Pioneers of 1863


John Parkin, son of William and Amy Allen Parkin and founder of the Parkin family in Utah, was born 12 April 1821 in Loscoe, Derbyshire, England and his wife, Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin, daughter of John Brown and Ann Wright Brown, was born 18 March 1821 in Loscoe Derbyshire, England, and they were married 28 Feb. 1839, Duffield Church, Loscoe, County of Derby, England.  John and Elizabeth Parkin joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints 15 Dec. 1850 and endowed and sealed 9 Feb. 1867, Salt Lake City, Utah, Bro. Woodruff being mouth. 


Mr. Parkin joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in England in his early manhood and labored there as a local Elder until he immigrated to Utah.  He and his wife and family, five boys and one girl, left Loscoe, Derbyshire, England, 26 May 1863.  They sailed on the ship “Cynosure,” 30 May 1863, in company with 754 other members of the Church with Elder David W. Stewart in charge of the Saints.  They crossed the Atlantic Ocean, arriving in New York 9 July 1863. 


Immediately on arriving in America, they continued the journey to Utah.  They traveled by train to Florence, Nebraska continuing by ox team to Salt Lake Valley.  Thomas E. Ricks was in direct charge of the party with which Mr. Parkin and family crossed the plains.  They arrived in the Salt Lake Valley 4 Oct. 1863, all in good health and spirit to serve the Lord.  John and Elizabeth Parkin were baptized in England by William Cooper 15 Dec. 1850, and received their endowments 9 Feb. 1863, in Salt Lake City, Utah.  On arriving in Salt Lake City, they immediately moved to Bountiful and settled at the Jesse Parkin home, the present site of James I. Atkinson’s home.  He later bought the home of Mrs. Severe and later moved to a ranch at Silver Creek and made butter and cheese. 


In 1865, Mr. Parkin was made school trustee of the Bountiful District, a position he held till his death in 1885.  He was instrumental in establishing three schools in the district.  When the South Bountiful Ward was organized 20 June 1877, he was appointed the first Ward Clerk.  He was very studious and had acquired a very good education and when mathematical problems arose in the community, they would go to John to help figure them out.  He was the Assessor and also the Water Master for a number of years.  He settled in South Bountiful and their home was located where the South Bountiful School House now stands, and was what he called “a three-story house on the ground.”  He run his farm raising hay, grain, and garden vegetables.  He kept cows and chickens and went to Salt Lake City every week with butter and eggs, fruit and vegetables.  He and his wife kept everything around the house and yard very neat and clean.  He would white-wash everything even the picket fence as often as it was necessary to keep it white.  He also kept a small store, one of first in South Bountiful (it may have been the first store).  He had candle moulds and made candles for himself and to sell. 



In 1867 Brigham Young called for a volunteer to go back to Missouri.  Grandfather John Parkin couldn’t go but sent ox-team and they made the trip to Missouri and back. 


On the 12th of April 1921, members of the Parkin family living in South Bountiful gathered at the home of Phebe Stanley Parkin, widow of Hyrum Parkin, to celebrate the hundredth birthday anniversary of the late John Parkin, founder of the family in Utah.  John Parkin, Jr., then 74 years of age and Joseph, then 71, were both present and John gave a talk, giving reminiscence.  The descendents up to this time, numbering 300, all belonged to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. 


John Parkin died 4 Nov. 1885 in South Bountiful, Davis Co., Utah.  His wife, Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin died 4 April 1887 at South Bountiful, Davis Co., Utah. 


John and Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin’s ages of children when they left England: 


William John Parkin                24 years.                      Harriet Parkin              20 years.

John Parkin, Jr.                        16 years.                      Joseph Parkin              13 years.

Hyrum Parkin                            9 years.                      Heber Parkin                  2 years.


The father and mother and six children were all pioneers of 1863, leaving Loscoe, Derbyshire, England, 26 May 1863, and arriving in the Salt Lake Valley 4 Oct. 1863.  Thomas E. Ricks was in charge of the Saints or Pioneer Company with whom they crossed the plains. 


Children’s births and deaths:


William John Parkin, born 19 May 1839;  died 16 Feb. 1919, Bountiful, Utah.

