Biography of Edward Lloyd Parry
was born August 25, 1818, at or near the village
of St. George, Denbinghshire, North Wales. My parents names
were Edward Parry and Mary Lloyd.
early boyhood was passed in the village
of St. George. My mother
died when I was but four and a half years of age, leaving three children... two
girls, Margaret and Mary, and myself. My sisters were taken care of by a nurse
each, to whom my father paid three shillings per week each, while he and I went
to live with his parents. My father was a well-to-do stone mason and
brick-layer, as were also my grandfather and my great-grand father.
attended school until I was twelve years of age, when I went to work along with
my father at the mason trade. I received one term of school again at the age of
fourteen; and also attended night school at the age of twenty-four and
passed my early manhood in the village
of St. George and the
adjacent towns, working at my trade as a stone mason and brick-layer, which
vocation I was naturally inclined to follow. I worked a great deal about the
state of Lord Dinorbin. Also assisted in erecting a number of
dwellings, vicherages, railroad bridges and churches.
married Elizabeth Evans 16 August 1846.
naturally inclined to be religious, I frequently
attended the Church of England and went to hear ministers of other
denominations preach. But I could not be converted to join any of them; as
their teachings did not appear to be consistent or in harmony with the Gospel
as taught by the Savior and His apostles. On hearing an Elder of the Church of
Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints preach, I was
converted to the truth, and wondered why I had not understood the Gospel in
that light before.
was baptized March 9, 1848, by Elder Abel Evans and confirmed at the riverside
about 5 weeks later. I was ordained a Priest during the summer of 1848. My wife
Elizabeth and my father and number of relatives joined the Church.
was ordained an Elder January 21, 1849, and on January 9, 1850 I was called to
preside over the Abergele Branch. On February 22, 1851, I was set apart as
first counsellor to the President of the Denbighshire Conference. I labored and
preached faithfully in that neighborhood until I emigrated
to Utah in
kept an open house for the Elders and Saints, providing them with food,
shelter, clothing and money to pay their traveling expenses, etc. Being
desirous of gathering with the body of the Church where I could be taught more
fully the principles of the Gospel and receive a more fullness of the blessings
and the benefits there to be derived.
On reading an article written by Brother Orson Pratt, then the
President of the European Mission, councilling all that could do so to go to Utah. So in the
year 1853 I concluded to take his council. But when the time came I did not
have the means with which to pay emigration as I had used the obtained from my
labor for the support of the traveling Elders and the mission. I therefore had
to emigrate on the perpetual emigration fund. When ready to leave, my relatives
and friends sent me enough money to pay my way to Liverpool,
where again the Lord raised up friends to me. A lady
friend there gave me money with which to buy beds and other necessary articles
not provided by the ship’s accommodations.
left Liverpool with my wife and eleven others from the same Branch, on February
5, 1853, on the sailing ship Jersey, commanded
by Captain Day. Elder George Holliday being in charge of the
were just six weeks to the day coming from Liverpool to New Orleans. We took a steamboat from New Orleans to Keokuk
where we arrived April 1, 1853. We remained there eight weeks.
obtained work across the river from Keokuk, going and coming across on a little
steamer every day. I gave such satisfaction to the man I was working for (a Mr.
Brown), that he begged me to stay, offering me a city lot and to build me a
house and give my own time to pay for it. I thanked him for this offer and told
him that I had made up my mind to go to Utah
and to Utah I
this time we had procured the necessary ox-teams and wagons to commence our
journey across the plains. Brother Joseph W. Young was our captain. I was put
in Captain of the guard. I therefore had to go ahead to find the most suitable
place to camp and to find a place to turn the cattle out to feed. I had also in
most cases to go with the guard to show them where the feed was, and then go
with the relieved guard again. I also dealt out the rations of flour once a
week to the company.
arrived in Salt Lake City
October 10, 1853, and settled in the Sixteenth Ward. I moved into the Fifteenth
Ward in 1854, and I paid my debt to the Perpetual Emigration Fund in less than
one year after arriving in Utah.
was ordained a Seventy in the Thirthy-Seventh Quorum of Seventies at the time
of the organization of that Quorum on January 12, 1854. My wife and I received
our endowments in the Endowment House by invitation of Brother Heber C. Kimball
April 1, 1854. We moved to Ogden in the Fall of 1855 as it was said that times
would be hard and I had an opportunity to do some labor there and obtain wheat
and other things for pay, which I did and therefore we did not suffer as some
did during the scarcity of food, and we were able to help many that were poor and
19th February 1857 I married Ann Parry (my cousin) who had come from Wales
the 2nd of October 1856 with the Handcart Company. The same month I was called
by Brother Heber C. Kimball to remove to Salt Lake City
to work on the Temple.
He placed his hand on my shoulder in his good old familiar way and said
"Brother Edward, I want you to pull up your stakes and come to the city to
live and go to work on the Temple.
Will you do it?"
I said, "I will if you say so."
