HISTORY OF LETTICE ECKERSALL REDFORD
by MARY R. STODDARD, G.D. and ALTA C. BRENCHLEY, G.G.D.
Sometime later she met and married Robert Patefield Redford, another mysteriously converted Saint on April 12th, 1841. Unto this union were born five boys and one girl. They managed a green grocery, going about the vicinity with pony and cart selling produce, and other commodities. They were called “Dippers”, because of their new Religion, and had a difficult tine obtaining and keeping work, being turned out of one factory after another. Although they were Superior Trades People, they kept getting poorer every year.
At last, having been advised by the Missionaries of opportunities in America, Robert decided that if he emigrated, he could soon earn enough money to bring his family over. So he left his wife and children and sailed in Nov. 1854 to the land of Opportunity, after which time she never saw him again, he having died before she was able to join him. The two older boys tried to go on managing the Green Grocery. They took the donkey and cart and went about trading and trafficking, but they were getting poorer each day, so they had to sell out.
Two months after Robert’s departure, their sixth child was born, Ephriam. Times became even worse. Flour was so scarce, that when she was fortunate enough to get some to make bread, she would gather her children about the pan, and they would kneel down while she prayed to the Lord that it might last until she was able to get more. (Now I, a Great Granddaughter, understand why John told his children, and grandchildren, never to burn a dry crust of bread, that if it couldn’t be used someway in meal preparation, to throw it outside so the birds could have it.) Joseph, then John, 13 – 11 obtained employment at the Print and Dye Works, but were allowed half a day until they reached fourteen. They would get up at five and walked two miles to be at work at six. If they were late, they were docked one-fourth day.
Ann soon joined them there, but wages were so low they just couldn’t manage. Many times they would have gone hungry had it not been for the goodness of the Saints. How grateful she was to them and to the Lord for raising them up in their hour of need. Even though trials seemed to mount, her Faith increased. She knew God lived and answered prayers, and sooner or later, all things would be righted. She must be courageous before her family. Had she not been blessed with a strong body and good health for this very purpose? Had she not been privileged to be numbered among the Saints of God? Her innermost desire was to teach her children to be devoted to the Gospel, to keep home a Fortress of love and strength, brightened with the cheer of music which acted as a medicine to their spirits. All were taught to sing the songs of Zion, and they directed the singing of them in the Branch, and later in Utah.
Joseph decided to buy a shovel and work for the Navy. By the time he was 19, he was determined to see what he could do to get the family away from this poverty. At the wish of his Mother, he contacted his Aunts and Uncles to see if they would give a little of their abundance, but with scoffs the few pennies they gave, were used for his fare back home. George Q. Cannon, interested to get them to Utah, asked if he could cook dumplings? “I can that,” he said. Arrangements were then made for him to cook on the ship to pay his transportation. Lettice moved the family to Bessies of the Barn, only to be moved soon to Chapel Field, located on the hill that led into Radcliffe City (the home of the L.D.S. Branch). Here Lettice and children worked at Farrers Factory. The thought came, if John could go to America, the rest would soon get there. So he left in April, 1864, who also worked on the ship, to pay for his fare.
Shortly afterward, Ephriam took very sick with consumption. He suffered for three years and died the 8th of November 1865 at the age of ten. He had been a loving child, very witty and quick to learn. He was such an accurate marble shooter, his friends avoided him, as he won all the marbles. During his sickness, the Elders came often to administer to him. At one time he was ordained an Elder—Brother Hatch said he was prompted three times to do it and followed the dictation. Abram was somewhat confused at hearing this prayer and asked his Mother if Ephriam would go on a mission. She answered, “No, why?” He then repeated to her the blessing given that she did not hear because of deafness. She soon realized that her boy was not long for this earth. Ephriam had saved a few pennies that different people had given him, and told his Mother to put them away, saying, “I know you will have a hard time to bury me.” It was a hard time as well as a sad one.
At the time of Robert’s death in America, July, 1865, Lettice dreamed that he took her to the place of his burial. When she arrived in Wellsville and visited the cemetery, It was just as she had dreamed.
In May, two years later, Ann came with the John Hilton family, having her way paid for helping with the children. Finally the money came to pay their passage. At last her dream was realized, for on the 30th of June 1868, fourteen years after her husband, Lettice and her last two sons sailed from Liverpool on the Steamer, “Minnesota”. Leaving behind a dear one and a weary past, but with Faith and Hope, they embarked on this venturesome journey to a new land and a new life. Ann and a friend had a man take them out on a boat in the New York Harbor to see if anyone was on the ship they knew. When she heard the voice of her beloved family calling to her, she was overcome with happiness. At Immigration Headquarters, they found funds waiting for their train ticket across the Plains to Laramie, Wyoming. Lettice was very sick on the way, but had recovered and was able to resume the journey to Salt Lake by ox-team in the Chester Loveland
Imagine what a joyous moment when Mother and sons met on the Plains. John had been called in the Cache Valley Train, to bring Immigrants and to take a load of flour to meet Seeleys Train, and run into the Company his family was in. They reached Salt Lake in a group of 400 Passengers, August 20th, and came directly on to Wellsville, with John, arriving 23rd of August and lived in his home for some time.
The first homes of John and father Robert were located in the south-west of Wellsville, Cache Co, Utah. John’s south of Rone Myers. He gave Robert a city lot to build a home on, and have a room for Lettice. In November of 1877, John homesteaded 80 acres south of Wellsville (later named MT. Sterling) and sold 40 acres to Robert, who built a large home, with a room for Lettice, now the Walker Home.
Joseph had 80 acres directly north to put his home. A block farther west he built a molasses mill. The corner above into the horizon was called, “Redford’s Hole.” The outset of thunder storms.
Lettice lived 20 years with Robert, who made her fire in the mornings, and tucked her in at night during cold weather. The week following her 86th birthday, as he went into her room at night, she said, “Robert, turn me on me side. That is fine, now I shall sleep.” The next morning as he entered, he found her just as he had tucked her in, sweetly sleeping her last sleep. Until the day of her death, she bore a strong Testimony of the Truthfulness of the Gospel, and the Mission of The Prophet Joseph Smith. She had full Faith in the law of tithing, paying and teaching it religiously. She was buried by her husband, 3rd of March 1900, in Wellsville, Cache Co, Utah.