Elisha Branch 18 Jan 1785-1 Sep 1857 (Mary Herrick)

Elisha Branch: 18 Jan 1785-1 Sep 1857

Parents: Stephen Branch & Hannah Starkweather in Preston, New London, Connecticut, USA

Married: Mary Herrick about 1811

This was written by his son William Henry Branch Sr.

I was born August 9, 1820 in the town of Griswold, New London Co., Conn. My father’s name was Elisha; he was born in January, 1783. My grandfather’s Stephen. He helped fight in the battles of the American Revolution. He was a hard working man and by trade a house carpenter. He did not belong to any of the religious sects of the day, but he taught his children to be honest and virtuous and to reverence the Sabbath Day.  He also brought up his children to work for a living. My father was a hard working farmer. He was honest and upright in all of his dealings with his fellow men. He also brought up his children to work for a living. He was brought up to attend the Presbyterian meetings in his young days; when he arrived at manhood he united with the Methodist Church and was a member of the same until his death. He taught school twenty-two winters of his life.  My father married Marry Herrick by whom he had five children namely, Elisha P., Mary Anne, Levi J., William H., and Abby L. My mother died in May, 1823, when I was about two and a half years old. My father then married my mother’s sister, Abby, by whom he had three children namely, Sanford L., Sarah R., and Jane. My father taught us to be honest and virtuous and to work for a living. He gave us all a common school education. I lived at home with my father until I was ten years old, when I commenced the world for myself.  From the time I was five years old I was taught to be useful either indoors or out.


Dan Atwood 4 Nov 1787-17 Dec 1863 (Polly Sawyer)

Came to Utah in 1850
Great Granddaughter-in-law

In some records Dan is referred to as Dan Atwood who joined the Mormons. He was born in Willington, Tolland County, Connecticut, on the 4th of November 1787, of sturdy, industrious English, New England stock. His father, Heman Atwood, was born about 1742 and his mother Jerusha Case about 1755 in Connecticut. Dan was their eighth child. When Dan grew to manhood he married Polly Sawyer. They were married 16 January 1812 and lived on a farm. The them were born eight children: five boys and three girls – Warren, John, Millen, Emily, Miner Grant, Samuel, Mary and Fanny. Dan was honest in his dealings with his fellowmen and
a firm believer in God and the Scriptures being allied with the Methodist faith. He instructed his children in his religious belief. All his children received a common school education, which was a blessing and privilege in those days. A few years after his marriage he moving to Mansfield where he rented farms for several years and by being careful he was in a few years able to make a down payment on a farm of his own. He was assisted by his sons. They went into the brick business too so before too long they had paid for their farm. When he heard the L.D.S. Missionaries explain the Gospel he could soon see their teachings coincided with the scriptures and in 1845 he, his wife and 6 of their children were baptized into the church. His two eldest sons, Warren and John, never They now worked to the end of emigrating to Utah and on April 1850 they left their native state for Utah.

They traveled to New York where they joined Wilford Woodruff’s Company. Members of the family who left were Dan Atwood and his wife Polly, Emily and her husband William Branch and child, Miner Grant and wife Mary Delilah Builde, Samuel, Mary and Fanny. Their son Millen came to Utah in Brigham Young’s first company of pioneers so when they arrived in Salt Lake City, 14 October 1850 part of the family spent the winter with him. Dan was taken ill with cholera on the trip but survived. When spring came he purchased a farm. He died November 1863 in Salt Lake City at the age of 76 years. His sons and many of his descendants have been among the early and present day stalwarts of the church; serving as bishops, missionaries and in building up both church and communities.

Pioneer Vital Records Collection
Atwood, Dan (Male)
Birth: Atwood, Dan (Male) Date: November 4, 1787 Place: Mansfield, Tolland, CT, USA
Alternate Date: 1788
Parents: Atwood, Dan (Male) Father: Atwood, Heman Mother: Case, Jerusha
Death: Atwood, Dan (Male) Date: December 17, 1863 Place: Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, UT, USA
Buried: Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, UT, USA
Marriage Information: Atwood, Dan (Male) Spouse: Sawyer, Polly Date: January 16, 1911
Alternate Date: January 1918 Place: Windham, Windham, CT
Alternate Date: January 16, 1912 Alternate Date: January 1918
Children: Atwood, Dan (Male)
Name: Birthdate: Place:
1. Atwood, Warren December 1, 1812 Mansfield, Tolland, CT, USA
2. Atwood, John November 4, 1814 Windham, Windham, CT, USA
3. Atwood, Millen May 24, 1817 Willington, Tolland, CT, USA
4. Atwood, Emily Cornelia March 1, 1819 Willington, Tolland, CT, USA
5. Atwood, Miner Grant March 18, 1823 Willington, Tolland, CT, USA
6. Atwood, Samuel Finch February 27, 1825 Willington, Tolland, CT, USA
7. Atwood, Mary Elizabeth October 10, 1828 Mansfield, Tolland, CT, USA
8. Atwood, Fanny Maria October 7, 1830 Mansfield, Tolland, CT, USA
Church Ordinance Data: Atwood, Dan (Male) Baptism Date: November 1840
Baptism Date: November 1846 Place: Nauvoo, Hancock, IL, USA
Ordained High Priest
Patriarchal Blessing Date: April 5, 1851 Place: Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, UT, USA
Officiator: Smith, John
Temple Ordinance Data: Atwood, Dan (Male) Baptism Date: May 1, 1976
Endowment Date: August 11, 1851 Temple: Endowment House in Salt Lake City
Endowment Date: July 2, 1976
Sealed to Parents Date: July 30, 1976
Sealed to Spouse Date: August 11, 1851 Temple: Endowment House in Salt Lake City
Places of Residence: Atwood, Dan (Male) Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, UT, USA
Vocations: Atwood, Dan (Male) Teamster
Comments: Atwood, Dan (Male)Dan came to Utah with the Wilford Woodruff company on
October 14, 1850. Dan’s family home was in Salt Lake City.

