Colaborador: Chynna67 Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
James Milligan was born in Liverpool, Lancashire, England on February 19, 1855. He was the second child born to James Milligan and Rose Ann McLean. His brothers were Peter and John. His father was a seaman by trade, and at that time all of the ships depended on the wind for their power in sailing. The ships were called “windjammers.” They traveled from Liverpool, England, by way of Africa to go to India; carrying a cargo to India and then a cargo back to England. James Milligan, Sr. and Rose Ann McLean were married on May 11, 1951 at Gorbals, Hutchessontown, Scotland. Although James, Sr. was Irish and Rose Ann from Scotland, after their marriage they found it more convenient to live in Liverpool. Rose Ann was born in Herbert Town, Tasmania, Australia. Her father was probably in the military, since one son was born in Poona, India, which was a military post. According to family stories, Rose Ann and James met on her voyage from Australia to Scotland. When the 1851 census was taken, Rose Ann was living with her mother and brothers, John and Patrick, in the same apartment house in Glasgow where James and his mother were living. Also, James’ (the seaman) brother Michael Milligan and his family were living in that same apartment house.
When James Jr. was about eight years old, his father left on a trip to India and never returned. He took sick at sea and was put ashore in India. He died there and is buried at Kircumberlo, Madras, India (not documented). When Rose Ann was notified of her husband’s death, she took James and his brother John and went to Scotland. Peter, the eldest son, had sailed to America with John Quinn, a friend of his father’s, during the Civil War. From the time James bid goodbye to Peter on the docks at Liverpool, he was never heard from again (probably because the family left Liverpool and mail was not forwarded). Right up to the time of his death, James never gave up hope of finding his brother, Peter, and spent many hundreds of dollars and unlimited time in searching for him.
After a short stay in Scotland, Rose Ann and her two boys returned to England, near Nottingham. They were very poor, as Rose Ann’s only means of support was from her sewing. When James was but a lad of eleven or twelve, he found it necessary to quit school and take a full-time job in a factory. He had been going to school part-time and working part-time. When he asked to be released from his part-time factory job, they refused to grant him a release. They demanded two week’s notice, so he had to stay until his two weeks were up, even though he made a mere pittance for his work. For two weeks he worked in one factory for twelve hours, then as fast as he could, he grabbed his hat and ran to the other factory. After working eighteen hours a day, when he got home, his mother would take his coat, see that he had something warm to eat and put him to bed. She often held him on her lap to feed him because he was so tired.
Rose Ann married again to John Evans (Nottingham Jack) of Wales. Evans drank quite heavily and at those times was very severe on the boys. He especially disliked James. When James was sixteen, Rose Ann became very ill and was taken to the hospital. One night when she knew her time was about up, she asked her husband to bring James and John because she wanted to see and talk to them. He went and brought John. Rose Ann then demanded to have James brought to her. When she had her two sons at her bedside, she asked Evans to leave the room and she talked to the boys, telling them she was going to leave them, and for James to look after his brother John. She also told them that when she died, if Evans got drunk, they were to go to the home of Sarah Brown Bailey (later Horsley). (Sarah was a half-sister to Jane Oldham, who would later become James’ wife) Sarah had promised Rose Ann that she would take care of the boys if Rose Ann did not get well. Rose Ann passed away that night on 14 May 1871. Evans spent the night in a pub and took the two boys with him. They crawled up in the loft and lay watching until the men had gone home or to sleep; then they climbed down and went to Sarah’s house and sat on the curb until morning, when she awakened. When she saw the boys she cried, “Why, it’s Rose Ann’s boys,” and she opened her heart and home to them. James went to school half a day and worked half a day and had to pay almost all he earned for their care. He became an apprentice and learned to scour the paint buckets and clean the brushes. Later he learned to mix paint and blend colors. He used this training all during his lifetime.
Sarah Bailey and husband, Alma, and family had joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1865 in Bulwell (Nottingham Conference). Alma died in a mine there, and Sarah married William Horsley. James and John went to Church with Sarah and her family. A Mrs. Coop kept a Mission Home where the Elders stayed. At the Mission Home, cottage meetings were held, and James and John, who were good singers, entertained. They were probably converted to the Church at this time. James was baptized on February 3, 1873, and John about a year and a half later. Sarah Bailey had a half-sister, Jane Oldham, who came to visit and help occasionally, and she was also interested in the Church. She was baptized on November 26, 1876 against the wishes of her parents.
