Joseph Thomas Perkins

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Joseph Thomas Perkins

Birthplace: Loughor, Glamorganshire, Wales
Death: June 06, 1889 (68)
Mapleton, Oneida, Idaho, United States
Place of Burial: Preston, Franklin, Idaho, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Thomas Perkins (Peregrin) and Ann Perkins (Mathews)
Husband of Harriet Preece
Ex-husband of Margaret Perkins (Martin)
Father of Thomas Martin Perkins; Margaret Selina Perkins; Joseph Mathew Martin Perkins; William Daniel Perkins; Edward Martin Perkins and 7 others
Brother of Catherine Evans (Perkins); Thomas Peregrin Perkins; Margaret Peregrin Perkins; Mary Peregrin Perkins; Mary Peregrin Perkins and 2 others
Half brother of William Perkins

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Joseph Thomas Perkins


Joseph Thomas Perkins married Margaret Martin on 25 December 1852 (ed. at Llangyfelachs. Joseph had been ordained an Elder in the fall of 1851 and called to preside over the Armbach (ed. ?) branch of the Church. Later he was called as a home missionary to visit Merthyr Tydfil, Dowlais, Rhymney, Brecon, Cardiff, Cowbridge, irwin and Aberdare.

In 1855 Joseph and his family left Wales for Utah. Ruth and her husband had already gone. They left Liverpool on 17 April on the ship Chimborazo with a company of 431 Saints under the leadership of Edward Stevenson as their captain. The company landed in Philadelpia on 21 May and after 2 days took the train to Pittsburg, then a boat down the Ohio River up the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers to Atchison. From there they went to Mormon Grove and from thence with the Charles A. Harper Company across the plains to Deseret. They reached Salt Lake City on 31 Oct and from there went to Ogden.

Mormon Pioneer Overland Travel, 1847–1868 Charles A. Harper Company (1855) Age 34

Departure: 25-31 July 1855 Arrival: 28-31 October 1855

Company Information: 305 individuals and 39 wagons were in the company when it began its journey from the outfitting post at Mormon Grove, Kansas (Near Atchison)

Perpetual Emigrating Fund

Spouses and children

Married 25 December 1852, Dowlais, Merthyr Tydfil, NE Glamorganshire, Wales, to Margaret Martin 1833-1915 , divorced in 1874


M Thomas Martin Perkins 1854-1928

M Joseph Mathews Martin Perkins 1856-1872 (shooting accident -see below)

M Edward Martin Perkins 1860-1912

F Margaret Selina Perkins 1856-1930

M William Daniel Perkins 1857-1857

F Celia Jane Perkins 1862-1939

M Lorenzo Martin Perkins 1864-1944

M Nephi Martin Perkins 1867-1906

M David Alma Perkins 1870-1948

Married 10 December 1873, Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah, United States, to Harriet Preece 1833-1900

