Transcript for James G. Bleak journal, 1854 February-1860 February

Friday 11th We left Elder Parker’s Tent and removed to the Tent belonging to the Hand Cart Compy.

Saturday 12 Very fine weather. We had a meeting in Camp this Evening.

Sunday 13th We had a meeting in Camp this morning, addressed by Elder Jas. Fergusons and Bishop Tyler.

Sunday July 20th The past week has been spent in attending to Camp duties, cutting wood, Hunting Cattle, Pruning luggage. &c. We had a meeting this morn’g addressed by Elder Dan Jones. I administered Sacrament this Afternoon. I went on Guard to night.

Monday 21st I went on Guard to night.

Tuesday 22nd I went to Guard Cattle from 12 at midnight till 8 a.m.

Wednesday 23rd I went on Guard from 6 P.M till 12 P.M.

Thursday 24th I went on Guard at 6 P.M.

Friday 25th I was releived at 7 this morning. Mrs. B. left this Evening.

Saturday 26th We started with our hand carts this morning. Mrs. B. returned this Evening. I went on Guard at 8½ oClock P.M.

Sunday 27. I was releived at 8½ oClock a.m. We had a Sacrament meetg to day

Monday 28th We went out this morning to look after some Cattle that got away from the Guards last night and found them all together. We started again with our hand Carts.I went on Guard at 9 OClock

Tuesday 29th. Came off guard at 6 OClock this morning

Wednesday 30th Went to look for 2 stray Oxen belonging to Elder Tyler.

Thursday 31st July Went again to look for the lost cattle this morning, but could not find them. I visited the remains of a conical stone building on the banks of the Des-Moines river supposed to be the remains of an Indian Council house. This Afternoon we travelled with our hand Carts about 5 miles.

Friday August 1st We travelled about 6 miles.

Saturday 2nd We travelled 10 miles.

Sunday 3rd Travelled 7 miles.

Monday 4th Travelled 8 miles.

Tuesday 5th Traveled 12½ miles

Wednesday 6th Travell’d 8 miles

Thursday 7th Travelled 13 miles.

Friday 8th Travelled 20 miles[.] We passed through the town of Newton

Saturday 9th Travelled 13 miles[.] While travelling we had a violent thunder storm.

Sunday 10th We rested. Elder Tyler killed a Rattlesnake and 4 young ones[.] Elder [William] Wignall blessed a child named Mary Jane Twelves[.] I administered sacrament

Monday 11th A Brother and a child was buried this morning[.] We travelled 12 miles.

Tuesday 12th We travelled 12 miles[.] Water very bad.

Wednesday 13th We travelled about 18 miles to Coon river.

Thursday 14th We travelled 16 miles.

Friday 15th We traveled 10 miles. Washing day.

Saturday 16th We travelled 16 miles. Travelled all day without water.

Sunday 17th We travelled 17 mile. No water on the road. We had a Thunder-storm this evening.

Monday 18th We travelled 20 miles[.] A sister named Mary Scott died to day in one of the Wagons, and was buried this evening. She was from Manchester Conference.

Tuesday 19th We travelled 22 miles.

Wednesday 20th We travelled 23 miles

Thursday 21st We travelled about 20 miles[.] Excellent water

Friday 22nd We travelled 5 miles to Florence[.] Road very sandy. Crossed the Missouri river.

Saturday 23rd We stayed in Camp.

Sunday 24th We had two meetings and partook of the sacrament.

Monday 25th A woman named Mary Thomas was cut off for adultery. We left Florence and passed a cluster of the graves of some of those who died during the Missouri <flight from Nauvoo> persecution. We travelled 3 miles. From Florence,

Tuesday 26th We remained in Camp.

Wednesday 27th We travelled 4 miles.

Thursday 28th We travelled 17 miles to Elk horn river. Richard and Thomas [Bleak] have walked from Winter Quarters to this place without any riding. We saw a few Indians to day.

Friday 29th We travelled 4 miles after crossing the river.

Saturday 30th We travelled 12 miles to day through a very level country

Sunday 31st President Martin said this morning that we were 992 miles from Salt Lake City. We travelled 13 miles to day.

Monday September 1st We travelled 19 miles and slept without raising our Tents as it was very late when we camped. We had a fine view of the prairies on Fire in two places.

