Eller Stoker1816 - 1855 (38 years)
Name Eller Stoker Born 28 Jul 1816 Bloomfield Township, Jackson, Ohio, United States Gender Male Died 18 Jul 1855 Council Bluffs, Pottawattamie, Iowa, United States Buried Graybill-Stoker Cemetery, Garner Township, Pottawattamie, Iowa, United States Person ID I2539 Petersen-de Lanskoy Last Modified 17 Jan 2015
Father Michael Stoker or Stocker, b. 24 Mar 1762, Frederick, Frederick, Maryland, United States , d. Aft 27 Oct 1836, of, Caldwell, Missouri, United States (Age > 74 years) Mother Catherine Eller, b. 6 Mar 1773, , Rowan, North Carolina, United States , d. Aft 7 Aug 1856, Kane Township, Pottawattamie, Iowa, United States (Age > 83 years) Married 7 Feb 1792 of, Ashe, North Carolina, United States Family ID F264 Group Sheet | Family Chart
Family Margaret Judd, b. 29 May 1822, Reddies River Township, Wilkes, North Carolina, United States , d. 20 Nov 1893, , Harrison, Iowa, United States (Age 71 years) Married 10 Jun 1839 , Van Buren, Iowa, United States Last Modified 22 Oct 2015 Family ID F1271 Group Sheet | Family Chart
1. Ancestry.com, 20 Apr 2002, database of D. Madison Bass
reports the following children all born in Pattawattamie, Iowa:
Melanda, b. 11 Sep 1840.
Eller Stoker, b. 25 Nov 1843.
Orson Hyde Stoker, b. 25 Nov 1843. [6 Jul 2003 note: Found photo of his and his wife's tombstone at www.rootsweb.com/~iaharris/cemetery/champlin.htm which is the Champlin or Yorkshire or Walker Cemetery south of Persia, Harrison, Iowa.]
David Allen Stoker, b. 29 Nov 1844, d. 15 Jan 1929.
Lavina [should be Luvina] Stoker, b. 10 Dec 1846, d. 15 [should be 19] Jan 1916. [6 Jul 2003 note: Found photo of her and her husband's tombstone at www.rootsweb.com/~iaharris/cemetery/graybill.htm which is the Graybill/Spears Cemetery at Neola, Harrison, Iowa. Their tombstone: "William Spears, Sept. 3, 1836-Jan. 7, 1911, and Luvina Spears, Dec. 10, 1846-Jan. 19, 1916." Site also notes they were married 25 May 1864 at Pott. Co. IA and that her maiden name is Stoker. Several Spear children and some Graybills also in same cemetery.]
Savina Stoker, b. Abt 1847.
Richard Stoker, b. Abt 1847.
Michael Eller Stoker, b. 26 Feb 1849.
Mary Elizabeth Stoker, b. 18 Feb 1850.
Margeret Clapernia Stoker, b. 7 Oct 1853.
Lucetia Stoker, b. 28 May 1855.
2. From Sep 2006 Internet, http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Ridge.2509/brownson.html: It appears the Stoker family probably knew the Seymour Brunson family of nearby Lawrence Co., Ohio. Brunson had served with Luke Johnson in 1832. In 1833 he is again with Luke in the area as are Zerubbabel Snow and Amasa Lyman. He is also specifically in Bloomfield, Jackson, Ohio in Nov. 1834 when his son his born and also per letters he wrote. He appears generally in Kirtland thereafter. His journal notes that in July 1836 he visited the church in Bloomfield. He does note the baptism of John Stoker 13 Nov 1837. It was at his funeral in Nauvoo in 1840 that Joseph Smith first revealed the doctrine of baptisms for the dead.
1820 US: Bloomfield Township, Jackson, Ohio, pg. 195, township had a little over 40 families; related families include James Lackey, Michael Stoker, and Michael Graybill. In neighboring Madison Township, related families David Stoker, Peter Graybill, Nancy (Graybill) Henson, and James McDaniel are found. Columns are male 0-10, 10-16, 16-18, 16-26, 26-45, 45+// female 0-10, 10-16, 16-26, 26-45, 45+:
Michael Stoker: 2,1,0,1,0,1//1,1,0,0,1. [Appears to be Michael, his wife Catherine, and their children John, Michael, Rebecca, Catherine, Jacob, and Eller; the three oldest appear gone in this census.]
Michael Graybill: 3,0,0,0,1,0//1,0,0,1,0.
James Lackey: 2,2,1,2,0,1//1,2,1,1,5.
1830 US: Bloomfield Township, Jackson, Ohio, pg. 109-112, note whole township had 527 people living in it, related families include Michael Stoker, Michael Stoker Jr., Alexander Lackey, James Welker, Michael Graybill, and John Stoker:
Michael Stoker. Males 10-15: 1; 15-20:1; 60-70:1. Females 10-15:1; 50-60:1. [Family appears to be Michael, his wife Catherine, and their two youngest sons Jacob and Eller; unsure who the girl age 10-15 may be.]
1840 US: Quincy, Adams, Illinois, the following related families living in near proximity to each other (with exception of John McDaniel and his wife Christina Stoker, all of David Stoker's siblings, children, and mother are accounted for and it confirms his father Michael was dead by 1840):
David Stoker, males 5-10:1; 40-50:1//females 5-10:1; 10-15:1; 40-50:1. [David, his wife Barbara, and their children Sarah (13), Catherine (11?), and Michael (6). Note daughter Nancy not in census which means she was probably deceased by then.]
Simeon P. Grabell [Graybill], males 0-5:1; 20-30:1//females 0-5:1; 20-30:1. [David's nephew: Simeon and his wife Amanda Hill and their two oldest children.]
Jacob Stoker, males 20-30:1//females 0-5:1; 20-30:1. [Younger brother to David: Jacob and his wife Catherine and their oldest child.]
Eller Stoker, males 20-30:1//females 0-5:1; 15-20:1; 60-70:1. [Youngest brother to David: Eller with his wife Margaret and their oldest child and probably their mother Catherine Eller.]
James Walker [Welker], males 10-15:1; 15-20:1; 30-40:1//females 5-10:2; 40-50:1. [Living next door to Eller and ages work perfectly that this is James Welker and Elizabeth Stoker, who is David's sister.]
John W. Stoker, males 0-5:2; 10-15:1; 30-40:1//females 0-5:1; 5-10:2; 30-40:1. [John and his wife Electa Sarah and their six oldest children.]
John Stoker, males 0-5:1; 20-30:1//females 0-5:1; 5-10:2; 20-30:1. [David's son: John and his wife Jane and their children.]
William Stoker, males 0-5:1; 20-30:1//females 20-30:1 (father-in-law Samuel Winegar is next door). [David's son William and his wife Almira with their child.]
Michael Stoker, males 0-5:2; 5-10:2; 10-15:1; 30-40:1// females 30-40:1. [Michael, his wife Martha, and their five oldest children.]
1850 US: Dist. 21, Pottawattamie, Iowa, p. 134b, dwelling 1118, household 1118; neighbors: Eller Stoker and Jacob Stoker:
Eller Stoker, 34, farmer, OH.
Margrath, 28, NC
Orson, 7, IL.
David, 5, IL.
Lavina, 3, IA.
Michael, 1, IA.
