Wilford Woodruff journal, 1847 January-1853 December, 25-77.
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- Source Locations
- Church History Library, MS 1352
- Related Persons
- Miner Grant Atwood
- Ezra Taft Benson
- John Brown
- Jacob D. Burnham
- Albert Carrington
- William Carter
- James Case
- William Clayton
- Robert Crow
- Benjamin Franklin Dewey
- Howard Egan
- Joseph Teasdale Egbert
- Edmund Lovell Ellsworth
- William Adam Empey
- Nathaniel Fairbanks
- John Sherman Fowler
- John M. Freeman
- Jacob Gibson
- Eric McArthur Glines
- Stephen Hezekiah Goddard
- Thomas Grover
- Joseph Hancock
- Appleton Milo Harmon
- John Somers Higbee
- John Greenleaf Holman
- Norton Jacob
- Luke Samuel Johnson
- Philo Johnson
- Heber Chase Kimball
- Jesse Carter Little
- Amasa Mason Lyman Sr.
- Stephen Markham
- Joseph Lazarus Matthews
- John Pack Sr.
- Francis Martin Pomeroy
- Orson Pratt
- Willard Richards
- Orrin Porter Rockwell
- Albert Perry Rockwood
- Shadrach Roundy
- Henry Garlic Sherwood
- Charles Shumway
- George Albert Smith Sr.
- William Cochran Adkinson Smoot
- Erastus Snow
- Roswell Stevens
- Benjamin Franklin Stewart
- Seth Taft
- Marcus B. Thorpe
- George Wardle
- Horace Kimball Whitney
- Wilford Woodruff
- Brigham Young
- Lorenzo Dow Young
- Phineas Howe Young
[April] 14th After getting all things in Readiness to leave I called my family together & Blessed my wife & children And left them in the hands of the Lord. I bid farewell to father Woodruff & family and all around me & took my leave of winter quarters & in company with Elders O Pratt Lyman G A Smith E Snow & others we again took the indian trail & rode through the prairie to the Elk Horn & went over on a raft & camped two miles below the ferry & we had a splendid supper composed of fried cat fish, pork beans, short cake, Honey comb, coffee, milk &c &c we all eat vary Harty, Had prayers & retired to bed[.] 25 miles.
15th Professor Pratt took an observation this morning for the correct time. We had a good Breakfast. Soon Brs Young Kimball Benson, Whitney & many others came & crossed the ferry & we all moved up to the general camp on the Platt River[.] 9 miles.
We found the camp vary busy in Blacksmith work & getting ready to continue the Journey. We spent the night at this place. During the evening Br Little arived from the eastern states in our midst. When He arived at winter quarters finding we had left He followed us post haste leaving all things behind him. He overtook us this evening. He gave us news of the eastern churches. Spoke of many friends Among wholm was our friend Col Kane who had remembered the Quorum of the Twelve & others by forwarding A variety of Presents to us. He forwarded to me A Patent Life Preserver & Stop compass[.] Br Little spent the night in camp
16th Brother Little, P. Rockwell & J Reading returned to winter quarters[.] the camp continued up the Platt 4 miles & camped & turned their Horses upon an Island of cottonwood & Rushess. the wind Blew exceding hard during the night. Before we left this morning the camp came to gether, And was organized for Journeying as a military body into tens 0 & 100s[.] Col Markham & A. P Rockwood was appointed captains over A Hundred & 4 captains of fifties & captains of tens. I was Appointed capt of ten[.] the following are the names of the persons belonging to my ten[:] W. Woodruff J. S Fowler J. Bornham, O. Pratt, Joseph Egbert, John M. Freeman, Marcus B. Thorp G. A. Smith, George Wardle, Being 9 in all[.] the camp consisted of 73 waggons & 143 men 3 women & 2 children making 148 souls in all
17th We travled 8 miles & camped in the edge of a grove of cottonwoods to spend the Sabbath[.] in the Afternoon the organization of the camp was finished in the following order[:] B Young Lieutenant General, Stephen Markham Colonel, John Pack 1st Major, Shadrich Rounday 2d Major.
The Rigiment be divided into tens under the folloing captains:
Wilford Woodruff Capt of 1st company
Ezra T. Benson, 2d company
Phineas H Young, 3d company
Luke Johnson, 4th company
Stephen H Godard, 5th company
Charles Shumway, 6 company
James Case, 7 company
Seth Taph, 8 company
Howard Egan, 9 company
Appleton Harmon, 10 company
John Higby, 11 company
Norton Jacobs, 12 company
John Brown, 13 company
Joseph Matthews, 14 company
Orders from Gen Young was for the whole regment to Journey in a copacked body as we were in an indian country for evry man to carry his gun loaded for the cap locks to be shut onto a peace of Buck skin with caps Handy to slip on in an instant in case of an attacked, for flint locks with cotton or tow in the pan & A powder flask handy to prime quick, the object of this caution is to prevent accident. And for every man to walk beside his waggon & not leave it except He is sent away. Strict rules & disipline are necessary while travling through A Hostile indian country. some traiders came down from the Pawnees & camped with us over night. They had a plenty of Boffaloo meat dried & gave us what we wished. they informed us we were within two days drive of the whole do[--] of the pawnees. We camped here in a line for the sabbath.
18th Sunday I wrote A letter Home to Mrs Woodruff By Br Eames who wished to return back. I perused several papers to day, but did not find much news. Br O Pratt took an observation of his Barometer. President Young called the captains together & gave them instruction to travel in the morning two abrest & let all who were not driving teams carry their guns & walk by the side of the wagons, let no man go away hunting to get [out] of sight of the camp[.] The Bugle was to be blown at half past 8 oclok at night when all was to go to prayers in their several waggons & retire to bed by 9 oclok. The Bugle will Blow at 5 oclok in the morning to arise & pray & two hours will be allotted the camp to dress pray cook eat feed Horses Harness &c & start at the blow of the Bugle at 7 oclok[.] this is the order of the camp Travellers have freequently spoken of the Platt River[.] in relation to it I will [say] It is the most singular river I ever beheld. it is from a quarter to
half a mile wide & its shores & bed one universal body of quicksand[.] it is a rapid stream yet many places A person can wade across it[.] frequently nearly the whole bed of the river is coverd with but few inches of water & at other places it is deep & rapid[.] notwithstanding it is quick sand[.] Horses & cattle can walk down to edge of the river & drink like walking on the edge of a Smooth sea Beach & some times while walking on the apparent hard beach or bed of the river A man or Horse will suddenly sink into the quick sand & the more he struggles to get out the more He will sink & will soon perish if assistance is not near[.] where many Horses & men have been lost in this way on the Platt. whare we have spent the Sabbath A man could nearly wade across the river. we do not travel on Sunday but pitch our tents Saturday night or encamp in the waggons & we do not move untill Monday morning[.] this is the order of the camp.
