Letters written by Charles Wilkins to his mother Jane Rixon Wilkins in England
Contributor: guthrm Created: 2 years ago Updated: 2 years ago
South Cottonwood Ward Jan 12, 1863
I once more take the pleasure of writing a few lines to you hoping it will find you as well as can be expected under the circumstances which you are in at present We are all well only the children a troubled a little with the whooping cough I expect by this time you are out of patience waiting to hear from us Elizabeth and me had intended writing to you before but we thought you would write to us when you received her letter We went to the post office a great many times and inquired for a letter but it got mislaid and was overlooked some way and I never got it untill yesterday So you must bare with us for not writing before Elizabeth arived
here the latter part of September prety well worn down with the fatague of the jerney but she is got over that and got fat and plenty of applycations for marrige all ready I was sorry when I found you was not coming because I am confident you cannot be in a much worse hell than you are now I was also sorry when I heard of father’s death I should very much liked to have seen him but I did not have the privilege But I have learned this much in my experience not to let
onavoidable ocurances make me on happy But yet I do believe if he had come here a few years before he would be living yet But I know how he was He had not nerve and fortitude enough to leave that old blacksmith shop untill he had hammerd and blowed himself almost to death And the lord had suffered to be that he was so cornered up that it was about the only thing he could do or go into that disunion called union With all his weaknesses and failings I very much respected him and I am satisfied it will be allright with him We understand that it is the
lords business to take care of his saints and it is the saints business to try and take care of themslves and every lawfull effort and stratagem should be made to that end and purpose
Dear mother I would be glad if you could come this season to the valley I don’t know wheather the emigration will be sage or not this season but the prophet will know I am sattisfied of that Where is the individual that has his douts wheather mormonism is true or not I will put the question to myself Do I No not for one moment I jest as much believe mormonism to be true as I believe there is a god A person that embrases the gospel of Jesus Christ or mormonism if you please and subject themselves to its laws are jest as shure of salvation as the sun will shine tomorrow Well but says one But this brother dont do everything right neather does he say everything right And for this reason I dont hardly know what to make of it I scarcely know whether it is true or not Now I here will ask a question Is there such a thing as perfection to be found among imperfect beings Let each one of us look at 2 ourselves and I think we will find plenty of it right at home This is the reason why the lord has set in his church the various officers for the perfecting of his saints and the work of the ministry and the edifying of the body of Christ ontill we all come into the unity of the faith Who cannot see that the prophesies are fulfilling as fast as time can bring it about And it behoves us as latterday saints to be faithful to our covenents that we might not share the same fate as the ongodly
Dear mother I should very much like to see you here this fall It dont take much to bring one individual across the sea If there is half a chance dont mis it for nothing For if you do it will be a thorn in you as long as you live If there is aney of the Brethren that you are acquainted with that has conciderable influence that can help you ask them to do so and when they comes home call on me and I will try and satisfy them for their help I know there is maney of the saints that are right around you that mightof been here long ago if they had felt disposed to And I know they are not happy I could point them out and name them easey enough but I dont feel like doing so at present I felt sory for James loosing his wife I know it makes things bad and look bad I feel for you all that are tied in that oppressive country I have been onfortunate since I have been here and have lost property enough to bring you all out here I have been porrer than aney of you but I am fixing up my famley a little comfortable now If I had the means at my command I whold freely devote it to fetching those of you out here that wish to come I don’t know of aneything that whold give me more joy But it is not in my reach I must concluse Please remember me to mother and father Drinkwater I wish then well and all the rest of them Remember me to all the saints I am a well wisher to you all I cannot
mention names so no more at present
From your never deviating son and daughter - Charles and Ury Wilkins
Note: In a margin was written – father and Mother Welch sends their best respects to you
South Cottonwood Ward
Great S. L. Co. Utah Territory July 2, 186(?)
