Southwest Quadrant of the Kerr & Winchester Roads Intersection

Far West Cemetery

Far West was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 1970. In 1999, the Mormon Historic Sites Foundation funded an archaeological exploration to determine the precise location of the cemetery site about a mile northwest of the Temple lot. It is estimated about 200 Saints were buried on this sacred ground. Here, without disturbing those interred by use of ground-penetrating radar, they discovered dozens of “anomalies” deep underground in a 50×250 meter plot.

A few notable burials at the site remind us of the persecutions the Saints faced during this difficult time in our history:

David W. Patten, President of the Quorum of the Twelve and the first Apostolic martyr of the last dispensation. Patten was mortally wounded in the battle of Crooked River and died a few days afterward. Elder Heber C Kimball wrote.

Immediately on receiving intelligence that Brother Patten was wounded, I hastened to see him. When I arrived lie appeared to be in great pain but was glad to see me. He was conveyed about four miles, to the house of Brother Winchester. … He lived about an hour after his arrival, and was perfectly sensible and collected until he breathed his last.—Although he had medical assistance, yet his wound was such, that there was no hope entertained of his recovery; this he was perfectly aware of.

. . . Speaking of those who had fallen from their steadfastness, he exclaimed, “O that they were in my situation; for I feel I have kept the faith, I have finished my course, henceforth there is laid up for me a crown which the Lord, the righteous Judge shall give to me,” and etc. . . . A few minutes before he died he prayed as follows: “Father I ask thee, in the name of Jesus Christ, that thou wouldst release my spirit and receive it unto thyself” and then said to those who surrounded his dying bed, “Brethren, you have held me by your faith, but do give me up and let me go I beseech you.” We then committed him to God, and he soon breathed his last and slept in Jesus without a groan. This was the end of one who was an honor to the Church and a blessing to the Saints: and whose faith and virtues and diligence in the cause of truth will be long remembered by all who had the pleasure of his acquaintance, and his memory will be had in remembrance by the Church of Christ from generation to generation.

The Prophet Joseph Smith wrote: “There lies a man that has done just what he said he would – he has laid down his life for his friends.”

, a faithful and successful missionary. When the brethren were making their way through the aftermath of the battle, they mistook him for the enemy and left his body. When it was discovered he was missing several days later they returned and recognized him. Oliver Huntington recalled.

One day I saw a crowd around a wagon not far from our house, so I ran up to see what was going on; I climbed up and stuck my head over the edge of the box and the first thing my eyes met was the familiar face of Gideon Carter, and although the cursed, worse than in human mob, had dug his eyes out with sticks he still looked like him still. Gideon was killed in the River Battle, had a ball hole in his breast and a large gash of a sword in the backside of his head.

, a member of Zion’s Camp and an inaugural member of the Seven Presidents of the Seventy. On January 16, 1839, Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, and Hyrum Smith, wrote Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball to call Sherman and George A. Smith to replace Thomas B. Marsh and Orson Hyde in the Quorum of the Twelve, due to apostasy. Heber reported back to confirm that George A. had been ordained to the quorum, but Sherman had died soon after he and Brigham received the letter. Sherman’s health had been compromised from being driven from his home during the previous winter. Kimball concluded that it was not the will of God for a man to take Hyde’s place as he later repented and returned to his former position in the Quorum.

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