Transcript for John S. Higbee reminiscences and diaries, 1845-1866

Winter Quarters emigration April the 9 1847

Left this place about 12 o'clock for the mountains in the pioneer Co. traveled 30 mils organized in a military company of which I was Apointed captain over 9 men[.] this was on the 17 of April

the 18 lay by for Sunday[.] catched with my net about 100 fish[.] on our way thus far the names of the men the 11th 10 is as follows: John S[omers]. Higbee capt.[,] John Wheeler, Soloman Chamberl[a]in, Conrad Cleiman [Kleinman], Joseph Rooker[,] Perry fitzgerald[,] John [Harvey] Tibets [Tippet], James Debenport [Davenport,] Henson Walker[,] Benjamin [Williams Rolf[e.] Brother John Wheeler & myself to one waggon[.] I have a horse[,] saddl[,] bridle & ride my horse to hunt acasionly & fish[.] the law given this day is to go to our Waggon at the sound of the horn at 1/2 past 8[,] attend prayers[,] go to Bed, get up at 5 at the Sound of the horn[,] attend prayers[,] travel with our guns in hand

20 catched 2 hundred fish

21 came to part of the the tribe of the pawnees[.] we gave them tobacco & paper but they were not satisfied[.] put out 50 men for guard[.] expected some danger

22 traveled on to missionary station[.] I got 16 lb of Iron

23 traveled to pawnee village which was Burned upwards of 200 houses

24 crossed the loo[p] fork on the plat[te]. Dangerous crossing[.] got over Safe

25 Sunday Lay by 26 traveled 16 miles at noon[.] Dawn & Day Brake 6 indians cept [kept] closed to our camp[.] 2 fired upon them; did not kill any

26 traveled 18 miles stil on the left side of platt this evening for the first time

27 we behold Buffelow tracks & sighns lately[.] crossed over to the South north fork of platte[.] killed one Antelope[.] seen a number[.] I seen 8 Buffelow as I supposed[.] this morning 4 men went Back xxxx to our encampment on Sunday night to hunt 2 horses the Indians Stole last night[.] 15 Indians fired on them[.] Did not get the horses[.] I was chosen for one of the Buffelow hunters Sunday evening the 25[.] on Tuesday the 27th I went through a [prairie] dog town[.] I suppose I saw one thousand Dogs; it was 1/2 mile long & 2 hundred yards wide[.] the[y] barked much like Dogs[.] the[y] were about the size of Rab[b]its

28 hunted all Day[,] killed nothing[.] there about 25 Appointed hunters[.] Also Brown killed a wolf to Day[.] I found a humans skull with one tooth in camp[.] traveled 16 miles this morning[.] shot [Lewis] Barneys horse that a gun went off the night before & shot thr[o]ug[h] the fore leg[.] Broke the Bone to pieces[.] She could not travel

29 traveled 20 mi[.] I killed one bird[.] Brant still on the left fork one third the way up the grand Island

30th traveled 16 mi

May the 1 killed a Sand hill crane[.] Saw for the first time a drove of Bufelow [buffalo.] we went out 8 or ten & killed 4 old ones & 7 calves[.] traveled 18 mi

2 Day Ice this morning 1/4 inch thick[.] lay by to Day & went out to attend to the cattle & a Buffelow came up with in a few rods of me[.] we had plenty of meat & its council to not kill any at present[.] it went of[f] unmolested[.] I could of shot it sure if wanted[.] went on a few miles & stopt

3 lay by to hunt & for Blacksmithing[.] I killed an antelope

4 traveled on[.] met a trader going to the settlements[.] sent a letter to my family last night[.] 3 this morning fired the canon[.] reported that there is Danger of Indians[.] Drilled our tens at noon[.] traveled 12 mi

5 I killed a Buffelow calf[.] theres was 6 calves & one cow killed to Day[.] traveled 12 mi[.] We se[e] thousands of Bufelows[.] cast your eye any way you can se[e] Buffelo

6 I went up to & [an] old cow[.] she made at me[.] I had to retreat with my horse as we did not want to kill any[.] traveled 18 miles.

7th traveled 8 miles[.] lay by[.] the feed is eat of[f] so close[.] our cattle & horses can hardly travel for the want of feed[.] There is Bufelow all round us[.] the prarie is spect [specked] with them[.] we are still on the right side of the north platt[e]

8th traveled 11 miles[.] Saw as many as 10 thousand Buffelow at one look 2 horses got in with them[.] at noon we had had work to separate them[.] as far as the eye can see we se[e] Buffelow[.] our cattle & horses are getting weak from the want of feed

9 I traveled on to get Better feed if it is Sunday 4 miles[.] stuck up a post 300 miles from winter Quarters

10 I was sick with the cramp colic half the day[.] theres was one Bufelow & one Deer killed to day[.] traveled 11 miles[.] Saw a wild horse[.] tried to catch him But could not

11 traveled 8 miles

12 traveled 12 miles[.] killed one Bufelow[.] we se[e] Indian sighns [signs] plenty[.] to day[.] we expect they are the sues [Sioux]

13 cold so we need our great coats & mittens then not warm[.] traveled to the Junction of the South fork of platte[.] Staid at the mouth of Baren [sic] river 11 miles Distance

14 Stil cold[.] a little rain & thunder[.] we have to take to the Bluffs as the river & Bluffs come together[.] traveled 8 miles[.] I killed an antelope & Badger[.] theres was a Buffelow killed also

