Transcript for Seymour, Charles William, Journal and reminiscences [ca. 1880-1906], 80-82
The cattle and wagons arriving, preparation was made to roll out, soon Captain Moses Clawson, started across the country to Council Bluffs, next Captain Claudius V Spencer Joseph Youngs company was soon following.
I believe Cyrus H Wheelock's company was the next to follow, (it being the company we formed a part) Jacob Gates, Appleton Harmon and I think one or two others, beside Vincent Shurtliff and Captain Isaac C Height
Mr Clark had paid forty pounds sterling at the Liverpool (LDS office) for as he understood two yokes of oxen, two cows and a wagon, but that amount was not sufficient and he was compelled to purchase the cows, as noted above.
We had a very heavy load, and had to sell a portion of it, to assist in raising money to buy another yoke of oxen with which when done we appeared to move better until they (being on the lead) they ran around to the right or off side and broke the wagon tongue but we put in a hickory (sapling) tongue and running around did not appear to affect that, as it came to Salt Lake City, and was used quite a while after.
Perhaps it is well to state here, that the church brought passengers from Liverpool to Salt Lake City, that year for ten pounds sterling, per adult, children half price infants (nursing) free
At Bear river (then a portion or Utah now in the State of Wyoming,) one of the oxen died, so Mr Clark made bundle's for us to carry variing [varying] in size according to our ability. I remember he carried one, and he looked very odd, trudging along at the off side, to keep the cattle from running around as usual, but they (the cattle) did not run around that day, too scared I thought at his (Mr Clark's) appearance. It is I presume in order to state that one day is all that was required of us to tote the packages.
I should have stated that, the state of Iowa appeared to me, to be a paradise, heavy grasses which were heavily clothed with dew every morning supported by rich black soil, without a stone or, as there called a rock in, or on it. We crossed the Des Moines river on a substantial bridge, it being the longest bridge, and the widest river I had ever seen except the river Nersey in England and the Mississippi of the United States of North America.
I do not know what the day of the month we arrived at Council Bluffs, but we were there on the fourth of July, some of the people attended the celebration of the anniversary of the declaration of Independence but I stayed with my old job of minding the cattle which were unyoked here for the first time since we started from Keokuk.
I do not remember anything regarding picking up the goods that were shipped from St. Louis to Council Bluffs, but the stoves were brought to Salt Lake and will perhaps, refer to them in future.
We finally reached the Missouri river, a yellowish ill looking stream, perhaps three quarters of a mile wide. We ferried the wagons, but swam the cattle.
I remember seeing in the river A Mr Taylor's team three yoke of oxen chained together as they were when hitched up for the road, they reached the other side all right, but I thought then, and I know now, that that was not the proper way to swim them.
We finally reached the Elk Horn river, were there were good timber, good grass, clear water altogether a pretty place to live, the soil was black and good.
If I remember right, this is the place where we (say), saw the first North American Indians. They were off the Pawnee tribe, and I did not have the antipathy, that I have heard others express for the decendents of the original owners of the whole continent of North America.
If I remember right Captain Vincent Shurtliffe and company caught up, and passed us, at this point.
Captain Shurtliffe was a rustler, but he not half as large a train as ourselves consequently it was not as much work to move on short notice. We never saw his company again, they reached the Valley If I was informed right about the 25 day September 1853
We saw and killed several buffaloes, and I remember the meat was very nice, but owing to the fact that we had been living upon salted meats, it did not have a good influence on our health.
We arrived at Loup Fork and crossed it continued on the north side of the Platte river, until we arrived at a point opposite Fort Laramie where we crossed the river (Platte) having passed over some lovely country and losing one man, young John Taylor from some place in Lancashire England, crossing the sea on board the ship International, he was drowned in the Platte while performing his duty (herding cattle)
I don't remember anything occurring only which was usual at the time, and under such circumstances. We reached the valley of the Great Salt Lake and went to the Sugar House Ward on the sixth day of October 1853.