Thursday, October 30, 2014

My Mormon Pioneer Charles Coulson Rich & Eliza Ann Graves - Part 4

With the blessing of his first wife, Sarah DeArmon Pea Rich, Charles married as his second wife Eliza Ann Graves on January 2nd, 1845 at the Nauvoo Temple in Nauvoo, Illinois.

Eliza is the daughter of Reuben Graves (1786-1858) and Phoebe Palmer (1788-1858) was born in Waterford, Vermont on June 3rd, 1811. She was a sickly child and because of this she was taught to sew suits by hand by her maternal aunt. In 1832, when her family moved to Erie, Pennsylvania. Eliza and her mother, opened a tailor shop and hired a few apprentices.

It was in Erie when Eliza, her mother and her sister, Mary Palmer Graves were introduced to the teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints and were baptized into the church. As was custom at the time, Eliza and her mother welcomed church missionaries into their home. On one occasion while caring for a sick elder, Eliza met her future husband who had come to call on the elder. Sometime in 1841, Eliza and her family left Erie and traveled to Nauvoo, Illinois.

By all accounts, Eliza was a small woman standing about five feet, two inches tall and weighed about ninety-eight pounds. She was a successful business woman who ran and operated a sewing business in Erie, Pennsylvania and Nauvoo, Illinois. She hired women and girls as apprentices and taught them her craft.

Eliza and Charles were married on January 2nd, 1845 in Nauvoo. They were sealed to each other forever on February 3rd, 1846 at the new Nauvoo Temple. Charles and Eliza had three daughters. The eldest was Mary Bratton Rich (1846-1931), Eliza Ann Rich (1848-1849) and Frances Phoebe Rich (1850-1932). Mary Bratton Rich has the distinction of being the first polygamous child of her father, Charles Coulson Rich. 

 Left to right are: Eliza Ann Graves Rich, Mary Bratton Rich Linford and Frances Phoebe Rich Collings

Within days of Charles and his family leaving Nauvoo, Eliza gave birth to their daughter, Mary Bratton. With Eliza's history of being sickly Charles made the decision to leave without Eliza and Mary as the rest of the family headed for Winters Quarters, Nebraska. Eliza understood and asked that Charles bless her, which he did, then left her and the baby in her mother's care. 

Once Eliza was strong enough to join Charles and the rest of the family in Nebraska, Mary became very ill. Eliza and her mother endured the violence that was happening in Nauvoo in the summer of 1846. Eliza was taunted and harassed by the citizens of Nauvoo with comments such as Charles had forsaken her and their daughter. Finally on September 3rd, 1846, Eliza, along with her mother and daughter began their journey west and the family reunited.

Eliza Ann Graves Rich died on June 2nd, 1879 in Paris, Bear Lake, Idaho at the age of 67. She is the only wife of Charles Coulson Rich to die before he did in 1883.

Arrington, Leonard J. Mormon General and Frontiersman ( accessed 4 September 2014  page 286 images of the following: Eliza Ann Graves, Mary B Rich Linford and Frances Rich Collings.

Arrington, Leonard J. Mormon General and Frontiersman ( accessed 4 September 2014, Eliza Ann Graves Contributed by pandersen3803350 ( accessed on 27 October 2014

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Happy Birthday, Cassie!!

Happy Birthday to my beautiful daughter in law, Cassie Kitts! You are a wonderful daughter, wife and mother. It is truly my pleasure to call you my daughter and my friend. I am so glad that my son had the sense to get back in touch with you when he moved back to Charlotte! I hope that you have a fantastic birthday and we love you.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Happy 104th Anniversary to my Great Grandparents - The Behrle's

Recently, I've been going through old photographs belonging to my parents. As I pulled a Sears bag out of my Momma's pie safe I thought I would find pictures of our family especially mine because when my boys, Kenny and David were growing up, Sears was the only place to go get good pictures without breaking the bank.

Imagine my surprise when I found a picture of my great grandparents on their wedding day nearly 104 years old in the Sears bag! On the back of the photograph I found the names of everyone in the picture, the place where my great grandparents were married and the date of the wedding.

