Erold C. (Erold Clark) Wiscombe.

The descendants of Maria Burr, John W. Clark and William West Lane online

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OF lATi u

■■'■>r-ui''-i j ]


^5/Crf"^ 1975


;ATAL0buE NO. i


The CLARK-LANE Family record has been written to help the later
generations become acquainted with their pioneer heritage. Since
a great many of our relatives are not affiliated with the L.D.S.
Church, it was a surprise to me to find our early ancestor, John
W. Clark, an active participant in the Church during the Kirtland,
Ohio and Missouri period.

John W. Clark was chosen to go back into Missouri after the
Mormon expulsion from that state, to uelp cut and lay the corner-
stone for the Far /lest, Missouri Latter Day 3aint Temple.

Maria Burr's second husband, William West Lane, was a bishop
at Winter Quarters. Both he and his wife died in the Westward

Each descendant of John W. Clark and Maria Burr has been given
a number. If the sign (+) follows the number, it means that that
particular child is also listed later on in the book in numerical
order as the head of a family. They can easily be traced by turn-
ing to the corresponding number found in the margin at the left side
of each page. An index has also been provided.

Some of the branches are not complete. There are also probably
many errors, but I believe that this record will be of great value
to our family if it does nothing more than tie us more closely to-
gether and remind us wno we are. A great sage once said: "It is
a desirable thing to be well descended, but the glorj' belongs to
our ancestors". May our hearts be turned to our fathers that we
may give proper thanks for all that we enjoy today.

The Compiler,

Erold Clark /tfiscombe (184)
607 North 5 West City, Utah 84302
1 January 1975


The Clark Family of Connecticut is a very ancient family. William
Clark of Hartford was one of the founders of the town of Haddam, Conn.,
along with his four sons in the year 1662. He is also the ancestor of
our Clark Family in America. He immigrated from near Braintree, Essex,
England. Our descent from this William Clark is as follows: Joseph Clark,
md. Ruth Spencer; William Clark md. (1) Mary Day; Peletiah Clark md. (2)
Elizabeth Slead; Stephen Clark md. Martha Cone; Felatiah Clark md. Amy
Wilcox. Felatiah and Amy are the parents of John W, Clark, (see p. 116)


John W. Clark was bom 13 April 1808, in Durham, Middlesex, Conn,
It is not known at what time his family moved from Durham, but they
did not move far, only into the next tovm of haddam, about ten miles
away through the fields. It was here that John W. was raised and grew
into manhood.

The Clark Family seems to have been associated with the First
Congregational Church of Haddam. his ancestors for several generations
on his father's side were born here. His mother's people ^ere from the
town of Kdllingworth, Conn. It was here in Haddam that John W. met the
lovely young lady, Maria Burr, whom he married at Kaddam, 24 July 1826.
The marriage was performed by the Rev. Simon Shailer of the First Cong-
regational Church. (Haddam Vital Records, Vol 1, p. 13). The Burr
Famdly had been members of this congregation for many years and at least
for four generations.

According to his son, Davis, Johji W. Clark's father, Peletiah Clark
gave him some land and $1800 when Jote and Maria married. No record of
this land transaction has been found in the county records yet. However,
four years later we find John listed in the 1830 Census surroimded by
numerous relatives as follows: (All living in a row.)

Aaron Johnson An uncle of John W. Clark's wife, Maria.

Stephen Johnson " " " " ii n n

Didymus Johnson Jr. " " " " " " "

John W. Clark |

Asher Clark ^ A cousin of John's father.

Coleman Clark Son of Asher.

Jidymus Johnson Sr. ; ' Grandfather of Maria Burr Cls.rk.
John W. did buy different pieces of property in Haddam and was able *
to acquire a considerable amount of lend. On 9 April 1832, he bought
49 acres of land at Haddam from Jehoshaphat Spencer, for $>1087.50.
This is recorded in the Middlesex County Court records Vol 24, p. 136.
Again, on 2 Jec. 1833, he bought 12 acres of land from rds Uncle Elisha
Clark. (Vol 24. p. 445.) This land had been deeded to Elisha and his
brother Silas by their father Stephen Clark.


