Sunday, June 28, 2015

Martin Handcart Pioneer: George Frederick Housley, 19

George immigrated with his mother.  His mother had been the victim of domestic violence, and left her husband with her three children.  He promised to amend his ways, and she went back to him.  However he continued his previous behavior and the family again left him. 
Georg’s older siblings had established new families, and would immigrate later while George and his mother, Harriet Cook Housley traveled with the Martin Handcart Company.  At Florence George became convinced he should stay in Florence for the winter.  This greatly distressed his mother.  She prayed for a sign as to whether they should stay or go.  The gentleman who had been talking to them of staying went hunting, and came back to the tent ill.  He went to his cot and commenced singing  that Harriet should take her son to the valley and everything would be alright.  This to George and Harriet was a spiritual manifestation of what they should do.  He remembers singing the handcart song as they left Florence.  However he also recalled the hardships with company members passing away each night.  One night he was with two companions, who both passed away during the night.  He became so distraught he wandered off from the company and was praying by a rock that he would die or that the wolves would come and take him.  One of the rescuers came upon him, and got him on his horse with a blanket, and took him into his wagon saving his life.  Coincidence would have it that later he would meet this gentleman again as the father-in-law of one of his children. 
George was a resident of Cache Valley, and helped build the Hyrum second ward church.

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