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Peninah Shropshire Cotton Wood

Peninah Shropshire Cotton Wood

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Published by Karisa Walker
Peninah Shropshire Cotton (1827-1879) was the daughter of Caleb Cotton and Nancy Merideth. She married Daniel Wood (1800-1892) and was the mother of Peter Cotton Wood.
Peninah Shropshire Cotton (1827-1879) was the daughter of Caleb Cotton and Nancy Merideth. She married Daniel Wood (1800-1892) and was the mother of Peter Cotton Wood.

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Categories:Types, Research, Genealogy
Published by: Karisa Walker on Feb 05, 2011
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Peninah Shropshire CottonWood
  March 12, 1827 - May 28, 1879Peninah was born 12 March, 1827, in Johnson County Illinois. She was the daughter of CalebCotton, and Nancy Meredith. Her grandparents were Samuel Cotton and Sarah Crouch, andJames Merrideth and Nancy Fulkerson. The last mentioned was a full blood Indian. She was veryproud of her race. She was the first of her blood to enter plural marriage in this dispensation, andas far as we can find in history, she was the first of the descendants of Lehi to join the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints. The Cotton progenitors came over on the Mayflower.She was the youngest of twelve children. She was on orphan at the age of 19, when she marriedDaniel Wood on the 21 January 1846. Her marriage took place in the Nauvoo Temple four months prior to the dedication, 30 May 1846. She was present at the dedication, as her husbandwas one of the secret guard.Her first child was born 27 January 1847 in Kanesville, Iowa, while they were b being drivenwestward from their homes by the mobs. In the early days of the church, they made home after hme (home), only to be driven from them further and further West by their enemies.In February 1846, Brigham Young began making preparations for the great exodus west, to theplace where the Saints could live in peace. By the first of April 1847, Daniel Wood and familyi,consisting of his firstwife, Mary Snyder and her five children, his second wife Peninah and her three month old baby, were ready to start the long journel. All the heavy work of preparation fellon Peninah, because Mary had been a semi-invalid since the death of her son, in 1845. Peninahfirst came into the Wood home as a hired girl to care for Mary and her children. Her Her kindness and efficiency had made Daniel love her, so they had been married. She continued tonurse and care for Mary for many years, until her death in Oct.. 1873. Peninah loved and caredfor Mary's children as tho (to) they were her own.
 
Q
uoted from Daniels History:We had two wagons, one carriage, four yoke of oxen, four cows, one span of horses, foodenough for a year. That was all we could haul. We often hitchec (hitched) the cows to thewagons to rest the horses. The wagons were loaded heavily with furniture, utensils, clothing, allkinds of provisions, and bedding. Thus the journey began.One day our President called us to a halt to tell us that he had been orders to get give hundredmen from our camp of Isreal to go fight the Mexicans. After afew days the number wasfurnished. That meant the women would have to drive the wagons. These five hundred men werethe Mormon Battalion.Our travel was slow for we were heavily loaded and there were no roads. When our supplieswere getting low, our President prepared a company of nine wagons to be sent back to Missourifor supplies. Since I hadn't a dollar in my pocket and my provisions were short, I decided toreturn with them to get a fresh supply. We found it necessary to part with clothing, furniture etc.to exchange for food-stuff. Leaving my wives and children in the howling wilderness alone, Itrusted God to protect them.On our return, as we were nearing camp, my two wives and my son, John came to meet us withtears of gratitude in their eyes. They were so happy to see us back safely.Traveling on thru the middle of Sept. we came to an Indian village where there were some half breeds called the Sioux tribe. Here President Young called us to a halt and prepared to winter inthis place. The Saints named it Winter 
Q
uarters. It was near Omaho, Nebraska. I was advised tostay behind and plant and provide provisions for the Saints. This is the reason I did not come intoUtah with the first company in 1847.Early in the month of April, 1848, as soon as the grass was grown enough to feed on we began tomake preparations for our journey. We had three wagons, four yoke of oxrn (oxen), three cows, aspan of horses, a carriage in which Mary rode with the small children. One wagon was equippedfor three pigs, a pen with 24 chickens, three geese. Yes, and we had a cat, and we made a placefor her. She was our pet. One of the other wagons was equipped with furniture, food, andclothing.. The third wagon was loaded with farm equipment.(Peninah was a God sent to these people, as Sacagawea, the Indian maid had been to Lewis andClark's expidition. She knew berries and plants that were good for food and medicine. And shemade moccasins, gloves and clothing from skins and from cloth she wove herself. She also hadto drive one of the wagons.)It was a sight to see our wagons correll in a circle for the night. With the greatest of care, eachone found his place.After traveling safely across the plains, we landed in Salt Lake Valley 23 of July 1848. Not twohours had passed after landing, before we were planting corn and potatoes etc.
 
In the fall of 1849 we moved to what was called North Mill Creek, where we made our firsthome, a log house 14 feet by 18 feet. By the 15th of Nov. we were settled in this log home quitecomfortable. Peninah's second baby was born 8 Dec. 1848. Though she was expecting this baby,she had driven a wagon across the plains, all the way.
Q
uoted from her son Joseph C. Wood's History:She and her husband lived one year in this cabin on the upper road (4th East) on the side of MillCreek, where Heber C. Kimball Grist mill was built, years later. There the wolves howled atnight, and bear were often seen. She helped colonize Woods Cross when there were only sixfamilies there. She bore seven children, six boys and one girl.She went thru the cricket famine, which lasted three years. She knew no fear, and was never sick until she reached the age of 44 years. She was 54 when she died of a tumor caused by thehardships and poor care in childbirth.Home made clothes were part of her house work, making her own clothes as well as thechildrens. She took worn out clothes to make caps for the boys. She braded straw for hats for themenfolk, her daughter and herself. (Many times she made hats for the men who were hired tohelp clear the land.)She helped milk cows, drove the ox team, was an excellent hand with horse teams, and had avery tender feeling for dumb animals. She knitted the stockings for her family, from wool off into warp, as it was called then, to the loom to make cloth from which their clothes were made.She was a lover of horses, taking a horse-back ride for an outing, going sometimes into Salt LakeCity and back in one day.I, her son Joseph C. Wood, have made this trip with her as a growing boy.She knew how to strike a steel on a flint, or rub two boards together to start a fire, as matchedwere unknown. She could cover a pine knot up in the hot ashes and coals so it would keep a firefor days.She made moccasins for shoes, homemade brooms to sweep the crude floors. She doctored thesick horses and cows and raised motherless colts many times. She made tallow candles, knewhow to braid rope, made heavy thread for the mens clothing, and kept house with only a fireplacefor heat and cooking. She baked bread in an old iron kettle on the hot coals. She made hominyout of corn, and cloth out of hemp, and cured all kinds of meat. She always took the wild animalsthat were killed to rend out grease for leather and harness oil..Her summer times were always busy with ;lanting (planting) ner (her) own kitchen garden, andcaring for it, drying all kinds of fruits, making her own molasses, syrups,, sour kraut, and pickles,for their supply during the long, hard winters. She knew how to make her own gloves, and thosefor the men fold as well.

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