19th It was quite cool in the morning. the Bugle Blew at 5 for prayers & 7 for starting. we travled two abrest. men walked by the side of their wagons. we bore a northerly direction untill about noon when we reached the north Bend of the Platt[e]. Professor Pratt took an observation & found it to be in Lat. 41.27.5. the crossing place of the Horn was in Lat. 41.16.24 making the North Bend of the Platt 10½ miles north of the ford. we formed into a circle at noon & bated[.] while nooning Elder Little arived with P Rockwell & two others[.] they brought the mail[.] I recieved two Letters one from L Hardy of Mass. who informed me that Milton Holmes father & Mother was cut off from the Church & He with them turned Strangites And that Aphia his wife was a great apostate[.] O, Milton Holmes how hast thou fallen. the other letter was from Mrs Woodruff which I read with interest. Br Little brought many things that the Colonel Kane sent as presents to the 12 & others[.] I recieved A stop Box Marriners compass small enough to carry in the pocket. it was A splendid present. May the blessings of God be upon the head of Col Cane for his good feelings towards the servants of God. we camped at night near a grove of timber on the bank of the Platt[.] we formed a circle from edge to edge at the bank of the river[.] the river on one side was our defence. we drove the tongues of our waggons out ward & fore wheel of each waggon was placed against the hind wheel of the waggon before it and all the Horses & cattle taken inside the Circle so that we were secure against the Indians. the river was about one mile wide whare we camped & on the north side joining by our encampment. it was deep & rapid. the face of the country during to days travel was on the south side of the river. High Bluffs runing precepitately to the river on the north side which we travled. A level prairie without any bluffs about 2 miles from the river a rise of table land about 10 feet & continues at a level. No timber except patches on the river. Soil sandy. 22 m.
20th A Hard wind through the night. this morning fair but strong SW wind[.] it covers our waggons with sand & dust while Journeying[.] the soil is universally sandy on the banks of the Platt[.] the grass is now about 4 inch high scattering not half feed. their are many water fowls about the Platt such as ducks geese Brant but the most numerous of all are the sand Hill Cranes which flye in large flocks on evry side of us. 25 minutes past 7 we started on our Journey, 2¼ miles came to another grove of small & large cottonwoods covering about 40 acres. it was about 5 miles to the table land which was now rising into a bluff. Here the road runs 20 degrees south of west bending to S by W. one mile in which distance we passed 3 Islands in the Platt coverd with timber the largest about 10 acres & their continues a chain of Islands for miles on the river & some timber on the south side of the Platt. We came to skull creek 3 miles from our encampment. 1 1/2 miles to the right of skull creek is A prairie dog village covering about 6 acres of ground. this creek is timbered ownly by a few scattering willows[.] the river runs about parallel with the river [sic][.] its general Barings are about east & west. after crossing the skull Creek bridge the road runs about SW by W 60 degres west of south for about 15 miles[.] the Platt is skirted with timber. Professer Pratt & myself went forward of the Company to take observation[.] we traveld about 13 miles & stoped bated Horses took observations &c. while on the road we frequently see gopher Hills from one to 6 feet in
circumference diamiter & from 3 inch to 2 feet in highth some resembling a potatoe patch which makes it rough waggoning over them[.] with the exception of this it is the best road on the north side of the Platt river I ever travled being a level dry hard road. our Standard Thermometer stood to day at 1 oclok 94°. the company approached us & we continued on 5 mile & the whole encampment came up & we encamped for the night in a circle. Cut down Cotton wood trees to feeds the Horses on the bark. they will knaw off the bark from brouse limbs & sticks 10 inches through as readily as they would eat corn[.] we have had to feed upon cotton wood all the way thus far[.] we give each Horse also about 3 quarts of corn per day. Our fisherman drew a net this afternoon & broat into camp 213 fish Buffalo & Carp which was divided in the camp[.] we had A Buffalo would weigh 10 lbs & carp 2 lbs & had a good supper. The Platt was a mile wide whare we camped including an Island opposite of us with timber. the distance of the day 18 miles
21st Cloudy with a light sprinkle of rain[.] wind in the east[.] our road runs west to begin with[.] the ox teams started at 7 oclok the Horse teams at 8. 15 minutes to 9 An Indian appeared on a mound mounted on a poney about 5 miles from us[.] He went out of sight & again appered[.] He then approached the camp full speed[.] was met by the brethren & shook hands[.] was soon followed by others[.] were 8 in all[.] they went through the encampment & then returned with us[.] the road runs 20 degrees South of west 7 miles then turned 10 dgress North of wes. at half past 12 we came in sight of 70 Indian Horses & Mules. soon we came in sight of a large Pawnee Indian village on the north side of the loup fork & also a large one on the south side of it. we drove on by the villages & they soon began to sally out to come to us. we camped in a half moon the bank of the river forming A parallel line in front[.] the indians to the number of about 200 on the south side of the river came down to the shore[.] some waided over[.] about 75 came into camp including the grand Chief of the Nation with many war Chiefs. we met them before we left the ground & made them presents of about 4 lbs of tobacco 15 lbs lead powder fish Hooks beads flour salt &c. but still they were not satisfied considering our Numbers they thought they ought to have had more & when we left the ground they appeared vary dissatisfied[.] we however Harnessed up our teams & drove on to looking glass Creek & camped at its mouth for the night upon the bank of the loop [Loup] fork[.] after our Horses were turned out we were called to gather & in Consequence of the dissatisfaction of the Indians A guard of 100 men was called for[.] the quorum of the Twelve with nearly the whole camp volunteered to stand guard one half the fore part of the night & the other the latter part[.] we had A picket guard also of 5 men & mules at a time[.] I with my mule was on picket guard. we had hard wind & rain in the Afternoon which continued A part of the time while I was on guard[.] I rolled myself up in my buffalo & let the wind & rain beat onto me[.] we were releaved at about 1 oclok & went to rest. But no Indians appeared during the night.
22 we crossed the looking glass 15 minutes to 9 & then continued a westerly course[.] there were A good many auter on the looking glass. we arived at Beaver Creek at 12 oclok. There are some Beaver on this creek about one mile above its mouth. Professor Pratt took the meridian observation of the sun by the sextant for the Lat which was found to be 41°25'15". Also found the magnetic needle to vary about 12 degrees east, And found the Barometer at half past 12 = 28.711, the attached Thermometer standing at 68° And the detached thermometer at 67° & Also took an observtion of the sun for the true time in the morning[.] it is 10 miles between the two creeks which we travled this forenoon.
we Crossed Beaver Creek at half past 2 oclok, the road runs about south west. the water was about to the deds of our waggons. It was a rough steep bank to come out of. about 12 men hitched a hook & roap to the tongue of each waggon & puled them up. Beaver Creek is lined with scattering timber cotton wood & willows, We travled 7 miles & came to the Pawnee Mishionary [Missionary] station & camped for the night[.] the Bluff was skirted with some Oaks on the North side of the road in the Hills. we kept a gard through the night as we were in danger of the Sioux on one side, and the Pawnees on the other.
President Young addressed the camp & told them when they left in the morning not to take away any thing ownly what they brought with them unless it was sold them by Brother Case who had had charge of the Station for a long time & the goverment was owing him a good deal & if He felt disposed to sell any thing that He had in his possession & report to Goverment He could do so. during the evening Professer Pratt made some observation[.] at 15 m past 7 oclok the Barometer stood at 28.7 inches[,] attached Thermometer 64° detached Thermometer 60° North wind & fair[.] Also at 8 oclok 52 m found the double altitude of the pole star to be 80°25'15" from which the lattitude was deduced [viz?] [ ]. O. Pratt Also took the angular distance of sun & moon for the Longitude at Beaver Creek ford also the altitude of the moon for the true time
23d At 6 oclok O Pratt made A Barometrical observation[.] mercury standing at 28.697 inch Attached Thermometer 36° detached thermometer 34°• Vary little wind from west[.] fair[.] Also took an altitude of the sun for the time, and also A Meridan Altitude of the Sun for the latitude[.] found it to be 41°25'29"[.] while wattering the Horses at a creek at the station last evening Brother G. A. Smiths Horse mired & pitched foreward & Jumped onto him trod upon his feet & breast & held him fast in the mud untill I caught him by the bit & backed him off[.] I was fearful He was badly injured but at last found that He was but little hurt.
