Nephi David Beckstrand 1878-1957

Nephi David

Nephi David Beckstrand was born in a two-room log house on 1 November 1878, in Meadow, Millard County, Utah, a son of Elias August and Henrietta Cecilia Ahlquist Beckstrand. He was born in humble circumstances into a warm and loving family. He was privileged to grow up enjoying many great blessings. He commented many times of the kindness of Anna Sophia (his father's first wife). Whenever he went to her home, she would consider his comfort equally with her own children. Many were the times that she saw to it that he was not hungry, providing him with the good food that was available. The closeness in the family continued throughtout the lives of the children. Nephi, Joseph Conrad, and John August were the best of friends.

Nephi's formal education began in Meadow followed by a number of years at the Murdock Academy in Beaver, Utah. He then attended the Brigham Young Academy in Provo for another two years. He had an excellent tenor voice and participated in singing groups wherever he went and had the leading roles in many musical productions.

During these years he helped the family produce fruits, vegetables and other things which were taken to Frisco, west of Milford and "pedaled" house to house. On one of these trips, Nephi, in company with others from Meadow, had sold the bulk of the produce. They were camped just outside of town waiting for morning so they could return home. At this time, he was only fourteen years of age. He was bedded down in his wagon awaiting dawn when an Indian entered his wagon intent on getting some of his food. There was some excitement which caused the other members of the group to awaken. Because of the insecure feeling, they hooked their horses to their wagons and drove toward home in the dark of the night.

On 1 June 1910, Nephi was married to Mary Hannah Adams in the Salt Lake Temple in Salt Lake City. A day or two later, Nephi left for a two-year mission to England. He he experienced great trials and periods of reward. One cold, damp winter he became ill with pneumonia but was able to revive and complete his mission. When returning from England, his ship passed through the area where the Titanic had sunk only a short time before. He was awed by the gigantic icebergs that were floating in the area.

Upon returning home from his mission, he and Mary set up housekeeping. They were parents of three children--Austin N (born 29 May 1914), Evan A (born 16 November 1917), and Lucile (born 11 February 1923). All three children were born in Meadow. Lucile died in Meadow on 1 November 1931, when she was eight years old.

Nephi was a great advocate of educational training. He was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and was a High Priest at the time of his death. He died at the age of seventy-eight on 10 May 1957, in Salt Lake City.

Histories Compiled and Edited by Sue Anne Beckstrand Thompson
Our Beckstrand Heritage: Christina Beckstrand Pehrsson, Karl Johan Beckstrand, Elias August Beckstrand and their families
(Logan, Ut., self published, 2003)