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Mary Jones was born in Swansea, South Wales, Great Britain August 7, 1838. She was the oldest daughter of Elias and Mary Williams Jones. Her early childhood was spent in Wales. While in Great Britain she attended an institution of higher learning at Bath, England. In April 1856 she and her family set sail for America. Six weeks later they landed at Boston and took the train to Iowa City. That Fall they joined Captain Hunt's Company to go to Utah. They reached Salt Lake City on Christmas Eve. Mary Jones went to Camp Floyd, Utah to live with a friend. While there she met Thomas Flavel a bookkeeper in Johnston's Army and was married to him some time in 1858. He was a very refined well-dressed gentleman. He could keep himself well-groomed at. the work he followed. His parents had educated him in Ireland to become a Catholic Priest, but this was not to his liking, so he joined the army to escape a ministerial life. He was very much devoted to his wife and liked always to see her well dressed. At Fairfield (on Camp Floyd), Utah on February 12, 1860 a baby boy was born, which they called William. When the child was less than a year old the husband's duties called him to Nevada. He wanted to take his wife and baby with him, but it seemed advisable for his wife to remain with her father until Thomas arranged for a home for his family in Nevada. Due to Indian raids and pioneer conditions the mail was very uncertain in those days and evidently they heard from each other very little. A few years ago a scrap of torn paper was found in their old home, which was part of a letter from Thomas Flavel written to his wife nearly 83 years ago (July 22, 1861). The letter told how helpless it seemed to try to get a letter from her, and that he hoped to have enough money saved by the next Spring to bring her and William to him. Until after the death of Mary Jones Flavel (Nov.) it was assumed that her husband had been drowned while crossing Green River, because no one knew that she had ever heard from him after he left. She waited ten long years for his return, then she married William Bona, November 16, 1870. He was born in Wales April 8, 1838, and had been in love with her since the former marriage. Seven children were born to them. Years later (about 1910) William Bona had been to California and anticipated another trip to see his sister and her sons. His dream was realized in part. He visited with his sister for a short time and then left for the house of his neice not far distant. When he didn't return to his sister's home in due time she became concerned about him and upon investigation learned that he had never reached his neice's home. A search was begun, but to no avail. He was never found. Strange that two such incidents should occur in the life of one woman. More long hours of anxious waiting grew into days, weeks, months and years but he was never heard of again. Mary Jones died the 14th of Sept. 1923 in Spanish Fork, Utah. (* This original letter is in the possession of Lois M. Larsen. )


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Dennis Larsen
10890 Bohm Place
Sandy, UT 84094
United States