Eliza Jane Losee Cox

The parents of Eliza Jane Losee, Isaac Huff Losee and Sarah Gilbert, heard about the Gospel in Michigan. They were baptized on Jan. 10, 1841. Aunt Almira Hatch says she remembers Grandmother said her folks were Quakers before hearing the Gospel and being baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Elder Henry Lameraux. Shortly thereafter this young couple with their baby son Rufus, who died the next fall, left Kalamzoo, Mich. to seek a home with the body of saints in Nauvoo, Ill. Though it does not say so in the history of Isaac Huff Losee on file with the D.U.P., written by Aunt Isadore Allen, it is very likely that they went on south of Nauvoo to Lima, Adams county, Ill. to make their home. Isaac's parents, David and Lydia Huff Losee, his older brother Abram and at least two of his sisters lived there and were members of the Lima Branch when it was organized the 23 of October, 1840 by Hyrum Smith. It was there that Grandmother, Eliza Jane was born Aug 10, 1842.

On May 11, 1843 Isaac H. received a call to fill a mission which he accepted. He took his wife, Sarah, and their baby girl, Eliza Jane, back to Michigan to stay with her folks while he was serving the Lord.

When Isaac H. had completed his mission, he took his family again to Nauvoo. There they endured the hardships, persecution and suffering to which the saints were subjected by the mobs. With the rest of the faithful they were forced to abandon their home and seek shelter in the far off west.

Eliza Jane had reached the ripe old age of five when this long trek began. For five years they helped in building the places along the way - Garden Grove, Mt. Pisgah, and Winter Quarters in Iowa. Isaac H. was a builder and all around handy man, so his services were needed to help build up these temporary rest places. Eliza Jane walked most of the way and often found time to play with the other children. Aunt Lovisa remembers this story from Grandmotherís experiences. She with others of the girls were playing hide and seek, and she ran along a big log that lay near the road and jumped as far as she could off the end of the log. Another little girl followed her but she didnít jump as far as Grandmother did and lit within striking distance of a rattlesnake which buried its deadly fangs in her leg. The girl was terribly sick, but an old Indian came along soon. after this happened add seemed to know what would help. He got some kind of weed, chewed it up and put it on the bite, and instructed them not to move her until the "snake came out." Her leg turned spotted like a snake but she got well and continued her trip. Grandmother saw her years later and was informed that at certain times in the year the leg would turn spotted add bother her some.

In June of 1852 the Losee family finally got on their way to cover the last and longest and most desolate part of their quest for a home in the valleys of the Mountains. They arrived in Salt Lake Valley Sept. 15 1852. Eliza Jane had her tenth birthday on the way, and by this time four more little Losees had joined up with them. This family of seven made their first home in the vicinity of Salt Lake City which is now called the Sugar House Ward.

Answering a call to help settle other parts of the state they moved to Lehi, then they were among the first settlers of Cedar Fort. In 1858 they moved to Manti, Utah. There they found a number of families who had lived in the old Lima branch. Among them was the family of Orville Sutherland Cox which by this time had grown considerably. It grew more when on the 22 day of June, 1859, Eliza Jane Losee became his third wife.

I canít now remember whether it was Aunt Lovisa or Aunt Almira that told me they remembered Grandfather saying that when the refugee saints from Lima, driven by the mob, sought refuge in Nauvoo and were forced to live several fami1ies in a house, and he saw that little Losee girl playing with his daughter, he never dreamed that some day they would be living in the same house as man and wife.

Grandmother was not quite seventeen when she was married, but the rigors of pioneer living had certainly matured her. She was readily accepted into the family and Orville's children by his other wives loved her dearly. She had a very understanding heart and was kind and sweet to all. Because of this, and being young, the children all felt she understood them, so they went to her with their troubles and problems. She gave her help and sympathy gladly.

Grandmother had been taught all the necessary arts of homemaking by her pioneer mother, such a spinning, weaving, sewing, and making straw hats. So, in spite of her youth she was well qualified to assume the roll of homemaker mother.

Aunt Lovisa described her to us as tall and stately, rather slender, with dark hair and eyes; a countenance that just radiated understanding kindness, and love.

