Life Sketch of Margaret Gardner Hadfield
Colaborador: Jane Little Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
Margaret Gardner Hadfield was born at Preston, Lancshire, England, May 30, 1844. She was the daughter of John Gardner and Martha Dunlap Gardner, both of Lancshire, England. She was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints March 11, 1863 in her native land, her father and mother being the first to embrace the gospel message when it was delivered to them by Brother Parley P. Pratt and Brother Wilford Woodruf. At the age of ten she went to work in the cotton mills where her father and sisters were employed, to obtain means to immigrate to Zion. On April 30, 1866 she, with her father, brother and sisters left their native land and sailed on the ship "John Bright" for America. They were six weeks crossing the ocean, then crossed the plains in Captain Wright's company. Walking a great portions of the way and enduring privations and hardships of that long and wearisome journey, arriving to Salt Lake City, September 2, 1866.
For two years she lived in Salt Lake City, part of the time at the home of the late John Taylor as a nurse, and when necessary assisting in other duties of the home. While here she was permitted to see and handle the bullets which shattered his watch, also those extracted from his hip when he was shot at Carthage jail. On November 23, 1868 she was married to James Hadfield, in the Endowment House. They moved to Ogden where they lived for a time. Brother Hadfield was employed part of the time by the railroad, as this was about the time the railroad came into Ogden. They found difficulty in getting enough employment to secure the necessities of life and often were unable to get the pay after the labor was done as money was so scarce. Sister Hadfield was among the first to remove a shovel of dirt when the excavating was begun for the depot at Ogden. The Church Authorities were given the first privilege, after which the ladies were allowed each to remove a shovelful of earth, which began the work of the great railroad center of the state of Utah.
In 1870 she with her husband moved to Smithfield where she resided until her death, enduring the hardships and privations of pioneer life in Smithfield, helping to build the bridges and roads and make possible the advantages which the generations to follow would enjoy.
She was the mother of eight children, four sons and four daughters. She had 43 grandchildren when this sketch was written. Her husband died November 21, 1914. She of late years spend what time her health would permit in temple work, having secured large records of the Hadfield and Gardner families. She was very anxious to see his work completed. Sister Hadfield was a teacher in the Relief Society of Smithfield for about twenty years, until her health would not permit her to carry on this work.
At the age of 79 years, she with her daughter and granddaughters traveled about 700 miles to attend the dedication of the Cardston Temple, enjoying the trip and being able to attend all of the temple meetings and partake of the feast which was given to those who were fortunate enough to be present at the first emple to be built on British soil. On returning from Canada to Smithfield she resumed her temple work at the Logan Tample. Her work there as a Savior on Mount Zion is worthy of special comment. Because her perserverance and determinations at such advanced years in climbing the Temple Hill until the last day that her strength would permit shows that she was undaunted in her efforts to open the prison doors and bring joy and blessings to those waiting in the spirit world to be released. She completed the temple work for one thousand names and after her health failed she provided means and ways for others to "carry on." When this was written sister Hadfield was eighty seven years old and had maintained a remarkable intellect. She was very keen in her sight and hearing and took a world of pleasure in conversation with her friends and relatives. Her choicest theme being things pertaining to incidents in the lives of those early saints who passed through the trials and hardships of early pioneer life. One incident she relates of her experience in crossing the plains which brought sorrow to the hearts of all in camp, one evening after the company had made camp one of the young men took his gun and went out to shoot some game for supper, on his failing to return the company built large bon fires and kept up the firing of guns during the night hoping that they young man would find the camp, but, to their great sorrow he never returned, his life was taken by the Indians while seeking food for his friends. Another incident---though of a different kind---at the time of crossing the plains; she was a charming young woman of 19 years and naturally her beauty and exceptional likable disposition, readily won the admiration of a young teamster. Often the young man favored her by inviting her to sit beside him and ride for and hour for a change from trudging over the rough roads on foot, She would then accept of his kindness only on the terms that in exchange for the ride she would sit and darn the driver's socks and mend his clothes. As their friendship grew it was noticed by the other girls of the company and they furnished her a little keen competition for a time. The teamster in order to demonstrate that she was holding first place in the contest, one day killed and dressed a nice chicken and in the evening prepared it for supper. He invited (the then) Miss Gardner to be his guest at the evening meal. She gladly accepted the invitations, but true to her generous nature, the pleasure of the occasion was not her only objective. They young man served supper to her as well as to some of his boy friends and while they ate theirs she stalled by telling some pleasant jokes getting the crowd to laughing and when they had finished and with her plate of wild chicken still untouched she said, "Mother has been sick for several days, do you mind if I take this over for her supper?"
Sister Hadfield was of a cheerful disposition and generally had some pleasant saying to offset melancholy. When one of the children would come downstairs late in the morning, instead of scolding, she would say,"Well, if it isn't early now "as been". When the girls were courting at the gate the time limit was ten o'clock and usually when that hour came she would step to the door and in a quiet voice would call, "Sarah or Martha (as the case might be) it's ten o'clock and the girls knew it was their next move.
She was a wonderful cook and after preparing a sumptuous meal (including plum pudding for that was her specialty) for her eight children and their companions would say, "Now come to your dinner it's all ready."
Some of her main sayings were: "Honesty is the best policy", "Step on a worm and the time will turn." On Sunday afternoon-- "Maggie you play the organ and you folks sing some of the Sunday school 'ims." As an early riser she would say, "I always like to see the sun come over the 'ill in the morning." "One hour in the morning is worth two at night." "It is easier to get into dept than it is to get out."
It was remarkable how much she used to enjoy singing the old time song, her voice was low and sweet. Some of the songs were --"Maggie by the Bro Side," "Hard Times Come Again No More," "When you and I were Young Maggie" and "Alice Ben Beolt."
During the years of 1865 and 1866 her husband (James B. Hadfield) served as a soldier in the Black Hawk Indian war spending his time and sacrificing his property in the defense of his country. In recognition of his loyalty the United States Government honored Sister Hadfield in granting her a war pension for the last few years of her life.
For some time she had the distinction of being the oldest living person in Smithfield.
Since embracing the gospel in her girlhood she always lived the life of a consistent Latter Day Saint thoroughly converted to every principle. She was an honest and consistent tithe payer and gave freely of her substance in offerings to the needy. She contributed liberally to the Missionary work by sending her eldest son to fulfill a two year's mission in a foreign land at a time when money was scarce and times were hard.
She was justly proud of her family and her life work. In her declining years she spent her time musing on the beauties of the gospel, and having lived to witness many marvelous changes through the scientific world. She enjoyed many of the modern conveniences including radio and through its medium was in touch with the news of the world. Her favorite hour of the week was Sunday afternoon "listening in" at the services held in the Great Mormon Tabernacle at Salt Lake City. She lived to see and became intimately acquainted with the events of the Mormon Church for near its "One Hundred Years of Mormonism."
During all of this time she never wavered in her belief of the gospel and of the Divine Mission of the Prophet Joseph Smith. She has entered the beyond with a firm hold on her celestial reward and with power to be sealed up to immortality and eternal life.
She died March 3, 1933, in Smithfield and was buried in the Smithfield cemetery.
This copy obtained from Roma Pratt Farr, July 28, 1940, submitted by Reta B. Spackman, November 1969, (Camp and Co.)