1851 Iowa State: Pottawattamie County. FHL film 1022203. The entire state was counted but only Pottawattamie listed everyone by name in the household with their ages; other counties only listed the head of the household and a numerical count without names of the various ages by sex in the household. No date is given when the census was taken but it was certified in Dec. 1851; however, the other counties show a Sep 1851 date which also appears more likely for Pottawattamie as well in light of ages given some children with known birthdays in October. Note that the following related families are in this census and very close neighbors: Simeon P. Graybill, Michael and Polly Graybill with Polly's mother Catherine Eller Stoker, Jacob and Catherine Stoker, Philip and Catherine Gatrost, David and Barbara Stoker, Edward and Sarah Davis, and William and Almira Stoker. Other relatives in same county but separated by several pages of census include the following families: Thomas and Hannah Pilling whose daughter Hannah later marries William Lenore Graybill, Levi and Patience Graybill, John W. and Sarah Stoker, Hannah Ford whose son Martin later marries Zibiah M. Stoker, and John and Sarah Smith. Census return:
Eller Stoker, 35
Orson H., 8
David A., 6
Michael E., 2
Mary E., 1/2.
John L. Gutherie, 30
1852 Iowa: the census has Eller Stoker in Kanesville, Pottawattamie, IA, p. 26. This census is statistical and only lists heads of household with numbers of males, females, and voters. It is not very helpful for families or positively identifying a given individual. The following Stokers are shown as being in the same area: David, Eller, Jacob, John, and William as well as Michael Graybill, Martin Ford, Philip Gatrost, John Smith, George Graybill, and Levi Graybill.
1854 Iowa: Kane, Pottawattamie, Iowa, listed as males, females, voters, militia (note that there are 8 pages of listings and only pages 5 and 6 list the following:
Michael Grabill, 5-5-2-0.
William L. Grabill, 1-2-1-1.
Geo. Grabill, 5-3-1-1.
Eller Stoker, 4-4-4-4.
Philip Gatirop, 3-2-1-1.
Simeon Grabill, 4-0-1-1.
5. From the book "Our Stoker Family Histories 1731-1881," Vol. II, comp. and ed. by Elayne Stoker, 2004, printed by Stevenson's Genealogy Center, Provo, UT. The following is a partial excerpt from the longer article entitled "David Stoker and Barbara Graybill," which is quoted in its entirety in the notes of David Stoker:
"By August of 1815 David and Barbara had settled into family life in Bloomfield, Jackson County, Ohio. It was on the 24 August 1815 that their first child was born: Christine Stoker. By the spring of 1816, David's parents had also joined them on the new frontier of the Ohio River Valley. David and his father, Michael, are listed on the Jackson County, Ohio, voting registry for an election that was held on 1 April 1816. Also, David's youngest brother, Eller, was born in Bloomfield, Ohio...
David and his family are not listed on the 1830 census records for Ohio or Indiana. (The family of John Stoker listed on the 1830 census in Ohio is that of David's brother, John W. Stoker.)...
Between the years of 1830 to 1836 David and Barbara Stoker along with some of the extended family received missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Some of these missionaries were: Seymour Brunson, John A. Fisher, and Luke Johnson. All baptized members of the Stoker family into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. John Stoker (David's son) was baptized by Seymour Brunson and Luke Johnson in 1834. David's younger brother, Michael Jr., baptized Barbara in 1836. ('LDS Biographical Encyclopedia.' Andrew Johnson Vol 2 pg. 252. Luke Johnson, Autobiography in 'Millennial Star' 1864, Lewis p 92)
Some members of the Graybill family also joined the church as their baptismal dates and offices they held within the church are listed in the records of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
An article in the local paper records that there was strong religious persecution against members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Vega area. This fighting lead to some families leaving Vega. ('Jackson Herald,' Friday, February 27, 1959 and cited in Jim Stoker's Stoker history 1993)
It was in the fall and winter of 1836 that David Stoker, his father, Michael, with their families and some of the Graybill families left the Ohio valley traveling west. On the 15 August 1838, David bought 52+ acres of land in Harrison County, Indiana. His brother, William, bought 120 acres in Madison County, Indiana. (Bureau of Land Management- Eastern States- General land Office, records of the Ohio River Valley Survey)
Other members of the extended Stoker family were already living in Indiana. David's sister, Elizabeth and her husband, James Welker, were married in Henry County, Indiana in 1828, and it's possible that their first son was born there. Albert Koons, a relative of Catherine Eller (David's mother), lived in Henry County, Indiana along with other Eller families. (The Indiana connections need to be fully researched to understand the detail of the different families movements.)...
The census records and genealogical family groups sheets illustrate some of David and Barbara's journeys. The history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints records members of the Graybill, McDaniel, and Welker families migrated west staying with the main body of the church to settle in Caldwell County, Missouri, near the town of Far West.
[Picture, pg. 61: "Caldwell County, Missouri. Township 55 North of the base line. Range 28 west of the 5th principal meridian.
Section 8 NW 1/4 of the SE 1/4 John W. Stoker's land -1837.
Section 8 SW 1/4 of the NE 1/4 James Welker's land -1837.
Section 9 SW 1/4 of the NW 1/4 Eller Stoker's land -1837.
(From the map archives of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)")...
During July of 1837 three families of the Stoker clan filed forty acre land deeds in Missouri. They were located seven to eight miles southeast of Far West, Missouri in the Grant Township near Log Creek. They were: James Welker (brother-in-law to David), Eller, and John W. Stoker (David's brothers). (Vital statistics indicate other family members were in this area, but no land records have been located at this time.)...
The next notable record of David and his family are found in the 'Redress Petition' to the United States government on behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This petition listed all those who lost property and effects due to the "Mormon Expulsion" order given by the governor of Missouri. This order simply stated that all of the Mormon church people had to immediately leave or die. Groups of raiding parties against the church members ensured the order was carried out to the extreme. The Stokers and their relatives reported that these 'mobs' had stolen their plow, wagons, tools, mill wheel, beehives, pigs, and horses. Their furniture was damaged, guns and rifles taken, and crops and homes were burned. There are 36 family members listed on the petition. ('History of the Church,' Vol 4)
The following is one journal recounts how volatile the Log Creek area became: "A sketch that I was an eye witness to in the State of Missourie Charles C. Rich on the 24th of October 1838 Messengers Come into Farwest stating that the mob was on Log Creek burning houses and Loaded waggons and threatening the lives of the people those was a few men Sent out to ascertain the movements of the mob these men returned a bout eleven O clock at night Stating that thare had been considerable Damage Done and also that they had taken three of the Brethern prisoners and intended to kill them..." (Stoker 1993).
David's nephew and the son of Polly Stoker Graybill, recorded this time also: "I went with my father's family and others, to Caldwell County, Missouri, in the autumn of 1837, and was with the Saints there in their time of terrible trials. We planted a crop which we were never allowed to harvest. I was a member of the State Militia under Colonel Hinkle. The mob came upon us near Farr West, in October, 1838... for weeks they had been stealing and driving off our stock, taking a team of horses from my father, and all the horses I owned" (ibid).
By 1840 the Missouri Governor's expulsion order had forced every member of the church to leave their homes, many fled into Illinois for safety. David's father, Michael, died during this event. One family tradition is that he was buried in the "Saint's Cemetery" in Far West. (There have been no records found as to when and where he died or is buried.)...
Other church members fled into Adams County, Illinois as the local citizens promised them safety. David, his brothers, and brother in law found work on farms south of Columbus, Illinois.
The 1840 census records for Adams County, list David, his son John, and their extended families. After taking time to restock and restore, the Stoker families moved further west as did the body of their church; into the state of Illinois. Their prophet and leader, Joseph Smith sent word to all church members to gather in and around the town of Commerce, Hancock County, Illinois where they could homestead new land and start over. It was a piece of swamp land on the bend of the Mississippi River heavily infested with disease carrying insects. The people drained the swamp land and built a city that housed thousands of church members. The name of Commerce was changed to Nauvoo. Tax and historical records of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints show that some of the Stoker families settled a few miles south of the city of Nauvoo...
