Life Story of David Smuin

Smuin, David b. 1848

Story written by Nippon Smuin March 23, 1955

David Smuin was born 8 Sept. 1848 Berkshire, England, son of Thomas Smuin and Sarah Hook.

When very young he went to Finchley, Middlesex, England to visit his Aunt Ruth Smuin Wooten, Simmons.  He fell in love with her step daughter, Jane Simmons who was very small and beautiful. They were married about 1866. He was 18 and she was 16 years of age.

Their first baby died at birth; the second a boy was named Henry William Smuin. He was born 26 Sept. 1868. At the birth of this child his young wife,Jane, died leaving David a very desolated and heart broken man. His Aunt Ruth already had six or seven children, but consented to care for the baby while David went away to work.

Time wore on and he had saved enough money to come to America. He bid his baby son good-bye and with the haunting memories of his young wife, still in his heart, started for this new land.

There were many Saints leaving Liverpool, England on the same boat, some happy some sad. Among them was a young girl named Emma D Robinson. She was also small weighing about 98 pounds, blue eyes and blonde hair. A very pretty smile, and rosy cheeks. She was also sad having endured many hardships the last two years, before sailing for America. She joined the Mormon church when 16 years old and as soon as her parents found it out they turned her out of their house. She worked as a servant girl trying to save enough money to come to Utah. Each place she found employment would turn her out as soon as they learned she was a Mormon. What little she had saved up would be spent while trying to find a new position. At last in a branch of the Mormon settlement she found a kind family and worked there until she had saved enough for the long awaited voyage.

As David and Emma learned to know each other and tell their troubles and sad experiences during the long trip to America, they found themselves falling in love. They were married 16 August 1870 as soon as the boat landed in New York Harbor.
David and Emma lived for many years in Pennsylvania where he worked as a glass blower in a factory. That was his trade. In 1872 he received word from his Aunt Ruth that his little son had died in England, so ended that chapter of his live.
In 1883 David moved his wife and family to Pleasant Grove,Utah and had a grand reunion with his family as most of his brothers and sisters and his parents in Ogden.

They all came to Utah in 18963 and had homes of their own by the time David and Emma came to Utah twenty years later.  In 1886 David and his brother Thomas Smuin moved their families to Ashley Valley, Uintah County,Utah. They went with a wagon train and the 1st pioneer to settle that valley.

David bought 40 acres of land to start with and became a successful farmer and later owned a large farm.  In later years after his sons and daughters were married he drove the creamery wagon taking all his neighbors cream cans to the creamery in Vernal.

The Smuins were all music lovers and David bought the 1st phonograph with the big horn and round records that came into the valley. The neighbors from all around would gather at David’s home to hear the music. It was said that on quiet summer nights he and Emma would put the phonograph in the wagon and drive slowly up and down the country lanes and while the sweet melodies they played floated to the distant homes.Smuin, David & Emma Robinson

Great was the sorrow in little Emma’s heart when her life companion died with a heart attack, while she was preparing breakfast 28 August 1911.

She lived a very lonely life from then on until she was called home to meet him on 3 November 1933. Twenty-two years later.


Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah, p.1172
SMUIN, DAVID (son of Thomas Smuin of Battle Creek, Utah). Born Sept. 6, 1850. Came to Utah 1868.

Married Emma Robison of England Aug. 16, 1870, who was born Jan. 16, 1849. Their children: George, m. Edna Loder; William Bradford, m. Eliza Ann Kendall; Rachel Syntha, m. Benjamin C. Slough; Rosa May, m. Findlay Odam; Annie Jane, m. Joseph Atwood; Effie Matilda b. Aug. 9, 1883, m. Levi Cyrus Kendall; Ellina Elizabeth, died; Minnie Eliza, m. John Robbins. Family home Vernal, Utah.
Elder. Settled at Oxford, Idaho, 1876; moved to Vernal 1884. Died Aug. 26, 1911.

Smuin, David d. 1911

Utah Digital Newspapers, Vernal Express, 1911-09-01, p. 8.

David Smuin Dies of Heart Failure

David Smuin died at his home in Naples Saturday morning of heart failure. he had just arisen when he remarked to his wife that he feld the old pain coming back again. He drank a cup of tea then sank into a chair and was gone.
Mr. Smuin had not been well for some time but kept at his work of odd jobs. He has lived in the country for many years and attended mostly to farming. He leaves a wife and several grown children.
Funeral services were held in the Naples ward house and the interment was in the Vernal cemetery.

Smuin, David b. 1848 Obit Vernal Express

About Ann Laemmlen Lewis

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