Cynthia Stewart was born on April 28, 1810, in Sumner County, Tennessee.
Her father, Samuel Stewart, was a Tennessee volunteer in the War of 1812. The Battle of New Orleans took place on Jan 8, 1815 and was the final battle of the War of 1812. American Forces, commanded by MG Andrew Jackson, defeated and invading British Army intent on seizing New Orleans and the vast territory the US had acquired with the Louisiana Purchase. The Treaty of Ghent, having been signed on December 24. 1814, had been ratified by all parties. Hostilities continued until late February when official dispatches announcing the peace reached the combatants in Louisiana, finally putting an end to the war.
Unfortunately, for Samuel Stewart it was too late. He was part of a 1352 Tennessee Militia that took part in that battle. There were only 55 Americans killed but one of them was Samuel who was killed on the battlefield at Chalmette Plantation. Cynthia would have been four of five years old.
Cynthia's mother remarried in 1822 to James A. McCall a friend and neighbor to the McClellan's in Bedford County, Tennessee. Shortly before her sixteenth birthday, Cynthia married James McClellan and they shared the land of her mother and stepfather in Bedford County , Tennessee. She quickly bore four children in Tennessee, William Carroll, 12 May 1828, Matilda Elizabeth 15 December 1829, Mary Jane, 22 August 1831, (and my great grandfather Samuel Wilburn, 23 Aug, 1833. Shortly after Samuel's birth the family moved with a contingent of other's from Tennessee to Shelbyville, Illinois. There is no record why the family moved but there was a Cholera epidemic in Bedford County Tennessee in 1833 and many people moved on to avoid the illness.
For the first year in Illinois the family squatted on 160 acres which the did not improve upon it. In 1834 or 1835 they bought 600 acres of farm and timber land with 100 acres under fence and part of it under cultivation. in a bend of the Okaw or Kashkaskie River. Their nearest neighbor was 3/4 of a mile away, the next nearest 21/2 miles. By industry and economy, James and Cynthia were rapidly surrounded with the comforts of life. They raised hogs and cattle and the surplus was sold in St. Louis and Chicago, along with coonskins, dressed turkeys, venison and hams.
Cynthia gave birth to Hugh Miles, on 4 February, 1835, Hugh Jefferson 13 November, 1836 and John Jasper 6 August, 1838. This was their condition when the elders of the L.D. S. Church came to their door. They embraced the Gospel and were baptized May 13, 1839.
James was impressed by Joseph Smith whom he made a special effort to meet which lead him to buy land in Nauvoo, bound by James and Lumber Streets in 1840. He had his son William move to that property early in the spring of 1841 while he tried to sell his farm in Shelbyville. It was one of the best in the area and it was not easy to sell. Finally he took some cash and livestock and moved on.
The family, consisting of father, mother and 7 children, moved to Nauvoo. Both Cynthia and James became afflicted with rheumatism so badly that they were bedridden for 3 months. James lost most of his stock when they decided to return to Shelbyville in the dead of winter. Some people herded up the livestock and cared for them till spring, but charged James one-half the herd in payment for keeping them. With the loss of his stock, payment of tithing, buying shares in the Nauvoo house and continued illness the finances were soon depleted. The slide from plenty to poverty seemed but a short step.
Louisa Ann was born 11 April, 1840. In 1843, James father Hugh was living with them in Nauvoo. Sarah Amanda was born, 5 Nov, 1844.
In the summer of 1846, most of the saints had left Nauvoo and only a remnant remained, composed of the poor, sick and afflicted who were unable to get away. They were all exerting all their energies to obtain means for that purpose. William Carroll had gone on ahead to help move the saints across Iowa. James wrote some letters to his son concerning why he had not returned to help them. After two months Brigham Young sent William back to get his parents, grandfather and other relatives.
Before leaving Nauvoo, James and Cynthia received their endowments in the Nauvoo Temple on January 7, 1846 but they were not sealed until April 2, 1847 in Winter Quarters. Upon arriving at home the boys found their parents preparing for the move west. They decided to cross the Mississippi at Nashville, as they could get better terms on ferriage. They crossed the State of Iowa and arrive at Mosquito Creek (Council Bluffs) July 14 or 15, 1846. When they arrived in Council Bluffs a recruiting officer was there, getting men for service in the Mexican War.
James prepared to go with his two brother's in law but that would have left the responsibility of moving four families west upon the shoulders of 18 year old William. William was allowed to enlist and the job of moving the families fell to James.
On August 19, 1848, Cynthia gave birth to James Travers.
On June 15, 1850, an emigrating company of one hundred saints was organized on the Missouri River near Council Bluffs, Iowa. Joseph Young was the appointed leader. James was assigned as Captain of fifty. They left their homes, crossed the Missouri River below the mouth of the Platte and traveled up the south side to Ash Hollow. From using the stagnant spring water, because of wet weather, between the Missouri and the Platte, cholera broke out in their company. During the latter part of June or the first part of July there were several deaths, including James and Cynthia's little son James Travers age two. William who had rejoined the family had a severe attack but pulled through in fairly good shape. Louisa Ann, age 9, was so very ill that they sent word to the company ahead to dig two graves. But our kind Heavenly Father saw fit to spare her life that she might reach maturity and with her husband, Eli Bell, reared a family in honor and integrity.
On August 22, 1850 in the Black Hills, near Fort Laramie, Wyoming, a little girl, the eleventh child of James and Cynthia named for mother, Cynthia Selena was born. With the strain of that journey, sickness and death weighing so heavily upon her, small wonder that Cynthia could not nurse her babe. Almeda, their son's wife, had a six week old child of her own when they started their journey. She drank lots of weak tea, walked part of the way, yet fed two babies at the breast. The company arrived in Salt Lake in Oct of 1850. They were the 6th company to cross the plains spending 107 days on the trail.
The McClellan family was assigned to Payson but wintered in Salt Lake. They removed the box from the running gears and set it on two logs. The women rearranged things to live in while the men took the rest of the wagons to mountains to get timber for burning and building. The family moved to Payson in March of 1851 were James became a blacksmith. Cynthia gave birth to her 12th child Arminta Zarada on 11 August 1852. On April 29th, 1862 Cynthia died the day after her 52nd birthday. Samuel would have been 29, when his mother passed away. She had suffered many things over her life time but showed much strength and determination. She was considered a heroic pioneer. (Unknown Author)
This person was created through the import of Jim Walker gedcom 4 Wikitree may 22 2011.ged on 24 May 2011.
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