He discovered that the Mormons were a religious people, however, at that time he cared nothing for religion. “The Methodists and the Presbyterians had been trying to convert me to their faith. I came to the conclusion that religion of every kind was a hoax, and that none was right, and that all preachers of religion were hypocrites, and were preaching for money and popularity.”

PARKER, John Jr.

John Parker Jr., was born February 14, 1812 in Chaigley, Lancashire, England, the sixth of ten children.  As members of the Anglican Church, the Parker family attended regularly; John Parker, Sr. led the choir and several of the children sang in it. In his early years John, Jr. herded cattle and sheep and rented a […]

HOLBROOK, Judge Joseph Holbrook: Faithful Saint

He served in the state legislature from 1859 to 1862 inclusive, it being held at the court house in Salt Lake City. January 20th, 1864, he was again appointed Judge of Davis County. There was a company of "Silvergrays" formed in the south portion of Davis Co. and mustered into service on the 8th day of August 1857, from members of the Nauvoo Legion. They were called the "Mountain Sharps."

ARMSTRONG, Thomas Kirk

Thomas Kirk Armstrong was instrumental in developing the Utah territory with his team and wagon, his sawmill work, and in the sheep business at a location about seven miles east of Park City, Utah. He also maintained a dipping vat that all sheepmen used to dip their sheep in. They used a solution of tobacco and sulphur

President’s Message: June 2020

June is filled with historically significant events such as D-Day, June 6, 1944, the beginning of the Normandy Invasion which ultimately resulted in the liberation of France. We also celebrate Father’s Day. I cherish memories of my father who took me with him to the farm where he taught me to work, he taught me […]

WALLACE, George Benjamin

July 4 Sunday – Rain this morning. Public meeting. Elders P. P. Pratt, Taylor and Father Smith spoke against growing cold and careless, and neglecting to pray. They urged all to give thanks to God, who is blessing us all the time. They also spoke against swearing and taking the name of God in vain. They gave strong warning and spoke of some of the law which will be put in force hereafter. They exhorted to union, obedience, etc. and exhorted the fathers concerning their children, how to bring them up, etc. They said if we forgot God it would go with us as it did with the Lamanites, etc. We must not set fire to the prairie for it is a signal for the Indians to gather together. We have now come 175 miles. The conclusion is to travel each company of 50 by itself and to have it encamp and herd by itself.


In those days, the Saints in each settlement were instructed by the General Authorities to have dramas and other amusements for entertainment. In the field of music and drama, Henry was especially gifted. He was a member of the first dramatic organization of Hyde Park. He, Rachel Seamons (Hancey), and Eliza Seamons (England) received much praise for their stage work. Henry had a wonderful bass voice and sang in the choir.

May 2020 President’s Message

Happy May Day to all. This month we transition from spring to summer. We have enjoyed April showers; may our gardens now be beautiful and our crops bountiful. Please remember that nominations for National President-elect remain open until May 31, and the nomination form is once again available here in the Trail Marker. The forms […]

BELLISON, James Thomas and Louisa

Before many days, an incident occurred which tells a lot about James' attitude toward draft animals. His granddaughter, Pearl Allen Read, tells of the company coming to a bog of mud in the trail which caused many wagons to get stuck. As each team came to the bog, the Captain standing there would join the drivers in whipping the animals to get them through.When it was his turn, James forbade the Captain. "These are my animals and no whip is to be used on them." Although James' team pulled through the bog successfully, the Captain was angry and thereafter continued to find fault with this independent member of his company.James Thomas' life-long insistence that his animals be treated well was admired by those who knew him and was learned and perpetuated by his children throughout their lives.

WOOD, George Lymer: An Incident in the Life

"The usual method of disposing of the dead was to weight the bodies and dump them overboard. When others and I asked the privilege of removing our dead and burying them on land, the Captain was hateful and mean about it. All of my dear ones except Samuel's wife I had to perform this last earthly service for. Others of the party had sustained like losses, and were as anxious as I to bury them as decently as possible. The Captain at last agreed to wait and we hired a Negro to help dig a trench big enough to put them in all together. We removed the dead from the boat and began our heart¬breaking task, but had it only partly done when the boat whistle blew and the boat began to get underway. All ran hastily back except the Negro, one woman and myself. She and I stood at the grave site of our dead and watched them go. What bitterness of spirit I experienced only God knows. Was this what I had come to America, the home of the brave, for? Here I was with two strangers standing beside the open grave of a group of strangers. Our common interests were all lying before us or fast receding from sight, subject to the whim of a heartless thing in human form.
"Surges of emotion swept over me, sorrow, anger, love, fear, and despair, but my nearest duty was to protect these rapidly decomposing dear forms of mine from the ravages of wild beasts, heat, and other elements. Perhaps I had been blessed and spared to perform this last service. If! were dead with them our bodies would rot together. So I urged on my companions the need for work. I felt responsible for seeing this thing through.

COX, Amos

Sister Brady Englestead has told me of how her sister who was about 14 years old had been sick for months, and got so she wouldn’t eat, and although they had the elders administer many times, still she seemed to get worse. One day she said “If you will have Amos Cox administer to me I think I will get well.” Father was only 17 years old at the time and had never administered to anyone in his life, but they sent for him out in the field where he was scything grain. He said he was dumb founded, but told them he would come. There in the field he asked Heavenly Father what to say and said he believed it was one of the most humbling experiences of his life. He went to the house, washed his hands, and sealed the anointing. He promised the girl that she would get well, then when he looked at her and saw how frail and pale she looked, he was scared and so weak that he sat down.