Inscription on headstone reads: Patriach and Pioneer. Born in Penn. Died Draper, Utah.
(Special to the Deseret News). February 22nd, 1855 — William Draper, son of Thomas and Lydia, was born in Wyoming, Susquehanna county, Pennsylvania, on the 6th of September, 1774. Being fond of the study of the Scriptures, and early convinced of the necessity of baptism for the remission of sins, he yielded to his convictions, and, according to the best light he then had, was baptized, and became a member of the Baptist church. In 1796 he married Miss Lydia Lathrop in the state of New York, and removed from that State to Upper Canada, in 1807. After full fellowship with the Baptists for about 15 years, he began to be faulted for believing that the scriptures were to be understood in accordance with their obvious purport, and that the prophecies would be literally fulfilled, and Israel gathered. He continued in this frame of mind until 1833, when he heard President Brigham Young preach the gospel, and was by him baptized, confirmed, and ordained into the lesser, or Aaronic priesthood in June, in the township of Laughborough; and was ordained an elder, under the same hands, before the expiration of that month. In 1835 he immigrated to Kirtland, Ohio; and in 1836 went, in company with John E. Page, on a mission to Canada, where they baptized many persons, and organized a large branch of the Church. He received his endowment in the Temple at Kirtland, and in 1837 was ordained a high priest under the hands of Don Carlos Smith and his counselors. In 1838 he started to immigrate to Missouri with the Kirtland camp, but stopped in Sangamon county, Illinois, until the fall of 1839, when he moved to Pleasant Vale, Pike county, Illinois, where he assisted in building up a large branch of the church. In 1841 he moved to Green Plains, Hancock county, Illinois, and was driven from there by a mob in 1845, and sought safety in Nauvoo, but in 1846 was again driven by a ruthless mob, and in August crossed the Mississippi river in search of a peaceful asylum in the West. Soon after crossing the river, his first wife, borne down by the hardships attendant upon a relentless persecution, fell asleep in the triumphs of the Latter-day faith, and her body was laid to rest on the right bank of the Mississippi river, there to await a glorious resurrection with the just. In 1847 father Draper resumed his westerly march, and reached Counel Point, Iowa, where he married the widow of his eldest brother; and in 1848 was ordained a Patriarch under the hands of Elder George A. Smith, by order of the First Presidency. Having by his industry accumulated an outfit, he started for, and arrived in these valleys in 1852, and in April 1854, united with the High Priests? Quorum in G. S. L. City, and since then has administered about 250 patriarchal blessings. Not withstanding his age, and the many severe scenes he had been called to pass through, he continued to labor with his hands to within a short period of the time when he was summoned to pass behind the veil, which happened at Draperville, in G. S. L. County, on the 24th of December, 1854, at the advanced age of 80 years, 3 months, and 18 days. He went calmly to his rest, as only the faithful can, and his works will follow him; and his spirit is rejoicing and operating in a wider sphere of intelligence; preparatory to receiving a glorious body in the morning of the resurrection. (bio by: Loose Moose)