Contributor: trishkovach Created: 4 years ago Updated: 4 years ago
Alphonzo Green was born 8 July 1810, in Brookfield, New York, the son of Daniel Green and Nancy Crumb Green.. The area of his hometown was east of the Palmyra area, but was experiencing the same religious revival excitement there as was in Joseph Smith’s hometown.
The town of Hamilton where Betsy lived was near Brookfield, only about twenty miles distance. At this time we have no record of how they met. We do know that they had each joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and that her family, the Joseph and Sally Murdock family, also joined when they accepted what the missionaries told them of the restored Gospel.
Alphonzo and Betsy were married on December 29, 1936 in her hometown of Hamilton. Madison County, New York by Archibald Wilsey. They had their first child, Alva Alphonzo, in Hamilton 15 September 1839. They had large farm and property holdings and it took some time for them to dispose of it so that they could join up with the saints. They left New York and moved to Nauvoo, Illinois, the center of Zion at that time.
In Nauvoo they were able to purchase considerable property, and they enjoyed the fellowship of the saints there. It was not long before the persecutions became intense, culminating in the martyrdom of the Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother, Hyrum in June 1844. Betsy gave birth a month later to a daughter, Sarah Annadella, on 31 July 1844. The mobs were relentless in their tactics to get the Mormons to leave all that they had worked so hard for. They stayed to see the Temple completed enough to receive their Endowments in the Nauvoo Temple.
They were finally forced to leave all their comforts and warm fires, to cross the frozen Mississippi River in February of 1846. They camped on the Iowa side of the Mississippi long enough to get organized into groups of pioneers to make the trek all the way across the state of Iowa to Council Bluffs. The trip was arduous and took longer than anyone had expected it to. The food ran low, and the spring rains made the trails quagmires. The heavy oxen and heavier wagons sank deep into the mud. They finally reached the Missouri River and were able to replenish some supplies in the frontier town of Council Bluffs. They made a treaty with the Indian Nations to be able to stay for a certain length of time on the Indian side of the Missouri in a place they called Winter Quarters. It is now the area of Florence, Nebraska, near Omaha.
They had to live for the first while in their wagons until small log homes or dug-out homes could be built into the sides of the hills there. They planted crops that spring which would help other pioneers later, but which they would never see mature. Food was scarce, cattle were stolen by the Indians, disease was rampant, and many people were dying and being buried in a cemetery on the hill. It was a refining time for the saints of God. Alphonzo and Betsy did not lose their faith. They had joined the true Church of Jesus Christ.
ALPHONZO GREEN p.2
In the spring of 1847 the pioneer wagon trains began leaving Winter Quarters to travel over a thousand miles crossing country that would test their mettle. Alphonzo and his wife and two children were assigned to the Daniel Spencer Company of pioneers. With the group were more than a thousand head of cattle that had to be herded every foot of the way. Alphonzo and his seven-year old son, Alva, took an active part in herding the cattle. They experienced all the hardships and joys that were typical for the many groups of Utah Pioneers. They arrived in the Salt Lake Valley September 1847 and lived for a while in the fort, later moving to a log home in the First Ward when they finished building it.. Alphonzo kept a trading post for the time they were in the Salt Lake Valley. While they were there Joseph Daniel was born to them on the day after Christmas, 26 December 1852. He lived only just over two weeks, dying 14 January 1853.
In the fall of that year, they packed up their belongings and traveled south to Lake Town, which later became American Fork. There they helped build a fort to protect them from the hostile Indians in the area. They had not been there a month when Betsy had another baby boy, named John Murdock, but he only lived less than a day. No date other than “October 1853” is given.
Their son, Alva, was a big help to them, helping to build a cabin for the family in the fort for with the logs that they cut down in the canyons about ten miles to the north-east. Still, it was a day’s journey with mules and wagons to get there. There was a stream running through the fort, probably the American Fork River or a branch of it. The cattle were grazed there, and the barns and homes were around the perimeter. Alphonzo, or Alph, had a large barn there and a nice vegetable garden by his home.
As the threat of hostility with Indians lessened, the people began to homestead land for their farms and homes. Alph and Betsy decided to build an adobe brick home about two miles to the west of where the fort had been on the Old County Road that went west toward Lehi. They made the bricks with clay and straw formed in molds and left in the sun to dry rock-hard. The information about how to make adobes had been brought back to the saints by the Mormon Battalion Members who learned about it in Santa Fe while on their march. They made nicer homes than the smaller and darker log cabins that were common before adobes.
They built for over a year to make a spacious home for their family and for the hotel guests that would come there for the next several years. Alphonzo had a very large barn also made of adobe bricks that was about forty by one hundred feet. It accommodated twenty horses, ten to twelve being in it all of the time. He contracted with the Overland Stage Company to board the horses needed when the stage would stop to get fresh horses. His corral was always full of beautiful horses. Hay was kept in the loft where it could be pitched down for the stock to eat. He could use a pitch fork with ease. The floors in the stalls were plank with rock floors in the center.
