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Ann Smith Bailey: A Life Story

Written in 1956-57 by her great-granddaughters, Elizabeth P. Astle and Mary P. Stuki (Ann Smith Bailey is the mother of George Brown Bailey)

Life Story of Ann Smith Bailey

Written in 1956-57 by her great-granddaughters,

Elizabeth P. Astle and Mary P. Stuki

Mother of George Brown Bailey

The following story is gleaned from research in parish registers, church, temple, state and municipal records, and from family records, and legends from the different units of the Bailey family; also from a written account left by our mother, Ann Maria Reed Price. This story is as authentic as it is possible for us to make it with the material at hand. With Grateful hearts we have worked diligently in research and this compilation has been a labor of love.

What a great and precious privilege is ours – that of recording the life history of these faithful pioneers, - our ancestors! In approaching this task we realize the deep responsibility entrusted to us, and deplore our weak and inadequate attempts to clothe in suitable language a record of their foresight, perseverance, and integrity, which has brought to our lives manifold blessings.

Our maternal great-grandmother, Ann Smith Bailey was born 30 October, 1800, at Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada, the daughter of Joseph Smith and Catherine Andrews Smith. They were probably of the colony of Smiths that settled with others on a land grant in 1759. (Charlottetown is the largest city on the island, which is located in the southern part of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and separated by Northumberland Strait from New Brunswick on the west and Nova Scotia on the south. Cape Brenton Island is a little to the east and Newfoundland on the northeast. The soil is said to consist mostly of fine red sand and to be very productive, the whole countryside being beautiful with trees and flowers). Yousuf Karsh, one of the world’s greatest photographers, described it as follows: Prince Edward Island – the smallest of the Canadian Provinces, is a land of green pastures, red earth, silvery beaches, and singular charm. It is the famed home of “Ann of Green Gables.”

Ann was the only girl in a family of nine children, and it is believed that she grew to womanhood in the place where she was born. She was extremely tall – six feet, to be exact – and very slender, with black hair and penetrating dark blue eyes. It is a legend in the family that “she weighed only ninety pounds but could lift a sack of wheat at any time.”

One can imagine her childhood and how her eight brothers must have idolized her. It is known that she vied with them in their sports and prowess. Perhaps being the gist of their many jokes and pranks helped to develop in her the courage and strength of character needed to meet the vicissitudes of later life.

The story is told of one of their pranks that resulted in a painful accident. Upon returning from a hunting expedition, when Ann ran out to meet them, the boys gave her a large gun to carry to the house. Of course they knew she could not resist the temptation to try her marksmanship, so they provided an extra heavy load in the gun for fun. They were not disappointed. She hit the bull’s-eye. But as the gun recoiled sharply from the extra heavy charge, she was unable to hold it properly and the butt struck her in the face, bruising her lips and loosening all her front teeth. The boys had a good laugh but their humor turned to concern when they realized she had been badly hurt. It was weeks before the injury was healed. The pranksters were severely chastised by their parents for their thoughtlessness.

In 1817, when Ann was seventeen years of age, she married an English soldier, Joseph Brown Bailey, who was born in 1790 in Avebury, Wiltshire, England. He was ten years her senior. Joseph was the son of Joseph Brown and Penelope Bailey Brown. (As the marriage of the parents was not performed by church authority, the pastor of the parish where they lived would not countenance the marriage; and when the children were brought to church for christening they were christened under the mother’s maiden name of Bailey, just as though there had been no marriage. Consequently, the children went by the name of Bailey instead of Brown), (Note – Through research, genealogists in the Church assure us that the above stated condition and practice prevailed in England at that time; and we assume that the above account is correct, since the dates seem to correspond. Joseph was buried at Avebury, 2 March 1794 and Penelope married John Watts 3 May 1800. If continued research discloses further information, it will be added later).

Joseph was vibrant, handsome and debonair. He was a tailor by trade, but having been conscripted into the Royal Army, was transferred with his regiment to various points in England and Canada wherever needed. He liked the military regime and decided to make it his career, which he did for thirty-five years. Sometimes Ann and her family were allowed to take up quarters where he was stationed, and sometimes they were not. Consequently, they were obliged to do without the care and association of the husband and father for months at a time. When permitted to follow, they found it necessary to cross the ocean several times between Great Britain and Canada. The journeys were accomplished by slow sailing vessels which usually consumed from four to six weeks time, but sometimes extended into months, depending on the time of year, the winds and the weather.