Today marks the 104th Wedding Anniversary of my great grandparents, Dr. Raymond Alexander "Papa Ray" Behrle and Pauline "Lena" Orth. Raymond is the son of John and Mary Jane (Hermann) Behrle. Pauline is the daughter of Conrad and Katherine (Wilke) Orth.

Unfortunately, the photograph had a couple of tears and someone had rounded all of the corners as if to fit it into an oval or circular frame. I suspect that my grandmother, Myrtle is the culprit who cut the corners. After all it's her parents in the photograph. Below is the photo as I found it.

This is the photo as I found it in the Sears bag.

Raymond and Pauline were married on Wednesday, October 26th, 1910 at St. Francis of Rome Catholic Church in Louisville, Kentucky. They had four wedding attendants, Anna May Orth, sister of the bride, Myrtle Walker, Louis Schuler and Godfrey (?) Bitzer. There was a wedding announcement in the October 29th, 1910 issue of the Kentucky Irish American. Then in the November 5th, 1910 issue of the Kentucky Irish American there is an announcement of their return from their honeymoon. 

This is the wedding announcement from the Kentucky Irish American newspaper published on October 29, 1910.

This the their returned home from their honeymoon from the Kentucky Irish American newspaper published on November 5, 1910.

I really wanted to restore the picture for my Momma as a birthday gift but I knew it was not something I could do with my own photo editing software. I also didn't want to entrust it to just anyone. This is where my childhood friend, Ed Higgins saves the day for me. Our parents were the best of friends. We had reconnected on Facebook and noticed that he was posting amazing photos. I sent him a message asking if he could recommend someone. He said he really didn't but would I mind if he took a shot at it. I said of course and a few days later he sent me the restored picture via email. It was absolutely gorgeous! I couldn't wait to give it to my Momma. A few weeks later my Momma and Daddy along with my nephew Bryan cane for visit. I gave her the gift bag with the restored photo and she loved it! Below is the restored photo. Thank you so much Ed!!

Photo restoration by Ed Higgins Photography

So today, I wish my great grandparents, Papa Ray & Lena a Happy 104th Wedding Anniversary. I also want to wish Papa Ray, who was born on October 27, 1880,  a Happy 134th Birthday!

(c) 2014 Dawn Kogutkiewicz

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Happy Birthday to my 2nd Great Grandfather William J Rueff, Sr.

Today marks the 165th anniversary of my great, great grandfather William Joseph Rueff, Sr.'s birthday.  He was born on October 22, 1849 in Louisville, Kentucky. The son of Charles Karl and Dorothea (Brun) Rueff. (c) Copyright Dawn Kogutkiewicz 2014

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Connect. Explore. Refresh. FGS 2015

I am proud to be an ambassador for the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS). FGS is being held February 11th-14th, 2015 in Salt Lake City. Unfortunately, I am unable to attend the conference next year. The theme for 2015 is Connect. Explore. Refresh. 

What does the theme of Connect, Explore and Refresh mean to me?

I am hoping that being an FGS Ambassador will allow me to connect with new people from all aspects of the genealogy community. I enjoy meeting new people. I enjoy being able to learn from others and getting to know them. Learning new things that will take my new friendships and my research to the next level.

For me to be able to explore new opportunities, new methodologies, online classes or any other format I can use to further my knowledge in the genealogy community is exciting and challenging. I have seen the list of seminars being offered at next year's conference and I see so many I would love to participate in. I wonder if in the future the FGS Conference would be available simultaneously as virtual conference too.

By connecting and exploring, I hope to refresh my own genealogy research. We all have list of who, when, where and why questions about our ancestors. That long list of family members that seem to be hiding from every census record imaginable or the one ancestor who seems to have fallen from the sky with no parents, no siblings, a wife with a missing maiden name and a dozen children. So with a new year fast approaching I am planning on refreshing my family tree to see what happens next!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Esther Thomas - Happy Birthday

Tomorrow marks the 121st anniversary of the birth of Esther Thomas, my 1st cousin 4 times removed. I would never have known her story if not for my cousin Sandy St. Clair. Esther, Sandy and I connected through my third great grandmother, Mary Elizabeth Warsaw "Betty" Morrow Cameron Miller. For Sandy, "Betty" is her second great grandmother, and she is the maternal grandmother of Esther. 

