Transcript

Transcript for Farr, Sally M. Porter, [Reminiscences], in "Utah Pioneer Biographies," 44 vols., 10:9-11

On the third of July the company of which our family were members, left Winter Quarters. Our company was what was known as an independent company because each family owned their own wagon. Many of the immigrants did not have the means to purchase their wagons and the church had an immigrant fund which provided wagons in which these people made the journey accross the plains. They could work later and pay the church back into the fund. This also applied to those crossing the ocean, if they did not have the money for their passage the church furnished it and they could pay it back after they were settled in Utah.

August [Isaac] Canfield was the captain or our company which had 25 wagons in it. He came from Utah to act as our leader and guide as he knew the route and what hazards were to be faced. On the 3rd of July, 1863, we started out and went only five miles and then camped so as to make sure that everything was in readiness. The next day being the 4th of July, a few of the young people came from Florence to our camp and there they had the first dance, on the ground.

It was the custom from then on during the journey to spend our evenings in dancing and singing when we were not too tired by the day's journey. On the 5th of July we started on our long trek across the plains. The weather was fine throughout with the exception of a few showers. We were very fortunate in having no sickness, deaths or accidents of any kind to mar our journey. Every day after the noon hour, Captain Canfield would ride ahead to find a suitable place, one with plenty of water and wood, where we could make our camp that night. Twice we were stopped by herds of buffalo and we were often visited by Indians, but the captain was familiar with their habits and customs and he made friends with them by giving them trinkets and food.

Our journey often took us across the Platte river and those of us that were walking would hold to the rear end of the wagons. We waded right on through the water and in order to avoid delay, our clothing was allowed to dry on our bodies. As luck would have it, no one ever felt any bad effects from these soakings.

When we arrived at Fort Bridger, Wyoming, which was a military camp, we were detained by officers who inspected everyone that came into Utah. They were searching for anything that might have a United States mark or stamp on it. One of the boys from Utah had a revolver and he asked one of the young ladies to wear it under her dress until they left the camp.

We arrived in Salt Lake City, Utah, on October 17, 1863, and there our company separated.

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