When we first came to Utah or the Valley on October 20, 1849, we had very little flour and that was soon gone so we had to live on corn meal and ground wheat. We made our own sugar and molasses from beets.
The men planted all our spare grain and we were depending on it for our bread, so you can see how we felt when the crickets came. One day the children came running in and said, “Mother come and look! There is a big cloud going right toward our grain patch.” It was the crickets. Mother tried to get the men folks to go and help scare them away, but father was afraid they would only light on the neighbor’s field and then come back to ours. Mother said, “Come on girls, Harriet and Jane, let us go.” We took a sheet and tin pans to drum on and went back and forth through the grain but they did not move. Then we saw mother standing still and praying so we stood still. She was praying aloud in tongues and as she prayed the crickets began to rise until the sky was black with them. They all left and flew down to the lake and never came back. We raised six hundred bushel of grain that year.Read more →
Frederick Barker and Ann Bligh, parents of Henry Barker, were married in England, Feb. 18, 1822, and settled down at Diss, Eng., where four children were born to them: Matilda, Mary Ann, James, and Sarah. The family set sail for America March 23, 1830, in the “New Brunswick,” encountering a severe siege of smallpox during the ocean voyage, the father becoming so afflicted that a bed sheet taken from his bed would stand alone. The mother, however escaped the disease and was able to wait on the afflicted.
They were accompanied to America by his brothers James and George, George’s wife died on the ocean during the smallpox siege and left him with five children. They landed at Staten Island, June 23, and soon afterwards located at LeRoy, Jefferson Co., N.Y., and later moved to Watertown. William, William the 2nd and Harriet were born in LeRoy, and Daniel, Jane, Henry and Bryon were born in Watertown. Henry was born Oct. 6, 1840, Watertown, Jefferson Co., N.Y.Read more →
Compiled by Gary Hanson
(Much of the following information is taken from the large and small Barker-Chadwick record books; Joseph Barker mission letters, journals, and notebooks; The Barker Odyssey by Don W. Barker, Iowa Falls, Iowa; family biographical sketches, and family group sheets.)
In 1830 the English government furnished transportation to America for a number of poor families. It is said that among them were the families of George, Frederick, and James Barker and their sister, Harriet Barker Jarrel, who sailed to America in March 1830.
It is thought these four were the only living children of their parents William Barker, buried 15 Dec 1829*, age 67, and Jane Barker, buried d4 Dec 1825* age 66, in Shelfanger, Norfolk Co., England. (*Dates from English church records searched by Joseph Barker in 1896 while on his mission in England.) William and Jane Barker were probably buried in the churchyard of the gloomy, Anglican All Saints Church built of almost black stones or rocks, part of which was standing in the 12th century.Read more →
These stories are excerpts from a collection about [Francillo Durfee]. by [Janis Durfee]
Immediately upon his return from Council Bluffs in the fall of 1849, Francillo and Cynthia joined James in the Weber Valley. David Moore, George and Frederick Barker, and Robert Porter and their families came as well, making some twenty-three persons in all. A few more settlers came in November (David Moore, Ogden).
The winter of 1849–50 was severe with deep snow. Several head of cattle and sheep died during the winter.
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Frederick Barker and Ann Bligh Barker with four children, Matilda, Mary Ann, James and Sarah, also Frederick’s brother, George and family, sailed from England March 23, 1830, in the “New Brunswick”, an old English war vessel equipped with armament. They landed at Staten Island June 23, 1830 and soon afterward located at Le Raysville, Jefferson County, New York.
After four or five years, they moved to Watertown. At Le Raysville the children, William and Harriet were born, and at Watertown, Jane, Henry and Byron. Early in the 1840’s the two families were converted to the gospel through the efforts of Dimick Huntington, Benjamin Brown, Jesse W. Crosby, and Thomas Dutcher, and joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
In the spring of 1845 the Barkers left New York for the west, stopped at Indian Prairie, now Lebanon, Iowa for three years, obtaining means and provisions to equip them for their journey to the “valleys of the mountain.”Read more →
History submitted by Virginia Woodward to the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers.
Nora H. Lund Historian, South Center Salt Lake County
Ann Bligh (Blygh) was born 8 Feb. 1802 at Tibenham, Norfolk, England. She was the daughter of Daniel and Sarah Pease or Pearse Bligh. We know nothing of her early life in England.
When she was 20 years old, on the 18th of Feb. 1822, she married Fredrick Barker in Diss, Norfolk, England. He was 2 years older than Ann, having been born in Feb. 1800 in Shelfanger, Norfolk, England. His parents were William and Jane Barker.
Ann was the motherly type, and welcomed with love, every one of her 11 children into her heart and home. First was Matilda—b. 14 June 1823, followed by Mary Ann—b. 18 Feb. 1825 James—b. 7 April 1827, Sarah—b. 7 Aug. 1829. All these were born in Diss.
Ann’s husband, Frederick was a farmer and worked with his brothers, George and James. They had a very close relationship with each other, which naturally influenced the lives of their wives.Read more →