Christiane <I>Hansen</I> Breinholt

Christiane Hansen Breinholt

Saint Louis, St. Louis County, Missouri, USA
Death 7 Dec 1914 (aged 58)
Redmond, Sevier County, Utah, USA
Burial Redmond, Sevier County, Utah, USA
Plot D-19-15
Memorial ID 40342067 · View Source
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She is wife of Jens Christian Larsen Breinholt (1841-1914).


Pioneer of Utah — 1856

Written by her son, Oliver Christian Breinholt,

Notes by grandson, Verle Breinholt

Christiane Hansen Breinholt was born April 7, 1856 at St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A. She was the fifth and youngest child of Anders Hansen and Abelone Knudsen. Their oldest daughter, Mariah, was about 16 years old at the time, and lived to raise a large family. Their son, Jorgen Andersen, died aboard ship coming across the ocean and was buried at sea at the age of 11 years. They had an infant boy who died at birth, while they were in Denmark. Their daughter, Anne Andersen, died at St. Louis, Missouri at the age of four years, at about the time Christiane was born.

Anders Hansen and Abelone Knudsen were both born in Denmark and immigrated to Utah in 1856. They sailed from Liverpool, England on 12 December 1855 on the ship John J. Boyd. They arrived in New York February 15, 1856, and arrived at St. Louis, Missouri sometime between the 15th of February and the 7th of April, 1856. They then sailed via the Missouri River to Florence, Nebraska. They departed from Florence on June 10, 1856 with the Knud Peterson Company, consisting of 320 persons and 60 wagons, arriving in Salt Lake City on September 20, 1856.

Mother (Christiane) was born in St. Louis while her parents were waiting for passage across the plains to Utah. At this time, the Saints were emigrating west so fast that they did not have enough teams and wagons to transport them. Therefore, Brigham Young instructed the emigration authorities to provide handcarts to move the Saints west. I assume that Mother's cradle was a handcart, but it did not seem to hurt her disposition, because when she grew to womanhood she was known among her friends as "Gentle Annie". She had blue eyes, a fair complexion and a slender build when she was a girl.

When they arrived in Utah, they settled in Ephraim, Sanpete County. Because her parents were advanced in years, Mother had to assume considerable responsibility in the home; and because they were very poor, she worked out when possible at a very young age. Their circumstances greatly hampered her schooling, of which she had very little, but she learned the arts of homemaking early, such as spinning yarns, knitting sweaters and stockings, and cooking. I have heard her relate how she went out into the fields and gleaned heads of wheat that were left after the harvesting.

She and her parents experienced some of the troubles during the Black Hawk War. During the year 1873 she became engaged to Jens Christian Larsen (Breinholt name adopted 1882). (1) He went to St. George on a labor mission during that winter to work on the temple, and when he returned home in March, 1874 they went to Salt Lake City and were married in the Endowment House on the 30th of March, 1874, and were sealed for time and eternity by Joseph F. Smith.

In the fall of 1874, Mother went with Father from Ephraim to St. George when he returned to work on the temple. They rented a one-room apartment, where they lived during the winter of 1874-75. They also took with them a little daughter of Father's by his deceased second wife [Christine Larsen]. (2) Mother cared for little Johanna Sophia until her death from diphtheria at the age of seven.

Once during the winter they went on a visit to Mother's older sister, Mariah Black, who lived at Long Valley, about 13 miles from Glendale. They returned to Ephraim in March, 1875. On the 30th of May, 1875 her mother, Abelone K. Hansen, died. Christiane stayed at her father's home and cared for him nine years until his death on the 1st of June, 1884. During these years three children were born to them: George Andrew was born 5 October 1878, Clarissa Abelone was born 9 February 1881, and Mahonri William was born 10 January 1883.

It was during the early years of Mother's married life that she experienced a great deal of sadness due to sickness and deaths. As has been mentioned before, first her mother, then little Johanna Sophia, and at the same time this little girl had diphtheria, her own baby, one-year-old George Andrew, also had the dread disease. He very nearly died when his heart stopped beating and there was no pulse, but through their faith and prayers and the administration of the Holy Priesthood, he was restored to life.

