James Rawlins was born on January 6, 1794 in Rutherford, Pitt,
He was the son of Charles Eustacie Gregory Rawlins. He had two older brothers,
Roderick and Hosea (Hoza), an older sister Charlotte and a younger brother and sister
Joseph and Amy. All of the family was born in North Carolina except the youngest Amy
who was born in Kentucky.
Jane Sharp was also a middle child. She was born March 22, 1794 in Barren,
Kentucky. She had an older sister, Sarah (Sally), an older brother James and two younger
sisters Elizabeth and Melinda.
About 1811 both families of these families apparently moved to the state of
Indiana. Some moved to the East Fork of the White River in Lawrence County and others
to Crawford or Montgomery, Daviess County, Indiana. This is southwestern Indiana, not
far from Illinois. It was here in Harrison County, Indiana that James Rawlins married Jane
Sharp on March 19, 1816. He was 23 years old and she was nearly 23. While in Indiana,
two daughters were born to them, Sarah and Lucinda. Sometime after Lucinda was born,
this young family moved to Greene County, Illinois.
Elizabeth, Joseph, Harvey, Leah & Amelia were born either in Whitehall or
Applecreek, Greene County, Illinois. Apple Creek is a stream that runs into Illinois River
which runs into the Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri. As most Americans at this
time James was a farmer. He was probably in search of better and cheaper farm land. But
they find something far more valuable than that in the state of Illinois. It must have been
quite a trip to go across Indiana and then across Illinois to St. Louis, then North to
Whitehall and Apple Creek. They lived in Applecreek for about 10-12 years, then they
moved North to Quincy, Adams County. They must have been living here when the
Mormon exiles from Missouri moved into Quincy. They must have been impressed
because in April 1840 James was baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter Day Saints by David Evans.
In the Spring of 1842 they traded their farm with Richard Wilson's farm on Bair
Creek in Hancock County. They enjoyed it here until the persecution became very harsh.
In 1846 they were obliged with many other saints to cross the Mississippi River in the
dead of winter and travel across Iowa. It was during this difficult year of 1846 that James
was ordained a High Priest. They settled in Council Bluffs, Iowa. However, friends they
knew, the Frost family had moved to a place sixty miles down river called Nishmobatny.
So they moved to Nishmobatny. It was here on December 3, 1846 that their son Harvey
married Margaret Elzirah Frost. They found work here splitting rails for a man named
Jones. About the last of December they moved to a place called Honey Creek. On New
Year's day they shot two wild turkey for dinner. They also gathered wild honey for their
The next winter the men built a school house, so the children could go to school
that winter. In May 1848, they started their trek to Winter Quarters, Nebraska. They
were assigned to the third division. Willard Richard's was the leader. Their company was
organized with James Blake captain of 100, Barney Adams, captain of 50 and Andrew
Cunningham captain of 10. Within a few days there was so much dissatisfaction that the
company was divided into three companies. They were in the Andrew Cunningham
company. They traveled so much faster that in a few days they passed the other two.
They arrived in the Salt Lake Valley on October 12, 1848. After one night in Salt
Lake City, Andrew Cunningham and the Rawlins families drove to Little Cottonwood.
They camped their for a time, then on to Big Cottonwood, where James, no doubt with
the help for others built a house. Both James and Jane were 54 years old now.
They lived in Big Cottonwood for about five years, then in 1852 they moved to
Draper. On May 16,1856, he married his second wife, Harriet Wheat. Two years later
though, his beloved wife of 42 years died on the 5th of April 1858. He also married a
third wife, Rachel Hammitt.
In 1865 they moved again, this time to Spring City. Finally in 1871 they left the
Salt Lake Valley and moved to Cache Valley. First to Richmond, then on to Lewiston,
They raised a wonderful family and left for their children a great heritage.
Recreated by John Shaw, September 1998.
Credit need to go to those that have worked on these histories in the past. Also those that
are still working on these histories. Right now, I can think of one, that is Julia Rawlins
and the Rawlins Family Organization. Thanks so much....
Also note - this history will be recreated again - hopefully with more documentation. JS