WASHINGTON COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY (Washington County, Utah)
PRUDENCE MACNAMARA PULSIPHER
(early settler in Hebron)
BIOGRAPHYPrudence MacNamara, was born July 31, 1803, at Northbridge, Worcester, Massachusetts, daughter of Hugh MacNamara and Martha Sherman. She married Zerah Pulsipher on July 12, 1854, at Salt Lake City, Salt Lake, Utah. She lived in Hebron, Washington, Utah.
"Monday, February 27, 1883, we heard the alarm of fire about daylight. I jumped into my pants and out of doors as soon as possible and found it was our log house, coming to and not a rod from the brick house occupied by the family.
"The first room of this wooden building was occupied by Mother Prudence Pulsipher, as a bedroom and the other two rooms joining were used as store rooms for farming implements, tools and machinery, harness, wagons, etc. Before we knew of the fire all three of these rooms were filled with flames - so it was impossible to get in or to help the feeble soul out. How horrible to think she suffered death by fire and no one able to get to her. The best we could do was to throw water freely and to separate the burning timbers. In so doing, we saved the body from being consumed; we also saved some of the clothing and her bed.
"It appears that she had arisen from her bed, dressed herself and made a fire. Finding it was not yet daylight, she had lain down on her bed and had fallen asleep and was entirely suffocated by smoke while asleep and insensible to any pain. She had made no move towards the door, or even spoken a word to give any alarm. Her voice was strong, but her body was weak and heavy. She had prayed for death, as she could do no good in this world and had wished for years that she could die. Now she was gone - horrible as it appears - yet we know of no easier death that she could have had.
"Following is a report of her death as telegraphed and published in the Salt Lake papers: Hebron, February 27, 1883. 'About five o'clock this morning the citizens of our town were awakened by the cry 'Fire, Fire.' It was soon discovered that the scene of the fire was on the premise of John Pulsipher, and in a room occupied by Prudence Pulsipher, widow of the late Zerah Pulsipher. When the fire was first discovered the flames were issuing from every opening of the building and through the roof, cutting off all possible chance of assistance. Following is the verdict of the Coroner's jury:
County of Washington
Territory of Utah
"'An inquisition held in the house of John Pulsipher on the 27th day of February, 1883, Daniel M. Tyler, Justice of the Peace, in Hebron, County and Territory aforesaid. Upon the body of Prudence Pulsipher, aged seventy years. Names there subscribed.
"'The said Jurors upon their oaths do say that the said Prudence Pulsipher came to her death by burning while lying on her bed [which] was accidently set on fire by her own hands on the morning of the 27th of February, 1883. And further that we find no cause of blame attached to any person or persons whatsoever.
"'In testimony whereof, the said Jurors have hereunto set their hands this day and year above said: Signed: George A. Burgon, Orson W. Huntsman, George W. Laub, acting coroner; Daniel M. Tyler, Justice of the Peace.'
"Held funeral at our house; good attendance; remarks were made by Daniel M. Tyler, John F. Laub and myself. If we can all get through this probation and find as little fault as she has, I think our salvation will be sure. Three loads of people went to the burial. We laid the body to rest a little south of father's." John Pulsipher
Parents and Siblings: Hugh MacNamara Martha Sherman Prudence MacNamara Pulsipher (born 7/31/1803; died 2/27/1883) ??? Husband and Children: Zerah Pulsipher (born 1/24/1789 or 6/24/1788; married 7/12/1854; died 1/1/1872) John Pulsipher (born 7/17/1827; died 7/9/1891 or 8/7/1891 or 8/9/1891 or 8/21/1891) ???
REFERENCESPulsipher Family History Book
Book compiled by Nora Hall Lund
See pages 99-100
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