The first few years of her married life were spent at Fairview, Sanpete, Utah. Then in 1865, her husband having been advised by Lorenzo Snow to move to the Muddy, took Eliza Jane, their two year daughter, Lucinda, and Walter his eleven year old son by Elvira and moved to the designated spot. It again was a long hard trip. Orville assisted in building dams and ditches to get water on the land. Because of the quicksand this taxed all of their pioneer ingenuity. When a home was built and the crops planted Orville returned to get the rest of his family and move them to the Muddy. During his absence a very tragic thing happened. Here I am going to let Aunt Ada tell the story

"Eliza's little girl, Lucinda, took her little pail to the creek to get some water; the quicksand caused her to slip, and she was drowned. They took her out not very far down stream but could not resuscitate her. The poor mother, among strangers and homesick, was inconsolable in her sorrow. Walter, seeing his little pet companion stricken in all her robust beauty and health, was wild with grief, and could not be comforted. After a time the neighbors concluded that Walter would die if some change did not come to get him to sleep and eat. They told Eliza of their fears for him, and so the disconsolate mother tried to hide her own grief and comfort him.Ē
The Cox family helped settle the towns of St. Thomas, St. Joseph, and Overton, enduring all the trials and hardships of such pioneering until it seemed that prosperity at last was to smile on them. Then a survey placed that land in Nevada, which levied back taxes on the land to the extent that the land was not worth it. At the advice of Brigham Young, these broken hearted people left their orchards, and their fields of cotton, and grain, and returned to Utah. In each of those Nevada towns Eliza gave birth to a daughter; Sarah Jane at St. Thomas, Nov. 15, 1866, Almira Miranda at St. Joseph Oct. 20, l867, and Pheobe Ann at Overton Sept. 30, 1870. Sarah Jane only lived two days. Tragedy in the far off place had claimed her first two children.

The Cox family with other returning from Nevada stopped at a little abandoned settlement in Long Valley, called Mt. Carmel, in Kane County. There they cleared out the deserted cabins, engineered ditches, canals, and dams, and got the land ready for production, when the former owner, seeing that the dams and ditches looked more promising than before, returned and said, "This is ours! Get out!" They then moved up the valley to a pleasant cove, where they again settled. At the suggestion of Brigham Young, these travel weary people , who had known so much tragedy and hardship, established the ďUnited QrderĒ and called the place Orderville. In its twelve years existence as such became known as "the best off ward in the Church'!

During their stop at Mt. Carmel, Eliza Jane gave birth to her first and only son, Orlan "L" 2 Jan l875 and in Orderville lO Dec. l877 her fifth daughter Lovisa.

Orderville was their home for twelve years. Eliza's parents had also made their home there too. When the order broke up, the Losee family moved over into a small secluded valley in Garfield county. Orville Cox moved his youngest wife Eliza and their children there with all her folks. There they started a settlement they called Loseeville. Those living in Loseeville were members of the Cannonville Ward. Cannonville was situated about five or six miles to the south. Orville built his family a home and surveyed ditches for irrigation. Water was a scarcity there and for that reason the community did not survive. Grandfather Orville surveyed another ditch to a more permanent creek and proposed bringing water in from there. The other inhabitants didnít think it could be done so they didnít try. A few years later when the town of Tropic was established in l894, they got their water over this same survey.

Orville left his family in Loseeville to go to Fairview and see his family there with intent of moving them all to Garfield Co., Aunt Lovisa said. While at Fairview he became ill and died on the 4 July 1888. It was three weeks before this sad news reached his family in Loseeville.

Grandmother with her four living children stayed in Loseeville. But dreaded cancer was preying upon her and she succumbed to it 1 Dec. l889. She is buried in the Loseeville cemetery. Aunt Almira, then 22 years, took over the family, with the help of their grandparents who lived close by. Shortly after this, however, these devoted Saints laid down their tired bodies in the community which they had helped to settle and which had been named after them.

Note: Loseeville was situated about three miles east of the present town of Tropic, and though all signs of the settlement has disappeared the cemetery still remains in the mist of a field. It has been fenced but the fence has fallen down and a subscription is being taken to put a good permanent fence around this place where the bodies of Great Grandfather and grandmother Losee and a number of their descendants including Grandmother Eliza Jane Losee are laid. If any of you would like to contribute to this subscription it would be appreciated.

Written by Orlan and Bernice Bartlett Cox.

Sources for this Material:
History of Isaac Huff Losee on file at the D.U.P. Library.
Biography of Orville S. Cox by Adelia B. Cox Sidwell.
Interviews with Aunt Lovisa Johnson And Aunt Almira Hatch.
Ward and branch records from the various places in which Eliza Jane lived.
Family group sheets.