[illustration of a snake]
This was A day of Adventures to the pioneer camp[.] in the morning 12 of us started on Horsback to search out a ford across the dangerous difficult & troublesom loup fork of the Patt river[.] we went down the stream some distance & several men waided across the stream & found the water so deep & so much quick sand we concluded to drive
Hier up to the old Pawnee village[.] so we returned to the camp[.] Harnessed up our Horses, my gray Horse named Titus had the belly ake or bots yet I started out with him & the camp drove up with some little difficulty to the old Indian village or a little below it & men commenced searching out a ford & found the whole bed of the river one universal dody of quick sand which if a Horse or waggon stoped it would begin to sink down[.] we had two channels of water to cross with a sand bar in the middle[.] the deepest water was from 3 to 4 feet deep & vary rapid & about 300 yards strait across[.] some places of quick sand was found so soft as to sink man or beast instantly in & the more He strugled to get out the more He would sink, but we calculated to avoid such places as much as possible[.] As I was forward with my 10 or the first ten it fell to me to make the trial[.] Professor Pratt having a strong pair of Horses went forward and I followed him[.] I had two yoke of cattle & my horses on my carriage with about 10 hundred on. I immediately saw as soon as I started that the cattle did but little good[,] were slow & in the way[.] we would stop & begin to sink[.] I Jumped out of my carriage into the water up to my waist[.] about 10 men came to my assistance with a drag roap & hitched to the oxen & assisted me in getting across the first stream but with great difficulty[.] I stoped on a sand bar out of water. My Horses & waggon immediately began to sink & by treading the ground a little it would become a perfect quagmire. but though we were sinking in it the men had to leave the waggon whare it was for O Pratt in trying to cross the second stream had sunk into a bed of quick sand and all men had to go to his relief to get his Horses & waggon out[.] the Horses were taken from the waggons the load taken out & carried to shore by hand & the waggon drawn out by the help of men[.] I took off a part of my load or most of it in a boat & went through the second stream empty & got out two other waggons done in the same way but it was so terrific the rest of the camp would not follow suit. so their were 6 men of us in all to spend the night to gether without horses & waggons to guard against the whole Pawnee band that were camped below us on the same side of the river should they feel disposed to come upon us. there numbers were not known but it was supposed they numbered over 600 warriors. we divided our company which made ownly three of us on guard at a time[.] Br Pack O. Pratt & myself went on guard the fore part of the night Although I had been in the water during the afternoon I stood guard in my wet clothing one half the night slept in them the other half. we had not more than got our position for the night untill we were joined by 5 men who crossed the river in a boat were sent over by President Young to assist us which made eleven men instead of 6 so we divided our force accordingly[.] the night past off in peace & no disturbance. distance from the Missionary station to the ford 4 miles
24th A Plesant morning. Professor Pratt took an observation on the south bank of the fording place on the loop fork 4 miles from the Missionary station, took a meridian observation of the sun for the Lattitude[,] found to be to 41°22'37"[.] The camp now wer busiy in concocking plans to cross the river[.] they drew together timber & rails to build two rafts & began to put it together but some of the Brethren made another trial to cross with waggons by putting in several Hors & mule teams. they went a little Hier up than we did & got over with much less difficulty & the more the ground was trod in the water the smother & Harder it grew, so the whole encampment turned there waggons back to the ford & abandoned the raft & by unloading one half of there baggage could cross in safety & the whole encampment came over in that way by doubling teams & going back & forth untill all were over[.] Each captain with his ten assisted each other over, & so in this way all Israel who were present went over (not Jordan) but the Loup fork of the Platt river in safety without damage to man or beast[.] we felt thankful in our Hearts to our God for his mercies unto us & that we were on the south side of the river[.] we all loaded up our waggons & drove 4 miles & camped for the Sabbath on the bank of the stream[.] After our waggons were placed the Twelve took a walk on the High table land to make observations with our glasses of the surrounding country. Professor Pratt made a Barometrical observation at this place at 15 m past 7. Barometer stood at 28.56 inch Attached Thermometer 64° detached Thermometer 61°..
25th Sunday A plesant morning. The order of the camp is that there be no fishing Hunting or labour of any kind on Sunday except such as is actually necessary. 4 Antelope appeared before us on the plain on the opposite side of the river[.] we could see them with the naked eye but far more clearly through our spy glasses. there sides & belly were white & backs brown[.] these were the first Antelope I ever saw. About 10 oclok also 4 Elk appeared on the opposite side of the river which we looked at without glasses[.] these were the first Elk also I ever saw. the day was mostly spent in resting man & beast untill 4 oclok. the camp gathered together for a meeting & were addressed by a number of the Brethren Among whom was G. A. Smith & B. Young who spoke upon principle upon Breaking off the yoke from the saints[.] some pretended to say that the Twelve were oppressing the People but is it so[?] No, But if most men that are on the earth those in the Church not excepted should rule & lead this Church they would have many yokes put upon them that we are all the while trying to take off their shouldiers. many other good things were said[.] the guards were placed out as usual to guard the camp during the evening[.] A company of Hunters were appointed to go foreward of the Camp to ketch game[.] there were 7 Horsemen & 10 footman[.] the quorum of the Twelve also had the privilege of Joining the Hunters when they Pleased. A Meriadian Alt of the sun gave for the Lat 41°20.-31—.
26th Early in the morning before the break of day 2 Indians crept upon their Hands & knees Approaching the camp to steal some Horses[.] they got within 3 rods of the guard before they were discoverd. they first thought them to be wolves & snaped at them[.] they rose up & ran & two of the guard fired at them & 4 others rose up out of the grass making 6 in all[.] the bugle was sounded And all arose up to arms not knowing but there was A large party nearby but we saw no more. I started out in the morning with the Hunters[.] we saw 8 deer 4 Antelope but caught nothing[.] we travled 8 miles & camped for noon, on the opposite side of the river we saw through our glasses the relicks of an old Indian town. we saw 8 trails leading to it with 6 & 8 abrest each[.] in the afternoon we travled 17 miles & camped on clear creek with a hard gravel bottom the first one of the kind we had met with on the road. we killed one wild goose & saw fresh Buffalo signs whare we camped[.] this was the first signs of the kind we had seen on the road. the travels to day was like a level desert except the dividing ridge between the two rivers. the grass was dry & sandy mostly level & nearly without water[.] we travled to day from 10 to 20 degrees west of south[.] we camped under a High Bluff in a half moon[.] Brs Young, Kimball, Richard's, & myself went on to a high Bluff to view the country[.] Just at dusk A tremendious alarm was given through the camp that Indians had cralled up & taken Porter Rockwell & his horse & made off with him[.] many men mounted there Horses & made off after him with all speed but it was soon discoverd that Rockwell was in the camp but two Horses were gone[.] Dr Richards & Br Little & about 20 men mounted & armed went in search of the Horses But found them not[.] it was believed the Indians took off the Horses.
