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 Christian Hansen

Christian Hansen

Death 10 May 1892 (aged 64)
Midvale, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Burial West Jordan, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA
Memorial ID 13382647 · View Source
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Son of Hans Jacobsen and Mari Christoffersen

Married Anne Henriksen, 26 Nov 1852, Royken, Buskerud, Norway

Children - Hans Christian Hansen, Martin Hansen, Eddley Hansen, Charles Michael "McCall" Hansen

Family Account - Son, Martin Hansen, was born October 4, 1855 in Heggum, Norway and when a child. His parents, moved to another place in the same locality called Rukem Buskrud. Here their home was of frame and log construction as were the out buildings including a large barn. This barn was large enough for their cattle and also for the hay and grain. The loft in it was used for threshing their grain during the winter months. It was then gathered in a pile and thrown from one end of the loft to the other. In doing this the lightest, or chaff, would fall first and the heavier kernels of grain fell the farthest away. This was then gathered up without waste for the chaff was used with the straw for winter feed.

During his early age it was necessary for him to work and assist at home as boys usually do, however finding time for play with his friends. One day while playing around a small, but deep pond from which his mother carried water to the stock and also for house use, he fell in and being unable to swim, sank twice during his struggles and was going down for the third time when his mother reached him and pulled him out.

After rolling him around for some time he was revived and in a short time felt little worse, if any, for his experiences. The water in the pond was apparently full of bloodsuckers (leeches) for when he was taken out, his body was covered with them.

Another time he and his brother Hans were sitting against the fireplace, the other children were playing on the floor and his mother had just left the house to milk the cows, when all at once he found his hair and clothing on fire. His brother Hans told him to sit still while he went for a bucket of water, but instead of doing this, he jumped up and ran from the house to where his mother was in the barn. Seeing him on fire, she threw her dress around him and smothered it out, but not before he had been severely burned which on his side penetrated into the ribs.

For some time he suffered considerable from this and at times could find no relief, only when milk from his mother's breast was applied, and when it did begin to heal it was very painful. When he sat down it would be necessary for someone to assist when he wanted to raise up, however in time it healed but the scars he carried throughout his life as a reminder of that experience in his early life.

During the long winters in his native land, he did considerable skiing and trapping birds as a boy which proved a pleasure and a pastime for him and his friends. In fact, it became his chief winter sport.

In 1865, when eleven years of age, his parents became members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and partook of the gathering spirit that had called so many from their native lands to the body of the church. So to further this their desire, they sold their property and all belongings by auction just prior to leaving their home for America.

At that time, his father's family consisted of the following four sons, namely, Hans, himself, Eddley (Note: Eddley or Eddle or Edle was a daughter) and McCall, all of whom with their parents walked some distance the night they left home to the place where the next morning they were taken to Christiana, now Oslo, the capital of Norway. During this walking he fell down several times because of the ice on the roads. Usually in the early part of May as this was, there is considerable freezing in this far north country.

Leaving Christiana, they crossed the North Sea in a small side paddle boat to Copenhagen, Denmark, from here they went to Hamburg, Germany, apparently by rail, and after staying there two or three days, they embarked on the sailing vessel "Humboldt" for America.

After leaving Hamburg (June 2, 1866), they stopped at one English port and then continued across the Atlantic to New York where they landed after being upon the water about nine weeks in a company of about five hundred passengers, most of whom were members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

One day while on the ship he fell from one deck to the other but fortunately he was not injured, however, it was not so well for Mr. Joseph Jensen upon whom he fell. It so happened that this Mr. Jensen, who was on the lower deck, was stooping over to pick up something from the floor when he fell, and in so doing, struck Mr. Jensen on the back and forcing him to the floor in which he was slightly injured.

Another time he had gone upstairs during a storm and was passing one of the doors when a woman grabbed him and pulled him to one side. Just as she did, one of the huge water tanks on the deck that had been loosened by the storm, crashed into the door, thus again he escaped for had she not pulled him to one side he would have been crushed.

During the long voyage, while he had many experiences, he was fortunate to escape sea sickness. However, there were many, including his brother Hans, who were very sick. Some of those who were (sick) and who were not sea sick, became ill from the drinking water which was not any too good and especially during the latter part of their journey because it was necessary to carry it in large tanks upon the decks and after being at sea for several weeks, it became somewhat stale.

