William Burgess Jr was born 1 March 1822 in Putnam, Washington County, New York, United States to William Burgess (1791-1880) and Violate Stockwell (1794-1880) and died 14 March 1904 Huntington, Emery County, Utah, United States of unspecified causes. He married Mariah Pulsipher (1822-1892) 17 September 1840 in Lima, Adams County, Illinois, United States.


I was born March 1, 1822 in the township of Putnam, Washington Co., New York. When I was ten years old my father and most of his family joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The next August, we started to move to Jackson Co., Missouri. We arrived in Kirtland, Ohio the first part of September. The Prophet Joseph Smith advised us to stop there and help build the Kirtland Temple. That Fall (1833), the Church was driven out of Jackson County by the mob.

In February 1835, I was baptized by my brother Harrison Burgess and confirmed by the Prophet Joseph Smith. I lived with the Smith Family for two years, and learned much of the Gospel hearing the prophet talk. I helped build the Kirtland Temple and was at the dedication. We passed through the persecution with the Saints and were driven out. We then moved to Caldwell County, Missouri in August of 1838. The Prophet counseled us to go to Daviess County. We arrived at Adam-ondi- Ahman about the 20th of August 1838. The mob spirit was raging and all the old settlers but two moved away in order to have their families safe while they were fighting. For about three months, I didn't undress only to wash and change clothes, and no one except those that passed through it knows the tribulation and privations that we had to endure. As it was for Gospel's sake, we endured cheerfully. I was taken prisoner by the mob and abused terribly. But we depended on the Lord and He delivered us from them. We went to Caldwell County in December and in the Spring, we were put in prison and the Church was driven from the State. We next went to Adams County, Illinois. We were driven out of Missouri, leaving our homes and all we had, but we were thankful for our lives, that we were spared.

In September 1840, I married Mariah Pulsipher near Lima, Adams County, Illinois. In the Spring of 1841, we moved to Nauvoo, Illinois and I joined the Nauvoo Legion. I passed through the trials and privations with the Saints there, and assisted in building the Temple. We completed the Temple for ordinance work and on Jan. 7, 1846, we received our endowments in the House of the Lord. I left Nauvoo on February 10, 1846, with the Pioneers, but came back the last of March, fixed up the best my wife and I could and started on May 23rd for Council Bluffs. I stopped in Iowa and worked. We arrived in Winter Quarters on September 16, 1846. We passed through that sickness that took so many lives and left Winter Quarters in May 1848 for the West. After four months, we arrived in the Salt Lake Valley on Sep. 22, 1848.

There were no houses except the Fort. It was a very hard winter with snow covering the ground all winter until April. On June 3 1852, he married Charlotte Elizabeth Liggett in polygamy. She was just a young girl of not 16 and he was 30 years old. Her father had been killed by the mobs in Nauvoo and her mother had died giving her birth when the saints were driven out of Nauvoo. Her grandparents took her to the Valley with them and now they were old and worried about dying and leaving her alone. They asked William to marry and care for her. This he did. They had one son, Horace Liggett Burgess. When the manifesto came in, the women were told they could choose between an annulment of their marriage or to just live separate from their husbands. Charlotte chose an annulment and later married a young man, Wiliam Whitehead Taylor, to whom she has been sealed.

In May of 1855 he was called to go on a mission to the Salmon River to teach the Indians there. It was a long way from civilization and they had a rough hard time. He was there one year. February 21, 1858, William took a third wife, Catherine Chamberlain. They had two children in Salt Lake. One died before coming to St. George, and then on to Pine Valley where two more children were born.

The Burgesses were sawmill owners from the very first, after they arrived in Massachusetts. Each place they lived, they owned sawmills. When they joined the Church in New York, they owned a sawmill. These mills were a vital part of each community. When William Kr. arrived home from his mission, he built a sawmill in Parley’s Canyon. This was his trade all his life. In his mill, he made shingles and lumber for some of the first homes in the Salt Lake Valley. His father and his brothers ran the mill with him. William Jr. was allotted 10 acres in the Valley for a home.

In the fall of 1862, William Jr. was called with his father and brothers to go to Southern Utah and settle there. They were asked by Brigham Young to set up a sawmill there, which they did. From St. George they moved to Pine Valley and built a sawmill and started to produce lumber for homes. The timber was very good. William and his family lived there for 20 years. President Young visited Pine Valley and picked out choice trees. The Burgesses cut these timbers down, sawed them to use in the Salt Lake Tabernacle and the great organ that stands in it. It took William six months to haul the logs by ox team to Salt Lake City.

He and his family, his father and family, and a few others were called to go down to Southern Utah and settle the Dixie Country. They went to a beautiful little valley, called Pine Valley. Here he set up and operated a saw mill. President Brigham Young rode on horseback to Pine Valley where he picked out a large straight tree to make the Tabernacle Organ out of. William and his father and brothers cut down the tree and sawed it in their sawmill. Then it was hauled by ox team to Salt Lake City. It took six weeks to make the trip.

He and his family moved to Huntington, Emery Co. where he owned and operated a grist mill. This was the first gristmill in Southern Utah. He also owned a mercantile co-op store and went into the bee business. He was general manager and owned an interest in the Co-Op store. He was a successful agriculturist, a large landowner, a very good carpenter and a talented mechanic. In fact, he could work at most any trade. He also kept bees. He was a leader, a wise safe counselor, and was a friend to many. He was an honorable and upright man of the community.

William Burgess Jr. died at his daughters, Annetta Robbins, home in Huntington, 14 Mar 1904. He is buried beside his first wife, Mariah Pulsipher in the Huntington City Cemetery.


Offspring of William Burgess Jr and Mariah Pulsipher (1822-1892)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Mary Harriet Burgess (1842-1936)
Carmelia Mariah Burgess (1844-1931) 9 January 1844 Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois, United States 4 November 1931 Mesquite, Clark County, Nevada, United States James Hughes (1838-1912)
Juliette W. Burgess (1846-1917)
William John Burgess (1848-1849)
Wilmer Burgess (1850-1932)
James Casper Burgess (1852-1940)
Vilate Pulsipher Burgess (1857-1923)
William Harrison Burgess (1859-1934)
Annette Burgess (1861-1950)

Offspring of William Burgess Jr and unknown parent
Name Birth Death Joined with
Horace Conrad Liggett Burgess (1854-1940)

Offspring of William Burgess Jr and unknown parent
Name Birth Death Joined with
Joseph Chamberlain Burgess (1860-1940)
William Riley Burgess (1862-1869)
Althea Burgess (1864-1952)
Charles Henry Burgess (1866-1946)



See Also

  • William Burgess
  • Burgess in Adams County, Illinois
  • Burgess in Emery County, Utah

Footnotes (including sources)