Larkin, Elijah


Elijah Larkin was born in Cambridge, England on 20 April 1829. His father, Thomas, passed away nine years later, and Elijah’s mother, Sarah (Southwell) Larkin, raised the couple’s five children alone. Elijah learned the baker’s trade but later went into the police force.

He joined The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1845 at the age of sixteen. Two years later Elijah married Sarah Parfey, also of Cambridge, who was seventeen years his senior. They had two children during their twenty-seven-year union.  

The family immigrated to the United States in 1863 and arrived in Utah that October in the Daniel D. McArthur Company. Later that year Elijah married a plural wife, Ruth Coe, who had accompanied the family from England. Ruth bore six children over the next ten years, but only one child survived to adulthood. The family lived in Salt Lake City until 1870, when Elijah and Ruth moved to Ogden, Utah. Sarah remained in Salt Lake until her death in 1872. Elijah settled permanently in Tooele County in 1875.           

Elijah was employed as a gatekeeper for Brigham Young soon after his arrival at Salt Lake. He also managed the tithing sheep of the Church. Later in life he grew fruit and vegetables for the market.

Elijah served in the bishopric at St. John, Tooele County, until his death on 4 January 1905. Ruth and three children, two sons and a daughter, survived him.


1870 Utah Census (Elizier Larkin, Eleventh Ward, SaltLakeCounty, 614).

1870 Utah Census (Ruth Larkin, SaltLakeCounty, 614).

1880 Utah Census (Elijah Larkin, Ophir, TooeleCounty, 85C).

Esshom, Frank. Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah. Salt Lake City: Western Epics, 1966.

History of Tooele County. Salt Lake City: Tooele County Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1961.