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Title: William Clayton's Journal - A Daily Record of the Journey of the Original Company of - "Mormon" Pioneers from Nauvoo, Illinois, to the Valley of - the Great Salt Lake
Author: Clayton, William
Language: English
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William Clayton's Journal

A Daily Record of the Journey of the Original Company of "Mormon"
Pioneers from Nauvoo, Illinois, to the Valley of the Great Salt Lake

Copyright 1921 by Lawrence Clayton, trustee for the Clayton Family

typos or formatting errors, you can email mormontextsproject@gmail.com.

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Version 1.0


William Clayton was one of the remarkable characters of early Utah
history. Born in the county of Lancashire, England, July 17, 1814,
he was educated in one of the schools of his native town, and grew
to manhood with a love for books and nature. An early convert of
the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, he conducted one
of the first companies from England to Nauvoo, and there became one
of the trusted secretaries of the Prophet Joseph Smith. With the
exodus from Nauvoo, he was Clerk of the Camp of Israel, and when the
Mormon pioneers left Winter Quarters in April, 1847, he was appointed
by Brigham Young one of the historians of that noted company. His
journal of that memorable expedition over the plains is one of the
most valuable diaries we have of that early period of western history.
He kept careful account of the distances traveled each day, and his
writings are full of descriptions of the country over which they
traveled. He has noted the topography, the fauna and flora of the
trail; and his descriptions of the activities of the company indicate
a well trained intellect in social study. His language is simple and
direct, and his care in keeping each day's distance and important facts
of the journey show order and method.

His hymn, "Come, come, ye Saints" takes its place as one of the most
beautiful hymns of western history, for it is full of joyfulness,
and expresses an optimism and faith in God that will always be an
inspiration to the one who sings it. It indicates that William Clayton
had much of the artistic in him, although we do know that he took a
virile part in the activities of life.

His journal should be read by all people who are interested in the
west's development. It is certainly one of the distinct contributions
of that early day, and shows that a man of strength of character wrote
it. It will inspire many people to a greater love and regard for the
work of the pioneers of Utah.

 Levi Edgar Young
 Salt Lake City, Utah
 April 1921

William Clayton

Born in England, 1814; died in Utah, 1879

The Claytons of England originally came from France. During the time
when William the Conqueror and King Harold were quarreling, a call came
from the former for volunteers among his chieftains to go to war. A man
named Robert was among those who responded. Robert was skilled in arms.

After the Battle of Hastings in 1066, in which Robert rendered heroic
service, William the Conqueror conferred upon him the English Manor of
Clayton as a mark of merit. Robert was afterwards known as Robert de
Clayton and Lord of the Manor of Clayton. From Lord Robert Clayton came
all the Claytons of England and America and by genealogical research,
the line has been brought down to the subject of this sketch.

William Clayton was born July 17, 1814, in the village of Charock
Moss, Township of Penwortham, County Palatine of Lancaster, England.
He was the son of Thomas and Ann Critchley Clayton, who were born in
Lancashire, England. William was the eldest of fourteen children. Three
of these children died in infancy and were buried in England. Through
the influence of the eldest son, the father, mother and surviving
children joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and
came to America. The mother died in Nauvoo, Illinois, July 15, 1848,
and the father in St. Louis, Missouri, June 16, 1849. A brother James
died in Winter Quarters, November 28, 1847. The remainder of his
brothers and sisters survived the persecutions of mobs and the early
privations of the Church and came to the valley of the Great Salt Lake
with the pioneers of Utah.

William Clayton first heard the Gospel preached in England by Heber
C. Kimball and Orson Hyde. With his wife, Ruth Moon Clayton, whom he
married in England, October 9, 1836, he listened to the teachings of
these missionaries, but he was not easy to convert. His wife received
the Gospel first, and many evenings had to be spent before William
Clayton became a believer in "Mormonism." He was ordained a Priest
December 25, 1837, and a High Priest, April 1, 1838, at which time he
was appointed with Willard Richards, Counselor to Joseph Fielding who
presided over the Church in Europe.

September 8, 1840, he left England in the packet ship _North America_,
arriving in New York, October 11, 1840, and in Nauvoo, November 24,
1840. In this city, he became a trusted friend of the founders of
the Church, so much so that on February 10, 1842, he was appointed
secretary to Joseph Smith the Prophet. October 7, 1842, he became
Temple Recorder and Recorder of Revelations. In 1842, he became
Treasurer of the City of Nauvoo. These appointments are indicative of
the zeal with which William Clayton served the Church throughout his

What of the personal characteristics of our subject? As will appear
from his portrait on the frontispiece, William Clayton did not tend
to frivolity or mirth but rather to seriousness and earnestness. Yet
he was witty and had a keen sense of humor. In the home he was not
demonstrative; although he had great love for his home and family and
provided well for their comfort. He was methodical, always sitting in
his own arm chair, having a certain place at the table and otherwise
showing his love for order, which he believed the first law of heaven.
His person was clean and tidy; his hands small and dimpled. He wore
very little jewelry but what little he had was the best money could
buy. He would not carry a watch that was not accurate, and his clothing
was made from the best material. His children remember him best in
black velvet coat and grey trousers and, in cold weather, a broad-cloth
cloak in place of overcoat.

The man-timber in William Clayton came from sturdy trees. His character
was above all littleness. He believed that what was good for him was
good for all men, and that the measurement of our lives was based upon
our daily conduct towards each other. To him that was God's standard.
He believed in perfect equity in the adjustment of the affairs of
life. Had he loved money, he could probably have had it because of his
education and executive ability. But he cared little for material gain,
centering his zeal in the pursuit of honor and right.

William Clayton was honest and nothing to him could justify an untruth.
He deplored waste or extravagance, yet he never withheld from a
neighbor in distress, or from the widow or orphan. Many are those who
knew his generosity. When his harvest was gathered, bushels of grain
and fruit found place among those of scanty store. And many pairs of
shoes and much warm clothing were given to comfort the needy. Nor was
the homeless forgotten, but the orphan was given a home and joy by his
own fireside.

His religion was deeply rooted and nurtured by association with and
testimony of an eye witness to the living God. His love for Joseph
Smith was love seldom shown in man for man. Few men possessed stronger
faith and courage. These qualities alone could inspire a man under
heart-rending circumstances, to write such hymns of faith and comfort
as "Come, come, ye Saints," and "The Resurrection Day."

The record of William Clayton in Utah kept pace with that of previous
years. His home was open always to his friends who loved to gather
there for social hours. Civic welfare always interested him. He was a
musician and played in the pioneer orchestra and that of the Salt Lake
Theatre. He was a lover of community features and took part in dramatic

He was treasurer of Zion's Cooperative Mercantile Institution, Recorder
of Marks and Brands, Receiver of Weights and Measures, and was
Territorial Auditor. His love for education prompted many sacrifices
and he tried hard to give his children the essentials of good schooling.

He had a strong will, although a tender conscience. Cowardice had no
place in him. Truly he could say, "My heart is fixed. I know in whom I
trust." Joseph Smith believed that they should meet and associate in
the Celestial Kingdom of God as they had here.

William Clayton died December 4, 1879, in Salt Lake City. Services were
held in the Seventeenth Ward Chapel at which his own funeral hymn was
sung. He left a large posterity.

 Victoria C. McCune
 Salt Lake City, Utah, June, 1921

Editor's Note

The descendants of William Clayton have in recent years formed
themselves into an organization known as the Clayton Family
Association. This book is offered to the public by the Association
with the thought that a document of such faithful description and fine
spirit would be welcomed by all people who might be interested either
in the Pioneer Period of Western History or more particularly in the
exodus of the Mormon people from Missouri to the valley of the Great
Salt Lake. It is difficult to understand why the _Journal_ was not
published years ago and it seems to require somewhat of an apology
that this interesting record should have remained so long unknown and
be now brought out with considerable haste. In the effort to have it
ready for distribution to the members of the Clayton Family Association
on the anniversary of the birth of their forefather on July 17th,
there has been a sacrifice of care and deliberation in the preparation
of this first edition which is hoped the reader will overlook upon
consideration of the facts. This lack of time and care will show itself
more in the text than in any other particular. Much of the proof
reading was done by the undersigned on board train between Salt Lake
and California. To say the least, such surroundings are not conducive
to the most finished work. It is hoped that this circumstance will also
make the reader more tolerant when encountering mistakes in the text,
obviously the result of hasty proof reading. At a later date a second
edition will do better justice to the author of the _Journal_ and will
show more consideration for the fine taste of the reader.

 Lawrence Clayton
 Salt Lake City, Utah, June, 1921

Table of Contents

February 1846

March 1846

April 1846

May 1846

June 1846

July 1846

August 1846

September 1846

November 1846

January 1847

February 1847

April 1847

May 1847

June 1847

July 1847

August 1847

September 1847

October 1847

February 1846

_Nauvoo, Illinois_

Sunday, February 8

At the office all day packing public goods, evening at Farr's writing
out a letter of instruction to trustees.

Monday, February 9

At the office packing. At 3:30 the temple was seen on fire. Women
carrying water.

Tuesday, February 10

At the temple packing, also Wednesday 11th.

Thursday, February 12

At home preparing to move.

Friday, February 13

Sent four loads of goods over the river. Loading and packing.

Saturday, February 14

Packing and seeking letters.

Sunday, February 15

Riding around to get teams and things together. Sent two teams over the

Monday, February 16

Still loading teams, also Tuesday 17th.

Wednesday, February 18

Got about ready to go over the river. Evening President Brigham Young,
Heber C. Kimball, J. M. Grant and some of the pioneers came to hurry
us over. N. K. Whitney also came in. We conversed together some. They
state the brethren have made a perfect waste of food and property in
the camp.

Thursday, February 19

This morning the ground is covered with snow. It is so windy they
cannot cross the river. Continued to snow all day. Evening went to
Elder Babbit's to supper with Elder Kimball. President Young was there,
Backenstos, J. M. Grant and some others.

Friday, February 20

The weather is very cold and windy. Impossible to cross the river.
Spent the day running after things to get ready, fixing wagons and
chopping fire wood.

Friday, February 27

We have spent the past week waiting for crossing over the [Mississippi]
river. It has been hard frost and much snow. This morning I concluded
to start over the river and began early to send my teams. About noon I
crossed with my family and then rested the teams and soon after went
on to the camp where we arrived a little before four o'clock. Bishop
Whitney concluded to stay at the river until morning because some of
his teams could not get over. When we got to the camp we were received
with joy and formed in the company of the band. The weather is still
very cold especially during the night. The distance from Nauvoo to this
place is called seven and a half miles.

Saturday, February 28

A.M. arranging my tents, etc. At twelve was sent for to council and
about two the band was requested to go and meet bishop Whitney and his
teams. We went and met him five miles from the camp. We played some
time and then returned to the camp. President Young, Heber C. Kimball,
P. P. Pratt, Orson Pratt and others accompanied us. At night played
with the band.

March 1846

Sunday, March 1

A.M. preparing to march to the next encampment. At ten a lecture was
given by Elder Kimball and about one the company proceeded to the next
camp about four and a half miles, where we arrived in good season.

Monday, March 2

Started this morning for another camp about eight miles where we
arrived about five p.m., the roads being somewhat hilly and muddy. The
band played at night. During the day the artillery company broke into
our ranks several times and broke a number of our wagon boxes. At night
they complained of us at headquarters, but after hearing our story the
matter stood about right.

Tuesday, March 3

Proceeded on our journey through Farmington about eight miles to a
place where bishop Miller was encamped and arrived in good season. The
band played at night.

Wednesday, March 4

This morning we concluded to stay a day and fix up some wagons which
were broken. A number of the citizens from Farmington came to the camp
and gave a very pressing invitation for the band to go to Farmington
and play some. Accordingly about three o'clock, the band started and
arrived at Farmington about 4:30 p.m. We played at the principal hotel
and then went to the school house and played till nearly dark. The
house was filled with men and women, the leading people of the place.
We then returned to the hotel where they had provided us with a good
supper. They also gave us $5 in money. John Kay sang a number of songs.
At eight o'clock we returned and when we left they gave us three
cheers. When we arrived at the camp we met thirty of the guard just
starting out to meet us. The President felt uneasy at our staying so
long and was sending the men to protect us.

Thursday, March 5

Proceeded on our journey. Crossed the Des Moines river at Bonaparte and
afterwards had a very bad road up the bluff for several miles which
detained us until late in the afternoon. We stopped awhile to feed the
band teams inasmuch as they had none this morning. We then started and
went to the next camping ground, making the day's journey about sixteen

Saturday, March 7

Proceeded about eight miles to a camp ground near to a Dr. Elberts
where the band camped. President Young was behind and when he arrived
he went on about eight miles farther. The band went to work splitting
rails for corn and made before dark, about 1:30. In the evening Dr.
Elbert and some others came to hear the band play. Kay sang some songs
which pleased them.

Sunday, March 8

Waited for orders from headquarters. Many of the citizens came to hear
the band play and gave us a very pressing invitation to go to Keosaugua
and give a concert. About noon word came that we should follow on to
the camp. We immediately struck tents and started and we arrived at
the main camp about five o'clock. Some of the citizens from Keosaugua
followed us waiting for an answer whether we would give a concert as
soon as we arrived at the camp. I asked the President whether the band
should go to Keosaugua to give a concert. He advised us to go and I
immediately sent out the appointment and then we pitched our tents
forming a line on the road opposite to the President's company.

Monday, March 9

Spent the day chiefly preparing for the concert and attending on my

Tuesday, March 10

The weather still continues fine. Spent the morning preparing for
the concert and about one o'clock p.m. started in company with the
brass band for Keosaugua. I rode in Elder Kimball's wagon with
William Kimball, J. Smithies and Wm. Pitt. The distance from the camp
to Keosaugua is about ten miles, the camp being at a place called
Richardson's point. We arrived at Keosaugua about three o'clock and
being requested we went through the town and played some. One of the
grocery keepers invited us to play him a tune which we did. He then
invited us in and offered to treat us to anything he had. We each took
a little and then the next grocery keeper sent an invitation for us
to play him a tune. We did so and he also gave us anything he had. A
beer keeper next sent word that he did not want us to slight him and
we went and played him a tune and then took some of his cake and beer.
We then marched up to the Des Moines hotel near the court-house where
we had ordered supper and after eating we went to the courthouse to
prepare for the concert. At seven o'clock the house was crowded and we
commenced, playing and singing till about 9:30. The audience seemed
highly pleased and gave loud applause. About the close one of the
citizens got up and said it was the wish of many that we should repeat
the concert the following evening and he took a vote of all who wished
us to go again. The vote was unanimous. We made nearly $25.00 clear of
all expenses. We started back for the camp soon after ten and arrived
about one o'clock all well and pleased.

Wednesday, March 11

In the morning I reported to President Young our success and the
request of the citizens of Keosaugua and he advised us to go again. We
accordingly started about eleven o'clock. I again rode with William
Kimball, Horace Whitney and James Smithies. When we arrived we were
welcomed again with the same kind feelings as yesterday. Pitt had a
severe chill all the way and when we got there it commenced raining
and made it very unpleasant. The house was again filled but we only
made $20.00 besides all expenses. We learned that there is a party of
socialists there and they and the priests are much opposed to each
other. We also learned that a man named McCully was in jail close by
under sentence to be hung on the 4th of April for murdering a man and a
child. I did not feel so well at the concert as on the night previous
on several accounts. We started back between eleven and twelve and got
to the camp about three o'clock.

Thursday, March 12

The band moved to better ground about one quarter of a mile farther.
The heavy rains had made it very muddy and unpleasant, all our bedding
and things being wet.

Friday, March 13

Went hunting.

Saturday, March 14

Wrote a letter to Diantha.

Sunday, March 15

In camp all day.

Monday, March 16

Some of the citizens of Keosaugua came again to request us to give
another concert. We agreed to go tomorrow evening.

Tuesday, March 17

Started for Keosaugua with Pitt, Hutchinson, Kay, Smithies and Egan.
I took my music box and china to try and sell them. We arrived in
good season and soon learned that the priests had been hard at work
preventing the sectarians from coming to the concert, saying that it
was an infidel move consequently there were not many present. We had
far the best concert which lasted till nine o'clock. We then went over
to the hotel, took supper and played for a private party till about
three o'clock. We only cleared from both, about $7.00 over expenses but
were well treated.

Wednesday, March 18

It rained last night and this morning again and we almost concluded
to go to Fairfield, but finally determined to return to camp. We
visited with a Mr. Bridgman who treated us very kindly. Bought about
eight bushels of beans and some articles for President Young and then
returned to camp. It rained some again today. We got back about five
o'clock. After dark Dr. Elbert came to see my china and said if I would
take it over tomorrow he would buy it.

Thursday, March 19

Went to ask council whether I should go to sell my china. Saw Heber who
advised me to go. A few of us started and soon met President Young who
said we had better go back and go with the camp who were then starting
on their way. We accordingly turned back our horses and struck tents in
a hurry. At twelve o'clock we started on our journey. After traveling
about six or seven miles we had to go up a very bad bluff which took
us till five o'clock. President Young's company went ahead of us and
camped three miles from the bluff. Some of our teams gave out and we
only went about a mile from the bluff and camped in a little point of
timber a little from the road. Our teams were very tired.

Saturday, March 21

We started early in the morning and soon came up with the main body of
the camp. I rode ahead about three miles to hunt my cow. We did not
have her last night being with the main camp. We traveled nine or ten
miles and then rested our teams. We started again and traveled three
miles farther where we found the President and Heber camped on the
brink of a long bluff. We concluded to go to the other bank which we
did and camped in a good place. In the evening the band went and played
for the President and Heber and then went to a farmer's house at the
owner's request about three quarters of a mile from camp to play for
his family. He promised to give us some honey if we would play for
him. We played about an hour and then left but neither saw nor heard
anything of the honey. We learned afterwards, however, that Hutchinson
had a pail under his cloak and got it full of honey after the rest had
left the house and kept it to himself, very slyly.

Sunday, March 22

Started again and soon came to the Shariton bottoms which is a very low
land for about four miles. The road was bad and it took us sometime to
cross. While on the bottom Root and Davis came again. Root had asked
permission of President Young to go back to his family some days ago
but it seems things did not go to suit him and he followed his team
again. It took sometime to go up the bluff. We had to let the teams
down into the Shariton river by ropes and also helped them up again by
the same means. Our company got over in good season but we concluded
to camp after getting up the bluff as it would take till night for the
whole to get up. I spent the day helping the teams till I was so sore
and tired I could scarcely walk.

Monday, March 23

In council with Brigham, Heber, and others. We found that Miller's
company had gone still farther about eight miles instead of waiting
till we overtook them so that we could organize. I wrote a letter to
them saying if they did not wait or return to organize, the camp would
organize without and they be disfellowshiped. We concluded to stay at
this place a few days to buy corn to last to Grand river but we found
corn scarce and 26c a bushel, the farmers having advanced on account of
a disposition to speculate.

Tuesday, March 24 and Wednesday, March 25

At the camp writing, etc. It rained considerably.

Thursday, March 26

Evening in council. Wrote a long letter to be sent to Emmet's company
by John Butler and James W. Cummings. This morning wrote another
letter to P. P. Pratt, Orson Pratt, George Miller telling them
they must wait for us or come back to organize. The letters were sent
by Smithies. He met them on the way and about noon P. P. Pratt,
Orson Pratt, John Kay and G. Miller came into camp and at 1:00 p.m.
the council met. The brethren plead that the charges in the letters
were unjust. They had not striven to keep out of the way but had done
all for the best. The whole camp accordingly was organized, A. P.
Rockwood over 1st 50; Stephen Markham, 2nd 50; Young, 3rd 50; Howard
E. Kimball, 4th 50; Charles C. Rich, 5th 50; Charles Crisman, 6th 50.
Each fifty had also appointed a contracting commissary for the purpose
of contracting for work and grain as follows: Henry Sherwood 1st 50;
David H. Kimball 2nd; Wm. H. Edwards 3rd; Peter Haws 4th; Joseph
Worthen 5th; Samuel Gully 6th. It was understood that I continue to
preside over the band and in the absence of Brother Haws over the whole
fifty. After this there was appointed for each fifty a distributing
commissary to distribute feed in camp as follows: Charles Kennedy for
1st 50; J. M. Grant 2nd 50; Nathan Tanner 3rd 50; Orson B. Adams
4th 50; James Allred 5th 50; Isaac Allred 6th 50. The brethren then
gave the following instructions for the whole camp with orders that
same be observed hereafter, viz. No man to set fire to prairies. No man
to shoot off a gun in camp without orders. No man to go hunting unless
he is sent and all to keep guns, swords and pistols out of sight. There
was then appointed a clerk for each fifty as follows: John D. Lee
Young, 1st 50; John Pack 2nd 50; Lorenzo Snow 3rd 50; Geo. H. Hales 4th
50; John Oakley 5th 50; A. Lathrop 6th 50. The council then adjourned
to meet at Shariton Ford camp on Monday at 10 a.m. We then returned to
our camp where we arrived just at dark.

Saturday, March 28

In camp making out forms for clerks of 50's and also copied letter to
James Emmet.

Sunday, March 29

Making forms for clerks of 50's and felt quite unwell all day with bad

Monday, March 30

Met with the council. The guard and pioneers were divided and
distributed amongst the several companies of 50's. It was also agreed
that company No. 4 should go on to the next camp tomorrow and the
remainder of the day following. Jackson Redding sold one of Keller's
horses for one yoke of oxen, leaving me as bad off for teams as before.

Tuesday, March 31

It was concluded we could not get ready to move until tomorrow.
O. P. Rockwell arrived with the mail. I received a letter from
Diantha and father. President Young received one from the trustees,
one from Matlock and one from E. Pratt which I read in council. I was
ordered to write an answer to the trustees' and Matlock's letter, but
being late I left it till morning when I was quite unwell. I got two
new teamsters, Levi Kendall and Swap.

April 1846

Wednesday, April 1

President Young also sent me two yoke of oxen, wagon, and Brother
Jones, the owner, to assist me. We divided the load out of the spare
wagons putting a yoke of oxen to each and about 11:00 started on our
journey. Mother was very sick, and could not bear to ride. She walked
all the way. I felt very unwell myself, having much pain in my limbs.
The roads were bad, but we arrived in camp about 2:00 and got on good
ground. After getting our tents fixed, fires made, etc., I went to
wrestling, jumping etc., to try to get well. I over-exerted myself
without any symptoms of perspiration and was so sick after I had to go
to bed.

Thursday, April 2

I was very sick all day and unable to write the letters or meet with
the council. O. P. Rockwell started back to Nauvoo with letters.
One of the Brother Hales arrived to say to his brother who drives team
for Pitt that his family is very sick and wants him to go back but
we cannot spare the team and he says it is no use for him to go back
without it. At night I wrote again to Diantha and sent it by Brother
Hale who returns tomorrow.

Friday, April 3

This morning it was decided to start early so as to get over the bad
roads and also travel about fifteen miles. We had to send a wagon and
team to fetch the eight bushels of corn which some of the band earned
by playing last night. We started, however, about eight o'clock. The
roads were very bad and when we had traveled about three miles it began
to thunder and rain. The clouds gathered fast and it soon showed signs
for heavy rain the whole day. We reached Bishop Whitney's camp about
noon and rested our teams while the rest came up. We then started again
in the heavy rain and bad roads and traveled about three miles to
Bishop Miller's camp. We had a very bad bluff to rise and had to double
teams to get up. On the top I met Heber camped. He selected a camping
ground for us and advised us to go no farther. President Young has gone
on six or seven miles. It was about 5:00 before all our teams got up
and it rained heavily all the time. Mother walked all day again in the
rain. I was very sick myself and unable to do anything. Yesterday the
portion of the guard detailed to our company joined in with us, being
Orvil M. Allen and eight men. They reported themselves destitute of
everything and said they had lived a week on corn meal gruel, Stout and
Hunter having made them serve as their body guard and used them very
hard. I dealt out some of my own flour and bacon to them, determined
to comfort them some if I could and not being willing to see anyone in
our company suffer while I have anything left. It continued to rain all
night very hard.

Saturday, April 4

This morning all our clothing, beds and bed clothing were drenched
and it has continued to rain all day. I have been sick again all day
especially towards night. I was so distressed with pain it seemed as
though I could not live. I went to bed and put a bag of hot salt on my
chest which seemed to give me some ease but I suffered much through
the night, and it continued to rain until after midnight. We put an
extra cover on our sleeping wagon, which kept out the rain. We have
only slept in the wagon three nights but have slept under a tent on the
wet ground. Haws' company are now formed with us, making our 50 nearly
complete. A number of the company feel unwell on account of the rain
and wet.

Sunday, April 5

This morning I feel a little better and the day is fine and pleasant.
I have spent the day writing in this journal, having written from
memory all since the date of March 9th. Some of the dates may not be
correct but the matters recorded are true. It is now 1:00 p.m. There
is a meeting at Elder Kimball's camp but I am sent here in this wagon
to fetch up this record. My health is somewhat better for which I
feel thankful. Elder Kimball says we had better not attempt to move
tomorrow. We can get corn within ten miles from here and he will help
us to means. We have now to lay in corn to last till we get to Grand
River about fifty miles farther, there being no farms on the road. On
Friday evening I appointed Charles Terry captain of my ten and Henry
A. Terry clerk and my brother James to attend on my family agreeable
with the orders of the President that I may be able to spend my time
writing for the council and camp and attend councils. Elder Kimball
instructed the captains of tens to call their companies together at
4:00. Agreeable with this, the band assembled in front of my tent and
administered the sacrament. Wm. F. Cahoon and Charles A. Terry
officiated. I spoke about three quarters of an hour on various subjects
touching on our journey and the policy we ought to use, etc. After I
had done Elder Haws spoke on some subjects and the meeting adjourned.
The captains then went over to Elder Kimball's camp about sending for
corn. We concluded to send four teams for our 50, Captain Egan and Haws
then went through the camp to see if they could obtain some money. Haws
obtained $31.45 and Egan $9.00. I sent $14.00 by Egan for some. Wrote
to Diantha.

Monday, April 6

It has rained again the last night and continued to rain all day very
heavily. The camp is very disagreeable and muddy. I spent the day
reading. About 5:00 the clouds began to break and it looks more likely
for being fair. In the evening Elder Kimball came over and the band met
opposite Hutchinson's wagon and played some. After that the quadrille
band met in my tent and played on the violins. All the time we were
playing the lightning occasionally broke forth from the northwest and
at 8:00 we dispersed just as the storm approached. Before I got to my
tent the wind arrived and soon blew a perfect gale with heavy rain,
hail, lightning and thunder. It continued for an hour and then abated
some. All the tents in our company except mine and Pack's were blown
down. The rain beat through the wagon covers and drenched the families
and effects. It was the most severe storm we have experienced and with
such wind it seems impossible to preserve our little clothing and
provisions from being spoiled. But in the midst of all, the camp seems
cheerful and happy and there are but few sick.

Tuesday, April 7

This morning it is fair but cold and windy. The ground is frozen stiff
and considerable ice. Many of the tents are still lying flat and
everything around shows that the storm was very severe. A number of the
band have no meat and some no flour nor in fact scarcely any provisions
and several have had little, only what I have given them out of the
stock I laid in for my family. I have this morning given the guard
the bag of flour Miller left and a piece of pork and also a piece to
Redding. The day continued fine but roads almost impassable. Evening
the band played some.

Wednesday, April 8

This morning the ground was hard again. But the weather looks more for
rain. I went out with Captain Cahoon and President Haws to look out a
better camp ground and we concluded to move on a little farther west
about a quarter of a mile. It took the company all day to move, it
being almost impossible to move the loads even with tripling teams.
About five o'clock Egan and the teams came back with fifty-seven
bushels of corn. He had to give 21c a bushel for nearly all of it.
Elder Kimball came over soon after to see if he could not get some of
it. While we were talking President Pratt and his company arrived and
reported that their teams have had no corn since yesterday morning
neither could they get any. Heber remarked that he would say no more
about us letting him have any although we had only enough to feed five
ears a feed every three days, and a journey of about fifty miles before
we can get any more with bad roads. We let Parley have one load. Heber
came with me to our camp and handed me a letter from President Young
requesting us all to go on which I read to the company. I felt very
unwell again and went to bed early.

Thursday, April 9

This morning we concluded to pursue our journey, President Kimball and
his company started out about seven o'clock. President Pratt started
out with his company. Our company waited for the latter to start in
its place till after eight o'clock and then we went on. The roads were
very bad indeed. About noon it commenced raining heavily which made
the roads still worse. We had calculated to go about eight miles to
timber but after toiling till about four o'clock and having traveled
only about five miles and our teams being entirely worn down we turned
out of the road to a little branch of water to camp. Several of my
teams stuck and we had to work till dark to get part of them to camp
and two wagons we were compelled to leave over night. Quite a number
were obliged to stay back on the prairie and Charles Hale did not come
more than a quarter of a mile from where we started this morning. Elder
Kimball has camped one and a half miles farther on the open prairie and
many of his teams are yet behind. P. P. Pratt's company are here
with us as well as George Miller's company except those behind on the
prairie. It continued to rain very heavily until night. We could not
make a fire and had little for supper, our provisions being in one of
the wagons back. This is the most severe time we have had but yet the
camp seems in good spirits.

Friday, April 10

The weather is yet very wet and gloomy. I spent the morning talking to
Margaret. At seven o'clock a gale struck up and blew our tents over.
We then concluded to move a few rods lower out of the wind. Before we
got moved the wind moved to the west and it grew very cold. Our teams
are gone back to fetch some of the wagons left last night. It rains and
blows very badly and is very severe on our women and teams. Margaret
and Lidia are out all the time and continually wetting both feet and
all over. We expect Robert Burton's, one of Peck's, Peart's and my
wagons in tonight. One of mine was fetched early in the morning. Our
teams fare hard with wet and cold, having very little corn.

Saturday, April 11

This morning rode with Egan to help to get Brother Peart's wagon out of
the slough. It took five yoke of oxen and twelve men to draw it out.
The roads are yet very bad but it is fair and very cold. We sent twelve
yoke of oxen to bring up Peck's and Charles Hale's wagon. They got in
late at night.

Sunday, April 12

This morning before I got up, P. P. Pratt called and said that
President Young wants the council to meet at Heber's camp at ten
o'clock. I started out with Captain Egan on foot and arrived in
season. Had some conversation with Ellen Sanders Kimball and then
went to council. It was decided to change our route and take a more
northern one to avoid the settlements. We will go to Grand River and
there enclose a space of land about two miles square and put up some
twenty log houses for a resting place for the companies. A company
starts out in a day or two to seek out the location amongst whom are
the President, Heber and others of the twelve. A company will also be
sent west to Judge Miller's to go to work for feed, etc. After council
I took dinner with Heber, the President being with us. I then wrote a
letter to the trustees and returned with Captain Egan to our camp and
soon after went to bed. The day has been fine but cold.

Monday, April 13

Finished my letter to Diantha and then went over to Peck's blacksmith
shop. We had concluded not to leave till morning. While there a message
arrived saying that Haws has sent eight yoke of cattle to help us on.
We then concluded to start forthwith, being noon. But although we had
so many extra teams, we had to leave three wagons in camp over night.
Four of my folks walked all the way but still it was hard for me to get
along. Keller had to stay back over night. I arrived at Locust Creek,
being about four miles journey, about six o'clock and sent the cattle
back for Peck and Steven Hales but they did not return till morning.
In the evening the band played some. James broke his wagon tongue. We
camped a little north of President Heber's camp.

Tuesday, April 14

The weather is again very fine. Because some of the wagons did not
come, Egan and I concluded to go and meet them and not start farther
until tomorrow. We met the teams close by and then took a northern
course a hunting. We saw only squirrels and I got five of them. About
noon we returned and found the camp mostly gone. Orders had come from
the President for the whole to move to his camp today. Charles Terry
and Henry were gone a hunting which detained me till about three
o'clock. James and I then started with the four wagons. They overtook
us when we had got about one half mile. We found the road very bad and
had to double teams, our horses being so badly worn down. Charles Terry
broke a wagon tongue.

Wednesday, April 15

Last night I got up to watch, there being no guard. The cattle and
horses breaking into the tents and wagons. I tarried up then called S.
Hales and Kimball. This morning Ellen Kimball came to me and wishes me
much joy. She said Diantha has a son. I told her I was afraid it was
not so, but she said Brother Pond had received a letter. I went over
to Pond's and he read that she had a fine fat boy on the 30th ult.,
but she was very sick with ague and mumps. Truly I feel to rejoice at
this intelligence but feel sorry to hear of her sickness. Spent the day
chiefly reading. In the afternoon President Young came over and found
some fault about our wagons, etc. In the evening the band played and
after we dismissed the following persons retired to my tent to have a
social christening, viz. William Pitt, Hutchinson, Smithies, Kay, Egan,
Duzett, Redding, William Cahoon, James Clayton and Charles A. Terry and
myself. We had a very pleasant time playing and singing until about
twelve o'clock and drank health to my son. We named him William Adriel
Benoni Clayton. The weather has been fine but rains a little tonight.
Henry Terry's horses are missing and have been hunted today but not
found. This morning I composed a new song--"All is well." I feel
to thank my heavenly father for my boy and pray that he will spare and
preserve his life and that of his mother and so order it so that we
may soon meet again. O Lord bless thine handmaid and fill her with thy
spirit, make her healthy that her life may be prolonged and that we
may live upon the earth and honor the cause of truth. In the evening I
asked the President if he would not suffer me to send for Diantha. He
consented and said we would send when we got to Grand River.

Thursday, April 16

This morning prepared to proceed on our journey but a span of horses in
our company in care of Henry Terry being missing we concluded not to
start. I sent out three men to hunt them. Soon after they were brought
into camp by another person. I then sent Henry Terry to hunt for the
men but it was after two o'clock before they returned. We fed a little
corn and then started. The company is far ahead of us. We traveled very
slowly our teams were so weak. However, we soon came into sight of the
camp but it was six o'clock before we got there, having traveled about
seven miles. The camp was formed on a beautiful prairie, President
Young's camp being on a little eminence. President Kimball's about
three quarters of a mile north of his and ours about a quarter of a
mile east. There is some little grass for our cattle here, but little.
We sent those of our company about a mile southeast and had a guard
over them through the night. President Haws, Captains Egan and Kay and
Jackson Redding went out a hunting. George Hale's cattle were so worn
down that they could not get along and when within about a mile of
camp about fifteen of the brethren went to help. They took a rope and
fixed it on the wagon, loosed the cattle and brought it in themselves,
singing all the way. At night the band played and then I retired to bed.

Friday, April 17

This morning very fine. Some of the camp started very early on the way.
I was ready about eight o'clock but was detained on account of Captain
Haws, Egan and others having gone hunting. I left Margaret to drive my
team and sent them on and I drove the cattle on foot. We formed our
encampment on a high dry place.

Sunday, April 19

While the rest are gone to meeting I turned to unpacking and took an
inventory of church property. It took till about four o'clock to get
through. Daniel Spencer's company had arrived about five o'clock.
Porter Rockwell and Edwin Cutler arrived with the mail. Received a
letter from Diantha confirming the birth of my son, also a letter from
A. W. Babbit on some business. Went to see the President to show
him the inventory but could not find him. About dark he sent for me and
I went again but he was gone and I did not see him. My mare got in a
mud hole last night and is very badly strained. Evening went to council
and read many letters and wrote one to Elder Hyde.

Monday, April 20

At nine o'clock went to council. Had to read some letters and several
pieces from papers. A report was read of all those who are able to fit
themselves for the mountains. A law was made on motion of President
Young that any person who interrupts the council hereafter by talking
or otherwise, shall be deprived the privilege of the council till
the council see proper to admit him. The public teams being brought
together, the bishops took a list of them to be disposed of at Grand
River. After council I went to work to assort the articles to be sold,
etc. Wrote to Diantha.

Tuesday, April 21

This morning the main body of the camp are gone, but I am obliged
to tarry and pack up the public goods again and re-load my wagons.
I weighed most of our loads and it took until night to get through.
Charles Terry's horse and one of mine are unable to drag any.

Wednesday, April 22

I had intended to start early this morning but our horses were away
which detained us till nearly nine o'clock. About that time we started
and traveled slowly about four and a half miles. We then stopped at
11:30 and thought we would rest our teams and get them cooled off.
The sun was very warm and they sweat considerably. Word came that
O. P. Rockwell was on his way and would call for letters. We
intended to wait until he came. I wrote a short letter to A. W.
Babbit and one to father but Porter failed to call, and at two o'clock
we started again. We traveled until about three o'clock when we passed
Orson Pratt who had concluded to stay a piece east of where the camp
had tarried last night. He said all the grass was eaten up for several
miles around. We concluded to go beyond the timber where the main camp
stayed last night but tried to find grass for our teams. We started
onward. At the creek watered our teams and rested awhile. We then went
on about a mile and a half and found good grass and much of it. We at
once concluded to tarry there. We had put a little wood into our wagons
to cook with. We arrived on the ground about six o'clock and then got
the best camp ground we have had for some time.

Three of our teams were behind when we arrived. Horlick got in about
a half an hour after us and then afterwards Swap and Jones arrived at
7:30. We are all comfortable but very tired, having traveled about ten
miles. My wife Ruth walked all the way and myself also. The rest walked
by turns. We have seen many rattlesnakes today. The weather is very

Thursday, April 23

This last night has been very stormy with heavy thunder, hail, rain
and wind. The thunder and lightning was very loud and the rain fell in
torrents. The weather continues cold and cloudy with some fine showers.
There appears some heavy rain in the east and north. Grass looks green
and the cattle have filled themselves well. We started about ten
o'clock and soon found that last night's rain had made the roads much
worse. After traveling about four miles we stopped to graze our teams,
being one o'clock. While resting Elders Taylor and Orson Pratt passed
on horseback. At three o'clock we started again and about four came to
the President's camp. He was just returning from an exploring tour to
find out better roads. His camp was on the east of a piece of timber.
He gave orders to move to the other side of the timber about a mile
from where he then was. We concluded to move on and finally camped on
the next ridge southwest of his. Our teams are tired and there is not
much grass. A number of the horses have been bitten by rattlesnakes
and one is dead. There are a great number of these snakes on these
prairies. The President says the road to the next timber is all ridges
and hollows and will be hard on teams. We got camped about 5:30 p.m.,
and before we got fixed a thunder storm came on with heavy rain but it
was soon over and the evening afterwards was fine.

Friday, April 24

This morning the President's company made a bridge over a creek and
started again on their journey. Four of my horses were missing and
I sent men to hunt them and went myself. They were found about ten
o'clock. We tarried until about twelve to rest and then started. We
went about two miles and stayed until four o'clock to graze our teams
and then went on again and about six o'clock got to timber. I went to
hunt a camping spot with Egan. We saw some women who told us Grand
River was only a mile ahead and that the other companies were required
to go down there. We started and soon arrived at the main body of the
camp. We formed on the south side of the camp. The ground here is rich,
timber good, and the prospects good for heavy crops. Here we calculated
to tarry a while, fence in a piece of land and those who are not
prepared to go through to tarry and raise crops. Wild onions grow in
abundance. The weather has been fine today. Evening those of the band
who are here went to Bishop Miller's tent and played for the President
and a Mr. Bryant who lives about thirty miles from here. Pitt, George,
Charles and Steven Hales and William F. Cahoon are way back as yet as
well as Heber's company.

Saturday, April 25

This morning started by daybreak fishing. About 7:30 the President
sent for me. I came back but he was gone. President Haws is regulating
the company to watch our teams and also go to making rails, etc. The
morning is fine. About nine o'clock Kendall, one of my teamsters,
brought one of the horses he drives into camp which had been bitten by
a rattlesnake. His nose had begun to swell badly. We got some spirits
of turpentine and bathed the wound, washed his face in salt and water
and gave him some snakes master root boiled in milk. He yet seems very
sick. Our men have made a pen for the cattle at night. I feel quite
unwell today. Spent the day chiefly reading. Evening Kennedy came to
look at our horse and says they have given sufficient of the master
root to kill four well horses. The horse looks very sick and is already
scarcely able to stand. The band played a few tunes at night. About
nine o'clock it rained somewhat and continued to shower through the
night. Pitt arrived in camp this afternoon.

Sunday, April 26

The first news I heard this morning was that the horse was dead. This
is a very unlucky circumstance for me for I am already very deficient
in teams. Moreover, three of my teams leave me here, viz. Horlick,
Chas. A. Terry and Jones with their wagons and teams. I shall then
have about quarter teams enough to draw the loads. I have about three
thousand pounds of church property besides my own goods. I see little
chance of my moving from here at present. The morning was wet but it
cleared off and continued so all day. I spent the day reading and
writing while the rest went to meeting. Evening was sent for to go to
council. Read a letter from O. Hyde stating that they had had an offer
of two hundred thousand dollars for the temple. He writes of hard
times in Nauvoo. The council selected one hundred men to make rails,
forty-eight to build houses; twelve to dig wells; ten to build a bridge
and the rest to go to farming.

Steven Markham, C. C. Rich, L. C. Wilson, James Pace to
oversee the rail cutting. Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, P. P.
Pratt and Geo. A. Smith the house building. A. P. Rockwood to boss
bridge building. President Young to boss him and the whole camp and
Jacob Peart to boss well digging. The council decided to wait until
morning to decide relative to selling the temple. After we adjourned I
went into my wagon. I wrote a long letter to Diantha. It was about ten
o'clock when I got through.

Monday, April 27

Rained all day. At 6:00 a.m., went to meeting. The men were divided out
to work and commenced operations and had to quit on account of rain.
After breakfast went to council, when it was voted to sell the temple,
signifying as to the reason, it will be more likely to be preserved.
It is as lawful to sell it to help the poor saints as to sell our
inheritance. We do it because we are compelled to do it. I was ordered
to write an answer to Elder Hyde's letter which I did, saying finally,
if the temple was sold, $25,000 must be sent for the benefit of the
camp. The balance to be left at the disposal of elder Hyde, Woodruff
and the trustees and to be appropriated to help away those who have
labored hard to build the temple and the faithful poor of the saints.
Spent the balance of the day packing up china and crockery to be sent
by Egan.

Tuesday, April 28

Weather very wet. Moved up on higher ground. Spent the morning
unpacking chests for files and supplies. Afternoon unloading wagon
to send a-trading. The weather very wet until night. President Young
called over and said we had better not send Egan until the weather
settles. The quadrille band have gone to give concerts in the Platte.
They had to draw their wagons across the river by ropes the water was
so high.

Wednesday, April 29

It still continues to rain and the ground is getting quite soft and
muddy. Spent the day setting men to fixing yokes and bows. Walked out
about a mile to the bluff west of us. It ceased raining about eleven
o'clock and continued fair through the day.

Thursday, April 30

Unpacking and re-packing chests all the day. It continues to rain more
or less and the weather looks bad. Ruth is quite unwell.

May 1846

Friday, May 1

This month brings the damp wet weather. Chas. Shumway and George
Langley start for George Herring this morning being instructed to bring
him on to Council Bluffs. Spent the day preparing for Egan to start
trading. He has gone with Jackson Redding and has taken $288.00 of
church property besides two span of horses and harness and near $60.00
of mine. Afternoon packing chests, etc. The weather finer and fairer.

Saturday, May 2

The day is fine. Preparing some for Horlick's return to Nauvoo on
Monday. Wrote to Diantha. Selling shoes.

Sunday, May 3

The morning fair, windy and cloudy, southeast wind. Spent the morning
making a list of all the company who have made their reports, also
fixing tents. At ten o'clock went to meeting. O. Spencer talked a while
and was followed by President Young who exhorted the camp to diligence
in getting in crops for that will be our salvation the next winter. He
said no company should start from here until the south field was made
and some houses built. It commenced raining as the meeting closed and
about three o'clock a thunder storm came on which lasted till near five
o'clock. I spent the afternoon reading. Soon after five it cleared off
some and the sun shone again. While at supper President Young called
and stated that he wished that I should go to council with him. I
started and the council met opposite his tent. It was decided that his
fifty build the bridge tomorrow and all the rest to make rails and also
that Sherwood and Orson Pratt go about twenty-five or thirty miles
southwest to seek out another section.

Monday, May 4

Finished my letter to Diantha and sent it by John Richards. Horlick has
concluded to tarry till my wagons are fixed. I spent the day examining
my flour and crackers and helping to fix the tent as considerable of
my crackers and flour are damaged on account of having poor wagons.
I dreamed last night that I saw Diantha and her babe. Her babe was
dressed in white and appeared to be lying down with its eyes closed.
She was bent over it apparently in sorrow. When I went to her she flew
to me earnestly but the babe seemed to be kept still and asleep, and I
awoke. This dream has troubled me considerably. Evening met the clerks
of 50's in my tent and instructed them how to make their reports, etc.

Tuesday, May 5

The weather very fine. I spent the day preparing to enter the reports
on the record. Went over to J. D. Lee's and learned that some of
the clerks had been to the President and told him that I had ordered
that they should include in their reports each wife a man has. I did
not do any such thing, only requested each name should be in full
according to the order of a previous council. The President said it
did not matter about the names being in full but I think in after days
it will prove it does. Dr. Richards thinks as I do. The President,
I understand, appeared quite angry. Many of the band are entirely
destitute of provisions and my flour is so nearly down I have concluded
to eat biscuit. I have given the band considerable of my biscuit
already. At nine o'clock fixing my wagons. Expected a storm which soon
afterwards commenced, raining and thundering very hard. Raining most of
the night.

Wednesday, May 6

Writing in the camp record. In the afternoon a storm arose emitting
very violent wind, thunder, lightning, rain and hail. Many tents blew
over. One of mine blew over and most of our articles were wet and some
nearly spoiled. I have been informed that Esther Kay has been offering
bitter complaints because they do not fare as well as some others. The
hint was thrown at Margaret and she understood that it was for me.
I have today let Miss Kay a pair of shoes and took down a large bag
of biscuits and divided it amongst those who are needy. I have all
the time let them have flour, sugar, bacon and other things as I had
them and to hear of dissatisfaction because I will not let them have
the last I have grieves me. I have given to the band as near as I can
estimate, twelve hundred pounds of flour, about four or five hundred
pounds of bacon besides much of other things. Towards evening it did
not rain so much but continued hard after we went to bed. The wind was
very severe, almost as bad as I ever saw it for about a half an hour.

Thursday, May 7

This morning it is dull, cloudy and cold. About nine o'clock commenced
raining again. I have again given Sister Kay a quart cup full of sugar.
I have spent the day entering reports on record.

Friday, May 8

The weather fine and pleasant. Spent the day fixing wagon covers and
wagons. Andrew Cahoon arrived from Nauvoo with the mail but no letter
from Diantha or father. He says the troops arrested O. P. Rockwell
last Thursday evening and took him to Carthage and thence to Quincy
jail. It is doubtful whether he will now escape their cruel vengeance.
This morning the mare had a colt. I have felt quite unwell all day.
Evening went to President Young's to get records to look for a deed
from Hiram Kimball to Ira S. Miles. Searched till near ten o'clock
but the deed is not on record. Kimball seems disposed to take all the
advantages he can from everyone.

Saturday, May 9

Morning fixing wagon cover, counseling with Wm. Cahoon and then was
called aside by the President to read two letters from Sister Harris
and her son. Dr. Richards, John Smith and Heber were present. Afternoon
went fishing. The weather fine and no wind.

Sunday, May 10

Wrote a letter to Diantha, one to trustees, one to father, one to
Brother Burdick, one to Thos. Moore and one to John Everett. Keller
returned with thirteen bushels of meal and 250 pounds of bacon from
the guard, having been gone twelve days. Evening went to council to
Heber's tent. Samuel Bent having been appointed at today's meeting to
preside over those left on his arm, he chose David Fullmer and Ezra T.
Benson for counselors. P. P. Pratt was advised to start as soon as
possible for Platte River to take all who were prepared to go.

Monday, May 11

Morning distributing meal and bacon to the band. Afterwards the
President, Heber, and Dr. Richards came and took some cordage.
Afternoon weighing and loading.

Tuesday, May 12

Sent Keller and Corbite to the mills to try and get flour, meal and two
cows. Weighing and packing. About nine was sent for to go to council.
I waited about two hours before anything was done. The vote for Ezra
T. Benson to stay as counselor for father Bent was rescinded and it
was voted to take Aron Johnson in his place. A letter of authority
was written for father Bent by Dr. Richards but he made me copy it,
and afterwards when the President spoke to him to write to O. P.
Rockwell he favored me to do that although I left three men waiting to
weigh my loading and load my wagon. The fact is I can scarcely ever
go to council but Dr. Richards wants me to do his writing, although I
have more writing to do as clerk of the camp than I can possibly do.
Moreover I have to unpack the chest and wait on all of them with the
public goods in my charge which keeps me busy all the time. President
Young, Heber, Dr. Richards and Bishop Whitney have all made out to get
lumber sawed to make their wagons comfortable but I can't get enough
to make a hind board for one of my wagons, which has none. They are
tolerably well prepared with wagons and teams but I am here with about
five tons of stuff and only six wagons and five yoke of oxen to take
it. I have dealt out nearly all of my provisions and have to get more
before I can go on. It looks as if I had to be a slave and take slave's
fare all the journey for it has worked that way so far. After council I
was weighing and loading, etc., until night. We had some rain at night.

Wednesday, May 13

The morning fair, but cloudy. Still loading my wagons and preparing to
move. President Young and Heber's companies have gone and left me. I
asked Jones and Terry what provisions I should have to leave them while
they put in the crops. They concluded that 25 lbs. of corn meal each,
and from 25 to 50 lbs. of bacon for three of them would be enough for
twenty days. I think so, for we do not use as much meat in the same
time in my whole family and as to 25 lbs. of corn meal each for so long
a time, it is far more than my family can have. I have also to supply
Horlick with provisions to take him back to Nauvoo and have kept four
of them since they came here while they are to work for themselves. All
this continues to weaken my hands for the journey. I have to get three
new teamsters and also feed them while the others are living on my
food. Markham came in the evening and said the President had sent word
to father Bent to raise cattle enough to take my load to the new place
tomorrow morning but I cannot go because my horses have gone to the
mill for meal. Evening it commenced raining again and rained nearly all

Thursday, May 14

This morning is fair, but cloudy and like for more rain. Jones has
concluded to leave for Nauvoo this morning and leave his son to
plant for him. I have given him and Charles A. Terry a letter of
recommendation. Jones asked me and said I would have to leave him some
provisions while he put in his crops but I do not feel to do it for I
think it is far more reasonable that the company for whom he has been
working should supply him instead of me doing it out of the little
provisions I have. I have left Charles and Henry Terry 50 lbs. of meal
and 14 lbs. of bacon besides boarding them two weeks while they have
been working on their farm. I went to see Brother Bent about the teams
and from him learned that he could only raise three yoke of oxen and
no wagon. I went to see Crisman who had promised two yoke and told him
I should start in the morning then went and spent the day fixing the
loads, etc.

Friday, May 15

This morning Crisman called and said he should not let his cattle go
until Brother Miller returned. I then concluded to take what teams I
had and take my wagons and go on a few miles. I borrowed two yoke of
oxen from Sister Kay and started. We got the wagons over the river and
on the bluff about a mile and then stopped to let the teams feed. I
walked on and met Brothers Miller, Pitt, Kay, and Hutchinson with a
large drove of cows and cattle. I told Brother Miller my situation and
the request of the President but I could get no satisfaction. We moved
on with half of the wagons and I selected a spot over a quarter of a
mile from timber. They then went back for the other wagons and got them
all up about six o'clock. Reddings have come here also, and Sister Egan
with one or two others.

Saturday, May 16

This morning is fine but the weather doesn't look like being fair long.
I have concluded to send two wagons through and wait until the teams
return before I can move farther. Swap and Conrad are gone with all the
teams I have and I have sent A. Johnson's cattle back because they were
useless unless I could have more. The day was very warm. I spent the
day mostly reading. Afternoon Duzett, Hutchinson and Pitt arrived with
their wagons.

Sunday, May 17

Spent the day mostly reading. Weather very warm. Afternoon Bishop
Miller's company passed but he did not leave me any cattle although he
has plenty and many cows. This agrees with his course, for from about
two months before we left Nauvoo to the present, he has done nothing
but for himself.

Monday, May 18

Morning went on the road about two miles to see if I could meet Keller
and Corbitt. It rained and thundered some and continued cloudy through
the day.

Tuesday, May 19

Spent the morning reading, afterwards went fishing. Some teams returned
from camp and said that some from Nauvoo had arrived there which
started two weeks ago last Saturday and that Elder Hyde had advised all
the saints to move over the river as fast as possible from Nauvoo, and
they have their ferry boats constantly employed. A number are already
on their way here.

Wednesday, May 20

This morning is very rainy and cold. Spun twenty yards of fish line
and tied on eleven hooks. Swap and Conrad returned soon after eleven
o'clock. They say the camp is about thirty miles ahead. They confirm
the report of some having arrived from Nauvoo and say they were told
that my father is on his way here. The roads are lined with teams,
etc., on the other road north of this. Horlick came this afternoon for
more victuals. Although he is a good wagon maker and carpenter, he is
either unwilling to work or the camp at the farms is unwilling to board
him for his work which I hardly believe. It seems as though teamsters
are resolved to live on me till they eat all I have and I now lack
about three thousand lbs. of provisions to proceed with. I can learn of
no one who has fed his teamsters as long as I have after they stopped
teaming and moreover, the teamsters started with church property but I
have sustained them out of my own provisions. Towards evening it was
fair but still threatens to rain again. I cannot yet learn a word from
Diantha but think she must be on her way. My family is yet in good
health except Margaret who looks sick but doesn't complain.

Thursday, May 21

Continued raining this morning but about noon it began to be fine.
About five o'clock a heavy thunder storm came up and it started raining
heavily. Storm after storm kept coming far into the night. Wilham F.
Gaboon called on his way up between the two companies. He wanted some
salt but I had none for him.

Friday, May 22

This morning fine but cloudy, ground wet and soft. Wrote some in the
camp record. About nine o'clock started on the road to look for a
good camp ground. James started at the same time on horseback to see
if he could meet Keller. I went about three miles and waited till he
returned but no news from Keller. I concluded to move my camp about
three miles and sent James back to load up and come on. I waited until
they came. It was after five o'clock before they came up, the loads
being heavy and the teams weak, the loads being too heavy for them. We
are now camped on a very pleasant spot not far from timber. We have
camped near the summit of a ridge where we can see a long way on both
the roads leading to Miller's mill and to the next camp. Soon after we
arrived Horace Whitney passed. I sent word to the President to send me
more teams. I told Horlick we could not board him any longer and gave
him a line to father asking him to board him until he returns. Have
borrowed some meal from Edward Martin to get along. If Keller doesn't
come soon we shall have to obtain something to eat somewhere or go
short. We have nothing left to eat but some corn, and being short of
milk we can not cook it to our advantage. James and I were consulting
just at dusk as to the wisdom of one of us starting out to try and meet
Keller and Corbitt or see if we could learn something of them. We both
felt positive they had lost their horses. While we were talking we
saw Keller and Horlick riding up from the first farm. From Keller we
learned they had got horses and loads and were coming on the other road
and would wait till we came up to meet them if we thought best. He said
the guard had all returned and were with the wagons. This was joyful
news to us and I felt my heart much relieved.

Saturday, May 23

James started out early to meet the wagons. After breakfast we started
on the road and while standing Keller came up and said it was about
four and a half miles to where the other road joins the main road. I
started ahead on foot and after traveling about three miles came up to
the teams where they had waited on the road. When I got up the guard
seemed pleased to see me. Captain Allen had bought about thirty-six
bushels of meal and 200 lbs. of bacon. They would not receive any
pay for it. They have been faithful and diligent and have done much.
There is yet $12.00 due them from the meal and they are determined
I shall have that too. When my teams came up we put the meal in the
wagons and started on. We went about a mile farther to Peter's Bridge
where we concluded to camp for the night. We arranged our loading and
I concluded to let Brother Allen have the wagon and team in his hands
which is church property to send back to Nauvoo for his family. The
guard made out a list of provisions which they wished me to leave them
which was indeed very little. I gave them four pairs of shoes and
probably three bushels of meal which is all the remuneration they would
accept for all they had brought. They seemed well satisfied.

Sunday, May 24

This morning I gave certificates of discharge to A. Keller, John
Horlick, Orville Allen, M. A. Dodge, Tollman, Starks, Mecham,
Bartlet and P. R. Wright. Keller and Horlick started immediately
for Nauvoo and Wright and Dodge soon after. I concluded to move on
about two miles to where Hutchinson and Duzett were in camp. I started
out on foot and most of my family soon after. It soon began to rain
and rained till I was wet through. I traveled on about four and a half
miles but could see no camp near timber. I stopped to rest at a post
put up by Stewart where the Raccoon fork led off. While there Josiah
Arnold passed on his way to Miller's. From him I learned that there
was a camp ground about a half a mile farther. I went on and waited.
Before any of the wagons arrived James came up. Soon after news arrived
that Swap had broke his wagon tongue. I sent James to help bring on
the loads. We only started with three wagons and left three back with
Corbitt and Martin. The teams worked hard all day and at half past nine
the last team arrived having taken all day to travel about five miles.

Monday, May 25

This morning I sent James and Corbitt to go and trade three horses
and some harness for cows. About noon I started out with two wagons
and left one and about three loads of stuff in care of two of the
guard. After we had traveled about three miles I met a messenger from
the camp who handed me two letters, one was from Diantha and one from
Brother Whitaker concerning a piece of land. We went on about a mile
and crossed a creek where we waited to rest our teams. When I read
Diantha's letter it gave me painful feelings to hear of her situation.
After resting about an hour we went on about four miles farther and
camped near Father Baker's camp on a creek. It was night before we
got supper over. I found several men going back to Nauvoo for their

Tuesday, May 26

Wrote an answer to Whitaker's letter and also one to Diantha. We
started on about eight o'clock and found the road bad and many bad
creeks where the bridges had been washed away. After traveling two
miles one of my wagons loaded with corn meal was upset in a hole. But
after about an hour's labor we got the loading in. The wagon was not
much damaged. We proceeded about three miles farther and met two men
with six yoke of oxen which President Young had sent to meet us. This
was a great relief to us for we saw that we could not get to camp today
because of our teams being so worn down. We rested our teams about an
hour and then started on at a good pace. We found several more very
bad creeks to pass but we did not have much difficulty. Duzett and
myself drove the cows. Edward Martin drove his horses. About sundown
we arrived in camp, having traveled about thirteen miles. This place
is called Mt. Pisgah and is a very beautiful situation, the prairie
rolling and rich, skirted with beautiful groves of timber on the main
fork of the Grand river. Soon after we arrived Elder Kimball came
to welcome us to camp and then came Elder Richards and family and
President Young who all seemed glad to see us in camp.

Wednesday, May 27

This morning my horses and one cow and several of the oxen are missing.
I went to see Bishop Whitney about getting teams to send back for the
loads remaining but could get no satisfaction from him. I went back
and unloaded two wagons on the ground and about the same time saw the
President who said he would send for them. Elder Kimball sent one
wagon and the President sent two. President Young said they intended
to take the church property in their wagons and take it on to Council
Bluffs but I must go with them and leave James and Corbitt and Egan to
bring on the wagons they have, etc. I cannot think they understand my
situation in regard to the teams or they would make some definite move
about it. They intend to start in a day or two and I tried to fix the
wagons in good order but had no chance to get even one fixed. Spent the
day fixing up my tent and had to get a new pole. Heber took my other
one. Afternoon it commenced gathering for a storm and we had barely
time to get the tent up and the things under it before it began to rain
and continued till I went to sleep. George Herring and Shumway arrived
here last night. I spoke with them today.

Thursday, May 28

The morning dull and foggy, ground wet, etc. Went fishing some. Evening
played with Hutchinson and Pitt. All my oxen, horses and the cow were
found. I went out this morning hunting for them on foot. Evening

Friday, May 29

The weather fine, cool, and windy. Talked with Heber some. He says I
shall have teams. One of my wagons came in this morning.

Saturday, May 30

Went and borrowed a robe and ornaments from Aaron Farr then rode
with Dr. Richards about three miles on the prairie. There were five
others and among them President Young. Two tents were brought and
we fixed them up and then met and clothed. There were President
Young, P. P. Pratt, J. Taylor, Geo. A. Smith, A. Lyman, John
Smith, N. K. Whitney, D. Spencer, O. Spencer, C. C. Rich,
E. T. Benson, Wm. Huntington and myself. Clothed and having
offered up the signs, offered up prayer, Heber C. Kimball being mouth.
We then conversed awhile and appeared again, Geo. A. Smith being
mouth--A. P. Rockwood and Wm. Kimball were guarding the tent.
Prayers were offered that we might be delivered from our enemies and
have teams to go on our journey, etc. About two o'clock we returned to
camp. Many of the teams were coming in and among the rest, the teams
sent back for my loading which all arrived tonight.

Sunday, May 31

Having heard that Egan was near I started out to meet him. The morning
was fine but about eleven o'clock it began to thunder. I went about
two miles and before I got back without seeing Egan it rained heavily.
I was wet through. I called at the meeting while President Young was
speaking. It rained nearly all the afternoon. Noal Richards died.

June 1846

Monday, June 1

Was wet in the morning and windy all day. The council got me four
wagons and seven yoke of oxen to take church property.

Tuesday, June 2

Still windy but fair. President Young has again stated I lack some
cattle yet. Fixing my wagon, etc. Have about teams enough but lack

Wednesday, June 3

Fixing my wagons. Concluded to start on. My teams were scattered but we
started with what we had. We got over the river at three o'clock, one
yoke of cattle still missing. I sent the men hunting for them but they
were not found.

Thursday, June 4

Again sent the men hunting cattle. The day was very cold and windy,
almost as cold as winter. I spent the day fixing a wagon for Diantha
expecting her on in about two weeks. Lucy Walker called in this
afternoon and expressed sorrow on account of the treatment of Heber's
family toward her. Amos Fielding called on his way to the President's
camp. Towards evening it rained and there was one of the most beautiful
rainbows I ever saw in my life. We could see its brilliant reflection
within a few rods of us. In the evening Douzett came for his cow which
had tarried with ours. He concluded to stay over night. My teamsters
returned without finding the cattle.

Friday, June 5

Sent all the men except James Douglas to hunt the cattle. About nine
o'clock my adopted son Thomas Corbich returned with them. I then waited
till two o'clock for the men to return, three of them being still
absent. I have now eleven wagons, sixteen yoke of oxen, six cows,
five horses, and six teamsters, besides my brother James, whose names
are Conrad Neil, Levi N. Kendall, James Douglas, Milton F. Bartlett,
Willard Smith, and A. E. Hinkel, four of the latter are new to me
and do not seem to know much about teaming. At two o'clock I concluded
to start on and after about an hour's preparation we started. The men
took two teams each. I drove the cows on foot. The roads are a great
deal better. We traveled about six miles and camped on a hill beyond
nice timber. Pitt is here and Brother Taylor's camp. Amos called on his
way back to England. He stayed and conversed a while. I will here say
that the oxen put in by Brothers Olive and Rich to take church property
are very poor and some of them scarcely of any use. We arrived here
about half past six o'clock. The day has been cold, fine and fair.

