Sunday, May 17, 2015


[Ancestral Link: Marguerite Anderson (Miller), daughter of Hannah Anderson (Anderson), daughter of Soren Erastus Anderson, son of Soren Anderson.]

Came to Utah in the William B. Preston Company (1864).  Possibly benefiting from the Perpetual Emigrating Fund.

The Life Story of Soren Andersen and Daughter Ane Kjrestena Andersen

Soren Andersen was born the 14 of May 1801, in Astrup, Hjorring, Denmark. On the 30 of November, 1828 he married Ane Marie Jensen in Denmark. She was born 22 May 1801. To this marriage was born six children, 3 sons and 3 daughters. Two of the girls died, one at the age of 1 year and the other at the age of 6.

Erastus Snow brought the gospel to Denmark. Soren Andersen heard the gospel and was converted and baptized into the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints the 14 of June 1853 by Christian Mikkelsen. One account said it was this reason that caused a dispute between his wife and himself, another said after giving birth to six children she died in Denmark. (Unsure which account is accurate). He took his daughter, Ane Kjerstina, who was in her teens and also believed in the gospel and they immigrated to America in the year 1854. Crossing the Atlantic Ocean on the ship “Benjamin Adams”( their names were found of the manifest of the Ship “Jesse Munn”), which sailed from Liverpool, England, on January 22, 1854, and arrived at New Orleans March 22, 1854. From here they traveled to Westport, Jackson County, Missouri. He crossed the plains with the Hans Peter Olsen Handcart Company which arrived in Salt Lake City October 6, 1854.

He settled in Ephraim, Sanpete County, in 1856. When Ephraim was first settled in 1854 it was called Cottonwood. Fort Ephraim was settled in 1854 by members of the Allred Settlement by immigrants from Scandinavia. Thus our fathers who grubbed the first brush, broke the first soil, raised the first crops and prayed in the first church, pitted their courage and endurance against a raw and forbidding land. In 1856, some of the men, together with Soren Andersen, went to haul rocks to build a fort around the houses which were then built. This fort was called Fort Ephraim.  The horses, oxen, and cows were corralled within the fort at night for protection against the Indians. In the daytime, they were herded outside the fort while inside, the men climbed to the watch towers and looked through the portholes to protect the men herding the cattle. Sometimes these herders could not reach the fort in time and were killed by the Indians. Soren Andersen was sometimes assigned to this guard duty.
The adobe houses were built along the inside of the fort wall and they were made from mud mixed in the ground and placed in molds. These were dried and put together to form the walls with mud in the cracks, the roofs were made of tree limbs and willows called stringers. The dirt was then placed on the top of the roofs which were sloped. Sometimes straw was added. The doors were made of hewn logs. The adobe houses were usually one or two rooms with a fireplace instead of a stove. There was a grate on which the iron or copper pots were hung for cooking. The table and chairs were made of los and the beds were made with pegs, along each side and end, rope was woven across on which straw mattresses were placed. The floors were dirt and most of the dishes were made of tin. The open space inside the fort wall was used for wagons. Everyone lived close together and all worked happily together for the good of each other.
The Pioneer’s clothing were of their own making. The men’s pants were made of canvas and the children’s garments were made out of cloth known as “factory” cloth. Shoes were either wooden or made of cowhide, which was tanned and made into moccasins with the hair left on the outside. The children went to school in these type of shoes. When the wagon covers and bed ticks were worn out, the best parts were made into Articles of clothing. These in time wore out and the people had to look elsewhere for something to make clothing from. The few sheep they had were sheared by the women and the wool was worked and spun into yarn, from which cloth was made. Nearly every home had a spinning wheel. The clothes were closely measured and made very plain to save on the material. From berries they gathered, and Rabbit brush, they made different colors to dye the material. For lye, wood ashes were placed in a large barrel and water poured over it. This stood for sometime and then the water was poured off. This made a lye what could be used for making soap, to use for scrubbing clothes and other uses around the homes. Brooms were made of Rabbit brush, which was gathered from the surrounding area. Wheat was ground in coffee mills to make graham bread. Milkweeds, sego lily bulbs and wild spinach was used for greens. Potatoes, eggs, poultry meat and wild berries comprised their food. Molasses and honey candy were considered their luxuries. Inside the enclosures of the fort, church meetings and school was held, as there was no special buildings built for these things. Candles were used for light and these were made from melted tallow and pieces of cloth. A candle burned only one night. Ginger with molasses was given for colds. The remedies used for sickness were not candy-coated – no one pretended to be sick. Senna tea was given for a laxative. Sagebrush tea was a tonic. Assafedity bags were hung around the throat to guard against diseases. Consecrated oil was also kept inside the homes. When babies were born, it was usually to cheers and tears, due to lack of a doctor’s assistance. The Elders were called in many times in cases of serious illness.

