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LFA Newsletter Volume 39, Issue 2 (December 2012)

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Livingston Family Association Logo.gif

1283 Logan Avenue
Salt Lake City, UT 84105

Volume: 39 Issue: 2 Date: December 2012


Do You Know Who This Person Is?

by Dana Rogers, Chairman
Helen.Livingston Watts.Dennis photo.jpg

Well, I didn't either, until this summer. The detective work that was done to find information about Helen Livingston Watts was fun and rewarding. We wanted to create a document with the head shots of the 6 grandchildren that Granny (1789) brought to Utah. We didn't have a photo of her and knew very little about her life. As I contemplated how to find this information, one thought after another popped into my head. I acted on these ideas and made several calls. Each call resulted in finding some of the following information;

Board secretary, Enid Cox, found a photo of Helen in an album in her possession.

BYU Family History Library emailed me Helen's obituary which included her city and ward. It included the following. “All spoke of the pioneer woman with the greatest of reverence and respect as each had known Aunt Ellen as she was familiarly called since babyhood. She lived and died a faithful Latter Day Saint. The esteem in which she was held was evidenced by the large crowd and the profuse collection of beautiful flowers at the service.”

Ward clerk gave me the name of a possible relative and a Smithfield Historical Society contact.

Helen's relative gave me the name of a cousin who was writing Helen's life story.

Historical society contact searched their files and found a misfiled history of Joseph & Helen Watts. This gives wonderful insights into the kind of person Helen was and how she lived.

Helen's relative sent a history which she had written about Helen. Her grandmother knew Helen and had shared many stories with her. She also shared photographs of Helen & Joseph. Their family had purchased a headstone for Helen last year so she wouldn't be forgotten.

So in one week of searching and finding information, I felt like I knew Helen personally. It was exciting to go from the unknown Helen to feeling connected to her. You can go to this link to find out more about Helen. LIVINGSTON,_Helen_"Ellen"_(1837). Consider telling her story of sacrifice, hard work, service, and determination to your family/children. This will help you to keep the Livingston Legacy alive in your own family.

Challenges from the Chairman

by Dana Rogers

Please help us by forwarding the following link to your children and siblings who are not receiving the electronic newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/LFAmail

Do your ancestors deserve to have their histories included with others in the section About People on livingstonfamily.org? I think they would like their histories preserved for future generations. It is up to you. I encourage you to write your life story and then a history for your ancestors if there isn't one. My mother left a journal of her daily activities, but what I really wanted to know was how she felt and what was important to her. I suggest you record your feelings and beliefs, your goals and accomplishments, how you overcame your challenges, how your life may have been protected or preserved, what is important to you and how you feel about your family. If you share these things with your posterity they will know who you are and will feel connected to you. Don’t take the chance that someone else will write the story you want to leave your posterity. Please send items you wish to share to board@livingstonfamily.org

The Amazing History of Helen Livingston Watts

by Georgia Memmott, Bountiful, UT

This history was written by Georgia Memmott of Bountiful, UT and includes information from church records, a history found in the book, Smithfield, City on a Hill, the history of Helen from Pioneer Women of Faith and Fortitude pg 3285 and from memories of Helen told to Georgia by her grandmother, Harriett Miles Watts, wife of Joseph Watts who was a nephew that Joseph and Helen helped raise.