Polly Sawyer 12 Jun 1790-16 Oct 1865 (Dan Atwood)

Polly Sawyer Atwood was born in Windham, Connecticut on the 12th of June 1790. Her father was Asahel Sawyer, born 21 May 1751 and her mother was Elizabeth Ringe.
She was married to Dan Atwood, 16 January 1812. To them were born eight children: five boys and three girls – Warren, John, Millen, Emily, Miner Grant, Samuel,Mary and Fanny.

They were converted to the Gospel and left their native state, Connecticut, for Utah in April 1850, arriving in Utah in October. Polly died in Salt Lake City on October 16, 1876.

She was known for her many good deeds in the service of her God. She displayed in a remarkable manner the works and gifts of faith and was much sought after by the sick and afflicted, up to the time of her death which occurred in her 86th year.

Her two eldest sons never joined the church, but her sons Millen, Miner Grant and Samuel were among the stalwarts of their day, being missionaries, Bishops, Bishop’s Counselors, High Counselors, etc., and also serving in a civic way.

This trait has come on down through her descendants to the present day.
Check other references
Wiggins, Marvin E. Mormons and Their Neighbors
Atwood, Polly Sawyer 1790 – 16 Oct 1876
The Women of Mormondom by Edward Wheelock Tullidge. [Salt Lake City: n.p., 1957.]

William Henry Branch Sr. 9 Aug 1820-19 Sep 1889 (Emily Cornelia Atwood)









William Henry Branch Sr. was born to Elisha Branch and Mary Herrick on 9 Aug 1820.  I will not go into to details of his life nor could I make it any better than by his own words.                     (You can read his journal by opening the PDF’s below)

Emily Cornelia Atwood 1 Mar 1819-11 Oct 1845 (William H Branch Sr.)

Emily Cornelia Atwood was born to Daniel Atwood and Polly Sawyer Atwood”:Orvil, Warren, Daniel, Milen, Samuel, Emily Cornelia, Miner.
Emily Cornelia Atwood was born March 1, 1819, in Willimantic, Connecticut. She married William Henry Branch  on November 19, 1844, at Mansfield, Connecticut. Their first child, Nelson, was born and died October 11, 1845. Their second child, Irvin, was born on October 15, 1847.- Emily and her husband were baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ on January 16, 1850, by Elder Cyriel Brown. On April 9, 1850, they left Willimantic to join Wilford Woodruff Co. for the Valleys of the Mountains.

Their boy, Irvin, took sick while they were on the boat soon after leaving Cincinnati on the Ohio River. He died one week later and was buried at Booneville, Missouri. He died on May 5, 1850.

While traveling across the plains by ox team, Emily took sick with cholera; she was the only one mentioned in this company that recovered from this disease. They arrived in Salt Lake on October 14, 1850. Here they built their home where Henry Jr., Eugene, Cornelia, Rosilla, and Candace were born. In the early 1860’s they were called to St.George. Candace died October 4, 1864, in Salt Lake at the age of 4. Emily’s health was poor, and she was taken to Salt Lake for treatment where she died on August 26, 1869. Her mother, Polly Sawyer Atwood, lived with the family until Cornelia was old enough to assume the responsibilities of the family.

William Henry now sold his Salt Lake home. He bought a Mason & Hamlin organ and took it to St. George for his oldest daughter, who learned to play and gave music lessons. This organ remained in her home for many years. Cornelia was just fourteen years old when her mother died. Cornelia told her girls how her mother taught them to sew clothes and carpet rags; she also taught them their lessons from her bed. Cornelia also told of how she tried to make her father a pair of pants after her mother’s death, by having him lie down on the cloth, on the floor, while she cut them out. She said they never fit very well, as she had to put tucks and gussets in them.

The family of Emily Cornelia Atwood and William Henry Branch Jr.: Eugene Elisha, Emily Cornelia, William Henry Jr., Rosilla Polly, Nelson, Irvin Henry & Candice Louisa.

Pioneers And Prominent Men of Utah (1913)

As I have been going through our Family History I found that our family has several ancestory’s in the book Pioneers And Prominent Men of Utah (1913). I found this website that I was able to download the entire book in PDF form and thought you might want to do the same. You can do so by going to this link Here.