George Parkin, born 15 Dec. 1841;  died 20 Dec. 1841, in England.

Harriet Parkin, born 30 June 1843;  died 27 Jan. 1879, Bountiful, Utah.

John Parkin, Jr., born 20 May 1847;  died 2 April 1936, Bountiful, Utah.

Joseph Parkin, born 6 June 1850;  died 23 Oct. 1935, Bountiful, Utah.

Hyrum Parkin, born 4 Feb. 1854;  died 18 Aug. 1899, Bountiful, Utah.

Heber Parkin, born 19 June 1861;  died 23 March 1921, Salt Lake City, Utah, buried in Bountiful.



Rememberances of John Parkin, Sr. and Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin

by granddaughter, Beatrice Parkin Schulthies


John Parkin, Sr. was not a very big man.  Wore a white goatee and white hair.  Had a log house with three rooms he called his three stories on the ground, had it fenced in with white picket fence.  South room was his store.  Sold groceries, candles, candy and prize boxes for the kids.  Raised chickens, used to boil meat and feed it to his chickens in a big brass kettle.  Milked 6 or 8 cows.  Made butter and cheese, sold eggs.  Went to town every Friday in his Spring wagon and team.  Had one of nicest gardens in country.  Peddled his produce.  Joe Wood said he raised best seed potatoes he had ever seen.  Had good education in England.  Was Ward Clerk under Bishop Brown about when Ward was organized.  Deputy County Assessor.  Probably on school board.  He used to brew his own “ale”.  One time his yeast on the tab___ ______ and blew cork out and went all over ceiling.  Grandmother was crying and said, “Look what the old fool has done now.”


He was very industrious, gave all of his sons land and helped them build and whitewashed all of the buildings and outhouses.  He shaved every man that died.  He was always jolly but stammered.  Before he came here, he worked in coal mine.  Sometimes horse and wagon would come home without him.  He and Malcomb McDuff were cronies.  He said when he died he wanted to go where Malcomb was whether it was hell or heaven.   Father (Hyrum Burtran Parkin) used to herd cows for John Parkin.  When he brought them home at night he asked him if he found plenty of soft rocks for them to eat, they looked pretty full!  When he died he looked like an old man even though he was ____.  He ran first store in South Bountiful. 


Grandmother Parkin was a little woman, good housekeeper, quiet.  Took care of store.  Went to Church.



Notes taken from History of John Parkin, Sr. and Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin

Filed by Beatrice T. Page 10 March 1962 at DUP Sunbonnet Camp


John Parkin was a coal miner.  He and two sons, John and Joseph, went down into the earth nearly ½ mile.  Then walked two more to pick coal loose.  Received pay by the tons. 


Missionaries came.  Two years passed before they saved enough money to come to America.  They all were baptized that were old enough on 15 Dec 1850. 


Elizabeth was only one of her father’s and mother’s family who embraced gospel so when she set sail on the ship “Syneshire” 26 March 1862, she never saw any of her folks again in this life.  They were seven months coming from England to Utah.  Seven hundred fifty-four under David W. Steward came from England on the ship Syneshore.  Some were buried at sea.  There were days when ship hardly moved.  No wind to blow sails.  Sharks seemed to always be following.  Six weeks on ocean.  All walked till they arrived except Elizabeth, who was very ill for a number of weeks, and so was put in a wagon.  Their first home was a one-room house a Negro family had moved out of.  Soon took up land in South Bountiful and built a two-room home.  Elizabeth was a Relief Society worker all her days.  Kind and good to the poor. 



Reminiscense of John Parkin, Sr.


By:  William John Parkin, eldest son

Chapter 1


William John Parkin recalls some incidents of his childhood that tend especially to illustrate the character of his father, and the effect of the Gospel in shaping the lives of individuals. 


John Parkin, Sr. was a pugilist by instinct rather than by profession, for he did not follow it for a living.  He was not a large man, but had a closely-knit, muscular frame, no surplus flesh, was about as active as a cat and possessed unbounded courage.  While not of a quarrelsome nature, he just naturally enjoyed a scrap. 


