Researching Family History: Sarah Goode Marshall was first handcart pioneer to enter the Salt Lake Valley 155 years ago

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  • eisaacson Rexburg, ID
    July 14, 2013 12:37 a.m.

    Great article. I love reading article's about my Grandma Sarah. She was an amazing woman. I think you may have some of your details a little skewed regarding her acquisition of a handcart, company 'assignment', confrontation with Caption Ellsworth, and place within the company. There's a pretty accurate synopsis of those events at Geos Rosegarden Blogspot page about "Sarah Goode Marshall - First Handcart Company and Captain Ellsworth". I'm reading "Faith Greater Than Pain" right now which is an amazing reliving of her trek.

  • KinCO Fort Collins, CO
    Sept. 21, 2011 1:55 p.m.

    Actually, although Sarah Goode Marshall may have been the first OFFICIAL handcart pioneer to enter the SL Valley, my husband's 2nd great-grandfather, James Alexander Gardner and his older brother, Walter, claimed to be the real first arrivals. James' story was that he (age 18) and Walter decided they wanted to be the first (there being a competition between their Scottish company of Saints and a company of English Saints traveling with them). When the companies finally arrived at the mouth of Emigration Canyon, they were met by the First Presidency and other assorted dignitaries, including a band. While the music, speeches and general excitement was going on, James & Walter realized that they could break ranks and make a run for it and be the first in the valley. They did so, but were severely reprimanded (he called it "court-martialed') and were not permitted to make the claim that they were first. But in true young male fashion, they didn't care about the official story--they knew they'd done it and that was all that mattered to them. This is from a family history by my husband's grandmother (James' granddaughter)--great story if it is true!

  • ulvegaard Medical Lake, Washington
    Sept. 21, 2011 10:30 a.m.

    I remember the last sermon spoken by Elder A Theodore Tuttle of the 1st Quorum of the Seventy over 25 years ago. He said "What we need is down right faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and I don't mean just a positive mental attitude."

    We don't face the challenges that Sarah Goode did, but we are doing our best to teach our children to have faith in the Lord, that if we do our best, He will bless us. So far, that has always been the case.

    But I note that such conviction is often missing. So many that I have known have drifted because they felt offended or decided that they had better things to do on Sundays. The world is getting more rough and treacherous all the time. We truly do need the faith demonstrated by Sarah Goode and countless others who demonstrated that they would never give up, no matter what.

  • "Doc" Cleland AMERICAN FORK, UT
    Sept. 20, 2011 1:58 p.m.

    If anyone is interested in joining the Sarah Goode Association, you can go to Yahoo and look up groups and enter Sarah Goode.

  • Serenity Manti, UT
    Sept. 20, 2011 12:11 p.m.

    I don't think any one of us can imagine what Sarah went through. One thing for sure, she had her faith and the Lord to carry her and her children through those long, long miles of unfinished trails and dusty roads. It would be interesting to know what happened to her and her children in the Salt Lake Valley after they got there. That would be a story in itself.

  • Kimball Bakersfield, CA
    Sept. 20, 2011 11:19 a.m.

    Thanks for sharing that amazing story. It is remarkable what people have sacrificed for conviction. Great story.

  • cl7kids Colchester, Essex
    Sept. 20, 2011 7:46 a.m.

    I so enjoyed reading this....I had Sarah on my nice to read the story behind the name...Sarahs grandson Bert Marshall, married Nellie Sloan (Stewart)...Nellies mother, Jane (Stewart) Sloan was the sister of my grandmothers ,grandmother (Rachel Stewart), Jane and her husband Hugh were converts and I am first generation LDS and live here in the UK..