After James and John joined the Church and had saved enough money, they joined the Coop family and many others, sailing on the ship “Wyoming” from Liverpool to America. James was ordained an Elder in the Leeds Conference before leaving England. He also took a trip to Glasgow, Scotland in the summer of 1875. He visited with his father’s brother, Peter, who was working at what was called “the secret works of Ruglen.” (Note that it was a family tradition to name their sons Peter, James, and John. Nevertheless, when John Milligan – born 1888 – had three sons, he broke the chain and named them Warren, Jack, and Horace) There were quite a few of the Milligans there at the time, also some of the McLeans. James and John sailed from Liverpool on April 19, 1879, landing at Ellis Island. They came on to Utah by train, arriving in May of 1879. They were met at the depot by Charles Nibley. James first worked as a herdsman in Salt Lake for the Brigham Young family. He herded cows or sheep on the lake shore. The Indians used to go by on their way back and forth to work, and shortly, because he thought he must have some protection, and possibly because he knew the Bible much better than most boys, and knowing the story of David and Goliath, he made himself a sling, the shepherd’s weapon. He used this sling so well that squirrels were not safe anywhere around him. He claimed he could sling a rock into the eagle’s mouth at Eagle Gate. He later went to American Fork and lived there for about six months. Jane Oldham was working there.
Jane’s parents had been bitter about the Church, and refused to let Jane immigrate to the United States. They locked her in her room and took her clothes away, but in the middle of the night, Jane climbed out of her window and down the post of the porch and ran to the depot. The shipping lists show that Jane Oldham, age 24 (error in age) of Nottingham Conference, sailed 29 June 1878 on the ship “Nevada,” agent Joseph F. Smith, destination: Ogden, Utah. This indicates that she came to Utah about nine months before James and John came, and four years before her half-sister, Sarah Horsley. James helped pay her fare to America. She went to American Fork to work. In England Jane had worked in a factory where they made curtains. Jane’s sister, Sarah Brown Bailey Horsley, sailed 17 May 1882 with three of her children, also on the ship “Nevada.” William Horsley, Sarah’s husband, and their son, Will (age 11) sailed 22 October 1881, seven months before his wife. They went to Wyoming to live. William worked in a mine where he was killed. Sarah then married Alf Limb, whose wife had died.
On October 9, 1879, while attending conference in Salt Lake City, James Milligan and Jane Oldham were married in the Old Endowment House. He was 24 and she was just about 23 (her birth date was 14 December 1856).
In 1880 James worked in Heber City dragging iron ore down the canyon on a cowhide. He taught school there, probably sent by the Church on this assignment, as unruly students (some of whom were adults) had caused other teachers to leave. While living in Heber City, he had typhoid fever and was very, very sick. His hip was left “out of joint” as a result of the typhoid, and he walked with a limp and used a cane for the rest of his life.
The Church helped the Milligans move to Smithfield, Utah. They moved into a home where the Smithfield Fourth Ward chapel now stands. James went to work in a harness shop and started making harnesses by hand. It was a job he could sit down to, as his hip was still giving him considerable trouble.
James had a diamond glass cutter that he brought over from England. It was shaped like a pencil with a diamond set in the cutter. He cut glass for the Logan Temple and put the glass in the bottom section of the Temple. He also did some of the painting on the inside of the Temple.
James kept his promise to his mother, and always stayed very close to his brother John. John and Mina Coop married shortly after arriving in America. They had three children: James William, Martha, and John. Their James William died in infancy. The Coop family settled in Ogden. John and Mina lived first in Logan, and their first child was born there. John was a worker on the railroad when the main line ran through Cache Valley. One day in June, John went out on the platform of the engine to do something, and it was not until the engine had gone a long way down the track that the engineer discovered he had lost his fireman. It was believed he had fallen into the Logan River. For days they searched for his body, but because the water was high and muddy, John’s body could not be found. James worked day and night searching in the marshes and sloughs. After twelve days of searching, James dreamed one night where he could find his brother’s body. John’s body was found in the exact spot his brother, James, had dreamed they would find it. John died June 2, 1884, and was buried in the Ogden City Cemetery on June 17th, 1884. The funeral was held at the residence of B. M. Wheelwright.
