Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Johan Gindrup and Sarah Andersen Gindrup

Johan Joachim Ginderup aka John Gindrup

The youngest son of Jens and Julie Amica Jacobsen Ginderup was Johan Joachim.  Later in his life, Johan changed his name to John Gindrup.  He must have thought this would make his name easier for Americans to understand and spell.  From the time he left Denmark and throughout his life his name was spelled many different ways; Ginrup, Gentrup, Gintrup, Gendrop, and Gundrap.

John was born in 1831 in Trinitatis, Denmark.  We have no records concerning his adolescence.  We do know he was baptized in March of 1861 into the LDS Church.  In May 4, 1865, from what we can tell, John left Denmark alone with only his fellow saints as his family.

John boarded the Aurora with 557 other Mormons and sailed to Kiel, Germany.  At Kiel, they caught a train to Altona.  The journey continued with a steamboat ride up to a place near Hamburg, Germany.  It was at Hamburg that they boarded the B.S. Kimball, a double-decked ship.  Although the Kimball encountered only one real storm, death was a prevalent enemy.  Twenty-eight of the Saints died of the measles; twenty-five of those victims were young children.
On June 5, a boat came near the Kimball and informed the crew and passengers that the American Civil War was over and rebel president Jefferson Davis was a prisoner.  There was much rejoicing among the immigrants.  The passengers gave three hurrahs for their leaders, Bro. Windburg and Svenson, for Captain Dearborn, for a reunion in Utah, and even one for the American Constitution.

Near the end of the voyage, the water that was left to drink was so nasty to the taste, that they put vinegar in it to make it bearable to drink.  When they finally reached the end of the voyage on June 14, 1865, the bed bugs and vermin in their bedding were so annoying they could hardly stand sleeping in them.  Once in New York, 411 of the Saints continued on by railroad to St. Joseph, Missouri.  In Missouri, they caught a steamer for the rest of the way to Florence, Nebraska.  The group somehow got to Wyoming, Nebraska because that is where they waited to get their outfits and where they left for Utah.  The group waited over a month before they received all their oxen and provisions.

 On July 31, Miner Atwood, Captain of the group, led the Saints from Wyoming, Nebraska to the promised land of Utah.  John Gindrup was made the group’s secretary.  Driving across the country with oxen was a new concept to nearly all of the immigrant saints.  They soon had to learn commands like, who! and hoa! for the oxen.  They also needed to learn how to yoke, breach a wagon, fix axles and tongues, set tires and shoe oxen.

Death seemed to run rampant in this group.  One woman was trampled to death by four teams of stampeding oxen.  Later, near Fr. Laramie, some Indians and vagabonds started a stampede among the oxen and other animals while the animals were loose and resting.  One family was attacked – the father shot, and the mother abducted and never heard from again.

Provisions became extremely low when they were still four weeks and three days away from the Salt Lake Valley.  It was decided that each adult would receive only one pound of flour a day.  John Gindrup had his flour made up into three biscuits, like many of the other pioneers did.  He was overheard to say each morning after he ate his first biscuit, “Now Brother Gindrup, you have had your breakfast.”  He would then eat his second biscuit, and say “Brother Gindrup, you have had your dinner.”  Then after immediately eating his last biscuit he would finish with, “Now Brother Gindrup, you have had your supper and may travel the rest of the way among the prickly pears and cactus.”  John’s Company eventually arrived in Salt Lake City on November 8, 1865, and set up camp in a big field designated as the Eighth Ward square, where the City and County building now stands.

John then set himself up as an upholsterer in Salt Lake City.  John’s future wife would not leave Denmark for another two years.

Excepts from The Thompson Tale by Danielle Batson

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