Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)


Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)

Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)

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Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)

Born: 21 May 1804 Charleston, New York
Died: 3 Jun 1868 Fillmore, Utah
Father: Joseph Robison
Mother: Cornelia Guinal
Siblings: John Robison
Jane Robison
James Miller Robison
William Henry Robison
Joseph Robison
Lovina Robison
Mary Robison
Matilda Robison
Susan Robison
Delilah Robison
Peter Robison
Margaret Robison
Spouse: Lucretia Hancock
Married: 5 Feb 1829
Children: Alfred Robison
Benjamin Hancock Robison
Joseph Vickery Robison
Alvin Locke Robison
Emily Robison
William Henry Robison
Mary Robison
Lucretia Proctor Robison
Proctor Hancock Robison
Almon Robison
Albert Robison
Adelia Robison
Franklin Alonzo Robison


Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)

Biographical Information: Excerpt from History & Genealogy of the Franklin Alonzo Robison Family Written and Compiled by Carrie Robison Despain and Melba Despain Garner, 1960.

Joseph Robison, son of Joseph Robison and Cornelia Guinal, was born in Charleston, Montgomery Co., New York, 21 May 1804, and died 3 June 1868 at Fillmore, Utah. He married 5 Feb. 1829 Lucretia Hancock, daughter of Benjamin Hancock and Lucretia Proctor Hancock.

In the year 1835 Joseph and Lucretia, with four small boys, bought forty acres of land from Mr. Schroeple in what was called Schroeple Township (in Oswego Co., N.Y.). Their son Alvin says: ‘My father cut his way into the woods a half mile into the dense forest and started to clear up his farm.

They used ox teams. A log house was built with a huge fireplace, and although the winters following were very severe, they had plenty of fuel.

(From Lucretia Ranney)

In the year 1840 Joseph first heard of the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ as revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith. He was given the “Voice of Warning” written by Parley P. Pratt.

He read it eagerly but secretly, and was converted to the Gospel. He brought the book home. He was afraid that his wife Lucretia wouldn’t read it if she knew it was Mormonism.

He laid it on the table and said, “This is a Mormon book and I don’t want you to read it.” When he was out of sight she lost no time in investigating and reading the book.

She was so thrilled and interested that even her work didn’t matter. Usually she was very strict about getting her work done up promptly. She continued to read until it was finished. She said nothing to her husband, nor he to her.

One bitter cold day in February 1841 Joseph took his clothing according to appointment with the Mormon Elders and went to the waters edge, the banks of the Oswego River in New York.

To his great surprise, Lucretia was there with her bundle of clothing. He came up to her and said, “What have you got?” She said “Clothes. What have you got?” He said, “Clothes.” And they were both baptized there without each other’s former knowledge or consent. (This was told to me over and over by Grandma Robison.)

He had been a teacher in the Methodist Church. Lucretia said, “I have my Bible and I’m not afraid of the Mormons.” Their friends, even her father, turned against them, but it didn’t matter to her when she knew she was right.

As soon as they had joined they had a great desire to gather with the Saints, then located at Nauvoo.

Quoting again from Lucretia Ranney: “Preparations went steadily forward until the summer of 1844 when, with 6 boys and one girl (they had left two little graves behind) they came near to the city of Nauvoo.

Here for the first time they hear of the death of the Prophet Joseph Smith and his Brother Hyrum. They were advised not to go to Nauvoo because of the feeling of persecution there.

With saddened hearts but undaunted faith and great courage they went to Crete, Will Co., Illinois, where they bought 160 acres of prairie land, and traded horses and wagon for 20 acres of ‘heavily wooded land’.

Crete was then about thirty miles from Chicago, and is now the suburbs of that city. During the winter they split rails and fenced the land.

They hauled lumber the thirty miles from Chicago for the house they built on the farm. They made many improvements and lived there ‘ten years and had a flourishing farm.’

“While there, Benjamin Hancock, Lucretia’s father, came to visit them. He was so pleased with their industry and everything in general that he changed his mind and Lucretia was given her share of his property.

Four more children were born here, three boys and one girl, including Lucretia Ranney’s mother, Adelia Robison Lyman and my father, Franklin Alonzo Robison, who was the youngest of Grandmother’s thirteen children.

“Although they seemed to be prospering here in Crete, they never lost sight of their great objective – to join the main body of the church. On the 25th of March, 1854, they started for Utah, later joining Peregrine Session’s Company.

They had sold the farm for $2200. Lucretia made a deep hem in her petticoat and very carefully quilted the money into that, and it was carried safely to Utah.

“The Robison family were quite well prepared for the long hard trek ahead of them. Joseph drove a team of four horses. Joseph V. and Alvin each drove a wagon with three yoke of oxen to each wagon. They also had some loose stock.

