Adam Yancey lived at the home of his grandmother Wood (Mary Snider Wood), with his mother (Harriet Wood Yancey). Harriet was an attractive woman and like her son, had a splendid character. She would often seem mentally abstracted with a melancholy expression for reasons which were attributed to the fact that her husband insisted on going away.

She would sit for hours and knit with a very serious expression on her face and was seldom jovial. She had repeated opportunities of marriage. She married Captain James Brown of Ogden 17 Sept 1859. He died a few years after in 1863 as the result of an accident and left quite a large grant which included the site of Ogden City. James Brown was the first white settler in Ogden, Utah. The histories speak quite freely of him.

Harriet thereafter denied all opportunities of marriage until after Hiram John Yancey Jr. was married. She married a widower by the name of  David Lewis. She did not love him but as they were both alone, they thought that perhaps through their marriage, their lives would be made happier through more intimate associations.

After the death of Captain Brown, Adam lived most of the time until he married with the family of John Moss, whose wife was Rebecca, another sister of Harriet, their children were just like brothers and sisters to Adam. When at school the boys used to tease Adam by telling him his name was not Brown. One day he got into a fight about it and when he went home, his mother told him about his real father. Harriet lived with Mr. David Lewis until she died in 1871 when Adam was twelve years old.

Adam Yancey & mother Harriett at about the time she died.
Inventory of Adam Yancey family history items


Hiram J Yancey Jr
a site with photos of his children
Newspaper Articles about Hiram J Yancey leaving the Utah valley


Capt James Brown
Capt. James Brown


David Lewis
David Lewis



John & Rebecca Wood Moss
with whom Adam Yancey lived for a while.


Transcription of a letter sent to Adam Yancey probably in the early 1900's.
"Just kept this because of the date recorded, BYJ  1978"  <Bertha Yancey Jensen - Adam's daughter>

Provo City, June 4
Mr. Adam Yancey

Dear Sir
I thought I would write you a few lines to . .. .will you please give me the dates of your mother's birth and the date of death and her standing in the church as I promised to do one favor in the temple for her. Your mother was . . . wifes of Capt. James Brown who died in 1863. My name is . . . Horracks
. . .hoping to hear from you. . .I . . . with kind regards to all.
Yours Truly
Mrs. Maria Horracks.

Information added by Dennis Yancey (2013)
There seems to be no record of Hiram John Yancey's LDS sealing to Harriett ever being "cancelled or revoked" after he left her.  Nor  is there any reference to any church disciplinary action against him that may have terminated his membership in the church.  However on 17th September 1859 Harriet was married to James Brown - in the "President's Office" whether this was a "for time only" marriage or a true "sealing" is not totally clear - although it is recorded as a sealing in FamilySearch. (Adam Yancey was born in April of 1859 after his Father left).   Note however she is subsequently recorded in Familysearch as being sealed to one David Lewis on the 9th of January 1871 in the Endowment House - again one should be careful in assuming this was not simply a "for time only" marriage that has been mis-recorded as a sealing on familysearch.org.

An interesting account from the Davis Family

In 1864 the [Davis] family decided to look for a farm where they could raise part of their food. They settled down near Enoch Lewis in Bountiful... On November 25, 1866, a daughter, Elizabeth, the twelfth child of David and Ann, was welcomed into their home. Little Elizabeth was only three months old, however, when her mother Ann died (February 10, 1867). Joshua was sixteen. Mary Ann, who was thirteen, took over the 'mothering' of the five children who were under the age of ten. Enoch Lewis and his wife Jane took little Elizabeth from this time on and raised her as their own. Four years passed before David Lewis married a second wife, Harriet Wood, who was a young widow with one son, Adam. They day David and Harriet were married (January 9, 1871), David first had Ann, his first wife, sealed to him... Harriet, David's second wife, was not to be with the family long, however. On December 22, 1873, she died and was buried in the Lewis plot in the Bountiful City Cemetery. Now the home was without a mother again, but Mary Ann, who was now married, helped out when she could.


Deseret News Weekly newspaper: 31 Dec 1873 FHL US/CAN Film _____, item _ Died, Bountiful, 20 Dec 1873, Harriet wife of David LEWIS and daughter of Daniel & Mary WOOD, 38 years 11 months 19 days.

Note the grave marker was (apparently) marked with the wrong death year.
(and was probably placed many years later - when there may have been some confusion about her death year)


Findagrave Memorials
Harriet Woods Yancey Lewis
Adam Yancey
Hiram John Yancey Jr
Capt James Brown
David Lewis