Ann Stephens was born, October 10, 1840, in
Pencader. Carmarthen. Wales.
She was the daughter of David Phillips Stephens and Jane Evans Stephens.
Mormon missionaries began preaching the gospel
in the village and encouraged the family to come to America
and join the saints who were traveling west to Zion
were converted. Two sons. Thomas and John, began saving some of their earnings to pay passage
across the Atlantic Ocean.
several years, when it came time to depart from their native land and home,
they changed their minds. Their younger sister Ann told her brothers she would
be happy to go to America
if she had the money. Thinking it was a joke on her part, they offered her
their savings to make the trip. Her faith was strong, her heart sincere, and
with a few personal belongings, she was soon on her way to join the saints in America. Of
course her brothers thought she would surely change her mind when reaching the
mighty ocean to board the ship, but she did not. At the age of 22, she sailed
for America, Saturday, May
30, 1863, on the ship Cynosure out of Liverpool,
England, with 774 other
saints, arriving in New York
Harbor July 19, 1863.
Upon arriving in the Salt
she was taken to the home of Brigham Young, Jr. as a housemaid. Many times Ann
mentioned to her children the life at this home, of what a wonderful man
Brigham was, of the kindness and thoughtfulness shown her by him and his
family. Her work there was caring for the fine linens of the home (The Beehive
House). Being an expert seamstress brought her more money than salary as a
housemaid. This was encouraging to her, as she was trying to save enough money
to bring more of her family from Wales
She accomplished this desire in seven years, and the rest of the
family came from Wales to Zion. Thev
settled in the small town of Willard, Utah. Ann moved with her
family to Willard but kept and cherished the close friendship with the Youngs.
About the same time that Ann left Wales, a young Frenchman named Louis Deschamps left his home in Canada
and drifted south towards St John,
Louis Deschamps was born March 12, 1838, Timothee.
Beauharnois County, Province Quebec Canada. He was the son of Francois (Henault) Deschamps and Josephte Pare' Deschamps. His father
was a woodsman or logger who probably built the first log houses, and Louis
learned his father's trade.
As he left
his home for America, he traveled with other woodsmen or trappers, perhaps over
a period of several years, down into Montana and Idaho, or possibly to St
Louis, Missouri, and then coming westward with a Mormon wagon train. It was
said that he built the first cabin in Boise,
Idaho. He was baptized into the
LDS church on July 28, 1866, at the age of 28. At some time in late 1866 or early
1867, Louis met Ann Stephens. She had been baptized into the LDS church on July
5, 1854, about 13 ½ years earlier, in Wales. The couple probably met in Brigham City, Utah,
or Willard. Ann was a Welsh and English-speaking lady. Louis, a French Canadian,
spoke French. Their courtship must have been a bit different than most because
neither of them could speak nor understand the language of the other. But by
signs and motions of various sort they courted. They were married in the
Endowment House in Salt Lake City,
Utah, on March 30, 1867, by Wilford Woodruff.
Louis and Ann were living in Willard,
Utah, at the time of the birth of
their first child. In 1870 the family moved north to Malad, Idaho,
with Ann's brother David and cousin Henry Jones. A
year earlier, in 1869, the hamlet about 5 miles west of Malad,
St John was
named by Welsh immigrants. Ann's parents, David and Jane Stephens, moved to St John in 1869.
Louis and Ann and their family followed them to St John in 1872. Numerous families
"staked their claims" with "squatter's rights" on land in St. John during this
time. However, the Deschamps did not officially
homestead until March 5, 1880. They built a house and store to supply the
lived in St John
until the time of their deaths. They were the parents of 11 children.
September 20, 1902, at age 64. Ann Stephens Deschamps
died March 5, 1909, at age 69. They are buried in the St. John Cemetery.
A picture of them hangs in the Pioneer
Museum in Malad.
Submitted by: Sue Ann Deschamps
great-great grand daughter
Additional information submitted br: