Heritage Gateways

Official Sesquicentennial K-12 Education Project
sponsored by the Utah State Board of Education, the BYU-Public School Partnership and the Utah Education Network

Pioneer 1848-1868 Companies

Previous | Next

The First Dutch Immigration - 1864

The first Latter-day Saint missionaries to the Netherlands arrived in Rotterdam August 5, 1861 and were successful in making several converts who soon became missionaries themselves. The first company of Dutch converts, 60 in number, left Rotterdam June 1, 1864 and sailed from London two days later on the S. S. Hudson. The company landed at New York July 19th and arrived at Wyoming, Nebraska, August 2nd, reaching Salt Lake City October 26th in Captain Wm. Hyde's train. During the voyage across the ocean, three children were born and nine died, the high mortality being caused by measles which had been accidentally brought on board and which was not discovered until the vessel was three days out at sea. One of the children born, a boy, was from Dutch parents - Jacobus and Susanna K. Cannegieter. The baby was named Henry Hudson, after the ship. One of those who died was also of Dutch parentage - little 3-year-old Bastian, the son of Elizabeth Anna Keiser, a widow.

These Dutch immigrants were the remnants of a dwindling sect called Nieuwlichters, or New Lighters, who had hailed the message of the Utah elders as a fulfillment of their own expectations.

No well-versed theologians they were, but plain folk, children of the people. Stoffel Mulder, their leader, was a skipper; Maria Leer, their prophetess, a "common" woman. Who knew their religio-communistic brotherhood, who notice their small circle of adherents in those turbulent years of the first half of the former century in the Netherlands? They labored mostly in the years 1816-1840, years of warfare and turbulence, politically and ecclesiastically, and the Brotherhood they established had already disappeared before there was time to pay them calm attention. Yet they, too, labored in their own way. They aroused spiritual life in a spiritless time; they raised their voices against the apostasy of the Gospel as they understood it; they preached a high ideal; an imitation of Christ, realized in life, according to Dr. G. P. Marang.

Among the members of that first company of Dutch immigrants were Timotheus or Timothy Mets and family, who settled on a farm in Morgan County in 1865. Dirk Bockholt, another member of the first Dutch immigrant company ...who served as clerk of Salt Lake County.

Later immigrants settled mainly in Ogden and vicinity and in Salt Lake City, the Ekker boys of Eureka and Mammoth, Gerrit de Jong, Jr., professor of modern languages and dean of the College of Fine Arts at the Brigham Young University, Hendrik Van Steeter, and Jan (John) Cornelius Van Dam.

Source: Our Pioneer Heritage © Carter, Kate B., ed. 20 vols. Salt Lake City: International Society, Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1958-1977. All rights reserved. No part of this material may be reproduced in any form or by any means without permission in writing from the publisher. Documents and images are exerpted by permission from the LDS Family History Suite CDROM from Ancestry.