Transcript for Biography of Thomas Henry White, circa 1912
In 1866 I was called to go back to the Missouri River to help bring in the emigrants. This was quite an undertaking for a boy of nineteen. We started about the last of March with ox teams. Being blessed with health and strength, I done all the blacksmithing, repainring, and shoeing cattle etc. on the journey at noon and evenings, my meals were eaten while driving the oxen or after work in the evenings. They had singing and dancing nearly every night.
On the Platte River we had a race to see who would get in first. It rained for three days fillin all the hollows and gulleys. In some places it was almost impassable. One place, where the stream was high, Andrew Patterson and George Halliday, captains of our company, found a bridge about two feet under water. This enabled us to cross over the stream and we landed in good time, ahead of the other companies.
Two weeks later we started back to Utah. The wagons were loaded with telegraph wire. My Grandparents, Abraham Rivers and Hannah Dowswell Rivers and an aunt with a baby were among the passengers in my wagon. I was driving three yoke of oxen: one yoke belonging to Dr. Benizel, one to Enoch Reese and one other yoke all from Salt Lake.
On the way back we had to pass examination before the U.S. Soldiers at Ft. Laramie, which was successful and we went on our way rejoicing. From here the streams were very high. We would put cattle enough to reach the sand bar to be sure of crossing. Late one night, one yoke of oxen give out and had to be left.
Next morning I went back two miles and found the oxen. When I returned to camp the last wagon was pulling out. I had to yoke up may cattle and hurry to catch the company. On our journey back we suffered with heavy storms and very cold weather, arriving in Salt Lake very late in the Fall, just after October conference, glad to be home again.