They drew water from an old surface well, drawing it up in an old bucket with a pole and chain. Every fall the men in those early pioneer days took about a month to haul cedar wood from the hills. Once in a while they went up through Provo Canyon to Coalville about 150 miles away, almost into Wyoming, to get coal because if would burn hotter than wood and for a longer time.
He raised sheep and was famous for his nice clean wool. The trick was that he would take the sheep to the mill pond to wash the sheep before they were sheared. They always had soft clean wool to card and spin. One night a
neighbor’s dog got into the sheep, and killed them all. That ended their sheep industry.
They raised turkeys, chickens, geese, goats, pigs, cows and everything that they would need to run a gracious hotel. In the winter, Alph would go to the Utah Lake and cut large blocks of ice to bring home. It was stored in an ice house deep in the ground, and the ice was covered with saw dust to insulate it. It could be used almost the whole summer that way. He grew a large garden and stored the root vegetables in the root cellar for use later in the year. He had large orchards of peaches, pears, and apricots. Strawberries and native berries were made into jam or dried on clean cloths on the roof in the summer. He grew sugar cane, not sugar beets, and hauled the canes to the mill where it was made into molasses. The women used the molasses in many of their desserts.
He saw to it that Betsy had all that she needed to have a gracious and tasty dining room for their guests and their family. He was the overseer for the hotel, often having a guest list of twenty-five people. Many famous people would stop for a pleasant meal and a clean and comfortable bed as they journeyed from Salt Lake City south to as far away as St. George. They always had room for their large extended family passing through on the way to General Conference in Salt Lake. Sometimes in the rainy times the roads would become impassable and the guests would have to stay extra days at the Green Hotel until the Overland Stage could be on the way again. The stage was pulled by four to six horses depending on the destination and the terrain to be traveled.
Alph was a hard working, stern man who was accurate and thorough in all he did. He wanted it done RIGHT! He was especially fond of fine horses and used to drive a pair of sorrel horses to Salt Lake every two months for supplies. His favorites he called Jim and Kit.
He and Betsy both believed in the righteous practice of plural wives, so when he asked Elizabeth Chadwick to marry him, Betsy was overjoyed and went with them to Salt Lake when they were sealed 13 December 1869. At that time Alphonzo was fifty-nine years old. They had three children together.
He lived for another six years before he died 6 August 1875 in American Fork. His funeral was held at the old bowery where the City Hall stands now. He was buried in the American Fork Cemetery on the Nob Hill.
BETSY BONNEY MURDOCK GREEN
Contributor: trishkovach Created: 4 years ago Updated: 4 years ago
BETSY BONNEY MURDOCK GREEN
Betsy Bonney Murdock was born in Hamilton, New York on 6 May 1810. Her parents were wealthy land-owners in their community and had many people working for them. Her mother died when she was only seven years old, and her step-mother, Sally, raised her and taught her many helpful traits. 1
Hamilton was about forty-five miles east of Palmyra, not far from the easternmost finger-lake. It witnessed the same kinds of religious-revival excitement that was happening in Joseph Smith's hometown in his youth. She was only five years younger than he was, so she experienced many of the same things that he did. When her family heard the early missionaries they were converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and were baptized in 1836. The main body of the Church was in Kirtland at that time.
Two years later, she married Alphonzo Green who was born and raised in Brookfield, New York, a town about ten miles distant to the east. Their first child, Alva Alphonzo Green, was born in 1839 in Hamilton. As soon as they could settle their affairs n New York, the Greens and the Murdocks moved to join with the body of the Saints in Nauvoo.
It was a pleasant, prosperous era for them as they built a home, owned land for a farm, and were quite prosperous. They helped in the temple-building and were endowed in the Nauvoo Temple. It was just one month after the deaths of Joseph Smith and Hyrum that Betsy's daughter, Sarah Annadella was born. The persecution became intense for all of the saints, so they left all of their holdings and crossed the frozen Mississippi in their ox-drawn covered wagons in February of 1846.
As they crossed Iowa in the spring of 1846, they experienced terrible hardships. The muddy trail caused the heavy wagons to sink hub-deep in the mud. Some days were spent straining to move wagons using several extra ox-teams to try to move one wagon through the mud. Sometimes as they camped at night they could see in the near distance the area where they had camped the night before. It took as long for those poor people to slog that three hundred miles across Iowa as it did for the pioneers to go 1000 miles from Winter Quarters to the Great Salt Lake Valley the next year.
