Updated: Feb 19
It's been pretty easy to love the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City (RHOSLC) housewives. As individuals and an ensemble cast, they brought plenty of drama and laughs last season and have already kicked off season two in a similar fashion. The added bonus for me has been genealogy brought centerstage, which isn't really surprising considering the prominent role genealogy plays in the Church of Latter Day Saints (LDS) aka Mormons.
In particular, I've received several questions about Whitney Rose and Heather Gay's pioneer ancestors. New friend Angie Harrington was a major player in the drama last week, all stemming from her familial ties to Whitney as well.
Whitney Rose and Heather Gay
Whitney and Heather are third cousins, descended from William Edward Robinson (1866-1919) and Jane Chipman (1872-1947), both children of LDS pioneers, including Edward Robinson (1807-1896), known as the first railroad conductor on a steam railroad in the world.
The couple married 7 July 1890 in Provo, Utah, and had five children, including daughter Myrtle and son Lewis, the ancestors of Heather and Whitney, respectively.
Whitney Rose and Angie Harrington
The common ancestry of Whitney and newcomer Angie was partly explained on the show. They both share pioneer ancestor Shadrach Roundy (1789-1872) who has quite the prolific history, including protecting Joseph Smith on at least two occasions. He married Betsey Quimby (1793-1880) on 27 February 1815 in Rockingham, Vermont, and had 10 children. Shadrach and Betsey are Whitney's 3rd great-grandparents and Angie's 4th great grandparents. They are fourth cousins once removed through this relationship.
However, I also found an additional, closer relationship on this line between Whitney and Angie (and I know that at least Angie wasn't aware of it). Angie's 2nd great-grandparents were Byron Donalvin Roundy Sr. (1844-1912) and Matilda Ann Roundy (1852-1919). They were first cousins; Byron's father and Matilda's father were brothers, both the children of Shadrach and Betsey (Quimby) Roundy. Matilda's father was pioneer Lorenzo Wesley Roundy (1819-1876). He was a polygamist and the shared ancestor of Whitney and Angie, making them half third cousins once removed in this additional relationship.
Whitney descends from wife Priscila Parish (1833-1914) and Angie through Susannah Wallace (1820-1892). You can find them all living together in Centerville, Davis, Utah County in the 1860 U.S. Federal census.
In all, Lorenzo Wesley Roundy had 18 children across his three wives (his first wife had died prior to his plural marriage). When Whitney says she's probably related to everyone in Utah, she might not be too far off!
Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interesting in exploring your family history. Free initial consultations.
Follow me on social media: