Thursday, June 14, 2012
William Green and Jane Prosser Family
(This history is taken from "The Dutson Family History" compiled by Louise Lyman Nielson and
Dora Dutson Flack, pages 89-94)
Early in the nineteenth century, there was living in Lugwardine, Herefordshire, England a
shoemaker, William Green, his wife, Jane Prosser Green, and their eleven children. 1
Jane born in January 1794, unmarried, died August 30, 1854 at St. Louis, Missouri
Mary christened June 21, 1795, died December 17, 1813 (ae 16)
Sarah christened March 3. 1797, married Philip Lewis July 2, 1819
Hester christened June 22, 1800
Ann christened 2 November 18, 1802, married (1) John Dutson "after Banns" February 7, 1826);
(2) John Carling June 10, 1844
Elizabeth christened October 3, 1804, married (1) Thomas Richmond (2) Luke Nield February 7,
Susan christened February 1, 1807
Phoebe christened October 2, 1808, and _______ Dunville
Eleanor (twin) christened January 13, 1812, married ________ Dunville (Whichever sister
married Mr. Dunville first later died and he married the other sister.)
William (twin) christened January 13, 1812, married Harriet Palmer
Philip christened December 15, 1812, married Rhoda ________
At that time most manufacturing was carried on in the homes. William Green and his sons made
shoes and the women ran a laundry. He owned his own home in the country and kept a garden in
which he raised roses and other flowers, herbs, vegetables, and fruits. They were an industrious,
thrifty family, living without luxury, but were well fed and clothed. Ann (the fifth daughter) married
John Dutson whose occupation we might term a travelling salesman. (See biography of John
William Dutson which gives occupation of a mapmaker.)
John Dutson was a very good husband and adored his small daughter Jane. From one of his trips
in the summer of 1828 he never returned. We who live in this modern age must remember that
transportation was extremely slow at that time and communication was very limited, making it
almost impossible to trace missing persons. Hence his wife and parents (who lived in the city of
Hereford) mourned him as dead.
On September 28, 1828 a son was born to the young widow, who was named John William
Dutson. These children (Jane Ann and John William) were the joy of their doting grandparents and
kindly aunts and uncles.
Jane was sometimes taken to Hereford in the coach of her Aunt Sarah's husband to visit her
Dutson grandparents. The Dutsons were prosperous shopkeepers and one of the daughters was a
milliner. They lived in the city and had to buy their food from shops. Therefore Grandfather Green
(surrounded by his own productive gardens) always wondered if they had sufficient to eat in the
big city where so many had to be fed from limited supplies. When little Jane would return from a
visit with her Dutson grandparents, Grandfather Green immediately inquired if she had had ''all thou
wantst to eat?" Often in his doting concern for them he would tie up a cherry limb or a currant bush
against the ravages of the birds to insure a portion of the fresh fruit for the children upon their
The Dutson children were taught early to sing. Jane's sweet voice joined with the other voices in
the Methodist choir when she was so small she had to stand on a stool to be seen.
In the spring of 1840 when Jane was 13 and John William was 11, an apostle of the Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Wilford Woodruff, came into their midst, preaching a new
religion. The family were very religious and were earnest readers of the Bible. However, they were
not entirely satisfied with their church. They had been members of the Methodist faith and may
have been in the group who had pulled away and set up a church known as the United Brethren.
Quoting from "Leaves from My Journal, " by Wilford Woodruff, we read: "This body of United
Brethren were searching for light and truth but had gone as far as they could, and were continually
calling upon the Lord to open up the way before them and send them light and knowledge that
they might know the true way to be saved." In eight months Wilford Woodruff baptized eighteen
hundred souls which included some two hundred preachers of various denominations and all but
one of the six hundred United Brethren.
All of William Green's family were included in this large number of baptisms by Wilford Woodruff,
except Philip who joined later. Although Philip was the last to join the church, he became the most
enthusiastic about going to America. In his joking way he was heard to exclaim: "Why, in America
the pigs are running around wild calling for people to come stick a fork in them."
Then began the process of disposing of their property and the preparations for the journey. The
husbands of Sarah and Susan were unsuccessful in the immediate sale of their property. They
waited for a better sale and as a result never emigrated to America.
The group of close relatives, with the exception of these two sisters, Sarah and Susan and their
families, left Liverpool on the sailing ship "Medford" September 25, 1842 with a large group of the
saints under the leadership of Apostle Orson Hyde who was returning from Jerusalem. They
arrived in New Orleans November 13, 1842.
