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A History of Joseph Stay Part 1



Section 1


Joseph Stay History


March 10th 2009


Chapters:
1 Preface
2 Background regarding Joseph Stay’s Life
3 A Void in Surviving Family History
4 Early Period of Joseph’s Life
5 Economic Conditions of the Time
6 Joseph’s Education
7 Conditions in early 1800
8 Joseph’s Baptism – Chalford Area
9 Marriage to Sarah Jane Pearce 1846
10 Joseph as a Traveling Elder
11 Emigration to St. Louis
12 The St. Louis Period
13 Shaw’s Botanical Gardens
14 The LDS Church in St. Louis about 1858-60
15 The Utah Period
16 Salt Lake First and Seventh Ward Affiliation
17 Epilogue
18 Appendix




Joseph Stay in England

JOSEPH STAY



1822 – Born 1822 Died 1903

By: Gary E. Stay
Revised February 1998
Revised November, 2008
Revised March 2009




PREFACE



This Section is a record of Joseph Stay's life and an account of his parentage and children. Until the first study published in July of 1988, no narrative was written regarding him, other than several brief references recorded in a Woodbury family history.(1) A detailed genealogy family group sheet initially provided a valuable reference point from which to start. Sparse verbal history was gathered during the course of the study which added an additional dimension. The work is being republished at this time with additional information regarding Joseph's schooling and his early life that was not available at the time of the first study. This third revision (March. 2009) includes additional information such as the steamship the family emigrated from Liverpool to New York’s Covenant Garden. Also the assumption that the family spent time in the New York area is now bogus due to additional information about Sarah Jane’s marriage to Charles Vought in St. Louis not New York.
The 1988 narrative opened a new chapter in the Stay family's identity, for until then, historical roots had been lacking on this lineage. It is also interesting to note that the Pearce family, (Sarah Jane Pearce, Joseph's wife), experienced an extension of ancestry in the course of this study.
Early English LDS Church (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) history is particularly interesting because of an emphasis during 1987, the 150th year of the LDS Church in England. We find that Joseph Stay was a participant in this history through his missionary activity and ecclesiastical leadership during the late 1840s and 1850s.
Pictures of Joseph Stay and his family have been located. Several pictures of his daughters and son and their spouses are included.
Considerable effort by many members of the family to identify the majority of Joseph's descendants has taken place. We know this listing is not complete, but time constraints have not allowed every line to be fully presented, we apologize for these omissions. With the New Family Search program, the family will be able to consolidate research between members of the family. The author is indebted to Dorothy Jacobson, Sharon Brown and Harry Stay of Highcliff, England who assisted in compiling information and editing the manuscript.

Small Photo of Joseph Stay



Chapter 2
BACKGROUND





Joseph Stay's life is significant, especially to his Latter-day Saint descendants, because Joseph Stay was the first of the Stay name to accept the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and embrace its teachings. It is because of this conversion that members of the Stay family immigrated to America.
In 1820, about two years prior to Joseph's birth, a young American lad also named Joseph, of Irish ancestry, living near Palmyra, New York, witnessed a vision that ushered in the dispensation of the fullness of times. This revelation in far-off America set into motion a series of activities and events leading to a new religious movement that would influence the life of Joseph Stay and his descendants over a period of one and a half centuries.
As this historical account of Joseph Stay's life has been researched, it has been found that he possessed a zeal shared by many early British converts of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who actively proclaimed its teachings, participated in missionary activity, fulfilled administrative priesthood responsibilities and taught his family the important values of the Mormon faith.
His faith was unwavering through many trials and periods of social upheaval and economic uncertainty. Although Joseph and his family were not "Pioneers” in the literal sense, i.e. those who walked or crossed the plains or by ox cart, he was a major influence very early in furthering the Gospel in the midlands of west central England following his introduction to the LDS Church eight years after Mormonism was introduced in his country.
The author has been reluctant to detail the considerable number of specific references gleaned; however, it is the detail and consistency of activity that attest to Joseph Stay and his family's perseverance and dedication. This short history has been constructed through researching the records of the LDS Branch and Conference records in the County of Gloucestershire England and St. Louis, Missouri church records, the Salt Lake City First and Seventh Ward records as well as a smattering of family sources. Other records such as the Perpetual Emigration Fund accounts available in the Church Historical Department and sources in the Salt Lake Genealogy Library have also been utilized.
Nothing in this history is monumental in nature. Joseph was a faithful LDS priesthood bearer who simply did his job, followed counsel, was given responsibilities, carried them out and remained true to the LDS faith throughout his life. References throughout this study attest to his and his family's strong commitment. The following three notations are indicative of the devotion that was found throughout the records studied:
Cheltenham Conference, England, minutes September 1850--
"Elder Stay being called to the stand bore his testimony and spoke at some length on his experience and many other things in relation to the great work of God."
April 25, 1875, St. Louis Branch:
"Meeting called to order by President Joseph Stay. Prayer by Pres. Joseph Stay. Pres. Stay then spoke, hoping the Saints would realize their position they hold in the Kingdom."
These entries and many others tell a story that many descendants of today who participate in wards and branches of the LDS Church could well experience, that of a solid leader who conducts meetings, provides the prayers, leads the saints, extols them to good works and faith-fullness and supports the congregation through the active membership participation of his family.



Chapter 3
A VOID IN SURVIVING FAMILY HISTORY





Family accounts of the past are often gilded to reflect an illusion of fact that provides descendants a degree of fantasy that does not truly reflect historical happenings. The Stay Family is no exception. The family has long subscribed to the story that the Stays are of French nobility who escaped during the French Revolution to Southern England and established a life anew among the people of Great Britain. The name ascribed to this French family is "Jetay" anglicized to the name of Stay. Genealogical evidence, however, would place the Stay family within the county of Hampshire long before the periods of French insurrections. We cannot discount however, that a number of families stemming from Southern England do indeed have lines extending into France due to the Norman influence in early times. However, at this juncture we must discredit the French Revolution. A considerable number of early references to the name of Stay and Stoy have been located in Southern England prior to the French insurrection periods.
Recent evidence traces our family to the village of Brockenhurst, Hampshire, England in early 1600, with the name being Stoy rather than Stay. Richard Stoy and other Stoys were Catholic dissenters (recusants), during the early 1600s
Note: An early family Bible(2) details the family and has a notation that "Peter Stay came from the north in Somersetshire". Peter Stay is the Father of Joseph. This account also is suspect because census entries and other data place Peter's birth in Hordle, Hampshire, England. However his ancestors did indeed stem from the “North” but not Somersetshire, but in the New Forest in the area surrounding the village of Brockenhurst
Family histories are often silent regarding certain family lines. Family members upon occasion wish not to disclose situations which could cast a negative connotation upon the family name.
Why an account of Joseph Stay's life has not been handed down either verbally or in written form is somewhat of a dilemma. The family lines have been searched diligently for any record of Joseph's life, to no avail. This void of family history is possibly accounted for in our family line because of the problems of Joseph Hyrum Stay, Joseph's son. LDS Branch records in St. Louis, would lead us to believe that this handsome young man born in Nailsworth, England, on the 14th of February, 1851, did not live in accordance with all the tenets of the LDS Church.

