Although my ancestry includes families from Canada,
Denmark, Great Britain, and Switzerland, there is mostly
Scotch in my veins. Since I don't drink, it must come
from my many Scottish ancestors: Belshe, Cameron, Dunbar,
Greenup, Hendrie, McKenzie, McPhail, McTaggart, Steele
and probably St. Clair. Some other family names in my
pedigree are Cecil, Cook, Evans, Hansen, Hochstrasser,
Lanz, and Witten. After arriving in this country, my
ancestors lived predominantly in Georgia, Illinois,
Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, North Carolina, Tennessee,
Virginia and Utah. One branch of the family actually
emigrated from the United States to Canada before the
turn of the century, where many cousins remain to this
day in the Cardston area. I am an enthusiastic
genealogist with great affection for my ancestors and a
constantly growing appreciation for my heritage.
To give you a quick snapshot of my ancestry, I've
posted four generation pedigree charts starting with
my father and
my mother. These were produced
using PAF*Mate, a Windows utility for PAF 2.x by Progeny
Software of Nova Scotia. Similar capabilities are
available for PAF version 3 using PAF Companion and are built
into PAF version 4. A future revision of this page will
probably connect to a more detailed version of my
personal ancestry after I've decided how to deal with
the privacy and security issues involved.
I'm the proud descendant of several individuals with
roots in Cache Valley straddling the border of Utah
and Idaho. For some materials related to this area,
see my Cache Valley page.
Family History Photo and Information Archive
This is the beginning of an archive that will grow over time. Where there are photos, click on
the tiny thumbnail pictures to view a larger one. If you share
my ancestry and have ancestral photos or stories that you would like to share with
the rest of the family, I'd be delighted to post copies. You can send me
electronically, or mail hard
copy to Mike St. Clair, 327 North 800 East, American Fork, Utah 84003.
In honor of Memorial Day and Veteran's Day, I have under construction a summary of heros within my family who have served in the military. It presently focuses on the
Civil War, but also includes a few who have served in World Wars I and II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. I haven't yet started to add
those from the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. You can see it at: http://www.saintclair.org/stories/Family_Participants_in_the_Military.pdf.
Mary Leota (Hansen) Steele and Eva Leota
Mary (my maternal grandmother) was born 30 Jan 1892 in
Aetna, Alberta, Canada (near Cardston) and married Oswald
Alexander Steele 28 Jun 1907 in Alberta. Eva (Mary's
mother) was born 8 May 1869 in Salt Lake City, Utah and
married Niels Hansen on 14 March 1887 in Logan, Cache,
Niels (my great grandfather) was born 11 Aug 1832 in Trostrup
Korup on the Island of Fyen, Denmark. He was an early convert
to the Mormon church in Denmark, serving as a missionary
several times during his life, in Norway and Denmark, in the
United States, and in Manitoba. Niels was a polygamist with
several wives, of whom my great grandmother Eva Leota
Hochstrasser was the last, and he left many descendents.
Niels and Eva married 14 Mar 1887 in Logan, Cache, Utah
shortly before emigrating to southwestern Alberta, Canada.
My wife and I have written a short biography of Niels Hansen
that is available online as
which you can read using Adobe's® free Acrobat® Reader.
This biography includes an extensive bibliography and
also discusses his parents, and some of his siblings,
wives, and children. In printed form it is 42 pages and
about 300k in size. (when originally posted) We plan to
improve and revise it from time to time. You can also
review a "family timeline" created during this project as
and a map showing the places important in his live after
emigrating from Denmark as
There has been some confusion over time about how many wives Niels really had, and with which he had
children. I have been studying this problem, and have written
a brief analysis of it which can be reviewed here at
Niels parents, Hans Jorgensen and Maren Christensen, were members of the first large company of Danish Saints to emigrate from
Denmark to the U.S., with Maren dying during the voyage. An unknown member of the company kept a journal which covered almost every day
of the trip from Denmark to the Salt Lake Valley, and which gives great insights into the trials they faced and the experiences they had.
There is an English transcription of this journal online at the Tracing Mormon Pioneers website. I'm working on a version which will be easier to read and to print and
will notify you all here when it's complete. There is also some good information about many of the members of this company at:
in the Church History portion of the LDS Church Website.
I welcome feedback about any of these documents about Niels Hansen,
which you can send to me at:
Versions of the Acrobat® Reader are available for most
computers, including Windows, Macintosh, Linux, Unix, and OS/2.
To download the latest version, click the "Get Acrobat Reader"
Rudolph (my 2nd great grandfather and father of Eva
above) was born 2 Sep 1839 in Fahrwangen, Aargau,
Switzerland. He was an early convert to the Mormon
church in the German-speaking portion of Switzerland
where he also later returned as a missionary. Rudolph
was also was a polygamist with several wives, of whom
Mary Ann Lanz (my 2nd great grandmother) was the 2nd.