David's brother, Eller Stoker, owned land along the "Carthage road" between the cities of Nauvoo and Carthage. Most of the family members settled in the Bear Creek Township twenty miles south of Nauvoo. (Historical Records, Nauvoo, Illinois)
County historical records list "Bear Creek" as the name of a city, township, and river but all names encompass the same area. Bear Creek was used as a timber and corn producing area.
Today corn and soybean farms still cover all of the prairie flats with old trees growing along the water ways. Bear Creek is itself a slow moving creek; with steep banks in places giving indications of the water power the creek can have in flood stages. Residents of the farm town of Basco, Hancock County, Illinois still refer to this area as Bear Creek.
Basco's official records begin in 1876. Today Bear Creek city and towns are only a remnant of it's former size as the settler's descendants are forced to move out to the larger towns to earn a living.
Early Church references to Bear Creek are:
1. Missionary town where the Saints lived among non-Mormons included Carthage, Bear Creek, La Harpe, and Fountain Green. ('Historical Atlas of Mormonism,' p.56)
2. Went to Bear creek, visited the Saints, held meeting, and preached on the subject of the building of the Nauvoo House and temple;... (Watson p.131)
3. Went to Knowlton Settlement on Bear Creek... (Watson p.160)
[Picture, pg. 67: "Log Creek Today. This is the general area of what would have been some of the Stoker families holdings. Located south of Kingston, Missouri."]
[Picture, pg. 67: "Trees in the background line Log Creek today. Except for the creek all is farm land."]
The Final Expulsion Order
Religious persecutions again plagued the fledgling church. During the winter of 1846, the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were again asked to leave. Peaceably at first, but eventually they were driven out in the same fashion as from Missouri. Members were forced to leave their newly built homes and anything they could not put in the wagons or carry. This time they fled across the Mississippi River into the unknown Iowa territory. Mormon journals from the residents living in Bear Creek record the trials they went through. Mobs were again burning homes to force the Saints to leave even though they were not fully prepared for a journey.
The Bear Creek region is close to the town of Warsaw, Illinois, a place where these mobs could gather and/or flee for safety. Listed below are journal entries from people who lived in the Bear Creek area. I have included this information to give the reader a sense of what the Stoker families endured.
1. "...On reaching a point midway (between Warsaw and Carthage) they were informed of new depredation by the mob. The sheriff then sent his family to Nauvoo under a small guard and proceeded to the scene of the mobbers. The mobbers saw them coming and took a flight, the posse pursuing with orders to arrest them if possible, if not to fire upon them. After pursuing them for some distance the posses fired upon them and killed two, and wounded it is believed others. This was on Bear Creek about two o'clock this afternoon." (Hosea Stout p39, 40)
2. "On Saturday, the 5th inst., as Pres. Joseph Smith was on his return from Quincy, to which place he had accompanied Pres. Hyrum Smith and William Law, on their mission to the East, he was arrested, at the Bear Creek Hotel,..." (Times and Seasons, Vol 2., p447)
3. "...I made ginger beer to sell this summer and I tended the Nauvoo House meat market, good guard, etc. until the 1st of September  and then there began to be trouble in the regions of Bear Creek, Carthage and Warsaw, so that we had to fly to arms again to protect ourselves against the mob..." (Allen Stout p.23)
4. "July harvested my wheat, which was on ground rented of Mr. Ezra Chase. It was very heavy, but owing to the heavy rains all summer, there was not so good a yield as was expected. During the fall and shortly after harvest, there were a great many buildings burned in the southern part of the county, belonging to the brethren on Bear Creek and Morely settlements. I went on one or two expeditions to repel the burners. To go through a thickly settled portion of country and see where had stood houses, barns, stacks, but now burned to the ground and some tragedies enacted amongst a nation claiming to have attained to the height of civilization. I was not surprised nor grieved to hear that the mob had said that we must, as a people, leave the ensuing spring, as soon as grass grew and water runs and that the authorities of our church had assented to these proposals." (Lorenzo Brown Journal BYU-S p.10)
5. "This is the number as usually stated, Gregg says: "For a week the burning continued until the whole of Morley-Town was in ashes, with many other residences in the Bear Creek region and that of Green Plains. In all it is stated that as Many as 100 or 125 houses were burned and their occupants driven off." (History of Hancock County p.340)
6. "In a very few days afterwards, bands of organized mobbers commenced the work of burning our houses in Yelrom, Green Plains and Bear Creek settlements, and throughout the country." (George Albert Smith p.22)
7. "Governor Ford puts the number at 175, houses and hovel that were burnt the inmates having to flee for their lives." (History of Illinois p.407)
Between 1847 and 1857 there were at least twelve family members that passed away. Included were: David Stoker who died on the 27 May 1852, his brother: John W. Stoker and his wife Electa Sarah McDaniel, David's brother, Eller Stoker, Michael Graybill (Mary's (Polly) husband), three children of Jacob Stoker and Catherine Burcham, two of John W. Stoker and Electa Sarah McDaniel, and two children of Michael Jr. and Martha McDaniel. It is believed that they with many others are buried in the family cemetery on the east edge of Council Bluffs...
William and his wife, Almira Winger, settled in Spanish Fork, Utah."
1. "Individual Affidavits from the LDS Historical Department" from the book "Mormon Redress Petitions, Documents of the 1833-1838 Missouri Conflict," editor Clark V. Johnson, p.358: "Stoker, Eller: Illenois Adams County May 1th 1839, the following is my bill of Damage a gainst the missouri in 1838
for loss on Deeded Land three hundred Dollar $300.00
Rifle gun one [and] waggon and set of harness 80.00
Loss of hogs cattle crop of corn seventy five Dollar 75.00
working tools house hold furniture fifteen Dolm 15.00
bees and othe vigetables fifteen Dollars 15.00
five months time and moving expence one hund, and fifteen Dollars 115.00
- - -
six hundred Dollar total sum $600.00
the above is a correct schedule
Eller Stoker [Sworn to before W. Oglesby, J.P., Adams Co., IL, 11 May 1839.]
2. The book "Mormon Redress Petitions, Documents of the 1833-1838 Missouri Conflict," edited by Clark V. Johnson, contains a copy of the "Scroll Petition" dated 28 Nov 1843 at Nauvoo, IL addressed to the U.S. Congress by members of the LDS Church who had property destroyed by Missouri mobs in the 1830's. Included with over a couple thousand signatures are Elles, Mary, and Catherine Stoker. Elles is Eller, Mary is Margaret, and Catherine is Eller's mother Catherine Eller.
3. Mentioned in the book "The Howard Leytham Stoker Von Dollen Family Histories," FHL 929.273 H833a, by Doris Lewis, 2017 So. 80th Ave., Omaha, Nebraska, 68124:
P. 87: Michael Stoker, the son of (John) Michael Stoker, was a 28 year old bachelor in Wilkes County, NC when the US census was taken in 1790. The farm which Michael Stoker bought from John Dick was on the north fork of New River in Ashe County. (The boundary line had been changed from Wilkes.) In 1792 Michael married Catherine Eller, the oldest daughter of Peter Eller and Elizabeth Dick. The Ellers and Dicks were settlers in this same area and all of Michael and Catherine's children, except Eller, were born and raised among numerous family members in North Carolina. In 1815, the family joined a migration of relatives moving west into Ohio. This party of Graybills and Stokers, all ages from babies to the elderly crossed the border into Ohio on Christmas Day, 1815. Michael and his son David, who had just turned 21, took part in the first election held in Jackson County on April 1, 1816. John Michael Stoker, Michael's father, settled in Perry County, Ohio, about 60 miles north. While in Ohio the Stokers became members of the newly organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. In 1837 [error: Feb 1836?], Michael, Jr., who was now a man and a member of the Priesthood, baptized Eller's future wife and her mother, Margaret and Rhoda Judd. Pauline Stoker of Council Bluffs has Michael Jr.'s old notebook where he kept records of baptisms, birthdays and deaths. On October 27, 1836, Michael and Catherine Stoker sold their land in preparation of the move to Missouri where the Saints were gathering. Michael was then 74 and Catherine 63 years old. Great persecutions took place in Missouri during the next two years and the family had to flee to Illinois for safety. Michael was not among those who reached Illinois, and how or when he died is not known. Catherine was at Nauvoo, IL, when the Saints again had to flee in February of 1846. She settled in Pottawattamie County, living with her eldest daughter, Polly, where she died. She is buried in the Stoker-Graybill Cemetery east of Council Bluffs, Iowa."