Joseph Hyrum Stay, 15/16

Joseph Hyrum Stay
The Saint Louis Branch Records(3) detail the following account:
August 18, 1872:
"Bro. Joseph Stay, Jr., was cut off from the Church this date "for continual contempt of Council". Bro. Joseph Stay, Jr., was listed as a Deacon. Elder Joseph Stay (Senior) was in attendance at this council meeting. "
We must assume that this reference was a severance from the Church. "Continual contempt of Council" could relate simply to not taking the advice of Council to bring his life into conformance with accepted mores and attend to Church duties and meetings. It possibly may refer to his use of alcohol. Joseph Hyrum was reinstated into full fellowship prior to 1877 when he was married to Mary Cornelia Woodbury in the LDS St. George Temple.
In Joseph Hyrum's later life, he had a drinking problem. In the 1890 era, drinking was considered a weakness in character or lack of willpower, and little could be done to "cure" a person. Successful treatment is only 30 to 40 years old and still remains a difficult condition to treat. This stigma attached to Joseph Hyrum's condition may have been the reason that no objective family history has stemmed through the Joseph Hyrum line. The situation appears to have been further intensified by the fact that on the 22nd of April 1898, Joseph Hyrum took his own life. Religious connotations are also attached to this act, "an offense that has eternal implications".
This account therefore is an attempt to reconstruct and detail the life of Joseph Hyrum's father, Joseph Stay, a forgotten grand-father, who for some reason has not previously had his life recorded.
Other family line records through Joseph's four daughters have not been found that refer to Joseph. It is possible that references and accounts may yet be found that could add to this history.



Chapter 4
EARLY PERIOD





Joseph Stay was born on near Ashley, in the parish of Milton, Hampshire, England on the twenty-fourth of April 1822. He was the son of Peter Stay and Sarah Mussen (Muston).
Note: Joseph recorded his mother's name as Muston when Sarah Jane his wife performed LDS temple work for her in the Logan Temple in Utah on the 22nd of Nov. 1887. For many years the family has attempted to locate her parentage. It has been found that her name was Sarah Mussen born near Canford Magna, Dorsetshire, England, and her parents, brothers and sisters have been identified. It appears that Mussen is the true family name because of references in the same geographic area. The birth of Joseph's older sisters, Ann and Elisea, in Lytchett Minster, Dorset, was located along with the actual banns and marriage entries of Peter and Sarah recorded at Canford Magna, Dorsetshire.
Joseph had eight brothers and sisters, Ann, born 21 October 1804; Elisea, born 25 Dec. 1806; both born at Lytchett Minster, Dorsetshire as previously mentioned. Mary was born 25 June 1809; John born 15 September 1811; both in the hamlet of Hordle. Charles born 24 October 1813 in Milford. William, born about 1816 at Ashley, Rebecca born about 1819/20 at Milford and Sarah born in 1824 at Barton. All of the latter locations are in the county of Hampshire. Based upon these recorded birth places, Peter and his family moved around the immediate area. Ashley and Barton are located in the Milton parish just east of the, Hordle and Milford-on-Sea parishes. All are located in Hampshire on the Southern coast of England just across from the western most tip of the Isle of Wight. The hamlet of Hordle is recorded as the place of his father's birth.
Recent evidence has shed light on Joseph's childhood and schooling. Joseph's family appears to have relocated for a time to Christchurch which is about ten miles from the place of his birth. Their affiliation with the Independent Denomination (Congregational Church) which is listed as "Dissenting Protestants" took place about 1828 at Christchurch. It appears that nearly all of Peter's children chose to become members of the Congregational Church. The following entries attest to this fact. (GS Films 0595452 and 1565289)
(Note: The student should read the history of Milford-on-Sea , this WEB site pertaining to the pastor of the local church leaving the Church of England with his whole congregation. Peter and his family were living in that parish at the time of these events which may account for their affiliation with the Congregational Church in Christchurch.)
William, Joseph and Sarah were baptized into the Congregational Church June 22, 1828. Rebecca was baptized December 22, 1828. Charles and his family is listed a number of times in the minutes of the church. A baptism of Charles Edgell the son of Mary (Stay) and John Edgell is recorded on July 13, 1834, and Henry Hoare, the son of Elizabeth (Stay) and James Hoare baptized on June 11, 1837 was recorded. These last two entries now confirm the marriages of these two sisters which were only known through the temple work done some years later in Utah.
The minute books and church rolls include entries accounting for Charles, Elizabeth, Charlotte, Ellen and John Stay which would account for nearly all the members of the family who were living in and around Christchurch at Whitehall and living at the "Pit" (an area of gravel pits).
It is interesting to note that descendants of the family retained membership in the Christchurch Independent Church for several generations. In December of 1881 for example, Charles Stay, (Joseph's Brother) is listed in the church minutes as one of ten poor members who were selected to be recipients of a trust left by a David Bury. Harry Stay, (our cousin at Highcliff, a great grandson of Peter) indicates that in the minutes of the Independent Church at Poksdown. At a meeting on December 14, 1896, Teddy Stay gave a recitation, while on July 26th Edith Golton kindly presided at the piano (Harry's mother) On November 29, 1897; Mr. Stay (Harry's grandfather George) gave an interesting address on "Strong Drink". On February 8th, *George Stay gave the address speaking of Barn Building in Canada (he went there twice) and his experience with a bull and a lamb, he also sang a song which he had heard sung in the old Chapel entitled "Patty Green", all present joining in the chorus. (*see recently located letter this WEB [Treasures] site from George Stay of Pokesdown, Hampshire England, to his uncle Joseph Stay in Utah)
It would appear that from all accounts that Peter and Sarah did reside for a period in the town Christchurch. An entry in the accounts of the Overseers of the Poor Law at Christchurch lists two entries pertaining to Peter:
1831 May 21 Peter Stay ill 3.0 d
1831 May 28 Peter Stay ill 1.6 d
Harry Stay is of the opinion "that the Peter lived for some years in Christchurch (with his family) and when Charles was old enough, he took over the cottage and Peter and family returned to Milton (see 1841 census)". Joseph's parents, Peter and Sarah, were illiterate, not uncommon for the time, attested to by the fact that their marriage banns and marriage certificate(4) are signed by an X, which would indicate an inability to write their names.
In later years, Peter became blind and was on the welfare rolls of the Milton parish. It was the custom of that area to take care of the poor through stipends rather than placing elderly poor in alms houses. His father, Peter, and his brother and sister, John and Rebecca, remained together based upon the 1851 census where Peter was listed as a widower age seventy-two, a pauper and blind living at Milton, Hampshire. It seems that Rebecca was unmarried at this time and had an illegitimate six-year-old daughter Ellen. After her father’s death, Rebecca age 38 married William Adams (a gunsmith) in Hordle 13 April 1875. John was reported to have married Elizabeth Robinson based upon temple work done by Joseph Hyrum Stay, 19 Jan 1894 in the Salt Lake Temple. The descendants of Charles (Joseph's older brother) tell us that he worked as a shepherd and as a laborer. Charles remained in the area (Christchurch) and assisted in the care of his parents in their later years. Some of his family, Harry Stay and Chris Upton, son of Joyce Stay Upton, three generations later, live within the immediate area at Highcliff and Mudyford within this geographical "roots" area.



