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Thomas, William Nash - Autobiography

WILLIAM NASH THOMAS 1835-----1823

Sketch of the life of William Nash Thomas (copied from a history in possession of Miriam Jones, Written 1 Feb. 1903).

I am the son of David Thomas and Elizabeth Nash, born on 24 February, 1835 at Merlins Bridge, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, South Wales.

My father, David Thomas, was born at Jordenren Bridge near Fishguard, Pembrokeshire on the (11th?) day of May 1802. His parents were John and Dinah Thomas. My Mother was born at Dennant, Pembrokeshire in May 1805. Her parents were Thomas and Lydia Nash.

My parents were poor, but hard working, honest people. My first memory of going to school, both day and Sunday, where I learned to read a little, was at this time. I attended school until I was nine years old I went to work to help get some clothes, and make a living for the family and I have been self supporting from that age. I worked for two years and then went to school again for a year. At the age of 12 I got a position in a Billiard Hall and worked for Mrs. Potter, a widow. I worked there for twelve months. After this, I got a little more schooling and worked for various people. At the age of fourteen I went to Heath, Glamorganshire, 80 miles from my home to work in a Billiard Hall at the Castle Hotel, kept by Mr. Jenkin Savors, and worked there two years. I returned home in Feb. 1851.

When I returned home I found that my parents and some other members of the family had become members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They all bore strong testimony of the truth of the work and the knowledge that the Lord had given them, and that the work they had done had been revealed and that the Gospel had been restored to the earth with all of its gifts and blessings, that the Savior had said should come. I believed them and attended their meetings and began to investigate the doctrines of the Church and they harmonized with the scriptures and with my own ideas of Christianity. On the 26th day of March 1851 I was baptized by John Griffiths, who at the time was a good and faithful Elder. He has since left the church and died. I was confirmed by Phillip Sykes. I received a testimony of the divinity of the work and felt to rejoice that my sins had been remitted. Them were holy days for me...I bore this testimony to many of my friends and neighbors, but few I could get that would take the same view of these principles that I had taken. These were happy days to my then youthful mind, having been released from darkness and brought into the marvelous light of the gospel; having no doubts in my mind as to where I was standing, that my Father in Heaven had given me a testimony of the truth I knew by the inspirations of the Holy Spirit that my sins were forgiven me. I took pleasure during the eleven years that I lived in Wales after I received the gospel, to travel with my brethren in the ministry whenever an opportunity presented itself; a portion of the time traveling alone without purse or script and I felt joy and satisfaction in my labors. I was ordained a Deacon on Dec. 19th 1851 by Daniel Williams. Ordained a Priest in November 1852, by William Bowen. Ordained an Elder by John Price on 24th of August 1853. Ordained a Seventy 2nd of June 1877 by H.C. Jackson. Ordained a High Priest 3rd of March 1905.

In my early days in the Church I attended my meetings on Sundays and week night and traveled 3 to 15 miles with other Elders, but sometimes went alone, and sang and prayed and told people about the restoration of the Gospel, and enjoyed this labor, being directed by the Holy Spirit at all times.

About the year 1856 the law of tithing was first given to the members of the Church, which I took hold of and paid an honest tithing each month. I was getting small wages at the time. About the same time we were called upon to donate one weeks wages to help build the Salt Lake Temple. This was freely paid by the Church members and we felt so by doing, donating our money and services to the Lord at this time. I worked ten hours each week day and walked four and ten miles to and from work.

I took a pleasure during the eleven years that I lived in Wales after I received the Gospel, to travel with my brethren in the ministry whenever an opportunity presented itself; a portion of the traveling alone without purse or script and I felt joy and satisfaction in my labors. The Lord heard and answered my prayers, the sick were healed and devils cast out by the power of God through the authority of his Priesthood.

During these eleven years I worked at various vocations, but mostly in the locomotive department and passenger steamboats. The last four years I was engineer on the passenger steamboat, Milford haven, running between the different towns on the Milford Harbor.

I presided over the Pembroke Branch of the Church until 1857 when I was released and moved to a town called Neyland and I got work at the locomotive department of the Great Western Railroad Company.

I got married on October 26, 1857 to Elizabeth Lalliss, daughter of Richard and Dorothy Lalliss of the town of Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, by Richard James, Register. From this marriage were born to us three sons in Wales; John Edward, William Henry, and Heber Charles. The latter died and was buried in Llanstadwell churchyard, 17 March 1862.

At this time I was called to preside over a branch of the Church known as the Pembroke branch. It was 11 miles each way and 3 miles each way North and South but very few church members. I continued this labor until I left to come to Utah in 1862.

