John Van Wagoner, 1849


John Van Wagoner 2John Van Wagoner was born

September 13, 1849, at Pattawattomie County, Iowa. He was the third child of a family of ten.
 In the year 1852, his father, John Halmah Van Wagoner, and his mother, Clarissa Tappen, crossed the plains with ox teams. As grandfather was only three years of age, he does not remember any thing of the journey. They settled in Provo.
 On July 17, 1863, he was baptized by William Wood, and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints by his
et the last immigrants that crossed the plains with ox teams. They waited on the Platt River for seven weeks having provisions and teams for them.Six immigrants died the first trip and were buried in the river bed. They were just wrapped in quilts and buried in a trench. On his return, he went to work on the western railroad at Humbelt. 
 The 13 March 1872 he was marriehalf brother, David Van Wagonen.
 In 1864 he came with his parents to Wasatch Valley and settled in Midway at what was known then as the Lower Settlement.
 In 1866 the call came for the Lower and Upper Settlements to come together on account of the Indian trouble, so they came “Midway”, thus giving the town its name. The same year he went to Montana where he worked for sometime and where he suffered greatly from home-sickness. He was a very young boy at this time and was with men that were not of the “Mormon” faith. After his return he went to Salt Lake City, and with ox team hauled rock for the temple.
 In 1868 Grandfather John went with eight others by ox teams to me

d to Margaret Ann Fausett by Bishop David Van Wagenen, and some years later, they went to the Endowment House. Fourteen children were born to them.

John Van WagonerThe first died at 18 months, leaving a great sorrow in their hearts.
 Margaret Ann was the second child of John and Mary Ann Shelton Fausett, born 26 Feb. 1854 in Provo, Utah. Living there a short time, then came to Midway. Being on of the first five families in Midway. They came from Pennsylvania for the sake of the gospel. Her mother was baptized by the Prophet Joseph Smith. Margaret walked nearly all the way across the plains. Grandmother (Margaret) endured the hardships of the pioneers, working hard all her life. She had a strong testimony of the gospel and honored the priesthood. She always prayed her family would never have to stand the test of wealth. In giving birth to her fourteen children she never had a doctor. She was a loving wife, mother and grandmother, with a merry twinkle in her brown eyes.
 Grandfather worked in the mountain logging and had the contract for the first hundred cord of wood used at the Ontario Mine.
 He and his brother, William, burned lime, and for a number of years made brick together with his sons. He made brick used in his own home and in many other buildings in the county. He also laid brick and did plastering. He bought a lot from Mark Smith for $2.50 and built his own home. He and his sons made brick in Heber for two years. Labor was cheap and he labored 65 days on the Second Ward meeting house at Midway for $1.00 a day, 10 hours a day. Grandfather passed through the hardships of early pioneer life of the town.
 For 16 years he was a ward teacher. He also taught a Sunday School class. He was very honest and taught his children to be honest. He was also charitable, his only regret was that he wasn’t able to help more where people needed help. He had a great amount of faith and many were healed through the Priesthood that he held.
 Grandfather and Grandmother raised thirteen children to man and womanhood. All were married, but one daughter, Grace. When the first epidemic of “flu” came, they lost three children within five months. Aunt Grace was the first to die. There were just three weeks between the death of my mother, Ann Eliza, and Uncle Joseph. 
 March 13, 1922, Grandfather John and Grandmother Margaret Ann celebrated their golden wedding day in the Midway meeting house, having a big dinner in the basement (it was not then separated in classrooms). Most of the children and grandchildren were there, and many relatives and friends, too. At night there was a dance in their honor at the amusement hall. 
 One year later Grandmother passed away.
 Grandfather and Grandmother passed their lives in Midway and during their married life lived in the same house grandfather built just after they were married. He suffered a very serious sickness about four years prior to his death. At that time his son, Dean, with his wife Ella, were living with him. He was bloated up with Bright’s Disease. It was at this time that his friends came to see him and sent him flowers that filled his room. His children were certainly good to him. His legs broke and ran, and for months he wasn’t able to have his shoes on. Many prayers were offered in his behalf. His legs were healed. His doctor marveled at it as he had never known any one’s legs to heal before.
 The last few years of his life he spent in Pleasant Grove and Heber with his children. Three of them, John, Dean, and Albert having moved their families to Pleasant Grove, after Grandmother’s death. Aunt Mary had lived there many years. He spent much of the time at the home of his daughter, Luella V.W. Clyde, at Heber, and died there December 20, 1928.
 The funeral service was held in the Midway 1st Ward, and the building was crowed with relatives and friends. Grandfather was buried in the Midway Cemetery.

The following poem was written by William Lindsey and read at the Golden Wedding of my grandparents, March 13, 1922:

Dear Brother John, it don’t seem long.

Since we were called to go,

To gather home the emigrants,

With ox team sure and slow;

But more than fifty years have passed,

Never again to come,

Since we went back as teamsters

In Captain Halman’s train.

This was a little mission

that we were
Called to fill,

To assist the Saints from Babylon

To come to Zion’s hill

Eight men and teams from Wasatch,

Were called to go that year;

Five of them have passed away

And only three are here.

We then were young unmarried men

All full of life and fun;

We carried in our hands long whips,

And in our belts a gun.

Four yoke of oxen for a team,

And fifty in the Train;

We surely made a crackling noise

We’ll never hear again.

Some called Ha! Some called Gee!

Our whips like pistols shot.

We surely made a racket

That will never be forgot.

We traveled on from day to day.

O’er mountain, rocks and vales,

Following very closely to the

Far-famed “Mormon Trails”.

We crossed the raging Green River

And never lost a man

While Seeley’s train three days before

Lost six out of his band.

Without great loss or accident,

We reached the famed North Platte,

Where we laid over seven weeks

And let our teams get fat.

Our emigrants arrived at last

And we started home again,

We brought them safely to Salt Lake,

The very last Church train.

But some fifteen of our emigrants

Were taken ill and died,

And were buried without coffins,

Along the Highway side.

We got safe home and later on,

You found a help-mate true,

By whom you’ve raised a family

Who this day honor you.

They are honored men and women,

Of whom you may be proud.

And in praise to their parents

They speak both long and loud.

God bless you and your dear good wife.

While on this earth you stay

And make your hearts feel glad

On this your Golden Wedding Day.

You are the only couple of the afore-mentioned eight

Who’ve loved out fully fifty years,

Along with your first mate

May God still add his blessings,

While on this earth you stay

And bring you forth in glory

At the resurrection day.

John Van Wagoner Death Certificate

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