Birthdate: 17 Jan 1837, Shotts, Ironworks, Lanarkshire, Scotland - Death: 7 Aug 1915, Smithfield, Cache County, UT
Parents: Archibald and Helen Muir Conner Livingston-:Pioneer: Richard Ballentyne Company 1855
Spouse: Joseph Watts - :Married:1 Feb 1859, Salt Lake City, UT
Joseph and Helen Watts with Henry Watts family2.jpg
Joseph & Helen in front of cabin.1.jpg
Helen, sometimes known as Ellen, lost her mother Helen Muir Conner, in Scotland when she was but nine months old. Her father Archibald, married again two years later and after ten years, he and his wife both died of cholera within two months of each other. This left Helen to the mercy of the world at the tender age of twelve years. She found work in different families for six years. Then her grandmother, Christina Livingston, having joined the Mormon Church, decided to come to the United States and join the Saints in Zion or Deseret Territory. She brought her grandchildren with her. Her son Archibald had three children by Helen Muir; James, Charles and Helen. After the death of Helen his wife, he married Jean Bain and had Jane, Isabella, Archibald and William. James came to America first and later sent for his grandmother Christina, who was caring for the other children in England to come to America. He paid part of their fare through the Perpetual Education Fund. She left Holytown with the 5 grandchildren and her two youngest children, James and Ellen in November of 1854 and stayed in Liverpool one month then she left England in January and was on the sea for two months. Young Helen spent three months at Garden Grove with her family waiting for an ox team to take them across the plains. She left in June 1855 with Richard Ballentyne's Company, reaching Salt Lake City in October 1855. She walked every step of the way, barefooted and even without a bonnet. Everyone was put on half rations the last half of the way.

In Salt Lake, Helen went to work for Hursel Barton. Helen worked nineteen weeks at 50 cents a week and from this money she bought a pair of shoes and a calico dress. The next summer in 1856, she went to Carson Valley with Bishop Covey and family and she being now anxious to join the Mormon Church was baptized by Elder John Hyde, who was traveling in the same company on his way to serve a mission to the Sandwich Islands.

After reaching Carson, she had a hard time for over a year, having to work most of the time just for board, so she came back to Salt Lake City and then moved South with the people due to fear of Johnston's Army. She went to Spanish Fork with the William Branch Family. Returning to Salt Lake in 1859, and finding work at the home of Francis Pumroy. She became acquainted with Joseph Watts, a new convert from England. They were married by Elder Atwood that summer. She was twenty-two years old and Joseph was forty-nine years old. That summer they journeyed north to Summit (Smithfield) Cache County, Utah arriving the first of May 1860. They made themselves a little home on Summit Creek in the fort to begin with, which was two and a half blocks west of the main street. They went back to Salt Lake City the next year, 1861, to go through the endowment house to be sealed.

Joseph and Helen lived happy together for a little over forty years until Joseph was stricken with paralysis in October and died five weeks later, Nov 29th, 1899. They had no children to bless this union but helped and enjoyed their nieces and nephews of brother Henry Watts. They even took in a little Pilkington girl to help raise for awhile. She was known as Aunt Helen or Aunt Ellen. Many hardships and trials were endured laboring to make a farming community while living with the threat of Indians. Helen lived sixteen more years alone in her little two room home after her husband died with the exception of a few months under the nursing care of a neighbor, Jane Claypool. She died of acute intestinal problems and bronchitis. She is buried next to Joseph in the Smithfield Cemetery.

Is There a Good Reason for Family Reunions?

by Karolyn Hall

I didn't think so at one time. When I was working, I never planned my vacation time to include our family reunions – it was my dad's job to attend, and he did. Then, when I was planning to go on a trip to Scotland, I decided to attend the Livingston Family reunion where I could meet others who would be going. – WHAT A SURPRISE!! In addition to feeling instant love- I thoroughly enjoyed myself. This past June, my whole family (all 11 of us) attended the week-end reunion at Heber Valley. Jesse, my grandson, said “Grandma, I didn't know I had so many relatives and I can't wait for next year to see them again”. I guess I got a lesson in reality from my grandchildren. What are some of the reasons we attend reunions?

These are only a few reasons, but a good start. It is my sincere hope that you aren't following in my past footsteps and will plan on joining us next June. My love goes out to those family members who work hard, find grave information, histories and photos and teach us how to do better in finding more information about our family.

2012 Livingston Family Reunion

by Daidre Hulick

Thank you all for attending our 2012 family reunion at Heber Valley Camp. We had over 144 people in attendance and the James line received the trophy for the most in attendance. We welcomed two new board members, Daidre Hulick and Trent Lewis. The cabins and other facilities were fantastic We enjoyed canoeing, paddle boats, challenge courses, sand volleyball, eating, hiking, visiting, and meeting more family.. We watched a slide show of Scotland, watched the Livingston Rap, listened to the story of Helen Livingston, learned about Dalgetty, Scotland from Doug Livingston and enjoyed seeing wonderful displays of photos and histories brought by many family members. We met and recognized the following people who have made a huge contribution to The Livingston Association; LaVonne VanOrden, Donna Bench, Kay Larson and Leon Aiken for research, David Jorgensen and Richard Prows for histories, Blaine Livingston for the Descendancy database and Dennis Davis for work on Find a Grave. We appreciate the efforts they and their families made to attend the reunion. A big thank you goes to the planning committee and those who helped with the food. We know it takes a lot of effort for families to attend but it's always worth it.