Pp. 102-105 [note that the same information is also in the FHL book 929.273 P684pn: "Graybill/Stoker/Eller/Smith/Koons/Pitt Connections," by Norman E. 'Gene' Pitt, 1996, p. 87]: "Eller Stoker was the last and ninth child born to Michael and Catherine Eller Stoker. He was born in Jackson County, Ohio on July 28, 1816, just seven months after the family had made the trek from North Carolina. While in Ohio, probably in 1833 or early 1834, the family joined the newly organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. His older brother, Michael Jr., baptized a number of relatives and friends in Feb. of 1836, among them, Margaret Judd, Eller's future wife. In 1837, the family moved to Far West, Caldwell County, Missouri, a gathering place for the Saints. Two years later, Eller, with numerous relatives, fled the persecutions in Missouri. His mother, Catherine, lived through these times to die in 1850 in Pottawattamie County, Iowa, but Michael was not among those accounted for later. In 1839, he married Margaret Judd, who also had been in Missouri, then living with her widowed mother, Rhoda Judd, on the Des Moines River in Jefferson County, Iowa. Margaret later commented that their only neighbors after their marriage were Indians and Half-breeds which leads me to assume they were living on the Half-breed Tract in southeastern Iowa, which Joseph Smith had negotiated for the displaced Saints from Missouri. Ownership of this Half-breed Tract was in dispute of whether it was legal for half-breeds to sell their government land and these Saints again lost their land. In 1841, Eller and Margaret moved to Nauvoo where they lived until the exodus in February of 1846. Orson and Allen were born in Nauvoo; Allen, a few months after Joseph Smith was killed. In June of that year, they settled in Garner Township, Pottawattamie County, on land still owned by their descendants and Eller planted the crop to be harvested that fall. In December, Margaret gave birth to Lavina, their fourth child and the first known white child born in Pottawattamie County. Their home was a small log cabin, where the younger children were all born and reared. This picture on page 104, was given me by Else Steinberg, and was taken before the cabin was destroyed in a tornado in 1925. On a hot July day in 1855, Eller took a cold dip in a pond after haying and couldn't seem to recover from the chills, which led to stories that the cold water killed him; however, he died from cholera. He was but 39 years old and left a wife and seven children, the baby a few weeks old. Margaret, at the age of 33, became the head of the family. She managed to keep the farm and gave each of the boys a team of horses, a wagon and a hundred dollars on reaching maturity. Both Eller and Margaret are buried a mile south of their old farm in the Stoker-Graybill Cemetery, east of Council Bluffs. A wrought iron fence surrounds their grave... Children:
a. Melanda Stoker, b. 11 Sep 1840 in Iowa; d. 11 Aug 1841.
b. Orson Hyde Stoker, b. 25 Jan 1843 at Nauvoo, IL; d. 14 Jan 1908 - buried at Yorkshire, Iowa; m. Elizabeth Massie Oman.
c. David Allen Stoker, b. 29 Dec 1844 at Nauvoo, IL; d. 15 Jan 1929; m. Allie Whitinger.
d. Lavina Stoker, b. 10 Dec 1846 at Pottawattamie Co., IA; d. 19 Jan 1916; m. William Spears.
e. Michael Stoker, b. 26 Feb 1849 at Pottawattamie Co., IA; d. 18 Nov 1929; m. Laura White; m. (2) Lilly White.
f. Mary E. Stoker, b. 20 Jan 1936; d. 20 Jan 1936; m. Andrew Fitzgerald; m. (2) William Sheen.
g. Margaret Calpernia Stoker, b. 7 Oct 1853 at Pottawattamie Co.; d. 27 Jan 1934; m. George Spears.
h. Lucretia Stoker, b. 28 May 1855 at Pottawattamie Co.; d. 28 Aug 1914; m. William Heileman."
4. Quotes from wife's biographies:
a. Http://iagenweb.org/pottawattamie/Bios1891-S.htm quoting from the "Biographical History of Pottawattamie County," 1891: "Margaret Stoker, of Pottawattamie County, was born May 29, 1822, in Wilkes County, North Carolina, the daughter of John and Rhoda (Judd) Stoker, the former a native of North Carolina. Mrs. Stoker was in her seventh year when her parents moved to Wayne County, Indiana, where they lived until after her father's death, which took place when she was about seven or eight years of age. He left his widow and nine children, of whom Mrs. Stoker was the youngest. In 1838, when she was sixteen years of age, the family moved to Iowa, on the Des Moines River, when the state was still a Territory and where they lived until the mother's death, which occurred one year later. In 1839 Mrs. Stoker was married, at the age of seventeen years to Eller Stoker, who was born in Jackson County Ohio, the son of Michel and Catherine Ella Stoker, the mother a native of North Carolina and the father of Germany. Eller Stoker was reared in Ohio, when about twenty-one years of age moved to Missouri, where he lived two years and then came to Iowa, and afterward moved to Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois, where he became a member of the Church of the Latter-Day Saints, in 1846. He then came back to the old homestead, where Mrs. Stoker still lives, and cultivated a portion of the land before his death, which occurred July 18, 1855, lacking but a few days of being thirty-nine years old, and leaving a widow and seven children, viz.: Orson Hyde, who lives near Yorkshire, Harrison County, Iowa, is married and has seven children: Allen, who lives near Union Grove, Harrison County and has five children; Michel E., lives near Union Grove, Harrison County; Lavina, the wife of William Spears, lives in Pottawattamie County, and has six children, Mary, wife of William Shene, of Garner Township, has three children; Calpernia, lives in Minden Township, the wife of George Spears, and has four children; and Lucretia, who lives in Garner Township, the wife of William Heiloeman. Mrs. Stoker has had a wonderful experience on living in Iowa and she has witnessed the growth and prosperity of the State."
b. FHL book 977.771 H2 "History of Pottawattamie County, Iowa," O.L. Baskin and Co., 1883, p. 97: "Mrs. Marguerite Stoker, Council Bluffs, was born in North Carolina in 1822; daughter of John and Rhoda Judd. When Mrs. Stoker was quite young, she moved, with her parents, from North Carolina to Indiana, where she was raised and educated. When seventeen years of age, she married Mr. E. Stoker, born in Ohio in 1816. At the time of her marriage, she was living with her mother (her father having died ten years before) on the Des Moines River, near what was called Meeke's Mill, at that time a flouring mill, subsequently a woolen mill; there she had lived a year previous to her marriage. The first two years after their marriage, Mr. and Mrs. Stoker lived in the eastern part of Garner Township, and then moved onto the present place. When they first settled in this township, almost their only neighbors were Indians and half-breeds, and they were obliged to procure their provisisons in Missouri. When the Western lands first came into market, Mr. Stoker purchased 160 acres; he also entered land, and subsequently added to this till the farm now consists of 360 acres. Mr. Stoker died in 1855, leaving his wife with seven children, two of whem live in Harrison County and five in this county; they are all married, except the youngest son."
