Ann Rogers, Biographical information relating to Mormon pioneer overland travel database, 2003-2017.
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They spent ten weeks at sea, arriving in New Orleans about the first of April. Here they began to see strange sights and peculiar customs of the new land and suffer minor disappointments. On April 4th, the family took passage on a steamboat going up the Mississippi River bound for Council Bluffs, Iowa. Her sister Sarah married while on the ship coming over. When they reached St. Louis, she and her husband and there brother Thomas and his wife decided to stop and work there then come on later. Thomas did come on later but Sarah died that summer in child-birth. Janette also died in Wales that same year.
On the way across the ocean, a young man fell in love with Grandmother's sister Elizabeth and asked to marry her, but she refused him. One night when they were some miles beyond St. Louis, Elizabeth saw Grandmother to bed then went out on the deck of the steamer in the moonlight. There the young man found her and again asked to marry her. When she refused him, he became angry and strangled her to death. When the people on board found out about it, they Captain of the ship said, "If you men are with me, we will stop and give this girl a decent burial." They stopped at one of the lovely old plantations along the river bank and buried her under the grass and trees in the moonlight. This was one of the saddest experiences of Grandmother's life.
The family came on to Council Buffs. They arrived not long before Grandfather Snow was leaving for Utah. they bought his farm and home because the presiding Elder, Mr. Hyde, advised Great-grandfather to stay and raise grain for about two years to take to Utah as food was scarce in the Salt Lake Valley at the time. It was through this that Grandmother became acquainted with the Snow family. As her father was not very strong, the conditions they were forced to live under were too much for him and he took chills and fever and died August 1850. Grandmother was also sick with chills and fever but recovered. She and her brother Henry were now the only ones left except the step-mother and a half-sister Mary, and the brother Thomas back in St. Louis.
The step-mother was very overbearing and hard to get along with. Henry and Grandmother longed to get away from her. Shortly after this, Henry got a chance to hire out to a man who was going to California. With a sad heart, Grandmother bad him goodbye. After he reached California, he wrote to her and Uncle Thomas several times and they answered. Finally Grandmother said she got to the place where she didn't have means enough to buy a stamp and paper so she stopped writing. She never heard from him again. Later they learned of some freighters in California that had been killed by the Indians and they always thought that likely he was one of them.
The step-mother now decided to go on to Utah. She and a man, that had a wife but no children, bought a covered wagon, a yoke of oxen and a cow together and started out for Utah with a company of saints. They hadn't gone far when the stepmother quarreled with the man, and she made him cut the wagon in two so that each had a two-wheeled cart and an oxen to make the journey with. Grandmother walked and drove the oxen the rest of the way across the plains.
After weeks of plodding over rough dusty roads exposed to all kinds of weather, they finally neared the Salt Lake Valley. Grandmother's wagon was the last in the train. When they were still miles outside of the valley, a wheel collapsed. She left the step-mother and sister Mary, and in her own words she said, "I walked a foot and alone in a snow storm into Slat Lake Valley to get help." when she got there, she met a man on the streets and told him of the plight she was in. He asked her if she knew anyone in the valley. She told him that she had known the Snows in Council Bluffs. So he took her there and some of the men went out and helped them. Out of the family of eight that had left Wales, she was the first to reach Salt Lake, in fact she was the only one of her own family except Uncle Thomas who moved out later.