Saturday, June 6

The morning very fine. We started out at eight o'clock; Pitt joined
with us. I went on foot to drive the cows. About ten o'clock we had a
little rain. After traveling about seven miles we arrived at a piece
of timber where the patriarch John Smith was resting. We concluded to
rest our teams here and stopped at half past eleven. At one o'clock we
started again and soon after had a heavy thunder shower. I was about
a mile ahead of the wagons and having no shelter was soon completely
drenched with rain. It got very cold while raining. As soon as the
wagons came up we stopped till the shower was over which did not last
long. We then pursued our journey and at six o'clock camped on the open
prairie a long way from timber, having traveled about sixteen miles.
After the shower the day was fine. I was very tired and wet and after
eating a little went to bed. Vilate Ruth is weaning from the breast
today which makes her cry.

Sunday, June 7

Inasmuch as we were not near timber we concluded to travel on till we
found some. We started at eight o'clock and traveled till two, being
about nine miles, when we came to a little grove of timber and just
beyond a bad bottom of prairies. I concluded to pass this and camp on
the adjoining ridge. I drove the cows all day on foot. My feet were
sore and blistered. The day was very fine. Sometime after we arrived
Father John Smith came and camped just below us.

Monday, June 8

The weather fine. Traveled about ten miles, the roads being very hilly
and uneven. We camped on a bottom near timber. I went fishing and had
good success. I drove the cows till noon then rode with family.

Tuesday, June 9

Weather fine and hot. Went fishing at daybreak with James and had
good luck. At nine we went on. I rode again. Afternoon three Indians
overtook us and begged some bread. We camped on a bottom beside Coleman
and others, having traveled about twelve miles. Two Indians are here
and we have learned their camp is only three miles from us. President
Young left word to go in companies from here to avoid being plundered
by the Indians. We had our cattle tied up and a guard over them through
the night.

Wednesday, June 10

Went fishing at daybreak and caught thirty-six. Weather hot. We started
about nine o'clock and found the roads good but over hills and ravines
all the day. At six o'clock we camped in sight of the Pottawattamie
Indian village. When about two miles from it they discovered us coming
and we soon saw a number of them riding towards us. Some had bells
on their horses which frightened our horses and cattle. James and I
took the horses and let the others take the oxen the best way they
could. Some of the Indians followed our wagons and inquired often for
whiskey. We had to pass some timber and a river before we arrived at
their village which is situated on a very beautiful ridge skirted
by timber and beautiful rolling prairie. Before we arrived at the
timber it seemed that the whole village had turned out, men, women,
and children, some on horses and many on foot. Their musicians came
and played while we passed them. They seemed to escort our wagons and
asked if we were Mormons. When we told them we were they seemed highly
pleased. It took us some time to cross the bridge over the river and
then we were perfectly surrounded by Indians apparently from curiosity
and friendship. They watched us cross the bridge and others followed
on with us. The boys seemed to learn the words our teamsters used to
drive the cattle and would run and in their way help to drive. They
manifested every feeling of friendship and nothing unkind or unfriendly
transpired. Soon after we passed the bridge we were met by Jas. W.
Cummings and the brethren from Shariton Ford with John L. Butler to
bring Emmet's company to meet us. The cattle have been with Emmet's
company from the time they left Nauvoo. The road leads within about
two hundred yards of the Indians and I wanted to go about two miles
farther to save the necessity of having a guard but soon after we left
the village we had to ford a stream which was deep and bad to cross.
I then concluded to camp on the ridge above the ford and in sight
of the village, being about a half or three quarters of a mile from
them. Many of them followed us, men, women and children and watched
all our movements but about dark all departed in peace. They seemed
well pleased with their visit. They certainly showed every mark of
friendship and kindness imaginable and treated us as brothers. We
learned that the chief's daughter was buried today. We have traveled
about fifteen miles. From Cummings we learned that Emmet had left his
things belonging to the company with him. Part of the company has
crossed at St. Louis and are now on the line here. The agent of the
U. S. refuses to let them pass. The other part of the company are
thirty miles below the bluffs expecting us to cross there.

Thursday, June 11

Many of the Indians again came to the camp with the same friendly
feeling. Some squaws came to trade. We started soon after nine, the
weather being very hot. We traveled over about five miles of very
uneven road. The rest was good. We had to travel till late before we
came to water. We camped on a small creek where Coleman and Tanner were
camped, having traveled about fourteen miles.

Friday, June 12

Traveled about three miles, the weather being very hot. We camped on
a beautiful ridge where the main body had evidently left but little
before, beside a large rapid stream. I concluded to stay here until
Monday to rest our teams and give their shoulders a chance to heal,
several of which were very sore.

Saturday, June 13

Fixing a wagon, etc. The weather very hot. Evening killed one of our
cows. The mosquitoes here began to be very troublesome, there being so
many of them and so bloodthirsty.

Sunday, June 14

The weather very hot and the mosquitoes tremendously bad. This morning
I weighed bread for each man at the rate of a half a pound a day.
They seem very much dissatisfied and growl to each other very much. I
weighed for my family of ten as much as I weighed for six teamsters.
They were dissatisfied but we had some left. They have hitherto had
all they wanted three times a day and above this have eaten up a bag
of crackers unknown to me which I had reserved for the mountains.
The mosquitoes being so bad, I concluded to go on a little piece. We
started at 1:00 p.m. and traveled until four when we arrived at a small
clear stream having traveled about six miles. I camped here and in the
evening told the men a part of what I thought of their conduct.

Monday, June 15

The morning cooler but mosquitoes bad. Our horses were missing and
we were detained till ten o'clock before we could start. The horses
had gone back to where we left yesterday. We traveled till sundown
before we came to water, being about twelve miles. We camped near to
C. L. Whitney.

Tuesday, June 16

Started at 7:30 and traveled about twelve miles when we came in sight
of the Missouri river and the main camp about five miles farther. We
soon learned that some of the camp were coming back to find water.
There being no water where we were, we moved back about two miles to a
spring and there camped expecting to stay until we should learn what to

Wednesday, June 17

This morning Kay and Duzett rode up and said they were anxiously
expecting us at the camp and wanted us to go immediately. I went to
the camp with them to look out a place while my men yoked up and
brought the wagons. When I arrived I saw Heber. He seemed pleased to
see me and went with me to look out a place to camp. I fixed a spot
between President Young's camp and Bishop Miller's. Heber said the
twelve had an invitation to go to the village to the agent's to dinner
and they wanted the band to go with them. I went back to meet the
wagons which had been detained on account of some of the cattle being
missing. As soon as my wagons arrived I got ready and started in Heber
s carriage with Heber, Bishop Whitney, and Smithies. Edward Martin,
Pitt, Hutchinsoo, Kay and Duzett rode in the other carriage. When we
arrived at Mr. Mitchell's, the agent's place, we were introduced to him
one by one. We then played and Kay sang until about five o'clock when
we returned. This village is situated but a little distance from the
river, probably fifty rods. It is composed of twelve or fifteen blocks,
houses without glass in the windows, and is the noted place where the
Lamanites for years held their council. The inhabitants are composed of
Lamanites, half breeds and a few white folks. I had an introduction to
Sarrapee an Indian trader. We arrived home just at dusk.

Thursday, June 18

Fixing a wagon all day. Evening went fishing. Spoke to Bishop Whitney
about some more teams.

Friday, June 19

Fixing wagons and preparing to send off some things to trade. Evening
went fishing. Went with the band to hold a concert at the village. Many
went from the camp. The Indians and half breeds collected $10.10 and
gave it to us and the agent Mr. Mitchel gave a dinner to all that came.

Sunday, June 21

At home until evening. At 5:00 met with the brethren of the camp and
acted as clerk while they selected men to build the boat.

Monday, June 22

Fixing my wagons. The day was windy and cold. I was informed yesterday
that Diantha is twenty miles back from Mt. Pisgah with her father still
farther back. They have sent her chest on to Pisgah and she is with
Loren. I partly made up my mind to start in the morning and bring her.

Tuesday, June 23

This morning I got my food ready to start after Diantha but Vilate Ruth
seemed quite sick and I concluded not to start. We took the teams and
went to the village to pick gooseberries but it rained nearly all the
time we were gone. I bought a scythe and some other things and tried
to trade a watch for a yoke of cattle. Major Mitchel offered me three
yoke for the gold watch. We got home about 3:00. I then went and told
the President about Mitchel's offer and he told me to sell it. It was
so cold and wet and windy we went to bed early and soon after we got
to bed, Heber and Dr. Richards came to my wagon with two letters from
Diantha, one dated Nauvoo, May 17, 1846, the other Big Prairie, June
18th. She tells that she is sent on by her father and is with Loren and
is very anxious that I should bring her or send for her. I made up my
mind to start tomorrow. The night was very stormy with strong winds and
heavy rains.

Wednesday, June 24

The morning wet and cold. I went over to President Young and told him
where I was going and what for. He said he would get the cattle for me.
I also spoke to Heber and he said: "Go and prosper." At 11:00 I went
to council and President Young, Kimball and Taylor concluded also to
go to Pisgah after the cannon. I started at two o'clock it then being
fair. At five o'clock I passed Father Knowlton's company thirteen miles
from camp and at seven passed Laharpe's company and inquired of Brother
Burgham and Freeman about Diantha but could not learn much from them.
Brother Ezra Bickford was here on his way back to Nauvoo. He said he
was tired from riding on horseback and asked if I would let him go with
me to Pisgah and use his horse in the wagon. I told him to come on. I
soon found it made a difference in the load. We went on about two miles
and stopped at dark on the middle of the prairie near no water. After
feeding we lay down to rest. We had several heavy showers through the

Thursday, June 25

This morning arose at four o'clock and moved our wagon a little to
fresh grass to let the horses feed, they being tied to it. It is fair,
but cloudy. We started again at 5:30 a.m., traveled till 10:00 then
rested till 2:00 and then traveled until dark, making thirty-one miles.
We camped just beyond the Indian village in the midst of a severe
thunder storm. It rained most of the day and the roads were bad.

Friday, June 26

Did not start until after seven. Morning fair, roads bad. After
traveling about six miles we found Horace Clark and others camped on
one side of a small stream and Orson Spencer on the other side. The
creek was full of water to the bank and in the deepest place about six
feet over the bridge and a part of the bridge washed away. We tarried
until 3:00 and then concluded to try to get over. Walter L. Davis and
Wm. D. Huntington volunteered to help us over. We unloaded the wagon
box for a boat, taking a few of our things over at a time. When we got
them all over we swam the horses over, loaded up, and at 5:00 started
again and went till near nine having traveled about sixteen miles.

Saturday, June 27

The day was fine and we traveled about thirty-eight miles and camped
on the prairie about eight miles from Pisgah. During the day we passed
some U. S. officers on their way to see President Young and the
council. We afterwards learned that they professed to be going to the
authorities of the church by order of the President of the United
States to raise five hundred volunteer Mormons to defend Santa Fe, etc.

Sunday, June 28

At daybreak it rained again. We started at four o'clock and arrived
at Pisgah at eight. Had some conversation with Father Huntington and
C. C. Rich. We fed and at nine o'clock started again. We soon
saw Brother Woodruff. He was glad to see me and we conversed together
some time. From him I learned that Missouri had sent up a committee to
Pisgah to search for forts and cannon, etc. He says the Missourians
are terrified and many are moving from the back to the interior
settlements. He also stated that we have a friend in the British
Parliament and the British had held a private council in relation to
the treatment of the U. S. towards us. Britain is making great
preparations for war. They have sent ten thousand troops to Canada
and a fleet around Cape Horn to Oregon. They are intending to arm
the slaves of the south and have their agents in the Indian country
trying to bring them in war to fight the U. S. After we left
Elder Woodruff we passed on and soon met Sister Durpee and Brother
Lott and his company. He said Diantha was back about four miles. Soon
after we met Orville Allen and from him learned that Diantha was back
at least twelve miles. We continued on and at two o'clock fed. We
arrived at Father Chase's between four and five o'clock. Diantha was
very glad to see me and burst into tears. My little boy is far beyond
all my expectations. He is very fat and well formed and has a noble
countenance. They are both well and I feel to thank my heavenly Father
for his mercies to them and Father Chase and to his family and may the
Lord bless them for it, and oh Lord, bless my family and preserve them
forever. Bless my Diantha and my boy and preserve their lives on the
earth to bring honor to Thy name and give us a prosperous journey back
again is the prayer of thy servant William. Amen. At night we had a
heavy thunder storm. It rained very heavily.

Monday, June 29

The morning is cool and cloudy, the ground very wet. Brother Bickford
is gone to Nauvoo. Left Father Chase's company about 10:30 a.m. They
kindly furnished us with bread stuffs sufficient to last us to camp. We
arrived at Mt. Pisgah and stayed near Father Huntington's.

Tuesday, June 30

This morning in council with President Huntington, Rich and Benson
until nine o'clock a.m. Took breakfast with Elder Rich and then started
on. We passed Brothers Woodruff, and Lott and their companies about
twelve miles from Pisgah. After traveling about twenty-six miles we
turned onto the big prairie for the night. The weather fine and roads

July 1846

Wednesday, July 1

P. P. Pratt passed about six o'clock. We afterwards learned that
he was going on express to Pisgah to raise the 500 volunteers to go to
Santa Fee. After traveling about seven miles we rested with Brother
Weeks and ate breakfast, then went on till two o'clock and stopped to
feed. We continued on till dark, having traveled about seventeen miles.

Thursday, July 2

Having lost the horses during the night I went back four miles to hunt
them. I met someone and enquired about them, asking if he had not seen
them. Went back to camp and ate a little and afterwards found them
about a mile west. We started about ten o'clock and at sundown passed
the Indian village and the stream at which we previously camped. We
camped about two miles west of the Indian village.

Friday, July 3

Started early and went about four miles to a creek where we ate
breakfast. The day very hot but we traveled about twenty-five miles.
We met President Young, Heber Kimball, and Dr. Richards going back
to raise volunteers. They feel that this is a good prospect for our
deliverance and if we do not do it we are downed. We went on and camped
near Hiram Clark and took supper with him.

Saturday, July 4

This morning my horses were missing and five from Clark's company
were missing. I found them a little west of the camp and started on.
Diantha having eaten nothing this morning I tried to buy some bread but
could not get it till I got home. I arrived at three o'clock and found
my little Vilate sick, the rest all well. I went over to Council at
Captain Allen's tent.

Sunday, July 5

At home all day. Conrad has left and gone to Elder Hyde's. The weather
is very hot. My traders have got back and brought twenty bushels of
corn, but only one of wheat.

Monday, July 6

Spent the day fixing wagons. Day very hot. Bishop Whitney called to see
us. They are getting over the river as fast as possible but it is slow

Thursday, July 9

Spent the two previous days fixing wagons and today went down to the
river to see about crossing, etc. Took my family with me.

Friday, July 10

Fixing my wagons, also Saturday unpacked the dry goods wagon and
repacked it.

Sunday, July 12

Went to the meeting at Elder Taylor's camp. In the evening President
Young, Kimball and Richards returned. They requested me to go to
Taylor's to council. I went and tarried till dark, wrote a letter to
the Quadrille band to meet tomorrow also wrote orders for all the men
in camp to meet.

Monday, July 13

Went to the general meeting and played with the band and then kept
minutes. They got three companies of 43 each and half of a fourth
company. All my teamsters have enlisted. I am now destitute of help.
Edward Martin is advised to go and leave his family in my charge. I
have still four yoke of oxen missing and I do not know where to find
them. Last night James was seized with a fit and is quite unwell today,
mostly insensible. Vilate Ruth is quite sick and on the whole my
situation is rather gloomy. The meeting adjourned at five till tomorrow
at eight, after which the company danced till dark.

Tuesday, July 14

I went over to meeting this morning and told the President my
situation. He consented for me to go back to my camp to see to things.
I came back but feel very unwell. Martin's youngest child died at 1:30

Wednesday, July 15

Went with Edward Martin to bury his child on a high bluff south of the
camp. We buried it between two small oak trees, a little east of them,
the babe's head to the east. After returning Heber sent word for us to
cross the creek to the other bluff where Elder Taylor is camped. We
got some of the cattle together and took part of the wagons over and
then returned for the remainder. As soon as we got there a message came
that the President wished the band to go to the village. We accordingly
started but when we got there we found nobody there and after a little
trading we returned home.

Thursday, July 16

Hunting my horses to take Diantha to see her father's folks who arrived
yesterday. In the afternoon we started out and went about three miles
from here. They appeared very glad to see us. We got home again at dark.

Friday, July 17

Went fishing.

Saturday, July 18

Went to the village to play with the band for the volunteers. They
danced till near sundown when we returned home.

Sunday, July 19

In the wagon till evening. Sister Farr came to see us. Diantha and I
went home with her in the evening.

Monday, July 20

In the morning fixing for our concert. Afternoon the band came with
their wives and we played and danced till dark. President Young made
some appropriate remarks exhorting the saints to prayer, etc.

Tuesday, July 21

This morning it rained very heavily. Went to council at Elder Pratt's
camp. The council appointed a council of twelve to preside here, viz.
Isaac Morley, Geo. W. Harris, James Allred, Thos. Grover, Phineas
Richards, Herman Hyde, Wm. Peck, Andrew H. Perkins, Henry W. Miller,
Daniel Spencer, J. H. Hales and John Murdock. I wrote a letter
informing them of their appointment also instructing them not to let
any pass over the river unless they could be in time to go to Grand
Island and cut hay, to watch over the church, establish schools for the
winter, etc. I spent the remainder of the day at the creek. I asked
the President what I should do but could get no answer. I have not
been able to get any satisfaction from any of the council as to what I
should do and am totally at a loss to know whether to tarry here or go
on. My provisions are nearly out and my teamsters all gone and nearly
all the cattle strayed away, and no one to hunt them except James and
Corbitt and they are sick.

Wednesday, July 22

Fixing a wagon for Margaret and re-loading some wagons.

Thursday, July 23

Unpacking church property. Found considerable of it very much damaged
with wet. I put it out and dried it well and repacked it. Evening went
with Diantha to see her folks.

Friday, July 24

Regulating the loading, etc.

Saturday, July 25

Bought 357 pounds of flour at $2.50 per hundred and carried it about
three hundred yards to my wagons then spent the day fixing wagon
covers. Evening went to Brother Farr's. About 11:00 a storm arose
and it soon began to rain heavily and a while after blew a perfect
hurricane. The thunder was awful and the rain poured in torrents for
about a half an hour.

Sunday, July 26

This morning the tent is down, wagons drenched and everything looks
gloomy enough. Scarcely a tent in the camp was left standing and many
wagon covers torn. A report is circulated that a cow was killed by
lightning. Much damage is done to wagons, provisions, etc. The cow was
killed about 200 yards west of my wagons. There was a tent struck also
but no persons hurt. I went to meeting and heard Benson and Taylor
preach. Afternoon at my wagons. Evening Bishop Whitney, President Young
and Kimball called. I made out a bill of goods for them to send east by
Robert Pierce. They ordered me to go down to the river tomorrow.

Monday, July 27

Loading wagons, packing, etc., preparing to start. Last night I engaged
Pelatiah Brown as a teamster. We started soon after noon. I drove the
cows and James, Corbitt and Brown the teams with twelve wagons. We had
to leave one cow four yoke of oxen and two horses on the ridge, being
missing. We got down about six o'clock. Bishop Whitney passed and said
I should not get over the river tomorrow and I suppose we shall have
to wait some days. James and Corbitt are both sick and discouraged on
account of having so little help and so many cattle, etc., to look
after. They have a hard time of it but I can see no prospects of its
being better.

Tuesday, July 28

James and Corbitt started back to hunt the cattle. I went to the
village and received $12.00 of Larpey for the cordage I sold to Allen,
$3.50 is yet my due. I then went and bought some flour of Tanner. While
we were weighing it a storm arose and it rained and thundered and
lightninged throughout the day and nearly all night. I have not seen
more rain fall in a long time.

Wednesday, July 29

Got the balance of the flour making 889 lbs., most of it at $2.50 and
200 lbs. at $2.00. Afternoon went to the village with Alice, Diantha,
and Margaret. There saw President Young and Heber. They have just
bought a pony and some cloth, etc., and seem to have money enough but
there is none to buy me flour. I yet lack about a ton.

Thursday, July 30

At home all day. Unpacked mother's wagon and found many things wet and

Friday, July 31

Attending to wagons, cattle, etc., all day.

August 1846

Saturday, August 1

This morning I went to the river to see how soon we could cross and
learned there was a prospect of our crossing this evening or tomorrow
morning. I then went back to my camp and we started with the wagons a
few at a time. My brother James is lame in bed. Pitt is lame. Brown
is lame and Corbitt nearly spent. About noon we got all the wagons to
the river and Corbitt returned to take the cattle to grass. I went to
Larpey's and got the balance of the money then went to Mitchel's to try
to trade my music box for a cow but did not succeed.

Sunday, August 2

Preparing to cross the river. Pelatiah Brown went swimming all the
forenoon and when Corbitt asked him to help with the teams he swore he
would not if Jesus Christ would ask him. I told him if he did not feel
like helping us he could go somewhere else, I did not want him. He went
and I am again left without a teamster. I will here say that Brown will
not work only when he has a mind to and during the last week when James
and Corbitt and Pitt were all gone he would go to the river swimming
instead of attending to the cattle and I may as well be without a
teamster as have a man who will go away in a cramp. About noon we
crossed three wagons over and kept to work until we had got them all
over which took us till dark. We had to crowd our wagons together in
the road just above the river on account of its being stopped up by
other wagons. We could not get our cattle to grass and they have had
none since last night, but having a few bushels of corn we gave them
five ears a piece. After supper I went fishing with Wm. F. Cahoon and
others until two o'clock but had very poor luck.

Monday, August 3

Started this morning to get our wagons on the prairie. The road is very
narrow and bad, up steep bluffs and very muddy. It took four yoke of
oxen to take a very light load. When we had got four of the wagons up
eight yoke of Bishop Whitney's cattle came to help us and afterwards
nine yoke of President Young's and Kimball's. We got to the prairie
about noon and stopped to feed our cattle. I sent on five wagons with
the teams sent to help us and after feeding about an hour started with
the remainder. I drove the spare cattle and horses. We got the wagons
to camp about six o'clock. One of President Young's oxen killed himself
when going to drink, being so eager he pitched into the creek and broke
his neck. When we got to camp we were all completely tired. My feet
were sore and my limbs ached and had to go to bed. We camped on the
north end of Heber's company. We have left nine head of cattle over the
river yet and there is little prospect of being able to find some of

Tuesday, August 4

This morning Heber's company have moved on about two days journey and
again left me here alone. I loaned C. L. Whitney three yoke of
oxen to help him through. They are gone to find a place within thirty
miles of here to winter. I spent the day doing little, being so unwell.

Wednesday, August 5

Moved down a little nearer water. There spent the day fixing Ruth's
wagon. Corbitt has gone over the river to hunt cattle and in the
evening returned with one yoke.

Thursday, August 6

Putting covers on Margaret's and mother's wagons, etc. Afternoon
writing copy of the returns of companies.

Friday, August 7

Spent the forenoon writing copy of return of companies of the
U. S. army. About noon two of Heber's teamsters came with some
cattle to help me to the main camp. I left off writing and went to
putting the wagons in order. While fixing a chicken coop I struck my
forehead with a hammer which disabled me from work the remainder of the

Saturday, August 8

This morning we arose about three o'clock and while some took the
cattle to graze the rest got the wagons loaded, etc., ready to start.
We got away soon after sunrise. I rode a mule and drove the cows. We
traveled about nine miles before we came to any water. Here we took the
teams from the wagons to a spring about a quarter of a mile from the
road. The cattle seemed tired but one of the teamsters said it was only
about three miles farther and should soon be there. We concluded to go
on without stopping to feed. But before we had proceeded far some of
the cattle gave out, the day being very hot, and before we got to camp
several yoke gave up entirely and were left on the road and brought
afterwards. One of the cattle died almost as soon as they took him from
the wagon, being about a mile from camp. Two or three others were not
expected to live. When we arrived Heber wanted us to form on his north
line but we could only get half of our wagons into the space left for
the whole of them. I then moved over to the south side and formed next
to D. Russell. We got our tent up but can have no fire until Monday.
The cattle are so tired we will not use them. I feel about sick myself.
Heber's camp is formed in a kind of parallelogram, each wagon camped
in a perfect line with the others. The square in the center is about
twenty-five rods long and fifteen rods wide.

Sunday, August 9

Writing copy of return of companies of U. S. army all day.

Monday, August 10

Attending to various business about the wagons all day.

Tuesday, August 11

Last night I had a severe chill and felt sick all day mostly with high
fever. Quite unable to work.

Wednesday, August 12

Quite sick, very bad fever all day.

Sunday, August 16

Since Wednesday have scarcely even been out of bed, but kept with
raging fever all the time. Twice Heber has rebuked my fever but it has
returned. Through fear and persuasion of my family I have taken some
pills and medicine given by Dr. Sprague, but seem to grow worse all the
time. Today I have been very sick. Towards evening my folks concluded
to get me out of the wagon into the tent where they had prepared a
bed. Soon after I got into the tent President Young, Dr. Richards,
G. A. Smith, Orson Pratt, Lorenzo Young and others called to
see me. When they had been in a few moments President Young called
O. P. Rockwell into the tent and the feelings we had on seeing him
cannot be described. He has been in prison some time but when his trial
came on there was no one to accuse him and the judge discharged him.
The brethren all laid hands on me and rebuked my disease in the name of
the Lord, President Young being mouth. I immediately felt easier and
slept well all night being the first sleep I had had of any account for
three days and nights.

Sunday, August 23

During the past week I have gained slowly and have been able to walk
about some. I, however, feel very weak and broken down.

Monday, August 24

Reading some and fixing a little at my violin. Feel very little better
but have a better appetite.

Tuesday, August 25

We had a thunder storm last night. I do not feel so well this morning
but took a walk into the woods. I had a very sick day all day.

Wednesday, August 26

The morning very cool and cloudy. Let T. Corbitt have a pair of shoes.

Thursday, August 27

Diantha was taken very sick and continued for four or five days.

Saturday, August 29

At night I was seized with fever again and very sick.

Sunday, August 30

Had chill and fever, the chill held me four or five days.

September 1846

Thursday, September 10

I still continue very weak and troubled with pain in stomach, etc.
President Young and Dr. Richards called and brought me a letter from
David; also said they had got me employment writing at a dollar a day
or 3c on every hundred words copying.

Saturday, September 12

Still quite unwell. President Young brought me $8.00 in money, one half
dollar bogus and soon after Dr. Richards sent me some letters to copy
which I did.

Tuesday, September 15

This evening I copied a letter to Joseph F. Herring and having no one
to send it by I took it to council myself. Before I got half way there
my knees failed me and it was with great difficulty I got there and
home again. When I got back to Pitt's shanty my spirit failed me for I
was not aware of my weakness.

Saturday, September 19

Since Tuesday I have scarcely been out of bed, but today I feel
somewhat better again.

Sunday, September 20

A little better. I have been told that President Young has virtually
cursed all who have gone to Missouri or those who shall go hereafter.

Monday, September 21

This evening about ten o'clock all the men of the camp were ordered
up armed to meet in this square forthwith. I got up and after a very
little while quite a company of the brethren got together. President
Hales informed them that the President had received a letter from Mr.
Sarpey informing him that two gentlemen from Missouri had informed him
confidentially that the Missourians had got out writs for the twelve
and others and were coming with a large force on the west side of the
river to attack the camp by surprise, etc. He advised the brethren to
have their arms clean and their ammunition ready at a moment's warning,
to pray with their families, keep dogs tied up at nights, etc., etc.
The company was then dismissed except a guard for the camp.

Tuesday, September 22

This morning the brethren were ordered to meet at the springs below
here at nine o'clock. At the sound of the drum the brethren met and
here organized into four battalions, one of artillery, and three
of infantry. There were about three hundred brethren present. The
President then stated that he had received a letter from Sarpey
informing him that two gentlemen, confidentially, from Missouri had
informed him that the Missourians were collecting with the sheriff
of Missouri, their head designing to attack the saints, that they
had writs, etc., for the twelve and others. He had ordered out the
brethren that they might be ready in case of necessity and advised
them to organize and be prepared. Markham was elected Colonel over the
battalions. Hosea Stout, Lieutenant Colonel over the battalions and
over the first battalions and over the first battalions of infantry.
John Scott was elected 1st major and major over the artillery. Henry
Herriman 2nd major to take command of the 2nd battalion of infantry and
John S. Gleason 3rd major over the 3rd battalion of infantry. After
organizing the President addressed the companies and then dismissed
them. It was advised to quit leaving and move the encampment to the
fort on the river. A number of teams moved this afternoon.

Wednesday, September 23

This morning President Young and many others have moved down to the
river. Heber told me to wait till the lots were selected and he would
let me know when to move. My health is improving.

Thursday, September 24

Very cold all day. I did not feel so well. I have been told that Daniel
H. Wells and William Cutler have arrived in camp and brought a report
that there has been a battle fought in Nauvoo and some of the brethren

Friday, September 25

I learned today that the mob had made it known that they were coming
to drive out the "Mormons." The Governor sent an officer to raise
volunteers to disperse the mob, but the mob learning this they came
sooner than they had calculated. The brethren being apprised of
the intentions of the mob prepared to meet them as well as their
circumstances would permit. Some of the new citizens also made
preparations to join the brethren. They made five cannon shot of an
old steam boat shaft. They also filled some barrels with powder, old
iron, etc., which were buried in the pass to the city which could
be fired by a slow match but this was of no avail as some traitors
informed the mob of it, hence they did not come into the settled part
of the city. On Saturday the 12th inst., the mob made their appearance
being about twelve hundred in number. The brethren and some of the
new citizens in the whole about one hundred and sixty went to give
them battle, but many of the new citizens and some of the brethren
when they saw the numbers of the mob fled and left about one hundred,
nearly all brethren, to fight the enemy. The mob had pieces of cannon.
They met near Boscow's store on Winchester street. The cannon of the
mob were two blocks from the brethren and the other part of rifle men
one block from them. The mob fired a number of times into Barlow's old
barn expecting many of the brethren were concealed there but in this
they were disappointed, the brethren chiefly lying down on the ground
behind some shelter and fired in that position. They fought one hour
and twenty minutes when the mob offered terms of compromise which were
these, that all the "Mormons" should leave the city within five days
leaving ten families to finish the unsettled business. The brethren
consented to this inasmuch as they had been well informed that 1,500
more were coming to join the mob and they had nothing to expect from
the authorities of the state. Lyman Johnson, one of the twelve, headed
a party of the mob from Keokuk, Iowa territory. Three of the brethren
were killed, viz. William Anderson, his son, and Norris, a blacksmith.
Three others wounded. The mob would not own to any of their party being
killed but one person saw them put sixteen men into one wagon and
handled them more like dead persons than wounded. The ground where they
stood was pretty much covered with blood, so that there is no doubt
they had many slain or wounded. They had 150 baggage wagons. Esquire
Wells took command of the brethren and rode to and fro during the whole
battle without receiving injury, although the balls whistled by him on
every side. Amos Davis fought bravely. While running across a plowed
field he stumbled and fell on his left arm which formed a triangle with
his head. As he fell a cannon ball passed through the angle of his
arm between that and his head. Hiram Kimball received a slight wound
with a musket ball on the forehead. The mob fired sixty-two shots with
the cannon and ten rounds with the muskets making 12,000 musket balls
only killing three and wounding three. The brethren did not fire so
much in proportion but did much more execution. Truly, the Lord fights
the battles of his saints. The cannon of the brethren was not of much
service, they would not carry more than a quarter of a mile, whereas
those of the mob would hold well a half a mile. They shot nine balls
through a small smith shop, one through Wells' barn and one at his
house but the ball struck the ground in front of his house and glanced
through the well curb. The mayor of Quincy watched the battle from the
tower of the temple and owned that history never afforded a parallel.
The brethren then began to get their families and effects over the
river where they remain in a suffering and destitute condition until
wagons and means are sent from the saints to their relief. On the
Thursday following, the mob, 1,200 strong, entered the city. 'Tis said
from good authority that such is the distress and sufferings of the
saints as actually to draw tears from this mob.

Saturday, September 26

Russell told me that he had selected three lots for us and we could go
as soon as we had a mind to. He saw Heber on the subject. I made up my
mind to start on Monday for Winter Quarters.

Sunday, September 27

This morning Brother Smithies came with six yoke of Heber's cattle
and said we must be ready to start in five minutes while he went to
water his cattle and although we had everything unprepared we were
ready before he got back. I felt well enough to drive a team. We
took six wagons down and camped on the same block with Heber in Cape
Disappointment. James and Pitt went back to wait for Corbitt who was
herding cows and in the evening returned with three more wagons.

Monday, September 28

Got the balance of the wagons and poles, etc., down. I copied three
letters for Dr. Richards.

Tuesday, September 29

Corbitt has started down into the country to fetch potatoes, etc.

November 1846

Sunday, November 1

During the last month several times I have been very sick and then
again would be somewhat better. I still continue to be feeble and
unable to work. I have one house nearly finished and shall in a few
days occupy it. Thomas Corbitt has been down the river to fetch a
load of corn on shares but President Young told me to take the whole
of it for which I feel very grateful. I have sent my cattle to the
rushes to be wintered, having but eight tons of hay although James and
Corbitt worked from twenty-six to thirty days but Russell and Rolfe
have contrived to work it into their hands, taking as Rolfe said, half
of Corbitt's hay for herding my cattle while he was in the hay field.
I think this is as wrong a piece of business as has been played on me
through the journey.

January 1847

_Winter Quarters_

Friday, January 1

Morning at the store. At 2:00 p.m. went with Diantha to her father's
and partook of a roast turkey for dinner. At 4:00 met the band at the
Basket Shop and played about an hour and a half. The basket makers
made each of us a present of a new basket and showed their gratitude
various ways. At 6:00 met with the band at Father Kimball's and played
for a party till after one o'clock. President Young and Kimball danced
considerable and all seemed to feel well.

Saturday, January 2

At the store regulating the books and making out Whitney and Woolley's
account current, etc. About 2:00 p.m. Sarah came and said her mother
wanted me. Moroni had fallen into the fire and burned himself very
badly. I went home and found as she said. All over the left side of
his head burned, his face very badly burned, large blisters round his
left eye. I immediately applied some consecrated oil and ordered them
to keep it on all the time. I then returned to the store. Evening
President Young came and took his hardware bill, domestic drilling,
etc. About 8:00 p.m. I went home.

Sunday, January 3

Moroni's face seems much better, all except around his left eye which
looks very bad. I was at the store all day working at Whitney's account
current which seems very bad to regulate. Evening Heber, his wife
Ellen, Sarah Ann and Sister Whitney came in to trade and remained till
about ten o'clock.

Monday, January 4

At the store all day. Evening waiting on Orson Pratt and Amasa Lyman.
Paid my tax today, $2.17½ to I. C. Wright.

Tuesday, January 5

At the store all day. Evening the band met at my house.

Wednesday, January 6

At the store all day, the weather extremely cold.

Thursday, January 7

At the store, the weather still colder than yesterday. Evening went to
Sister Buel's and took supper of turkey. Afterwards went to Leonard's
and played for them with Hutchinson and Smithies till 12:00.

Friday, January 8

At the store again, the weather still colder. Evening the band met at
my house and played some.

Saturday, January 9

At the store all day. Quite unwell till 9:00 p.m.

Sunday, January 10

At home mostly all day. About 2:00 p.m. went to Hutchinson's to dinner.

Monday, January 11

At the store all day, the weather more moderate. Margaret and her boy
doing well. Last night Pitt returned from Missouri.

Tuesday, January 12

This morning Ruth began to feel unwell. I went to the store and
continued settlements as usual. Brothers Lee and Russell returned
from Missouri, having obtained change for the checks. About 4:00 p.m.
President Young and J. D. Lee came to Bishop Whitney's and I
received in gold $496.17, and in silver $1,080.52 out of three checks
which Lee took value $2,447.32, the balance to be accounted for
hereafter. Soon as I was through receiving the money, I was informed
that my folks had sent for me and I went home soon after, found that
Ruth had brought forth a son twenty minutes after 5:00 p.m. She had a
pretty hard time, but feels comfortable as can be expected. The boy is
named Newel Horace. Evening I met with the band at Johnson's and played
till about 11:00 p.m. The house was very much crowded and not much room
to dance, but they kept it up freely.

Wednesday, January 13

This morning Ruth feels more comfortable. At the store all day waiting
for Lee and Russel to settle. Evening Russel came and I received from
him in gold $177.50, and in silver $363.19. He also accounted for
$150.00 paid to Heber and $30.00 to Daniel Russel out of a check value
$732.53 leaving him deficit $11.84. Spent the evening at home.

Thursday, January 14

At the store paying out a pair of the money, expecting before I made
final payments to settle with Lee and Egan.

Friday, January 15

Spent an hour with Lee and Egan at my house but did not accomplish
much towards a settlement. Afterwards at the store paying out money,
settling, etc., filled bills for Pisgah & Garden Grove.

Saturday, January 16

At the store again paying, settling, etc., all day. The weather very
cold. My folks doing well.

Sunday, January 17

At home mostly all day.

Monday, January 18

At the store all day, mostly paying money to the soldiers' wives.

Tuesday, January 19

At the store paying money, etc.

Wednesday, January 20

At the store paying money, etc.

Thursday, January 21

At the store paying money, etc.

Friday, January 22

At the store paying money, etc. Evening went with Hutchinson to
Packer's party and played for the party in the smoke till near midnight.

Saturday, January 23

At the store all day paying money, etc. Evening met with Pitt and
Hutchinson at the council house.

Sunday, January 24

Headache all day having taken cold last evening. Mostly at home. A few
hours at the store over the river and back. Night played with Pitt

Monday, January 25

At the store, very busy paying money, etc. Snowed some and is cold.
Whitney let me have some goods. Evening walked alone.

Tuesday, January 26

At the store till 2:00 p.m. Afterward went with the Quadrille Band to
the Council House agreeably to previous notice and played for a party
of men (70's) and their families who had assisted in building the
house. They danced till about midnight. We had plenty to eat and drink
through the interview and a very pleasant party.

Wednesday, January 27

At the store again till noon. At 2:00 p.m. at the Council House with
the Quadrille Band and played for another company of those who had
assisted in building the house. We had plenty of refreshments and a
very sociable party as on yesterday. Broke up again about midnight.

Thursday, January 28

At the store till noon, and then at the Council House with the
Quadrille Band playing for the third party of those who had assisted in
building the house, together with the poor basket makers.

Friday, January 29

At home and the store. Felt quite unwell.

Saturday, January 30

At the store all day settling and paying money to soldiers' wives.

Sunday, January 31

At home all day. Dined with Diantha, Ruth, Margaret and mother Farr on
a turkey.

February 1847

Monday, February 1

At the store all day settling accounts, paying money, etc.

Tuesday, February 2

At the store till noon. Afterwards at the Council House with the
Quadrille Band playing for Brigham's family generally.

Wednesday, February 3

At the store till noon. Afterwards at the Council House with the
Quadrille Band to play for a family meeting of the Young family.
President Brigham Young was quite sick and seemed very low spirited.
After the meeting had been opened by prayer, the President called on
his brothers to stand up by him in the center of the room which they
did according to age. John Young took his place at the head, then
Phineas, Joseph, Brigham and Lorenzo. The President then called on
Heber to take his place in the line inasmuch as he had been recognized
about fifteen years as a member of the Young family. He took his place
between Joseph and Brigham. The President then said this was the first
time that father Young's boys had been together in the same capacity
for a number of years, etc. After a few remarks the remainder of the
evening was spent by partaking of a good supper and cheerful dancing
till about two in the morning, when the party broke up in the best of
spirits and good feeling.

Thursday, February 4

At the store mostly, evening at home.

Friday, February 5

At the store till noon, then with the Quadrille Band to play for the
Silver Greys till midnight.

Saturday, February 6

At the store all day.

Sunday, February 7

At home.

Monday, February 8

At the store all day.

Tuesday, February 9

At the store till 10:00 a.m. Then went with the Quadrille Band in
Eldridge's carriage to play round the city, but the weather was so cold
we could not play much. At 2:00 p.m., met with--

_[No pages from here until April.]_

April 1847

...into camp from England which will probably detain the camp a few days.

Friday, April 9

Went with the Quadrille Band over the River as the twelve do not
start for the Horn today. We played in the boat as we crossed, but in
returning the wind was high, the boat heavily loaded with cattle and
dangerous crossing.

Saturday, April 10

At home nearly all day.

Sunday, April 11

At home and Farr's. I told Winslow Farr concerning Hosea Stout's
threats to take my life after the Twelve are gone, etc. He called at
night on his return from the Council and told me to be on my guard.

Monday, April 12

At home all day. Thomas and James had planted a number of garden seeds
on Saturday. Today, they are cutting wood and preparing to go to the
farm tomorrow. I have no hay, neither can I get any for my cows and

Tuesday, April 13

At home most of the day. Thomas and James started for the farm. Evening
went to the store and told Brigham and Heber about Hosea Stout's
calculations, etc.

Wednesday, April 14

This morning severely pained with rheumatism in my face. At 11:00 a.m.
Brigham and Dr. Richards came. Brigham told me to rise up and start
with the pioneers in half an hour's notice. I delivered to him the
records of the K. of G. and set my folks to work to get my clothes
together to start with the pioneers. At two o'clock I left my family
and started in Heber's carriage with Heber and Wm. Kimball and Ellen
Sanders. Bishop Whitney and Lyman went out with us in another wagon.
We went about 19 miles and camped on the prairie. After supper Heber
prayed and we retired to rest.

Thursday, April 15

After eating and prayers by Bishop Whitney, started at half past seven
and got to the Elk Horn at 11:30. We were all across at 12:00 and there
we overtook Brigham, G. A. Smith, E. T. Benson and Amasa
Lyman. We arrived at the pioneers' Camp about 3:00 p.m. This camp is
about twelve miles from the Elk Horn and about 47 from Winter Quarters.
I spent the evening with Aaron Farr, Horace Whitney and Jackson Redding.

Friday, April 16

This day is gloomy, windy and cold. About 8:00 a.m. the camp was called
together, and organized two captains of 100's viz. Stephen Markham
and A. P. Rockwood were appointed, also five captains of 50's
and 14 captains of 10's. There are 143 men and boys on the list of
the pioneer company, three women and Lorenzo Young's two children.
There are 73 wagons. C. P. Rockwell has gone back to camp with
J. C. Little. Bishop Whitney, Lyman, Wm. Kimball and J. B.
Noble returned from here to Winter Quarters. The following is a list of
all the names of this pioneer company. To wit:

Wilford Woodruff, John S. Fowler, Jacob Burnham, Orson Pratt, Joseph
Egbert, John N. Freeman, Marcus B. Thorpe, George A. Smith, George
Wardle, Thomas Grover, Ezra T. Benson, Barnabas L. Adams, Roswell
Stevens, Amasa Lyman, Sterling Driggs, Albert Carrington, Thomas
Bullock, George Brown, Willard Richards, Jesse C. Little, Phineas H.
Young, John Y. Greene, Thomas Tanner, Brigham Young, Addison Everett,
Truman O. Angel, Lorenzo Young and wife, Bryant Stringham, Albert
P. Rockwood, Joseph L. Schofield, Luke Johnson, John Holman, Edmund
Elsworth, Alvarnus Hanks, George R. Grant, Millen Atwood, Samuel Fox,
Tunis Rappleyee, Harvey Pierce, William Dykes, Jacob Weiler, Stephen H.
Goddard, Tarlton Lewis, Henry G. Sherwood, Zebedee Coltrin, Sylvester
H. Earl, John Dixon, Samuel H. Marble, George Scholes, William Henrie,
William A. Empey, Charles Shumway, Thomas Woolsey, Chancy Loveland,
Erastus Snow, Andrew Shumway, James Craig, William Wordsworth, William
Vance, Simeon Howd, Seeley Owen, James Case, Artemas Johnson, William
A. Smoot, Franklin B. Dewey, William Carter, Franklin G. Losee, Burr
Frost, Datus Ensign, Franklin B. Stewart, Monroe Frink, Eric Glines,
Ozro Eastman, Seth Taft, Horace Thornton, Stephen Kelsey, John S.
Eldredge, Charles D. Barnum, Alma M. Williams, Rufus Allen, Robert T.
Thomas, James W. Stuart, Elijah Newman, Levi N. Kendall, Francis Boggs,
David Grant, Heber C. Kimball, Howard Egan, William A. King, Thomas
Cloward, Hosea Cushing, Robert Byard, George Billings, Edson Whipple,
Philo Johnson, William Clayton, Appleton M. Harmon, Carlos Murray,
Horace K. Whitney, Orson K. Whitney, Orrin P. Rockwell, Nathaniel
Thomas Brown, R. Jackson Redding, John Pack, Francis M. Pomroy, Aaron
Farr, Nathaniel Fairbanks, John S. Higbee, John Wheeler, Solomon
Chamberlain, Conrad Kleinman, Joseph Rooker, Perry Fitzgerald, John H.
Tippets, James Davenport, Henson Walker, Benjamin Rolfe, Norton Jacobs,
Charles A. Harper, George Woodard, Stephen Markham, Lewis Barney,
George Mills, Andrew Gibbons, Joseph Hancock, John W. Norton, Shadrach
Roundy, Hans C. Hanson, Levi Jackman, Lyman Curtis, John Brown, Mathew
Ivory, David Powell, (Hark Lay, Oscar Crosby, blacks) Joseph Mathews,
Gilbroid Summe, John Gleason, Charles Burke, Alexander P. Chessley,
Rodney Badger, Norman Taylor, (Green Flake, black) Ellis Eames.

There were 72 wagons, 93 horses, 52 mules, 66 oxen, 19 cows, and 17
dogs, and chickens.

The names of the females in this camp are: Harriet Page Young, Clarissa
Decker, and Ellen Sanders. The names of the children are Isaac Perry
Decker Young and Sabisky L. Young, making a total of 148 souls who have
started to go west of the mountains as pioneers to find a home where
the saints can live in peace and enjoy the fruits of their labors,
and where we shall not be under the dominion of gentile governments,
subject to the wrath of mobs and where the standards of peace can be
raised, the Ensign to nations reared and the kingdom of God flourish
until truth shall prevail, and the saints enjoy the fulness of the

The following are the names of the captains of 50's as appointed at
this organization, viz. Addison Everett, Tarlton Lewis, James Case,
John Pack and Shadrack Roundy. The captains of 10's are as follows:

Wilford Woodruff, Ezra T. Benson, Phineas H. Young, Luke Johnson,
Stephen H. Goddard, Charles Shumway, James Case, Seth Taft, Howard
Egan, Appleton M. Harmon, John S. Higbee, Norton Jacobs, John Brown,
Joseph Mathews. For the names of the guard and the gun division see
under date of April 30th.

Stephen Markham was appointed the Captain of the Guard and ordered to
select out of the camp, fifty men for guard, such as he had confidence
in who are to be considered as a standing guard, to attend to the
wagons each night, twelve of them to stand at a time, and to have
two sets each night, that is, 12 each watch to stand half the night.
In cases where the horses and cattle are tied some distance from the
wagons at night, an extra guard is to be selected from the balance of
the company or camp, the standing guard not being permitted to leave
the immediate neighborhood of the wagons. After the organization was
over, I wrote a letter to Diantha, and put it into the hands of Bishop
Whitney, together with the one I received yesterday from father and
I. McEwan, also the one from Ellen to James. Up to 12:00 a.m. I had
no place to put my trunk and clothing, and did not know what to do
with them. However, soon after Heber told me to put them in Appleton
M. Harmon's wagon, which was done. At 2:00 p m. the camp started out
to proceed on the journey. I bid farewell to to Bishop Whitney and
his brother Lyman and son Joshua, who all returned from this place,
also Wm. H. Kimball and Joseph B. Noble. We traveled about three miles
and encamped in a line about six hundred yards from timber, where
there is plenty of cottonwood and some rushes. This night I slept
with Philo Johnson, but having only one quilt, and the night severely
cold, I suffered much, and took a very bad cold. The country in the
neighborhood of the Elk Horn is one of the most beautiful I ever saw.
The bluffs on the east are nicely rolling and beautifully lined with
timber, and some very nice cedar groves. From these bluffs a little
above the ferry you can see the meanderings of the Platte River, and
the beautiful level bottom on the north of it, about fifteen miles wide
for many miles up the river. The Horn is a beautiful river about 150
feet wide and about four feet deep.

Saturday, April 17

This morning the weather is severely cold, with a strong wind from the
north and northwest. We started out at nine o'clock and traveled till
near 12:00 the distance being about seven miles. We camped close by a
cottonwood grove, and the brethren fell hundreds of them to feed their
teams and save corn. There is a small lake close by but the water is
not good and the brethren go to the river about a half a mile. At 5:00
p.m. the camps were called together and organized in military order as

Brigham Young, Lieutenant General.

Stephen Markham, Colonel.

John Pack and Shadrack Roundy, Majors.

The captains of 10's to be captains of 10's in this order, except John
Pack, who being appointed major, Appleton M. Harmon was appointed
captain in his stead.

Thomas Bullock, clerk of the camp. Thomas Tanner captain of the cannon
with the privilege of choosing eight men to manage it in case of
necessity. The President then said: "After we start from here, every
man must keep his loaded gun in his hand, or in the wagon where he
can put his hand on it at a moment's warning. If they are cap locks,
take off the cap and put on a little leather to keep wet and etc. out.
If flint locks, take out the priming and fill the pan with twine or
cotton," etc.

The wagons must keep together when traveling, and not separate as they
have previously done, and every man to walk beside his own wagon, and
not leave it only by permission. A while before evening one of the
trader's wagons came from the Pawnee village, loaded with furs and
peltry, and camped about one quarter of a mile below us. At night Eames
and Hanson played some on their violins. All peace and quietness. At
night I slept with Egan in Heber's wagon, Heber being gone to sleep
with President Young.

Sunday, April 18

This morning I wrote a letter for Heber to his wife Vilate, which was
sent by Brother Ellis Eames who has concluded to go back on account of
poor health, spitting blood, etc. He started back with the trader's
wagon about eight o'clock a.m. The wind this morning east and southeast
and very cold, with a slight shower of snow. At 10:00 a.m. seven more
traders' wagons came in and stopped about one quarter of a mile below
us, soon after six mules loaded with robes and furs. These traders
say they have come from the Pawnee village in two days. Brother
Roundy got some Buffalo meat from them and gave me a little, which
I thought tasted very good. I commenced writing Heber's journal and
wrote considerable. He wants me to write his journal all the journey.
I also wrote considerable in this book. Afternoon the weather more
moderate and pleasant, the wind has changed near south and the sun
shines. I walked with Horace Whitney to the river which is about a
half a mile. At 4:30 p.m. father James Case was cutting a cottonwood
tree to brouse his horses, and just as it fell the wind struck it and
threw it directly contrary to the direction he intended it to fall. The
consequence was, one of the limbs struck an ox on the neck and knocked
him down. His right eye was knocked down in the socket out of sight.
The ox doesn't seem seriously hurt otherwise. About 10 minutes after it
was done, the eye turned back to its place, and the ox seems to have
sustained little injury. At 5:00 p.m., the officers of the camp met
with President Young, and he told the order for traveling and camping
hereafter, which was communicated to the companies by the captains of
10's as follows:

At 5:00 in the morning the bugle is to be sounded as a signal for
every man to arise and attend prayers before he leaves his wagon. Then
cooking, eating, feeding teams, etc., till seven o'clock, at which time
the camp is to move at the sound of the bugle. Each teamster to keep
beside his team, with his loaded gun in his hands or in his wagon where
he can get it in a moment. The extra men, each to walk opposite his
wagon with his loaded gun on his shoulder, and no man to be permitted
to leave his wagon unless he obtains permission from his officer. In
case of an attack from Indians or hostile appearances, the wagons to
travel in double file. The order of encampment to be in a circle with
the mouth of the wagon to the outside, and the horses and stock tied
inside the circle. At 8:30 p.m. the bugle to be sounded again at which
time all to have prayers in their wagons and to retire to rest by nine
o'clock. Tonight I went to bed about seven-thirty o'clock suffering
severely with pain in my head and face. I slept with Philo Johnson.

Monday, April 19

At 5:00 a.m., at the sound of the bugle I arose, my face still paining
me very badly. After eating breakfast, I started out on foot, before
the wagons started, with my rifle on my shoulder. At 7:15 the wagons
began to move and at 7:30 were all formed in double file and proceeded
on. After traveling about eight miles we arrived at a number of small
lakes, where were many ducks. A number of the brethren shot at them and
killed several. At 1:15 p.m. we arrived at a bend in the river where a
small stream runs around an island.

We stayed here to feed awhile, having traveled about fifteen miles
mostly a western course with the wind south. The roads very good and
the country very level on these flat bottoms of the Platte river
which bottoms appear to be from ten to fifteen miles wide. Soon
after the camp was formed, O. P. Rockwell, Jackson Redding, and
J. C. Little came in from Winter Quarters. They arrived at 2:10.
They have found Dr. Richard's mare which was lost east of the Elk
Horn and brought her to camp. They brought me a line from Diantha
and one from Ruth and Margaret. In the last was a very gentle piece
of information which has caused me to reflect much, and proves to me
that Ruth and Margaret's virtue and integrity have for the last year
been far superior to mine. In my letter to them I requested them to
attend to family prayer in my absence, a thing which I have neglected
since leaving Nauvoo. They informed me that they had done that when I
was at home but unknown to me, and they had then, and still continue
to bear me up before their Heavenly Father. Oh, what integrity, what
faithfulness. I feel unworthy to possess two such treasures, but still
feel to try to reward them for it, and may my Father in heaven bless
them, and all my family and let his angels guard them, and me during
my absence that we may all be permitted to meet again and enjoy each
other's society in this world for many years to come, and eternal
in the world to come. O! Lord, grant this prayer of thine unworthy
servant, and fill my family with peace and union, and open a way that
they may have the necessaries and comforts of life, and Thy name shall
have the praise, even so, amen.

I received by Porter, some few fish hooks and lines, a ball of fish
line and three pencils, but no small hooks nor knives or wafers. At
twenty minutes after 3:00 p.m. the wagons began to move again, in the
same order as this morning and traveled until 6:00 p.m. when we arrived
at a very pretty open view of the Platte river, and the encampment was
formed in a semi-circle on its banks, having traveled since noon, about
five miles, and in the whole day 20 miles, over the same kind of dry,
level, sandy bottom. The river here appears to be about a mile wide
but very shoal. There is not much timber where we are camped, and the
water is pretty muddy. I walked some this afternoon in company with
Orson Pratt and suggested to him the idea of fixing a set of wooden cog
wheels to the hub of a wagon wheel, in such order as to tell the exact
number of miles we travel each day. He seemed to agree with me that it
could be easily done at a trifling expense. After the encampment was
formed, I went to Brother Luke Johnson and asked him to draw my tooth
which has pained me so much for a long time. While I was speaking to
him Stephen Markham came up, and wanted him to take his team and the
Revenue Cutter the name by which the leather boat is called back about
two miles, as they designed to seine in one of the lakes. Brother Luke
Johnson drives the team which draws the boat and rides in the boat as
in a wagon. I concluded I would go and watch them fish and started out
on foot. I overtook Markham and John S. Higbee and in our conversation
I mentioned to Brother John S. Higbee the same idea I had advanced to
Orson Pratt, and he also seemed to coincide fully. After arriving at
the lake they launched the boat and made three hauls. They only caught
a snapping turtle, four small turtles, one duck, two small cat fish,
and two creek suckers. They then concluded to return and I started on
foot again with two rifles to carry. I got back to camp before they
overtook me and being perfectly tired and very footsore, went to bed,
but had no rest on account of the severe pain in my head and face.

Tuesday, April 20

Arose at 5:30, my head and face very bad indeed. I ate but little
breakfast, although we had a couple of ducks and a snipe. We started
out at 7:30, the morning pleasant except a strong west wind. At 9:15
arrived at Shell creek, which is about six or eight feet wide, and a
poor bridge over it, but all the wagons got well over. This is about
five miles from where we camped last night. We then passed through a
small grove of timber, and entered again upon the wide, open prairie
bottom. At 11:30 we stopped beside a small slough or lake to feed and
eat, etc., being five miles from Shell creek. While stopping here,
three deer passed about half a mile west of the wagons. O. P.
Rockwell and Thomas Brown chased them on horses four or five miles, but
did not succeed in taking any of them. The wind has fallen considerably
and it is very warm and dusty. At 1:00 p.m. started again, the horse
teams taking the lead, traveled about ten miles farther and encamped
near a cotton wood grove on the banks of the river. The encampment was
formed about half past five. Tanner's bellows and anvil were set up and
a number of tires set before dark.

John S. Higbee, Luke Johnson, S. Markham, and some others, started
ahead of the camp about noon, and went about two miles farther than
this place to a lake with the boat and seine. They took over 200 very
nice fish, and arrived with them about the time the camp was formed.
The fish were distributed around the camp according to the number of
persons in each wagon, generally two to a wagon, and the brethren
enjoyed a good supper on fish. I went to the river and washed my feet
which were very dusty and sore. I also washed my socks as well as I
could in cold water without soap. After Brother Luke Johnson had got
through distributing fish, I went and asked him to draw my tooth. He
willingly agreed and getting his instruments, I sat down in a chair,
he lanced the gum, then took his nippers and jerked it out. The whole
operation did not take more than one minute. He only got half the
original tooth, the balance being left in the jaw. After this my head
and face pained me much more than before. I ate but little supper and
then lay down, but could not sleep for pain till near morning. The
evening was very calm and pleasant.

Wednesday, April 21

Arose at 5:00, my face easier, but swollen and my gums raw. Took
breakfast on fish and coffee, but ate no bread, it being very dry and
hard. I could not bear to put it in my mouth. At seven started on
foot; the ox teams being gone ahead. Some appearances of rain, and a
slight shower fell. Wind northeast and pretty cool. At ten minutes to
nine an Indian rode up to the first wagon and appeared very friendly.
Soon after six or eight others came running on foot. They came from
the timber about a mile to the left. At 10:00 we arrived at a fork in
the road, the one on the left leading to the new Pawnee village, and
the one to the right leaving the village some distance to the south. A
consultation was held by President Young with father Case relative to
the roads crossing the river, etc., when it was concluded to take the
right hand road. We proceeded accordingly and at 12:00 came in sight
of the new Pawnee village, in an open spot on the south bank of the
Loop Fork, between two bodies of timber. The village appeared to be
about three quarters of a mile south of the road we were on. At 12:30
we were opposite the village, and could then see distinctly upwards
of 100 lodges set pretty close together, and appeared to be ranged in
several lines, and set in good order. We proceeded until we arrived at
a long narrow lake by the side of the timber and near to the river. At
1:00 p.m. the encampment was formed on the bank of the lake and a guard
instantly placed at the passes, as many of the Indians had followed us,
although they had to wade the river, but it is very shoal. One of the
Indians presented several certificates from persons who had previously
traveled through their village, all certifying that the Grand Chief of
the Pawnees was friendly disposed, and they had made him presents of
a little powder, lead, salt, etc. Heber gave them a little tobacco,
and a little salt. President Young gave to the chief, some powder,
lead, salt and a number of the brethren gave a little flour each. The
old chief, however, did not seem to think the presents sufficient,
and said he did not like us to go west through their country, he was
afraid we should kill their buffalo and drive them off. Brother Shumway
told him we did not like buffalo, but this does not appear to give
him much satisfaction. However, there was no appearance of hostility.
In fact, all that came to camp seemed highly pleased to shake hands
with our brethren and would run from one side to another so as not
to miss one. A number of the squaws were on the opposite side of the
lake with mattocks digging roots. Brother Shumway says there are
about twelve thousand of the Pawnees in this neighborhood, and it is
reported that there are five thousand warriors. We did not see many of
them. Larpy is at their village trading, and it is uncertain whether
he will endeavor to use an influence for us or against us. We have no
fear, however, because their only object appears to be plunder, and it
is the calculation to be well prepared by night and day. During the
resting hour I spent the time writing in my journal. At 2:15 p.m. the
ox teams started out again and the horse teams soon after. The weather
had been calm and pleasant for a few hours, but about 2:00 or a little
before, some heavy clouds began to gather, and thunder was heard at a
distance. About 2:30 the rain began to descend heavily, accompanied by
heavy peals of thunder and vivid lightning which continued till about
4:00. A strong north wind blew up, the rain and thunder ceased and the
weather grew very cold. We traveled till 5:30 and the encampment was
formed on the Loop Fork of the Platte river. After the encampment was
formed and teams turned out, the brethren were all called together and
some remarks made by President Young, advising them to have a strong
guard round the camps tonight. He called for volunteers to stand guard
and about 100 volunteered amongst whom were all the twelve except Dr.
Richards. This guard was divided into two companies of fifty each, one
company to stand the first half the night, and the remainder the last
half. Those of the twelve who stood took the first watch till 1:00.
Brigham and Heber both stood on guard. Out of the companies a party
were stationed as a picket guard some distance from the camp, the
balance stood near the camp. The night was very cold, with a strong
wind from the northeast, and in the middle of the night, it rained
considerable. Our course this morning was about west. This afternoon,
northwest. We are now within three miles from the bluffs on the north.
We have traveled today about twenty miles, the roads being good and
very level. The grass here is short but looks good. The buffalo grass
is very short and curly like the hair on a buffalo robe. The spring
grass doesn't seem to be as early here as at the Elk Horn, and the last
year's growth not being burnt off, will be rather a disadvantage to
the spring companies. I have noticed all the way on this bottom from
the Elk Horn, that the ground is full of wild onions which appear far
richer and larger than any wild onions I ever saw. I have no idea that
corn would grow here for the land is very dry and loose and sandy, and
appears poor. The country is beautiful and pleasing to the eye of the
traveler, although you can only see one kind of scenery for several

Thursday, April 22

Arose soon after 5:00 a.m., my face very painful again caused by the
cold. There has been no trouble from the Indians and all is peace and
safe. The cannon was prepared for action, and stood all night just
outside the wagons. There was considerable joking this morning on
account of two of the picket guard having their guns stolen and Colonel
Markham having his hat stolen. The owners were found asleep while on
guard and those who found them so, took their guns to be a warning
to them, but it is difficult for men to keep awake night after night
after traveling 20 miles in the day, taking care of teams, cooking,
etc. At 7:30 the camp proceeded again. I went ahead on foot. About one
quarter of a mile from where we camped is one of the prettiest beds
of nettle I have seen for some time. Our road this morning lay beside
pretty heavy timber, and about a westerly course. After traveling two
miles, crossed Looking Glass creek, a small stream about a rod wide,
but easily forded. I still went ahead on foot and at 9:45 sat down on
an Indian grave, on top of a mound from whence is a splendid view of
the surrounding country for many miles. From southeast to southwest you
can see the course of the Loop Fork for a number of miles. Northwest a
level prairie about four miles and then a range of timber. The bluffs
on the north about seven miles distant, and on the east a level prairie
for about twenty miles. At this place there is a range of what appears
to be mounds about a quarter of a mile long, running from northeast to
southwest. At 12:15 we arrived on the east bank of Beaver River, having
traveled about ten miles. This stream is about twenty to twenty-five
feet wide; swift, clear water and pleasant tasting. The banks are
tolerably well lined with timber. Here we stopped to feed. Some of the
brethren went to fix the fording place a little, the banks are steep
on each side and the water a little over two feet deep. At 2:00 p.m.
started again, the ox teams first. When passing the river a number of
the brethren stood on the west bank with a long rope which was hooked
to the wagon tongue and they assisted the teams up the bank. The wagon
I rode in crossed at two minutes after 2:00, and in a little while all
were safely over. We proceeded on till half past five, when we arrived
at the Pawnee Missionary station which is about seven miles from Beaver
River. The country this afternoon was more uneven, there being many
steep ditches and rises. The grass appears longer and there is much
rosing weed. The soil looks black and no doubt would yield a good crop
of corn. This missionary station was deserted last fall, and Brother
Miller's company being camped here, they carried the missionaries
and their effects to Bellview on the Missouri river. This is a very
beautiful place for a location. On the north and west it is surrounded
by bluffs, on the south by the Loop Fork at about three quarters of a
mile distance. On the east by descending prairie. The Plumb Creek runs
through it, and but a few rods from the missionaries' house. Its banks
are lined with a little timber. There is also a steep bank on each
side, and between these banks in the valley which is a few rods wide,
the Sioux have practiced coming down when they have made their attacks
on the Pawnees. The ravine is certainly well calculated to shelter
an enemy from observation when designing to make a sudden attack.
There are a number of good log houses here, considerable land under
improvement enclosed by rail fences, and a good quantity of hay and
fodder, large lots of iron, old and new, several plows and a drag. All
apparently left to rot. There are also two stoves, etc. The government
station is a quarter of a mile below, or south where father Case lived
as government farmer and received $300.00 a year for it, but when Major
Harvey learned at the last payday, which was last November, that father
Case had joined the "Mormons" he very politely dismissed him from the
government service. The Sioux came down sometime ago and burned up
the government station houses, blacksmith shop and everything, but
the missionary station they did not touch. This place according to
my account is 134 miles from Winter Quarters, and a lovely place to
live. Before dark the President called the camp together, and told
them they might use the fodder and hay for their teams, but forbade
any man carrying anything away, even to the value of one cent. He said
he had no fears of the Pawnees troubling us here, but we had better be
prepared lest the Sioux should come down and try to steal horses. A
guard was selected and a picket guard to watch the ravine to the north.
The cannon was also prepared and Brother Tanner drilled his men to use
it till dark. At 9:00 p.m. I retired to rest and slept well through the
night. The variation of the compass is about 12 degrees at this place.