I take the present opportunity of answering your letter with some degree of plesure I dont know who I am writing to but I suppose all hands Some one rote but he did not put his signature at the bottom so I was left to guess I feel so full this morning I scarsly know where to begin
Dear mother I feel sory to hear that you are so poorly But I dont know how I could expect much else under the circumstances It appears by the letter I had you wishes to come here and 3 that you need help I have thought a great deal about it Still I have nothing to regret about on my part concirning the matter I have hat to fight my way through the best I could being inexperienced in the manadgment of the afaiers of life When I first went to Illinois I did not know how make money If I had I could of made a thousand dollars jest as easey as a hundred I saw that about the time I left their And when I come to this country it seemed still more strange no money pasing I felt rather bad Seemed onfortunate Had a great maney losses
one way and another and still have them once in a wile Two hundred dollars whold hardly cover the loss I have had now within a year I have a wife and five children and to undertake to soport them by working out by the day whold be a pretty hard concern I have rented land for some time but I thought I might jest as well have land of my own as to have to pay rent for it And it takes means to get all these things I have a nice little farm situated in a good place and the land is very level Two years ago I had to bild a house and last year I had to bild a seller and
a grainery and this year I have to bild a new stable And so you see there is always something to be done I have worked very hard and to a great disadvantage for want of means And that is the reason why I have been shaping things so that I whold not have to work so much And for a man to make aney kind of a start for himself he must be worth a 1000 dollars You may think perhaps I ought to have lots of _____ by me But the wants of a famley are maney and I am a man that likes to make my famley comfortable
Now to come to the point about your coming here The question is are you able to stand the jerney You cannot form a correct idea of that hardous task It is a tiresome concirn onless you had plenty of money to pay out to wait on you for you are getting along in years I was in hopes that some of the elders that you had fed and sheltered whold of asisted you a little but that is the way of it I know all about it And if ever you start on that jirney you will see the weakness of humannature exhibited more than you ever have in your life before At least I did It is everybody for himself and the good man for us all
Now about the means to get you here I don’t know as their will be aney trouble by another spring but what we can fix that allright for you But I can tell you where you missed it that you did not come along when father and Elizabeth come away And I expect you feel it now I blame father for not coming some years ago when he could have done it but he was so chicken hearted and console himself by saying providence will open the way Let me tell you providence as opened _____ the way some years ago It needs some exertion and energy on our part
Dear mother I don’t blame you aney but the man is the responsible party Now I never have seen the time yet but what there is a chance for men to free themselves from bondage and oppression if they will take it at the right time in ninety nine cases out of a hundred You will see young men in full viger and strength of body They will waste their strength and their 4substance that god has blessed them with and then get married in the depeths of poverty and then complain about it Now I whold ask a question Is god to blame for this I answer no We are all born in this world and it is our duty to make the best of it If you want a farm go where it can be got If you want a cow Get one If you want a horse Get one I look at it like this
There is plenty of room in this world and plenty of land and if it is not where we are we had better go where it is I consider the air is as free for me to breathe as aney other man and if I can find a portion of land onocupied it is as free for me as aney other man Now do you sopose if I was in England with my present famley and know what I do that England whold hold me aney more than one year I tell you nay Jesus says save yourselves from this ontoward generation The man that rote your letter I don’t know who he was Said there is a will their is a way
That I fully belive But he said you was all in hell together and could not help yourselves Now you see he did not believe is own words If he did he wold believe their wold be some way to get out
Dear mother write to me again as soon as you can We rode over and seen elizabeth last sunday after we got your letter and we talked the matter over I don’t know as I have anything to say about her as she said she had rote to you Aney more than they are well I will write to you again after a little I will stop a little Elizabeth is jest come
