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Sarah Elizabeth Moulton Hawkins
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Birth: Sep. 5, 1837
Northamptonshire, England
Death: May 2, 1885
Salt Lake City
Salt Lake County
Utah, USA

Daughter of Thomas Moulton and Esther Marsh

Married John Bennett Hawkins, 5 Dec 1856, Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah

Children - John Moulton (John Bennett) Hawkins, Sarah Ann Hawkins, Della Maud Hawkins, Julia May Hawkins, William Moulton Hawkins, Thomas Ernest Moulton Hawkins, Eliza Jane Hawkins, Esther Emily Hawkins, Emma Amelia Hawkins, Mary Elizabeth Hawkins

History - Sarah Moulton, age 19, a member of the "Willie Handcart Company" met her future husband, John Bennett Hawkins, a member of the "Rescue Company; Additional Rescuers."

Both John and Sarah's stories began in the rolling green countryside of England where they joined the Church.

Born in 1825, John was baptized in 1849 at 24 years of age. He sailed to America and arrived in 1852 Utah where he became a blacksmith.

Sarah Elizabeth's family learned about the Church in 1837 through family friends. In 1841, nine members of the Quorum of the Twelve visited England. Meeting some of those Church leaders strengthened Sarah Elizabeth's and her family's resolve to travel to the Salt Lake Valley. The spirit of gathering was strong in the hearts of the saints in Europe.

Still the Moulton family including seven children did not have the means to make the journey. They saved money in a fruit jar, then news of the Perpetual Emigration Fund buoyed their hopes. Soon Church leaders investigated handcart travel, and found that handcarts allowed the travel to be faster and less costly.

With their savings, help from the Perpetual Emigration Fund, and a less expensive mode of travel the dream of emigration became more of a possibility.

The family began careful planning for the trip. Sarah Elizabeth's father thought about delaying their departure. His wife was pregnant with the couple's eighth child. But she was a woman of great faith and she could not be persuaded otherwise.

Still, before she left England she was given a blessing in which she was promised that she could make the long journey without losing a single member of her large family.

Sarah Elizabeth would have been 18 years old at this time. The family set sail from Liverpool, England, in 1856. They welcomed a baby boy three days into journey.

When they reached Iowa City, however, they found handcarts sent with other pioneer companies were in short supply. Before the pioneers could leave they frantically constructed 250 handcarts. The women made dozens of tents for the journey.

Due to time constraints, many did not adhere to the strict specifications used on other handcarts. The more costly error was making carts of green, unseasoned timber.

Sarah Elizabeth's family was assigned two handcarts, her parents pulled one with the three younger children aboard. With the help of two younger brothers and a younger sister, Sarah Elizabeth pulled the other handcart. Her 8-year-old brother crossed the plains on foot, tied to his parents' handcart so he would not wander off.

They began the 1,300-mile journey westward July 18 as part of the historic Willie Handcart Company. At Winter Quarters several more days were lost as they mended carts and took on new supplies.

Late in the season, a council was held to determine if the group should go on or wait until spring. They were strongly cautioned against travel so late in the season. Short provisions, the Willie company started on their journey in August 1856.

During the journey, Sarah Elizabeth's family who had already left excess baggage at the port in Liverpool, England, aboard the ship, in New York City, and in Iowa City now discarded everything left, including badly needed bedding and clothes.

It is hard to imagine the daily misery, the blistered feet, the sore muscles, flies and mosquitoes, stampeding buffalo herds. How can we imagine the difficult river crossing in sand or among slippery rocks or pulling handcarts across deep or swift running water? How can we understand the tiredness that comes from a lack of sufficient nourishment?

They reached Fort Laramie on Sept. 30. Here they were able to exchange their remaining watches and jewelry, about all they had left, for corn meal, bacon, beans and flour.

But the food did not last long in the harsh, cold conditions. On a rocky ridge of the Sweetwater, the company waited against starvation and cold for help to arrive.

From Temple Square President Brigham Young sent men and supplies to help the stranded pioneers. John was in the (old) Tabernacle that day.

On Oct. 21, the rescuers finally found the people. They were greeted with joy and gratitude by the frozen and starving survivors. This was probably the first meeting of John and Sarah.

When the company reached the Salt Lake Valley gratitude soon blossomed into romance and Sarah Elizabeth Moulton married John Bennett Hawkins a few weeks later, on Dec. 5.

Sarah Elizabeth's mother's blessing was fulfilled; every member of her family made it safely to the Salt Lake Valley.

Mormon Pioneer Overland Travel, James G. Willie Company (1856) 
Family links: 
  Thomas Moulton (1810 - 1892)
  Esther Marsh Moulton (1802 - 1839)
  John Bennett Hawkins (1825 - 1898)
  William Moulton Hawkins (1858 - 1858)*
  Sarah Ann Hawkins Keysor (1859 - 1919)*
  Mary Elizabeth Hawkins Rasband (1861 - 1942)*
  John Moulton Hawkins (1865 - 1908)*
  Esther Emily Hawkins Rasband (1869 - 1941)*
  Eliza Jane Hawkins (1869 - 1869)*
  Julia May Hawkins Martin (1871 - 1953)*
  Emma Amelia Hawkins (1874 - 1875)*
  Thomas Ernest Moulton Hawkins (1877 - 1955)*
  Della Maud Hawkins Sanders (1881 - 1926)*
  Susan Moulton (1834 - 1836)*
  Sarah Elizabeth Moulton Hawkins (1837 - 1885)
  Mary Ann Moulton Giles (1841 - 1868)**
  William Denton Moulton (1843 - 1883)**
  Joseph Moulton (1845 - 1935)**
  James Heber Moulton (1848 - 1934)**
  Charlotte M Moulton Carroll (1851 - 1940)**
  Sophia Elizabeth Moulton Hicken (1853 - 1933)**
  Charles Alma Moulton (1856 - 1931)**
  John Ephraim Moulton (1860 - 1915)**
  George Franklin Moulton (1863 - 1933)**
*Calculated relationship
Salt Lake City Cemetery
Salt Lake City
Salt Lake County
Utah, USA
Plot: F_7_12_1/2_S
Created by: SMSmith
Record added: Jun 11, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 19833777
Sarah Elizabeth <i>Moulton</i> Hawkins
Added by: Judie Latshaw Huff
Sarah Elizabeth <i>Moulton</i> Hawkins
Added by: SMSmith
Sarah Elizabeth <i>Moulton</i> Hawkins
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Jimmy Bennett
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.

- SMSmith
 Added: Jun. 11, 2007

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