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David Udall's Journal - First Entry

St. Louis, Missouri
23 May 1851

"The reason that I write this book is because the servant of God has advised me to do it and because I am determined that my posterity shall not be so ignorant about their forefathers as I am. Many a time I wished to know about my forefathers but no one could tell me. How I wish they had kept a record book so that I might know something about them. I would have kept that book as sacred as I do the history of men that is recorded in the Bible.


I have taken great pains in getting all the information about my relations and I wish my posterity--I know that I shall have a posterity--to preserve this book and when it is old to copy it off on another paper and hand this record down from one generation to another so that none of my posterity may be ignorant about their genealogy. I wish each generation of my children to keep a record of their ups and downs that they have and of births and deaths, and a few of the most important things that come to pass in their lives, and hand it down to their children.


Another request I have to make, that is for them to keep the commands of God and live soberly, honestly, industriously, and attend to every virtuous principle, and I promise them in the name of Jesus that they shall be blessed, both temporally and spiritually throughout time and eternity. Keep the commands of God and His servants and keep in His Kingdom, and never enter into the kingdom of the devil, and then we will all meet in the first resurrection together to receive the blessings that God has in store for us, to see all our good forefathers, to dwell on this earth when all is peace and happiness, and when the knowledge of God will be over it, even so, AMEN."


This far-sighted statement was written by my great great great granddad David Udall, almost two months after his arrival in the United States. At the time he was working as a bricklayer to support himself and his new (and pregnant) wife and save for an eventual journey westward to Zion.Instead of thinking exclusively of his new home, new family, and new life on a new continent, his mind was also on the past, and the mostly unknown heritage he was leaving behind.


Few enough people today strive for consciousness of where they came from and who came before them. In David's day that attitude was much rarer, and even among members of the LDSChurch it was hardly universal.I and all the rest of his descendants owe him a tremendous debt - because of his efforts we are not as ignorant of him as he was of his forefathers. It is in this spirit that I am starting this web project.


I intend to publicize what I have learned of all my ancestors and their families. I have gone to considerable trouble to look up the various records that inform us of past lives - others have looked many of them up before me but I could not benefit from their work because it was not available to me. I want to make my discoveries available to all who want them. That way researchers who come after me will start at the outer frontiers of our family knowledge and be able to push them even further out. In compiling a documentary history, I hope to derive greater certainty about these interesting people, and highlight areas that could benefit from further research.


What I have is not exhaustive. I hope to learn from you as much as you learn from me.I have a wish list of big things that I'm lacking, but in general, if there's any documentary information or family story you have that you don't see on here, please share it with me, whoever it is about.

Garrett Pace
Sandy, Utah