When James’ health grew better, and the harness shop failed, he went back to his trade as a painter and paper hanger. He moved to a house on a low hill or ridge in the northeast part of Smithfield. It was a rock basement, split-level home of English architecture. His home and lot became a paradise. He was known for growing the best vegetables and fruit in the valley. Jed Plowman, who was a neighbor to James, remembers the beautiful garden and fruit trees he had at the time. Jed’s father, John Plowman, was called on three Church missions while he was raising his family. Jed said that Brother Milligan helped feed John’s family from his garden and fruits while John was serving the Lord on missions. On another occasion, when his neighbor’s cow died and the family had quite a few little children who needed milk, James, who had two cows of his own, took one of them over to the neighbors to be used until they could own one again. He was always willing to do his part to share with his neighbors. He took great pride in his beautiful tulips and the many varieties he had. A small part of his garden was in warm soil on the south side of the barn. He planted radishes, onions, lettuce, and other frost resistant vegetables in this small plot in the fall. He usually harvested these vegetables about the same time most people were just planting their gardens. Much produce was sold to many people in different towns. All of the children helped with this project, growing and harvesting fruit and vegetables.
James and Jane had five children: James Henry (Jim), Jane Ruth (Jean), John, Rose Annie, and Sarah Elizabeth. All of the children, with the exception of Jim, were born in the Milligan home on 2nd East between 3rd and 4th North. After the birth of the fourth child, Rose Annie, Jane never regained her good health. She died on June 20, 1899, leaving five children for James to raise. Jim was 16, Jean 13, John 11, Rose 7, and Sarah 5 years old. There were no relatives to call upon, but they had good neighbors. Grandma Raymond was especially kind and charitable. Jean could mix the bread, but had not learned to regulate the oven in the wood-burning kitchen range, and Grandma Raymond helped her with this, as well as many other household duties.
James and his boys went into the bee business and they sold honey by the five gallon can. They had an extractor to extract the honey. People came from as far as Star Valley to buy his honey, and would take a wagon full of five-gallon cans at a time. On one occasion, when Sarah was rendering honey combs to make beeswax, her clothes caught on fire. She suffered severe burns over much of her body, and as a result she died 9 August 1912, about six weeks after the accident. James used to purposely let the bees sting his hands. Through his reading, he had become convinced that this practice helped develop good teeth. He still had all of his teeth when he died.
James was a Smithfield City Recorder for Two and a half terms, a Trustee of the Smithfield Board of Education for six years, until the district was consolidated. He is given credit for having the first water works in Smithfield. He ran the water from the ditch into some barrels north of his house, then ran a pipe through the foundation into the lower part of the house, on which was attached a tap. This was before the city water system was installed.
On January 15, 1908 James married Margaret Elizabeth Douglas, who had worked in the County Recorder’s Office in Logan. They were married in the Logan Temple for time only. In 1915 they started the mercantile business in a new frame building on South Main, naming it the “MILLIGAN GROCERY.” According to a notice in the Smithfield Sentinel dated December 17, 1915, they opened the Milligan Grocery with a line of staples and of fancy groceries. They also sold paints, wallpaper, and carried flour from both the Farmer Union Mill and John M. Bain’s mill, with germade, graham, corn meal, bran, and shorts. They worked very hard in this business, James delivering groceries with his horse and wagon all over Smithfield. When grandson, Cleve grew old enough, he used to deliver groceries for Grandpa, and remembers the very intelligent horse named Billie, which obeyed every command. In some respects he was smarter than some people. In some cases Grandpa would tell the horse where to go and it would go to that house and stop. Cleve remembers Grandpa telling Billie that he wanted to go to Sylvester Lowe’s and the horse went there and stopped. Aunt Maggie, as she was lovingly known, passed away in July of 1932. James still carried on the business, but without the help of Aunt Maggie plus the introduction of the super-markets and the extension of too much credit, this business failed. James lived alone on his property until near the time of his death. He was very trusting of people but his supreme faith in others proved his downfall financially. As a merchant, he met reverses for his extended credit to people who forgot the favor.