Chapter 5
ECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF THE TIME





The southern counties of England, which would include Dorsetshire, Wiltshire and Hampshire, had been particularly hard hit by economic hardship during the early to mid 1800s. This may account for Joseph's move in residence to the northwestern midlands where work was available within the woolen industry and associated activities.
The extent to which economic hardship prevailed during Joseph's early years is demonstrated in the following account:
Though living standards rose, they did so neither considerably nor steadily. Real wages stagnated or declined during the French wars from 1793 to 1815, rose in the early 1820s, but then fell back by anything up to 9% until 1840. And this takes little account of the possible absence of wages altogether for many workers in the slumps of 1811, 1816, 1819, 1826-7, 1830-31 and 1836-42, nor of Henry Mayhew's opinion in 1849 that only half the country's workers were in regular employment, the rest being either half employed or without work altogether.(5)



Chapter 6
JOSEPH'S EDUCATION





Public education of the period often used the Bible as a primary text for reading, which gave the English commoner a solid grasp of the scriptures. Joseph's later role as a missionary and lay leader of the Mormon Church would indicate an understanding and acquaintance with the Bible. It is clear that Joseph had some formal education based upon his literacy and handwriting skills. During the eighteen-thirties and eighteen-forties England had one of the highest literacy rates in the world. Joseph may have received his public education as a result of the Factory Acts that were passed between 1802 and 1833. These acts "extended regulation--- it imposed the limit of an eight hour day for children between nine and thirteen, and of a twelve hour day for young people between thirteen and eighteen, with some exceptions for silk factories. Children of the protected age-groups were to attend school for at least two hours each day."(6)
The century was rich in endeavor to improve literacy. ---It does not do to regard these schools too dismissively merely because their motive was strictly religious and their objectives simple piety, sober behavior and habits of subordination. Puritanism had committed the English to an intensely verbal religion and an intensely verbal culture. - - That the principal educative influence should be the Bible was almost unavoidable, since there were few books written specifically for children.(7)
Between 1818 and 1888, the percentage of children attending Sunday schools rose from four percent to seventy-five percent, most of them from the working class. Sunday schools, with their voluntary teachers, some of them teenagers, laid down a sediment of Bible stories and of residual recollections about God and Jesus which ensured the continuing demand in adult life for the magical services of the clergy at christenings, weddings and funerals- - - (8)
The Education of Joseph is almost certain to have taken place at the "Congregational Church Boys School" built in 1822/23 in Christchurch. The Reverend Daniel Gunn became the minister in 1818 with an aim of educating children. The schools were also known as the "Congregational Church day Schools" one for boys and one for girls, also known as the "Priory School" The Reverend Daniel Gunn is listed as the minister who baptized the family into the church.(9) Joseph would have been age six at the time of his baptism. Six or seven years would likely have been the period a young boy would have entered school prior to him becoming of age to be taken into the work force.
An advertisement(10) (1849) regarding the Congregational Church Boys' school - 7 years and upwards listed the following:
Elementary Division - Scripture, Reading, Writing and Arithmetic on Slates.
Middle Division - Scripture, Reading Writing and Arithmetic in Books, Natural History, Geography, Grammar, Mental Arithmetic and Elementary Singing.
Upper or First Division - As above, with History, Book Keeping, Geometry, Mensuration*, Algebra, Free Hand Drawing and Vocal Music. *surveying
The above course material if in place in 1829, would have prepared Joseph for his work in St. Louis working as a Landscape Engineer where his drawing and mathematical and surveying skills would have been used. Also this course material would give him indoctrination in the Scriptures which would have prepared him for his leadership and missionary roles as a member of the LDS Church later in his life.
Harry Stay has done additional research into the schools established by the Christchurch Congregational Church. In a letter dated 19 September, 1988 he states:
The first boys' school was build 1822/23 (when Joseph was born), but apparently not used until 1826. An "Extract of Education Returns" dated 1833 states the Education situation in Christchurch at that time: Two Lancastrian Schools, maintained by Dissenters, one contains 110 females, the other (commenced 1826) 126 males.
"The Evangelical Magazine" (July 1834) refers to the above two schools: "In 1833, thanks to the generosity of one William Rawlett who gave 400 guineas for the purpose, a new infant school was opened for the dissenters, plus a house for the mistress (these two buildings still exist) and catered for 80 children - - -
The "Extract of Education Returns 1833" also dealt with Sunday Schools and contained the remarkable information "- - - two other schools appertain to the Dissenters and consist respectively of 92 and 441 children of both sexes; the last school has an extensive lending library attached".
Thus, it is almost certain that Joseph received his education at the boy’s school provided by the Congregational Church.



