The importance of letters!

It is from these letters sent by Samuel to Permelia that it was revealed that Samuel had not moved to Canada and abandoned his families in Cache Valley. These letters were found in the attic of Permelia's home after her death.

Through contact with Tom Matkin in Alberta, Canada I learned that Samuel came to visit every year until his death and had not simply run off with his thrid wife and left the others behind.

Another case of history being rewritten to suit what was being told to others.

A History of Samuel Matkin
by Arlie B. Matkin

Samuel Matkin and his 3rd wife Sena Anderson were married a month before they left for Canada. He was an officiator at the Logan Temple and she was a cook there. They left by covered wagon for Canada arriving 6 weeks later in May just before the group who came in June 3, 1887. They were able to travel faster as they had no stock to drive.

They lived one block northeast of the Cahoon Hotel. This property is still owned by the family.

Samuel farmed in the summer and freighted in the winter between Cardston & Lethbridge by horse and wagon. It took 3 days to make the trip, necessitating sleeping out for 2 nights. He hauled the first mail to Cardston. He often had to cut the frozen bread with an axe & slept out on the prairie in severe cold.

He died in 1905 age 54.

Samuel Matkin was born August 19, 1850 as West Lehigh, England. He was the son of Thomas & Esther (Broadhurst) Matkin.

When he was two years old his father died. Soon after his mother, joined the Church & set sail for America with her small son, Samuel. On the way, she gave birth to another son, Joseph, who died at sea. (See the Voyage of the Ellen Maria for more information on this journey. She did not give birth at sea.)

Esther & her small son Samuel crossed the plains to join the Latter-day Saints in Utah.

Letters to Permelia J. Matkin & Family

Junction Utah

April 28, 1933

Permelia J. Matkin

Dear Cousin

Your letter of 25' just received. Am sorry to say that I have no records nor any way to assist you in getting genealogy of the Drury family. My brother Horatio while he was alive was much interviewed in the work but he and his wife are both gone. They left a daughter, Mrs. Addie Johnson who lives in Richfield but I do not know if she would know anything about the records or not.

You might write to Louis Anderson at the Manti Temple and see if he can give you any information of the Drury family.

For several year I have been crippled with rheumatism and I am 85 years old. Only two of our 9 children are now living and Ella died more than a year ago. I am able to get up and walk around a little by using my cane but don’t try to do any work.

Is your brother Charlie well and living does he busy himself.

With love and best wishes.

John Morrill

Cardston, Alberta
W. T.

Feb 2nd 1896

George Q. Matkin

Hyde Park, Utah

My dear little Son your kind and loving letter of Jan 19th came to hand in due time. I was glad to hear from you and though was well but sorry to hear that my little girl Blanche was sick but hope she is better by this time.

I was glad that you got the money all right. I would like to see you in your new suit of clothes I think I will before spring. I have been sick three weeks but I am a little better now but not able to do anything it is fine weather here the snow is nice and warm to day no snow only where it has drifted. You must be quite a little to saw wood for Mama & Blanche has not wrote yet to tell her not to for I will not get it and may be on the road before it could get here. Give my kind love to Ma and Blanch and may the Lord bless you all is the Earnest prayer of your loving


Saml Matkin

Cardston Alberta

Jan 12th 1892

Dear Melia & Children

I thought I would write a few lines to let you know how we are getting along we are getting along pretty well at present and hope and pray that you are all enjoying the same blessing. I read your letter of Dec 8 on the 22 you said you had written in Oct if so I did not get it as I have only read two letters from you since I was there and have written a great more and have sent money to you in the different ways both by letter and by Bro. L C. Potter and Bro. Sterling Williams and the last by Bro. Card now of course I don’t know whether you have got any of that or all of it or not. As you never said any thing about it I was sick a great deal of the last year with the piles sometimes I have not been able to set down for 2 or 3 days at a time and then to get such letters from you. I thought it very unkind. In all my writing to you I have never intended to them before times or had and I work every day that I can and don’t waste any money either and I have not had a suit of clothes for 8 years. I think Bro Card will come and see you. May the Lord bless you and all comfort your hearts is the earnest prayer of

Samuel Matkin

Logan June 6th 1926

Dear Cousin P. J. Matkin

I just resolved your letter inquiring about names of your relations to be baptized for. I have my second Morrill Book what I got about 15 months ago. I hired Sehole or his clerk to copy the names from the Record which they did & they were all Baptized for & a quite a few Endowed for. I have a relation here in Logan her name is Magie Smith Watson. My Grandfather married 1. Mary Carpenter & of course all of Fathers Brothers & Sisters came from Mary Carpenter & that Carpenter Record has some 13 thousand names in & by applying to Sister Magie Watson they could be plenty of names to be Baptized for that is our Relations I have worked a lot on the Carpenter Record where there wasn’t any Morrills but I still have Morrills straight to work for yet a while. Emma hasn’t been able to do much Temple work for some time so I am back with the work. On the women’s side Aunt Trorie worked a couple of weeks for us we are as will as usual & hope these lines find you all well.

With best love to all we are respectfully

D. & E. W. Morrill

We are always pleased to see our relatives.

Cardston May 18th, 1896

Dear Melia

I now take the opportunity of writing a few lines to you hoping they will find you well. I am improving slowly but hope to seen be able to go to work. I have not done anything since I arrived here. The balance of the folks are pretty well it has been storming the last 2 days steadily and every thing is thoroughly soaked up. Our grain is not all in yet and this storm is going to make it awful late. Times are awful dull here now but we are in hopes that something will turn up soon or else I don’t know what the people will do. I trust that Thomas has got your work all done by this time so that it will more pleasant getting around the yard. I am going to Lethbridge tomorrow if we can find our horses but the storm has drove them off some where. If you will send me a sample of your dress pattern I will try and match it and send it down with some of those Excursionists when they return they will be here Friday from all accounts I will try and send you some money when I get to Lethbridge but I never seen money so scarse but I must have some from somewhere for I know you are needing some bad I was not able to go to town last weeks. I pray that the peace and Blessings of Heaven may be and abide with you that you may feel blessed and comforted and enjoy the Holy Spirit.

God bless you for this time, write soon.

Yours, Sam

Dear Blanche & George

I got here all right a little over a week ago but felt awful tired. I am getting a little better but show I hope and pray that you are well and that you may ever be blessed with health and strength so that you may become great in the Church and Kingdom of God here on the Earth. Be good children and kind and good to Ma and the Lord will love and bless you. It is awful stormy here now rain & snow for the last 2 days and no sign of it clearing up. Well I must close praying to the Lord to ever bless you from your Papa. Write soon. S. Matkin


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