Esther was born on October 18th, 1894 in Pewee Valley, Kentucky, the fifth child of William Grayce Thomas and Gabriella "Ella" Cameron. Sometime between 1910 and 1919 Esther left home and went to Chicago where she performed. It was while she was performing in these little honky tonk's around Chicago that she was seen by agents from New York City. She left Chicago and went to New York City and began using the stage name of Esther Walker, where she became a musical-comedy star and a recording artist. 

Beginning in February of 1919 at the Winter Garden Theater, Esther starred in "Monte Cristo, Jr." until August 6th, 1919 when the show was temporarily suspended because of the Actor's Equity strike. The show resumed on September 8th, 1919 and closed on October 4th, 1919. Then beginning on October 7th, 1919 Esther starred in "Hello Alexander" at the 44th Street Theater until November 22nd, 1919.

Between 1919-1920 and 1925-1927 Esther made over 30 recordings for the Victor and Brunswick recording companies. Included in the Victor recordings are the songs "What-cha Gonna Do When There Ain't No Jazz" (1920), "Sahara (We'll Soon Be Dry Like You)" (1919), and "Sweet Kisses" (1919). The Brunswick recordings include "I Don't Want Nobody But You" (1926), "I Love My Baby (And My Baby Loves Me)" (1926) and "Five Foot Two, Eyes of Blue" (1926). If you would like to hear some of Esther's recordings you can find them on and at

In 1920, Esther married Karl St. John Hoblitzelle. Karl was a theater owner and philanthropist. Karl built the Majestic Theater in Dallas, Texas in 1921 which is still in use today.  Karl also built Majestic Theaters in Houston which opened in 1923 and was torn down in 1971, as well the Majestic in San Antonio which opened in 1929 and is still in use today. Esther and Karl made their home in Dallas, Texas. Esther was very involved in civic organizations such as the USO, the American Red Cross and the Junior League. She was also involved with many social clubs including the Dallas Garden Club, the Dallas Country Club and remain active in local theater productions.

Esther Thomas Hoblitzelle died of pancreatic cancer on July 28th, 1943 in University Park, Texas at the age of 48. She left the bulk of her estate to the Hoblitzelle Foundation which was founded by Karl and Ester in 1942. The Hoblitzelle Foundation continues to this day.

Garrick, David,'ll%20Soon%20Be%20Dry%20Like%20You-Columbia%2018613.jpg
Garrick, David,
Garrick, David,
Internet Broadway Database - All rights reserved description of cover art.
Library of Congress, National Jukebox, List of recordings for Esther Walker,
Majestic Empire,
Powell, Sandy, Photograph of Esther Thomas Hoblitzelle in suit
Powell, Sandy, Emails and conversations
"Texas, Deaths, 1890-1976," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 16 September 2011), Esther Hoblitzelle, 28 Jul 1943; citing certificate number 31500, State Registrar Office, Austin; FHL microfilm 2137308., Various recordings by Esther Walker

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

My Mormon Pioneer - Charles Coulson Rich & Sarah DeArmon Pea (1809-1883) Part 3

Charles became heavily involved with the Church after he converted. He was well liked and respected by his peers. The Church promoted marriage and family and in this department Charles was lacking. Friends tried to help Charles in this matter and recommended a young woman named Sarah DeArmon Pea. Friends of Sarah's were also determined to see her wed the young new Elder too. However, Charles was busy with his church duties and could not find the time to travel to southern Illinois to meet her. Once he completed his duties he set about to travel to Missouri by steamboat.

