Esther Holbrook Walker was born June 21, 1829 near Bristol, England to John and Mary E. Thomas Holbrook. She had several siblings, though they became orphans at a young age and went to live with their grandmother. Esther was put into a boarding school where she learned 'all things necessary for a young lady,' such as cooking and sewing. Afterwards, she worked for a rich woman in a weaving factory. She and a work friend attended a Mormon meeting, and Esther began investigating the Church. She was baptized in 1848, and in 1857, met and married Joseph Walker. They had seven children while living in England, though four had died by the time they left in 1868 for the United States. After arriving in New York in July, the family immediately began the trek west, traveling on the railroad as far as it was built. They reached Farmington, Utah that fall. In the spring of 1869, a wagon accident resulted in Esther breaking an arm, although the rest were uninjured. She died April 10, 1895 at the age of sixty-eight in Farmington.
This is a two-page typescript biography written by Esther's daughter, included in the Margaret Steed Hess collection. During the trip west, the manuscript describes an instance in which the Indians drove away the pioneers' horses while they were watering. The saints immediately grew worried because they would be left either to starve or to be killed by Indians. However, some young men managed to retrieve the horses, and there was no harm done. Later, the manuscript details one of Esther's Sunday School lessons that took place on the 24th of July, in which she dressed all in white and made a banner with lilies of the valley for the class to carry. She also taught them how to make paper and wool flowers.