In the spring of 1858, I started to work as foreman on a passenger steamboat. At this time earning 13 shillings per week. I paid my tithing honestly. In a short time I was promoted to engineer, and earned 20 shillings per week. Next year I got 35 shillings per week. Next I was raised to 65 shillings per week. I attribute this to the goodness of the Lord in paying an honest tithing and my faithful labor in his church.

During the eleven years in South Wales after joining the Church, I had a great lot of walking to do. Sometimes more than 20 miles each way to hold meetings and to attend conferences. This was done on Sundays as I had to work six days a week. I walked one night 11 miles after work and crossed two rivers to baptize Br. Frank Purser and all of his family at the time of a reformation in the church and felt well in doing my duty. I have many marvelous gifts in administering to the sick and casting out evil spirits when they would trouble the saints.

I left Liverpool on Wednesday, May 7, 1862 (one account says Tuesday the 15th of May) on the William Tapriat (?).

During these eleven years I worked at various vocations but mostly in the locomotive department and passenger steamboats. The last four years I was Engineer on the passenger Steamboat Milford Haven, running between the different towns on the Milford harbor.

After leaving Liverpool we had a very pleasant time most of the way, but we had some very heavy storms at times. Lots of sickness and some deaths. Those that died was buried at sea. Myself and family was not sick. We had prayers night and morning and Testimony meeting twice a week. Our berths were midship in the second deck. We were considerable mixed up during one storm. Boxes, tons of food, and emigrants were all tossed to and fro. Some enjoyed the scene, others were crying and some praying and many singing. To me this was all right, having been for five years on the water I was all right when the wind was blowing hard. We had several marriages, only two deaths during the voyage. There were eight hundred people on the ship, crew not included. We landed in Castle Garden, New York on 26 June 1862. There was 800 passengers on board. Myself and family stopped in a hotel overnight. We left New York on Friday evening on the Hudson river Railroad and arrived at Albany on the 28th then took the Grand Western and Canada Train to Winsor (Niagra Falls) and a boat to Detroit on the 30th. Then took the Michigan Central to Chicago, where we arrived on the 1st of July. Then we took a steamboat to Quincy by the Chicago Burlington and Quincy, where we arrived on July 2nd, then by boat on the Mississippi to Hannibal and left that evening for Saint Joseph, Missouri where we arrived on the night of July 3rd. We stayed there until 6 pm July 4th, then we took a steamboat to Florence, Nebraska. This place we arrived on Sunday the 6th at midnight. This was the worst part of the journey. The sun was so hot, and the river water so thick with muck and very warm. There was plenty of ice cold water for the crew, but none for the Mormon emigrants. We had one death on the boat. We stopped on Sunday morning long enough to dig a grave and bury him. We landed and took our baggage ashore in the dark and did the best we could. On the morning of the 7th we moved about one mile to camp. It was a beautiful day; the suns hone clear and warm, but before we got our camp fixed up the rain poured down in torrents; the wind blew a gale, the thunder roared, the lightening flashed, it was terrific. It blew one wagon over, and nearly killed Brother Joseph Young. It blew down store fronts and one man was killed with lightening. The while camp and their clothing and baggage were all in the same fix; well soaked from the effects of the storm. It cleared up in about one hour and we were able to dry our clothes. Then we got our tents which we pitched and were soon made comfortable again.

We stayed at Florence until the 17th of August; then loaded our effects into the wagons; 18 to each wagon and 12 to each tent. My wife and I walked all of the way across the plains. We had a very pleasant time, taking all things into consideration. We had about a dozen deaths on the way. It fell my lot to help bury the dead, and I dedicated nearly every grave. This was sorrowful work to leave our friends on the dreary plains. We always buried them as soon as they died or at the next stopping place. We never started with a dead body in the wagon. We had a very good Captain, Horton Haight (?), also a fine lot of teamsters. We had prayers night and morning. The able bodied men all took their turn at guarding the stock and the camp. We had no murmuring on guarding to speak of, but we felt that we had a common purpose to accomplish in gathering to Zion. We waded through the cold rivers, to Elkhorn, and the Loop Fork, the Platt several times, also the Green river, but strange as it may appear we were preserved in health.

We arrived in Salt Lake City on the 19th day of October and Brother John Isaac met us and brought us some cake and milk which we shall always remember with kindness. We stopped in Salt Lake City nearly three weeks where I worked in City Creek Canyon with Br. John and William Gibly getting out fire wood and sold it for molasses, which we took to Paradise, Cache County.