Soon after marriage, Ann went with her husband to England, where she lived at Bath, in Somerset shire. This city, located on the beautiful Avon River, with its castle-like buildings and picturesque bridges, had been famous for centuries as a fashionable watering place and for the natural hot springs, and baths (established by the Romans) from which the city derived its name. Here their first child, Mary Ann, was born 18 September 1819. When Joseph was away, how lonely and homesick Ann must have been – so far from her childhood home and all familiar faces, and while experiencing motherhood for the first time. (Note – Our mother’s story of the family gives the above account. The family group sheet placed in the temple by George B. Bailey records Mary Ann’s birth at Halifax, Nova Scotia. Further research may clear up this point).

Later she retuned to Canada, where she lived at Halifax, Nova Scotia, for several years. While here two more daughters came to bless their home: Sarah, born 4 December 1821 (who died in childhood); and Elizabeth Sophia, born 22 July 1823. Halifax, with its deep-water harbor, being the chief Atlantic base of the British Navy, was strongly fortified. The harbor was usually filled with sailing vessels and small fishing crafts. In stormy or foggy weather, the foghorns resounded almost continually.

About 1825, the family moved to Enneskillen, Ireland, where their forth daughter Ellen Jane, was born 7 January, 1826. This was a beautiful location in Fermanagh County, on Lough (Lower Lake) Erne, an arm of Donegal Bay. But they did not remain here long. To Canada, then to England, back and forth they went. Other places where Ann is said to have lived when in Canada, either with her own family or with the Smith family, were Lundy Lane in Niagara and Winnipeg in Manitoba.

Joseph and Ann were the parents of nine children, the last five being born in England: Robert, born 6 December 1828, at Templemore; Caroline, born 28 July 1830, at Chatham; and the last three, all boys, born at Bath, in Somerset shire; George Brown, born15 February 1833; William, born 30 October 1836, Reuben Josiah, born 10 July 1838. It seems that the family removed from Chatham to Bath about 1831 or 1832, where a permanent home was established and they remained here for about twenty-five years. So the children’s childhood and youth time were probably spent in this place, with its fine schools, Cheddar cheese factories, picturesque buildings and bridges, and world famous baths. (We have no record of a sea voyage during these years but family legend states that Ann crossed the ocean five times before coming to Utah).

When the father was at home, all went well with the Baileys. Joseph enjoyed the home life and loved to have a baby upon his knee. But the voyages were sometimes difficult, attended by seasickness and discomfort. On one trip the children were all ill with measles and Elizabeth’s life was despaired of for some time. Ann watched beside here constantly, or held her in her arms to ease the roll of the vessel. To add to the anxiety, a terrific storm arose with heavy winds, rain, thunder and lightning, lasting two days and nights. Many were the prayers that ascended for their safety! At dawn of the third day the storm abated, the sun came out and they sailed over smooth blue water. Elizabeth slowly recovered but was a frail, delicate child during all of her youth time.

On one voyage the vessel was “becalmed” at sea for several weeks, there being no wind to carry it forward. The sun shone down mercilessly, upon the unruffled surface of the water while the vessel idled there and the worried crew and passengers looked out helplessly upon the glassy sea with mingled feelings of hope and despair, attended by the constant prayers of many faithful ones. Rations became low and the travelers experienced much suffering and anxiety. Then an adverse wind sprang up and for some time the vessel was blown backward on its course. But after four months on the water, the ship sailed safely into port.

Being a tailor by trade, Joseph taught his wife to sew, at which art she became adept. She never ceased to be grateful for this knowledge. She proficiently cared for the needs of her family and found it helpful in later life in earning a livelihood. She also taught her daughters this useful art and they became expert needlewomen.

About this time a great sorrow came to them in the death of Robert, their oldest son. He was six years old. And in 1837 two more children, Caroline and William, were called to death. But their greatest sorrow and the severest shock of all came when their oldest daughter, Mary Ann, eloped with the young man of her choice, John Stevens. The marriage proved unhappy, but the young couple kept their whereabouts a secret from the family for seve4ral years; and although the parents advertised and used every available means at their command, the search was in vain.

In those days bands of Gypsies roamed through the towns, begging, telling fortunes, and sometimes stealing things they could not afford to buy. Ann did not believe in fortune telling or “make believe” oracles, so she made it a point to have no dealings with Gypsies except to give generously to supply their wants when begging, “Let me tell your fortune, lady.” The friend said, “Ann why don’t you ask here about Mary Ann?” So Ann gave the Gypsy some food and a few coins and the woman said: “Thank you, lady. You have been very kind. Yes, I can tell you about your daughter. She is a very unhappy girl. Her husband is cruel to her and she has to earn her living by sewing. You will hear from her soon.”

