[Typewritten manuscript found in Franklin Thomas Pomeroy’s Book of Remembrance. Undated. It appears to be written by himself, because sometimes the narrative switches to first person, and also because this was his Book of Remembrance. Transcribed by Dayna Jacobs 21 Sep 2009.]
Brief Biography of Franklin Thomas Pomeroy
Franklin Thomas Pomeroy was born on the 15th day of September, 1870, in Paris, Bear Lake County, Idaho, and is the son of Francis Martin Pomeroy and Sarah Matilda Colborn Pomeroy, the former of whom was born in Somers, Tolland County, Connecticut, on the 22nd day of February, 1820, in the ancestral home, where his parents had lived for several generations before him. His mother was the daughter of Thomas Colborn and Sarah Bowers, born in Wayne County, New York State on the 4th day of November, 1834.
His father Francis Martin Pomeroy was one of the famous Pioneers who crossed the great American Desert led by Brigham Young and founded Salt Lake City and the commonwealth of Utah in 1847. He also pioneered in Idaho, settling in Paris, where he built the first grist mill, chiseling the burr stones with his own hands, and also the first saw mill and shingle mill in the State of Idaho. Tiring of the long cold winters of the north he sought a milder climate and succeeded in settling the first company that settled in Mesa, Arizona. Where with his family and a company consisting of 82 souls they arrived on the 14th day of February, 1878. The main company had been preceded a few weeks before by Francis Martin Pomeroy, George Sirrine, Charles I. Robson and Charles Crismon, to seek a location for their future home in the Salt River Valley and the first [?] run the line of the Mesa Canal with apirir [sic] level on a tri-pod, when a Phoenix surveyor had refused to run the line from the remaining head of the ancient canal to river, declaring it was unfeasible; that the river bed had eroded so greatly since the canal was used that the head would go into the rocky hills before gravity water could be obtained, the cost of which would be prohibitive for the small company. However later he run the line on the line these pioneers had run, and only changed the head of the canal 100 feet.
Sarah Matilda Colborn Pomeroy bore to her husband six children; Mary Ursula; Talmai Emerson; William Edley; Franklin Thomas, Sarah Rosina, and Edward Leslie. While from a former and other marriage he was the father of fourteen other children.
The ancestral line of Francis Martin Pomeroy and the Pomeroy family has been compiled back to the tenth century, to the beginning of the name, and published in three great volumes. His ancestor in the fifth generation back was Eltweed Pomeroy, who came to America with his wife and two children and 1632-3, settling in Dorchester Massachusetts, now part of Boston, and the Pomeroy’s in America are descendants of his five sons, all born in the United States.
Eltweed was the eighteenth grandson of Radulphus De La Pommeraye, who first assumed the surname “POMEROY,” and who was a companion of William the Conqueror and an officer in his army that conquered England, in 1066, and to whom was given 20 manors in Devon and Cornwall Shires, as his reward. One of his descendants married Rohesia, the daughter of Henry I. King of England, and through this line of ancestry has been traced to Odin or Oden, the great Chieftain and King of the Scandinavian country. Another descendant married Margeria De Vernon, of France, whose direct ancestry runs back through the Kings of France to Charlemagne, and has been traced and compiled back to Antenor, the King of the Cimmerians, who lived on the Black seas and who died 443 B.C. without a generation missing in the line. Another direct line is compiled through English Ancestry to 350 A.D. While another is compiled through Germany Russia and Scandinavia to Ruric and to Odin.
The memory of Franklin Thomas as to events in his life while living in Paris Bear lake Co. is very hazy, however a few events stand out clearly, as when, on a dare, he broke the ice and plunged into the icy water, which brought no ill effects, although he had a touch of diphtheria, at the time, save it brought him a merited spanking. Also, when he was chased by a bull which he mistook for a bear, above the saw mill; or when he received 25 cents in boletus on Geo. W. Serine’s store, for outrunning a neighbor boy; but his seventh birthday is quite clear, September 15, for the company was camped on the turnpike on the shore of Bear lake, en route to Arizona, having made the start from Paris the day previous, but on that day his father Francis Martin Pomeroy presented him with a little pinto pony, which he rode much of the way en route, but the pony never reached Arizona.
The general route was via Randolph, Woodruff, and Quakenasp Springs, where he saw his first railroad and train, and took a roll to the bottom of the embankment, where many of the company had assembled to see the train go by. It whistled when opposite, startling many who had never saw a train before. They also passed through Echo Canon, and Father pointed out some of the big boulders he had helped to roll to the rim of the mountain, to be “tipped off” on Johnson’s Army, should it attempt to pass through. A few weeks was spent in Salt Lake City, where we arrived September 25, Mother and some of us children stopping with Aunt Rozina, whose cellar filled with big rosy apples is the keenest recollection. After two weeks stay here, we joined the company at Dunyuns, where several other families assembled, and when joined by Charles I. Robson and family at Panguitch the company numbered 82 souls.
