FC: Our Pioneer Heritage | Vol. 1
2: GGG Grandparents | GG Grandparents | Great GrandParents | Ida Christina Johnson | Hyrum Fechser | Johan Friedrick Fechser
4: Great Grandparents | GrandParents | George James Bitton | Rebecca Bingham | John Evington Bitton | Sarah Wintle | Willard Bingham | Amanda Melvina Snow | Jane Evington | William Farman Bitton
6: Ida Christina Johnson
8: When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses. ~Joyce Brothers
12: Mother | Grand Mother | Grand Father | Great Grand Father | Great Grand Father | Great Grand Mother | Great Grand Mother
13: Father | Grand Mother | Grand Father | Great Grand Father | Great Grand Father | Great Grand Mother | Great Grand Mother
16: Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories.
18: GG Grandfather | GG Grandmother | GGG Grandmother | GGG Grandmother | GGG Grandfather | GGG Grandfather | GG Grandmother | Great Grandfather | GG Grandfather | Dean Kenneth Bitton | Kenneth Willard Bitton | Rose Ethel Nielson | George James Bitton | Rebecca Bingham | Frank William Nielson | Rose McFarland
19: GGG Grandfather | Great Grandmother | GGG Grandmother | GGG Grandmother | GGG Grandfather | GG Grandfather | GG Grandmother | LaRae Parker | Charles Eldren Parker | Blanche Estella Bingham | Charles Jacob Parker | Elizabeth Moyes Anderson | Wilford Albertus Bingham | Martha Estella Patterson
20: Willard Trowbridge Snow & Melvina Harvey | Willard born 6 November 1811 to Levi Snow & Lucina Streeter Melvina Harvey born 16 December 1811 tp Joel Harvey & Betsy Bowen | Willard's early life was spent on a farm where no doubt Willard worked to clear rocks and trees from the farming land as he grew old enough to help in the fields. The Snow children were taught to work, each child had his daily jobs from the time they could carry a pail of water. Willard's father and mother saw to it that their children obtained an education.Both Levi and Lucina loved books and learning, they were avid readers and natural teachers which affected their children in future years as several of the Snow children taught school as they became older. There was a strong religious atmosphere in the home were Willard was raised.This strong religious atmosphere has been said to have come from the Streeter side of the family and not the Snows. This same atmosphere seemed to prevail in the community. As soon as the homes were built, a church was erected for the community. The people in the community didn't seem to belong to any certain church, but the all lived by the Ten Commandments and were called "Seeker after God's Truths." When Willard was a young man his family home caught fire and burn down. Neighbors came to assist the family in saving all that they could. His mother made sure all the books they had were saved. The family lived in the large new barn that they had just finished that summer and after the fall harvest was over the family built a new home. This barn is where the missionaries came and taught the gospel to the many individuals that joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
21: After hearing the gospel message that Orson Pratt was teaching in his father's barn, which was the largest building in St. Johnsbury at the time, Willard was baptized. He was baptized June 18, 1833 by Orson Pratt. After Willard and most of his family were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, he spent the better part of the next four years with his brothers, Zerubbabel, William and Erastus laboring as part time missionaries in Vermont and New Hampshire. In the spring of 1834, at the age of 23, Willard left St. Johnsbury for Kirtland, Ohio with his brother Zerubbabel. That same year Willard and Zerubbabel joined Zion's Camp in Missouri. There he had a narrow escape from death, being among the number which, while the camp rested in Clay County, Missouri, was attacked by cholera. Early in 1835, Willard returned to Kirtland and then went to serve several other missions in the United States preaching in various parts of the country. Willard was ordained to the First Quorum of Seventies on February 28, 1835 by the Prophet Joseph Smith Jr. In 1836, Willard went through the Kirtland Temple, and shortly after moved to Missouri with his father's family who had come from St. Johnsbury to join the main body of the saints and be with their four sons. In Missouri, Willard's parents settled in Far West about one and a half miles north of the town. Here they endured the sufferings and persecutions of the saints, including the chills and fever