Charles Jefferson Hunt (1803 - 1879) MP

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Birthplace: Bracken, Kentucky, United States
Death: Died in Red Rock, Bannock, Idaho, United States
Managed by: Marsha Gail (Kamish) Veazey
Last Updated:

About Charles Jefferson Hunt

Charles Jefferson Hunt (1803 - 1879), son of John Thomas Hunt IV (1757 - 1821) and Martha Jenkins (1760 - 1850), was born 20 January 1803 at Bracken County, Kentucky. He was a U.S. western pioneer, soldier, and politician. He was a captain in the Mormon Battalion, brigadier general in the California State Militia, a California State Assemblyman, and a representative to the Utah Territorial Legislature. He had two plural wives, with whom he had nineteen children; he also adopted the orphaned brother and sister of his second wife. He died 11 May 1879 at Red Rock, Bannock County, Idaho and was buried at Red Rock Pass Cemetery, Bannock County, Idaho.

Marriages and Children

  1. Celia Mounts (1805 - 1897), daughter of Mathias Mounts (1772 - 1819) and Mary Montgomery (1770 - 1854), married on 1 December 1823 at Albion, Edwards County, Illinois. Their children were (not necessarily in order of birth):
    1. Gilbert Hunt (1825 - 1858)
    2. Marshall Hunt (1829 - 1915)
    3. Jane Hunt (1831 - 1899)
    4. John Hunt (1833 - 1917)
    5. Harriet Hunt (1835 - 1918)
    6. Joseph L. Hunt (1837 - 1916)
    7. Nancy Ann Hunt (1837 - 1920)
    8. Hyrum Hunt (1840 - 1880)
    9. Mary Hunt (1845 - 1930)
    10. Thomas Jefferson Hunt
    11. Parley Hunt
  2. Matilda Jane Nease (1827 - 1865), daughter of Peter Nease (c1783 - 1845) and Lucinda Eleanor Martin (1798 - 1845), married on 7 February 1846 at Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois. Their children were (not necessarily in order of birth):
    1. Sophronia Elizabeth Hunt (born 27 August 1849)
    2. Julia Ellen Hunt
    3. Olive Isabelle Hunt
    4. James Franklin Hunt (1858 - 1917)
    5. Liberty Independence Hunt (born 24 July 1860 Ogden, Weber County, Utah Territory)
    6. Jane "Jennie" Hunt, twin (born 22 October 1865)
    7. Janette Hunt, twin (22 October 1865 - 22 October 1865)

Adopted by Jefferson Hunt:

  1. Peter Hunt (c1833), orphaned brother of Matilda Nease
  2. Ellen Hunt (c1835), orphaned sister of Matilda Nease

Biographical Summary

Jefferson Hunt moved with his parents to Illinois, where he met and married Celia Mounts in 1823. In 1834 they both converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Jefferson Hunt served as a major in the Nauvoo Legion. They moved with the Mormons to Clay County, Missouri, and were driven from there to Caldwell County where the persecution continued.

He became an early participant in plural marriage when he married Matilda Nease in 1846. The same year, while encamped at Council Bluffs, Iowa, he joined the Mormon Battalion, which was formed at the request of the U.S. government for participation in the Mexican-American War. He was commissioned as a Captain, and was placed in command of Company A. Two of his sons also enlisted, and served under his command. He temporarily commanded the entire battalion when its commander died, until a replacement arrived.

The Hunt family accompanied the Battalion as far as Santa Fe. After making the march to California, Captain Hunt and son Marshall returned to Salt Lake Valley in October 1847. That fall Captain Hunt went to back to California with his sons and fifteen others to obtain provisions, cattle, seeds and grain. They took the southern route, reaching what is now San Bernardino, on Christmas Day. With two hundred head of cattle, seeds, and other provisions, they returned to Salt Lake, reaching the Valley in May 1848.

In the spring of 1849 he helped to settle Provo, remaining there until 1851, when he was called to go to California with Elder Amasa M. Lyman and Charles C. Rich, to establish the settlement of San Bernardino. In 1856 he was appointed as a Brigadier General in the California State Militia. Captain Hunt served as a member of the first legislature of California and erected the first sawmill in San Bernardino County.

He lived in San Bernadino until 1857, when he was called back to Utah on account of the Johnston Army troubles. In 1860 he founded the town of Huntsville, Utah. He served as a representative to the Utah Territorial Legislature in 1863, representing Weber County.

Matilda went into labor on 22 October 1865, and gave birth to twin girls, Jane and Janette. Matilda was very ill and the doctor from Logan could do nothing to save her life. Infant Janette lived only long enough to receive a name, then was buried in the arms of her mother in an unidentified grave in the Millville cemetery. By the time Captain Hunt could get to Millville, he found his wife and infant daughter dead and buried. His grief was intense. He felt that if he could have reached her side he could have healed her through prayer and spiritual intervention. He had withstood many a hardship, but this was grief almost unbearable.

Jefferson Hunt later lived in Oxford, Idaho, where he died 11 May 1879.

Burial Memorial

"Captain Jefferson Hunt, soldier, pioneer, and churchman. Born January 20, 1804 in Kentucky. Died May 11, 1879 in Idaho. Charles Jefferson Hunt served in the Mormon Battalion as captain of company A and as assistant executive officer in its historic march from Council Bluffs Iowa to San Diego, California 1846-1847. His service on the commendation of all whom served with him. Under appointment by President Brigham Young in 1851, Captain Hunt was guide for the pioneers to San Bernardino, California. His pioneering services also included Provo, Parawan, and Huntsville {which bears his name} in Utah and Oxford, Idaho. A convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, he was loyal, obedient, and faithful to the end." - Erected by descendants of Captain Hunt and the Utah Pioneers Trails and Landmarks Association


Sources

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Captain Jefferson Hunt's Timeline

1803
January 20, 1803
Bracken, Kentucky, United States
1823
December 1, 1823
Age 20
San Bernardino, San Bernardino, California, United States
1825
April 11, 1825
Age 22
Albion, Edwards County, Illinois, USA
1829
1829
Age 25
1831
October 1, 1831
Age 28
1833
March 9, 1833
Age 30
Albion, IL, USA
1835
February 9, 1835
Age 32
1837
May 9, 1837
Age 34
Caldwell, MO, USA
1837
Age 33
1840
October 7, 1840
Age 37
Dunkllin, MO, USA