The company passed from Utah into Arizona October 19th near Johnson, and took the route over the Buckskin Mountains, crossing the Colorado River at Lees Ferry, then over Lees Backbone, up the Little Colorado to Sunset, then through Sunset Pass, across the Mogollon Mountain to the Verde Valley. While encamped at Pipe Springs on Christmas Eve, the company was snowed in three feet of snow falling during the night. After a hard battle the company made their way down the mountain to Beaver Head valley, where we encamped for a few weeks, while the heads of Families, as heretofore related drove to the Salt River Valley and located the place for the company to settle. While encamped here, a number of deers were killed, and one night, while all were around the campfire, Oscar Crismon was scraping a tooth pick from a deer’s bone, and Joel Slipped up and burned him behind the ear, and ran. Angered by the burn he whirled and threw the knife and Joel, who stumbled over a stick and fell and the knife flew over his head and struck we edge first in the back [transcribed as it was written], luckily it struck a bone and bounced out. It was my first experience in blood-letting.
The company came on the Salt River Valley, via Cape Verde, soldier post, and the Black Canon road arriving in the valley on the 14th day of February [September crossed out and February written in pencil above] 1878. The first camp was made at Camp Utah, where Henry C. Rogers had written the letter to Francis Martin Pomeroy which was responsible for our company moving to Arizona. The next day the camp was made on the bank of Salt River a couple of miles below the head of the Mesa Canal to be guilt.
The canal was completed to the northwest corner of the surveyed townsite, and the company moved to the Mesa, and located on their lots as drawn by agreement, and allotted in proportion to the amount of work done on the canal.
With a few other children he attended the school taught the first year after arrival taught by his oldest sister Ursula, in his mothers large baush [sic] she which became the community center until other building were constructed. He attended school regularly for the next few years alternately herding the community cows, on the desert, and working on the farm. His Dear Father, Francis Martin Pomeroy, died when he was in his 12 year, on the 29th of Feb. 1882.
When he was 14 he was compelled to leave school and assumed the responsibility of providing the necessities of life from his mother’s family. His older Brother Talma was on a mission, and his brother Will, had been jipped out of several months putting up desert hay, by the contractor drawing his pay and skipping with all the money. He engaged in hauling freight to Silver King, and wood and Hay to Fort Mc Dowell, when the Tempe Normal School commenced first year, in 1885 he attended for a couple of months, but was needed so badly by his brothers, Talma and Will, who with Frank miller were running the mail and stage line from Phoenix to Ft. McDowell, that he had to quit school and drove stage to Ft. McDowell from Mesa, and also from Tempe to Mesa, the following year when he had passed his 16th birthday, when he was able to take the oath of office to the Government.
He became a noted jockey during these years, riding two seasons at the Fair in Phoenix, and several matched races. The last race he rode was in Tonto Basin, where he made enough money to start him in college, and in August 1887, he took the train for Salt Lake City, and entered the L.D.S. College, which was in its first year, and under the Principalship of James E. Talmage. He finished two years in the College, and graduated in the business course and received the first certificate of graduation issued by the L.D.S. College, in May 1890.
Returning to Mesa, he went to work with his brother Will, who had interested capital and had built the highland Canal, to the east of Mesa, and was now general manager of the Canal and was operating two sections of land, art of which was already cleared, and some planted to grain and alfalfa. The next two years the balance of it was cleared and planted to barley, and Franklin Thomas, finally became assistant Manager, and for a time operated the canal and ranch.
On the third day of March, 1883, there arrived from Rockville a number of families and settled on the Mesa. Among them was a family by the name of Morris. This youngest child was a buxom lassie named Sophia Isadora, called for short Dora, and by many lovingly named “Doley.” She filled the eye and heart of this youth, who wooed and won her, and they were married on the 28th day of March 1893, by President Charles I. Robson, of the Maricopa Stake.
The same evening they joined a company and entrained for Salt Lake City, where they attended the Conference, and the dedication of the Salt Lake Temple, April 6th 1893. Their honeymoon, was spent in Salt Lake City, and aside from attending their first annual Conference of the Church, were blessed to attend two session of the dedication of the Salt [Lake] Temple, and heard, what was thought to be the “angel choir” in its heavenly refrain and chorus,. On the 19th day of April they received their endowments in the Logan temple, and were sealed in the Holy order of Celestial Marriage, for time and all eternity. Their hearts were full.