Ann asked, “How soon? Oh, please tell me when I shall hear from her.” The Gypsy answered, “You will hear from her in March.”

The months rolled by and even as the Gypsy had said, in March a letter came from Mary Ann, saying she was ill and very poor, and while writing this letter to her mother a spark from the fireplace had ignited her dress and she was badly burned. Ann wrote at once asking her to come home, which she did, but she died shortly afterwards from the effects of the burns. She was buried at Bath, England, where her parents lived.

In 1846 Ellen Jane was happily married to an estimable young man, John Lamborn, and they made their home near by. (They became the parents of five children). Elizabeth, although still far from robust, was the comfort and mainstay of her parents. For years she had worked in a bookshop, bringing her earnings to help with the family finance. She had been engaged to be married for some time, but the wedding had been postponed on one pretext or another, possibly because she hesitated to leave her parents to the loneliness of the home with only the two young boys, now that Ellen had gone to a home of her own, and knowing how they still felt about Mary Ann’s absence. George B., bright and scholarly, having attended school regularly and studied diligently, became a schoolteacher at sixteen; and Reuben, the youngest son, was now old enough to have a voice in family matters.

After leaving the Army, Joseph became quite morose and melancholy. His health was much impaired. He missed the excitement and daily activities of the military routine and the association of his buddies. At home he no longer had a baby upon his knee. His beautiful Mary Ann was gone. Of their nine children, only four remained. The habit of drinking, acquired in the Army, was growing upon him, regardless of Ann’s remonstrances. It became necessary for Ann to earn much of the living for the family. She found employment at the cheese factory, working long hours, and supplementing this with sewing at home. Joseph died quite suddenly 1 November 1850, at Bath, England, and was buried there, perhaps beside his loved daughter, Mary Ann.

While sorrowing for the death of her husband, Ann blessed the long, work-filled days that kept both body and mind occupied. Her children were a blessing and comfort to her. Elizabeth and Reuben relieved her of many of the home duties, keeping things nice for her; and George B., being now the man of the house, assumed much of the responsibility. He was steady and reliable and had become a teacher at such an early age. How proud she was of him!

Soon after this, two “Mormon Elders” came preaching the Gospel, and hearing the message, Ann was receptive and was at once converted. It was as though a flash of light had come, piercing the darkness around her. She learned that a branch of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had been organized at Bath as early as 1837. She wondered why she had not before been made aware of its wonderful teachings. She also learned that her son George B. had joined this church about six months before his father’s death. She rejoiced in the enlightening principles and promises of the new faith and began to set her life in order to embrace it. After baptism she received the gift of “The Comforter” which remained with her throughout her life.

Now the great desire of her heart was to go to Utah. She began at once working and saving for transportation. Later a family conference was held and it was decided that George B. should take the money saved and to America, try to establish a home for them and perhaps be better able two assist the other members of the family to emigrate.

Before leaving England, George B. was clandestinely married to a fine young lady, Elizabeth Young, and she accompanied him on the journey unknown to his family. The marriage took place 10 February 1853. It is thought that they sailed on the ship “Falcon” which left Liverpool, England 26 March 1853 with 324 Saints under the direction of Elder Cornelius Bagnall. It arrived at New Orleans 18 May. Elder John Brown, Church Emigration Agent at that point, accompanied the Saints up the Mississippi river. They landed at St. Louis 27 Many and re-embarked for Keokuk, Iowa, the same day. Arriving there early in June, to join the company going over the plains. What a comfort it must have been for them to be together on the long and tedious pilgrimage by sea and by land, with all the hardships attendant to a pioneer company. They made their home at Mill Creek, Utah, where George B. readily obtained employment as a schoolteacher. (They lived there all their lives, acquired much property, were leading citizens in the community and were blessed with numerous posterity).

As with almost all converts to the church, Ann found herself estranged from many of her lifelong friends. To those who kindly inquired about George B., she proudly told of her son who was a schoolteacher in “Zion.” She told them also of her testimony and of her great desire to leave “Babylon” and gather with the Saints of God. Her baptism is recorded as 25 November 1854.

After accepting the Gospel, Ann found, as it were a whole new world opened before her. She wanted to reach out a helping hand to everyone she knew. Prayer became her watchword and her shield. She learned to take her problems to the Lord, knowing that she would find solace there, - that a deep, sweet peace would come to her and she would be able to think clearly and find an answer. She observed the Word of Wisdom strictly, gaining strength thereby.