On one of the deeds his signature was signed, showing that he did
have some formal education.


On 17 April 1833, Didymus B. Burr, a minor under age 18, residing
in Harpersfield, N.Y., having real estate in Haddam, made a choice
of John W. Clark, his brother-in-law, to be his guardian. This John
accepted and handled the property settlement for young Jidymus.

The first four children of John W. and Maria were born at Haddam,
however, no record of any of their births have been found recorded in
any of Kaddam's church records.

In 1836, the Mormon Missionaries arrived in Haddam and converted
many of the families of the town, /jtiong them were three of Maria
Burr Clark's Uncles: Aaron, Lorenzo, and Huntington Johnson; also
a cousin of John W. Clark, (no name mentioned in son's autobiography)
and also John W. Clark and his wife Maria. They were baptized into
the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints sometime before July

On 26 July 1836, John W. sold his 50 acres of lard in Haddam to
Felander Burr for $1300, and moved to Kirtland, Ohio where he pur-
chased some land and built a house.

Later in the fall, 10 Nov. 1836, John W. and Maria both received
a Patriarchal Blessing from Joseph Smith Sr. in the Kirtland Temple
These blessings are recorded in Vol 2, pp. 189-190. Copies are in
the hands of the compiler.

John W. was ordained an Elder in the LDS Church the following
year 10 Nov. 1837. Two years later during the Missouri troubles
he was ordained a Seventy on 5 Jan. 1839.

At Kirtland, Ohio the Clark Family remained for about one and a
half years, his son records that one time Johai loaned the Prophet
Joseph Smith the sum of $1800. After a short stay in Kirtls^d, the
bSLrfof r Saints of Kirtland to move to Zion in the Wekern

^ZH? nl u°''''l' '^°'''"^ "°" =^^^«^ ^hat when they sola their
land m Ohio, his father had more money than a man could lift.

wnJ^h^H^ time the Kirtland Saints arrived in Aestern Missouri,
word had already reached tnem that the Latter Day Saints at Jackson

mSlv harbL'"H''''°^' '^°"''^ ^'^ ^^^i- "S^-^il^" neighbors Sd
s^L^pH r ''^'''" ^''°" ^^^^^ ''°^^^' The Kirtland group then
separated into various groups and settled in the surrounding three

har West, Caldwell Cour.ty, Missouri and secured more land. He open-
ed a farm and also bought a lot in to^ ana built a large fra^e house.


It was here on the 11th of May 1838 that his last child, a son nained
Enoch A. Clark, was born.

Mobs continued to harass the Saints of Western Missouri. On the
24th of Oct. 1838, eight armed mobbers plundered a house a short dis-
tance from Far West and took three Saints prisoners announcing their
intent to kill them. Upon learning of tnis boast, Col. Hinkle order-
ed out a company of men to disperse the captors. Seventy five men
under the command of Apostle Uavid W. Patten went off to rescue the
men. John W. Clark was most likely one of this company as he lived
close by Apostle Patten's home. The men were ambushed and a battle
followed at a place called Crooked River. The first hit was a young
man named Patrick O'Banion. Capt. Patten ordered a charge upon the
enemy shouting, "Our God and liberty". A musket ball pierced the
bowels of uavid Patten, fatally wounding him. John's son, Uavis re-
corded in his autobiography: "I remember when they brought in the
body of David Patten, we lived close neighbors. I was at the fun-

Joseph Smith and his brother, Hyrum, upon hearing that Apostle
Patten was wounded, went out to meet him and returned with the
group to Patten's home. As Patten was dying, he spoke with "holy
exultation of the eternity opening to his view". His last words to
his wife were: "'Whatever you do else, oh, do not deny the faith!"
(Joseph Smith the Prophet by Geo. Q. Cannon, pp. 251-252). The Clark
family attended the funeral.

