Transcript for Nielson, Peter, [Diary], in Andrus, Elizabeth Emma Nielson,comp., Ancestors of Elizabeth Emma Nielson Andrus [197-?], 204-8
June 16th Sunday. English and Danish meeting on the deck.
June 17th The wind is fine; a pilot came onboard this afternoon.
June 18th The sun is shining and the wind is fine. At noon we could see a lighthouse and land; I feel very happy and so do most of the people; many of the sick have arisen, and a new life is among the Saints. I collected from the Saints in my district 3 dollars and 5 cents to be given to the two mates for their kindness during the voyage. A total of 12 dollars were collected from the Scandinavian Saints.
June 19th At two o'clock in the afternoon we arrive in New York. Earstus [Erastus] Snow, one of the Twelve, spoke to us in the evening, and it seemed to me that all were happy.
June 20th We left from her to New Jersey by boat; we left by train from here at 5:30 p.m.
June 22nd. Arrived in Dunkirk at 10:00 a.m. changed train and left this place at 4:00 p.m.
June 23rd At 7 o'clock in the morning we arrived in Cleveland, changed train and continued our journey at 8:30 a.m.
June 24th Arrived in Leport at 5 o'clock in the morning. Had our lunch and continued our journey to Chicago where we arrived at 10:45a.m. We changed train and rode the whole night and arrived in Quincey on the 25th at noon; stayed here for the night.
June 26th Went onboard the steamship "Black Hawk" which was to take us to Hannibal, where we arrived at 11:00 a.m. Some of the Saints were immediately taken into the cars and left for St. Joseph. I and other brethren worked to get the luggage from the train into the cars and as soon as this was done we immediately left by train for St. Joseph; the ride was very bad as the cars were terrible; my family and myself got first class ssats [seats] towards evening, for which I was very grateful, as my wife could not stand to sit in the other cars; it was raining and thundering during the night.
June 27th Arrived at our destination at 10:45, and here we stayed till 5 o'clock the next day. As we had to wait for the steamship, which was to take us up to Florens [Florence] we sailed on the Missouri river for three days, but everything was alright, and we arrived in Florens on July 1st in the forenoon; after we had got our luggage from the ship we got hold of the cars and loaded our stuff into them. I and several of the brethren rented some rooms in the city for our families. July 2nd. The Saints who remained in St. Joseph arrived.
July 3rd. We drew lots about the cars; I was sent out to find some cows which had gone away, about 32 head, and we found about ten of them. A meeting was held in the afternoon, and Brother Erastus Snow gave many fine teachings. Elder S. Woolley was appointed captain of the whole company, N. Wilhelmsen as chaplain and O. Hansen as captain for the guards and counselors to S. Woolley. Then the company was divided into 10 and a captain appointed for every fourth. G. Olsen was appointed for the 1st, I.P. Nielsen for the 4th, J. Fagerb for the 3rd. Fixed various things.
July 4th. Tried to get everything in order, but it takes such a long time for the agent.
July 5th. Down to receive oxen; the day passed by yoking them and marking them.
July 7th. Sunday. Received our oxen and drove about 4 miles outside the city. We camped here at a spring. Received the captains of the 10 companies. It rained and thundered during the night.
July 8th. Two of my oxen got away; I went far to seek for them, but they returned themselves. I fixed my company and wrote down the names of all the individuals and what provision they wanted and turned it over to N. Wilhelmsen; I had a lot to do to arrange all the necessary details for our trip accross the plains; a child died here. On the journey from Copenhagen and up till now the following have died: 17 children and 3 women. 6 children have been born.
July 12th. We continued our travels for about 8 miles and camped near a spring. Apostle Erastus Snow gave us many fine teachings today.
July 13th. We traveled about 12 miles and camped at little Papioa; the water and grass here are excellent. The first Indians visited us in our camp.
July 14th. We continued our journey and traveled about 56 miles; it was raining heavily in the afternoon. We had great difficulty in coming down a hill. We camped for the night at Elkhans Bridge; there were several Indians here and they visited us and asked for food from us.
July 15th. Brother Erastus Snow visited us in the morning; this visit made us rejoice; a company was organized and many instructions and teachings were given, after which we traveled for about 12 miles on the plains; the weather was rather bad today and it continued that way for some days, but anything turned out alright according to the prevailing circumstances; we had some trouble with the oxen; otherwise nothing special happened. I was somewhat sick.
July 19th. We came to a city by the name of Columbus and crossed the river and camped here for the night. Apostles Orson Pratt and Erastus Snow came to see us; they had been released from their missions and were returning home; they spoke to us and gave us many great blessings if we would do right and be humble.
July 21st. Sunday afternoon. We have covered ten miles from Florens. A meeting was held in the evening. All is well. However, we have had a little sickness in the camp.
July 22nd. We left the camp at 7 o'clock and at 5:00 p.m. we camped at the Platte river. The pasture is fine here.
July 24th. Wednesday. We journeyed 17 miles and camped at the Wood river.
July 25th. We crossed the river and traveled 14 miles and camped at the same river.
July 26th. We traveled 14 miles and camped at M. Lan's; we stopped here for the afternoon, so that the women had time to wash.
July 27th. We continued our journey in good order and continued this the following days, and nothing extraordinary happened.
July 30th. An old woman died and she was buried the next day, after which we continued our travel in the usual order.
August 2nd. Inger Marie Thomassen, a girl of 16, died in the morning and was buried at Skank [Skunk] Creek; we started again in good order; the weather is nice and also the road. Three Indians visited us this evening in our camp; they were peaceful, and we gave them flour and pork. The company was divided into two; Brother [Joseph] Porter became the captain of 28 wagons and was to come after us, and we were to be gathered in one again, before we arrived in the Salt Lake Valley. I remained in the campany of Wo[o]lley's. We traveled forward with good speed.
