Jemima Elizabeth Child Stookey was born 31 March 1827 in London, England to John and Eliza (Newport) Child. Her family immigrated to the United States when Jemima was an infant. They lived in Philadelphia for about five years where her father was a shoemaker. Being very poor, Jemima's father decided to move his family to Belleville, Illinois, in hopes of increasing his income; the family farmed and her father did shoemaking on the side. In 1843 Jemima's mother, Eliza, died which devastated the family both mentally and financially. Jemima became the housekeeper and mother to the other children. In her early twenties, Jemima became acquainted with Enos Stookey, son of a wealthy family, and they soon became engaged. While Enos and Jemima were engaged, Jemima was introduced to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Orson Pratt. She traveled to a relatives' house and secretly got baptized into the Church while there. Her family and fiance were both displeased when she joined the Church, but her family later accepted the gospel and Enos became more accepting of it as well. Jemima and Enos married on 25 March 1852. They had some disagreements with his family and so they decided to go west and settle in Utah, even though Enos was not a member of the LDS Church. Jemima's family had immigrated with the Saints to Utah shortly before this. Enos and Jemima arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in the winter of 1855. They had two children who trekked west with them and had one more child in Utah who died in infancy. Jemima and Enos lived in Rush Valley, Utah, then they moved to Clover Creek, Utah, where they lived comfortably the remainder of their lives.