Distance of the day. 15 miles[.] Lat of this place is 41°17'21"[.] Barometer 28.445 inch Attached Ther 85° detached Ther 87°. S.S.W. wind. Fair
27th O. P. Rockwell & 3 others went again in search of the Horses & were gone all day[.] we continued our Journey [A?] South course to try to get on the platt river[.] we came on to some beautiful green grass & saw a great quantity of Buffalo sign but found no wood or water[.] travled 12 miles & bated our Horses in a green valley[.] just as we were starting in the Afternoon we rose a small Bluff & saw two Antelope before us in the valley. Brs Young Kimball & myself were together. Br Brown & another Brother was on another side of the Hill & saw him also[.] Br Brown first fired upon him[.] another man & myself fired also[.] we all Hit him with our Balls but He did not fall[.] we rode up to him & cut his Throat to Bleed him & He run about 10 rods & fell[.] this was the first Antelope we have Killed[.] He was dressed & put on board of the waggons & we continued on[.] in a short time we saw 3 more at the top of a mound looking at us[.] Br Brown & myself went after them But they went onto the flats & we could not get to them so we left them[.] turned about 10 degrees east of South went to a creek & camped[.] our cattle & Horses were vary dry not finding any water through the day. we had A Heavy Storm of thunder lightning wind & some little rain which lasted about an hour. A rifle went off in Br Brown waggon by accident[.] the Ball went through a bag of cloths (set it on fire through the waggon) & Broke A leg of a fine Horse which broke up one team. in the edge of the evening O P Rockwell & the Brethren with him returned & reported that the Indians Had stolen the two Horses & they were attacked by 15 Indians who were in Ambush in the grass[.] they came upon them determined to take their Horses from them[.] they kept them off by their Rifles & Pistles[.] the Indians were armed with guns & Bows & when they found they could not skare the Brethren they then professed friendship to get to them[.] But the Brethren were resolute & determined not to move but to fight first though ownly 4 to 15 men[.] the Indians finally rushed upon them to ketch the Horses by the bit & the Brethren drew their pistols upon them determined to fire & do their best & the Indians seeing their determination broke & ran but fired their guns upon the Brethren & the Balls whistled around them but no one injured[.] they did not fire upon the Indians not wishing to kill them if they could Help it[.] distance of the day 20 m 16 miles sw from our last station, about half way between the loop fork & Platt rivers. the meridian Alt of the sun gave for the Lat 41°9-26--0 h 30 m Bar stood at 28.053[.] Attached Ther 87°, Detached Ther 88° S.S.W. wind. Fair
28th At 6½ A.M. Bar. stood at 2.7.968—Attached Ther, 59° -5 detached Ther. 60°’ wind N.N.E. fair[.] A Plesent morning[.] 10 miles from the Patt [Platte] River on Plain Kreek. we travled to grand Island & camped on its banks for nooning[.] I went out with the Hunters[.] caught Nothing but one wolf & a goose[.] in the Afternoon we travled 6 miles & camped on wood creek[.] formed a circle put our Horses inside & had good defense[.] we saw many deer in the afternoon run across on the Island[.] President Young thought it not prudent to travel up the Island Hunting lest we get into an Indian Ambush 15 m
29th A cool morning[.] the camp started at 5 oclok without feeding. drove 3 miles stoped & Bated & Breakfasted[.] The Hunters went up the Island. grand Island is well supplyed with rushes & cottonwood; wood creek is Heavily wooded for this country[.] we are begining to get a good bide of grass for our Horses & Cattle[.] Professor Pratt at 7 h 30 m AM took a Bar observation on wood creek at our camping place[.] Mercury in the Bar. Standing at 27.979 inch Attached Ther 61°.° detached Ther 60°.2.°S. wind. fair. we travled 8 miles & nooned, Travled in the afternoon 10 miles & camped on the Borders of grand Island. the Island of this place was thickly coverd with rushes upon which we fed our Horses[.] I went out with the Hunters[.] we saw about 30 Antelope & 8 deer[.] the Antelope would play around on the large plains & keep out of our way so we should not shoot them[.] they mostly went towards wood creek which we had forded in the morning & left to our right[.] the ford was good. we shot 4 geese[.] I shot two of them & one deer but did not get the deer[.] we find places on the main land bordering upon grand Island coverd with white substance resembling salt & taste quite saltish. we camped for the night[.] distance of the day 20 m
30th O Pratt took observations on the north Bank of the Platt River 17 miles from the last station at 6½ A.M. of the Barrometer mercury stood at 27.7.16 Attached Ther. 50° detached Ther. 48° S.E. Wind fair. At noon Lat 40°42'37". At 6½ PM 17 miles west of morning station Bar 27°.9.33 Inch. Att. Ther 43°.5° det Ther 41°.5°. North wind[.] Fair. we travled to day 16 miles & camped without wood or water[.] the wind Blew Hard in the evening[.] the Ther stood at 41°. The grass was short affording but little feed[.] 16.
May 1st 1847 This was an interesting day to the Hunters of the Camp of Israel. It was vary cold Ther stood at 30° with strong North wind[.] the Hunters put out & the camp started on the Journey. Before Breakfast [we] travled 6 miles & camped on the Prairie in sight of A Herd of Buffalo of 200 feeding on the Bluff to our right. three ownly of the Hunters started out after them[.] they rode near them & left their Horses & cralled upon them to get a shot but they frightend the Herd & they run away. A little previous to the main Herds being seen 3 Bulls were discoverd on the Bluff[.] O. P. Rockwell & two others went after them & wounded two but got neither of them[.] we had not travled more than 2 miles before we discoverd Another large Herd of about 200, 5 miles Ahead of us[.] the Hunters got together[,] held a council & waited untill the Camp all came up. we were determined to get some of the Buffalo if possible[.]we travled together untill we were within one mile of the Buffalo[.] we then made A Halt, & 15 Hunters started out. Amasa Lyman & myself of the Twelve made two of the Numbe[r]. we all travled together on to the Bluffs within A few rods of them & there divided out into companies[.] Br Grover & Luke Johnson went together into the Bluffs[.] O. P. Rockwell & Br Brown took the entire left & so we divided into companies on the right left & center[.] I was in a company in the centre of the Herd & we all made A charge upon them from the Bluffs & rushed on to the Plain. the Herd ran vary fast down the ruff Bluffs into the plain but when we came on to the Plain we soon came on to them[.] each company singled out his game. we made choice of Cows generally[.] then rushed up by the side of them & fired upon them with our Pistols such as Horse Pistols[,] Rifle Pistols &c which are much better to carry than rifles as they are vary comberson in running[.] the first that we gave chase to was A Buffaloo Cow with her Calf. I rode by the side of her & fired two Balls from my Pistols into her. the other Brethren with me also fired into her untill we killed [her]. we cut her throat[.] I then run my Horse to the Assistance of another Party who had wounded one, & that one was also soon dispatched. I then saw O. P. Rockwell had 3 Bulls at bay on the Prairie[.] Br Pack & myself run our Horses to his assistance & Br Kimball came up at the same time[.] we surrounded them & commenced firing upon them[.] they bolted ahead[.] I put spirs to my horse & run in ahead of them[.] was in about one rod of them they all Pitched at /me/ & gave me chase for fight & I had to be quick to get out of their way but soon cleared[.] the two of them Broke for the Bluff[.] Br Brown Put for them[.] Rockwell, Kimball, Pack & myself stuck to the old Bull[.] I fired 2 Balls into him, Br Kimball one, Br Pack one & He fell dead. And we cut his throat & also shot a calf that was with him. the two that had left us that Brown was after was in the Bluffs more than a mile from us. Br Kimball & myself gave chase to them & as we got in about 20 rods of the Bluff we saw two come out & run for the main Herd[.] we gave chase for awhile but they were fresh & my Horse had run near 10 miles in the chase so we gave up the Pursuit.
