logo John Thomas Caine


 See Introduction for some general background.

LDS Biographical Encyclopedia,, Vol. 1, p.726

Caine, John Thomas, Utah's fourth delegate to Congress, is the son of Thomas Caine and Elinor Cubbon, and was born in the parish of Kirk Patrick, Isle of Man, Jan. 8, 1829. Speaking of the days of his childhood, Elder Caine says: "I knew if I ever amounted to anything, it would be by my own exertions, for I had no one to help me and was practically alone in the world. I had confidence, however, that a straight forward, honorable course, backed by energy and perseverance, would succeed, and such a course I have endeavored to pursue." At the tender age of six years, in his far-off island home, young Caine found himself virtually an orphan, homeless and friendless, so far as parental roof, father, mother, brothers and sisters were concerned. His father emigrated to America, and his mother died, leaving him in the care of his grandfather, Hugh Cubbon, a small farmer and tailor. When about nine years of age, he was taken to Douglas, the principal town of the island, where he lived with an aunt, Mrs. William Cowley, his father's sister, who sent him to school, thus giving him his first tuition. When about eleven, he took up his residence at Peel, and another aunt, his mother's sister, Mrs. John Richardson, who lived at the [sic] Ballamoore, near Peel, placed him in a position to continue his education and otherwise treated him with great kindness. The Richardsons were wealthy, possessing valuable business and properties both in the Isle of Man and in Liverpool. At the latter place, Mr. Richardson (an Englishman) was the head of a large merchant tailoring establishment. With a view of fitting John T. to take a lucrative place in this establishment, his relatives urged him to obtain some knowledge of the tailor's trade. In deference of their wishes, he made the attempt, and for a time became an apprentice to the trade, but his heart was not in it, the occupation being distasteful to him. His desire was to become a printer. Neither of these trades, however, was he destined to follow. At Peel he first heard of "Mormonism"-in 1841. Apostle John Taylor was preaching in a school house, when young Caine happened to be passing by. With a boy's curiosity, he stepped into the building, just before the speaker closed, and there had his first view of a "Mormon" Elder. Subsequently, he heard other Elders preach, and was present at the first "Mormon" baptism at Peel; it was at the seaside, near the home of his Uncle John Gracey, who afterwards joined the Church. Though favorably impressed with "Mormonism," as taught by such men as William Mitchell, William C. Dunbar, William Gill Mills, and others, the lad did not at once embrace it, though it influenced to some extent his determination, formed about this time, to leave the Old Country, where he saw little chance to succeed, and seek his fortune in America. A few pounds left him by his grandfather, added to means furnished him by the Richardsons, enabled him early in 1846 to carry out his intention. He proceeded to Liverpool, and on the 17th of March sailed from that port on the bark "Shanunga," accompanied by a cousin two years younger than himself. An uneventful voyage of six weeks brought him to New York, where he landed on the 30th of April. He first found employment in a merchant [p.727] tailor's establishment. Having made an investigation of the claims of various churches, he became convinced of the truth of "Mormonism," and was baptized by Elder William H. Miles in the East River, New York, March 28, 1847.

Extensive biography in Orson F. Whitney, History of Utah, Vol. 4,

In the 1841 census a 12 year old John Cain, a tailor's apprentice, is shown as lodging with John Gracey, a tailor, and family who shared the house at the bottom of Castle Street (or Sand Street (now Crown Street), as the census is somewhat ambiguous) with their aunt Ann Gracey Boyd - William Mitchell, the mormon preacher was also staying at this house as also were David and Catherine Callister.

 Manx Note Book      [Genealogy Index]

see Mormon Converts

Any comments, errors or omissions gratefully received The Editor
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