Dear mother if you can only manage to live to get here you can share with us and make yourself at home here and take all the pleasure you can Aneybody can live with Ury She is one of the most peaceable woemen that ever lived Try and make this out as well as you can I have not room for more I will write again soon
With our best respects to you all - Charles and Ury Wilkins and children don’t ferget to write
South Cottonwood Ward G.S.L. Co. Utah Terrt Feb 14th 1866
Dear mother I take great pleasure at this time in writing to you again and I hope you are well and all the rest as I feel happy to say we are at present acsept Urys mother She as not been well for a long time I expect you began to think I did not intend to write to you aney more and now I will tell you the reason
Last year money was very plenty here and I did not know but what it might be the same now But things took a change and instead of plenty it is very Scarce indeed And I was not able to tell until about a week ago that I could do aneything for you But as fortune wold have it I had a chance of doing a little hauling with my team It was a small Job and I went to work in good ernest and with good faith that it was the lord that had thrown it in my way to make the money 5 This job had to be done in a herry so I went one sunday while the rest of the folkes was at meeting and felt perfectly Justified in doing so under the circumstances So that is the way I
got the money and the reason I did not write was because I had not the money and I did not know where it was coming from And now I have not sent you as much as I wold like to have done but it is the best I can do So with a little good managment and econemey I guess you can make out to get along I live in hope of it at aney rate You will see upon this check or draught that you are to recive eight pounds You can show it to your precedent See that you get your rights and try and take care of yourself as much as possible I don’t think I wold bother myself
with much luggage but what is very usefull It will only serve to perplex you There is one thing I should be very glad if you could bring along and that is a faging hook One of the fusel make I don’t want the largest size nor the smallest but a mediome sixed one And please get one that has no cramp to it I like them much the best Do that much for me if it don’t give you to much trouble John will go and buy that for you I wish that the whole bach of you could come but it dont lay in my power to get you out If Johns oldest son was here and was a good
hand with a team and wold be carefull he could soon help his father out here I think if he was here and he whold harken to my council I believe I could put him in the way of it You might say how it is that I cant do more Why I will tell you when I first come here their was not such a good chance as there is now and another thing I was a stranger to this country I did not know how to manage and I had no one to take me by the hand and show me And now I have quite a
famley to take care of and it keeps me kind of buisey We have five children and we will have another in a few weeks if we have good luck
I dont know that I have much more to say now But I whold like if John whold write me a good long letter or aney of you And not look for me to write to them all the time They all have my best wishes
Dear mother I whold like if you whold write to me as soon as you get this and let me know how things is prospering with you Elizabeth and her husband was at our house last Sunday and I told her I was a going to send for you They was all well She is expecting another little stranger in about a week I should go over there and get her to write a few lines but I want you to get this as quick as posible For I know you will have no time to spare There are five hundred teams going from the valley to the frontiers to bring along the saints And when you get their you enquire for the cottonwood teams and teamsters for they all know me I am well acquainted with all of them Give my best respects to all my friends and acquaintances The
names are too newmerous to mention
May god bless you all and try and bless yourselfs Your never deviating son and daughter -
Charles and Ury Wilkins
Contributor: guthrm Created: 2 years ago Updated: 2 years ago
Charles Wilkins was the first sexton of the South Cottonwood Cemetery - later named Murray City Cemetery.
He held this position for 20 years.
The first grave was dug in 1874.
Family records show birthplace as Bucklebury, Berks, England.
He migrated to the United States in 1861 on the ship Ellen. He made the voyage with his first wife, Elizabeth Drinkwater, who died crossing the plains.
Mother of Lillian Wilkins Weaverling
Married to Ury Welch
Children: Clarissa (Manwaring); Ury Harriet (Severson); Charles Albert; Heber Christopher; Nephi (Twin); Ely (Twin died at birth); Jesse; Charlotte Anne (Sherwood); William Henry; Mary Jane (Hanson); Rueben; Andrew; Stephen Job (died at 7 mo's); Lydia Louise (died at 16); & Nettie Luella (Randall)
He is in Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah - page 1247 , Our Pioneer Heritage - page 162, & many of the books written about Murray Utah history.
