Ann Grimshaw Jackson
Ann Grimshaw Jackson was born in 1806 in Manchester, Lancashire, England on July 19, 1824, she was married to Benjamin Jackson. They bore nine children. Benjamin was a carpenter and he and his family decided that he should go to America and work as a carpenter there and earn money to send back to England and pay the way to America for the rest of the family. In 1849 he boarded a sailing vessel bound for America. He was not heard from again until the late 1860s.
Ann Grimshaw and five of her children earn money in other ways to pay for their way to America. That sailed to America on May 25, 1856 on the ship “Horizon,” that was led by the Captain Edward Martin. They landed in Boston in July and loaded-out for Florence near Omaha, Nebraska. In Florence, they were held up for a few days to await the making of handcarts. The Jackson Family had two handcarts. They were a part of the Martin handcart Company , they suffered many trials while crossing the plains to Utah. They were one of the families that were stranded in the mountains that the men helped save when President Brigham Young sent help to the saints.
On Sunday, November 30, 1856 they arrived in Salt Lake City. The Jackson Family was sent to Nephi, Juab County, Utah. There Ann Grimshaw Jackson remarried and thought her husband to be dead, since she didn’t hear from him in seven years.
Well it turns out that her first ole Benjamin did in fact go to America, but ended up going to California in search of gold and completely forgot about his family. Some years later he showed up to Ann’s house on mule.
Earning the money in other ways to pay their way to America, Ann Grimshaw Jackson and five of her children, Elizabeth, Martha, Joseph, Samuel, and Nephi, sailed from Liverpool, England, on May 25, 1856, on the old-time sailing ship, "Horizon," with 856 souls aboard, led by Captain Edward Martin. The voyage across the Atlantic Ocean took about six weeks, and was relatively peaceful and uneventful.
They landed safely at Boston about the first of July and "loaded-out" for Florence, near Omaha, Nebraska, the terminus of the railroad, arriving there on July 8, 1856. Some of the Jackson family had wanted to call on their brother, John Jackson, who was then living in Boston, but Samuel absolutely refused to hunt for John, for fear he would persuade the family to settle in Boston. The family went on and did not visit John.
At Florence, they were held up a few days to await the making of hand carts. After the journey to Utah had commenced, a count was made which showed that the company consisted of seven wagons and 146 hand carts. The Jackson family had two handcarts, one manned by the two girls, Elizabeth and Martha, and one manned by Joseph and Samuel. The handcarts rolled along very nicely until the foothills and the mountains and the snow were encountered. Although we have not been told all the details, there was some trouble encountered while crossing the Indian territories.
The mother, Ann Grimshaw Jackson, was a small women, not much more than a hundred pounds and subject to heart trouble. She took it upon herself to take care of a son, Nephi, who was about nine years old. The mother and son would leave in the morning before the handcarts would start. She was lucky to sometimes to have a rough, coarse biscuit for lunch for her and her son. After being on the trail for some time, the company would pass them. The boy would get hungry and fretful and the mother would get so sympathetic that she would give him her part of the biscuit and she would go on the rest of the day without anything at all to eat. Many times, her son would get so tired the mother would take him on her back and would carry him to rest him. About sundown, when the company would stop to camp for the night, the girls, Elizabeth and Martha, would walk and run back to meet their mother, not sure of finding them alive, or possibly, finding them lying beside the trail exhausted. However, they always had good luck in meeting Ann and her son, trudging along.
While the girls were away to meet the mother, the boys were busy setting up the camp. Their fires were often not very large because of the scarcity of fuel. Many of the company fell behind and some died along the way. Later, because of early and heavy snows, some of the handcarts had to be abandoned.
On November 13, 1856, Joseph Young and Abel Garr arrived in Salt Lake city and reported that the Martin Handcart Company was stranded in the mountains by the heavy snow. President Brigham Young dispatched teams, men and supplies, to help the beleaguered Saints. Before being rescued from the snow and cold by the relief party from Salt Lake City, the family, along with all members of the company suffered many privations. Samuel often related how he would suck the marrow from the sun-parched bones of the animal carcasses he found along the trail. He said they also burned the hair off raw hides and roasted the hides before eating them.
When the rescue party arrived, Samuel would pick up the corn slobbered from the mouths of the oxen as they were being fed and would parch this corn to eat. The rescue party warned the company, who were so weak and hungry, to be very careful and not eat too much too quickly. On Sunday, November 30, 1856, what was left of the company arrived in Salt Lake City. This was the Martin Handcart Company.
Brigham Young and the Authorities of the Church were very careful to place the immigrants in settlements where their language was spoken. The Jackson family was sent to Nephi, Juab County, Utah. Ann Grimshaw Jackson, after crossing the Plains, made her home in Nephi, Utah, where she lived for the rest of her life.
As she had not heard from her husband, Benjamin, for over seven years, she took action to have him declared legally dead, thus making her a widow. In those days, widows and widowers where counseled by Church authorities to remarry. Believing she was a widow, she married a man by the name of Jenkins, with whom she lived happily the rest of her life. Benjamin Jackson showed up to Ann’s house some years later on mule.
Ann Grimshaw Jackson, was a small woman who, throughout her adult life at least, suffered from heart troubled. One evening, an acquaintance was crossing a narrow bridge over a mill race. It was dark and he heard splashing in the water below. When he investigated, he found Ann Grimshaw Jackson, whom he rescued. While crossing the bridge, she had had a heart failure and had fallen into the mill race. She continued to live in Nephi and died there on March 27, 1873. She is buried in Nephi.