We then went to Paradise, Cache County. We arrived there on the 11th day of November 1862; and commenced to work the next day helping to thresh. They had a machine called a Chapp piler and cleaned the grain with a machine run by hand. This was strange work to me, not having done anything like it in my life before, but I soon got onto it and all other kinds of labor that I had to do. I worked for the first few years in the canyon. In the spring of 1863 I got a city lot and planted it. I also built a good log house before the next winter. In the fall of 1863 I sold the house for a yoke of oxen and built me another one in the spring of 1864. I took up some land and raised some crops.

On 12 of November 1862 our first daughter, Sarah Jane was born. (She married John T. James.) In 1864 I took a load of Tithing wheat with four yoke of oxen from Wellsville to Salt Lake City, with four yoke of oxen. (Some dates missing) The next day I began to work helping thrash wheat. It was the first day to thrash that season. Myself and family lived with Br. E.D. Miles and wife. The first I worked in the canyon all winter cutting logs to build a house to live in. I got a city lot and built a house and planted the lot and kept working. In the fall of 1863 I sold the house for a yoke of oxen and built me another one in the spring of 1864. I took up some land and raised some crops.

On Nov. 17, 1865, my son James Richard was born. In September 1866 my father, David Thomas, arrived in Paradise, Utah. My mother died in march 1866 in Neyland Pembrkeshire, South Wales and was buried at Haniborro burying ground. My father was in good health and worked hard until the spring of 1873 when he fell and burst a blood vessel. He died 4 November 1874 (1876) and was buried at Paradise, Cache, Utah.

In October 1866 the grasshoppers came in millions, and ate up everything that was green. They cut the heads off the grain that was not harvested, and deposited their eggs in the ground so that when spring came and the grain was up and covered the ground, they hatched out and traveled, and ate up all of the crops before they left. They continued with us for three years. This was a scarce time with many of the poor, but my household had plenty of food all of the time.

On November 27, 1867, my daughter, Elizabeth Ann, was born. (She since married Harry A. Shaw.) In the fall of this year we (that is the settlers of Old Paradise, since called Avon) thought it best to move as a body, about 3 ½ miles north of the old site where we could get more room; also, that we could better protect ourselves from Indian raids; as they had been very troublesome in this part. So during this fall we took up and plowed new land and worked in the canyon all winter to get fencing and logs for our houses, and get comfortably fixed through the summer of 1868. This year my sister Jane Jones and my family came, having crossed the plains partly by train and part way by ox team. They stayed with us that winter. On 11 November 1868, myself, my wife and several others went to Salt Lake City by ox teams and got our endowments, and had a very wet time on this trip, but felt that we got these ordinances attended to.

This is the winter that many of the brethren went to work upon the Central Pacific Railroad, then being built. In 1869 I was engaged getting ties and lumber for the construction of the Utah Central Railroad, then building from Ogden to Salt Lake City. On 20th November 1869, my son, David Hyrum, was born. In 1870 and 1871 I worked in the canyon and farmed.

On January 1 of 1872 I married Mary Jan Obray, daughter of George and Maria Obray, born at Pembroke Dock, Wales. We were sealed by Daniel H. Wells at the Endowment House, Salt Lake City. On 1st July of this year I went to run an engine in a sawmill in the mountains about 30 miles east of Paradise. On 2 August my son, Joseph Parley, was born. The same fall I bought a shingle mill at paradise and commenced making shingles in April 1873. On 17 August 1873, my son, Willard Evan, was born. On 25 November my son Alma Phillip was born. On June 1, I took charge of building a sawmill for the people of Paradise and I took charge of running it until the fall of 1876. My son, Albert Nathan, was born 14 February 1876. During the summer of this year I built a sawmill to run in connection with making shingles in the town of Paradise; I also purchased a section of land adjoining the town. For the next three years I was at home sawing lumber, railroad ties, and shingles. On 9th June 1878 my daughter, Dorothy Minnie was born (who has since married Fred Whittle). On 4th Dec. my son, Orson was born. On 1st June, 1880 I purchased a steam sawmill at Beaver canyon, Idaho and was sawing with two steam mills until 1886. Sawed ties for Utah Northern Railway, later known as the Oregon Short Line, and for Union Pacific Railway Company. On June 1 ?? I bought eleven hundred acres of plant land near Cache Junction. I also bought three thousand dollars worth of live stock. I worked this land for about two years and made much improvement. I sold this property to a Mitchell for fifteen thousand dollars. I had broke up about twenty acres of this land and fenced a large portion of it in.

On 13 August 1880 I had a son born who died without being named. He was buried at Paradise. On 2 November 1881, my son, Evan, was born and died (11?) January 1882 and was buried at Paradise. On 8th March 1883 my daughter, Sarah Jane, was married to John P. James, (son of David and Annie P. James) at Salt Lake City, by Daniel H. Wells.