In Winter Quarters on the west side of the Missouri River they had to build log cabins while they lived in their wagons. As spring came, they cleared the land and planted crops for those saints that would be coming later, knowing that they would not ever see the harvest themselves. In late June of 1847 they began their long trek crossing the plains in the Daniel Spencer Company. There were several companies traveling together, and they drove a herd of more than a thousand cattle as they came. They arrived in the valley in late September, just two months after Brigham Young had declared that this was indeed ''the place." They must have passed Brigham as he traveled back to Winter Quarters where he was sustained as the Prophet and the 2nd President of the Church. That took place in the Kanesville Tabernacle which had been built specifically for that purpose. He went back because the body of the saints had to sustain him, and there were too few, at that time, in the Salt Lake Valley.
After arriving Betsy and Alph lived in the fort in Salt Lake, and later lived in the First Ward area for about six years. Their third child, Joseph, was born there, but after only a month he died in January of 1853.
They farmed the arid land, dug irrigation ditches, and experienced the miracle of the seagulls eating the devastating locusts that were devouring the critically needed crops. Their prayers and thanks joined with those of the other saints in the valley. Brigham Young called them along with several other families to colonize in the area along the American Fork River in northern Utah Valley. So, in the fall of 1853 they arrived in their covered wagons to yet another new place. A month later their last child, John, was born and died the same day.
They joined with the others to build up a fort with a thick stone wall surrounding it. It was 80 rods square or about 1320 feet squared or 440 yards squared. In later times you would say that one side was about one and a half football fields long. The smallish American Fork River ran through it, providing fresh water necessary for the settlers and for the livestock. They built log cabins with logs from the canyon ten or so miles to the northeast They built corrals for their stock toward the river, and built their homes nearer the outer walls. There was room for a kitchen garden, a barn, some out-buildings and a home on each plot ofland in the Fort.
Mills were soon built nearby on the hill to the north, sometimes called the bench, where the falling waters could be used for power to grind or whatever was required. One was a grain mill which was built a bit later and is still standing on First East and about Fifth North. Another was a molasses mill which took the sugar cane that they grew. The women and the children often cut the sugar cane, stripped it, and hauled if to the mill run by Brother Wagstaff. The cane was cooked in a large vat and was stirred with paddles turned by the power supplied by horses going round and round. The girls were required to skim the molasses, and they could take the skimmings home. Molasses was used for cakes, cookies, candy, and for preserving.
The settlers had dances and rodeos, pole-climbs, and parades for some of their amusements and celebrations. On the 24th of July in 1856 a big parade was held for Pioneer Day. Her son,' Alva, led 24 seventeen year-old young men.as they marched holding aloft a Book of Mormon in their right hand emblematic of the great work they were called to perform in the Last Days.
They lived in the Fort for over four years until they could homestead their own lands and build a home there. Alphonzo and Alva spent over a year building a large adobe home on the Old County Road about two miles west of the central part of American Fork. It became a hotel where many weary travelers found comfortable lodgings and wonderful food.
On Christmas Day of 1863 Betsy prepared for the wedding of her daughter, Sarah Annadella, to James Chipman. She cooked a wedding supper and made her home beautiful for the wedding. Her son, Alva, caught the spirit and asked his long-time sweetheart, Elizabeth Lucretia Buckwalter, to marry him right then, as well. So they had a double wedding and a joint celebration and supper.
Alva and Elizabeth, or Libby, as everyone knew her, lived in a part of the big Green home for a few years until Alva was able to build his own large home one mile east of Betsy' s on the same main County Road. Eleven children were born to them at home, which is still being lived in and is in good condition.
There was a large garden and barn on the Green property. The Overland Stage made a regular stop at their hotel and exchanged horses there. The large barn held stalls for the stage horses as well as their own. Leonard Smith exchanged horses and boarded them there during the early days of Stage-coaching. They never saw such beautiful horses as those that the stage people had. A Mr. Salisbury owned them and had bought them in the East. Dick Mitchell worked for the Greens and was in charge of all the horses. The Overland Stage served from the north end of the state, through Salt Lake and all the way to St. George.
When the stage would stop at noon the passengers would come in to the hotel and have dinner. Many times Betsy would have twenty people at her table. The road used to be so muddy in the spring of the year that they could hardly travel. At conference time visitors from Provo and southern Utah would overnight there on their way to Salt Lake. Murdock relatives always planned to stay as they went north for supplies or conference. It was said that the home of the Greens was always noted "From the north to the south end of the state where a weary traveler always found comfortable lodgings for man or beast," In a newspaper an article was printed about their hotel. A Pleasant Call
Our overtaxed business men who want a pleasant drive for a few miles, to momentarily relieve them from the cares of their wealth, can find as pleasant a resting spot as they could desire at Brother Alphonzo Green's at American Fork.. He does not seek business; he has plenty of it, but his house is comfortable, pleasantly situated, and the good lady's table is not surpassed anywhere that we can think of. For a couple of days it is a pleasant out.