5. Published biographies of their children and grandchildren:
a. Two sources: www.rootsweb.com/~iaharris/ and FHL book 977.747-H2n: "History of Harrison County, Iowa," 1891, pp. 542, 543: "Orson H. Stoker, a farmer and stockraiser of section 32, Washington Township, came to Harrison County in the spring of 1863. He came in with William Spears, from Pottawattamie County, Messrs. Stoker, Spears, William A., and A. J. Graybill, had bought three hundred and twenty acres of land in a body in company. Mr. Stoker and Mr. Spears came up and broke sixty-five acres of this land in 1864. Mr. Stoker remaining until the autumn of 1865, and then returned to Pottawattamie County, remained until 1868, then came to Washington Township, locating on the farm he now occupies, which comprises three hundred and sixty-two acres, but in all, he is the owner of six hundred and eighty-two acres within Harrison County. His first improvement was the erection of a house 16 feet square which he erected in the autumn of 1867, and in which he lived until 1879, when he built a frame house 16x36 feet, two stories in height, together with an addition 14x21 feet. In 1875 he built a barn 24x30 feet, and in 1883 another 32x34 feet together with machinery sheds. This provided him with sufficient barn room until 1889, when he erected a barn 30x50 feet, with an annex 20x28 feet. He also has a hog house, built in 1887, in which he has an engine and boiler costing $1,000. He is engaged in breeding, making a specialty of Poland-China hogs and Short-horn cattle; and is quite an extensive feeder throughout the year. He generally feeds about fifty head of cattle, and from one to two hundred head of hogs. Of the three hundred sixty-acre home farm two hundred acres are under cultivation, eighteen in timber land and the balance in pasture and meadow. Of the three hundred and twenty acres he owns in Union Township, two hundred and forty are in pasture, and the remainder under the plow. Our subject was united in marriage, in Pottawattamie County, Iowa, January 8, 1868, to Miss Elizabeth Omen, the daughter of Perry and Hannah Omen, who were the parents of two children. Mrs. Stoker was born November 12, 1847, and when a child, removed to Pottawattamie County with her mother, with who she lived until the time she was married. By this marriage ten children have been born: Jessie F., born November 8, 1868; Margaret H., February 8, 1869; Emily C., April 27, 1871; Nettie, May 26, 1874; Kate A., April 12, 1879; Bettie A., December 6, 1881; Mary L., March 15, 1883; Ettie L., November 2, 1885; Floyd H., November 5, 1888; and Julia, August 9, 1890. Margaret H., died March 28, 1875, and Mary L., December 29, 1889. Our subject was born in Hancock County, Ill., January 25, 1843, and came with his parents to Pottawattamie County, where he remained until 1863. His father was Eller Stoker, and was born in Ohio about 1815, and died in Pottawattamie County, in July, 1855; she was one of the pioneers of that county, coming there as he did, in 1846, when Iowa first became a State. His wife, the mother of our subject, was Margaret (Judd) Stoker, and was a native of North Carolina, born in June, 1822, and is still residing in Pottawattamie County, Iowa. When Mr. Stoker came to this county in 1868, there were but four families in his neighborhood, in Washington County. Politically our subject exercises his right of franchise by voting with the Republican party. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and belongs to Agate Lodge, No. 423, at Neola, Iowa. Mr. Stoker is in possession of a most excellent stock farm, which is provided with an abundance of good water, numerous barns and outbuildings well arranged for the keeping of lie stock, which he breeds and handles in a general way with much success."
b. Two sources: www.rootsweb.com/~iaharris/ and FHL book 977.747-H2n: "History of Harrison County, Iowa," 1891, pp. 717, 718: "Allen Stoker, who is a resident of section 27, Union Township, came to Harrison County in February 1869, and purchased a part of his present homestead, and then returned to Pottawattamie County, returning the following year to remain, and began breaking up the wild sod. He lived with his brother-in-law, George Spears, for about two years. The township at that time was very thinly settled, there not being over one hundred and fifty inhabitants, and their chief market was Logan. To inform the reader concerning our subject's earlier years, his marriage, etc., it should be stated that he was born December 29, 1844, in Hancock County, Ill., and is the son of Ellar and Margaret (Judd) Stoker. The father was a native of the Buckeye State, and came to Pottawattamie County, Iowa, settling near Council Bluffs, in June 1846, where he died July 19, 1855, always following farming. His wife was born in Indiana. They were the parents of eight children, of whom seven still survive, Mr. Stoker being the third child. He attended the district school in Pottawattamie County, acquiring a fair business education. His father died when he was about eleven years of age, but, being a faithful son, he lingered around the home hearth-stone until he had reached his majority, and then worked the old homestead two years, teaching school winters. Upon leaving home his mother gave him a team of horses and a wagon and the sum of $100 in money. And with this small beginning he started forth in life to take his rank among men as the architect of his own fortune, and by good business habits and much hard labor he is now surrounded with a comfortable home, and is possessor of three hundred and ninety-five acres of land in Union Township, of which two hundred are under the plow, and the balance pasture and meadow land. He usually keeps seventy-five head of cattle, fourteen horses, and fifty swine. He built his present house in 1879, the upright of which is 16x24 feet and two stories high, to which an addition fourteen feet square and one story high has been added. His barn was erected in 1883, and is 36x42 feet, with twenty-foot posts. The whole premises show evidences of good management and our subject is looked upon as one of the intelligent agriculturists of the country. He was united in marriage October 31, 1876, to Sarah E. Whitinger daughter of Jasen and Mary J. (Howard) Whitinger, who emigrated to the county in 1857 or 1858. Her father was born in Indiana August 18, 1835, and came to Dallas County, Iowa in 1853. He was married when twenty-four years of age. His wife was born in Illinois March 7, 1842, and raised a family of six children, of whom Mrs. Stoker, born February 24, 1859, is the eldest. Her people are living in Idaho, to which State they went in 1854. Mr. and Mrs. Stoker are the parents of seven children, who were born in the following order: - The first born died in infancy; Ada M., October 15, 1877; Margaret J., October 3, 1879; Nellie L., January 17, 1882; Marvin C., September 29, 1884, died December 14, 1890; Edith, born June 19, 1889; Lloyd A., May 1, 1889. Politically, Mr. Stoker is identified with the Republican party."
c. Two sources: www.rootsweb.com/~iaharris/ and FHL book 977.747-H2n: "History of Harrison County, Iowa," 1891, pp. 959, 960 [Same exact quote shows up in FHL film 934944 "History of Harrison County, Iowa," 1915, pp. 959-960]: "Miss Julia Stoker - The biographies of successful women are unusual in works of this character, yet there are, in every community, a few women, who, by virtue of their superior ability and keen business judgement, are entitled to recognition far beyond that usually accorded to the sterner sex. But it is altogether extraordinary to find a young woman who has shown such wonderful executive ability as Miss Julia Stoker, a successful capitalist and the manager of her deceased father's great estate. Miss Julia Stoker was born on August 9, 1890, in Washington township, Harrison county, Iowa, the daughter of Orsan and Elizabeth (Omen) Stoker. They were the parents of ten children, eight of whom are living. Orsan Stoker was born on January 25, 1843, in Hancock county, Illinois, the son of Ellen and Margaret (Judd) Stoker. Orsan Stoker came to Harrison county, Iowa, in 1862, and bought land in Washington township. He made improvements upon this land, among which was a log cabin, sixteen feet square and here he and his family lived a few years, when the log cabin was replaced by a better house. He was an extensive breeder of Poland China hogs and Shorthorn cattle. Throughout his life, he was an energetic farmer and stockman. He built a splendid house near the town of Yorkshire, Iowa, later in life, and at the time of his death in 1908, owned nine hundred and seventy-four acres in Harrison and Pottawattamie counties. He was a member of the church of Latter-Day Saints and the Masonic fraternity. Orsan Stoker's wife, the mother of Miss Julia, was born in 1847, in Holt county, Missouri, the daughter of Perry [Omen] and Hannah (Smith) Graybill, the latter of whom was married three times [Perry being first husband]. She is now living on the old home place. Julia Stoker attended the eight grades of the Yorkshire school and has always remained on the home farm. She now manages all of her mother's interests and looks after all her affairs. Miss Stoker owns one hundred and fifty-seven acres of land, near Persia, in Washington township. She is very much in love with the work that has fallen to her lot to perform and is very competent for this work. She is a member of the church of Latter-Day Saints, well known in the community where she lives, and widely admired for her many sterling qualities."
