Transcript for Miles P. Romney reminiscences, 8 November 1865, 5-8.

The following from the pen of Miles P. Romney, who crossed the plains in Capt. Miner G. Atwood's company, contains some details of the journey.

On the morning of the 16th of September, 1865, we traveled about 9 miles and corralled on Horse Creek for dinner. At about 2 p.m. we resumed our journey leaving Bro. Anders W. [Wilhelm] Winberg with about thirty other men to butcher an ox, being instructed to bring the meat on to camp. After we had traveled about five miles we met the Mine wagon, guarded by about 12 or 14 soldiers who, when they passed us, were hurrahing and swearing, and acted as though they were very brave indeed. We continued our journey until evening and camped for the night opposite Laramie Meadows. As we were unyoking our cattle Mine wagon returning at full speed, the horses getting plenty of buck skin from their riders and drivers. One of the soldiers rode into our camp, his horse being all in a foam and his own face pale as death. Shaking as bad as a man who had an attack of the ague he told us in trembling accents that about 200 Indians were crossing the river a few miles below and that part of these Indians had endeavored to cut them off from our camp. He supposed that they (the Indians) intended to attack us, but he thought we were strong enough to defend ourselves. After telling us this, away he went at full speed. After the lapse of about an hour Bro. Winberg returned to camp with his men and told us that it was they who had unintentionally frightened the soldiers. As soon as the soldiers saw Bro. Winberg and party they stopped, and Bro. Winberg supposing they were afraid, took off his hat and while swinging it in the air he rode towards them telling them that he and those with Indians. When the soldiers saw this they wheeled around, put spurs to their horses and flew like the wind towards our camp. This is one specimen of the bravery of Col. Connor's command, who were said to be invincible. I should think they were invincible only when danger was far off in the distance.

We continued our journey on to Laramie, arriving there on Sept. 18th, about an hour after dark. As we were camping some of the soldiers came down from the fort and told Capt. [Miner G.] Atwood that there was good feed on the opposite side of the river and that we had better drive our cattle over there, which we accordingly did. Miles P. Romney and John Francom crossing the river at the same time. When they got across they found the cattle scattered through about six or eight acres of brush or small timber. There was no grass such as the soldiers reported. After a time, eight Danishmen crossed the river to assist the two brethren named to guard the cattle. About ten o'clock as the brethren were placing guard around the cattle, about thirty horsemen rode toward them, howling like Indians, but the brethren stood their ground. As the horsemen passed they fired one shot, rode in circles several times and then stopped. At this point Bro. Romney called out and said: "Gentlemen, we know you are not Indians and the first man among you who attempts to drive off our cattle will be shot. One of the horsemen cried out: G - D- you, shoot then. They then scattered, some of them going down into the brush. Miles P. Romney then came down to the river and asked the captain of our company if the guard would be allowed to shoot if they were disturbed anymore that night. Capt. Atwood said "yes shoot the first man who attempts to drive off the cattle." Miles P. Romney then started back to join the guard. On the way he saw a soldier driving four mules ahead of him. Bro. Romney fired two shots at him, when the soldier plunged into the water on his horse and disappeared in the darkness of the night.

In the morning we found about 75 head of our cattle gone, but soon succeeded in getting all of them back expect 16 head of cattle and two mules. Capt. [Miner G.] Atwood, Anders W. Winberg, Albert W. Davis, Miles P. Romney and others of the brethren searched for them two or three days and the animals were all found expect five head of oxen and two mules. One day, when Albert W. Davis and Miles P. Romney were riding through Fort Laramie, a man who was clerking in the quartermaster's department told them that he would find the oxen if the company would pay him $300. This convinced us that it was the soldiers who had driven off our stock.

On the 21st of September, as we were about to resume our journey, five or six officers with about twenty or thirty soldiers, all armed and equipped, came to our camp and told us that they had heard there were several in our camp who were being forced to go to Utah against their will, and therefore they desired to speak to the people. They had a Danish Josephite, or Reorganite, with them who arose and talked to the emigrants for some time, telling them in the name of the government that if they wished to stop they would be able to find work at Fort Laramie, or if they wished to go back to the States, they would be sent back free of expense. After this man and the officers had quit talking, Capt. Atwood rose to the occasion and asked all those who wished to go on to Salt Lake Valley to say "Yah" (Ja). Every person in the company said "Yah"! This made the officers from the post feel cheap, therefore they let us depart in peace.

We continued our journey in peace until the next day about noon, when some Indians made an attempt to stampede and drive off our cattle. It happened as follows:

About noon on the 22nd of September, as we were driving our cattle to water at Cottonwood Springs, some 25 or 30 Indians came out of each side of the brush, making an attempt to cut the cattle off from camp. They howled and yelled like fiends, shooting at all who were in their way. Of course we all commenced shooting at them. Albert W. Davis is certainly worth of the name of a mountain boy, for he rode fearlessly about among the Indians in all directions running the cattle and mules toward camp. Assisted by other brethren of the company he finally succeeded in driving the animals into camp, and the Indians did not get any animals for their trouble. Unfortunately, however, they wounded seven of our men, all Danes, yet none mortally, for since that time they have all recovered. The Indians also stole one Danish woman from us. She was about half a mile behind the train at the time, together with her husband who was shot by the Indians with five arrows, wounding him severely.

I fully believe that these Indians were in the employ of the soldiers, for all the way across the plains they tried to injure us all they could. May God reward them for their labors with plenty of chastisement until they repent.

The above is written from memory, but I think it is quite correct, although written in great haste. MILES P. ROMNEY (Letter on file)