Lewis, Elizabeth - Biography
(Lewis is the English version of Llewellyn)
Born: April 15, 1804
Place: Aberavon, Glamorgan, Wales
Elizabeth Lewis was born on April 15, 18041 to Rees Lewis and
Gwenllian Hopkins in Aberavon, Glamorgan, Wales.
She was born in a monumental year when the first steam locomotive made its
outing on February 13, 1804 at the Pen-Y-Darren Ironworks in Merthyr.
Her father Rees Lewis was born on May 10, 1785 in Michalston, Wales in
Glamorgan County. Rees married Gwenllian Hopkin2 on February 7,
1806. Of the three daughters born to this union, Elizabeth was the oldest.
Her Maternal Grandparents
Her grandfather Rees Hopkins was born about 1745 and married Rebecca Evans on
February 20, 1762. They had four children and Rebecca died. Rees married a
second wife on November 14, 1770 by the name of Sarah Lloyd. They had five
children of which Gwenllian was their last child. Rees was a
portreeve3 of Aberavon and later became a cordwainer.
Aberavon is located at the mouth of the Avon River. It is south of Swansea in
the County of Glamorgan and the newer portion of the town is called Port
Talbot, being a coastal town.
When Elizabeth was 32 years old she met Thomas Edwards who was 10 years her
senior. He was a widower with one son David who was 24 years old. Thomas and
Elizabeth were married by banns in the Aberdare Parish. Most of their children
were born in Aberaman, a small hamlet just south of Aberdare. The family
belonged to the Aberdare Parish. Their children are listed below:
||17 Nov 1835
||17 Sep 1836
||26 Jun 1837
||26 Jun 1837
||12 Oct 1839
||20 Feb 1844
||15 Mar 1849
||8 Jan 1852
Their second son David died at two years of age and their twin daughters died
of scarlet fever at the age of two. They moved to Merthyr Tydfil in 1844 where
Janet was born. William Jones baptized Elizabeth into the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter Day Saints in December of 1850. Thomas investigated the
church quite a bit longer before he committed to baptism but the following year
her husband was baptized by Miles Williams. They attended the LDS Glamorgan
They were encouraged to leave Wales and move to America to join the Saints
there. After saving for a number of years for this voyage, the family traveled
to Liverpool, England to board their vessel. On November 13, 1854, their family
of seven boarded the Clara Wheeler along with 414 LDS passengers. After leaving
Liverpool on November 24, 1854, they returned to port six days later because of
bad weather. Everyone suffered from seasickness. After the Captain obtained
more food and water, they set sail on December 7 and cleared the Irish Channel
in three days. Measles broke out among the passengers (20 children and two
adults died at sea). Upon arrival at New Orleans on January 11, 1855, their
eight-year-old daughter Elizabeth died (from measles).
On January 12, the family continued their journey on the steamer Oceana, which
took them up the Mississippi River to St. Louis, Missouri. In St. Louis, they
were met by Apostle Erastus Snow. After staying in St. Louis for about 4
years, they made their way to Nebraska to prepare to cross the plains.
Their daughter Mary Edwards was the first to marry and give them a grandchild.
She married John James and named their first child, Kathryn James who was born
in December of 1859. Mary became a widow sometime between 1859 and 1861. She
married her second husband William Alfred Hymas in May of 1861 in Omaha,
Crossing the Plains
The Edwards family left Florence, Nebraska on June 7, 1861 traveling with Job
Pingree4 (an independent company) and arriving at Great Salt Lake
City, Utah on August 24, 1861.
Robert McQuairce rebaptized both Thomas and Elizabeth after they arrived in the
valley. Thomas began farming in Ogden, Utah. The family attended Ogden's 1st
Ward5. On November 5, 1866, Thomas and Elizabeth went to Salt Lake
and took out their endowments and their marriage was solemnized for time and
all eternity in the Endowment House. 1891 had ordained Thomas Edwards ordained
a High Priest6.
Their children: Mary Edwards Hymas had her first pair of twin girls in April of
1862 in Omaha, but like her mother's twins, they died. In July of 1862, William
and Mary joined the James Wareham Company. They traveled in a covered wagon
pulled by oxen and arrived in Utah on September 26, 1862. They left Utah in
1864 and settled in the southeast corner of Idaho near Wyoming. Mary had two
more sets of twins except these twins were a boy and a girl from each set. The
boy from the first set died at age 5 but the other twins lived to adulthood.
Mary had 11 children total, 8 lived to be adults, and out of the 11, she
had 3 sets of twins. Now this is quite an accomplishment in itself, but the
Hymas family was the third family to move into the tiny village of Liberty,
Idaho. Being pioneer times, there were no doctors in most of the settlements,
so Mary was asked to become a mid-wife. She was given a special blessing in
the Logan Temple in Utah to become a midwife and was promised that she would be
given strength to accomplish this task. She successfully delivered more than
700 babies in Bear Lake County while raising her own 8 living children.
Janet Edwards married William Slater and moved to Huntsville, UT. Sarah Edwards
married William Morgan in 1868. Thomas Edwards married Nancy Helen Nicholas in
1877 and they became pioneers in helping to establish Almo, Idaho. Reese
Edwards7 never married and lived in Ogden until he died. He is
buried in the Ogden cemetery next to his mother.
Elizabeth Lewis Edwards died on April 13, 18798 and was buried in
the Ogden Cemetery. She lived to be 77 years of age having had 10 children,
five of which she buried. Her hair never turned gray but continued to stay
dark brown until she died.
On Saturday morning, April 19, 1870, The Ogden Junction (a forerunner of the
Ogden Standard Examiner) a Death notice said,
"Edwards -- In this city April 18, 1879, of old age, Elizabeth wife of Thomas
Edwards, aged 77 years. The funeral will take place today at 2 PM in the First
Ward Schoolhouse. Friends of the family are invited to attend."
- FHL film 183,405 Endowment Record: verified date of birth and parents names.
- Hopkin and Hopkins are the same surname.
- Aberavon was governed by a Portreeve and two aldermen.
- Pioneers & Prominent Men of Utah, p. 953
- Organized in 1856.
- Film 26,245 (1878-1889 Ogden First Ward Records), p. 13.
- Rees is the Welsh version of Reese.
- Death record: FHL 979.228/01 Vol. 30 Ogden City Cemetery, p. 270.
- Ogden Junction 1872 Ð 1879, University of Utah, Marriott Library, AN2.U8 044.
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