“Benjamin was married and had a wagon of his own. His wife, Lillis Andre, was not a member of the church, but joined later and was faithful and true all her life. Their son, Willis E. Robison, was but a few months old.

“They reached Salt Lake City in August and camped southeast of the city. Joseph and Lucretia went to see Pres. Brigham Young and gave a tenth of all their belongings in compliance with church regulations. Pres.

Young instructed them to go to Fillmore, which they did. They joined about 15 other families living in a fort. Grandma Robison said they lived in the fort for seven years, during which time all the men folk took turns standing guard for fear of the Indians, who constantly threatened their lives.”

Joseph Robison was a true Latter-Day-Saint, his religion expressing itself in love and kindness for his friends and his willingness to share with newcomers less fortunate than he was. He died at the age of 64. His wife, Lucretia, died in Fillmore, Utah 27 Aug. 1899, age 92.

Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)

Incidents related by Franklin Alonzo Robison to his daughter, Ella Adelia Robison Jacobson, as she wrote them down:

Father, Joseph Robison and family arrived in Utah in the late summer of 1854. Father drove a horse team across the plains. Our teams were driven by father, Joseph, Benjamin, Alvin, and Henry.

The boys drove ox teams. Buck and Charlie were the names of two of our oxen. We had seven wagons in all. The wagons were fitted out like the sheep wagons of today.

Father’s wagon had every convenience that could be had in those days. It was said by the early pioneers that Robisons had the best outfit that had crossed the plains up to that time.

When we reached Salt Lake Father paid tithing on all he had. Brigham Young asked him to go down and settle in Fillmore, Millard Co., Utah.

Fillmore was wild and unsettled except by a few who came as early as 1851, including his brother Peter and others of the Robisons who had preceded him, and by the Indians.

The people had to live in a fort to protect themselves from the Indians. Father and the boys helped build the fort.

Father bought a log house of three rooms that one of the first settlers had built. It joined on to the fort, the south side forming a part of the fort wall. Father, Joseph Robison, made peace with the Indians, hired them to help with the farm work, taught them how to cut grain and hay and do other kinds of farm work. Old Chief Marear worked for us.

Father and Mother were very ambitious and thrifty. We had more than most people. Father never forgot to share with those in need and would send me to see what the immigrants were in need of as they came into Fillmore. I can remember carrying provisions in sacks on my back to them.

We raised sugar cane and used molasses to preserve the fruit for winter. We dried fruit and vegetables, salted and smoked meat. Father was a good provider and we always had plenty of food.

Mother did her own spinning, weaving, and dying, having learned to do all when she was a girl in New York. She used a plant called madder to dye red and copperous for blue.

Mother and Father were anxious to build a house as soon as possible, so Father hired Horace Owens to put up a brick kiln below town. The rain destroyed the brick kiln, so they hauled rock as mother wanted something more substantial.

Benjamin had rock hauled for his house at the same time. The two rock houses still stand. Father built his house outside the fort, the first to be built outside. Edwards and Peary were hired to put up the walls. They were two years building the house. We lived in the fort 8 or 10 years.

During that time Father was farming at the old field. The Sink land was covered with a heavy growth of brush and willows. We milked cows, made butter and cheese. We raised corn, and the blackbirds and crows were so thick, Albert and I had to put up scare crows and herd the corn.

In the southeast corner of the fort, the first fruit trees were raised from seeds in boxes and then transplanted. When Uncle Joseph went back east to Michigan to get Aunt Martha to get married, he made arrangements with a man to send seeds, from which seeds nurseries were started, and the country ’round got its first start of fruit trees.

Uncle Joseph hired Byron Warner as agent to sell trees. He sold through Sanpete, Sevier, and Millard Counties, also Juab and Iron Counties, making thousands of dollars in the nursery business. The winters were very severe and many of the fruit trees froze down at first.

(Submitted by Carrie Garner Strong, 2008)

The Robisons lived in the fort seven years, after which they built a fine two-story rock building south of the fort and on the east side of what is Fillmore’s Main Street.

They had brought apple seeds, and cuttings from other trees and plants and they gave generously to their friends and neigh­bors. While Joseph lived only 14 years after arriving in Fillmore, he and his family contributed much to the new settlement.

He was Mayor of the City, and served in many Church and Civic positions. He died in June 1868. The posterity of Joseph and Lucretia Hancock Robison now number in the hundreds.

