The Theodore Turley Family Organization is run by volunteers, and we’d love your help! There are many ways to assist the work of the TTFO or family history generally. Check out some ideas below!

Know how to use a computer? Congrats! You can do family history!

If you want to start with your own lines…

Verify information. A great way to help is to make sure your own family lines are accurate. The free website FamilySearch.org is sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but it is unique among genealogy websites because it features a universal family tree. Check your own family lines in FamilySearch’s Family Tree and verify, verify, verify. FamilySearch can help you find records about your family members so that you can “attach” them as sources. Does the information in the tree match the historical record? If not, is there a good reason? Sometimes historical records are incorrect, but sometimes families have inadvertently shared faulty information. Since starting this website, we’ve discovered that death dates and even names in many family records are incorrect.

Share memories. FamilySearch.org is a great way to share memories. On that website, “memories” can include photos, documents, stories (kind of like social media posts with photos attached), and audio clips. Bug your parents or go through those boxes of family history papers that you inherited. Are there photographs, documents, journals, or personal histories in those files that aren’t on FamilySearch? Digitize as much as possible and share it online via FamilySearch, social media, or even our website! Here are examples of items that family members made available to us to share on our website: Photos from Charles Herman Turley Collection and 1992 Clarence F. Turley, Sr. video.

FamilySearch Memories

If you want to help family history efforts generally…

Maybe you just want to get some general service hours in or don’t want to commit to anything big. Here are a few suggestions for ways to serve your community and others via family history!

FamilySearch indexing. Indexing historical records is what makes searching for ancestors in computer databases possible! Find more info at FamilySearch.org/Indexing.

Transcribing records. Transcribe historical records at the Utah State Archives or find an archive in your local community that needs help with transcription!

Gravestone photos. Family member Krystal Adair Hon suggested “taking pictures at a cemetery for findagrave.com and/or billiongraves.com.”

Salt Lake City Cemetery

If you want to help the Theodore Turley Family Organization…

Join us! Contact us to get your name added to our email list. We send out emails a few times per year. Also, join with us in our organization events! We have administrative meetings twice a year (typically April and October) and a yearly celebration commemorating Theodore’s birthday. Spread the word via text or social media to other family members who might be interested in receiving our emails or attending our events.

  • Are you great with social media? We’d love help spreading the word about the TTFO and fun of family history. We have a Facebook group, but we don’t have accounts on any other social media platforms (Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, etc.). Would you be up for creating short social media posts once a week or a couple times a month?
Rick Turley presenting at a TTFO event.

Website additions. This website is two years old, but it is still very much under construction. We want this to be a great resource for family members and historical researchers alike. Here are some ideas of content that we’d like to get on our website, but we need help creating it!

  • Posts or articles for our blog on Theodore Turley, his descendants, or other family history topics.
  • Short explainer videos or slide shows relating to Theodore Turley and his family. We could post these on our website or YouTube.
  • Help collecting “Related Links.” On each family member page, we have a list of related links at the bottom of the life sketch pointing others toward great relevant sources online (see Frances Kimberley page, for example). Are you skilled with internet search engines? Pick a family member and look for really good online posts/websites about that person that we should know about. Compile a list and send it in!
  • Have you made family history trips? We’d love photos, maps, and informational guides for the locations you’ve visited that relate to Theodore Turley or his descendants for our Places page. These could include places in England, Canada, Missouri, Illinois, Utah, California, etc.
    • Did you attend the 1997 placement of Theodore Turley’s headstone in Beaver, Utah? We’d love your pics and a description of your experience!
    • Did you attend the 2010 Theodore Turley Family Reunion in Salt Lake City? We’d love your pics and a description of your experience!
    • Did you attend the 2014 Theodore Turley commemoration event in Nauvoo? We’d love your pics and a description of your experience!
    • Did you attend the 2017 Ontario Church History Conference in Brampton & Churchville? We’d love your pics and a description of your experience!
    • Did you attend the 2016 Beaver or the 2018 San Bernardino field trips with the Theodore Turley Family Organization? We’d love your pics and descriptions of your experience!
    • Have you served missions or spent extended amounts of time in locations important to Theodore Turley and his descendants? We’d love your pics and a description of your experience!
  • Do you know of great books that would help family members better understand Theodore Turley, his time period, or his descendants? Let us know so we can add it to our Other Books and Websites page.
  • Do you know of artifacts or heirlooms related to Theodore Turley? Do you know the location of any of the missing family heirlooms? Let us know!
  • Transcriptions of talks in audio clips or videos (see example of transcripts here and here)
    • 2014 Nauvoo Theodore Turley Commemoration Event with Susan Durrant and Rick Turley (see video here)
    • 2017 remarks at dedication of plaque in Churchville Cemetery by Rick Turley (see video on this webpage) We have a volunteer for this one.
    • 2017 TTFO research presentation with Rick Turley, David R. Turley, and Mary Ann Clements (contact us for audio)
    • 2018 TTFO research presentation with Leo Lyman (contact us for audio)
  • Name or subject index of newsletters in our archive. There is a ton of great information in past TTFO newsletters, but it’s not always easy to figure out what’s available. Pick one newsletter and write down the names or subjects with the associated page number. We’ll add your contribution to a master list that we can post on the website.
  • Do you have other ideas for great additions to the website? Let us know!
2018 San Bernardino Field Trip – Standing on Theodore Turley’s old property in San Bernardino.