History of Herbert Manwaring
Contributor: guthrm Created: 2 years ago Updated: 2 years ago
My father, Henry Manwaring, was of a religious nature. He went to the different churches to learn which of them had the true Gospel, and for six years investigated different creeds, including the Gospel of the Latter-day Saints. He was a shoemaker and worked for some length of time in a shop with a friend who was a member of the Latter-Day Saint Church. He prayed for a testimony of the truth. He had heard the Latter-day Saint missionaries preach and had heard members of the branch in Sandbach speak in tongues, enjoying the gifts of the Gospel that the Lord said should be in His Church. Still, he wanted a stronger testimony for himself. He was in his garden one day behind a hedge near his bees praying for a more sure testimony when he heard a voice telling him that the Latter-day Saint Church was the true Church. He had no more doubt and was baptized right away and remained true to the faith.
Mother did not join til sometime later; I think in the same year. I do not know the exact date but it must have been in 1861. Having been taught the principles of the Gospel, I was baptized in June of 1862 by Robert Bate, then President of the Sandbach branch, and was ordained a deacon about the middle of that month. The president of the branch later apostatized and Father was made president. There were only two families besides ours left in that branch. Father’s sister Ellenor was the only relative to come into the Church. She did not live long after becoming a member. I do not know how old she was when she died, but she was only a young woman. She was unmarried and worked at the silk factory.
Mother had nine children, seven boys and two girls. The last one, a baby, became very sick and they did not know what to do about his being blessed and given a name before he died. Grandfather wanted to bring the vicar of the Church of England, but my father did not want him to come. The missionary elder of that district, although he was miles away, was prompted and walked nearly all night to get there. He arrived about daylight and blessed the child and gave it the name of William and it died soon afterward. That was another instance where the servant of the Lord was inspired to come to comfort and bless, with no other warning except through the Holy Spirit. They did not know where the elder was; neither did he know what he was wanted for, but he knew where he was wanted and got there in time.
My folks and I had been in the Church about four years when the elders councilled them to send me to Zion as I could be of more help in assisting them to emigrate by going to Utah then by staying there. I was working on a brick yard in summer and had to go back to the shoe trade in winter and I did not like that. So, Father hired me out to the farmers when I was about 16 for the enormous sum of one proud sterling, not quite $5.00 in paper currency, for a year’s work. Well, I stayed that year and hired out to the same man for the year 1866 for two pounds. Word came that a ship would sail for New York with a load of Saints and that my folks had better send me. I was going home every Sunday to meeting at Father’s house and I got up to bear my testimony and said I would like to go to Zion, or to the valleys of the mountains, but I guessed I would not be able to that year as I was hired for the year and my boss didn’t want to release me. After I sat down a Sister Nancy Bate got up and spoke in tongues. When she sat down Father asked if any one had the interpretation of what Sister Bate had said. No one had so she got up again and these are the words she said, “Brother Herbert, thus saith the Lord: If you will be faithful you shall go to the land of Zion and you shall be the means of helping your parents and brothers and sisters to that land. You will have difficulties and trials to pass through but if you will be faithful you shall do that thing.”
Well, Father, Mother and I held a council and concluded that I should run away from my place of employment, which I did on the night of the 25th of April, 1866. I left my employer, went to town and got a hair cut, then went to Father’s and stayed over night. I did not even visit my relatives to say goodbye as I thought they might give me away. I said goodbye to those at home, then Father and I walked six miles through by-lanes and fields carrying a sixty-pound trunk, till we arrived at a junction station called Crewe, where we met a family who were going to New York on the same ship as I. As Father was acquainted with them, they being members of the branch of which Father was president, he placed me in their care and we said goodbye to Father and boarded the train for Liverpool. After all arrangements were made we boarded the ship “John Bright” a sailing vessel, and on Sunday morn, the 26th of April, 1866, we set sail for New York.
There was great rejoicing among the passengers for a day or two till some got sea-sick and the ship was becalmed out in mid-ocean and was not sailing forward. Well, many prayers wen up that we might sail on. Finally a favorable wind came up and we were sailing again. Then a heavy wind came and it looked as if we would be swallowed up. For two or three days the waves came like mountains and nearly tipped the ship over sidewise, then we had heard winds and the ship would seem to be ducking under the great waves. We could scarcely cook anything during this time. Many prayers went up for our safety and favorable wind that we might arrive in port, which we did after being on the ocean forty days.