He taught his older sons “the manly art of self-defense,” and gave them to understand that he had no patience with mollycoddles.  He didn’t want them to pick a quarrel, but if anyone ever attempted to impose on them, or their friends, he expected them to give a good account of themselves.  He would be ashamed to have anybody who bore his name ever show the white feather. 


John, Sr. was passing along the street of his native hamlet in England one day when his attention was attracted by a rather large and noisy crowd of people who were, as he learned on joining them, listening to a local “Mormon” Elder advocate his doctrines, with frequent and noisy interruptions.  The interruptions he soon found were mainly made by three preachers:  one a Baptist, another a Methodist and the third a Church of England minister.  He recognized these when he saw them, for they were well known and somewhat popular in their special lines of religion, but the “Mormon” Elder was a stranger to him.   In fact, he had never before met a “Mormon,” or heard or read of “Mormon” doctrines.  He had not listened long when his sense of fairness became so outraged by the sneering, ridiculing, captious interruptions by the preachers, and the laughter of their sympathizing auditors, that he pushed his way into the center of the crowd and asked the lone “Mormon” Elder to allow him to say a few words. 


The privilege being granted, he told the crowd that he was not a preacher, and knew nothing about the doctrines this man was preaching, but he believed in free speech and fair play, and thought the man ought to be allowed to tell what he had to say without interruptions.  Then, if the preachers could controvert it, they might fairly do so. 


His remarks had the effect of quelling the disturbance momentarily, but the Elder had scarcely resumed his speaking when the preachers, apparently bent upon not allowing him to proceed, burst forth again with their interruptions. 


With indignation now thoroughly aroused, Mr. Parkin shook his fist in the faces of the preachers and demanded fair play.  “I don’t know this man,” said he, “but he looks and talks decently, and he’s got to have a hearing, if I have to smash the men that interrupt him.” 


The Baptist preacher had a wooden leg, and perhaps presumed upon that in being the first to cry out in ridicule when the “Mormon” again essayed to proceed. 


Grabbing him by the collar and shaking him, Mr. Parkin angrily demanded, “Are you going to compel me to hit you, even though you are a cripple?  Now keep your mouth shut, or I’ll have to do it!” 


He had scarcely let loose of the preacher’s collar when a stalwart son of the preacher rushed out from the crowd and made a pass at him with his brawny fist; but Mr. Parkin saw the movement, and, nimbly dodging the blow, struck out with his good right hand with such force that his big assailant went down as if he had been hit with a sledge hammer. 


While friendly hands began fanning the youth and throwing water in his face to resuscitate him, Mr. Parkin, with blood boiling and eyes flashing defiance, proceeded to deliver this challenge to the whole crowd in true bantam fashion:  “Come on now, all of you, one at a time, and I’ll whip the crowd!”  


None of them chose to accept the challenge.  On the contrary, they neither manifested any disposition to fight him or further listen to the preaching, for they soon dispersed--their departure being doubtless hastened by a brisk shower just then coming on.


Turning to the “Mormon” Elder, Mr. Parkin inquired:  “Where do you live?” 


“At Langley Mills, nine miles from here,” was the reply. 


“You can’t go home in this shower; you had better walk home with me,” said the pugilist, and his invitation was accepted. 


The shower didn’t pass as soon as expected, but rather increased in severity as night approached, and it became apparent that the guest must be provided with lodgings, as the family hadn’t the heart to turn him out in such a storm.  Then, too, there was another reason for it—they had become somewhat interested in listening to his explanations of his belief, the doctrines being all new to them. 


The eldest son, a boy about 10 years old, solved the question of lodging by offering to give up his bed, and the mother helped out the matter by arranging for the boy to occupy an improvised bed in the room in which his parents slept. 


When the time for retiring arrived, the stranger asked, as a special favor, the privilege of praying with the family, and the father replied to this by the declaration that he was not a religious man, that he was a pugilist, a cock fighter, a man who didn’t believe in prayer and had no regard for things which others considered sacred; but if it would afford him any gratification, they would be willing to listen to him pray. 


The prayer was offered, and in it the guest thanked the Lord that he had found one man who would accept the truth. 