With the aid of the Perpetual Emigration Fund, established by the Church, George B. was able to send for his relatives in 1855. Ann and her family set sail for America on the ship “Samuel Curling,” a sailing vessel which left Liverpool, England, 22 April, 1855, and arrived in New York harbor 27 May, 1855. The following record of their journey was taken from the Church Emigration Files:

Ship – “Samuel Curling” of 1476 tons Register Sanders Curling, Master; Franklin D. Richards, Agent.

Ann Bailey, 56, widow, No. 8 Claremont Building, E. Co., 43. Wallcott, Bath England. Ticket No. 78; Folio M>P>I>F> Register 881, ordered from G.S.L.C.

Elizabeth Bailey, 31 spinster

Reuben Bailey, 16, plasterer,

William Lamborn, 7, child

Left Liverpooln22 April, 1855, came to New York 27 May, 1855.

April – Sun 22. The ship Samuel Curling sailed from Liverpool with 518 Saints, under Israel Barlow’s

Direction; it arrived at New York May 27th. The emigrants continued by rail to Pittsburgh, thence by

Steamboat on the rivers, via St. Louis, Mo., to Atchison, Kansas.

October. – Wed. 24. – Capt. Milo Andrus’s immigrant train, called the third P.E. Fund company of the season arrived in G. S. L. C.

Ann and her family were in the above named company.

While on the ship, Ann had found ample opportunity to minister to the sick and downhearted ones. On the plains there as constant need for the cheery word, the helping hand. She carried the boy William over many a weary mile. She delighted in the morning and evening service when prayers were said and wise counsel given. This brought strength for the day of travel and peace for he nights repose. As the wagons were heavily loaded, the family walked all the way across the plains and forded most of the streams, which was difficult for Ann because she did know how to swim. At Green River, with the boy William upon her shoulders, she was swept from her feet by the deep, strong current and went down twice; but being near the bank she was able to grasp some willows and hold on tightly while she regained her feet, and rested a little before pulling herself up the bank to safety.

After the long and strenuous journey across the ocean and the plains, Ann looked forward with joy to the reunion with her son George B., and hoped to find rest and comfort in his home at Mill Creek; but unexpected conditions greeted her there. How surprised she must have been to meet the young daughter-in-law and the grandchildren of whom she had never heard! She was happy for George B. and his good fortune, but now her own plans must be entirely changed. She must not intrude for long upon the privacy of the little family.

One can realize how difficult it must have been for the young wife to provide food and lodging for so many staying guests, especially since that had been a bad year (1855). “Grasshoppers and crickets had devoured everything green in most parts of Utah, and drought had taken the rest.” (C.C.) There was little food to be had. Each family was striving desperately to lay by adequate provisions for the coming winter. George B. had wanted to provide amply for his relatives, and had sought to obtain sufficient supplies for their needs, but conditions had been against him.

Ann at 55 years of age, had a very independent spirit. She was also a woman of action. She knew she must care for her own. Many of the Saints were living in “dugouts” and this seemed to be an answer to her great need. A dugout was hastily constructed, made as comfortable as possible, and into this crude shelter they moved their few belongings. Winter was already upon them. Ann and Elizabeth went out sewing and washing for neighbors and Reuben doing farm chores, to earn what they could. In severe weather, they huddled together for warmth and protection from the cold. Their food for that winter is said to have consisted mostly of bran bread and boiled roots. When the snow melted, they were able to gather sego lily roots from the hills, and later, thistles and watercress were added to their daily menu.

Spring brought a welcome relief. They obtained a small piece of land and some cows. They made butter and cheese, planted a vegetable garden and began to prosper. But through all the after years, Ann never forgot the hardships, suffering and anguish endured that first winter in Utah and she made it a lifelong practice of visiting those in poor circumstances, sharing her supplies and relieving their wants and needs.

In order to be near George B. they made their home at Mill Creek. IN those days many rebaptisms were performed. Mill Creek Ward records state that Ann Smith Bailey was rebaptized there 4 January 1857, by Archibald Gardner and confirmed ll January, 1857, by Alex Wright. Elizabeth was married 23 April, 1857 to Luther Reed, and they moved at once to Tooele, Utah, where Luther set up a sawmill, answering the call of President Brigham Young. Early in 1858, Ann went to stay for a short time with Elizabeth at Tooele and welcome the arrival of the Reed’s son, Luther Bailey Reed, 10 February 1858. While here she met old Indian Chief Tabby, who became her loyal friend.