Her granddaughter, Vilate, wrote of her that Grandma Green was kind and good to everyone; was never known to speak an unkind word; was a busy homemaker and mother. She lived to love and serve. Her life was in keeping with the first and greatest commandment ... "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all they heart, and with all they soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind, and thy neighbor as thyself." She would invite tramps and the Indians who came to her door to come into her home and to eat at her table, often giving them a bag of food to help them on their way. There was as old fellow named Joe who tramped the country. He always found entertainment at the Green home for two or three days. At one time a woman named Mrs. Dawson, with a family, was kept by Grandma Green all one winter during which time she gave birth to a baby. When they left, the good Samaritan gave them half a pig for good measure.
Betsy was a hard worker who cured hams and bacon, and dried meat. She put up kegs of pickles, barrels of sauerkraut, jars and jars of peaches, apricots, pears, and prunes. She grew a large garden of vegetables and rhubarb which she stored in the winter under the house in a cellar. She made her own candles in candle molds, cooked and formed soap for her hotel guests to use and for the laundry. Her husband cut large blocks of ice from the frozen Utah Lake, hauled it home in wagons, and stored it in a deep ice house covered with saw- dust so that they could use it in the hot summer. In her home quilting frames were often set up for a new quilt to be made. Rocking chairs for hotel guests and family commonly add raw-hide seats tanned and stretched by Betsy. Most of the wood floors were bare and scrubbed clean with sand. Hand-crocheted rag rugs covered much of her home's floors. Her dried apple pies and peach pies were famous for years.3
They kept cows, raised ducks and geese, turkeys, goats and sheep. They would take the sheep to the mill pond to wash the wool before shearing and it would be soft and clean before it was sheared, carded, and spun into cloth. She was often tired at the end of the day and would sit at night with a candle. She would nod with sleepiness as the flame would flicker as she read. Before retiring she would often have a bowl of bread and milk with a bit of cheese.
Her daughter, Sarah, died of diphtheria, leaving four children whom Betsy practically raised. One of them was President Stephen L. Chipman who was the Stake President for years, and the mayor for some years. She also raised an Indian girl named Josephine who died of diphtheria about the same time as Sarah. She left four children whom Betsy raised.
She believed in the righteous practice of polygamy and when her 59-year old husband took Elizabeth Chadwick as his second wife and was sealed to her in the Endowment House on 13 December 1869, she was happy for them. They had four children in their family. Her husband died on 6 August 1875 at the age of 65 and his funeral was held at the old bowery in American Fork.
Betsy lived seven years longer than Alphonzo. Alva was her only living child while she was a widow, and she was especially fond of him. She had seen him pass her home on his way to Lehi. She had a luscious melon she wanted to share with his family, and she was anxious that she might not see him coming home and might miss him. She decided to go to his home, a distance of about a mile, to invite them to a watermelon feast. She walked up the road to the creek and then walked along on the train tracks to cross over the water. Being quite deaf, she did not hear the fast approaching freight train. It knocked her off the tracks to the side of the road, killing her. Some gypsies camping nearby were the first to get to her. They stole her gold earrings right off her ears. The news of her death spread quickly through the town. People came nmning in great numbers to the scene of the accident They all lamented, ''Oh, poor Grandma Green, killed by a train!" The gypsies thought that she must have had a great posterity to have so many grandchildren, She died 1 October, 1883 at the age of seventy-three.
One of her favorite poems tells a lot about the kind of woman that she was.
THE HOUSE BY THE SIDE OF THE ROAD By Sam Walter Foss
There are hermit souls that live withdrawn
In the peace of their self-content;
There are souls, like stars that dwell apart,
In a fellow-less firmament.
There are pioneer souls that blaze their paths
Where highways never ran;
But let me live in a house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.
Let me live in a house by the side of the road,
Where the race of men go by.
The men who are good and the men who are bad,
As good and as bad as I.
I would not sit in the comer's seat, .
Or hurl the cynic's ban;
Let me live in the house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.
I see from my house by the side of the road,
By the side of the highway of life,
The men who press with the ardor of hope,
The men who are faint with the strife.
But I turn not away from their smiles nor their tears,
Both are part of an infinite plan.
Let me live in a house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.
I know there are brook-laden meadows ahead,
And mountains of wearisome height;
That the road passes through the long afternoon,
And stretches away to the night.
But still I rejoice when the travelers rejoice,
And weep with the strangers that moan.
Nor live in my house by the side of the road like a man who dwells alone.,
Let me live in my house by the side of the road
Where the race of men go by;
They are good, they are bad, they are weak, they are strong,
Wise, foolish so am I.
Then why should I sit in the Scorner's seat
Or hurl the cynic's ban?
Let me live in a house by the side of the road and be a friend to man.