I returned to Br Brown in the Bluffs & found that one of the Bulls He Had given Chase to was near dead had lain down[.] But Br Brown Had no more Powder or Ball But Before I arived He Had got up & run into the Herd on the Bluff, so we all returned on our Chase ground to gather up the meat we had Killed[.] in all 3 Cows one Bull & 5 Calves making 11 in all. Br Solomon [Joseph] Hancock* went out in the morning onto the Bluffs to kill Buffalo on foot[.] He did not come in at night[.] we felt concerned about him[.] early in the morning He came in, Had Killed a 3 yer old Cow & watched it over night to keep the wolves from eating it & wolves came upon him[.] He shot one[,] the rest run away[.] this made 12 Buffalo in all that the Hunters Killed to day which we considered was doing vary well considering that we were nearly all strangers to that mode of Hunting, as but vary few of us ever saw a wild Buffalo Before in our lives[.] We dressed our meat & waggons came from camp to take it in[.] A Part of this Chase was through one of the largest Prairie dog towns nearly ever seen[.] it was nearly ten miles long & 2 wide & full of Burrows nearly evry rod & great danger of a Horse steping into them & falling. There was no accident Happend at all to any one which was truly a blessing. My Horse stumbled once & came nigh falling but no harm done. This was the first Buffalo Hunt I ever took part in or saw.we travled to day with the camp[.] 18 miles[.] We discoverd Indian fires on the south & west of us.
2d Sunday All were Busy cooking & saving thare meat[.] in the Afternoon we moved up 3 miles for Better feed & camped by the side of a large slew [slough] of water[.] our camping place last night & this morning was at the Head of grand Island[.] Professor Pratt took an observation for the Latitude & found it to be 40°41'42"[.] this agrees with Freemonts obervation within 2 miles & his was on the south side of the river which was 2 miles south of our camping place[.] we came through another large dog town to day. Soon After we camped A herd of Buffalo came from the Bluffs to the river to drink within about 2 miles of us & then returned to the Bluffs[.] some were Anxious to go after them but as it was Sunday Br Young thought it best to let them be untill to morrow[.] the Indians set fire to the Prairie before us which burnt rapedly over a large region of country[.] Brs Young[,] Kimball & several others went several miles in the evening on our road to examine the fire & other things[.] distance 3 miles
3d The Hunters were called together in the morning 20 in number to go into the Bluffs for a still Hunt for Bluffs Buffalo & other game[.] we started out with two waggons to Bring in the game[.] I had taken a severe cold & setled in my side whare I was Hurt last fall & it made me sick & I was not able to go out[.] yet I started with the company as I was among the Hunters[.] I Had Jared myself badly in my hard Buffalo Chase on Saturday & I now was feeling its effects[.] at the same time the Hunters started Another Company was formed to go & explore out the rout & see if we could get grass for our Horses as the Indians had been Burning it of[t] for several days. We went into the Bluffs & separated into two Parties 10 in each & we travled some 10 miles Back & forth over the Hills & saw no game except Antelope & wolves[.] I felt so unwell I concluded to go back to Camp[.] A Lyman & 3 others were with me. we sat down upon the edge of the Bluff in sight of the camp to rest ourselves & we saw a company of 20 Horsman Approaching us from the camp in haste bearing A red flag[.] when they got within half a mile of us we trailed our arms & went down to meet them. they informed us that the party that went up the river had come upon an encampment of about 400 Indian warriors[.] A party of about 100 had followed them down A ravene to cut off their retreat probably with the Intention of robing them of their Horses & Clothing & would take life if they could not do it without & this company of Horsman Had come to us to call in the Hunters to camp[,] so we went in[.] the Hunters in coming in with the Horsman came across A Herd of Buffalo & Brought into camp 3 Calfs & 4 Antelope[.] they kept out a good guard during the night & we had no disturbance[.] the cannon was fired twice early in the morning to let the Indians know we were awake. I had a very severe night with my side. was in much pain[.] We had a great dew & frost during the night[.] 12
4th Thermometer stands at 33° this morning[.] I feel some better than I did last night. we started on our journey this morning 5 waggons a breast which made 5 roads[.] this was to be in readiness in case of an attack from the Indians[.] we travled 3 miles & saw some waggons on the opposite side of the river going down the Platt[.] soon one of the men waded the Platt & came to us to see who we were[.] He informed us they were traders from fort Laramie[.] He had been there 3 years had not tasted Bread for 2 years. was 16 days from Laramie[.] the grass was green & good on the south side to that fort but burnt off on the North side[.] He waided the Platt to come to us A mile across it & did not go but little above his knees[.] He would take letters to us to Sarpee who lived near winter Quarters[.] so the camp stoped & wrote 52 letters to our familys[.] I was ahead of the company with O Pratt taking observations & did not know untill the time was nearly up[.] I then in great haste scribbled a few lines to my wife[.] An epistle was written to the Church &c. Three Brethren accompanied the Frenchman accross the Platt & the other men was 9 in all[.] had not seen an Indian since they left Laramee [Laramie], Stated there was a ferry at the fort &c[.] agreed to take our letters saf[.] we drove on 3 miles more & bated our teams untill the Brethren returned[.] they made A report to the camp of what was said to them[.] A council of the whole camp was then Called to deside whether we would cross the Platt or continue up the North side of it. we were Convinced that it wood be better for us as a company to cross the river and use the old travled road to Laramee as their was good grass on the way on that side while the Indians were burning it all off on the North side of the river where we were travling[.] but when we took into consideration the situation of the next company & thousands that would follow after & as we were the Pioneers & had not our wives & children with us we thought it best to keep on the north side of the river & brave the difficulties of Burning Prairies & make A road that should stand as a permanant rout for the saints indipendant of the old emigration rout & let the river seperate the emigrating companies that they need not quarrel for wood grass or water & when our next company came along the grass would be much better for them than it would on the south side as it would grow up by the time they would get along. A vote was called & it was unanimous to go on the north side of the river. So the Camp again moved on, but during the nooning Col Markham drilled the men in a military capacity, they unshiped the cannon & carried it on wheels. the Frenchman informed us that He never saw so many Buffaloas on the rout this year[.] they had to stop several times to let the Herd Pass so they could get along. we saw many deer & Antelope to day & also wolves And a few Buffalo[.] one large Bull came across the river to us. we rode onto the bank before him & He run clear back again upon a loap & again crossed below us[.] we camped at night at a gravel creek or slew[.] A large Herd of Buffalo lay but a short distance before us[.] we travled in all today 9 m[.] 9 miles.
