Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Emma's Memories

Emma Maria Zundel said, " I was privileged to have Jacob Zundel, born Wierusheim, Wurtenberg, Germany; and Sarah Forstner Zundel, born in Old Harmony, Butler, Pennsylvania, for parents. I was born in Caldwell County, Missouri on August 28, 1838." Her life is intertwined with her father's, whose history precedes hers. We are fortunate to know something about her life from what she wrote.

Emma's words--
We, father, mother and family were driven out of Missouri when I was seven weeks old. The snow was two feet deep and it was so cold that a bottle of milk froze between two feather bed ticks. Many women died during the move. We traveled to Nauvoo, the Beautiful, arriving there when it was in the making and it seemed to become a city overnight; houses grew like mushrooms. My father had a beautiful farm and house and lot. The trees were just commencing to bear when we were driven out to Winter Quarters.

I remember hearing Joseph Smith preach. He came to my father's home many times to see how he, Joseph, was progressing in his study of the German language. Joseph and Hyrum both came to administer to my little brother, Jacob, when he was sick unto death. I was at the funeral of Joseph and Hyrum in Nauvoo Mansion and saw them in their caskets.

We stayed at Winter Quarters about a year. It was while we were there that the call came for 500 men (for the U.S. Army). President Young left for Utah with his band of men to locate a place to take the Saints. He told us that if we would be faithful, the Lord would bless us with the gift of tongues and the interpretation of tongues. We were blessed with both of those gifts. A lot of the Saints died from scurvy or black leg, because they were without any vegetables. On the Missouri bottom the Lord had provided wild potatoes, wild onions and artichokes. In this way, our lives were saved. We left Winter Quarters and went over into Pottawattomi County, Iowa, where we stayed about two and one-half years.

I joined the L.D.S. Church when I was eight years old and was baptized by Benjamine Clapp, and I think he confirmed me also. I crossed the plains in the company of Captain Woods, who had been our branch president.

At night we were coralled in a circle by placing the wagons, tongues in, closely together with but one opening in the circle. Two men stood guard each night to watch out for Indians and buffalo and to gaurd our livestock. We had a very pleasant time enroute, not a drop of rain or a bit of wind came to mar the trip. However, our camp was struck with cholera. Father and mother stayed to minister to those who were sick and dying with the disease. Our main camp moved some miles distant, leaving us to bury our dead friends and wash their clothes. None of our family had the cholera. One of the Three Nephites had blessed my father when he was on a mission and had told him that he would go to the mountains and that many would die and we would care for them but that none of our family would die.

We had about 100 buffalo pass right in front of our company. They were close enough to see them very well but they did not try to stampede us. One morning when we awoke early, there was a buffalo standing inside the circle of our wagons. All the men turned out and killed him.

I noticed the big Independence Rock that stood out all by itself. It was large enough to dance on and hundreds of names were written on it in tar. Later we saw Chiminy Rock, a rock that resembled a chiminy and fireplace. We camped in Echo Canyon, a canyon of solid rock. We came into Salt Lake Valley through Immigration Canyon in August, 1852. I thought when I viewed the valley for the first time that it was very lovely. We could go from Eagle Gate through the city to the end of the Salt Lake settlement in a very short time. I certainly thought, 'This Is The Place!'

We brought dried apples, sugar and a supply of dry goods and seeds of all kinds for a garden. We camped first down by my aunt, Magalena Moesser. She was my father's sister and she had come on first and had a nice rock house. She lived near the Jordan River. She was a widow with five children.

On the way across the plains, we drove one oxen and one horse team. The oxen were named Buck, Broad and Jerry. I don't remember the names of the horses. We had our churn and all we had to do was put the milk (cream?) in the churn and fasten it to the wagon and driving over the rough roads churned the butter. We had steps to fasten to the back of the wagon. When we were traveling, they were strapped on the side of the wagon. We also had a folding table that was easily carried. We made our fire with buffalo chips.

We paid $1 a yard for factory and $1 a pound for sugar. Our family had enough stuff of that kind and did not need to buy any. Some were well dressed. We were well dressed because we brought lots of nice things with us and we got things from the people traveling to California. Dresses that had been made for rich people to carry with them, of such materials as silk and wool delaine were traded for vegetables, etc.

We did not use any food substitutes. The next year after we came, we planted and raised barley, wheat, oats, corn and potatoes. Our vegetable garden contained every well-known vegetable. Mother raised the garden and sold vegetables to the people traveling to California. We cut our grain with a sickle, sythes, snath and cradle and the hay also.

Our first home was in Willard, Utah, known then as Willow Creek. It consisted of our two wagon boxes set on logs and one log room. The room was furnished with three bed frames made by my father, with bed cords stretched across. They were as large as a bed stead and we used them all the way across the plains. We had maple chairs with rush bottoms. The dirt floor was covered with bunch grass that we gathered, cutting it with a butcher knife. The grass grew about three feet high and it made a nice floor. It was pentiful enough that one could change it every day. The rattle snakes often crawled in and hid under the grass. Willard had lots of rattle snakes.

