|Ogden Valley News
|In Copyright (InC)
|SR Communications DBA, Eden, Utah
|Digitized by J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah
|Ogden Valley News
Volume XIV Issue XVI The Ogden Valley news Page 13 June 1, 2007 Note: The following information was taken from the book “Captain Jefferson Hunt of the Mormon Battalion,” by Pauline Udall Smith. The book was published in 1958 by The Nicholas G. Morgan, Sr., Foundation. Hunts’ Fort, which came into existence in Ogden Valley in the autumn of 1850, was named for Jefferson Hunt who founded it. He had gone originally to cut hay with a view to making a permanent settlement, and when such settlement appeared feasible, he led into the valley a party of seven families and located them near Hawking Grove on the north side of the South Fork of [the] Ogden River, about half a mile south of the present Huntsville square. Here the seven families built their log houses in fort style with all doors facing inward. They were situated under the bench near the stream, sheltered from the north wind. These families included Edward Rushton and his family, Joseph Wood and his mother, Nathan Coffin and his mother, and the three of Hunt’s sons: Hyrum, Joseph, and Marshall, and their families. Marshall moved down from Smithfield where he had been living since the exodus from San Bernardino. Into the fort Jefferson moved his wife Matilda and his younger children: Sophrinia, who was now 12 years old and a great help to her mother, Ellen, Olive, Thomas, James Franklin, and the infant Liberty Independence who had been born less than three months before, while Jefferson was giving the 24th of July oration in Ogden. Jefferson also maintained a home in Ogden where he often had business, and Celia preferred to live there with Mary, now 15 years old, her only remaining unmarried child. Mary was a lovely girl, blue-eyed with black hair, and Celia wanted for her the school and social advantages which Ogden had to offer. The settlers arrived early enough in Ogden Valley to cut hay upon which to winter their cattle. Jefferson and his sons had driven some horses and cattle up from San Bernardino during the previous summer on one of their freighting trips, and they were now in the ranching business. The Indians in the valley were troublesome, disposed to steal the cattle and harass the settlers. When one band of Indians told the settlers to leave the valley or they would pollute the water, Captain Hunt told them that at their first suspicious act, he would burn all the water in the canyons. They looked incredulous. Whereupon he seized a dipperful of colorless liquid and burned it before their eyes. The Indians, unaware that the dipper held alcohol, resumed friendly relations for a time. Catherine, Joseph Hunt’s wife, taught school in her cabin that first winter, while Hyrum’s wife, Emily, took care of Catherine’s baby Evaline, eight months old. Emily’s own baby had died the previous year, but before the new year arrived, she gave birth to the first white Founder of Huntsville, Utah child born in the valley, a little girl who was named Rosetta. For several years before the establishment of Hunt’s Fort, Ogden Valley had been used as a herding ground for the cattle of people living in and around Ogden. There was no road bed and the first wagon had been taken into the valley six years before. It had to be let down with ropes. In order to make the valley accessible a good road was needed. Such a road, three years in the building, was nearly completed when Jefferson took the seven families into the valley. In fact, without it a settlement would have been nearly impossible. This was a toll road, built by a corporation with stock amounting to $4,157, and was to remain so for nearly 20 years before becoming a public road. Jefferson and his family were among the best customers of this toll road in the early days because of their many trips to Ogden and back. Toll charges ranged from 25 cents to $1.50 depending on whether travel was by horseback, or light or heavy vehicle. Hunt’s Fort proved an unsatisfactory place to live that first winter, so in the spring, it was abandoned and the entire population moved up on the bench land where Huntsville is now located. A temporary water supply was obtained by digging a ditch to the South Fork of Ogden River and it was decided to lay out Huntsville according to the plan followed by Joseph Smith in Missouri and Illinois. During the summer a one-room building was built near the center of the present town square, to serve as the school house. Two years later a second room was added and the building was used for church and public meetings as well as for school. Jane Dilworth Hammond, the first school teacher in Utah, was one of the early teachers in this school. A branch of the Church was organized, with Jefferson Hunt as president. Jefferson had been the recognized leader from the very first, but without official title. He was a speaker at afternoon Conference in Salt Lake on April 7, 1861. Additional settlers arrived in the summer. The next winter there was unusually heavy snow. High waters followed and a great portion of the canyon road was washed away making travel in and out of the settlement difficult for some time. In the dead of that cold, snowy winter, Matilda presented Jefferson with another son, born on February 5, 1865. Jefferson named him Peter. By March of the following spring, Jefferson was able to make his way out of the valley to Salt Lake City to attend a Battalion party. There was a hearty repast followed by dancing and songs, and recitations, interspersed with speeches from Major Hunt, Captain Brown, and others. The end of May a daughter, Ina Francell, was born to Catherine and Joseph Hunt in Huntsville. Now they had two daughters. The year 1863 proved to be an eventful one. That year the Huntsville people sent a team to the Missouri River after poor emigrants. Jefferson Hunt had always contributed generously to the emigration fund and approved of this cause. That year, also, a band of 15 Indians after killing a man at Mantua came to Ogden Valley to camp. They killed a beef, jerked the meat, and left the next day taking with them 64 horses, 44 of them Captain Hunt’s and 20 belonging to other settlers. Captain C. D. Bronson, Marsh Hunt and Joseph Hunt, the Indian Weber Jack and others, ten in all, followed them and after a fight in which two Indians were killed, returned with all but two of the horses. Indians were always a sore trial to the Huntsville settlers who had found it wise to pay them an annual tax of a number of beeves and considerable flour and vegetables each year. This proved a heavy burden on the settlers. On July 16, 1863, the anniversary of the enrollment and discharge of the Mormon Battalion, a large Battalion and Pioneer Festival was held in Great Salt Lake City. Out of the 500 of the original enrollment, 181 were present. Counting wives, mothers, sons and daughters and special guests, there were eight hundred at the festivities. Captains Hunt, Brown and Higgins each addressed those present. In October Jefferson Hunt undertook an exploring trip with Apostle C. C. Rich who was interested in making a second trip into Bear Lake Valley, this time with a view to pioneering another route from Ogden. He planned to go in on horseback with pack animals. There were six other men in his party: Jefferson Hunt, Thomas R. Miller, Richard R. Hopkins, Lorin Farr, Joseph C. Rich and George Hill. At the time there was not road up the Ogden Canyon, only an Indian trail. They proceeded to Beaver Canyon, then up to Skunk Creek, thence to Blacksmith’s Fork and up Lodge Pole Canyon into Round Valley at the south end of Bear Lake. The little town of Huntsville was growing. Summer amusements consisted of playing ball, running, jumping, wrestling, and horse racing. In the winter the HUNTSVILLE cont. on page 15 Historical Photo Cooks dressed up in their Sunday best. From left to right: Mrs. Wangsgard, Mrs. McKay, Mrs. Ferrell, Mrs. Doman, Mrs. Harris, and Mrs. Clark. Photo courtesy of Ned Clark. Celeste C. Canning PLLC Attorney at Law 2590 Washington Boulevard, Suite 200 Ogden, Utah 84401 Local: (801) 791-1092 Office: (801) 612-9299 Email: email@example.com Meeting the Legal Needs of Small Business and Their Owners FREE Initial Thirty Minute Consultation. Appointments in Ogden Valley upon request.