James was a small man and when mention was made of his size, he would reply, “Always remember this – they measure a man from his chin up.” Some people would cone into the store and say, “How is the world treating you, Jimmy?” His usual reply was: “Reluctantly.” He was a tough task-master. He would always say, “If something is worth doing at all, it is worth doing right.” And if you didn’t do it right, he was greatly disturbed, and he didn’t mind telling you so, and you probably ended up doing it over the right way.
James was described as having a splendid character, a beautiful philosophy, and as a pillar of strength. He was known as a friend, a student, a philosopher, and a counselor. He could carry on an intelligent conversation on practically any subject. Calder Smith and Heber Whiting, teachers at North Cache High School, and others visited him frequently, and were high in their praise of his knowledge and philosophy. He was a great reader. He read the Encyclopedia Brittanica from cover to cover, all 25 volumes. He read the classics as well as fiction, and accumulated quite a library. One of his favorite authors was Lloyd Douglas. He loved music and had a good tenor voice. He went all over Smithfield singing at the old-folks outings and ward reunions. Cleve remembers taking Grandpa to a piano concert at the college played by a woman pianist. She really gave the piano a work-out. They expected the piano to fall to pieces on the floor a few times. As they left Old Main, Grandpa said, “I’ll bet she has never had dough under her fingernails.” This was quite typical of his sharp wit and observation. He could be really sharp with his replies at times. At other times he could be rather gentle with his replies. He had a wonderful smile, many interests, and a keen mentality. He had a deep love for his fellowmen and no one was turned from his door who needed assistance. He had an independent spirit about him and wanted nothing unless he paid full value for it. He was a charter member of the Smithfield Kiwanis Club, and at the time of his death was the oldest Kiwanian in Utah. A tree is planted in the Smithfield Mack’s Park in his memory.
Cleve remembers enjoying visiting with Grandpa at the little store, even though he was sometimes rather rough and untactful with Cleve. Grandpa had a stimulating mind and was well-read. Quite often he gave Cleve books to read from his library. He gave Cleve a nineteen volume set which he enjoys very much, particularly a biography of Christopher Columbus, by Washington Irving, published in 1927. In these two volumes, Columbus constantly affirms that he was inspired by Deity and by the Holy Ghost to make his famous voyages.
While attending the AC (agricultural college, later named Utah State University), Cleve often walked from the interurban railroad station to visit Grandpa at his store. One day Cleve had the book, Mansions of Philosophy by Will Durant, under his arm. This was a large book and not easy to read. Grandpa asked if he could see it. He thumbed through it and indicated he would like to read it. He asked if he could borrow it for a day. The next day, when Cleve went to get his book, Grandpa said that he had stayed up all night and read the whole book. Cleve was amazed at his comprehension of it. Cleve’s father, Jim, had told him that sometimes when he came home in the wee hours of the morning, Grandpa would still be awake and reading. We wonder what Grandpa would have done had he attended a university. As it was, he only had a few months of formal education is a parish school and workshop. He taught school for a short time and was also a member of the Smithfield School Board. In his later years, Grandpa was not very active in the Church, but while he had his store, he often delivered groceries to the widows and the poor.
James died on January 6, 1939 in Smithfield at the home of his daughter, Rose Nilson, of cancer of the liver. He was nearly 84 years old, just lacking a month. Surviving him were James Henry, Jean, John, and Rose, and a foster son, George Lester Douglas, 23 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren. He is buried in the family plot in Smithfield, Utah.
Information for this history was obtained from: Short histories written by Ruth Lewis Nelson (grand-daughter), Rose Nilson and Jean Andrews (daughters), genealogy sheets, church records, immigration records, and the diary of James Milligan. Material was also from personal knowledge from old friends and from the talks given at the James Milligan funeral. This history was compiled by Veral Nilson Ballard, Cleve Milligan (two of James’ grandchildren), and other Milligan children.
