BIOGRAPHY OF ELI WILLIAM OPENSHAW
Contributor: trishkovach Created: 9 months ago Updated: 9 months ago
Eli William Openshaw was born 18 June 1864 in Santaquin, Utah, Utah Territory to Eli and Levinah Riste Openshaw. He was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on 3 July 1873 at the age of nine.
His father Eli Openshaw was born 1 February 1835 in Bolton, Breightmet,Lancashire, England to William and Ann Walmsley Greenhalgh Openshaw. He was christened 18 September 1836 in Bolton le Moors, St. Peter,Lancashire,England. His parents were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1840. Eli was baptized into the Church on 24 April 1846 at the age of eleven.
His father Eli and his older brother, Roger William, came to America in 1854. They traveled to Utah with an Unknown Company. There were 677 in the company. Roger was 24 and Eli was 19. They were instructed by Brigham Young to “find good wagons and carry light loads. They were to bring enough animals to fill up the gaps when the animals were sick or injured. They were to carry as much flour as possible because it would cost anywhere from $4 to $50 per hundred pounds. They were to use great patience and make sure they had proper care for their animals. They were to travel on the North side of the Platte River.” He cautioned them that “the more haste the less speed.” It took them two weeks to get ready and learn how to yoke the oxen. They had to tie up the cattle at night to keep them from running with the buffalo. They had a “great abundance” of the finest meat in the world. There had been an Indian uprising at Fort Laramie and about 1300 hundred soldiers were killed. However, they were able to stay away from the area of the uprising. They arrived in the valley in late August.
They settled in Santaquin, Utah, Utah Territory and started working to earn money for the rest of the family to come. They built a home as well as being able to earn money for transportation across the ocean for their father, five brothers and sisters,and Roger’s wife. They came with the ill-fated Martin Handcart Company in 1856. When the company ran into snowstorms and needed help both Roger and Eli were with the rescue companies. Roger’s wife died on 18 October 1856 prior to the rescue.
His father Eli married Levinah Riste on 3October 1859 in Santaquin, Utah, Utah Territory. She was born 11 August 1835 in East Leake ,Nottinghamshire, England to James and Mary Richard Riste. Her father came with the Appleton Harmon Company in 1853. Levinah, her sister Martha Ann, and her mother came with the Milo Andrus Company in 1855. There were 461 in the company of about 50 wagons. They left Mormon Grove Kansas on 4 August 1855. The company was the 3rd PEF (Perpetual Emigration Fund) company. They were given a loan to come to Utah and would work to pay it off once they got to the valley. Captain Andrus had only twelve hours to get ready to move the Saints west. He was the last company and was a good rearguard.
There was an Indian uprising on 15 August and about 40 Indians were killed near Ash Hollow. On 13 September they were just below Fort Laramie. By 6 October they had made it to South Pass. There was very little feed for the animals. On the 5th crossing of the Sweetwater River and woke up to three inches of snow. They had made it to the Green River by 11 October where they had to wait while“Captain Hooper bought 20 yoke of oxen to supply the deficiency in the train from neighboring forts. They made it to Fort Bridger by 15 October 1855. They made it into the valley by 24 October 1855.
They were married on 3 October 1859 in Santaquin, Utah, Utah Territory. They were both 24 years old. In 1860 they were living in Mount Pleasant, Sanpete, Utah Territory. They were sealed 7 December 1867 in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah Territory. They had nine children, three girls and six boys. The first two children were born in Mount Pleasant. Mary Ann was born 4 November 1860 and Levinah was born 29 May 1862.
They moved to Santaquin where they rest of the children were born. Eli William was born 18 June 1864; James Hyrum was born 16 January 1866 and died on that day; John Thomas was born 31 January 1867; Samuel Alma was born 6 February 1869;Martha Ann was born 22 July 1872; Joseph was born 6 May 1876 and died 29 May 1876; and David Owen was born 23 February 1878.
His father Eli died 3 December 1899 at the age of 64 and was buried in Santaquin,Utah Utah. His mother Levinah died 11 January 1913 at the age of 77 andwas buried 15 January 1913 in the Santaquin City Cemetery, Utah, Utah.
Eli William did not marry. He died 18 March 1892 at the age of 27 in Santaquin and was buried in the Santaquin City Cemetery, Santaquin, Utah, Utah Territory.