Transcript for Hansen, Peter Olsen, Journal [ca. 1876], 121-24
When the weather began to be hot Some drunken rowdies came t[w]o or three times to the camp in a rather insulting manner, over which I complained to the Sheriff Mr. Powers, who was a fine man and done what he could for us.
Finely some of the inhabitants began to think that they were in danger of taking the colerah [cholera] from us although we had no colerah in camp. Consequently a committy [committee] was sent to request us to move to a place 1 mile out. The committy said that we would do better to comply with the peoples request or we would be apt to be drove away. We would rather move off any hour to a better place, but we had not received our cattle yet.
Now However now we had to hire somebody to move our wagons for us. Mr. Powers advised us to go to the Catholic mission for team. I walked out there but could not obtain any team. I then found a man who had a yoke of cattle and he moved all the wagons for a dollar a piece.
After moving the camp I went to Weston and was gone 4 days and on my return I found Colerah in the camp, and four had died. Then a brother Perry brought our cattle and ordres for me to move the camp up to Atchison; but many of the cattle were unbroke or mismatched and none of the brethren knew anything about driving ox team, hence we had to leave half of the camp and move on with one half first; and when I got back after the other half five more had been swept away by that dreadful disease. One of these was a sister of the venerable Lady Widerborg, a noble soul, the mother of three fine children. Another was <our good> Sister <M[agdaline Christina]> Lund whose one daughter Laura afterwards became a wife unto Elder Van Cott. And another was a brother Fred Franzen [Frandsen] who was a very good man and left a good wife [Jann Catrine or Catherine] who is still living. This was a dredful shock to my feelings.
One morning I got bid [bit] in my right hand by a Possom which made me unable to hold the whip that day until a Sister Sandersen brought me some oil that took the swelling off.
When we got to Mormon Grove, which was the name of the camp ground, we helped to make a farm for some who were to remain there for want of means.
Now, our number had become so small that we only amounted to 30 teams <tens of wagons> not enough for a company wherefore we were added to two other tens of english saints under Elder Jacob [Foutz] Secrist to & as captain of fifty. <Niels R[asmussen]. Beck & Lars Kier [Kjar]> And some of my company
had <did> complain of of my being fretful and apt to scoaled [scold], and also that I had been too intimate with the b aforementioned young sisters he . deemed it best to relea e<se> me and let them have another one to lead them, and said: whom do you want? and two <some> of the Norvegians [Norwegians] of one Hogans countrimen spoke up for him, and he was voted in as Captain of the 1st ten of the danish devision. I then motioned that Elders [Johan] Eilertsen & N[iels]. Peterson be captains of the other two tens, which we inquired for information and found that I had acted very imprudent by sleeping in the other tent as the same tent as the girl and exposing myself to suspicion. He rather excused my fretfulness by reason of trying circumstances and blamed my censors for finding fault with me for speaking against filthyness which was my duty, and chastened me before the whole camp for being so imprudent, yet he was more lenient than I deserved and I felt sorry of my folly and humbled myself before God & my brethren; and I have many time since then felt thankful for not at that time being lead deeper into transgression and losing my standing in the church. Nevertheless there are those yet who yet believe that I had committed Bro. Prom had heard Beck say that they wouldn’t have Br H. to lead them over the plains, and considering all circumstances, he [blank space] motion was carried. Then a serge[a]nt of the guard was called for and I recommended Niels Beck, knowing that he had served in the Army and he was accepted
Captain Secrist desired me to serve as an interpreter and as such he wished me to travel next to the last wagon of the english devision and this brought me ahead of capt [Erick G.M.] Hogan, and my accusers didn’t like the looks of it. By that time I had bought a light wagon for 45 dollars which I borrowed of br [Lars Peter] Lund the late widower, and br Niels Johansen let me have the use of a good yoke of oxen as he would rather be without them while traveling. Thus I was well off for conveyance yet I had to put up with bows which I made of a grape vine and being rather low made my carriage look rather humble.
<We started on the 13 or 14 of June> After traveling four days Sargent Beck told Cpt Secrist <in German> that he wished to be released for he felt as he had been whipped, and did not have the spirit of his calling wherefore the Captain called a council and had me voted in as Sargant of the guard. By this means I was practically
brought restored to my lost position as a general servant to the people, and although they had rejected me that were glad to have me serve them, for they had already said that Hogan was not qualified for the task.
I must not forget that my young friend Hans Peterson was
say called to assist me. No[a]h T[homas]. Guyman was the sargant of the guard of the whole camp.
About the time a good sister from Norway died yet with colerah [cholera].
The above council was held on the 17th and I am not sure but what we laid still two [or] three days on account of a sickness
On the 20 we travelled a few miles & encamped within half a mile of Big Nemehaw, [Nemaha] and used the time for washing & yoke making.
On the 21st & 22d we travelled till an hour before sundown, and on the 23d we travelled and camped before sundown after crossing a rocky creek. At noon we cold and sorefooted at fire at 8:20; and at night we buried a dead man.