After the death of her father, they moved to Manti where Father was laboring as a stonemason on the Manti Temple. Here their son Canute Peter was born on 8 August 1885. In the fall of 1885, they moved to Redmond, Utah and there rented a house. They planned to make a permanent home and Father built a two-room log house into which they moved in the spring of 1886. (3) On the 2nd of August 1887, a fourth son was born, named David Milton, and on the 4th of June 1889 a fifth son, Oliver Christian, was born.

From the spring of 1886 until November 1891, Mother lived in this home and cared for her six children. (4) Most of the time she was alone and had very limited necessities, but she was resourceful and managed to get along. At this time, Redmond was a new settlement and they had moved there hoping to settle it and make a permanent home there, but on account of the pressure of the Edmunds Law, they were again obliged to move. (5) This time they traveled to Old Mexico to avoid persecution from the U.S. Marshals.

On November 25, 1891 they left Redmond with a team of horses and a wagon, one cow, and the barest household necessities. At Ephraim they loaded their belongings on a train and eventually arrived at Demming, New Mexico, which was the nearest point to the Mexican border. From here they continued by team and wagon into Old Mexico. When they arrived at their destination, they were welcomed by Mother's older sister Mariah and her husband, William M. Black, who was working at Joseph Jackson's flour mill.

They lived in a tent for some time until Father could build them a home. Again they were faced with many hardships and lived mostly on corn bread and molasses until they could grow other things to eat. After a year or two Father was able to purchase a 30-acre piece of farming land at San Jose, across the river from Colonia Dublan, State of Chihuahua, and here they built a two-room house for the family. They were members of the Dublan Ward, Juarez Stake of Zion. Another son was born to them on the 11th of May, 1893 and was named Anton Lund. A daughter was also born to them 19 August 1897, named Christy Mariah.

Christiane Breinholt worked very hard to care for her eight children and her husband. She spun yarn, knitted stockings and sweaters, sewed and remodeled clothing, braided wheat straw and made hats. She also made straw ticks to use on the boys bunk beds. She hired the Mexican men to make sandals out of rawhide for us to wear on our feet. Mother was a good cook and homemaker. She made her own soap in a large brass kettle over the fire, using grease and lye. To keep the milk and butter cool, she would put it in a bucket and lower it down into the well with a rope and pulley. She did all the washing of clothes on a washboard all her active life, except for a few years when hand-powered washing machines became available.

Mother loved her children and was cheerful in her work. She often sang to us, and I can remember a part of the lullaby she sang:

Open the door for the children,

Tenderly gather them in . . . .

From her parents she had learned to speak the Danish language, and she enjoyed visiting with her Danish friends — especially two girlfriends named Matha Wells Herbert and Mariah Torgensen. She had a generous nature and always gave freely to those less fortunate than herself. It was common for relatives and friends to stop at her home when traveling, and especially at quarterly stake conference time.

Mother had much faith in prayer and she never neglected having family prayers when Father was not at home to attend to it. She was an honest tithe payer, but her tithing was often eggs, chickens, and butter, which she felt was part of their earnings.

Because of her limited education, she did not take much part in church activity other than attending sacrament meetings and Relief Society, and she was a visiting teacher. (6)

The family moved from Dublan to Colonia Juarez the year of 1899 for the benefit of better schooling. (7) It was May of this year while her oldest child, George Andrew, was finishing some work at Dublan that he was stricken with appendicitis, and on account of not having proper care in time, he died the 29th of May 1899 and was buried in the Dublan Cemetery.

Mother's life was a strenuous one — especially the last 20 years. She had poor health, because during one of her maternity confinements she developed cancer of the breast. She finally went to a doctor and was operated on. It did not cure, but rather seemed to spread throughout her system. She also had the responsibility of the care of Anton, her youngest son, who became an invalid due to multiple afflictions (8) from the age of eight until his death at age 21.