Tuesday 2nd We travelled 3 miles before breakfast <then 9½ miles> to Loup Fork ferry which we crossed and then travelled 1 mile to camp.

Wednesday 3rd We remained in Camp.

Thursday 4th We travelled 15 miles.

Friday 5th We travelled but 6 miles in consequence of a violent thunderstorm this morning.

Saturday 6th We travelled 8 miles. This morning we saw a tribe of Pawnees Indians going Eastward.

Sunday Septr. 7th we travelled 16 miles. Just after we camped Prest. F.D. Richards and several of the brethren overtook us, on their way to the Valley.

Monday Septr. 8th We travelled 18 miles over a very heavy road. No watering place on the road. Considerable murmuring in Camp.

Tuesday 9th At the meeting this morning President Martin and Elder Tyler gave the murmurers a good chastising. We travelled 6 miles to some sand pits where we obtained some water. We travelled 9 miles this Evening and had a Thunderstorm while on the road.

Wednesday 10th Septr. We travelled 18 miles through a level country.

Thursday 11th We tavelled 15 miles. Level country.

Friday 12th We travelled but 6 miles, in consequence of it being discovered that a cripple had been left behind.

Saturday 13th We travelled 20 miles.

Sunday 14th We travelled 13 miles. While I was on Guard last night I was attacked with Bloody Flux. Have been very ill all day.

Monday 15th We travelled 22 miles. I began to draw the Handcart this morning but was obliged to leave it. Br Francis Webster very Kindly persuaded me to get on his handcart and drew me 17 miles. Elder Hunter and the two sisters [Elizabeth and Jane] Brown very Kindly drew me about 4 miles. For which Kindness I feel grateful, and pray God to bless them with health and strength.

Tuesday 16th We travelled 9 miles. I through the blessing of God was able to draw the Handcart to day, but am still very ill. The brethren were out Buffalo hunting to day but returned unsuccessful.

Wednesday 17th We travelled 15 miles. I feel better to day. We had a very high wind all the time we were travelling to day.

Thursday 18th Septr. We travelled 23 miles to day. According to Clayton’s Guide we are 294¼ miles from W. Quarters

Friday 19th We travelled 17 miles to Pawnee Swamp.

Saturday 20th We travelled 13 miles. Very wet afternoon.

Sunday 21st Thomas 5 years old to day. We travell’d 5 miles. We did not start till the afternoon.

Monday 22nd We travelled 8 miles to day.

Tuesday 23rd We travelled 12 miles. This morning we were 709 miles from G.S.L. City. Some of the wagon company killed a Buffalo to day which they Kindly presented to us. We had a very sandy road all day. We passed the remains of Col Babbit[t]s wagon, it had been burned by the Indians.

Wednesday Septr. 24th We travelled 15 miles. To day we passed some articles of clothing stained with blood[.] The wagon company picked up part of a human body which was supposed to belong to Thomas Margetts[.] (“Deseret—News” of 22d Oct 1856. States Thomas Margetts and wife, James Cowdy, wife & child, on their way from Gt. S. L. City to the States. T. Margetts, Cowdy, wife and child Killed by Indians. Margetts wife missing. 6th Sept. 1856. About 125 miles above Fort Kearney.)

Thursday 25th We travelled 13 miles.

Friday 26th We travelled 11 miles.

Saturday Septr. 27th We travelled 7 miles. Sand very soft and deep. Sister Webster confined.

Sunday 28th We travelled 16 miles.

Monday 29th We travelled 20 miles.

Tuesday 30th We travelled 11 miles. James was 3 years old to day.

Wednesday Octr. 1st We travelled 20 miles.

Thursday 2nd We traveled 18 miles. We met some Apostates returning from the Valley. Also some Soldiers, out Indian hunting. We sighted Chimney rock this morning.

Friday 3rd We travelled 17 miles. We passed Chimney rock this afternoon. This morning we were about 85 miles from Laramie.

Saturday 4th We travelled 15 miles. We passed Scotts Bluffs

Sunday 5th We travelled 15 miles.

Monday 6th We travelled but 8 miles in consequence of a sister having been missed. She went for water last night but did not return. After a fruitless search this morning we found that she had been with Capt Hodgerts [Hodgett’s] compy. all night. We passed Raw Hide Creek.

