They remained in St. Louis four years, the father and James Jr. working in the coal mines and Emma's older sister Jane working as a maid for a wealthy family. Jane was married on May 6, 1855 to John S. Hacking, her childhood sweetheart, who crossed the plains in 1849.
He also went to California with an exploring company and on his return trip, then sailed up to Philadelphia and across country to St. Louis to meet his bride. Two days after the wedding, they started the long trip across the plains west by team. There was no room in the wagons for anything but bedding, clothing, and food, so John shipped the rest of their belongings up the river to Council Bluffs by steamboat.
When he arrived there he heard that all the Clark family had been killed by Indians. He couldn't bring himself to believe this and was overjoyed when the whole family arrived safely at Council Bluffs. The Clark family, of which John S. Hacking was now a member was placed in Banks Company for the journey west, but were with the ten wagons who later pulled out and went on alone under James Pearson Clark, brother of Emma.
A dispute had arisen when part of the men in the company refused to do guard duty and other unpleasant jobs, so rather that be imposed on, the ten teamsters pulled out and went on by themselves. They encountered no Indians, had a minimum of illness, and one baby was born on they way. Emma Clark was now nine years old and perhaps found the slow traveling day after day quite tiresome. She did ride the horses and joined in the dancing and singing at night. One could easily imagine them singing around the campfire at night for they were all good singers.
John Pearson Clark, brother of Emma, was chorister in Cedar Fort for 45 years. When the group arrived at Fort Laramie, tribes of Indians were there, making peace treaties with the United States, and their many horses had eaten off the grass in all directions for about 60 miles. This was a great disappointment to the pioneers, because their oxen were in need of good forage.
One night, as they were camped by a deep gulch, a bad storm arose. Soon the gulch was flooded and the banks overflowed, covering the plains around the camp with a foot of water. The cattle stampeded back across the gulch. Emma's father and John Hacking swam the torrent and ran two miles before they could turn the oxen toward camp. Arriving in Salt Lake City on Sept 27, 1856, they proceeded at once to Cedar Fort, where John Hacking had established his mother on his previous trip to Utah. Here they made their homes and resided the rest of their lives.
Emma was a typical pioneer girl, full of life and fun. Jane, her older sister, said she was a regular cut-up, always playing pranks and having a good time. She was always willing to help gathering sego roots and greens to supplement their food supply. She also helped fight the grasshoppers that came to destroy the crops of these hardy pioneers. Emma was only sixteen when she became the wife of John Drysdale.
The young couple were very happy, playing together and enjoying themselves. Their first child, Margaret, raised a fine family of her own.
Tragedy, in the form of diphtheria struck, taking the lives of three of their [John & Emma's] children within a few days. The father [John Drysdale] himself was stricken and his life was despaired of, but John Hacking rode all night to bring a doctor to his side and his life was saved. Kind hands did all they could to help, but the little mother's heart was saddened. Other children blessed their home and happiness returned.
Their home was always open to their friends and many happy gatherings were held there. As their family grew, they added more rooms to the small house, the last to be added was a lovely large living room in which a new organ was placed. Here the young people gathered, sang songs and had many happy times and her association with this family has left many golden memories to be treasured through life. The quilting parties, with the wonderful dinners cooked by "Aunt Emma", as she was lovingly called by most of the town, were wonderful affairs.
The wit and humor of "Uncle John, as he gave a reading always brought forth roars of laughter. He would assume a very dramatic attitude and recite from Shakespeare. Their daughter, Emma [Emma Drysdale Knight] , was a very beautiful girl. She and Manetta were dear friends of the writer, as was Andrew, [Andrew C.Drysdale , Frontier Musician] and his wife Julia. Henry [Henry R Drysdale , my great grandfather] was a good looking chap, lively and full of fun. Addie, the youngest of the family, was petite and winsome.
John helped build the stone fort which Brigham Young told the pioneers of Cedar Fort to build. It was never finished as the Indian troubles were settled before its completion. He also fought in the Walker Indian War of 1863 and was in the battle with White Elk and his warriors (presumably the Tintic War).
The children grew, married and left the family home. John and Emma were left alone but were often cheered by visits from their children, and good times once again filled their home with love and laughter. As they grew older, Emma was afflicted with cataracts, which were operated, but her eyesight never was good after the operation. John also lost his eyesight; his health failed, and he died in Cedar Fort on April 4, 1912.
After his death, Emma went to live with her daughter, Emma and Walter Knight, who did all in their power to make her last days happy and content. She did June 15, 1919. So this pioneer couple who braved many hardships and endured so much, yet lived happily passed to their reward. The story of their bravery, courage, and achievement will be treasured by their descendants down through the years.
I am directly related to these folks , all credit[s] go to the person or person[s] that wrote this piece . I would like to thank Bonnie R. for this information