She did not complain, although her hardships were many. All of her children were born with the assistance of a midwife. At Juarez she was provided with a modern coal and wood stove with a warming oven and a hot water reservoir, which was very modern at that time. She carried most of the drinking water from a neighbor's well for the family. (9) It was kept cool by putting it in a large crock jar covered with burlap and hung in the shade.

About 1900 the first one of her children to marry was Clarissa Abelone. She married Nathan O. Robinson in Mexico, and it was later solemnized in the Salt Lake Temple on 12 April 1905. Mahonri William was married to Ethlyn Buchanan at Dublan, Mexico on 19 September 1904 and it was solemnized in the Manti Temple the 10th December 1910. Next to be married was David Milton, who was married to Theda May Black 20 July 1912 at Juarez, Mexico, and it was solemnized 7 January 1917 in the Manti Temple.

In 1912 a revolution was raging in Mexico and it became unsafe for the Mormon people to remain there. Following the advice of the Church authorities, the Mormons left Mexico temporarily, but many of them never went back. The children, women, and the aged were exported by train, mostly in boxcars, to El Paso, Texas, where they were provided for in a large lumber yard until they could be dispersed to various localities. Our remaining family members decided it would be best to return to Utah, with the exception of Father, who was reluctant to leave his home. He was 70 years old and had taken out citizenship in Old Mexico. (10)

Those who came to Utah in our group were Mother, Oliver, Anton, Christy, and Mahonri and his wife and three children (ReVell, Velda and Sterling who was 2 years old). We traveled via Santa Fe Railroad to Grand Junction, Colorado, and from there via D&RGW Railroad to Redmond, Utah, arriving 18 September 1912. We were kindly received by Father's eldest son by a former wife, J. C. Breinholt, (11) family, and others. Father came soon after and joined us at Redmond. Mahonri and family went on to Venice to live.

We purchased a lot on which was an improvised log house that was fairly comfortable after Father fixed it up a bit. Father and Mother were able to have plenty of good food the remainder of their days. Oliver found work at various places away from home, and eventually married Roda Cowley from Venice, Utah in the Salt Lake Temple on 8 April 1914. At the time of their leaving Mexico, Canute Peter and David were away working in Arizona. Canute married Fannie Ione Lewis on 2 October 1914 in the Salt Lake Temple. Christy Mariah married after Mother's death. She married Charles Arthur Mickelsen on the 22nd of June 1917 at Redmond, Utah.

Mother was not bedfast very long, although she was sick in her declining years. The doctors prescribed a syrup composed of rock candy dissolved in alcohol to clear the mucous from her throat and lungs until her death. Father died on the 5th of November 1914 from pneumonia, (12) and shortly after Anton's death on the 12th of November 1914, Mother failed rapidly and passed away 8 December 1914 at Redmond, Utah. She was buried in the Redmond Cemetery. The funeral was conducted in the Redmond L.D.S. Chapel by Bishop Jensen; Newel K. Young was one of the speakers.

Christiane Hansen Breinholt, at the time of her death, was survived by four sons, two daughters (husband and two sons deceased), eight grandchildren and one sister.

The Daughters of Utah Pioneers of Redmond have moved and revived the old log house that Christiane lived in at Redmond in 1885-1891 and have organized a camp called Camp Christine, and will preserve the house as a pioneer shrine. (13)


Original made in 1959, in possession of Mrs. Clare Breinholt of Bountiful, Utah. Copy of notes added by Verle Breinholt in 1997, grandson of Christiane Hansen Breinholt, are in possession of Marilyn Breinholt, Orem, Utah.


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  • Maintained by: Rose Wright
  • Originally Created by: Max Turpin
  • Added: 6 Aug 2009
  • Find a Grave Memorial 40342067
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Christiane Hansen Breinholt (7 Apr 1856–7 Dec 1914), Find a Grave Memorial no. 40342067, citing Redmond Cemetery, Redmond, Sevier County, Utah, USA ; Maintained by Rose Wright (contributor 46889763) .