d. FHL film 934962 "History of Pottawattamie Co., Iowa," by Field and Reed, 1907, pp. 502-506: "William Spears, a general farmer and stock-raiser of Minden township, is numbered among the extensive landowners of the county, having 800 acres, which returns to him a very gratifying annual income. He has been a resident of Iowa since 1848 and on his present farm since 1871, his home being now on section 7. His original purchase, however, embraced but 80 acres, and this serving as a nucleus, he has continually added to his possessions until his holdings are now very extensive. Mr. Spears was born in Mercer county, Pennsylvania, September 3, 1836. His father, George Spears, was a native of Scotland and when a young man sought the broader opportunities of the new world, settling in Pennsylvania, where he followed the trade of a machinist and blacksmith. In 1839 he again removed westward, becoming a resident of Hancock county, Illinois, where he lived until 1846, when he came to Iowa. For a time he was in Council Bluffs and then went to Nebraska, where he lived for two years. He became entirely blind through an accident. While in Pennsylvania he married Miss Sarah Churchfield, of that state, and they became the parents of eight children, of whom four are now living. William Spears, the eldest of this family, was reared upon the home farm and enjoyed common school advantages. His father died in Florence, Nebraska, in 1846, and the mother afterward married again in that state, becoming the wife of George Sweet, who, in 1848, returned to Iowa, where he engaged in farming. The occupation to which he was reared, William Spears decided to make his life work and for several years he worked by the month and later rented land until he acquired capital sufficient to enable him to purchase property. In 1862 he bought 80 acres at the edge of Harrison county, where he made a home, living here for several years. In 1871 he came to Minden township and has since resided on his present farm on section 7. In the meantime, on the 27th of May, 1863, in Council Bluffs, Mr. Spears was united in marriage to Miss Levina Stoker, a native of Pottawattamie county, born December 10, 1846, and a daughter of Eller Stoker, a pioneer of this county, who in 1836 [1836 seems erroneous; perhaps 1839?] established his home here and was numbered among those who aided in laying the foundation for the present progress and prosperity of the county by reclaiming wild land for the purposes of civiliaztion. As the years passed Mr. Spears carried on the work of the farm and prospered in his undertakings. As his financial resources increased he added to his property from time to time until he is now the owner of 800 acres, which is divided into four farms, with good sets of buildings upon each. In all of his work he has been practical and has accomplished what he has undertaken by reason of his diligence, perseverance and well directed labor. His first home was a log cabin, but this has long since been replaced by a more modern structure and he now has good two story dwelling upon his farm, together with substantial barns and out-buildings. In fact, all of the equipments of a model farm are to found upon this place. He has made a specialty of raising and selling polled Angus cattle, keeping full blooded registered stock. He also makes a specialty of Chester White hogs. He feeds about three carloads of stock each year. He has planted orchards and small fruits and has good farms, thouroughly equipped with modern conveniences and representing in their well kept appearance the care, labor and practical methods of the owner. Unto Mr. and Mrs. Spears were born ten children, but they lost three in infancy, while Agnes became the wife of John D. Bennett and died at the age of 22 years. The others are: Mary Jane, the wife of G.J. Winslow, of Fort Collins, Colorado; Daisy Ann, at home; Myrtle, the wife of F.N. Wilson, a farmer who aids Mr. Spears in the conduct of the home place; Eva, who is at home; William H., who assists his father in carrying on the work of farming and stock-raising; and Cora, also at home. Mr. Spears is independent in politics, supporting men and measures rather than party. He has held all of the township offices both here and in Harrison county, being called to public positions by his fellow townsmen, who recognize his worth and ability and appreciate the faithful service which he always renders. He was a member of the old Grange and of the Farmers Alliance and has ever been deeply interested in all that pertains to the advancement of material interests. He started out in life empty-handed and has made a splendid record as one whose diligence constitutes the basis of his success, his labors being at all times guided by sound judgment and practical views. He has helped to make the county what it is today, breaking prairie and opening up farms and thus reclaiming the wild land for the purposes of civilization. He is the oldest settler in Minden township in years of continuous connection therewith. He has passed the scriptural age of three score years and ten, but is still active and gives personal supervison to his extensive farming interests, embracing the cultivation of 800 acres of land. His life record is in many respects worthy of emulation and should serve as a source of encouragement to those who have to start out as he did without capital. He early realized that labor is the strongest force in winning success and as the years have gone by he has so directed his efforts that difficulties and obstacles have been overcome and he has gained a place with the most prominent and prosperous agriculturists of this community."