with M Joseph Ephriam Perkins 1874-1875

M Hyrum James Perkins 1877-1879

M Edward Perkins 1879-

DOCUMENT 472 History of Joseph Perkins

Our family name was changed. It was Pergrin and remained that until between 1849 and 1852 when we took the name of Perkins. Thomas Pergrin, my paternal grandfather, I saw when I was a small child about two and one half years old. He died in February 1823 in the Parish of Langhar, Glamorganshire, Wales. Mary Anthony, my grandmother (Thomas Pergrin’s wife) died in the year 1833. I was acquainted with my grandmother. My grandparents bore good characters. My grandfather was a religious man, an Independent and a deacon of two churches, one in Shandlo, and the other in Crassin, near Sketty. These churches were seven miles apart, and were in the Swansea area of Glamorganshire. Their children, as far as I remember were: John Pergrin, Thomas Pergrin, Hopkin Pergrin, Mary Pergrin, Ann Pergrin and Catherine Pergrin. My grandfather Thomas Pergrin had a brother named Oliver Pergrin and he had a son name Thomas Pergrin and he had a son also named Thomas. Grandfather’s brother was also an Independent. My father Thomas Pergrin was born in the year 1780 in Glamorganshire, Wales, and has a natural son William Pergrin who was born in the year 1805; his mother’s name was Ann. My father married my mother Ann Mathews who was four years older than my father and was therefore born in 1776. Their children were: Ann Pergrin, born in 1808; Thomas Pergrin, born in 1811; Margaret Pergin, born in 1814; Mary Pergrin, born in 1817; Joseph Pergrin, born Sunday, September 24, 1820; Mary Pergrin, the 2nd, born in 1823; Ruth Pergrin, born in 1826; Elizabeth Pergrin born in 1829; and Kitty Pergrin, born in 1833. We were all born in Langhar, Glamorganshire, Wales. All of us children spoke the Welsh language which was our mother tongue. Father could speak but little English. Mother could speak pretty well in English. My maternal grandmother [Margaret Beddow] kept a public house called the “Trap.” She lived there about seventy years and buried her husband [Joseph Mathews] when my mother was about seven years old.' I have heard my mother speak of a brother she had. This grandmother was robbed when she was eightyeight years old of £14,000. She had made a will for me to have £7,000 and my sister Margaret £7,000. She died shortly after the robbery. I went to work in a coal mine in Langhar when I was eight years old. I had six pence a day. I dragged coal in a little cart when I was eleven years old and I had one shilling and two pence per day until I was nineteen years old. Then I was selected to drive a horse on the outside of the mine at an engine pump, to draw water out of the mine. My wages were put at one shilling six pence a day. I was very small until after I was nineteen years old, when I grew six inches in six months. I worked at this job one year, Sundays and week days. Then I felt I was a man and I left the place and went and drove a horse underground at Swansea at three shillings per day. I worked at this place until I was thirty-two years of age. One Thursday, about 3:00 p.m., the gas in the mine took fire. We were then about five miles underground and I was struck senseless. I expect my foot got fastened in the car. My car was off from the rails, nine men came to help me get it on. It was at this time the gas took fire and I was knocked unconscious from the explosion. By pulling I had my knee, also my ankle, out of joint. My foot was turned around, my toes were at the back. I was 300 yards off the surface when I gained consciousness. Five of the ten men were killed at the car, and a little boy was driven by gas against the car wheel; his head split open from ear to ear and his father killed at his side. I was taken home about 5:00. The doctor came Thursday and ordered me to have new milk; he thought I was burned inside; the milk tasted very nasty to me. I was burned so badly the flesh came off the calves of my legs. After I was placed in bed I became uncouscious again, and I was that way until Friday about 7:00 p.m. My father went and asked the doctor what he thought about me and the doctor said, “If he lives until seven he will be out of my judgment.” About four o’clock Saturday morning I called my mother and said “I believe my entrails are running out.” I was burned on my side and there was a large water blister; this broke and ran under me and I thought this was my entrails. About 8:00 in the morning the doctor came to see me and all of this time I was unconscious. I thought I was in company with Queen Victoria; after a time I got well, but one year passed by before I was able to work. I left home and went to Doulois [Dowlais], thirtytwo miles from Swansea. I moved there in August, 1844. My brother William had been baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the year 1843. My father and mother were baptized in 1845. After listening to the preaching of Hopkins Mathews, Abel Evans and Evans and Elders, in 1846 I was converted to the faith of the Latter-day Saints. I drank a little before I came into the Church. I was in company of a man who was a freighter and he became a member of the Church. His name was John Evans. I went to prayer meeting one Sunday morning at seven o’clock and I heard him praying for me. This melted me, and I went to breakfast with him, then to morning meeting and at two o’clock that day I was baptized by Elder David Evans. This was April 27, 