Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Junius Crossland

Junius Crossland was born October 14, 1820 at London, Middlesex, England, the son of Nathaniel Valentine Crossland and Eleanor West.

Junius married Francis Ann Otten at the Parrish Church in London England on May 29, 1841.  This is the marriage certificate with what appears to be their actual signatures.

The family heard the gospel preached and was converted to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  They were baptized May 16, 1851.  Junius was baptized by Elder McCaughie at the Holbron London Conference in the British Mission.  Junius was ordained a Teacher in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints  December 19, 1851 at the Theobald’s Road, London Conference.  On March 22, 1852, Junius was ordained an Elder in the Church at Holborn.

In 1853, the Crosslands sold their possessions in London and left England against the wishes of her (Frances Ann Otton) parents and seven brothers, and came to America.

The passenger list of the ship International shows the family as passengers.  The ships arrived in New Orleans on April 25 1853.

Information regarding the ship International can be found at the BYU Library Mormon Migration website.  The Crossland family is listed as passengers, but Junius is listed as "James."

The Crosslands crossed the plains with the Jacob Gates company.  More information about the Jacob Gates company can be found here.  They traveled in what was known as a 10 Pound Company.  The plan allowed the pioneers to travel from England for only 10 British Pounds.

This was a very difficult journey for the Crossland family.  The company had little food and the food that Junius was alotted, he gave up for his children.  James Ririe's journal mentions the final acts of Junius Crossland:
The only man in the wagon with me, a Brother [Junius] Crossland from London, was took sick on Green River with Mountain Fever and died west of Bridger. He was buried at the crossing of Bear River and Evanston.

I had a rough time of it then, having to take care of the cattle, get wood and water for the wagon, stand guard half the night each fourth night. When Brother Crossland was unmanageable by his wife, he being light headed with the fever, I had to have the sent close to the wagon to be ready to help Mrs. Crossland to calm her husband.

He said to me one day, "If I die, I should like to write my own Epitaph."

"What would you write Brother Crossland?"

"I should writh [write] , I am murdered by the unwise prosedure of the Ten Pound Company." He had pinched himself to save it for his children.


The October 3, 1931 edition of the Deseret News tells of a grave found near Evanston, Wyoming that could be Junius Crossland.

Junius Crossland is my 3rd Great Grandfather on the Goodman side of my family.  It is unknown exactly where he is buried, but it is somewhere on the plains near Evanston Wyoming.  He is remembered on the headstone of his wife Francis in Pleasant Grove, Utah.  The coordinates of Francis Ann Otten's headstone is N 40 22.131 W 111 44.458 and marked with the green arrow on the map.

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