I again introduced the subject of fixing machinery to a wagon wheel to
tell the distance we travel, describing the machinery and time it would
take to make it, etc., several caught, the idea and feel confident of
its success.

Friday, April 23

Arose this morning at 5:30, my face bad again through sleeping cold.
The air chilly but a very pleasant morning. President Young, Heber and
others are gone to the river to ascertain where we can best ford it.
There is a ford a little distance from here, and another about four
miles above, but the latter is in the neighborhood of another band of
the Pawnees and they are desirous to avoid it if possible. They started
out on horseback at a quarter to eight and the camp remained here till
they returned. Some are working, some fixing wagons, etc. The day is
now warm and very pleasant. I went to Plumb creek and washed my feet
which are very sore. The brethren returned at a quarter to 12:00 and
reported that we would have to go about four miles and there build
a raft. Tarlton Lewis was appointed to superintend the building of
the raft. President Young then stated in regard to the plows, iron,
etc., which lies around here, for the government is owing father Case
considerable for services, and he has the privilege of taking this for
his pay. He will do it and if the brethren want the iron, etc., they
can have by hauling it, one half, and father Case the other half, and
he (Case) will write and inform them what he has done. I started on
foot about 12:00 and viewed the ruins of buildings, etc., which the
Sioux have burned. There is a large quantity of good bar iron, and a
number of plows, which the brethren put into their wagons on the terms
proposed by father Case. Two miles from Plumb creek, passed another
creek not very good to ford, although it is narrow but sandy. Two miles
farther arrived at the intended crossing place, but the prospect looks
dull for rafting on account of sandbars and very rapid current. My feet
were so sore and blistered I could not walk for some time after I got
there. The sun is very hot and no wind. At 3:20 the wagons arrived and
prepared to ford the river. Luke Johnson was the first who went over,
leaving the boat on this side, and although he had no load, nor even a
wagon box, it was with difficulty he got over. Orson Pratt started next
with a part of his load. When he had got in about a rod, his horses
began to sink some in the sand and they could not draw. A number of the
brethren jumped in and lifted at the wheels, etc., till they got him to
the bar in the middle. He then started for the other bar and about half
way across his horses sank in the quicksand so badly that one of them
fell down. A number of the men immediately went to his assistance and
took them off the wagon and led them across to the sand bar. President
Young went over in the boat and took the loading out of the carriage
into the boat. The carriage was drawn to the sand bar by men with a
long rope. The brethren then assisted Elder Woodruff's team over in
the same way, also John Pack's and Wordsworth's. President Young then
ordered that no more wagons should go over that way, but move up the
river about a quarter of a mile and camp until morning. The camp was
formed about 5:30 p.m. The river is not more than two feet deep, but
there are a great many beds of quicksand which are dangerous to teams,
and calculated to shake a wagon to pieces. They make a noise when
crossing the quicksands as if they were going over a stone pavement.

The country here is indeed beautiful and appears rich, but there is
very little timber. After crossing Plumb creek, there is plowed land
for nearly two miles on the right but not fenced. It appears to have
yielded a good crop of corn. The land on the left to the river is level
and beautiful for a farm. We are now camped about a quarter of a mile
from the old Pawnee village on a splendid table of land, level and
pleasant as heart could desire. It is not much over three quarters of
a mile wide and shielded on the north by beautiful rolling bluffs and
on the south by the Loop Fork of the Platte. From this bank can be seen
the timber on the banks of the main Platte, the bottom from here to it
appears very level. There is something romantic in the scenery around
here, and the prospect cannot well be exaggerated.

In the evening the captains of tens were called together and a vote
taken to build two light rafts, Tarlton Lewis to superintend one and
Thomas Woolsey the other. As many loads of property as can be carried
over in the boat will be done, and the teams with empty wagons will
ford it. It is said that by going over several times with teams the
sand will pack down and be good crossing, several of those who have
been across believe this from today's experience and they calculate to
give it a fair trial tomorrow. Amongst the rest of those who waded the
river to help the wagons over, Brother Kimball joined and assisted one
team to the other side, and then returned in the boat with President

Saturday, April 24

Arose soon after 5:00. Morning fine, but cool. One of Phineas Young's
horses was choked to death last night. It appears he was tied to a
stake with a chain near a steep hole in the ravine, and either stepped
back or lay down and rolled over into the hole, and the chain being
short he was choked to death, having no power to extricate himself.
This is a grievous loss for there are no more teams in the camp than
what are absolutely necessary, and in fact, there are hardly enough to
get along very comfortably. By request of Brother Kimball, I went up to
the old Indian village immediately after breakfast to take a view of
it, and write a description as near as circumstances would permit which
is as follows:

This village is situated on the north bank of the Loop Fork of the
Nebraska or Platte river, about four miles southwest of the mission
station on Plumb creek and 138 miles from Winter Quarters. The Pawnee
nation is divided into four bands. The names of the bands are the Grand
Pawnee, the Loop, the Tappas, and the Republican. When the nation
settled in this region the Grand Pawnees and the Tappas located on the
west bank of Plumb creek and the Loops located on this spot and were
afterwards joined by the Republicans. When the Sioux made war on the
Indians at the first settlement and destroyed their village, the Grand
Chief saw that his party were unable to cope with their hostile foes
alone, and it was concluded that the four bands should locate together
on this spot, but notwithstanding this, the Sioux succeeded in burning
this village last summer during the absence of the Pawnees when on
their hunt. They rebuilt most of it again, but last fall the Sioux
made another attack and burned the whole village except one dwelling
or lodge, which is not harmed. There are three or four others but
partially destroyed, the rest are entirely demolished and levelled with
the ground. The Pawnees then moved to the place where we passed them a
few days ago, and are dwelling in their lodges made of hides, etc. The
name of the Grand Chief is Shefmolan, who is also the superior chief
of the Pawnee band. All documents or treaties made by the nation are
signed by this chief and the nation is then bound by them. The head
chief of the Loup band is named Siscatup, the other chiefs, father Case
did not recollect their names. From him I obtained this information.
There is a part of the Loup band on the main Platte, some distance from
here, who have never yielded to the government treaties, but stand out
from the rest of the nation and spend their time mostly in plundering
other tribes as well as travelers. They frequently go as far as the
Cherokee nation to rob and plunder. All the Pawnee nation are noted for
their love of plundering travelers of their horses and mules, but not
often anything else.

On the east and west of the village is a beautiful level bench of
prairie extending many miles, and to the ridge of bluffs which run
east and west touching within a mile of the village. On the top of the
bluffs can be seen a number of Indian graves. To the northwest about
a mile distant, and at the foot of the bluffs is an extensive corn
field, the stalks still standing. On the south is a beautiful view of
the nice level prairie extending to the main branch of the Platte, the
timber on the banks can be faintly, but plainly seen. The Loup Fork
is probably about 400 yards wide at this place and very shoal, except
a narrow channel near the shore on this side which is probably three
feet deep. The bottom is mostly quicksand and not safe fording. About
half the surface from bank to bank is sand bars which appear above the
surface of the water mostly on the south side. There are several small
islands and a little timber to the right or west. The village occupies
a space of about 40 acres of land, and is mostly enclosed by a ditch
about five feet wide, and a bank inside the ditch about four feet high,
running from the bank of the river around the village till it again
strikes the bank, and when perfect, has formed a good fortification. A
number of lodges are built outside the ditch on the east and on account
of want of room inside when the bands from the other village joined
them. The village is composed of about 200 houses or lodges varying
in size but all similarly constructed, as appears from the remnants
of some left standing. While I take this sketch, I sit in the one
left unharmed, which it is said was owned by the chief Siscatup, and
as the lodges are all constructed in the same manner, only differing
in size, I will endeavor to describe the way in which this is built.
In the first place, the earth is dug out a little, slanting to the
depth of about 18 inches in the form of a perfect circle about 44 feet
in diameter. This forms the floor of the dwelling. Then there are 17
crotch posts let into the floor in a direction slanting outward so that
the top of the crotch is about perpendicular with the outside of the
circle, the foot being set about 18 or 20 inches from the base of the
circle. These posts are arranged at about equal distances from each
other around the circle. In the crotches, poles are laid across from
crotch to crotch, and are sufficiently high for the tallest man to
stand upright under them. At the distance of 18 or 20 inches from the
outside of the circle are many smaller poles let into the surface of
the ground, on an average of about a foot apart and leaning inward so
that the top of the poles rest on the cross pieces which are supported
by the crotches. The space between the foot of these poles and the edge
of the circle forms a bench for seats entirely around the house, and
there is room sufficient for more than a hundred men to seat themselves
on it very comfortably. On the outside of these last mentioned poles
are laid a number of still smaller poles horizontally from bottom to
top from about 9 inches to a foot apart, these are lashed fast to
the upright poles by strings made of bark. On the outside of these
is laid a thick layer of long prairie grass and occasionally lashed
through to the upright poles also. The whole is then covered with
earth about two feet in thickness at the bottom and gradually thinner
towards the top. This forms an enclosure when completed around the
whole area about seven feet high, a place being left sufficiently large
for the door. The next process is to place erect ten upright poles or
crotches, very stout, being about a foot in diameter about seven feet
nearer the center of the circle than the first crotches. These are set
perpendicular, deep in the ground and also arranged at about equal
distances from each other, and form a strong foundation which is the
design and use to which they are appropriated. On the top of these
pillars are also horizontal poles laid strong and firm, the top of the
pillars being about eleven or twelve feet above the floor. Long small
poles are then laid from the outside horizontal poles over the inner
ones and sufficiently long to meet at the top within about two feet
of each other, forming a hole for the smoke from the fire to ascend
through. These long poles are laid pretty close together all around
the building, and across them smaller ones are lashed with bark as in
the first instance, only they are much closer together. The operation
of lashing on a layer of long grass and finally covering the whole
with earth, completes the roof of the building. The door or entrance
is a long porch formed by placing in the earth four upright posts or
crotches far enough apart to extend outwards from the circle, about 18
or 20 feet. There are four upright crotches on each side the porch and
in the crotches, poles are laid horizontally as in the other parts of
the building. The process of lashing sticks across, then a thick coat
of long grass and lastly a stout coat of earth, is the same as the
other parts of the building. The roof of the porch is flat and is about
seven feet high and six feet wide. The porch is dug down about half
as deep as the main building, making a short step at the mouth of the
porch and another one at the entrance into the house. The fire has been
made in the center of the house directly under the hole in the roof.

At the farther side of the building, exactly opposite the porch, is
a projection of sod left about a foot from the outside of the circle
which is said to have been the seat of the chief, and over which hung
his medicine bag and other implements.

The crotches are arranged so that there is a free passage to the center
of the hall from the porch one standing on each side at the entrance
about six feet apart and the others appear to be arranged from them.
The smaller houses have not so many pillars as this one. Some have
eight in the center and sixteen outside the circle. Others have four
in the center and ten outside. The entrances are also smaller in
proportion, but all are constructed on the same principle. It looks a
little singular to note that nearly all the entrances to these lodges
front to the southeast, except in one or two instances where they front
in other directions for lack of room. It is probable that this is done
to avoid the effects of the severe cold northwest winds so prevalent in

Adjacent to each lodge is a stable or pen, which has been designed for
keeping horses in. These are mostly left unharmed. They are constructed
by placing poles upright in the ground from two to three inches in
diameter as close together as possible and about ten feet high. About
five or six feet above the ground cross poles are laid horizontally,
and each of the upright poles are firmly lashed to the cross poles by
strips of bark, so as to make them firm and secure them from being
moved out of their place. The stables are mostly built square, with
a door left on one side sufficiently large to admit a horse. There
are some circular stables but not so many as the square ones. The
horses appear to have been penned in by placing loose poles across the
doorway, for there is no other sign of a door visible.

Around each lodge there are also several cachets where corn and other
necessities are deposited. The cachets are large holes dug in the
ground, or rather under the ground, the entrance being only just large
enough to admit a common sized man. They are made pretty much after the
shape of a large demijon. The cachets are generally about six feet high
inside and about fifteen feet in diameter; there is a gradual slope
from the mouth to the extreme corner and a little bowing, which forms
the roof. The surface of the earth above, at the mouth, is about two
and a half or three feet deep. Some of these are said to be capable of
holding a hundred bushels of corn, and when filled there is a thick
coat of grass laid on the top and the mouth then filled up nicely with
earth, and when finished a stranger would not have the least suspicion
that there was a storehouse full of corn under his feet.

I finished taking the foregoing sketch soon after noon, and then had
intended to go on the bluffs and examine the Indian graves, but it
being very warm, and perceiving the teams crossing the river very
rapidly, I returned, and found most of the teams over. They commenced
crossing about eight o'clock, some unloaded their goods on the bank
which were carried in the boat to the sand bar, the teams going down to
the ferry to cross. After a few wagons had gone over, it was perceived
that they went over with less difficulty, and by doubling teams they
soon took over the loaded wagons without much difficulty. I prepared
to wade over the river, inasmuch as the wagon I am with was gone over,
and in fact, all Heber's wagons were over except one, but Jackson
Redding brought me Porter Rockwell's horse to ride over, and I mounted
and proceeded. I found the current strong indeed, and about as much as
a horse could do to ford it without a load. I soon got over safe and
wet only my feet. At 3:00 p.m. the last wagon was over on the solid
sand bar, and about four o'clock all the wagons and teams were safely
landed on the bank on the south side of the Loop Fork without any loss
or accident, which made the brethren feel thankful indeed. A little
before four, the wagons started on to find a better place to camp and
feed for our teams, where we can stay comfortable until Monday and give
the teams a chance to rest, for they as well as the men are very tired
by wading against the strong current on the quick sand. The bottom
land on this side is more sandy than on the other side, but the grass
appears higher but not so thick on the ground. The bluffs on the other
side look beautiful from here, and the Indian graves show very plain.
We went on about three miles and camped beside a small lake near the
river. I traveled this on foot. Soon as we arrived Porter Rockwell
discovered that there were many sun fish in the lake. I took a couple
of hooks and lines, handed some to him, and went to fishing myself
with the others and we had some fine sport. I caught a nice mess which
Brother Egan cooked for supper, and although they were small they made
a good dish. Many of the brethren caught a good mess each. Brother
Higbee came down with the seine and made two hauls but caught none on
account of the grass in the bottom of the lake. We have good reasons
to suspect that we are watched by the Indians as their footsteps have
been seen on the bluffs south, apparently very fresh, but the guard are
faithful and we have no fear. The cannon was prepared again so as to be
ready in case there should be an attack. Evening I walked over to Orson
Pratt's wagon, and through his telescope saw Jupiter's four moons very
distinctly never having seen them before. I went over to my wagon and
looked through my glass and could see them with it, but not so distinct
as with Orson's. The evening was very fine and pleasant. About ten
o'clock retired to rest in good health and spirits, thankful for the
mercies of the day that is past.

Sunday, April 25

Arose soon after five, shaved and changed some of my clothing. The
morning very pleasant, wind west. Our course for the last seven miles
has been about southwest. We are about 14 miles from the main branch
of the Platte river and it is said that if we travel on this fork one
hundred miles farther, we shall then be not over thirty miles from the
main branch. This morning saw four antelope on the other bank of the
river about a mile and a half northwest. Afternoon Elijah Newman was
baptized by Tarlton Lewis in the lake for the benefit of his health.
Brother Newman has been afflicted with the black scurvy in his legs and
has not been able to walk without sticks, but after being baptized and
hands laid on him he returned to his wagon without any kind of help
seemingly much better. Soon after 5:00 p.m. a meeting was called at the
wagon of President Young, and remarks made by several, and instructions
by President Young chiefly in reference to the guard and the folly
of conforming to gentile military customs on an expedition of this
nature. After dark the twelve and some others met together opposite
the President's wagon to select men to go a hunting buffalo, etc., as
we proceed on the journey. It was ascertained that there are eight
horses in the company which are not attached to teams. Then eight men
were selected to ride on horseback, viz., Thomas Woolsey, Thomas Brown,
John Brown, O. P. Rockwell, John S. Higbee, Joseph Mathews. Then
there were selected eleven men to hunt also on foot, viz., John Pack,
Phineas H. Young, Tarlton Lewis, Joseph Hancock, Edmund Ellsworth,
Roswell Stevens, Edson Whipple, Barnabas L. Adams, Benjamin F. Stewart,
Jackson Redding and Eric Glines. It was also voted that the twelve have
the privilege of hunting when they have a mind to. After some remarks
and cautions in regard to chasing the wild buffalo, the company was
dismissed, and I retired to rest soon after nine o'clock, the evening
being very fine and pleasant.

Monday, April 26

This morning about 3:30 an alarm was sounded. I immediately got out of
the wagon and learned that three of the guard who were stationed to the
northeast of the camp had discovered some Indians crawling up towards
the wagons. They first received alarm from the motions of one of our
horses, and noticing this they went towards the spot and listening,
heard something rustle in the grass; they first suspected they were
wolves and fired at them. Only one gun went off and six Indians sprang
up and ran from within a few rods of where they stood, another gun was
then fired at them and the camp alarmed. A strong guard was placed all
around, and a charge of cannister put in the cannon. The day was just
breaking when this took place and the moon had just gone down. The
air being extremely cold and fires put out, I retired into the wagon
till morning and arose again at half past five. After daylight, the
footsteps of the Indians could be plainly seen where they had come down
under the bank and sometimes stepped into the water. No doubt their
object was to steal horses, and they had a fair privilege if the guard
had been found asleep, for the camp was only formed in a half circle
and some horses were tied outside. However, the prompt reception they
met with will have a tendency to show them that we keep a good watch
and may deter them from making another attempt. Orders were given for
the tens to assemble for prayers this morning, instead of two in each
wagon, which was done. President Young told me this morning that as
soon as my health will permit, he wants me to assist Brother Bullock in
keeping minutes, etc., as Brother Bullock is hard run, having to take
care of a team and attend to other chores.

The camp started out about 8:00 a.m. I started at 7:30 on foot and
traveled four miles, then waited for the wagons. There is no road here,
consequently, President Young, Kimball, G. A. Smith, A. Lyman and
others went ahead on horseback to point out the road. The horse teams
traveled first to break the strong grass so that it will not hurt the
oxen's feet. The hunters started out in different directions keeping
only a few miles from the wagons. We traveled about seven miles and
then stopped at 11:30 beside a few little holes of water to rest and
feed teams, etc. From this place which is somewhat elevated, can be
seen the remains of an old village or Indian fort, over the river about
northwest from here. The country looks beautiful, somewhat rolling and
bounded by uneven bluffs. The land looks poor and sandy. The sun is
very hot and not much wind. I find it has a great tendency to make sore
lips, parched up and feverish. At 1:45 all the wagons were on the way
again. We traveled about seven miles. We crossed two slough or soft
places though not very bad. They are the first since we left Winter
Quarters. The roads are more uneven than on the other side the river.
We had to make a new road all day. At 6:15 the encampment was formed on
the east banks of a small creek with a very gravelly bottom. The wagons
are formed in a deep hollow and so low that they cannot be seen at a
quarter of a mile distance. There is no fresh grass here, neither has
the old grass been burnt off. We have crossed a number of trails today
which some say are buffalo trails. They all run towards the river, and
in some places there are 8 or 9, others, not more than two, and so on,
together running about a half a yard apart. The hunters have seen no
buffalo. Woolsey killed a goose. There is no timber here, only a few
small willows. We are about a half a mile from the river, and there
doesn't seem to be much timber on the river. Our course today has been
about southwest. About a mile back from this place situated on a high
bench of land on the banks of the river is the remains of an Indian
village, the houses or lodges being all down and no appearance of
timber left. The entrances to these lodges all face to the southeast,
the same as those back at the other village. There has evidently been a
garden around the village as the land has been broken and bears marks
of cultivation. This morning Brother Benson discovered that one of the
iron axles of his wagon was broken, and he moved the load so that there
was no weight on the part which was broken, and traveled with it all
day. This evening the wagon was unloaded, the axle taken off, Brother
Tanner's forge set up, and the axle welded and fixed ready to put to
the wagon again. This was done in the short space of one hour after the
encampment was formed. The welding was performed by Brother Burr Fost.
About eight o'clock Joseph Mathews came into camp from seeking his
horses and stated that an Indian had rode a horse off a little before
and he supposed it was Brother Little's horse, which was missing. Dr.
Richards' mare was also missing. Brother Mathews stated that he went
out to seek for his black man who was out watching his teams, and as
he arrived he saw Brother Little's horse as he supposed going towards
the river. He ran towards it to turn it back to camp, but as soon as he
commenced running the horse sprang to a gallop, which made him suppose
there was an Indian on him although he could not see the Indian. As
soon as he gave the alarm five or six of the brethren mounted their
horses, and pursued on the course pointed out to the river, but could
neither see nor hear a horse or Indian. When they returned, President
Young and Kimball and a number of others went out on horseback and
searched till near eleven o'clock, but likewise proved unsuccessful.
The brethren have been repeatedly warned not to let their horses go far
from their wagons, but every time we stop they can be seen around for
more than two miles. These are two good horses and the owners feel bad
enough, but it will be a warning to others to be more careful.

Tuesday, April 27

Arose soon after five. The morning fine and pleasant. During the night
the guard fired twice but they supposed they were wolves they fired
at. I went back to the old Indian village before breakfast, and also
with O. P. Rockwell, to see if any tracks of the lost horses could
be found. He followed one track some way into a bunch of willows, but
having no arms we returned. At 7:45 the wagons commenced moving and
traveled till 2:15 being about twelve miles nearly a south course, the
design being to go to the main branch of the Platte. President Young,
Kimball and others went forward again to point out the road. O. P.
Rockwell and some others started back to hunt the horses about the time
we started. The land today has been very rolling and uneven. It is also
very sandy and dry. After traveling about four miles through dead grass
we found a large space where the grass had been burned off. Here it is
quite green, and there are quantities of buffalo dung, which proves
that we are not far distant from some of them. The hunters have been
out again but have not discovered any. There are a great many lizards
on these sand ridges, but they are of a small size. President Young and
Kimball discovered a dog town a piece back, and many little prairie
dogs. In one hole was a very large rattlesnake, and around the holes
many small owls which seem to correspond with what travelers have said
previously, that the prairie dog, rattlesnakes, and owls all live in
the same hole together. The sun is very hot but there is a nice west
wind although it is dry and parches our lips. When we stopped at noon
the brethren dug several holes and obtained a little water, as there is
none here above the surface. They could not obtain any for the cattle
and horses. At 3:15 the teams commenced to move again. Just as they
started, John Brown, Roswell Stevens and Brother Woodruff all shot
at an antelope. They all hit him and killed him. Having skinned it,
they put it into one of the wagons. The afternoon was very hot and the
roads very dusty. After traveling about two miles some of the ox teams
gave out and had to stop and feed. The rest went on till they found
a small branch of water and the grass being very good we stopped for
the night at half past five, having traveled about four miles, course
about south. President Young and several others went back with mules
and horses to assist the teams up which are behind. Luke Johnson shot
a very large rattlesnake and brought it to camp for the oil. Roswell
Stevens killed a hare, the nearest like the English hare of any I have
seen in this country. Soon after we arrived here it began to lightning
and thunder and we had a light shower with a very strong wind. There is
an appearance of more rain which is very much needed indeed. At 6:30
O. P. Rockwell, Joseph Mathews, John Eldridge and Thomas Brown
returned from hunting the two lost horses. They reported that they
went back to within about two miles of where we encamped on Sunday and
looking off towards the river they saw something move in the grass at
the foot of a high mole. They proceeded towards it thinking it was a
wolf, when within about twelve or fourteen rods Porter stopped to shoot
at the supposed wolf. The moment he elevated his rifle, fifteen Indians
sprang to their feet, all naked except the breech cloth, and armed
with rifles and bows and arrows. Each man having a rifle slung on his
back, and his bow strung tight in his hand and about twenty arrows.
The Indians advanced towards them but the brethren motioned and told
them to stop and held their rifles and pistols ready to meet them. When
the Indians saw this they began to holler "bacco! bacco!" The brethren
told them they had not tobacco. One of the Indians came close beside
J. Mathew's horse to shake hands with Mathews but kept his eye on the
horse's bridle. When nearly within reach of the bridle, Brown cocked
his pistol and pointed at the Indian shouting if he did not leave he
would kill him. At which, the Indian seeing the pistol ready to fire,
retreated. The Indians made signs to get the brethren lower down the
river, but the brethren turned their horses to come to camp, thinking
it unsafe to go near to the timber where they expected more Indians
lay in ambush. When the brethren turned to come back the Indians fired
six shots at them with their rifles and the brethren immediately faced
about at which the Indians fled towards the timber below. The brethren
did not shoot at the Indians, even when the Indians shot at them. They
saw the tracks of the horses which are missing and returned satisfied
that Pawnees have got them, and no doubt intended to get the horses on
which the brethren rode, but they met with too stern a reception to
risk an attempt. Some of these same Indians were amongst those who came
into camp when we stopped for dinner near their village, and proves
that they eyed the horses pretty close, and also proves that they have
followed us close ever since. The brethren ran great risks indeed, but
got back safe to camp without harm.

About the same time the brethren returned, a gun accidentally went
off and broke the nigh fore leg of Brother Mathew's horse. Those who
saw the accident state that when the rain came on, some of the men
put their guns in John Brown's wagon, loaded and with the caps on.
Brother Brown threw his coat on the guns, and soon after went to get
his coat and plucking it up, some part of the coat caught the cock
of the gun and raised it so that when the coat slipped off, the gun
went off, and the ball struck the horse's leg on the back side about
half way between the knee and upper joint. The bone was broke entirely
off. There were several men and horses close by the wagon at the time.
The wagon was set on fire, but soon put out with little damage. This
makes four of the best horses lost within the last four days, but the
last circumstance is by far the most painful, and breaks up Brother
Markham's team. Brother Brown made Heber a present of a little antelope
meat. About dark the wind moved to the north and blew strong a little
while and we had a little more rain.

Wednesday, April 28

Morning fine and pleasant, no Indians. The wind blew strong from
the northeast which makes it much cooler. There are many wolves and
antelope around here, but no buffalo have been seen as yet. Orders were
given this morning for no man to leave the wagons except the hunters.
The brethren had to make a road down to the small creek near which
we camped. This occupied till about nine o'clock, when the wagons
commenced crossing; the last wagon crossed at ten o'clock and then the
camp proceeded on, President Young, Kimball, and several others going
before to point out the road while the wagons were crossing the creek.
Brother Luke Johnson shot the horse dead which had his leg broke last
night. The horse belonged to Brother Barney, but was in Markham's team
and was a good one, but they concluded it was better to shoot her than
leave her alone to the mercy of the Indians. Our course for the first
seven miles was a little east of south over a very level prairie and
green with grass. The largest wild onions grow here I have ever seen.
After traveling about seven miles we turned southwest, being within
a mile of the main Platte and opposite to Grand Island. We traveled
till 2:30 and then stopped to feed, having come about eleven miles
today. The roads are extremely dusty and the strong wind blows it into
the wagons and everything is covered. We are now near to timber and a
good chance for grass for the cattle. At 4:00 p.m. we moved again and
traveled till six, having traveled about four miles, and during the
day, about fifteen miles. We have camped about a quarter of a mile from
the timber and there is plenty of grass to fill the stock tonight. The
water is also clear and cool and good tasting. The evening is cloudy
and very cool, which affects my head some. Suppered on some antelope
and went to bed early.

Thursday, April 29

The wagons started at five o'clock this morning before breakfast, to
find more grass as this is all eaten off. We traveled till 6:30 being
about three miles, and then turned out the teams to feed. The morning
very cool. There seems to be very little rain in this country and no
dew. Breakfasted on goose and mouldy bread. At twenty minutes after
eight, the teams started again and after traveling about two miles
came to a very pretty stream of good water, (Wood River) about ten
feet wide on an average, but at the fording place about a rod wide. We
were detained some here, but all got over safely. We then traveled on
a table or prairie gently ascending for four or five miles but very
even and good traveling. At 1:00 p.m. we stopped beside a small lake to
rest and feed teams, having traveled about ten miles today. The wind
south and strong. One of Orson Pratt's horses is very sick, supposed
to be the bots. He has lain down several times in the harness within
the last three hours. I am not astonished, as the wagons and everything
else is shrinking up, for the wind is perfectly dry and parching;
there is no moisture in it. Even my writing desk is splitting with the
drought. At 2:30 p.m. we started again and traveled till about 6:30
over tolerable level prairie, distance about eight miles, and nearly a
southwest course. The wind was strong from southwest till sundown and
then turned to northeast. The clouds of dust were almost sufficient to
suffocate everyone. I rode Heber's horse this afternoon and went before
the wagons. Saw many antelope, and the brethren had a good chance to
kill one, but they missed it, although three of them shot at it. We
camped at night close to Grand Island where there is an abundance of
rushes for cattle. There is also a white substance that seems to ooze
out of the ground around here, and tastes like salt, but not so strong
as common salt. Brother Orson Pratt's horse is better and the day has
passed without accident.

Friday, April 30

Arose at half past five. Morning cool and pleasant. The teams have
filled themselves with rushes. Started at 7:40 and soon after the camp
started, I started ahead on foot and have traveled about five miles.
The prairie level and green with grass. We travel on the first bench
about three quarters of a mile north of the timber on Grand Island.
There are many wild geese on the prairie, also buffalo dung, but
none very recent. There are immense patches of blue grass which from
appearances, the buffalo are fond of. There are also numerous patches
of buffalo grass which is very short, thick on the ground, and curly
like the hair on a buffalo's hide, and much resembling it, except in
color. About a mile from where we camped last night, we passed a place
where the Indians have camped no doubt during their hunt. They must
have been very numerous for their camp has covered a number of acres of
ground. President Young, Kimball and Lyman are gone ahead on horseback
to look out the road. We have thus far followed the Indian trail, but
it is now so grown over and so old it is scarce discernible. The wind
blows strong from the north and the dust is very bad. The atmosphere is
dull and cloudy. Our course today has been about west. At a quarter to
twelve we stopped to feed beside a small creek of clear, good, water,
having traveled about eight miles. The grass along this creek is long
and plentiful. We are about a half a mile from Grand Island.

Having the privilege of copying from Brother Bullock's journal, I will
now record the names of the standing guard as organized April 16th,
also the men selected by Brother Tanner to form the gun division as
ordered Saturday, April 17th.

Tarlton Lewis, Stephen H. Goddard, Seeley Owens, Thomas Woolsey, John
G. Luce, Horace Thorton, Charles D. Barnam, Sylvester H. Earl, George
Scholes, Rufus Allen, William Empey, John Holman, George R. Grant,
William P. Vance, James Craig, Datus Ensign, William Dykes, John Dixon,
Samuel H. Marble, Artemus Johnson, Norton Jacobs, Addison Everett,
William Wordsworth, John W. Norton, Francis M. Pomroy, Lyman Curtis,
Horace M. Frink, Erastus Snow, Hans C. Hanson, William C. A.
Smoot, Barnabas L. Adams, Rodney Badger, Charles Burk, Alexander
P. Chesley, Appleton M. Harmon, David Powell, Joseph Mathews, John
Wheeler, Gillrid Summe, Mathew Ivory, Edson Whipple, Conrad Klineman,
Joseph Rooker, Nathaniel Fairbanks, Ozro Eastman, Andrew S. Gibbons,
William A. King, Thomas Tanner, Hosea Cushing, and John H. Tippets.

The names of the gun detachment are as follows:

Thomas Tanner, Captain; Stephen H. Goddard, Seeley Owens, Thomas
Woolsey, John G. Luce, Horace Thornton, Charles D. Barnam, Sylvester H.
Earl, George Scholes and Rufus Allen.

At twenty minutes after ten o'clock started again, the wind blowing
from the north tremendously strong, and clouds of dust arose from under
the wagon wheels. It has turned very cold and gloomy. We traveled
again over a level prairie some distance from the river and turned off
to camp under the bench soon after 5:00 p.m. having traveled about
eight miles, our course a little southwest. The wagons were formed in
an imperfect circle in such a manner as to have all the wagon mouths
from the wind, which took near an hour to form the encampment. We are
about a mile from water and a mile and a half from timber, with very
little grass for our teams. It is now so cold that every man wants his
overcoat on and a buffalo robe over it. We have had no accident and the
brethren feel well, some are wrestling to keep themselves warm. Some
have had the good luck to bring a little wood with them but it seems
as if many will have a cold supper. And some perhaps little or nothing
as they have no bread cooked. Eight p.m., the camp have found a good
substitute for wood in the dried buffalo dung which lies on the ground
here in great plenty, and makes a good fire when properly managed.
Brother Kimball invented a new way of building a fire to cook on and
which is well adapted to the use of this kind of fuel. He dug a hole
in the ground about 8 inches deep, 15 inches long and 8 inches wide.
Then at each end of this hole he dug another about the same dimensions
as the first leaving about 3 inches of earth standing between the
middle and two end holes. At the end of these partitions he made a
hole through about 3 inches in diameter to serve as a draught. In the
bottom of the middle hole the fire and fuel was placed, and across the
top two wagon hammers to set the pots and pans on, so that the fire
could have free circulation underneath. By this method much cooking
was done with very little fuel. To save the trouble of carrying water
so far a well was dug in a short time about 4 feet deep and good water
obtained. After supper I went and gathered some dried buffalo dung
(politely called buffalo chips) to cook with in the morning. Brother
Hanson played some on his violin and some of the brethren danced to
warm themselves. I went to bed early to get warm but having only one
quilt for covering, I suffered much with cold. Brother Kimball rode
ahead again on horseback and suffered some from cold.

May 1847

Saturday, May 1

The morning very cold indeed. Inasmuch as there is little grass for the
cattle, the camp started out at 5:40 and traveled till a quarter after
eight, six miles before breakfast. Soon after we started this morning
three buffalo were seen grazing on the bluff about six miles distance.
I could see them very plain with my glass. O. P. Rockwell, Thomas
Brown and Luke Johnson started on horseback to try to kill some. Soon
after they went, another herd of buffalo were seen to the northwest at
the foot of the bluffs about eight miles off. I counted with my glass,
72, and Orson Pratt counted 74. Three of the brethren went on their
horses after the latter herd. I watched the movement with the glass
and saw that sometime before the brethren got to them, the buffalo
fled and were soon after out of sight. We stopped for breakfast close
to Grand Island and at 10:15 proceeded again. After traveling four
miles we arrived at a small lake on our right at twelve o'clock which
evidently connects with the river in high water. A little previous to
this time the hunters returned and reported that Luke Johnson shot at
one and dropped him on his knees, but he got up again and ran after the
herd. They did not get any, but saw more farther west and went to give
chase to the latter herd. When they got near them, they turned down
under the bluffs and joined the herd chased by the last hunting party.
Luke lost his cap and could not find it again. Brother Higbee said he
could have shot one, but Woolsey told him to hold on and pick out a
good one. They being pretty near, selected a cow and designed both to
shoot at her, but while they were making their plans the herd started
and they missed their chance. About the time the hunters returned,
another still larger herd was discovered still farther west, also at
the foot of the bluffs. The President stopped near the above mentioned
lake and selected eleven men to go and give chase to the last seen
herd and he gave them their instructions. Although they were at least
eight miles from us, I distinctly counted 101 with my glass and amongst
them many calves. This being the first day buffalo has been seen on
our journey and in fact the first ever seen by any except about five
or six of the brethren, it excited considerable interest and pleasure
in the breasts of the brethren, and as may be guessed, the teams moved
slowly and frequently stopped to watch their movement. When the hunters
were within a mile or two from the herd, two of the dogs gave chase
to an antelope, which made directly towards the buffalo. One of the
dogs chased it till it went into the midst of the herd and when the
buffalo saw the dog, they commenced to canter into a closer huddle.
The dog, however, evidently frightened with their savage appearance,
stopped and retraced his steps. About this time Elder Kimball seemed to
get inspired with the idea of chasing the buffalo and he immediately
called for Egan's fifteen shooter and started with it on full gallop.
After the dog returned the buffalo did not move much from the place
and the hunters moved gently along till they got pretty near them, at
which time Heber joined, just as the herd discovered them and commenced
galloping off. The brethren's feelings who were left with the wagons
were now strung up to the highest pitch, a feeling of exciting interest
appeared to prevail throughout the camp, they having heard and read
so much of the mad ferocity of the buffalo when hotly pursued, and
knowing that all the hunters were inexperienced in regard to hunting
the wild buffalo. While they felt for the safety of the hunters, they
still desired to see as much of the chase as the distance would allow,
and were wishful that the chase might be successful as a number have
no meat and a piece of fresh meat would taste good to all men and save
our bread stuff, and the desire to taste the much famed buffalo meat
created a longing desire to see some of the herd fall. Soon as the herd
commenced galloping off, the hunters followed in pursuit at full gallop
and soon closed in with them. At this time I got my glass and rested
it on Brother Aaron Farr's shoulder, determined to see as much of the
chase as possible. I soon discovered O. P. Rockwell ride into
the midst of the herd which then appeared to number over 200, others
having come in sight when the herd commenced to run. Porter was soon
enveloped in the cloud of dust caused by the heavy tramp of the buffalo
on the dry sandy ground, but in a very short time the herd began to
separate and scatter in every direction, a small party coming down
the bluff again and some running west under the bluffs, others going
over. The hunters closed in on the first party and commenced their
fire, especially at one cow which they finally succeeded in separating
from all the rest, and determined to keep to her until they killed
her, except Porter, who as soon as he had wounded her, left her with
the hunters and pursued some of the rest. The cow was now in close
quarters and after she had been shot through two or three times, Elder
Kimball rode close to her with his fifteen shooter and fired over his
horse's head, she dropped helpless and was soon dispatched. At the
report of the gun which was very heavy loaded, Elder Kimball's horse
sprang and flew down the bluff like lightning and he having let go the
lines to shoot, her sudden motion overbalanced him and his situation
was precarious to the extreme. The other hunters saw his situation and
trembled for his safety but could render him no assistance. However,
being a good horseman, he maintained his position in the saddle and
soon succeeded in gaining the lines and by a vigorous effort succeeded
after some time in reining in his horse and returned to the rest
unharmed and without accident. All this movement passed about as quick
as thought, and as soon as they saw the cow dead and all right they
again followed in pursuit of the remaining buffalo. About this time
three of the herd separated from the rest and came in a direction
towards the camp on a gallop. President Young seeing this, ordered a
halt, and the wagons to get close together lest the buffalo should,
in their fury and excitement, venture to go between the wagons and do
much mischief. However, they were discovered by some of the hunters
nearer the camp and some foot men who gave chase to them changed their
course when within about a mile from the camp. At this time I had a
very good view of their shape, color and appearance when running which
I shall endeavor to describe hereafter. Elder Kimball arrived in time
to aid in the chase of these three which lasted some time. The hunters
made choice of a large and very furious bull, and worked with him
some time, shooting him through several times but all this did not
seem to impede his progress. O. P. Rockwell said he had heard it
said that a buffalo could not be hurt with a ball shot at his head.
Having a fair chance with this one, he determined to satisfy himself,
and (previous to his being wounded) gaining a little in advance came
right in front within about a rod of him and discharged his rifle
pistol which struck the center of his head, but with no other effect
than to make it smoke a little, some dust fly and the raving animal
shake savagely. The brethren, John S. Higbee and John Pack, soon after
succeeded in dropping him and laid him dead at their feet, John Pack
being the one that dropped him. During all this, other scenes were
passing of equal interest. One of the calves was discovered within a
few rods of the wagons, a shot fired at it and it was soon caught by
the dogs, killed and put into a feed box. Porter chased another calf
to within a mile of the camp previous to his chasing the bull. Some
of the footmen surrounded and dispatched it, and soon after brought
and put it in one of the wagons. Other brethren were still away at the
bluffs, but we had no certainty of their success until Elder Kimball,
John Pack, and several others came up to the camp after dispatching
the bull and reported two other cows killed and three calves. This
was a little before 5:00 p.m. When it was ascertained for a certainty
that one was killed, the revenue cutter was unloaded and sent to fetch
it to camp. It was reported that two other cows and three calves were
killed. When Elder Kimball and others came up to the camp, President
Young requested some of the brethren to unload their wagons and go and
fetch the others reported to be killed, while the wagons would strike
towards the river and camp for the night. The chase lasted from soon
after 1:00 until 4:00 p.m. Soon four wagons were unloaded, the brethren
having their loads on the ground in care of a guard, and were ready
to start out. Having a great desire to see a buffalo in his natural
state, my feet being very sore, and the distance to the bluffs being
over three miles, I got into Brother Aaron Farr's wagon, he being one
who unloaded to fetch in the meat, and we started for the one shot down
by Elder Kimball, he and O. P. Rockwell following on horseback.
On our route, we met Luke Johnson and two other hunters returning.
Luke had a calf tied on his horse, himself on foot. When we arrived at
the cow, we found that three of the brethren had come on foot and had
already got the hide off, except the head. She was soon cut in two, put
in the wagon with the rest of the meat, hide and head, and we started
for the next cow which was about three quarters of a mile distant. This
cow would probably weigh on foot, about 700 pounds. She was not very
fat, but the meat looked nice and clean. When we arrived at the next
cow, we found several of the brethren at work with her, they had got
her hide off and soon had her in the wagon. We then proceeded to camp
and got in soon after sundown. The meat was unloaded in the semi-circle
opposite the President's wagon and placed on the hide which was spread
on the ground for the purpose of keeping it clean. The brethren's
faces beamed with joy to see the meat begin to come into camp, and
with some astonishment to view the size and ferocious appearance of
the head, which still had the hide on. Soon after the other wagons
came in and each deposited its load in the same place. Joseph Mathews
came in about the same time and reported that he had killed another
calf after chasing it three miles, making the total number killed in
the first day's buffalo hunt by the Camp of the Latter-day Saints,
already reported as follows: one bull, three cows and six calves, a
circumstance far exceeding our expectations and best hopes, and all
without the slightest accident or loss to man or property, except Luke
Johnson's cap and a ramrod to a rifle. There is, however, one shade
of suspense caused by the intelligence that Joseph Hancock has not
returned to camp. He started out on foot when the three buffalo were
first discovered this morning and has not been seen or heard of for
sometime. Considerable fear is entertained for his safety from the fact
that he is lame, and it is evident, or at least considered so, that
there are Indians near because a large smoke as of prairie burning has
been seen all the afternoon within some six or eight miles to the west
and must have been set on fire by somebody and the probability is, it
is Indians, although none has been seen for several days. The meat was
cut up into quarters and distributed one quarter to each company of
ten, leaving some to be distributed in the morning, and in a short time
every fire was loaded with it, and the camp had a good feast on the
fruits of today's labors.

Soon after the hunters started out at noon we came to a long range
of dog towns and saw many of the little prairie dogs playing around
their holes. The extent of this dog town is yet unknown, for we have
traveled over, and parallel with it about five miles this afternoon,
and they seem to extend still farther west. In some places the town
is nearly two miles broad, in others not so much, and must contain
thousands of the little dogs. I could not get near enough to see their
form distinctly, for they are so quick into their holes when anything
approaches, you can only have a partial view of them. They appear to be
about as long as a common grey squirrel but more chunky, a larger body
and chubbed head. The tail is short, more resembling that of a dog,
their color light brown. Their bark resembles the chirp of an English
throstle, and something like the chirp of a squirrel. They appear to
live on grass as it is all eaten off close to the ground throughout
the extent of their dog town, and the ground looks naked and barren
as a desert. Several of the brethren shot at the dogs but failed in
killing any. We had a north wind this afternoon and cold weather, our
course being nearly west over a level prairie, not far distant from the
island. Since noon we traveled about eight miles, and the encampment
was formed at half past six o'clock near a small lake about a mile
above the head of Grand Island. The grass is not so good here as it
has been back, and but a poor chance for the cattle, etc., to fill

The appearance of the wild buffalo at a distance is somewhat singular.
The color of the back and about half way down the sides is a light
brown, the rest is a very dark brown. The shoulder appears slightly
rounding and humped. When running, the large shaggy head hangs low
down, about half way in height between the ground and the top of
the shoulder. They canter like any ox or cow, but appear far more
cumbersome and heavy, especially about the fore parts, which look
larger than they really are on account of the long, thick matty hair.
They run tolerably fast, but a good horse will easily gain on them.
They will run a long time without diminishing their speed. Their meat
is very sweet and tender as veal.

Sunday, May 2

This morning is fine but cold. Ice about half an inch thick. Sometime
in the night a buffalo and calf came within a short distance of the
wagons. The guard discovered them and shot at the calf, wounding it
in the hind leg. They caught it alive and tied it up near the wagons
but concluded finally to kill and dress it. About six o'clock we
were gladdened to see Joseph Hancock come into camp with a piece of
buffalo meat. He reported that he killed a buffalo yesterday back on
the bluffs, and there being no one with him he concluded to stay by it
over night. He made a fire and scattered a little powder around his
buffalo to keep off the wolves. Some visited him during the night, but
were awed by the fire. After he had told his story and taken breakfast,
Brother Hancock started in company with four or five other brethren to
fetch in the meat on horseback, as no wagons could get over the bluffs
to it. They found that the wolves had devoured much of it, but the
balance they brought along with them. They also killed two antelope and
brought them into camp. The total number of buffalo now caught is five
large ones and seven calves. Edmund Ellsworth killed one of the prairie
dogs, and brought it to camp. It looks much like a squirrel, only the
body is thicker and the tail short and no bush on it. The day grew
pleasant till about noon, when it became cloudy and cold. President
Young, Kimball and others started out to look out a camp ground where
better feed can be obtained for our stock. They returned a little after
two and gave orders to go on a few miles. There have been a number of
buffalo seen in different directions, one grazing within three quarters
of a mile from camp, but orders were not to hunt or shoot today. At
three-fifteen the camp started and traveled two miles over dog towns
as yesterday. At a little after four p.m. we camped beside a long lake
of shoal, clear water near the banks of the Platte. This lake is about
three rods wide and connects with the river. The Platte appears about
two miles wide at this place but very shoal and muddy. There is no
timber but plenty of grass, mostly last year's growth. The weather is
more temperate and the wind ceased. President Young, Kimball and others
went on to look out a crossing place over this lake, etc. On their way,
they fell in with a buffalo cow and calf and chased them some to get
a view of them but not to kill. On their return they said we should
tarry here tomorrow and have some blacksmith work done and probably
hunt some. Half of the hide off the bull's face was brought into camp.
On examination I found the mark where Porter shot at his head. The ball
made a small hole, barely cutting through the outer surface or grain
of the hide which was near an inch thick. The hair near the top of the
head is about a foot long.

Monday, May 3

This morning cold and ice in the water pails. The hunters are going
out on foot. Tanner and Davenport are fixing their forges to do some
repairing, shoeing, etc. At about nine the hunters, twenty in number,
started out with two wagons which had been unloaded for the purpose.
At the same time, fifteen of the brethren on horseback started west
to examine the route, etc. At two-thirty the party who went to look
out the route returned and reported that Brother Empey had discovered
a large war party of Indians while he was chasing an antelope. The
Indians are in a hollow about twelve miles distance and about three
hundred in number, some on their horses and some standing beside them
holding the bridle. The company also saw nearly twenty scattered
Indians about four miles from here. When this report was made, orders
were given to dispatch a number of the brethren on horses, well armed
to warn the hunters and tell them to come to camp. In about half an
hour, twenty-three men started out on this mission. Before they reached
the bluffs which are about four miles from here, some of the hunters
were on their way to camp, having seen only one buffalo during the day.
In a little time all the hunters were notified and were on their way
back. They arrived about six o'clock, having got three antelope, and
the horsemen who went after them got two calves which were all brought
in and the day passed without accident. Some of the brethren saw some
objects at a distance, which, by their motions they were satisfied were
Indians. The day has been fine but cool and cloudy, with occasionally
a few drops of rain. A number of wagon tires have been set and other
blacksmithing, washing, drying meat, etc., done. The wind near south.
The cannon was unlimbered at night and prepared for action in case it
should be needed.

Tuesday, May 4

The morning fine but cool, wind about southwest. Two horses ran east as
much as six or eight miles and were pursued by the brethren and brought
back. William Smoot was thrown from a horse and his senses knocked out
of him by the fall. He soon recovered and appears to have sustained no

At seven-thirty the camp was called and received instructions from
President Young, especially in regard to leaving the wagons and
scattering off hunting without counsel. He strongly urged the brethren
not to do it any more and said if they did, some of them would be
caught by the Indians and if not killed would be severely abused. The
instructions and regulations given April 17th were read and enjoined
upon the camp to be observed more strictly. It was decided that the
cannon wagon should be unloaded, the box put on another wagon so
that the cannon can be always ready for action. An addition of ten
volunteers was made to the standing guard and ordered that all horses
and mules should be tied inside the circle at night, and the cattle
and cows outside within a few rods of the wagons. A guard to be placed
around the cattle when turned out to graze. It is thought best to
travel with the wagons four abreast and the cannon to go in the rear.

At nine o'clock the wagons commenced moving and passed over the lake
near its junction with the river, at which place it is about ten or
twelve feet wide.

After traveling about a half a mile the camp stopped some time, waiting
for some wagons behind. While stopping, three wagons were discovered on
the opposite bank of the river, considered to be traders going back to
Council Bluffs. The river is about two miles wide and no person here
acquainted with it, consequently no one attempted to go over, which
many desired. About eleven o'clock we proceeded, five wagons abreast
so as to be better prepared for defense should the Indians attack us.
After traveling about two miles, one of the men from the wagons on the
other side the river overtook us and we halted to see him. He said
there are only nine of them. They have been to Fort Laramie for furs
and are going to Council Bluffs. This is the sixteenth day since they
left the fort with ox teams. He says the road is good on the other
side and the river easily forded, being not more than knee deep in
the deepest place and a good bottom. He cheerfully agreed to carry
letters back for us but could not wait long. I wrote one to my family
and in about half an hour a pretty large mail was made up to send back
to Winter Quarters, and may the Lord grant that it may arrive safely.
Brother Johnson bought a buffalo robe of the man for about a pound and
a half of coffee, and another brother bought one for a pound of sugar
and a little pork. I feel my mind relieved by this unexpected privilege
of writing back to my dear family and hope they will have the pleasure
of perusing the contents.

At twenty minutes after one the bugle sounded for a march, and the
messenger is returning with the letters and a bag of provisions on his
shoulder which the brethren have given him for carrying the letters.
We traveled about four miles farther and at three-thirty, stopped to
let the teams feed on a small spot where the fire has not touched, the
rest having all been burned off within a few days. We have traveled
today only about six miles, having stopped much. The country is still
very level and nice traveling only for the dust. The wind south and our
course nearly west. When the trader went back over the river, Thomas
Woolsey, John Brown and John Pack accompanied him on horses to speak
with a person whom Brother Woolsey is acquainted with. They returned
soon after we stopped to feed and say that the river is very good to
cross, not being more than two feet deep in the deepest place, and the
bottom good. The horses broke through but very little. The traders
say furthermore, that if we continue on this side, we shall have to
cross the river twice where the water is much deeper and cannot be
crossed only in a ferry. There is a good traveled road also, which
would be an advantage we have not got on this side. During the time we
stopped to feed, a guard was placed around the cattle and horses to
keep them from straying far from the wagons. Then men were called out
and drilled with their loaded guns in the circle formed by the wagons.
Some objects are seen grazing about four miles west of us thought to be
buffalo. Thirteen in number. Some of the hunters are going out to give
them a chase, and try to kill some of them. At a quarter after five
o'clock, the camp was called together and Brother Brown reported what
the traders said about the route, etc., as above. The subject was then
talked over and when it was considered that we are making a road for
thousands of saints to follow, and they cannot ford the river when the
snow melts from the mountains, it was unanimously voted to keep on this
side as far as Fort Laramie at least. Soon after this we started on
again. Saw a lone buffalo but a short distance from us but it galloped
across the river. Saw also a number of antelope and some deer. About
seven o'clock we passed a spot where the Indians have camped and must
have been many of them. A while after sundown we arrived at a creek of
good water and camped for the night, having traveled about nine miles
today. The prairie level but all the grass burned off, except in small
patches. We have camped on a small spot which has escaped the fire.
Elder Kimball, who was one of the hunters who started out at four
o'clock, said the objects seen from camp were antelope, but he had seen
a herd of buffalo about a mile ahead of where we now are. He named this
creek, Buffalo creek.

Wednesday, May 5

The morning fine and very pleasant. Saw two small herds of buffalo a
few miles from camp. At seven-thirty continued our journey. I went
on foot about two miles and then stopped to count the horses, mules,
oxen, etc., and afterwards walked on again to the first wagons. Here
Elder Kimball offered me his horse to ride. I then went ahead with the
horsemen. We soon after came to a very bad slough and had to bear off
to the north to find a place to cross it. The prairie after we crossed
this slough about a mile wide from the river was very soft and it was
necessary to bear still farther to the north. The horses' feet cut
through the sod and the ground appeared wet under, although there has
been no rain for some time. At eleven-thirty we stopped to feed on a
small patch of unburnt grass, having come about nine miles, course
about west, with a very strong south wind. There were two buffalo
within about a half a mile from camp, grazing. Some of the brethren
went to view them, but the orders of the day are not to kill anything
which the men cannot carry to camp. There are no appearances of Indians
near except the prairie which is still burning ahead of us, supposed
to be set on fire by them. About one p.m. continued our journey and
traveled till three p.m., when some of the hunters came in, bringing a
live buffalo calf, also one they had killed. They reported that John
Brown, Jackson Redding and John S. Higbee, Luke Johnson had each killed
a calf, the one killed by Brother Higbee having previously been shot by
Amasa Lyman. Joseph Mathews killed a cow and Elder Kimball, O. P.
Rockwell and John S. Higbee chased the one brought in alive until a dog
seized it and Porter left his horse and caught it without shooting at
it and led it to camp. The revenue cutter was unloaded and sent after
the cow and calf left, they being about three miles off. We traveled on
about a half an hour and found the prairie all in a blaze. President
Young and Kimball thinking it unsafe to risk the wagons near the fire,
ordered the camp to go back a half a mile to an island where we can
have water for our teams and be secure from the fire. The prairie is
all burned bare and the black ashes fly bad, making the brethren look
more like Indians than white folks. There is some feed on the island,
and the cattle easily ford the stream to it. The calf is tied in the
circle. When a dog goes near it, it will attack the largest and they
flee from it, though not more than six or eight weeks old. About half
past six the revenue cutter arrived with the meat, which was fatter
than any we have had. They also brought in another calf which they
killed while out for the cow, making a total of one cow and six calves
brought into camp today. The meat was divided amongst the companies of
ten, each having either a calf or half a quarter of a cow.

Thursday, May 6

This morning at five-fifteen, President Young called to the camp and
proposed to go on to where we can find feed for the teams. The brethren
assented and he gave orders to start as quickly as possible. However,
some must feed their teams a little corn, some milk their cows, etc.,
and it took till near six-thirty to get started. During the night the
Lord sent a light shower of rain which has put the fire out except in
one or two places and made it perfectly safe traveling. We have had a
strong southeast wind through the night but the morning is calm and
pleasant. We traveled about two miles and stopped on the unburned grass
to feed at a quarter to seven. Several antelope were surrounded by
the brethren and some shot at them, killing one. The rest made their
escape. We can see several large herds of buffalo within about two
miles of the camp and many calves amongst them. President Young and
Kimball rode ahead to find a place to stop for feed. The ground is
hard and good traveling. At a quarter to nine, proceeded on, President
Young and Kimball going ahead to point out the road. Our course about
northwest, the wind strong from west. We traveled near the river. Saw
thirteen elk together, also many antelope and numerous herds of buffalo
on both sides of the river. Jackson Redding shot an antelope which Luke
Johnson chased near the wagons.

A young buffalo calf followed Luke to camp, but the President advised
him to leave it as it is only a few days old. We stopped near the river
at a quarter to twelve, having traveled about six miles. We find a
little more grass here, but the numerous herds of buffalo keep it eaten
off close to the ground nearly all the way we have traveled today. The
President gave orders that no more game should be killed until further
orders. It appears we have got as much meat in camp as can be taken
care of. While we were stopping for noon, some of the cows moved off
towards a large buffalo herd, and when President Young and Kimball
started ahead after dinner they discovered the cows near the buffalo.
Brother Woolsey went to turn them back, but he had to run his mule
some distance before he could prevent the cows from mingling with the
buffalo. They brought the cows back to the wagons and then proceeded
ahead again. One part of the horsemen's business today has been to
drive the buffalo out of our track, judging it unsafe to risk them
between the wagons and the river. The camp proceeded on at one-thirty
and in about two miles distance found a lake of clear water. Here we
discovered the horsemen coming back, and found that the President had
lost his large spy glass, while chasing the cows from the buffalo herd,
a second time. He did not find it. We traveled slowly this afternoon,
some of the horses and oxen having given out in consequence of lack
of feed to sustain them. We traveled till six-thirty and camped near
some islands in the river, having traveled about seven miles this
afternoon and fifteen through the day, our course a little west of
northwest. Wind about west. Some think we have traveled eighteen, some
twenty and some even twenty-five miles today, but from the number of
times we stopped and the slowness with which the teams moved, I feel
satisfied that fifteen miles is plenty. About three quarters of a mile
back we saw a buffalo cow which appears to be sick. She fought the dogs
some time and then lay down, and the brethren went close to her, some
venturing to feel and handle her. I was within six or eight feet of her
and had a good view, as much as I wanted. She has lost all her hair
and looks very poor and weak. The President ordered that the brethren
leave her and not disturb her and she was left lying down, but it is
doubtful the wolves will kill and eat her before morning. When the
brethren went back to hunt the spy glass they found that the wolves
had killed the calf and nearly eaten it up. What they had not eaten,
they carried off with them. We have never been out of sight of herds of
buffalo today, and from where we are camped, I am satisfied we can see
over five thousand with the glass. The largest herd we have yet seen is
still ahead of us. The prairie looks black with them, both on this and
the other side of the river. Some think we have passed fifty, and some
even a hundred thousand during the day, or have seen them. It is truly
a sight wonderful to behold, and can scarcely be credited by those who
have not actually seen them.

Friday, May 7

This morning the wind northwest and almost as cold as winter. The
buffalo vastly numerous all around. About eight a.m. the camp was
called together and measures taken to raise more teams to put to the
canyon as some of the horses and even cattle have given out. The
President chastised Elder Snow for not attending to the cows yesterday
causing the President to lose his spy glass, it being Brother Snow's
turn to drive the cows according to his own voluntary agreement. At a
little before eleven o'clock, Porter Rockwell, Thomas Brown and Joseph
Mathews started back to hunt the spy glass, and soon after they left,
the camp proceeded onward. The day was cloudy and very cold. Our course
about northwest. We traveled about seven miles and camped at two-thirty
near several small islands, on the banks of the river. About four p.m.,
Porter and the others returned, having found the spy glass, which was
a source of joy to all the brethren. At six-thirty the companies were
called out to drill. I have been very sick all day with a complaint and
have suffered much.

