Elizabeth Jane Kittleman (1831 - 1917)

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Birthdate:
Birthplace: Downington, Chester, Pennsylvania, United States
Death: Died in Centerville, Davis, Utah, United States
Managed by: Arthur Whittaker
Last Updated:
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About Elizabeth Jane Kittleman

Source: Our Pioneer Heritage; The Ship Brooklyn - Volume 3

The following story is told by Elizabeth Jane Kittleman (Dalton) concerning their voyage on the ship Brooklyn and the trek from California to Utah. She was born May 26, 1831 at Downington, Chester county, Pennsylvania, the eldest daughter of William and Elizabeth Hindman Kittleman.

"In 1838, my father, William Kittleman, was working for a railroad company. One day as he was preparing to eat lunch two Mormon Elders came to talk to him. They had not eaten so he shared his lunch with them. They asked if they might call at his home and hold a cottage meeting. He assured them they would be welcome. People heard of the gathering and came from far and near to hear the Elders' message. They converted my Grandfather and Grandmother Kittleman (John and Sarah), three aunts and two uncles, George and Thomas, my father, mother, and their family. None of my mother's people were converted and were very much opposed to our joining. I was baptized in the summer of 1840 by Elijah Sheets. When I was a small girl, the Prophet Joseph Smith and his brother, Hyrum, came to Grandfather Kittleman's home and held many meetings.

On January 4, 1846 my parents and their family, together with my grandparents and their family, left our home in Downington, Chester county, Pennsylvania for New York where we set sail February 4, 1846 on the good ship Brooklyn. We were on the ship six months and landed twice, once on Juan Fernandez and once on the Sandwich Islands. We landed in Yerba Buena Bay, Sunday, July 31, 1846, so we stayed on board until the following Tuesday. We, with many more of our friends, had no place to go. We took our bedding and went to stay in a large adobe house for the winter. It was the time of the Mexican-American war and the streets were guarded and every one had to be in by 9 p.m., if not they were marched to the guard house. In the spring the peace terms were settled and the people bought land and started out. Father bought a lot, built a shanty, and we moved from the adobe house. He planted a garden and raised some of the first vegetables in that settlement.

On July 16, 1847 the Mormon Battalion boys were discharged at Los Angeles and scattered out, some coming to San Francisco. Among them was Henry Dalton (Company B.) who came to work in a butcher shop and boarded in our home. He stayed with us until the following March when we were married by Elder Addison Pratt. The next May gold was discovered and the people all rushed out in search of the precious metal. We went to Mormon Island where I washed gold.

We left San Francisco in June, 1849 to come to Utah. We arrived October 1, 1849 and settled in the First Ward in Salt Lake City. In 1850 we moved north to Centerville. In May, 1856 we were called on a mission to Carson Valley. We were camped on a mountain near the upper road of Carson when some Indians rode into camp. I, at once, recognized the quilts, blankets and some silks they had as being the property of my friends, Mr. and Mrs. Carl Muir. They also had a Spanish hat which Mr. Muir had purchased in San Francisco. The Muirs were on their way from California to Utah and had camped near the Humboldt river. With them was Mrs. Haws, mother of Mrs. Muir. They started on the lower road which was about four miles below the upper. Indians followed and killed these people, took their horses and other possessions, and then set fire to the camp. They wanted to trade these articles to us for food, so I exchanged food with them for the silk dress Mrs. Muir had worn the last time I saw her.

In 1857 the Carson Valley settlers were called back to Utah and on the way we met Mr. and Mrs. Zacheus Cheney. Mrs. Cheney, Amanda Evans, came with us on the ship Brooklyn. When we arrived in Centerville my husband sold the upper portion of the farm to the Cheneys and then built a home for us on the other part We left our home again in 1858 at the time of the "move south." We went to Spanish Fork but returned to Centerville in July of that year.

On December 13, 1917 Elizabeth Kittleman Dalton passed away, having lived fifty-seven years on the land purchased by them shortly after their arrival in Utah in 1849. Mrs. Dalton was the mother of five children. She was an active Latter-day Saint and was a member of the first Relief Society organized in Centerville.

Sarah Kittleman was born in Downington, Chester county, Pennsylvania on September 20, 1845. She and her twin sister (Hannah) were the youngest of the six children who accompanied their parents, William and Elizabeth Hindman Kittleman on the Brooklyn. They were four and one-half months old. Many incidents are told concerning the happenings which involved the passengers on this historic voyage; but one was especially remembered by Elizabeth Kittleman. During the lay over in Honolulu several natives came aboard and when they saw the tiny twin girls they were delighted and immediately wanted permission to take them ashore and show them to their Queen. The request was granted, but after they had been gone more than two hours, the mother Elizabeth, became alarmed. The ship's crew organized a posse and were ready to start the search when two young native girls came running toward the ship with the infants. They brought numerous gifts from the Queen for their mother.

The vessel docked in Yerba Buena cove on a Sunday, so the Saints held a meeting that day and gave praise to God for a safe journey. The William Kittleman family lived in San Francisco for about three years. Elizabeth kept a boarding house on Bush and Montgomery streets where the Mills Building now stands. They came to Salt Lake City, Utah in 1849, and after a short stay journeyed on to Centerville. Sarah had a spinning wheel. She gathered wool and became adept at weaving it into cloth from which much of the family's clothing was made.

