O Pioneers!

My 3rd cousin 5 times removed, Susannah Rebecca TILLET, was born in Norfolk in 1822. Her father, William, didn’t live to see her married to Daniel OSBORNE in 1844; her mother, Susanna, welcomed four of the couple’s seven children into the world – though the first two, twins Richard and Robert, didn’t stay long. The third child, Susannah Rebecca (named after her mother), was four years old when granny Susanna died. Three more Osborne children were born in Norfolk and then, at the age of 31, Daniel decided to take his family to America. They sailed on the good ship Thornton and arrived in New York City early in July 1856, giving their final destination as Utah. Before the end of the month, they set out from Iowa City, traveling with the James G. Willie Company.

A Willie Handcart Survivor plaque continues the story of Susannah Rebecca the Younger.

At the age of  12 years Susannah Rebecca Osborne and family were members of the Willie Handcart Company of 1856. She, her mother and sisters Martha Ann and Sarah Ann were rescued from under the handcart in Echo Canyon, Utah, by John Saline. Soon after their rescue, Susannah Rebecca Tillet Osborne, mother of three little girls,, died and was laid to rest in a meager, snowy grave just hours from Salt Lake City. Her father Daniel Osborne and Daniel Osborne Jr. also died and were buried on the plains. John and Susanna were later married and came to the Gila Valley where they raised ten children. Their numerous descendants are sincerely reverenced and truly humbled by their great faith, noble devotion and everlasting love for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We are forever amazed, honored and stand in awe of their life story.


I wouldn’t have known any of this had FamilySearch not sent me an email! Here’s the first sighting of my pioneer cousin.


O Susannah, I’m not ashamed to say I cried for thee.


Today’s Image

In June 1841, Church Cliff House was occupied by farmer Richard LOWISH, his wife Mary Ann, and their daughter Ann, with five male agricultural labourers and two female servants living in. In August the following year, Richard sold 35 pure-bred Leicestershire rams by auction and in April 1843 assigned “all his real and personal estate and effects” to three trusted men and sailed for America. In 1850 he was enumerated in Lost Creek, Vigo, with Mary Ann and four children. The youngest of three girls, Emma G. aged 3, had been born in Indiana. You can find them on FamilySearch Tree.

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