Transcript for Lois Gunn Judd, "When I crossed the plains," 1-2.

It was in the year 1860 when my parents decided to leave Philadelphia and join a company of emigrants who were bound for Salt Lake City. I was the youngest of four children, (the seven-year-old baby.) My father was William Gunn and my mother, a patient but sickly woman, was Emma Baker Gunn.

Preparations for the long, hard journey were as complete as our few belongings and poor circumstances could make them—but all who joined the company shared the same lot. After bidding good-by to our few friends we turned our ox teams toward this valley in the spring of 1860. We had traveled quite a distance when one of our oxen died. Our little milch cow was put under the yoke to help pull the cart from then on, as no one in the company had extra oxen. She did her part, however, and helped pull the load the whole journey through.

When we reached Green River we had to ferry our wagons across the stream, which required considerable time accompanied by difficulty.

John Smith was our able Captain. As we struggled on a young man by the name of Hyrum Walker accident[al]ly shot himself. Our Captain immediately put another man in charge of the company and with the only mule team in the band he took the injured man to Salt Lake to the doctor.

The company was unmolested for several days until one dark, cold night when the tired, weary travelers were preparing to camp. Our Captain rode ahead but soon returned giving the startling command for us to yoke our oxen immediately and move on as there were Indians not far away. The damp, cold air was piercing to our half-protected bodies. My sister Bessie and I were huddled together under a small blanket and we plodded along beside the wheel of the wagon in which our ill mother was riding. Mother was too weak to walk so we children walked instead. In the bustle and confusion of moving camp, the oxen became frightened of something and the whole train stampeded. I was knocked down and my collar bone was broken. It seemed that there was always assistance at hand. We had a kind lady in the company who was very efficient as a nurse. She set the broken bone as best she could and the band of enduring folk moved onward.

In September 1860 we reached Salt Lake City.