John initially traveled to the Salt Lake Valley in the William B. Hodgetts Company in 1856. He was a shoemaker.
At the end of a mission to Sweden, he traveled home with the Miner G. Atwood Company in 1865. He assisted a group from Copenhagen heading for the Salt Lake Valley. When the group left Florence, John was appointed steward of the company. During this trek, he was involved in an Indian attack near Laramie and was shot with two or three arrows in his arm.
He returned to America in 1865 on the ship Hamburg.