Chapter 7
CONDITIONS IN EARLY 1800





It may be well to set the period of Joseph's early life in England.
The first railroad in the world was not far from the area where Joseph and his family lived. On the fifteenth of September 1830, when Joseph was seven years old, the Liverpool-Manchester Railway was opened. Prior to this time the main means of freight movement was by canal, wagons and boats.
The canals of England were an essential part of the increasingly intricate and roundabout processes of manufacture and distribution. The map of English canals is the map of industrial England; in 1750 there were only 1,000 miles of navigable waterways; by 1850, 4,250 miles of canals linked the main rivers and industrial towns with the ports and London.(11)
"In 1830, steam vessels were plying on rivers, lakes, and coastal routes or across channels and narrow seas."(12) "By 1838 the question no longer was whether any steamship could cross the North Atlantic at one jump, but which would be the first to do it. On 23 April the Sirius and the Great Western reached New York; crossing in about half the time taken by the best packets."(13) However, in 1856, just two years prior to Joseph and his family immigrating to America, "less than four percent of the passengers arriving there (New York) came by steamship."(14) We now know that Joseph and his family arrived in New York by steamship (The ship West Point)
Other technical innovations included Michael Faraday's announcement of the induction of an electrical current in a magnetic field in 1831. Prior to this date electricity was of no use. During this period Great Britain was undergoing a major industrial shift. Between 1800 and 1850 the country had "been transformed from a society that was predominantly rural and agricultural to one predominantly urban and industrial."(15)



Chapter 8
BAPTISM AND THE CHALFORD AREA





As stated earlier, we cannot account for Joseph relocating in his early twenties from the area of his birth, some seventy miles to the north, to the town of Chalford, Gloucestershire. Chalford is located about 25 miles northeast of Bristol, fifteen miles south southwest of Cheltenham and five miles southeast of Stroud. Chalford was a woolen center with active mills and dying plants.
Chalford was the place of Joseph's baptism into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was baptized on 3 November 1845 at the age of twenty-three by E. Henry Webb, who was the presiding authority of the area. Webb appears to have been an extraordinary missionary and is recorded as converting and baptizing a considerable number of members from this area. Joseph was confirmed a member on 9 November 1845, also by Henry Webb, then ordained to the Aaronic Priesthood and then to the office of priest in the Aaronic Priesthood on 25 December 1845. Joseph functioned as a priest in the area until his ordination to the higher priesthood, the office of elder, by James Ballenger on 19 September 1847.(16) (Joseph was ordained to the office of High Priest on the 29th of September 1877 by Edward Snelgrove in Salt Lake City, Utah)(17) (Snelgrove's Ice Cream?)
Joseph's religious preference prior to his joining the LDS Church was the Congregational Independent Church a non-conformist group. His marriage to Sarah by banns "According to the Rites and Ceremonies of the Established Church" at St. John Baptist Church in Gloucester would likely indicate their early prior affiliation with the Church of England, as well as the laws of the time.( marriages were not recognized except those performed in the "official church"). His christening was recorded at Barton Stacey in the local parish church on 7 July 1822. Chalford where Joseph lived at the time of his conversion to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints (LDS), had four different churches in 1845: Christchurch (Church of England), a Baptist chapel, a Wesleyan chapel and a Primitive Methodist Church.
Many converts to the Mormon Church during this period were members of the Primitive Methodist Church which had been functioning in Britain for over 100 years as dissenters of the Anglican faith. The mass baptisms into the LDS Church during the early period by the Mormon apostles and missionaries sent by Joseph Smith were often members of sects who were dissatisfied with the main bodies of English religions. In particular, nearly 400 converts from the United Brethren faith, a break-off from the Primitive Methodist Church, were baptized by Wilford Woodruff near Ledbury in 1840. Ledbury is some twenty miles to the northwest of Cheltenham. This concentration of Saints could well account for the high activity several years later of Mormonism near the homes of Joseph and Sarah just a few miles to the south.
Based upon Joseph's early affiliation with non-conformist values, he would have fit well into the pattern of early converts to the LDS Church.
Specifically, when and how the LDS Church was introduced into the Chalford, Wotton-under-Edge, and areas of Gloucestershire has not been recorded. Wilford Woodruff in a letter to America told of the frenzy of activity during 1840 (just five years prior to Joseph' s entry into the LDS Church in the same area):
"We had held two conferences of late in the south of England where I have been laboring; the first was held at the Gadfield Elm Chapel, in Worcestershire, England, June 14th. Elder W. Richards was with me; we had an interesting time; we organized twelve churches, and transacted much business; the other was held on the 21st of June, at Stanley Hill, Herefordshire, England. Elder Richards and myself conducted the meeting or conference, with the help of God; and I never saw more business executed in one day, than on this occasion. We organized twenty churches; ordained 4 Elders, blessed 20 children, besides a multitude of other business, and broke bread to several hundred Saints, etc. The work had been so rapid, it was impossible to ascertain the exact number belonging to each branch, but the whole number is 33 churches, 534 members, 75 officers, viz.: 10 Elders, 52 priests, and 13 teachers, all of which had embraced the work in less time than four months in a new field which I have opened in Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire, and the work was never in a more prosperous state in that place, than at the present time. I have no doubt but what the churches in that place will soon number one thousand souls".(18)
A number of important religious movements existed at this time: Millenarianism, pertaining to the millennium; the Temperance Movement who professed LDS Word of Wisdom concepts; the Atkinites, (Robert Atkin) who professed the second coming of Christ; the Roeites, who professed the literal gathering of Israel concept; the Irvingites, (Edward Irving) who stressed Biblical prophecy, prophets and apostles. These and other movements contributed to the religious milieu of the period. The teachings of the LDS Church therefore provided a uniform, orderly answer to these and many varied sects functioning throughout England. “The field was truly ripe and ready for harvest” which surely contributed to the conditions surrounding Sarah's and Joseph's conversions to Mormonism.
Chalford was in an economic stage of decline during this period. The woolen mills had cut production drastically due to over-abundance and competition within the woolen industry. The extensive woolen mills were active in Chalford from the mid 1700s through 1850 where as many as thirteen major producing mills were functioning. Chalford was developed as a woolen center because of supply (wool from the Cotswold hills), and because the Cotswold hills produced a number of fast running streams that powered the water wheels providing energy to run the extensive mechanized looms. Because of the decline in production during this period, it is probable that Joseph was not employed as a woolen worker. These jobs likely would have been preserved for those with tenure or seniority.
What then could draw a twenty-year-old, single man to a somewhat depressed area as Chalford? First, the area of Southern England, Joseph's place of birth, was suffering from a more intense economic decline. Second, we find reference to the fact that prior to this time the roads were very poor with the use of pack animals as the principal means of transporting goods in and out of the area. Canals were not functional in this hilly area, and the railroad had not yet moved into the mountainous country, so extensive essential road building was taking place during this very time. Based upon Joseph's documented future landscaping activities and that on his marriage certificate he is listed as a gardener, and with later references to the use of his team, it is probable that Joseph was engaged in some sort of landscaping activities or the construction of roads. His skills of surveying (courses in Mensuration) would have been utilized in road building. The principal means of moving earth during this period was by wheelbarrows, pick and shovel, and primarily through the use of scoops known as slips, pulled by horse and mule teams. Nearly a yard and a half of soil and aggregate could be moved by scooping then skidding to the place of deposit.