Arriving in New York City (18 July 1866), they passed the government inspection and changed their money into American money and left for Omaha and the West without unnecessary delay. Omaha, the place where they were to start upon the plains, was quite a distance from New York City and especially so in that day for only a small part of the distance could be traveled by train.

Leaving New York by train, they went westward to what was thought to be Pittsburgh. Here they left the train and walked for some distance. Evidence of mob gathering bent upon violence to the new emigrants caused them to move very careful, and just at this time they had an opportunity to take passage on an old wood burner river boat which was going down the river with a load of wood. Availing themselves of this opportunity, they accepted the invitation of the captain and without delay started down stream.

The next day they reached Omaha and began preparations to move on west. With preparations complete, they formed a part of Peter Nebeker's company consisting of mule teams and quite a number of yoke of oxen for the wagons, and a few horses for riding.

The wagon that carried their belongings, consisting of two trunks and their bedding, was pulled by three yoke of oxen. It also included the small belongings of another couple, both of whom were sick that necessitated their riding along with his brother Hans, but the rest of them walked and if they traveled after dark as they did some times, the teamsters would pick him up and set him in the wagon with his brother, but his father always walked until they made camp.

In those early days there were no bridges so it became necessary to ford the streams and river(s) that were necessary to cross on their way. This at times was very difficult and required some times a full day to cross one with as many as six yoke of oxen to the wagon. At one of these crossings, Mr Andrew Severson's father, who was one of their company, made his friend Andrew a fishing hook from an old knitting needle and while he sat on the river bank fishing, a huge salmon trout came along, took the hook and pulled Andrew into the stream where he stood up still holding to the fish. One of the men rode out and brought him to shore so for supper that night many in the company enjoyed the fish.

During the journey no one suffered for the want of food as there seemed to be plenty of bacon and white flour that was carried in the wagons . . . Many of the company drank black coffee, and the Severson family who had brought a cow along had milk, but they got along alright with water.

On the way they met many Indians, but in most cases they were going in the opposite direction and all riding very fine red horses with blankets and generally appeared to be peaceful.

In their company was a woman called Mrs. Gruntley, who from all appearances, was dissatisfied with the journey and almost everything else, and who had a tendency (to) drag a little in the rear of the company as they traveled along. One day a group of Indians ride up, picked up Mrs. Gruntley, threw her across one of their horses and rode rapidly away. Her husband seeing this attempted to stop them, but was shot down with their arrows and seriously injured. He recovered somewhat but the places where the arrows struck continued to break out in running sores and shortly after reaching the valley he died. But as for his wife, she was never seen again.

Another man of their company was bitten by a rattlesnake and while they worked with him, they were unable to prevent the poison from going through his system and before he died, his legs became the color of the snake.

With this company, there were several wagons pulled by four mules which were placed in the lead of the company because they were faster then the oxen. They would travel a short distance and then wait for the oxen to come up. Usually the oxen made from twenty-five to thirty miles each day.

After a trek upon the plains for about three months, they arrived in Salt Lake during Fall Conference of the Church in October 1865, and while the journey had been long with many sad and happy experiences, they felt little worse, if any, other than tired for their experiences, with the exception of his brother Hans who had been ill most of the journey and gradually became weaker as they neared the end of their journey. The day after their arrival in Salt Lake he passed from this mortal life.

So this little family who had given about all they possessed for their religious convictions were called upon to make another sacrifice and to mourn his loss. Yet with sadness caused by his demise, they were thankful that he could live until they reached the valley. Through the kindness of Mr. Harmon Cutler, he was laid away in the Cutler burial lot (Melba called it the old Indian burial ground).

After camping in the tithing lot two or three days following their arrival in Salt Lake, Mr. Harmon Cutler, with Alexander Dahl as his interpreter, hired his father, who was a carpenter and builder by trade, to work for him. At this time, Mr. Cutler had considerable building to do and desired some one who understood that work. So they moved to West Jordan (now Midvale) to the Cutler home where his father worked for him about a year.

Less than a year after they arrived in the valley, or in 1866, his father had been able, through the kindness of Mr. Cutler, to secure logs and lumber to build them a little house on the site of the present new Midvale City Hall. Here they made their home and such it remained to him until he was married in 1880, and a home for his mother until the day of her death.

His father was very thankful for the work that he had received for it assisted him in paying for their transportation from their native land to Salt Lake for this was his privilege to do so. Many of the Saints came that way and after their arrival here, paid their way and assisted others to come also.

