Zemira Palmer is my third-great grandfather. In 2010 I was given tons of information about him by two angel cousins. With their permission I share it all!! - Deniane Kartchner

Contact: denianek@gmail.com

Sally Knight Palmer

Sally Knight Palmer

Zemira's Wives

The photos of Zemira's two wives were contributed by Lucile Brubaker

and her mother, Lenna Cox Wilcock. Thanks!

Caroline Jacques Palmer

Caroline Jacques Palmer


Unless otherwise noted, the main source for this blog (including the introduction) is a history titled “ZEMIRA PALMER, 1831 – 1880, His Life and Family in Early L.D.S. Church History.” This history was prepared by Lenna Cox Wilcock and sent to Deniane Kartchner via email by Lenna's daughter, Lucile Brubaker, with Lenna and Lucile's permission to post on this blog with the stipulation it be used for family history purposes only and not for financial gain. Lenna and Lucile are descendants of Zemira Palmer through his wife Caroline Jacques.

I have posted the history in segments exactly as Lenna wrote them (with the exception of adding details needed to help the sections stand alone).


Zemira Palmer was born the year after The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day-Saints was organized in Fayette, New York. Living amongst the earliest “Mormon” converts, his entire life and that of his family was inextricably inter-woven with that of the early Saints.

The faith of the Palmer and Draper families, as with all the Saints, was severely tried and tested as they were swept along in the turbulent stream of Mormonism in its desperate struggle for survival while defending their freedom to worship their God as they chose. As Utah Pioneers they contributed greatly in making the desert blossom as a rose in the rugged western American frontier.

One month before his death, in a letter to his sister Zemira made the following statement, and by living according to what it expresses, he was worthy to gain the great reward of which it speaks:

“. . . There is one thing which seems to be true, the Lord is fulfilling His promises. He has said by the mouths of His prophets that He would send judgments on the wicked & trials on the faithful, so that everyone that can be shaken, will be, and those who cannot be shaken, shall gain the great reward of eternal life & supreme happiness.”1

1- Excerpt from letter written by Zemira Palmer to his sister Lovina Palmer Munroe Sept. 18, 1880.

* * * * *

Zemira Palmer History on this blog


(30) Mormon Battalion,1846-1847

The Battalion consisted of five companies, averaging a little over 100 men per company. Ebenezer Brown was chosen as 2nd Sergeant of Co. A.  Phebe offered to go and was given the privilege of accompanying her husband as a laundress and cook.  Zemira asked to go with them and, although he was not quite 15, he was accepted as an aide to Captain Allen. They were among those who enlisted in June. 

There would have been the children to consider before Phebe or her husband could have enlisted.  From information available we learn that Phebe’s daughter Lydia had married sometime in 1846 in Iowa, so all of Phebe’s children were married except Zemira and Rhoda who was 12 years old by then.  She was taken into her Uncle Isaac Palmer’s home, until she could be re-united with her mother later in the western valley.  Ebenezer’s oldest daughter was 19, and she and the three other children, who were all in their ‘teens’ by then, somehow would manage there on the plains, and then they also would be re-united with their parents in the West.47       

Brigham Young’s parting blessing to the Battalion members included some good counsel and advice, and he promised them that they would pass through the ordeal without a shot being fired at them.  The soldiers were marched to Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas where they were outfitted with supplies, guns, and $42 per man as clothing money for the year. That amounted to a total of $21,000.  A portion of that money was given to the Church to be used for the support of the Battalion members’ families in Iowa, to purchase much needed food, etc., to last through the winter and to supply their needs to complete the journey next Spring to the western Valley.48

The Battalion march was very difficult, and those who became sick, or weakened, were turned back to Pueblo, Colorado leaving only 350 soldiers to continue.  Col. James B. Allen was among those who became ill, and he died within days after the Battalion reached Fort Leavenworth.  One reference here noted:  “Zemira served as aide to Col. James Allen until his death; then to George B. Sanderson from Ft. Leavenworth to Santa Fe; thence to Lieut. Lorenzo Clark until the Corps was discharged.”49

“While in the Battalion Zemira carried a gun and ruck-sack the same as any other soldier. Food was scarce, and because he was not a regular soldier, his mother, who was the cook, would purposely burn the bread so the Officers would cut the crusts off, and this she would take to Zemira.  He said they were better to him than pie would be years later.”50

47- Ebenezer Brown & Descendants – Ebenezer’s young children stay with older sister
48- The Restored Church, p. 238 – the Battalion outfitted with clothing and funds
49- Daniel Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion in the Mexican War, 1846-47, p. 125

50- Dec. of G. Palmer & P. Draper, p. 446 – Hungry Zemira eats crusts

No comments:


Lucile Brubaker (and her mother Lenna Cox Wilcock) are also contributing to this blog.