"Well," said he, "didn't I say so?"
In three weeks after I had moved down, I reported myself for work.
went to work on the Temple next day and
continued to work there and on the public works while in Salt Lake City. I was present when the
treasure box was laid in the foundation of the Temple and spread the mortar for it.
10, 1857, I was called to go to Echo Canyon to prepare to meet Johnston's Army and was placed as captain of
ten. I remained there three weeks working on the breast-works and wigwams. When
I returned home [I remained] until the spring of 1858. Then I went out again
for three or four weeks. Then we were counseled to move South,
that the troops were coming in, and we got ready to burn our property if the
word was given.
family and I went as far as Springville in the beginning of May 1858. We lived
in our wagon and a little willow shed by the side of my sister Mary and her
husband Job Rowland. We went back home to Salt Lake City about the 4th
of July 1858 when I returned again to work on the Public Works [and] worked
there until April 1862 when I was called to go to St. George in Southern Utah
to settle. I arrived there June 5th, 1862, with my wife Ann, [our]
little son Edward Thomas and foster son George Brooks. (George Brooks came to
us in October 1856. He was a splendid boy and we all loved him like one of our
very own.) We left my wife Elizabeth and daughter Elizabeth Ann in Salt Lake
City until August 1863 when I returned to Salt Lake City and moved the
remainder of my family to St. George.
had charge of the mason work on the St. George Hall, the Tabernacle, Bro.
Erastus Snow’s Big House, the County Court House, raised the Washington Factory
one story higher, built a great many residences for private parties, among
them, one for Pres. Brigham Young, and was Master Mason of the St. George
Temple, the four corners of which I layed without the usual ceremonies, the
Authorities not being able to be there at the time and Pres. Young was very
desirous of having the work hurried along. I also assisted President Young and
others in setting the treasure box in the Temple
walls of the St. George Temple.
in St. George we lost two children; one died in February and one in March 1871.
Artimisha, aged four years, and Minnie, aged two years.
April 1877 I was called by President Young to go to Manti to take charge of the
mason and stone work of the Manti
Temple. I arrived there
with a part of my family in company of President Young April 24, 1877. The rest
of my family came to Manti in October of the same year.
were about two years leveling the hill, building the Terrace Walls and getting
ready to lay the corner stones of the Temple,
which were laid April 14, 1879. The South East Corner Stone contained a
Treasure Box that I assisted in setting in the Temple. That made three treasure boxes that I
had assisted in setting in Temples.
wife Elizabeth died August 11th, 1880, and my wife Ann died August 6th,
1886, leaving me with five young children, the two youngest aged five and three
respectively. Three years after the death of their mother they died in November
1889 within two weeks of each other which was indeed a great trial to me. [His
daughter Harriet tells me that he took his trouble losing those two very dear
children very hard, but he tried to be patient and humble.]
connection with my sons with whom I am at present (April 1895) in business in
the stone mason and building business, I took up a stone quarry near Ephraim,
known as the Sanpete White Oolite Company, from which the large stones in the
corners of the Manti Temple Treasure Box were obtained... also the stone of
which the Annex building of the Salt Lake Temple is built. These were furnished
following notes are presented by his daughters, Harriet and Emma Parry:]
company in which he crossed the plains contained fifty-six wagons. The company
consisted of different companies, namely: Independent Company, the Ten Pound
Company, [and] the others the Perpetual Emigrating Company, the latter of which
he was a member. He thinks he came very comfortably fixed.
company of Daniel McArthur, David Bentley, David Cannon and others, he assisted
in locating a fort South East of St.
George and during the Indian troubles he stood guard many a night.
His first wife
Elizabeth had no children, but the following ones were born to himself and his
second wife, Ann Parry Parry:
Elizabeth Ann born 4
March 1858, Salt Lake City,
Utah. Died 8
February 1917. Married Warren S. Peacock, had
12 children, 25 grandchildren, 3 great grandchildren, total 40.
Edward Thomas born 19
October 1859, Salt Lake City,
Utah. Married Charlotte Ann Edmunds, had 9 children, 32 grandchildren, total 41. Died 28 September 1938.
Mary Ellen born
18 June 1862, St. George, Utah. Married Sylvester H. Cox, had 8 children, 37 grandchildren, 15 great
grandchildren, total 60. Died 25 December 1917.
John Lloyd born
6 October 1864, St. George,
Utah. Married Sarah
Isabell Peacock, had 8 children, 13 grandchildren,
total 21. Died 9 June 1916.
25 December 1866, St. George,
Utah. Died 15
12 March 1869, St. George, Utah. Died 3 March 1871.
1 November 1870, St. George,
8 July 1873, St. George, Utah. Married Vilate
Charity Harmon. They have 7 children and 8 grandchildren, total 15.
7 February 1876, St. George,
Hugh Evans born 8 May 1881, Manti, Utah,
died 19 November 1889.
