Transcript for Mosiah L. Hancock autobiography, undated
On the 10th of May, 1848, mother sent me forth to Winter Quarters to see Brother Brigham and find out if we could go to the Salt Lake Valley. He said, "Yes, and here is a team." So I took a team back with me, and our team was for us and the other team was for father's 2nd wife. But the 2nd wife did not come with us, so mother took charge of both teams.
We started with 27 bushels of cornmeal, 15 lbs. of flour, 2 pigs, a dog, and a cat. There was Uncle Levi Reed, 2½ years older than I; and Uncle Ira Reed, a little younger. Levi and Ira drove one team and I the other; although when I would be out hunting, mother would drive my team. We all walked because we were heavily loaded. We left the Indian Mills on May 14, 1848; and we left Winter Quarters on May 18th.
While we were camped at Winter Quarters, Mary Dunn came to our camp and wanted to go with us, but mother said we could not take her because we had no room. Mary's mother had died and her father had gotten a stepmother for his children. She came with her bundle of clothes to our wagon, and with what joy I hailed my noble, beautiful wife! But Mary had to go, and oh what sorrow as I saw her depart. We were separated for life.
We went over to Elk Horn and were organized in Zera Pulsipher's company of 50. He was captain. There was John B. Butcher, John Bills, Wm. Burges[s], John Alger, Samuel Alger, Lewis the tinner, Brother Bunday, Brother Neff, and Charles Pulsipher. I took my duty thru the day with the men, and had my turn standing guard at nights. My first turn standing guard was with John Alger. He said I could have the first turn if I would stand till one o'clock; which I did.
We killed our first antelope at Soapfork [Loup Fork]; and I also caught a catfish there that weighed 36 pounds. John Pulsipher helped me pull it out! We got our first buffalo about 100 miles out of Soapfork. There were four of we boys, and we went to camp and brought out seven yoke of oxen to get the buffalo! John Benton mourned because of the parts of the buffalo we threw away. Then we boys thought we would stroll along up the Platt[e] in quest of other game; but we went too far and got surrounded by wolves before we got back. We got a severe scolding when we got home, but the howling and the massing of the wolves was a great deal worse in my estimation!
When we got to within two days travel of Laramie, we just about got into some trouble with a large company of Sioux Indians. John Alger started in fun to trade a 16-year-old girl to a young Chief for a horse. But the Chief was in earnest! We got the thing settled, however, and were permitted to go without the loss of Lovina. We went thru Laramie and on to Platte Ferry. Father, in returning from the Battalion trip, had stopped there, but had gone on to Salt Lake Valley because he had heard we were not coming until next year. We found Lewis Robinson at Platt[e] Ferry, and he was going on to the valley. Mother wished to go also, for I was so free to do everybody's bidding that I was nothing but skin and bones, and mother was afraid that I wouldn't live thru it. She talked to the captain of the company, but he gave her the most insulting language, so we pulled out and went on. I did not have to stand guard for that company any more, and I began to mend from that time forth.
When we got to Cash Cave [Cache Cove] we met father and brother David Petigrew going back to the bluff for us. So father returned with us to the valley. While we were going down East Canyon Creek, mother's foot got caught in between the box and wagon tongue and broke the toe at the upper joint; but the skin was not broken. So father anointed her foot there and administered to her and it was healed quite soon. We went on and at the mouth of Emigration canyon I broke a hind wheel; but we had some of father's carpenter tools along and the wheel was mended.
This evening August 2, 1848, Edmond Ellsworth and Charles Shumway came up to our camp with some roasting ears. August 3rd, we drove into the old fort in Salt Lake Valley . . .