Alma Helaman Hale & Sarah Annie Clark
Sarah Annie Clark Hale was one
of the sturdy, brave and noble pioneers who dared to brave, the hardships of
five thousand mile journey by sailing vessel, railway, ox team, and on foot from
her native home in England to the Salt Lake Valley.
She was born 27 March 1842, at
Colchester, Essex County, England, the second child of Daniel and Elizabeth
Gower Clark, who were the parents of ten children. Their father was a maker of
fine shies and her mother a tailor; and our ancestors before her weir their
husbandry, thrift and common place things of life.
Parents: Daniel Clark &
While Sarah was still a girl, the
Clark family moved from their little town to the big city of London. The Mormon
elders found their way into the Clark household there in the summer of 1851, and
they readily accepted the new doctrine in preference to their own religion, for
it offered them a new way of life. Elder Charles w. Penrose brought the, gospel
message, and Sarah, her older sister Elizabeth, and her father and mother were
baptized in November, 1851.
Owing to the prejudice of their
relatives, friends and townspeople against them, they made plans, to
"gather to Zion" where they could worship as they pleased, and where
the children could have access to schooling, which was denied then in England
because of their religion. They found it quite a task to get enough money
together to bring the family of ten across the water, so Elizabeth, Sarah and
Rebecca, the three oldest girls went to work and earned enough money to bring
them to Zion ahead of their parents.
On the first of April, 1861, the
clipper ship "Underwriter" sailed from Liverpool, England, with the
three Clark sisters and 621 other saints bound for Utah, under the presidency of Milo Andrus, Homer Duncan and Charles W.
Penrose. The company arrived at New York on May 22, after a seven week's trip on
water, and on June 2 they were in Florence Nebraska, ready for the thousand mile
trek across the plains. They
immediately joined the Joseph Horne company, walked the entire distance over the
almost desolate country, and arrived in the
Salt Lake Valley in September 1861. The journey from London to the blessed
Mormon home had occupied slightly
over five months.
One evening, while crossing the plains,
they learned that the company following them was to have a dance. They could see
the lights and it did hot look far, so they coaxed Captain Horne to let them
walk back to the dance. He told them it was too far, but they insisted so he let
then go. They walked and walked and finally reached the camp. After dancing, all
evening, they walked back to their own camp and arrived just in time to start
the journey on the following morning. They were surprised to find the distance
was more than eight miles ... but they loved the dance, and the trip was
The girls had been taught that
cleanliness was a virtue, and so they changed and washed their clothing every
day while crossing the plains. Even the thick prairie dust failed to dampen the
spirits of their tired bodies.
Sarah and her sisters immediately went
to work, saved every penny and sent the money back to their parents. Three years
later, in 1864, the entire family had saved enough, money to emigrate to Utah,
and came in the William Hyde company. However, a very sad thing happened enroute.
Daniel Clark their father, took sick with the cholera and passed away in July,
1864. It was a sad occasion, for the little
family to bury their father out on the plains, at the first ford across the
Platte River in Eastern Wyoming. It was even a bigger shock to Sarah and her
sisters, for no word could be sent to them and when they stood waiting for the t
emigration company to arrive so they could greet their loved ones again, they
were happy and their spirits ran high. But it is hard to imagine the
disappointment, the gloom and sadness that came to them, for they loved their
family very dearly. He was a kind, loving father and a good companion to his
Shortly after arriving in the Salt Lake
Valley, Sarah met a young widower by the name of Alma Helaman Hale from
Grantsville, Tooele County, who had buried his first wife some months before and
left with a daughter and two sons; but the little boy had soon passed on. Alma
H. Hale was a kind man from a good American family, and Sarah soon fell in love
with him and the were married on 24 December
1861. The new mother took
the two children two children and reared them as her own and they always loved
her as their own mother.
Alma Helaman and Sarah Annie Clark were
parents of ten children; Ernest Frederick, Albert Henry, Almana Sarah, Rachel
Clarissa, Katie Eliza, Grace Emma, Jonathan Harriman, Solomon Eliphalet, Aroetta
Louisa, and Rebecca Viola. Almana and Solomon passed in infancy and the rest
they reared to maturity.
Sarah Clark Hale was true to her new
religion and never missed an opportunity to work in the church, and to urge her
husband and children to honor the calls that came to them. She was made President of the Primary Association of the
Grantsville Ward in June 1879, and three years later made Stake Primary
President in the Tooele Stake. She
held both offices for some time and was released from the ward office in 1886.