The mobs continued to threaten the Sairts even at Far West. John
had two lots fenced, and had hauled in a good deal of corn from the
farm, but the mob broke do;vn the fence and ran their horses over the
corn tramping it down and destroying it. They also took an axe and
smashed the Clark's cellar door and carted off what they wanted.
Jeveral head of cattle were killed, also some sheep, and they took
away all the poultry belonging to the family. Joseph Smith and a
few others were taken prisoners, and John's son, Davis recalls;
"My father was among the prisoners taken, but I don't remember much
that took place, I was so young."

Sister Amanda Smith, a survivor of Hawn's Mill massacre where her
husband and one son were murdered, and another little boy wounded
described the scene at this time: "They (the mob) told us we must
leave the state forthwith or be killed. It was cold weather, and
they had our teams and clothes, our men all dead or woionded. I told
them they might kill me and my children ana welcome. They sent word
to us from time to tine , saying that if we aid not leave the state •
they would come and kill us. We had little prayer meetings. They
said if we did not stop these, they would kill every man, woman and
child. We had spelling schools for cur little children. They said
If we did not stop these, they would kill every man, woman, and child.
We (the women) had to do our own milking, cut our o-wn wood, no man to
help us. I started on the first of February for Illinois without
money; mobs on the way; drove out own team; slept out of doors.
I had five small children, we suffered hunger, fatigue, and cold."

Tills scene was typical of what was happening all over //estem
Missouri. Governor 3oggs next ordered the expulsion of "all Mor-
mons" from the state.

John W. lost his home and all his land which he had paid for,
and never received a penny for it. His son, Javis, states:
"Father took his wife and five children in a two horse wagon and
traveled to Quincy, Illinois, in the midst of winter. When we
got to the Mississippi River, we could not cross for the ice. i-ve
had to camp on the bank of the river for some days. The weather
was very severe".

Back in Fissouri on April 5, 1839, Captain Bogart, a judge of
Caldrfell County visited Elder Theodore Turley in Far West and
boasted about a revelation that Joseph Smith had made 8 July 1338
in which the followinf passage occurs: "Let them (the twelve)
take leave of my Saints in the city of Far West, on the 2oth of
April next on the building spot of my house saith the Lord".
(Doctrine and Covenants 118:5)

Here was one revelation Joseph Smith had attacned a date and
place on to it and Bogart couldn't resist heckling Elder Turley
about it: "As a rational man, you must give up the claim that
Joseph Smith is a prophet and an inspired man; the Twelve are
now scattered all over creation; let them come here if they dare-
If they do they will be murdered. As revelation cannot be '
fulfilled, you must now give up your faith. This is like all the
rest of Joseph Smith's damned prophecies." (Ufe of Josepn Smith
by Cannon, p. 285)

The Lord would not permit one jot or tittle of His promise to
lail; He had servants with the courage and fidelity to perform
His command. Shortly after midnight at 1:00 A.M. on the morning
of the 2bth of April 1839, the day promised in the revelation,
seven of the Twelve Apostles, a majority of the quorum, held a
conference on the temple site at Far West; and tue master work-
men laid a cornerstone of the foundation of the Lord's house.
h^loH u pf ^f^^'""' ^^^ '"^"^^^ ^°^^^ °f the house, assisted
of th^lL^ H ' ^ '^f^ '^'^"^ ^y ^^^^«' l^i=^ ^'^^ foundation
?o cut ^nH 1 .T^' -^^^^"'^ s°"l^ter wrote: "My father helped
to cut and lay the corner stones of the Far West Temple".

icatL^^'^R "^^^"^"^ '°"^ ^^ "'^""'"^" °^' th« -^h^^^h were excoimun-
rZ^lt' .^'^^^"^^^ "^s conducted, prayers were offered by the
looilkve'of tT fi? "Adam-ondi-ahmen", and then the Twelve
The ni^eTo? 18 sJnt ^^'"^ '"'""' agreeable to the revelation,
ine names ol 18 baints were recorded as attending the meeting -in

to lohn f I ™- ""^ "f '■'""='" '=°'dJ >>ave been the cousin

ItliTjsi olTa^f ?S^ '^'" ^^-^ "^^^ '' ^ "-PO. t-nt^y


Undoubtedly, Maria did not acco;npany ier husband on this trip
back into Missouri, but remained at Quincy, Illinois the snail

Thus was fulfilled the revelation of July 6, 1838, which the
enerides of the church said could not be fulfilled, (history of the
Church, Vol III, pp. 336-340).