5th I was quite sick with the diaree[.] the change from salt to fresh meat is affecting a number in camp[.] The 400 Indian warriors that was supposed to be seen on the 3d Proved to be fals[.] the man was frightened at a herd of Antelope & supposed them to be Indians[.] we had to keep a guard out this morning to keep a herd of Buffalo from mixing up with our cattle[.] we have had vary strong south wind for 2 days, two Buffalo Bulls at noon were approaching the Herd of cows & men went out & drove them off[.] we rode up within 3 rods of one that was asleep & stoped & looked at him for some minutes[.] He awoke & shook himself & loaped off[.] we met a large Herd in the afternoon[.] the Brethren killed one cow 5 calves & brought A Bull Calf into Camp a live with the intention of raising it. it would drink water out of a pail[.] they had some sport in trying to make it suck to a cow[.] it would try hard to bunt the men & dogs over & some got hard raps[.] I have been obliged to keep my bed a part of the day have sufferd much with Bowel complaint. When we stoped for [the] night we soon found ourselves in the midst of grass on fire & had to return back one mile & camped on a spot of ground on the Bank of the river that was just Burned over & no feed except small patches[.] some took there Horses on an Island near & cut down cottonwood for them[.] we travled to day 15 miles.
6th I was some better this morning[.] we had some rain last night[.] I had a poor nights rest. we started early this morning without feeding (except a little corn) as there was no grass & travled 3 miles & got beyond the fire[.] left it in our rear & stop to bait & Breakfast on a good spot of grass. this morning the Herds of Buffalo speck the plains on both sides of the river And Antelope in great abundance some of which run into camp, the Buffalo Calf is dead this morning that was brought into camp alive last night[.] we continued our journey saw many herds of Buffalo Antelope & one large Herd of Elk A young Buffalo calf came into camp & followed us[.] we gave him some milk & left him[.] we travled 10 miles & Nooned on the prairie. we scarsly meet with any timber now, two Antelope were killed this forenoon but as we have so much meat in camp it is thought best not to kill any more Buffalo untill we need it or any other game. we were visited at noon with many Buffalo[.] Dr Richards G. A. Smith & myself walked up quite near several Buffalo Herds & exhamined through our glasses[.] they were sheding their coats[.] one bull Had a mat of wool swining by his side like a loose robe, our Herd of cows started to run among the Buffalo & President Young on his horse [rode] to seperate them & had great difficulty in doing it[.] He lost A spy glass in the chase worth $40. the Brethren Hunted for it A long time but could not find it[.] we continued to Journey among the Herds of Buffalo & we are not out of sight of them at all[.] they have eat the grass out to such a degree that our cattle & Horses can get but vary little to eat. we camped near A Herd at night that reached as far as our eyes could extend[,] There were thousands in it[.] distance of the day 20 m
7th A meeting was called[.] one of the Herdsman recieved a sharp reproof for neglecting the cows yesterday[.] a teem was called for to take the canon[.] we had an exceding Cold north wind to day[.] we travled 6 miles & camped upon the bank of the river[.] I should judge we saw 10,000 Buffalo to day[.] we came near large Herds with a greater proportion than usual of calves, yearlings, & two year olds[.] we saw several large ones mired, dead, wolves had commenced eating some of them[.] we could see wolves upon evry hand following the Herds of Buffalo to eat those who die of wounds, Accident or poverty. we had some rain in the evening. President Young & others rode out 6 mile in the evening to search out the road A few miles forward & for the first time on the Journey saw & killed a Polecat or Skunk. The Rigment [Regiment] was called out in the evening & drilled Arms inspected &c & found in good order[.] It was supposed an Indian was seen crossing the river in the night but was stoped & did not get ashore
8th A Plesant morning. Not so cold & winday as yesterday[.] we did not start untill 10 oclok as our teams wanted rest as they could not get much as the Buffalo had eat all the food up[.] Br Wm. Clayton prepared A mile gage on his hind waggon wheel to know how far we travel. I rode forward to day with the Twelve & others & of All the sights of Buffalo that our eyes beheld [this] was enough to asstonish man[.] thousands upon thousands would crould to gether as they came from the Bluffs to the Bottom land to go to the river & slues to drink untill the river & land upon both sides of it was one dark spectacle of moving objects[.] it looked as though the face of the arth was alive & moving like the waves of the sea[.] Br Kimball remarked that He had herd many Buffalo tales told But He never expected to behold what his eyes now saw[.] the half had not been told him. we saw many dead scattered about & many wolves following the herds. when we stoped at noon many of them walked along by the side of our waggons so that we might easily have shot them down, O P Rockwell did shoot one through the neck & she droped dead[.] it was a two year old Heifer & good meat[.] there were a great number of Calves & young cattle in the Herds we saw to day[.] we had great difficulty in keeping our cattle & Horses from going among them for if they once get mixed with a Herd it is almost impossible to ever get them again. we travled to day untill we came to the Bluffs that made down to the river & camped for the night[.] Distance 11¼ miles[.] I went onto the top of the Highest Bluffs that were near us & took A survey of the surrounding country with our glasses[,] there being present B. Young H C. Kimball W Woodruff & G A Smith[.] the whole surrounding country north east & west as far as our vision could extend looked as rough as the sea in a storm of ridges & valleys of mostly sand with scarcely any green thing upon it except a little scattering grass & the Spanish soap root such as the mexicans use for washing with instead of soap[.] the top resembles A pine Apple the most of anything I ever saw[.] I brought in one root 24 inch long 2 inch in diameter[.] I pounded A little of it up & it would fill a dish with suds like soap
9th Sunday As we had no feed around us we took up our teams & passed across the Bluffs 4 miles & camped for the day[.] I wrote 2 letters one to Br Ferguson & the other to Br Bevin for Br Wolley to take with him to Puebelo[.] we had a meeting & a good one[.] the spirit of God rules over the camp[.] Peace quietnes & contentment seems to pervade almost evry breast. the Twelve met & thought it best for the Brethren not to start to Pueblo untill they arive at Laramey. In the evening I rode with the Twelve & others 4 miles up the river & returned[.] we saw large Herds of Buffalo come to there watering places to drink, some geese, cranes & one Pole Cat[.] 8 miles.
