Emmeline Needham

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Emmeline Needham (Harper)

Birthdate: (68)
Birthplace: Holladay, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Death: February 15, 1930 (68)
Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Place of Burial: Salt Lake City Cemetery (Plot: Platt L Section 34 Block 42 Grave 3-west), Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah USA
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Charles Alfred Harper and Harriet Harper
Wife of David Stafford Needham
Mother of Mary Needham; Rachel Harper; Joseph Needham; Myrtle Needham; Sarah Jessie Morton and 2 others
Sister of Harriet Peterson; Elizabeth Harper; Parkarette Harper; Nathan Harper; George Harper and 2 others
Half sister of Harvey John Harper; Ellen Harper; Charles Alfred Harper, II; Livina Walker and Park Harper

Managed by: Smith Harper Hutchings
Last Updated:

About Emmeline Needham

Emmaline Harper was born August 19, 1861 at Holladay, Salt Lake County, Utah, the third child and daughter of Charles Alfred Harper and Harriet Taylor.

She grew up at Park City, Utah assisting her mother, sisters, and half-brothers in operating a ranch on Silver Creek. She received some pubic education there, but was mostly home taught by her mother. In 1880 the ranch at Silver Creek was sold and the family returned to Holladay; Emmaline was 16 years old then.

In 1885, a daughter, Rachel was born. She would grow up primarily on the Harper estate in Holladay, being raised mainly by her grandparents, aunts, and uncles.

On September 5, 1889, Emmaline married David Stafford Needham in the LDS Temple at Logan, Utah. They made their first home at Millcreek and later moved to Salt Lake City.

Five children were born to the couple: Joseph in 1891; Elizabeth (Bessie) in 1893; Myrtle in 1895, and twin girls in 1896. One twin died at birth and was unnamed. The other, Mary lived only one week.

Sometime after the loss of their twins, David & Emmaline separated and eventually divorced. The three surviving children remained with Emmaline.

She married James Christensen Dec. 23, 1901, but just three months later he left the city to work in the mines at Bingham Canyon. He never returned. In August of 1907, having been abandoned for more than five years, she was granted a divorce by the State of Utah, and she returned to using her maiden name, Harper.

Alone, Emmaline did her best to care for her three children finding what work she could as a washwoman. She rented several small apartments and occasionally worked as a live-in housekeeper for other families.

Two of her daughters, Rachel and Myrtle both died as teenagers, Rachel in 1904 from appendicitis, and Myrtle in 1912 from a poisoning incident. Bessie moved to Brigham City, Utah as a young woman and lived there the rest of her life. She married Francis Carruthers (later divorced) and then Clifford King in 1959. She died in 1978.

Joseph, who never married, maintained work as a Foreign Exchange Checker at a Salt Lake shipping company. He owned a small house in Salt Lake, and Emmaline moved there with him in her later years when she was no longer able to work.

She was active in the Mormon church all of her life and her steadfast faith, no doubt, served as a point of solid ground in a life torn by repeated hardship and tragedy. Emmaline died February 5, 1930 following a stroke and was buried at Salt Lake City Cemetery. Her son, Joseph, who died in 1937 after being struck by an automobile, is buried nearby.

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Emmeline Needham's Timeline

August 19, 1861
Holladay, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
April 7, 1885
Age 23
Holladay, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
January 1, 1891
Age 29
Holladay, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
April 15, 1893
Age 31
Holladay, Salt Lake, Utah Territory, USA
January 14, 1895
Age 33
Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
September 28, 1896
Age 35
Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
July 19, 1900
Age 38
Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
May 22, 1903
Age 41
Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
February 15, 1930
Age 68
Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA