Transcript

Transcript for "Autobiography of Marie Nielsen Robins," 3-4.

Here [Omaha] we were forced to wait several days for men from Utah who were to take charge of the company.

My parents were penniless and were without the necessary cooking utensils to begin the long trip across the Plains. One day while we were waiting, some other children and myself went into some oak brush to play when, right before me, lay a five dollar gold piece. I picked it up and showed it to the other children. An older girl in the group wanted to give me some bright pieces of cloth for it but although I did not know its value, I felt I must take it to father. This I did and he took it to the Captain of the Company who told him there would be no chance of finding the owner and for him to use it. Again in our time of need we acknowledged the hand of the Lord in Helping us.

From the time we left our home in Denmark, my eleven year old brother had been ill. Most of the time so bad he had to be carried from place to place. We left Omaha, August seventh in Captain Scott's company and at noon, August 9, just as mother was preparing the meal, my older brother who was left in the wagon called, ‘Oh, Mother!' [Niels] Ditlow [Ditlov Neilsen] is dying!” He had been so anxious to reach Zion where he could rest but was the first of the company to be left at the sides of the trail. In one hour the train moved on, but before that time a shallow grave had been dug by father. The little body was wrapped in a blanket and laid away and the stricken family fell in line with their faces ever to the West.

The morning before his death one of the teamsters had given him a stick of peppermint candy which was taken from his hand after death and divided among the children, being the first candy I had ever tasted.

Forty-four others of the company passed away before Salt Lake Valley was reached. Mother's health was poor and she and my two smaller sisters rode in the wagon most of the way but I walked the entire distance, being placed in the wagon only when streams were too deep to be waded.

A company of prospectors was a short distance ahead of us on the Plains and I would often go to their camp sites and gather discorded [discarded] bacon rinds, onion and potato peeling and take to Mother. She would scrape and clean them and make broth that tasted better than the choicest food does now. When we reached Echo Canyon a terrible storm came up and many of the cattle were frozen to death. The emigrants were so hungry they would have eaten the flesh of the animals but the officers in charge would not allow.

We arrived at the tithing yard in Salt Lake City October 6, after five months of almost constant traveling . . .

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