John Hopwood Bleazard

A Sketch of the Life History of Mary Jane Miller Hill 
by Stella Johnson Mackelprang


A Sketch of the Life History of Mary Jane Miller Hill

Written by Mary Jane's granddaughter, Stella J. McElprang, daughter of Elizabeth Hill (Cook) Johnson

Mary Jane Miller, daughter of James Miller and Sarah Searcy (or Surcey) was born 9 Jan 1832 at Beards, Montgomery County, Illinois. She was ten years of age when she embraced the gospel of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The date of her baptism was 10 October 1842.

It is believed that her father, James Miller, died at Nauvoo, Illinois, while working on the temple. (Isaac Hill's diary mentions a James Miller who died in Nauvoo on 12 March 1840, but does not state who he was. Mary Jane's father's family were living in Nauvoo at that time).

Mary Jane and her mother, Sarah Searcy, a widow, were married in polygamy to John Hopwood Bleazard 30 March 1846 at Winter Quarters. President Brigham performed the marriage ceremony, with Wilford Woodruff and Willard Richards as witnesses.

From this marriage of Mary Jane and John H. Blazzard two daughters, Sarah and Mary Ann were born. The latter, Mary Ann, died when she was about two years of age from effects of ill treatment received from her father.

Mary Jane became very angry and resentful toward her husband because of his outrageous temper and of his mistreatment of her children and of herself and of his cruelty to her child who died from the effects of his mistreatment.

Then too, she learned of how he had cheated a poor widow out of what little property she did have, and she (Mary Jane) felt she could not put up with his disgraceful conduct any longer, so she left him, taking her remaining daughter Sarah, with her. She received a divorce from him on 31 January 1850.

She, with her child, Sarah, along with other members of the Saints, left Nauvoo, Illinois, in 1849 with Captain Hooper's Company. She walked all the way across the plains and arrived in the salt Lake Valley with the company on 4 September 1850.

On 27 October 1853, Mary Jane married Isaac Hill in polygamy, with her sister, Martha Ann, who had married this same man, a widower, on 28 October 1851. They both were sealed to him in the Endowment House in Salt Lake City, Utah 21 April 1857.

Notes from Joan

This story is in my possession and as with all the stories, I am typing them exactly as they are. I know that there are errors in this story and in the DUP story. I'm certain that Mary Jane Miller Bleazard and her baby Sarah Ann, and her mother, Sarah Searcy, came to Utah with John Hopwood Bleazard and that they came to Utah with the Wilford Woodruff Co, in 1850. I'll be uploading some of Mary Jane's testimony during Court as to how many years she lived with John and about the two children. It will be in her own words.