10th A cool morning[.] Before leaving the camp ground A letter was written to the next camp put into a small box nailed to A post 12 feet long one end put firm in the ground the other end erect in the air as A guide bord containing the following words. Open this Box and you will find a letter. 316 miles to winter Quarters. Pioneers. Lattitude 41.° (Our Friends no doubt will be glad to get the letter as it contains an account of our Journey.
we travled 6 miles & nooned then travled 4 & camped for the night[.] our teams are some weak in consequences of not getting grass for several days as it was eat out by the Buffalo[.] there was one Buffalo, one deer & one Hare Brought into camp by the Hunters to day, & distributed among the men in camp[.] we have what fresh meat we want daily[.] the grass is some better to day[.] not but few Herds of Buffalo on our rout today, we passed through some miles of dead grass which we set on fire to have new feed for the next company[.] it made a great fire indeed[.] we get our distance daily now of our travel from A mashine fixed to a waggon wheel which gives the true distance[.] we camped to night by an Island of cotton wood[.] 10 m
11th Quite warm to day[.] we travled 4 miles & made A short halt then travled 3½ miles & camped A little below the junction of the North & south forks of the Platt River[.] I felt quite unwell. the use of fresh meet does not as yet agree vary well with me. we see but few Buffalo to day some Antelope & Deer &c. 8½ miles
Professor Pratt informed me that He took an observation for the Longitude May 7th on the opposite bank of the Platt from whare Freemont gives the Longitude in his travels[.] Professor Pratt made the Longitude to be 100° 5'45" making it two seconds of a degree less than Freemont ownly about 10 rods which was vary close calculating. He also found the Lat ½ a mile west of this nights encampment to be 41°7'44"
12th A cool morning Mercury stands at 41, we had a strong S wind through the day[.] we travled 8 miles & nooned[.] we then travled 4 miles & camped for the night on the bank of the North fork of the Platt[.] I rode onto the Bluffs to take a survey of the country which was about 3 miles from the river & we found both on the Hills & flatts through the days travel that we were traveling over the Soux Hunting ground[.] there had been A large band from 500 to 1,000 we should Judge from there signs over the ground from 8 to 10 days before us, they took the brains out of the large Buffalos generally their Hides & some of the meet & broke up the bones for the marrow. 100 calves were found dead in one place with nothing taken but the tongues, legs to the knees & entrails[.] Another place 35 calves were found dead & washed in heaps whare the Buffalo had been chased across the river & run over the calves in rising the bank of the river. I found on the Bluff their medicine bag tied to a stick 6 feet long stuck up in the bank[.] it was what is called kinikinnick composed of tobacco & bark to smoke[.] I Also found a saddle tied to a large buffalo dung I supposed to show the next party which way the Buffalo had gone. I left my horse in the valley to feed while I went onto a Bluff to see the country & He started off not seeing the camp took the back trail & I had to run After him & while following him I run through the great S[i]oux encampment whare they had had there lodges while on their hunt[.] I left my gun there & followed my horse untill I overtook him with the Assistance of Br Fowler who came out from our encampment & stoped him[.] I then rode back got my gun examined the ground & should judge their had been 500 lodges. there was Acres of ground covered with Buffalo wool whare they had dressed there skins. they left much stuff scattered over the ground such as peaces of dressed Buffalo & wolf skins mogascins [moccasins] &c[.] I brought in a good dressed white wolf skin[.] distance of the day 12 mil
I could see the Bluff between the forks of the river about 10 miles above us[.] the Bluffs that I passed over to day were more fertile & coverd with more grass than any I had seen on the Platt before[.] A young Buffalo was killed & brought in in the evening
13 Many of the Brethren went out to visit the Indian encampment & brought in mogasens, parts of robes leather &c, we have A strong cold north wind to day. we travled to day 11 miles & camped on the west Bank of A stream about 18 rods wide with good ford that empties into the Platt[.] this is nearly opposite the first Bluff that is formed between the two forks of the Platt[.] the grass was better than it had been, the Bluff here for the first time on the north fork comes bold to the river so that we have to go over the Bluffs with our wagons[.] there is one thing concerning the Platt river which is worthy of note, which is not characteristic [of] any other river that I have any knowledge of in the world. it is much of the way A mile in wedth & generally coverd with water but vary shallow[.] when A South wind blows hard the water all rushes to the north shore untill one would suppose there was a great rise in the water[.] let the wind shift & blow hard from the North & the water immediately leaves the north shore untill one can walk across two thirds of the river on bare ground & the river constantly ebs & flows like the tide just according as the wind blows[.] I went onto the bluffs Hunting Buffalo in the evening, saw several small Herds[.] President Young gave the stream we camped on the name of the Bluff fork.
I dreamed last night we had arived at our Journeys end whare we were to build up a stake of Zion[.] As we came onto the place there was An open vision of A temple presented before me[.] I asked some brethren that stood by me If they saw it[.] they said they did not[.] I gazed upon it & it was glorious[.] it appeared as though it was built of white & blue stone[.] the sight of it filled me with Joy and I awoke & behold it was a dream. 11 m
14th I went out early in the morning to Hunt some Buffalo[.] I cashed myself in the bank & a large Herd came along, but their old Bulls was out as a rear & front guard & there was none of their young cattle near enough for me to shoot so they past by[.] I saw some more coming I way laid them[.] they proved to be 7 Bulls[.] I fired at the youngest one while [it] passed by but missed him[.] I then returned to camp[,] took breakfast[,] had a hard shower of rain, & some words with Br Fowler & started out again Hunting[.] Br Higby soon Killed an Antelope that was put on board of a boat called the revenue Cutter[.] Phineas Young & myself went out to gether[,] waited for Buffalo & Antilope[.] I finally got lost among the Bluffs but found my way out again[.] Br Phineas shot an Buck Antilope & I carried him into Camp. there was 3 Antilope & one Buffalo Bull killed. Some of the Hunters thought they herd Indian guns on the opposit side of the river during the night[.] An Indian cralled up to a pair of mules that was tied together & made a grab to ketch them[.] they sprung & got away from him[.] one of the guards shot at him & he run[.] all Horses were then brought into the circle & the cannon prepared for firing but seeing no more it was not fired[.] travled 8 miles
15th A vary cold North wind & rain[.] we ha[ve] travled about 3 miles & camped in the best grass we had found on the road. Most of our road this morning was over & through the bluffs as they come again bold to the river[.] A large number of Barefoot tracks was seen this morning under the bluff on the bank of the river, supposed to be the Indians that came down last night to steal our Horses. the rain stoped in the afternoon & we drove 5 miles & camped on the Prairie. distance 8 miles
We saw the Bluffs dotted over with Buffalo[.] I went out with some others to hunt them[.] I could not get within about 30 rods of them[.] I shot at the neck of one & the ball went into his sholdier which crippled him but He Hobbled away with the Herd & I did not get him[.] But there were A number of Hunters among the Herds & one of them killed A fat Buffalo which was brought into camp. the Bluffs again come down to the river A short distance before us
16th Sunday Still Cloudy & cool wind. I did not feel vary well this morning And did not rise untill 7 oclock which was two hours after the time[.] when I got out of my carriage I found all five of my horses standing at the stakes while all the other Horses of the encampment had been feeding two hours. It was Br John Fowlers Business to let them out but He did not get up untill half an hour after I did. He Is destitute of the spirit or principle that a faithful man or servant should possess And it makes it much harder upon me in the care of the teams & business than it would if I had a true & faithful man with me[.] Br Burnham does our cooking which keeps him vary busy & He has the hardest time of it as much of the time He has nothing but Buffalo dung to make a fire of[.] we are now in a place whare we are proving ourselves & if we are not faithful we shall come under condemnation. I rode out to day with Brothers Young Kimball, Benson Rockwell & Stephens 4 miles over the Bluffs to pick out a road for the camp to go across to get again on the bottoms[.] we found a road through & returned to the camp[.] I picked up A young Hare which Br Young took in to camp. we saw Herds of Buffalo while coming in. Br Glines went out Hunting & shot an Antelope & one Buffalo though it was against the rules of the camp & council of his captain to go Hunting on Sunday. we had a good meeting in the Afternoon[.] Br [blank space] opened meeting by Prayer. Brs Richards Markham Rockwood & Kimball spoke & the laws of the camp were read & a good spirit prevailed[.] the channel of the teaching was to Harken to council & sustain the Heads of the Church & go & do what was said unto us & it would prove A Blessing unto us[.] 8 mi
17th It is much more warm & plesant to day than usual[.] our road has been hard to day we came 2½ miles through sandy bluffs. we again struck the bottom 4½ miles from our camping place but the bottom was much softer than usual & many slues to cross[.] we crossed about one dozen streams to day of vary clear water that come from springs in the Bluff from 1 to 10 feet across them which run almost on the top of the ground without any bank at all with hard sand or gravel bottom. the water however was not as cold as spring water generally is. the Hunters brought in 3 Buffalo & it detained the camp some to get them in, President Young was not pleased with it as we had so much meet in camp already & they went out without council. we saw vary large droves of deer to day in the bottoms the most we have ever seen any day on the road[.] A young Fawn was picked up & brought into camp & kept[.] we travled in all to day 12¾ miles.