Chapter 9
MARRIAGE





Sarah Jane Pearce

Sarah Jane Pearce
Earliest known photograph
from an early tin type

On the seventh day of July, 1846, Joseph was married to Sarah Jane Pearce of Kingswood, Wiltshire. Sarah and Joseph were married at the parish church in the Parish of St. Michael in the City and County of Gloucester "according to the rites and ceremonies of the established church by banns" by me E. C. Boisco curate of St. John Baptist.(19) Joseph was listed as a gardener and Sarah as a spinster. Their residence was listed as the Hamlet of St. Michael in or near the City of Gloucester. Although both were members of the LDS Church they followed the practice of marriage following the notification by banns.
Sarah, a member of the LDS Church, had been baptized on the twenty-eighth of February 1843, by the same E. Henry Webb, nearly two years prior to the baptism of Joseph. Kingswood sported two religious buildings: St. Mary the Virgin (Anglican) and a Congregational Chapel founded in 1668. The Pearce family also appears to have been active in the non-conformist groups of the area. Graves of the Pearce and Lacey families (Sarah's Mother's family) are located in the Tabernacle (Congregationalist) churchyard and in the Baptist churchyard in Wotton-under-Edge near Kingswood.(20) Kingswood, although surrounded by the county of Gloucester, was a small enclave which was a part of the county of Wiltshire. It is probable that Joseph and Sarah met through LDS Church contact. Or, he may have affiliated with the Congregationalist Tabernacle in Wotton-under-Edge. Both were members of the LDS Church prior to their marriage and because the Cheltenham Conference (we would call this a mission district today) included the branches of Chalford, Tetbury, Avening, Cam and Kingswood. Kingswood, Wiltshire, is the location of Sarah Jane Pearce's birth. It appears that no records pertaining to the LDS Church have survived from Kingswood.
To get a perspective of the LDS Church activity in our area of study from this period, it is noted in an 1844 entry of the Conference records regarding the Chalford Hill Branch:
A Conference was held at Chalford August 19, 1844 at which Elder E. Henry Webb presided. The branches of Chalford, Tetbury, Avening, Cam and Kingswood were represented, comprising 116 members.(21)
This is not a large congregation for five ecclesiastical units.
The first child born to Joseph and Sarah Stay, Sarah Jane, named for her mother, is recorded on the 30th of May 1847 at Bristol.(22) Bristol is some twenty-five miles to the southwest of Chalford. Sarah Jane Pearce's parents lived in Bristol at the time. Sarah and Joseph may have lived in Bristol or Sarah may have gone to her parents' home to have her first child.
Although Joseph was baptized in 1845, his first recorded responsibilities in the Church appear in 1849: Elder Joseph Stay is recorded as baptizing Charlotte Gapper on March 12, 1849 and Eliza Hawkins on April 16, 1849 at the Cheltenham Branch. At least six other ordinances are recorded as being performed by Joseph Stay at Cheltenham during this year.
Sunday March 16, 1850:
Elder Joseph Stay was sustained as President of the Chalford Hill District and the Nailsworth Branches.
Chalford Hill Branch: September 15, 1850:
At the council meeting held on this day it was moved and seconded that Joseph Stay should preside over the Branch council meetings and that R. Preator be clerk to the Branch. W. Wall was empowered to look for a place to hold their meetings in the future. Present 4 Elders, 1 Priest and 1 Teacher.(23)
September 21 and 22, 1850:
Moved by Elder Booth seconded by Brother Clark, that Elder Joseph Stay be upheld and sustained as president of the Nailsworth Branch and labor in the several branches in that vicinity.(24)
Elder Joseph Stay represented this Branch at the Cheltenham Conference, which he reported contained 29 members, 3 Elders, 2 Priests, 2 Teachers and 1 Deacon. Elder Stay sustained president of the Nailsworth Branch.
December 14 and 15, 1850, Chalford Hill Branch:
Elder Joseph Stay again reported the Branch at the Cheltenham Conference as containing 25 members, incl. 2 Elders, 2 Priests, 2 Teachers, and 1 Deacon. 4 baptisms, 4 emigrated.(25) Branch at Wotton-under-Edge added to Bro. Stay's responsibility.
Note: Wotton-under-Edge is the location of Sarah Jane Pearce Stay's family roots, i.e. Worlocks, Vizards, Osborns, and Laceys came from this parish.
As of this date, we have not located any details of the LDS Branches of Kingswood and Wotton-under-Edge; however, because of Sarah's family ties to these specific towns, it is probable that Joseph was active in missionary work within the area. Is it possible that he may have converted members of his wife's family? Listed in the names of members at Cheltenham some fifteen years later were the surnames of Vizard, Osborn and Lacey which very likely could be related family members Joseph and Sarah influenced during this period.
March 15, 1851:
The statistical report of the Cheltenham Conference for the quarter of this date, showed that this Branch was represented by Elder Joseph Stay. (Chalford Branch) 58 Members, 2 Elders, 2 Priests, 1 Teacher, 2 Deacons, 4 had been baptized.(26)