Saturday, May 8

Morning cold but fine. Started out at nine o'clock and traveled till
one p.m., distance seven and a half miles, course a little west
of northwest. The prairie on both sides of the river is literally
black with buffalo, and to try to say as to what number we have seen
this morning would be folly. I should imagine that at a moderate
calculation, we have seen over fifty thousand. They are more tame than
they have been, and will stand till the wagons come within two hundred
yards of them. Porter has shot one about two years old, the meat looks
nice. There is no difficulty in getting meat enough. It is with some
difficulty that the horsemen can drive them away from the track as
fast as the wagons come up. It is very warm today, and no wind. I have
counted the revolutions of a wagon wheel to tell the exact distance
we have traveled. The reason why I have taken this method which is
somewhat tedious, is because there is generally a difference of two and
sometimes four miles in a day's travel between my estimation and that
of some others, and they have all thought I underrated it. This morning
I determined to take pains to know for a certainty how far we travel
today. Accordingly I measured the circumference of the nigh hind wheel
of one of Brother Kimball's wagons being the one I sleep in, in charge
of Philo Johnson. I found the wheel 14 feet 8 inches in circumference,
not varying one eighth of an inch. I then calculated how many
revolutions it would require for one mile and found it precisely 360
not varying one fraction which somewhat astonished me. I have counted
the whole revolutions during the day's travel and I find it to be a
little over eleven and a quarter miles, twenty revolutions over. The
overplus I shall add to the next day's travel. According to my previous
calculations we were two hundred eighty-five miles from Winter Quarters
this morning before we started. After traveling ten miles I placed a
small cedar post in the ground with these words written on it with
a pencil. "From Winter Quarters, two hundred ninety-five miles, May
8, '47. Camp all well. Wm. Clayton." Some have past the day's travel
at thirteen and some fourteen miles, which serves to convince more
strongly that the distances are overrated. I have repeatedly suggested
a plan of fixing machinery to a wagon wheel to tell the exact distance
we travel in a day, and many begin to be sanguine for carrying it into
effect, and I hope it will be done. Our course this afternoon has been
northwest, no wind and the prairie as bare as a poor English pasture,
the grass being eaten off by uncountable herds of buffalo. No pen nor
tongue can give an idea of the multitude now in sight continually, and
it appears difficult to keep them away from the wagons. Two calves
have been killed and brought to camp and multitudes would be killed
if the President did not prohibit the brethren from killing them only
as we need the meat. Truly, the Lord's cattle upon the thousand hills
are numerous. We are now camped on the banks of the river within a
quarter of a mile from where the range of bluffs, which have appeared
exceedingly ragged all day, strike the river, and when we move again we
have got to cross over them. President Young and Kimball have been back
on the bluffs on foot some distance and report that as far as they can
see the grass is eaten perfectly bare and the prospect for feed for our
teams is poor indeed. There are several buffalo lying dead around here,
whether dead from old age or by the hands of hunters or of starvation,
it is unknown. Many of the brethren have to cook their victuals on dry
buffalo dung, there being no wood near.

Sunday, May 9

The morning very cold with wind southeast. At seven-fifty we proceeded
on three and a half miles, going a little around some of the bluffs
until we turned down on a low bottom and very sandy. We have camped
near some islands and can get wood and water, but poor feed for the
teams. We arrived here at nine-fifty and shall stay till morning.
Soon as the camp was formed, I went about three quarters of a mile
below to the river and washed my socks, towel and handkerchief as well
as I could in cold water without soap. I then stripped my clothing
off and washed from head to foot, which has made me feel much more
comfortable for I was covered with dust. After washing and putting on
clean clothing I sat down on the banks of the river and gave way to a
long train of solemn reflections respecting many things, especially in
regard to my family and their welfare for time and eternity. I shall
not write my thoughts here, inasmuch as I expect this journal will have
to pass through other hands besides my own or that of my family but if
I can carry my plans into operation, they will be written in a manner
that my family will each get their portion, whether before my death or
after, it matters not.

The day is very warm and the wind has moved to the west. According to
my calculations, we are now 300 miles from Winter Quarters, lacking a
few rods. I got a small board and wrote on it: "From Winter Quarters
three hundred miles, May 9, 1847. Pioneer Camp all well. Distance
according to the reckoning of Wm. Clayton." This was nailed on a post
and in the evening I went and set it up about three hundred yards from
here on a bend of the river. Spent the afternoon reading and writing
in Elder Kimball's journal. At three p.m. a meeting was called and the
camp addressed by several. President Young took tea with Elder Kimball,
and afterwards they started out together with one or two others to
look at the country ahead of us. They went a few miles and found a
small stream which we shall have to cross. Here they saw multitudes of
buffalo coming to water. Porter and Phineas Young went within six or
eight rods of them to try to get one, but in the whole herd, they could
not find one fit to kill. They are very poor, for there is no feed for
them, and in fact they are so numerous that they eat the grass as fast
as it springs. There are, however, some good cottonwood groves and
good water at the stream. After sundown the wind blew strong from the
northwest and the evening was cold and chilly.

Monday, May 10

The morning fine but cool. The wind nearly ceased. Last night I
dreamed that I was in company with the camp which was stopping beside
a considerable river of deep water. Our horses and cattle were tied
to stakes all around the camp to the distance of a quarter of a mile,
some good timber thinly scattered around. I thought President Young,
Kimball and several others started up the river in a flat boat without
stating their object, leaving the brethren to guard the camp, cattle,
etc. in their absence. When they had been gone sometime I thought a
large herd of buffalo came on full gallop right amongst our horses and
cattle, causing them to break their ropes and fly in every direction.
The brethren seemed thunderstruck and did not know what to do. Seeing a
small skiff in the river, I sprang into it, and a paddle lying in it,
I commenced rowing in pursuit of the President. It seemed as though I
literally flew through the water passing everything on the way like a
railway carriage. In a few minutes I overtook the brethren in the flat
boat, took the skiff and threw it on shore and to my astonishment I
saw that the skiff was made only of barks and cracked all over, and
it seemed impossible to put it in the water without sinking it. The
paddle with which I had rowed proved to be a very large feather and I
had another feather in my left hand with which I steered the skiff.
When I got into the flat boat, I made known what had passed in the
camp, but the brethren seemed no ways alarmed. I awoke and behold, it
was all a dream. Dr. Richards is going to deposit a letter in a stick
of wood prepared for the purpose near this place in such a manner that
the next company will discover it. He fixed it on a long pole and being
assisted by President Young and others raised it and fixed it firm in
the ground. His distance from Winter Quarters three hundred and sixteen
miles. At nine five the camp proceeded onward. After traveling two
miles we crossed a small creek which Elder Kimball named Skunk creek,
easily forded, though the ground was soft on the west side. About this
time the brethren at the head of the camp discovered a strange horse
alone on the prairie. Porter and Thomas Brown gave chase to try to
catch it. Brother John Brown states that when the Mississippi company
passed on the other side last season, one of the brethren lost a mare
and two colts, and this is supposed to be the oldest of the two. When
Brother Woolsey and Tippets came through from the battalion last winter
they saw the same horse near here. We traveled till twelve five and
finding a little better feed stopped for dinner having traveled a few
rods over six miles. The last two miles was over very soft prairie and
although the last year's grass has not been burned, the wheels cut
through the sod frequently. At the creek four miles back, some of the
brethren shot a buffalo which was brought into camp in the revenue
cutter. The meat is said to be good and the fattest we have had. At
two we continued our journey. About the same time Porter and Brown
returned having failed to catch the horse. After traveling about half
a mile we crossed a very bad slough, and beyond that for a mile the
ground was wet and soft. The teams began to give out, and at half past
four o'clock, the President ordered the wagons to strike for the timber
which was a little out of our course, but necessary to favor the teams
and obtain wood and water. We arrived near the timber and camped at
four fifty, having traveled since my last guide post a little over
nine and three-fourths miles, the last two miles the ground being dry
and good traveling. Some of the hunters killed a deer and we had some
venison for supper. Our course a little north of west. Light wind from
northwest. The day warm and pleasant. We have a little better feed for
cattle, and on the island plenty of brouse for horses, better timber
than we have had for some time past. It appears plain that vast herds
of buffalo have wintered here, but have mostly left and gone eastward
sometime ago, and we have the full growth of this year's grass which
is small indeed. The grass evidently springs later the farther west we
travel, and nature seems to have taught the wild cattle this lesson,
hence their eastward progress. There are some scattering herds of
buffalo around, but not nearly so numerous as they were some thirty
miles back. The face of the country here is indeed beautiful, the soil
rich on the bottoms, the ragged bluffs on each side of the river have
a splendid appearance, and at about ten miles distance, west of where
we now are, they seem to circle around until they form a junction. It
appears evident also, that we are above the junction of the north and
south forks of the Platte, the north fork running nearly northwest and
the south fork southwest. Brother Woolsey says these are the forks
in reality, but are connected some miles higher up by a slough, and
consequently the land between is set down by travelers as the main land
rather than as an island.

Tuesday, May 11

The morning cold. Wind east; camp well. At 7:00 a.m. went with a number
of the brethren who were going to dig some wolves out of a hole about a
quarter of a mile from camp. They dug out four and brought them alive
to camp. They are probably six or eight weeks old and about the size
of an English hare, very vicious. At half past nine the camp moved
onward over a very nice level, dry prairie for five miles. Amongst the
timber on the island could be seen many small cedar trees. At the end
of five miles, we had to pass over a small ridge of low, sandy bluffs,
which extended to the river. After passing nearly over the bluffs we
stopped half an hour to water the teams and eat a little dinner, then
proceeded on three miles farther and passed over a creek of clear
water, but this could not be very good in consequence of so many dead
buffalo lying in it. We proceeded on half a mile, and finding tolerably
good feed, stopped for the night, having traveled eight and half miles
today. Weather fine, wind south and southeast; course a little west
or northwest. We have seen few buffalo today, but there are signs
of thousands having wintered in the neighborhood. The country looks
beautiful, soil rich, only lacking timber. After the camp was formed,
it being half a mile to water, the brethren dug two wells, and about
four feet deep found plenty of good water. One of the wells is reported
to run a pail full a minute. Brother Appleton Harmon is working at the
machinery for the wagon to tell the distance we travel and expects
to have it in operation tomorrow, which will save me the trouble of
counting, as I have done, during the last four days. Took supper on
some duck presented to Elder Kimball by George Billings.

Wednesday, May 12

Morning cool, weather fine. Brother Appleton Harmon has completed the
machinery on the wagon so far that I shall only have to count the
number of miles, instead of the revolution of the wagon wheel. We
started at 9:10, the first mile pretty soft, the rest tolerably hard
and very good traveling. We have passed over vast beds of salt, or
rather dust with a salt taste. It looks something like dirty flour.
Traveled eight miles in four hours and two minutes, and stopped at
12:48 to feed, nearly opposite two small islands. The feed tolerably
good. Our course northwest. Considerable strong wind from southeast
covering everything in the wagons with dust and sand. No timber on the
bank of the river and but little on the islands. The hunters report
that they have seen many dead buffalo between here and the bluff with
the hides off and tongues taken out, a strong proof that Indians have
been here very recently, as the flesh looks fresh and lately killed.
The range of bluffs on each side the river extend much farther apart,
and near the foot of the south range can be seen timber scattering
along, which is an evidence that the south fork ranges in that
direction, although some are sanguine that we have not yet arrived at
the junction.

At half past three we moved on again and traveled four miles, camped
at a quarter to six near a bunch of small islands, and a kind of bayou
projecting from the river. Our course this afternoon a little south of
west, having come around a considerable bend in the river. The land
good and good traveling. Wind southeast. Several of the brethren caught
a number of small fish in the bayou or lake. The feed here is rather
scanty. Heavy clouds are rising in the west and northwest, and a fair
prospect for some rain which is much needed. It is now certain that we
are about fourteen and a half miles above the junction of the north and
south forks of the Platte, and although we have to make a new road all
the way, we find no obstacles so far. Brother Woodruff reports that he
has been beyond the bluffs north of the camp and saw upwards of 200
wickeups where the Indians have camped very recently.

He found a cured buffalo skin and some pieces of other skins also. The
hunters killed a two year old buffalo and brought it to camp. Brother
Orson Pratt reports that when we were five and a half miles back, we
were in latitude 41° 9' 44".

Thursday, May 13

This morning cold and cloudy, cold enough for overcoats and buffalo
robes. The buffalo which was killed yesterday was cut up and divided
this morning amongst the companies of tens. Some feelings are manifest
this morning between Brothers Thomas Tanner and Aaron Farr on account
of the former taking the latter prisoner and putting him under a
guard part of the night. Perhaps Aaron was a little out of order in
conversing loud after the horn blew for prayers, but I think Brother
Tanner's angry spirit more blameable. At 9:00 we moved onward nearly
a west course four miles and at 11:00 stopped to feed teams at a spot
which is a little better than we generally have. The wind strong from
north and northeast.

At half past twelve we proceeded on again and traveled till four
o'clock, distance six and three quarters miles. At this distance we
arrived at a stream about six rods wide which appears to come from
the northeast, the water in appearance like the Platte, the bottom of
the river quick sand. Water in the middle about two feet deep; at the
sides quite shoal. It appears that travelers have never discovered this
stream for it is not noticed in any works that we have seen. We crossed
it without difficulty and camped on its banks. The weather cloudy and
very cold, with a strong north wind. Presidents Young and Kimball rode
ahead as usual to look out the road. They report that the bluffs half a
mile west come clear to the river and are considerably high. They found
several ranges of them and finally found a valley running between some
of the ranges through which we can pass by going about a mile around
from our course. This stream according to measurement, twenty-five and
one quarter miles above the junction of the two forks and 341 miles
from Winter Quarters, by estimation. President Young named it the North
Bluff Fork. A while before we arrived here four of the brethren went to
chase a few buffalo which were lying down at the foot of the bluffs,
but they did not get any. Presidents Young and Kimball saw a very large
rattlesnake near the river. Brother Kimball says the largest he ever
saw in his life. I saw a small green snake today, very pretty, the back
light green and the belly a pale yellow. Presidents Young and Kimball
suffered severely with cold while riding over the bluffs to look for a
road. Had to use buffalo dung for cooking, there being no timber.

Friday, May 14

The morning cloudy and very cold. In the west could occasionally be
seen streaks of lightning and distant thunder heard. At 8:00 a.m. the
dark clouds having approached nearer, it commenced raining pretty
hard, accompanied by lightning and thunder. The President ordered the
horses got up just before the rain commenced; and after the storm
ceased, we started onward at a quarter past ten. After traveling about
a mile we passed among and around the high bluffs, our course lying
nearly in a north direction for some time, then turning south and
on again approaching the river, nearly southeast. When within about
three quarters of a mile from the river, we stopped to feed at twenty
minutes to two, having traveled six and a quarter miles. We have got
on the level bottom again and are probably not more than three miles
in a direct line from where we started this morning. Presidents Young
and Kimball went forward to point out the route, which is very good to
travel, although considerably uneven. Brother Higbee killed an antelope
and wounded another which made its escape while he was loading his
rifle. We have better feed here than we have had for some time. We had
a little more rain just as we came to a halt. We have not had much wind
this morning but it is now increasing from the north. It is somewhat
warmer than this morning. The atmosphere cloudy and looks as if we
might have more rain. The land between the two forks for about 25 miles
is perfectly flat and very level without timber.

The bluffs there rise suddenly, apparently in a line from fork to
fork. There are many buffalo back in the valleys between the bluffs,
and although there is no sign of the prairie having been burned, it
is evident the buffalo have kept it eaten clean off, but have moved
back and east, probably since the Indians have been hunting them. Some
of the brethren have discovered fresh tracks where the Indians have
gone up this north stream, evidently very lately. But we are satisfied
the Lord hears the prayers of his servants and sends them out of the
way before we come up to them. At three o'clock we proceeded on our
journey, keeping above the lower prairie, which appeared soft and
swampy. Our road was very uneven. We went two and a half miles and
at half past four stopped to learn the report of those gone ahead to
look out the road. There is another high range of bluffs about half
a mile west of us, extending to the river. Elder Kimball went across
the several ranges of bluffs to the west side, and hunted for a road
in various directions, but there did not appear to be any possibility
of finding a road between the bluffs, without going many miles around.
President Young and he concluded it would be best to camp where the
wagons are and in the morning cross right over the bluffs by doubling
teams. Accordingly the encampment was formed about five-thirty, the
train having traveled eight and three quarters miles today. Our course
this afternoon nearly west, wind southeast. The feed for our teams
grows much better, and on one of these high sandy bluffs I saw a large
bed of flowers, not unlike the violet, and very rich. The sand on the
bluffs in some places looks like large drifts of snow, and in other
places seems to have deep chasms as if wasted by heavy rains. The
atmosphere is still cloudy but not so cold as it has been. The hunters
have killed two buffalo, three antelope and one badger during the day,
which will be very acceptable. It was dark when the hunters returned to
give the information. The revenue cutter was sent after the meat which
was reported to be a mile and a half distant. It was late when they
returned. There was an alarm made by the guard in the night supposing
the Indians were near. The camp were aroused to secure their horses,
but we had no further trouble about them.

I discovered that Brother Appleton Harmon is trying to have it
understood that he invented the machinery to tell the distance we
travel, which makes me think less of him than I formerly did. He is not
the inventor of it by a long way, but he has made the machinery, after
being told how to do it. What little souls work.

Saturday, May 15

This morning is very cloudy and very cold, more like a January morning
than a May morning. The wind blows strong from the northeast. The
brethren who killed the buffalo did not bring it to camp last night,
but put it in the boat and left it till morning. About half past seven
they brought it in and divided it to the captains of ten. At eight
o'clock it commenced raining again but abated a little before nine. At
nine o'clock we commenced moving and after traveling three-quarters of
a mile began to ascend the sandy bluffs. It commenced raining again and
it looks like rain for all day. It is very cold, the wind continues
strong. The road was much of a zig zag over the bluffs, but only about
a mile before we descended to the bottom. We traveled a piece farther
and at half past ten o'clock it was considered best to turn out the
teams until it ceases raining, after traveling two and a quarter miles.
We found it unnecessary to double teams while crossing the bluffs and
we got over without difficulty, much better than we had anticipated.
About noon it again ceased raining and the signal was given to harness
up teams. At half past twelve we proceeded and traveled till a quarter
to three, distance four and a half miles, then formed the encampment
in a circle about a quarter of a mile from the river. The road has
been level but soft and wet, however not bad traveling. The bluffs are
about half a mile to the north and several herds of buffalo grazing on
them. Some of the hunters are gone to try and get some meat. The wind
still keeps up, and is cold, damp and uncomfortable. The feed appears
better here than we have had for some days, and the cattle soon fill
themselves which is a comfort and blessing to the camp. Some of the
brethren have been lucky enough to pick up a few sticks and dead wood
but our chief dependence for fuel is dry buffalo dung which abounds
everywhere, but the rain has injured it some for burning. About two
miles back we passed a place where the Indians have lately camped
during their hunt. It is plain that whole families are amongst their
number as the foot prints and moccasins of children have several times
been seen. They evidently make use of the buffalo dung for fuel, and
for seats, they dig up sods and lay them in a circle around their
fire which is in the center. We have passed a number of these little
temporary camping spots this afternoon. The reason why we did not
travel farther was that Elder Kimball being gone ahead to look out the
road, etc., he found as he came near the next bluffs that the feed is
all eaten off by the numerous herds of buffalo and found also, that we
shall have to travel over the bluffs and they appear wide and would be
impossible for the teams to get over them tonight, hence the necessity
of stopping here where we have good feed. The soil on this prairie
looks good and rich but there is no timber. In fact there is none in
sight, except a small grove on the other side the river about two miles
west of the camp. Late at night Porter Rockwell came in and reported
that he killed a buffalo. The cutter was sent for it to bring it to
camp. Our course this afternoon nearly west.

Sunday, May 16

Morning fine, but chilly and cold. Wind north. Eric Glines killed an
antelope near the camp which was cut up and distributed. Soon after
breakfast, President Young, Elders Kimball, Woodruff and Benson went on
horseback to look out the best road over the bluffs. They returned at
half past twelve and reported that we can pass through a valley between
and around the bluffs, which will be about four miles across them.
About 5:00 p.m. several buffalo were seen making their way from the
bluffs towards our horses, some of which were very near them. Brother
Eric Glines started out with the intention of driving the buffalo away,
and bringing the horses nearer camp. When he got near, the buffalo did
not seem much disposed to move and he shot at one of them and wounded
him. He moved a little farther and Brother Glines followed him and shot
three times more at him. The buffalo then ran about forty rods, fell,
and soon expired. I went to look at him. He is a large one, judged to
weigh about 700 pounds, and in pretty good order. I left the brethren
skinning him and returned to camp where a meeting had been called at
5:00 p.m., and the brethren addressed by Elders Richards, Markham,
Rockwood and Kimball, chiefly on the subject of obeying counsel, and
Elder Kimball remarked in regard to hunting on the Sabbath. He would
not do it even in case of necessity, but he did not feel disposed to
find fault with the brethren. The laws and regulations for the camp of
April 18th were then read by Brother Bullock and the meeting dismissed.
About noon today Brother Appleton Harmon completed the machinery on
the wagon called a "roadometer" by adding a wheel to revolve once in
ten miles, showing each mile and also each quarter mile we travel, and
then casing the whole over so as to secure it from the weather. We are
now prepared to tell accurately, the distance we travel from day to
day which will supersede the idea of guessing, and be a satisfaction
not only to this camp, but to all who hereafter travel this way. I
have prepared another board to put up here on which the distance from
Winter Quarters is marked at 356¾ miles. I have also written on it that
the last seventy miles are measured, and we shall continue to measure
and put up guide posts as often as circumstances will permit through
the journey. The whole machinery consists of a shaft about 18 inches
long placed on gudgeons, one in the axle tree of the wagon, near which
are six arms placed at equal distances around it, and in which a cog
works which is fastened on the hub of the wagon wheel, turning the
shaft once round at every six revolutions of the wagon wheel. The upper
gudgeon plays in a piece of wood nailed to the wagon box, and near this
gudgeon on the shaft a screw is cut. The shaft lays at an angle of
about forty-five degrees. In this screw, a wheel of sixty cogs works on
an axle fixed in the side of the wagon, and which makes one revolution
each mile. In the shaft on which this wheel runs, four cogs are cut
on the fore part which plays in another wheel of forty cogs which
shows the miles and quarters to ten miles. The whole is cased over and
occupies a space of about 18 inches long, 15 inches high and 3 inches

After the meeting was dismissed, the cutter was sent to fetch the
meat in, killed by Brother Glines. They soon returned and the meat
was distributed as usual. Presidents Young and Kimball have walked
out together towards the bluffs. After supper Elder Whipple made me
a present of a half a candle made from buffalo tallow, by the light
of which I continue this journal. Although, as may be expected, the
buffalo are generally poorer at this season of the year, yet Brother
Whipple has obtained sufficient to make two candles from his portion
of meat received yesterday morning. The candle burns very clear and
pleasant. The tallow smells sweet and rich. I imagine it has a more
pleasant smell than the tallow of domestic cattle.

Monday, May 17

The morning very cold and chilly, wind northwest. Dr. Richards left
another letter on the camp ground for the benefit of the next company.
The letter is secured from the weather by a wooden case, and placed so
that the brethren can hardly miss finding it.

We started on our journey at 8:13 a.m. After traveling a mile and a
half, we arrived at the foot of another range of bluffs which extend to
the river, and began to ascend about a quarter of a mile north from the
river, the road also turning to the north. A quarter of a mile farther,
we crossed a stream of spring water about three feet wide. The road for
a little distance on both sides the stream is rough, sandy and crooked.
We then turned westward, and passed over a number of bluffs as there
was no chance to go around them without going miles out of our course.
On these sandy bluffs, there are very many small lizards about four or
five inches long from nose to the end of the tail, which is an inch and
a half long. The body looks short and chunky and is of a light grey
color with two rows of dark brown spots on each side of the body which
make it appear striped. The head is shaped something like the head of
a snake. They appear perfectly harmless and are pretty in appearance.
After traveling two and a quarter miles beyond the last mentioned
stream, we arrived at the west foot of the bluffs. The last part of the
road very sandy and there are several very steep places of descent.
However all the teams got safely over without difficulty. At the west
foot of the bluffs, there appears more grass than anywhere we have
yet been, although the buffalo have eaten it off considerably. Within
a quarter of a mile from the bluffs, we crossed two small streams of
spring water and at a mile from the foot of the bluffs, we crossed a
stream of spring water about four feet wide with a very rapid current.
The whole of this bottom seems full of springs and we have to keep near
the bluffs to make a good road to travel, and in fact, we find it more
or less soft and springy even close to the bluffs. A mile and a quarter
west of the last mentioned spring is another small stream of very clear
spring water. The others are rather muddy by running over sandy land.
They all appear to have their rise in the bluffs a short distance from
our road. At 11:35 we stopped to feed having traveled this morning,
six and three quarters miles. Our course west, weather fine, warm, and
little wind. While we were resting, one of President Young's horses
(in care of Phineas) mired down in a soft slough. A number of men soon
collected and with a rope dragged it out, washed and rubbed it, and all
was well again. Latitude 41° 12' 50".

At two o'clock, we proceeded onward. After traveling a half a mile, we
arrived at a very shoal stream of clear water about thirty feet wide
but not over three inches deep in the channel which is about three feet
wide. We forded it very easily and then passed over a short range of
low sandy bluffs about a quarter of a mile wide and then entered on
level prairie again, but we found it very soft and springy. Within two
and a half miles from the last mentioned stream we passed two others,
one very small, the other about four feet wide. They both doubtless
rise from springs at the foot of the bluffs. About ten minutes after
three o'clock, word arrived that a buffalo was killed by the hunters
about a mile from the road. Two men were sent to skin and dress it.
About the same time the revenue cutter arrived with two more buffalo,
one said to have been killed by Luke Johnson and the other by John
Brown, also an antelope killed by Amasa Lyman. The wagons halted at
a quarter to four, took the meat out of the boat, which immediately
returned to fetch the other buffalo which was killed by Porter
Rockwell. The meat was cut in quarters and put into the wagons and at
half past four o'clock we again moved onward and traveled till 5:50
p.m. and camped on a nice dry bottom prairie where the grass is shorter
than that we have passed all day. We traveled this afternoon six miles
and during the day twelve and three quarters, about a west course. We
are some distance from water but several wells were soon dug and good
water obtained at about four feet deep. Soon after we camped the boat
came in with the other buffalo and the meat was all distributed equally
around the camp, but it appears that some have already got more than
they need and feel unwilling to take a good forequarter. The bluffs
on the opposite side the river project to the river for some distance
opposite this place. Latitude 41° 13' 20".

Tuesday, May 18

The morning fine and very pleasant. At seven o'clock the President
called the captains of tens to his wagons and gave them a pretty severe
lecture. He referred to some who had left meat on the ground and would
not use it because it was not hind quarter. Some would murmur because
a fore quarter of meat was alloted to them, etc., which is not right,
for God has given us a commandment that we should not waste meat, nor
take life unless it is needful, but he can see a disposition in this
camp to slaughter everything before them, yea if all the buffalo and
game there is on our route were brought together to the camp, there are
some who would never cease until they had destroyed the whole. Some men
will shoot as much as thirty times at a rabbit if they did not kill it,
and are continually wasting their ammunition, but when they have used
all they have got, they may have the pleasure of carrying their empty
guns to the mountains and back, for he will not furnish them. We have
now meat enough to last some time if we will take proper care of it. As
to the horsemen, there are none with the exception of Brothers Kimball,
Woodruff and Benson, that ever take the trouble to look out a good road
for the wagons but all they seem to care about is to wait till their
breakfast is cooked for them, and when they have eaten it, they mount
their horses and scatter away, and if an antelope comes across the
track, the whole of us must be stopped perhaps half an hour while they
try to creep up near enough to kill it, but when we come to a bad place
on the route, all the interest they have is to get across the best
they can and leave myself and one or two others to pick out a crossing
place and guide the camp all the time. Such things are not right, and
he wants them to cease and all take an interest in the welfare of the
camp, be united, and receive the meat as a blessing from God and not as
a stink offering from the devil. It is not necessary to preach to the
elders in this camp, they know what is right as well as he does, and he
will not preach to them all the time. Let the captains do the best they
know how and teach their men to do likewise. The meeting dispersed,
the meat was taken care of and at a quarter past eight we started out
again, and traveled three and a quarter miles nearly a west course
over a very hard prairie and good traveling and then arrived at a nice
stream, Rattlesnake creek, about twenty or twenty-five feet wide, a
foot or 18 inches deep and a very strong current. This stream must take
its rise some distance back in the bluffs or else is supplied from many
strong springs, for there is much water comes down it. We traveled on
from this near the bank of the river about a northwest course over
tolerably rough land till 11:10 and then stopped to feed having come
six and a half miles this morning, the weather very hot. Opposite the
stream last mentioned on the south side the river, are several pine
groves, or rather cedar groves. There is some little pine wood, such
as knots and dead branches that can be picked up on the banks of the
river. It has floated from above. This, with a little buffalo chips,
makes a good fire for cooking. Latitude noon 41° 3' 44". Rattlesnake
creek was so named from the following incident: President Young, as he
rode up to the banks of the creek discovered that his horse stepped
within a foot of a very large rattlesnake. He turned his horse away
without harming it. Soon afterward, one of the brethren came up on foot
and stepped within two feet and a half of it. It immediately coiled up
and sprang at him and would have struck him (as it sprang 2½ feet) had
he not jumped to one side. He took his rifle and shot the snake dead.

The head of Cedar Bluffs, as named by Fremont, is three miles west of
where we camped last night. At 1:05 p.m. we continued our journey.
Our route lay near the banks of the river which seems narrower here.
After traveling three and a half miles, we crossed a stream about six
feet wide, and three quarters of a mile farther another stream of
tolerably deep, clear water about five feet wide. This stream is very
crooked and seems to run from the bluffs to the river in a perfect
serpentine or zig zag direction. Soon after starting this afternoon, we
discovered some dog towns, the grass eaten perfectly bare all around.
The feed is growing worse again, evidently eaten up by the buffalo. At
noon, a heavy black cloud arose in the west and we had a little rain,
accompanied by lightning and distant thunder. After passing the last
mentioned creek about a mile, we had to change our course to nearly
northwest on account of a bend in the river. We traveled till 5:30
and formed our encampment on the west bank of a running stream about
eight feet wide and one foot deep which is five miles from the crooked
creek, making our afternoon's travel nine and a quarter miles and the
day's travel fifteen and three quarters. The bluffs and the river here
are about a quarter of a mile apart, the river very wide, feed poor,
plenty of float wood, pine and cedar, for fuel. The weather calm and
warm, though cloudy. After encampment was formed, went with Elder Orson
Pratt to Dr. Richards' wagon to enter into arrangements for making
a map of our route. The doctor wants me to do it, assisted by Elder
Pratt's observations. He handed me Fremont's map, and I retired to my
wagon to commence operations, but soon found that the map does not
agree with my scale nor Elder Pratt's calculations. I then proposed to
Elder Pratt to wait until we get through the journey and take all the
necessary data and then make a new one instead of making our route on
Fremont's. The subject is left here till morning. After supper I took
my candle and finished this day's journal. At dark Colonel Markham
called the camp together to tell the brethren their duty in regard
to traveling, guarding teams, and standing guard at nights. The old
laws of April 18th were talked over and additional by-laws added, but
not being present I did not hear them, neither can I learn anything
from those who were present, for they all say that there were so many
little matters touched upon, and so many resolutions passed that they
remembered only one--and that is, when any man goes out of the
sound of the horn to fetch in his team, and sees another man's horse
or mule or ox, a little beyond or near his, he shall drive it also to
camp, and if he neglect to do so, he shall be sent back to do it even
if it requires an escort to make him. About seven o'clock the wind
shifted around to the north and blew strong and cold.

Wednesday, May 19

It has rained a little most of the night and still looks gloomy, cloudy
and like for a rainy day. Inasmuch as the feed is not good here, it
was thought best to move on before breakfast a few miles and seek
better feed. We started out at 5:05, the second division having the
right to lead, but a part of the first division being ready a little
before all the second were ready, they rushed on their teams, drove
fast and those of the second division behind had to leave the track
and run their teams to take their places. We traveled two and three
quarters miles, our course eleven and one fourth degrees north of west,
and then crossed a stream three feet wide, and one quarter of a mile
farther crossed another four feet wide. Our route lay within about
one quarter of a mile from the bluffs and a mile from the river which
takes a bend south from where we camped last night and runs close to
the bluffs on the south side. We then turned our course to a little
west of northwest as the river bends again to the bluffs on this side,
and traveled a quarter of a mile farther and halted for breakfast at
6:20, having traveled three and a quarter miles. The main body of the
camp have stopped a quarter of a mile back, being three miles from
where we started this morning. The road is mostly sandy, tall grass of
last year's growth. The two streams we passed seem to form many ponds
of clear water extending at short distances from each other from the
bluffs to the river. Elder Kimball has been ahead over the bluffs to
look out the road. It continues to rain a little occasionally with
light north wind. Elder Kimball found that the bluffs project entirely
to the river and are very sandy, but we can cross them without going
out of our course. At twenty minutes to nine, we proceeded onward a
little and then waited till the rest of the wagons came up. At the
distance of nearly a mile and a half, we crossed a stream about twenty
feet wide, not very deep, neither very good to cross, and exactly at
the distance of a mile and a half, we arrived at the foot of the bluffs
and began to ascend without doubling teams. Some of the teams stuck by,
but by the assistance of the extra men, they all got up. The bluffs
are very high, sandy and rough, and the sand cuts down considerably,
making it heavy on teams. These bluffs are three quarters of a mile
from the east foot to the west foot following our trail which is nearly
straight. About 200 yards from the west foot of the bluffs, we crossed
another stream five feet wide. It has rained heavily all the time
since we started after breakfast and continues. Consequently at half
past ten the camp formed into platoons and then halted to wait for
more favorable weather, having traveled six miles today over the worst
road we have had from Winter Quarters, rendered worse, doubtless, by
the heavy rains. About half past two the weather looked a little more
favorable and orders were given to move on. We started at five minutes
to three, about which time it again rained heavily. We traveled two
miles and then formed our encampment in a semi-circle on the banks of
the river, having traveled two miles and through the day, eight miles.
The first mile this evening was over very soft prairie, the last hard
and good. The rain still continues to pour down heavily and this has
been the most uncomfortable day we have had and the hardest on our
teams. The brethren, however, feel well and cheerful. The ox teams are
improving in their condition, but the horses do not stand it as well.
The stream at the east foot of the last mentioned bluffs was named
Wolf creek from the following circumstance: When Elder Kimball went
ahead this morning to search out a road, he went up the creek about a
mile and around over the bluffs to find, if possible, a better road
than the one close to the river. While he was searching, about a mile
north from the river he went down into a deep hollow surrounded by high
bluffs and as he was riding along at the bottom, he turned his head
to the left and saw two very large wolves at about five rods distance
gazing at him. One of them he said was nearly as large as a two year
old steer. When he saw these he looked around on the other side and saw
several others about the same distance from him, very large ones, and
all gazing fiercely at him. This startled him considerably, and more
especially when he reflected that he had no arms. He made a noise to
try to scare them away but they still stood, and he concluded to move
away as soon as he could. They did not follow him and he saw a dead
carcass near, which satisfied him that he had interrupted their repast.
On mentioning this circumstance to President Young, they named the
creek "Wolf Creek." He traveled back and forth over ten miles searching
out a road before breakfast. He also went out again afterwards and
got badly wet. He then concluded to change his clothing and remain
in his wagon. The evening is very cool and cloudy with wind from the
northeast. The rain had ceased about six o'clock, but it still looks

Thursday, May 20

The morning fair, but cloudy, light wind from northwest and cold. At
7:45 we started out again but had not traveled over a quarter of a
mile before the roadometer gave way on account of the rain yesterday
having caused the wood to swell and stick fast. One of the cogs in
the small wheel broke. We stopped about a half an hour and Appleton
Harmon took it to pieces and put it up again without the small wheel.
I had to count each mile after this. Three quarters of a mile from
where we camped, we crossed a creek eight feet wide and two and a half
feet deep. We then changed our course to about southwest a mile or so
following the banks of the river, as the ground was wet and swampy
nearer the bluffs. The river then winds around about three miles in a
bend and then strikes a little north of west. The bluffs on the north
appear to be about two miles from the river. We traveled till 11:15 and
then halted to feed, having traveled seven and three quarters miles
over tolerably good road, though at the commencement somewhat soft. On
the opposite side the river, the bluffs project near its banks. They
are rocky and almost perpendicular, beautified for miles by groves of
cedar. Opposite to where we are halted, we can see a ravine running up
the bluffs and at the foot, a flat bottom of about fifteen acres. At
the farther side of this bottom is a grove of trees not yet in leaf.
Brother Brown thinks they are ash and that the place is what is called
Ash Hollow and on Fremont's map, Ash Creek. We all felt anxious to
ascertain the fact whether this is Ash Hollow or not, for if it is,
the Oregon trail strikes the river at this place, and if it can be
ascertained that such is the fact, we then have a better privilege of
testing Fremont's distances to Laramie. We have already discovered that
his map is not altogether correct in several respects, and particularly
in showing the windings of the river and the distance of the bluffs
from it. I suggested the propriety of some persons going over in the
boat and Brother John Brown suggested it to President Young. The
boat was soon hauled by the brethren to the river, and Orson Pratt,
Amasa Lyman, Luke Johnson and John Brown started to row over, but the
current was so exceedingly strong the oars had no effect. John Brown
then jumped into the river which was about two and a half feet deep
and dragged the boat over, the others assisting with the oars. After
some hard labor they arrived on the opposite shore and went to the
hollow. They soon found the Oregon trail and ascertained that this is
Ash Hollow, Brother Brown having traveled on that road to near Laramie
last season with the Mississippi company and knew the place perfectly
well. They gathered some branches of wild cherry in full bloom, rambled
over the place a little while and then returned to camp. About the same
time the camp prepared to pursue their journey. The brethren arrived
and made their report, and at 1:45 p.m. we proceeded onward. From the
appearance of the bluffs ahead, our course this afternoon will be west
and northwest. A light breeze from northwest. Soon after we started,
one of the brethren killed a large rattlesnake within a rod of the road
made by the wagons and on the side where the cows travel. He killed it
to prevent its injuring the cows and threw it away from the road. In
the river one and a quarter miles above Ash Hollow, there are several
small islands on which grow many trees of cedar. One of these islands
is perfectly green over with cedar and looks beautiful. The bluffs also
on the south side the river continue to be lined with cedar apparently
for two miles yet and are very high and almost perpendicular, running
pretty close to the river. On this side the river, the bluffs seem to
bear farther to the north, being apparently about three miles from the
river, and a few miles farther west they are as much as five miles from
the river. After traveling three and a quarter miles from the noon
stop, we crossed a tributary stream running into the Platte, in a very
crooked direction, being from four to eight rods wide and two and a
half feet deep most of the way across, the bottom quick sand, current
rapid and water of sandy color like the Platte. Some had to double
teams to get over, but all got over safely. We proceeded on about four
miles farther and found that the river bends considerably to the north.
The bluffs also bend to the south, so that the low bluffs in front
almost reach the banks only barely leaving room for a road. We went
a little farther and camped for the night at half past five, having
traveled this afternoon eight miles, making fifteen and three quarters
miles during the day. Elder Kimball and several others went forward
on horses to pick out our road as usual. I have seen several kinds of
herbs growing today which appear new to me. One looks like penny royal,
smells almost like it, but tastes hot and like the oil of cloves.
Elder Kimball and others saw a very large wolf about half a mile west,
and he appeared to be following them to camp. They turned and rode up
to him and round him, struck their pistols at him, but they did not
go off, being damp. He finally made his escape. The large stream we
crossed this afternoon is named Castle Creek from the bluffs on the
opposite side which much resemble the rock on which Lancaster Castle is
built. The bluffs are named Castle Bluffs. We had a light shower this
afternoon, but the evening is fine though very cool.

Friday, May 21

The morning very fine and pleasant though tolerably cold. I put up
a guide board at this place with the following inscriptions on it:
"From Winter Quarters 409 miles. From the junction of the North and
South Forks, 93¼ miles. From Cedar Bluffs, south side the river, 36½
miles. Ash Hollow, south side the river, 8 miles. Camp of Pioneers May
21, 1847. According to Fremont, this place is 132 miles from Laramie.
N. B. The bluffs opposite are named Castle Bluffs." At 7:35 we
continued our journey. We found the prairie tolerably wet, many ponds
of water standing which must have been caused by a heavy fall of
rain, much more heavy than we had back. However, it was not very bad
traveling. We made a pretty straight road this morning at about the
distance of a mile from the river. The bluffs on the north appear to
be five miles or over from our road. At 11:15 we halted for dinner,
having traveled nearly seven and three quarters miles, course north
of northwest, very warm and no wind. Presidents Young and Kimball
rode forward to pick the road, and near this place they saw a nest of
wolves, caught and killed two with sticks. Four or five others escaped
to their hole. At half past one we proceeded onward and found the
prairie wet, and grass high of last year's growth. After traveling four
and three quarters miles we arrived at a range of low bluffs projecting
to the river, which at this place bends to the north. There is,
however, bottom of about a rod wide between the bluffs and the river,
but as it is wet and soft, it was preferred to cross over the bluffs by
bending a little more to the north. We traveled on the bluffs a little
over a quarter of a mile and then turned on the bottom again. The
bluffs are low and almost as level as the bottom. After we crossed the
bluffs we found the road better. We saw about a mile this side of the
foot of the bluffs, a very large bone almost petrified into stone. Most
of the brethren believe it to be the shoulder bone of a mammoth, and is
very large indeed. About this time a badger was brought to the wagons
which Brother Woodruff had killed. As I was walking along and looking
over the river, I heard a rattlesnake, and looking down saw that I had
stepped within a foot of it. It rattled hard but seemed to make away.
We threw it away from the track without killing it. At five o'clock
Elder Kimball rode up and stopped the forward teams till the last ones
got nearer saying that some Indians had come down from the bluffs to
the brethren ahead. When the rest of the wagons came up we moved on a
quarter of a mile farther and at half past five formed our encampment
in a circle with the wagons close together as possible, having traveled
seven and three quarters miles this afternoon, making fifteen and a
half through the day. As the camp was forming the two Indians came
nearer, being a man and his squaw. They represented by signs that they
were Sioux and that a party of them are now on the bluffs north of us
and not far distant. By the aid of glasses we could see several on
the bluffs with their ponies, evidently watching our movements. This
man was hunting when first seen and appeared afraid when he saw the
brethren. The squaw fled for the bluffs as fast as her horse could go,
but by signs made to them they gathered courage and came up. President
Young gave orders not to bring them into camp, and they soon rode off
to the bluffs. The man has got a good cloth coat on and appears well
dressed. The horses they rode are said to be work horses which makes
us suspect they have stolen them from travelers. The day has been
very warm and some of the teams gave out. We can see some timber on
the bluffs on the other side of the river some miles ahead which is
the first timber we have seen for more than a week, except some small
cedar and the timber in Ash Hollow, all on the south side the river.
We are nearly a mile from water and the brethren have to dig wells to
obtain a supply for cooking. The feed here is very poor, not much but
old grass. Our course this afternoon has been a little north of west.
Lorenzo Young shot two very large ducks with one ball and brought them
to camp. Elder Kimball proposed tonight that I should leave a number of
pages for so much of his journal as I am behind in copying and start
from the present and keep it up daily. He furnished me a candle and I
wrote the journal of this day's travel by candle light in his journal,
leaving fifty-six pages blank. The evening was very fine and pleasant.
The latitude at noon halt 41° 24' 5".

Saturday, May 22

Morning beautiful, no wind and warm. We have not been disturbed by
the Indians; all is peace in the camp. At eight o'clock we continued
our journey, making a more crooked road than usual, having to bend
south to near the banks of the river. The prairie somewhat soft and a
little uneven. After traveling five and a half miles we crossed a very
shoal creek about twenty feet wide. The bluffs and river about a mile
apart, but on the other side, the bluffs recede two miles back from
the river and have lost their craggy and steep appearance, the ascent
being gradual, while on this side they begin to be rocky, cragged and
almost perpendicular though not very high. We traveled till half past
eleven and then halted for noon, having traveled seven and a quarter
miles, the road on this side the creek being better. Our course about
west of northwest with a light breeze from the east. Elder Kimball and
others ahead as usual. The creek above mentioned was named Crab Creek
because some of the brethren saw a very large crab in it. A mile east
of this creek is a dry creek, down which, from appearances, a heavy
stream runs at some seasons of the year, perhaps during heavy storms.
The water running from the bluffs swells it to a considerable height
and it is certain there are tremendous storms here. A while after we
halted, Porter Rockwell came in and said he had been on the high bluff
about a mile northwest of us and had seen the rock called Chimney Rock
which appeared a long distance off. We have been in hopes to come in
sight of it today and feel anxious in order to ascertain more certainly
the correctness of Fremont's distance. In order to satisfy myself,
although my feet were blistered and very sore, I determined to take my
telescope and go on the bluff to ascertain for myself whether the noted
rock could be seen or not. At half past twelve I started out alone. I
found the distance to the foot of the bluff a good mile, the ascent
gradual. From the foot the bluff looks very high and rough, many huge
rocks having broken from the summit from time to time and rolled down a
long distance. I found the ascent very steep and lengthy in comparison
to its appearance from camp. When I arrived on the top I found a nice
slightly arched surface of about a quarter of an acre in extent, but
barren and very little grass on it. Huge comparatively smooth rocks
peeped through the surface on one of which I wrote with red chalk:
"Wm. Clayton. May 22, 1847." On the highest point I sat down and took
a view of the surrounding country which is magnificent indeed. On the
south at the distance of two miles from the river, there is a range of
cedar trees on the bluffs which very much resemble some of the parks
and seats of gentry in England. East I could see where we camped last
night, the high grass still burning. Northeast, north, and northwest,
alternately, appeared high swelling bluffs and valleys as far as the
eye could see or the glass magnify. West, the course of the Platte for
ten or fifteen miles and at about four or five miles distance, a large
bend to the north brings it in contact with the bluffs on this side.
At the distance, I should judge of about twenty miles, I could see
Chimney Rock very plainly with the naked eye, which from here very much
resembles the large factory chimneys in England, although I could not
see the form of its base. The rock lay about due west from here. After
gratifying my curiosity, and seeing the men collecting their teams
for a march, I descended on the west side of the bluff. The descent
at this point looks more alarming than on the other. The side being
very steep and all along huge rocks standing so critically, that to
all appearance, a waft of wind would precipitate them to the prairie
below with tremendous force. In one place in particular, a ponderous
mass of rock appears to hang from the edge of the bluff without any
visible means of being retained in its position, and by gazing at it
a little while, it is easy to imagine you can see it move and ready
to overwhelm you instantly. At a little distance from the base of the
bluff, I turned to gaze on the romantic scenery above and was struck at
the appearance of a large rock projecting from one corner, which very
much resembled a frog's head of immense size with its mouth part open.
The thought was, those bluffs ought to be named and what name more
appropriate than Frog's Head Bluffs. After this reflection, I walked on
to where I thought the wagons would come which started out at half past
one. After traveling three and a quarter miles we crossed a dry creek
about six rods wide, and a quarter of a mile farther, another about
five feet wide and a half a mile farther, still another about six rods
wide on an average. These all appear to be the sources of heavy streams
of water at some seasons of the year. Soon as we crossed this last
one, I saw Elder Kimball wave his hat for the wagons to turn off to
the north in order to cross the bluffs which struck the river a little
farther. But a little to the west was a very high ridge and I concluded
to walk on to it. Found it to be a perfect ridge of gravel, very high
and rounding on the top, not more than four or five feet wide and from
north to south about 150 feet long. Elder Pratt names this Cobble
Hills, the gravel or cobbles varying in size of from fifty pounds in
weight to the smallest pebble. At the north foot of this hill is what
might be named a clay bank, being composed of a light colored kind of
sandy clay and forms a kind of large table. A little distance farther,
we crossed another dry creek about eight rods wide and then ascended
the bluffs. The ascent is pretty steep for nearly half a mile, but
hard and not difficult to travel. The wagon had to wind about some to
keep around the foot of the bluffs, crossing the dry creek three times
before we emerged from the bluffs to the banks of the river. We crossed
another dry creek pretty steep on each side and then found ourselves
once more on the prairie bottom. The bluffs are two and a quarter
miles from the east to the west foot following our trail. The wind has
blown from the southeast all day until lately, when a dead calm has
succeeded. In the west a heavy thunder cloud has been gathering for
two hours and vivid streaks of lightning observed in the distance. At
twenty minutes to five the wind struck suddenly from the northwest, the
blackest part of the cloud then lying in that direction. We had a few
drops of rain only. Then it seemed to turn off to the east. The scenery
after this was indeed sublime, the sun peering out from under the heavy
clouds reflecting long rays upwards which were imitated in the east.
The romantic bluffs on the north and the lightning playing in the
southeast all tended to fill my mind with pleasant reflections, on the
goodness and majesty of the Creator and Governor of the universe, and
the beauty of the works of his hands. At 5:45 we formed our encampment
in a circle within a quarter of a mile of the banks of the river,
having traveled this afternoon, eight and a quarter miles and through
the day fifteen and a half, making the distance from Winter Quarters
440 miles in five weeks and three and a half days. The feed on the
lower bench of the prairie is tolerably good, while the higher land is
quite bare. We have noticed today a great many petrified bones, some
very large. All are turned into solid, hard stone, which proves that
the atmosphere is pure and the country would doubtless be healthy, but
is not adapted for farming purposes on account of the poor sandy soil
and no timber at all on this side the river. I have noticed a variety
of shrubs, plants and flowers all new to me today, many of which have
a very pleasant smell and in some places the air appears impregnated
with the rich odors arising from them. Among the rest are numerous
beds of the southern wood. There are also vast beds of flinty pebbles
of various colors, some as white as alabaster. About 6:30 I observed a
group of brethren standing together inside the camp. I went up and saw
a young eagle which had been taken out of its nest on one of these high
bluffs by George R. Grant and Orson Whitney. Although it is very young
and its feathers have scarcely commenced growing, it measures from the
tips of its wings when stretched, forty-six inches. Its head is nearly
the size of my fist and looks very ferocious. After this I went with
John Pack and Horace Whitney to the bluffs. On our way we saw a large
wolf about as large as the largest dog in camp. He was within a quarter
of a mile from camp. After traveling about a mile we arrived at the
foot of a stupendous mass of rocks almost perpendicular, with only one
place where it was possible to ascend. We went up with difficulty and
by using our hands and knees, gained the top. We had to walk over a
little space which was only about three feet wide and on the east side
a perpendicular fall of about sixty feet. Although from the camp this
peak looks only large enough for a man to stand upon we found it large
enough to seat comfortably about twenty persons. The top is composed of
large rocks and very uneven. The prairie below looks a long distance
under foot from this peak. Descending we viewed the surrounding scenery
which looks more like the ruins of an ancient city with its castles,
towers, fortifications, etc., on all sides, and a dry stream coming
through the center. We proceeded to the next high rock and found it
very difficult of ascent. The top is nearly level and very pleasant. We
discovered several other varieties of shrubbery, all smelling pleasant
and strong. We saw that a horse has sometime stood on the top, but how
he got there, we could not easily determine. At the east end there is
a cedar tree flat on the top and on the underside almost looks like an
umbrella. We made a calculation of the height of this bluff as well as
we could and concluded it must be at least 200 feet higher than the
river. The surrounding country can be seen for many miles from its
summit, and Chimney Rock shows very plainly. We descended at the east
end and arrived in camp at dark well satisfied with our journey. Some
of the brethren have discovered a cave in one of these bluffs, and one
went into it a little distance, but it being very dark and having no
torch, he did not venture far. Elder Pratt reports that he saw on the
top of one of the bluffs, a hole in a rock 15 inches in diameter and a
foot deep with five inches of very cold good water in it. He supposed
it to be a spring. Between the bluffs they also discovered a spring of
pure cold water of a very good taste. Dr. Richards names these bluffs
"Bluff Ruins" from their appearance being that of the ruins of castles,
cities, etc. A little to the left is a small perpendicular rock much
resembling Chimney Rock but smaller. The whole of the scenery around
is one of romantic beauty which cannot be described with either pen or
tongue. Last night a large black dog, half wolf, supposed to belong to
the Indians, came to the camp. He has kept within two hundred yards of
the wagons all day, and has followed us to this place. There have been
many rattlesnakes seen today and six or seven killed. In fact, this
place seems to abound with them. The evening was spent very joyfully by
most of the brethren, it being very pleasant and moonlight. A number
danced till the bugle sounded for bed time at nine o'clock. A mock
trial was also prosecuted in the case of the camp vs. James Davenport
for blockading the highway and turning ladies out of their course.
Jackson Redding acted as the presiding judge. Elder Whipple attorney
for defendant and Luke Johnson attorney for the people. We have many
such trials in the camp which are amusing enough and tend among other
things to pass away the time cheerfully during leisure moments. It was
remarked this evening that we have one man in camp who is entitled to
the credit of being more even tempered than any of the others, and that
is Father Chamberlain. He is invariably cross and quarrelsome, but the
brethren all take it as a joke and he makes considerable amusement for
the camp. Opposite the encampment there are quite a number of small
islands, but no timber on any of them.

Sunday, May 23

The morning very fine and pleasant. Brother Egan commenced washing
very early on the banks of the river. He kindly volunteered to wash my
dirty clothing which I accepted as a favor. After breakfast President
Young, Elders Kimball, Richards, Pratt, Woodruff, Smith and Benson and
Lyman walked out to view Bluff Ruins and returned at half past eleven.
A while ago I went out a little distance to view an adder which George
Billings had discovered. It was a dark brown color about 18 inches
long and three quarters of an inch thick through the body. They are
represented as very poisonous. About eleven o'clock Nathaniel Fairbanks
came into camp having been bitten in the leg by a rattlesnake. He went
on the bluffs with Aaron Farr and Brother Rolf and as they jumped off
from the bluff, the snake bit him, the others having jumped over him
farther. He said that in two minutes after he was bitten his tongue
began to prick and feel numb. When he got to camp his tongue and
hands pricked and felt numb as a person feels their feet sometimes
when they are said to be asleep. The brethren immediately applied
some tobacco juice and leaves, also turpentine, and bound tobacco on
his leg which was considerably swollen. We laid hands on him and Luke
Johnson administered a dose of lobelia in number six after he had taken
a strong drink of alcohol and water. The lobelia soon vomitted him
powerfully. He complains much of sickness at his stomach and dimness
in his eyes. He appears to be in much pain. While the brethren of the
quorum of the twelve were on one of the high detached bluffs they found
the skeleton of a buffalo's head. Brother Woodruff wrote the names of
all the quorum of the twelve present and set it upon the southwest
corner of the bluff. John Brown also wrote his name on it. Elder Pratt
took the altitude of the bluff and found it to be 235 feet above the
surface of the river. He did not calculate the height above the sea,
owing to the state of the atmosphere. He, however, predicted wind from
the same cause. At twelve o'clock the camp was called together for
meeting, and after singing and praying we were addressed by Elder Snow,
followed by President Young. The latter said there were many items of
doctrine which he often felt like teaching to the brethren, but as
to administering sealing ordinances, etc., this is no time or place
for them, they belong to the house of God and when we get located we
shall have an opportunity to build a house, etc. He expressed himself
satisfied with the conduct of the camp in general. He is pleased to
see so much union and disposition to obey council among the brethren
and hoped and prayed that it may continue and increase. He wants the
brethren to seek after knowledge and be faithful to acknowledge God in
all things but never take his name in vain nor use profane language.
If all the knowledge in this camp were put together and brother Joseph
were here in our midst, he could comprehend the whole of it and wind it
around his little finger. And then think of the knowledge of angels,
and above that, the knowledge of the Lord. There is much for us to
learn and a faithful man who desires eternal glory will seek after
knowledge all the time and his ideas never suffered to rust but are
always bright. He will not throw away the knowledge of small things
because they are familiar, but grasp all he can and keep doing so and
by retaining many small things he will thus gain a large pile, etc.
He expressed his feelings warmly towards all the brethren and prayed
them to be faithful, diligent and upright, for we are now sowing seed,
the fruit of which will be plucked in after days whether good or
bad. G. A. Smith made a few remarks, also several others of the
brethren. The president then stated that on Sunday next he wants the
brethren to understand that there will be meeting at eleven o'clock and
the sacrament administered, and he wants the brethren to attend, all
that can, and not ramble off and fatigue themselves but use the Sabbath
as a day of rest. He enjoined it upon Bishops T. Lewis, S. Roundy,
J. S. Higbee and A. Everett to see that the proper necessities
were prepared for the sacrament. The meeting was then dismissed. A
while after meeting I walked out with Elder Kimball a piece from
the camp. We sat down and I read to him my journal of the last four
days, with which he seemed well pleased. We then knelt down together
and poured out our souls to God for ourselves, the camp and our dear
families in Winter Quarters. While we were engaged in prayer the wind
rose suddenly from the northwest, a heavy cloud having been gathering
from the west all the afternoon. A sudden gust struck Elder Kimball's
hat and carried it off. After we got through, his hat was nowhere in
sight, but following the direction of the wind we soon saw it at a
distance on the bottom of the prairie still flying swiftly. We both ran
and chased it about three quarters of a mile and caught it a little
from the river. While we were out together I remarked that the buffalo
gnat had bitten us very severely. Elder Kimball said they bit him very
badly last evening. Their bite is very poisonous, and although they
are extremely small, they punish a person very much with an itching,
aching pain like a mosquito bite. About five o'clock the wind blew a
perfect gale and continued till seven when it commenced to rain very
heavily, large drops descending, accompanied with hail, which however,
did not continue very long but the wind continued nearly all night.
The lightning and thunder continued some time but not very severe. We
saw the necessity of having good stout bows to our wagons, and the
covers well fastened down, for the very stoutest seemed in danger of
being torn to pieces and the wagons blown over. When the wind commenced
blowing so strongly it turned very cold and long before dark I went to
bed to keep warm. Brother Fairbanks seems considerably better. This
evening President Young, Kimball and Benson laid hands on him and he
seemed much better afterwards.

Monday, May 24

The morning very cold indeed, strong wind from northwest. At 8:25 we
continued our journey and traveled over level prairie ten miles, then
halted to feed at 12:45. The bluffs on the north about two miles from
us and the river one mile. About noon the weather began to moderate
and grow warmer. While we were resting two Indians came to camp, their
object evidently being to get the dog which has followed us to this
place. They tarried a little while and then went away taking the dog
with them. At 3:00 p.m., we again proceeded and traveled till 6:00
p.m., distance six and a half miles, during the day 16½. Several of
the horse teams gave out and they are evidently failing but the oxen
are gaining daily. The mules stand the journey well and in fact all
the teams, considering the scarcity of grass. About 5:30 we discovered
a party of Indians on the opposite side the river moving west. When
we formed our encampment they crossed over the river. Some of the
brethren went to meet them carrying a white flag with them. When the
Indians saw the flag, some of them began to sing, and their chief held
up a U. S. flag. It was soon ascertained that their object was to
obtain something to eat. A number of them came to the camp and were
conducted around by Colonels Markham and Rockwood. They were shown a
six and fifteen shooter also the cannon and the gunners went through
the evolutions a number of times which seemed to please them much.
They are all well dressed and very noble looking, some having good
clean blankets, others nice robes artfully ornamented with beads and
paintings. All had many ornaments on their clothing and ears, some had
nice painted shells suspended from the ear. All appeared to be well
armed with muskets. Their moccasins were indeed clean and beautiful.
One had a pair of moccasins of a clear white, ornamented with beads,
etc. They fit very tight to the foot. For cleanness and neatness,
they will vie with the most tasteful whites. They are thirty-five
in number, about half squaws and children. They are Sioux and have
two recommends certifying as to their friendship, etc. The brethren
contributed something to eat which was sent to them. Our course today
has been nearly west, with a cool wind. The evening fine but cold
enough to freeze clothing stiff when laid on the grass to dry. Elder
Kimball has been quite unwell all day and mostly kept to his wagon.
Opposite the camp on the south side the river is a very large rock very
much resembling a castle of four stories high, but in a state of ruin.
A little to the east a rock stands which looks like a fragment of a
very thick wall. A few miles to the west Chimney Rock appears in full
view. The scenery around is pleasant and romantic. After the Indians
had viewed the camp, they returned to their horses and the rest of the
party who have camped on the banks of the river about a quarter of
a mile west of us. Elder Sherwood returned with them and soon after
came back accompanied by the chief and his squaw who signified a wish
to abide with our camp tonight. The brethren fixed up a tent for them
to sleep under; Porter Rockwell made them some coffee, and they were
furnished with some victuals. The old chief amused himself very much by
looking at the moon through a telescope for as much as twenty minutes.
Brother Fairbanks is much better this evening. Last night Luke Johnson
discovered a very large petrified bone in the neighborhood of the
bluffs as much as two feet wide, but he could not ascertain the length
of it. After laboring sometime ineffectually to dig it up, he broke off
two pieces and brought them to camp. They are very white and hard. It
is now eleven o'clock. I have been writing in Elder Kimball's journal
since dark, and have but little chance to write as much as I want in
my own and his both, but I feel determined to do all I can to keep a
journal of this expedition which will be interesting to my children
in after days, and perhaps to many of the Saints. The evening is very
fine but cool and I retire to rest with the feeling: "God bless my dear

Tuesday, May 25

The morning fine and very pleasant. Most of the Indians, men, women
and children came early to camp on their ponies and marched around
mostly trying to obtain something to eat. Several little barters were
made with them for moccasins, skins, etc. John S. Higbee traded ponies
with one of them. They have some good ponies and some inferior ones,
but both male and females are neatly dressed and very tidy. They look
cheerful and pleased to witness the camp, etc. At 8:20 we proceeded
onward. After we started, the Indians left us and went over the river.
One mile from where we started, we began to ascend a low range of
bluffs to avoid a large, high sandy ridge which projects to the river.
We traveled three quarters of a mile and descended again to the level
prairie. At 9:40 we halted to let the cattle and teams graze, the feed
being good and plentiful, having traveled two and a half miles, mostly
northwest around a bend of the river. The sun is very hot, the roads
sandy and hard teaming. The river is probably three quarters of a mile
wide here and on this side there are many small islands. At 11:15
continued our journey and traveled till half past one, distance four
and three quarters miles over a very soft, wet, level prairie. We then
halted to feed and rest our teams, as they have been hard drawn nearly
all day. We have seen no game for several days except a few antelope
and hares. The buffalo appear to have left this region and in fact
there are little signs of many having been here. The feed is poor,
mostly last year's growth and very short. One of the hunters killed
an antelope, which was brought to camp and divided to the captains of
tens. At 3:00 p.m. we started again and traveled till a quarter to
six, distance four and three quarters miles, and during the day twelve
miles. For three miles of the first of this afternoon we had a good
road, but the last part has been very wet and soft, numerous ponds
of water standing all around caused by heavy rains. We have camped
on a very wet spot, but the feed being poor where it was drier, it
was decided to stay for the benefit of the teams. Our course has been
about northwest, very little wind and the day very warm. Chimney Rock
shows very plain and appears not more than two miles distance but is no
doubt five miles distance or over. Another antelope has been killed and
brought in by the hunters. Elder Orson Pratt is taking an observation
to ascertain the height of Chimney Rock. The evening was very pleasant
and the brethren passed away their time till after nine o'clock
dancing. Porter Rockwell shot the two antelope spoken of above. He also
shot two wolves. Latitude six and a quarter miles back, 41° 41' 46".