On the 1? Of August 1884, on the invitation of the Stake Presidency, myself and wife, Elizabeth, went to Rexburg, Idaho, in the company of John Taylor, George Q. Cannon, and several others. We traveled with team from Market Lake to Rexburg. They went there to more fully organize the stake. The next morning I went to a council meeting, when in the meeting there came a telegram that two elders had been killed by a mob in Tennessee. When this message was read a voice spoke to me, "John Gibbs," he said. I said "What?" The voice said gain "John Gibbs." When I got out of the meeting I told Br. George Q. Cannon that I felt that John H. Gibbs was one of the elders that was killed. He asked me how I knew. I told him of the voice that spoke to me. He said it was marvelous. In the afternoon meeting, the names came. Br. Cannon came to me and told me to cultivate that gift that I had and it would be a blessing to me. I have tried to do so and has been a comfort to me.

On January 23, 1900, my wife, Mary Jane, died at Paradise. She had been sick for several weeks. She left two sons, Willard and Orsen.

On May 19th, 1901 my wife, Elizabeth, died after eight weeks of severe suffering. She was buried at Paradise. On Thursday evening May 16 she said to me, "I've had three patriarchal blessings. I have been reading them today. They each said that I should live as long as life was desirable to me, and I shall not die as long as I feel as I do now." Only two days after this when I got home from work she said to me. "William, I have been talking to the girls today that I did not think it a sin that I would ask the Lord to take me to Himself as I was tired of living." I said to her "Bessie, we do not want you to let you go." "I know," se said "But my suffering has been so great that I want to go." She then said, "I want to ask you a favor. Will you do it?" I said, "What is it?" She then said, "I want you to put your hands upon my head and ask the Lord in authority of the Holy Priesthood, to take me this night. Will you do it?" I then said, "Bessie, I have never refused you anything you have asked me to do." I administered to her and rebuked the pain, and asked the Lord to take her spirit that night as she requested. When I got through she said that the Lord heard that, and felt sure that she would die that night. One of my sons passed through the room and heard me and went and called the Dr. Budge. HE came and looked at my wife. Then he went into another room where the family was and said to them, "Now if you keep quiet and make no noise, you can come and see your mother die." They promised that they would. This was about half past ten o'clock. The Doctor said on he side of her and me on the other. All was quiet for ten minutes. She opened her eyes and said, "I feel happy and comfortable and I am going to die." The Doctor took her pulse and had his ear by her mouth, then said, "She has breathed her last breath but do not make a noise, her heart is still beating." Then said, "Your mother is dead and if you must cry you can, as you cannot disturb her now."

I was prepared for this. On the night before this I was sitting on the sofa in front of the stove and heard beautiful singing in the air the hymn found on page 194 of the LDS Hymn book, "Let us pray gladly, Pray in the House of Jehovah." The singing was beautiful. She was buried in Paradise 21 May 1901. She died in Logan.

Then I prepared myself to take a trip to South Wales to hunt up some of my relatives and friends. I was set apart for this trip in the Annex of the Salt Lake Temple by Apostle Teasdale on April 14, 1903, (?) record on page 123 of the old family record..

On account of rock slide of the Union Pacific Railroad, we had to take trip on the O.S.L by way of Bear Lake Valley. We reached Rock Springs next morning and arrived at Lexington, Nebraska at one o'clock on the 17th day and stopped at nephew James Thomas for one week. We got into Boston on the 26th.

(Many of the notes on the trip to Wales do not have dates and the pages have been mixed up so I will put the information in as I read it LKC)

We left Boston on May for Liverpool on the steamship Commonwealth. When about mid-ocean we had a terrific storm for about two days. There was many passengers in bed very sick. Some of the Elders and many of the sisters who was going on a visiting tour was in bed. I felt troubled about them and felt some of the brethren should pray for them. I hunted up the President who had charge of the missionaries, and found them on the deck. Is aid to them, "Brethren, I have been hunting for you to ask you to get a few of the elders to pray to the Lord to stay this storm so that our people may be relieved of their sickness." The president said that they were glad that I was inspired by the spirit to come. We have a room ready and was going to join in prayer, please accompany us, As you are the oldest, you pray first.

After prayers each one of the passengers came to me and said, the sea is smooth as glass. I told them the Lord had been very merciful to us. The passengers all got better.

We arrived at Liverpool May 12, all well. I was not sea sick on the trip. After having our baggage checked and passed through the custom house, I went to number 42 Irelington. I met President Lyman. We had a meeting. The president gave us all welcome and instructed us to our duties...I stopped over night.