which remained with them for many years. While living in Far West, Willard married Melvina Harvey, who he had known in Vermont. They were married May 14, 1837. Melvina was born December 16, 1811 at Barnett, Vermont. Willard had known Melvina and probably her family before coming to Missouri. Willard and Melvina's first child, Amanda Melvina, was born March 18, 1838 at Far West, Caldwell County, Missouri. June 13, 1845. After moving with the family to Garden Grove, Willard and the Snow families were among the first group of saints to leave their beloved Nauvoo and head westward. It was not safe for any leaders of the church or their families to stay in Nauvoo unless absolutely necessary. Before leaving, Willard and Melvina took out their Endowments in the Nauvoo Temple on December 12, 1845 and were sealed together one month later on January 12, 1846. While living in Nauvoo, Willard was one of the agents to help build the Temple. On May 14, 1846, Willard married a second wife, Susan Harvey, Melvina's sister. Not much is known about Susan except that she had some kind of deformity. This information was found in Patty Sessions records as a midwife. September 1847, Willard with his families, came to Utah in Jedidah Grant's company of 100 wagons. He was captain of the second 50 wagons in this company. Willard arrived in the Salt Lake Valley on October 4, 1847. When he arrived in Salt Lake, he settled with his families on the north side of the Old Fort. | Orson Pratt | Nauvoo Temple
22: Many things happened in the life of Willard between October 1847 when he arrived in the Salt Lake Valley and September 1851. In these four years he was a judge at the first election held to form a territorial government. He was also a member of the territorial legislature and speaker of the House in 1849. He served on the judiciary committee in the new Territorial Legislature and he was the first Justice of the Peace appointed in Utah. While serving in the legislature he served on the judiciary, counties and on military and civil laws committees.He was a councilor to Daniel Spencer in the first organization of the town of Salt Lake. Willard was also a member of the Perpetual Emigration Fund Committee that had been organized by Brigham Young to help finance the western migration of the saints. Willard's family life was very eventful at the same time. On February 8, 1848, about four months after his family arrived in the valley, Melvina gave birth to a pair of twins, the first pair of white twins born in the state of Utah. Susan, Willard's second wife gave birth to a daughter named, Susan, and the mother, Susan died soon after. Two years after reaching Salt Lake, Willard married a third wife, Mary Bingham, a girl from St. Johnsbury, Vermont (1849). At General Conference in Salt Lake City, September 7, 1851, Willard was called on a mission to Europe. Soon after, he left his wives and four children and arrived in England, December 29, 1851. Willard was appointed president of the Scandinavia Mission to succeed his brother Erastus. On April 21st, Willard took the steamer at Hull, England and arrived at Copenhagen, Denmark on the 26th. He set to work with a will to learn the Danish language in which he was very successful. He mastered the Danish language so well that he translated many books into Danish, one being the L.D.S. Hymn Book. In 1852, while Willard was in Denmark, serving as the Mission President, he was mobbed and treated with contempt and was driven into the swamp where he contracted malaria or swamp fever. This fever was eventually what would take his life. While addressing a council of Elders on the evening of August 15, 1853 in Copenhagen, he was so violently attacked with an illness that he was unable to proceed. Later he seemed a little better, and decided to go to England for treatment of his illness. On the 18th of 1853, he took passage on board the ship "Transit," but while on board he was again prostrated. He soon became unconscious, and continued to sink, gradually until the evening of the 21st, when he expired. Elder P.O. Hansen and H.P. Jenson were with him, but not withstanding their earnest pleading, the captain insisted that the body be sunk in the sea. So he was wrapped in canvass and sunk about 80 miles north of Hull, England in the North Sea. He was just 41 years of age. Willard Trowbridge Snow was the first American Elder to die abroad while on his mission. Willard Trowbridge Snow was known as a friend of the Prophet Joseph and faithful in all of the calling that he was asked to do.
