Andrew Jackson Moffit

May 7, 1818 - May 31, 1892


ANDREW JACKSON MOFFITT, was the son of James Moffit and Elizabeth Thompson and was born in Ireland: May 7, 1818. The family came to the United States when he was an infant and located in Iowa, where he grew up and was married. His wife died soon after marriage and he started for California in the 1850's during the gold excitement. When he reached Salt Lake City he joined the Mormon Church, then went on to California, from which he soon returned, and served as coachman for Brigham Young for several years.

In 1860 he came to Manti, being sent by President Young as bishop. He held the position for fifteen years, and was president of the Co-op store several years. He took an active part in the Black Hawk war, and being the bishop, kept an open house to all.

He lost a great many stock through the Indian raids. He was always prominent in church and public affairs and universally respected.

On February 17, 1857, he married Margaret, daughter of Robert and Elizabeth Easton, born near Glasgow, Scotland, September 20, 1834. They had thirteen children: Charles, Harriet, Syrena, George, Margaret, Nettie, John W., Wallace, Spencer, Russell and Edward, living in 1897; Brigham and Jane were deceased.

Became a Mormon in 1849. One source gave mother's maiden name as Elizabeth Evans. Harold Moffitt said family tradition claimed the family came from Co Cavin, Ireland. Andrew started for California during the gold rush, but when he reached Utah he joined the LDS Church. He then went to California but returned to Salt Lake City soon. (from Jacob Kaylor Moffitt) According to granddaughter, Clara Peacock Anderson, Andrew came to the US as an infant, grew up in Iowa, and was married there. Soon after the death of his 1st wife he left for the California Gold Rush, but stayed there only briefly, serving as coachman for Brigham Young in Salt Lake City for several years. The two children of his 1st wife were left with their maternal grandparents. He had 14 children by his second wife, Margaret Easton, and 2 more by the 3rd wife, Jane Easton, Margaret's twin. He was Bishop of the Mormon Church in Manti 15 years. It was while he was preaching a funeral sermon for a dear friend when he had a stroke and never regained consciousness.

Andrew Jackson Moffitt by Grandaughter Clara Peacock Anderson

Andrew Jackson Moffitt was born in Fermanagh, Ireland, May 7, 1818 to James and Elizabeth Moffitt. The family came to the United States when he was an infant. They located in Iowa, where he grew up and was married. His first wife, Syrena Evans, gave birth to two children, a son, Jacob and a daughter, Theresa S. His wife died when she was pregnant with their 3rd child. Very soon after her death, he came to Utah, leaving the little ones with his wife's folks.

He started for California during the gold excitement, but when he reached Utah he joined the Latter-day Saints' Church. Soon after this he went to California, but soon returned to Salt lake City. He served as a coachman for Brigham Young for several years. During this time Margaret Easton and her twin sister Jane Easton, two young girls from Scotland, came to Utah to find employment, which they did.

On February 17, 1853, he married Margaret Easton. They had 13 children, Charles, Harriett, Syrena Evans, Brigham, John, George, Margaret, Wallace, Jeanette (Nettie), Spencer, Russell, Jane and Edward.

The two oldest were born while they lived with Brigham Young's family.

In l858, Brigham Young called him to go to Manti to be Bishop. President Young was going to Manti with them. Then they reached Provo, their third child was born, a baby girl. Brigham Young asked Grandmother if he could name her. She said "yes", and he gave her the name of Syrena Evans after Grandfather's first wife. Grandmother's eyes filled with tears. When Brigham Young saw this he said "Margaret, don't you like the name?" and she replied, "Oh she is such a teeny little thing to have such a big name". She said we will call her Teeny, and this was the name she was known by all her life. This was my Mother.

Grandfather and Brigham Young came on to Manti, leaving Grandmother and the children in Provo until she was able to travel. Grandfather served as Bishop for fifteen years. He was president of the Manti Co-op Store for several years. They had to bring all the merchandise from Salt Lake City with team and wagon.

He took an active part in the Black Hawk War. Being Bishop, they kept an open house for all. He lost a great many stock thru the Indian raids. He was always prominent in Church and Public affairs and was universally respected. It is told he always liked young people and always planned recreation for them, as well as the other members of the town. It is recorded in some Scandinavia History that he was especially kind to the Scandinavian emigrants and that they thought a lot of him.

He was a farmer and cattle man. They raised most of his family in the house where Mrs. Frank Thurston now lives on Union Street. He sent his three oldest children on a Mission to Arizona to help settle that country, all at the same time. They were all married the same day, January 29, 1876, and left February 16, with ox and mule teams. This was very hard for him and grandmother to see three of their children go under the trying conditions. Another son, Spencer, filled a mission in the Southern States.

In the Jane Wilkens, Grandmothers twin sister. She was previously married to Joseph Wilkens and had two girls. Her husband left her and the two girls and went to California during the gold rush. He was gone for several years. She never heard a word from him, and thinking he was dead, she married Grandfather. They had two children, a boy and a girl, Fannie and William. This made him the father of 18 children.

He and Grandmother kept a boarding house in the Old McCallister Place on Main Street in Manti for many years. Many of the men that worked on the Temple boarded there.

Eight of his children went over into Emery County to help settle that Country.

He was a very kind and sympathetic man. He was preaching a funeral sermon for one of his very dear friends, Dr. Ray Foster Kenner, when he was stricken with a stroke. His sons carried him home and he never regained consciousness. He passed away May 3l, 1892 at his home in Manti and is buried in the Manti City Cemetery.