We were in Castle Gardens a few hours, then started afoot to a steamboat port where we boarded a boat and sailed all night. From steamboat went to railroad cars—sometimes velvet seats and sometimes cattle cars with plank seats and a little straw on the floor. Sometimes we camped out waiting for a train to come and pick us up, or a steamboat. We finally landed at Florence, Nebraska, where we camped for a month waiting for the ox trains from Utah to get loaded up with freight and luggage for Utah. There were about 50 wagons in a train, two or three yoke to a wagon. We started from there about the last of July.
When we got to Laramie we were caped for noon when some Indians came into camp. Seeing a young woman that looked like an Indian girl, a young chief wanted to buy her, so one of the teamsters, to have some fun, agreed to sell the girl to him for three or four horses. He thought it was a bargain and went and got the horses. They had quite a time with him trying to make him believe that they were only in fun. But he was in earnest and went off angry because he could not get the girl.
Well, we traveled on two or three days, meeting Indians occasionally, but nothing occurred tillabout the third day at noon. We had camped on a creek bottom, where there was good feed for cattle, and were having dinner. The herders were herding the cattle and some of the women were working down on the reek when some Indians came among the cattle, waving their blankets, yelling and stampeding them. The herders came running in, telling every one who had a gun to come and help head them off. But before the boys could get out there, the Indians had got away with ninety head of cattle and three or four horses and were out of sight. The boys followed after four about a mile, when up jumped a lot of Indians that were lying across the road and yelled, “Come on, you dam Mormons.” But the boys had to turn aback without their cattle. And that was how the boys paid for a practical joke.
We could hardly move the train. They sent a telegram to President Young. He sent word to pick up all the oxen that had been left at ranches while going into Utah. Other trains had left some to recuperate while they had gone down to the frontiers. I think there were three or four ox trains that year. There was an Oregon freight train about three days ahead of us and their oxen stampeded one night and came back on the road and our herders headed them off, ran them into camp with ours, yoked them up and used them until we reached the Oregon train. So with their help and that which we got from ranches on the way we arrived in Salt Lake about the last of September, making a little over five months from the time I left home.
I left the Pleasant Grove boys at their homes and went to Springville to an Uncle of ours and stayed with him all that winter and worked at shoe mending. In the spring of 1867 I went to Salt Lake and hired out to an uncle, son-in-law of John Taylor, to drive team for a while. I later hired to Brigham Young on his farm, picked maldre root to dye woolen cloth. In the fall I hired to a farmer in Big Cottonwood, left him and hired to a man by the name of Clinton Tompson in South Cottonwood, a farmer. In the spring of 1868, the grasshoppers hatched out and took all the crops. They killed them by the myriads but when they could fly they were like a cloud between us and the sun. We could look right toward the sun and it would not make us blink, they were so thick.
I stayed with Tompson till 1870. I was engaged in cultivating potatoes one day when thunder storms were brewing and I was hurrying my horses to get through before it should rain on us. We got half way down the field when a lightning bolt struck us down. A dr. Hulenger(?) found us in the middle of the patch while he was searching for the place where the bolt had struck. As he was in a low meadow and I was on higher ground, he did not see me till he came to see where the lightning had struck. As the horse made no move, he came to me. I was stripped naked of all my clothes, which smelled like sulphur, and burnt down the breast. He shook me and felt my pulse but could not see or feel any sign of life in me. He tried to carry me but laid me down again and ran a quarter of a mile, hailing Tompson to bring a bucket of water. They ran back and the doctor kept darting water on me till I gasped for breath. Two men came from neighboring field and after I could breathe they carried me to the house. When about half way, they set me down a while to rest. I said, “What are you doing to me?” They told me that I had been struck with lightning. I said, “Where is the horse?” He was dead. I did not know anything about it till they told me.