In 1856 Soren Andersen married Hannah Nielsen, a convert also from Denmark. She was born 11 of May 1834, at Lindelse, Sovenborge, Denmark (Lindelse, Svendborg, Denmark). She bore him six children, 4 boys and 2 girls of which two died at birth. She died 1 of May 1873 in Ephraim, Sanpete, Utah. In 1860 Soren Andersen was called by Brigham Young to help settled Circleville, in Piute County, Utah. He lived there for two years, but the Indians made it so miserable for them that he moved to Salina, Sevier County. There he stood guard along with other duties in the Black Hawk War in the years 1865 to 1867. Here a narrow trail was built through the canyon as it was the only way to get in and out of Salina. They tried to make a trail by the creek but there was not enough room so one was built through the canyon. Because of it’s narrowness, only one man and his horse could come up the trail at a time. The Indians would lay and wait for the men and shoot them as they came up the trail. Many lives were lost this way. Also the Indians made raids upon the people in Salina running off their cattle. The people tried to save their cattle, but the Indians knew the canyon too well and could make it back and be there in time to shoot the white men as they came up the trail looking for their cattle.
In 1874 he moved to Sterling, being among the first settlers there, he lived in a dugout. Later he built the first house in Sterling, which was a one-room log house with a dirt roof. At the time Sterling was settled, the Indians had signed a peace treaty ending the Black Hawk War. The Indians still camped in the foothills and begged food from the settlers, who always shared their small rations with them to keep peace. Later, he moved to Nine Mile with his daughter Dianthis and sons Erastus, Joseph, and Peter homesteading 160 acres. The Highland Reservoir now covers his original homestead. This was about two miles south of Sterling.
About 1885, he located permanently in Centerfield, where he resided until the time of his death January 18, 1901 making him within four months of being 100 years old.

The daughter Ane Kjerstena, was born 24 of November 1836 at Vinnebjerg, Hjorring, Denmark. At 21 she married a young man who was also a convert to the church. His name was Jens Nielsen (Engager). He was born in Boddum, Thstd, Denmark (Thisted, Viborg, Denmark), 12 October 1822. They made their permanent home in Ephraim. Ten children were born to them, five girls and five boys (Ane Kjerstine was married previously and had a son - Henry Thorpe who died in infancy - she later divorced her first husband – Thomas Thorpe. She had her son – Henry sealed to her and Jens Nielsen in the Endowment House on 16 April 1858 so she actually only gave birth to 9 children of her second marriage) Verification can be found at the family History Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her oldest daughter (Maren) Maria Kjerstena Nielsen was the first girl to be born in the Ephraim Fort. The responsibility of pioneering not only fell on Ane Kjerstena and her husband, but on their children as well. It was a hard struggle to get just the bare necessities of life. It was a hard task to gain a productive farm, and also stand guard for the Indians would steal their horses and drive their cattle off. She taught her girls to cord the wool, spin the thread and knit the clothing for the family. Their second daughter Jensine Petrine Brighamine Nielsen was my grandmother.
Ane Kjerstena died on the 27 of October 1914 at Ephraim, Utah at the age of 77 years.

Twenty years after Soren and his daughter came to Utah his oldest son, Anders Sorensen Andersen with his wife Johanna Marie Johannesen and their two children Anene Martine and Soren Peter came from Denmark to Utah. Two children had died as babies in Denmark.

Written by: Unknown Granddaughter of Ane Kjerstena Andersen Nielsen
found on in Arlene R. Miller's Family Tree

Soren Andersen and his daughter Ane Kjerstine Andersen sailed from Liverpool, England on the full-rigged ship "Benjamin Adams" with 382 other Scandinavian Mormon Saints, on 28 January 1854. She was under command of Captain John Drummond. Elder Hans Peter Olsen, a missionary returning from the island of Bornholm, presided over the emigrant company. These Mormons had sailed from Copenhagen on the steamship "Eideren" by way of Kiel, Gluckstadt, and Hull. After they arrived at Liverpool misfortune overtook them. Sickness broke out among the company and twenty-two children and two adults died. As the emigrants boarded the "Benjamin Adams" an examining physician declared fifteen unfit for the voyage and would not permit them to sail with the rest of the company. Although the fifty-three-day passage was described as "very pleasant and prosperous," there were eight deaths (two elderly adults and six children), two births, and nine marriages. The vessel arrived at New Orleans on 22 March.

This large three-master, hailing from New York, was built with three decks, a square stem, and a billethead. Among her owners were the Drummonds, including the master, Gilbert C. Trufant, Wuilliam Tapscott, and George B. Cornish - all prominent in the Yankee sea trade. After fourteen years of service the "Benjamin Adams" was lost at sea in 1866.

NOTE: From Scandinavian Emigrant Ship Descriptions and Voyage Narratives (1852-1868) from "Ships, Saints, and Mariners" by Conway B. Sonne and other sources.
found on in Arlene R. Miller's Family Tree

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