Mary Ann Levi

July 30, 1835 - December 3, 1872


Brief History of Mary Ann Levi Riddle

Mary Ann Levi was born July 30, 1835, in Gosfield, Essex County, Ontario, Canada. Her parents were Frederick Levi, Jr. and Julia Ann Carroll Levi. Not much is known about her early life. She was the second child in a family of five. Her father, Frederick, Jr. was born in Essex County, Ontario, and her mother, Julia Ann Carroll was born in Cork County, Ireland. They were Mormon immigrants to Utah, who settled in Ogden. All five children grew to adulthood and married. Mary Ann and Isaac were married in Ogden in 1853. They lived in Ogden for the next year, where their first child, George, was born and died. Then Isaac was called on his mission and Mary Ann went with him. Isaac written about the places he pioneered and the things he did, but not much about living conditions and how the family engaged in those times. Isaac was a good provider and surely did the best he could, but the family moved frequently. Each of their five other children was born in a different place in Southern Utah, and we know that Joselina was born in a "wagon box."

In June of 1864, shortly after he was released from his mission, Isaac moved the family to Pine Creek, where they lived for the next ten years.

In the fall of 1867, an epidemic broke out with what was called 't putrid sore throat." It is now known as diphtheria. In those days there was no known cure for it and many children died. Isaac and Mary Ann lost all three of their daughters: Madora, who was five, in September; Mary Ann, eleven, in October; and Laura, the baby, not quite four, in November. This left only Joselina and his older brother, Isaac J. from the first family.

Most of the rest of what we know comes from Laura R. King, who wrote: "Father and Uncle Isaac have both told me their mother was a very fragile woman, very accomplished for the time, doing beautiful embroidery and sewing her own clothing, some of which my mother in her possession as long as she lived. The costumes spoke of culture and refinement, were well made of fine alpaca, trimmed in satin back velvet ribbon. All of the pleating was so even, the stitches so fine as not to be visible. There were tiny hats and gloves for each costume.

Grandfather Isaac spent ten years on an Indian mission in Southern Utah and Arizona and Southern California. On one occasion when he returned, he brought my grandma a beautiful dinner set of Spanish origin. I have in my possession at this time one of the plates. He had occasion to trade with Spanish merchants who had goods that at that time were unheard of elsewhere. Grandmother's house was well furnished, and had almost the first factory made carpet, which was called "States and it was believed by some of the poor people that their feet would almost sink in the soft pile or Brussels.

Grandmother could not endure the pioneer node of living and after giving birth to her sixth child she was never well again. Father was eleven when she died, and he says he cannot remember her leaving her room except to ride out with grandfather or to go to conference. Grandfather kept a hired girl and had a lady come in and help with sewing spring and fall.

In the fall of 1867, a daughter developed "putrid sore throat." Everyone was afraid of that, and only grandma's faithful friend Mae Murdock stayed until death relieved her. Then grandma and the hired man took the body and went to the cemetery, where the Bishop met them and helped them inter the remains. Poor grandmother failed rapidly after her little girls died. She was naturally of a jovial nature, often joked about her condition and never complained, but in the spring after burying her little girls, she had been so very sad and quiet and had finally taken to her bed.

One morning in the spring of 1871 she was worse and sent for her friend Mae Murdock. The person she sent did not understand that grandma was worse, so she did not go immediately. Before Mae arrived, grandma had sinking spells, and when Mae came she was past seeing but knew Mae's voice.

Almost her last words were about her boys. She was silent for a while and then said, "Oh, Mae, I rate to leave the boys. Don't tell them I am dying, will you? Little Silney has stayed so close to me since the girls left." Although father (the little Silney referred to) was eleven years old he doesn't seem to have been as old as the eleven-year-old children of today." End of Quote.

Mary Ann passed away in Beaver March 3, 1871 and is buried there. She was 35 years old.

The Frederick John Levi family traveled from Keg Creek, Iowa to Salt Lake City, Utah in the James Holt Company in 1852.

Members of the company were the following:

Name Age Date of Birth Death Date
Holt, Franklin Overton Infant 31 July 1852 10 November 1929
Holt, James 48 10 February 1804 25 January 1894
Holt, Joseph Overton 3 8 October 1848 2 November 1853
Holt, Leroy Payne 14 27 March 1838 10 November 1910
Holt, Mary Ann 12 11 January 1840 22 February 1916
Holt, Nancy Catherine Overton 1 28 October 1850 25 April 1931
Holt, Parthenia 31 12 July 1821 7 May 1906
Holt, William Alma 9 25 August 1842 11 May 1920
Levi, Barbara Jane 15 24 July 1837 13 May 1909
Levi, Charlotte Ann 12 20 December 1839 20 September 1872
Levi, David 19 16 May 1833 8 January 1909
Levi, Frederick John 51 17 October 1800 11 April 1865
Levi, Joseph Hyrum 7 30 December 1844 29 June 1902
Levi, Julia Ann 42 17 August 1809 3 March 1887
Levi, Mary Ann 16 30 July 1835 3 March 1872
Smith, Dr. William Unknown Unknown Unknown

Mary was born on July 30, 1835 in Gosfield, Essex, Ontario, Canada to Frederick John Levi II and Julia Ann Carroll. On March 6, 1853, Mary married Isaac Riddle, an LDS Pioneer. Isaac Riddle's autobiography does not state exactly where they were married but it does state that he worked that summer on the Bear River 80 miles north of Salt Lake City so it is possible that they were married in that area. They were married in Salt Lake City, Utah.

At the end of the summer, they invested in 50 acres of improved land, horses and cattle. It appears from his biography that this farm was near Ogden, Utah. They spent a happy Fall and Winter in their new home. On March 6, 1854, their son was born. He lived only two weeks and his name was George. Mary became very ill.

Isaac's biography states that she was not expected to live. It was at this time that he left her to go on a Mission for the church among the Indians in Southern Utah. Though his autobiography makes it sound as though he did not return until the Fall of 1858. It is obvious that he must have been home in February of 1855 since their second child, a daughter was born on December 7, 1855. He was again home in February of 1857 since another son was born on December 17th, 1857.

Considering the weather in that part of the country, my guess would be that he traveled extensively during the Spring, Summer and Fall and was home during the Winters. His autobiography states that this particular mission with the Indians was the best and the hardest ten years of his life. I would imagine it wasn't easy on Mary with her husband being gone so much of the time either.

In 1858 when he returned home, he sold the farm and invested his money in a sawmill probably the one he built in Pine Valley. He spent much of his time traveling dealing the business of the sawmill and the mission with the Indians, leaving Mary alone to deal with her family.

In 1859, another son was born followed by two daughters in 1861 and 1863. The 1860 census shows the Mary Ann living in Pine Valley with Isaac, her daughter,Mary, Isaac's mother, her two sons, Isaac Jr and J.M. and a young man named Jackson Curley from Georgia

In 1867, the family was living in Beaver during a diphtheria epidemic and all three daughters died. Mary Ann who had not been in the best of health and had been a semi-invalid since the birth of her last child never got over the death of her daughters. She died on December 3, 1872. She was survived by her two sons who went to live with Isaac and his second wife. [3]

Mary Ann's husband Isaac Riddle