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 John Harvey Ballard

John Harvey Ballard

Windham, Windham County, Connecticut, USA
Death 23 Mar 1891 (aged 65)
Grafton, Washington County, Utah, USA
Burial Grafton, Washington County, Utah, USA
Memorial ID 59768 · View Source
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Son of Ebenezer Ballard and Sophia Richardson

Married Charlotte Pincock, 6 Mar 1845, Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois

Children - Mary Sophia Ballard, James Monroe Ballard, John Harvey Ballard, Henry Leander Ballard, Charles Harvey Ballard, Edward Harvey Ballard, Joshua Harvey Ballard, Hezekiah Harvey Ballard, Charlotte Ann Ballard, Miles Harvey Ballard, David Ballard, Francis Marion Ballard, Rhoda Ellen Ballard, William Thaddeus Ballard

History - John Harvey Ballard was born November 30, 1825 in Windham, Connecticut, the son of Ebenezer Ballard and Sophia Richardson. At the tender age of six years he was taken from his parents who were living in Sudbury, Massachusetts at the time, by an aunt, Nancy Richardson, to Kirtland, Ohio, a gathering place for a newly organized religious sect called Mormons.

Just why Aunt Nancy took little John Harvey from his parents we do not know. We do know that he was never permitted to see, or even to hear from his parents again, although as soon as he could read and write he tried to contact them through correspondence, but failed. No doubt they had moved in the meantime. Aunt Nancy loved and cared for him as if he were her own son.

When he was eight years old he was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints at Kirtland. This newly organized church became very unpopular with other religious sects of that day. Satan, well aware that the true church of Jesus Christ had been restored to earth again, did everything in his power to thwart its growth. Hence persecution and hardships seemed to follow the members of this new faith wherever they went.

As a lad John Henry witnessed many harrowing experiences. He knew the sickening sensation of being driven from his home and of having to flee in the night for his life. This was the case when they had to leave their Missouri home in the dead of winter. It was in February of 1839 that their prophet, his brother Hyrum, and other church leaders were confined in a filthy, ill kept jail in Liberty County, Missouri.

It was bitter cold; the snow was from eight to fifteen inches deep. John Harvey was thirteen years old and he walked the entire distance to Quincy (250 miles) bareheaded and barefoot. It was here these religious exiles found friendly Christians who took them into their homes and gave them shelter.

After the prophet Joseph Smith and other church leaders escaped from the Missouri prison a new home was established for these homeless people in Nauvoo, Illinois. Here the Saints prospered for a while and Nauvoo soon became the largest city in the state. Life seemed serene and lovely to John Harvey, but only for a short time. He was nineteen years old when Joseph Smith was his brother Hyrum were martyred at Carthage Jail.

One day a big boat docked on the Mississippi River, bringing many converts from England to Nauvoo. Among them was the family of John Pincock and Mary Marsden. They had seven girls and two boys. Charlotte, the second daughter in the family soon caught the eye of John Harvey Ballard, and after a brief courtship they were married March 6, 1846. Charlotte only six months younger than her husband, was born in Euxton, Lancashire, England on June 3, 1826. They received their endowments in the Nauvoo Temple on January 31, 1846 and were later sealed in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City on May 29, 1854.

The early part of their married life in Nauvoo were months never to be erased from their memories. Almost daily word came of homes, outbuildings, and haystacks being burned by the mob. Men were kidnapped and whipped; women and children were insulted and frightened into the woods which were their only protection. When it became apparent that they would have to leave Nauvoo, John Harvey tried to dispose of some of his property. He had five yearling heifers which he sold for fifty cents a head.

Charlotte's parents died within two weeks of each other in the fall of 1845. Their first baby, Mary Sophia, was buried only a few days before an armed mob entered the city on Nauvoo and drove the remaining Saints from their homes at bayonet point. They crossed the river on rafts to the Iowa shore that night and for several days following these poor exiles huddled around camp fires which were difficult to keep ablaze because of the down poor of rain while they were waiting for wagons to come help move them to the settlements of the Saints scattered across the state of Iowa. They had little shelter and no food. Starvation seemed staring them in the face.

One morning they were awakened by the rustling of wings and a large flock of quail literally fell into their camp. The starving saints began to gather them up. Charlotte filled her apron with the wild fowl which offered no resistance as she picked them up. Just as manna was sent to the children of Israel, quail was sent to these starving people to save their lives. They recognized the hand of the Lord in this and gave thanks unto Him.

It was 1852 when the John Harvey Ballard family arrived in the Salt Lake Valley. They settled in the town of Provo. It was on April 11, 1853 that their son Charles Harvey Ballard, the subject of our sketch, was born. The first eight years of his childhood were spent in Provo.

One day his father came home from conference with some disturbing news. They had been called to leave their newly established home and go with others who had also been called to help build up the Dixie country in Southern Utah. It required faith, courage and sacrifice to leave their fertile fields and go into a new land that had a reputation anything but favorable. They responded to the call and settled on the Virgin River and called the place Grafton.

John Harvey was engaged in farming and stock raising. He mended shoes in his spare time. He was very talented musically and he furnished music for the settlements along the Virgin River with his violin. He served as a chorister and supt. of the Sunday school for many years. He was the postmaster of Grafton and taught night school for three years without any remuneration.

His wife, Charlotte, was also very active in church activities. She served as first Relief Society President of Grafton, and also served for many years as President of the Primary.




  • Maintained by: SMSmith
  • Originally Created by: Utah State Historical Society
  • Added: 2 Feb 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 59768
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John Harvey Ballard (30 Nov 1825–23 Mar 1891), Find A Grave Memorial no. 59768, citing Grafton Cemetery, Grafton, Washington County, Utah, USA ; Maintained by SMSmith (contributor 46491005) .