- Name: William Bowden
- Born: October 7, 1827 at Bishopnympton, Devonshire, England
- Died: July 2, 1907 Brigham City, Utah
- Related through: Erin's grandmother Idonna Nuttall Madson
William Bowden was born October 7, 1827 at Bishopnympton, Devonshire, England. He was the son of Benjamin Bowden and Mary Steel. He was one of six sons; their names were John, Richard, Thomas, George and Benjamin.
He was converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and was baptized in 1842 when he was 15 years old.
In 1852 he met and married Ann Grinny. They were married for 55 years. Three girls were born to them while they lived in England. They moved later to Wales where two more daughters were born to them. The work in Wales was plentiful and gave them the opportunity to save the money they needed to come to the United States.
They sailed from Liverpool in the spring of 1863 on the ship S.S. Synosure. After a very rough sea voyage, which took six weeks, they landed in New York City on July 19, 1863. One child died in Wales and another was buried at sea.
The trip from New York to Council Bluffs was made by trains. Here they joined a pioneer company. The long hot, dry trek across the plains was more than the young couple expected. William walked most of the way because of his good health and vigor. William and Ann were undaunted and anxious to reach the land of Zion.
Their lifetime wish was realized when they arrived in Salt Lake City on October 10, 1863 with the Horton Heights Company. After a few days rest they journeyed on to Brigham City where they made their home at the foot of the beautiful Wasatch Mountains east of town.
William was an exceptionally good farmer. A fruit orchard was planted. The peaches raised there were some of the first in the area. He made a large pond above his home where a natural spring kept it full of water and was used for irrigation purposes. It was also enjoyed for swimming by family members during the summer months.
The canyon immediately above his property was named “Bowden Canyon,” because he was among the first settlers of that area. It is the first canyon just north of the “B” and directly up from 5th or 6th North.
William and Ann were the parents of 15 children. Their names were Emma, Mary Ann, Mavia, Elizabeth, Nora, Jane, Priscilla, Abigail, Thomas, Rachael, Benjamin, John, Joseph, George and Henry. He and his wife received their endowments on January 19, 1869 at the Endowment House in Salt Lake City. They had eight of their children sealed to them at this time.
Music was their great love which brought many happy hours with the family gathered around the organ singing to their hearts content. This love of music was passed on to future generations. The Bowden’s have been known to be noted “songbirds.”
He passed away at his home July 2, 1907 at the age of 80. He is buried in the Brigham City Cemetery.
This article is a combination of articles by Vera Bowden Murdock and Verda B. Knavel from the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers archive.