John Webster Langford

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John Webster Langford

Birthdate: (75)
Birthplace: Callerus Mills, Fulton, Whiteside County, Illinois, United States
Death: April 19, 1916 (75)
Wardboro, Bear Lake County, Idaho, United States
Place of Burial: Wardboro, Bear Lake, Idaho
Immediate Family:

Son of John W Langford and Eliza Nelson
Husband of Rhoda Ann Langford and Martha Jane Langford
Father of James Monroe Langford; George Leroy Langford; Edith Rosamond Langford; Sarah E Langford and Magie Inez Langford
Half brother of James E Horn; Cornelius Horn and Isabella Francis Horn

Managed by: Whitney Ellis McCullough
Last Updated:

About John Webster Langford


By the death of J W Langford which occurred at his home in Wardboro yesterday morning, another pioneer of Bear Lake county and veteran of the civil war has answered the final role call. Death was caused from kidney and stomach trouble, with which he had suffered for several years. Within the last year he had failed rapidly, although he was able to be around until about six weeks ago, since which time he had been confined to his bed.

Source: The Montpelier Examiner, April 18, 1916, []

John was a Civil War Veteran from Co A, 1st Regiment Wisconsin, Heavy Artillery


by Duane Langford

John Webster Langford was born in Fulton County, Illinois 1841. On the twenty-sixth of November, 1863, when he was twenty-two years of age,he enlisted in the First Regiment of the Wisconsin Heavy Artillery, to serve three years or during the war. He was in Washington, D.C. at the time of the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and had bought a ticket to Ford's Theater that tragic night, but instead stayed on guard duty to replace a sick buddy. He heard shots fired in the darkness and learned later that they were fired by the pur­suers of John Wilkes Booth. 

While living in Wisconsin, he married Martha Gotthe. To this union five children were born. They moved to Kansas where a daughter was born. Coming still farther west the family lived at Tie Siding, Wyoming, where John Webster took care of the sick and practiced pharmacy in the railroad camp. While living there, the eldest daughter, Sarah Eliza, died of Rocky Mountain Fever.

After they moved to Wardboro, Idaho, John Langford and his family were converted to Mormonism and he took a second wife, Rhoda Ann Dimick. To this union seven children were born: Clarence, Lionel, Monroe, John Leslie, Marinda, Leona, and Estelle. Many of his direct descendants from both mar­riages are still living in the Bear Lake area.

The Langford family lived on the south bank of the Bear River near where the Nild gravel pit is now located and were the first whites to spend the winter at Wardboro.

As one of the early settlers of Bear Lake, John Langford was known as "Doc Langford," because of his talent for administering to the sick. He pulled teeth, delivered babies, and assisted the sick whenever he could. He was also one of the early school teachers in the valley.

The forceps "Doc Langford" used in pulling teeth are being loaned to the DUP Museum at Montpelier by his grandson, Duane Langfordhe One of his daughters, Marinda Langford Bagley of Pocatello, Idaho recalls that when a person with a swollen jaw appeared at their door, she and her sisters would run out to the "out house" and hold their hands over their ears, so that they wouldn't hear the patient cry out as the tooth was being extracted.

On another occasion, she tells that she remembers her father leaving the house one evening, carrying his "black bag" The next morning he told them that he had delivered a baby to their half Sister that night before and all the children were sorry they hadn't looked in the "black bag" so that the could have seen their sister's baby before it was "delivered".

At one time the Langford family lived above the present town of Garden City, Utah. A son, J. L. Langford, told how he made marbles from the red clay soil and his mother, Rhoda Ann, baked them for him in her oven.

A granddaughter of John Webster Langford, Eva Murphy Dayton, has the old family Bible in which he recorded the family birth dates in his own handwriting. According to this he was born in 1841 and his first wife, Martha Gott, was born October 21, 1837. They were married November 18, 1858. Their children were Sarah Eliza, George L., James Robert, Edith Rosmond and Maggie Inez. They were baptized into the Mormon Church at Wardboro, Idaho August 3, 1884. by Edgar and H. H. Dalrymple. In November 1884,he married Rhoda Ann Dimick, who according to his notation in the family Bible, was born in 1866. Also, he recorded the death of Sarah ElIza in 1881 at Tie Siding, Wyoming.

This writer does not know where "Doc" Langford acquired his knowledge of pharmacy and medicine. If anyone reading.g this can supply this information or any other facts about this early "Bear Laker" or his family, please contact Duane Langford.

"Doc" Langford died at Wardboro in April, 1916. His first wife Martha died in 1919 and the second wife, Rhoda Ann, died' in 1928. He and Rhoda Ann and their son, Monroe, are buried in the Wardboro Cemetery.

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John Webster Langford's Timeline

January 29, 1841
Fulton, Whiteside County, Illinois, United States
December 29, 1869
Age 28
Age 35
January 3, 1898
Age 56
Wardboro, Bear Lake County, Idaho, United States
April 19, 1916
Age 75
Wardboro, Bear Lake County, Idaho, United States
April 22, 1916
Age 75
Wardboro, Bear Lake, Idaho