Chapter 10
JOSEPH AS A TRAVELING ELDER





Records would indicate that Joseph filled at least two missions: the first was identified in the 1851 census, the second was recorded in the Cheltenham Conference records about March 1856 which reads, "Bro. Stay selected to go on a mission to Winchcombe with brothers Higgs and Timbrel to assist him."
The 1851 Census records the following entry:
Page #1 1-171 Page 108, 30 March 1851 Minchemhampton Amberly, a Borough of Stroud, 94 Watledge Street
Joseph Stay - Head - Married - Age 28, "A traveling Elder in the Church of Latter-day Saints."
This entry is important to the fact that Joseph was dedicating his full time efforts to proselyting for the LDS Church during this period.
The following entry was found in the 1851 Census from the same census tract: (Page 27) Pinfarthing Street
Sarah J. Stay - visitor 3 years old born Somerset, Bristol
Joseph and Sarah's oldest Child. This entry was included in the Edward Day family Census data. Edward was listed as a stone mason, age 37, and also had a daughter Ellen age four years. Sarah and Ellen would have played together. It would be interesting to know if this friendship continued over the years.
The Edward Day family were taught the gospel by Joseph and resided in the Chalford Branch after their baptism. This family later moved to Bristol and attended the same LDS branch as Sarah Jane's parents, Charles and Mary Pearce.
At this time we are unable to locate the place of Sarah Pearce Stay, Joseph's wife in the 1851 Census. We speculate as follows:
Sarah may have been home with her new baby, Joseph Hyrum, of one month, while Joseph had taken his three-year-old daughter with him so as not to impair Sarah's recovery. Joseph may have placed Sarah Jane with the Day family while attending to his missionary work.
During this period, 1851, Joseph presided for a short time in the Tetbury Branch and in this capacity baptized, confirmed additional members and functioned as the president of the branch. The follow notation was located in the membership record book for The Tetbury Branch:
---that Charlotte Clifford be cut off from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for open rebellion to Saints and Sinners. Carried unanimously. Officers present 3 elders, 2 priests, 2 teachers, 1 deacon.
Meeting closed by prayer. Elder Stay President
Many saints during this period were cut off from the LDS Church. As a Branch President, Joseph must have spent many hours counseling the membership as well as performing the unpleasant tasks associated with cutting off members who were inactive or were not conforming to the teachings.
Joseph also served as clerk of the Conference which is recorded in the Cheltenham Conference minute book dated 1853-1856.(27) This minute book also recorded the names of members of several of the branches. A number of pages are written by Joseph in a very good hand and in good grammatical form which would indicate that he was an educated person with a fair amount of schooling for the period.
From this information it would appear that during this time Joseph Stay presided over two branches and a district of the Church, the Chalford Hill District, Nailsworth and Chalford Branches.
The family then moved to the Cheltenham area where they lived from 1852 through 1858. Three children were born: Charlotte Elizabeth, 16 November 1852; Mary Ann, 31 December 1845; and Louisa, 20 April 1857, while living in the Cheltenham area. Cheltenham is northeast of Gloucester about four or five miles. They may have lived in both, or perhaps Joseph represented two branches, one listed as the Chosen Branch (Church Down) and the other listed as the Norton Branch. Norton is located about five or six miles due west of Cheltenham. Church Down is located about three miles south and west of Cheltenham.
Dec. 30, 1853:
....he succeeded Elder Stay in the Presidency of the Norton Branch. Also: that Br. Stay be released from the Presidency of the Norton Branch with a note of thanks for his labors in that Branch.
January 1, 1854:
Elder Stay as the auditor, read the Book Agency Account
This reference relates to Joseph's activity in the area conference leadership. Over the next several years we find accounts of his acting in the capacity as a clerk and involved in fiscal affairs. The "Book Agency Account" is thought to be a fund used for the publication of much needed LDS literature such as The Millennial Star, tracts and hymn books. With the rapid growth of the Church during this period, as well as considerable anti-Mormon literature being circulated, it was necessary for considerable printing to be accomplished to "further the work". The Millennial Star was the official publication of the "Mormon" Church in England which chronicled events, temporal and spiritual. The "Star" served as an important link between the saints in England and the leadership of the British Mission as well as recording important events taking place in Utah and the United States.
As set forth on the title page of the first volume, each one subsequent has contained "a great variety of useful information in regard to the doctrine, principles, rise, progress, success, opposition, persecution, etc., of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and of the great work of God in these last days, with a faithful record of the signs and judgments which are beginning to be shown forth in the heavens and in the earth.(28)
The accounting for funds to support these important printing efforts was important due to the fact that the Church was in serious debt for the extensive printing activities over the prior fourteen years. This fund became a major focus of English membership contributions during this period.
In April of 1854 Joseph was again listed as "clerk of the Conference".
At the July 16th Cheltenham Conference: Joseph Stay spoke, representing the Chosen Branch.
Why they moved to the Cheltenham area, isn't known, but the Branches in Chalford and Nailsworth did not fare so well after Joseph and Sarah left. The Conference reports indicate low participation with much backbiting following their departure. 1853:
Nailsworth Branch not being in as good condition as could be wished. About half were good and the rest bad. Seven or eight members being suspended and the priesthood not very united.(29)
The Church in the Cheltenham area was a much larger congregation of nearly 400 members. They had their own building with considerable activity being recorded. The Chosen Branch just west of Cheltenham, in which the family lived, on the other-hand, was a small branch and in July of 1854 consisted of one elder (likely Joseph), two priests, one deacon, and five members - a total of nine, five of which were the Joseph Stay family. The branch also participated in the Perpetual Emigration Fund in this account.
April 1, 1855:
Joseph Stay replaced Elder Sims as president of Chosen Branch. Joseph Stay, "This branch is few, I have no complaint to make they are good, we have cut off two for we had visited them times but the prospects of this place are good."
The statement "the Prospects of this place" appears to be in reference to missionary prospects, a term still used by those active in LDS missionary work.
The family may have moved again or was situated between the two branches which were only a few miles apart:
July 1, 1855, Elder Stay selected to replace Elder Thurmer as President of the Norton Branch. Elder Price selected to replace Elder Stay as President of the Church Down (Chosen) branch.
The Norton Branch is historic in LDS history, because Wilford Woodruff of the Quorum of the Twelve was responsible for bringing the gospel to this hamlet during his mission in 1840.
December 30, 1855:
Joseph Stay acted as clerk of the Conference.(30)
March 30, 1856:
It was also moved and seconded that a day's sacrifice be made to pay for the old book stock on hand and that Brothers Stay and Hughes audit the book agent's accounts during the coming week. Joseph serving as Conference Clerk.(31)
The "old book stock" and the "book agent's accounts" again refer to the ongoing fiscal activities associated with the printing and accounting for the LDS Church printed tracts, The Millennial Star, hymn books and other publications to further the work in England. Meeting the costs of printing and the logistics of publishing continued to be a major problem throughout this period within the British Mission.
It can be assumed from the above accounts over a period of thirteen years the following:
1. The family was highly active in the LDS Church and were trusted members with Joseph holding many leadership roles. Over thirty baptisms are recorded as being performed by Joseph in the membership records of the various branches of the area. Note: The complete membership records for the area are nonexistent or have not as yet been located. The number of baptisms, confirmations and ordinations could be substantially greater than the thirty recorded.) A partial listing of these members are provided in the Appendix.
2. Joseph was educated enough to act as a recording clerk and capable of auditing the books and accounts. His handwriting and text exhibit a good command of the English language.
3. The family moved about frequently, (at least four times) either for reasons of work or more likely for Church responsibilities or callings.
4. Joseph contributed to the Perpetual Emigration Fund for future emigration to Utah.
5. Census records would support that Joseph was indeed a traveling LDS Elder (missionary) through this period. We don't know for sure if his family followed him to the various branches and areas of labor in this activity. He must have traveled considerably in his Church responsibilities based upon the references cited.