At this time Sister Rachel Ridgeway Ivans Grant, President Heber J
Grant's mother was general Primary President and these two women were good
friends and made many trips together to different wards of the stake.
Nearly all these trips took several days and had to be made by team and
On one occasion, as those two women
were returning from Skull Valley, a terrible storm came up and they were lost on
the desert. Little ten year old Aroet Hale who had gone along with the idea of
driving and taking care of the ladies, became so frightened of the thunder and
lighting and storm, that he crawled in the back of the white top buggy and left
the women and horses to find their way home. The horses stopped, and the next
flash of lightening showed that the storm had washed a deep gully through the
road. Mrs. Hale's husband and friends became alarmed and, went out to their
rescue with lanterns, and they returned safely.
In 1862, shortly after their marriage,
Alma H. Hale was called to make a trip east to help a company of immigrants
complete their trip to Utah. His wife was very ill, but the Bishop promised him
she would be all right and would get well if' he would go. He believed in the
promises made by the servants of the Lord and when he returned it found his wife
had made a rapid recovery and had been able to take care of things at home as
well as if he had been there.
The Hale home at Grantsville was always
an open house for the General Authorities on their visits to the Tooele Stake,
and the mother of the home took great delight in preparing things for the
"Men of God" who brought her new gospel truths. She loved to sit at
their feet and learn the words of the Lord.
Sarah Hale was very handy with her
needle, and was very artistic. She made all the children's clothing, including
the suits for their sons and husband, and knit their stockings, mittens, hoods
and other wearing apparel. When it came to weaving cloth, she could always make
the prettiest plaids for dresses of anyone in the community. She was very clever
with her crochet hook, also, and she always had a tidy on all the tables, stands
and chairs in the parlor; and lace and edging on all the family cloths.
One day when President Wilford Woodruff
was staying at the Hale home during Stake Conference, he went out in the kitchen
where dinner was being prepared and said "Sister Hale, where do you get the
time to do all this knitting and crocheting?" and she answered him
"OH, just at odd moments. I
always have it handy when taking care of the baby or doing other jobs.
And if I do a few stitches now and a few then, it is soon finished."
President Woodruff said he was going to remember what could be done by
the use of spare time in odd moments, and he talked of this in many of his
Sarah Hale was also a member of the Old
Folks Committee in Grantsville from the time of its organization until they
moved from the town in 1888. She
was a practical nurse and was noted for her proficiency in caring for the sick.
If there was any sickness in the neighborhood, she was right there to
bless and make life happy for her friends.
If there was any death in the community, she was the first one there to
help lay out the dead, and make the burial clothes.
She was a very clever seamstress and owned one of the first sewing
machines in the valley. She used it
to do fine sewing for the neighbors in all directions.
In April 1888, the Hale family moved to
Smithfield, Cache County, Utah, where they could be close to the Temple of the
Lord. Here they bought a small farm
of 60 acres and went to work to build up a new community.
They were ardent temple workers and their hearts had been touched by the
spirit of Elijah. They spent every
winter in the temple doing the work for the members of their family who had died
without hearing the gospel.
In the winter of 1902 they moved to the
Logan fifth Ward so they could spend all their time in the House of the Lord.
And when Sarah Hale became too ill to attend the Temple sessions, she
always kept and open house for those who came to work there.
On a trip by horse and buggy back to
visit their friends at Grantsville, Sarah Hale and her husband had a severe
accident. Their horse became
frightened and ran away with them, and when the buggy crashed, Sarah's chest was
badly crushed and she was hurt internally.
For many months people asked if Sister Hale was still alive, and they
marveled at the recovery she made. She
told them that she had not yet completed her temple work and that her life was
spared for that purpose. She lived many years after, and one of her greatest
achievements in life was her untiring energy in Temple Work. That seemed to be
her life's ambition and her heart's desire.
Sarah Annie Clark Hale lived ten years
after her husband's death, and passed away at Logan, Utah, on 7 September, 1918,
at the age of 76. She was a true lover of flowers and all things beautiful. She
was a most excellent Housekeeper and a good economist in household affairs. It
was often said of her that she could accomplish more with less than any one
else. She was indeed, a Woman of God, a good mother and a devoted wife, and she
has left a noble posterity to bless the world.