Hole-in-the-Rock Landmarks and People

Hole-in-the-Rock Landmarks and People
Answers at bottom of the left column.

January 12, 2010

Decker, Nathanial Alvin and Emma Morris

Nathanial Alvin Decker was born 19 JUL 1856, Parowan, Iron, Utah. He died 4 MAR 1929, Mancos, Montezuma, Colorado and is buried there. He married Emma Morris 11 JAN 1877, Saint George, Washington, Utah

Emma was born 27 JAN 1859, Dukinfield, Chester, England. She died 4 JUN 1929, Mancos, Montezuma, Colorado and is also buried there. They died the same year, just 3 months apart to the day.
Children on the trek: Sarah Jane and Alvin Morris
Another son, Nathanial Cornelius Decker was born 9 APR 1888, Bluff, San Juan, Utah and died 4 SEP 1958, Lemon Grove, San Diego, California. He is also buried in Mancos, Colo. (This conflicts with Saga of San Juan list)

Profile in Saga of San Juan p. 308:
Nathaniel Alvin was born July 19, 1856 in Paroway Utah. He was a self-educated man with meager schooling. At an early age he learned the value of work. Emma Morris became his wife January 11, 1877. They with other young couples received a call from President John Taylor to settle in the San Juan River country. Making the journey through the Hole in the Rock, they reached Bluff April 6, 1880.
Mrs. Decker, who had bravely faced the six months hazardous trek from Parowan, without complaint, came nearly to losing her life a week after reaching Bluff when she gave birth to her second child in a wagon box.
So far as we know, Alvin was the first white man to try living at South Montezuma (Verdure) in 1884. However, he returned to Bluff when Indian trouble developed and he stayed until the Blue Mountain Mission was established in 1887. His family accompanied him back to Verdure, remaining only a year or so, before establishing permanent residence in Mancos, Colorado.
Throughout his life he had been known as a determined, courageous man, deeply devoted to his family and church. He had a powerful voice and loved to sing and preach. He fullfilled an LDS mission to the southern states. His life's work was farming, freighting and supervising road construction.
His wife, Emma shared with him the hardships of pioneer life. Her vegetable and flower garden was the envy of all her neighbors. She, like her husband, loved to sing. They reared a family of eight children: Jane, Alvin Morris, Earl, Della, Will, Neal, Carl, and Ione.

Hole in the Rock trek remembered:

. . .Among them was a young woman whose clothes at that time no doubt still hid the treasure growing within her. Emma Morris Decker probably felt confident that she and her husband, Nathaniel Alvin Decker, and their young daughter, Sarah Jane, would be safely located in a new location long before the expected birth of this new child, for Church leaders predicted that their trip to their new home would take only about six weeks. Little did they know what lay in store for them, for the six weeks actually turned into six months before the group finally made their way across some of this nation's most inhospitable land to their new home. . . .Such were the conditions of the trek that Emma, Alvin, and little Sarah Jane made as Emma's unborn child grew within her. How grateful she must have been that they had finally reached their destination when on Monday, April 12, she gave birth to a son whom they named Alvin Morris (after an older brother of William). It can probably be truthfully said that, because of her condition, Emma's journey to her new home was one of the most difficult of any of those Hole‑in‑the‑Rock pioneers. . . .Five years after their arrival in Bluff, Utah, Emma gave birth to another son on November 21, 1885. This son they named William. Sometime after William's birth, the family left Bluff and moved to Mancos, Colorado.
History of Sarah Halls Decker

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