Wednesday, May 26

The morning very fine and pleasant. I have spent the morning working
on Dr. Richards' map. At eight o'clock continued on our journey. Elder
Pratt taking observations to tell the distance our road lies from
Chimney Rock. Yesterday morning Stephen Markham traded a mule which was
foundered and unable to work to one of the Indians for a pony. They put
him in the harness a little towards evening and again this morning.
When crossing a very soft place the whipple tree unhitched and struck
against his heels. He ran full gallop towards the head teams and twice
through the line of wagons causing several teams, horses and oxen both,
to spring from the road and run some distance before the men could
stop them. After running nearly a mile some of the brethren caught
the pony, brought him back and put him to the wagon again without any
accident, except a little injury to the harness. After traveling four
and five-eighths miles, we arrived at a point directly north of Chimney
Rock which we ascertained by the compass, having traveled since it
was first discovered 41½ miles. We proceeded till twelve o'clock and
halted to feed, having traveled seven and a quarter miles, a northwest
course, the road very straight and hard excepting a few spots where the
water stands caused by late heavy rains. We turned south a little to
get to grass as the higher prairie is barren, and scarcely any grass on
it. Porter Rockwell has killed two antelope and John Brown one which
were brought into camp and are being divided amongst the companies as
usual. Elder Pratt found that Chimney Rock is 260 feet high from its
base to its summit and the distance from our road at the nearest point
three miles. The latitude at noon halt 41° 45' 58". At 2:25 resumed our
journey making our road nearer the river than this morning. The road
somewhat crooked but good traveling. After traveling five miles, turned
directly south to avoid a bad slough and went a quarter of a mile and
then formed our encampment at five o'clock on the banks of the river.
The last quarter of a mile was not reckoned in the day's travel which
exclusive of that is 12¼ miles, course north of northwest. The feed
here is good and sufficient to fill our teams well. Joseph Hancock
killed an antelope which was brought into camp and distributed. Soon
after we camped, walked out to the bank of the river with Presidents
Young and Kimball to read to them some of the minutes of the old
council. We were joined by Dr. Richards and tarried till seven o'clock,
at which time a heavy black cloud was fast approaching from the west
and was soon followed by a strong wind and a little rain which lasted
only a short time. The evening afterwards warm and pleasant though
somewhat cloudy. Carloss Murray has been trying to rear the young eagle
caught on Saturday. After stopping tonight, he put it under a wagon and
a while afterwards the men ran the wagon back, one of the wheels ran
over its head and killed it. I wrote in Heber's journal till half past
ten and then went to rest.

Thursday, May 27

The morning very fine. We have seen a number of romantic spots on our
journey, but I consider our view this morning more sublime than any
other. Chimney Rock lies southeast, opposite detached bluffs of various
shapes and sizes. To the southwest, Scott's Bluffs look majestic and
sublime. The prairie over which our route lies is very level and green
as far as we can see. The bluffs on the north low, and about three
miles distant. The scenery is truly delightful beyond imagination. I
have finished making Dr. Richards' map to Chimney Rock. Elder Pratt
has measured the width of the river at this place by the sextant and
found it to be exactly 792 yards. At ten minutes to eight we continued
our journey and traveled near the banks of the river till 11:45, being
eight miles. The route very good, hard and good traveling, although
a little crooked. Porter Rockwell has killed two antelope and Amasa
Lyman one, which were brought to the wagons and distributed. There
are some heavy thunder clouds in the south and west and a nice breeze
from northeast. At two o'clock we continued our journey over the same
kind of dry level prairie, keeping not far distant from the banks of
the river and making a straight road. At the distance of four and an
eighth miles passed the meridian of the northernmost peak of Scott's
Bluffs being 19¾ miles from the meridian of Chimney Rock. These bluffs
are very high, steep, and broken like many others, resembling ancient
ruins. They are probably two miles from north to south extremity, but
not very wide. We traveled till 4:45 and formed our encampment in a
circle near the banks of the river which from this place seems to bend
for some distance to the north, having traveled this afternoon five and
three quarters miles and during the day thirteen and three quarters,
mostly northwest. Elders Kimball and Woodruff pointed out the road
this forenoon. Afternoon Elder Kimball rode with me in Johnson's wagon
while I read some of his journal to him. The evening is very cold, wind
northeast, and raining some. Feed is good and the camp generally well.
Another antelope was brought in by the hunters. The latitude of the
northernmost peak of Scott's Bluffs 41° 50' 52".

Friday, May 28

The morning cool, damp, cloudy and some rain. Wind northeast. At about
eight o'clock the brethren were called together and the question
asked: shall we go on in the rain or wait until it is fair? All agreed
to stay until it was fair. I went to writing in Heber's journal and
wrote till nearly eleven o'clock. Elder Kimball came to the next wagon
where some of the boys were playing cards. He told them his views and
disapprobation of their spending time gaming and dancing and mock
trying, etc., and especially the profane language frequently uttered
by some. He reasoned with them on the subject and showed them that it
would lead from bad to worse if persisted in until the consequences
would become serious. He exhorted them to be more sober and wise. It
growing fair, we started out at eleven o'clock, our first four miles
being north of northwest in consequence of a bend in the river. We
traveled beside a creek of very clear water about a mile. It rises
about four miles northwest of where we camped last night and runs in
a crooked direction till it empties into the river about a mile west
of the camp. It rises from springs as was proved by Horace Whitney
who traced it to its source where there is a spring rising out of a
circular kind of wet swamp about six feet in diameter. The creek is
about eight feet wide but not deep, the bottom is gravelly. Near where
it empties into the river, they discovered a number of large spotted
trout, suckers and dais of a good size. The water tasted very good and
cold. At the distance of four miles we arrived and traveled at the foot
of the bluffs, the road sandy and heavy on teams. We soon turned from
the bluffs on a level barren prairie, hard and good traveling. At nine
miles descended on a lower bench of prairie where we found it wet and
soft though not bad rolling. At 4:45 formed our encampment near the
river, having traveled eleven and a half miles, the last seven a little
south of west. The feed here is not very good. Driftwood tolerably
plentiful. We have seen a few small trees on the islands today but
none on the north bank. Vast quantities of southern wood and prickley
pear grow on these sandy prairies where there is no grass. The evening
cloudy and dull with cold northeast wind. While Thomas Brown and Porter
Rockwell were out hunting about five miles north of here, the former
saw five or six Indians about a quarter of a mile from him. They also
saw many new footprints of horses, which shows that there is a hunting
party near.

Saturday, May 29

The morning cold, wet and cloudy with wind from northeast. We shall not
travel unless it grows fair and better weather. I spent the morning
writing in Elder Kimball's journal, but felt very unwell having
taken cold yesterday and been sick all night. About ten o'clock, the
weather looked a little better and at half past ten the bugle sounded
as a signal for the teams to be got together. After the teams were
harnessed, the brethren were called together to the boat in the circle.
President Young taking his station in the boat, ordered each captain of
ten to lead out his respective company and get all his men together. He
then called on the clerk to call over the names of the camp to see if
all were present. Joseph Hancock and Andrew Gibbons were reported to
be absent hunting. Brothers Elijah Newman and Nathaniel Fairbanks were
confined to their wagons but answered to their names, the remainder all
present. President Young then addressed the meeting in substance as

"I remarked last Sunday that I had not felt much like preaching to the
brethren on this mission. This morning I feel like preaching a little,
and shall take for my text, 'That as to pursuing our journey with this
company with the spirit they possess, I am about to revolt against it.'
This is the text I feel like preaching on this morning, consequently
I am in no hurry. In the first place, before we left Winter Quarters,
it was told to the brethren and many knew it by experience, that we
had to leave our homes, our houses, our land and our all because we
believed in the Gospel as revealed to the Saints in these last days.
The rise of the persecutions against the Church was in consequence of
the doctrines of eternal truth taught by Joseph. Many knew this by
experience. Some lost their husbands, some lost their wives, and some
their children through persecution, and yet we have not been disposed
to forsake the truth and turn and mingle with the gentiles, except a
few who have turned aside and gone away from us, and we have learned
in a measure, the difference between a professor of religion and a
possessor of religion. Before we left Winter Quarters it was told to
the brethren that we were going to look out a home for the Saints
where they would be free from persecution by the gentiles, where we
could dwell in peace and serve God according to the Holy Priesthood,
where we could build up the kingdom so that the nations would begin to
flock to our standard. I have said many things to the brethren about
the strictness of their walk and conduct when we left the gentiles,
and told them that we would have to walk upright or the law would be
put in force, etc. Many have left and turned aside through fear, but
no good upright, honest man will fear. The Gospel does not bind a good
man down and deprive him of his rights and privileges. It does not
prevent him from enjoying the fruits of his labors. It does not rob
him of blessings. It does not stop his increase. It does not diminish
his kingdom, but it is calculated to enlarge his kingdom as well as to
enlarge his heart. It is calculated to give him privileges and power,
and honor, and exaltation and everything which his heart can desire
in righteousness all the days of his life, and then, when he gets
exalted into the eternal world he can still turn around and say it
hath not entered into the heart of man to conceive the glory and honor
and blessings which God hath in store for those that love and serve
Him. I want the brethren to understand and comprehend the principles
of eternal life, and to watch the spirit, be wide awake and not be
overcome by the adversary. You can see the fruits of the spirit, but
you cannot see the spirit itself with the natural eye, you behold it
not. You can see the result of yielding to the evil spirit and what
it will lead you to, but you do not see the spirit itself nor its
operations, only by the spirit that's in you. Nobody has told me what
has been going on in the camp, but I have known it all the while. I
have been watching its movements, its influence, its effects, and I
know the result if it is not put a stop to. I want you to understand
that inasmuch as we are beyond the power of the gentiles where the
devil has tabernacles in the priests and the people, we are beyond
their reach, we are beyond their power. We are beyond their grasp,
and what has the devil now to work upon? Upon the spirits of men in
this camp, and if you do not open your hearts so that the Spirit of
God can enter your hearts and teach you the right way, I know that you
are a ruined people and will be destroyed and that without remedy,
and unless there is a change and a different course of conduct, a
different spirit to what is now in this camp, I go no farther. I am in
no hurry. Give me the man of prayers, give me the man of faith, give
me the man of meditation, a sober-minded man, and I would far rather
go amongst the savages with six or eight such men than to trust myself
with the whole of this camp with the spirit they now possess. Here is
an opportunity for every man to prove himself, to know whether he will
pray and remember his God without being asked to do it every day; to
know whether he will have confidence enough to ask of God that he may
receive without my telling him to do it. If this camp was composed of
men who had newly received the Gospel, men who had not received the
priesthood, men who had not been through the ordinances in the temple
and who had not had years of experience, enough to have learned the
influence of the spirits and the difference between a good and an evil
spirit, I should feel like preaching to them and watching over them
and telling them all the time, day by day. But here are the Elders of
Israel, men who have had years of experience, men who have had the
priesthood for years--and have they got faith enough to rise up
and stop a mean, low, groveling, covetous, quarrelsome spirit? No, they
have not, nor would they try to stop it, unless I rise up in the power
of God and put it down. I do not mean to bow down to the spirit that
is in this camp, and which is rankling in the bosoms of the brethren,
and which will lead to knock downs and perhaps to the use of the knife
to cut each other's throats if it is not put a stop to. I do not mean
to bow down to the spirit which causes the brethren to quarrel. When I
wake up in the morning, the first thing I hear is some of the brethren
jawing each other and quarreling because a horse has got loose in the
night. I have let the brethren dance and fiddle and act the nigger
night after night to see what they will do, and what extremes they
would go to, if suffered to go as far as they would. I do not love to
see it. The brethren say they want a little exercise to pass away time
in the evenings, but if you can't tire yourselves bad enough with a
day's journey without, dancing every night, carry your guns on your
shoulders and walk, carry your wood to camp instead of lounging and
lying asleep in your wagons, increasing the load until your teams are
tired to death and ready to drop to the earth. Help your teams over
mud holes and bad places instead of lounging in your wagons and that
will give you exercise enough without dancing. Well, they will play
cards, they will play checkers, they will play dominoes, and if they
had the privilege and were where they could get whiskey, they would
be drunk half their time, and in one week they would quarrel, get to
high words and draw their knives to kill each other. This is what such
a course of things would lead to. Don't you know it? Yes. Well, then,
why don't you try to put it down? I have played cards once in my life
since I became a Mormon to see what kind of spirit would attend it,
and I was so well satisfied, that I would rather see in your hands the
dirtiest thing you could find on the earth, than a pack of cards. You
never read of gambling, playing cards, checkers, dominoes, etc., in
the scriptures, but you do read of men praising the Lord in the dance,
but who ever read of praising the Lord in a game at cards? If any man
had sense enough to play a game at cards, or dance a little without
wanting to keep it up all the time, but exercise a little and then quit
it and think no more of it, it would do well enough, but you want to
keep it up till midnight and every night, and all the time. You don't
know how to control your senses. Last winter when we had our seasons of
recreation in the council house, I went forth in the dance frequently,
but did my mind run on it? No! To be sure, when I was dancing, my mind
was on the dance, but the moment I stopped in the middle or the end
of a tune, my mind was engaged in prayer and praise to my Heavenly
Father and whatever I engage in, my mind is on it while engaged in it,
but the moment I am done with it, my mind is drawn up to my God. The
devils which inhabit the gentiles' priests are here. The tabernacles
are not here, we are out of their power, we are beyond their grasp, we
are beyond the reach of their persecutions, but the devils are here,
and the first thing you'll know if you don't open your eyes and your
hearts, they will cause divisions in our camp and perhaps war, as they
did with the Lamanites as you read in the Book of Mormon. Do we suppose
that we are going to look out a home for the Saints, a resting place, a
place of peace where they can build up the kingdom and bid the nations
welcome, with a low, mean, dirty, trifling, covetous, wicked spirit
dwelling in our bosoms? It is vain! vain! Some of you are very fond of
passing jokes, and will carry your jokes very far. But will you take
a joke? If you do not want to take a joke, don't give a joke to your
brethren. Joking, nonsense, profane language, trifling conversation and
loud laughter do not belong to us. Suppose the angels were witnessing
the hoe down the other evening, and listening to the haw haws the other
evening, would they not be ashamed of it? I am ashamed of it. I have
not given a joke to any man on this journey nor felt like it; neither
have I insulted any man's feelings but I have hollowed pretty loud and
spoken sharply to the brethren when I have seen their awkwardness at
coming to camp. The revelations in the Bible, in the Book of Mormon,
and Doctrine and Covenants, teach us to be sober; and let me ask you
elders that have been through the ordinances in the temple, what were
your covenants there? I say you should remember them. When I laugh I
see my folly and nothingness and weakness and am ashamed of myself. I
think meaner and worse of myself than any man can think of me; but I
delight in God, and in His commandments and delight to meditate on Him
and to serve Him and I mean that everything in me shall be subjected
to Him. Now let every man repent of his weakness, of his follies, of
his meanness, and every kind of wickedness, and stop your swearing and
profane language, for it is in this camp and I know it, and have known
it. I have said nothing about it, but I now tell you, if you don't stop
it you shall be cursed by the Almighty and shall dwindle away and be
damned. Such things shall not be suffered in this camp. You shall honor
God, and confess His name or else you shall suffer the penalty. Most
of this camp belong to the Church, nearly all; and I would say to you
brethren, and to the Elders of Israel, if you are faithful, you will
yet be sent to preach this Gospel to the nations of the earth and bid
all welcome whether they believe the Gospel or not, and this kingdom
will reign over many who do not belong to the Church, over thousands
who do not believe in the Gospel. Bye and bye every knee shall bow and
every tongue confess and acknowledge and reverence and honor the name
of God and His priesthood and observe the laws of the kingdom whether
they belong to the Church and obey the Gospel or not, and I mean that
every man in this camp shall do it. That is what the scripture means by
every knee shall bow, etc., and you cannot make anything else out of
it. I understand there are several in this camp who do not belong to
the Church. I am the man who will stand up for them and protect them in
all their rights. And they shall not trample on our rights nor on the
priesthood. They shall reverence and acknowledge the name of God and
His priesthood, and if they set up their heads and seek to introduce
iniquity into this camp and to trample on the priesthood, I swear to
them, they shall never go back to tell the tale. I will leave them
where they will be safe. If they want to retreat they can now have the
privilege, and any man who chooses to go back rather than abide the law
of God can now have the privilege of doing so before we go any farther.
Here are the Elders of Israel who have the priesthood, who have got
to preach the Gospel, who have to gather the nations of the earth,
who have to build up the kingdom so that the nations can come to it,
they will stop to dance as niggers. I don't mean this as debasing the
negroes by any means; they will hoe down all, turn summersets, dance on
their knees, and haw, haw, out loud; they will play cards, they will
play checkers and dominoes, they will use profane language, they will
swear! Suppose when you go to preach, the people should ask you what
you did when you went on this mission to seek out a home for the whole
Church, what was your course of conduct? Did you dance? Yes. Did you
hoe down all? Yes. Did you play cards? Yes. Did you play checkers? Yes.
Did you use profane language? Yes. Did you swear? Yes. Did you quarrel
with each other and threaten each other? Why yes. How would you feel?
What would you say for yourselves? Would you not want to go and hide
up? Your mouths would be stopped and you would want to creep away in
disgrace. I am one of the last to ask my brethren to enter into solemn
covenants, but if they will not enter into a covenant to put away their
iniquity and turn to the Lord and serve Him and acknowledge and honor
His name, I want them to take their wagons and retreat back, for I
shall go no farther under such a state of things. If we don't repent
and quit our wickedness we will have more hinderances than we have
had, and worse storms to encounter. I want the brethren to be ready
for meeting tomorrow at the time appointed, instead of rambling off,
and hiding in their wagons to play cards, etc. I think it will be good
for us to have a fast meeting tomorrow and a prayer meeting to humble
ourselves and turn to the Lord and he will forgive us."

He then called upon all the High Priests to step forth in a line in
front of the wagon and then the bishops to step in front of the High
Priests, which being done, he counted them and found their number to
be four bishops and fifteen high priests. He then called upon all the
seventies to form a line in the rear of the high priests. On being
counted, they were ascertained to number seventy-eight. Next he called
on the elders to form a line in the rear of the wagon. They were eight
in number. There were also eight of the quorum of the twelve. He then
asked the brethren of the quorum of the twelve if they were willing to
covenant, to turn to the Lord with all their hearts, to repent of all
their follies, to cease from all their evils and serve God according
to His laws. If they were willing, to manifest it by holding up their
right hand. Every man held up his hand in token that he covenanted. He
then put the same question to the high priests and bishops; next to the
seventies, and then to the elders, and lastly to the other brethren.
All covenanted with uplifted hands without a dissenting voice. He then
addressed those who are not members of the Church and told them they
should be protected in their rights and privileges while they would
conduct themselves well and not seek to trample on the priesthood nor
blaspheme the name of God, etc. He then referred to the conduct of
Benjamin Rolfe's two younger brothers, in joining with the Higbees and
John C. Bennett in sowing discord and strife among the Saints in Nauvoo
and remarked that there will be no more Bennett scrapes suffered here.
He spoke highly of Benjamin Rolfe's conduct, although not a member of
the Church and also referred to the esteem in which his father and
mother were held by the Saints generally. He then very tenderly blessed
the brethren and prayed that God would enable them to fulfill their
covenants and then withdrew to give opportunity for others to speak
if they felt like it. Elder Kimball arose to say that he agreed with
all that President Young had said. He receives it as the word of the
Lord to him and it is the word of the Lord to this camp if they will
receive it. He has been watching the motion of things and the conduct
of the brethren for some time and has seen what it would lead to. He
has said little but thought a great deal. It has made him shudder
when he has seen the Elders of Israel descend to the lowest, dirtiest
things imaginable, the tail end of everything, but what has passed this
morning will make it an everlasting blessing to the brethren, if they
will repent and be faithful and keep their covenant. He never can rest
satisfied until his family is liberated from the gentiles and their
company and established in a land where they can plant and reap the
fruits of their labors, but he has never had the privilege of eating
the fruits of his labors yet, neither has his family, but when this is
done he can sleep in peace if necessary but not till then. If we will
serve the Lord, remember His name to call upon Him, and be faithful, we
shall not one of us be left under the sod, but shall be permitted to
return and meet our families in peace and enjoy their society again;
but if this camp continues the course of conduct it has done, the
judgment of God will overtake us. He hopes the brethren will take heed
to what President Young has said and let it sink deep in their hearts.

Elder Pratt wanted to add a word to what has been said. "Much good
advice has been given to teach us how we may spend our time profitably
by prayer, and meditation, etc." But there is another idea which
he wants to add. "There are many books in the camp and worlds of
knowledge before us which we have not obtained, and if the brethren
would devote all their leisure time to seeking after knowledge, they
would never need to say they had nothing with which to pass away their
time. If we could spend 23 hours out of the 24 in gaining knowledge
and only sleep one hour of the 24 all the days of our life, there
would still be worlds of knowledge in store for us yet to learn. He
knows it is difficult to bring our minds to diligent and constant
studies, in pursuit of knowledge all at once, but by steady practice
and perseverance we shall become habituated to it, and it will become a
pleasure to us. He would recommend to the brethren, besides prayer, and
obedience, to seek after knowledge continually. And it will help us to
overcome our follies and nonsense; we shall have no time for it.

Elder Woodruff said he remembered the time when the camp went up to
Missouri to redeem Zion, when Brother Joseph stood up on a wagon wheel
and told the brethren that the decree had passed and could not be
revoked, and the destroying angel would visit the camp and we should
die like sheep with the rot. He had repeatedly warned the brethren of
their evil conduct and what it would lead to, but they still continued
in their course. It was not long before the destroying angel did visit
the camp and the brethren began to fall as Brother Joseph had said. We
buried eighteen in a short time and a more sorrowful time I never saw.
There are nine here who were in that camp and they all recollect the
circumstance well and will never forget it. He has been thinking while
the President was speaking, that if he was one who had played checkers
or cards, he would take every pack of cards and every checker board and
burn them up so that they would no longer be in the way to tempt us.

Colonel Markham acknowledged that he had done wrong in many things.
He had always indulged himself, before he came into the Church, with
everything he desired and he knows he has done wrong on this journey,
he knows his mind has become darkened since he left Winter Quarters.
He hopes the brethren will forgive him and he will pray to be forgiven
and try to do better. While he was speaking he was very much affected
indeed and wept like a child. Many of the brethren felt much affected
and all seemed to realize for the first time, the excess to which they
had yielded and the awful consequence of such things if persisted in.
Many were in tears and felt humbled. President Young returned to the
boat as Brother Markham closed his remarks and said in reply, that he
knew the brethren would forgive him, and the Lord will forgive us all
if we turn to Him with all our hearts and cease to do evil. The meeting
was then dismissed, each man retiring to his wagon. And being half past
one o'clock we again pursued our journey in peace, all reflecting on
what has passed today, and many expressing their gratitude for what
has transpired. It seemed as though we were just commencing on this
important mission, and all realizing the responsibility resting upon
us to conduct ourselves in such a manner that the journey may be an
everlasting blessing to us, instead of an everlasting disgrace. No loud
laughter was heard, no swearing, no quarreling, no profane language, no
hard speeches to man or beast, and it truly seemed as though the cloud
had burst and we had emerged into a new element, a new atmosphere, and
a new society. We traveled six and three quarters miles about a north
of northwest course and then arrived at the foot of the low bluffs
which extend within about ten rods of the river, the latter forming a
large bend northward at this point. At the foot of the bluffs the road
was sandy and very heavy on our teams. Like all other sandy places,
it was perfectly barren, being only a tuft of grass here and there.
After passing over the sand we changed our course to a little north of
west, not, however, leaving the bluffs very far. The river bends again
to the south. We then found the ground hard and good to travel over,
but perfectly bare of grass for upwards of a mile. At five o'clock it
commenced raining very hard accompanied by lightning and thunder and
strong northeast wind. It also changed considerably cooler again. At
five thirty o'clock we formed our encampment on the edge of the higher
bench of prairie. The feed is tolerably good on the bottom but here
there is none at all. We have passed a small grove of fair sized trees,
all green, growing on the islands in the river which are tolerably many
near here, but there is no timber yet on this side of the river. The
brethren pick up drift wood enough to do their cooking. I spent the
evening writing in this journal till half past twelve o'clock, but felt
quite unwell. The distance we have traveled today is eight and a half
miles, during the week seventy-four and a half, making us 514½ miles
from Winter Quarters. There is a creek of clear water about 200 yards
to the south from which the camp obtains what they want.

Sunday, May 30

The morning fair and somewhat more pleasant, although there is yet
appearance for more rain. I felt quite unwell through the night and
also this morning, having severe pain. At nine o'clock most of the
brethren retired a little south of the camp and had a prayer meeting,
and as many as chose to, expressed their feelings. At a little before
twelve they met again in the same spot to partake of the sacrament.
Soon afterwards all the members of the council of the K. of G. in the
camp, except Brother Thomas Bullock, went onto the bluffs and selecting
a small, circular, level spot surrounded by bluffs and out of sight,
we clothed ourselves in the priestly garments and offered up prayer to
God for ourselves, this camp and all pertaining to it, the brethren
in the army, our families and all the Saints, President Young being
mouth. We all felt well and glad for this privilege. The members of the
above council are Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, Willard Richards,
Orson Pratt, George A. Smith, Wilford Woodruff, Amasa Lyman, Ezra T.
Benson, Phineas H. Young, John Pack, Charles Shumway, Shadrack Roundy,
Albert P. Rockwood, Erastus Snow, myself, Albert Carrington and Porter
Rockwell. The two latter, having no clothing with them, stood guard
at a little distance from us to prevent interruption. When we started
for the bluffs, there was a heavy black thunder cloud rising from
the southwest, and from all appearance it might rain any minute, but
the brethren believed it would not rain till we got through and if
it did we chose rather to take a wetting than to be disappointed of
the privilege. It kept off remarkably till we got through and got our
clothing on, but soon after it began to rain and after we got to camp
it rained considerably, accompanied by strong wind. I never noticed
the brethren so still and sober on a Sunday since we started as today.
There is no jesting nor laughing, nor nonsense. All appear to be sober
and feel to remember their covenant which makes things look far more
pleasant than they have done heretofore. I spent most of the afternoon
in Elder Kimball's wagon with Elder Kimball, President Young, Lorenzo
and Phineas Young. Read the minutes of President Young's discourse of
yesterday. About five o'clock President Young, Kimball, Benson and
others walked out together to the bluffs. They invited me to go with
them but I was so afflicted with cramps I could scarcely walk, and
after drinking a cup of tea prepared by Ellen Sanders I went to my
wagon and retired to bed early. The evening more pleasant with a light
shower occasionally. Elder Kimball, President Young, and others saw the
Black Hills in the distance from a high bluff.

Monday, May 31

The morning fine but cool. I feel quite unwell yet and have been sick
all night. At a quarter past eight we proceeded onward, found good
level traveling, the day cool and pleasant. We soon struck a wagon
trail which evidently leads direct to Fort Laramie. At four miles,
passed some high sandy bluffs. Traveled till after twelve and then
turned off a little to the southwest and at half past twelve o'clock
halted for noon at the edge of lower land where there is some short
green grass for our teams. The land we have traveled over this morning
is naked and barren, course west of northwest, distance nine and a
half miles. A high wind from northwest. Latitude 42° 04' 30". Started
again at 3:00 p.m., weather warm and wind ceased. At 6:45 p.m. formed
our encampment on the east bank of a shoal stream about ten feet wide,
having traveled this afternoon seven and a quarter miles, and during
the day sixteen and three quarters. Our course this afternoon a little
north of west. About four miles back, passed some timber on this side
of the river which is the first since the 10th inst, being a distance
of 215 miles without wood for fire, except driftwood, and much of the
time nothing but buffalo chips. The last four or five miles have been
sandy, the ground uneven and very heavy on our teams. The country looks
perfectly barren; in some places there is nothing but a few weeds and
garlick. Some of the brethren picked considerable of the latter to eat.
The feed is very poor indeed, but a little better than four miles back.
John S. Higbee has killed a deer and some of the brethren wounded two
others. This deer which Brother Higbee killed is of the long tailed
species, having a tail more than a half a yard long, and is the first
one I ever saw of the kind. A while after we camped, President Young
and Kimball went to the bluffs and again saw the Black Hills in the
distance. They bowed before the Lord and offered up their prayers

The month of May has passed over and we have been permitted to proceed
so far on our journey, being 531¼ miles from our families in Winter
Quarters, with the camp generally enjoying good health and good
spirits, and although some things have passed which have merited
chastisement, we have the privilege at the closing of the month of
seeing a better feeling, a more noble spirit, and a more general desire
to do right than we have before witnessed. I feel to humble myself and
give God thanks for his continued mercies to me and my brethren and
may His spirit fill our hearts and may His angels administer comfort,
health, peace and prosperity to all our families and all the Saints
henceforth and forever. Amen.

June 1847

Tuesday, June 1

The morning very fine, warm and pleasant. All is still and quiet as a
summer's morning, the camp well and in good spirits and a feeling of
peace, union and brotherly love seems to dwell in every breast. My mind
revolves back upon by-gone days and then to the present, and I truly
feel thankful to my God for His mercies to me and for the privilege
I now daily enjoy. The idea of dwelling with my family in a land of
peace, in the midst of the Saints of God is better felt than described,
but the mild, still scenery of this morning puts me in mind of it.
At nine o'clock we pursued our journey, the stream we passed over is
called by Grosclaude: "The Raw Hide." Elder Kimball let me have his
horse to ride. I went in company with George A. Smith who was on foot
carrying his gun in fulfillment of President Young's prophecy at the
Pawnee Mission station. The wagons went on till half past eleven and
then halted for noon. We were about a mile ahead of them. The distance
they traveled was four and a half miles. At half past one, started
out again and traveled till a little after four o'clock and saw Fort
Laramie about four miles to the southwest. Elder Kimball and President
Young then came up to where Brother Woodruff and I were looking out
for feed and we started on, President Young having stopped the wagons,
and went to the ford opposite to the fort. It was finally concluded to
form our encampment here on the banks of the river. Several men soon
came down from the fort which is about two miles from here and made
themselves known as a part of the Mississippi company from Pueblo. They
have been here two weeks. It caused us much joy to meet with brethren
in this wild region of country and also because we should have some
news from the brethren in the army. Luke Johnson being up here with
the boat and several others coming up, they got the boat into the
river to go over and see the brethren. And Luke Johnson, John Brown,
Joseph Mathews and Porter Rockwell started over and about the same
time, Presidents Young and Kimball started back to bring the camp up.
When the brethren got over the river Brother Brown met several whom he
knew and soon returned bringing Brother Crow and his son-in-law over
to this side. The brethren seemed pleased to meet us. Brother Crow
reports deaths in the Pueblo detachment since Brothers Tippets and
Woolsey left, viz. Melcher Oyler, Arnold Stevens. They also state that
Soloman Tindall was on the point of death. The other portion of the
battalion they had not heard from. The Pueblo brethren are expected to
receive their pay and start for this point, at latest by this date,
and will probably be here in about two weeks. They also recorded that
three traders from the mountains arrived here six days ago, having
come from Sweet Water in six days and nights. They traveled day and
night with horses and mules to prevent their starving to death as there
is no feed up there. Two of their oxen had died already, etc. The
snow was two feet deep at Sweet Water when they left, so that we are
evidently plenty soon enough for feed. At 5:45 the wagons arrived and
formed encampment on the banks of the river in the form of a V, having
traveled this afternoon, seven and a half miles and during the day,
twelve, making a total from Winter Quarters to Fort Laramie 543¼ miles
and we have traveled it in seven weeks lacking a half a day, but we
have traveled but a few miles on Sundays. We have arrived so far on our
journey without accident except the loss of two horses by Indians and
two killed. We have been prosperous on our journey, the camp are all in
better health than when we left Winter Quarters and we see daily that
the Lord blesses us and directs the movements of this camp as seemeth
Him good and as is for our good and prosperity. The road today has been
mostly sandy and heavy on teams with but little feed in any place. The
country begins to have a more hilly and mountainous appearance. Some
of the Black Hills show very plain from here. The timber is mostly ash
and cottonwood on the low bottoms near the river. There is some cedar
on the bluffs. In one of the large ash trees in the middle of the camp
is an Indian babe or papoose. It cannot be said to be buried, but
deposited, being first wrapped with a skin and then tied between two
of the highest limbs of the tree. This is said to be the way they bury
their dead. The bark is all peeled off the tree below, I suppose to
prevent the wolves from getting up.

Wednesday, June 2

The morning pleasant. About nine o'clock started over the river in
company with the Twelve and others to view the fort and also learn
something in regard to our journey, etc. Elder Pratt measured the
distance across the river at this spot and found it to be 108 yards.
The water is deep in the channel and the current runs about four miles
an hour. After crossing we went up to the remains of an old fort called
Fort Platte which is near the banks of the river, the outside walls
still standing, but the inside is in ruins, having been burned up.
The walls are built of adobes or Spanish brick, being large pieces
of tempered clay dried in the sun and apparently laid one on another
without mortar or cement. The dimensions of this fort outside are 144
feet east to west, and from north to south 103 feet. There is a large
door fronting to the south which has led to the dwellings which have
been fourteen in number, built in the form of a parallelogram, leaving
a large space in the center. The space occupied by the dwelling is not
quite half of the whole fort. Fronting to the east is another large
door which opens upon a large open space 98¾ feet by 47 feet where it
is supposed they used to keep horses, etc. At the northwest corner is
a tower projecting out from the line of the walls six feet each way,
or, in other words it is twelve feet square with port holes for cannon.
At the northeast corner has been another projection extending eastward
29½ feet and is 19½ feet wide. The walls are 11 feet high and 30
inches thick. We took the dimensions of this with a tape line and then
proceeded to Fort Laramie about two miles farther west. This latter
fort was first built of wood about thirteen years since, and named
Fort William, but being destroyed was afterwards built seven years
ago with adobes and named John. It stands on the bank of the Laramie
fork. Laramie fork is a stream forty-one yards wide, a very swift
current, but not deep. We tarried a little while with the Mississippi
brethren who have camped close by the fort and then went inside. We
were politely welcomed by Mr. Bordeau who appears to be the principal
officer. He conducted us up a flight of stairs into a comfortable room
and being furnished with seats, we rested ourselves. President Young
and others entered into conversation with Mr. Bordeau. From him we
learned that we cannot travel over four miles farther on the north
side the Platte before we come to bluffs which cannot be crossed with
loaded wagons. The road is better on this side than the one we have
traveled, it being hard and not sandy. Feed scarce mostly lying in
little patches near the river. They send their furs to Fort Pierre on
the Missouri river a distance of 400 miles by land and receive all
their stores and provisions back by the same teams, except their meat
which they kill, there being buffalo within two days' drive. They
have tried making a garden and planting corn which did well enough
the first year, but afterwards they could raise nothing for want of
rain. They have had no rain for two years until a few days ago. They
have got a flat boat which will carry two wagons easily which we can
have for fifteen dollars or he will ferry us over for $18.00 or 25c a
wagon. From the door of this room one can see the same black hill seen
on Sunday evening and which is Laramie Peak. We could see the snow
lying on it very plainly. We can also see several ranges of high hills
in the distance which are no doubt parts of the Black Hills. We went
across the square to the trading house which lies on the north side
of the western entrance. The trader opened his store and President
Young entered into conversation with him. They trade solely with the
Sioux. The Crows come here for nothing but to steal. A few weeks ago
a party came down and stole twenty-five horses, all that they had at
the fort, although they were within 300 yards of the fort at the time
and a guard around them. The Sioux will not steal on their own land.
A pair of moccasins are worth a dollar, a lariat a dollar, a pound of
tobacco a dollar and a half, and a gallon of whiskey $32.00. They have
no sugar, coffee or spices as their spring stores have not yet arrived.
They have lately sent to Fort Pierre, 600 bales of robes with ten robes
in each bale. Their wagons have been gone forty-five days, etc. The
blacksmith shop lies on the south side of the western entrance. There
are dwellings inside the fort beside that of Mr. Bordeau's. The south
end is divided off and occupied for stables, etc. There are many souls
at this fort, mostly French, half-breeds, and a few Sioux Indians.
Elder Pratt measured the river and found it forty-one yards. He also
took the latitude which was 42° 12' 13". Brother Bullock told me that
several of the brethren had picked up a number of beads off the ant
hills. Curiosity led me to go and examine and I found it even so. It
appears that the ants gather all the small pebbles they can carry and
build them over their hills to prevent the strong winds from blowing
them away, and amongst the rest, they picked up beads which have been
lost off the Indians' moccasins and robes, etc. I picked up quite a
number. Brother Bullock and I took the dimensions of the fort which
will be given in another place. We then got on board the boat and had
a pleasant ride about three miles down the Laramie fork to its mouth,
the current being very swift. At the mouth, the brethren mostly got on
shore and towed the boat up to camp. After dinner I went over again in
the cutter which was going to fish with the seine in the Laramie fork.
They caught sixty or seventy small fish, salmon, suckers, etc. About
six o'clock we returned to camp. The Twelve have decided that Amasa
Lyman shall go with Brothers Woolsey, Tippets and Stevens to Pueblo.
They start tomorrow. Longitude at Fort Laramie 104° 11' 53". I have
seen three birds here which very much resemble the English magpie in
size, shape and color, in fact I know of no difference between the two.
We passed a number of currant bushes about four miles back, quite thick
with young, green currants. On the morning of the 4th of June, I put
up a guide board on the north side of the river at the ferry with the
following inscription on it, viz. Winter Quarters 543¼ miles, junction
of the forks 227½ miles. Ash Hollow 142¼ miles, Chimney Rock 70¼ miles,
Scott's Bluffs 50½ miles. Wm. Clayton, June 4, 1847. Elder Pratt took
the altitude of Fort Laramie and found it to be 4,090 feet above the
level of the sea. Fremont makes 4,470, differing 380 feet.

Thursday, June 3

The morning cold with strong southeast wind. The first division
commenced ferrying over the river at five o'clock and took a wagon over
every fifteen minutes. After breakfast I went over and wrote a letter
for Elder Kimball to James Brown at Pueblo, then walked up to a high
bluff on the northwest to view the country, but not being able to see
far from it, I went to another over a mile farther northwest. Although
this last was very high I could see nothing but a succession of high
ranges of bluffs as far as I could see, except the narrow space through
which the river winds its course. Seeing some heavy thunder clouds
rising very rapidly from the northwest I returned to camp and arrived
just before the rain commenced. Elders A. Lyman, Thomas Woolsey, John
H. Tippets and Roswell Stevens started at 11:15 on horses and mules for
Pueblo. President Young, Kimball, Richards and Pratt accompanied them
to the Laramie fork and then held a council, kneeled down and dedicated
them to God and blessed them. The four then forded the river and went
on their journey, the others returned to camp. At half past 1:00 p.m.
it commenced raining heavily accompanied by hail, lightning and very
loud thunder, which lasted till 3:30 p.m. During the storm, the horses
were mostly secured in the old fort. The ferrying ceased till it was
fair again, and about five o'clock the first division were all over.
The boat was then manned by the second division, John S. Higbee,
captain. They averaged a wagon across in eleven minutes and one in ten
minutes and one in ten minutes and twenty seconds. The quickest trip
made by the first division was thirteen minutes. About seven o'clock
it commenced raining again from the southeast and rained heavily,
consequently the brethren quit ferrying, leaving three companies of
about fifteen wagons on the other side. All the wagons would have been
taken over today if it had not been stormy.

There is a report come in that there are 2,000 wagons on the road to
Oregon, but a little distance behind, but we are satisfied the report
is exaggerated. There are eighteen wagons camped about three miles
below and one of the men who has come to the fort says that they have
counted over 500 wagons. They have lost four horses by the Indians.

Friday, June 4

Morning very fine. Laramie peak shows very plain. The brethren
commenced ferrying at 4:40 a.m., and at eight o'clock the last wagon
was over. I walked up to a high bluff with Carlos Murray and picked up
some stalactites clear as crystal supposed to be isinglass. The bluff
is very high and almost perpendicular and it is dangerous to get to the

At nine o'clock President Young, Kimball, W. Richards, A. P.
Rockwood and T. Bullock walked up to Fort Laramie and returned soon
after eleven o'clock. They have learned very favorable reports about
Bear River Valley, being well timbered, plenty of good grass, light
winters, little snow and abundance of fish, especially spotted trout,
in the streams. About half past eleven o'clock Brother Crow's company
came down and joined in with the second division and at twelve we
started on our journey again, following the Oregon road. We traveled
three miles and at 20 minutes past 1:00, halted near some good grass to
let our teams feed. The weather is very warm though many light clouds
are flying. The bluffs come near the river and are very high, steep,
and look like sand. During the halt I went up on a very high bluff
near by with my glass. I found it very difficult of ascent. From the
top I could see Laramie peak very plainly and also some hills a long
way off to the northwest. The country looks very hilly as far as can
be seen and the snow on the peak shows quite plain. At half past two
we continued our journey and found the road sandy and very uneven. At
the distance of seven and three quarters miles from Fort Laramie we
descended a very steep pitch or hill. All the wagons had to be locked
and we were some time getting down. We went on half a mile farther and
formed our encampment in a circle at half past five, having traveled
eight and a quarter miles today. At half past five we had a shower
accompanied by a little lightning and heavy thunder. I will now give
the list of names of Brother Crow's company who have joined the camp
today to go with this pioneer camp. They are as follows:

Robert Crow, Elizabeth Crow, Benjamin B. Crow, Elizabeth Jane Crow,
John McHenry Crow, Walter H. Crow, Geo. W. Therlkill, Matilla Jane
Therlkill, Milton Howard Therlkill, James William Therlkill, William
Parker Crow, Isa Vinda Exene Crow, Ira Minda Almarene Crow, Archibald
Little, James Chesney and Lewis B. Myers, seventeen in number, making
the total number of souls in this pioneer camp, after deducting four
gone to Pueblo, 161.

Lewis B. Myers is represented as knowing the country to the mountains,
having traveled it, and I am told that he came as a guide to Brother
Crow. They have five wagons, one cart, eleven horses, twenty-four oxen,
twenty-two cows, three bulls and seven calves.

Inasmuch as there have been some changes in horses and mules, I will
endeavor to state them and give the number we started with from Fort
Laramie. Two horses killed by accident. Two horses stolen by the
Pawnees at Gravel creek; one mule traded for a pony by Brother Markham;
three horses and one mule gone with the brethren to Pueblo; one horse
traded by O. P. Rockwell for three cows and two calves; one horse
traded by John Pack for three buffalo robes; one horse traded by T.
Brown for a pony at Laramie; one pony traded by J. S. Higbee to
the Sioux for a pony. These changes with the addition made by Brother
Crow's company make the number as follows: horses 95, mules 51, head of
oxen 100, cows 41, bulls 3, calves 7, dogs and chickens, and 77 wagons
and 1 cart.

Saturday, June 5

The morning pleasant though somewhat cloudy. Elder Kimball gave George
Billings a lecture about abusing his team, kicking them, etc. He gave
George some very good advice. The horn sounded early to start but we
were detained till half past eight on account of several oxen being
missing. About that time they were found and we pursued our journey.
After traveling a little over four miles we ascended a steep bluff.
The road runs on the top of it a little distance in a very crooked
direction, the surface in some places being hard, uneven rock, which
shakes and jars the wagons very much. In one place there is a little
descent and at the bottom a very sharp turn in the road over rough
rock. Here Brother Crow's cart turned over. However, it was soon
righted and no injury done to anything. At the west foot is a steep,
sandy descent but not difficult. The bluff is a half a mile across.
About a half a mile from the west foot we turned from the river nearly
a west course and crossed a low gravelly channel where it appears the
river has run sometime and perhaps does now in high water.

The road after this is considerably crooked and uneven. About a mile
and a quarter farther we descended again on the same gravelly channel
and traveled up it a piece and at 11:35 halted for noon opposite a
very large spring noticed by Fremont. The water of this spring is
very clear and soft, but considerably warmer than the river water. We
have traveled this morning six and a half miles. Just as we halted,
two men came down from the other road on mules to water. They are in
company with eleven wagons and bound for west of the mountains. They
say the other road from Laramie is only ten miles to the spring while
our road has been 14¾ miles. About a half an hour after we stopped, we
had a nice shower. The 1st division halted about a quarter of a mile
back from here. Latitude at the warm springs 42° 15' 6". While we were
halting, the company above referred to passed down the bluffs and went
ahead of us. They have got many cows, etc., with them. At 1:40 p.m.
we resumed our journey. After traveling a mile we turned in a narrow
pass to the northwest between two high bluffs and traveled a quarter of
a mile farther, then came to where the road rises a very high, steep
bluff. At the foot is a short sudden pitch and then a rugged ascent
for a quarter of a mile. The bluff is rocky and many large cobble
stones lay in the road which made it hard on teams. Appleton Harmon
took one of his yoke of cattle and assisted George Billings to the top
and Brother Johnson took Appleton's steers and put them forward of his
and brought up his wagon. Appleton and Johnson then took the three
yoke of oxen and fetched up Appleton's wagon which threw us nearly in
the rear of all the wagons, none of the rest doubling teams. After
arriving on the top the road was good but still rising for a quarter of
a mile farther. We traveled on this high land five and a quarter miles
which was very good traveling although it was considerably rolling.
Four and a half miles from the top of the last mentioned bluff, we
passed a large lone rock, standing far away from any other. At five
and a quarter miles we descended again from the bluff, the descent
being steep and lengthy but sandy and good to travel. At the foot of
the bluff we again crossed the gravelly channel and traveled on and
alongside about a mile, then descended a little to the bottom prairie
again. At 6:30 we formed our encampment on the west bank of a small
stream and near a very good spring of cold water, having traveled this
afternoon 10½ miles and during the day seventeen.

I have put up two guide boards today. One at 10 and the other at 20
miles from Fort John or Laramie, but the former name is on the guide
boards. The bluffs we have passed today are mostly very high, rocky and
broken, with pine growing on most or nearly all of them. We have pretty
good feed here and plenty of wood and good water. The gentile camp is a
little east of us. They say that there were two more companies arrived
at Fort Laramie this morning as they left, and three other companies
within twenty miles of Laramie. They left this morning. They left
Independence on the 22nd of April. They are expecting the mail soon
on mules, but they anticipate keeping ahead of all the companies. We
find the road very crooked, but not bad traveling. About dark it rained
some, accompanied by lightning and thunder. The camp was notified that
tomorrow will be a day for fasting and prayer as last Sunday.

Sunday, June 6

Morning cloudy, cool, and like for rain. At eight o'clock the eleven
wagons passed us again. At nine the brethren assembled for prayer
meeting a little from the camp, but many kept about their wagons, some
washing and some at other things. At eleven o'clock, four Missourians
came up mounted, being part of a company a little behind. Some of
these are recognized by the brethren and they seem a little afraid and
not fond of our company. They say the old settlers have all fled from
Shariton, Missouri, except two tavern keepers, and I feel to wish that
their fears may follow them even to Oregon. At half past eleven just
as the brethren again assembled for meeting it commenced raining hard,
accompanied by lightning and heavy thunder which caused the meeting to
break up abruptly. During the storm, the Missouri company passed by us,
having nineteen wagons and two carriages. Most of their wagons have
five yoke of cattle to each, and few less than four. They have many
cows, horses and young cattle with them. They have a guide with them
who lives on the St. Mary's River at the Columbia. He says we shall
find water again about six miles from here and then no more for fifteen
miles farther. It was then considered wise to move on this afternoon as
we cannot well reach the second watering place in one day. Soon after
twelve o'clock the weather cleared off, the sun shone and looks like
for being fine. The wind blows strong from the west. At half past 2:00
p.m. the camp began to move forward. About three quarters of a mile
we crossed the same small stream again, and two miles further arrived
at a sudden bend in the road to the south about two hundred yards and
then as sudden to the north the same distance occasioned by the water
having washed a deep gulf where the road ought to run. A mile beyond
this the wagons came to a halt in a body of timber and brushwood at
four o'clock, and halted while the brethren on horseback, viz. Elder
Young, Kimball and Woodruff, went ahead to look for a camping ground.
They returned at 4:40 and the camp proceeded on. Having proceeded a
quarter of a mile we passed the camp of the nineteen wagons close by
the timber a little south of the road. Several of the men came to look
at the roadometer, having heard from some of the brethren that we had
one. They expressed a wish to each other to see inside and looked upon
it as a curiosity. I paid no attention to them inasmuch as they did
not address themselves to me. At a quarter past 5:00 p.m. we formed
our encampment in an oblong circle, at the foot of a low bluff on the
west and close by water, having traveled five miles. The feed here is
very good and plentiful. Wind strong from the west. Road very crooked,
mostly a southwest and west course. There is plenty of timber all along
and the soil looks good on the low lands. One of the men in the company
of the nineteen wagons told G. A. Smith that he had broken his
carriage spring and seemed much troubled to know what to do to get
along. He asked George if there was any man in our company who could
fix it. George told him there was. After we were camped, Burr Frost set
up his forge and welded the spring ready to put on before dark.

Monday, June 7

Morning fine. Elder Pratt gave me some instructions on the use of the
sextant and showed me how to take an observation. He has promised to
teach me to take observations and calculate latitude and longitude
and I intend to improve the opportunity. At 6:30 the Missouri company
passed through again. And at ten minutes past seven we commenced our
onward course. Dr. Richards left a letter in a guide board 30¼ miles
to Fort John. I walked about five miles mostly in company with Elder
Pratt conversing on astronomy and philosophical subjects. Elder Kimball
then let me have his horse to ride. We traveled till eleven o'clock
and then halted to feed on the west bank of a small stream and spring
of clear water, having traveled 7¾ miles, mostly a north of northwest
course. The road more even and good traveling. Soon after we halted,
another company of Missourians passed us, having thirteen wagons and
mostly four yoke of oxen to each. They say they are from Andrew County,
Missouri. At 12:35 we moved forward. At a quarter of a mile began to
ascend a bluff which was a quarter of a mile from the bottom to the
top, the ascent gradual and tolerably steep. From the top of this hill
we had as pleasant a view of the surrounding country as I have ever
witnessed. Laramie peak appears only a few miles to the southwest, and
from that around to the west, north, and northeast, a very extensive
view of a beautiful country for many miles, indeed, as far as the
eye could survey. From a fair view of the peak I am satisfied that
the Black Hills, of which this is a prominent part, are so named
from the vast forests of pine trees covering their surface and being
of a dark green color within a few miles of them. The pine grows in
the most rocky places and abounds on the highest hills, while on the
lower bluffs it is sparsely scattered and in the bottom land, which
looks rich and good, there are none. We have passed many noble trees
and there is no lack of good pine timber in this region. The peak is
very high, and very broken and craggy, the snow still lying on its
summit and plainly visible with the naked eye. The ridge over which
we passed was a half a mile over from the southeast to the northwest
foot. At that distance we began to descend and had to lock the wagons
in several places. The descent was rendered unpleasant by the many
large cobble stones scattered in the road. Many of the brethren threw
them out of the road as we went along and the road is much improved.
They have also dug down some places and leveled others, which will
make the road much better for other companies. At half past three we
arrived at Horse Creek and formed our encampment on the bottom land
near the timber or rather in the midst of a grove of ash, cottonwood,
etc., having traveled five and a quarter miles this afternoon over
crooked road and during the day, thirteen miles. On this camp ground
is one of the clearest and largest springs of water I have seen for a
long time. Elder Kimball having discovered it, he calls it his spring
or Heber's spring. The creek is also clear and said to have trout in
it. The feed is much better and more plentiful than we have ever met
with on this journey. There is abundance of wild mint and sage growing
here; the mint seems to perfume the air. The sage grows in abundance on
all this sandy land. There are also many wild currant bushes in full
bloom and prickley pears all along the road. The other companies were
all within two miles when we arrived here, but mostly going on a few
miles farther. A little before we stopped, we had a thunder storm which
lasted upwards of an hour. During the latter part of it, it rained very
heavily accompanied by hail and thunder and lightning. Our hunters have
killed a long-tailed deer and an antelope, which were distributed as
usual. Brother Crow's hunter also killed a deer, but they are unwilling
to conform to the rules of the camp in dividing and reserve it all
to themselves. Brother Crow observed that if they got more than they
could use they would be willing to let the camp have some. Some of the
other companies killed an antelope, took off the quarters and left the
balance on the ground. Brother Pack picked it up and brought it along.
After we stopped Brother Crow came near meeting with an accident while
endeavoring to yoke up a pair of wild steers. It took a number of
men to hold them, having lariats on their saddle-horns. They got the
lariats entangled round their legs and Brother Crow also, throwing one
of the steers down and he fast with it. They cut the rope and he was
liberated without injury. Myers, the hunter, roasts the young antlers
of the deer and eats them. In regard to Brother Crow's meat, etc., I
afterwards learned that the whole family had to depend on Myers for
what they eat, having no bread stuff, nor anything only what he kills,
and the little flour and meal paid to him for a part of the ferryage,
he having a small claim on Bordeau. After supper, walked out with Elder
Kimball and was joined by George A. Smith. Brother Smith told me of a
good opportunity of sending a letter to my family by some traders who
are expected down every day and I feel to improve the opportunity. We
had a very strong wind at night, so much that I could not write.

Tuesday, June 8

Morning fine though cool. At half past seven we proceeded on our
journey crossing the Horseshoe creek, which is about a rod wide. We
traveled two and a quarter miles, winding around the foot of high
bluffs and then began to ascend them. We found this ascent the worst
we have ever had, being three quarters of a mile up, and having in
that distance seven very steep rises. On most of them the teams had to
double. We saw a buffalo about a half a mile to the south which is the
first we have seen since about the 21st of May. Two and a half miles
from the east foot of the last bluff we passed over a small creek,
nearly dry, and then ascended another high bluff but not nearly so
bad a rise as the other one. At 11:45 we halted for noon near a very
small creek with but little water in it, having traveled six and three
quarters miles over hills and valleys, the roads being very crooked.
About half an hour before we halted, Harriet Crow got run over with one
of their wagons. The teams had stopped near the descent from the bluffs
and she stepped on the wagon tongue to get a drink. The cattle started
suddenly, threw her under the wheel which passed over her leg below the
knee and downwards, passing over her foot above the toes. She screamed
and appeared in great agony. We thought her leg was broken, but were
soon satisfied to the contrary. Her foot was badly bruised but I think
there was nothing broken. One of the women washed it with camphor. She
was then put into a wagon and we proceeded on. Latitude 42° 29' 58".

At 1:40 we proceeded. After traveling a little over a mile and a
half we passed another small creek, and again ascended a high bluff.
We found this ridge more uneven than the other, it being a perfect
succession of hills and hollows for five miles. The road was good
and hard. While traveling on the top the wind blew very strong from
the west and it was so cold that we suffered some. The road over was
indeed very crooked but mostly bending to the north. We could see a
long distance from the top. The country to the north looks more even
but south and southwest very hilly and broken. At five miles we began
to descend gradually, and while watching the roadometer I discovered
it did not work right which made me pay more attention to it. At ten
minutes past six we crossed a stream about thirty feet wide and nearly
two feet deep with a very swift current. It is named on Fremont's map
as La Bonte river. We formed our encampment on the west bank in the
timber having traveled this afternoon 8¾ miles and during the day 15½.
The evening is very cold and much appearance of rain. Porter Rockwell
has killed a deer and someone else an antelope. Porter says he has been
on the Platte which is about four miles from here following the La
Bonte. Soon after we stopped, the men came into camp who were expected
to carry a letter. They are camped about a mile west of us. I finished
my letter to my family by candle light, as it is contemplated to start
in the morning before breakfast and go a few miles to better feed.

Wednesday, June 9

Arose at 4:20 and at 5:15 a.m. we moved onward, keeping near the La
Bonte. At 5:45 halted for breakfast beside the traders' camp, having
come a mile and a quarter. I sent my letter to them by Aaron Farr, a
number of the brethren also sending letters. While we halted I got
the roadometer fixed again and also put up a guide board marked "To
Fort John 60 miles." These traders or mountaineers said they had left
a kind of ferry made of three buffalo skins hung in a tree on the
Platte and wanted Brother Crow's company to have it. It was decided
to send a company ahead to overreach the Missouri companies and get
the ferry before they could arrive, and also build a raft for us to
cross on, kill game, etc. The men say it is about seventy miles to
where we cross the river. Nineteen wagons were sent ahead and about
forty men to attend to this business. All of Brother Crow's company
went, Aaron Farr, J. Redding, the cutter, etc., being five wagons from
the 1st division and fourteen from the 2nd. They started about half
an hour before we started. We proceeded at 7:45 and immediately after
starting had to cross a very steep gulf, being difficult for teams to
get up, though it was not long. Soon after this, four men passed us
with pack horses and mules. They say they are from Pueblo and going
to Green River; they told others they were from Santa Fe and going to
San Francisco. We found the road very hilly and uneven and crooked as
yesterday. At three and three quarters miles passed over a branch of
the La Bonte, a stream about ten feet wide but not deep. The descent
and ascent being very steep, most of the teams required assistance to
get up. For half a mile before we crossed this stream and three and a
half miles after, our road lay over a kind of red earth or sand about
the color of red precipitate. Most of the rocks and bluffs are of the
same red color, only a deeper red. It affected my eyes much from its
brightness and strange appearance. About one and a quarter miles west
of the creek President Young and Kimball saw a large toad which had
horns on its head and a tail. It did not jump like a toad but crawled
like a mouse. This was seen near a large pile of rock or rather a hill.
At 12:40 we halted for noon having come ten miles since breakfast.
There is little water here for the teams. The day fine and nice west
breeze. The road is very crooked, hilly, and mostly rocky, many large
cobble stones covering the bluffs, the land barren and little grass.
The ground here is covered with large crickets which are so numerous,
to walk without stepping on them is almost impossible.

At half past two o'clock we were on the move again. I put up another
guide board a little east of the creek: "70 miles." We found the road
much better this afternoon, not being so uneven, and tolerably straight
excepting a bluff to climb a mile from the creek. At the foot of this
bluff I saw a toad with a tail like a lizard, about three inches long.
It had no horns but there was the appearance of horns just coming on
each side of the head. It resembles a lizard in color, tail, and motion
when running swiftly through the grass. Its hide appeared hard and on
its sides appeared numerous little sharp pointed fins or pricks. In
other respects it resembled any common toad. At a quarter past one we
formed our encampment on the east banks of a stream about a rod wide,
two feet deep and swift current. It is named the A La Pierre. We have
traveled eight miles this afternoon and during the day 19¼. We have a
good place for feed but the higher land is barren, abounding only in
wild sage. There are still some high bluffs around but the country west
appears much more level. The evening fine but cool. After traveling six
and a quarter miles from noon halt, passed a small creek, and again
three quarters of a mile farther passed the same creek. Sterling Driggs
killed an antelope and a deer.

Thursday, June 10

The morning calm and very pleasant. There is wild mint growing on the
bank of this stream in great plenty and abundance of wild sage on all
the higher land. The mint smells natural, but the sage smells strong
of turpentine and a little like camphor. Started at half past seven
and found good roads. At four and a half miles passed over a small
creek about three feet wide but not much water, being only a few inches
deep. A mile farther passed another creek about five feet wide, clear
water and plentiful. At 11:20 we halted on the east bank of a stream
about thirty feet wide and tolerably deep with a rapid current, having
come eight and three quarters miles. We have had several long, steep
bluffs to ascend and descend and two places at the creeks where it was
hard for the teams to get up without help. We saw one of the Missouri
companies a few miles ahead of us. Edmund Elsworth killed an antelope.
There is good feed here and plentiful. Our road has been crooked mostly
winding northward. The creek on which we camped last night is named
A La Pierre and about a mile from where the road crosses, it runs
through a tunnel from ten to twenty rods under the high rocky bluffs.
The tunnel is high enough for a man to stand upright in it, and when
standing at the entrance one can see the light through on the other
side. It seems as though this tunnel has been formed by some strange
feat of nature. Several of the brethren went to see it. Lewis Barney
and another brother each killed an antelope which were brought into
camp during the halt and divided. The brethren carried the two last
about five miles on their shoulders. We have learned today from one
of the travelers that there is one man living and making a farm in
the Bear River valley. At a quarter to 2:00 we continued our journey.
Found the road somewhat more even and good traveling. I put a guide
board this morning at 80 miles from Fort John, and this afternoon after
traveling three and a quarter miles from noon halt I put up another
mark at 90 miles. Just as I finished setting it, I looked forward and
saw the Platte river again. After descending a half a mile we were on
its banks, being 77 miles since we left it on Saturday last, after
having wound around among the hills and bluffs all the way. When we
arrived near the river the road was more level but sandy and harder
on our teams. There are also some low places where the water stands,
making it soft, but scarcely any feed for teams since we left the creek
at noon. At a quarter to six we passed another stream about thirty feet
wide and two feet deep, swift current and clear water. Name is Deer
Creek. There is plenty of timber on its banks and abundance of good,
rich grass for our teams. We formed our encampment on the west bank
in a grove of large timber. About a mile back we passed a sick horse
supposed to be left by some of the companies ahead. Brother Markham
bled it in its mouth, but could not get it along and had to leave it.
The distance we have traveled this afternoon was nine miles and during
the day 17¾ miles, the last five miles being nearly a west course. Soon
after we camped, Horace Whitney went to fishing in this stream. We were
soon satisfied that there are plenty of fish in it. I got a line and
went to fishing also and in a few minutes caught two which would weigh
a half a pound each. We then went a piece below the ford and by fishing
till a little after dark I caught twenty-four nice fish which would
average over a half a pound each, and some of them would weigh over a
pound each. The ones I caught were of a very bright color and very much
resembled the herring, but much larger. Horace caught a cat fish and
two suckers. A number of brethren also caught more and some less. There
is abundance of fish in this stream and we might have caught enough
for all the camp with the sein but it is ahead with those who are gone
to build a raft. The Twelve and some others walked out together to the
river about a quarter of a mile up the stream. Some of the brethren
discovered a rich bed of stone coal where any quantity might easily be
dug, and it is said to look good and is a fine quality. The land here
on the bottom is rich and would doubtless yield good crops of grain and
potatoes, etc. Lewis Barney killed an antelope this afternoon which was
distributed as he saw fit, inasmuch as he was not appointed a hunter.
The evening is very fine, calm and pleasant indeed.