2013 Livingston Family Reunion

Mark your calendar and plan to join us for a fun filled day June 15, 2013 for our next family reunion in Salt Lake City. We have reserved a park and pavillion at 7585 East Doverhill Drive in Cottonwood Heights. Classes about Scottish history, The Livingston Family web site, family history and genealogy, and family fun activities will be available as well as good food. All children will enjoy a kid zone with snow cones, bouncers, and many fun activities. Enjoy Scottish music and learn Scottish dancing while getting to know your family line. Start thinking of your favorite dessert to enter into the cook-off. More details will be in our next newsletter and our website.

The Livingston Family History Rap : by Crystie Cook
6 Livingston siblings with background pictures1024px.jpg
Read this rap style to your family for a fun experience.
Well, this is the story of the Livingston clan.
And if you ain't one now, you will soon be a fan.
It was back in the year of eighteen-forty-eight ,
Squire of Lanark, Scotland, which is where I will state
Conditions in the coal mines were grievously grave.
Workin' twelve to sixteen hours a day, like a slave.
Christina Campbell Livingston, or Granny, y'know,
Raised ten of her children, with two more to go.
But Archibald, the oldest, and his wife fell ill, and died.
Hall Family together1.pxl.jpg
Their seven children came to find their fill
Of love with Granny, and Aunt Helen, Uncle James.
They learned to work, went to church, and played some games.
James, James C., and Charles were workin' overtime.
Covered head to toe in coal dust, and sweat and grime.
Granny said, "I'm 'spectin' visitors, so be good.”
Turns out the Mormon elders came into the 'hood.
Elders Baird and President Gourley taught the family fast,
And most everyone got baptized-James and Charles were last.
By nineteen James C. had learned a stone-cutting trade.
On the Falcon sailed t'America—the rest they stayed.
In Nauvoo, in the spring of eighteen fifty-three.
James C. happily the riverboat did flee.
A man in Keokuk got a job for James C.
Till it was time to move west—eventually.
In Appleton Harmon's pioneer wagon train.
James C. met Agnes Widdison—his first wife to gain.
In Deseret James C. helped quarry granite stone,
With Bishop John Sharp, because you can't work alone.
When the Salt Lake Temple is the building at stake,
'Cuz when you leave this life, it's those blessings you'll take.
Soon all of the fam'ly came from Scotland to stay;
The Emigration fund helped to make it that way.
Doug teaching about Scotland.jpg
In eighteen-sixty-two, Brigham Young was concerned;
Johnston's army was gone—Patrick Connor'd returned.
Brigham said, “I need a man of valor and wit.”
Stopped in front of James C., said, “Now, Brother, you're it.
You're the man for this spy job; the Lord told me so.”
James C. then replied, “Then, I'm willing to go!”
And for several months, James was in the Army,
Reporting to Brigham, under a false I.D.
And coming to visit his wife Agnes at night,
With soldiers for dinner; neighbors thought, “That ain't right.”
They complained to the bishop, thinking Agnes'd tried
To harbor unfriendly soldiers, which she denied.
But Granny found out and went to see Brigham Young.
And said, “Dear President, something's got to be done!
Or they'll ex-communicate poor Agnes, you know?”
Brigham said, “All right, Granny, I'll certainly go.”
So Agnes was saved, and James served out to the end,
Came back home to work more and his fam'ly to tend.
And brother Charles worked in the city's police,
A very tough job 'cuz it sure wasn't a breeze.
In the eighteen-sixties, with a railroad to build,
James and Bishop Sharp made sure the cuts were all filled.
Someone made a goof with the lit dynamite,
Blew off James' right arm; he was sufferin' that night!
Agnes gathered the children round James C. to pray.
With blessings and time, life continued some way.
But the loss of his arm didn't hold James C.
Back from helping keep the big Salt Lake Temple on track.
There's more that went down, but our time is all through.
Now the Livingston story continues with YOU!

