ELIZABETH GRAHAM MACDONALD 1831-1917
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Orson Pratt Brown's Mother-in-law Once Removed
Elizabeth Graham Macdonald.
|Elizabeth G. Macdonald wrote in her journal:
"I was born in the city of Perth, Perthshire, Scotland, on the 12th of January, 1831, and am the fifth of ten daughters born to my parents, John Graham and Christina Proudfoot MacKenzie (Kennock) Graham.
My attention was first brought to the Church of Latter-day Saints in 1846, and in 1847 I was baptized and confirmed, being the second person baptized into the church in Perth. This course brought down upon me so much persecution, from which I was not exempt in my own father's house, that I soon left home and went to Edinburgh. There I was kindly received by a Sister Gibson and welcomed into her house. After two years had passed my father came to me and, manifesting a better spirit than when I saw him last, prevailed upon me to return with him. He had in the meantime become partially paralyzed, and had to use a crutch. Two weeks after my return he consented to be baptized. While being baptized the afflication left him , and he walked home without his crutch, to the astonishment of all who knew him. This was the signal for a great work, and the Perth branch, which previously had numbered but two, soon grew to over one hundred and fifty members.
On May 20, 1851, I was married in Perth, Scotland to , then an elder in the church. He went immediately on mission to the Highlands; but in 1852 he was called to take charge of the Liverpool conference, whither I went with him, and there we made our first home together.
In May, 1853, I fell down stairs, which so seriously injured me that I remained bedridden until the following marvelous occurrence: On Saturday afternoon as I was feeling especially depressed and sorrowful, and while my neighbor, Mrs. Kent, who had just been in, was gone to her home for some little luxury for me, as I turned in my bed I was astonished to behold an aged man standing at the foot. As I somewhat recovered from my natural timidity he came towards the head of the bed and laid his hands upon me, saying, ' lay my hands upon thy head and bless thee in the name of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The Lord hath seen the integrity of thine heart. In tears and sorrow thou hast bowed before the Lord, asking for children; this blessing is about to be granted unto thee. Thou shalt be blessed with children from this hour. Thous shalt be gathered to the valleys of the mountains, and there thou shalt see thy children raised as tender plants by thy side. Thy children and household shall call thee blessed. At present thy husband is better than many children. Be comforted. These blessings I seal upon thee, in the name of Jesus. Amen.' At this moment Sister Kent came in, and I saw no more of this personage. His presence so impressed upon me that I can to this day minutely describe his clothing and countenance.
The next conference, after this visitation, brought the word that Brother Macdonald was released to go to the valley, being succeeded by Elder Spicer W. Crandall. We started from Liverpool in March 1854, and after the usual vicissitudes of sea and river navigation, finally went into camp near Kansas Village on the Missouri. From there we started for Utah in Capt. Daniel Carn's company, reaching Salt Lake City on the 30th of September.
In 1872 my husband was appointed to settle in St. George, where we arrived about the middle of November. Here we have since remained, and I have taken great pleasure in this southern country, especially in having my family around me, in the midst of good influences. The people here are sociable and kind, and we have no outside influences to contend with. All are busy and industrious and striving to live their religion."
In 1879 Alexander was appointed to preside over the Arizona Mission so they moved to Mesa, Arizona. The Maricopa Stake was organized in 1882, and Elizabeth served for five years as the Stake Relief Society President. In about 1885 her husband went into Mexico to help establish colonies there. He lived there from then on. Elizabeth elected to return to Salt Lake City and she lived first in a small adobe house at the East Gate of Temple Square, with responsibility for the dining room at the Temple Annex. In Salt Lake she raised five of her motherless grandchildren. (This last comment may be mixed up from the history of .)
With her eyesight failing, she spent her final days in St. George where she died 11 July 1917 at the age of eighty-six years. She is buried in Provo, Utah.
The Women of Mormondom - Edward Wheelock Tullidge, 1829-1894, Salt Lake City, Utah, March 1877, Page 457-460
Pioneer Women of Faith and Fortitude, by DUP Page 1845-1846
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