Thursday, June 14, 2012

Stephen Shelley

    Stephen Shelley, son of William and Jane Dunn Shelley, was born February 14, 1849 at Bobbingham, Staffordshire, England.  He was the third child of a family of thirteen.
     In the month of February 1851, when Stephen was two years old, his father and mother with their four children, William, Hannah, Stephen and John Lyon, started for the Land of Zion.  They were accompanied by Grandfather James Boyer Shelley and his wife Elizabeth Bray Shelley and their children, William, Thomas, John, James, Joseph, and Sarah.  One daughter Martha remained in England.  They had all accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ as taught by the humble Mormon Elders.
    They set sail on the ship “Ellen Maria” and after a voyage of several weeks landed at New Orleans, April 5, 1851.  Within a few days the party proceeded by steamer up the Mississippi River.  When near Memphis, Tennessee on April 14, grandmother Shelley drowned while attempting to draw a bucket of water from the swift stream.  Her body was not found.  This indeed was a great sorrow to the family.
     When they arrived at St. Loius, Stephen’s father and mother decided to remain there for a season until they could get sufficient means to continue their journey to Zion.  They remainded in St. Louis about one year and arrived in Salt Lake City, August 13, 1852 and from there they came to American Fork where the rest of the family resided and made this their permanent home.  Here Stephen grew to manhood assisting his father and grandfather in helping to provide for the needs of loved ones by working on the farm, also in the saw mill which was run by Grandfather Shelley.
    He was united in marriage in the Endowment House at Salt Lake City, February 21, 1870 to Sarah Clegg, daughter of Thomas and Susanna Redman Clegg, by Daniel H. Wells. To this union five children were born, Eliza, Jane, June, Amy and Stephen T.  He was always a keeper of the golden rule, “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”  He was strickly honest in his dealings with his fellowmen; faithful to every trust; ever ready and willing to help and assist in time of need.  He served the City as water master for 22 years and through his efforts and few others water was put in the cemetery.  He worked for a number of years for the American Fork Coop.  He also trained to help fight the Indians in the Black Hawk War, but didn’t go into actual service.
      What more need be said of him? Though quiet and unassuming his heart was in the work of God.  The last three months he has been a sufferer but has had faith in the priesthood of God and asked often for them to come and ask Father’s blessings upon him, and has received rest and comfort.  During his sickness his wife and family have been unceasging in their efforts to ease his suffering, and have done all that loving hearts and hands could do, showing their great love and devotion to him until death came to his relief, August 11, 1921.
    His posterity numbers 5 children, 13 grandchildren, and 13 great grand children.  He held the office of an Elder.
     May we as the posterity of our noble ancestor prove ourselves worthy of him, and live so that the family he loved may see the family chain unbroken throughout Eternity.

             O Father, help us to see Thy hand,
             Thy purposes to understand.
              Help us in all to stand the test.
              And feel each day Thy will is best.

               Help us to live that we may claim,
              Thy spirit here to praise Thy name
              To live that we when life is o’er
               May meet in joy those gone before.

               When death no more will us molest
               No parting know, but perfect rest
               With those we love, O joyous thought
               Help us Our Father, do our part.

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