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George Elisha King

Mantua, Portage County, Ohio, USA
Death 28 Oct 1855 (aged 27)
Seattle, King County, Washington, USA
Burial Non-Cemetery Burial, Specifically: Body buried on rural farm, along White River, King, Washington, USA
Memorial ID 103190899 · View Source
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George Elisha was the eldest son of Rebecca Englesby Olin and Thomas Jefferson King.

In 1846, he married Sabrina Curtis, a daughter of Ruth Franklin and Enos Curtis of New York. They had one son, David Abraham 1847-1921 and a daughter, Rebecca Angelina, who lived less than a year in 1849. This baby drowned in the Platt River, Platt County, Nebraska Territory. Her mother also nearly drowned in the crossing.

This was only the beginning of George's heartaches to come. Sabrina never recovered from the loss, they divorced and she immediately left for the Salt Lake Valley, taking young David with her. In April, 1850 she married a young man by the name of Thomas Harward at Salt Lake.

George also remarried, to Mary Susan Kinsley in Missouri, but they did not leave the main body of the Latter-day Saints at Nauvoo, Illinois until about 1850.

George crossed the Great Plain to the Salt Lake Valley ahead of the company of his parents with his wife and two small children, having had the heartache of burying three of his young siblings, Rhoda Eleanor, Jonathan Alma, and Enoch Elmer and his own infant son, William R. before the family left Nauvoo, Illinois and the state of Iowa in mid May, 1854. He, his wife, son George Alma, and baby Mary left with their separate team a few days ahead of the Benjamin C. Thurman Company of wagons.

It was reportedly recorded in a journal kept by Winfield Scott Ebey that the baby, "Mary", died just west of Fort Laramie on June 19th; this daughter was wrongfully assumed to be another daughter, named Mary Susan, who was to be born in 1855 and was named after her deceased sister.*

Upon arrival in the Salt Lake Valley, George Elisha's parents settled at what was called Kays Creek (later Kaysville and Layton, Davis County, Utah); but George and his little family had headed for Fort Hall, departing for the coast. They were never heard from, nor were they ever seen again, by their parents.

He had determined to travel northward to the northwestern coastal region. On arrival, they took up a recorded claim of land, along the White River, just south of present day Seattle, King, Washington, which was then just Washington Territory. Their last child, Mary Susan, namesake of her sister and mother, was born late July 1855 and was the infant recorded missing in the following report:

In late 1855, conflict between the Indians east of the Cascade Mountains and American soldiers and settlers spilled over the mountain passes, igniting what came to be known as the Puget Sound Indian War. Hostilities began on October 27, 1855, in what is now often called the White River Massacre.

Nine white settlers were killed and others driven from their homes. White River Indians attacked several settlers in the area on October 28, 1855. At about 8:00 a.m. the Indians began an attack, killing three families -- nine people, in all.

The third family, reported to be residing peacefully in their usual residence was that of George E. King.

George, his wife, Mary Susan Kinsley King and two children were also attacked; the parents were killed immediately. Mrs. King's body was found shot and mutilated, and Mr. King was found burned up in the home. Their two children, including a baby girl, Mary Susan, were kidnapped.

Their son, described as "five year old George King, Jr." was actually George Alma King, then almost six years old. He was brought to the soldiers at Fort Steilacoom, near Lake Steilacoom, the following spring; having been well cared for by an Indian called "Spoon Bill." However, the baby was never recovered; she was assumed killed that day.

The soldiers who attended to the aftermath of the killings reported that they buried the settlers there on their own remote farms, about 20 miles south of Seattle.

During the next six months log forts sprang up across the landscape of the southern Puget Sound, as hostilities continued.

George Alma eventually came into the care of others and lived to 25, never marrying; and at his death, he resided in Meridan, New Haven, Connecticut.

*NOTE: Many thanks to researcher Neil Simmons for bring the proper identifications of Mary & Mary Susan to our attention.

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  • Created by: history4sure
  • Added: 6 Jan 2013
  • Find A Grave Memorial 103190899
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for George Elisha King (23 Oct 1828–28 Oct 1855), Find A Grave Memorial no. 103190899, ; Maintained by history4sure (contributor 46997739) Non-Cemetery Burial, who reports a Body buried on rural farm, along White River, King, Washington, USA.