They married 1 Nov 1861 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Rudolph
and Mary Ann lived for most of their lives in Providence,
Cache, Utah (near Logan).
Known as Jean or Jeanie to her friends and family, my
mother was born 9 May 1914 in Cardston, Alberta, Canada.
She was only three years old when her father, Oswald,
died during the world-wide flu epidemic in 1919. Her
mother, Mary Leota, later married the widowed Moroni "Ronnie"
Allen who I knew as "grandpa." They moved to Southern
Idaho where Jeaneva grew up, married and lived during the
time her nine children were born. A lovely and sweet
woman, she was afflicted from a fairly young age by an
insidious, rare disorder called Huntington's Disease
that gradually took away her
mobility and ability to communicate with others. I rejoice
in my knowledge that she no longer suffers these handicaps
and that she will (in the resurrection) regain
all her faculties and be able to fully participate with
her family once again.
Noah M. St. Clair, Sr.
Noah (my father) was born 3 March 1914 in Day, Taney,
Missouri, just a hop, skip and a jump from Branson where
everyone goes to listen to country music. During the
depression, my father would travel west during the
summers with his father to participate in agricultural
harvests, to thereby produce a little badly needed hard
cash. The summer of 1936, during the potato harvest in
Idaho he met a lovely young girl at a church dance in
Weiser, Idaho. He and Jeaneva Steele fell in love, then
married 7 October 1936 and settled in Idaho to raise
their family. After the first half of the family was
raised, they moved to southern California, where they
lived the remainder of their lives. The summer before
Noah died, he spent the summer with my family, at which
time this picture was taken with his five year old
I have recently obtained copies of two short autobiographies written
about his childhood and youth by my father. I've converted them
to PDF files named
(see above if you need a PDF reader) so I can share
them with the rest of the family and others who might be interested.
If you are aware of anything else written by or about Noah, his parents,
or his siblings, I would appreciate your letting me know.
Oswald Alexander Steele
Oswald (my maternal grandfather) was born and raised in
Ontario, Canada, in Middlesex county, not too far from
London. His ancestors on both the paternal and maternal
side came from Scotland in the mid-1800s. After
finishing school and receiving his teaching credentials,
Oswald took a long adventerous trip west and took a
teaching job in the small Alberta hamlet of Aetna where
he initially boarded with the family of my great
grandfather, Niels Hansen. While teaching there in a
small two room schoolhouse he helped teach Nathan Eldon
Tanner, who was later to become a prominent business and
government leader in Canada and a member of the leading
council of the Mormon church. He also fell in love with
one of his students, married her, and started a family.
He died of the flu during the winter of 1918 just before
the massive worldwide flu epidemic and didn't have the
opportunity to raise his five young children to adulthood.
James Alvis St. Clair and Lillian Lucettie Evans
My paternal grandparents were born, lived, and died in
the great state of Missouri where their ancestors had
come during the early 1800s. James was born in the
Ozarks, a third generation resident of Taney/Christian
counties on 30 November 1872. Lillian was born 8 November
1881 in Miller county, up near the central Missouri
capital city. Her family relocated to the southwestern
Ozark region when she was a young child. They married in
Taney county, 1 April 1900. Based on what I've learned
(and inherited) of the St. Clair sense of humour, it must
have been a challenge for her to have a wedding
anniversary occur on April Fool's Day! They had a large
family of 14 (one stillborn and a set of twins who died
as infants), raised them in southwest Missouri, and
remained their entire lives within a few county
William Cook and Mary Jane White
William Cook is my great great-grandfather, pictured here
with his second wife, Mary Jane White. Born in Tennessee,
and rumored to have married and lived for a time in southern
Illinois, William had most of his children and lived most
of his life in Christian and Taney counties in the Missouri
Ozarks. He must have been quite intense in his politics
as in the picture (he was at least age 72, when he married
his second wife as a widower) he is proudly wearing a
campaign ribbon reading "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too!" William
Henry Harrison, the hero of "Tippecanoe," had been elected
president in 1840 when William was but 27. Almost fifty
years later he still had that campaign ribbon and made sure
he was wearing it for the portrait. Do you think he was
a Whig perhaps?
William Franklin St. Clair and Ailcey Cook
William Franklin St. Clair and Ailcey Cook (to the right in
this picture) are my great grandparents. He was born in
the vicinity of Sparta (now Christian county) Missouri, shortly
after his parents arrived in the area in the late 1840s. Here
in the beautiful Ozarks he grew up, married, raised his family
and died, and as near as I can determine he never even traveled
far from his home. His sweetheart, Ailcey Cook, was born near
Sparta just a couple of months later. They must have had a firm
commitment to their family and each other right from the beginning
because their ornate, colorful, wall-sized wedding certificate
which could only be kept on the wall for all to see, has been
preserved. To the left in this picture is their eldest daughter,
Margaret Evangeline and her husband, Ed West.
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