Tuesday, August 23, 2011

William Mendenhall

William Mendenhall was born on April 8, 1815 in Mill Creek Hundred, New Castle County, Delaware.  He married Sarah Lovell on February 21, 1839.

William first heard a Mormon Elder preach early in the spring of 1841.  He was at once convinced of the truthfulness of the gospel and was baptized by Elder William A. Moor in Red Clay Creek on December 12, 1841.  In May 1842 he started for Nauvoo leaving his wife and two children at her fathers house in Delaware.  He worked at his trade of building brick houses all summer and then returned to Delaware to his wife and children. 

William returned to Nauvoo with his wife and children in May of 1843.  William was acquainted with the prophet Joseph Smith and was blessed by the patriarch Hyrum Smith and was in Nauvoo at the time the prophet and his brother were martyred.

William and Sarah Mendenhall's house still stands in Nauvoo and is located on the north side of Sidney Street just west of Page Street and the Ellis Sanders home. The approximate location of their home in Nauvoo is highlighted in red on the map.

William and Sarah were driven from Nauvoo leaving their home in June of 1852.  William, Sarah and their 5 children crossed the plains in wagons with ox teams.  They arrived in Salt Lake City in September of 1852.  They traveled in the David Wood company with 288 pioneers.  William was the 4th captain of 10 in the company.

To read more about the David Wood Company, go to the LDS Church History site.

A Deseret News article from 1852 shows all of the 1852 immigrants to Salt Lake City. Below is an excerpt just showing the 6th company.

William and Sarah settled in Springville, Utah.  In 1904 William wrote, "I have performed work for the dead in St. George, Logan, Manti and Salt Lake Temples. I am reasonably well at the age of 89 years and six months."  The photo below is of his home in Springville.

William Mendenhall died June 3, 1906 at the age of 91.

William Mendenhall is buried in the Evergreen Cemetery in Springville, Utah along side his wife Sarah Lovell. 

The coordinates of his headstone are N 40° 08.445 W 111° 36.186. The location is marked on the map with a green arrow.  William Mendenhall is my 2nd Great Grandfather from the Mendenhall side of the family.

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  1. This is a fun find for me. I am from Mill Creek, DE and grew up in the home of Williams grandfathers (Aaron) home. My parents still live there. I have not checked the census but it is likely Williams birth and childhood home as well. Cool to see how far the Mendenhall's spread in the 19th century.


  2. Stephen - That is amazing! If it is not too intrusive I would love to have a photo of the home and possibly the address so I could locate it on google earth. Do you happen to know the burial place of Aaron? I understand he is interred in Mill Creek. Thanks for looking at the blog and commenting! Adam Goodman - agoodmanut@gmail.com

  3. Thank you for this! William is my third great-grandfather also on the Mendenhall side and I love finding stories about the family.

  4. His son Abraham is buried in the Old Cemetery in Nauvoo. His Headstone and foot stone are still intact . Picture on Family Search

  5. Correction from Williams Diary
    June 5th 1846 Started from Nauvoo crossed the Mississippi River
    June 6th 1846 Camped at Jack Oak Grove.
    Traveling from Nauvoo, we camped at Jack Oak Grove for two days so I could complete my business. We crossed the Des Moines river and then almost three weeks to arrived midway across Iowa at Garden Grove at the settlement on the prairie outside the settlement. On the third of July crossed the Grand River and camped 20 miles further west to rest and do our washing.
    On the tenth day of July they passed through an Indian Village at the same time Presidents Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball were passing through, and on the fourteenth of July arrived and camped about 2 miles east of Council Bluffs. IA

    My Grandfather was there building houses for incomine Saints. Until the Wood Company left for Salt Lake...in 1852