William McKee Fausett

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William McKee Fausett

Birthplace: Gallatin, Sumner County, Tennessee, United States
Death: September 06, 1896 (90)
Provo, Utah County, Utah Territory, United States
Place of Burial: Provo, Utah County, Utah, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Richard P. Fausett and Mary Lowrance Fausett
Husband of Elizabeth Faucett; Matilda Caroline Faucett and Ruth Bailey Cloward
Father of Nancy Mariah Follett; Martha Jane Fausett; Narcissa Rebecca Lott; Mary Ann Lott; Harriet Catherine Fausett and 6 others
Brother of Alexander Fausett; Sarah Mariah Pursell; Eleanor Baldridge; Nancy Brown Baldridge; David Fausett and 9 others
Half brother of Thomas Samuel FAUCETT

Occupation: Bishop LDS
Managed by: AP Wilcox
Last Updated:

About William McKee Fausett

Oldest Ordained Bishop at the Time of His Death

Father William M. Fawcett, a pioneer of the early times, passed from his mortal sphere, Sunday, Sept 7th at ? o’clock p.m., after an illness of twelve days. Deceased was 90 years old on the 7th of last January, and was a faithful worker in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, being the oldest ordained bishop in the church at the time of his death. He was for many years as acting bishop in Provo. Father Fawcett leaves three daughters and two sons and a large posterity of grand, greatgrand, and great greatgrand children, sumonning to upwards of three hundred. The funeral was held in the Third ward meeting house this afternoon where the following biographical sketch was read by Elder J. E. Booth.


William M. Fawcett was born in Kentucky, Jan. 7, 1806. He married Matilda C. Butcher, March 3, 1826, and joined the church in Missouri in the year 1837. He passed through all the ?rasentions of the Saints in that State and removed with them to Illinois. Were he assisted in building the city of Nauvoo, laboring two or three years to ? stone with which to build the temple at that place.

In 1846 he removed to Winter Quarters with the Saints, and was there ordained a bishop and set apart to preside over one of the wards of that place. He emigrated to Utah in 1851, and in October of that year settled in Provo, and was set apart to preside over the ward located in the river bottoms, just north of Provo.

At the time of the first Indian troubles here, he removed with his family to the settlement of Provo, and was appointed to preside over the Fourth ward, which position he held until the fall of 1868, when he was honorably released on account of his age and long and faithful services in the bishopric, having served as bishop continuously from the year 1846, with the exception of six months ? on the plains. Since that time he has been one of our quiet, industrious honored citizens, and to the time of his death was a faithful worker to the church. He attended a meeting at the Tabernacle a week before his death and seemed possessed of all his reasoning faculties. The death of his wife Matilda, which sad accident occurred during the encampment of the veterans at Geneva, weighed heavily on his heart.

There were a great many people at the funeral services.

“William McKee Fausett was born 6 January 1807, at West Gallatin, Sumner County, Tennessee, to Richard and Mary McKee Fausett, the seventh of fourteen children. His parents had migrated from Orange County, North Carolina, between 1802 and 1804. He had two brothers and two sisters born in North Carolina: Alexander, born about 1793, David, born about 1795 (23 March 1800), Eleanor, born about 1795 (1797) and Sarah Maria (Mariah), born about 1800 (1795).”

    The Fausett family moved from North Carolina and settled in Sumner County, Tennessee and their fifth child, Nancy Brown, was born in 1802 in Gallatin, “followed two years later by John McKee, 22 December 1804, and William McKee, 6 January 1807.”  The Fausetts “became part of the great westward movement of colonizers and settlers along the frontier trails.  It was in Maury County that Eliza McKee was born 5 July 1808, Amanda Armstrong, 6 May 1810, Mary in 1812, Rebecca Stone, 11 June 1813, Martha Spencer in 1816 (17 January 1815), Harriet Berryhill about 1817, and Catherine about 1819.  Mother Mary died here in 1830 after a life of service to her husband and family.”
    William McKee Fausett married a young lovely nineteen year old woman named Matilda Caroline Butcher, the daughter of Isaac and Narcissus Rebecca Rentfro Butcher.  Matilda’s father was a minister and performed this marriage ceremony.  After their marriage they moved to Macoupin County, Illinois, where some Mormon missionaries came to visit them.  The Fausetts believed what they were taught and were baptized in September of 1834.
    With their little family of five children, William and Matilda decided to move to Caldwell County, Missouri and join the “Saints” living there.  They purchased some farm land and set up making their home there, but by March 1838 events with the mobs had gotten so bad that the Prophet Joseph Smith and others were taken and confined for long periods in Liberty Jail.  The governor gave an extermination order making for the speedy removal of all the L.D.S. people back across the Mississippi into Illinois.
    The Fausetts sold their farm and gave the funds to the Prophet with the hopes that somehow this would help him and others get their freedom from their enemies.  They were befriended by the friendly people of Quincy until they were able to move to Nauvoo and establish their home there.  They purchased property in Nauvoo which consisted of one acre and lived there for about four years.  They helped to build the beautiful Nauvoo Temple and in 1845 William and Matilda were able to go through the temple and were sealed together.
    They were driven out of Nauvoo with the Saints because of the actions and oppositions of the general population and the mobs around them.  At Winter Quarters, William was called to serve as a Bishop. He served in this capacity for 4 years, from 1847 through 1851.  He was able to assist many incoming Saints to get ready to make their journey across the plains to the Salt Lake Valley.  In 1851 “the William McKee Fausett family was assigned to the company of Alexander R. Stephens.  They left Kanesville, Iowa, 29 June 1851, and arrived in the Salt Lake Valley 23 September, after three months of hard travel.”
    After arriving in Salt Lake City, they were sent to settle Provo, Utah, where William was again called as Bishop of the Provo Fourth Ward.  He served in this position for 15 years.  
    “On 27 July 1856 William McKee Fausett entered into polygamy with his marriage to his second wife, Ruth Bailey Logan Cloward, the widow of Daniel Cloward…. “In the year 1865 he married his third wife, Elizabeth Trachsler Boshard, the widow of Caspar Boshard.”…. “At the age of 86, he married 13 September 1893, another widow, Matilda Hardy, from England.”  
     He died at the age of 89 years on 6 Sept 1896 and is buried in Provo, Utah in the Provo City Cemetery.

Quoted parts are from William McKee Fausett’s history by Mildred Fausett Ellis (Mrs. Elvin D. Ellis) and also notes by Arlene Bean Meservy. Short sketch of William McKee Fausett compiled by Saundra Cox, January, 2015. Note: Buried on 7 September 1896 in Provo City Cemetery in Provo, Utah.

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William McKee Fausett's Timeline

January 6, 1806
Gallatin, Sumner County, Tennessee, United States
July 29, 1827
Age 21
Columbia, Maury County, Tennessee, United States
October 4, 1828
Age 22
Columbia, Maury, TN, United States
March 12, 1830
Age 24
Maury, TN, United States
March 1831
Age 25
March 8, 1833
Age 27
Columbia, Maury County, Tennessee, United States
February 16, 1835
Age 29
Maricipona, Macoupin, Illinois, USA
April 23, 1836
Age 30
Nauvoo, Hancock, IL, United States
January 24, 1838
Age 32
Woodland, Marion County, Missouri, United States