The eldest son (the boy who gave up his bed for the stranger to sleep in) recalls hearing his father ask his wife some time after retiring for the night what the man could have meant by alluding, in his prayer, to one man whom he had found in that town who would accept the truth.  She said she had no idea what man he had in mind, and the husband told her he would find out by asking him the next morning.  And ask him he did, the next morning, and was not a little surprised when the Elder turned and pointing to him, said, “You are the man, for I am sure you will yet embrace the Gospel!” 


That local Elder (whose name was Aaron Nelson, and who afterwards migrated to Utah, and died only a few years since in St. George) continued to come every Wednesday and hold meetings in Loscoe, and Mr. Parkin generally attended his meetings and stood by him, to see that he got fair play. 


Finally, at the close of one of the meetings Mr. Parkin asked the privilege of making an announcement.  Consent being granted, he said:  “I want to give out notice (Elder Nelson being willing) that on Wednesday night next I will be baptized by him, at Loscoe Dam, for I have become convinced that ‘Mormonism’ is true.”


He was deliberate about embracing it, but he was as true to it thereafter as ever needle was to the pole. 


The family all embraced the Gospel and came to Utah, and the manner in which they first became interested in and were led to investigate “Mormonism” furnished a theme for many a fireside conversation. 


As an indication of the effect the Gospel had upon the elder Parkin, it may be mentioned that after he joined the Church he generously entertained all the missionaries who visited his part of the country, made them presents, and went to the limit of his ability to manifest his love for them and his interest in the work in which they were engaged. 


Chapter 2


Some years after Father John Parkin, Sr. migrated to Utah, he rode to Salt Lake City one day with his son, William John, who was bringing a load of carrots to sell.  As they rode along the street, they met Mr. T., a man who had served as a missionary in England when they were new converts, and been entertained many times at their house, and to whom Father Parkin had been unusually generous when he was released to return to his home in Utah. 


Brother T., who had the reputation of being among the wealthiest citizens of Salt Lake and as stingy as he was thrifty, hailed them (recognizing them, of course) and inquired what they wanted for their carrots, and was told “25 cents per bushel.” 


On further inquiry, he learned that they had 40 bushels in the wagon, and after some parleying decided to buy the load.  The wagon was driven into his yard, and Brother T. procured a bushel basket to have them measured with, evidently not caring to buy them according to the measurement of Brother Parkin. 


Brother Parkin offered no objection to having them measured, knowing that he had been rather generous in his measurement of the carrots, but regretted the delay that it would cause, as he and his father both had some purchases to make before they could leave town, and they were anxious to get home. 


When the wagon was not more than half unloaded, Brother T. was called by his wife to come to dinner, and he asked his old acquaintances, father and son, to excuse him for a few minutes, and take a rest while he ate his dinner (leaving them to understand, of course, that he wanted to see the rest of the carrots measured.)


Work was suspended and father and son cogitated a few moments while each munched at a carrot, for their appetites were keen enough to enable them to enjoy a good dinner too if the dinner had been forthcoming, and soon the father broke the silence. 


“My son,” said he, “can you imagine Elder T. when he was a missionary in England eating a carrot in a barn while I indulged in a warm meal in the house?”  


The son responded that he could not imagine such a situation.  “On the contrary,” he said, “I remember distinctly that he never called at our house without being invited to eat, whether it was meal time or not and that the choicest cuts of meat were bought to provide him the best meal possible, and that you paid 36 shillings for silk for which to make a pair of stockings to present him with to bring home for his wife when he was released from his mission, and that when those stockings were made they were admired by everyone who saw them and declared to be fit for any queen or princess to wear.” 


“Well, my son,” the father added, “I don’t regret anything I ever did for a missionary.  When I embraced “Mormonism” I did it because I was sure it was the truth, and I afterwards tried to serve the Lord just as thoroughly as I had ever served the devil before.  The truth is not affected by men’s actions, and men’s actions are not always affected by their knowledge of the truth.  Brother T. probably knows that the Gospel is true, but it has apparently not changed his nature.  I don’t envy him his nature or his possessions.  Better live on raw carrots and retain our love for the truth and our respect for those who have served with us in its promulgation, than have the wealth of this world and forget or cease to respect our former friends and associates in the ministry.” 


