IISTORY OF SALLY OF THE SHOSHONES AND HER DAUGHTER ADELAIDE EXERVIA BROWN
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The Information on this Page was Contibuted to this Website by Marilyn Ruth Brown Colvin.
Indian Women of the West
INDIAN WOMEN OF THE WEST
The Story of Sally of the Shoshones and Her Daughter Adeliette
Borrowed for the FEDERAL WRITERS' PROJECT by Virginia Howell and Elvera Manfull,
One hundred years ago on October 23rd, 1838 at Fort Laramie, Wyoming, an Indian reservation at the time, a child was born to Battice[Batiste] and Sally Exervid. The father was a French trader who was very friendly with the Shoshone Indinas and met Sally while stopping at this post on business.
Sally was an orphan girl who was a full blooded Shoshone Indian. Not much of her history is known because of the sad circumstances which shadowed her life. When she was only a baby, in the early part of 1800, a terrific battle took place at Battle Creek, Wyoming, between the Indians and a party of white soldiers who had been sent to this locality to investigate some Indian thefts.
As was so often the case, instead of trying to make peace with the Red Man, these self righteous defenders of the law, took it upon themselves to settle the trouble by killing every one of this little band. But some kind fate had decreed a different ending for one soul, for as the victors were preparing to leave the field of battle, someone noticed a slight movement on the ground. On closer scrutiny, a wee infant was discovered suckling at its dead mother's breast.
Some brave full grown man exclaimed, "Nit's make lice, hit it in the head." But another spoke up and said, "No, let me have it, I will take it home with me, it will be quite a curiosity." And so the life of little Sally of the Shoshones was spared.
She was taken to St, Louis and adopted by some merchant with whom she lived for several years. Knowing that she was a native of the west, she longed to be reunited with her own people. When she was only a young girl she ran away from this unhappy home and began her search for her native tribe. It is told that she wandered for many days, at one time swimming a tributary of the Mississippi River before she reached the western ranges, where she finally found and settled with the Indians living at Fort Laramie, Wyoming.
After she was married to Battice Exervid, she traveled with him all over this western country. To them was born two children, Adeliette, or Adelaide as she was known, and [Ishamana] John [later known as Indian John or Shoshoni John]. Then the dreaded scourge of the pioneer days fell upon them and her husband Battice died from spotted fever. [See notes for account of Batista's death from a bullet in the back shot by Thomas Fallon at a July 4, 1843 rendezvous in Wyoming].
Still only a young woman, she was now a widow with two children to care for, facing the loneliness and dangerous life of the wild west, with such courage as only her race can have.
She returned to Wyoming, which was by this time being colonized by the Mormon Pioneers. The girl Adelaide, was taken into the home of President Brigham Young where she learned the ways of the refined white people, She learned to read and write and was very quick at figures. She learned the arts of good housekeeping and her French lineage asserted its talents, as she became proficient in cooking and fine sewing.
Sally, the mother, later married [Elijah] Barney Ward, a handsome young Irishman who traveled through the Indian settlements, endearing himself to both the Red Man and his White Brothers, as an Interpreter and Counselor. Sally had two more daughters by Ward, Mary (otherwise known as Polly) Ward [born on July 15, 1842] and Louisa Ward [born on 26 May 1848]. Then another war robbed her of her husband, and for the third time she was left to struggle alone.
By this time her daughter Adelaide had met and married [on July 24, 1855 at Fort Supply], a young missionary laboring with the Indians at Fort Supply, Wyoming [then it was part of the Utah Territory].
A romantic angle of this mating is revealed in part.
Young Jim Brown, nineteen years old to be exact, saw Adelaide Exervid for the first time on the Fourth of July. She had returned from Brigham Young's home in Salt Lake City with a party of pioneers bringing supplies to the reservation, to visit her mother and sisters, and as yet had not met the missionary who was stationed there. She was an attractive girl, slim and straight as an arrow, with sparkling black eyes and dark curly hair. A little celebration was in progress, and this young miss sat, or perched, on the top rail of the corral fence, swinging her bare legs, all unconscious of the admiring glances of young Brown. Inquiring from some of the others as to who she was, young Brown, without hesitation said, "Well I want to meet her right now, that is the girl I am going to marry." On the 24th of July, 1855, just twenty days later, they were married by , an uncle of Jimmies, then President of the Branch. It might be stated here that Brigham Young never hesitated to give his consent to any marriage between the young Pioneer,stock and the descendants of Father Lehi.
