|JOSEPH LABAN WALL (1838-1898)|
Joseph Laban Wall was born in Worchester or maybe Horsley, near Nailsmith, Glouchestershire, England, son of William Wall and Sarah Sansome. His hair was dark and eyes a blue gray.
After the Wall family accepted the gospel it was decided that they come to Utah. They didn't have the means to come to Utah all at the same time, so it was decided that the oldest children come first. At the time Apostle Orson Hyde and Charles C. Rich were staying at the Wall home. Before Joseph and his sister Sarah Emily left for the long journey these Elders gave them a blessing and promised them that they would suffer many hardships but they would complete the journey in safety.
They left their home and loved ones with faith in that promise. Emily Wall, and her brother Joseph started out for Utah well prepared to make the journey on foot, as their mother had purchased fifteen pairs of sturdy shoes for each of them. Emily was only fifteen years of age and her brother was three years her senior. They were assigned to the Edward Martin Hancart company of 1856. When the need arose for the handcart loads to be lightened these two discarded part of their clothing, giving it to many who were not as fortunate as they.
Early in the trip, while tring to ford the Platt River, Joseph almost drowned. He was rescued by the hair of the head when going down the third time. One night Joseph was sleeping between two men and by morning both of them had frozen to death. Joseph's toes were frozen and he contracted pneumonia. The company thought to leave him for they deemed his recovery impossible; Emily, relying on the promise made to them refused to leave him and insisted that she could pull her brother on her cart if only he be permitted to come. Consent was granted and with the aid of a small girl these two girls pulled Joseph for three days.
At Devil's Gate where a company of rescuers met the party, one of the boys, William M. Cowley, came to her aid. In conversing with her, he asked if some day she would marry him. Emily said she didn't know and told him he would have to write to England and get permission from her mother. Joseph recovered and with Emily arrived in the valley. Joseph went to work in Echo Canyon building rock culverts for the first railroad in Utah.
William M. Cowley ws sent to San Bernardino to help set up a printing press and was not seen for the next three years. Upon his return to Salt Lake City, he found Emily Wall at the home of President Young and asked her if she remembered his proposal. She had, but wanted to know if he had written to her mother. After being informed that a letter had been sent and a reply received saying it was all right for them to be married provided he was a good man, Emily consented and the young couple were married.
Joseph was able to earn enough money to pay the expense of his family coming to Utah. Two sisters arrived in 1862. While working in Salt Lake City, Joseph met a house maid Selena Stevens and married her, 7 March 1963. Selena was born April 7, 1940 and her parents John and Martha Doel Stevens were converts to the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They lived in Bath, England. Brigham Young's oldest son saw Queen Victoria driving six beautiful horses and said, "I can do that." He did so but was thrown into prison. Selena's father, John, thought this so awful of a Mormon and thus turned bitterly against the church.
John Stevens, by trade was a gardner and florest. He owned his own hot house and was able to provide his family a fine living. Selena and her mother remained faithful to the church, but in order to attend church gatherings they had to sneak out unbenown to John. They were baptized in the Thames River, during the night in midwinter. The ice had to be broken.
Selena decided to leave her folks and travel to Utah for the sake of the gospel. She was only eighteen and had earned her own money. Her father stayed up all night trying to persuade her to remain at home She asked him to cord her trunk and he said he would rather cord her coffin.
Selena's brother, William, was at sea. Later he came home bringing his sister two trunks filled with beautiful clothes. When Willian heard that his sister had gone to Utah, he decided to follow her. He was stopped when crossing the American Continent to fight in the Civil War on the side of the South. Later, he reached Utah and settled in Sevier County.
After Joseph Laban Wall married the brown-eyed light sandy haired Selina on march 7, 1963, they moved to Manti, Utah. Here Joseph obtained work in a griest mill. After having learned the trade of a miller he moved his family to Glenwood, Utah. Here he built the first griest mill in Sevier County and ran it up until two years before his death.
The rest of Joseph's family arrived from England in Sept of 1865 in the Thomas E. Rich Company. The Wall family initially settled in Logan, but later moved Glenwood.