15 stil cold rainey this morning[.] cold north wind all day[.] traveled 7 miles[.] killed 1 Bufelow[.] an alarm sounded last nig [.] the guard shot at an Indian that was crawling up to take a couple of mules[.] did not hit him[.] every man was ordered out to take care of his horses and get his gun[.] it was 12 oclock at night. lay by Sunday[.] killed 2 Bufelows & antelope[.] had meeting at 4 oclock

17 traveled 13 miles[.] killed 3 Bufelow & 1 antelope, 18 had orders from President Young not to kill any thing unless he gave orders[.] traveled 16 miles

18 traveled on 6 miles & stoped for rain[,] the first we have had since we started of any amount[.] we came a short distance over a high sand ridge[.] came into the Bottom again[.] traveled 2 miles after the rain

19 traveled 16 miles

20 crossed a s[t]ream about 3 rods wide[.] traveled 16 miles out of the Buffelow range

21 traveled 16 miles[.] 3 Indians came to us to day[.] they soon made of[f] again[.] These are the first we have seen since the Pawneese, they are the cut throats of Sues [Sioux] Indians

22 traveled 16 miles to day[.] found mammoth Bones

23 Sunday lay by[.] at night came on a cold rain with thunder & wind

24 cold[.] snowed in the morning[.] theres is 32 Indians come to us this evening[:] Sues [Sioux.] they want something to eat[.] traveled 16 miles[.] I traded my honey with them for a clay bank horse

25 traveled 12 miles past the chimney rock at night[.] killed two antelope to day

26 traveled 12 miles[.] killed 4 antelope to [d]ay[.] about 75 miles from Fort Lareme [Laramie.] I put my horse in gears this morning in the reveneu cutter[.] he was frantic at first But soon give up & drawed as well as any horse[.] I rode in the waggon for the first time to day a bout an hour

27 traveled 14 miles[.] killed 4 anatelope [antelope] to day[.] got up to the Scot[t]ish Bluffs[.] thunder shower this evening

28 traveled 12 miles

29 rainy this morning[.] president Young cawled [called] the camp together & said he did not want to go any further without a change of spirit the people[.] covenanted to repent & do Bette[.]r started at 1 oclock[.] traveled 9 miles

30 Sunday lay by[.] had fast meeting & sacrament conducted By the Bishops

31 traveled 16 miles[.] I killed one deer[.] I took my horse this morning he being so lame he could not work[.] the collar hurt him[.] I led part of the day & rode some.

June 1 Travel 12 miles oposite fort lareme [Laramie.]

2 day[.] went over got a ferry Boat for 15 dollars to ferry all over[.] went a fishing[.] catched about 50 fish

3 Day[.] T[homas] Grover took command of the Boat & put part over[.] I took command & put the Balance over[.] took us til 8 next morning. Started on at 11 o'clock

4 day[.] went 8 miles[.] come in to the Black hills

5 traveled 17 miles

6 day[.] lay by Sunday[.] fast & prayer meeting at 8[,] preaching at 11[,] Sacrament at 3[.] it rained[.] we went on in the afternoon 5 miles

7 day[.] went 13 miles killed deer 1[,] antelope[.] 3 companys passed us from Missourie to oragon

8 day[.] traveled 15 miles[.] traded my horse for a cow & heifer[.] had milk for dinner

9 day[.] traveled 25 miles[,] separated[,] went on to the ferry at platt[e]

10 day[.] traveled 25 miles killed 3 antelope[,] 3 Bear

11 day got to platt[e] and 10 miles[.] got a job of ferrying some missourie emigrants over[.] 22 waggons for 33 dolars[,] flour at 2 1/2 for hundred[,] meal 50 cts

12 day[.] got through ferrying the emigrants

13 Sunday had meeting til noon[.] went then to get timber for to make raft to cross over on

14 ferryed 24 waggons over[.] Brother Tibets [John Harvey Tippets] left at laram[i]e & Debenport [James Davenport] left to day at the second crossing of platt[e.] the river high

15 Stil ferrying

16 crossing

17finish crossing[.] commence taking over emigrants Smites Co. I am counciled to stay here until our Bretheren come up get a boat ready

18th Stil crossing emigrants

19 our Bretheren left 10 of us namely T[homas] Grover[,] W[illiam]. [Adam] Empey[,] James Debenport [Davenport,] luke Johnston[,] Ed[mund Lovell] ellsworth[,] A[ppleton] T [Milo] harmon[,] & F[rancis]. [Martin] Pumenoy [Pomeroy,] [Eric M.] glines[.] They left us here for the purpose of ferrying over emigrants [..over] Capt.

20 F. Pumenoy [Pomeroy] & Glines left us to day to meet our Bretheren[.] did not go

21 moved the ferry down 8 miles

22 fixing ferry

23 waiting

24 waiting

25 comenced ferrying

26 - 27 - 28 - 29 - 30 stil ferrying

1 June [July] ferrying the purbelow Co. continued ferrying til near the last of July[.] I received about 60 dollars for my share[.] bought 3 cows & t[w]o heifers which I paid 4 dollars[.] 2 of the cows gave milk[.] Staid on til the 16th of August[.] we expect the camp to day as we have heard from them[.] bought a churn 1 dollar[,] bought a hat[,] 1.25 a bell 5 cts[,] a piece of steel 40 cts