23: Willard Trowbridge Snow is your 5th Great Grandfather. He is the Grandfather of George James Bitton who is Grandpa Great's Grandfather.
24: Jane Evington was born in Deptford, London County, England on September 29, 1805, the daughter of John K. Evington and Mary Beeble. She had two step-siblings, and a full sister named Elizabeth (Mina). She married William Farman Bitton in England about 1837. To this union six sons and four daughters were born. They were: Amelia, John Evington, Louis, Amelia (2), Jane, Stephen, Walter, Walter (2), Harriet and William. All of her children were born in London or at Great Yarmouth, England. Her first daughter Amelia died when she was just a child and little is known of her. Her second daughter was also named Amelia. One son, the first Walter, was jumping from one boat to another and fell between the ships and was killed.. His body was not found for about two hours. Two of her other sons, Louis and the second Walter came to America by ship, which exploded soon after arriving in the harbor. Jane’s husband, William was a seafaring man, like his father before him. One day while he was unloading some cargo, the pressure of the weight he was lifting caused his optic nerve to burst. As a result he became totally blind. This was just one more tragedy Jane experienced in her life. | William Farman Bitton & Jane Evington Bitton
25: One day William heard the missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints preaching in a meeting, and he went home to tell Jane he had found what he was looking for. The Elders’ testimonies and the teachings of the gospel impressed Jane also, and she was baptized on February 9, 1852. Six months after her baptism her youngest son, William was born, He died when he was seven years old, adding to Jane’s lifetime of heartache. On May 25, 1856 Jane’s oldest son, John Evington, his bride Sarah Wintle, and John’s nineteen-year old sister, Jane left England aboard the ship “Horizon” and sailed for America. They traveled with the ill-fated Martin Handcart Company to Salt Lake City, Utah to join their fellow Latter- Saints. Seven years later, Jane, William and their daughter Harriet sailed for the United States. They crossed the plains on a wagon pulled by an ox-team in the fall of 1863. Because her father was blind, Harriet led him by hand most of the way. They settled in West Weber, Weber County, Utah where their son John and his family lived. William passed away in 1864, just one year after coming to the United States. (Jane’s obituary in 1891 noted that he was buried in the Ogden City cemetery. However no records exist to verify this burial.) | Sometime after her husband’s death, Jane went to Menan, Idaho where her two daughters, Jane and Harriet lived. (Both daughters were married to John Rawlston Poole as polygamist wives.) Jane became sick while living with her daughter and passed away in Menan on January 24, 1891. Because of the hardship and poor transportation of the time, it was impossible to take her body to Utah to be buried with her husband, so she was buried in the Poole family plot in the Little Butte cemetery. (The cemetery is located in Annis, Idaho, just outside of Menan.) Her daughters, Jane and Harriet were later buried beside her. (Compiled by Barbara Fowers King great, great, great-granddaughter)
27: John Evington Bitton & Sarah Susannah Wintle | John came from a seafaring family. His father had also been a seaman but he had to retire early due to an injury sustained at sea as a young man which caused him to gradually lose his eyesight. John hired on as a cabin boy on a sailing vessel at the age of thirteen. He later served as a seaman and sailed around the world three times. He studied diligently in order to better himself until he gained the rank of second mate. His first voyage in this position was to India. Upon returning he gave $600 to his parents. In 1848 his ship made port in California during the gold rush, and because he didn't desert the ship to run to the gold fields as many of his shipmates did, he was promoted to first mate for his loyalty. He married Sarah Susannah Wintle on 13 May 1856 and they sailed for America twelve days later on the ship Horizon, a ship chartered by the Mormon Church to carry members of the Martin Handcart Company to Boston so they could travel by rail to Iowa City. At the time they joined the handcart company John was 26 years old and Sarah only 17. The company got as far as Green River, Wyoming; there winter overtook them. Its members were so exhausted from lack of food and toiling with the carts that they were unable to proceed further. Word had been sent to Brigham Young that the company was in desperate circumstances. He immediately organized a company of men with teams to go to the relief of the immigrants. John, his wife Sarah and his sister, Jane Bitton, were rescued by John Poole, a resident of Ogden, Utah who had joined the rescue party with his wagon. They arrived in Ogden on 30 November and spent the winter with Mr. Poole. John Poole married Jane Bitton the following year, jokingly saying, "I rescued her from a snow bank, so I felt I had a right to her!" John and Sarah had their first child in Ogden the following June and moved to West Weber shortly thereafter where they farmed for the rest of their lives and raised fourteen children.