In March, 1858, at the time of “Johnson’s Army” episode, the Reeds and Baileys went to Goshen, Utah, as planned by President Young. Luther, as one of the older men, had been called, with others, to guard and care for the women at this place, while many of the husbands were with the Utah Militia on guard duty at Salt Lake City and Echo Canyon, or with the scouting parties further eastward. But in June peace commissioners from the government met with President Brigham Young, the difficulties between the United States and Utah were peaceably adjusted and in July the people were allowed to return to their homes. (While in Goshen, records state that Ann was rebaptized 6 April, 1858, by John Brown, Goshen Ward, and Tintic Stake).

On the way back the Reeds and Baileys stopped in Spanish Fork, and finding the place to their liking, they decided to remain and make permanent homes there. Therefore, the property at Tooele and Mill Creek was sold and Ann and Elizabeth were happy to locate side by side in log cabins on farms four miles out of town.

Spanish Fork, a small town about sixty miles south of Salt Lake City, had been founded by Latter-day Saints in 1851. The town, canyon, and river had d4erived their names from the fact that the great Spanish explorer Escalante had camped on this stream in 1776, and thus, in this respect, the place is the most historic one in the state. The Old Spanish Trail from Santa Fe passed through this canyon, and long before 1847, when the pioneers came to Utah, travelers and mountaineers traversed this part of the country with pack animals between the Spanish settlements in New Mexico and California. Indian caravans had used it constantly through the years. They considered this their special domain and resented the encroachment of the white people.

The greatest drawback to the settlers here was the unfriendly Indians. They had to be constantly on the alert to protect their property, of an Indian outbreak or night raid. Old Chief Tabby, being Ann’s friend, always found a way to warn them in time for preparation. He liked the white settlers and was in favor of peace, but it was difficult for him to hold the young braves in check. He said some of the white people did not keep their promises; some Indians had been killed and the young men wanted revenge.

Obeying the injunction of President Young, “It is better to feed the Indians than to fight them,” the Reeds and Baileys were kind and generous to them and won many friends among them. They never had any serious trouble with them, but sometimes they had to make sacrifices. Old Chief Tabby came frequently to Ann’s home. She always shared her food with him. He particularly enjoyed huge slices of freshly baked bread spread liberally with butter and molasses. He ate with great gusto, punctuated with grunts of approval. Sometimes he visited socially and then Ann knew all was well in the red man’s tepee. On other occasions he slipped into the room with a mere grunt of greeting, sat upon the floor with his back against the wall, arms folded across his chest, without speaking. If offered refreshments, he accepted without comment, and after a time disappeared as silently as he had come. At such times she knew he was worried – that there was trouble brewing, and she found a way to warn the other settlers.

One night Tabby was almost too late. Just as dark settled down over the landscape, he appeared suddenly in the doorway, saying, “They are coming; Hurry! Hide!”. Then he vanished in the darkness. They snatched up some blankets and ran to a patch of willows down by the creek. A few moments later they heard the pounding of the horses’ hoofs in the distance, and soon the Indians came racing by with shouts and war whoops, which the settlers knew were meant to stampede the horses and cattle. The town had not been alerted and that night two men were killed, several homes burned and many animals driven away. At another time the families ran to the shelter of the willows but the Indians were frightened away by a shot fifed into the air. Those must have been harrowing yet humbling experiences – to flee in the darkness, to spend the long night in a clump of willows, stifling the children’s cries, listening intently for any unfamiliar sound, praying mightily for protection. They must have felt entirely dependent upon our Heavenly Father’s care and closer to Him there, out under the starry sky, then in their own loved home only a short distance away.

Grasshoppers and crickets were troublesome, too. Some years the crops were almost a failure because of these pests. The Saints worked from early morning until set of sun to save their grain and vegetables. Many methods were used to destroy the insects but the most effective way seemed to be to plow a ditch along one side of the grain patch and partly fill it with straw; then drive the insets into the straw and set fire to it. After a few weeks of this strenuous labor, when the case seemed almost hopeless, the voracious bugs usually disappeared as mysteriously as they had come.

The family tried to be self-sustaining, - to raise their own breadstuffs and to care for their own needs. The grain was taken to a mill to be ground into flour, or ground in a small hand mill at home. Sometimes the wheat was boiled and used for cereal, or coarsely ground (cracked) and used for mush. Cornmeal was also used for bread and cereal. There were no markets where bakery products could be obtained (as today). Bread, pies and cakes were all made at home.