Colaborador: Chynna67 Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
One of the talks at the funeral of James Milligan -
CALDER SMITH: My dear brothers and sisters and friends and relatives, I am indeed grateful this afternoon, that I have been counted worthy to say a word in appreciation for the friendship of this good man whose body lies before me.
Bishop Rees outlines for you in a way what the character of this man has meant to him--as he appealed to him as a man. He has said these things in a most suitable manner, a most appreciable manner, far better than I can do.
To me I think of Brother Milligan as a result - and the man he has described for us - as a result of conditions which caused him to develop to manhood and the statue he did. I think of Brother Milligan in terms of the home where he was raised. Many times talking with him, as I did, as we sat and conversed in his little store, he told me about the times and conditions that surrounded his childhood, and I think they have practically made him as he was.
He was born in the great city of Liverpool, that metropolis city of England amid the hustle and bustle of city life. Liverpool is an interesting place to visit for a short while, but it must have indeed seemed a big place to a boy of his size and age for he lost his father young and the family had to depend on what the mother was able to glean for their livelihood by art of her needle. Surely he appreciated the efforts that his mother had to put forth in behalf of the children.
One particular instance he told me was when he was little, about 10 or 12 years, a tiny little fellow he must have been, but he found it possible to get a part time job, so he was working in a factory part time and going to school part time, and then because of the hardships on his mother, he found a job for full time work, but when he asked to be released from the factory where he was working part time, they would not give it to him. They demanded two weeks notice, as is customary, before he could leave, so he had to stay until his two weeks were up even though he made a mere pittance for his work. I don't remember now just the amount he did make a week, and so for two weeks he worked in one factory for 12 hours, then as fast as he could he grabbed his hat and ran to the other place performing the work that was wanted of him there. Now think, if you can, how tired that boy must have been and he told me how he remembered so well when he did get home after 18 hours of work, a long shift, his mother would take his coat, take him in her lap--see that he had something warm to eat and almost put him to bed. And these times I believe are the times that made grandfather, Uncle Jim, what he was.
As he grew to manhood, young manhood, and his mother passed on and left him, he told me his mother asked him to look after his brother somewhat younger, and you know the story of how his brother was lost and could not be found, but how well Uncle Jim discharged that trust.
He became an apprentice to learn the trade of a decorator, painter and glazier. Now it seems in England in order to learn the trade one must work exceedingly hard and brother Jim was the one who could take the gaff. He first learned to scour the paint buckets just right, later on he learned to mix the paint and blend the colors. This training, later on, stood him a good stead. He had learned to select color, and beautify many of our places in this community. He learned his work thoroughly and as he has told me on several occasions whenever there was any particularly tough or difficult job, too much for the average man, they sent for Uncle Jim. They could always get their decorating done in an ideal way, and so I am sure as a tradesman he had the respect and confidence of the people for whom he worked.
And then a little later he came to America, settling in Salt Lake City. Not knowing what to do, a little immigrant boy as it were, from England. He was able to speak the language and that was about all, and he knew not what to do or where to go. Possibly that was why he took the first opportunity of employment that was offered him, as a herdsman boy, to herd cows, on the lake shore, to watch the cattle as they grazed. The Indians used to go by on their way back and forth for work, and shortly because he must have some protection and possibly because he know the Bible much better than most boys, Uncle Jim, recalling the story of David and Goliath, made himself a sling, the shepherd's weapon. He used this sling so well squirrels were not safe anywhere around him, so you see the capabilities of the man and no wonder he grew to be the man Bishop Rees described him to be. If the work of the scouts had of been organized at that time, I am sure Uncle Jim would have been a model scout for their motto of "Be Prepared" fit his life exactly.