The son was impressed with the change the Gospel had wrought in his father, for he could easily recall the time when he would not have looked charitably upon any action that savored of meanness or parsimony in one of his fellows, and when the more pretentious the person was (be he preacher or layman) who displayed any such characteristic, the more bold and ready he would have been to denounce him to his face.


The rumination was ended.  Brother T. returned from the house and the unloading of the carrots was resumed, Brother T. keeping tally with a pencil on a board as the baskets were emptied.  When only a few bushels remained to be measured, he exclaimed:  “Never mind measuring any more, I see you have 40 bushels, alright.”


Then the son decided that it was his turn to speak right out in meeting.  “But Brother T. I do mind!  It was you that wanted these carrots measured.  I would have sold them to you for 40 bushels if you had been satisfied to take them without measuring.  Now we will finish measuring, and if there are more than 40 bushels, we will take the overplus home, if you do not want to pay 25 cents a bushel for them.” 


The measurement of the balance disclosed the fact that there were 42 bushels in the load, and brother T. rather shamefacedly handed over $10.50 in payment therefore. 




By:  Beatrice Parkin Schulthies


My Great Grandmother, Elizabeth Wright Brown, was born 18 March 1821, Loscoe, Derbyshire, England to John Brown and Ann Wright.  She married John Parkin 28 Feb 1839.  They both joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints 15 Dec 1850.  She was the only one of her father’s children to be baptized. 


Seven children were born to this couple:  6 boys and one girl.  They lost their second child, a darling baby boy, named George, just five days old.



William John Parkin, born 19 May 1839;  died 16 Feb. 1919, Bountiful, Utah.

George Parkin, born 15 Dec. 1841;  died 20 Dec. 1841, in England.

Harriet Parkin, born 30 June 1843;  died 27 Jan. 1879, Bountiful, Utah.

John Parkin, Jr., born 20 May 1847;  died 2 April 1936, Bountiful, Utah.

Joseph Parkin, born 6 June 1850;  died 23 Oct. 1935, Bountiful, Utah.

Hyrum Parkin, born 4 Feb. 1854;  died 18 Aug. 1899, Bountiful, Utah.

Heber Parkin, born 19 June 1861;  died 23 March 1921, Salt Lake City, Utah, buried in Bountiful.


All seven children were born in Loscoe, Derbyshire, England. 


Elizabeth and John, with their now six children, left England 26 May 1863.  They sailed on the ship “Cynosure” to New York, then by train to Florence, Nebraska, continuing by ox team to the Salt Lake Valley with Thomas E. Ricks Company, arriving 4 October 1863 and immediately moved to Bountiful, Utah. 


Elizabeth was small, with pretty auburn red hair, was quiet and good to children.  She kept everything neat and clean around the house and yard. 


They had a log house with three rooms, had it fenced in with a white picket fence.  They kept a small store, one of the first in South Bountiful, Utah.  This was in their south room.  They had a mold, and made candles to sell.  Also sold groceries, candy and prize boxes for the children.  They milked six or eight cows and made butter and cheese, and raised chickens.  They had one of the nicest gardens in the country.  They peddled their fruit, vegetables, cheese, butter and eggs, going to town every Friday in their spring wagon and team. 


Elizabeth attended church regularly, was a faithful worker in Relief Society and did a lot of genealogy and temple work.  She always bore a strong testimony. 


Elizabeth Wright Brown died 4 April 1887 and was buried in the Bountiful Cemetary. 



Elizabeth brought with her two white vases trimmed in gold from England.  My Grandmother, Phebe Parkin, inherited these vases.  They were given to her only daughter, Vada Kast.  Aunt Vada, before her death, gave them to me.  I, in turn, have given them to my only daughter, Celia Schulthies Darnell.

Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin & Her Vases




Note by Celia Schulthies Darnell

Daughter of Beatrice Parkin Schulthies


My mother, Beatrice Parkin Schulthies, passed this precious pair of white vases of Elizabeth Wright Brown Parkin’s on to me since I was the only daughter of Beatrice Parkin Schulthies.  I look at them often and will always cherish them and look forward to meeting their original owner.