s. udall

Udall family

For other meanings see Udall (disambiguation). Udall is the name of a U.S. political family rooted in the American West.


First Generation

  • David King Udall (1851 – 1938) was the founder of the Udall political dynasty, which currently spans over 100 years and four generations. He led pioneer settlers into Arizona, and served a term as a Representative to the Arizona Territorial Legislature in 1899.
  • William Thomas Stewart (1853 - 1935) was a double brother-in-law of David King Udall. David married William's sister, Eliza Stewart. William married David's sister, Mary Udall. William served as the mayor of Kanab, Utah 1889-91, and as a Representative to the Utah Territorial Legislature in 1887 & 1889.
  • Joseph Udall (1861 – 1949) Younger brother to David King Udall, served as an Apache County (Arizona) Supervisor and Chairman (1906-1920).

Second Generation

Four of David King Udall's sons held political offices:

Third Generation

Four of David King Udall's grandsons held political offices:

Fourth Generation

Five of David King Udall's great-grandsons currently hold political offices:


Links to other political families

  • David King Udall married Mary Ann Linton (Morgan), widow of John Hamilton Morgan. He also married Ida Frances Hunt, granddaughter of Jefferson Hunt, in addition to Eliza Stewart.
  • There are several links to the Kimball-Snow-Woolley Family. J. Nicholas Udall was the grandson of Andrew Kimball, great-grandson of Heber C. Kimball and Edwin Dilworth Woolley, and cousin of varying degree to several other politicians in that family. Ivy Stewart Houtz Woolley was a great-niece of William Thomas Stewart, and cousin of varying degree to several Udall politicians.
  • The Smith Family is connected through David King Udall's daughter Pauline marrying Jesse Nathaniel Smith's son Asahel. David's son (Pauline's brother), John Hunt Udall, married Jesse Nathaniels Smith's daughter (Asahel's half-sister), Leah, after the death of John's first wife.
  • Several connections come through John D. Lee. Lee's ex-wife Louisa Free remarried to Daniel Hammer Wells of the Wells-Bennett-Grant Family. Louisa's sister Emmeline Free married Brigham Young of the Richards-Young Family. Rex E. Lee was a great-grandson of John D. Lee and a son of J. David Lee, making him a 1st cousin of Mo and Stewart Udall, and 1st cousin once removed of Mark and Tom Udall and Gordon Smith.
  • Gordon Smith's father, Milan Dale Smith (son-in-law of Jesse A. Udall) was Assistant Secretary of Agriculture during the Eisenhower Administration.


  • Gordon Smith is not just a second cousin to Mark and Tom Udall, they are actually double second cousins. Two Udall brothers married two Lee sisters. Gordon Smith is the grandchild of one of those unions, while Mark and Tom Udall are grandchildren of the other.
  • David King Udall was a Mormon polygamist, and he had children through two different wives. Most of the descendants of his first wife, Eliza, who have held political office, have been Democrats. Most of the descendants of his second wife, Ida, who have held political office, have been Republicans.
  • In 1922 John Hunt Udall, running as a Republican, defeated his little brother, Levi Stewart Udall, running as a Democrat for clerk of the Arizona Superior Court.
  • Point Udall, U.S. Virgin Islands, the easternmost place in the United States, is named for Stewart Udall. Point Udall, Guam, the westernmost place in the U.S. is named for his brother, Mo Udall.
  • Most Udall politicians have also been either Hunt or Lee descendants. Gordon Smith is unique in being descended from both additional lines. David King Udall and Levi Stewart Udall are the only two not descended from either of those lines (but each of them married into one).
  • Udall politicians have been elected from 4 different states: Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Oregon. If viewed as a combined entity, the Udall-Hunt-Lee family has been elected from 6 states: Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, and Utah.


In his autobiography Too Funny To Be President, Mo Udall describes the efforts of himself and his brother Stewart to get a dam built on the Colorado River (a position they later opposed). A citizen, who lived in Saint Johns, Arizona as a boy, dictated the following letter and mailed it to a number of politicians:

Dear Sirs: I am an old man and I know a lot about...this Udall outfit. My father had a ranch on the Little Colorado River when I was a boy. We had cattle, sheep and goats and horses. In the bottom land we raised our corn and beans and chile and we were contented and happy. Then David K. Udall moved down to Saint Johns...and he and some other men like him put in a dam across the Little Colorado. We objected because it was a dangerous place to put in a dirt dam but they went right ahead and put it in anyway.

When it broke, it ruined our land and drowned our cattle and goats and...I have been poor ever since. They never paid us a cent for the damages. I confess I do not like the Udalls and this is one reason.

Another reason is that you cannot trust any of them. The whole tribe were Republicans and David K. Udall and his brother Joe Udall tried for years to get the Mexicans, who were then all Republicans to give them a public office. But Don Lorenzo Hubbell, who was a great leader, saw through this scheme and never would let them get on the Republican ticket. And the Mormons, who were nearly all Democrats, would have none of them. But when Franklin Roosevelt came in, some of the Mexicans switched to him and the Udalls went along, or most of them did.

However David K. Udall, the big shot, had a second wife hid out down the river at a place called Hunt and this wife had some boys who stayed Republican and one of them got to be mayor of Phoenix. In this way the Udall family can now work both sides of the street. I want you to check up on this because I am an old man and want to be sure of my facts. But my granddaughter tells me this Stewart Udall is trying to steal the water from the Colorado and I can believe it. Because this is the way it happened fifty and sixty years ago. The Udalls have been at this business a long time.

Respectfully yours,

Jose (Joe) Chavez

(commentary deleted)

See also

Works Cited

  • Udall, David King and Pearl Udall Nelson. Arizona Pioneer Mormon; David King Udall: His Story and His Family. Tucson: Arizona Silhouettes Press, 1959. Full text online.
  • Udall, Morris King. Too Funny To Be President; New York, New York. Henry Holt and Company, 1988.
  • "In Arizona, you have a choice: Vote for Udall, or for Udall" Robert Gehrke, Associated Press, November 9, 2001.
  • "Joseph Udall and his extended family." Published by Ronald Earl Wiltbank. ISBN:0-9713437-0-5 Feb. 1996.

External links

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