August 4th. We came across a great many Indians, but they were peacebul [peaceful]; the road was very sandy and hilly and we had to travel far to get water and pasture. I worked till after darkness to get my ten to the camp. We had to use several teams for most of the wagons as the oxen were very much exhausted.
August 5th. We traveled a few miles and camped at the Platte river at 10 o'clock. The sisters are busy washing and baking; all is well in the camp.
August 11th. Sunday. We camped at the Platte river and all is well; the road has been sandy and hilly, and in consequence of this we have not traveled as much the last seven days, but according to the circumstances we make pretty good progress, and nothing has hindered us, but we have been much blessed.
August 18th. Sunday. At noon we camped at the Platte river; the journey has been good the last week; all is well and very little sickness. We have come across quite a few Indians who have been very kind to us. Yesterday for example we had a heavy hailstorm and some of the sisters had gone ahead of the company when the storm arose; some Indians were near them and they took their hats made with tarpaulin off and held them over the heads of the sisters. We camped near their camp in the evening; they came over to us and got some bread and flour and pork, and were very much satisfied.
Today I wrote to K.H. Bruun in Jutland, Denmark.
August 25th. Sunday morning early we crossed the Platte river; it was very sandy. 2 divisions passed us. Captain [Joseph] Porter passed us; at noon we passed a soldiers' camp; some bullets came from that direction, but they did not make any harm. We camped for the night at a very high place; we had to walk very far to get water and grass. This week we have crossed a lot of hills, but all is well. Have passed Fort Laramie.
August 26th. The road is bad. Passed Deer Creek. Camped at the Platte river.
August 27th. We left early. Drove far before we came to grass and pastures.
August 28th. We crossed the Platte river on a bridge; it cast [cost] 40 cts. a wagon; the road was very rough. Camped early in the afternoon.
August 29th. Several of the oxen have strayed away so we could not leave till 11 o'clock. We went up a steep hill so the brethren helped push the carts by tying ropes to the oxen. Passed poisenous creek. We drove very late, but found no grass. We camped.
August 30th. Left very early; we drove for six miles and camped at a creek, where there was good grass and plenty of water. Drove 9 miles and camped at a creek.
August 31st. All well today. Drove 8 miles and crossed Sweet Water; the road has been very heavy and bad; camped for noon, only little grass here. In the afternoon we passed Devil's Gate; we camped for the night at Sweet River; good grass.
September 1st. Sunday morning passed by shoeing the oxen. Drove about 11 miles; camped at the river.
September 2nd. Drove 19 miles; crossed and camped at the same for the night. September 3rd. Crossed the river three times and camped near Ere Spring; good pasture but no water.
September 4th. Left at 5 o'clock; drove 10 miles before we reached good water and grass, where we stopped for 2 1/2 hours; then we covered 7 miles and camped for the night at Sweet Water.
September 5th. Drove 4 miles before lunch and then 15 miles. The road was very hilly. Camped for the night. Not very much grass. September 6th. Drove 9 miles before noon; the road is good. Camped at the last crossing of the Sweet Water. Crossed the river; drove past the second division; some of the brethren nearly had a collision. Camped for the night at the South Pass; together with Captain Wolley attended a meeting, where he chastised the brethren for their unwise conduct; about 22 oxen had died in this division.
September 7th. Drove a long ways; camped at a high place; little grass but plenty of water; I was on guard, the night was very cold.
September 8th. Sunday. Drove 14 miles before we reached water; rested and then drove on to Little Sandy, where we camped.
September 9th. Crossed Big Sandy and camped for the night; little grass and far to water. September 10th. Drove 14 miles before we reached water. (Big Sandy). Again traveled some miles and camped for the night at the same river.
September 11th. Drove 4 miles; stopped for four hours at Green River; crossed it and drove 10 miles. Camped, little grass and no water.
September 12th. Crossed Hams Fork and Blocks Fork and camped here; good grass and water.
September 13th. Drove 14 miles.
September 14th. Passed Smith's Fort and Fort Bridger, where we camped for this day and night; one of my oxen died here.
September 15th. Sunday. The trumpet was sounded early. I got one of Brother Ekholm's [Edholm's] oxen. Drove 14 miles.
September 16th. Drove 12 miles; camped at a spring for the night.
September 17th. Drove 19 miles; camped for the night at the mouth of the Echo canyon. 2 oxen died today.
September 18th. Drove about 16 miles; one ox died; the road is bad.
September 19th. The road is rather hilly, but all is well. Crossed a creek several times.
September 20th. About the same as yesterday.
September 21st. Brother Erastus Snow and others had come to our camp during the night; good news from Salt Lake. Brother Knudsen who had also come to meet us loaned me two of his oxen and drove himself my wagon, for which I am very thankful as P. Hansen who generally drives it is not a good driver. Passed Big Mountain. We managed with exception of three wagons who needed help. Camped for the night at Little Mountain.
September 22nd. We passed Little Mountain in the morning; camped at noon about 4 miles from Salt Lake, where we washed and fixed ourselves, after which we continued our journey in good order and drove into Salt Lake City in the afternoon, where many friends and acquaintances met us and welcomed us. After we had camped at the regular place several went on immediately with their families and friends who had come to meet them. Strange feelings went through my mind. My wife and son and myself went home with J. Svenson, who lives here; they received us very well; we returned and slept in our wagon.