They laid me on the porch. I said “Take me in the house. I feel like my legs will drop off.” They did so, and made me a bed on the floor. They administered to me and I became conscious of what had transpired. The doctor asked me what I saw on the other side. I said, “I guess I did not get there.”
“Well,” He said, “I could not see or feel any signs of life in you.” (As a result of the accident, Herbert was very deaf for the rest of his life.)
Well, he doctored my burns with clothes wrung out of cold spring water to take out the fire, and then put on castor oil and flour to heal the wound, which was as large as my hand all down my breast. It took two weeks to heal before I was able to get up out of bed. Many people came to see me and said they could not see how I could have been struck down and recover. It seemed like I had been raised from death. Well, that promise made me by Sister Bate had not come true yet. My folks were still in England and I was so weak I was not able to do a day’s work the balance of that year. But the Tompson were kind to me and I stayed with them and went to school that winter in South Cottonwood and did the chores for my board and lodging while my boss went out to Echo Canyon freighting from the end of the railroad that was being built to Utah.
In the spring of 1871 I was strong again and hired to Clinton Tompson for another summer. He said to me, “You say you want to send for your folks. Well, I have a little extra money. I will pay you $150 in advance. You can go to President Young and tell him you have folks in England who want to come to Utah and I have $150 to pay down.” I asked President Young, “Could you have them brought through the Perpetual Emigration Fund?” He looked me straight in the eye and said, “Young man, will you be responsible for the balance that will be due after they arrive?” I said, “Yes, Sir.” He said, “They shall be sent for.” He told his clerk to make a note of that and where they lived and assured me they would be brought over as soon as a ship could be charted to bring the saints from Liverpool.
My folks were living with Grandfather Manwaring when he died—at the age of 82 years. He had a little money laid away which he gave to Father and they came to Utah soon after his death. They came by steamship and boat and railroad all the way. They were only three weeks coming over-land as the railroad had been built into Salt Lake.
When I had been well five months, that promise came true, though I had been nearly killed before it came to pass and five years had passed away. But the Lord did preserve my life that I should be the means of emigrating them. They arrived safely but had to have many trials after they got here. My sister Mary was soon taken down with mountain fever and in two weeks she died. She was a fine young woman, about 15 years old. That was quite a trial for them. Father also came down with the same disease but survived. I only had two sisters. Ellenor married and had five children. She died before I went to live in Springville or Mapleton. Three of her children are dead. Only two daughters are living, one in Salt Lake and one in California.
Now, my good wife, Clarissa Wilkins, was living only a half mile West of Tompson where I lived. Her father helped to carry me to the house when I was struck by the wicked bolt of lightning. I was well acquainted with him, but not so well with the family until I commenced to keep her company not long before we were married. She was about 19 then. We were married in the old Endowment House by Joseph F. Smith, then one of the Apostles, on the 23rd of May 1876.* The next day we went out on the prairie to make our home without any neighbors to welcome us except a young fellow whe was a cattle herder. We went nine miles from her home with a little span of mules and an old wagon, bedding and some household utensils, to a rough lumber house about sixteen feet square with about $125 or $130 worth of furniture waiting to be used. There were no neighbors within a mile of us.
That is how we started life. O, she was a courageous little woman. I have never met one that I felt I could love better than her and I will joy, I am sure, when we meet again in that land where there is no more death or sickness to mar our happiness, where I can make good for many mistakes I have made and we will have joy in meeting with our friends and relatives and those we have helped to redeem.
June 23, 1934.
*CFI says 22 May 1876 EH
History of Charles Wilkins, Jr.
Contributor: guthrm Created: 2 years ago Updated: 2 years ago
LIFE HISTORY OF CHARLES WILKINS, JR
Charles Wilkins, Jr. was born 28 December 1827 in Bucklebury, Berkshire, England, the son of Charles Wilkins and Jane Rixon. He and his brother John were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in September 1849. In May or June of 1855 his mother, father, sister Elizabeth and perhaps other members of the family became members of the church.
