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


(36) William Draper Sr. joins family in Draperville from Nauvoo

We have followed Zemira and some of his Draper relatives until they reached Utah. Let’s return to Nauvoo in 1845, to where we left William Sr. and Lydia Lathrop Draper.

* * * * *

“William and Lydia had by then passed the age of 70.  The great body of the Saints had left Nauvoo, and only a remnant remained, composed of the poor, the weak, the aged and afflicted, who had been unable to get away.  They were all anxious to depart, and were exerting all their energies to obtain means for that purpose.”—(Quote by Janael Hendricks)  They remained in Nauvoo until August 1846, but by the time they reached the west side of the great Mississippi, Lydia, worn down by the relentless persecution, could bear no more.  There she died.   “She was buried on the bank of the Mississippi River, in a brown dress and a calico apron.”—(Quote by Estella Draper Magnus)

Their son Zemira Draper and his wife Amy Terry had stayed with them and cared for them. William remained in a camp near his beloved companion’s  grave until the spring of 1847, when in a company with his son Zemira and wife, he moved on to the Missouri River Camp.  That same year William went on to Council Bluffs, Iowa, and there he married Marie or Mary Louise Allard.  In 1848, William was ordained a Patriarch of the Branches of the Church in the Pottawattamie Lands of Iowa, under the hands of Elder George A. Smith.— (Estella Draper Magnus)

In July 1852 he went to Utah where he rejoined some of his family in Draperville, Utah, thus adding to the Draper group already there.  While living there he gave more than 250 Patriarchal Blessings before his death at the age of 80 in 1854.  He blessed the lives of many people, and he is to be honored and loved for the great man that he was.

Eventually, it will be interesting to follow the lives of each of William Draper Sr. and Lydia’s children, and also those of George Palmer Jr. and Phebe.  We know that some of them came to Utah.

William Draper's headstone.
Www.findagrave.com, photo John Warnke

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