The Wagstaff family included Ruth Wagstaff, who later married George Jacklin, along with her parents and siblings. The Wagstaff family traveled, most likely by third-class train, from Upper Caldecote in Bedfordshire to Liverpool.

Sailed on John J. Boyd.

      The Wagstaff family then left Liverpool on April 23rd on the John J. Boyd, built in 1855 in New York, with 702 Mormon passengers (Sonne 175). The sailing ship was similar to the one that George Jacklin traveled on. The journey was also similar. A young boy, exploring the ship as they first boarded it, even fell down the same hatchway going down to the hold where the luggage was being stored. However, this boy was more seriously injured from the fall and later died.

Whooping Cough and Measles.

      One difference was the Boyd�s passengers were plagued with illnesses besides seasickness. Whooping cough and measles afflicted many of the passengers (Brown). Mary Jane Wagstaff recalls �During the trip, Heber [Wagstaff] and I [Mary Jane Wagstaff], came down with the measles, which affected my eyes, and I have suffered all my life since, and my eyes are very poor to this day.� One family lost both of their young sons. Reuben McBride recalls, ��[I] was called to administer to a young lad 3 1/2 years old. At the time, could plainly see the shades of death upon his countenance and only felt to rebuke the powers of darkness and commit him into the hands of the Lord. At eve was again called. Went with Brothers Rich and Lindsey. Attended prayer beside his bed and before Brother Lindsey had concluded the spirit left the lad�s body. [His] mother was filled with [irrepressible] feelings of sorrow while beside her slept her boy in the arms of death and close by her in bed lay another in the last stages of life. During the night the wind blew and [it] rained � Got up at 1 a.m. Wrote in my journal. At 2:45 a.m. Brother [Nelson] came and told me that the other lad, the younger brother of the one that died the eve before had just breathed his last. At 12 p.m. Parry and Tom [Thomas] Griffiths were consigned to a watery grave, while their mother sank under the heart rendering scene and was placed in bed.�

Severe Storms.

      The Wagstaff family also passed through severe storms. Reuben McBride recalls, �� when night set in, the ocean presented one angry body of snow-capped mountains lashing each other with all the fury of many contending armies, at times striking each other with such a crash that sent the spray in torrents over our bulwarks, completely submerging the decks �The storm continued all night, upsetting everything movable, and causing loose cans and dishes to join in a sort of general promenade, making their own music as they went from place to place. On the whole, it was a very laughable sight--and one anything but favorable to those who desired sleep. At times, when the ship would take an extra plunge, a large wave at the same time striking her bows, completely jarring all hands, inundating the decks and copiously discharging a torrent of salt water through the hatches at such periods, some few would groan, and one or two manifested their timidity and fear, one old man and his son in particular, laboring under the delusion that we were very apt to drown before morning.�

Crew Problems.

      The Wagstaff�s journey also differed by having some problems with the crew, especially the first mate. Joseph Rich, a counselor, states the first mate tried to seduce the young women on board. The first mate also disrupted a Church service. Apparently, �The captain gave the first mate a damning before many of the Saints saying if he �heard many more complaints about his bad conduct, damned if he didn�t give [him] a lesson that he would remember��(Rich). Near the end of the trip, the first mate was ordered to his room for ordering cooks to throw scalding hot water on some children.

Arrive at New York City.

      The Wagstaffs finally arrived in New York on June 1st, 1862. They took the same path to Florence as George Jacklin�s group and had similar experiences. Many of the biographical sketches for Wagstaff family members mention seeing Niagara Falls on the journey. The Wagstaff emigration from Florence to the Salt Lake Valley was nearly identical to that experienced by George Jacklin. Click here to continue with a description of the Wagstaff emigration.

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