We, mother and the children, were forced to leave the farm one night and walk three miles, carrying the smaller children to a neighbor's, because about 100 Indians were trying to come up and kill us and burn our home. Father and my oldest brother stayed back and stood guard over our house. The next morning every man and woman moved into what is now known as Willard City and we formed a fort. The next day following, Major Moore and his officers came from Ogden to help make the trench around us. The fort was built with a trench about fifteen feet deep on the outside and poles on the side near the houses. There was but one bridge to go in and come out. The fort was made of wagon boxes and two rooms, one room was owned by Birch. It was a board room and Hubbard had a log room. Just after the trench was completed, the Bannock Indians came, one hundred braves, three squaws, a Chief and an interpreter. Every step their horses took, they yelled a war cry and they rode to the opening and said if we would let them come inside and stay the night, they would not harm us. We let them in, but every man stayed up and had his gun loaded, because we did not dare to trust them. At 3:00 in the morning, the three squaws were back by the wagon crying and all the bucks were ready to fight. Mother said, "Children you must pray, the Lord will protect us, but you must pray." We prayed.

A wagon drew up right by father's wagon box and the chief got in and preached for about an hour to his men. He told them that they had promised that if the people would let them sleep inside, they woulod not molest or kill anyone, and he added forcefully, "you keep that promise. I will not allow any of these people harmed." The braves went back to bed and the next morning they went peacefully away.

President Young said the Indians had done something he could not do. He had preached and told the people to move into small towns where they would attend church, but they never would do it until the Indians forced them to. "The Lord used the Indians to make you move to small towns."

We were not out of danger. A few miles out from the fort, a large band of Indians camped and the men had to take turns standing guard. Old Mrs. Gould never went to bed at night, but stayed up all night and knit sale sox in the dark every night and slept all day. She was afraid that the Indians would come in and kill her. The Lord saved our lives because of our prayers.

As the town grew, we built a wall around the city so we could live in safety without having a tranch around the city. This wall was all built by placing boards a few feet apart and filling the space with mortar and mud. The dirt to build it was secured by digging a tranch just inside the wall. When the mortar and mud were able to stand along, the boards were moved on down and the process repeated. The wall was about five and one-half feet high.

When the Indians became more friendly, they furnished us with ducks, geese, brants and feathers. They dried berries until they were just like raisins. They understood the drying but no one could get the process out of them. In return for the things they gave us, we gave them flour. A pan of flour would get a sack of service berries or enough feathers for a bed tick.

After we had lived in Willard for a long time, a snow came in May that was two feet deep and practically every horse and cow died. My father and Mr. Ward had quite a bit of grain and father and he kept their animals alive by the sparing use of grain. Fifty Danish people had come in the winter and father rationed all those who would come to his door every day and he helped the Beechers who lived next door too. My father had a log grainary and when he started to give grain away, he made a notch where the grain came to and notwithstanding the amount he gave away, the grain never went below the mark. During that famine, President Young sent men all over the state to see that every one was provided with something to eat. He found one young mother who was very near death and he took her home with him. Old Mrs. Sichrans buried ten barrels of flour with the idea that she would make a good bit of money. President Young found out about it and he said, "The Lord will destroy it." The Lord did destroy it. When she had it dug up it was bitter as gall. No one could use it. Only one person died from want of food and that was a boy who, being hungry, ate some poison roots.

Our farm was taken up by a friend who gave it to use when we came on. We paid for our city lot, but I don't know how much it cost.

The first celebration I remember was the 24th of July when we met under the Bowery and two or three familiers would go in together and set a large table. Twenty-four girls dressed in white marched and dancing was enjoyed in the evening.

The grasshoppers came in such quantities as to form a cloud that would shut off the sunlight. They traveled during the day and swarmed down during the night to geast on someone's field of grain. Our neighbors were bothered, but we never suffered from any grassshoppers or crickets.

The first necessary industry was home making, which consisted of cutting timber and building houses.

Mr. Carlson had the first shoe shop in Willard. Olive Mason had the first bakery. Brother Willer had the first carpenter shop. Abraham Zundel had the first blacksmith shop. The first dance hall was the school house. Hardings had the first dance hall after that. Scherdick Jones built rock houses. The best farmers were Charles Hubbard, Elihu Pettingill and the Hardings. Jacob Zundel was one of the best gardeners. Thatcher, an eastern man, who, being forced to stay all winter in Willard before going on to California, taught school. The three R's and spelling and grammer. His first name was Henry. George Harding and I are the only ones now living of that first school. Mr. Thatcher did not belong to the church when he started teaching, but he joined afterwards.