Tuesday 7th We travelled 17 miles and passed a Trading post.

Wednesday 8th We travelled 13 miles and arrived at Laramie.

Thursday Octr. 9th We travelled 3 miles.

Friday 10th. We travelled 14 miles. Road very rough.

Saturday 11th We travelled 22 miles. In consequence of hearing the report of fire arms, some of us armed ourselves and went back to find out the cause. We found that the report was in consequence of the teamsters being in distress some of the cattle having given out.

Sunday 12th We travelled 9½ miles and gave the cattle a good opportunity to feed

Monday 13th We travelled 20 miles.

Tuesday 14th We travelled 20 miles and crossed the Platte.

Wednesday 15th We travelled 15 miles and crossed the Platte again.

Thursday 16th We travelled 11 miles. Our ration of flour was reduced from 1 pound to 12 oz for adults, and from 8 oz for my children to 6 ounces a day.

Friday 17th We travelled 5 miles. Washing day.

Saturday 18th Sr. Mary Jackson died this morning at ½ past 2 OClock. Aged 65 years. We travelled 17 miles.

Sunday Octr. 19th We travelled 10 miles. We crossed the Platte, very trying in consequence of its width and the cold weather.

Thursday 23rd Octr. We travelled 5 miles. For several days we have been weather bound in consequence of a heavy fall of Snow.

Friday 24th No travelling.

Saturday 25th No travelling. Our rations reduced to 8 oz of flour for adults and 4 oz for childn.

Sunday 26th No travelling.

Monday 27th No travelling.

Tuesday 28th Octr. No travelling. The brethren Joseph A Young[,] <Abel Garr> and two <one> other, were met from the Valley <at Red Buttes, 16 m above Platte Bridge. 56 of our Compy died.> When they first made their appearance I do not think there was one in Camp but shed tears of joy—

Wednesday 29th We travelled 10 miles.

Thursday 30th We travelled 9 miles.

Friday 31st We travelled 11 miles met Genl. Grants releif Coy [company]. Our rations were raised to 1 lb <for adults> and ½ lb of flour <for chn> which

Saturday Novr. 1st We travelled 10 miles. Considerable Snow this afternoon.

Sunday 2nd We travelled 6 miles.

Monday 3rd We did not travel in consequence of the state of the weather. We left all the uncovered Hand carts

Tuesday 4th Novr. We travelled 3 miles.

Wednesday 5th. No travelling. Weather very severe. Sr. Mary Harper died aged 64. Our ration of flour was reduced to 4 oz. and 2 oz for the children. making 1 lb a day for the 6 of us. Through the blessing of our Father we felt as contented, as when we had 1 lb per head.

Thursday 6th No travelling. Weather bound.

Friday 7th Still weather bound.

Saturday 8th. No travelling. Weather more favourable

Sunday 9th. We travelled 5 miles. I have suffered very much to day with my feet, which are frost-bitten. I walked the 5 miles not wishing to burden the teams. Nearly all the Hand carts have been left behind.

Monday Novr. 10th. We travelled 8 miles. I rode. Our ration of flour was raised to 8 oz and 4 oz.

Tuesday 11th. We travelled 7 miles.

Wednesday 12th. We travelled 6 miles. Alfred Bloomfield Bridge died and was buried this morning <one of 15 in one grave>. He was born the 25th of May 1837.

Thursday 13th. We travelled 12 miles, We passed Ice springs to day.

Friday 14th. I have not been able to find out the distance travelled to day.

Saturday 15th. I am 27 years years of age to day. I do not know the distance travelled to day.

Sunday 16th. Our ration of flour was raised to 1 lb and ½ lb. We travelled 10 miles.

Monday 17th. We shall travel by mule team to the Valley, leaving the Ox teams behind, and expect to travel from 20 to 25 miles a day.

Friday 21st. Nothing of importance has transpired during the last few days. We reached Green river this Even’g.

Sunday 23rd. We reached Fort Bridger.

Monday 24th. We travelled 13 miles. I am suffering from an attack of Mountain Fever.

Saturday 29th. We did not travel far. Crossed the Big Mountain. Snow very deep.

Sunday 30th. We entered Great Salt Lake City.