Research help. We are still discovering new information about Theodore Turley and his descendants! Do you like to do research? Whether you like physically going to archives and courthouses or just like to dig in online digitized collections, there is plenty to explore.

  • Property records or residences.
    • Where was Theodore’s property in Far West, Missouri (1838-1839)?
    • Can we figure out where Theodore resided during his years in Winter Quarters (1846-1848) or Kanesville (1848-1849)? The Latter-day Saints abandoned the Winter Quarters settlement on the Nebraska side in April 1848, so we know he lived in Iowa for close to a year.
    • Can we figure out where Theodore resided in Cedar City, Utah (1858)?
  • Birth records.
    • Christening records for the children born in Canada prior to 1837. Check records for Episcopal Methodist Church on New-Gate Street and Toronto Street in York (built 1818) and Primitive Methodist Church on Bay Street in York (built 1829). Theodore stated in his Family Memorial for Frances Kimberley that he registered Mary Ann Turley‘s 13 July 1827 birth at the “Methodist Episcopal Church” in York. This is likely referring to the Episcopal Methodist Church on New-Gate and Toronto Streets.
    • A christening record for William Turley’s 1770 birth near Sedgley, Staffordshire, England? We know his father was Joseph Turley of Sedgley according to Theodore Turley’s missionary journal. William was in the Royal Battalion, which is probably what took him to the larger city of Birmingham in Warwickshire.
  • Marriage records. Any diaries, letters, or first-hand reminiscences that can help us confirm these marriage dates and locations? It doesn’t look like official civil records are available.
    • Mary Ann Turley‘s marriage to John Cook on 8 Sep. 1851 in Sycamore Grove near San Bernardino, California. We have the general time period accurate, but nothing that confirms the day (Sep. 8th).
    • Frederick Turley‘s marriage to Amelia Louisa Counsell on 1 Jan. 1856 or 1 Jun. 1856 in San Bernardino. Was it January or June?
    • Sarah Elizabeth Turley‘s marriage to Stephen Franklin in 1853 in San Bernardino. The red book says 1855, but a life sketch written shortly after Stephen Franklin’s 1898 death says he arrived in San Bernardino in 1852 and was married there to Sarah in 1853. Stephen Franklin is mentioned several times in Amasa Lyman’s journal in 1854, which suggests he’d become a member of the extended Turley family by that point.
    • Isaac Turley‘s marriage to Sarah Greenwood on 11 Mar. 1861. The marriage likely occurred in either Minersville or Beaver, Utah. I’ve searched the 1860-1865 civil marriage records in San Bernardino County, California, and didn’t have any luck. Beaver County was awful about recording marriages at this time, so we’ll probably need to locate a diary entry or something.
  • Death records
    • Death records for the two children who died in Churchville (Theodore Jr. sometime between March and November 1837 and Obia Turley in July 1834) – can we find any contemporary mention of their deaths, church records, or maybe burials in the Churchville Cemetery? The only source we have on Theodore Jr. is Theodore’s 1837 letter to Isaac Russell. The only source we have on Obia’s birth and death is the Family Memorial for Frances Kimberley.
    • Any death records from Kanesville (now Council Bluffs), Pottawattamie County, Iowa? We don’t have any other contemporary records that confirm the existence of Theodoreus Turley, son of Theodore Turley and Mary Clift. Based on his 28 May 1848 birth and 31 Dec. 1848 death, any historical records about him would likely be from death records in Kanesville or diaries of people who were around the Turley family in Kanesville. (The Latter-day Saints abandoned the Winter Quarters settlement on the west side of the Mississippi River in April 1848.)
    • Mention of Frederick Turley‘s 1875 Minersville death in contemporary records like diaries or newspapers? Maybe a probate record? We’ve got the red book that says Frederick died on 24 Feb. 1875, but Amasa Lyman’s journal says he died on 17 Feb. 1875.
    • Mention of Ruth Jane Giles Turley’s death on 28 Dec. 1880 or March 1881? Church membership records are pretty solid on the 28 Dec. 1880 death date, but it’d be nice to have some corroboration with another record. Her residence at that point was Beaver (she was living with her son Jacob Omner Turley), so we’d be looking for diaries, letters, or church records talking about Ruth’s death and burial in Beaver.
  • Mention of Turley family members in other historical records. These can include diaries, letters, newspapers, land records, church records, local histories, etc. Please contact us when you find cool stuff! (And boring stuff. We’ll definitely take the boring stuff, too.)
Genealogy page from Theodore’s mission journal.