Elihu Pettingill and Mr. McCreary were the first musicians. They played the violin. Evan ___phans taught note singing and Bob Baird taught organ. The best singers were Sarah Greenhalgh. John Woods led choir and taught singing. Sister Johnson was midwife and doctor. They used peppermint tea for summer complaint and chills. Turkey rhubard and golden seal for stomach trouble. The first large schoolhouse was built by Hyrum Kinball. Barley and oats were used as the medium of exchange. The favorite dances were Money Musk, Upper Reel, Polygamy Walse, and Quadrille. The best dancers were Elihu Pettingill, George Marsh (who taught dancing) and Jane Andres Marsh, his wife. We felt very much nearer to our neighbors in those corn-husking, rag-bee days than you do today.

For light, we started with bitches, then candles, and then coal oil lamps, then gasoline pressure lights and finally, electric lights. I do appreciate my life today as much as any of my children appreciate theirs. (She lived to hear radio and it was always a great thrill to her to hear the broadcasts from Temple Square with the organ and choir.)
~Taken fron writings of Viola Lontgreen Zundel from material her grandmother told her and from letters from Maria Zundel~

Emma married Eli Harvey Pierce on 15 February 1857, but he died in 1858. Then she married Elisha Mallory on 15 June 1859 and had a daughter with him, but that marriage did not last. Her third husband was Elihu Ulysses Pettingill on 6 February 1864 at the Endowment House, Salt Lake City, Utah. She was his second wife. Together, they had a large family, our ancestor being Jefferson Bartlett Pettingill. She died on 18 June 1926 at Lofgreen, Tooele, Utah and was buried at Box Elder.

John Jacob Zundel


Wiernheim, Germany is 30 miles NW of Stuttgart in the Enz district, named for the river of the same name which is a tributary of the Neckar. The Zundels had been in the area since 1648. For a nice history of the family,click here.It includes their earliest beginnings in Switzerland, the conditions in Wiernsheim when they moved there, events surrounding their move to America, their arrival in Philadelphia in 1805 when John was nine years old; their move to Harmony, Pennsylvania, and subsequent move to New Harmony, Indiana; then back to Economy, Pennsylvania, and their introduction to the gospel in 1836 through Elder Everett. Emma is not included as one of the Zundel children in this history, but it has many pertinent facts about her family, with more about her brother, Abraham,since the history is about that particular line of the family.

Johann Jakob Zundel was born on 28 August 1796 at Wiernsheim, Neckarkreis, Wuerttemberg, Germany. His parents were Johan Eberhardt Zundel and Juliane Pflueger. He came to America with his parents, who came as devotees of George Rapp and his religious society that split with the Lutheran Church in 1785 and then came to America in 1803 to avoid persecution. In America they were a Christian commune known as the Harmony Society. Their life in the Harmony, Pennsylvania, the first of three settlements, is described here.


John married Sarah Forstner in 1831 at Old Harmony, Butler, Pennsylvania. Her parents were also from Germany. By this time, Rapp had already sold off Harmony, and moved the society to a new location at Economy, Pennsylvania. This highlighted history states that the last of the Harmonists arrived there in 1825. There were issues in the commune about celibacy; in fact, by marrying, Johann and Sarah forfeited their place in the Harmony Society.

In 1836, the Zundels met missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and were taught the Gospel by Elder Everett. With their religious background, and having been denied membership in the Harmony Society, they were no doubt ready to hear of a restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. They would have had much Bible knowledge at their ready disposal to make their decision. They were baptized in the Ohio river and moved to Missouri to be with the Saints. Gathering to the body of the church was a very comfortable decision for people who had lived in a communal religious community.

Their children, Magdalena and Abraham, were born in Pennsylvania prior to 1836. Emma, our ancestor, was born on her father's birthday in 1838. In her words, "I was privileged to have Jacob Zundel, born Wiernsheim, Wurtenberg, Germany; and Sarah Forstner Zundel, born in Old Harmony, Butler, Pennsylvania, for parents. I was born in Caldwell County, Missouri on August 28, 1838." Isaac, Jacob, and Matilda were born in Nauvoo; and Daniel was born in Iowa.

The family traveled to Utah in Captain Wood's company, leaving on 6 June 1862 and settled in Willard, Box Elder, Utah. He was a butcher and a farmer. He enjoyed music and played the clarinet and the flute. He died at Box Elder on 19 April 1880 having lived a life full of adventure since leaving his home in Wiernsheim.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Do You Ever Wonder?

Embleton village is located in Northumberland, one mile inland from the North Sea and Embleton Bay. It is seven miles NE of Alnwick. Dunstanburgh Castle is at the southern end of the bay, lying between Embleton and Craster, a fishing village. It is the largest castle in Northumberland, circa 1313. The area also shows traces of earlier occupation.