As a rule, many of the young men of about twenty-one years of age would volunteer to return East and bring in other immigrants to the valley, and in order to have wagon power, many of those in the valley would assist by sending their mules and oxen and in this way, assist in the paying of their own transportation and at the same time assist others to come.

His father assisted in this manner and at times would send the best oxen of the two he had and while it was away, he would get along the best they could with one. Usually when their animals returned, they were in a good condition.

After his father had worked for Mr. Cutler about a week, he gave them a cow called "Old Brook" which had a calf in the early spring and therefore was a valuable asset to the family at this time in furnishing plenty of milk.

Having no hay upon the place where they were living, their neighbors gave them plenty, so they were at this time able to give proper care to it.

In West Jordan (now Midvale), Mr. Cutler had quite a number of horses and forty or fifty head of cattle which was necessary to feed during the winter months while they were herded during the summer by boys on the bench lands. This gave him an opportunity to work when a boy.

When his father had completed his work contract with Mr. Cutler, he was given his choice of one of his horses in appreciation for the splendid work he had done. The one selected was unbroken to work so he and Mr. Nels Anderson hitched it up and in a short time had a fine working animal. Then about this time another man took a fancy for the horse and offered them two of his horses, both of which were unbroken, however, the trade was made and in a short time they had a team instead of one horse.

When he was twelve years of age he was hired to Mrs. Henry Erickson of Mill Creek to work on her farm following the death of her husband, for which he received eight dollars a month during the summer with board, room and schooling during the winter. However, the schooling was very limited for the work must be done first. However, she did compliment him, telling him that he did more work than any other two men she had ever hired.

Returning home from Mill Creek, he worked for Mr. Cutler herding his horses up around Sandy and the Dry Creek region. He also worked a short time for Mr. George Wright feeding and looking after his cattle. During this time he purchased a Bible which he carried with him when he was out herding for he found time to read. At this time he was herding with one of the Leak boys having as many as two hundred head of cattle up on the East bench. These cows belonged to different people for which they charged so much a head and at times when the herd was large, they received as much as two dollars a day each.

During the winter he attended school. It was not much if compared with our schools of today, but it was the best they had and it did considerable good. At first he had a Mr. Alsop from Sandy as a teacher, but for some reason he had no control over the larger boys and even some of the adults that usually attended, for if the boys were playing ball or doing anything else that they desired and the bell rang, it made no difference with them for they continued to play until they themselves decided to go in. Then Mr. Benjamin Cutler became the teacher and he made quite a success of it and had the respect of all who attended. Later, Mr. Seb Stewart of Draper became the teacher and he got along very good.

When he was about seventeen years of age, he worked again for Mr. George Wright herding his sheep on the west bench and foothills of the west mountains and later in the valleys south and west of the Salt Lake valley. He had his own yoke of oxen for moving his camp and his own wagon in which to live. These oxen he had received by trading a horse that was given to him by Mr. Cutler at the time he was herding horses in the Dry Creek region. At the time he received these oxen they were unbroken so it was necessary to do that, however, he was successful in doing so and they became very useful to him.

For a time after they were broken to work, he hauled freight from the railroad station in Sandy to the mines and smelter at Granite and Little Cottonwood Canyon and did considerable work in the valley with them. A little later he secured a team of horses and from that day until he retired from farming activities in later life, he always had a team.

Growing into young manhood he did considerable teaming in the valley and also in Bingham Canyon mining district, for in that day it was necessary to haul fuel and supplies from the nearest railroad station at Sandy to the mines and smelter in Bingham Canyon, so for (some) time he was engaged in this work.

When his father was killed, just a little west and north of the intersection of what is now Center and Holden Streets in Midvale, he was driving one of the teams that was moving some heavy machinery from the railroad station to a mill site, which also later became the site of the Bingham smelter in Midvale. The heavy machinery fell from the wagon on which is was being hauled crushing his father and resulting in his death.

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  • Maintained by: SMSmith
  • Originally Created by: Bruce J. Black
  • Added: 18 Feb 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 13382647
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Christian Hansen (1 Jul 1827–10 May 1892), Find A Grave Memorial no. 13382647, citing West Jordan City Cemetery, West Jordan, Salt Lake County, Utah, USA ; Maintained by SMSmith (contributor 46491005) .