Transcript

Transcript for Stewart, William Henry, Autobiography [ca. 1902], 1-2

. . . . While at Counsel Bluffs I was baptised. In the spring of 1852 father began getting ready to come to the Valley of the Mountains, got new oxx yokes, made some painted red and some blue, having a yoke of oxen and three of cows, a company of about 50 wagons, with captain over each ten, was organized. When we reached the Missouri River there was a terrible wind came up. There were some men and teams on the Ferry boat, the cattle became frightened (at the wind) and rushed to one side, tipping the boat over. Men clinging as best they could, but the cattle went under, some that were yoked together were drowned, most of the cattle belonging to Cap. Howley [William Hawley] and Hyrum [Hiram] and Lon [Alonzo D.] Winters. The next day we ferreyed over and proceeded on our journey. On reaching the Platte River, it being on our left, my sister Ma[r]y [Priscilla Stewart] tried to jump out of the wagon on the off side. Her skirt caught in the draw bolt of the tongue, jerked her back under the wheel and broke her leg. She hollered, of course, it scared the cattle and the whole train came very near going in the Platte River. I was driving that day, Father lying in the wagon sick. The cholera broke out in the train, Mrs. [Rebecca Burdick] Winters died, with the same. The captain of the ten to which she belonged said they would stop and buyr [bury] the corpse and the rest of the train could proceed. While they were preparing for a burial a band of 400 warriors rode up and demanded something to eat. Bread was offered them, but this they refused and boistrously called for a feast. This they could not spare from their scanty store. Old Cap. Hawley beckoned the leader to come and look. He opened wide the curtains of the tent, pointed therein, and as they beheld the corpse fear seemed to seize them and raising their hands and giving a whoop and yell they rode away as fast as their horses could gallop. There was no coffin, but into the deep grave her body was lowered, but the few boards that could be spared from the wagon were placed across the vault and the grave was covered. Father being sick I drove a good deal of the way across the plains. On the third of October, 1852, we reached Salt Lake. Camped down on the Jordan little south of west of Salt Lake City. I hereded [herded] the cattle while father went to conference. Shall never forget how glad I was when we first saw the city.
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