Last Years

Edwin Whiting and his families moved to Springville. One of his wives, a sister to F. W. Cox, Mary Elisabeth, became a very close friend to Mary Ann Richardson. On October 11, 1870, F. W. Cox married Emma Sophia Peterson. Only one of F. W. Cox’s first four wives had any children after his mission--Cordelia gave birth to one child. On July 4, 1878, his wife Emma Peterson Cox gave birth to her fifth and last child. F. W. Cox was sixty six years old at this time.

Mary Ann Richardson died in Springville on January 13, 1871. Edmund Richardson died at the mines in Juab County March 27, 1875.

F. W. Cox was called again on a mission to the Indians in the fall of 1876. He was always good to the Indians and gave them food. One time a company of Indians came to his home and sat on their horses, filling the street in front of the big Cox house. He stood on his porch and preached to them in their own language for an hour or more. (This scene is depicted in the painting done for Farrin and Enola Mangelson by F. W. Cox’s great grandson, Owen Richardson.)

FW Cox preaching

Click to enlarge.

Here is the painting, in color,about 1 meg.

Corner stones for the Manti Temple were laid April 14, 1879. President John Taylor officiated in laying the southeast cornerstone; the Presiding Bishop of the Church laid the southwest cornerstone; the President of the High Priests Quorum of the Sanpete Stake, F. W. Cox, laid the northwest cornerstone; Horace Eldridge of the First Quorum of Seventy laid the northeast corner. F. W. Cox was the only person from Sanpete County to have the honor of laying a cornerstone of the temple.

F. W. Cox bears his testimony and gives counsel in this letter to his sister in Arizona (her children, as previously explained, were full cousins to Charles Edmund and Sullivan Calvin Richardson.)

Mary Elizabeth Cox Whiting and her sons:

How often I think of you and the boys and wonder how you are getting along and you have my best wishes for your welfare. Now understand me--it is not the dollars and cents that I am thinking of, but the work of God. The dollars will come, no fear for them, but keep the spirit of this work in your hearts, that is all important for every man and woman on this earth. So round up your shoulders and let your firmness be to the death. So shall you find comfort and satisfaction in this life and eternal reward in the future. (This is to all the boys.)

God bless you forever.
F. W. Cox Sr
June 1, 1879. Manti, Utah

On June 2, 1879, F. W. Cox was hit by a falling log at the saw mill, which accident resulted in the death of this great patriarch. He died on June 5, 1879. At the time of his death he was living with all five of his wives, which was a tribute to him and his wives. He had twenty-seven children not including the two Richardsons. He had fifty three living grandchildren, three had died.

(This is additional information on Fredrick Walter Cox that has been found since this short history was written.)

Here are a few of the characteristics and accomplishments of this good man:

He arrived in Manti when he was 40 years old. He served two missions in eastern U.S., and a three year mission to England in 1868 and presided over the Preston and Durham conferences. In 1876 he was called as a special missionary to the Indians as he, at that time, spoke three Indian dialects.

He was a trusted friend and advisor to the Indians. They often came for food and he always gave some to them. Indians came to him for advice from as far away as southern Utah. The painting depicts him preaching to about 20 Indians. However, William Arthur Cox stated that he “often saw great crowds of Indians by the big Cox house with Father Cox preaching and reasoning with them.”

He served as a member of the Manti City Council for many terms and was Treasurer of Sanpete County when he died. He, as you know, was president of the High Priests Quorum in Manti and officiated in the setting of the northwest comer stone of the Manti Temple. He served as a counselor to Stake President Isaac Morley in Illinois and to President Welcome Chapman in Manti. He was also a member of the Utah Territorial Legislature.


  1. Before and After Mt Pisgah, Clare B Christensen, 1979 (7482 N 6500 W American Fork, Utah 84003)
  2. Charles Edmund Richardson, Man of Destiny, Annie Richardson Johnson and Elva Richardson Shumway, 1982 (Contact Enola Mangelson, 260 W 1500 N, Orem, UT 84057)
  3. The 1845 Burning of Morley’s Settlement & Murder of Edmund Durfee, William G Hartley, 1997, Brigham Young University, Provo UT 84602

NOTE: Most of the information for this short biography of Fredrick Walter Cox was obtained from reference 1 above.

Additional information on the father, mother, brothers, and sisters of Fredrick Walter Cox is in the story of Edwin Marion Whiting and Anna Maria Isaacson, by Annette Farr, 1969 pgs 15 – 24. published by J Grant Stevenson, Provo, UT

Farewell and Farewell