Joseph "Gurnsey" Brown was born 8 November 1824 in Dryden, Tompkins County, New York, United States to Ebenezer Brown (1802-1878) and Ann Weaver (1806-1842) and died 7 January 1907 Kanab, Kane County, Utah, United States of unspecified causes. He married Harriet Maria Young (1834-1928) 31 December 1851 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. He married Esther Brown (1832-1881) 18 January 1857 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States. He married Lovina Manhard (1838-1918) 23 March 1857 in Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah, United States.


Gurnsey Brown was the first child of Ebenezer Brown (1802-1878) and Ann Weaver (1806-1842). She dies when he was 18 years old. His father remarried the Widow Palmer and together they joined the Mormon Battalion. Meantime, Gurnsey at age 22, together with his 19 year old sister, Harriet, and her husband Oliver Stratton, brought the family (siblings and step siblings) across the plains with the 1848 Willard Richards Wagon Company.

They met their father in Salt Lake in 1849. The cattle herd they had brought across the plains were taken south of Salt Lake for feed. Ebenezer and his family took up land south of Salt Lake City on what was called Willow Creek They built the first house in Draper in 1850.

On December 31. 1851, Gurnsey married 16 year old Harriet Maria Young (1834-1928), the niece of President Brigham Young (1801-1877).

1856 Handcart Company Rescue

In 1856, Gurnsey was part of the rescue group sent out to save the Willie and Martin Handcart Companies stranded in the snows of Central Wyoming. One of the young English girls rescued in the company, Esther Brown (1832-1881), would come to live with Ebenezer and his wife, and she would become his second wife just a couple months later.

1867 Muddy River Mission

Brown Family Gravestone in Kanab City Cemetery.

Gurnsey was called on a mission to England in 1864 where he served for nearly three years without purse or script, leaving three wives with children. Soon after his return, President Brigham Young called Gurnsey and his family to assist with the colonization of Moapa Valley, Nevada, known as the "Muddy Mission". In the fall of 1867, Gurnsey and Harriet and their eight children ranging in age from 14 years to 8 months, made the journey to help settle the town of St. Joseph. Here they lost their baby daughter, Julliet, May 20, 1868.

This mission settlement eventually failed on all settlers returned to Southern Utah.

1871 United Order of Kanab

Harriet's brother, John R Young, convinced Gurnsey to take his family to join the settlement in Kanab Utah. Where they first stayed in a tent left over from Johnston's Army. They were part of the United Order of Kanab for it's duration


Offspring of Joseph "Gurnsey" Brown and Harriet Maria Young (1834-1928)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Homer Achilles Brown (1853-1886)
Persis Ann Brown (1855-1919)
Joseph Gurnsey Brown (1857-1887)
Lucy Elizabeth Brown (1859-1952)
Angeline Brown (1861-1924)
Lorenzo Young Brown (1862-1893)
Ebenezer Brown (1864-1942)
Juliette Little Brown (1867-1870)
Feramorz Little Brown (1872-1893)
Jennie Brown (1875-1958)
Willmia Brown (1877-1965)

Offspring of Joseph "Gurnsey" Brown and Esther Brown (1832-1881)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Martha Salina Brown (1857-1858)
Celestia Ann Brown (1859-1914)
Esther Ellenor Brown (1861-1866)
Isaac Osborn Brown (1863-1946)
Rose Anna Jane Brown (1865-1925)
Elley Moore Brown (1868-1881)
James Arthur Brown (1871-1957)
Harriet Luetta Brown (1874-1900)

Offspring of Joseph "Gurnsey" Brown and Lovina Manhard (1838-1918)
Name Birth Death Joined with
Edwin N Brown (1861-1861)
Della Jane Brown (1868-1939)
William Manhard Brown (1870-1956)
Almond Harris Brown (1873-1938)
Nellie Mabel Brown (1875-1959)
Ellen Brown (1873-1873)
David James Brown (1878-1939)




Footnotes (including sources)


Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.