1846; I was confirmed the same day by Elder David John. I was workin in the iron mines at Dowlais at this time. I worked in the iron mines until the spring of 1847; then I moved to Armback. At this place I worked in the coal mines. I was ordained a Teacher in 1848. I acted in this capacity until the fall of 1851 when I was ordained an Elder under the hands of James Ellis, and placed to preside over the Armback branch the same night. This branch was in Merthyr’s Conference. Soon after this I was called to be a home missionary and visited the following places: Merthyr, Tidvil, Dowlais, Ramney, Brecon, Cardiff, Cowbridge, Aberdare and Irwin. In the spring of 1852 I was calculating on getting married and one Monday morning the gas caught fire and nineteen Elders were killed in the mine. It was thought the total of the dead were seventy-two souls. I was not in the mine at the time of the explosion. I was off at the time selling tracts. I continued to preach and sell tracts until the mine was in a condition to work again. Before this accident happened, I was working in another mine and this night I was sleeping with Elder John Taylor, one of the Twelve Apostles, and I had a dream. I was groaning, and Brother Taylor woke me up and I told him my dream. I dreamed the coal works were on fire, and Brother Taylor told me not to go to work that day; about 5:00 my father called me to go to work and I answered father but did not get up. He kept calling me until 7:00; then he opened the door and saw men running from out of the coal pit. My father called me and said “something is the matter at our coal works.” I jumped up and dressed as soon as I could and ran with father to the top of the coal works, and then we found that the gas had exploded. In about ten minutes after we got there a young man got up out of the pit; he was burned all over; his clothes were burned off. We took him home in sheets and he died that night. There was an Elder named John Pugh; he was burned and died a few days after. Eight were killed at this explosion. I should have been there too, but Brother Taylor told me not to go that morning. Two persons were burned but recovered and came to the village. On December 25, 1852 I married Margaret Martin who was born December 22, 1833 near Dowlais, Glamorganshire. Her parents were Thomas Martin and Gwenllian Williams. After I was married I moved back to Dowlais in January, 1853. On March 12, 1854 my father was taken with a paralytic stroke. He could neither talk nor eat nor swallow for twelve days and then he died and was buried in Aberdare in the old church cemetery. I worked at Dowlais until I was released to come to the valley in the year 1855. My father-in-law gave me $33.00 to immigrate with my family to the Salt Lake Valley. He gave me other money besides this to help us to Liverpool. My first child was named Thomas Perkins and was born June 9, 1854 at Dowlais. When we arrived at Liverpool, we went by coach to Aberganey and then by train. We stayed at a house for a week and sailed on the ship Chimbarazo [he spelled it Chinbargo] for Philadelphia. Edward Stephenson, president of the Latter-day Saints on board this ship was among the 700 souls. We came in sight of land in three weeks, came near the south of the river, our ship was tossed about for two weeks. The pilot was aboard all this time. Finally our Captain engaged a steam tug and in three hours we were in Philadelphia. We were out of drinking water before we arrived there. My wife was sick the whole of the voyage. We stayed in Philadelphia two days and two nights, then took train to Pittsburg, then by boat down the Ohio River and up the Mississippi and Missouri rivers to Atchison and then to Mormon Grove seven miles, where we camped. This was the starting point of the plains. Edward Stephenson our president across the sea, on the railroads and on the rivers to Atchison was kind and brotherly all the way. We arrived at the camp in May and stayed in Mormon Grove until the last day of July, when we rolled out for the plains. Charles A. Harper was Captain of our company. We had heard of cholera on the plains and Edward Stephenson had been sent to lead the company to the valley that was ahead of us. A woman died in our company two days before we started from Mormon Grove; she left a baby; Thomas Jeremy came to my wife and begged her to take this baby, if she would do so the father gave her $1.50 to buy extra provisions and clothing for the baby. We traveled until we came to the Blue River. We arrived there just before sundown and camped. In the morning Captain Harper went on his horse and tried to ford the river. He came back and informed us we had to lift the wagon beds ten inches to keep them out of the water. Captain Harper went into the river and drove his own yoke of oxen and wagon; the water took team and wagon downstream and he jumped on the off side. I plunged into the river and swam and turned them up stream and they arrived safely on the other side. Where we entered the river the banks were steep; we had to rough-lock both hind wheels and men had to hold on to ropes to keep the wagons from going too fast into the river. I led twelve wagons across the river with the Captain’s cattle. He called me out and said I had stayed in the water long enough; on the 13th wagon coming down the hill into the water with twenty-two sacks of flour and the freight of the passengers; this affair was soon straightened up. Just as this wagon