Young Brown, who was the son of , of the Mormon Battalion, and , was an industrious worker and being very handy with carpenter tools and also stone masonry, he was kept at the mission to help colonize the Wyoming country and made many friends while preaching the gospel to his Lamanite Brothers. He was a peacemaker between his wife's people and his own race, and was often called upon to act as such, always dealing with a firm but kind disposition.
When Adelaide's second son , was only three days old, Jim Brown had an accident, injuring his hand so badly, he was released from his mission to return to Ogden for Doctor's care. Traveling in a wagon over the rough mountain trails was a trying experience for the young mother, but her stoical Indian heritage gave her strength to endure the privations and she took her turn at driving the team of horses and making camp along the way, building fires and caring for her sick husband and two young babies.
They arrived in Ogden [October]1857, where they established a home at 2843 Washington Avenue. It was at first only a single log room but through the years they worked together, and young Brown became quite wealthy. All of his earnings he used to build houses, for the city of Ogden was growing fast. His faithful wife did washing and sewing and kept boarders and roomers for years. She had nine more children, two of them dying in infancy. She was extremely ambitious for her children, giving them every advantage that was possible in those days.
Her oldest son, James William Brown, was one of the town's popular musicians, playing the violin and horn and accordian.
Moroni F. Brown, her second son, went on a mission to England and on his return was made Bishop of the old First Ward.
Four of her sons were married and had families, the children numbering twentythree living.
Adelaide 's life was beset by many tragedies as was her mothers, as for her children died in early life and consequently the mother's heart was so bereaved she also passed away when only fifty-nine years of age [on December 15, 1895 in Ogden].
While Adelaide was living, her mother Sally, and brother John Exervia, often visited her at her home and in the fall of the year always came with some of their tribal brethren to help with the harvest.
At this season, James Brown often prepared a barbecue for his native friends and afterwards gave them supplies to take to their camps.
After one of these visits, the lonely Indian woman Sally left with her son [Ishamana John Exervia], but never returned. There is no record of her death, but she was probably cared for by her own people. [John had married a wife named Madame //Exervia] ...John was reported to have been killed in Weber Canyon.
There is a biography of [Elijah] Barney Ward written by some church historian, but at this writing it could not be located. It is believed to contain some information on the life of Sally, but what is here recorded is only that which has been handed down through word of mouth. At Gunnison, Utah, an attractive monument has been erected in honor of Barney Ward, who was extremely well liked by the people, so it might be that Sally's grave is near this locality.
Sally's two daughters by Ward were Mary and Louisa. They were both married and raised families. Mary otherwise known as Polly, married a Mr. Donnelly and had two children, a boy and a girl. The boy died but the girl is still living. She married John Williams, and had three boys, only one is still living. Louisa died about forty years ago, but Polly is still living at Bellevue, Idaho. She is 88 years old.
Excerpt from: ELIJAH BARNEY WARD Biography Page 345
"While Ward was living among the Shoshone Indians in the Fort Bridger (Wyoming) region, his friend Batiste "Exervid" died. Before the Frenchman expired he obtained a promise from Ward to care for his Indian wife and little daughter.7 This Barney did, later marrying the widow Sally, and caring for the child, Adelaide, who had been born at Fort Laramie in 1838. Barney Ward and Sally had two daughters, Polly and Louisa Jane. The first was born at Fort Bridger on July I5, 1847, and Louisa Jane in Salt Lake City on May 26, 1848.8
James W. Waters, early Mountain Man in the Rockies and later a prominent business man of San Bernardino, California, went in the fall of 1844 with a party of traders and a pack train of furs to Los Angeles. Ward was undoubtedly a member of the party. They chartered a small sail boat, went down the coast of Lower California, and obtained a cargo of abalone shells. With these they returned..."
8. Jenson, op. cit., 554; Mormon Temple records, Salt Lake City, no. 358, Book F, p. 30.
Scenes in the Rocky Mountains: RUFUS B. SAGE Page 268
"Our intention was to enter the mountains and spend a few weeks in deer-hunting; but, the river proving impassable, on account of high water, we were compelled to forego that purpose for the present, and accordingly started for Fort Lancaster to procure a re-supply of ammunition.