Wild game, - deer, elk, rabbits, fowls and fish provided meat for the table. In summer it could be safely stored for a short time in the root cellar beneath the cabin floor, while quantities were prepared and dried for future use. In winter the meat could be kept frozen for months by placing it in sacks and hanging it on the outside cabin wall, or in a tall tree to protect it from prowling animals.

The cooking was done in the fireplace in huge iron kettles suspended from hooks above the fire, or in skillets set upon the coals. Sometimes the baking was done in a brick oven built in the side of the chimney. Saleratus was used for leaven in the bread. This was gathered from the surface of the wet ground – a tedious and backbreaking job. They usually went as a family, or in groups, with a team and wagon to gather the product, which was dried and kept on hand for future use. It could be used dry, as soda. Another was to cover a portion of the saleratus with water, boil it well, and then cool it. Sediment settled to the bottom and a scum formed on top. When the scum was removed the clear liquid could be poured off and used for leaven. If too much was used, the bread tasted bitter. Later, when live yeast was brought from Denmark that was a happy day for every housewife.

Ann’s cabin was fitted with simple homemade furniture; bed, table, chairs, cupboard, chest, wood box, etc. Luther, her son-in-law, being a fine carpenter and a cooper by trade, as well as a millwright, had willingly and deftly supplied both homes with well-made furniture and also necessary utensils for their use. Many of these, too, were madder of wood; a tub, buckets, barrels, churns, breadboards, butter bowls, paddles and molds, washbasins and washboards.

Candles were used for light and they were made at home from melted tallow. Near the fireplace stood the spinning wheel that Ann learned to use with skill. She could take the wool from the sheep; follow it through every process necessary to convert it into warm clothing for her family. So, with many other undertakings, if she did not have the necessary ingredients, she substituted, or did without them. From Experience she gained wisdom and learned the best methods to employ for her labor, and then shared them with others.

In October 1860, Ann experienced another deep sorrow in the death of her son, Reuben. He accidentally shot himself while cleaning a gun after a hunting trip for game. He had been his mother’s stalwart and willing helper and her means of sustenance. Now her only help and companion in the home was her grandson, William Lamborn. Many friends came to her assistance and Elizabeth and her husband were a great comfort to her.

A happy event to record was the birth of Elizabeth’s little daughter, 28 March 1860. They named her Ann (Maria) after her grandmother. She brought joy and happiness to both homes. As time went by, the farms prospered and life began to be pleasant and profitable.

Then early in 1863, Luther received a call from President Young to help settle the Bear Lake country. For safety from the Indians, it was decided that Ann and Elizabeth should move into town and live together, sharing the labor and expense of the home. Luther was in the vanguard of the Charles C. Rich Company. He left early in April, going by way of Cache Valley, assisting with construction of roads and bridges through the Mink Creek Country and down Emigration Canyon to Paris, where they arrived 12 May, 1863, the main body of the company coming 18 September. (He did not return to Spanish Fork for his family until the spring of 1866).

In the meantime, at Spanish Fork, Ann and Elizabeth, working side by side, gleaned in the wheat fields. One year the high waters flooded the grain fields, covering them with mud and saleratus, and destroying much of the crops of some of the settlers. Ann obtained permission to glean what was left. It was a gigantic task, but with prayerful hearts they persevered, working long hours, day after day, until all was gathered. When it was threshed, they were astonished at the amount produced. Ann sold the grain. When the buyer came to take it away, he found he could not lift the heavy sacks alone; he would have to go for help. Without fuss or bother, Ann (now in her sixties, still tall and slender, weighing only ninety pounds) bent and lifted the sacks into the wagon, and the man drove away, marveling at her great strength. She attributed her good health to the blessings of the Lord and strict observance of the Word of Wisdom.

About this time they received word from England of the death of Ellen’s husband, John Lamborn. It became Ann’s greatest desire to bring Ellen and her family to America. With the proceeds from the sale of the grain Ann and Elizabeth bought cows. They made butter and cheese that brought a good price. They took in washing, ironing and sewing for the neighbors. In this way they obtained means to finish paying their own Emigration Fund and to bring Ellen and her children from England.

The happy embarkation was from London 3, June, 1864, on the ship “Hudson”, arriving at New York 19 July. They reached Wyoming, Nebraska, in time to join the Warren Snow Company, last one of the season going to Utah, and reached Salt Lake City in a blinding snowstorm, 2 November, having walked all the way. Transportation had been arranged for them to go at once to Spanish Fork where Ann and Elizabeth, remembering their own experience upon arriving in Utah, prepared a royal welcome. What a wonderful reunion it must have been – a “Thanksgiving”! They were all one happy family together after their long separation. The young boys soon found work and acquired some property. Life seemed very pleasant.

