It’s The Women That Impress Me!

Mormon history guide enacting the role of Jacob Hamblin

“He traveled some 30,000 miles in this saddle as a kind of diplomat making peace with the Indian nations in the southwest.” On a history tour of St. George, Utah we learned about a man named Jacob Hamblin who was a western pioneer and Mormon missionary aiding settlement in southern Utah and northern Arizona. In his house our guide proudly showed us Jacob’s saddle and talked about his inspirational life.  He spent so many hours in that saddle as he traveled across the southwest helping new settlers and establishing cordial relationships with First Nations groups. 

On the left is Jacob’s fifth wife Louisa and on the right his third wife Sarah Priscilla

I saw photos of two of Jacob’s five wives in his home and wondered aloud if it hadn’t been those women who were truly inspirational. According to Wikipedia Jacob fathered some 25 children with his five wives. Although his first wife stayed in Ohio when Jacob decided to move to Utah he took their four children along with him and his subsequent wives helped to raise them as well as their own children.  

Jacob Hamblin 1819-1886

Jacob’s work as a broker between Mormon settlements and First Nations groups was only possible because his wives stayed home to ‘hold down the fort’ caring for his livestock, his orchards, his cotton fields, his gardens, maintaining his home, and seeing to the education and upbringing of his children. 

The Hamblin House

Although history records his wives’ names- Lucinda, Rachel, Sarah, Eliza and Louisa of course Jacob is the one we know the most about and the one who history honors.  Indeed the house where he lived is called The Jacob Hamblin House when in fact he was seldom there but usually out on his missionary and diplomatic journeys. 

On the main floor of Jacob’s house we saw the marriage bed where Jacob will have done his part to conceive his many children. Upstairs was a circle of chairs to show how the children met together with their parents for worship and family meetings and education. The maintainence of that family circle was largely left to Jacob’s wives while he traveled his 30,000 miles. I wonder if the Jacob Hamblin House shouldn’t be named after them.

In the doorway of the Jacob Hamblin House

Other posts……….. 

A Utah Massacre Remembered

Cotton Pickin Hard

From Pale and Weak to Platoon Commander

Mothers at the Met

Mothers Have a Stronger Bond With Kids

 

3 Comments

Filed under Utah

3 responses to “It’s The Women That Impress Me!

  1. I’ve visited the Jacob Hamblin home many times over the years. I’m his GGG Grandson. Excellent point about the faithful mothers. I’m a descendant of Rachel and the more I’ve learned about her the more impressed I’ve become. What a true inspiration. They are a shining example of the old saying, “behind every successful man is an amazing woman.” Learn more about the Jacob Hamblin family at the official Jacob Hamblin family website at http://www.jacobhamblin.org.

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  2. joan6kids

    Jacob Hamblin had no children with Eliza, his Indian wife. She left him very shortly after they were married. Jacob was an incredible man of great faith and patience. The Indians with whom he worked respecgted him as did John Wesley Powell and the men he led and whom Jacob introduced to several different Indian groups with which he had a relationship. Jacob was no where the Mountain Meadow Massacre and had he been, he would have prevented it. My husband is Jacob R. Hamblin and is a great grandson of Jacob and a grandson of his son, Jacob Hamblin.

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    • The information in my blog post came from the notes I made while listening to the guides at the Hamblin House and in downtown St. George. Although I don’t know if Jacob was at the Mountain Meadow Massacre I do know his wife Rachel wrote in her diary about looking after some of the children whose parents had been slaughtered and were brought directly to her home from the site of the massacre.

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