was gotten out of the river, the water rose four feet. Our train consisted of thirty-two wagons. We stayed several days by this stream; our company on both sides of the river. While we were camped a brother in the Church, A Frenchman, started to swim the river. He was a good swimmer, but he tried to swim straight across the stream with his clothes on. He sank in the water. Ropes were gotten and I plunged into the water after him. I had a rope in one hand and grabbed him with the other hand and brought him out. After much trouble his life was saved. We stayed at this camp for eight days. On the ninth day General [William Selby] Harney with the United States troops came up and told Captain Harper if he would not use the ferry then they would. We were fording this stream to save ferriage. We drove to the ferry, crossed our cattle and wagons and camped that night all together. The baby died that night and was buried next morning. Captain Harper paid a wagon for part of our train being ferried over Big Blue River. General Harney crossed his command after us then went ahead of us. We traveled on the plains until we came to Ash Hollow. We had one yoke of oxen on each wagon. We went down the Welsh part of our company alright. The balance of our company was composed of French and English. A wheel was broken belonging to the English part of our company. It was dark when we arrived at the Platte River. Six men were placed on guard at a time during the evening. An express came to our camp early this morning from General Harney’s command and it was desired we would travel as early as possible as a fight was expected by the soldiers and Indians on the Platte. The soldiers guarded us for three days. Three of the soldiers went with us to the valley. From the Platte to the Sweetwater River we got along alright. At the Sweetwater River two young men went back to buy some nails for shoeing cattle; on their return the young men took a wrong road. We had taken a cutoff and they got ahead of us and learned we were behind; they waited for us to catch up. We got along alright to Fort Bridger. Elder Edward Stephenson met us there and traveled with us to the valley, where we arrived October 31st. After we reached the city, John Davis Printer came to our camp and took me and family to his home. While eating dinner my sister Ruth came into the house. She arrived in the valley a year before. Next morning we started with sister Ruth and Sister Davis to Bountiful. Next day we walked to Ogden and the next day to North Ogden, which we reached in November. I had about four or five days work before winter set in. About the last of November I was stricken down with rheumatism. Bishop T. Dunn administered to me every day. He asked me if I wished anyone to administer to me. I told him I wished to have two brethren for this purpose and he gave this mission to two men. They came for about two weeks. The Bishop came in one morning and I asked him what I should do. I was getting worse and worse all the time. He asked me if I had faith. I told him the pain was killing my faith. This was on Wednesday morning. He told me to have faith for two days and pray every little ease I could have. I did not eat nor drink until Thursday night. That night, with help I went to meeting. Thre was a Welsh brother sitting by my side and I asked him who was addressing the meeting. He said Uncle John Young, President Brigham Young’s brother. I felt if he would administer to me I would be alright. After the meeting was over I called on the Bishop and Brother John Young and Crandel Dunn came and administered to me. Brother Young called on Brother Crandel Dunn to be mouth. Before they took their hands off my head I was well. I don’t think I will forget that night in time or eternity. Crops were short in 1855 and my family was supported by donations till harvest in 1856. The Bishop had two acres of barley; this was for the poor; nineteen families had this. They cut, threshed and had it ground. In 1857 during the winter I felt greatly in need of a cow, and I went and prayed by a bush. I made a covenant with my Heavenly Father right there that I would neither eat nor drink until the way was opened up for me to get a cow. Next morning about six o’clock the Bishop knocked on our door. I was in bed and jumped up to let him in. He asked me if I had a shawl I would like to sell for a heifer. I asked my wife what she would say in the matter. She said, “I will leave that to you.” I went and got a double shawl and showed it to the bishop. He told me he would let me have the heifer and two dollars worth of butter for one half of the shawl. This heifer was coming two years old and would have a calf that season; then he asked me if I had a nice handkerchief I would sell. I told him I had a black silk handkerchief I bought for my father’s funeral. She he, “I’ll let you have a steer calf a year old in the spring for it.” At that time snow was over three feet deep and I told the bishop I didn’t know what I would do with them, and he told me to let them stay at his haystack till the grass grew. I watered them three times a day until spring came. During the harvest of 1856 my wife went gleaning every day and she was on the way for the twins. I threshed at night what she gleaned in the day and we had it ground. My wife had a pair of twins on the 22nd of September, 1856. We named them Margaret and Joseph Mathew Martin. This year of 1857 was called the move. All of