The Wilkins family lived on a farm; the nearest town being Newby. As a young man, Charles worked for a man who grew reed to be made into baskets. Late in 1850 he married Elizabeth Drinkwater on
2 June 1850 in Thatcham, Berkshire, England. Elizabeth was born 16 January 1831 in Cold Ash, Thatcham, Berkshire, England.
On Wednesday, 8 January 1851, Charles and Elizabeth sailed from Liverpool on board the sailing vessel "Ellen." On the ship's register Charles' age is given as 22 and Elizabeth's as 19; his occupation was laborer. There were 466 saints onboard under the direction of James W. Cummings. All went on board on January 6, but the ship remained anchored in the river opposite Liverpool until about 11 a.m. On January 8 she ran at the rate of seven miles an hour until about 11 p.m. that night when she struck a schooner breaking her jib-boom, main, and foreyards. The following day they put into Cardigan Bay, New Wales, to repair. The wind changed the day the vessel put into port. They remained in port three weeks. The accident proved to be a blessing because many ships and lives were lost during this time due to the storms. The captain became impatient so they set sail January 23. The wind changed soon and on February 1 they lost sight of the Irish coast.
Nearly every child on board had measles; also some adults. There were ten deaths (two adults) during the voyage, six marriages, and one birth. The deaths were due to a cough similar to whooping cough.
The saints were divided into twelve wards (10 berths to each) with a President for each, then each ward was divided into two groups. A presidency over the priesthood was also organized. Men were appointed to visit every family twice a day and to administer to the sick.
After much bad weather and strong head winds, the ship docked at New Orleans, Louisiana on March 14. There the company chartered the steamer "Alexander Scott" to take the emigrants to St. Louis, Missouri. They paid $2.50 for each adult and half price for children, all luggage included. They left New Orleans the morning of March 19 and landed in St. Louis on March 26. Two children died coming up the river and one was born.
Charles and Elizabeth settled in Illinois where Charles worked for a farmer named Atwood to earn money for equipment to come to Utah. On 9 May 1852, their daughter Lillian was born at Madison, Illinois. Two years later in 1854, the little family started for Utah. They had an ox team and a lynch-pin wagon. They saw many large herds of buffalo. Some of the company would be sent to kill some to furnish buffalo meat for the travelers.
Many of the company died of cholera. A man whose wagon was near the end of the train and who was a dear friend of the Wilkins became ill and died. Elizabeth insisted on going to see him before he was buried--much against the wishes of her husband. She was well at the time but soon became ill and told her husband she was going to die. When she died, no one would come near so Charles wrapped her body in sheets and blankets and carried her out of the wagon to a grave the other men had dug. A straw tick was laid in the grave and her body was placed on it and covered over and she was buried on the plains.
A family named Welch, from Pilson and Marshwood, Dorsetshire, England, took care of baby Lillian during the rest of the journey. This family had also joined the church in 1849. On
4 September 1850 they sailed from Liverpool on board the ship "North America' with 357 saints under the presidency of David Sudworth and Hamilton G. Park. The family was listed as follows: Job Welch 40, carpenter; Charlotte Welch 47; Honor 20; Uriah 8; also Job's sister Ann, 44. The ship docked at New Orleans 1 November 1850.
About two years after reaching Utah, Charles married Uriah, or Ury, as she was known then age fourteen or fifteen. Charles had first lived in Malad, Idaho; then in Willard, Utah and later in South Cottonwood, Utah, where he settled, bought a farm and lived the remainder of his life. This area is now known as the Granger or Hunter area on the west side of the Salt Lake Valley. Their first child, Clarissa, was born in Willard, and their second, Ury Harriet, in Mill Creek. The rest of the fifteen children were born in South Cottonwood, two of them dying in infancy.