They have outstanding sons and daughters who have become Doctors, Lawyers, Professors in the field of education, Writers, Poets; and every field of business has some representative from this couple who gave their all to join the Pioneers of the West. (From A. Paul Robison, as printed in Builders of Early Millard, p. 600)


Joseph Robison Biography (1804-1868)

Joseph Robison Biography: Sources

  • Birth place variant: Charlestown [Hughes report]
  • Marriage variant: 6 Feb 1829 [Builders, p. 597]
  • 1850 Federal Census, Illinois, Will County, Crete, Page #168, Dwelling #96, Family #97, Enumerated 20 Sep 1850:
ROBINSON, Joseph, 46, m, farmer, 1000, NY

Lucretia, 43, f, VT
Alford, 20, m, farmer, 250, NY
Benj’n, 18, m, farmer, 250, NY, att school
Joseph B., 17, m, farmer, NY, att school
Alvan, 16, m, farmer, NY, at school
Henry, 12, m, NY, att school
Lucretia, 9, f, NY, att school
Proctor, 7, m, NY, att school
Almon, 5, m, ILL, att school
Albert, 3, m, ILL
Adeline, 1, f, ILL
  • 1st Sealing: FHL Film #183394, Salt Lake Temple Records, Endowment House Sealings, 1855-1856, Book B(B1), p. 37:
Robison, Joseph

Born: 21 May 1804, Charleston, Montgomery, New York
Sealed to:
Hancock, Lucretia

Born: 24 Aug 1807, Susanburg, Rutland, Vermont
Solemnized by: H. C. Kimball
25 Oct 1855, in the Endowment House
Witnesses: H. C. Kimball, J. M. Grant
  • Civil service: FHL film 482920, Court Minutes, Utah, Volume B, 1854-1856:
Grand jurors of the court AD 1855, Nov 7: Joseph Robison
  • 2nd marriage: FHL Film #183380, Item 3, Record of Marriages, p. 33:
Robison, Joseph, b. 21 May 1804, Charleston, Montgomery, N. York married
Mariah Ann Stoddard, b. 8 Nov 1812, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Solemnized by Brigham Young
Place: B. Y.’s Room, Fillmore
Time: 23 Dec 6 1/2 pm 1855
Witnesses: J. M. Grant, F. W. Ellerbeck
  • 2nd marriage, variant: 23 Nov 1855
  • Decree: FHL Film #1654353, Millard County Probate Court Record, 1854-1862, p. 166:

Joseph Robison appeared before the Court and petitioned to be appointed guardian for the minors Almon Robison, Albert Robison, Adelia Robison, and Franklin A. Robison.

Court appointed Joseph Robison guadian over the persons and property of Almon Robison, Albert Robison, Adelia Robison, and Franklin A. Robison.

Jno. A. Ray, J. P.

[This is a result of his childrens’ inheritance of portions of Benjamin Hancock’s estate.–SDR]

  • 1860 Federal Census, Utah, Millard County, Fillmore City, Page #106, Dwelling #922, Family #839, enumerated 14 Jul 1860:
ROBINSON, Joseph, 56, m, Far[mer], 1000/2500, NY

Lucretia, 52, f, VT
Henry, 23, m, NY
Alon, 15, m, ILL, att school
Albert, 13, m, ILL, att school
Adelia, 11, f, ILL, att school
Franklin E., 8, m, ILL, att school
  • Death: Fillmore City Cemetary Record, Volume 1, p. 6, no. 11:

Died: 3 JUN 1868
Age: 64y 14d
Buried: Fillmore City Cemetary, block 92, lot 4.
  • Death, Burial: Lichfield, Beulah Menlove. Cemetery Records, Fillmore, Millard County, Utah, p. 58:
Name: ROBISON, Joseph

Born: (not given)
Age at Death:
Parents: (not given)
Died: 3 Jun 1868
Buried: in Fillmore Block 12, Lot 4
Reported by:
  • Death, Burial: Fillmore City Corporation, Cemetery Single Line List, by Deceased Name, 22 Apr 1990, p. 41:

BLK 92, Lot 4, Grave 2
d. 6-03-1868
  • Death, Burial: Fillmore City Corporation, Cemetery Master List, by Deceased Name, 13 Jun 1994, p. 389:

BLK 92, Lot 4, Grave 2
d. 6-03-1868
Comments: Age at death 64 yrs 14 days
Current Owner: Robison, J. V.
Original Owner:
  • Gravestone: Fillmore, Millard, Utah
  • 3rd Marriage: Manti Temple Record:
Joseph Robison, b. 21 May 1804 Charleston, NY

d. 3 Jun 1868
proxy: Horace Thornton
sealed 14 Oct 1891, Manti, to
Rhoda Holiday, b. 28 Oct 1794, Edinburgh, NY

d. 19 Dec 1889
proxy: Ellen Barton Ray Matheny
  • Despain, Carrie Robison and Garner, Melba Despain. History & Genealogy of the Franklin Alonzo Robison Family, p. 115.
  • Black, Susan W. E. Early LDS Membership Data (Infobases, 1995).
  • Day, Stella H. ed., Builders of Early Millard, pp. 544, 589, 591, 595, 597-600, 603.
  • Lichfield, Beulah Menlove. Cemetery Records, Fillmore, Millard Co., Utah, p. 57.


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