Transcript

Transcript for "Pioneer Mrs. Duzette," Deseret Weekly, 17 April 1897, 573

PIONERR [sic] MRS. DUZETTE
Rockville, March 28, 1897.

As I [Mary Adeline Ewing Duzette] have seen nothing recently from this part of far away Dixie I thought I would write a few items of Pioneer history to the many readers of the NEWS. I am the daughter of Samuel Ewing, the third child of a family of nine children. I was born May 31, 1833, in Lancaster county, Penn., Little Britain township. I was 13 years of age when we crossed the plains. We were in Jedediah M. Grant's 100, Brother Noble's 50, and Hayes and Kimball's 10. We buried my mother [Esther Shaffer Ewing] fifteen miles this side of Laramie; she was the first white woman of the Latter-day Gospel who laid down her life in seeking religious freedom in that journey, and will no doubt be numbered with the martyrs. We prepared her for her last resting place—the best that our limited facilities would allow. We wrapped her in a quilt, and having nothing with which to make a coffin, we laid her in a deep vault dug in a deeper grave, sawed the table up to cover the vault, then filled the grave with rocks, brush and earth, to prevent the prairie wolves from disturbing all that was earthly of our dear loved one. Then we left her in her cold and lonely resting place to continue our sad and lonely journey with heavy hearts and weary steps; leaving, it seemed, half our life and all its sweetness behind us. Our feelings can better be imagined than described. It was a scene that beggars description.

But such things were endured with the best possible grace, all for the love of the truth. Surely such suffering will not go unrewarded, and a time come when we rejoice for all the hardships we have endured for the Gospel; and even now we are proud to know that we are counted worthy to suffer for Him who laid down His life for us.

Our long, lonely and tedious journey terminated October 7, 1847, when our eyes rested on the valley of the Great Salt Lake.

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