The Livingston Legacy of FAMILY and LOVE lives on through Bill and Jean Livingstone

by Enid Cox, Treasurer

The Livingston Family Association would like to pay tribute to them on this, their 50th year of marriage.

Bill and Jean Livingston, who live in Dunfirmline, Scotland, who have been most helpful in providing information about our common ancestors, who are fantastic tour guides, who know more about our ancestors and the land of their birth than anyone, who are the most gracious hosts, who are so much fun to be with, who have a lovely and charming family, – and because of all of that and much more, we honor them. This is their story written by their daughter, Laura Simpson.

On 22 July 2012 an enjoyable Sunday afternoon was spent celebrating the Golden Wedding of Bill and Jean Livingstone. Friends and family gathered at the home of the couple's daughter Laura to celebrate fifty years of happy marriage. It was a lovely day, full of fun and laughter with proud speeches made by son Iain and by Bill himself.

William Beveridge Livingstone was born on 9 June 1936 and raised in Cowdenbeath, Fife, Scotland. He completed his compulsory National Service with the RAF before going to Jordan Hill College of Education in Glasgow where he trained as a Physical Education teacher. A teaching post at Queen Anne High School in Dunfermline proved significant. It was there he met a young member of the PE Department called Jean Roy – and the rest, as they say, is history! Bill and Jean first met in August 1961, were engaged by Christmas of the same year and married in July the following year – a whirlwind romance! The Rector of Queen Anne is quoted as saying that he had “no doubt that they would produce a dynasty of Olympians” – sadly he was mistaken! Bill and Jean married in Dunfermline Abbey – the burial place of King Robert the Bruce – on 14 July 1962 and in May the following year their daughter Laura was born followed by Iain in October 1966.

Family life was busy and happy. Once the children were older Bill decided to find out more about his ancestors and began researching the Livingstone Family. One interesting fact was that the “e” at the end of his name turned out to be a recent addition made by his grandfather who thought it made the name appear of a higher class! Bill spent many a day at Register House in Edinburgh tracing his ancestry. As a result, he has met many of his extended family and enjoyed happy times with them, both in America and Scotland, with a particularly enjoyable week in 2011 when a large party of Livingstons came over to visit.

Both Bill and Jean enjoyed fulfilling and successful careers in education culminating in Bill becoming an Assistant Rector at Inverkeithing High School and Jean the Head Teacher of a Primary School. They both retired on the same day in March 1991. Throughout their marriage Bill and Jean had many happy vacations with friends in their holiday home in Spain but soon after retiring they decided to sell this house as their life at home was filled with family time and grandchildren – six granddaughters in all! Amy was born to Laura and her husband Kevin in 1985 followed by Anna in 1987 and Claire in September 1990. Iain and his wife Jane then had Sylvie who arrived only four weeks after Claire, with Louisa being born in 1994 and Hope, the youngest, in 2000. Amy and Anna, who are both married, are now teachers like their grandparents, while Claire is training to be a nurse. Sylvie is now a police officer, Louisa is an art student and Hope is very excited to have begun high school. The pleasure Bill and Jean take in their granddaughters is obvious for all to see and very gratifying for Laura and Iain. The girls all love them and know that their grandparents are proud of each one of them, being always available and interested in everything they do. What was very clear at the Golden Wedding in July is that Bill and Jean are held in the greatest affection and respect by everyone they know and that they occupy a place very much at their family's heart.

Thanks to You Who Have Donated to our Family Organization

By: Enid Cox, Treasurer

We appreciate your help and interest. We have been able to acquire some maps that Doug Livingston will talk about at the 2013 reunion. They should be very helpful in identifying where our family lived and other important information in their histories. We are changing our request from “paying dues” to “making donations” as you can. You are all important members of our family and we hope you will come and participate – donations or not! The most important thing is learning about our ancestors, becoming acquainted with our relatives and instilling a love of our heritage in our families.

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