Returning from their honeymoon, they made their home with the wife’s parents, who were now aged, and needed the help of their remaining children. So a couple of rooms were built on her parents’ home and they settled down to home making. A lot was purchased, and the work of setting it to trees and improving it was commenced. In due time a son blessed their home, arriving on the 26th day of January, 1894. He was blessed by Patriarch Benjamin F. Johnson on the First day of March 1894.
When Franklin Ivan was fifteen months old, Franklin Thomas Pomeroy received a call for a mission to the Southern States. He has been ordained an Elder by President Charles I. Robson on his wedding day, March 28, 1893, and was ordained a Seventy, and set apart for his mission by President Collins R. Hakes, and set apart for his mission, by special dispensation, and sent directly to his field of Labor, in Chattanooga, Tennessee, via New Orleans. He was assigned to labor in the State of Mississippi, by President Elias S. Kimball, the President of the Southern States Mission. Arriving at Hazelhurt, Mississippi, he took up his missionary labors, with Elder J.W. Walker, the President of the Conference. A month later President Walker was released to return home and Franklin Thomas Pomeroy was appointed the President of the Mississippi Conference in his stead, where he served for 35 months, taking great joy and satisfaction in his labor, gaining a powerful testimony of the Gospel, through the manifestation of the blessing of the Father.
Sometime before going on his mission, he had received his patriarchal blessing under the hands of Patriarch Benjamin F. Johnson, who among many other wonderful promises and blessings, said “Thy Father house shall be glad for thee” and “in all the works of salvation, pertaining to the restoration of Israel and the redemption of Zion, the rearing of her temples and ministering therein for the living and the dead, thus shalt do thy full part. ** As a son of Ephraim thou shalt stand upon the earth to minister in the Holy Temple to Israel from the north country, in the great day of their crowning.” I was deeply impressed by these words. And there falling into my hands a pamphlet printed by William Rodman, who had twice married into the Pomeroy family and was a crank on heredity, had compiled the genealogy of the Pomeroy Family, and studied their characteristics to prove his theory in heredity. In the pamphlet he described the characteristics of the Pomeroys, and in it I discovered an exact description of my father. So I wrote to him, commended him for his work, and asked for a copy of the genealogy he had compiled. To my surprise and joy, he gave me a record of my ancestral line through seven generations back to Eltweed Pomeroy who came to America in1830, and stated that from his information, Eltweed was a descendant of Ralph De Pomeroy, who lived in the tenth century, and was an officer in the army of William the Conqueror in 1066, and after. Conditions providentially arranged themselves, that on my receiving my honorable, release, after 36 months of labor in the Southern States Mission, I returned by was of Salt Lake City, where I attended the 68th Annual Conference of the Church, and had the pleasure of doing the work in the Salt Lake Temple for the head of families of my ancestors, back through the seven generation s to and including Eltweed Pomeroy, also doing the work for Ralph De La Pommeraye. And hereby hanged a Genealogical Development and Testimony that few have had in the church. This work was done in the Salt Lake Temple beginning March 29, 1898. The following August, the Pomeroy wife of William Rodman, took some of the manuscripts in genealogy, which her husband had compiled with her on a visit to her cousin, George Eltweed Pomeroy, who was a very wealthy man, and who lives in Toledo, Ohio, and delivered the genealogy to him of his ancestral line, and also Albert A. Pomeroy, who lived in Sandusky, Ohio.
A few days later, George E. Pomeroy visited Albert a Pomeroy, who was a writer and historian, and a retired soldier, a colonel of the civil war, being at the time Treasurer of the Soldiers home in Sandusky, and shoed him the genealogy compiled by William Rodman. They there conceived the inspired idea to “compile the genealogy of the Pomeroy family, and to do it in a big way…second to none in the United States.” This they proceeded to do and for the next fifteen years, George Eltweed furnished some of the “Sinews of war,” funds, and Albert A. Pomeroy, devoted his life to the compilation of the genealogy of the Pomeroy family both in America and Europe.
Letters were written to the members of the family, who addresses were found in diverse ways, and they were asked to join the Pomeroy Family Association, and to send in the genealogies of their families, Albert A. Pomeroy, went to England and France, and employed Genealogist and spent two years there, photographing the records. At the end of the fifteen years they printed the genealogical compilations in two volumes, covering the history and genealogy of the Pomeroy Family from the 10th century—the beginning of the name down to 1912. In 1922 he published a third volume, which together with the Loomis Ancestral Chart carries the genealogy, through collateral lines back to 350 A.D.
Franklin Thomas, early joined the Pomeroy Family Organization and furnished the genealogical data of his fathers family, and co-operated in every way to further and encourage the work along.