Friday, June 11

Arose at four o'clock to try and get some more fish. Morning fine and
warm, but caught only four. I procured a sample of the stone coal from
G. A. Smith. It looks good. This place reminds me of England. The
calm, still morning with the warbling of many birds, the rich grass,
good streams, and plenty of timber, make it pleasant. At 7:35 we again
continued our journey along the banks of the river which appears
somewhat wider here than at Laramie. At two and a half miles we passed
a deep hollow, the banks on both sides being very steep. At four and a
quarter miles put up a guide board at 100 miles from Laramie, having
traveled it in a week lacking two and a quarter hours. At 11:50 we
halted for noon in a grove of timber where there is plenty of good
feed for a large company. The land since morning has been generally
level, but sandy and no grass. The road somewhat crooked. About a mile
back we came around a bend to the south caused by a deep ravine. We
had to travel more than a mile to make a quarter of a mile direct.
William Empey, Edmund Elsworth, and Francis M. Pomeroy, each killed an
antelope. Several of the brethren have taken an interest in the guide
boards and wherever they see a piece of board sufficiently large, they
pick it up and preserve it. By this means we have now got enough to
last 200 miles. The distance we have traveled since morning is nine and
a quarter miles, being 105 miles in the week including Sunday, or 100
miles in six days. About half an hour after we halted, Brother Joseph
Hancock came in with the hind quarters of an antelope which he killed
about three miles back. He could not carry the remainder and left it on
the ground. At two o'clock we started again. After traveling one mile,
we crossed a very crooked, muddy creek, about twelve feet wide and over
a foot deep. The descent and ascent were both bad on account of a crook
from one to the other. There is plenty of feed on its banks, but no
wood. Five and three-quarters miles farther another muddy creek about
three feet wide and bad to cross on account of the clay being very soft
in its banks. The balance of the road good, but considerably crooked.
At half past five o'clock we came to a halt on account of seeing a
number of wagons about a half mile ahead which proved to be two of
the Missouri companies camped on the banks of the river and preparing
to cross here. It was also ascertained that there is no camping place
beyond them unless we go some distance. It was decided to turn off to
the river opposite where we are and camp for the night and the wagons
proceeded accordingly. We went a half a mile from the road and at six
o'clock formed our encampment near the river where there is plenty of
timber, having come on the road this afternoon seven and three-quarters
miles and during the day seventeen miles, exclusive of the distance we
turned off to camp. The feed here is good and plentiful. The region on
the banks of the river is pretty level, but a few miles to the south
there are very high bluffs. Very little chance for feed except in
places on the banks of the river and generally where there is timber.
These Missourian companies inform us that the regular crossing place is
twelve miles farther and that our brethren are gone on there and also
the balance of the Missourian companies. These men have got a light
flat boat with them and have already got one load over. They say they
have killed three bears between here and the bluffs. They have also
killed a buffalo. There have been signs of bears seen by our brethren
a number of times, but no bears for a certainty. We have only seen
one buffalo since we left Laramie until today, when several have been
seen. One of the Missourians brought a snow ball from the hill on the
south. He gave Rockwood a piece of it, and he brought it to camp. Elder
Kimball and several others saw it which now convinces us snow is yet
lying on these high bluffs. Henson Walker, Charles Barnum and Brother
Owens have each killed an antelope this afternoon, making eight during
the day.

Saturday, June 12

Morning very fine with nice east breeze. Brother Markham has learned
this morning that Obadiah Jennings was the principal in killing Bowman
in Missouri. Bowman was one of the guard who let Joseph and Hyrum and
the others get away when prisoners in Missouri. The mob suspected him
and rode him on a bar of iron till they killed him. At a quarter past
eight o'clock we continued our journey. At one and a half miles crossed
a deep gulch pretty difficult to descend but not bad to ascend. One and
three-quarters miles farther, we crossed a small creek about two feet
wide on a bridge which the brethren fixed, they having started ahead
of the wagons for that purpose. One mile beyond the last mentioned
creek we crossed another muddy stream about five feet wide, and one
and a half feet deep. At a quarter to 12:00, we halted after crossing
another large ravine, having traveled seven and three-quarters miles
over a sandy, barren prairie. In some places it is soft, although the
soil is much like clay in appearance. The road somewhat crooked, and
the day fine and warm. During the halt, Brother Rockwood called upon
the brethren to help fix another ravine immediately west of us. Many
turned out and it was soon done. James Case and S. Markham went to the
river opposite here to see if it could be forded. They waded their
horses over and found the water about four feet six inches deep in the
channel and the current very swift. Of course it could not be forded
with loads in the wagons, but the loading would have to be ferried in
the boat. They made a report of this kind on their return to camp and
about the same time Brother Chesley came down from the brethren ahead
and reported their progress and the nature of the crossing place, etc.
A number of the brethren in company with Elder Kimball and Chesley
went to the river opposite the camp to decide whether to cross here or
go on. Brother Markham and Case again went over, but it was finally
concluded to go up to the other ferry. We accordingly started at half
past two. I went ahead on foot. At three and a quarter miles, crossed
a creek about five feet wide. At half past four the encampment was
formed on the banks of the river, having come four miles, and during
the day eleven and a quarter. It is about a half a mile from our camp
to the place where they ferry. I arrived at the brethren's camp at four
o'clock and learned that they arrived here yesterday about noon. Two
of the Missourian companies arrived about the same time. The brethren
concluded that a raft would be of no use on account of the swiftness of
the current. The Missourian company offered to pay them well if they
would carry their company over in the boat and a contract was made to
do so for $1.50 per load, the brethren to receive their pay in flour at
$2.50 per hundred. They commenced soon after and this evening finished
their work, and received the pay mostly in flour, a little meal and
some bacon. They have made $34.00 with the cutter all in provisions
which is a great blessing to the camp inasmuch as a number of the
brethren have had no bread stuff for some days. During the afternoon
yesterday, one of the men of the Missourian company undertook to swim
across the river with his clothes on. When he reached the current
he became frightened and began to moan. Some of our men went to him
with the cutter and arrived in time to save his life. The Missourian
company seem to feel well toward us and express their joy at having got
across the river so soon. Rodney Badger exchanged wagons with one of
them and got a wagon as good as his own, only the tire wants setting.
He got a horse, 100 lbs. flour, 25 lbs. of bacon and some crackers
to boot. The provisions and horse are considered to be worth as much
as his wagon. Since the brethren arrived here they have killed three
buffalo, a grizzly bear and three cubs, and two antelope. The buffalo
are very fat and the meat is good and sweet. According to the idea of
some French travelers camped here, the buffalo are making down east
behind the hills opposite here, which they say is a certain sign that
the Indians are on Sweet Water hunting them. The brethren say that the
buffalo are very plentiful back of these hills. When I returned to camp
I learned that Tunis Rappleyee and Artemas Johnson were missing, the
former having started for the hills to get a little snow; the latter
having been hunting all day. A company were sent out with the bugle to
find them. Brother Rappleyee returned about eleven o'clock. Johnson was
found by the brethren who returned still later. All agreeing with the
report that the hills are eight or ten miles distance, although they do
not appear more than one mile. There were four antelope killed by the
brethren but divided according to the feelings of those who killed them.

Sunday, June 13

The morning fine and pleasant. At nine o'clock the brethren assembled
in the circle for prayer and after they had spent some time, Elder
Kimball arose and addressed them exhorting them to be watchful and
humble, to remember their covenants and above all things avoid
everything that will lead to division, etc. He made use of the
similitude of the potter and the clay to show that every man had the
privilege of being exalted to honor and glory if he did not mar in
the hands of the potter, but would continue passive, etc. His remarks
were very touching and appropriate to our circumstances. President
Young followed next on the "Liberty of the Gospel" showing that it
guarantees all fullness of liberty to every man which fact will tend to
his salvation and increase, but does not give us liberty to break the
laws of God, to wander off to the mountains and get lost, nor to kill
the works of God's hands to waste it, etc. He was followed by Elder
Pratt on the subject of our avoiding all excesses of folly of every
description, inasmuch as it disqualifies from the society of just men
and angels. He exhorted the brethren to be watchful and to seek after
wisdom and knowledge. The meeting was dismissed at half past twelve
and a company were then dispatched to get poles to lash the wagons
together to prevent their rolling over when crossing. Another company
were sent over the river to build a raft to cross over provisions, etc.
The brethren are gone to work and are diligently preparing to cross the
river tomorrow. The day has been very hot, more like a summer day than
any we have yet had on the journey. The ground seems to be alive with
the large crickets, and it is said that the bears feed on them and pick
them up very fast. A person who has never seen them could form no idea
of the vast numbers of crickets in this region. I spent the day writing
in Elder Kimball's journal. Phineas Young came in from the mountain,
having killed a deer.

Monday, June 14

Morning cloudy and cool. At four o'clock the first division commenced
ferrying their goods over the river in the cutter and some time
afterwards commenced taking the wagons across on a raft which proved
to be very slow work. The second division also began to take their
goods over on a raft but the current was so strong they only took two
loads over in it and then quit. The second division then got a rope
stretched across the river from shore to shore and lashing two wagons
fast together to keep them from rolling over, they dragged them over
by the rope, letting them drift with the current to save breaking the
rope. When the wagons struck on the sand on the other side the upper
one keeled over, and finally rolled over the other one, breaking the
bows considerably and losing iron, etc., in the wagon to the amount of
$30.00 belonging to John Pack. The other wagon had the reach broken
and some of the bows. They next lashed four wagons together abreast
and dragged them over the same way. All got over well except the upper
one which turned on its side, but it was righted again without damage.
They next tried one wagon alone, but as soon as it got into the current
it rolled over and over, breaking the bows pretty badly. The plan of
taking one wagon at a time on a raft is the safest, no accident having
occurred with it and the wagons got over dry but it is very slow and
would take us three or four days to get all the wagons across. The wind
blows strong from the southwest which is much to our disadvantage. At
3:30 we had a very heavy thunder storm. The rain was heavy indeed,
accompanied by hail and as strong a wind as I ever witnessed. After
the storm was over the ferrying was continued, getting my trunk, etc.,
and the loads in Brother Johnson and Harmon's wagons over, and also
Harmon's wagon, Johnson's being got over just before the storm. It took
till nearly ten o'clock to get the loading into the wagons and get
regulated. The river has been rising all day and has risen very fast
since the storm. The men have tried hard, much of the time being in the
water and sometimes up to their armpits which is very fatiguing indeed.
When they quit at night the first division had got eleven wagons over,
the second division twelve, making twenty-three wagons after a very
hard day's labor. There was no difficulty in getting the freight over
for one man can carry it in the cutter faster than all the rest of the
camp can get the wagons over.

Tuesday, June 15

The morning fine but very windy. The brethren continued ferrying wagons
over on the raft and also built two other rafts. The wind being so high
they could not get along very fast. In the afternoon they commenced
driving over some of the horses and cattle belonging to Brother Crow's
company. They neglected to take the lariats off the horses and the
buffalo horse was soon seen to be drowning. Some of the men immediately
went to it with the skiff and dragged him to the shore but could not
succeed in bringing him to life. His natural make seemed to hurt him
from swimming. The rest all got over safely. The cattle got over
safely also; the current was very strong, the wind high and the river
rising which made it look dangerous to swim the cattle across. It was
concluded today to leave several brethren here to make a boat and
keep a ferry till the next company comes up. By that means they will
probably make enough to supply a large company with provisions. We have
learned from a Missourian that there is a large company of emigrants
coming up on the north side of the Platt above Grand Island. There are
doubtless some of our brethren and if so they will probably reach us
before we get through. The day continued windy and somewhat inclined to
storm, but they succeeded in getting nearly twenty wagons over before

Wednesday, June 16

The morning fine but strong west wind. The brethren continue ferrying.
A company have gone back about three miles to make two canoes on which
they intend to build a boat to be used here till the next company
comes up. Another company also went about half a mile up the river to
make slabs or puncheons to lay on the canoes. A while before dark the
brethren returned from below with two good canoes twenty-five feet
long each and nearly finished and ready to put together. The ferrying
continued all day but with great difficulty on account of the strong
wind blowing down stream. When they started over with Brother Goddard's
wagon the wind was blowing strong. James Craig and Wordsworth were on
the raft with poles and when they got nearly half way across Brother
Craig's pole stuck in the sand and threw him overboard. He swam back
to shore and in spite of Brother Wordsworth's exertions, the wind
and current carried the raft about two miles down the river. It was
finally landed by the help of the cutter and without accident. They
have had three rafts working today, two of which they now work by oars
which are proving to be far superior to poles in this strong current.
At the close of day there were still a number of wagons on the south
shore. Those which had been brought over could not be easily counted on
account of their being scattered all along the banks of the river for
about a mile in length. It was now contemplated to leave a company of
brethren at this ferry to ferry over the gentile companies for a dollar
and a half a load till the next company of our brethren arrive. This is
the object for which the new boat is being built. They will thus earn
a good stock of provisions for themselves and be prepared to set the
brethren of the next company over without delay and will also be able
to preserve the boat for our use, for it is the instructions of the
President that when they have ferried our brethren over to cache the
boat and come on with them.

Thursday, June 17

The morning fine but windy and cold. The brethren renewed the ferrying
early and soon after noon they had got the last wagon safely over
which was a matter of rejoicing to all the camp. Two companies of the
Missourians had arrived and made application to be set over at a dollar
and a half a load. When the contract was made with the first company to
be sent across as soon as our wagons were over, the other company of
ten wagons offered to pay the brethren 50c per man extra if they would
set them over first, making $5.00 over the stated price for ferriage
being ten of the brethren to work at it. Colonel Rockwood had made a
contract to the above effect with the first company and did not like to
break it. However, he received a hint that this was Colonel Markham's
day for the use of the boat and consequently Colonel Markham had a
right to take the last offer if he chose. He took the hint and they
went to work forthwith at a dollar and a half a wagon in provisions
at Missouri prices and 50c extra per man in what they preferred for
themselves. The afternoon and evening was very cold indeed with a very
strong wind. After President Young and Kimball got their wagons over,
being about the last, orders were given for the camp to come together
and form the wagons in a circle near the ferry. It took till near dark
before all the wagons got up. The ferrying was continued all night and
till daylight at which time many of the Missourians' wagons in the two
companies were over.

Friday, June 18

Morning very cold and windy. The brethren continued working at the
new boat, others continued ferrying the Missourians' wagons over. It
was concluded not to start today but wait and assist in finishing the
boat and also to take the provisions on which will be realized from
these two companies. After dinner, I went with brother Pack to fish
in the last creek we crossed about a mile and a half distance. We
found the fish numerous and had good luck. I caught sixty-five very
nice ones which would average half a pound weight each. About six
o'clock I started back but found I had got more than I could easily
carry to camp. However, when I got about half way, Brother Cloward
met me and helped to carry them. We arrived at the camp about sundown
pretty well tired. The afternoon was very warm and pleasant. When we
arrived the Twelve and some others were going to council. I went with
them. The names of those who are appointed to tarry were read over as
follows: Thomas Grover, John S. Higbee, Luke Johnson, Appleton Harmon,
Edmund Ellsworth, Francis M. Pomeroy, William Empey, James Davenport,
and Benjamin F. Stewart. Thomas Grover was appointed captain. The
President then referred to Brother Glines who was wishful to stay
but the president said he had no council for him to tarry, but he
might do as he had a mind to. Some explanations followed by Glines,
but the unanimous feeling of the brethren was to have him go on. The
President preached a short sermon for the benefit of the young elders.
He represented them as being continually grasping at things ahead
of them which belong to others. He said the way for young elders to
enlarge their dominion and power is to go to the world and preach and
then they can get a train and bring it up to the house of the Lord with
them, etc. The letter of instructions was then read and approved by the
brethren and the council was then dismissed.

Saturday, June 19

Morning fine but cool. At 7:50 the camp started out again in good
health and spirits and the teams in very good order. It was remarked
by several that their stock had fattened so much while stopping at
the ferry, they hardly knew them. The grass appears to be rich and
good. The first six miles of the road was nearly in a west direction
over several considerably high bluffs. At that distance the road turns
suddenly to the south and rises up a very high bluff which is upwards
of a mile from the foot to the summit. There is some interesting
scenery on the top of this bluff, especially a range of rough, coarse,
sandy rocks of a dark brown color, rising abruptly above the surface
of the land in huge masses and ranging east and west. The descent
on the south side was rough, crooked and uneven, and about half way
down was a bed of white earth mixed with black in places and others
yellow. In one place you can pick up small fragments of rock of each
color within a yard of each other. Towards the foot, the road is still
more uneven and there are several steep pitches and rises. At one
o'clock we halted for noon on a spot of good grass about a quarter of
a mile from a small spring which is the first water we have come to
since leaving the ferry which is eleven and a quarter miles. There
is no timber nearer than the bluffs probably two miles away and that
is small cedar and little of it. The Red Buttes are nearly opposite
to this place towards the southeast and appear to be two high bluffs
of red earth or sand, presenting a very triangular, yet interesting
appearance. After stopping about an hour it was decided to move on
to the spring and we started accordingly and found it to be a small
stream of water rising out of the quick sands. At the distance of
twelve miles from the ferry there is quite a lake of water supposed
to be supplied by a spring. Indeed we could see the water boil up out
of the mud in several places. The grass on the banks of this lake is
good and plentiful but no timber within two miles or upwards. After
watering teams at the lake, at ten minutes to three we continued our
journey, bearing near a southwest course over rolling prairie. At the
distance of eight miles from the spring there is a steep descent from
a bluff and at the foot there is a high ridge of sharp pointed rocks
running parallel with the road for near a quarter of a mile, leaving
only sufficient space for wagons to pass. At the south point there is a
very large rock lying close to where the road makes a bend, making it
somewhat difficult to get by without striking it. The road is also very
rough with cobble stones. At 7:40 we formed our encampment in a small
spot surrounded by high bluffs, having traveled this afternoon ten
and a quarter miles and during the day twenty-one and a half which is
the longest distance we have traveled in one day since we left Winter
Quarters, and this is considered by all to be the worst camping ground
we have had on the journey, but we were obliged to take it for there
is neither wood, grass, nor water since we left the spring. The land
being perfectly sandy and barren, and nothing growing but wild sage and
a small prickly shrub something like those on the moors in Lancashire,
England. There is some grass in this place for our teams but no wood.
The brethren have to make use of the wild sage and buffalo chips to do
their cooking. There are two small streams of water, one appears to
come from the northwest and is not very bad water; the other is from
the southwest and is so bad that cattle will not drink it. It is strong
of salt or rather saleratus and smells extremely filthy. Its banks are
so perfectly soft that a horse or ox cannot go down to drink without
sinking immediately nearly overhead in thick, filthy mud, and is one
of the most horrid, swampy, stinking places I ever saw. It was found
necessary to keep a guard out to prevent the cattle from getting into
it and orders were given to drive them down a little east where feed is
pretty good and it is not so dangerous of their miring. The mosquitoes
are very bad indeed at this place which adds to the loathsome, solitary
scenery around. Porter Rockwell returned from hunting soon after we had
camped and reported that he had killed a fat buffalo about two miles
off. A team was sent to fetch in the meat which they did not return
till long after dark. Elder Kimball saw six buffalo while riding ahead
to look out a camp ground. They are represented as being more tame.
Myers killed two buffalo, but took only the tallow and tongues and left
the rest to rot on the ground. John Norton and Andrew Gibbons left the
camp at the springs and went out to hunt, expecting we should stay
there till Monday. Gibbons has not been seen or heard of since. Norton
has returned and reports that he has killed a buffalo and left it back
not far from the spring. About nine o'clock there was an alarm that an
ox had mired. He was nearly covered but soon got out again.

Sunday, June 20

Morning fine, mosquitoes very bad. Two more oxen found almost buried
in the mud and all hands appeared wishful to leave this place and
at a quarter past five o'clock we moved out. The first mile was bad
traveling, there being several steep pitches in the road making it
dangerous for axletrees. A number of the brethren went ahead with picks
and spades and improved the road somewhat. After traveling three and
three quarters miles we halted for breakfast at seven o'clock beside a
small clear stream of spring water about a foot wide, but plenty for
camping purposes. The feed on its banks good and plentiful but no wood
yet. Elder Kimball states that when he and Elder Benson were riding
ahead last evening to look out a camping ground they came within a
quarter of a mile of this place but were not near enough to discover
the water. A while before they arrived here, as they were riding
slowly along, they saw six men suddenly spring up from the grass to
the left of the road. The men were clothed in blankets some white and
some blue and had every appearance of being Indians and the brethren
thought they were Indians. The six mounted their horses and started on
in a direction parallel with the road. The brethren also kept on their
course. In a little while one of the supposed Indians left the rest
and rode towards the brethren and motioned with his hand for them to
go back. They, however, kept on and paid no attention to his motion.
When he saw them still coming, he wheeled round and joined the others
who all put spurs to their horses and were soon out of sight behind a
higher piece of land. Soon as they were out of sight Elder Kimball and
Benson spurred their horses and rode to the ridge and as they arrived
there they discovered a camp of the Missourians about a quarter of a
mile to the left of the road and the six Indians were just entering
the camp. The brethren were now satisfied that these Indians were
Missourians and had taken this plan to keep us back from this good camp
ground. It is considered as an old Missouri trick and an insult to
the camp, and if they undertake to play Indian again, it is more than
likely they will meet with Indian treatment. Their camp left here a
little before we arrived this morning and it is now President Young's
intention to press on a little faster and crowd them up a little. We
have learned from one of the emigrants a few miles in our rear that
Andrew Gibbons tarried with their camp over night. When he returned to
the spring and found our camp gone and the Missourians' camp there, he
told them of the dead buffalo killed by Norton. They went and fetched
what meat they wanted and feasted on it, he joining with them and
faring well. At a quarter past nine we proceeded on our journey. After
traveling three miles, we arrived at the Willow spring and halted a
little while to get water. This spring is about two feet wide and the
water ten inches deep, perfectly clear, cold as ice water, and very
good tasting. There is a willow grove extending for some distance
above and below it which will answer very well for firing purposes.
The grass is good and plentiful and it is one of the loveliest camping
spots I have seen on the journey, though the land where the stream runs
below the spring is soft and some danger of cattle miring. The spring
is situated between two very high hills and is about three rods west
of the road and shielded from the sun by a bank about eight feet high
and the willow grove. A little piece before we arrived at the spring
there are two very deep ravines to cross, which requires some care
on the part of the teamsters to prevent accidents. At a quarter of a
mile beyond the spring we began to ascend a very high hill which was
one mile from the foot to the top and the ascent pretty steep. The
summit of this hill is nicely rounding and considered to be much the
highest we have traveled over. From the top can be seen a vast extent
of country to the south, west, and north. For about twenty or thirty
miles to the south there appears to be a tolerably level bottom over
which our future road runs. Beyond this there are vast ranges of high
hills whose summits are spotted with snow. In the distance to the
southwest can be seen a small body of water which we suppose to be a
part of the Sweet Water river. To the west the ridges of rocks or hills
appear nearer. They are probably not over fifteen miles from us. On the
north we can see hills a long distance. The one opposite Red Buttes,
near the spring where we halted yesterday noon, appears only a few
miles distance. The view from this hill is one of romantic beauty which
cannot easily be surpassed and as President Young remarked, would be a
splendid place for a summer mansion to keep tavern. We then descended
on the southwest corner of the hill and found it to be just one mile
farther to the foot. At the distance of three quarters of a mile
farther we found a good place for feed, being plenty of grass, but no
water nor wood. At a mile and a quarter still farther we crossed a very
bad slough which is about a rod across and following the road, nearly
three feet deep in water and stiff mud. Most of the wagons crossed a
little to the right of the road and found it not so difficult to cross,
yet very soft. There is also plenty of good grass at this spot. A mile
beyond this slough we ascended a very steep bluff though not very high
and the descent on the southwest is also very steep. At 2:45 we halted
to feed in a ravine where there is plenty of grass and a good stream
of water about three hundred yards south from the road but destitute
of wood. We have traveled this forenoon nine miles over barren, sandy
land being no grass only in the spots above mentioned. During the halt
it was decided that President Young take the lead with his wagon and
try to proceed a little faster. At five o'clock we again proceeded, the
President's wagon going first; all the others keeping their places.
I will here remark that it is the order of our traveling for each
company of ten to go forward in their turn. The first ten in the first
division taking the lead one day, then on the second day it falls in
the rear of the first division, the second ten takes the lead and this
continues till each company of ten have taken the lead one day a piece.
Then the first division falls in the rear of the second division which
also begins by companies of ten to take the lead of the road as stated
above and when each ten have had their day, the second division again
falls in the rear of the first which continues in the same order. Thus
every man has his equal privilege of traveling one with another. After
traveling two and a half miles we descended to the bottom land again
and saw a small stream a little to the left of the road where there
is plenty of grass. One and three quarters miles farther we crossed a
creek of tolerably clear water about six feet wide and one foot deep,
but neither grass nor timber on its banks. After traveling seven miles
this afternoon we turned off from the road to the left and at 8:20
formed our encampment on a ridge near the last mentioned creek where
there is good feed, having traveled this afternoon seven and a quarter
miles, exclusive of allowance for turning from the road, and during the
day twenty miles. We had been in hopes of reaching the Sweet Water but
it appears we are yet some miles from it. The whole country around is
entirely destitute of timber, not a tree to be seen, nor a shrub larger
than the wild sage which abounds in all this region of country and will
answer for cooking when nothing else can be found. Some anxiety is
felt on account of the absence of Elder Woodruff and John Brown. They
started ahead this morning with instructions to go on about fifteen
miles and if they found a good place to camp, to stay. They have not
been seen or heard of since. It is supposed they have fallen in with
some of the companies either forward or back and have concluded to
tarry with them over night.

Monday, June 21

Morning very fine and warm. From this place we can see a huge pile
of rocks to the southwest a few miles. We have supposed this to be
the rock of Independence. After breakfast I went to view it and found
that it was a vast pile of rocks extending from south to north about
five hundred feet and in width, one hundred feet. The rocks are large
and seem piled on one another with the edges up. There is no earth
on the ridge but a little drift sand in which there are currant and
rose bushes growing. I saw a large mouse on the top which had a long
bushy tail like a squirrel. It sat up and acted in every respect like
a squirrel, but in size and color resembled a mouse. At 8:35 the camp
proceeded onward. After traveling three and a quarter miles we arrived
on a bed of saleratus which was a quarter of a mile across and on which
were several lakes of salt water. This place looks swampy and smells
bad. The beds of saleratus smell like lime, but the saleratus itself
is said to raise bread equal to the best bought in eastern markets.
Lorenzo Young gathered a pail full in a short time with a view to test
its qualities. Large quantities may be gathered in a short time and
when pulverized it looks clean and nice. We are now satisfied that the
water we saw from the hills yesterday must have been some of these
lakes as the Sweet Water is not yet in sight, but these being high,
show at a long distance. The water is not very salty but brackish and
tastes sickly. It is reported by travelers that these are poisonous,
but it is probable that all the poison there is about them is their
salt causing cattle to drink freely when they can get no other water,
and the more they drink, the more thirsty they get till they burst
themselves, which is said to be the effect of drinking the poison,
viz., to burst. As we passed along a little farther we saw another
large lake to the left and one to the right of the same nature, their
banks mostly white with saleratus. At twelve o'clock we arrived on
the banks of the Sweet Water, having traveled seven and a half miles
over a very sandy road destitute of wood, water or grass. The distance
from the upper ferry of the Platte river to this place is forty-nine
miles by the roadometer. There has formerly been a ford here but lately
emigrants have found a better ford higher up the river. At this place
the river is probably seven or eight rods wide and over three feet deep
at the ford, but in some places it is much deeper still. The current
is very swift, the water a little muddy, but pleasant tasting. By
watching it closely it is easy to see on the surface numerous small
bright particles floating which at first sight might be supposed to be
salt, however the water itself has not the least saline taste. On the
banks of the river there is plenty of good grass but destitute of wood
there being only one solitary tree to be seen and that stands beside
this fording place. The only chance for fuel appears to be the wild
sage and other small shrubbery occasionally growing in spots on the low
banks. After we halted, Sister Harriet Young made some bread using the
lake saleratus and when baked was pronounced to raise the bread and
taste equal to the best she had ever used and it requires less of this
than the common saleratus. A number of the brethren went back during
the halt and filled their pails with it calculating to make use of it
during our future journey. The day has been very hot and no wind which
makes it unpleasant traveling. Elder Woodruff and Brown again joined
the camp on our arrival here and reported that they had spent the night
in one of the gentile camps which are now some miles ahead of us. There
are many high hills or ridges of the granite rock in the neighborhood,
especially in the east and west, all entirely destitute of vegetation
and which present a very wild and desolate as well as romantic aspect.
I can describe their appearance only by saying that it seems as though
giants had in by-gone days taken them in wheelbarrows of tremendous
size and wheeled up in large heaps, masses of heavy clay which has
consolidated and become solid, hard rock. The rock Independence lies
a little west of where we have halted and after dinner I went to view
it as well as many others. It lies on the north bank of the river in
this shape: The extreme southeast corner reaches to within about three
rods of the river and runs in a direction northwest while the river
at this place runs nearly a west course. It is composed of the same
barren granite as other masses in this region and is probably 400 yards
long, 80 yards wide and 100 yards in perpendicular height as near as
I could guess. The ascent is difficult all around. Travelers appear
to have ascended it mostly at the southeast corner where there are
some hundreds of names of persons who have visited it, both male and
female, painted on the projecting surfaces with black, red, and some
with yellow paint. About half way up there is a cavern about twelve
feet long and three feet wide at the bottom but at the top about ten
feet wide and eight feet high, formed by a very large heavy mass of
rock having sometime fallen over an opening or cavity leaving scarcely
room enough for a man to enter. However there are three places by which
it may be entered though not without difficulty. There are a number
of names inside the cavern put on with black paint, doubtless being
the names of persons who have visited it. On the top of the rock the
surface is a little rounding something like a large mound with large
masses of loose rock lying scattered around. Proceeding forward you
descend, when nearly half way of the length, to a considerably lower
surface which continues some distance and then rises high again to
about the same height as the first section. On the top there are a
number of small pools of water, no doubt collected during heavy rains
and having no chance to run off, they stand until evaporated into the
atmosphere. Some of the pools are eight inches deep and taste like rain
water. It is more difficult descending from the rock than to ascend
it on account of its being hard and slippery and nothing to hang on,
and a visitor has to be careful or he will arrive on the ground with
bruised limbs. At three o'clock p.m. they started on and on arriving
at the rock found it to be one and a quarter miles from noon halt. We
put up a guide board opposite the rock with this inscription on it.
"To Fort John 175¼ miles. Pioneers, June 21, 1847. W. R." The
letters W. R. are branded on all the guide boards at the doctor's
request so as to have a mark that the Saints might know; and his
brand is generally known by the Saints. After traveling on the banks
of the river one mile beyond the rock, we forded over and found it
nearly three feet deep in the channel. All the wagons got over without
difficulty or much loss of time. We then continued a southwest course
four and a half miles farther and arrived opposite Devil's Gate which
lies a little to the west of the road; and a quarter of a mile beyond
this, the road passes between two high ridges of granite, leaving a
surface of about two rods of level ground on each side the road. The
road then bends to the west and a quarter of a mile farther, passes
over a small creek two feet wide but bad crossing on account of its
being deep and muddy, requiring caution in the teamsters to prevent
accident. President Young, Kimball and others went to view the north
side of Devil's Gate and returning reported that the devils would not
let them pass, or meaning that it was impossible to go through the
gateway so called. We proceeded on a little farther and at 6:35 formed
our encampment on the bank of the river having traveled this afternoon
seven and three quarters miles, and during the day fifteen and a
quarter. The feed here is good and plentiful and a little cedar can
be obtained at the foot of one of the rocky ridges about a quarter of
a mile back. After we had camped I went back to view the Devil's Gate
where the river runs between two high rocky ridges for the distance of
about 200 yards. The rock on the east side is perpendicular and was
found by a barometrical measurements by Elder Pratt to be 399 feet 4¼
inches high. The one on the west side is about the same height but
not perpendicular bending a little from the river gradually to the
top. The river has a channel of about three rods in width through this
pass which increases its swiftness and, dashing furiously against the
huge fragments of rock which have fallen from the mountain, makes
a roar which can be heard plainly in the camp. One of the brethren
fired off his rifle at the foot of the rock and the report resembled
much like that of a cannon. Others tumbled fragments of rocks from a
projection at the entrance about 150 feet high, which made a very loud
rumbling sound caused by the echoes. The scenery is one of romantic
grandeur and it seems wonderful how the river could ever find a channel
through such a mass of heavy, solid rock. The view from this evening's
encampment over the surrounding country is sublime. To the east, south,
and southwest the Sweet Water mountains tower high and appear spotted
with snow; and about twenty to thirty miles distance from the river to
the west are also hills and ridges interspersed as far as the eye can
reach, except the land immediately on the river which appears even for
many miles. These high, barren, rocky ridges on the north side of the
river seem to continue for many miles.

Tuesday, June 22

Morning fine. At 7:20 we continued our journey and about 200 yards
from where we camped, crossed a very crooked creek about six feet wide
descending from the southwest. After traveling three miles over heavy,
sandy roads, we crossed another creek about six feet wide; and three
and three quarters miles farther, a creek two feet wide. Somewhere near
this last creek, Brother Lorenzo Young broke one of his axle trees
which detained him some time. One of the Missourian companies came up
soon after the accident and took his load into one of their wagons and
by splicing a piece of wood on his axle tree, he was enabled to follow
our camp. At 11:55 we halted on the banks of the river, having traveled
ten miles over a very sandy, barren land, there being no grass only
on the creeks and river banks. During the halt, Elder Pratt took an
observation and found the latitude of this place 42° 28' 25". President
Young went back to meet Lorenzo but soon found he was coming on with
the Missourian company who were approaching near us. He immediately
turned about and on arriving back gave orders to get up the teams and
proceed so as to keep ahead of the other company who say they have
traveled from Independence Rock without halting. However, they passed
before we could start and got ahead of us. The day has been hot and
a little wind. At 2:25 we continued, finding the road again leaving
the river. At half a mile, we passed a very large lake on our left
which covers an area of over 80 acres of land. Its banks are mostly
white with the alkali or saleratus. After passing this lake the road
runs south, passing between high sandy bluffs after which it again
turns around gradually towards the west and descending a steep bluff
over very heavy, sandy land. After traveling five and three quarters
miles crossed a creek about six feet wide and a foot deep. The bank on
each side is very steep and sandy, making it difficult for teams to
get up. Here Sterling Driggs had his harness broken to pieces by his
horses springing suddenly when attempting to rise out of the creek.
They cleared themselves from the wagon which was hauled up by a yoke
of oxen so as not to hinder the rest from crossing. The banks of this
creek are well lined with sage instead of grass which is very large and
thick on the ground on account of which Elder Kimball named this Sage
creek. After passing this creek one and three quarters miles we again
arrived on the banks of the river and continued to travel near to it.
At two and a quarter miles farther crossed a creek three feet wide, but
not much to be depended on for water. At 7:50 we formed our encampment
at the foot of a very high gravelly bluff and near the river, having
traveled this afternoon ten and three quarters miles and during the day
twenty and three quarters miles over mostly a very sandy road. This
is a very good camp ground, there being plenty of grass for our teams
which is well worth traveling a few miles extra. From this place the
country seems fortified by hills and mountains especially on the west.
Lewis Barney and Joseph Hancock have each killed an antelope during the
day, but there appears to be no buffalo in the neighborhood.

Wednesday, June 23

Morning fine and warm. After breakfast I went to the top of the
high bluff expecting to get a good view of the country west but
was disappointed in consequence of the many ridges or bluffs but a
little distance beyond us. At seven o'clock the camp moved forward
and immediately after saw a graveyard on the left of the road with a
board stuck up with these words written on it: "Matilda Crowley. B.
July 16th, 1830, and D. July 7, 1846." On reflecting afterward that
some of the numerous emigrants who had probably started with a view
to spend the remainder of their days in the wild Oregon, had fallen
by the way and their remains had to be left by their friends far from
the place of destination, I felt a renewed anxiety that the Lord will
kindly preserve the lives of all my family, that they may be permitted
to gather to the future home of the Saints, enjoy the society of the
people of God for many years to come, and when their days are numbered
that their remains may be deposited at the feet of the servants of God,
rather than be left far away in a wild country. And oh, Lord, grant
this sincere desire of thy servant in the name of Thy Son Jesus. Amen.
After traveling one and a half miles we crossed a very shoal stream of
clear, cold water about five feet wide. There is but little grass here
although a number of bitter cottonwood trees grow on the banks. There
being no name on the map for this creek, it was named Bitter Cottonwood
Creek to designate it in our future travel. It is probable that this
stream is caused by the melting of the snow on the mountains and if
so, could not be depended on for a camp ground late in the summer.
After passing this creek, the river runs between some of the high
rocky ridges, the road at the same time bending a little southwest to
pass around them. After traveling five miles beyond the last mentioned
creek, we again descended to the banks of the river where would be a
pretty good camp ground although the grass is not so plentiful as in
many other places on the banks of the river. We traveled till 11:05 on
the river banks then halted for noon where the road and river separated
a little farther and hence we would probably not find grass again for a
number of miles. The land continues very sandy making it hard on teams;
our course about west, the day very warm with a light south breeze.
We traveled eight and a half miles this morning. There are some small
cedar trees on the rocky bluffs which is the only timber seen since we
passed the Bitter Cottonwood. Latitude of this place 42° 31' 20". At
1:10 we continued our journey and after proceeding half a mile, found
the river turns between the granite ridges in a northwest direction and
seems to have but a narrow space to pass through in several places. The
road at the same place turns south to avoid the ridges for over a mile
and then bends to the southwest for some distance farther. The road at
the foot of these rocky hills is extremely sandy and heavy traveling.
On arriving at the south side of the hills, we were suddenly cheered
with a very plain view of the Wind river chain of the Rocky Mountains
towering high up in the air and perfectly white with snow. Some of
the peaks appear to run up very high, but we are evidently many miles
from them yet. After we passed this place, the road gradually bends to
the west and northwest and at the distance of six and three quarters
miles from our noon halt brings us to the banks of the river again. We
continued on the banks of the river till 6:20, at which time we formed
our encampment, having traveled this afternoon eight and a half miles
and during the day seventeen. As usual there is plenty of grass on the
river banks but no wood. There are some dry buffalo chips and wild sage
which answer tolerably well for cooking. The land over which we have
traveled, except in the several places above mentioned, is perfectly
barren except for wild sage which abounds, but there is scarcely a
spear of grass to be seen. These granite ridges continue from the Rock
Independence to this place, mostly on the north side the river. Here
they recede from the river a few miles and then cease. There are two of
the Missourian companies camped, one about a half a mile and the other
a mile west of us and we are given to understand we have got a long
distance to travel without grass or water. It is stated that a man from
one of these companies left his company a few days ago and went ahead
to examine the route, etc. On their arrival here they found him in one
of these rocky hills hid up for fear of the Indians. He reports that he
has been to the pass and that we shall find water about fourteen miles
from here. He has come from the pass in two nights and hid up in the
day time to avoid Indians, but has seen none. He says it is not over
twenty-eight miles to the pass from here. After we camped, Burr Frost
set up his forge and set some wagon tires and repaired the wheels of
the wagons for one of the Missourians. There are no buffalo to be seen
yet and not much game of any kind. Lewis Barney killed two antelope
and the brethren mostly killed one or two every day. The Sweet Water
mountains do not appear very high but have considerable snow lying on
them in some places. They appear to run nearly parallel with the river
to about from twenty to thirty miles distance to the south.

Thursday, June 24

Morning fine but cool. It was calculated to make an early start so as
to pass the two companies of the Missourians and get the best chance
for feed at night, but they started out a half an hour before we were
ready. We proceeded onward at 6:15 and a little over a mile from where
we camped, found the river again bending northwest while the road
continues near a west course and soon rises a high bluff. On the top of
this, we appear to have a level road for many miles. After traveling
five miles from morning, we arrived at a level strip of land on the
north side of the road where there is plenty of grass and apparently
swampy and soft. It extends in the same direction with the road a
mile and a half and appears to terminate where the road crosses the
lower land although the grass and hollow continue southward for some
distance. Just above where the road crosses at the west end there is
some water standing around a small, circular, swampy spot of land
probably about a half an acre. Near the edge at the northwest corner is
a hole dug which is called the Ice Spring. The water in the hole smells
strong of sulphur or alkali and is not pleasant tasting, but under the
water which is over a foot deep there is as clear ice as I ever saw and
good tasting. Some of the brethren had broken some pieces off which
floated and I ate some of it which tasted sweet and pleasant. The ice
is said to be four inches thick. The water is very cold although the
weather is warm. A quarter of a mile farther than the spring, there is
a small lake or spring of alkali on the left of the road and a little
farther, still another lake. The latter is more pleasant tasting than
the other, not being so strong of sulphur. It tastes very much like
lye water mixed with salt. The ground around these lakes is white with
alkali or saleratus and a number of the brethren picked up their pails
full but we have learned that it ought to be used with care, it being
so much stronger than common saleratus, if the same quantity is used
it makes the bread quite green. After traveling from the ice spring
ten and a quarter miles over a very uneven road, we descended a very
steep bluff close in the rear of one of the Missourian companies. The
other had halted a few miles ahead and we passed by them. While winding
around and descending from this bluff we came in sight of the river
again and about the same time. Elder Kimball picked up an Indian arrow
point made of flint stone and nearly perfect. It was almost as white
as alabaster. At 3:30 we tarried a little south from the road and
formed our encampment in a line so as to enclose a bend in the river,
having traveled seventeen and three quarters miles without halting on
account of there being no water fit for cattle to drink. The feed here
is very good and plenty of willow bushes for fuel. The river is about
three rods wide and clearer and very cool. The last five or six miles
of the road were not so sandy but hard and good traveling. One of the
Missourian companies have gone on, but the other camped a piece down
the river at the fording place. A while before dark when the brethren
were fetching up their teams, John Holman, while bringing up President
Young's best horse, having his loaded rifle in his hand, the horse
undertook to run back past him and to prevent his running back, he
jammed his gun at him. The cock caught in his clothes, the gun went off
lodging the ball in the animal's body. It entered a little forward of
the nigh hind leg on the under side of his belly making quite a large
hole. The horse walked to camp but it is the opinion of many he cannot
survive long. He appears to be in great pain, the sweat falling from
his forehead in large drops. President Young is evidently filled with
deep sorrow on account of this accident but attaches no blame to John
who seems grieved very much. The brethren generally feel sorrowful,
this being the second horse shot by accident on this mission.

Friday, June 25

President Young's horse is dead. The morning is fine but very cool. At
twenty minutes to seven o'clock, we pursued our journey fording the
river a quarter of a mile below where AVC left the road last night.
We found it still nearly three feet deep and the current very swift.
After proceeding a half a mile beyond the ford, we crossed a stream
about a rod wide which appears to come from the northeast and empties
into the river a little farther up. Half a mile beyond this stream, we
turned from the river to the northwest and began to ascend a very high
bluff which we found pretty steep and over a mile and a half to the
top. The road then gradually bends around towards the river and begins
to descend over hill and hollow and at four and a quarter miles from
where we camped, strikes the river again and continues a quarter of a
mile on its banks. Here would be a pretty good place to camp, there
being sufficient grass for a large company. After traveling a quarter
of a mile near the river we encountered another high sandy ridge, the
road again winding to the north to cross it. The descent on the west
side is very steep and unpleasant. We strike the river again after
traveling one and a quarter miles from where we last left it, but it
is the opinion of many that by fording the river twice at the foot of
the ridge we could save a mile and they think it can be forded. Colonel
Rockwood has paid particular attention to the place and reports that
one hour's labor for 100 men would dig down the foot of the ridge so as
to make it good passing and save rising the ridge and a mile's travel
without fording the river. After leaving the west foot of this ridge,
we crossed a stream about twenty-five feet wide and again a quarter of
a mile farther the same, only about six feet wide. On examining it, we
found it to be a branch of the river running around a piece of land
about a quarter of a mile across and forming a semi-circular island.
The last crossing was soft on both banks. The high sandy bluffs on
each side the river seem to approach much nearer to each other and
leave only a small strip of low land on each bank. At 11:20 passed
a creek two feet wide and halted for noon having traveled eight and
three quarters miles, the wind blowing very strong from the northwest
and making it cold and unpleasant traveling and filling the wagons
with dust. The latitude at this halt by Elder Pratt's observation
is 42° 28' 36". At 1:20 we proceeded again, our road running on the
river banks two miles then turning to the northwest and ascending a
succession of hills one after another for three miles farther, winding
around and over hill and valley in some places over a good hard road,
and in other places over rocks and broken fragments of rock, making it
severe on wagons and requiring great care in teamsters. About a half
mile north of the road at the top of this ridge there is a heavy bank
of snow which some of the brethren went to visit and amused themselves
by snowballing each other. Brother Carrington says there is every
appearance of a rich lead mine in the same place, he having examined
the place minutely. The brethren brought some snow to the wagons and we
ate some of it which tasted refreshing in the heat of the day. After
arriving on the top of these ridges we began to descend gradually over
rolling land, but the descent is not nearly equal to the ascent. At
the distance of seven and a quarter miles from noon halt, we crossed
a narrow wet swamp quite difficult for teams to get the loads over
without help and one and a quarter miles beyond the swamp a creek a
foot wide and a quarter of a mile farther still another one two feet
wide. These all unite in one about 200 yards to the left below the
middle creek and then appear to pass under a snow bank which at present
forms a kind of bridge over the creek. At 6:45 we formed our encampment
on the north banks of a creek about five feet wide, having traveled
this afternoon eleven and a half miles and during the day twenty and a
quarter. This creek is very clear and cold. Its banks are well lined
with willows and about a mile below the camp there is a grove of white
poplar in which house logs may be obtained sixteen feet long and a foot
through. There are several banks of snow a little to the north and some
of the brethren have found ice four or five inches thick and brought
a quantity of it to camp. On the banks of the creek there are some
groves of gooseberry bushes with small green berries on them. There are
also some strawberry roots and flowers and a little white clover has
been found, but there is yet no appearance of the great abundance of
such things as travelers have represented. The land appears somewhat
more likely to yield the nearer we approach to the mountains, but all
calculations for farming in this region would be likely to fail on
account of the scarcity of timber. It would only be natural to suppose
that the nights are very cold here, while so much snow lies around. It
requires considerable clothing to keep comfortable, but in the middle
of the day it is equally hot. Some of the brethren have traveled up the
banks of the Sweet Water river and represent it as tumbling and foaming
over rocks and descending very rapidly on account of the great rise of
the ground from noon halt to this place. They say it runs within a mile
and a half south of this but it is probable it is only a branch of it
as we are evidently not near the main branch yet. There is one of the
gentile companies camped about a mile below, making the third company
we have passed lately and it is the intention to keep ahead of them and
have the advantage of the good feed and camping grounds.

Saturday, June 26

Morning very cold and considerable ice froze in the water pails during
the night. At 7:40 we crossed the creek and pursued our journey. At one
mile we passed a small creek which rises from springs a little south
of the road where there is a small grove of small timber. Elder Pratt
has gone ahead with the barometer to try to find the culminating point
or highest dividing ridge of the South Pass as we are evidently at the
east foot of the pass. Fremont represents that he did not discover the
highest point on account of the ascent being so gradual that they were
beyond it before they were aware of it, although in company with a man
who has traveled it back and forth for seventeen years. At two and
three-quarters miles beyond the last small creek, we crossed the branch
of the Sweet Water about two rods wide and two feet deep, the water
clear and cold. This would be a good camp ground were it not so cold,
as it must be from the fact that large deep banks of snow are now lying
on its banks both above and below the road. Where the snow doesn't lie,
there is good grass and plenty of willow groves for fuel. Two and a
quarter miles beyond this branch we crossed another stream about eight
feet wide on an average, though where the ford is, it is nearly three
rods wide and two feet deep. This water is also very clear and the
banks well lined with willows and grass. It is considered a superior
camping ground to the one back. There seem to be a great many antelope
at the foot of the mountains which is about all the game to be seen.
After crossing the last stream, we climb another high range of hills
over a good road, gently rolling. From the top of this is a pleasant
view of the surrounding country but all entirely destitute of timber
except on and at the base of the mountains many miles distance from the
road. We have also a good view of Table Rock to the southwest as well
as the high, broken, white capped chain of the Wind River mountains on
the north. At 12:40 we halted on the main branch of the Sweet Water
having traveled eleven miles. The river here is about three rods wide,
three feet deep and current very swift. The water is clear and cold as
the snow which lies on its banks in places six or eight feet deep. This
is a lovely place for a camp ground, there being abundance of good,
rich grass about eight inches high and plenty of willows for fuel.
Some of the boys and girls amused themselves by snowballing each other
on one of the large snow banks a few rods below the camp. Soon after
we halted Eric Glines came up, having left the brethren at the upper
ferry on the Platte River on Wednesday morning. He camped one night
alone, the other nights he camped with Missourians. He does not assign
any reason why he followed us, but evidently considering to repent and
obey council than to continue obstinate and rebellious. The weather is
now warm and pleasant and but little wind. At 2:20 we moved onward,
ascending again on pretty high land where we found good traveling. The
latitude at our noon halt was 42° 22' 42". After traveling seven miles
this afternoon we arrived on a level spot of lower land and some grass,
and inasmuch as we have found no stream as laid down on Fremont's map
since leaving the Sweet Water, neither is there much appearance of any
for some miles farther, the wagons halted while President Young and
some others went over the ridge to the north to look for a camp ground
as some of the brethren said the Sweet Water was close by. President
Young soon sent a message for the camp to proceed, leaving the road
and taking a northwest course. At 6:45 we formed our encampment on the
banks of the Sweet Water, at the distance of a little over a quarter
of a mile from the road, having traveled this afternoon seven and a
quarter miles, and during the day eighteen and a quarter. This is a
good place to camp, there being plenty of grass and willows. There
are many small pebbles of hard flint rock on the flat land a little
back and some almost as clear as glass. Elders Kimball, Pratt and
some others are some miles ahead and not having returned at dark, a
number of the brethren were sent to meet them. They soon returned in
company with Elder Kimball who reported that he had been on as much as
six miles to where the head waters of the Atlantic divide from those
of the Pacific--that Elder Pratt was camped there with a small
party of men direct from Oregon and bound for the U. S. It is now
a certainty that we are yet two miles short of the dividing ridge of
the South Pass by the road. This ridge divides the headwaters of the
Atlantic from those of the Pacific and although not the highest land
we have traveled over, it may with propriety be said to be the summit
of the South Pass. The Wind River mountains appear very high from this
place but on the south there is very little appearance of mountains,
Table Rock itself appearing but a little elevated.

Sunday, June 27

Morning fine but cold. The ox teams started at five minutes to eight
and the remainder shortly after. We soon met eight of the Oregon men
on their way back having over twenty horses and mules with them mostly
laden with packs of robes, skins, etc. Several of the brethren sent
letters back by them. At two and three-quarters miles, arrived at the
dividing ridge where Elder Pratt took a barometrical observation and
found the altitude 7,085 feet above the level of the sea. This spot
is 278½ miles from Fort John and is supposed to divide the Oregon
and Indian Territory by a line running north and south. At two miles
farther we arrived at where Elder Pratt camped last night on the head
waters of the Green River and although the stream is small, we have
the satisfaction of seeing the current run west instead of east. The
face of the country west looks level except far in the distance where
a range of mountains peers up, their surface white with snow. There
is good grass here but no timber nor in fact any in sight except on
the mountains. Since leaving the pass we have descended considerably,
winding around and between high bluffs or hills, but the road is good.
One of the Oregon men is returning with us today and then intends to
wait for the next companies, etc., and act as a pilot for them. His
name is Harris and he appears to be extensively known in Oregon and
the subject of much dispute on account of his having found out a new
route to Oregon much south of the old one. He appears to be a man of
intelligence and well acquainted with the western country. He presented
a file of the Oregon papers commencing with February 11, 1847, and five
following numbers for our perusal during the day. He also presented
a number of the California Star published at Yerba Buena by Samuel
Brannan and edited by E. P. Jones. I had the privilege of perusing
several of these papers during the day but found little interesting
news. Mr. Harris says he is well acquainted with the Bear River valley
and the region around the salt lake. From his description, which is
very discouraging, we have little chance to hope for even a moderately
good country anywhere in those regions. He speaks of the whole region
as being sandy and destitute of timber and vegetation except the wild
sage. He gives the most favorable account of a small region under the
Bear River mountains called the Cache Valley where they have practiced
caching their robes, etc., to hide them from the Indians. He represents
this as being a fine place to winter cattle. After halting some time
we proceeded onward and crossed the stream which is about three feet
wide, then halted on its banks at twelve o'clock, having traveled six
and a quarter miles, the day warm. The latitude at this halt was 42°
18' 58". At 2:25 we started again and proceeded over gently rolling
land and good hard road till 6:40 when we formed our encampment on the
west banks of the Dry Sandy, having traveled this afternoon nine miles
and during the day fifteen and a quarter. The country west for many
miles appears destitute of timber and the view is very extensive. There
is very little grass to be seen anywhere and not much near this creek.
There is but little water in the creek at first sight, but by digging
and tramping on the quick sand, sufficient can easily be obtained to
supply a large company. Elder Kimball has been on the road nearly two
miles farther but discovered no chance for a camping ground better
than this. Mr. Harris has described a valley forty miles above the
mouth of the Bear River, and thirty miles below the Bear Springs which
might answer our purpose pretty well if the report is true. It is about
thirty miles long and fifteen miles wide and tolerably well timbered.
We generally feel that we shall know best by going ourselves for the
reports of travelers are so contradictory it is impossible to know
which is the truth without going to prove it. It is three years today
since our brethren Joseph and Hyrum were taken from us and it was the
general feeling to spend the day in fasting and prayer but the gentile
companies being close in our rear and feed scarce, it was considered
necessary to keep ahead of them for the benefit of our teams, but many
minds have reverted back to the scenes at Carthage jail, and it is a
gratification that we have so far prospered in our endeavors to get
from under the grasp of our enemies.

Monday, June 28

Morning fine but cool. Many of the brethren are trading with Mr. Harris
for pants, jackets, shirts, etc., made of buckskins and also the skins
themselves. He sells them high. The skins at $1.50 and $2.00; a pair
of pants $3.00, etc. He will take rifles, powder, lead, caps or calico
and domestic shirts in exchange but puts his own price on both sides
and it is difficult to obtain even a fair trade. At half past seven we
proceeded on our journey, Mr. Harris waiting for the other companies.
After traveling six miles the road forks, one continuing a west course,
the other taking a southwest course. We took the left hand road which
leads to California. This junction of the road is 297½ miles from Fort
John. We then continued to travel over a desert land yielding nothing
but wild sage and occasionally a grass root and weeds until 1:30 when
we arrived and halted for noon on the banks of the Little Sandy,
having traveled thirteen and a half miles without signs of wood, water
or feed for our teams. This stream is about twenty feet wide on an
average but at the fording place over three rods, two and a half feet
deep, muddy water and swift current. There is not much grass and no
timber except willow bushes. There is a variety of roots bearing very
handsome colored flowers. One of the brethren has picked up a large
piece of petrified wood. It resembles the outside layer of a cottonwood
tree next to the bark, and appears to have rotted and broken off short
then petrified and turned to a solid, heavy, hard, flint stone, but
retaining its original shape and appearance. At 4:15 we commenced
fording the river and found it in no way difficult until a number of
the wagons had gotten over and the banks began to be soft and muddy.
Several of the latter teams required help. At 4:45 all were safely
over with no loss except two tar buckets considered to be of no worth.
We then proceeded on, expecting to go about eight miles farther, but
after traveling a little over a mile we were met by Elder G. A.
Smith who introduced us to Mr. Bridger of Bridger's Fort on his way to
Fort John in company with two of his men. Mr. Bridger being informed
that we had designed to call at his place to make some inquiries
about the country, etc., he said if we would turn off the road here
and camp, he would stay with us till morning. A camping place being
selected we turned off from the road about a quarter of a mile and
formed our encampment near the Sandy at six o'clock, having traveled
this afternoon one and three-quarters miles, exclusive of allowance
for leaving the road, and during the day fifteen and a quarter miles.
We have pretty good feed here, enough to fill the teams well. A while
after we camped, the twelve and several others went to Mr. Bridger to
make some inquiries concerning our future route, the country, etc. It
was impossible to form a correct idea of either from the very imperfect
and irregular way he gave his descriptions, but the general items are
in substance as follows:

We will find better grass as we proceed farther on. His business is to
Fort Laramie. His traders have gone there with robes, skins, etc., to
fill a contract, but having started later than they intended the men at
Laramie have taken advantage of the delay and he is going to see to the
business himself. There is no blacksmith shop at his fort at present.
There was one but it was destroyed. There have been nearly a hundred
wagons gone on the Hastings route through Weber's Fork. They cross the
Blacks Fork and go a little south of west from his place and pass below
the mountains which cross Green river. The Green river runs over an
extent of country of 400 miles. It is impossible for wagons to follow
down Green river, neither can it be followed with boats. Some have gone
down with canoes, but had great difficulty getting back on account of
the rapid current and rough channel. Cannot pass the mountains close
to the river even with horses. For some distance beyond this chain of
mountains, the country is level and beyond that it is hard black rock
which looks as if it were glazed when the sun shines on it, and so
hard and sharp it will cut a horse's feet to pieces. When we get below
the mountains, the Green River falls into a level country for some
distance after which it winds through a mountainous country perfectly
barren to the Gulf of California. From Bridger's fort to the salt lake,
Hastings said was about one hundred miles. He has been through fifty
times but can form no correct idea of the distance. Mr. Hastings' route
leaves the Oregon route at his place. We can pass the mountains farther
south, but in some places we would meet with heavy bodies of timber
and would have to cut our way through. In the Bear River valley there
is oak timber, sugar trees, cottonwood, pine and maple. There is not
an abundance of sugar maple but plenty of as splendid pine as he ever
saw. There is no timber on the Utah Lake only on the streams which
empty into it. In the outlet of the Utah Lake which runs into the salt
lake there is an abundance of blue grass and red and white clover. The
outlet of the Utah Lake does not form a large river, neither a rapid
current but the water is muddy and low banks. Some of his men have been
around the salt lake in canoes. They went out hunting and had their
horses stolen by the Indians. They then went around the lake in canoes
hunting beaver and were three months going around it. They said it
was 550 miles around it. The Utah tribe of Indians inhabit the region
around the Utah Lake and are a bad people. If they catch a man alone
they are sure to rob and abuse him if they don't kill him, but parties
of men are in no danger. They are mostly armed with guns. There was
a man opened a farm in the Bear River valley. The soil is good and
likely to produce corn were it not for the excessive cold nights which
he thinks would prevent the growth of corn. There is a good country
south of the Utah Lake or southeast of the great basin. There are three
large rivers which enter into the Sevier Lake unknown to travelers.
There is also a splendid range of country on the north side of the
California mountains calculated to produce every kind of grain and
fruit and there are several places where a man might pass from it over
the mountains to the California settlements in one day. There is a vast
abundance of timber and plenty of coal. There is also plenty of coal
in this region near the mountains. North of the California mountains
there is walnut, oak, ash, hickory, and various kinds of good timber on
and in the neighborhood of the mountains and streams southeast of the
great basin. There can be a wagon road made through to it and no lack
of water. The great desert extends from the salt lake to the Gulf of
California which is perfectly barren. He supposes it to have been an
arm of the sea. The three rivers before mentioned are southwest of the
desert. There is a tribe of Indians in that country who are unknown to
either travelers or geographers. They make farms and raise abundance
of grain of various kinds. He can buy any quantity of the very best of
wheat there. This country lies southeast of the salt lake. There is one
mountain in that region and the country adjoining in which he considers
if ever there was a promised land, that must be it. There is a kind of
cedar grows on it which bears fruit something like juniper berries of
a yellow color about the size of an ordinary plum. The Indians grind
the fruit and it makes the best kind of meal. He could easily gather a
hundred bushels off one tree. He has lived on this fruit and used to
pick his hat full in a very short time. There are a great many little
streams head in this mountain and many good springs. It is about twenty
days' travel with horses from the salt lake, but the country to it is
bad to get through and over a great part of it, nothing for animals to
subsist on. He supposes there might be access to it from Texas. On one
of the rivers there is a splendid copper mine, a whole mountain of it.
It also abounds in gold, silver and has a good quick silver mine. There
is iron, coal, etc. The land is good; the soil rich. All the valleys
abound with persimmons and grapes which will make the best kind of
wines. He never saw any grapes on the Utah Lake, but there are plenty
of cherries and berries of several kinds. He thinks the Utah Lake is
the best country in the vicinity of the Salt Lake and the country is
still better the farther south we go until we meet the desert which
is upwards of 200 miles south from the Utah Lake. There is plenty of
timber on all the streams and mountains and abundance of fish in the
streams. There is timber all around the Utah Lake and plenty of good
grass; not much of the wild sage only in small patches. Wild flax
grows in most of the valleys and they are the richest lands. He passed
through that country a year ago last summer in the month of July, and
they generally had one or two showers every day, sometimes a very
heavy thunder shower but not accompanied by strong wind. By following
under the mountain south of the Utah Lake we find another river which
enters into another lake about fifty miles south of the Utah Lake. We
shall find plenty of water from here to Bridger's Fort except after
we cross Green River and travel five miles beyond it where we shall
have to travel eighteen or twenty miles without water, but there is
plenty of grass. After crossing Green River we follow down it four or
five miles to the old station then cross over to a stream which heads
in the mountains west. The station is more than half way from here to
his place. We shall have no streams to ferry between here and the fort
except Green River. The Indians south of the Utah Lake and this side
the desert raise corn, wheat and other kinds of grain and produce in
abundance. The Utah's abound more on the west of the mountains near the
salt lake than on the east side, ten to one, but we have no need to
fear them for we can drive the whole of them in twenty-four hours but
he would not kill them, he would make slaves of them. The Indians south
of the Utah Lake raise as good corn, wheat, and pumpkins as were ever
raised in old Kentucky. He knows of a lead mine between the mountains
and Laramie on a timbered creek near the Horseshoe creek. He has found
lead there and thinks there is considerable silver in it. It can be
found in a cave on the side of the mountain not far from the road.

Such was the information we obtained from Mr. Bridger, but we shall
know more about things and have a better understanding when we have
seen the country ourselves. Supper had been provided for Mr. Bridger
and his men and the latter having eaten, the council dismissed, Mr.
Bridger going with President Young to supper, the remainder retiring to
their wagons conversing over the subject touched upon. The evening was
very fine but mosquitoes numerous.

Tuesday, June 29

Morning very pleasant till the sun got up a little, then it was very
hot. We started at 7:40 and traveled over very good roads through
barren land till 10:45 then halted for noon on the banks of the Big
Sandy, having traveled six and three-quarters miles. The second
division have passed over the river but the first division halted on
the north side. This stream appears to be about seven rods wide at this
place and about two feet deep in the channel, but it is not generally
so wide, but deeper. There is some timber on its banks and plenty
of grass in places for teams. At 1:30 we again proceeded, President
Young and some others going ahead in the cutter wagon to look out a
camp ground for the night. Our course still lies about southwest, the
road generally good over gently rolling, hard, sandy land and in some
places the surface is covered with loose fragments of hard rock. After
traveling nine and a half miles President Young rode up and reported
that we would have to go at least six miles farther before we could
get feed. It was then a quarter after six, but the teamsters spurred
up in order to get through. Most of the road after this for four miles
was very hilly and uneven and in places the loose fragments of rocks
made it very bad traveling, but many were thrown from the road by the
spare men. The weather grew cooler towards evening, some large clouds
rising in the west which favored the teams considerably. At 9:05 we
found ourselves on the lowlands on the banks of the river again and
formed our encampment, having traveled since noon seventeen miles and
during the day twenty-three and three-quarters, which is the greatest
day's journey we have made since leaving Winter Quarters. The camp was
formed by moonlight. There seems to be plenty of feed for teams but
no wood for fuel. Many of the brethren have gone down sick within the
past three days and a number more this evening. They generally begin
with headache, succeeded by violent fever, and some go delirious for
a while. Brother Fowler was seized this afternoon and this evening is
raving. It is supposed by some that this sickness is caused by the use
of the mineral saleratus or alkali picked up on the lakes and surface
of the land and it is considered poisonous. Some consider also that we
inhale the effluvium arising from it, which has the like effect. It
appears to be an article which ought to be used with great care if used
at all. There has been no case considered dangerous yet, nor any of
long duration.

