Heman T. Hyde was the son of Heman Hyde and Polly Wyman Tilton, the
eldest of their four sons and eight children. Heman T. was born June 18,
1812 in Strafford, Orange County, Vermont.
He was introduced to the Church by the Prophet Joseph
Smith and Parley P. Pratt. He was
baptized the next day March 11, 1834. Later, Elder Pratt recorded
in his autobiography: "We baptized a young man named Heman Hyde; his parents
were Presbyterians, and his mother, on account of the strength of her traditions,
thought the we were wrong, and told me afterwards that she would much rather
have followed him to an earthly grave than to have seen him baptized. Soon
afterwards, however, herself, her husband, and the rest of the family,
with some thirty or forty others, were all baptized and organized into
a branch of the Church--called the Freedom Branch--from which nucleus the
light spread and souls were gathered into the fold in all the regions round.
Thus mightily grew the word of God, or the seed sown by that extraordinary
personage, the Prophet and Seer of the nineteenth century." (Autobiography
of Parley P. Pratt, p. 117.)
Shortly after his baptism, Heman volunteered to accompany
the Prophet on Zion's Camp, the expedition to provide relief to the saints
who were suffering persecution in Missouri. In consequence of his faith
and valor, he was ordained a Seventy and called into the newly created
First Quorum of the Seventy in early 1835, thus earning a position in the
roster of General Authorities.
Later the same year Elder Hyde married Eunice Sawyer
on October 13, 1835. The Ancestral File lists no children of this
The Ancestral File reports that Elder Hyde died May 26, 1842 at Payson, Adams County, Illinois at the age of only thirty, This was undoubtedly at least partially due to the privations and persecution he suffered as an Saint in those early days.
The gentle reader is warned against making the same mistake that Grampa did and confusing Heman T. Hyde with his father, Heman Hyde. The elder (small 'e') Hyde survived the Nauvoo era and treked west with the saints. Indeed, he was appointed a "Captain Of Fifty" under (then) Elder Lorenzo Snow on the trek west. Andrew Jenson's Church Chronology reports the elder Hyde's death in Salt Lake City on June 11, 1869
Grampa is indebted to Sister Fawn Morgan for clearing up the confusion between father and son... and for setting Grampa on the trail of additional information on Elder Hyde's family. I refer the reader to "Heman Hyde and Polly Wyman Tilton," a history written by Myrtle S. Hyde and posted on the web on PDF format.