Brother Turley, who attended the meeting, could not help but
stop and bid his former friend, Isaac Russell, goodbye. Isaac and
his wife had been two of the 30 who were excommunicated at the meet-
ing. The wife answered the door and said, "Come in, it's Brother
Turley". Russell replied, "It is not, he left here two weeks ago".
Vjhen he v;as assured it was, he invited Turley to sit down, but he
refused stating: "I cannot, I shall loose my company". "Who is
your company?" inquired Russell, "The Twelve", "THE TflKLVKl" ex-
claimed Russell in alsrm. "Yes, don't you krow that tlds is the
26th and the day the Twelve were to take leave of their friends on
the foundations of the Lord's House, to go to the Islands of the
Sea? The revelation is now fulfilled and I am going i,rith them".
Russell was speechless, and Turley bade him farewell.

The brethren imjnediately returned to Quincy, Illinois taking
with them the families of Tenney's Grove. John W. Clark also re-
joined his family at Quincj'-.

Davis Clark recalls that his family lived at Quincy for some
months. "Father, being a master stone cutter, took a contract to
build some bridges on the Central Illinois Railroad, that was being
build across the state". **e recalls other stone cutters who also
joined John W. in this project, Nosh Packard, Aaron and nuntington
Jolmson (Maria's two uncles), and Cyrus Sanford. These latter four
all settled later in Springville, Utah.

The railroad contract was finished, John -V. and the others start-
ed for Quincy to settle up j-nd get their pay, but on the way John
was attacked by a bilious fever which did not subside and in a few
days he died. Notice of his death was later recorded in the Times
and oeasons, a Nauvoo, 111, newspaper for April 1840, p. 95. He
died 9 Aug. 1839 near Warsaw, Hancock Co., Illinois. His wife
never received one penny of ti.e money for his labors on the rail-

Two weeks later, death struck again taking Harriet, the eldest
daughter, 21 -August, followed by the death of the second child,
Alpheus, the 27th of August.

John was only 31 years old at the time of his death. He was
very devoted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latt^=r Day Saints,
though he was only a member for three years. He died in the faith,
honored by all who knew him.

His Patriarchal Blessing was indeed propl etic when it stated:
"Thou must stand at the head of thy family, and stand as a pat-
riarch to thy children and bless tnerc. Thou shslt have peace with


the one hundred and f curt y-f our thousand shall stand v\dth the
Lamb on Mount Zion."

"Thou art a man of intelligence and wisdom, yet, if thou dost
persevere in the way of holiness, God will greatly increase thy
intelligent powers and give thee the wisdom of heaven."

"Thou shalt be numbered with the children of Joseph, as thou
art of the lineage of Abraham, thou art entitled to the Priest-
hood." (Patriarchal Blessing Vol 2, p. Ift9)


Maria Burr was bom 5 Jan. 1806, at haddam, Middlesex Co., Conn.,
the eldest daughter of Samuel Burr and Concurrence Johnson. She .vas
was also the eluest of their five children.

The Burr Family held membership in the First Congregational Church
of Haddam.

At the tender age of 10, her parents both died. Ker father on tne
8th of April 1816, and her mother the follc^Ndng day. The church re-
cord did not state the cause of death. It was probably one of the
numerous plagues that constantly recurred throughout New England at
the turn of the last century.

There were four other children in the family younger than Maria,
namely: Alpha, who later married Jonathan Smith; Samuel I. Burr,*
who married Mary Pelton, Mary Jane, who married Nathan Shaler; ^nd
a little brother, two years old, Didymus Buell Burr.

