Note: This essay is based, in
large part, upon personal
recollections, letters, diaries and genealogies of the York and Carter
families, as well as original church records. From its
beginning, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has
encouraged its members to keep genealogies, diaries and family
histories. This record keeping is an integral part of Mormon
doctrine and practice, and these sources provide a wealth of
information unavailable elsewhere. However, in many cases,
these records were written after the fact, often years later, by
persons who did not directly observe or participate in the events
described. Grammatical and spelling errors, not unusual for that period
of emigration and settlement, characterize many of the documents.
Names of persons and places are often spelled differently; accuracy in
this regard was not considered as important as it is today.
Discrepancies, therefore, are inevitable.
Patronymics or the practice of naming children for their parents,
grandparents, and other family members, ancestors, and respected
personages creates confusion for the historical researcher attempting
to sort out who, when, what, where and why. Given these
limitations, this writer has made every effort to present a factual
account of the York and Carter families as they traveled from
Bethel/Newry, Maine, westward to help settle the Great Salt Lake Basin.
Leonard J. Great Basin
Kingdom: An Economic History of the Latter-day Saints, 1830-1900,
with an introduction by Ronald W. Walker
. Urbana and
University of Illinois Press (1958, 2005).
Leonard J. and Davis
Bitton. The Mormon
Experience: A History
of the Latter-day Saints, Second
Howe. History of Utah
Salt Lake City, Bookcraft (originally
published in San Francisco in 1889, 1964).
Carter, Barton L.
Dominicus Carter: Latter-Day Pioneer
Sandy, Utah, self-published (1997).
Carter, D. Robert (no relation to the Carter family line discussed in
this essay). Founding Fort
Utah: Provo’s Native Inhabitants, Early Explorers,
and First Year of Settlement
. Provo, Provo City
Coleman, Arthur D. Carter
. Provo, Utah, J. Grant Stevenson (1996).
Compton, Todd. In Sacred
Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith
. Salt Lake
City, Signature Books (1997).
B. History of Bethel, Maine,
with an Introduction by Stanley
. Somersworth, New
Hampshire, New England History Press (facsimile of the 1891 edition,
Donna Toland (Editor). Mormon
Midwife: The 1846-1888 Diaries of
Patty Bartlett Sessions
, Utah State
The Gathering of Zion: The Story of the Mormon Trail
, University of Nebraska
Press (1964, 1981).
Letters from Aaron M. York
to Brigham Young, and Young’s response regarding the Hallett orphans,
LDS Family History Library and Archives
Documents from the DJY
collection (genealogy and documents compiled by the writer’s father,
Donald J. York, between 1970 and 1993), in the author's collection;
includes Edna Holdaway Bentwet, “Gilberth Haws Family: Pioneer
of 1848.” Provo, Utah (1966)