He lived in American Fork for some time and then moved to Salt Lake and later to Logan, and during that time he suffered an accident to his leg and was not able to walk very well. One day Brother Card, who was then the Supervisor of the building of the temple, met him and said: "Why, Jim, you are just the man I am looking for, for glazing down the bottom story of the window frames and putting glass in them and then we can build a temporary roof and be able to work all winter. Would it be possible that you could come?" Uncle Jim had to tell him that he could not walk, but he would come if some way could be arranged. Brother Card then told him they had need for a diamond to cut the glass--and in pioneer days they were very scarce and not available in every hardware store as today, but the Short Line had a diamond but it was not here and they could not get it until about two weeks and by that time it may be so stormy they could not get any work done that winter anyway, and Uncle Jim reached in his pocket and brought out a diamond. Always prepared for things that came to him. He put the glass in the bottom section of the temple and as you and I know, Uncle Jim did it right and the way it should be done and he did everything to make it last well. It was done in the best possible way.
Then later he came to Smithfield and I believe he told me the first work he had was as a caretaker. Then he worked in a harness shop as an errand boy. Keen mentally, he did not stay long doing chores. When the other men and gone to dinner he did cutting and sewing harnesses and learned to be about as good a harness maker as any of them.
So development came to him along various lines and he was skillful in more lines than most men are. Well, later on in his life his family grew, and the loss of his wife cane, he found it necessary to be at home more and to use his first trade in using the skill acquired in the old country, and along with that he turned to developing the lot on which he lived--being a good pioneer bee-keeper and gardener, he accomplished much. No matter what it was he gave it the best of care. Uncle Jim's lot was a paradise.
Of course a man of his kind could not be left entirely alone. He was put on the school administration board as secretary of the board, and he was telling me at one time they needed a teacher for one of their upper grades and Uncle Jim told them, and I remembered this because it is my idea too, that if they were in need of a teacher for first grade they would have to worry, but for a teacher of the upper grades they could find one, which they did very shortly.
Next, I believe Uncle Jim went to work for the Telephone Company as their collector. Imagine if you can, this little man, scarcely five feet, tiny little fellow, out to collect, but he did collect and made a record which I don't believe has been equaled in the Telephone Company before or since. But always when Uncle Jim was away from home, opportunity permitted him to call up his children to give them encouragement and to be sure they were all right.
He made such a record with the Telephone Company that on one occasion the manager from Logan took him to Salt Lake to show the color of the man's hair who could collect the money that was regularly coming from Cache Valley and when they saw Uncle Jim they said: "That little wart, how in the world does he manage?" But that will to win, that persistence he had made it possible for him to do what many great big men have found impossible to do.
As a merchant we all know Uncle Jim's record. His smile was always ready for everyone who came in. I don't believe anyone bought anything there that they did not get their moneys worth. He did not sell a 10 cent item for a $1.98. If you bought a 10 cent item, you got 10 cents worth. Bishop Rees has outlined the fact that he trusted everyone and if anything was his undoing as a merchant, it was this.
I have been informed that Uncle Jim was a splendid neighbor by the people who live near him and have known him well. His fences were good between their places and his. He was willing to do his part to share with his neighbors and I know of one occasion when the neighbor's cow died and they had quite a few little children who needed milk. Uncle Jim had two cows and one of his cows went over to the neighbor to be used until they could own one again.
As a parent and father, the character which lives in these people he has fathered, I feel is a greater tribute than could be offered in words, and when I think of Uncle Jim and his many interests, his keen mentality, his interest in philosophy, of his wise words, of the way he gave to everyone a kind word, all this means to me, a true man.
One morning not too long before it was necessary for him to leave the store, in talking with him, he took out a little clipping which he had cut out from a paper. I think it expresses his splendid philosophy and he said as I read this particular clipping. " I wish I could have written this myself." This clipping was handed to me the other day without the knowledge of anyone and as I believe it expressed his outlook on life, expressed some of the things Bishop Rees had already said and explains it more eloquently than I could. I should like to read this short item before sitting down:
"When I leave this mortal shore, and mozey about the earth no more,
Don't weep, don't sigh, don't sob, I have found a better job.
Don't go and buy a large bouquet for which you'll find it hard to pay,
Don't mope around and seem all blue, I may be better off than you.
Don't tell the folks I was a saint or any old thing that I ain't,
If you have jam like that to spread, just hand it out before I am dead.
If you have roses, bless your soul, just pin one in my button hole,
while I am alive and well today, don't wait until I have gone away.