Robert Brighton was born 24 July 1807 in Dyserf (Old Monkland), Lanark Scotland.† Elisabeth Stuart, his wife, was born 21 May 1808 in Calder Ironworks (Old Monkland), Lanark, Scotland.† Robert and his son, William Stuart Brighton, were both miners working in Calder Ironworks.† From there they went to Plasecraig for about two months, then Girthshaere for a long time.† It was in Meadhead that Robert first heard about the Latter-day Saints when his son, William, came home from work.
William, age 15, had heard a discussion between a member, Peter Moffet, and a non-member.† Peter invited William to a meeting, and after William went home, he told his father.† Robert listened and was baptized a few days later.† A short time later William was baptized in February 1844.
They moved to Auchenair (located near Glasgow, the largest city in Scotland) where there was a newly organized branch of the church.† About the time they arrived, Robert was appointed to be branch president by Brother Kailey. Their home was used as headquarters of the Church in that area.
Some six weeks later, Robert and William went to work between 8 and 9 o'clock at night on the 10th of April 1849. They were working at the time in a pit about 10 fathoms deep. As they prepared to go down, Robert was standing in the cage, the "snaks" were drawn to permit the winch to lower the platform. Someone had left the engine out of gear, and he fell to the bottom at a very great speed.
For a good long time, William knew not whether Robert was killed, but Robert finally gave those up above a signal, and they got him up. He was severely hurt, his leg broken in two places and his body crushed, rendering him, therefore, unable to provide for himself and family.† His son, William, was blessed with regular work and good wages which allowed him to take care of the family.
Within a few days after the marriage of William to Catherine Bow on 31 December 1850, Robert "took very badly and died, this being the 25th of January 1851. He was buried on the 27th. I [William] mourned his loss although I rejoiced to know that he died a faithful man of God."
Before he died, he made arrangements for William, who was married at the time, to care for his widow and his youngest daughter Annie who was then about ten years old. There were two other daughters in the family, one of whom was married.
On 27 Nov. 1854, William and Catherine took their two children and sailed for New Orleans on the ship CLARA WHEELER.†† His little daughter, Mary, was buried at sea.† His sister, Annie, left England on 12 December 1855 on the sailing ship JOHN G. BOYD.† Annie met William, Catherine, and Janet, and they all traveled to Utah with the Captain Israel Evans Handcart Company leaving 19 June 1857 and arriving in Utah on 11 Sept. 1857.† Williamís† mother, Elisabeth Stuart, and her other two daughters remained in Scotland.