Next day I went to Bristol to meet Charles Lalliss but they had moved to Portsmouth. I then went to Newport where I met two of my cousins, James Thomas and Ann Evans and their families. I took their records and the names and references of a large number of my relatives. I left with them several church books and then took the train to Cardiff, South Wales. I went with him several times to get the records of Sarah Lalliss' family. Births, marriages, and deaths from her great grandparents to the last baby born.

I was at Haverfordwest until the 23rd then went by team to Haraldston West and I met my cousin, Steven Thomas' widow and daughter with her husband, Joseph Philipp and family. I then stopped with them and took what records they had and bore a strong testimony of the Gospel to them. I left them some church books.

I returned to Haverfordwest on the 30the day of May and I stopped there until May 31. Then went to Milford. It being White Monday, a Holy Day, I saw some of the (?) and got some records.

I went to Neyland that night. Next day I went to Porter (?) and met Thomas Gibbs and also a Mrs. Hubbard, that I had saved from being drowned. She fell out of the boat. I jumped into the water and got her to land. This happened forty-three years since. I also met John Obray, a brother to Sam and Thomas Obray of Paradise. I got his family records and returned to Neyland, and visited my mother's grave at Honiborrow. The next morning I visited the grave of my son, Heber Charles, at Llanstadwell Churchyard.

I returned to Haverfordshire on July 4th, and done some visiting among some of my old friend's families. On the 5th I went to Fishguard, the birthplace of my father, and got some records. I returned on the 12th. I stopped at Haverfordshire visiting many of my relatives and friends of the family. Also the family of Sarah Lalliss. I also visited Freystarss Lugum Johnsten (?) and neighborhood. On June 22 I visited Porter (?) Pembroke and got some information of some friends.

On the 23rd I went to Whiteland Carmarthen and visited some relatives of Evan Jones of Logan. Is aw a circus parade on the street. Then went to Llanelly and stopped over night with John Evans, my nephew-in-law, and got some records. Then visited the home of Mrs. Samuel, a cousin of Mrs. William James of Paradise and got what records I could get.

Then to Swansea and visited a sister of Evan Jones, Martha Daneslton, to Britten ferry with my cousin, Ebenezer Davies, and family and had a good time. I then went to Pincheweither (?) and met my cousin Catherine Davies. I got some records and then visited the coal mines.

I met the president of the conference and several elders. I took dinner with them and they took me around. I met Thomas White, brother to William White of Salt Lake City. I stopped overnight with them.

Then went to Britten Ferry and stopped with Ebenezer Davies, a son of my father's sister, Margerett, and had some good family talk, and got their records, and then took train to Neath.

Thence to Llanelly where I met my cousin, William Nash, and the Family of my cousin Nash Jones, and what records they could give me and left on the 19th for Haverfordshire and stopped at the Kings Arms Hotel.

I then met May Lalliss, my wife's sister, and John White, brother to William White. I visited my birthplace, Merlin's Bridge, and had a talk with some of the old inhabitants, most of them were dead.

When I got to Haverfordshire, West Pembrokeshire, I had about a mile to walk uphill. I was carrying a satchel and overcoat. When I got on the level road I was very tired and had to take a rest in front of a house. I looked up and saw a sign "Gloves Inn." I went in and there were two men sitting by the window, I sat down on a chair. The lady of the house came into the room. I asked if she could tell me where Mary Lalliss lived. She said all of the Lalliss family had gone to Salt Lake City some years since. I told her my name and that I married a Lalliss girl, and that I had come from Salt Lake. She asked me if I knew Sarah Lalliss. I told her yes and that I had seen her the day before I left. She called her husband and said put up your paper. "The man can tell you all about Aunt Sarah." We had a long conversation about the family and about Utah. The man's name was Charles Pughe. He then said to me, if you could come all the way from Salt Lake that he had a horse and buggy and that I could take a ride with him to see all the folks eight or ten miles as often as I wished but not to offer him any pay as he would not take it.

I got back from Haversfordwest July 4 and went to Haraldsten (?) church yard grounds on July 5. It rained hard all day. I had dinner with Harry Miles. From the 5th to the 18th I went visiting many of my old friends and relatives. On Sunday 19th I visited Mr. Williams and family at a farm called Temperness. His wife was a sister of the late William Howds of Slaterville, Weber County, Utah. She is a member of the Church. I had a good time with them and then returned to Haverfordwest, on Monday the 20th and stayed home all day writing.

After this I went visiting my relatives and friends that I had met on my visit, and said goodbye for this time. On the 15th day of August, I left my place of birth well and satisfied with the traveling and the information that I had gained.

