“The First Command was to ‘Multiply.’ The Prophet taught us that Dominion & Power in the great future would be comensurate with the no [number] of ‘Wives, Childin & Friends’ that we inheret here. And that our great mission to earth was to Organize a Neculi of Heaven to take with us. To the increase of which there would be no end.”
Benjamin F. Johnson
My Life’s Review:
Autobiography of Benjamin F. Johnson

Continued from: “Pt 34-N: The Mexico-LeBaron Madmen: Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button?

In blogs “Pt 33″ and “Pt 34-A,” I stated incest on my maternal grandfather Alma Dayer LeBaron’s side definitely contributed to the mental illness prevalent in most of my maternal grandparents’ ten children who lived to adulthood!

Grandfather Alma Dayer LeBaron Sr.’s parents were first cousins:
His grandfather Benjamin Franklin Johnson’s seventh wife’s daughter Sarah Jane Johnson married her paternal Aunt Esther Melita Johnson’s son Benjamin Franklin LeBaron–-Benjamin Franklin Johnson’s nephew.
In other words, Benjamin F. Johnson’s daughter married his sister’s son. [1]

Recently, I read Benjamin F. Johnson’s autobiography “My Life’s Review,” a well-written, interesting history. And a testament to what strong testimony and fortitude can accomplish.

But pertinent to me in this essay is: His memoir verifies mental illness ran in the genes of my paternal grandfather Dayer LeBaron’s family tree — as well as in my maternal grandmother Maud’s side.

Many people believe the mental illness in the Mexico-LeBaron family was ONLY inherited from my grandmother Maud McDonald’s family tree. Not so!

In Chapter Two, BFJ states:
“While in Amherst, at my brother Joel’s, a mania seemed to come over [my brother] Seth, whom we all so dearly loved; and who was regarded by all as a gentleman and a scholar – a pattern for all young men.

Apparently this was because of his extreme anxiety to see our father converted to the truth and redeemed from his intemperance [alcoholism].

Our first intimation of this mania was the discovery that he had left the house in the night, and when, after anxious searching and waiting for him, he came back about 10 o’clock A.M. next day, his mind in a wild and deranged condition. 

“We found he had traveled near 100 miles in that short period of time.

He returned home with my father, and remained weakened in mind for a few months, but was the same fall able to come to Ohio, from which place, after a short stay, I accompanied him home, after which he became to all appearance perfectly sound in mind.” [2]

My grandpa Dayer LeBaron’s cousin Owen LeBaron had bipolar problems; spent time in a Mental Institution — at the SAME time and in the same facility where Grandpa Dayer’s son Benjamin LeBaron was institutionalized!

And where Dayer’s youngest son Verlan LeBaron was working as an Aid to pay his way through college while attending the Brigham Young University! Coincidences never cease to abound.

But I’m sure my handsome Uncle Verlan — at one time, a Cary Grant look-alike — made a wonderful and sensitive assistant at the Utah State Mental Institution; he, himself, having grown up with two schizophrenic siblings, Lucinda and Ben. (His brother Ervil’s psychosis didn’t make itself known till much later in Verlan’s life.)

Regarding cousin Owen LeBaron, the following is a re-quote, from one of my former blogs:

Historian Kris Wray said: “I’d gamble his mental illness came from the Johnson/LeBaron line. His dad’s (William Farland LeBaron) parents were David Tully LeBaron Jr. and Harriett Naomi Johnson.

“Grandpa David Tully’s parents were David Tully LeBaron Sr. and Esther [Melita] Johnson [Benjamin F. Johnson’s sister].” [3]

I rest my case:
Part of the reason there was much mental illness in my grandparents Maud and Dayer LeBaron’s family is because Mania/Bipolar Disease/Schizophrenia ran in BOTH sides of their Family trees. Then multiplied through incestuous marriage.

1- NOTE:
Incest is illegal because marrying close relatives doubles the recessive genes/ bad genes in one’s genetic gene pool:
Insanity is a recessive gene.

2- NOTE:
In Mania/ Type I Bipolar Disorder, the mood becomes abnormally heightened, accompanied by hyperactivity and a reduced need for sleep.

This state lasts in the individual for a time; then the afflicted person generally returns to his/her normal state … until perhaps another episode of mania occurs.

“COMMENT from Mary B. Taylor:

Hi, Steph: Thanks for your latest blog. Im drifting off to sleep but wanted to give you these details of relation:

“My maternal grandmother is a niece of Harriet Naomi Johnson (whom you mentioned). Her mother was Emma Geneva Johnson, both daughters of BFJ and Harriet Naomi Johnson.*

Emma Geneva had been a plural wife with her sister Harriet and had one baby with David Tully LeBaron. The baby died as a toddler. Emma’s and David’s marriage dissolved after the Manifesto and then Emma married my great-grandfather.

“Another interesting thing. Those sisters’ mother was a daughter of Roxannia Naomi Lebaron, who was the only living child of David T. LeBaron Sr. and his first wife, Azuba King.

Azuba died young and then David Tully LeBaron married your ancestor. So my husband and I are cousins through Johnson AND LeBaron. I feel like we’re far enough apart, though, for these gene’s not to affect us too much.
I also think that poverty and fanatacism play a huge part in mental illnesses. As you’ve said.

“Lastly, my grandma Orpha Vance Blackmore had those genetics (Johnson and LeBaron) and she suffered with post-partum depression so severely that she abandoned her 3 babies to walk to find her mother, who was a couple hundred miles away.

She spent the next 4 years in a mental hospital. Eventually she was reunited with her children. Her husband never gave up on her. She was very fortunate.

*(Harriet Naomi Johnson and Emma Geneva johnson were daughters of Harriet Naomi Holman Johnson and BFJ.”)

[3]. PS: I was thinking about Owen LeBaron. I don’t know much about him but he was a product of somewhat close-cousin-grandparents, I guess:

Harriet Naomi Holman and David Tully LeBaron would have been something like half-first-cousins, once removed. I’ll have to think about it further.

Roxanna Naomi LeBaron was half sister to David Tully LeBaron, and Melissa Bloomfield LeBaron. She and my 4th-great-grandfather James Holman raised them after they became orphans.

My siblings and I were very very fortunate to have our grandparents very much in our lives. Gramma (Orpha) recovered from her mental breakdown and was able to finish raising most of her children when they were teenagers and then to become the most wonderful grandmother to me. She wrote her memoir.

She is the mother of Kenyon Blackmore who also claims some kind of One Mighty and Strong something. One of Gramma’s sisters spent her last years in a mental hospital: Lula Vance Olsen.

Good morning, Mary:
This feedback is what I was looking for. I was wondering how many cases of mental disorders exist in our family trees but have been covered up.

Benjamin F. Johnson had a huge family and therefore a humongous posterity—I have Johnson and LeBaron relatives all over the place.

It would be interesting to know how many others have suffered from these recessive genes for bipolar and other disorders. But I once heard that it is not unusual to have at least one mentally ill person in a large family.

Your genealogical knowledge and family history is extensive. I appreciate your taking time to share information with me and my readers.

So thank you once again for your time and information. It all adds to my quest for why there was so much insanity in my maternal grandparents’ offspring!

Stephany Spencer-LeBaron

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