Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thomas Barratt History 1

Thomas Barratt, one of Utah’s early pioneers, was born in Loughborough, Leichester, England, March 10, 1830.  He was the son of John and Sarah Ann Watts Barratt.  His father followed the trade of wool comber.  His son, Thomas, grew up in his native town.  He learned the trade of lace making from the school that country at which trade he became an expert.  At the age of 19, in the year 1849, he was married to Mary Morgan Whitby.  He heard the teachings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from the humble missionaries.  He was convinced of the truthfulness of it and embraced the Gospel in the year 1850.
   At the age of 24, in the year 1854, he, in the company with his wife and son, left his native land for the land of Zion.  He remained about a year in St. Louis, Missouri.  While here his wife died.  He then sent for Ellen Julian, a young lady with when he was well acquainted in England, and they were married May 19, 1855, in St. Louis, Missouri.  She was born in Shelford, Nottingham, England.  She was the daughter of William and Jane Spencer Julian.  She was also throughly converted to the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and was baptized December 16, 1853.  She was then 19 years old when she assumed the responsibility of wife and foster mother to his motherless child.  Her sweet uncomplaining disposition was always a source of joy and satisfaction on their arduous journey, arriving in Salt Lake City in 1855, where they remained for 3 months, and when their endowment work was done, December 1855.
    In February 1855 they came to American Fork, where they have since resided.  They walked the entire distance in snow up to their knees. 
    To this union, thirteen children were born, two died in infancy, John W., Sarah Jane, James H., Mary Ellen, Thomas J., Heber, Frank, Charlotte, Martha, Edwin, and Samuel.
    His third wife, Emma Skyes, also a native of England, bore to him seven children.
     Grasshoppers had destroyed about all the crops in the territory the year they came to American Fork and food was very scarce so that they suffered much in common with others of the settlers for lack of proper nourishment, and was also destitute for clothing.

     Although new at the occupation of farmer, he took up land and worked hard in clearing the land which was in a wild and undeveloped state, but by hard work and close economy, of which his wife was surely a help-mate, he was able to bring it under cultivation, building a comfortable home which was truly enjoyed by his wife and large family.  But it was not considered too large by her who possessed a truly motherly spirit, as was proved in her taking to raise as her own, two others left motherless by death, James Hunter Barratt and Nellie Mercer Christensen.  The former child of her son, James H. The latter the daughter of Jeddediah J. Mercer and grandchild of her only sister, both about two weeks old when she took them under her care.  She was a heroine in the true spirit of the word and her long life of good deeds both to her family, neighbors, and friends, speak louder than words, will ever stand as a monument to her memory.  Her husband Thomas Barratt, has always taken on an active part in both religion and public affairs, having filled many positions of trust.  He served in the capacity of City Councilman for a number of years.  He also for a number of years, acted as counselor to the late Bishop Robinson.  He was a member of the early militia of Utah during the raids of the Indians in Rush and Cedar Valley and also during the time of the Black Hawk War he asked as assistance commissary and otherwise took an active part in the troubles with the Indians at that time.  He was exceptionally active in the Church which he was a devout member.  He passed through the different offices of the Priesthood from Deacon to High Priest.  When a Seventy he held the position as senior President of the 67th Quorum of Seventy.  He was also a High Councilor of Alpine Stake of Zion.  In 1876 he was sent to England on a mission laboring for a time in the Nottingham Conference and was later appointed President of the Liverpool Conference.  He returned in the year 1878 and was in charge of a company of saints.
   He, in company with a neighbor, Brother Samuel Wagstaff, being both devout Latter-Day Saints, were often called on to administer to and comfort the sick.  Day and night they were on hand to go at a moments notice to the bedside of the sick and were successful in calling down upon them blessings of the Lord.  He was also one of the originators of the Old Folk’s parties that have become a pride to the state and was a member of the State Committee at the time of his death, January 4, 1906 of diabetes.  His second wife, Ellen Julian Barratt still survives, at the age of 93 the 18th of March next. [That would be March 18, 1929]
   His posterity numbers 20 children, 67 grandchildren and 18 great grand children and 11
great great grand children.
    May we as the posterity of such noble ancestors prove ourselves worthy to them and live so that the family they loved may see the family chain unbroken through eternity.

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