I got to Liverpool on Sunday morning and went to a hotel. The next day I went to 42 Lislington (?) and met President Lyman and many of the Elders. Also many of the brethren and sisters that was about to start for Utah. We had a pleasant time. Went to several meetings.

We left Liverpool on the 20th. We had a pleasant trip on the ocean. Arrived at Boston about noon on the 28th, making the trip in about seven and one half days. After passage the doctor and inspector we went on shore and took dinner. We arrived in Salt Lake City at 4 PM on Sept. 1 and got home to Paradise on September 3.

On 4 April 1884 my son, John Edward, was married to Annie Obray and on the same day and same place my son, William Henry, was married to Rose Zarra Obray at Salt Lake City by Daniel H. Wells.

On March 30, 1887 my daughter, Elizabeth Ann, was married in the Logan Temple by W.C. Edlufson to Harry Albert Shaw of Paradise.

On 10 October, 1888 my son, James Richard was married in the Logan Temple to Martha W. Bickmore of Paradise.

On 10 September 1891 my son, David Hyrum, was married in the Logan Temple to Cathrena Thatcher of Logan.

On 13 Feb. 1895 my son, Joseph Parley, was married in the Logan Temple to Sarah Ann Davies of Logan.

On 10 June 1902 my daughter, Dorothy Minnie, was married in the Logan Temple to Frederick Whittle of Richmond, Utah.

On December 10 1902 my son, Nathan Albert, was married in the Salt Lake Temple to Beatrice Cristman of Salt Lake City.

On 22 March 1900 my son, Orsen, was married in the Logan Temple to Elizabeth W. James of Paradise.

On 3 October 1880 I went to Salt Lake Conference, and took sick the next day with pneumonia. They did not expect me to live, and on the fifth day I sent for Brothers Jeremy and William White to administer to me. So great was my faith I got healed and not by medicine. I was also taken sick on the 15th of April 1897 with the same disease and was healed in the same manner after the doctor said I could not live. The gifts of healing and of being healed have been given to me in a marvelous manner at all times since I embraced the truth.

On May 18, 1877 I attended the dedication and breaking of the first ground fro the Logan Temple. President Brigham Young and many of the Brethren came with him.

On the 19th of September I was present and saw the corner Stone laid and heard the dedicatory prayer. President John Taylor Presided. I donated 100 dollars per year for its building until finished. It was dedicated May 17, 1884. My wife, Elizabeth, and I were admitted on the 17th; My wife, Mary Jane, went on the 19th. My family and I have, before this writing, 1 February 1903, been to the temple and have done work for a great many of our kindred dead, also for many faithful saints who have died in Wales, also for many of my old friends and neighbors. We also attended the dedicatory services of the Salt Lake Temple on 10 April 1893.

On 14 August 1884 by invitation, I accompanied President John Taylor and company on his visit to the Snake River Country, to more fully organize the Stake. We took teams at market Lake, from there to Parker and held a meeting, and stopped overnight, then crossed the North Fork and held a meeting at Teton, then drove to Rexburg and stayed overnight. We drove to Lyman and returned the next day, and held a meeting there. On the next day, Sunday, we held a council meeting at the home of Brother M.E. Ricks. While holding the meeting a dispatch came. It as that some of the Elders had been killed in Tennessee. After the meeting I told Brother George Q. Cannon that I felt that one of those killed was John W. Gibbs, which proved to be true. After the council meeting we held two meetings at which the Stake was more fully organized. We left by team and crossed the South Fork with a small boat and stopped overnight and held a meeting next morning, then took the team to (now Idaho Falls). The president's party went south to Utah; I went north to Beaver Canyon. This was a pleasant trip.

On the first of April 1887, I bought one half interest of the Barber and Sons Implement business. We sold the business to CO-OP Wagon and Machinery Company in January 1889.

