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John Russell Archibald


John Russell Archibald
1846 - 1923

John Russell Archibald was born 2 August 1846 in Greenrigg, Linlithgowshire, Scotland, the sixth child in a family of ten children, to Thomas Archibald and Elizabeth Russell. He was baptized a member of the LDS Church on 15 September 1857 "when eleven years old," by George Law, and confirmed on the 16th of September 1857 by Alexander Gilkerson, in Scotland. His parents
were baptized several years before that. His father had died 8 April 1857, five months before John was baptized.
May 30, 1863 John emigrated to America on the ship Cynosure. They docked in New York in July. His brother William and William's family were on the same ship, but John appears on the ship's records alone, listed as a miner, age 18, coming from G. Peacock. John and William's mother and four younger siblings had already gone to America in 1862. One little sister, Agnes, had died in Scotland in infancy. They settled in Wellsville, Cache county, Utah in the fall of 1862, the first settlement in Cache Valley (microfilm #0025692, pg 30).
The threat of Indians was great. John had to herd cattle on the hillside and help with farming. He had just turned 16 years old when they arrived in Wellsville.
John met Elizabeth Hendry in Wellsville and they were married on the 3rd of February 1867 in the LDS Endowment House in Salt Lake City, Utah. That must have been a cold ride in a wagon from Wellsville to Salt Lake City in February, but they were young and strong, and in love.
To them were born seven children 6 boys and 1 girl. They were all raised to maturity. The children were John, Thomas, Isabell, Michael, James, William and Allen. William died at age 20 years and he had not married. In John Russell Archibald's record book, it tells that he had two young ladies sealed to William Francis McKay Leishman and Isabell Eunice Dalton. This was something they did in those days. Isabell, the only daughter, died in 1909; she had been married to George T. Darley. In 1914 Michael died in Canada where he had gone to settle; he left a wife and five children.
John loved his family very much.
John's one brother and three of his oldest sons went to Canada, around Cardston, to homestead farms. John was a farmer and had some very good land, with his home in town and his land out of town a ways.
At that time, the LDS Church practiced polygamy. With the consent of his wife, Elizabeth, John married a second wife on 31 October 1884. Her name was Deseret Kilfoyle; called "Aunt Dez" by the first wife's children. John and Deseret had three girls: Mary Ann, Clara Alberta, and Margaret (who died when five days old). Mary Ann died at age 23, she was married to John Jones Haslam.
John got his citizenship papers on 6 October 1880 for this great United States of America. The certificate was kept in a Book of Remembrance kept by his son Allen and Allen's wife, Laura.
John Russell Archibald and his wife Elizabeth went to Salt Lake City by team and wagon to the dedication of the Salt Lake Temple; their son Allen went with them and maybe others did also.
After the Manifesto, when polygamous marriages were no longer allowed in the LDS Church, John went to Canada with his second wife Deseret. It was there that their daughter Clara Alberta was born. They came back to Utah in December 1890.
As read in the Church chronology, "In the 1st district court at Ogden, John R. Archibald was sentenced by Judge John Miner to 3 months imprisonment for U.C. [Unlawful Co- habitation]." Sunday, the 29th of March 1891, John was released from the penitentiary.
John loved both of his families very much and it was a very hard thing for him to give up one family.
He was called to serve a mission to Scotland in July 1902 and landed in Glasgow on July 24th; he was still gone in 1904 when they held his mother's 86th birthday party.
Deseret Kilfoyle Archibald, his second wife, died 10 March 1916, and is buried in the family plot in the Wellsville cemetery. Elizabeth Hendry Archibald, his first wife, died 19 January 1919 of the flu. The two wives lived in homes on the city block in Wellsville.
John helped with the construction of the Logan Temple and enjoyed doing temple work there, for his ancestors, after it was dedicated. Letters (replies to letters he wrote to relatives in Scotland, seeking genealogy information) are still in the family.
Some of his sons filled missions for the LDS church. John went to the Eastern States mission; Michael went to the Southern States mission; Allen went to Scotland. There may have been others. All of his children were good, honorable men and women, who loved and respected their good parents.
John Russell Archibald's home burned down after Elizabeth's death. He spent the last years of his life with his son Allen, Laura and family. He died 29 April 1923, and is buried in the Wellsville Cemetery.
He loved and enjoyed his grandchildren very much. He was a very devoted member of the LDS Church and would have given all for the Gospel.

From a history written by his grand-daughter Ruth Archibald Aston

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