Maria married John y^. Clark, 2A July 1826, at the age of 20 years,
he was 22 years old at this tijne. Their son said John's father gave
them some land and $1800 as a wedding gift. This undoubtedly gave
them a good start for married life. This would be in addition to
the Burr property that was held in trust until Maria and her broth-
ers ana sister came of age to receive their share of the parent's
estate. On 5 Feb. 1832, her grandfather, Jidymus Johnson Sr. left
a gift of $8.00 to be divided equally between the four grandchild-
ren, Maria Clark, Alpha Smith, Sair.uel I Burr, and uidymus B. Burr.
Maria's younger sister, Mary Jane, who married Nathan Sh.aler was
not mentioned in his will. This was not a very sizeable fortune,
but m those hard times, every bit helped.

knoi^ ofM^"^ ^^^ T f^^^""^^ P^""^'^^^ ^^^y °^ Springville ^ho had
a^^in^ T<"^ ^T'' '^'^^ ^^"" ^" ^''- ^^^^^^^ ^^y'> described her
less"^ ''°^^''' ""^ imaculately clean, her house was spot-
Since her husband was a builder and a stone mason by trade it is


They sold their home and lard for a good price when they joined
the Mormons and moved to Kirtland, Ohio. They had moved to hartland
sometime between the months of March and November of 1836 and bought
more land and built a home. This was Just shortly after the dedica-
tion of the Kirtland Temple. On the 10th of November of that year,
she received a Patriarchal Blessing under the hands of Joseph Sirdth
Senior. The Patriarch had just returned from a mission to the East-
ern States on the 2nd of October. It is quite possible that he and
his brother, John Smith, were the ones who took the gospel to the
Clark family in Connecticut. The history of the church Vol II, p.
467 states they had traveled 2,400 miles and visited nearly all the
branches of the church in N.Y. Vermont, Kew harripsl.ire, and Penn.
During this trip they baptized many, conferred blessings upon many
hundreds, aind preacned the gospel to many ti.ousands.

Little did Maria realize then just what the Patriarch meant when
he told her in her blessing: "Thou shalt stand fearlessly in the
midst of judgements, pestilence and famire, and rejoice in the
fostering hand of God. In the nan^e of Jesus Christ, tue Great iie—
deemer, I bless thee with the gift of patience, the gift of intel-
ligence, and the gift of faith.... If thou art faithful in keeping
the commandments of God, no blessing snail be too great for thee.
The blessing of heaven shall rest on thy posterity, ai^d eternal
life awaits thee..." Inasmuch as part of her promise includes her
posterity, I have taken the liberty to include it here. She could
not have known at that time of the judgments that she would stand in
while living in Missouri, or of the famine they would face in cross-
ing the Western plains.

The LD3 Community of Kirtland was becoming so crowded in 1836,
the time the Clark Family arrived there, that the council of the
Church at Kirtland on uec. 22, 1836, issued an order tliat the
Eastern branches were not to descend upon Kirtland without proper
preparation first, as everyones homes were filled to capacity with
those poor souls, and all Saints were to send money to help buy land
and prepare living quarters for those coming to Kirtland. It was
probably after this conference tliat John and Maria gave the Prophet
Joseph Smith $1800 to use as he needed.

During the winter of 1836-37, the Saints attended school at the
Temple. This was called the Kirtland High School, but it was attend-
ed mainly by adults.

In the spring of 1837, a bitter feeling of apostacy swept through
the Kirtland Branch, caused by the failure of the Kirtland Bank, but
Johji and Maria's faith did not sway. During this year they migrated
as directed to Caldwell County, Missouri. Here her youngest son,
Enoch Clark, was born on 11 May I838.

During the winter of 1838, Maria accoiopanied her husband to yuincy,
Illinois after the mobs drore the Saints out of Missouri. They lost
their home and farm.


The family stayed in Quincy for some time. In April 1339, her
husband went back to Missouri to help lay the cornerstone of the
Far West Temple, returning soon after.