In March 1889, by advice of Apostle Moses Thatcher, I went to Baker City, Oregon to look up some timberlands; so that lumber may be shipped to Logan to be manufactured into door sash and building. I moved my sawmills there from Beaver Canyon, Idaho. And on may first I took a lot of men and two steam saw mills to that point. After forming a company (Oregon Lumber Company) (Capital stock $1000,000 and I took $30,000 after stopping there one year.) with several of the leading men of Logan and Salt Lake City, we put up mills and sawed that summer with success, but in the next winter the company sold out to Mr. David Eccles and other, and I joined myself with another company and cam home to Logan and engaged in the mercantile business. I went to Baker City to attend a July stockholders meeting in January 1890, they had another good report of last year's business. I was at the railway station to return when two stockholders came to me and said that balance sheets were false at the meeting and in about three weeks that the company be dissolved, and they would come and take all of my property where they could find it, as the law of Oregon would permit them to do so. Is topped and examined the books and found that they had told me the truth. I did not say one word to the bookkeeper about this matter but came home to Logan and fixed up things the best I could. The next morning I made arrangements with A.G. Barber to be my signee and made thatcher Brs. Banking company a preferred creditor. In one week after, they had officers come to Logan to take all my property but it was too late, they could only get their share. During the money panic of 1892 and 1893 the lumber business as forced to go to a receiver and I lost 20,000.00 in that concern which was the cause of my losing every dollar I owned, and had to assign all of my property to Brother A.G. Barber. By the help of my son, J.E. Thomas, and my nephew, John H. White, who bought all of the merchandise that I had assigned, and my wife and I ran the store, which we had owned in J.E. Thomas's name. I borrowed three thousand dollars. My son John E. Thomas, and my nephew, John H. White, and got them to purchase the store goods and run the store under the name of J.E. Thomas and done a good business as was soon out of debt, and kept one son on a mission in the Eastern States for 27 months.

We were successful in the store and paid all of the price of goods. In the November election 1895 I was elected a member of the City Council, from the first precinct of Logan for 2 years, commencing 1 January 1896. The following November I was elected a Justice of the Peace in and for Logan precinct commencing 4th January 1900 for two years.

On 23 January 1900 my wife, Mary Jane Obray, died and was buried in my lot at Paradise. On the 19th day of May 1901, my wife, Elizabeth Lalliss, died at Logan and was buried at Paradise on 21 May 1901.

On 15th of August 1902, I sold my mercantile business to Mr. John Bench of Logan and prepared to go to Wales to get genealogies of my parents and their ancestor.

William Nash Thomas died February 14, 1923 and was buried in Paradise, Utah.

Continued: Miraculous Healings Under Administration of William Nash Thomas

(copied from a copy in possession of Miriam Jones Sept. 1964)

The following are a few of my testimonies on the Power of God that has been given to me out of the many hundreds of cases I have been called upon to administer to. I have always felt to use the authority of the Priesthood without fear of consequences when I knew I had the Spirit of God with me to dictate my sayings. I always spoke as I was led.

In the spring of 1871 Sister Jane Price, wife of Brother Samuel Oldham of Paradise, was taken sick with childbed fever. Doctor Ormsley had been attending her, but had given her up, and she said she could not live. Her father, Edward Price, came to the...

THOMAS, Elizabeth Ann, 27 November 1867

THOMAS, David Hyrum, 20 November 1869

THOMAS, Joseph Parley, 2 August 1872

THOMAS, Alma Philip 25 November 1873

THOMAS, Nathan Albert, 14 February 1876

THOMAS, Dorothy Minnie, 9 June 1878

THOMAS, Infant, not named, 13 August 1880

THOMAS, Evan, 2 November 1881

CHILDREN OF MARY JANE OBRAY AND WILLIAM NASH THOMAS

THOMAS, Willard Evan, 17 August 1873

THOMAS, Orsen 4 December 1878

Copied by Louise K. Clark © November, 2000 redone and added to Feb 2003

Recopied Dec 2000. I had two autobiographies and tried to combine them. There may be some duplications. LKC That's a lot of pages.

My son, Albert Nathan, was born 14 February 1876. During the summer of this year I built a sawmill to run in connection with making shingles in the town of Paradise; I also purchased a section of land adjoining the town. For the next three years I was at home sawing lumber, railroad ties, and shingles. On 9th June 1878, my daughter, Dorothy Minnie was born (who has since married Fred Whittle). On 4 Dec. my son, Orson, was born. On 1st June, 1880 I purchased a steam sawmill at Beaver Canyon, Idaho and was sawing with two steam mills until 1886. Sawed ties for Utah Northern Railway, later known as the Oregon Short Line, and for Union Pacific Railway Company. On June 1 ?? I bought eleven hundred acres of plant land near Cache Junction. I also bought three thousand dollars worth of live stock. I worked this land for about two years and made much improvement. Is old this property to a Mitchell for fifteen thousand dollars. I had broke up about twenty acres of this land and fenced a large portion of it in.

On 13 August 1880 I had a son born who died without being named. He was buried at Paradise. On 2 November 1881, my son, Evan, was born and died (11?) January 1882 and was buried at Paradise. On 8th march 1883 my daughter, Sarah Jane, was married to John P. James, (son of David and Annie P. James) at Salt Lake City, by Daniel H. Well.