Chapter 11
EMIGRATION TO ST. LOUIS





We note from the Cheltenham record of members that Joseph Stay and his family and Mary (Mary Lacy) Pearce, Sarah's mother, were recorded as "Emigrated on October 1, 1858", which is the last notation regarding the Joseph Stay family in England. Brigham Young instructed British Latter-day Saints that emigration "upon the first feasible opportunity directly follows obedience to the first principles of the Gospel we've embraced." The gathering of the Lord's elect to headquarters in America was a crucial factor in strengthening the Latter-day Saint Church in its first four decades and beyond and becoming a part of the gathering was an important personal goal for many of the Church members well into the twentieth century."(32) Admonitions by Church leaders and missionaries to immigrate to Zion repeated several key points some of which were the following:
1. The Lord's people were always commanded to gather together and the Lord was now again calling Saints through a living Prophet to relocate.
2. The Saints could accomplish more to build the Lord's kingdom on the earth through combined effort as a gathered people.
3. The Saints were commanded to gather out of Babylon, a sinful world that they might not partake of her sins. By separating themselves from the world they sought to live a life more pleasing to God and to become sanctified.
4. Prior to the second coming of Christ, wars and natural disasters would plague nations and there would only be true safety in Zion.
5. Latter-day Saints and particularly the poor would have greater economic opportunities and better chances to achieve their individual potential in Zion than in Europe.(33)
Thus, because of economic uncertainties, civil strife and wars engaged in by England during this period, many saints had strong testimonies concerning the principal of "the gathering". Joseph and his family were no exception attested to by their contributions to the emigration fund. Statements recorded as being made by Joseph in branch records in England as well as minutes recorded while the Stay family resided in St. Louis attest to their strong desire to start life anew in America and do everything in their power to emigrate to Zion.
We now know the particulars of the Stay family emigration. The family went to Liverpool, the Church's emigration office, prior to departing. (However, other small groups of Saints left other ports with sailings from London and Bristol to New York during this period). The family is recorded as utilizing the Perpetual Emigration Fund (P.E.F.) and is recorded as arriving in the United States through the Port of New York on 6 November 1858. The emigration location in New York City at the time was Covenant Gardens. Ellis Island was utilized after their entry. The ship was an early steam ship and crossed the Atlantic in 36 days on the Ship West Point. On the ship manifest, the family is listed:
Joseph Stay 36 Male Farmer England
Sarah Stay 36 Female Wife
Sarah Stay 10 Female
Joseph Stay 7 Male Child
Charlotte Stay 5 Female Child
Mary A. Stay 3 Female Child
Louisa Stay Infant Female
Mary Pearce 50 Female Housekeeper