6. The book "The Howard Leytham Stoker Von Dollen Family Histories," FHL 929.273 H833a, by Doris Lewis, 2017 So. 80th Ave., Omaha, Nebraska, 68124, pp. 107+, has the following biographies of the children of Eller and Margaret (Judd) Stoker:
Orson Hyde Stoker: "Orson was three years old when he came to Pottawattamie County with his parents in 1846. He grew up on the family farm in Garner Township. In 1863, when 20 years old, he bought government land at $7.00 an acre in Harrison County, Washington Township, section 32. Andrew Graybill, William Graybill, William Spears and Orson bought 320 acres in one body and helped one another clear the land. In 1867, he built a log house where he brought his new bride, Betty Oman, the following January. The oldest five children were born in this log house on Mosquito Creek, and Jess commented later it had quite a number of cracks, requiring one to shake the snow off of the quilts in the morning if it had snowed in the night. In 1879, Orson built the big family home just west of the cabin. The road at this time ran east and west and the house stood east of the present Highway 64 and across the road from William Darrington's home now. Because of his many daughters and numerous men on the premises, the second story was separated into male and female sleeping quarters by a solid wall, with separate stairways from each side. Because of the many out buildings, elevators and granaries, strangers often stopped at the farm thinking they had reached Yorkshire. Orson owned more than 1000 acres in Harrison County when he died in 1908 from an infectious carbuncle on the neck. He had diabetes, as did many of his children. Elizabeth Massie Oman, or Omen, as it is sometimes spelled, was born in Lexington, Lafayette County, Missouri, in 1847, the first child born to Perry and Hannah Oman. A number of babies born to Latter Day Saint parents were born in Lafayette County, so there was probably a pocket of church members there. Two years later Betty's younger sister was born in Holt County, Mo. The Missouri census, taken in Lafayette County on August 26th, 1850, lists Perry as 26 years old, born in Illinois and a farmer by occupation. Hannah was 22, Elizabeth 3 ½ and Eliza ½. In the summer of 1851, the family moved to Pottawattamie County, Iowa, where Perry soon died. He may be buried in the old Mormon Cemetery, now Fairview in Council Bluffs, of the Stoker-Graybill Cemetery east of the Bluffs, or in Wheeler's Grove, where many Smiths were living, including Hannah's father, in a large Mormon community. I find only two other Omans at this time in the area, both in Council Bluffs, during the 1850 census. Eliza Oman, age 35, was perhaps a relative since Perry named a daughter Eliza, and next door to her was George Oman, who was a leader of a group of Latter Day Saints who traveled on to Utah. Betty's younger sister Eliza Annette was called 'Net.' When Net was 16 she met George Tucker at a dance in Council Bluffs, and they were married three weeks later. The Tucker family had come to Council Bluffs, then called Kanesville, in 1849. The first night of arrival they camped outside of town and the father was killed trying to stop house thieves from stealing the horses. The mother and a younger brother contacted smallpox later and died, leaving George and a sister, orphans. In 1861, when 17, George volunteered in the Fourth Iowa Infantry, Company B. He served in the following battles: Pea Ridge, Chick Bayou, Arkansas Post, Jackson, Champion Hill, Vicksburg, Big Black River, Dalton, Taylor's Ridge, Mission Ridge, Columbia River, Bentonville, the Atlanta campaign, the march to the sea, and the campaign that ended in Johnston's surrender. After the war he delivered oxen and wagons to Denver, returning with cattle. Returning from such a drive in the midst of a violent snow storm, he found a dance in progress in Council Bluffs. Dances had been discontinued during the war years, which made one quite an event after the war. George went to the dance and met Net. They never had children but were dear aunt and uncle to all of Orson and Betty's children. They lived their entire married life within a few miles of Neola. In the early years of marriage they lived in a log cabin on Mosquito Creek near Yorkshire, the last few years they lived in Neola, where George was the banker. The Stoker look is a familiar phrase to us who have it, but I was surprised to find that photographs show it was the Smith women who had it. Maybe it is really a Smith look, or an Eller look, of a Koons look, but wherever it came from, Grandma Betty Stoker had it." More on Orson Children: "Orson used to bring home bolts of material, so each family member had a dress or a shirt made out of the same material. He also brought barrels of clams and my grandmother said as she walked in the smoke house she could hear hundreds of clams clicking shut when the light hit. They were all excellent cooks, good eaters, hard workers, but would drop everything for a good ridge game. They had as much fun at 70 as at 17. When the grandchildren were ready for high school, which is in Neola, they moved in with Grandma Stoker, who had moved to Neola in her later years. There were times when she had as many as six teenagers boarding with her..." [The book lists 10 children born of this couple with numerous photographs. Three of the photos are especially noteworthy since they are of Hannah Smith - one taken just after her marriage with George Graybill, one with her second husband, James Sexton, taken during the Civil War, and one as an older woman with three generations of descendants.]
David Allen Stoker: "Allen, who always went by his middle name, lived at home and taught school winters, until he was 24 years old. In 1869, he purchased the land and broke the wild sod which was to become the homestead on section 27, Union Township, Harrison County, Iowa. For two years he lived with his future brother-in-law, George Spears while he worked the land. In 1876 he married 'Allie' (Sarah) Whitinger, a young woman of 17..." [7 children listed, a complete downline, and a photograph is included.]
Lavina Stoker: "Lavina was the first known white child born in Pottawattamie County. Her Mormon parents, Margaret and Eller Stoker, left Nauvoo with the migration of Mormons in the spring of 1846. She was born and reared in the log cabin just east of the Bluffs, leaving home when she married William Spears. William bought and started to clear land in Harrison Co., in 1863, along with Lavina's older brother and two Graybill cousins. William and Lavina had a log house just south of the Harrison county line in Pottawattamie County and lived there for many years before building their bigger house to the south... This old log cabin was near the conjunction of Interstate 80N and 80, north of Neola. When Minden Township was formed in 1877, William Spears was one of the three judges appointed." [Eleven children listed with a complete downline.]
Michael Stoker: Narrative is about his wives' heritage and not Germane to this database. [One son is listed, a complete downline, and some photos.]
Mary Elizabeth: Narrative of children and not Germane to this database. [Three children are listed and a complete downline.]
Margaret Calpurnia Stoker: Calpurnia married at 17, as did her older sister, Lavina. George Spears was a brother to William Spears; which was not unusual on the frontier, for sisters of one family to marry brothers from another. George was named after his father, George Spears, Sr., who came from Scotland, married a girl name Sarah Churchfield in Pennsylvania, moved to Illinois in 1839. While in Illinois the family became members of the Latter Day Saint Church and came to Florence, Nebraska, with the exodus from Nauvoo in 1846. Calpurnia and George raised Byron Stoker, son of Michael Stoker, after the death of his mother. George Spears was born in Pennsylvania." [Four children are listed and a very partial downline.]
Lucretia (Crish) Stoker: "Lucretia was a few weeks old when her father, Eller Stoker, died. She lived all of her life on the farm on which she was born. She was nicknamed 'Crish' as a baby, probably as a result form an attempt at pronouncing her name by Calpurnia or Mary. William Heileman was born in Germany and after his marriage to the baby of the family; he took over the family farm, consisting of 243 acres, burying it from Margaret, his mother-in-law. Granddaughter, Helen, and husband Dean Andress, live on part of the original farm today." [Two children are listed with a complete downline and a photo.]
7. FHL Book 929.273EL54h "George Michael Eller and Descendants of His in America," compiled by James W. Hook, 1957, also on FHL film 896571, item 2, pp. 122-123: "Eller Stoker, b. 28 Jul 1816 in Jackson Co., OH; d. 18 Jul 1855 in Pottawattamie Co., IA. He m. 1839 Margaret Judd, b. 29 May 1822 in Wilkes Co., NC; d. 20 Nov 1893 in Pottawattamie Co., IA. She was a dau. of John and Rhoda (Shepherd) Judd. (Sources of data on this family, the 1850 Federal Census of Pottawattamie Co., IA and Hisotries of that county published in 1883 and 1891, also cemetery, church and Stoker family records.) The children of Eller Stoker and Margaret Judd were:
Orson Hyde Stoker, b. 25 Jan 1843 in Illinois, d. 14 Jan 1908. He married but wife's name not found.
David Allen Stoker, b. 29 Dec 1844 in Illionis; d. 15 Jan 1929; m. Alice Whitinger.
Lavina Stoker,, b. 10 Dec 1846 in Pottawattamie Co. IA; d. 19 Jan 1916; m. William Spears, b. Sep 1836 in Mercer Co., PA; d. Jan 1911 in Pottawattamie Co., IA.
Michael E. Stoker, b. 26 Feb 1849 in Pottawattamie Co., IA; d. 18 Nov 1929; m. Laura White.
Mary Elizabeth Stoker, b. 18 Feb 1850 in Pottawattamie Co., IA; d. 20 Jan 1936; m. William Sheen or Shene.
Margaret Calpernia Stoker, b. 7 Oct 1854 (prob. 1853) in Pottawattamie Co., IA; d. 19 Sep 1933 at Council Bluffs, IA; m. 5 Mar 1871 George Spears, b. 6 Apr 1843 in Illinois; d. 27 Nov 1919.
Lucretia Stoker, b. 28 May 1855 in Pottawattamie Co., IA; d. 28 Aug 1914; m. 16 Apr, about 1878, William Heilman."
8. FHL film 702: "Journal of John Stoker, b. 1817; Journal starts November 1, 1869." John was the son of David Stoker and Barbara Graybill. Selected family related passages from his journal:
P. 1: Nov. 1-4, 1869: The journal starts with John leaving as a 52 year old missionary with Jesse N. Perkins as a companion from Salt Lake City on the railroad to Omaha, NE. The railroad had just recently been completed so he details the progress of the transcontinental railway journey.