28: The Martin Handcart Company was the fifth handcart company to travel west to the Salt Lake Valley. This company of English emigrants left Iowa City, Iowa, on 28 July 1856. There were "576 [people], with 146 carts, 7 wagons, 30 oxen, and 50 cows and beef cattle” (LeRoy R. Hafen and Ann W. Hafen, Handcarts to Zion , 93). At Florence, Nebraska, they stopped for handcart repairs. It was late in the season, and they wondered if they should continue. A few members dropped out, but most wanted to go on. They left Florence on 25 August. They reached Fort Laramie, Wyoming, 8 October. After leaving Fort Laramie their food rations had to be cut. Because of their growing weakness, they had to lighten the loads they were pulling, so they discarded blankets and clothing. On 19 October they crossed the North Platte River. As soon as they crossed, it started to snow. Several people died that night. As the storms and cold continued, the pioneers desperately needed the supplies they had left behind. The men became so weak and sick they couldn’t pitch the tents. Twelve miles beyond the river they were stopped by the deep snow. Fifty-six had died since they had crossed the river. Early in October President Brigham Young heard there were still pioneers on the trail. He knew they would have problems, so he called for volunteers to go to their aid. Horsemen, wagons, and supplies were sent. On 28 October three men rode into the camp of the Martin Company. The deep snow had halted the rescue wagons, so the men told the emigrants their only hope was to keep moving to reach the rescue wagons. They struggled on, and on 3 November they reached the first of the supply wagons. The rescuers decided the company had to move on to find better shelter from the snow and cold. The company pushed on until they came to the Sweetwater River. For many, crossing the river seemed more than they could manage, but men from the rescue party bravely carried several of the pioneers across. The company found shelter in a mountain cove where they stayed for several days. When they moved on, they left most of the handcarts behind. The rescuers loaded the sickest and weakest into wagons, but the rest had to walk. The storms had forced some rescuers back, while others waited to try again. One of these, Ephraim Hanks, left his wagon and went on with two horses. One day he killed a buffalo and loaded his horses with the meat. That evening he reached the Martin Handcart Company. The meat was welcomed by the starving pioneers. On 11 November Ephraim Hanks and members of the handcart company camped on Bitter Creek (present-day Cottonwood Creek). Gradually other wagons reached the pioneers, and all were able to ride the rest of the way into the valley. They reached Salt Lake on 30 November. Between 135 and 150 people had died on the way. | The Edward Martin Handcart Company
29: Sweetwater River from Devil's Gate | Edward Martin | We suffered beyond anything you can imagine and many died of exposure and starvation, but we became acquainted with [God] in our extrem[i]ties. I have pulled my handcart when I was so weak and weary from illness and lack of food that I could hardly put one foot ahead of the other. I have looked ahead and seen a patch of sand or a hill slope and I have said, I can go that far and there I must give up, for I cannot pull the load through it. I have gone on to that sand and when I reached it, the cart began pushing me. I have looked back many times to see who was pushing my cart, but my eyes saw no one. I knew then that the angels of God were there. Was I sorry that I chose to come by handcart? No. Neither then nor any minute of my life since. The price we paid to become acquainted with God was a privilege to pay, and I am thankful that I was privileged to come in the Martin Handcart Company (as quoted in David O. McKay, “Pioneer Women,” The Relief Society Magazine, Jan. 1948, 8). | " | "