It was during this trip that Charles finally was able to write to Sarah. He told her of how Elder George M. Hinkle and other friends recommended that she would be a good a good companion. He tells her that Elder Hinkle has told him that she too will be coming to Missouri. In his letter dated March 23, 1837, Charles writes, " I should be happy to see you there and if these lines is received with the same feeling I write them I trust that you maybe single and unengaged.(1)". Charles and Sarah would exchange letters for six months before they would meet in person.

Sarah DeArmon Pea was born on September 23, 1814 in St. Clair County, Illinois. She is the daughter of John Pea (1783-1874) and Elizabeth Knighton (1783-1847). Sarah's father John served in the War of 1812 and her maternal grandfather, Thomas Knighton served in the American Revolution. Sarah was one of eight children. Her siblings John Wesley, Nancy Rebecca and Missanian all died in infancy. Her brother Thomas Knighton Pea died at age twenty-one and unmarried. Her brother Ezekeiel remained in Illinois until his death in 1869. While her father and sister Jane made the journey to Utah.

Sarah's mother, Elizabeth taught her and her sisters the skills of carding, spinning, weave, coloring, knitting and sewing; they were taught to how to milk cows, churn butter, cook and make soap. Sarah was very good at weaving, once she was done with the her family's needs, she began taking weaving jobs. She was not only taught the skills young girls of her era needed to know about keeping and running a home but she learned the aspects of farming as well planting crops and harvesting crops. John Pea was a farmer and a blacksmith by trade. The family would sell their wares in St Louis as it was not far from their home in Illinois.

As a child of ten, Sarah and her family left Illinois for her mother's health. Elizabeth Knighton Pea was not well and John thought it would be better for her if they went to Tennessee. He left his land in Illinois in the hands of his father in law and took only what could be carried in two wagons. 

The journey was long and difficult no doubt. When they arrived in western Tennessee John Pea sent word to his brother via another man who was traveling to the area where his brother lived. He explained that they would resting at a certain spot and asked him to come and visit. 

It was then decided that Sarah would go and stay with this Uncle and his family until her father had settled the rest of the family in eastern Tennessee. Her Uncle would return her to her family about six months later. The family would remain in Tennessee for about three years. John Pea would begin anew in Tennessee as a blacksmith and a farmer. Once her mother had significantly regained her health the family headed back to Illinois.

Like Charles, Sarah converted to the Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day saints and was baptized on December 15, 1835 at the age of 21 along with parents and her sister Jane. Sarah and Charles were married on February 11, 1838 in Far West, Missouri.

There were nine children born to Charles and Sarah, Sarah Jane Rich (1839-1926); Joseph Coulson Rich (1841-1908); Atremesia Messeniah Rich (1843-1843); Charles Coulson Rich, II (1844-1890); John Thomas Rich (1846-1893); Elizabeth "Libbie" Rich (1849-1932); David Patten Rich (1853-1930); Benjamin Erastus Rich (1855-1913) and Frederick Carmel "Fred" Rich (1859-1941).
 From left to right top row are Sarah Jane Rich Miller, Joseph Coulson Rich, Charles Coulson Rich, II and John Thomas Rich. From left to right bottom row are Elizabeth "Libbie" Rich Pratt, David Patten Rich, Benjamin Erastus Rich and Frederick Carmel "Fred" Rich.

On July 12, 1843, Prophet Joseph Smith reveals principle of plural marriage and the eternity of the marriage covenant. Charles and Sarah were told of the doctrine and it was understood that Charles was being urged to enter into choosing plural marriages. However, Sarah DeArmon Pea Rich was his first wife and the final decision as to whether Charles would have plural wives was hers. If she did not agree with the proposed idea of plural marriage then Charles would most likely would not have taken any other wives. On the other hand if Sarah did agree then Charles would then seek out an additional wife or wives. As it turned out, Sarah did agree with the idea of plural marriages and went so far as to help her husband choose who is wives would be.