Continuing down the Platte, on the third day we reached our destination, and were kindly received, though humorously rallied upon our wayworn and forlorn appearance. Nor were we backward to join the laugh, occasionally retorting, when the jocose current set too strong against us, "Well, what do you know about war? -You've never been to Texas!"
The 6th of July dated our arrival, -the glorious fourth having been spent in plodding over a broad prairie, on foot, with rifles upon our shoulders and packs upon our backs. By comparison, I concluded my fortune had slightly improved since July 4th of the preceding year, which found me in a cheerless prairie, on foot, packing my bed, almost naked, without knife or gun, or having had a mouthful to eat for two days previous.
Capt. Fremont, elsewhere spoken of, had just arrived from the States on an expedition to Oregon,267 ordered by the United States Government, and brought intelligence of an existing armistice between Mexico and Texas. Accompanying his party was one whom I recognized as an old acquaintance of other lands, the first and only one I had the pleasure of meeting with during my long sojourn in the country.
July 11th witnessed the death of an old mountaineer at Fort Lancaster who came to his end from the effects of a pistol wound received in a drunken frolic on the 4th. The ball entered the back about two inches below
SCENES IN THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS Page 269
the heart, severely fracturing the vertebrae and nearly severing the spinal marrow.268 He lived just one week succeeding the occurrence, but meanwhile suffered more than the agonies of death. His body below the wound was entirely devoid of feeling or use from the first, and as death preyed upon him by piecemeal he would often implore us with most piteous and heart-melting appeals kindly to ease his miseries by hastening his end. The murderer was left at large, and in two or three weeks subsequent accompanied Capt. Fremont to Oregon. 269
The above is the most remarable exhibition of human tenacity to life that ever came under my personal observation; I have, however, heard of instances far more extraordinary. The case of Ex-Governor Boggs, of Mo., in 1841, who recovered from the effects of a wound, that not only fractured his scull, but actually emitted particles of the brain, is doubtless well known; 270 yet another of like nature, still more wonderful in its detail, occurred to an old French trapper, named Augustine Clermont, with whom I am well acquainted.
Clermont, in an affray with a Spaniard, had been prostrated by a blow that fractured his scull in the occiput. His antagonist then fell upon him and thrust the point of a knife into the brain repeatedly, and finally left him for dead.
Soon after, he was found by his friends in this deplorable situation, who, on perceiving he yet breathed, kindly dressed his wounds, and bestowed upon him the..."
267. Fremont reached Fort Lancaster (Lupton) on July 6 -See his Report op. cit., p. III.
268. The man, a Frenchman called Xervier, was shot by Thomas Fallon. C.H.Carey (ed.) The Journal o Theodore Talbot, op. cit., p. 24
269. Thomas Fallon was employed by the Fitzpatrick contingent of Fremont's expedition on July 27, 1843. See Talbot, op. cit., p. 28. Fremont took Xervier's Indian widow and her two children with him toward Oregon. See Fremont's Report, op. cit., pp. 120-21.
270. Gov. L W. Boggs was shot by Porter Rockwell, as an aftermath of the Governor's "extermination" order directed against the Mormons.
Fairview's economic base has always depended on agriculture and the livestock industry. Following trapper Barney Ward's lead, irrigation ditches were dug and reservoir sites identified soon after settlement. Food crops, hay, and grains were planted and, in 1870, the town's first flour mill was constructed south of town. Livestock raising, ranging from beef and sheep to chickens and turkeys, has persisted throughout Fairview's history. Because of its proximity to canyon forests, sawmills were established in the early decades to support a lumber industry. By the turn of the century, there were half a dozen steam sawmills in the mountains east of town.
Marilyn Ruth Brown Colvin's Pedigree
The above information was Contributed to this Website by Marilyn Colvin of Ogden Utah < dau of James Albert Brown and Mary E. Petersen. James Albert Brown is the son of Albert Brown 1865-1915 + Rachel Ann Brown 1876-1952.
PAF - Archer files = Captain James Brown + (1) Martha Stephens > James Morehead Brown + Adelaide Exervia
Mountain Men and the Fur Trade, by Hafen 1972.
Additional information in [brackets], bold, etc. added by Lucy Brown Archer
Copyright 2001 www.OrsonPrattBrown.org