On September 3, 1868, in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City, Sarah became the wife of James Wilson Miller, son of Frederick and Mary Mason Miller. He was born in New York City November 13, 1842, and after the death of his father, a sea captain, came to Utah with his mother and two brothers in 1850. The young couple made their home in Lake Town for a time where two children were born. Later they moved to Centerville and four more children came to bless their home. Sarah died in Salt Lake City, Utah July 27, 1892 at the age of 46 years. She was buried in the Centerville cemetery.

Mary E. Miller Jackson

She is buried in the Centerville City Cemetery, Plat A, block 17, lot 5, space 7.

The Voyage of the Brooklyn Saints:

In November of 1845, while the members of the Church in Nauvoo were preparing for their trek across the great plains, preparations were also being made for the evacuation, in a sense, of other members of the Church in the east. Elder Orson Pratt, who presided over the eastern states sent a message to the members of the Church in the eastern and middle states to join in the exodus in the coming spring. "We do not want one saint to be left in the United States after that time. . . . If it were in our power, our hearts would leap for joy at the prospect of taking you all with us: and thus would the fulness of the gospel be fully brought out from among the Gentiles."

Samuel Brannan, an enterprising and ambitious man who also served as editor and publisher of “The Prophet”, a church newspaper in New York, was assigned to oversee the movement of the saints in the east to California by ship. He chartered the ship “Brooklyn” and, with the help of Orson Pratt, recruited some 238 passengers: 70 men, 68 women and 100 children for the voyage at $75.00 per adult and half-fare for children.

The departure of the Brooklyn was delayed several times, due in part, to the possibility of some questionable activities between Samuel Brannan and a group of men in Washington D.C. known as A.G. Benson and Co. A contract was drawn up that presumed to ensured the safety of the saints in leaving the United States and in preventing any government interference with their departure, in return for “the odd number of all the lands and town lots they may acquire in the country where they may settle”. This contract was sent to Brigham Young while he was encamped at Sugar Creek, Iowa for his approval and signature, but Brigham and several of the Twelve refused to sign the contract and nothing more was heard about it.

Finally the Brooklyn set sail from New York harbor, coincidentally on the same day that the first wagons left Nauvoo and crossed the Mississippi River, 4 February, 1846. The ship itself was advertised as a nearly new, first class ship, a very fast sailer, with an experienced captain and crew, though there were some who did not agree with the accuracy of this description. Some alterations were required to accommodate the large number of passengers on the Brooklyn. “The captain of the ship ordered the space between decks changed into living quarters. A long table and backless benches and sleeping bunks were built and all were securely bolted to the deck. They [the saints] lived in cramped quarters with low ceilings. Only the children could stand upright.

The voyage of the Brooklyn and its precious cargo, was long and arduous. The saints were just under six months (five months and twenty-seven days) on the journey. They encountered two major storms, ten deaths (one of which occurred following the premature birth of a child caused by being thrown from a stairway during one of the storms), two births, the names of which children were “Atlantic” and “Pacific” , spending five days on Juan Fernandez Island (where Robinson Crusoe had lived), spending 10 more days at Honolulu, Hawaii and finally arriving at Yerba Buena - San Francisco bay - on 29 July, 1846.

Most of them suffered seasickness and the storms in the Atlantic blew them almost to Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa. They underwent severe storms all the way around Cape Horn wherethe ice became so bad that some had to be lowered to the sides to chip ice off the ship.

Elder Dunn suggested that their six-month journey may have been the most difficult trial in the westward trek, with the possible exception of the Martin and Willie handcart companies. He hoped that contemporary Saints would look to it as an important part of their heritage.

Samuel Brannan had hoped to be the first to raise the flag of the United States of America on what had been Mexican territory. As the ship pulled into the harbor, the saints saw, through the mist and the fog, the United States flag, which had been raised just three weeks earlier. This brought mixed reactions among the religious exiles; by one account, Brannan murmured, "There is that damned flag again"

In the spring of 1847, Brannan left California to search for the vanguard company of Brigham. After an 800 mile journey, he met the pioneers on the banks of the Green River in present day Wyoming, 2 July 1847. Brannan hoped to convince Brigham to bring the church to California’s fertile soil and pleasing climate. Brigham refused, and though Brannan helped the initial parties into Utah, by August 1847 he had returned to the west coast. About 140 members of the Brooklyn company made their way to the Salt Lake valley between 1848 and 1850. Unfortunately, most of those who remained in California, including Samuel Brannan, left the church. Some few united themselves with the “Mormon” colonies in San Bernardino and Arizona. Samuel Brannan died a pauper near San Diego in May, 1889.

Deseret Evening News, Friday Dec. 14, 1917

Mrs. Elizabeth Dalton, Aged Pioneer Dies

Centerville - Dec. 14 - Mrs. Elizabeth Dalton, widow of H. S. Dalton, died Thursday at her home here, where she has lived since 1850. The funeral will take place in the Centerville Chapel Monday, Dec. 17 at 2 p.m.

From the Deseret News , Saturday, Dec. 15, 1917

Died

Mrs. Elizabeth K. Dalton - At the age of 86, Mrs. Elizabeth K. Dalton, widow of Henry S. Dalton, died at her home. The funeral service will be held Monday at 2 p.m. in the Centerville ward chapel.

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Elizabeth Kittleman's Timeline

1831
May 20, 1831
Downington, Chester, Pennsylvania, United States
1848
March 12, 1848
Age 16
San Francisco, California, United States
1917
December 12, 1917
Age 86
Centerville, Davis, Utah, United States