Since the River was filled with ice, the family remained at St. Louis for the winter. The father,
William Green, Sr., died at St. Louis in April of 1843 at the age of 88.
In the spring the family continued their journey up the Mississippi River to Nauvoo where they
established homes with the saints.
The Green families suffered severe persecutions from the mob, along with the other saints. On one
occasion they were forced by the mob to flee in such haste that they left their wash boiling in a
large brass kettle in the backyard. When they resumed the clothes were mildewed.
Following the expulsion of the main body of the saints from Nauvoo, the Greens were forced to
remain because they were unable to sell their property. They finally fled from the city just before
the battle of Nauvoo (see biography of John William). They were so frightened and intimidated
that no one stopped to gather any provisions of any kind. The women were without bonnets,
coats, extra clothing, and did not even take a crust of bread with them for sustenance.
The men remained behind to defend the city. The women begged passage down the River and
finally reached St. Louis where they were staying when found some three weeks later by William
Green, Jr. after hazardous experiences with the Mormon-haters. (See biography of John William
Jane Prosser Green (the mother of the large family of emigrants) had prevailed upon her grandson
John William Dutson to postpone his trip to the Valley in order that he might care for her and her
unmarried daughter Jane, so that they might go together at a later date. However, she never lived
to see the Valleys of the mountains. She died of cholera in St. Louis June 21, 1849. The epidemic
was so severe at the time that the city officials would make the rounds of the city in the morning to
see who was sick. In the afternoon they would return with a coffin, knowing that the illness meant
sure death. Jane Prosser Green was buried the same day she died. The citizens were ordered to
refrain from eating meat and vegetables.
William Green and his wife Harriet, and Philip Green and his wife Rhoda, suffered greatly from the
They lost several children and settled in St. Louis in the hope of regaining some of their lost means.
However, they remained in St. Louis. It is not known whether they turned against their religion, but
lost contact with the family in the West.
Elizabeth Green married a widower, Thomas Richmond, who died en route to Utah. The couple
never had children of their own. However, he had a family by his former wife. One of those sons
joined the Mormon Battalion. Elizabeth brought the other Richmond children with her to Utah and
settled first in Provo, where she was joined a year later by her sister, Ann Green Dutson Carling
and her family. In 1853 they moved south to Fillmore. Elizabeth married Luke Nield February 7,
Elizabeth became known as "Aunt Richmond". She was an especial friend to the widows and
orphans, taking them into her home, caring for them, nursing them in sickness, clothing and feeding
them. She took one little motherless mite, Eliza Ann Trusket, when but a few hours old and raised
her to womanhood. There were no rubber nipples at that time. So she boiled buckskin, stretched it
over the neck of a bottle, punctured small holes in it and used this to bottlefeed the tiny baby. To
supplement the milk, she boiled bread into a fine gruel and added milk to it.
Apostle Francis M. Lyman in church services in Fillmore extolled her virtues and told her kindness
and resourcefulness. He related how she had come into their home when his wife was ill and they
had so little. But Elizabeth could take what little was available and serve attractive, appetizing
dishes. Her great love for children was doubly returned. The children could count on "Aunt
Richmond" to share their joys and sorrows. Holidays were special -Christmas. Easter, Good
Friday, Ash Wednesday, 4th of July and 24th of July. There was always something new to wear
for Easter. Hot Cross Buns were always served on Good Friday.
She and her niece Jane Dutson Melville made the first flag to be raised in Fillmore. It was made
from a white sheet, Jane's husband's red military sash and some blue cloth. When completed, it
was raised on the highest cabin in the fort.
"Aunt Richmond's" little home was built on her city lot situated between her sister and her niece.
She died in Fillmore at the age of 77, loved and mourned by all who knew her.
It is regrettable that more information concerning the Green family as a whole is not at present
available. Because of their advanced years, no doubt William Green and his wife, wondered in
discouraging moments, as they left behind the memories' friends, and means of a long lifetime, if the
move to the new world for the sake of a new religion was really worth the sacrifice. Looking down
the stream of time of their posterity, they could not possibly see the contributions in service and
courage which were necessary in subduing the west. Even though they both died at St. Louis, their
indomitable spirit lived on in the hearts of those children who braved the ordeals of pioneer life to
make their homes among the saints of God in the valleys of the mountains.
1 Family group sheet by Genealogical Society of Utah for Dutson of Ririe, Idaho
2 See Footnote #1 in biography of Ann Green Dutson Carling.
Scanned by Joseph F. Buchanan - 8 July 1996
Histories of my ancestors (index)