Albert A. Pomeroy had adopted the Standard form of Genealogy for his compilation, and where the volumes were received in 1913, after going to Salt Lake City, and obtaining a few lessons in genealogy proceeded to transfer the names from the printed history to his temple record, and began the work for them in the temple, The Salt Lake, Logan, Manti, and at St. George, and later in the Arizona Temple.
After publication of the third volume of the History and Genealogy of the Pomeroy family, Albert A. Pomeroy , now 82 years of age, suggested the appointment of Franklin Thomas Pomeroy, as Secretary and Historian of the Pomeroy Family Association, and on his sudden death, be stroke, on the 19th day of July 1926, the appointment was officially made, and all the records, and letter files, and matter accumulated in 30 years of genealogical research was shipped to Franklin Thomas at Mesa, Arizona, and it cost him $36.00 to pay the freight on the boxes of precious genealogical and historical data. He had to build a vault to care for it, which is 6 by 12 inside and built of brick arched over for protection from fire. Now he is in contact with all the Pomeroys in the world, receiving new developments in records of the family, and supplying those who ask for information in their lines.
For a time after returning from his mission, in April 1898, he kept books for the Zenos Co-operative Institution, later, selling school supplies over the state, then became a partner with John Mets in Stationary and Bicycle business and remained in that business for 20 years, selling during that period most of the property on the Mesa, and come of it many times. He started the first daily newspaper in Mesa, The Mesa Free Press, in which he owned the controlling interest for many years. Under later reorganization it was changed to the Journal-Tribune. For the past eight years he has successfully published the Genealogical and Historical Magazine of the Arizona Temple District, and has issued four Arizona Temple Souvenirs, 12,000 the first issue, which were distributed before and during the dedication of the Arizona Temple, and the last three editions of 3000 each , 2000 of each having been distributed from the Arizona Temple, and the last two issues the Church has assisted in the cost of the printing of the 2000 copies delivered to the Arizona Temple.
He has been signally honored by the Church, aside from serving as instructor in the M.I.A. for 26 years, and the Theological Class, the Parents Class and the Gospel Doctrine class for 36 years in the wards, he was Superintendent of the Religion Classes of the Stake, for many years, Counselor in President John T. Lesuerur of the Maricopa Stake for six years, Stake Representative of the genealogical Society for eighteen years, a high counselor in the Maricopa Stake for seventeen years , and a worker in the Arizona Temple since its dedication.
In a public way he ahs served his city as City Clerk, his precinct as Justice of the Peace. He was Reading Clerk in the Arizona State House of Representatives in the fifth and sixth sessions, and was elected a member of the seventh. Was reading clerks in the eighth and ninth, and member of the State Senate in the Tenth session, serving 1931 and 1932.
Franklin Thomas Pomeroy and Sophia Isadora Morris Pomeroy , are the parents of nine children, as follow: Franklin Ivan, born January 26, 1894, who married Aug 12, 1923 Ann Tanner, and they have three children, Ivan Dwayne, born the 7th day of July, 1924; Ann Francyne born 29th Nov. 1925, Carrwin Jeffrey, born 29th Oct, 1929; He was a volunteer in the great world war, and is now a captain in the reserve corps, and captain of Battery E. National Guard of Arizona; Karl Francis, born Feb. 13th 1899; married Elizabeth Herold, Aug. 12th 1922, living in Los Angeles; filled a mission in the eastern states, and was a volunteer in the Worlds war, serving during the period of U.S. participation in the war, in the Hospital division, and was released, as was his brother when the armistice was signed; Has been an employ of the Mountain States Telephone Company for the past ten ears; Adah Eleanor, born March 11, 1902, married Owen W. Allen, a teacher in the Gilbert High School, they have two children, Owen W. Jr. born Aug. 1st, 1927 and Shirleene Eleanor, born Aug. 24th 1929. Adah is a graduate of the Arizona Teachers College at Tempe and taught two years in the Mesa Grammar schools; Gladys, born Dec. 11 , 1904. She is a graduate also from the Arizona Teachers College, at Tempe, and had taught the last six years in the grammar grades of the Mesa School George Hyrum, born Nov. 16th 1907, died may 7th, 1913; Roland Eltweed, born Sept 25, 1910, graduated from Tempe State Teachers College 1931, and is taking a degree course in the same institution; Ralph De, born Sept. 25, 1910, twin to Roland, died October 2nd 1910; Margery Rohesia, born January 4th 1914, graduated from Mesa Union High School, June 1931, and is now a Freshman student in the Arizona State Teachers College in Tempe; Dorothy Nastilla, born Aug. 21, 1916, and is a Sophomore in the Mesa High School. Margery Rohesia was named for her seventh and 22nd grandmothers, while Dorothy Nastilla was named for her 49th grandmother.
One thought on “Franklin Thomas Pomeroy Autobiography”
Thank you for all of your hard work!!