Transcript for "Excerpts from the Journal of John F. F. Dorius," Church emigration, 1857

Tuesday, June 9. We arrived in Iowa City in the afternoon, and were at once guided to the camp place about two or three miles , and here we raised our tents which were pitched in a circle like fashion, each tent was intended for 18 persons; each family obtained a handcart from the railroad station. Here I saw, among others, Bro. Christian Christiansen who had brought me into the Church. by baptism and had emigrated to Zion in 1852, and had been sent out from Utah on his mission (two years) to the United States, and he was here to assist in the emigration.

Friday, June 12. In the afternoon we broke up our encampment and commenced our journey westward with our handcarts. After traveling 2 miles we camped for the night on an attractive place, where everything was green and beautiful. It was a fine <sight> vision to see the many tents which were placed in a couple of rows and people engaged in cooking and making attending to camp duties. I felt glad over <in enjoying> this free life outdoor in the open <outdoor>, and it was a pleasure to haul green branches, and to listen to the hymns of thanks which arose from the different tents before the occupants retired to their rest for the night. Sunday, June 14. On this day the camp was divided into eight districts, each with its captain. My brother Carl [Dorius] and I were appointed captains over two divisions, consisting of nine handcarts each. The <We spent the> rest of the days of this week passed with us <by> traveling forward, not very fast on account of the many sick among us. So many were sick among us that the four vehicles hauled by mules were often filled to capacity.

Sunday, June 21. An old sister who had died while we were in camp was buried in the woods. We continued our journey thru Iowa westward each day, and the sick continued to delay us, causing us to proceed slower than was intended. The weather was good though warm, but we, as a rule, remained in camp two or three hours in the middle of the day on account of the heat.

Thursday, July 2. We reached the town of Council Bluffs, and made camp nearby that town for the night.

Friday, July 3. We crossed the Missouri River in the morning on a steamboat; passed by a little town called Omaha, where some Saints from Scandinavia were living. They came and greeted us. Our eyes then saw for the first time those people called Indians, or wild men. They were nearly naked. On the same day, we traveled on to Florence, where we arrived about noon and was met by many good Saints from Scandinavia, some of whom were making preparations to go to the Valley, while others lived temporarily here. We made our camp near the town of Florence, in the evening we were visited by brethren from Zion, among whom were <was a son> Brigham Young's brother <who spoke encouragingly to us. > The Indians visited us and we gave them some of our food and drinks.

Sunday, July 5. While we were in camp near Florence our company was re-organized into four divisions. Elder Christian Christiansen from Zion was appointed our leader and captain for the whole company, with and Elder <James P.> Parks and Elder [blank space] Rudd as his assistants. C.C.A. Christensen, Johan F.F. Dorius, Ole C. Olsen and Carl C.N. Dorius were <each>{C}{C}{C} appointed captains over <such> sixteen handcarts, about one hundred persons.

Tuesday, July 7. We left Florence in the afternoon and began our journey with handcarts across the plains or wilderness. We continued our journey each day, and a general good understanding prevailed in the whole company, <for> which a great deal of honor belonged to that good man, Bro. Christian Christiansen, who acted as a father to us. There were, of course, several sick in the company, <but> yet not so many, and only a few deaths occurred among us. which is something that cannot be avoided on so long a journey.

After many trials and exertions we arrived in Salt Lake City on Sunday, Sept. 13, 1857, about 2 o'clock in the afternoon.