Wednesday, June 30

Morning hot. We resumed our journey at 8:15, several others of the
brethren being reported sick. President Young, Kimball and others rode
ahead again. We found the roads very good but sandy and filling the
wagons with dust. At 11:30 we arrived on the banks of Green River,
having traveled eight miles and formed our encampment in a line under
the shade of the cottonwood timber. This river is about sixteen to
eighteen rods wide and altogether too deep to be forded. Its banks
are well lined with cottonwood but none large enough to make a canoe.
There are also many patches of wild apple trees, and rose bushes
abound bearing pretty roses. This river is 338½ miles from Fort John
or Laramie. There is a narrow strip of land which might answer for
farming on each bank of the river. The grass grows good and plentiful
but still not so much as has been represented. After dinner the
brethren commenced making two rafts, one for each division, and a while
afterwards Elder Samuel Brannan arrived, having come from the Pacific
to meet us, obtain council, etc. He is accompanied by Smith of the
firm of Jackson Heaton & Bonney, bogus snakers of Nauvoo. There
is another young man in company with them. They have come by way of
Fort Hall and brought with them several files of the California Star.
They had eleven deaths on board their ship during their voyage over,
the others I understand are doing well, raising grain, etc. Towards
evening a storm blew up from the west and although we had no rain we
had tremendous wind. The first division finished their raft before
dark. There is a slough a little down the river where some of the
brethren have caught some very nice fish, but the mosquitoes are so
very troublesome it is difficult abiding out of doors.

July 1847

Thursday, July 1

This morning found myself laboring under a severe attack of the fever,
accompanied with violent aching in my head and limbs. The brethren
commenced ferrying but got only fourteen wagons over on account of the
very high wind.

Friday, July 2

The day was more pleasant and the ferrying continued more rapidly. I
got over the river before noon but remained very sick. Afternoon the
twelve had a council and decided to send three or four men back to
serve as guides to the next company.

Saturday, July 3

The morning more unfavorable. The brethren got the last wagon over
before noon, no accident having happened, and about the time they
finished it commenced raining, accompanied by thunder and wind. It was
concluded for some of the brethren to go on and look out a camp ground
a few miles ahead so as to shorten the distance of the next day's
travel. The brethren returned about noon and gave orders to harness up
and proceed, and at 3:15 we moved forward and went on three miles, then
formed encampment in the midst of an army of mosquitoes. These insects
are more numerous here than I ever saw them anywhere, everything was
covered with them, making the teams restive in the wagons. There
is plenty of grass for teams and it is the intention to tarry here
till Monday morning. At night President Young gave the brethren some
instructions about trading at Fort Bridger and advised them to be wise,
etc. Five men were selected to go back and meet the next company, viz.,
Phineas Young, George Woodard, Aaron Farr, Eric Glines and Rodney
Badger. They are to take the cutter wagon instead of each taking a
horse which cannot be spared by the camp.

Sunday, July 4

The morning fine and warm. The five brethren have started back to meet
the other company. President Young, Kimball and others went back with
them to ferry them over Green River. Some of the brethren assembled
for meeting in the circle. At 2:30 p.m. the brethren returned from the
ferry accompanied by twelve of the Pueblo brethren from the army. They
have got their discharge and by riding hard overtaken us. They feel
well and on arriving in camp gave three cheers, after which President
Young moved that we give glory to God which was done by hosannas.
William Walker was with them but has gone back with the five brethren
to meet his wife. The spot where we are now camped is opposite to
the junction of the Big Sandy and Green River. On the other side the
river there is a range of singular sandy buttes perfectly destitute
of vegetation, and on the sides can be seen from here, two caves
which are probably inhabited by wild bears. The view is pleasant and
interesting. During the afternoon one of Brother Crow's oxen was found
to be poisoned through eating some kind of a weed and was much swollen.
I understand it was dead when they found it.

Monday, July 5

At eight o'clock we pursued our journey, many of the brethren still
being sick though generally improving. After traveling three and a
half miles on the bank of the river the road then leaves it bending
westward. We have now a very pleasant view of the Bear River mountains
far to the southwest, their summits capped with snow. We found the land
somewhat rolling, destitute of grass and several very steep places of
descent. At 4:45 we arrived on the banks of Blacks Fork and formed
our encampment, having traveled twenty miles, the last sixteen and a
half without sight of water. This stream is about six rods wide, very
swift current but not deep. The bottoms on each side are very pleasant
but not much grass for teams. There is one place in the road where we
might have saved a crook of nearly a mile by digging down bank which
would probably have detained us about twenty minutes, but it was not
discovered till most of the wagons had passed over.

Tuesday, July 6

Morning very pleasant. We started on our journey at 7:50 and after
traveling three and three-quarters miles, crossed Hams Fork, a rapid
stream about three rods wide and two feet deep; and this would be a
good place to camp, there being an abundance of high bunch grass on
the banks. One and a half miles farther we crossed Blacks Fork which
appears to be about eight rods wide and two and a half feet deep, but
little grass near it. We then leave the river and wind over uneven
road with many pitches caused by heavy rains washing the land, which
is generally barren. After traveling eleven miles beyond the last
stream, crossed a small creek about two feet wide but no grass. At four
o'clock we crossed back over Blacks Fork and formed our encampment on
its banks, having traveled eighteen and a quarter miles. At this place
there is a fine specimen of the wild flax which grows all around. It
is considered equal to any cultivated, bears a delicate blue flower.
There is also an abundance of the rich bunch grass in the neighborhood
of the river back and many wild currants. The prairies are lined with
beautiful flowers of various colors--chiefly blue, red and yellow,
which have a rich appearance and would serve to adorn and beautify an
eastern flower garden.

Wednesday, July 7

This morning we proceeded at 7:35 and after traveling two and a half
miles, forded Black's Fork once more. Here also is abundance of
good grass, wild flax and handsome flowers. After traveling two and
three-quarters miles farther, forded a stream about two rods wide and
two feet deep, very swift current, also lined on its banks with bunch
grass. At twelve o'clock we halted for noon on the banks of the last
stream, having traveled nine miles over pretty rough road. The day
very windy and filling the wagons with dust. Some of the wagons have
gone on expecting to reach Bridger's Fort before they halt. At 1:40
we moved forward and found the road more even, though in many places
rendered bad by the cobble stones. After traveling seven and a half
miles we arrived opposite to nine Indian lodges erected on the south
of the road. Here we halted a while and found Tim Goodale here, one
of the trappers who passed us at the Platte ferry. There are not many
Indians here but they appear to have a great many handsome ponies. We
then continued on and after fording four creeks on an average about a
rod wide, we arrived at Fort Bridger which is proved by the roadometer
to be 397 miles from Fort John. We went half a mile beyond the fort
and formed our encampment after crossing three more creeks, having
traveled this afternoon eight and three-quarters miles and during the
day seventeen and three-quarters. The grass is very plentiful in this
neighborhood and much higher than we have generally seen it. The whole
region seems filled with rapid streams all bending their way to the
principal fork. They doubtless originate from the melting of the snow
on the mountains and roar down their cobbly beds till they join Black's
Fork. Bridger's Fort is composed of two double log houses about forty
feet long each and joined by a pen for horses about ten feet high
constructed by placing poles upright in the ground close together,
which is all the appearance of a fort in sight. There are several
Indian lodges close by and a full crop of young children playing around
the door. These Indians are said to be of the Snake tribe, the Utahs
inhabiting beyond the mountains. The latitude of Fort Bridget is 41°
19' 13" and its height above the level of the sea according to Elder
Pratt's observations is 6,665 feet. It is doubtless a very cold region
and little calculated for farming purposes. To the west is a pretty
high mountain which appears well covered with timber. The country all
around looks bleak and cold.

Thursday, July 8

Morning fine but high wind. It is concluded to stay a day here to
set some wagon tires, etc. Many have gone to trade their rifles and
some clothing for buckskins. H. Egan traded two rifles and got twenty
pretty good skins for them. The day continued warm with high wind.
Evening there was a council and some complaints listened to from George
Mills against Andrew Gibbons. It was decided for Thomas Williams and
S. Brannan to return from here and meet Captain Brown's company from
Pueblo. Inasmuch as the brethren have not received their discharge nor
their paw from the United States, Brother Brannan goes to tender his
services as pilot to conduct a company of fifteen or twenty to San
Francisco if they feel disposed to go there and try to get their pay.
Williams came clothed with authority to arrest Tim Goodale or one of
his men for stealing a horse at Pueblo, but he can get no encouragement
from President Young to make the attempt.

Friday, July 9

We started at eight o'clock, the brethren who go back bidding good
bye to the camp and proceeding on their back journey while we moved
westward over pretty rough roads. After traveling six and a quarter
miles, we arrived at the springs and halted a while to rest our teams.
We then proceeded on three-quarters of a mile and began to ascend
a long steep hill, near the top of which and eight miles from Fort
Bridger, Elder Pratt took an observation and found the latitude 41° 16'
11". Arriving on the top we found the table tolerably level for several
miles then began to descend to the bottom again. The descent from this
hill is the steepest and most difficult we have ever met with, being
long and almost perpendicular. At three o'clock we crossed the Muddy
Fork, a stream about twelve feet wide, and formed our encampment on the
west bank, having traveled since the halt six and three-quarters miles
and during the day thirteen. Here is plenty of tall bunch grass and
a pretty good chance for our teams. The day has been windy, warm and

Saturday, July 10

Started this morning at eight o'clock, weather warm with tolerably
high wind. After traveling three and a half miles we passed a small
copperas spring at the foot of a mountain a little to the left of
the road. The water is very clear but tastes very strong of copperas
and alum and has a somewhat singular effect on the mouth. It runs a
little distance over the red sand which abounds in this region and
where it is saturated with water almost looks like blood at a little
distance. After passing this spring the road winds around the foot of
mountains gradually ascending for some distance till finally arriving
on the summit of a high ridge. Here Elder Pratt took a barometrical
observation and found the height to be 7,315 feet above the level of
the sea. On arriving at the west side of the ridge two and a half miles
from the last mentioned spring we found a very steep, rough place to
descend and found it necessary to halt and fix the road. About half
way down there is a place over huge rocks, leaving barely enough room
for a wagon to get down, but by labor it was soon made passable. A
little farther, the brethren had to dig a place considerably to make a
pass between the mountains. President Young and Kimball labored hard
with a number of others and in about a half an hour made a good road.
At twenty miles from Fort Bridger, passed another spring and a little
farther after arriving on the bottom land, the road turns nearly south
through a beautiful low bottom filled with grass. At 1:45 we halted
for noon, having traveled nine miles. Latitude 41° 14' 21". After
halting an hour and a half we proceeded again and after traveling
three and a half miles began to ascend the dividing ridge between the
Colorado waters and the great basin. This mountain is very high and
the ascent steep, rendering it necessary to make a crooked road to
gain the summit. The height is 7,700 feet according to Elder Pratt's
observations. The surface at the top is narrow. Here three bears were
seen to run over a still higher mountain on the left. The descent was
very steep, having to lock the wagons for half a mile. We then descend
and travel on the bottom a few miles between high rugged mountains
till the road seems suddenly to be shut up by a high mountain ahead.
The road here turns suddenly to the left and goes east about 200 yards
then winds again southwest. After ascending and descending another high
ridge, we crossed a small creek about ten feet wide and at 7:45 formed
our encampment on the southwest banks, having traveled this afternoon
nine miles and during the day eighteen over the most mountainous course
we have yet seen. After camping, Mr. Miles Goodyear came into camp. He
is the man who is making a farm in the Bear River valley. He says it
is yet seventy-five miles to his place, although we are now within two
miles of Bear River. His report of the valley is more favorable than
some we have heard but we have an idea he is anxious to have us make
a road to his place through selfish motives. Elder Pratt has found a
beautiful spring of clear, sweet, cold water about a hundred yards
southwest from the camp. Water excellent.

Sunday, July 11

Morning fine with ice a quarter of an inch thick on the water pails.
Walked on the mountain east with President Young and Kimball, from
whence we had a pleasing view of the surrounding valley which is
about ten miles wide. Abundance of timber on the mountains south
and southwest and beyond that plenty of snow. After having prayers,
we again descended and at the foot discovered a very strong sulphur
spring. The surface of the water is covered with flour of sulphur and
where it oozes from the rocks is perfectly black. The water in the
creek shows sulphur very clearly and smells bad. During the day some of
the brethren discovered an oil spring about a mile south. The substance
which rises out of the ground resembles tar and is very oily. Some
have oiled their gun stocks with it and oiled their shoes, others have
gone to fill their tar buckets and are sanguine it will answer well to
grease wagons. It is somewhat singular to find such a great contrast
of substances within so short a distance. Here is pure water, sulphur,
and oily tar within a mile of each other, and matter of curiosity all
around for the contemplation of the curious. Porter, Brother Little
and others have been out with Goodyear to view the route he wishes us
to take. They represent it as being bad enough, but we are satisfied
it leads too far out of our course to be tempted to try it. There are
some in camp who are getting discouraged about the looks of the country
but thinking minds are not much disappointed, and we have no doubt of
finding a place where the Saints can live which is all we ought to
ask or expect. It is evident the country grows better as we proceed
west, and vegetation is more plentiful and looks richer. After dark, a
meeting was called to decide which of the two roads we shall take from
here. It was voted to take the right hand or northern road, but the
private feelings of all the twelve were that the other would be better.
But such matters are left to the choice of the camp so that none may
have room to murmur at the twelve hereafter.

Monday, July 12

Morning cloudy and cool. We pursued our journey at 7:15. At one and a
quarter miles rose a very steep, low hill, narrow but very steep on
both sides. One half a mile farther crossed the Bear River, a very
rapid stream about six rods wide and two feet deep, bottom full of
large cobble stones, water clear, banks lined with willows and a little
timber, good grass, many strawberry vines and the soil looks pretty
good. About a half a mile beyond the ford, proceeded over another ridge
and again descended into and traveled up a beautiful narrow bottom
covered with grass and fertile but no timber. Four and three-quarters
of a mile beyond Bear River, passed a small spring of good clear
cold water. At 11:50 halted for noon in the same narrow bottom near
a ridge of high, rough rocks to the right, having traveled nine and
three-quarters miles. There is scarcely any wagon track to be seen,
only a few wagons of Hasting's company having come this route; the
balance went the other road and many of them perished in the snow; it
being late in the season and much time was lost quarreling who would
improve the roads, etc. There is a creek of clear water close by, deep
but scarcely any current. President Young was taken very sick awhile
before we halted. After resting two hours the camp moved on again,
except President Young and Kimball's wagons, who concluded to remain
there today on account of the President's sickness. After traveling one
and a half miles we crossed the creek at the foot of a high mountain
and a little farther crossed back again. A mile farther, began to
ascend a long steep hill, narrow on the summit and steep descent. We
then wound around between high hills till arriving again on a narrow
rich bottom. At the foot of the hill we crossed last, there is a spring
of very good cold water, and in fact, there are many good springs all
along the road. At six o'clock we formed our encampment near a very
small creek and a good spring, having traveled this afternoon six and
three-quarters miles and during the day sixteen and a half. There is an
abundance of grass here and the country appears to grow still richer as
we proceed west, but very mountainous. There are many antelope on these
mountains and the country is lovely enough but destitute of timber.
About a quarter of a mile west from the camp is a cave in the rock
about thirty feet long, fifteen feet wide and from four to six feet
high. There are many martins at the entrance and on observing closely,
can be seen myriads of small bugs. It is supposed from appearances that
there is some property cached in the cave. Soon after we camped, we had
a light shower accompanied by thunder. This country evidently lacks
rain, even the grass appears parched.

Tuesday, July 13

Awhile before noon, Elder Kimball and Howard Egan arrived from the
company back. A meeting was called but suddenly dispersed by a thunder
shower. After the rain ceased, Elder Kimball proposed that a company
start from the camp with Elder Pratt to proceed to the Weber River
canyon and ascertain if we can pass through safely, if not, to try and
find a pass over the mountains. He reported that President Young is a
little better this morning, but last evening was insensible and raving.
Colonel Rockwood is also very sick and quite deranged. A company of
twenty-two wagons, mostly ox teams, started on soon after dinner, in
company with Elder Pratt, and soon after, Elders Kimball and Egan
returned to the back company. The day has been very hot and sultry, and
mosquitoes are very troublesome.

Wednesday, July 14

The day has been very hot, with occasionally a light breeze. Several
of the brethren have been out hunting, and brought in several antelope
which appear to abound in this region. Brothers Woodruff and Barnabas
Adams went back to the other wagons this morning. They returned at
night and reported that President Young is considerably better, but
Brother Rockwood remains very sick. There are one or two new cases of
sickness in our camp, mostly with fever which is very severe on the
first attack, generally rendering its victims delirious for some hours,
and then leaving them in a languid, weakly condition. It appears that a
good dose of pills or medicine is good to break the fever. The patient
then needs some kind of stimulant to brace his nerves and guard him
against another attack. I am satisfied that diluted spirits is good in
this disease after breaking up the fever. At night had a light shower.
The following is a list of the names of those who are gone on to look
out and make a road, etc., viz.: Orson Pratt, commander of company,
O. P. Rockwell, Jackson Redding, Stephen Markham, Nathaniel
Fairbanks, Joseph Egbert, John S. Freeman, Marcus B. Thorpe, Robert
Crow, Benjamin B. Crow, John Crow, Walter H. Crow, Walter Crow, George
W. Therlkill, James Chesney, Jewis B. Myers, John Brown, Shadrack
Roundy, Hans C. Hanson, Levi Jackman, Lyman Curtis, David Powell, Oscar
Crosby, Hark Lay, Joseph Mathews, Gilbert Summe, Green Flake, John
S. Gleason, Charles Burke, Norman Taylor, A. P. Chesley, Seth
Taft, Horace Thornton, Stephen Kelsey, James Stewart, Robert Thomas,
C. D. Barnham, John S. Eldridge, Elijah Newman, Francis Boggs,
Levi N. Kendall, David Grant. First division: seven wagons, fifteen
men; second division: sixteen wagons, twenty-seven men besides Crow's
family of women and children. Total, twenty-three wagons and forty-two

Thursday, July 15

Morning pleasant but cloudy. At twelve o'clock President Young, Kimball
and all the rear wagons arrived, eight in number. The President is much
better. Brother Rockwood is considerably better. Orders were given for
this company to harness up, and during the time till we started onward
at half-past one we had a very refreshing shower. After traveling two
miles we passed another spring of good water at the foot of a high hill
a little to the right of the road. At half-past three we formed our
encampment at the foot of some high red bluffs, having traveled four
and a half miles, and enjoyed two more pleasant showers. Feed here good
and a beautiful spring of good, clear, cold water a little to the left
of the road. The evening fine and pleasant.

Friday, July 16

This morning we have had two pleasant showers accompanied by pretty
loud thunder. At 8:45, we proceeded onward, passing through a narrow
ravine between very high mountains. After traveling one and a quarter
miles passed a deep ravine, where most of the teams had to double to
get up. One-half mile farther, crossed the creek and found the crossing
place very bad. Harvey Pierce broke his wagon reach and bolster. The
wagon had to be unloaded, but with little delay was soon repaired,
during which time a number of the brethren fixed a new place to cross
the creek. After passing this place, following the course of the
creek, the mountains seem to increase in height, and come so near
together in some places as to leave merely room enough for a crooked
road. At half past twelve we halted to feed, having traveled six and
three-quarters miles and are yet surrounded by high mountains. As we
halted, O. P. Rockwell came up from Elder Pratt's company. He
reports that it is about twenty-five or thirty miles to the canyon.
They have found the road leading over the mountains to avoid the canyon
and expect to be on top today at noon. The day is pleasant with a nice
breeze. Grass plentiful and pretty high, but no timber yet, except
small cedar on the sides of the mountains. Numerous springs of clear
water all along the base of the mountains. During the halt two of the
brethren went to the top of the mountain on the north of the camp. They
looked like babes in size. At 1:40, we proceeded onward and found the
pass between the mountains growing narrower, until it seemed strange
that a road could ever have been made through. We crossed creek a
number of times, and in several places found the crossing difficult.
After proceeding a few miles, we saw patches of oak shrubbery though
small in size. In the same place and for several miles there are many
patches or groves of the wild currant, hop vines, alder and black
birch. Willows are abundant and high. The currants are yet green and
taste most like a gooseberry, thick rind and rather bitter. The hops
are in blossom and seem likely to yield a good crop. The elder-berries,
which are not very plentiful, are in bloom. In some places we had to
pass close to the foot of high, perpendicular red mountains of rock
supposed to be from six hundred to a thousand feet high. At a quarter
to seven we formed our encampment, having traveled this afternoon nine
and a half miles, and during the day sixteen and a quarter. We are yet
enclosed by high mountains on each side, and this is the first good
camping place we have seen since noon, not for lack of grass or water,
but on account of the narrow gap between the mountains. Grass is pretty
plentiful most of the distance and seems to grow higher the farther we
go west. At this place the grass is about six feet high, and on the
creek eight or ten feet high. There is one kind of grass which bears
a head almost like wheat and grows pretty high, some of it six feet.
There is a very singular echo in this ravine, the rattling of wagons
resembles carpenters hammering at boards inside the highest rocks. The
report of a rifle resembles a sharp crack of thunder and echoes from
rock to rock for some time. The lowing of cattle and braying of mules
seem to be answered beyond the mountains. Music, especially brass
instruments, have a very pleasing effect and resemble a person standing
inside the rock imitating every note. The echo, the high rocks on the
north, high mountains on the south with the narrow ravine for a road,
form a scenery at once romantic and more interesting than I have ever
witnessed. Soon after we camped, I walked up the highest mountain on
the south. The ascent is so steep that there is scarce a place to be
found to place the foot flat and firm, and the visitor is every moment,
if he makes the least slip or stumbles, in danger of being precipitated
down to the bottom and once overbalanced, there is no possibility of
stopping himself till he gets to the bottom, in which case he would
doubtless be dashed to pieces. After resting about half a dozen times I
arrived at the top and found the ascent equally steep all the way up.
In many places I had to go on my hands and feet to keep from falling
backwards. From this mountain I could see the fork of Weber River about
a mile west of the camp; looking back I could see the road we had come
for several miles, but in every other direction nothing but ranges of
mountains still as much higher than the one I was on as it is above the
creek. The scenery is truly wild and melancholy. After surveying the
face of the country a little while, I began to descend and found the
task much more difficult than ascending, but by using great care and
taking time, I got down without accident a little before dark. Solomon
Chamberlain broke his forward axle tree about two miles back. A wagon
was unloaded and sent back to fetch him up. He is yet very sick.

Saturday, July 17

Arose to behold a fine pleasant morning, my health much better. This
is my thirty-third birthday. My mind naturally reverts back to my
family and my heart is filled with blessings on their heads more than
my tongue is able to express. The richest blessings that ever were
bestowed upon the head of woman or child could not be more than I
desire for them, whatever be my lot. President Young is reported as
having had a very sick night. A forge was set up and some repairs done
to wagons and Brother Chamberlain's repaired also. The cattle and mules
seem very uneasy and continue lowing and braying all the morning. I
suppose it is in consequence of the singular echoes, they no doubt
thinking they are answered by others over the mountains. At 9:40 the
camp renewed the journey and one mile farther arrived at the Red fork
of the Weber River. We also seem to have a wide space to travel through
and now turn to the right in a western course, the ravine having run
mostly southwest. The distance we have traveled through this narrow
pass is twenty-three miles. Yesterday was the first day we have been
out of sight of snow a whole day since we arrived at Fort John. We
could not see it for the high mountains although surrounded by it. On
arriving at this stream we see it again on the mountains to the east.
This stream is about four rods wide, very clear water and apparently
about three feet deep on an average. Its banks lined with cottonwood
and birch and also dense patches of brush wood, willows, rose bushes,
briers, etc. By stepping to the top of a small mound at the bend of
the road, the mouth of the canyon can be seen very plainly, as also
the mountains between which we pass to avoid it. The canyon appears
to be about eight or ten miles west of us. I should judge not over
that. President Young being so very sick found he could not endure
to travel farther. Accordingly Elder Kimball and some others went
to select a camping ground and soon returning reported a place a
little farther. The camp moved on and formed encampment on the banks
of the river having traveled two and a half miles, the day very hot
and mosquitoes plentiful. Several of the brethren have caught some
fine trout in this stream which appears to have many in it. In the
afternoon Elders Kimball, Richards, Smith, Benson and others went onto
a mountain to clothe and pray for President Young who continues very
sick. On returning they rolled down many large rocks from the top of
the mountain to witness the velocity of their descent, etc. Some would
roll over half a mile and frequently break to pieces. John Nixon found
and brought to camp a very singular kind of thistle which I have never
seen before nor recollect of ever reading of the like. He found it on
the low land near the camp and says there are many more like it. It is
a great curiosity and worthy of description. The stem is about four
feet long, about six inches wide and a quarter of an inch thick. It is
formed of a double leaf or case and when broken is hollow, although
the stem lies close together, perfectly flat. It is ornamented with
prickles from bottom to top. These leaves are but sparsely scattered
all along up the stem. The top is a kind of crown and bush formed by
the same kind of prickly leaves and is about ten inches long by five
inches broad, forming a very handsome head or crown. But the great
curiosity of this thistle is a perfect resemblance of a snake coiled
around the crown as though in the act of guarding it against foes.
The head of the snake lies on the top of the crown at one end and is
ornamented by a small bunch of flowers like common thistle flowers on
the snake's head. At the extremity of the tail is a bunch of small
burrs covered with prickles something resembling the rattles on a
rattlesnake's tail. The body of the snake is formed of the same kind of
substance as the thistle itself and has a very singular appearance. It
seems that two of the great enemies of mankind have combined, the most
bitter and destructive guarding the more innocent. The serpent tempted
the woman causing her to sin, in consequence of which the earth was
cursed and decreed to produce thorns and thistles, etc., but this is
the first time I ever saw the snake guard the thistle. In the evening
Elders Kimball, G. A. Smith and Howard Egan rode down the river
to visit the canyon. They returned about ten o'clock and said they had
been eight miles down the river but at that distance did not arrive at
the canyon and being late they concluded to return to camp.

Sunday, July 18

This morning the camp was called together and addressed by Elder
Kimball. He reports President Young as being a very sick man. He
proposed to the brethren that instead of their scattering off, some
hunting, some fishing, and some climbing mountains, etc., that they
should meet together and pray and exhort each other that the Lord may
turn away sickness from our midst and from our President that we may
proceed on our journey. It was decided to assemble at ten o'clock
and at the sound of the bugle the brethren met in a small grove of
shrubbery which they have made for the purpose opposite the wagons.
During the meeting, Elder Kimball proposed to the brethren that all
the camp, except President Young's and eight or ten other wagons with
brethren enough to take care of him, etc., proceed on tomorrow and go
through, find a good place, begin to plant potatoes, etc., as we have
little time to spare. The proposition was acceeded to by unanimous vote
and after a number had expressed their feelings the meeting adjourned
till two o'clock at which time they again assembled and listened to
remarks from a number of the brethren. Elder Kimball again gave much
good instruction and prophesied of good things concerning the camp. The
bishops broke bread and the sacrament was administered. Good feelings
seem to prevail and the brethren desire to do right. A number yet
continue sick, but we expect all will soon recover. The day is very hot
with very little air moving. Elder Kimball consented for me to go on
tomorrow with the company that goes ahead.

Monday, July 19

Morning fine and warm, President Young considerably better. At 7:45 we
started onward leaving President Young and Kimball's wagons and several
others. We found the road very rough on account of loose rocks and
cobble stones. After traveling two and a quarter miles, we forded the
river and found it about eighteen inches deep but proceeded without
difficulty. Soon after we were over, Elder Snow came up and said the
camp were requested to halt awhile till Dr. Richards came. One of
his oxen is missing and he wished to go on. We concluded to move on
a little to where the road should turn off between the mountains to
avoid the canyon. Elder Pratt went three miles out of his road and had
to return again. Three-quarters of a mile from the ford we found the
place to make the cutoff and there halted awhile. I put a guide board
up at this place marked as follows: "Pratt's Pass to avoid canyon. To
Fort Bridger 74¼ miles." Brother Pack, having charge of the company,
concluded to move on slowly and be making our way up the mountains. We
accordingly started and after traveling a mile from the forks began to
ascend and wind around the mountains. We found the road exceedingly
rough and crooked and very dangerous on wagons. Three and a half miles
from the forks of the road the brethren made a bridge over a small
creek over which we crossed having passed a number of springs near the
road. Two and a quarter miles farther we arrived on the summit of the
dividing ridge and put a guide board up, "80 miles to Fort Bridger."
At this place Elders Kimball, Woodruff, G. A. Smith and H. Egan
rode up to view the road, etc. The descent is not very steep but
exceedingly dangerous to wagons being mostly on the side hill over
large cobble stones, causing the wagons to slide very badly. After
traveling a little way, G. A. Smith's wagon wheels gave way going
down a steep pitch. The spokes are loose in the hub, and worked about
so that when the wagon slides they dish inward, etc. At two o'clock, we
halted beside a small creek to water teams, having traveled ten and a
half miles over exceedingly rough road. A wagon was unloaded, and sent
for G. A. Smith's loading which is reported to be two miles back.
While they were gone, many turned out their teams to graze. At 3:30 the
men returned with the wagons, putting the loading into several so as
to proceed and at 3:35 we started forward, the road turning suddenly
to the right for about three-quarters of a mile and then a southwest
course again. Here we ascend a very long steep hill for nearly a mile,
then descend by a very crooked road. I think a better road might be
made here and this high hill avoided and save a mile's travel. After
traveling a little over three miles, we crossed a creek about a rod
wide and eighteen inches deep, pretty steep going down but good going
out. We went on a little farther and at half past five camped on a
small spot surrounded by willow bushes full of mosquitoes, having
traveled this afternoon three and a quarter miles and during the day
thirteen and three-quarters. The day has been hot and no wind. Teams
sweat much and it has been a pretty hard day's travel. There is not
much grass here, but is said to be more plentiful a little farther.
Several accidents have happened to wagons today but nothing serious
except Brother G. A. Smith's. Dr. Richards' wagons arrived in camp
at the same time the rest did. The sick are getting better. In the
evening the brethren picked up a lot of dry willows and made a coal
pit to set G. A. Smith's tire before we can leave tomorrow. The
evening and night were very cold.

Tuesday, July 20

This morning fine and warm. The coal pit is burned and Burr Frost set
Elder Smith's wagon tire and did various other repairs to a number of
other wagons which took till nearly eleven o'clock, about which time
the camp started onward. One of Brother Crow's men returned from Elder
Pratt's company and reported that their camp is about nine miles from
here. He is hunting stray cattle. He says the road is very rough from
here and about a mile beyond where they are camped the road begins to
ascend over a high range of mountains. Elder Pratt has been to the top
but cannot see the Salt Lake from there. Their company is gone on. I
walked ahead of the camp nearly four miles and picked many gooseberries
nearly ripe. They are very plentiful on this bottom. The brethren spent
much time cutting brush wood and improving the road. After traveling
four miles, halted about half an hour to water teams and eat dinner.
The road over which we have traveled is through an uneven gap between
high mountains and is exceedingly rough and crooked. Not a place to
be met with scarcely where there would be room to camp for the dense
willow groves all along the bottom. We then proceeded on and traveled
over the same kind of rough road till a little after 5:00 p.m. then
camped on a ridge, having traveled today seven and a quarter miles. The
last three miles has been the worst road of the two, it being through
willow bushes over twenty feet high, also rose and gooseberry bushes
and shaking poplar and birch timber. Although there has been a road
cut through, it is yet scarcely possible to travel without tearing
the wagon covers. We have crossed this creek which Elder Pratt names
Canyon Creek eleven times during the day and the road is one of the
most crooked I ever saw, many sharp turns in it and the willow stubs
standing making it very severe on wagons. As we proceed up, the gap
between the mountains seems to grow still narrower until arriving at
this place where there is room to camp, but little grass for teams.
There are many springs along the road but the water is not very good.
In one place about a mile back there is a very bad swamp where the
brethren spent some time cutting willows and laying them in to improve
it. We have got along today without much damage which is somewhat
favorable for the road is awful. At this place the ground around is
represented as being swampy and dangerous for cattle. It is reported
that there is no place to camp beyond this till where Elder Pratt's
company camped and this is so small they have to huddle the wagons
together. The soil continues sandy, except in the low moist places
where it looks black and good. There is some pine occasionally in sight
on the mountains, but timber here is scarce. We have passed through
some small patches today where a few house logs might be cut, but this
is truly a wild looking place.

Wednesday, July 21

We started onward at half past six, the morning fine and pleasant.
We crossed the creek once more and about a half a mile from where we
camped, the road turns to the right leaving the creek and ascending
the mountains gradually. Much time was necessarily spent cutting down
stumps, heaving out rocks and leveling the road. It is an exceedingly
rough place. There are several springs at the foot of the mountain and
one a mile from the top which runs above the ground a little distance,
then sinks under again. The last half mile of the ascent is very steep
and the nearer the top the steeper it grows. There is considerable
timber up this gap but mostly destroyed by fire. We saw a prairie
pheasant while going up and some wild gooseberries. At eleven o'clock,
the teams began to arrive on the dividing ridge and in less than an
hour, all were safely up. From this ridge we can see an extensive
valley to the west but on every other side high mountains, many of
them white with snow. It seems as though a few hours' travel might
bring us out from the mountains on good road again. We halted on the
ridge a little while and then prepared to descend, many locking both
hind wheels, a precaution not at all unnecessary. We found the road
down exceedingly steep and rendered dangerous by the many stumps of
trees left standing in the road. The brethren cut up many of them which
delayed us much. About a mile down is a bridge formed of small trees
laid one on another to fill up a deep ravine. It is steep on both sides
and here Joseph Rooker turned his wagon over, however, without much
damage. A mile and a half from the top is a spring and small stream of
very good cold water where we halted to let teams drink. This would
make a tolerably good camp ground in case of necessity. After this, the
road is not so steep but is very rough and winds between high hills or
mountains through willows and brush wood and over soft places, crossing
the creek a number of times. At four and a half miles from the top of
the ridge, we arrived at a good spring of cold water, plenty of grass
and a good place to camp. Our teams have now been in the harness about
ten hours without eating and the feeling of many was to stay here, but
some wanted to go on and we continued. Turning suddenly to the right
a little below this spring we began to ascend another high ridge and
while ascending some of the teams began to fail. There are a great many
service berries on this ridge growing on what we supposed to be wild
apple trees. The berries are good and rich when ripe. The descent from
this ridge is not nearly so steep as the other one, yet many locked
both hind wheels. After descending, we found another small creek and
a very rough road again. At 7:30, we formed our encampment near the
creek, having traveled fourteen miles in thirteen hours. There is but
little grass here and a poor chance for cattle. Orson Pratt's company
are camped a half a mile ahead of us and our camp was formed by Colonel
Markham. He says they have had many new cases of sickness but mostly
getting better. The cannon is left back on the other side of the
mountains. About a mile back from this place there is a small grove of
sugar maple and considerable other timber along the creek. There are
also beds of nice green rushes in several places.

Thursday, July 22

This morning is cloudy and some like for rain. We started on at 8:30
and soon came up with Elder Pratt's company. There were several bad
places in the road where the brethren spent considerable time fixing
them. As we near the mouth of the canyon, there is a small grove of
elder bushes in bloom and considerable oak shrubbery. We named this a
canyon because of the very high mountains on each side leaving but a
few rods of a bottom for the creek to pass through and hardly room for
a road. It is evident that the emigrants who passed this way last year
must have spent a great deal of time cutting a road through the thickly
set timber and heavy brush wood. It is reported that they spent sixteen
days in making a road through from Weber River which is thirty-five
miles but as the men did not work a quarter of their time much less
would have sufficed. However, it has taken us over three days after the
road is made although a great many hours have been spent in improving
it. In this thick brush wood and around here there are many very large
rattlesnakes lurking, making it necessary to use caution while passing
through. After traveling one and three-quarters miles, we found the
road crossing the creek again to the north side and then ascending up a
very steep, high hill. It is so very steep as to be almost impossible
for heavy wagons to ascend and so narrow that the least accident might
precipitate a wagon down a bank three or four hundred feet, in which
case it would certainly be dashed to pieces. Colonel Markham and
another man went over the hill and returned up the canyon to see if
a road cannot be cut through and avoid this hill. While passing up,
a bear started near them but soon was out of sight amongst the very
high grass. Brother Markham says a good road can soon be made down the
canyon by digging a little and cutting through the bushes some ten or
fifteen rods. A number of men went to work immediately to make the road
which will be much better than to attempt crossing the hill and will be
sooner done.

Agreeable to President Young's instructions, Elder Pratt accompanied by
George A. Smith, John Brown, Joseph Mathews, John Pack, O.P. Rockwell
and J. C. Little started on this morning on horses to seek out
a suitable place to plant some potatoes, turnips, etc., so as to
preserve the seed at least. While the brethren were cutting the road,
I followed the old one to the top of the hill and on arriving there
was much cheered by a handsome view of the Great Salt Lake lying, as I
should judge, from twenty-five to thirty miles to the west of us; and
at eleven o'clock I sat down to contemplate and view the surrounding
scenery. There is an extensive, beautiful, level looking valley from
here to the lake which I should judge from the numerous deep green
patches must be fertile and rich. The valley extends to the south
probably fifty miles where it is again surrounded by high mountains.
To the southwest across the valley at about twenty to twenty-five
miles distance is a high mountain, extending from the south end of the
valley to about opposite this place where it ceases abruptly leaving a
pleasant view of the dark waters of the lake. Standing on the lake and
about due west there are two mountains and far in the distance another
one which I suppose is on the other side the lake, probably from sixty
to eighty miles distance. To the northwest is another mountain at the
base of which is a lone ridge of what I should consider to be rock salt
from its white and shining appearance. The lake does not show at this
distance a very extensive surface, but its dark blue shade resembling
the calm sea looks very handsome. The intervening valley appears to
be well supplied with streams, creeks and lakes, some of the latter
are evidently salt. There is but little timber in sight anywhere, and
that is mostly on the banks of creeks and streams of water which is
about the only objection which could be raised in my estimation to this
being one of the most beautiful valleys and pleasant places for a home
for the Saints which could be found. Timber is evidently lacking but
we have not expected to find a timbered country. There may be timber
on the mountains which the long distance would render impossible to
be seen with the naked eye, but the mountains through which we have
passed have very little on them. In some places may be seen a grove
of small fir or cedar or pine and in the valleys some cottonwood and
other small timber. There is doubtless timber in all passes and ravines
where streams descend from the mountains. There is no prospect for
building log houses without spending a vast amount of time and labor,
but we can make Spanish brick and dry them in the sun; or we can build
lodges as the Pawnee Indians do in their villages. For my own part I
am happily disappointed in the appearance of the valley of the Salt
Lake, but if the land be as rich as it has the appearance of being, I
have no fears but the Saints can live here and do well while we will
do right. When I commune with my own heart and ask myself whether I
would choose to dwell here in this wild looking country amongst the
Saints surrounded by friends, though poor, enjoying the privileges
and blessings of the everlasting priesthood, with God for our King
and Father; or dwell amongst the gentiles with all their wealth and
good things of the earth, to be eternally mobbed, harassed, hunted,
our best men murdered and every good man's life continually in danger,
the soft whisper echoes loud and reverberates back in tones of stern
determination; give me the quiet wilderness and my family to associate
with, surrounded by the Saints and adieu to the gentile world till God
says return and avenge you of your enemies. If I had my family with me,
how happy could I be, for I dread nothing so much as the journey back
again and when I think of the many dangers from accident which families
traveling this road are continually liable to and especially this last
mountain road from Weber River, it makes me almost shudder to think of
it and I could almost envy those who have got safely through, having
their families with them, yet they will doubtless have a hard time of
it the coming winter. Brother Crow's family especially have very little
bread stuff with them, they say enough to last them two months and they
are dependent on the success of their hunter for support through the
winter. This valley appears to be fortified by mountains, except on the
banks of the lake, on many of which there is still snow lying in large
quantities. It is certain that good limestone abounds in these ridges
and it is supposed coal can be found with little labor. From this hill
I passed down the creek which we named the Last Creek about a mile and
there saw a bed of bull rushes of the largest kind I ever saw, some
of them being fifteen feet high and an inch and a half in diameter
at the bottom. The grass on this creek grows from six to twelve feet
high and appears very rank. There are some ducks around and sand hill
cranes. Many signs of deer, antelope, and bears, but not many have been
seen here. There have been fresh buffalo signs seen a few days' travel
back, but those animals evidently do not stay in this region unless
some come to winter. The ground seems literally alive with the very
large black crickets crawling around up grass and bushes. They look
loathsome but are said to be excellent for fattening hogs which would
feed on them voraciously. The bears evidently live mostly on them at
this season of the year. After spending about four hours' labor the
brethren succeeded in cutting a pretty good road along the creek and
the wagons proceeded on, taking near a southwest course. We found the
last descent even but very rapid all the way. At half past five, we
formed our encampment on a creek supposed to be Brown's Creek, having
traveled seven and a quarter miles today. We are now five and a quarter
miles from the mouth of this canyon making the whole distance of rough
mountain road from the Weber River to the mouth of the canyon on this
side a little less than thirty-five miles and decidedly the worst
piece of road on the whole journey. At this place, the land is black
and looks rich, sandy enough to make it good to work. The grass grows
high and thick on the ground and is well mixed with nice green rushes.
Feed here for our teams is very plentiful and good and the water is
also good. There are many rattlesnakes of a large size in this valley
and it is supposed they have dens in the mountains. The land looks dry
and lacks rain, but the numerous creeks and springs must necessarily
tend to moisten it much. The grass looks rich and good. A while after
we camped, Elder Pratt and company returned and reported that they had
been about fifteen miles north from here and this region is as suitable
a place to put in our seeds as they have seen. Approaching nearer the
lake, the land is mostly sunken and many small lakes in it. A few
miles north of this, is a good spot to break up and plant potatoes,
sow our seeds, etc. There is a little timber on the creek. From twelve
to fifteen miles north at the foot of the mountain they saw many hot
sulphur springs issuing from the rocks, as many as fifty in number.
One of them, the largest, falls out of the rocks and then forms a pool
apparently ten feet deep and a rock is in the center. The water of this
is so hot a person cannot bear his hand in it but a very few seconds.
It is strong of salt and sulphur and the bottom appears green as though
it was covered with verdigris. A council was held at the Doctor's wagon
and it was decided to move early tomorrow to the place designated;
also, to send two men back to the President and company to report our
progress, etc., then to commence forthwith and plow and plant about ten
acres with potatoes this week if possible and thus continue till the
seed is secured. John Pack and Joseph Mathews were selected to return
to President Young's company. The evening was fine and pleasant and the
night feels much warmer than in the ravines of the mountains.

Friday, July 23

This morning Elders Pack and Mathews started to meet the President and
at the same time the camp moved on to the final location. We traveled
two miles and then formed our encampment on the banks of the creek in
an oblong circle. The grass here appears even richer and thicker on the
ground than where we left this morning. The soil looks indeed rich,
black and a little sandy. The grass is about four feet high and very
thick on the ground and well mixed with rushes. If we stay here three
weeks and our teams have any rest they will be in good order to return.
As soon as the camp was formed a meeting was called and the brethren
addressed by Elder Richards, mostly on the necessity and propriety of
working faithfully and diligently to get potatoes, turnips, etc., in
the ground. Elder Pratt reported their mission yesterday and after
some remarks the meeting was dismissed. At the opening, the brethren
united in prayer and asked the Lord to send rain on the land, etc. The
brethren immediately rigged three plows and went to plowing a little
northeast of the camp; another party went with spades, etc., to make a
dam on one of the creeks so as to throw the water at pleasure on the
field, designing to irrigate the land in case rain should not come
sufficiently. This land is beautifully situated for irrigation, many
nice streams descending from the mountains which can be turned in every
direction so as to water any portion of the lands at pleasure. During
the afternoon, heavy clouds began to collect in the southwest and at
five o'clock we had a light shower with thunder. We had rains for about
two hours. The brethren have plowed up considerable land and broken
several of their plows, but there have been three plows going nearly
all day. At night, the camp was called together and addressed by Elder
Richards on a subject which seemed little welcome to many from the way
it was handled. It was a sermon of ---- from end to end. Some
felt a little insulted but it all passed off well and jokingly.

Saturday, July 24

The plowing is renewed and many are gone to planting potatoes. There
is one drag going. Others are still at work on the dams. John Pack and
Joseph Mathews returned at dark last night and reported the President
and company a few miles up Last Creek. They have gone back this morning
to fix two bridges at the mouth of the canyon. The day is fine and hot
with a nice breeze. At a quarter to twelve, President Young and Kimball
arrived and the wagons also began to arrive at the same time. The
President seems much better and the sick generally are getting better.
Most of the brethren express themselves well; pleased with the place,
but some complain because there is no timber. There appears to be a
unanimous agreement in regard to the richness of the soil and there are
good prospects of sustaining and fattening stock with little trouble.
The only objection is a lack of timber and rain. The latter God will
send in its season if the Saints are faithful and I think yesterday was
a proof that He listens to and answers the prayers of the Saints. We
can easily irrigate the land at all events which will be an unfailing
and certain source of water, for the springs are numerous and the water
appears good. About 5:00 p.m. we were favored with another nice shower
accompanied by thunder and some wind. It continued raining till nearly
dark; the balance of the evening fine. Elder Kimball says that it is
contemplated to send out an exploring party to start on Monday and
proceed north to the Bear River and Cache valleys. They design taking
several wagons with them and Presidents Young and Kimball accompany the
expedition. Another company is to start at the same time and go west to
the lake, then south to the Utah lake and return down this valley.

Sunday, July 25

Morning fine and pleasant. At ten o'clock a meeting was held in the
camp and the brethren addressed successively by Elders G. A.
Smith, H. C. Kimball and E. T. Benson, these mostly
expressing their feeling of gratification for the prospects of this
country, each being highly satisfied with the soil, etc. Elder Kimball
referred especially to the manifold blessings we have been favored
with during the journey. Not a man, woman, or child has died on the
journey, not even a horse, mule, ox, cow or chicken has died during
the whole journey. Many exhortations were given to the brethren to
be faithful, obey the council of those in authority and we shall be
blessed and prosperous. At 1:00 p.m. by request of Elder Kimball, the
following persons viz.: Howard Egan, Hans C. Hanson, Jackson Redding,
Carlos Murray, Thomas Cloward, George Billings, Philo Johnson, Charles
Harper, Edson Whipple, Wm. A. King, Hosea Cusing, Robert Byard, Orson
K. Whitney and Horace Whitney, assembled themselves in a willow grove
adjacent to the camp where Elder Kimball addressed them in substance as
follows [the whole reported by Horace Whitney]:

"Most of you here present have become adopted into my family, except
a very few calling them by name and Horace, who has become connected
with my family by marriage, but I do not care for that, you are all the
same to me, and your interest is my interest for what's mine is yours
and what's yours is your own. If I have the privilege of building a
house, I want you to help me and I will help you. Horace will want to
build a house for some of his father's family if they should come up
and there is plenty of timber in the hills. When my family comes up,
we may conclude to settle somewhere else. If so, there will be plenty
to buy us out if we shall have made any improvements. I want you all
to be prudent and take care of your horses, cattle and everything
entrusted to your care. It would be a good plan and probably will be
done for those who stay here, to go back on the Sweet Water and kill
buffalo, etc., for winter consumption. We shall go tomorrow if Brigham
is well enough, in search of a better location--if indeed, such
can be found--if not, we shall remain here. There should be an
enclosure made for the purpose of keeping the horses and cattle in
nights for there are plenty of Indians in the vicinity. I should
advise you to keep the Sabbath day holy whether others do or not. I
want you to put all the seed into the ground that you think will come
to maturity. I am satisfied that buckwheat will do as well here as
any other seed we can grow. I want also some peach stones and apple
seeds to be planted forthwith. Brother Byard and Hans I would like
to have immediately engage in making garments of buck skins, Brother
Cloward in making shoes and Brother Johnson in making hats as soon as
practicable. If you wish to go hunting, fishing, or to see the country,
select a week day and not the Lord's day for that purpose. Do not let
us get giddy and light minded as the Nephites did of old, but strive to
work righteousness in the beginning, inasmuch as we have reached the
promised land. If it is advisable to work in a family capacity, we will
do so; and if in a church capacity, we should be equally willing to do
that. I am going out on a scout with the brethren and I shall probably
want one or two of you to go with me and also one or two wagons. I
am not going to take anything back with me to Winter Quarters except
what is actually necessary--even some of my clothes I shall leave
behind. I shall leave Bishop Whipple with you. He is quite a steady
and economical man, and as such I recommend him to you. I want every
man to be as industrious as possible while I am gone and get into the
ground all the turnips, cabbage and other seeds you can. In case a
storm of snow should come on, it would be advisable to drive all the
cattle among the willows where they can remain until the snow goes off.
I want you all to work together until such time as every man can have
his inheritance set off to him. I feel towards you as a father towards
his children and I want you to banish all peevishness from your midst
and accommodate yourselves as much as possible to each other's wishes.
I have it to say that my boys have been faithful to their various
duties on this journey and other people have noticed it and expressed
the opinion that they never saw such an attentive set of men in their
lives, and I consider that their conduct is worthy of imitation. I want
you to be sober and prayerful and remember me and my family in your
prayers." A number of other good ideas were advanced by Brother Heber
and then we closed the meeting by prayer.

At 2:00 p.m. the brethren again assembled within the camp and were
successively addressed by Elders Woodruff, Orson Pratt and W. Richards
sustaining the ideas advanced by the other brethren this morning. Some
remarks followed from Lorenzo Young, John Pack and others and the
meeting was dismissed. It is contemplated to send some wagons back to
lighten the loads and assist the next company over these rough roads.
It is now certain that there is considerable timber in the ravines and
valleys between the mountains, several large bodies having been seen
by the brethren since our arrival. There is a mountain lying northeast
from here on which is considerably large timber. It is supposed to be
about ten miles distance. The northern expedition is given up for the
present on account of President Young's health. A company intend to
go tomorrow to the lake and survey that region. If they go, they will
probably be gone a day or two.

Monday, July 26

Morning cloudy and pleasant. The brethren commenced plowing early,
others are gone to planting, etc., and the brethren appear to feel
well. Some of the sick have been to bathe in one of the hot springs
and pronounce the effects wonderfully beneficial. Others are going
this morning to try the same experiment. Another company are gone to
make a road to the timber through a ravine a little north of this.
About ten o'clock, President Young sent me a horse with instructions
to join him and some others going on a short exploring expedition.
I immediately started and found the company consisted of President
Young, Elders Kimball, Woodruff, G. A. Smith, Benson, Richards
and Carrington. We took a course northward passing by the land where
the brethren are plowing and planting. The land indeed looks rich and
light. About three-quarters of a mile north of the camp, we arrived on
a beautiful table land, level and nicely sloping to the west. Here we
halted to view it and the more we viewed, the better we were satisfied
that it is as handsome a place for a city as can be imagined. At the
east part there is a considerable creek of clear cold water descending
from the mountains and just above this place it branches into two
forks, one running northwest, the other southwest, and the two nicely
surrounding this place, and so well arranged that should a city be
built here the water can be turned into every street at pleasure. We
passed on and began to ascend the mountains, the President signifying
a wish to ascend a high peak to the north of us. After some hard toil
and time we succeeded in gaining the summit, leaving our horses about
two-thirds the way up. President Young felt pretty well fatigued when
he got up. Some of the brethren feel like naming this Ensign Peak. From
this place, we had a good view of the Salt Lake and could see that the
waters extend for a great many miles to the north of us. There appears
to be land, although white with salt, all the way to the mountain
on the northwest which we had previously supposed was surrounded by
water. We can see a pretty large stream winding from the south to the
north through the valley but keeping not many miles distant from these
mountains towards the lake. After satisfying ourselves we began to
descend, President Young and Lorenzo, who joined us a while before we
went up, going down on the east side where they were joined by Elders
Woodruff, Benson, and Richards with the horses. Elders Kimball, Smith,
Carrington and myself descended on the northwest corner and found the
descent very lengthy and difficult. These hills are mostly rocky of a
kind of soft stone in some places, in others a harder kind of flint
stone. On arriving on the level again, we wound our way southward to
meet the other brethren and after passing a little way saw one of the
sulphur springs where a pretty large stream of sulphur water boils out
of the rock at the foot of the mountain and thence branches out into
several smaller streams for some distance till these enter a small
lake. This water is about as warm as dish water and very salty. There
is much filthy kind of substance collected on it and the smell arising
from it is truly nauseating and sickly, though generally supposed to
be in no way unhealthy. Elder Kimball left us here on seeing Elder
Woodruff's carriage and the other brethren returning back towards the
camp. In the meantime, Elders Smith, Carrington and myself went lower
down towards the lake in search of some fresh water to quench our
thirst. We found a nice clear stream of cold water but a little way
from the sulphur spring and having drunk of it, we concluded to go
on and see the river which we had noticed from the mountain. We took
nearly a west course and soon struck the old road made by emigrants
last year. We found the land exceedingly rich all along, good grass and
abundance of rushes. We found many wet places but no signs of swamps,
nor danger of miring. After traveling about two miles, we arrived at
the river having followed the road to the ford. This river is about
five rods wide on an average, three and a half feet deep at the ford
but in other places much deeper. The current is slow and the water of
a dark lead color. The banks are about five feet high and the soil to
the water level of a rich, black alluvial. There is no timber on the
banks here and not many willow bushes. We went over the river and found
the soil equally good on the other side. While here we observed Elder
Woodruff's carriage and the brethren again proceeding northward. We
started back to meet them, it being the intention to go to the large,
hot sulphur spring. We could but remark all along, the richness of
the soil and the abundance of high, good looking grass. On arriving
at the foot of the mountain beside another sulphur spring, we saw the
carriage come on to the first spring but apparently judging it unsafe
to cross, they wheeled around and returned back to camp. Elders Smith,
Carrington and myself then concluded to go on and view the big spring
which we found to be about two miles farther. Before arriving at it,
there is a large shoal salt lake and on the banks are numerous sulphur
springs varying in the appearance of the surface and losing themselves
in the lake. There were many plovers on and around this lake. We
arrived at the big spring about four o'clock and making our horses
fast, we went down to where it boils out of the rock. This spring is
also situated at the foot of the mountains and at the base of a large
rock, perpendicular on the west side and gradually losing itself on
the east in the mountain. The spring, as I have said, is at the base
of this rock. There is a circular hole about four feet wide and a yard
high from the top to the surface of the water from whence the water
boils out in a considerable stream. The water itself in the spring
seems to be about two feet deep. There is a rock at the mouth of the
spring where a person can stand and see inside. Standing on this rock
with your face near the mouth of the spring a strong warm sulphurous
air is felt to come in gusts out of the rock and it is so hot that it
requires only a few minutes to start the perspiration. On putting my
hand in the spring, I was startled with the heat and found I could not
bear to hold my hand in five seconds. It is as hot as the hottest dish
water ever used for dishes. Immediately on emerging from the rock, the
water forms a lake about three rods in diameter and evidently pretty
deep. The water is exceedingly clear and nice to look at but very salty
indeed. We could see the water boil up in many parts of the lake. The
water escapes at the north side of the lake at the base of the rock and
there forms a stream about four feet wide and eighteen inches deep. We
concluded we would go down the stream six or eight rods to wash our
feet, naturally expecting the water to be cooler, but on taking off
our boots and socks we found it impossible to hold our feet in it a
moment and could barely wash by dashing the water on with our hands
and suddenly dipping them in and out. It is supposed this would boil
an egg in about ten minutes. At five o'clock we returned back to camp
and supposed that the spring is about four miles distance. We arrived
in camp at six o'clock. The brethren have planted about three acres of
potatoes, some peas, beans, and are now planting four or five acres
of corn. Elder Kimball stated that on returning with the carriage to
the creek near the camp to get some water, he discovered that he had
lost his spy glass. He retraced his steps on foot to the top of the
peak and back without finding it, and on arriving at the bottom he saw
Elders Richards and Benson bathing in one of the warm sulphur springs.
Although wet with perspiration he took off his clothes and plunged in
and found the effects very pleasant and beneficial. After bathing they
started back for camp and but a few rods distance found the glass near
the road. Some of the brethren have commenced making a garden about two
miles to the southeast and indeed their operations and industry are
truly pleasing and noble. The more I view the country, the better I am
satisfied that the Saints can live here and raise abundant crops. Elder
Kimball has kindly offered me a horse to ride and view the country
as much and when I have a mind to while we stay here. This morning
Joseph Mathews and John Brown started west to go to the mountain. They
returned this evening and report that they have been at the foot of
the mountain and judge it to be about sixteen miles distance. They say
the wild sage is very plentiful on the other side the valley, showing
that the land is not so rich there as here. They found a horse, near
the mountain and have brought it to camp, supposed to have strayed from
emigrants who have previously passed this way. Towards sundown heavy
clouds were noticed in the south and southwest. We expected a shower,
but it passed off to the east.

Tuesday, July 27

Morning fine and warm. The atmosphere appears very different here to
what it did amongst the mountains. The evenings and nights are very
warm and pleasant and the air appears pure. Two of the Utah Indians
came to camp early this morning to trade. Two ponies were bought of
them for a rifle and musket. These two are but of moderate size,
pleasing countenance and dressed in skins. At half past eight Amasa
Lyman, Rodney Badger, Roswell Stevens, and Brother Brannan arrived in
camp. They report that the Pueblo company will be in tomorrow or the
day after. The brethren are still busy plowing and planting. Burr Frost
has his forge up and quite a number of plows have been rigged up by the
assistance of the carpenters. Elder Lyman, I understand, reports that
they heard of a large company on their way and he thinks we may expect
them in 15 or 20 days. Elders Lyman and Brannan joined the exploring
party with President Young and Kimball and the company started off soon
after their arrival. A company of brethren have been to the mountains
to get more lumber to build a skiff. They returned this evening
bringing a very handsome pine log about twenty inches through and
which, probably, when whole, would measure sixty feet long. The day has
been very fine and warm. The horses and cattle seem in good spirits and
are getting fat. They are full of life and ambition. Presidents Young
and Kimball have had their wagons moved a little distance from the camp
to the other side the creek. During the afternoon, two more Indians
came in to trade. Some of the brethren are making unwise trades, giving
twenty charges of powder and balls for a buck skin, while the usual
price is three charges. This is wrong.

Wednesday, July 28

Morning fine and warm. Several of the Indians have remained in camp
over night. They seem very peaceable and gentle and anxious to trade.
The brethren are making a saw pit to saw lumber for a skiff. Joseph
Hancock and Lewis Barney have been off hunting in the mountains two
days. They state there is abundance of good timber for building in the
mountains but difficult to get at it. The timber is mostly balsam fir
and poplar and many sticks will make two good logs. At half past three
President Young and company returned. They have been at the Salt Lake
and report it to be about twenty-five miles distance. No water after
they leave the river except salt water. The lake is very clear and the
water heavy, so much so, that a man cannot possibly sink. Even not
where more than four feet deep and they tried to fall down on their
knees but could not touch the bottom. They can sit or lie in the water
perfectly easily without touching the bottom. One of the brethren lay
down on the water and another got on him but could not sink him. They
suppose the water will yield 35% pure salt. They gathered some off the
rocks which is as pure, white and fine as the best that can be bought
in market.

There is a cave in the mountain west of the camp which is sixty feet
from the entrance to the far end. The Indians appear to have frequently
visited it and there are yet the remains of their fires.

There appears to be no fresh water beyond the river and the brethren
are more and more satisfied that we are already on the right spot.
At eight o'clock the brethren were called together and addressed by
President Young on various subjects, pointing out items of law which
would be put in force here, his feelings towards the gentiles, etc. He
said they intended to divide the city into blocks of ten acres each
with eight lots in a block of one and a quarter acres each. The streets
to be wide. No house will be permitted to be built on the corners of
the streets, neither petty shops. Each house will have to be built so
many feet back from the street and all the houses parallel with each
other. The fronts are to be beautified with fruit trees, etc. No filth
will be allowed to stand in the city but the water will be conducted
through in such a manner as to carry all the filth off to the River
Jordan. No man will be suffered to cut up his lot and sell a part to
speculate out of his brethren. Each man must keep his lot whole, for
the Lord has given it to us without price. The temple lot will be
forty acres and adorned with trees, ponds, etc. The whole subject was
interesting to the brethren and the items will probably be given more
fully hereafter. The Twelve were appointed a committee to lay off the
city, etc.

Thursday, July 29

We have had a very strong cold, east wind all the night and the morning
is tolerably cool. At eleven o'clock I was moved up to the other camp
about three-quarters of a mile. At ten o'clock we had a light shower.
It rained pretty heavily all around but mostly passed by here. At three
o'clock, the Pueblo brethren came in sight, the soldiers appearing in
military order, many of them mounted. They have twenty-nine wagons in
the company and one carriage. Presidents Young, Kimball and the Twelve
went to meet the brethren and met them in the canyon. They report that
they had very heavy rain there, the water rising in the creek three
feet in a very short time, caused by the rush from the mountains. The
brethren arrived at the lower camp at half past three and marched in
headed by the fifes and side drum. They have camped a little west
of the other camp. The brethren are represented as feeling well and
cheerful. At five o'clock the Twelve returned here and an hour later
went over north to the mountains, I suppose to hold a council.

Friday, July 30

Day warm. Twelve held a council with the officer of the battalion,
then rode up to the hot spring. Evening a general meeting of the camp
and addressed by President Young. He told his feelings concerning the
soldiers, they have saved the people by going when required, etc. He
rejoiced that they are here. He expressed his feelings warmly towards
the brethren and also told his feelings towards the gentiles. The
meeting was opened by hosannas three times and closed by requesting
the battalion to build a bower tomorrow on the temple lot where we can
assemble for meetings, etc.