On Sunday 24th we laid by, and as it had become necessary to do something for to lighten some of the loads, those who were able were persuaded to take some freight at the note of $11 Dollars in cash per 100 lb. Some government teams past us. <Some of> our horses (7 head I think) got scared & ran off, and the captain and some other 2 went in search of them but did not find them.
On Monday the 25 we travelled twelve miles and camped
on <beyond> the Big Blue but the horses were not found.
On the 26, we burried a little child which had died with the colerah [cholera] Also, a 3 year old girl of Niels Clemensen. Did not travel on account of the lost horses. The texian [Texan] company came on (under captain Zeth [Seth M.] Blair I think.) Also Bro Ballentine [Richard Ballantyne] with his company (I think)[.] Long horned cattle. Horses not found.
On the 28 we burried our last victim to the colerah Niels Mauritzen’s wife [Johanne] a good sister, and travelled 13 miles.
On the 29 We laid still waiting for our Captain and the two tens.
we done some [illegible] Captain Secrist about the horses and he went off again.
On the 30th we travelled 10 miles. Met a fur train from fort Laramie[.] The horses came on, but the captain was sick with the colerah we were told.
On Sunday 1st of July we moved two miles to a running water and encamped near the Texas company. Afternoon Williams’s train came on. (I think it was bro. Thomas Williams’s, who was a merchant in S.L. City). Afterwards another fur train from fort Laramie came and encamped near by. A sick man was missing in Blair’s camp, and we made a general search for him but he was not found.
On Monday 2 <towards noon> they [the] two tens came on; and Bro Secrist died soon after. He had been severely attacked by the colerah while out days & nights on horseback, hunting for the lost horses. We travelled some in the afternoon and encamped on the prairie.
On the 3d we traveled 15 miles and encamped on the Little Blue, and
on the 4th we laid still and Brother Stevenson being a tinner, had bought a lot of tin for to make up when he got home. Out of this he made a coffin for Br Secrist corpse in order to have it taken along to the home of the saints, but as he could not make it tight enough to keep the stench from leaking out, we laid still on Wednesday the 4th to burry him. We also burried a little boy. And now as Elder Dewel [Osmyn Deuel], the captain of the 1st ten had shown by his action that he t[h]ought it was his duty to lead the company in the dead Captain’s place, and bro [Noah Thomas] Guyman thought it was wrong, he called a counsil of us Elders from Zion, Dewel [Osmyn Deuel], [Erick] Hogan, [Peter] Hansen, [Charles] Smith & himself, to be held off from camp. The result was that Guymon was sustained as the proper person to take charge of the company.
On Thursday 5 we traveled on and had a stampede in the english division caused by somebody kicking to an old stove pipe hat, and six wagons were turned over and an old lady got hurt; also an ox got hurt some. However we were thankful that this sometimes drea<d>ful occurence kept within so small limits.
On the 6 Some Cheyennes came to our camp. We traveled to where the road leaves Little Blue for 8 miles. There were many springs.
On the 7th we travelled on and camped where the road leaves that river for good and saw several Buffalos.
Sunday 8th We had a meeting in the morning and partook of the sacrament and traveled about 15 miles and camped on the prairie.
Monday 9 We traveled on to Platte river, 20 miles.
On the 10 We traveled passed Fort Kearney and encamped on the river bank of the [text missing] travelling 14 miles.
My diary do[es] not tell what was done on the 11, 12 & 13 only that a buffalo was killed, which was dragged to the camp where the people were pleased to look at it before it was dressed and cut up.
On the 14 we travelled in the forenoon
On Sunday 15. We travelled in the afternoon. One Buffalo was killed.
Nothing written for 4 days, only that we passed the Texas company on the 18th
On the 20th we forded the South fork and encamped on the high land.
On the 21st We travelled to Ash hollow, went down through and camped on the flat below. I advised the people to go and gather currants & cherries in the hollow
On Sunday 22d We travelled up the river. I confirmed a danish boy who had been baptized.
Now I have nothing to copy from for a while but I recollect <of> travelling very late one night <of> the feed being rather poor in the Black hills, and that we camped on Deer creek.
On the 18 August we burried a sister. Met with a company of six wagons from the Valley, as we still called it in those days. Most of the brethren in that company were mission[ar]ies for England, and they cheered us much with their good report and testimony. Six men on horse back past us westward with a drove of oxen.
On the 19th we travelled about 12 miles, crossed a muddy creek. Very hot.
Wednesday 20th We travelled whole day & camped at a spring.
From here to Green river we were scarce ever free from the stench of dead cattle and at the poison springs many had died and 8 head laid in a double row as if they had been struck dead by a thunder bolt while hitched to the wagon.
A new route was found so that we avoided the Poison Spring, and as our cattle was getting very weak, we got along rather slow, and it was pretty hard getting over the Big Mountain.
In the evening of the 6 of Sept., we encamped in the Emigration Kanion [Canyon] and in the morning the emigrants washed themselves and put on clean clothes. I told them that they had better wait till we got into the city for we had a very dusty road before us, but they thought they would risk it.
On Friday the 7th we [......] drove down into the city and encamped on the Public Square west of Bro Kimball’s place...