Stillwell family recognizes Western pioneers

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It all started in 1883, when Henry Stillwell and Alfred Wells arrived in Oakland/San Francisco, Calif., to raise The Salvation Army flag.

Sent by the Founder, General William Booth, Stillwell and Wells were assigned the task of bringing the Gospel to the “wild west.”

One year later, Booth gave permission for two lassies to join the men and become their brides. One was Mary Matthews, who married Henry immediately upon her arrival in San Francisco.

Traveling up and down the Pacific Coast, Henry and Mary Stillwell became the initiators of numerous West Coast corps and the progenitors of a large Salvation Army family.

Today, that family is spread all across the United States. Many of the grandchildren are in the Southern Territory, under The Salvation Army name, Morrison. Some are in the Eastern Territory under the family names of Stillwell, Carlson, and Rightmire. Still others are in the West under the Stillwell name.

Recently, the grandchildren of Henry and Mary Stillwell (13 are still living) honored their grandparents by providing a grave marker in a Salvation Army plot in Inglewood Park Cemetery in California.

“We created the grave marker as a reminder of both the history of The Salvation Army in the West and the sacrifices of the early pioneers,” said Art Stillwell.

Eva Booth’s pump organ in Skagway, Alaska museum

Eva Booth’s pump organ in Skagway, Alaska museum

The Salvation Army’s Klondike party arrived on the SS Tees from Vancouver in

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