On the 1? Of August 1884, on the invitation of the Stake Presidency, myself and wife, Elizabeth, went to Rexburg, Idaho, in the company of John Taylor, George Q. Cannon, and several others. We traveled with a team from Market Lake to Rexburg. They went there to more fully organize the stake. The next morning I went to a council meeting, when in the meeting there came a telegram that two elders had been killed by mob in Tennessee. When this message was read a voice spoke to me, "John Gibbs," he said. I said "What?" The voice said again "John Gibbs." When I got out of the meeting I told Br. George Q. Cannon that I felt that John H. Gibbs was one of the elders that was killed. He asked me how I knew. I told him of the voice that spoke to me. He said it was marvelous. In the afternoon meeting, the names came. Br. Cannon came to me and told me to cultivate that gift that I had and it would be a blessing to me. I have tried to do so and has been a comfort to me.

On January 23, 1900, my wife, Mary Jane, died at Paradise. She had been sick for several weeks. She left two sons, Willard and Orsen.

On May 19th, 1901 my wife, Elizabeth, died after eight weeks of severe suffering. She was buried at Paradise. On Thursday evening May 16 she said to me, "I've had three patriarchal blessings. I have been reading them today. They each said that I should live as long as life was desirable to me, and I shall not die as long as I feel as I do now." Only two days after this when I got home from work she said to me. "William, I have been talking to the girls today that I did not think it a sin that I would ask the Lord to take me to Himself as I was tired of living." I said to her "Bessie, we do not want you to let you go." "I know," she said but my suffering has been so great that I want to go." She then said, "I want to ask you a favor. Will you do it?" I said, "What is it?" She then said, "I want you to put your hands upon my head and ask the Lord in authority of the Holy Priesthood, to take me this night. Will you do it?" I then said "Bessie, I have never refused you anything you have asked me to do." I administered to her and rebuked the pain, and asked the Lord to take her spirit that night as she had requested. When I got through she said that the Lord heard that, and felt sure that she would die that night. One of mysons passed through the room and heard me and went and called the Dr. Budge. He came and looked at my wife. Then he went into another room where the family was and said to them, "Now if you keep quiet and...

...child labor and was very sick. She asked me to administer to her that she may be delivered, which I did; but had very little faith. She asked me if I could get her doctor as she had to have a doctor with each of her children formerly born. I told her that a doctor could not be here in less than ten hours. The husband and she were crying saying that would be too late to save her life. She was a deformed woman. The nurse was a very large woman. She said, "If it was a doctor that you want, I will doctor you." She was indicated at the time. She rolled up the sleeves of her dress and said "Now I am ready." I felt sure she would kill the woman and my heart was grieved to see this. I jumped to my feet and held my right hand over the sick woman and said, as nearly as I can recollect, as follows: "In the name of Jesus Christ and in the authority of the Priesthood that I hold I command that child to come forth by the power of God." The child was born. They said, I never touched you, and you must have been delivered by the power of God and give Him the praise."

On the 3rd of November 1896 I was asked by Elder ? D. Cranny if I were afraid to go to administer to those who had the diphtheria. I answered, "No." we went to the house of brother William H. Afferly and they were all sick; one child was buried form there the day before. We anointed and blessed all in the house commencing with the mother and on down according to age. They thanked us very kingly, and felt that they would all be well in a short time. We were going out at the front gate when I heard a scream, and I told Brother Cranney that we were wanted in the house. He said they had not called us. I said, no, but that an evil spirit had taken possession of the body of the second daughter. We went in and the daughter was raving. I said to her, "Sister, why did you doubt the promises of the Lord." She said that she had not doubted, but that she wanted me to be mouth in sealing the anointing and that that was the reason that she was overcome. We then rebuked the evil spirit, and blessed her again and the family all got well in a short time.

These are a few of the many that I have administered to and seen healed by the power of the Priesthood and I bear my testimony to the truth of what I write to the best of my recollection, just as they happened. Let this suffice for the present. I have always felt when asked to administer to the sick to let my tongue be guided by the spirit of truth and was never afraid to say to the sick, "Be thou healed," when under the influence of that spirit and power. Although, I have shuddered at the words after I had spoke them, many times...

CHILDREN OF ELIZABETH LALLIS AND WILLIAM NASH THOMAS

THOMAS, John Edward, 31 July 1858

THOMAS, William Henry, 22 April 1860

THOMAS, Heber Charles, 24 February 1862

THOMAS, Sarah Jane, 12 November 1863

THOMAS, James Richard, 17 November 1865

Immigrants:

Thomas, David

Thomas, William Nash

Lallis, Elizabeth

Thomas, William Henry

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