Over an eight day period Charles married the following wives at the Nauvoo Temple. His second wife was Eliza Ann Graves and they married on January 2, 1845. On January 6, 1845 Charles married his third wife, Mary Ann Phelps. Charles married his fourth wife, Sarah Jane Peck on January 9, 1845. Sarah Jane Peck's family was already acquainted with Rich clan as Sarah Jane's younger sister Henrietta had married Charles's cousin Thomas Rich in 1839. Emeline Grover would be come Charles's fifth wife on February 2, 1846. The sixth wife of Charles Coulson Rich was Harriet Sargent whom he married on March 28, 1847 in Winter Quarters, Nebraska. Both Emeline and Harriet were fourteen when they married Charles.

Sarah must of have been a great help to Charles as their families travel to Utah in 1847. By this time she had already journeyed from Illinois to Tennessee and back. 

When Charles left for San Bernadino, California Sarah Pea Rich chose to remain in Utah.  She would receive the occasional letter from Charles who also sent her seeds and fruit trees. With tender loving care she was able to establish an orchard in Salt Lake City.

By all accounts, Sarah Pea Rich was a caring and loving woman who looked after her large family. She cared for her children, she would nurse members of her father's family back to health and When Charles returned from California the family had some quiet years. Charles would accept a mission to Europe but by 1864 he would uproot his family having been called upon once again to start the settlement of Bear Lake Valley, Idaho. 

Sarah Pea Rich did not particularly care for the Bear Lake Valley and return to her home in Salt Lake City after a few years. She continued to provide for herself and her children as best she could and whenever possible she would send care packages to other families  including fruit from her orchard. Charles would visit Sarah when he could and he when he was elected to the legislature he would spend his winters in Salt Lake City with her. 

After Charles death in 1883, Sarah continued to help children however and whenever she could. Sarah would move to Ogden, Utah to live with her son Benjamin in 1891 and she died there on September 12, 1893. She was buried in Paris, Idaho.

1. Arrington, Leonard J. Mormon General and Frontiersman, page 56 ( accessed 4 September 2014 
2. The Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints, Doctrine and Covenants, Section 132 ( accessed 15 September 2014
Sources: LDS Pioneer and Handcart Companies, 1847-1856 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA:, 2013. Membership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830-1848 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2013.

Arrington, Leonard J. Mormon General and Frontiersman ( accessed 4 September 2014
Arrington, Leonard J. Mormon General and Frontiersman ( accessed 4 September 2014  page 286 images of the following children of Charles Coulson Rich and Sarah DeArmon Pea, Sarah Jane Rich Miller, Joseph Coulson Rich, John Thomas Rich, Elizbeth "Libbie" Rich Pratt, David Patten Rich and Frederick Carmel Rich

The Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints, Doctrine and Covenants, Section 132 ( accessed 15 September 2014 

Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints, Lesson 25 - Every Young Man Should Serve A Mission, Aaronic Priesthood Manual 3, (1995), 97–103, Sarah DeArmon Pea Rich ( accessed on 16 September 2014

Church History in the Fulness of Times Student Manual, (2003), 211-234, Chapter Seventeen: Refugee in Illinois ( accessed 11 September 2014

Cole, Zula Rich. Pioneer Joseph Rich 1786-1866 Father of Charles Coulson Rich ( Contributed by bwatkins., accessed on 29 August 2014

Rich, Sarah DeArmon Pea, A Self-Written History of Sarah DeArmon Pea Rich,, Contributed by SarahMVidal, ( accessed on 18 September 2014

"Utah, Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah, 1847-1868," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 19 Aug 2014), Charles Coulson Rich, ; excerpted from Frank Esshom, Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah: Comprising Photographs, Genealogies, Biographies (Salt Lake City, Utah: Utah Pioneers Books, 1913).

"Utah, Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah, 1847-1868," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 14 Oct 2014), Benjamin E Rich, ; excerpted from Frank Esshom, Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah: Comprising Photographs, Genealogies, Biographies (Salt Lake City, Utah: Utah Pioneers Books, 1913).

Wikipedia contributors. "Charles C. Rich." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 10 Sep. 2014. Web. 11 Sep. 2014.

Copyright (c) Dawn Kogutkiewicz 2014