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

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1863 (age 18), Lofdahl (Evans), Johanna Lovisa (Sweden)

Johanna Lovisa Lofdahl was born October 8, 1834 at Enkoping, Sweden, the daughter of Yan Olsson Lofdahl and Lovisa Christine Dixelius Lofdahl. She was orphaned at five years old, and lived a lonely child life, being taken first into the home of her grandparents; then upon their deaths she was raised by two bachelor uncles, then a neighbor and his wife. Her religious education was the Lutheran faith until in young womanhood she was converted and baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. So firm was she in her faith that she left friends and family and set out for America alone. To own a farm in Sweden was considered by the peasant farmers as a priceless inheritance. When Johanna sold her share of her Grandfather Dixelius" estate her relatives were shocked beyond measure to think that she would join such an unpopular American religion and use this money to emigrate to Utah. Dismayed beyond repair at her rash actions, they made no attempt to contact her again, consequently she did not see them nor hear from them again in her lifetime.

Unable to speak or understand any but the Swedish language she made her way to England and boarded the ship Amazon and sailed to America in 1863. Coming west in a company with Wm. B. Preston as captain, Johanna met with an accident which crippled her for the rest of her life. The company paused before fording a river. Johanna, thinking it best to leave the wagon to lighten the load jumped from the wagon as the order to move was given. She slipped and the wagon passed over her leg, breaking it below the knee. This was just nine days before entering Salt Lake city, and thinking that she would soon receive medical aid, she refused to allow the unexperienced members of the company to set the limb. Upon arriving in Salt Lake City she was placed on a quilt upon the dirt floor of an unoccupied log cabin and was given the best aid available.

While crossing the plains Johanna became acquainted with Morgan Samuel Evans, a member of the company who had been called by President Brigham Young to drive his ox team to the Missouri river to bring the immigrants to Salt Lake Valley. Upon returning to his home in Logan, Morgan told his wife Mary of the sad accident which had befallen Johanna, and Mary insisted that he return to Salt Lake City and bring Johanna to their home in Logan that they might care for her. The same year with the full consent of Mary, Johanna became the plural wife of Morgan S. Evans. She became the mother of seven children, 3 boys and 4 girls. She died December 12, 1912 and is buried in Logan City Cemetery.

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.