George Washington Adair was born 18 March 1818 in West Carthage, Smith County, Tennessee, United States to Thomas Adair (1774-1858) and Rebecca Brown (1776-1846) and died 26 August 1897 Orderville, Kane County, Utah, United States of unspecified causes. He married Miriam Jane Billingsley (1829-1912) 6 May 1846 in Tioga, Mahaska County, Iowa, United States. He married Johanna Freestone (1849-1903) 29 December 1880 in St. George, Washington County, Utah, United States.


History of the Life of George Washington Adair.

George Washington Adair was born March 18, 1818 in Tennessee. His father was Thomas Adair. His mother was Rebecca Brown. He was familiar with the early persecutions of the Church. He joined the saints in the journey to the *** and was given the job of driver of a team in Ira Eldredge’s company. George was a very large man, being very powerful. He wore a beard, and a man that could be depended upon.

In traveling across the country they stopped to make camp one night where some other saints were camped and around the camp fire he met a young lady by the name of Miriam Billingsly. They saw a great deal of each other in the weeks following and fell in love and some time later they were married at Mt. Pisga. The wedding took place in a camp wagon with one of the elders presiding on May 6, 1846.

Their progress across the plains was very slow. Finally they arrived in Salt Lake City October 2, 1847 with a very small baby name Emeline. The company of saints they were with overtook President Brigham Young and his company at Mt. Pisga May 23, 1847.

President Brigham Young (1801-1877) counseled some of the saints to stop at this place and plan corn and other vegetables and make a resting place for some of the saints who had been left behind. So George and his wife stayed and came on later so they reached Salt Lake City October 2, 1847.

Their first winter was spent in a little log cabin on the north side of Pioneer Square. The roof of the house was made of dirt and at times when it rained it leaked so badly, Miriam would hold a quilt over her baby to keep her dry.

George made the house as comfortable as he could. They had very little to do with and his anxiety to secure work was the cause of their moving away out to Sugar House to live as he could get work at the saw mill. They lived on the north side of 21st south in a dug out in the side of the hill. They were a long way from neighbors.

At this time all of the saints were having a very hard time to get enough food and when their crops were ready the crickets were so bad they had to fight to save enough to live on and many times were compelled to live on sego roots and pig weeds green and other roots.

They walked into Salt Lake to go to church in the old bowery, when the weather was good. One time they went into church they had so little on hand to eat, and on their return found a plate filled with bread and butter, and oh what a feast. They never did find out who their benefactor was. Many times they walked to church and back with shoes that were very poor. At times when they would get so very hungry Miriam had some pieces of tallow wrapped up and put away and she would take them out and take a little bite and chewing this seemed to help their hunger. The lived in Salt Lake until after their second child was born, and they were called to part with both of their little children leaving them with just their older one. When saints were moving to the southern part of the state they decided to go to Dixie and live as they had been advised to go and take the cultivation of cotton. They traveled as far as Provo and stopped to earn some supplies. While here they found some old very dear friends, who asked them to stay with them.

These friends were none other than George A. Smith and family. While staying with them they helped gather some kind of leaves for the purpose of making sugar and a syrup. They stayed until they had 50 lbs. of sugar and enough syrup for both families all winter. They gathered the leaves, washed them, and then boil this down until the produced sugar and syrup.

They then went on to Dixie to live. They bought a farm, and there George spent his time raising cotton, sheep, and cattle. He would go into the mountains and get all of their wood to burn, he also made of their furniture. He made his wife Miriam a loom as she understood weaving cloth, and she made everything they wore. She was a very beautiful seamstress. Later they moved to Minersville, Utah so he could get some work and they lived in a house made of cedar logs. Here they hard a few chickens and sheep. His son Jedediah was two years old when they made a trip in wagon to Dixie. One of these trips they were taking molasses. They roads were so bad and the molasses got spilled all over their bedding. Miriam had a very hard time getting it off.

Wherever they lived, George Adair farmed and worked in saw mills and hauled wood from the mountains. He always tried to make their home comfortable for they were never blessed with wealth but the spirit of their home was beautiful. They were always faithful Later Day Saints. George was the father of 11 children and after the death of two of their children, they took the grandchildren and did the same by them as they did their own.

They moved from Minersville to Beaver, Utah and later they moved to Orderville, Utah in Long Valley, Kane County Utah. He lived in Orderville in the United Order in 1876. He did a great deal of temple work in his later life. He came up from Orderville in 1897 to the jubilee and marched in the parade at the unveiling of the Brigham Young Monument. One of his daughters was County Queen and it was her lot to present the pioneers with their badges.

He died at Orderville in August 187, the following March he would have been 80 years old. A pair of his hand made britches are now in the Relic Hall at Liberty Park. They were from the Virgin wool and woven by his wife Miriam Billingsly Adair and made by hand as she made everything at that time.

These facts furnished by his son Jedediah Adair and his wife Florence Fowler Adair, and granddaughter, Harriet Adair Jolley, was with him when he went to the jubilee at Salt Lake City in 1897 at age 11.


Offspring of George Washington Adair and Miriam Jane Billingsley (1829-1912)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Emeline Rebecca Adair (1847-1927) 1 March 1847 Mount Pisgah, Harrison County, Iowa, United States 23 January 1927 Monroe, Sevier County, Utah, United States William James Baldwin (1844-1908)
Sarah Adair (1849-1849)
George Washington Adair (1850-1851)
Miriam Josephine Adair (1851-1873) 20 November 1851 Provo, Utah County, Utah, United States 1 January 1873 Beaver, Beaver County, Utah, United States William Holgate (1846-1915)
Lana Tabitha Adair (1854-1859)
Elijah Thomas Adair (1856-1927)
Jedediah Grant Adair (1859-1937) 5 June 1859 Washington, Washington County, Utah 31 December 1937 Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah Florence Ellen Fowler (1860-1946) Florence Ellen Fowler (1860-1946) Julia Ann Maxwell (1860-1915)
William Wallace Adair (1862-1943) 11 January 1862 Minersville, Beaver County, Utah, United States 28 July 1943 Kanab, Kane County, Utah, United States Mary Josephine Hogan (1865-1931) Mary Josephine Hogan (1865-1931) Bernice Viola Kleckner (1891-1970)
Edwin Ruthfin Adair (1864-1942)
Ruhamah Victoria Adair (1869-1898)
Eliza Stella Adair (1874-1915)

Offspring of George Washington Adair and Johanna Freestone (1849-1903)
Name Birth Death Joined with
George Andrew Adair (1881-1966)
Joseph Adair (1884-1971)




Footnotes (including sources)

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