This is my 4th or 6th great grandmother Sarah Goode Marshall (we are still trying to figure out how many “greats” she is to me). She, along with her 6 children came 1,400 miles across the plains and arrived in Salt Lake City in 1856. She was one of the first handcart companies to arrive.
This is a descendant of Sarah Marshall, Lynn Cleland.
He too walked 1,400 miles across the plains and arrived in Salt Lake City…but the year was 2009. This awesome man decided to retrace the steps that his great great grandmother made over 150 years ago. He has been researching for several years now on the exact route that they took, what foods and clothing they wore, what they slept in, etc. Beginning in June of this year, Lynn walked from Iowa City, Iowa to Salt Lake City pulling a handcart weighing over 200 pounds. He slept in a canvas tent and ate what the pioneers ate – which wasn’t much. He has a website, faithgreaterthanpain.com, and he invited all those who could join him to meet him at This is the Place monument in Salt Lake and walk with him the last 3 miles of this trek. Austin and I had the amazing experience to be there last Saturday and meet over 50 of Sarah’s descendants. Some of my family members were able to come out and be there for the event as well.
I can’t express the feeling I got when he arrived at This is The Place pulling his handcart. It must be close to the same feelings that Brigham Young and the other saints who were already in Salt Lake felt when they watched all these faithful saints arriving at last. So many of the pioneers lost everything – their family, their friends but they still came. Lynn talked about after the first 3 weeks, he felt like he couldn’t make it anymore. But then he remembered the motto that he put on his handcart - “Faith Greater than Pain” and he said it helped him to continue on. We often wonder how the saints did it…and it was because their faith was greater than their pain. They believed in this gospel and they would do anything to follow the promptings of the spirit. I am so grateful for Lynn and his desire to do this. It has given me a greater testimony of the importance of family history because it actually became real for me. Here were several generations of us all gathered together on Saturday and it was amazing! I am thankful for the example my great grandmother was and for her desire to join this church. Who knows where I would be without her faith and determination to do what was right. Here are some pictures from our trip and also a couple of newscast videos :)
This is the Place Monument
My Uncle Fred and Kylie
The descendants of Sarah Marshall
Great Uncle Ray, Aunt Debbie, and Great Aunt Beverly
Kylie and Lynn
Kylie after Lynn looked back at her….
If you look closely at this first video, you can see me and Austin and Kylie walking on the road. Austin is wearing a red hat.