The Church of Holy Trinity is a late Norman church dating from the 12th century, and was later restored in Victorian times. The old vicarage boasts a fine example of a vicar's pele tower (watch tower), built in the 14th century. It is one of only three fortified vicarages in the county today.

This was the home of Matthew Skelly and his wife, Mary Lisle. Their daughter, Mary, was christened there on 17 August 1735. On 8 May 1759, she married John Dunn there. Three children named Mary, Joseph, and Thomas were also christened there. Do you wonder if they wandered through the ruins, or whether or not they visited the old church? Embleton has a little main street with a green and a community water pump. Did they play on the green, or pump their water from that pump? Most likely, they did.

About All We Know, Is Stallingborough

All the big events of Susanna Isaac's life happened at Stallingborough, Lincoln, England. She was christened there on 17 August 1707. Her parents were Thomas Isaac and Maria Cockrill and they were married there. Susanna married James Tweed at Stallingborough on 3 July 1732. Two children were also born there, named after their parents.

Stallingborough is a small village in NE Lincolnshire, located between the larger towns of Grimsby and Immingham. Being an old place, once a Roman settlement, it was mentioned in the Domesday Book. It is about seven miles from Grimsby and three from Immingham. Both places are ports on the Humber, a large tidal estuary on the east coast of Northern England and the North Sea. The county is low and flat with extensive marshes along the coast. Fishing has always been an important occupation there.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The Commins of Crowan in Cornwall


Joseph Commin (also Common, Commen) was born on 11 August 1797 and christened on 3 September 1797 at Crowan, Cornwall, England. His father was also named Joseph (christened on 6 July 1766), and his mother was Mary Rowe (christened 3 Feb 1777). His parents married on 17 September 1796 in Crowan (A); and he married Honour Mathews on 16 February 1818 at Madron (B), about 14 miles SW. They had seven children, our ancestor being Philippa, who was their third child. Since they were also christened at Crowan, we can assume that the family resided there, as had their parents and grandparents before them.
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Crowan is a village and civil parish in the Kerrier district of Cornwall, which is the most southerly district in the United Kingdom. Cornwall has an ancient and rich history. It is the home of the Cornish people (in Cornish: Kernowyon)who are regarded as a separate ethnic group of the United Kingdom. The history of the Cornish goes back to 4000 BC, which you can see in a chart on the Cornish page. They are often described as a Celtic people. Learning about these people will help us understand the Commins and others who lived in Cornwall in times past.


The River Hayle rises around a mile from Crowan then flows through the village. The village is about six miles north of Helston. Cornwall is noted for its wild moorland landscapes, its extensive and varied coastline and its mild climate. It is also known for mining and for its history. And who has not heard of the Pirates of Penzance?

Monday, August 5, 2013

Richard Webb of Bretforton in Worcestershire


Thomas and Frances Webb christened their son Richard, on 5 August 1646. On 1 October 1676 he married Anne White. He died on 1 December 1717 at the age of 71. All of these important events in his life happened at at Bretforton, Worcestershire, England.

Bretforton is the largest farming village near Evesham, which is a middle-sized rural market town. Evesham has an abbey which was founded by Saint Egwin around 701 A.D. following a vision of the Virgin Mary by Eof (a swineherd who claimed to have seen the Virgin Mary). The name of Evesham is derived from "Eof's ham" ("ham" in English place names means "homestead"). Bretforton is just four miles from Evesham proper.

This link shows some old postcards that are charming. This town looks so charming I just have to add it the places I want to visit.

"The historic town of Evesham on the banks of Shakespeare's Avon is the 'capital' of the fertile Vale of Evesham, lying between the Malvern and Bredon Hills and the Cotswolds." Take the above link to see some good photos, a short history, and other items of interest. You'll want to visit too!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Dorothy Lawrence of Donington on Bain


Donington on Bain is a village in the county of Lincolnshire, England within the East Lindsey district and in the heart of the Lincolnshire Wolds , which is a very rural area of rolling hills. The range runs parallel to the North Sea coast. It lies about six miles SW of the town of Louth and about six miles due north of the town of Horncastle. The Viking Way progresses north-south through the village. The village sits on the east bank of the River Bain.

St. Andrew's church was built in the 11th century, and has an unbutressed Norman tower and circular Norman font, which according to local legend, was discovered in a field further up the hill. This may indicate the site of the medieval village. This village was the home of Dorothy Lawrence, who was christened on 4 August 1611 at Donington on Bain, Lincolnshire, England, no doubt in this very church. There are about 500 residents at Donington on Bain today, so it is a small place, a hamlet.

Dorothy married William Smith on 7 Jan 1639 at Fulletby, which is about 8-1/2 miles south of Donington on Bain. They had three known children named William, Ellen, and Elizabeth.

To see some nice photos of the area, click here.