In the spring of 1866, Elizabeth’s husband returned for his family and they went to live at Laketown, Rich County, Utah. But that same year Luther was called to build and operate a mill in Bloomington, Idaho, and they moved there at once. Ann missed Elizabeth’s companionship and help. Through the years they had been together almost continuously. (Records state that both Ann and Elizabeth received their endowments 29 September, 1866, at the Endowment House in Salt Lake City).

The following was copied from Spanish Fork Records:

Spanish Fork, 25 January 1866.

This is to certify that the following named individuals have paid the sum of two-and-a-half (21/2) dollars and are each entitled to a claim in the Spanish Fork South Survey. (166 names were signed to this document. Ann Bailey’s name was 47 in the list).


James C. Snow, County Surveyor

James C. Snow, Secretary William Creer Committee

William W. Rockhill, Clerk John D. Lewis

William J. Thomas, Treasurer

****** ******

In 1868 the Lamborn boys were called to help settle the Bear Lake Country, so Ann sold her property at Spanish Fork and moved with them to Laketown, Utah. Later, Ellen and her husband followed. The boys took up land, planted crops and worked in the canyons, (Dry Canyon, Lodgepole and Meadowville), getting out timber for homes. It took four days to make a trip to get the logs with an ox team.

Ann’s first home there was a dugout in the hill south of the Watson home, and later, a log cabin on the site of the William Lamborn home. (Note – Years later, when a new home was erected there, this log building was used for a granary, and still is in use – 1957). The Lamborn boys were good workers and were ambitious. Ann yearned toward them as though they were her own sons. She had brought the boy William with her on the long, tedious journey from England at thee age of seven, and through the years he had been her constant aid and companion. She struggled to help them make homes in this new location.

The first two years were difficult as grasshoppers and crickets came in great numbers and destroyed almost everything green – all the gardens, grain and much of the hay. Their main diet for those two winters and potatoes and fish – suckers, which were plentiful in the lake. (Note: The suckers were caught by netting them, as they could not be caught by a fishhook. They then salted them and placed them in large barrels to be used during the winter. They were very bony, but provided protein for their diet.) The Indians came by the thousands and camped by the lake each summer with hundreds of ponies that devoured all the native grass from the hills and valleys. The settlers had to keep strict watch over their animals both night and day, to prevent them from being stolen. Sometimes they were placed in the fort or the town square. The animals grew thin and some died for lack of fodder. The Saints found it necessary to share their meager fare with their redskin brothers, and were glad when in late autumn they departed for warmer regions. After a treaty arranged by President Young, the Indians were allotted other territory and seldom came in great numbers, except when passing through to their reservations.

A special “fast day” was held and the Saints humbly petitioned the Lord to remove the insect pest. As in answer to their plea, a strong wind sprang up and continued for twenty-four hours. It blew the grasshoppers and crickets into the lake and they were drowned. When the tide came in, they were deposited knee deep upon the beach. When a person walked through them, they snapped and crackled like dry straw or crisp paper. As far as the eye could reach, a heavy dark line could be seen against the white sandy shore. How marvelous are the ways of the lord; about 1870, Elder John Taylor, then an Apostle, visited a conference at Paris, Idaho, and blessed the land of the surrounding valleys for the benefit of the Saints. After that better crops were raised.

Each summer Elizabeth and her children came from Bloomington, Idaho, to Laketown to be with her mother and sister. These visits were very enjoyable as communication was slow in those days and Ann and Elizabeth found much comfort in being together.

Our mother, Ann Reed Price, told us the following incident. “When I was nine years old, we went to visit Grandmother Bailey at Laketown. She was crying and said she was in deep trouble. She said the boys had bone to the canyons to cut timber. With them was a man by the name of Chauncey Rogers. They drove their teams of oxen quite a distance away from the timber and fed them, thinking they would be safe; but Mr. Rogers’ oxen followed them back, unnoticed. When William cut down a large tree, it fell on the oxen, breaking their backs. They had to be killed. Mr. Rogers blamed William and insisted that he pay for the oxen. It was a great misfortune to lose even one ox in those days. William felt that he was not entirely to blame, as it was an accident, and they were all there working together. He offered to pay for one animal. So the matter was taken to court with judge and jury. The court was in session the day of our visit.