Saturday, July 31

This morning the brethren commenced making the bower on the temple lot
a little southwest from our camp. They will make it about forty feet
long and twenty-eight feet wide. Walked with President Young, Kimball,
Richards and others to the Mississippi camp. Brother Thomas Richardson
is very sick and several others of the soldiers. Soloman Tindal is yet
alive but looks feeble. Elder Kimball conversed sometime with Captain
James Brown. There are from twenty to thirty of the Utah Indians here
and some squaws trading with the brethren. They are generally of low
stature, pleasing countenance but poorly clad. While we were there, a
dispute arose between two of the young men and they went to fighting
very fiercely. One broke his gun stock on the other's head and I
expected to see a pretty serious affray, many of the others gathering
around. Soon an old man came up, father to one of the young men engaged
in the quarrel and he used his heavy whip very freely about both their
heads and faces. The antagonist of the son struck the old man and he
immediately gathered a long pole and broke it over the young man's
head. He succeeded in quelling the broil and gave them a long lecture.
They then mostly left and resumed their trading a little distance from
the camp. In the afternoon, we had a pretty smart thunder shower and
considerable wind. In the evening I walked down to the Pueblo camp and
there learned the following particulars:

These Indians who are now here are of the Shoshones, about fifteen or
twenty in number, and several women among them. There were four or five
of the Utahs here this morning when the Shoshones came up. One of the
Utahs had stolen a horse from one of the Shoshones and the latter party
saw him with the horse here. He had traded the horse for a rifle but
was unwilling either to give up the horse or rifle hence the quarrel
spoken of above. When the old man separated them, the thief went down
and hid himself in the camp below. Soon after, he saw another horse
walking by, which he knew to belong to the Shoshones. He sprang on his
own horse and drove the other one before him towards the mountains on
the southeast as hard as he could ride. The Shoshones being informed
of it, four of them started in pursuit and as he got in between the
mountains they closed in on him, one of the pursuers shooting him dead
while another one shot his horse. They returned and made this report
to the others of the tribe at the camp at the same time exhibiting
fresh blood on one of the rifles. They appear to be much excited and
continually on the watch. When the men returned, they sat down and made
a meal of some of these large crickets. They appear to be crisped over
the fire which is all the cooking required. Many of the brethren have
traded muskets and rifles for horses and ordinary muskets will buy a
pretty good horse. They appear to be displeased because we have traded
with the Utahs and say they own this land, that that the Utahs have
come over the line, etc. They signified by signs that they wanted to
sell us the land for powder and lead. The Shoshones are poorer clad
than the Utahs. They are about the same in stature and there are many
pleasing countenances among them. Colonel Markham reports that there
are three lots of land already broke. One lot of thirty-five acres of
which two-thirds is already planted with buckwheat, corn, oats, etc.
One lot of eight acres which is all planted with corn, potatoes, beans,
etc. And a garden of ten acres, four acres of which is sown with garden
seed. He says there are about three acres of corn already up about two
inches above the ground and some beans and potatoes up too. This is
the result of eight days' labor, besides making a road to the timber,
hauling and sawing timber for a boat, making and repairing plows, etc.
There have been thirteen plows and three harrows worked during the week.

August 1847

Sunday, August 1

We have had another cool windy night. At ten o'clock in the morning
the brethren assembled for meeting under the bower on the temple lot,
all the members of the quorum of the Twelve being present except
President Young who is quite sick again. After the meeting had been
opened by singing and prayer by Elder G. A. Smith, Elder Kimball
arose and made some remarks to the following effect, as reported by
Brother Bullock: "I would enquire whether there is a guard out around
our cattle; if not, let one be placed immediately. The Indians left
here very suddenly this morning and we don't know their object. If we
don't take good care of what we have, we will not have any more. It is
all in the world we shall ever have, for 'to him that receiveth I will
give more.' We are the sons of God and He will do with us as we would
do to our children, and inasmuch as I am faithful in taking care of my
neighbors' goods, I shall be entitled to the same from them, for we
are commanded to do unto others as we want others to do to us. Every
penurious man who takes advantage of others will come down to poverty.
If we have to follow the steps of our Savior we have to follow and
experience the same things; you will have to feel for men so as to know
how to sympathize with them and then you can feel for them. I feel for
this people and grow more feeling for them every day. Our Father in
Heaven is more tender to us than any mother to her little child. If I
am faithful to serve others, others will be willing to serve me."

Orson Pratt requested the prayers of the Saints in his behalf: "It
is with peculiar feelings that I arise before so many of the Saints
in this uncultivated region inhabited by savages. My mind is full
of reflection on the scenes through which we have passed and being
brought through the deserts of sage to this distant region. God's ways
are not as our ways. It is not wisdom that the Saints should always
foresee the difficulties they have to encounter for then they would
not be trials. We expected some revelations to take place and behold
they are revealed in the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants,
for we are to congregate among the remnants of Joseph. We did think
our wives and children would be built up among the strongholds of the
gentiles, we thought we should be as Missourians to them. Jehovah had
different purposes. He designed that this people should be brought
out almost as an entire people. The Book of Mormon never would have
been fulfilled if the Saints had not left the gentiles as a people,
for when the gentiles rejected the Gospel it was to be taken among the
Lamanites. So long as the Gospel, the Priesthood and the main body of
the people remained with them, the fullness of the Gospel was not taken
away from the gentiles. This movement is one of the greatest that has
taken place among this people. I feel thankful as one of the Twelve for
the privilege of coming out as one of the pioneers to this glorious
valley where we can build up a city to the Lord. For many years I have
not read that good old book, but I remember the predictions in it and
some that are now very nearly fulfilled by us. Isaiah says, (Chapter
62) speaking of the City of Zion, it shall be 'Sought out, a city not
forsaken,' etc. Many in this congregation know what is meant by the
garments of salvation and the robe of righteousness. Righteousness and
praise shall spring forth before all the nations of the earth and they
will not hold their peace. There are many of you that feel you can cry
day and night to the people in the cause of righteousness until it
shall triumph. 'For as a young man marrieth a virgin,' etc.--this
belongs and refers to us. 'I will no longer give thy corn to be meat
for thine enemy.' This has not been fulfilled heretofore but will be.
The corn that we toil to raise from the earth, it shall not be given
to our enemies, they that gather it shall eat it, and they shall drink
in the courts of His holiness. This wine is also to be drunk in the
courts of the Lord's house. We have gathered out the stones out of the
road and thousands will yet fulfil this prophecy. It has reference
to the latter times that were to dawn upon the world in the last
dispensation. 'Thou shalt be called, Sought out, A city not forsaken.'
If ever there was a place sought out it is this, we have enquired
diligently and have found it. This cannot refer to Jerusalem, but to
this very place, point and spot that the pioneers have found where a
city shall be built unto the Lord, where righteousness will reign and
iniquity not be allowed. Isaiah and Joel both spake very plainly on
this subject. 'It shall come to pass in the last days that the house of
the Lord shall be established,' etc. In what part of the earth could
it be established more than in this place where this congregation is
gathered. In the midst of the spires of the mountains we have found
a place large enough to gather a few thousand of the Saints. You may
travel Europe, Asia, Africa and America but you cannot find a place
much higher where any people can raise crops and sustain themselves.
The house of the Lord will be established on the tops of the mountains
when we shall have once reared here. The experience of the Saints
proves that there was no house of the Lord, and we can say: travel over
this earth but you cannot find the house of the Lord. The Lord must
give the pattern of the building and order it, and give directions to
His servants. The Lord wants His house built precisely to the pattern
that He gives and He is bound to speak to and bless and make them His
own children in that house and I verily believe I shall see it and see
thousands come flocking to the house to learn the way of salvation.
And I want to see the time that I shall see thousands raising their
voices on this consecrated land. There are many testimonies in the
prophets all bearing upon this subject. Joseph, in the Book of Doctrine
and Covenants speaks of this very subject and it appears there will be
some sinners in Zion who will be afraid and a devouring fire will rest
upon every dwelling place in Zion. 'He that walketh righteously' etc.,
'He shall dwell on high, bread shall be given him, his water shall
be sure.' Isaiah was on the eastern continent when he spoke this and
was speaking of a very distant place. It will be pretty difficult to
get a ship of war up to this place. When we get used to this healthy
climate, the people will not say, I am sick, but will be able to smite
the gentiles. They will grow up strong and will not be in jeopardy
from sickness. The wilderness shall become as a fruitful field and a
fruitful field as a forest. We know the time will come that the great
Jehovah will cause springs of water to gush out of the desert lands
and we shall see the lands survive that the gentiles have defiled.
Isaiah speaks of the heritage of Jacob being in a high place. This
is about four thousand feet above the level of the sea and the high
mountains will still catch the hail and we shall be in a low place. We
will not feel discouraged but will feel full of vigor and circumscribe
all things to the very heavens, for this is what we desire above all
things. Let us endeavor to covenant in our hearts, that we will serve
the Lord; that we will keep His commandments and obey His counsel. I
wish that all of us should be faithful and as President Young said the
other evening, every man is expected to do his duty. The Lord will be
with us still; He will shield, guard and defend us by day and be our
refuge by night, and our salvation. I feel to say in the name of the
Lord Jesus Christ, you shall be blest if you keep the commandments of
God. Amen."

Elder Kimball hopes the brethren will be attentive to what they hear
for if you bring an evil upon this people you will bring destruction
upon yourself. If you do things according to counsel and they are
wrong, the consequences will fall on the heads of those who counseled
you, so don't be troubled. I do not want to be wrapt in the skins of
some men who have taken a course that has brought destruction upon
themselves and others, and they will have to answer for it. I am a man
that would not speak to a man's daughter to marry her until I have
first spoken to her father and mother also, and then it is done by
common consent. But I preach the truth, every word of it. President
Young instructed the Battalion last evening and counseled them for
their comfort and the counsel is for the brethren to keep their guns
and their powder and their balls and lead and not let the Indians have
it for they will shoot down our cattle. They stole guns yesterday and
had them under their blankets and if you don't attend to this you are
heating a kettle of boiling water to scald your own feet. If you listen
to counsel you will let them alone and let them eat the crickets,
there's a plenty of them. I understand they offered to sell the land
and we were to buy it of them, the Utahs would want to pay for it too.
The land belongs to our Father in Heaven and we calculate to plow and
plant it and no man will have power to sell his inheritance for he
cannot remove it; it belongs to the Lord. I am glad I have come to a
place where I feel free. I am satisfied and we are in a goodly land. My
family is back, my teams are helping on several families and leaving
ours. If my family were here I would not go over that road again. I
believe in Brother Joseph's religion which he said was a key that would
save every man or woman, and that it is for every man to mind his own
business and let other people's business alone. We will all have farms
and cultivate them and plant vineyards, and if we are faithful, five
years will not pass away before we are better off than we ever were
in Nauvoo. If we had brought our families along everybody else would
have come; and we must lose another year. We could not bring all the
soldiers' families for the same reason that we did not bring our own
families. I thank the Lord that there are so many of the soldiers here.
If they had tarried in Winter Quarters there would have been many more
deaths among them. We brought many of these pioneers to save their
lives, many of them were very sick and were carried out of their beds
and put into the wagons. They have mostly recovered their health and
we have been prosperous and have been permitted to arrive here alive.
There has not one died on the journey, nor an ox nor horse nor anything
except one of Brother Crow's oxen which was poisoned. We lost several
horses by accident and we shall be prosperous on our journey back again
if we are faithful, those of us who go, and we shall see and enjoy
the society of our families again. We will one day have a house built
here and have the forts and go into the house and administer for our
dead. Elder Richards then read an order from Lieut. Cooke of the Mormon
Battalion on the Pacific, after which Elder Bullock read a letter from
Jefferson Hunt to James Brown, dated July 6, 1847, after which and a
few other remarks, the meeting was dismissed.

At 2:25 the congregation assembled and opened by singing and prayer by
Elder Woodruff. Bread and water were then administered by the bishops
after which Elder Richards, after a few preliminary remarks, read the
"Word and will of the Lord," as given in Winter Quarters. Elder Kimball
made some remarks and the brethren manifested that they received and
would obey the revelations by uplifted hand. He was followed by remarks
by Elder Amasa Lyman, mostly sustaining the positions taken by the
previous speakers. Elder Kimball again rose to lay before the brethren
some items of business, whereupon it was decided that the three
companies form into one camp and labor together that the officers be a
committee to form the corral, and that the corral be formed tomorrow.
That horses and mules be tied near the camp at nights; that we build
houses instead of living in wagons this winter; that we go to work
immediately putting up houses; that we work unitedly; that the houses
form a stockade or fort to keep out the Indians; that our women and
children be not abused and that we let the Indians alone.

Colonel Rockwood remarked that a log house 16 by 15 would cost forty
dollars and one of adobes half as much. Captain Brown was in favor of
setting men to work building both log and adobe houses to hasten the
work. Captain Lewis said that inasmuch as timber is scarce and we have
spades and shovels and tools enough, as many as can be used, he is in
favor of building adobe houses and saving the timber. Lieutenant Willis
said you can put up an adobe house before a man could get the logs for
a log house. Adobe houses are healthy and are the best for equinoxial
gales. Elder Brannan has a man in California who will take three men,
make adobes for a thirty foot house, build the house and put a family
in it in a week. His printing office was put up in fourteen days and a
paper printed. Elder Richards said we want brick made and lime burned.
If wood is put into houses it will be a waste of it. We want all the
timber to make floors and roofs. We want the walls up and we are men
enough to put them up in a few days and have the women protected.
It was voted to put up a stockade of adobe houses. Samuel Gould and
James Drum reported themselves as lime burners. Sylvester H. Earl,
Joel J. Terrill, Ralph Douglas and Joseph Hancock reported themselves
as brick makers. Elder Kimball then remarked that those who intend
to send ox teams back to Winter Quarters must be ready a week from
tomorrow morning. If the cattle's feet are too tender, have them shod,
or have new shoes in the wagons. Those oxen to rest and be released
from plowing, etc. Do not get the Indians around here. I want you to
have nothing to do with them. After a few remarks on general items, the
meeting dismissed.

Monday, August 2

We have had another cool night, but morning fine. The other companies
commenced moving their wagons up and we also moved a little farther
east. During the day the whole camp was formed in an oblong circle.
About noon Ezra T. Benson and several others started back to meet the
next company. They carried a letter, the following being a copy of the

"Pioneer camp. Valley of the Great Salt Lake, August 2, 1847. To
General Chas. C. Rich and the Presidents and Officers of the emigrating
company. Beloved Brethren: We have delegated our beloved Brother Ezra
T. Benson and escort to communicate to you by express the cheering
intelligence that we have arrived in the most beautiful valley of the
Great Salt Lake, that every soul who left Winter Quarters with us
is alive and almost everyone enjoying good health. That portion of
the battalion that was at Pueblo is here with us together with the
Mississippi company that accompanied them and they are generally well.
We number about 450 souls and we know of no one but who is pleased with
our situation. We have commenced the survey of a city this morning. We
feel that the time is fast approaching when those teams that are going
to Winter Quarters this fall should be on the way. Every individual
here would be glad to tarry if his friends were here, but as many of
the battalion, as well as the pioneers, have not their families here
and do not expect that they are in your camp, we wish to learn by
express from you, the situation of your camp as speedily as possible
that we may be prepared to counsel and act in the whole matter. We
want you to send us the names of every individual in your camp, or in
other words, a copy of your camp roll, including the names, number of
wagons, horses, mules, oxen, cows, etc., and the health of your camp,
your location, prospects, etc. If your teams are worn out, if your camp
is sick and not able to take care of themselves, if you are short of
teamsters or any other circumstance impeding your progress. We want to
know it immediately for we have help for you, and if your teams are in
good plight and will be able to return to Winter Quarters this season
or any portion of them, we want to know it. We also want the mail,
which will include all letters and papers, and packages belonging to
our camp, general and particular. Should circumstances permit, we would
gladly meet you some distance from this, but our time is very much
occupied. Notwithstanding, we think you will see us before you see our
valley. Let all the brethren and sisters cheer up their hearts and know
assuredly that God has heard and answered their prayers and ours and
led us to a goodly land, and our souls are satisfied therewith. Brother
Benson can give you many particulars that will be gratifying and
cheering to you which we have not time to write, and we feel to bless
all the Saints. In behalf of the council. Willard Richards, Clerk.
Brigham Young, President.

This morning, Elders Pratt and Sherwood commenced surveying the city
to lay it off in lots but finally concluded to wait until the chain
could be tested by a standard pole which will have to be gotten from
the mountains. Some of the brethren are preparing to make moulds
for adobes. In the evening, Elder Kimball's teams returned from the
mountains with some good house logs and poles for measuring, etc.
The day has been very warm but the nights begin to be very cool. The
northeast winds seem to prevail here at this season and coming from the
mountains of snow are cold when the sun is down. After dark President
Young sent for me to come to his wagon and told his calculations about
our starting back. He wants me to start with the ox teams next Monday
so as to have a better privilege of taking the distances, etc. He
calculates the horse teams to start two weeks later, and if the first
company arrives at Grand Island before the other comes up to wait for
them there, kill and dry buffalo, etc. He wants the roadometer fixed
this week and Elder Kimball has selected William King to do the work.

Tuesday, August 3

Morning fine, but cool. Elder Carrington starts for the mountains to
look for limestone. During the day I went and bathed at Bullock's
bathing place in one of the warm sulphur springs. I found the effects
very refreshing and beneficial. Spent most of the day making a table of
distances, etc. The day very hot.

Wednesday, August 4

This morning William A. King has commenced making a new roadometer. The
day very hot and close.

Thursday, August 5

Again at the roadometer, day very warm. J. C. Little and others
have returned and report that they have been at the Utah Lake. As they
went up they saw bodies of two dead Indians lying on the ground proving
that there was one of each tribe killed the other day. They consider
it to be about forty miles to the Utah Lake and on the east side is a
handsome valley about six or eight miles wide. They are now convinced
that the stream which runs a few miles below here is the Utah outlet,
they having followed it to its junction with the lake.

Friday, August 6

The day very warm.

Saturday, August 7

Today William A. King has finished the roadometer which will now tell
the distance for one thousand miles without keeping any account. About
noon a very large whirlwind struck the south side of the camp forming
a cloud of dust about twenty feet in diameter and making a loud roar.
It carried a chicken up some distance, tore up the bowers, and shook
the wagons violently in its course. It passed off to the northeast and
seemed to break at the mountains. This morning fifteen of the brethren
commenced building a dam a little above the camp so as to bring the
water around and inside the camp. They finished early in the afternoon
and we have now a pleasant little stream of cold water running on
each side the wagons all around the camp. Where the water runs off or
overflows the gutters, it soon becomes miry and cattle will sink a half
a yard in mud. This is owing to the lightness of the soil, it being
very light and rich. In the evening, many of the brethren went and were
baptized in the dam by Elder Kimball for the remission of sins, Elders
Pratt, Woodruff, and Smith attending to confirmation. I went and was
baptized amongst the rest. It has been recommended for all the camp to
be baptized and this evening they have commenced it.

Sunday, August 8

Morning cloudy with strong northeast wind. The brethren have resumed
baptizing and a number have obeyed the ordinance both male and female.
At ten o'clock, a meeting was held in the bowery and instructions given
to the brethren. At two o'clock, sacrament was administered and 110 of
the brethren selected to make adobes. Wrote a letter for Heber to Elder
Martin and others.

Monday, August 9

At eleven o'clock, Brannan, Captain James Brown and several others
started for San Francisco. Elder J. C. Little accompanies them to
Fort Hall. I spent three hours taking observations with the barometer
with Elder Pratt to ascertain the height of the land on the creek above
the city. Ensign Peak, etc. The twelve had decided on a name for this
place and a caption for all letters and documents issued from this
place, which is as follows: Salt Lake City, Great Basin, North America.

Tuesday, August 10

This morning, President Young and Kimball have gone to the adobe yard
to commence building some houses in that region. They have already got
many good logs on the ground. Colonel Markham reports that in addition
to the plowing done week before last, they have plowed about thirty
acres which is mostly planted, making a total of about eighty acres.
The plowing ceased last week and the brethren are now making adobes,
hauling logs, etc. Elder Sherwood continues surveying the city. Tanner
and Frost are setting wagon tires and have set fifty-two today. The
brethren who went to the lake on Monday to boil down salt have returned
this evening and report that they have found a bed of beautiful salt
ready to load into wagons. It lies between two sand bars and is about
six inches thick. They suppose they can easily load ten wagons without
boiling. I have received from Elder Kimball a pair of buckskin pants,
as a present I suppose, but as I have on similar occasions been
branded with the idea of receiving a great many kindnesses without
consideration, I will for this once state a little particular on the
other side the question. I acknowledge that I have had the privilege of
riding in a wagon and sleeping in it, of having my victuals cooked and
some meat and milk, and occasionally a little tea or coffee furnished.
My flour I furnished myself. I have had no team to take care of. Howard
Egan has done most of my washing until a month ago in consideration of
the privilege of copying from my journal, using my desk, ink, etc. The
balance of my washing I have hired. Now what have I done for Brother
Kimball? Am I justly indebted on this journey? Answer: I have written
in his journal 124 pages of close matter on an average of 600 words
to a page, which if paid at the price of recording deeds in Illinois
would amount to over $110.00. I have collected the matter myself,
besides writing letters, etc. This has been for his special benefit.
I have kept an account of the distance we have traveled for over 800
miles of the journey, attended to the measurement of the road, kept
the distances from creek to creek and from one encampment to another;
put up a guide board every ten miles from Fort John to this place with
the assistance of Philo Johnson. I have mapped some for Dr. Richards
and keeping my own journal forms the whole benefit to be derived by
my family by this mission. I have yet considerable to write in Elder
Kimball's journal before I return. I am expected to keep a table of
distances of the whole route returning from here to Winter Quarters and
make a map when I get through, and this for public benefit. Now how
much am I considered to be in debt, and how often will it be said that
I was furnished by others with victuals, clothing, etc., that I might
enjoy this journey as a mission of pleasure. I have spent most of this
day calculating the height of this spot above the level of the sea for
Elder Pratt.

Wednesday, August 11

Early this morning, a large company of the Utah Indians came to
visit the camp and it was with difficulty they could be kept outside
the wagons. There are few of them who have any clothing on except
the breech clout and are mostly of low stature. They have scarcely
anything to trade and not many women and children with them. They are
camped about three miles north of west and supposed to be going north
hunting. One of them was detected stealing some clothing which lay
on the bushes to dry, but was made to leave it. When they found they
were not permitted inside the circle, they soon moved off to their
camp. The brethren have commenced laying the adobe wall today which
will be twenty-seven inches thick and nine feet high. The adobes are
18 inches long, 9 inches broad and 4½ inches thick. The brethren in
camp have finished the skiff and launched her in the creek to soak.
About five o'clock, a child of Therlkill's was found in the creek
south of the camp drowned. Various efforts were made to restore it but
unsuccessfully. The child was about three years old and its parents
mourn the accident bitterly. The day has been very hot, but as usual,
at sundown we have a strong, cool wind from the northeast.

Thursday, August 12

Spent the forenoon with Elder Pratt in taking observations to ascertain
the height of the temple block above the Utah outlet which he found to
be sixty-five feet. The altitude one mile up the creek above the temple
block is 214 feet and the altitude of the temple block above the level
of the sea is 4,300 feet. The latitude 40° 45' 50". The blacksmiths are
very busy shoeing oxen and there is prospect that the ox teams will
start back on Monday or Tuesday. The soldiers are getting dissatisfied
at being kept here so long from their families and yesterday several of
them left the camp secretly to go to Winter Quarters and this morning
others are gone, but it is probable that President Young knows nothing
of it yet although about a dozen are already gone and others are
preparing to follow them. On Tuesday President Young laid a foundation
for four houses; Elder Kimball four, Colonel Markham one, Dr. Richards
one, and Lorenzo Young two, and today Dr. Richards has laid the
foundation of another, George A. Smith two and Wilford Woodruff two,
making a total of seventeen houses mostly fourteen feet wide and from
twelve to seventeen long. Elder Kimball has his house four logs high.

Friday, August 13

Spent the day mostly writing. The brethren have got 130 bushels of salt
with twenty-four hours labor.

Saturday, August 14

Started at 8:40 in company with a number of others for the Salt Lake.
We arrived at three o'clock and estimated the distance twenty-two
miles. We all bathed in it and found the reports of those who had
previously bathed in no ways exaggerated. We returned back to the river
where we arrived at eleven o'clock at the beginning of a light thunder
shower. There is no pure fresh water between the river and the lake.

Sunday, August 15

President Young preached on the death of little children, etc. Evening
the company composing those who are returning with the ox teams met
and voted that Shadrach Roundy and Tunis Rappleyee be captains. They
received instructions to start tomorrow and travel leisurely to Grand
Island and there wait for the last company of horse teams. J. C.
Little and company returned yesterday from Utah Lake, and this morning
the exploring company returned.

Monday, August 16

Spent most of the day fixing the roadometer, also finished marking the
distances, camping places,, etc., on Dr. Richards' map from Devil's
gate to Little Sandy. Evening took the wagon in company with Jackson
Redding and Howard Egan to the warm spring to try the roadometer. We
found the distance to be one and a half miles. Most of the company of
ox teams have started today for Winter Quarters. They will go to the
canyon and wait there till morning. After dark, Elder Kimball called a
number of us together in the tent and each one present selected a lot
for himself and family. I had previously selected lots 1, 7 and 8 on
block 95, but President Young broke into our arrangements and wished 7
and 8 reserved, consequently I made choice of lots 1, 2 and 3 on block

Tuesday, August 17

Started out at 8:10 and found the distance to the mouth of the canyon
five miles, the difference arising from making a road across instead
of following the first one. One and three quarters of a mile farther
arrived at where the company had camped for the night and found them
all ready to start, only waiting for President Young to arrive and give
some instructions, but he sent word he should not come and we started
forward. Elders Kimball and Richards soon overtook the company, gave
some instructions, then returned and the company moved on. On arriving
at Birch Spring, we encamped for the night, having traveled thirteen
and a half miles. There is considerable danger of cattle miring near
the spring and several have already had to be pulled out. This company
consists of seventy-one men with thirty-three wagons. After camping,
the brethren were called together by Captain Roundy for the purpose
of organizing. He briefly stated the manner of the organization of
the camp when we left Winter Quarters and it was unanimously voted to
organize after the same pattern which was done as follows:

1st Division

  1st Ten

  Joseph Skeen, Captain
  Wm. Burt
  Artemas Johnson
  James Dunn
  James Cazier
  Joseph Shipley
  Geo. Cummings
  Samuel Badham
  Thos. Richardson
  Roswell Stevens

  2nd Ten

  Zebedee Coltrin, Captain
  Wm. Bird
  Chester Loveland
  Josiah Curtis
  Lorenzo Babcock
  John S. Eldridge
  Samuel H. Marble
  Horace Thornton
  Geo. Scholes

  3rd Ten

  Francis Boggs, Captain
  Geo. Wardle
  Sylvester H. Earl
  Seeley Owens
  Almon M. Williams
  Clark Stillman

Tunis Rappleyee, Captain of 1st Division. James Cazier Captain of Guard
in 1st Division.

2nd Division

  1st Ten

  Jackson Redding, Captain
  Robert Biard
  Wm. Carpenter
  Benj. W. Rolfe
  Henry W. Sanderson
  Thos. Cloward
  Bailey Jacobs
  Lisbon Lamb
  John Pack
  Wm. Clayton

  2nd Ten

  John H. Tippets, Captain
  Lyman Stevens
  Francis T. Whitney
  Lyman Curtis
  James Stewart
  John S. Gleason
  Chas. A. Burke
  Myron Tanner
  Wm. McLellan
  Rufus Allen
  Norman Taylor

  3rd Ten

  Allen Cumpton, Captain
  Franklin Allen
  John Bybee
  David Garner
  J. Averett
  Harmon D. Persons
  John G. Smith
  Solomon Tindal
  Philip Garner
  Chas. Hopkins
  Barnabas Lake

  4th Ten

  Andrew J. Shoop, Captain
  Albert Clark
  Francillo Durfee
  James Hendrickson
  Erastus Bingham
  John Calvert
  Loren Kenney
  Daniel Miller
  Benj. Roberts
  Luther W. Glazier
  Jarvis Johnson
  Thos. Bingham

Shadrack Roundy, Captain of 2nd Division. John Gleason, Captain of

The soldiers were numbered with the 2nd Division, 3rd and 4th tens.

Those who have horses to ride were then numbered and their duty pointed
out, which is to lead the way and fix the road where it needs it; look
out camping places; drive the loose cattle and hunt for the camp. Their
names are as follows: John Pack, Captain, Samuel Badham, Francillo
Durfee, Benj. Roberts, Thomas Bingham, James Hendrickson, John
Eldridge, R. I. Redding, Seeley Owens, Barnabas Lake, Wm. Bird,
Daniel Miller, James Cazier.

Wednesday, August 18

We had a little rain this morning and the air very cool. We started at
8:00 a.m. and found the road rough indeed. When ascending the mountain
from Brown's Creek, most of the teams had to double, it generally
requiring six yoke of oxen to bring up an empty wagon. The descent is
also very rough and especially where the road crosses the dry creek
which is a great many times. Canyon Creek appeared rougher than when we
first went up it and it took till near night to get to the end of the
creek, having traveled only fifteen and three quarters miles during the

Thursday, August 19

We got started again about 8:00 a.m., all except Chas. A. Burke. One of
his oxen was missing. Before noon several of the loose cattle gave out
through being over driven. We arrived and camped on Red Mountain Creek
at six o'clock, having traveled sixteen and a quarter miles. The day
has been very hot but nights are very cold.

Friday, August 20

Morning very cold. Started out at seven and traveled till 12:30, the
day being cool, then rested and baited an hour. At 1:30 proceeded again
and arrived at Cache or Reddings Cave at 5:00 p.m., having traveled
twenty and a half miles, but it was nearly seven o'clock before the
company arrived.

Saturday, August 21

Started at 7:30 a.m. and traveled till 12:00 then baited an hour. We
found Bear River not over fifteen inches deep. We camped on Sulphur
Creek at five o'clock having traveled sixteen and a half miles and
after camping I went with the brethren to fill their tar buckets at
the oil spring. We followed a wagon trail made by a part of Hasting's
company last year about a mile and found the spring situated in a
ravine a little to the left of the road just at the edge of a high
bench of land. The ground is black over with the oil for several rods
but it is baked hard by exposure to the sun. It is difficult to get
the clear oil, most of it being filled with dust and gravel. It smells
much like British oil and is said to do well for greasing wagons. John
Gleason has found a coal bed in the edge of the mountain across the
creek. The coal looks good and burns freely.

Sunday, August 22

Many of the cattle were missing this morning but after much search were
found about four miles southwest from camp. We started at nine o'clock
and traveled till one, then halted an hour at the copperas spring. Most
of the wagons halted at the spring four miles back. The water of this
spring is not bad, cattle drink it freely. At two o'clock we began to
ascend the ridge and at five formed our camp near the Muddy fork having
traveled seventeen and three quarters miles, the day cool and cloudy.

Monday, August 23

We started early this morning and arrived at Fort Bridger at one
o'clock. We found the grass pretty much eaten off and only stayed an
hour and a half while some of the brethren traded some, then went
on eight miles farther and camped on a stream two rods wide, having
traveled twenty-one and a half miles, the day very cool.

Tuesday, August 24

This morning many of the cattle had strayed several miles from camp
which prevented our starting till eight o'clock. We traveled eight and
a half miles, then halted an hour on Black's Fork. We proceeded again
and had a pretty heavy thunder shower and arrived at Ham's Fork at
5:20, then camped for the night, having traveled twenty-three miles.
Most of the wagons did not arrive till nearly night, but we had no
place to camp short of this and here we have good range for cattle.

Wednesday, August 25

We traveled today twenty-three miles and camped on Green River. We
found several places where the road is shortened some, but it is yet
about sixteen miles from water to water.

Thursday, August 26

Started at eight o'clock and went on to the Big Sandy and before the
majority of the company arrived, E. T. Benson and escort came up
with letters from the companies. They say there are nine companies
between here and the Platte with 566 wagons and about 5,000 head of
stock. They report the companies well and getting along tolerably fast,
some they expect we shall meet within three days. After eating they
proceeded on. After sundown a large party of mounted Indians came up,
and camped on the opposite side the river. They have been on the Sweet
Water hunting and are said to be of the Shoshone tribe.

Friday, August 27

Many of the brethren traded sugar, powder, lead, etc., to the Indians
for robes and skins and meat. We started soon after seven and traveled
to the crossing of the Big Sandy. Then after halting an hour, continued
to the Little Sandy, making twenty-five and a quarter miles today, but
it was nine o'clock before some of the wagons arrived. The feed is
mostly eaten up on the creeks near the road and there is none except on
the banks of streams. Bailey Jacobs killed a large antelope which is a
matter of rejoicing as we are nearly out of bread stuff and had little
meat for several days. We started back from the valley with 8 lbs. of
flour, 9 lbs. of meal and a few beans each, and we have to depend on
getting meat on the road for the rest. I was told there were 25 lbs. of
flour put up for me, but I find it is not so.

Saturday, August 28

Started at eight o'clock and traveled till half past three before
halting when we arrived at the crossing of the Pacific creek and halted
to camp for the night having traveled twenty-three miles. There is no
grass from Little Sandy to this place except a very little on Dry Sandy
but the water there has some taste of alkali and teams do not like it.
Here there is considerable grass along the creek and very good water
but no wood except wild sage. We had a heavy thunder shower about four
o'clock and considerable hail. It was dark before the ox teams arrived.
Some of the men had killed a buffalo a few miles back, but it is very

Sunday, August 29

It was decided to remain here today to rest the teams, but our ten
obtained leave to go on to Sweet Water, expecting to meet the company,
and after reading the letter of instructions from the council to
this camp, my wagon proceeded on slowly. At the Springs, we saw
an aged Indian squaw near the road dwelling in a shelter composed
merely of wild sage and apparently dependent on passing emigrants
for subsistence. She is doubtless left to perish on account of age
and infirmity, but it is likely she will live some time on what she
receives from those who pass by. When we arrived near the summit of the
dividing ridge or south pass, two Indians rode towards us and motioned
for us to stop. Not seeing the other wagons coming after, we stopped to
wait for the wagons and the Indians soon arrived. They made signs that
a large party of them were over the mountain north and they wanted to
"swap." While they were conversing a number more rode over the ridge
and soon after a still larger number. About this time the wagons came
in sight and when the brethren saw so many Indians they were alarmed.
John Pack rode back to the main camp to get some of the brethren to
come up, but J. R. said he would not budge a foot. The brethren
behind were much alarmed, some expecting to be scalped and one W. Carr
ran and hid himself in the sage bushes. No one returned with John Pack
but Norman Taylor and the wagons proceeded towards us. In the meantime,
after learning the object for which the Indians sought us, that none of
them were armed except two, and by a certificate that the first visitor
was a Shoshone chief, Brother Lamb and myself signified that we would
trade with them and soon some of them returned with antelope, buck and
elk skins and robes to trade. I traded some balls and a little powder
for one robe, one elk skin, two buckskins and nine antelope skins and
a pair of moccasins. Lamb bought five antelope skins. While we were
trading, the other wagons arrived and also commenced trading. The
Indians, about sixty in number, about twenty of them boys, all mounted,
seemed highly pleased to trade with us which we did mostly through the
chief. By request of the chief, I gave him a certificate stating that
he appeared friendly and wanted to trade with the whites, etc. The
chief gave us a very strong invitation to go to their camp to trade and
made signs that they would feed us well and we should sleep with them.
I answered him by signs that we should camp when we arrived where the
road crossed the Sweet Water but they were very anxious to have us then
turn off the road and camp. After we started, the chief came up and
wanted to swap a good mule for my spy glass but I refused. I had let
him look through it and he seemed very wishful to try it. When they saw
we were determined to go on, they left us and returned to their camp
while we pursued our journey to the first crossing of Sweet Water where
we arrived and camped at six o'clock, having traveled fourteen miles.

Monday, August 30

This morning the cattle belonging to the camp behind came to us early,
having strayed away. John Pack and Bailey Jacobs went to drive them
back and to trade some with the Indians. We calculated to go on about
eleven miles but before we started, Father Eldridge came up with his
wagon and said he expected Spencer's 1st 50 company up soon. We then
concluded to stay here until they arrived and about three o'clock,
their wagons began to cross the creek. I was glad to find Aaron and
Loren Farr, and William Walker in this company with their families all
well and in good spirits. From Sister Olivia, I received some articles
sent by my family which were very acceptable indeed and made me feel
grateful. This company all appear well and cheerful and are not much
troubled on account of lack of teams. I spent the evening with Loren
and their families. The balance of our camp arrived before dark.

Tuesday, August 31

Our camp except this ten has started on, but Brother Spencer has
concluded to halt here today and I spent the day copying tables of
distances for Loren and also gave him a plot of the city.

September 1847

Wednesday, September 1

We bid farewell to Brother Spencer's company and proceeded on. After
traveling about a mile, we met P. P. Pratt going to see Brother
Spencer and to get some cattle. He says some of the back companies
have lost many head and can scarcely move. A few miles farther we met
the 2nd 50 of Spencer's company. We traveled till nearly dark and
camped with the returning pioneers at the cold spring, having traveled
twenty-two and a quarter miles. The day fine and pleasant. We find the
grass pretty much eaten off all the way. John G. Smith was appointed
captain of the 2nd division in place of Shadrach Roundy who returns.

Thursday, September 2

Started about eight o'clock and after traveling two miles passed
Russell's company of 50 and about five miles farther we passed Elder
Rich's 50 and G. B. Wallace's 50. They all agree to the health and
prosperity of their companies but have lost many cattle and have had
hard work to get along. We passed Captains Foutz and Hone on this long
drive with their companies all well, but complaining much for lack of
teams. I conversed some with Edward Hunter and Elder Taylor. Brother
Hunter will give cash for some cattle if he can buy them. We arrived on
Sweet Water at six o'clock but the ox teams did not get in till eight
o'clock, having traveled twenty-four and a half miles. The evening was
very cold, windy and like for rain. Brother Roundy returned back to the
valley this morning, having met his family.

Friday, September 3

We started on this morning following the new road at the north side
of the Sweet Water, the road sandy in places but much better than the
old road. After traveling about two miles, we saw a lone buffalo about
two miles to the south. John Pack and Lisbon Lamb went to try to kill
him and finally succeeded, on which our ten halted and sent back a
wagon for the meat which detained us about three hours, after which we
proceeded again. A little before the road fords the river the second
time, there is an alkali lake a little north from the road. We joined
the company and also met J. B. Noble's company where the road
joins the old one again. Brother Noble's company are all well and not
so bad off for teams as some of the other companies. We proceeded on a
few miles farther and met J. M. Grant with Willard Snow's 50 which
is the last company on the road. Brother Grant had a child die last
night and his wife is yet very sick and not much expected to recover.
This company have lost many cattle and are so bad off for teams as not
to be able to travel more than ten miles a day which would make it some
day in October before they get through. We went on nearly two miles
farther, then camped for the night near Bitter Cottonwood creek, having
traveled fifteen and three quarters miles. Most of the company camped
back with Brother Snow's company.

Saturday, September 4

We started late this morning and traveled over a very sandy road till
five o'clock, then camped on Ravine Creek, having traveled sixteen

Sunday, September 5

There being alkali springs near, we concluded to go to Independence
Rock at which place we arrived about three o'clock having traveled
twelve and a half miles. Soon after we camped, Lamb and Jacob Cloward
went to chase some buffalo and succeeded in killing one. I walked over
the rock and had some solemn meditations and felt to humble myself and
call upon the Lord for myself and family, for this company, the twelve
and all the companies on the road. Experience has taught me many maxims
of late and I intend to profit by them. Be not hasty to promise, lest
thy promise be considered worthless. Make not many promises without
reflection, lest thou fail to fulfill them and it dampen the confidence
of thy friend. If thou promise many things and regard not to fulfill
them and it damp the confidence of thy friend, then be assured that thy
friends will despise thy promises and have no dependence in them. Seek
not to speculate out of a good brother.

Monday, September 6

This morning the cattle were found down the Sweet Water about six miles
from camp which made it late before we started. While passing the
alkali lakes, a number of the brethren filled the bags with saleratus.
We found the road very sandy to Greasewood Creek and after that it was
somewhat better. About three o'clock the wind began to blow very strong
and cold and we had heavy rain for about two hours.

We proceeded on and arrived at the Willow Spring a little before dark
in the midst of a heavy shower of rain. Thomas Cloward left one of the
old oxen sent back by Wallace on the road. It died before morning.
All except our ten and William's stayed back at Greasewood Creek. We
tried in vain to make a fire but finally went to bed wet and cold,
having eaten nothing since morning. Some of the teamsters have only a
light summer coat with them and they suffer considerably. We traveled
twenty-one and a half miles today.

Tuesday, September 7

This morning our cattle were all missing and it still rains and snows
very heavily. Pack and T. Cloward started early on foot to hunt the
cattle but after following them over seven miles in the storm and
seeing that they had kept on the road towards the Platte river, they
returned to camp. It rained and snowed heavily till eleven o'clock at
which time the balance of the camp arrived. John Pack asked the company
to let us have some of their loose cattle to bring on our wagons till
we overtook ours again, but the captains both generously refused for
some cause or other. However, some of the brethren took their cattle
out of their teams and let us have them and we moved onward. After
traveling about thirteen miles we saw our cattle about four miles to
the left of the road at the foot of a mountain. We halted and Lamb took
one of the mules to fetch the cattle to the road. Soon after Pack and
Jackson Redding came up and learning that we had found the cattle, they
started to them to drive them to camp and Lamb being relieved, returned
to the wagon. We harnessed up and arrived at the mineral spring about
six o'clock, having traveled sixteen and a quarter miles. This spring
has been represented as poisonous but if it is so, it must be in
consequence of minerals under the water. The water has no bad taste
till the cattle trample in it. It then becomes almost black as ink and
this is probably what makes it poisonous.

Wednesday, September 8

We started at eight o'clock and arrived at the Upper Platte ferry soon
after twelve o'clock. We found N. Jacobs and company there hunting.
We forded the river and found it about two feet deep in the channel.
We halted on the banks about two hours at which time the whole camp
arrived. We then proceeded on. The main company went about five miles
but we went till we found a good camping place in a grove of timber on
the banks of the river where the road runs through, then halted for
night, having traveled nineteen miles.

Thursday, September 9

This morning Norton Jacob's company joined us at eight o'clock and
we moved forward. Found the road rough, it being cut up by the other
companies in wet weather. We arrived on Deer Creek about sundown and
camped for the night, having traveled twenty-two and a quarter miles.
The day fine and very pleasant. Joseph Hancock killed an elk which the
brethren packed to camp on horseback about sixteen miles.

Friday, September 10

We have had a strong southwest wind all night and the morning is
somewhat cool. We started a little before eight o'clock and had good
traveling. We saw many herds of buffalo but the hunters did not get
any while passing. We arrived at the river A La Perle at three o'clock
and camped for the night having traveled seventeen and a half miles.
A while before dark, some of the men came in with a part of a buffalo
which they killed. Lewis Barney also killed a young one which was
considerably fat. The meat was all packed in on horses. One of the men
killed a wolf out of which we got considerable grease for the wagons.
It was decided to have a guard each night the remainder of the journey,
every man to stand in his turn, four each night.

Saturday, September 11

Got up at twelve o'clock and stood guard till daylight. The morning
very fine and pleasant. Three of the brethren arrived from the camp
back and said that during the night before last the Indians had
stolen sixteen or seventeen of their horses and they were in pursuit
of them. We were detained some on account of several of the horses
having rambled off, but about nine o'clock we started on and traveled
to the La Bonte River, distance nineteen and a half miles. There are
many buffalo around here also and although we have plenty of meat, the
brethren continue to kill them. We find the feed eaten off bare almost
every place we come to and it is difficult to find grass to sustain our

Sunday, September 12

We traveled this day seventeen and three quarters miles and camped
by Heber's Spring on Horseshoe Creek. We found the spring had ceased
running but there was water in the creek a little north. The roadometer
has broken down today over the same ground it broke as we went west.
Our bread stuff is now out and we have to live solely on meat the
balance of the journey. John Pack has got flour enough to last him
through. We have all messed together until ours was eaten, and now John
Pack proposes for each man to mess by himself. He has concealed his
flour and beans together with tea, coffee, sugar, etc., and cooks after
the rest have gone to bed. Such things seem worthy of remembrance for a
time to come.

Monday, September 13

We fixed the roadometer this morning, then traveled to Dead Timber
Creek, distance fifteen miles. Here we find good feed and plenty of
wood and water.

Tuesday, September 14

Started at nine o'clock and traveled till about five, then camped on
the Platte River, having traveled twenty-four and a quarter miles. In
consequence of some things which have passed and some which at present
exist, I have concluded to go on as fast as circumstances will permit
to Winter Quarters and I intend to start tomorrow. Some have opposed
it, but not with a good grace. However, I have no fears that the
council will censure me when they know the cause. If they do, I will
bear the censure in preference to what I now bear. Before dark Luke
Johnson, William A. Empey and Appleton Harmon came up from Laramie,
having learned from an Indian that wagons were near. They say that a
party of Sioux warriors have got the brethren's horses, seventeen in
number, on the Raw Hide, about eighteen miles north. They say that
about fifty armed men might go and probably get them, but not fewer.
The Sioux are at war with the Crows and Pawnees and reports say that
there is a large party of the Pawnees a little down the river.

Wednesday, September 15

We started a little after eight, forded the Platte without any
difficulty and at three o'clock concluded to stop for the night, having
traveled twenty-one and a quarter miles over very sandy road. The ox
teams have kept nearly up with us and it is evident they intend to keep
with us or kill their teams, and being aware that if the teams are
injured we shall be blamed for it, we have given up going ahead to save
the teams.

Thursday, September 16

Today we traveled nineteen and a half miles over good road and camped
near the river amongst good grass.

Friday, September 17

This morning Thomas Brown, Ezra Beckstead, Mathew Welch, Benjamin
Roberts, David Perkins and William Bird started to go through to Winter
Quarters in consequence of having no bread. We traveled nineteen and
three quarters miles and camped again on the Platte. The road very good.

Saturday, September 18

Last night John Pack's gray horse was stolen from his wagon. He lays
it to the brethren ahead and with Norton Jacobs and Joseph Hancock has
heaped a pretty long string of severe abusive language on them which
I consider to be premature, unjustifiable and wicked. Two Frenchmen
came to the camp and said they were camped below on a trading excursion
among the Sioux. Inasmuch as some of the brethren wanted to trade with
them, it was concluded to move down opposite to them. We accordingly
traveled four and a quarter miles then again camped on the banks of the
river and the brethren bought a number of buffalo robes, etc. Norton
Jacobs bought five robes for seven common calico shirts.

Sunday, September 19

The traders say they will move down the river today to where there are
plenty of buffalo. Our camp also traveled ten and three quarters miles
and camped a little below Chimney Rock. There are many herds of buffalo
around and Lewis Barney killed one which will give us a little fresh
meat. The weather has been very fine and warm for some days past. This
evening there are some signs of stormy weather.

Monday, September 20

Today we traveled seven and a quarter miles, the day very hot. We
turned off the road to camp at Rubidoos' request while they killed some
buffalo. They gave us some very nice meat.

Tuesday, September 21

We have concluded to wait here until the balance of the company
arrives. Afternoon went over the river and had a good feast on buffalo
ribs with the Frenchmen. The victuals were cooked by a squaw but looked
much cleaner than our men cook it. Evening it became cloudy and soon
followed by cold rain which continued till two o'clock.

Wednesday, September 22

At one o'clock, I got up to stand guard and found the night extremely
cold and unpleasant on account of rain. The morning is cloudy and cold.
The wagons have not yet come in sight which makes us think there is
something the matter with them.

Thursday, September 23

Today Jackson Redding and Sanderson went back to see if they could see
the other wagons. They returned at night and said the company were
within a few miles having been detained at Laramie to recover their
horses, most of which they got. They state that news has come to the
fort by a Sioux Indian that the twelve and their company had all their
horses stolen at the Pacific Springs during a snow storm. The Sioux
stole them supposing them to belong to the Shoshones. The man that
brought the news stole seventeen but lost eight in the mountains, the
remainder he brought to Laramie and the brethren there knew some of
them and demanded them. He gave them up, at least all they could prove
and four of the brethren started with them to meet the twelve. The
Indian says there were nine of them who stole the horses.

Friday, September 24

We resumed our journey this morning and traveled thirteen and a half
miles, then camped where the road runs close to the river. The weather
is again fine and hot in the day time but the nights are cold and
frosty. Joseph Hancock killed a buffalo cow and John Norton an antelope
which will supply the company with a little meat each, most of whom are

Saturday, September 25

The day cloudy and some like for a storm. We made an early start and
traveled to Crab Creek, distance twenty and a quarter miles then
camped for the night. The land on both sides the river is literally
spotted with vast herds of buffalo, but our hunters are not very lucky
as yet. From the fact of there being so many buffalo in this region,
we are inclined to believe we shall see but few lower down and this
is probably the best chance we will have to lay in a supply to last
us home. During the afternoon, Joseph Hancock killed a buffalo cow
and Captain Rappleyee sent a wagon to fetch the meat to camp. When it
arrived John Pack took the hind quarters and the best meat off the rest
of the cow, together with all the tallow, then sent for Rappleyee to
take what he had left and divide it amongst the company. When Rappleyee
saw what he had done, he felt angry and Pack and he had some high words
on the subject. Brother Pack's conduct has caused many unpleasant
feelings against him among the brethren. He takes all the tallow he can
lay his hands on, and all the best meat and has now got more than will
serve him home while many of the rest have scarcely any and that of
the poorest pieces. He has plenty of flour, meal, beans, tea, coffee,
sugar, etc., while most of the camp are destitute of everything but
meat, and while he continues to take the tallow and best of the meat
there will be hard feelings against him. He has disgraced himself in
the estimation of many within the past few days. I do not think I can
ever forget him for his treatment of me, but I cherish no malice nor
feelings of revenge, but I hope and pray that I may forever have wisdom
to keep from under his power. There have been six or eight buffalo
killed by the camp and it is intended to stay here tomorrow and try to
get meat to last us through as it is not likely we shall have another
privilege as good as this. Most of the camp now begin to feel that it
is necessary for us to make our way home as fast as possible to save
our teams and escape the cold rain and snowstorms.

Sunday, September 26

Many of the brethren are gone out hunting. The weather continues fine
and warm. In the afternoon we had a strong northwest wind. During the
day the second division killed more than enough meat to last them home,
but were totally unwilling to let the first division have any although
they killed none, not having but two or three guns in the division.
This also has tended to increase the feeling of envy and bitterness
which already exists too much. Thomas Cloward has manifested feelings
and conduct worse than the general run of gentiles and unworthy of a
saint. He seems to have drunk into Pack's spirit for they act very much

Monday, September 27

Those of the first division who have no meat have concluded to move
on a few miles to where there are more buffalo as they have mostly
left here, but the second division will not move till they have dried
their meat some. We went on three miles and then camped where there
are plenty of buffalo over the river. Lisbon Lamb, Lewis Barney and
John Norton volunteered to go and kill what meat they can for those who
have none. They have got enough to last them through. It is said that
our coming down here has given feelings but it is plain and evident
that there are several men who will find fault and deal out wholesale
censure whatever is done, and for my part I shall remember John Pack,
Thomas Cloward, Norton Jacobs and Joseph Hancock for some time to come.
Such little, selfish, unmanly conduct as has been manifested by them,
is rarely exhibited except by the meanest classes of society. A man who
will openly and boldly steal is honorable when compared with some of
their underhanded conduct. During the day the brethren killed five cows
and one bull which are considered sufficient to last the first division

Tuesday, September 28

We waited till after nine o'clock for the second division to come up
but not being yet in sight we moved onward, traveled seventeen and a
half miles, then camped on Sand Hill Creek about a mile from the river.
We have seen more buffalo today than I ever saw in one day, supposed to
be not less than 200,000. We had some trouble to make a road through
them safely. We also saw two horses with the herd. Jackson Redding went
to try and catch them but found them perfectly wild.

Wednesday, September 29

We got an early start this morning and traveled till four o'clock,
distance twenty and a quarter miles. We camped near the river in high
grass. The road has run close to the river all day except a few miles
beyond Castle Creek and although the ground is perfectly dry, it is
very rough, it having been cut up in wet weather. Watch and Wolfe
Creeks had abundance of water in them, as much as when we went up.
Castle River was about a foot deep. We have not seen many buffalo today
but after we camped, John Norton shot two at one shot. L. Barney also
killed a young cow. The weather is yet fine and very warm.

Thursday, September 30

This day we traveled only sixteen and a quarter miles, then camped a
quarter of a mile east of Rattlesnake Creek on the banks of the river.
In this creek, there is still a very heavy current of water running. It
appears that some of the brethren left their fires burning this morning
and the prairie has caught fire and is still burning furiously.

October 1847

Friday, October 1

This morning I wrote a short letter and left it in a post for the
company behind. We traveled twenty miles and camped on Bluff Creek. The
day fine and very warm.

Saturday, October 2

This morning we calculated to travel eleven miles, but on arriving at
the North Bluff fork, we found no grass and were compelled to continue
on. We traveled till the road strikes the river and some grass, then
camped, having traveled eighteen and a half miles. Three buffalo have
been killed today and there are considerable in this region. Two of the
oxen gave out and had to be left on the road.

Sunday, October 3

This morning we traveled four and a quarter miles, then camped opposite
some islands where there is pretty good feed and willows. The day has
been exceedingly warm and the brethren have dried a good quantity of
meat. Considerable anxiety and feeling has originated in the breasts
of two or three brethren in consequence of a rumor being circulated
which deeply concerns one individual but it is not known whom. In the
evening, a strong north wind blew up which made it turn very cool.

Monday, October 4

Cool and pleasant. We traveled twenty and three quarters miles and
found that the last company have made a new road near the bluffs to
avoid a very bad slough. We went a little on the old road and then
struck across to the new road but had considerable difficulty in
crossing the slough. We camped beside a small lake of not very good
water and several miles from timber.

Tuesday, October 5

Pleasant day. We traveled nineteen miles, then turned off the road
about a half a mile to camp near a small bunch of timber. The brethren
have killed a good many buffalo today. They are very plentiful here,
and wolves abundant.

Wednesday, October 6

The largest part of the company again concluded to tarry a day again
although there is little feed here. Some determined to go on a piece
and amongst the rest, I felt more willing to go on than to tarry.
Accordingly eleven wagons started, viz. Jackson Redding, William
A. Empey, Lewis Barney, Roswell Stevens, Cummings, Joseph Hancock,
H. W. Sanderson, John Pack, Thos. Cloward, Zebedee Coltrin and
Norton Jacobs. We traveled seventeen and a half miles and then turned
off the road about a half a mile to camp.

Thursday, October 7

We started a little before 10:00 a.m. and traveled till nearly dark and
had then to run over a mile from the road to camp. We traveled nineteen
and a quarter miles. Wind very strong from the north and a very cold

Friday, October 8

Just as we started this morning, twelve or fifteen Indians were seen
running over the river towards us. They soon came up to the wagons
which were somewhat scattered and although they shook hands, they
showed savage hostility. Four of the oxen were not yet yoked up; these
they drove off from the wagons which now began to draw together.
They soon satisfied us that they were bent on robbing us and without
ceremony took Jack Redding's horse from behind the wagon. Lamb went to
take it from them and seized the lariat which another immediately cut
with his knife. Lamb then got on the horse, but no sooner on than two
Indians pulled him off and marched off with the horse. They stole Jack
Redding's knife out of its sheath and one from John Pack. They also
tried to get Jack off the horse he was riding, but he kept his seat.
They tried Skeen's horse but he kicked one of them over. The Indians
then tried to get the men out of their wagons so that they might get
in and plunder, but every man kept in his wagon to guard it and we
concluded to turn about and go back to the company. We accordingly
started and the Indians turned back towards the timber with the horse,
four oxen, two knives and a sack of salt. After traveling back about
six miles, we met the company, told the story and bore their slang and
insults without saying much, but not without thinking a great deal.
The whole company were then formed in two lines. All the arms were
loaded and each man that could raise a gun was ordered to walk beside
the wagons, the horsemen to go ahead. We then proceeded on and when
we came opposite to where we met with the Indians, the horsemen went
down and found the oxen where we left them. They brought them and we
traveled till dark, then camped near the river, having traveled five
and a quarter miles from last night, exclusive of the distance we went
back. A strong guard was placed around the cattle and camp and kept up
through the night. Many hard speeches have passed among the brethren,
such as "damned hypocrites," "damned liars," "mutineers," etc., and
most of those who started ahead are ordered to travel in the rear all
the time. This savage, tyrannical conduct was one thing which induced
some to leave and undertake to go through alone and more peaceably
and it will still leave feelings of revenge and hatred which will
require some time to cover up. Young Babcock shook his fist in Zebedee
Coltrin's face and damned him and said he could whip him. For my part,
I shall be glad when I get in more peaceable society, and I think I
shall not easily be caught in such a scrape again.

Saturday, October 9

We have had no disturbance from Indians. We started at six o'clock and
went on five miles to get better feed. We then halted for breakfast.
The remainder of the day's travel was mostly over dog towns. A United
States soldier came up to the wagons and went with us a few miles. He
says there are ninety of them on the island surveying and looking out a
place to build a fort. We traveled seventeen and a quarter miles today,
then camped near a low bench of land where there is plenty of grass and
water and willows for fuel. A number of the soldiers came over to camp.
They say the Pawnees are perfectly enraged and savage and that the
worst band of between four and five hundred are on the north side the
Platte about forty miles below.

Sunday, October 10

Morning fine but cold wind. The captains called the camp together and
asked whether we shall wait here three days or a week for the twelve,
or shall we continue on to Winter Quarters. Thirty men voted to go on,
seventeen voted to wait and the remainder did not vote. The majority
having voted to go on, we started and traveled very slowly till about
five o'clock, then turned off to the river to camp, having traveled
sixteen miles. There are many new tracks of Indians on the sand bar,
but we have seen none today.

Monday, October 11

Morning, cloudy and cold. We have had a little very cold rain and
there is great appearance for more. We started on but it continued to
rain heavily till near noon. The afternoon was fair but very cold. We
traveled twenty-one and a quarter miles and camped amongst high grass
close to timber. There is every chance for Indians tonight if any are
near. The camp in general are much dissatisfied with the camping place.

Tuesday, October 12

This morning the weather was severely cold with strong wind. Some of
the cattle were missing and the owners not going to hunt them till the
rest were ready to start on, we were detained till eleven o'clock and
then proceeded. We found plenty of water in Wood River but did not lose
much time crossing. We took one of the late wagon trails and arrived
on Prairie Creek a little before sundown, having traveled fifteen and
three quarters miles. We have seen no Indians yet and all goes well but
the cold weather.

Wednesday, October 13

Morning very cold indeed with strong northwest wind. We found the creek
difficult to cross, it being soft and miry, but all soon got over
safely and we proceeded on. The road is sandy about five or six miles
on the bluffs and very crooked all the way. We arrived and camped on
the Loup Fork at dark, having traveled twenty-one and three quarters
miles. The day has been excessively cold.

Thursday, October 14

Much time was lost this morning in hunting for a place to cross the
river. It was finally concluded to cross a mile higher up and we
proceeded to the place. While going up we saw a company of horsemen and
two wagons on the other side the river, which we soon recognized to be
our brethren from Winter Quarters. All the wagons got over safely and
camped on the hill, having traveled two miles. The company is a part of
the old police going to meet the next company. We were gladdened with
the news they bring from Winter Quarters.

Friday, October 15

The brethren of the police started early this morning to go on and meet
the next company. They got well over the river but not without getting
into the water to lift at the wagon wheels. It was late when we started
on account of some oxen being missing and there are some who will not
look for their cattle till all the rest are ready to start. We traveled
till a little after three and camped on the banks of the Loup Fork,
distance twelve and three quarters miles, day warmer.

Saturday, October 16

The night has been very stormy, there being a strong wind, rain, and
very cold. We made an early start and by noon arrived at the mission
station. We found the Pawnees busy gathering corn, probably nearly a
thousand of men, women and children. They soon began to come to the
wagons and their chiefs made inquiries by signs about the Chirrarots
or Sioux. Some of the brethren gave them to understand that the Sioux
were within five days of them. The chief immediately gave the word to
the rest and in half an hour the squaws had loaded their corn on ponies
and mules and then began to march towards the river. They show great
fear of the Sioux. They were very anxious to have us camp with them
tonight but we kept moving on. One of the wagons was upset crossing
a ravine. Several of the brethren traded for corn. At three o'clock,
we arrived and turned out the teams on Beaver River, having traveled
seventeen and a quarter miles. Soon after we arrived, some of the
Indians came up, having followed with the idea of trading. They have
conducted themselves peaceably so far, but they are not to be trusted.
In consequence of their following us, it was the feeling of most of the
brethren to go on a few miles after dark. At 5:45 we started on and
traveled till 8:30 being six and a half miles, then camped beside the
lakes. Evening very fine and pleasant. We have traveled twenty-three
and three quarters miles today.

Sunday, October 17

We started early and traveled to Looking Glass, then halted for
breakfast. Morning windy and cold. After breakfast, we started on again
and traveled till four o'clock, distance sixteen and a quarter miles,
then camped at a point of timber near a creek or lake and not far from
the Loup Fork.

Monday, October 18

Started at eight o'clock and traveled to Shell Creek distance eighteen
and three quarters miles, day pleasant but cool.

Tuesday, October 19

The night was excessively cold and this morning there is considerable
ice. We got an early start and traveled to where the road leaves the
river and crosses to the Horn. At this place there is a liberty pole
set up by some of the brethren. We have traveled today twenty-three and
a quarter miles and we now find that the grass is all burned off ahead
of us as far as we can see, probably to the Elk Horn. We are cheered by
a view of the timber on that stream.

Wednesday, October 20

We started early and found the prairie all burned off to the Elk Horn
except in small patches. We arrived at the Horn about noon and soon
after commenced crossing where Hosea Stout and company crossed. The
water was nearly three feet deep and the bottom somewhat soft, but we
were soon all over without accident except John Pack, who broke his
wagon tongue. We then had to make a road through high, strong grass for
upwards of half a mile and found a very bad creek or slough to cross.
When we again struck the main road, we found it good and started for
the Papea where we arrived soon after dark, all except one wagon which
was left a mile back. The evening cool and windy.

Thursday, October 21

This morning, Brother Empey, Lamb and myself started early accompanied
by six horsemen and arrived in Winter Quarters a little before noon.
I found my family all well except Moroni who is very sick and his
mother is somewhat sick. Their circumstances are not good, but in
other respects they have been prosperous for which I thank my God.
There has been much sickness here and many deaths during the fall
and many are now suffering for lack of some of the comforts of life.
We have been prosperous on our journey home and have arrived in nine
weeks and three days, including a week's delay waiting for the twelve
and killing buffalo. Our health has been remarkably good, but we have
lacked provisions, many of us having nothing but dry buffalo meat. I
have succeeded in measuring the whole distance from the City of the
Great Salt Lake to this place, except a few miles between Horse Creek
and the A La Bonte River which was taken from the measurement going
up. I find the whole distance to be 1,032 miles and am now prepared
to make a complete traveler's guide from here to the Great Salt Lake,
having been careful in taking the distance from creek to creek, over
bluffs, mountains, etc. It has required much time and care and I have
continually labored under disadvantages in consequence of the companies
feeling no interest in it. The health of my family has encouraged me
for all that is past and my secret gratitude shall ascend to Heaven for
the unbounded kindness and mercies which the Almighty has continually
poured upon them in my absence.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "William Clayton's Journal - A Daily Record of the Journey of the Original Company of - "Mormon" Pioneers from Nauvoo, Illinois, to the Valley of - the Great Salt Lake" ***

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