In 1862 Charles' father and sister Elizabeth left their home in England to come to Utah. During the sea voyage, their father died leaving Elizabeth to come alone the rest of the long journey to Utah. In August 1865 his mother wrote from Bucklebury, "If I had known how things would of turned out when Betsy and father went, I would have come along with them." Sometime between then and October 1873, when she had her own endowments at the Endowment House in Salt Lake, his mother came to Zion. After his mother came, Charles' brother John came to Utah and also another brother James, but James did not stay. None of the family knew whether he went to Australia as he had planned or just what did become of him. Charles' mother Jane made her home with her daughter and son and died at Charles' home on February 18, 1877. Charles had sent the money to bring his father, mother, and sister to Utah.
Besides farming, Charles did considerable butchering. He killed beef steadily for two years to supply the Orson A. Woolley Butcher Shop in Murray; killing two or three animals a week. Another time he took a contract to furnish another man beef for some time. Charles was Superintendent (manager) of the South Cottonwood Cemetery for twenty years.
Charles could also make shoes, and made some of his children's shoes. Jesse remembered one pair he made out of the uppers of an old pair of boots. They were handed down from one child to another. It seemed there was no way to wear them out.
Ury died 8 November 1891. Charles was married again to Harriet Cox and had been married about four years when he died 12 March 1896.
Jane Rixon Wilkins Life Sketch
Contributor: guthrm Created: 2 years ago Updated: 2 years ago
Jane Rixon Wilkins
Born: December 2, 1799 at Berkshire, England
Daughter of: James Rixon and Mary Pauling
Married: Charles Wilkins Sr. on December 16, 1820 in
Mother of: Caroline Wilkins (1821-1829); James
Wilkins (1822); John Hatter Wilkins (1824-1905);
Jane Wilkins (1825-1902); Charles Wilkins Jr.
(1827-1896); William Wilkins (1830-1831); William Henry Wilkins (1831-
1832); Christopher Wilkins (1833) and Elizabeth Wilkins (1835-1918)
Died: February 18, 1877 at South Cottonwood, Salt Lake, Utah
Buried: February 1877 in the South Cottonwood/Murray City Cemetery, Utah
Jane Rixon Wilkins was married to a blacksmith, Charles Wilkins Sr. They
became acquainted with missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints and were baptized June 9, 1855. Jane and Charles, with their children, talked off
leaving England as the conditions were becoming oppressive and more difficult each
day. They felt moving to America and making a home among members of their faith
would provide better opportunities for them.
Their son Charles and his wife Elizabeth left England in 1851. By 1854 their son
Charles was in the Utah Territory and making his home there. Charles wrote home to
England often and encouraged his family to join him in America. The challenge to pay
passage for each member of the Wilkins family was overwhelming. Charles Sr. was not
a young man, neither did he have good health, but it was finally decided that he and his
youngest daughter, Elizabeth, should come first and then once they were settled he
would send for his wife. Charles Sr. and Elizabeth set sail for America April 23, 1862 on
the ship ‘John J. Boyd’.
During the voyage, Charles Sr. experienced continual health problems. Days
past with no improvement and he passed away just weeks into the journey. Charles Sr.
was buried at sea in the Atlantic Ocean.
Elizabeth continued to America and at her first opportunity wrote her mother:
I expect you will hear before this reaches you that father is dead…father died
near a fortnight before we landed at New York. He filled in with the dropsy very
fast, which you need not be surprised for it was coming on before he left home.
In August 1865, Charles’ mother wrote him from Bucklebury, “If I had known
how things would have turned out when Betsy and father went, I would have come
along with them.”
Charles sent for his mother in February 1866. She was sixty five years old at this
time. The date of her travel to America is unsure, but Jane Rixon Wilkins immigrated to
America and traveled to Utah where she settled in with her daughter, Elizabeth, who
lived near her son, Charles, at South Cottonwood, Salt Lake. Utah.
Jane was active in the Church and busied herself in the community. She received
her own endowments in the Endowment House in Salt Lake, October 8, 1873.
Jane Rixon Wilkins died at Charles’ home February 18, 1877 and was buried in
the South Cottonwood/Murray City Cemetery.
This Fact Sheet for Jane Rixon Wilkins was compiled from documents and other records collected and kept in the
Family History Library of K. Oswald.