“While Grandmother and I were walking over to Ellen’s home, a short distance away, she knelt down in the dust of the trail and bowed her head. I knew she was praying. When she arose from her knees she said.

‘I think William should pay for only one ox.’ Her prayer was answered. William gave Mr. Rogers one of his oxen. Then he walked to Dingle, Idaho, (30 miles) to get another one to mate the one he had left.”

Ann Smith Bailey was a strong, courageous woman, and a true Latter-day Saint. Wherever she lived she labored in the Church, paying her dues and offerings, and freely sharing her resources with those in need. She had great faith and found solace in prayer. Many stories are told of how here prayers were answered. She recognized the trials and hardships she passed through as tests of her mettle and used them as self-discipline for the refinement of character. Surmounting them meant to triumph over the power of evil.

Especially was she a friend to the Indians. Old Chief Tabby loved and trusted her. The following story is legend in the family. “One day while Ann and her granddaughter, Eliza, were in the yard at Laketown, a caravan of Indians passed by. Two of their number, an Indian Chief and his son, approached. They recognized the Baileys, leaped from their horses, and the chief ran shouting to Ann. He threw he arms around her and cried, “Grandmother Bailey! Grandmother Bailey!” Eliza was frightened but the chief told her his name was Tabby and that he liked Ann very much for they had been old friends at Spanish Fork. He had missed her when she had moved away, and still remembered her goodness to him. They stayed for dinner and visited for hours before rejoining the caravan.”

Through all the years of her life Ann was a hard worker, sparing no effort or labor to help others. She still milked cows and made cheese within six months before her death. She brought comfort to many people. She had the ability to bring peace and assurance to those in trouble. She could always be relied upon in case of sickness or death. Her friends were numerous. By her sense of justice she gained the love and respect of her neighbors. She died 19 December 1870, age seventy years. She had requested that her remains be laid away on the rocky knoll south of her home. This spot became the Laketown Cemetery. She was the second person buried there. It is regrettable that she did not live a few more years to see the farms teeming with hay and grain and the valley blossoming in beauty and abundance, even as the Prophet had said.

Although only three of her own children lived to have families of their own, today she has numerous posterity, many of them talented in various fields and others holding prominent positions in church and state. May they profit by her example which seems so worthy of emulation, - to choose real values, to persevere and triumph over the daily tasks of life. May they have strength to endure through the temptations so prevalent in these times of opulence and prosperity, as she did through the hardships and privations in pioneering a new country.

As we find pleasure and profit in reviewing these records of the past, may we live in the present, ever mindful that our every action is the heritage of generations yet to come. At least some of our ancestors have verified in their lives the Words of George Bernard Shaw: “I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle for me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing on to future generations.”

A Tribute

How can these simple words of praise a tribute just convey

To one who chose through wisdom’s course, a blessing to purvey –

A priceless heritage to all whom now her lineage bears?

Can emulation now repay for all her love and care/

The crown of wife and motherhood she wore with joy and pride,

She followed over land and sea. Love could not be denied,

She heard the Gospel’s clarion call. Unhesitatingly

She hearkened to the warning voice and hastened to obey.

She left her home and friends so dear, in life to meet no more –

The grassy mounds where loved ones sleep, beside fair Avon’s shore.

She braved the perils of the sea, the hardships of the plains,

With tattered raiment, bleeding feet, through sun and torrent rains.

A thousand miles o’er trail and stream, and canyon’s rough defile,

With plodding oxen, squeaking wheel, - the Saints the time beguile

With songs of hope. The dust and grime, the campfires melt away.

On bended knees, a fervent prayer, there’ll be a happier day!

Each morn the weary forms press on – rough-hewn, the path they trod;

They reach the “Zion” of their dreams. They’re with the Saints of God!

All heads are bowed; all eyes are filled with tears of gratitude.

By patient toil and boundless faith the desert is subdued.

The cricket’s chirp, the red man’s wail, deep snows and winters cold,

The coyote’s howl, grave hunger’s cry, and are conquered as foretold.

Primeval forests yield there all for homes and fields of grain.

Fair cities rise. The burgeoning land can every want sustain.

Building, planting, struggling on, for us the prize to keep,

Those few who sowed, with prayers and tears that millions yet shall reap!

With wisdom, to this “chosen land”, they came with hearts sincere.

All honor to those brave-souled ones – immortal Pioneers!

Strength and honor are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up and call her blessed.
Proverbs 31:25-29

Owner/SourceElizabeth P. Astle & Mary P. Stuki
File nameAnn Smith Bailey: A Life Story
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Linked toAnn SMITH

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