The month of August 1839, was one of great tragedy for Maria.
Her husband had been building some stone bridges for the Central
Illinois Railroad. On his way home from completing this job he
was stricken with a fever and died on the 9th. Twelve days later
her eldest daughter, Harriet, age 11, also died. Her spirit must
have been sorely tested, but this was not the end, as her eldest
son, Alpheus, age 9, also died six days after his sister.

Maria removed her three remaining children to Warsaw, Illinois
and remained there until the spring of 1840 when her Uncle, Aaron
Johnson came and moved them to Commerce (later named Kauvoo).
Though the railroad owed her husband over ^1,000, she was not able
to collect one cent from them.

At Nauvoo, i'-aria met and married a -widower with four small
children under the age of 10. He was William West Lane, bom
29 Aug. 1797, in Sumner Co., Terjiessee, a son of ^Jaraes Lane and
Mary Phipps. Mr. Lane's first v^lfe had been Mary V^heeler.

Two more daughters were born at ^^auvoo, namely, Lavina and Sarah.

At Nauvoo the principle of baptism for the dead was introduced
and after the new temple was completed, Maria went into the waters
of baptism for a number of her relatives, namely: Goncurrance and
Samuel Burr, her parents; John, Israel and Nathaniel Burr, uncles-
Sa:r.uel and Jerusha Rewell Burr, grandparents; and a sister. Mary '
Shaler. ''

In 1S46 the Saints were once more forced to leave their com-
fortable homes and flee into the wilderness. They started across
the plains to the West. The Lane Fair.ily stayea at Council Bluffs
for a few years. In February 1847, a set of twin girls were born.

On 3 /pril 1848, Maria and her husband both received another
blessing from the Church Patriarch, Isaac Morley.

Maria's Uncle, Aaron Johnson, was a bishop at Council Bluffs
Iowa. -Vhen he left to go to Utah in 1850, Maria's husband, wmi.^
West Lane was appointed Bishop in his place.

proSabiy Sre'o'maha^n^orsTSdS.'^^'^'^^^' ^^' ^^^ ^°"^ ^" ^«^-^^-'

^roin o?%o^'?f f ^?^^' '^" '^"'"^"" ^^^^^ Bishop Lane to take a
group of some 15 families and build a settlement 40 miles north of

ThLJai :;i eTthe''"^ '^'' '°^ '°"^^^ °" ^^^ quartirsection


In the spring of 1852, Apostles Orson l.yde and jizra T. benson
came to the Grove and counselled them to move to the Salt Lake
Valley. The Lanes made preparation to leave and on tne 24th of
June, the group departed for the West. Tl^-iat day they crossed
the Missouri River.

Bishop Lane was the Captain of the 5l3t Company, with Jacob
Bigler and his wife's uncle, Lorenzo Johnson, as counselors.
They traveled but a few days when cholera broke out in camp.
Several died, and Bishop Lane became very ill. The proup stopped
at Loop Fork one or two days in consequence of iiis illness, and
as he seemed much improved, the company moved on. Three days
Liter, Maria was taken ill with cholera about 9: o'clock in the
morning after the wagon train had started. They had to move on
to reach water, but the journey plus the illness proved too much
for her. She died at about 4:00 p.m. that day, on the 5th of
July 1852, at the age of 46, leaving behind 3 children by her
first husband, 5 cViildren by her second husband, and 4 step child-
ren from her husband's first marriage. Certainly a sizeable brood
of 12 children to be left orphaned in the care of her elaest son,
Davis, a 20 year old boy.

The company moved on, but three days later Bishop Lane had a
relapse and als-o died on the 8tii of July. The burcen of holding
the faJTiily together and getting t; em to Utah safely resten upon
her eldest son. Ke brought trera on to Utah, arriving the 24th of
Sept. 1852. After staying in Salt Lake City for a suort time, tney
moved to Springville, Utah, where Maria's three Uncles had settled.
(See Burr Pedigree p. 118)

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Online LibraryErold C. (Erold Clark) WiscombeThe descendants of Maria Burr, John W. Clark and William West Lane → online text (page 1 of 12)