Star of the West

The ship West Point was configured as this one with two masts for sails.
During the Civil War, steamships and steamboats often exploded and were involved innumerous other accidents, many which occurred on the Potomac River. On Aug. 13, 1862, 77 soldiers, three soldiers’ wives and a 6-year old boy drowned when the steamship West Point sank after colliding with the George Peabody.
The West Point was heading north from Newport News, Va., to Alexandria with 258 wounded soldiers, the three wives and little Arthur Dort, proudly bring his wounded warrior-father home safely from battle. The George Peabody was heading south to ferry fresh troops into battle.
A survivor of the dreadful disaster on the Potomac provided this description; “The scene which followed cannot be described. Escape seemed hopeless. Mrs. Dort, in great distress, had called me from the lower cabin to her berth, to help dress her boy. I rendered the requested aid and helped her and the child upon the hurricane deck. Nearly all were plunged into the water. I heard the surgeon tell the ladies he would do his best to save them, and I think he did, for as he was drowned and was found two days later far down the river with one of the ladies holding fast to him, it is evident that he kept his promise.”
Many of the survivors believed the accident was intentional and that the captain and pilot, who immediately deserted the sinking ship, were Rebels. Perhaps the accident was caused by corrupt contractors - - or, more precisely, what the contractors were responsible for; “Mismanagement and corruption, of insufficient crews and incompetent officers; of defective machinery and rotting timber; or lack of proper inspection and safeguards.”
When we think that Joseph and his family crossed the Atlantic in this same ship just 4 years earlier, The ship apparently was not seaworthy according to this account.
Most of the vessels were of such poor construction that no one would buy them at any price. “That they survived voyages was perhaps due more to luck than anything else, year after year vessel after vessel had gone down to the bottom of the Ocean.” Gustavus Myers wrote in 1907 in his “History of the Great American Fortunes.”
Because of the gap in time between when the family left their branch in England and when the twins were born in St. Louis, little is known. We know that Sarah Jane, Joseph's oldest daughter married a Charles Vought in St. Louis, Mo. June 3, 1869.
The establishment of the headquarters of the Church in Great Salt Lake Valley automatically made the "Great Basin" the gathering place for the Latter-day Saints. But the securing of funds to transport so many members of the Church, drawn mostly from the poorer classes, and scattered over the United States and in foreign lands, was a question of grave importance. So in September, 1849, the Perpetual Emigrating Fund Company was organized under the direction of President Brigham Young. Donations of money, oxen, wagons, foodstuffs and equipment were widely solicited to constitute a fund whereby the poor might be gathered to "Zion." The money advanced to individuals for transportation was considered as a loan to be repaid as soon as possible after the arrival of the immigrants in the "Valley".(34)
We find a record of the family in regards to Perpetual Emigration Fund (P.E.F.) payments in Salt Lake City some years later as follows:
Joseph, Sarah, Charlotte, Louisa, Rebecca Stay 1876 Journal
Dec. 30. To Transportation, N. Y. Note 52 $225.00
1878 June 22 Interest $14.24
Paid in Full $239.24 (35)
Note: In a box recently found, the original vouchers representing the initial contract and subsequent payment receipts, not for money, but for labor performed. We would assume from these vouchers that Joseph "worked off" his obligation perhaps planting trees at Washington Square (the recently restored Salt Lake City building). See Treasures this WEB site for viewing copies of the vouchers.
This amount would represent the costs of passage and possibly their train fare from New York to St. Louis. Joseph would have signed a note prior to sailing with a sacred obligation that it would be due and payable after arriving in Salt Lake City.
Why was Joseph Hyrum's name not recorded on the above payment schedule? Did he sail on another ship, or was he obligated to pay on his own because of his status or age?
From the emigration fund account, we surmise the family arrived in the United States through the Port of New York some time in late 1858 or early 1859 but did not pay their P.E.F. account until they arrived in Salt Lake City some years later.
The Millennial Star indicates that during 1858 only three LDS emigration ships sailed because of a request by earlier by Brigham Young to shut off emigration due to the troubles in Wyoming and Utah with Johnson's Army and the invasion of Utah. The ships listed departed for New York, Boston and Philadelphia from Liverpool. A search of the LDS families on the ships recorded, does not include the Stays as passengers.
It is important to attempt to account for the Stay's not immigrating directly to Utah. The following letters may give some insight into the course of their wanderings.
The Latter-Day Saints' Millennial Star Saturday, January 1, 1859
America.--Deseret Presidents Office, Great Salt Lake City U.T., September 10, 1858
- - - We are expecting a small emigration the present season, as the way is deemed sufficiently open to be safe. This being the case, there will doubtless be considerable emigration another year, although we do not expect to operate any through the Perpetual Emigrating Fund. Those who chose and are able can come; and probably many others, who are not able to come through, might come to the States and gather up as the way shall open. It is wisdom for those who come to land at the northern ports and come to Chicago, where our business agency will hereafter be established, instead of St. Louis.
- - - We realize that there are many worthy faithful Saints who are poor and have not the means to emigrate to this place, and that they are exceedingly anxious to do so.
- - - If the European Saints wish to form a handcart company and come through that way, it is their privilege to do so. If they choose to come and locate at some convenient point in Canada, as was talked of last season that will be all right; for, when we get ready, we can gather them from there as well as from any other place. And if they stay either in Canada or the United States a few years, and see whether they are going to apostatize or not, before they come here, perhaps it will be a good thing, as it will save them the trouble of crossing the Plains twice, and save us a good deal of trouble too. - - -
- - - We still owe thousands of dollars in St. Louis, which was expended in helping out the poor Saints, and which we would like the Liverpool Office to liquidate, if possible.
The Latter-Day Saints' Millennial Star
Saturday January 1, 1859
Page 8
"Emigration.- - - We are pleased to be able at length to say to the Saints that emigration is again opened for all those who have means at their command to gather to Zion. As we have before said, no one will receive any help whatever from the P.E. Fund. The deliverance of the Saints depends entirely upon themselves; and we hope that those who have the means will go, and that those who can assist their brethren will stretch forth a helping hand. - - - Those who have not the means to go through to the Valley, but who nevertheless feel desirous to go to the United States and assist in strengthening the settlements on the route, will have an opportunity after the through emigration shall have closed."
The Latter-Day Saints' Millennial Star Saturday, January 8, 1859 America.--Deseret. G.S.L. City, October 21, 1858
- - - Urge on the emigration so far as you have the power. Wherein the Saints are not able to come all the way through, let them come to the States, and then make their way through as soon as they can. - - - Of the sailing of emigrants you will do well to advise with brother George Q. Cannon, so that timely arrangements can be made for them to get places to work, be forwarded to their destination,- - -
Saturday, February 19, 1859 Letter from Brigham Young to Elder Calkin.
- - -Far better for the Saints to stay a year longer in the States before they get to Utah than to go dabbling in things that they are ashamed to let their brethren see them engaged in far less - - - Nobody should be in an extravagant hurry to go into work when they arrive here, though everybody is expected to lose no time in finding employment. It is good to see the city and to see the President and counsel with him. - - - On where or how the Saints will come to this country I have nothing to remark. But, wherever they go or wherever they are told to stay or tarry for a season that is the best place for them. In 1859, the doors were again opened with a high level of emigration taking place. - - -
The above lengthy correspondence over a period of a year between Brigham Young and the emigration church authorities in Liverpool gives an account of the environment surrounding emigration. We must therefore assume that Joseph and his family heeded the encouragement by the Prophet to emigrate. Also, that the saints without adequate resources to cross the plains should "tarry for a season". In the Stay's case they "tarried" in Saint Louis for sixteen years.
We know, however, that sometime between November 1858 and December 1860 when the twins were born, the family had arrived in Saint Louis. At this time the railroad was just opening to the west (Mississippi river) Emigration records of others at the time indicate that they could have come by way of rail to a river city thence down the river by river boat to St. Louis.
Joseph Stay is recorded in the 1960 St. Louis City Directory (page 487), "Joseph Stay, Porter, George Dunford Residence, 251 Broadway." Dunford's business was hats and caps and was located downstairs from the family living quarters. From this account, the family must have been in the city at least by mid 1860 for the directory to include their names in the printing. Also Joseph's work at this time, that of "porter" gives a hint as to his work situation.
Note: The Stay family who lived in Huntington Park, California during the nineteen thirties had a bishop by the name of "Dunford" could there be a connection?
Emigration through the use of the P.E.F. worked as follows: Each family was encouraged to save for their own emigration. (Records show that Joseph and his family were contributors to the Church P.E.F.) Members desirous of emigrating would first need a local recommend, then petition the European Mission Office. A review of each petition was made regarding the length of active membership, their role in leadership positions, the number of children in the family and their economic status. Then certain families were selected and notified to report to the emigration office (most often at Liverpool). Most members who used the fund were active members for a period of ten to twelve years prior to emigration. Each family member was allowed 100 pounds of luggage. They must bring their own straw mattress, bedding, cooking and eating utensils, soap, etc. The passage generally took eighteen to thirty days on the water depending on the weather and sailing conditions.(36)
During the period that Joseph Stay emigrated, there were some steamships that were inefficient and expensive; however, nearly all of the emigrant ships were sailing vessels that were used for cotton and lumber being shipped from the United States. The return boats from England were fitted with very rough planking and the stowage consisted of bunks closely aligned with little comforts. Sanitation was poor with chamber pots rather than toilets. Many of the saints were seasick a good portion of the voyage. Sarah's brothers, Charles, Thomas, Joseph Charles, and her sister, Charlotte, also immigrated to St. Louis about this time. Their father, Charles Pearce, had died in Bristol in 1850. Records indicate that Mary Lacy Pearce, Sarah's mother, died in 1873 in St. Louis. She apparently is buried somewhere in the St. Louis area. Sarah's sister, Charlotte, married Alfred Nethercott. Charlotte's death notice indicated that "She came to Utah with the pioneer company led by Orson Pratt in the early '50's and endured without complaint the many privations of the early days in Utah".(37) It would appear then, that Sarah's brothers and sister did not tarry long in St. Louis and elected to go to Utah leaving their mother and sister. Joseph and his family immigrated on the steamship West Point.

Link to Part 2


Owner/SourceGary Stay
DateMar 2009
File nameA History of Joseph Stay Part 1
File Size
ID101
Linked toJoseph STAY

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