ALVIN HOPE TURLEY by Mary Ann Turley Clements
Alvin Hope Turley was born November 13, 1855 in San Bernardino, California. He was the youngest of Theodore Turley’s children, born to Theodore’s fifth wife, Ruth Jane Giles. Theodore and Ruth were married in Salt Lake City in June 1850, shortly after the death of Mary Clift Turley. Ruth had a son from a previous relationship, Joseph Orson Turley, who was adopted by Theodore. Ruth and Theodore went on to have two more sons together, Jacob Omner and Alvin Hope.
As a young child, Alvin was part of the evacuation of the San Bernardino Mormon colonists in late 1857 and early 1858. Theodore and Ruth thereafter settled permanently in the Southern Utah town of Beaver, where Alvin was raised. Theodore Turley passed away from mouth cancer in August 1871. Less than a year later, on May 29, 1872, Alvin was in the Salt Lake Valley when he succumbed to Typhoid Fever at the age of 16. He is recorded in Salt Lake death registers as belonging to the Beaver Ward, indicating it was a temporary visit away from home. Alvin was buried in the Turley family plot at the Salt Lake Cemetery next to one of Theodore’s earlier wives, Mary Clift Turley.
More information about Alvin’s death has been found in the Amasa M. Lyman biography:
“In August 1871, Priscilla [Theodore Turley’s daughter and plural wife of Amasa M. Lyman] and Amasa received word that her father, Theodore, had died from cancer on the twelfth of that month. In September, Theodore’s only surviving widow, Ruth Jane Giles, moved from Beaver to Salt Lake City, probably to obtain medical care for her fifteen-year-old son, Alvin. Almost a year later, in May 1872, a Mr. Levi brought the severely ill Alvin to the Lyman home in Salt Lake City, where his mother and Maria [Amasa M. Lyman’s first wife] nursed him assiduously. He died just a few days later on May 23. Amasa, who had exerted himself to obtain proper medicine for the boy, telegraphed the news to his aunt, Sarah Turley Franklin, at Beaver; then wrote to Alvin’s older brother, Omner, then working at Beaver County’s Star District mining camp; composed an obituary for the Tribune; and arranged for Alvin’s burial at Salt Lake City. He probably also conducted the funeral services but did not mentioned it in his diary.”
Amasa Mason Lyman, Mormon Apostle and Apostate: A Study in Dedication by Edward Leo Lyman (2009), page 473.