P. 2: Saturday, Nov. 6, 1869: "Went to Bluff City with J.N. Perkins. Sunday 7th, spent the fore noon with Moroni Stoker - took dinner with him." [William Moroni Stoker, 1834-1929, was John's first cousin thru John's father's brother Michael S. Stoker, 1805-1858.]
P. 3: "Monday 8th. Went up to Musketoe to see Simeon P. Graybill. Stayed all night. Tuesday 9th, took dinner with Aunt Margaret Stoker, Uncle Eller Stoker's widow, and returned to Aunt Martha's at Trading Point, Potawatamie Co., Iowa. Wednesday, 10th. Wrote a letter to Mr. Wm. Atkinson in Bountiful, Davis Co., Utah. Thursday 11th. Visited Wm. McDaniel in Harrison Co. 40 miles north. Friday 12th. Visited the grave of Zibiah Birdno [could also be Binders], my wife's mother. Saturday 13th. Returned to Aunt Martha's at Trader's Point. Sunday 14th. Spent the day with Aunt Martha's family. Monday 15th. Went to Bluff City to look for a letter but got none and returned to the Point. [Simeon Graybill, 1816-1889, was John's first cousin twice thru his father's sister Polly Stoker, 1792-1864, and thru his mother's brother Michael Peter Graybill. Eller Stoker, 1816-1855, was John's father's brother and married to Margaret Judd, 1822-1893. Aunt Martha was Martha Carr McDaniel, 1808-1873, wife of John's father's brother Michael S. Stoker, 1805-1858. William McDaniel, 1810-1885, is John's brother-in-law. John's Mother-in-law, Zibiah (McCarley) McDaniels, 1786-1860, apparently remarried a Mr. Birdno after her husband James McDaniel, 1762-1820, died.]
Pp. 4-9: The journal details their departure from Council Bluffs area by various means including railroad, hack, steamboat, packet boat, hired horses, and on foot with luggage to "Leith Co. 5 miles north of Estillville," Virginia via many detailed waypoints including but not limited to DesMoines, Chicago, Cleveland, Wheeling VA, Burlington on the Ohio River, the "Big Sandy" on the line between Kentucky and Virginia, the "Pound Gap" summit of Cumberland Mountain, the "High Nob the highest point in Virginia." John details with whom they stayed and what hospitality they received. Along the way they see and preach the Gospel to many McLelland/McClelland relatives of his companion. In Leith Co., VA, on Monday, Dec. 13, 1869, he "wrote a letter home to my family and one to Ash[e] Co., North Carolina to David and Henry Graybill" which they mailed the next day from Estillville. [John's mother, Barbara Graybill, had two brothers - Henry, ca1780-ca1843, and David, 1794-1874 - who remained in Ashe Co. where she was born; however, Henry was dead by then but his "Uncle" David responds later on Jan. 22.]
Pp. 10-17: They stayed in the area doing missionary work mainly among McClellands. He notes on Christmas day while staying with Samuel McClelland, they went to a meeting and heard a Dunkard preach. On Monday, Dec. 27th, John notes, "wrote a letter to my family also one to my sister-in-law Martha Stoker at Bluff City, Iowa. [Martha Carr (McDaniel) Stoker was whom he referred to as Aunt Martha previously in his journal since she was married to his father's brother Michael S. Stoker, but she was also a sister-in-law since she was the sister to John's wife Jane McDaniel.] John notes on Saturday, Jan. 8th, that he "went to the widow Quillins to inquire concerning the Wampler family." [I am unsure who the widow was, but John's maternal grandmother was Christina Wampler, 1753-1844.] On Tuesday, Jan. 11th, John notes, "Went to Patsy Daughterty's to inquire after my mother's relatives." On Thursday, Jan. 13th, he notes that he "went to Wm. Wampler's, took dinner." [I do not have either a Patsy Daughterty nor William Wampler in my database - they must be of a later generation than John's grandmother Christina Wampler.] He also notes on the same day that he received a letter from his son-in-law J. Tolman and daughter in Utah. On Saturday, Jan. 22nd, John notes, 'Received a letter from my son David Stoker, Davis Co., Utah dated Jan'y 1st, 1870, gave particulars of my son John Stoker's sickness but getting better. Also received a letter from my uncle David Graybill, Ashe Co., Jefferson, North Carolina." On Jan. 24th, he writes back to his uncle David Graybill.
Pp. 18-24: Starting on Jan. 26th, 1870, the missionaries are on the move: first to Bristol (VA?), then thru Chattanooga, Nashville, Sparta, to Putnam Co., Tennessee where they did missionary work with the Perkins and Mayberry families who relatives of his companion, Jesse Perkins. On Sunday, Feb. 13th, 1870, John wrote letters to his son David Stoker in Davis Co., Utah and one to Aunt Martha Stoker and cousins in Council Bluffs, Pottawattamie Co., Iowa. On the next day he went to Gainesboro where he received a letter from his son David Stoker. Beginning Feb. 16th, 1870, John proceeds by boat down the Cumberland to Nashville then to St. Louis via the Mississippi River from Cape "Jerido". On Feb. 23rd, took the from St. Louis to Trader's Point where again he sees Aunt Martha. He sends money to his companion in Decatur Co., Iowa to help him get to Council Bluffs. He also sends a letter to Utah asking his family for money for himself and his companion.
Pp. 25-33: John arrives Feb. 26 and remains in Pottawattamie Co., Iowa until March 24 when he, Jesse Perkins who arrives March 9, and several other missionaries from the East Coast join up in Omaha for the trip home to Utah by railroad which he notes cost $50.75. Generally he is staying with his Aunt Martha. Some journal entries during that time period dealing with family follow: "Sat., Feb 26th, 1870: Went up to Musketoe Creek to Simeon Peter Graybill, my cousin. Stayed over night. Sunday, 27th. Went to Walker's Grove in Harrison Co. to Sidney R. Graybill, my cousin, with Moroni Stoker to see some sick cousins Michael and Elizabeth Graybill. [Sidney Rigdon, 1836-1893, Michael S., 1827-1910, and Elizabeth, 1833-1891, are siblings and all children of Polly Stoker, John's father's sister.] Stayed over night. Monday 28th. Cold and windy. Remained all day. Stayed all night. Tuesday, March 1st 1870. Returned to Aunt Martha Stoker's at Traders Point. Read a letter from David Stoker, my son, to John A. Stoker, dated Feb'y 21st, 1870. Stayed overnight… Thursday 3d. Cousin Jared Stoker killed 2 turkeys, the 2 weighing 40 lbs. [John Alexander Stoker, 1837-1918, and Jared, 1843-1912, were first cousins and sons of Michael S. Stoker, brother of John's father David.] Stayed over… Tuesday 8th, being my birthday, age 53… Wednesday 9th… was weighed being 184 lbs… Friday 18th… went to Aaron Thomas, took dinner and spent the day with him and family. [Aaron Morris Thomas, 1833-1920, was married to John's first cousin, Elizabeth Jane Stoker, who was the daughter of John W. Stoker, a brother of John's father David.] Returned to Aunt Martha Stoker's… Saturday 19th… Sent a letter to Wm. Atkinson in Bountiful, Davis County, Utah, heard from home by a letter wrote to John A. Stoker dated March the 12th, 1870. All was well… Thursday 24th… John A. Stoker and Joseph Stoker took me and Bro. Jesse N. Perkins to Omaha with a wagon. Rained before we got there. Joseph Stoker went over the River with us met about