George born 27 July 1883, Manti, Utah,
died 13 November 1889.
descendants of Edward L. Parry are 178.
Bro. Edward L. Parry had three sons grow to maturity and
aall went on missions for the LDS
Church. One daughter also
went on a mission. Two sons-in-law. Two
grandsons and one granddaughter. One great grandson
and one great granddaughter. Total 11 in his family.
He taught his children the gospel, first by example and
second by precept, told Bible stories and was diligent in teaching them.
We think he loved tobacco and tea about as well as any
person we could think of and yet he quit both when he decided to live the
The children of Edward and Mary Lloyd Parry are as follows:
Edward Lloyd Parry, born 25 Aug 1818, St.
George, North Wales, died 26 Aug 1906.
Margaret, born about 1820, St. George, North Wales.
Mary, born February 1823, St. George, North Wales.
Bro. Edward L. Parry lived to a good old age, being 88 years
old. He had done much good in his day and was greatly blessed of the Lord. No
serious accident occurred in the building of the St. George and Manti temples,
bespeaking the care of the Lord in the erection of those buildings.
Elder John Henry Smith of the Council of the Twleve Apostles
and Seymour B. Young of the First Council of Seventy attended his funeral at
Manti on 28 August 1906, so we see in what high respect he was held with the
Church Authorities. He was buried at Manti.
The temples at St. George and Manti stand as monuments of
his skill as a master mason.
He was very neat in his dress, always wore white shirts,
every day in the week, had them starched and ironed very beautifully. He never entered
a house without cleaning his shoes thoroughly. If he could not get them cleaned
good enough he took them off and went in his stocking feet. Then took other
shoes and went out to finish cleaning those he had removed.
His wife always tied his tie as long as she lived and after
she died it was the pleasant task of his daughter. But he must look just right
He always had a good garden, free from weeds and told his
family that the way to keep a garden free from weeds was to pull every one as
soon as noticed.
One of his sentiments: Act in the present, don’t keep
alabasters of love and sympathy to break over coffins. Living is none too sweet
at best, and flowers on the coffin casts no backward
Another: What do the dead care for the tender tokens of
love, the praise, the floral offering? But living, palpitating hearts are
broken for the want of just these things.
When Hatty and Emma Parry visited the St. George Temple in
Stpember 1911, Bro. Pickett, who was then the doorkeeper at the temple, showed
them through the temple, taking them up to the roof, where he told them an
incident connected with their father. One time when the temple was being built
Bro. Parry had occasion to go up on the roof, and where the walls are built
above the roof he saw a bad stone being placed in the wall. He said to the
builder, “Take out that stone, my boy, and put in a good one.” The man said to
ohim, “What will it matter, there will be no weight on it and it will be
plastered over and no one will know it.” Whereupon, Bro. Parry said, “My boy,
three persons will know it.” The man said, “What three?” Bro. Parry said, “You
will know it. That is one. I will know it. That is two. And God will know it.
That is three. My boy, take it out.” This shows how particular and
conscientious he was to have the work done right.
We have said that the Lord blessed their efforts in building
these two temples. Well, we will relate an incident where the Lord impressed
Bro. Parry during the night that something was wrong at the temple and that he
should get up early and see about it.
He called for Bro. Jarvis to go with him to the temple to
see what was wrong. They found that one of the main ropes of the scaffold had
been out almost through, being in a condition to snap as soon as pressure was
placed on it. Bro. Jarvis repaired it and all was right again, but we can
easily imagine how a bad accident could have happened if the Lord had not been
guarding the building.
The Lord expects us to do all we can in such things. Bro.
Parry would always examine the workings every morning before commencing another
day’s work, so when he was doing his best the Lord would help him.
After the death of Bro. Parry’s wives he took the place of
both father and mother to his motherless children. He was indeed a splendid
father, kind, loving and sympathetic.
He was a good conversationalist, witty and quick to think.
One incident comes to our minds: several brethren were at Kanute Peterson’s for
dinner at conference time and were talking about the Scandinavians being fo the pure blook of Israel, saying they were from the
remnants of the ten tribes as those tribes traveled to the North. Bro. Parry
spoke up and said, “Why bless your soul. The Welsh are not descended from the
lame, halt and blind fo the Ten Tribes but are
descended from Gomer, the great grandson of Noah.” Then thinking he might have
said too much, turned and asked one of the Authorities, “Did I say too much?”
The one addressed said, “Why, no, that is just right.”
He was about 5 feet and 9 inches height when young. Heaviest weight about 180 pounds. Sparkling
dark eyes and dark hair when young. Genial
disposition, generous and very considerate of other people’s welfare,
especially so of all the men with whom he worked. He always addressed
the men as “My boys”.
One more item we want to mention here. Bro. Parry was very
loyal to the authorities and even if they were faulty he would say, “Never
mind, that is not our business. We must respect the authority they hold.
This sketch was typed by Alice K. Hatch, 30th
November 1938. She is the Historian of DUP Manti Camp.,