the people north of Salt Lake County were going to move south of that county. I was taken to Salt Lake City and stayed there about three weeks. I left my steer and heifer at Farmington. After I stayed four days in the city I went and hunted for my heifer and calf and found them and took them to Salt Lake City and put them in a herd over Jordan. I went next day to town and met Brother Stevenson on the street. I asked him if he would buy my yearling. He asked me where it was and I told him it would be at my house that evening. He came and saw it and gave me shoes for myself and family and a sock of flour besides. From Salt Lake City I moved to Provo and worked for Bishop Blackburn; made some script working on Provo Canyon road ($40.00). I walked to Salt Lake City fifty miles to try and get some clothing for my family; they would not look at my script. I walked next day to Provo fifty miles. On the 20th of August my wife had a son who we called William Daniel. He died September 5th. This month I went to Camp Floyd in Cedar Valley. I got work making adobies and in thirteen days I made $30.00 in gold and got back home. The first thing I bought was a bake kettle for $11.00. That winter I worked for Bishop Blackburn. We took a contract to move church grain and flour and made sometimes $60.00 per day. I worked around the tithing office till late in 1859. On the 10th of January 1860 my wife had another son, Edward Martin. The latter part of March I started for Cache Valley with Brother Thomas Smart. We arrived in Wellsville on April 4th. Brother Smart and others went to find a place to settle and on the 15th of April we arrived in Franklin. Several families were there before us. Brother Peter Maughan came soon after us and appointed Brother Smart as president and S. R. Parkinson and James Sanderson as his counselors. We moved on to the present site or place which is now Franklin. In April the town was surveyed into ten acre lots in what was called the south field. Our names were called and we drew tickets out of a hat for choice of land. We made a corral and then started to plow. I was working for Brother Smart at that season. Guen Roberts came to Franklin June 3rd and brought my wife’s sister, who was his wife, with him. That month of June, President Brigham Young and company came to Franklin and appointed Preston Thomas as Bishop. I got a team of oxen, cows and sheep and a wagon. In 1862 on the 20th of April, our daughter Celia Jane was born. I was gaining property and in 1864 we moved out of a fort and onto town lots. I had a good lot. On the 4th of November I had another son born: Lorenzo Martin. May 1, 1867 we had another son born Nephi Martin. My son David Alma was born February 11, 1870. August 31, 1872, I was working in American Fork Canyon and received word that my son Joseph had been shot and killed. I started for home the 3rd of September. He and another boy named Jordan Hickman were out shooting ducks and he was shot accidently, I suppose. Bishop L. H. Hatch counseled the people to dig his grave and took him out to the graveyard and put him in his grave until I came home, covered with a little hay. After I arrived home, Bishop Hatch called the people and went to the graveyard and uncovered him, so I could see him. The Bishop asked me if I would like him up out of the grave and open the coffin. I said no, I could not recognize him as he would be discolored, then he was buried and the grave dedicated. The Bishop asked me if I was satisfied to have a funeral sermon preached next Sunday; I answered, “yes.” After this I went to work for Amos Hawkes at a saw mill. I worked there till it closed up in 1873. I worked on a gravel train in the spring then I went to work at the saw mill till September, then I went and worked on Bear River Canyon road, then I went and worked on the U. and N. Railway grade. On December 10, 1874 I married Harriet Preece in Salt Lake City. In the spring I went and worked on the section on the U. and N. Railroad. I worked until July then I went to work for L. H. Hatch and Brigham Young, Jr, boring for coal till about October. We sunk about seventy-eight feet. On the 31st of October 1875 my wife Harriet had a son name Joseph Ephraim. In the spring of that year I went boring for coal again for L. H. Hatch and Brigham Young, Jr. in the south field, Coveville [seven miles north of Richmond, Utah] in a hollow. We started in soap stone and quit in the same kind of stuff fifty-eight feet deep. I worked till June and then went up Cub River to gather hay. Afterward I went and quarried rock for the Logan tabernacle at Franklin at the temple quarry in 1877. I the month of May I moved my family up Cub River onto my ranch. On the 26th of July my wife had another son named Hyrum James. I worked a little on the ranch. In 1879 I worked on the railroad most of the year. Joseph Perkins died June 7, 1889.

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Joseph Thomas Perkins's Timeline

September 24, 1820
Loughor, Glamorganshire, Wales
September 24, 1820
Loughor, Glamorganshire, Wales (England)
June 9, 1854
Age 33
Dowlwais, Glamorganshire, Wales
September 22, 1856
Age 35
North Ogden, Weber, Utah
September 22, 1856
Age 35
North Ogden, Weber, Utah, United States
August 20, 1858
Age 37
Provo, Utah, Utah, United States
January 10, 1860
Age 39
Provo, UT, United States
January 10, 1860
Age 39
Provo, Utah, Utah, United States
April 20, 1862
Age 41
Franklin, Oneida, Idaho, United States