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Isaac Haight


The following has been contributed by Diane Hitchcock Owens, a descendant of Isaac Haight.

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ISAAC CHAUNCEY HAIGHT was born May 27, 1813 in Windham, Greene County, New York. He was the son of CALEB and KETURAH HORTON HAIGHT

Isaac reportedly was of a delicate and frail constitution in his youth. He was more of an intellectual temperament than a physical. He was about six feet tall, weighed about 190 pounds with brown eyes and brown hair and was considered a rather handsome man. He married ELIZA ANN SNYDER at the age of twenty-three.

Isaac was educated to be a teacher although, he did do some farming. He considered a career in the ministry and had a desire to join the Baptist ministry to Burma. About this time he met Joseph Smith, the founder of the LDS Church. Isaac was among the first converts of Joseph Smith to the LDS Church. He recruited his parents, as well as forty other members of his community in Green County, New York. They joined the migration westward in 1839 to Nauvoo, Illinois.

In Nauvoo, Isaac served on the police force and as a body guard for Joseph Smith. Isaac was in Utah guarding the temple in Nauvoo when word came that Joseph Smith and his brother, Hiram, had been killed. Isaac was the first person to receive the news.

Isaac played an important role in the exodus from Nauvoo to the Utah Territory. Brigham Young appointed him as one of the bishops to build shelters and to take care of the families at Winter Quarters. He was known for his resourcefulness and the people had great confidence in him.

In 1847 Isaac was sent to Salt Lake City. He made a second trip the next year. In December of 1848, Isaac was part of a group of fifty men led by Parley Pratt, who had left Salt Lake City and gone south to Salt Creek, then east to the Sevier Valley and southwest to Panguitch and the Valley of the Little Salt Lake. After traveling through the mountains in three to eight feet of snow, they reached what is now Parawan.

Upon his return to Salt Lake City, Isaac was given a seat in the territorial legislature. Shortly after the legislature adjoined, he left on a mission to England where he was very successful in recruiting new members to the LDS Church. It was also Isaac’s responsibility to carry the Saints money, which had been converted into gold, back to the United States. He carried a small leather satchel that contained $36,500 in English gold coin and which he converted to US currency and spent in New York City on supplies.

Isaac made several trips to England where he recruited other members to the LDS Church. On one of these missions, he met ELIZA ANN PRICE, the daughter of JOHN PRICE and SARAH MARY JOHNSON. She  became one his five wives. Eliza was a member of the Episcopalian Church where Isaac was preaching. Eliza and five other girls had gone to hear him speak when they met. Eliza's mother had died when Eliza was an infant and she was raised by her Aunt in London. She had light brown hair and blue eyes. She was a small woman, weighing only about 120 pounds and standing five feet tall. Her brother was Sir Arthur Price who served in the King’s Service. Her grandmother was a distant relative of Sir Walter Scott.

They were married on October 10, 1853 in Salt Lake City. According to their daughter’s memoirs, Eliza did not know that Isaac had other wives until she was on aboard the ship for the United States. When she discovered Isaac had other wives, she refused to marry him. But, she was too embarrassed to tell her family back in England and so she remained with Isaac and lived her life in the Utah desert. She never quite forgave him for his deception.

Isaac’s other wives were (1) MARY MURRY, (2) ANNA BELL ST. CLAIR, (3) ELIZA ANN SNYDER and (4) ELIZABETH SUMMERS January 24, 1858 in Utah, daughter of JAMES and MARY SUMMERS.

Isaac was sent to Iron County, Utah where he was the first mayor of Cedar City as well as the first Stake President. His home still stands on the corner east of the Presbyterian Church. The family later moved to Tocquerville.

In the late summer of 1857, the territorial militia (affectionately, the Nauvoo Legion), which included every able-bodied man between the ages of eighteen and forty-five, was on full alert. Staff officers, who were also church and civic officials, were dispatched to every settlement under their command to explain and enforce militia decisions. George A. Smith, who commanded all of the southern Utah militia units, arrived in Parowan on 8 August and began the task of preparing the people psychologically, militarily, and materially for war. The units of the Tenth Regiment of the territorial militia were mustered and drilled, and the impending battle plan was explained. Smith, an effective orator and founder of Iron and Washington counties, made several impassioned speeches and apparently accomplished his purpose. The people were convinced that they were in a state of war and were ready to take action.

Several meetings were held in Cedar City and Parowan to determine how the "War Orders" should be implemented. The militia decided that the Fancher train should be eliminated. Cooler heads prevailed temporarily and an express rider was sent to Salt Lake City to solicit Brigham Young’s advice. The round trip—more than 500 miles—took six days. In the meantime, things got completely out of hand. Orders and counter-orders were misinterpreted, deliberately or otherwise.

Isaac was excommunicated from the church and he died in exile on September 08, 1886 in Thatcher, Graham County, Arizona.

The children of ISAAC HAIGHT and ELIZA PRICE are:

MARIE ANTOINETTE HAIGHT, b. August 09, 1861, St. George, Utah, d.January 12, 1935, Salt Lake City, Utah

ROSELIA JACOSIA HAIGHT, b. October 22, 1854, Utah d. December 10, 1922.

ISAAC CHAUNCEY HAIGHT, b. October 21, 1856, Utah, d. 1927, Utah

ELIZA ANN HAIGHT, b. May 08, 1858, Utah, d. March 02, 1897

HORTENSE HAIGHT, b. January 11, 1860, Utah, Went to Alaska

MARIA EUGENIA HAIGHT, b. July 25, 1863, Tocquerville, Utah; d. February 07, 1942,Utah.

HARRIET ADELIA HAIGHT, b. September 03, 1865, Tocquerville, Utah, d. December 15, 1942.

OWEN PRICE HAIGHT, b. May 29, 1868, Tocquerville, Utah, d. October 17, 1900.

HECTOR CALEB HAIGHT, b. May 09, 1870; d. December 1957.

HORTON EDWARD HAIGHT, b. October 11, 1872, Tocquerville, Utah

Source Notes:

1. Isaac Nelson, Cedar City Utah

2. Memoirs of Marie Antoinette Haight

3. Juanita Brooks

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