I led the camp mostly through the Bluffs in the morning before Brothers Young & Kimball come up[.] we rode together all day picking our roads.
18th The camp was called together or the Captains of Companies & President Young sharply reproved the Hunters for shooting so much meet when it was not needed & detaining the camp or for taking life any more than could be helpd And Also the horsman for their indiferance in picking out the road[.] He said there was but two that had rode that manifested any interest in helping him get the Camp along. He spoke vary sharply upon the indiferance of men, & they rejected the meet when it was brought into Camp &c[.] the camp started out after the meet was disposed of & the Hunters or Horsman went forward to pick out the road instead of going Hunting[.] I did not hear a gun fired on the road during the day[.] Amasa Lyman was one called by name & reproved for not paying any attention to seeking out the road. but he was with us to day in that business[.] we rode 6 miles & nooned[.] we rode in the afternoon 9¾ miles & camped for the night[.] distance of the day 15¾ m
19th we crossed the worst sand Hill Bluff of about one mile that we have crossed on the journey & what made it still worse the rain was pouring down upon us continually[.] we travled about ½ mile on the flat & camped untill the rain was over for the time being[.] we started again at 3 oclok but it soon began to rain again hard[.] we travled untill 5 oclok & Camped for the night on the bank of the river. we travled 8 miles by the wheelometer[.] 8 milesI rode forward during the day in the rain & picked out the road[.] we had the most water fall during the day and evening that we have met with on the whole Journey
20th we came 7 miles & camped for our nooning on the North side of the Platt opposite Ash creek that comes through the Bluffs to the Platt on the south side of the river whare the Origon road first strikes the north fork of the Platt[.] several of the brethren went over in a boat that we were taking with us & exhamined the rock Bluffs, road, creek, &c & returnd with some Ash, rock, wild curands, & Cherry &c[.] we came on 8 3/4 miles & camped for the night[.] we crossed a large creek about 12 rods across it which we supposed it to be A Creek that Glos Cload called the Rawhiyde[.] we had a vary good road most of the day on the bank of the River, we have passed A good deal of rock Bluff on both sides of the river, & some on the south side of the river was formed into natural terrices Rotundas, squairs &c 50 or 100 feet high[.] looked like good foundations to build forts & fortications & strong holds upon, they resemble the work of Art & look some like the old castles of England & Scotland. They were level on the top. A short distance above Ash Creek there is A beautiful Ceder Island in the river which is a good Beacon to show travelers whare the oregon road strikes the river[.] we have had a cool, windy, cloudy day[.] whole distance 15 1/4 m[.] Brother Egbert drove Br Pratts carriage tongue into the hind end of my carriage & broke in the end bord & the water came in when it rained so that it wet my things & to day Br Fowler run his waggon into it again to day but when I spoke to him about it He denyed it which caused some words between us. we had some little rain to day. The Bluffs on the opposite side that I have described above are named Castle Bluffs & the stream that was called rawhide is called castle creek
21st Before we left the encampment Br Clayton put up A guide board with the following inscription for the benefit of the next camp from winter Quarters[:] 409 miles from the Junktion [junction][:] 93¼ ceder [Cedar] Bluff 36 1/2. Ash Hollow 8 miles, & 133 from Fort Laramee [Laramie[.] we travled to day 7½ miles & nooned[.] in the Afternoon 8 m[.] & camped for the night. we saw 8 or 10 Buffalo to day but have not seen but few for several days[.] we saw some deer & Antilope [antelope] to day[.] I killed A Bagger [badger]with the jaw bone of a Buffalo. Just as we got to A camping place two Indians came from the Bluffs riding towards us & made signs for us to come to them[.] several of the brethren went, it was A Sioux Indian & his wife. they talked by signs awhile & went away[.] distance of the day 15½ miles.
22d The brethren found A part of a petrified leg bone of A Mamouth [Mammoth.] it was from the knee joint downward[,] the piece was 17 inch long. 11 inches wide & weighed 27 lbs. we travled to day 7 1/2 miles & nooned & in the Afternoon 8 miles & camped for the Sabbath. whole distance of the day 15 1/2 m[.] our road has been vary strait to day but we came over 2½ miles of the worst Bluff sandy & Hilly that we have past on the rout. we have also past several large creek beds of dry sand, the Bluffs on our rout to day have presented the most singular natural senery that I ever beheld in my travels on the earth. It has the greatest appearance of the old walls & ruins of the castles of Europe from the size of chimneys to 100 feet square or more, bodies of earth & rock that Appears as though it was formed out of clay stand erect scattering through the Bluffs from 10 to 100 feet high with perpendicular sides as strait as walls of A building while all the earth around them have been washed away to their base with rain & time. A spring of cold water was found in the top of one of these peaks Apparently in a small basin of stone. there are considerable number of rattle snakes come out of these bluffs[.] I saw near A dozen to day[.] A good share of the rout this Afternoon the face of the earth is barren Almost destitute of grass
23d Sunday In Company with B Young & the Twelve we visited the top of two of the Highest Bluff ruins that lie opposite our encampment which were truly a curiosity. O. Pratt took a Barometrical observation on the ownly tree which was red Ceder [cedar] on the top of the ruins or Bluff which we visited[.] we had A fair view of chimney rock from whare we were. I carried A Bleached Buffalo Bulls head on to the top & wrote upon it with a pencil our names & distances from several places for the Benefit of the next Camp. while Br Fairbanks was on one of these Bluffs He was bit with A rattlesnake & became vary painful before He reached Camp[.] the Brethren commenced giving him such things as they thought best, And he soon was better. The camp met at half past 11 oclok. E Snow Addressd the Meeting & spoke well. President Young then addressed the Camp in an Interesting manner. Said He was satisfyed that the Lord was with us & Leading us[.] had never seen a company of people more united than the Camp had been thus far on the journey[,] that we should pluck the fruits of this mission to all Eternity[,] that He had many things to teach us but Could not do it ownly in a stake of Zion. But He was well satisfyed with Himself, his brethren the Twelve & the camp at large[.] one thing He would say to the praise of all, that was not one had refused to obey his council on the road, His peace with God was continually like a river & He felt that the spirit of peace rested upon the whole Camp. many good things were said. Several other brethren followed him After which meeting was dismissed. we intended to have rode out in the evening, but we saw that a storm was gathering, & it soon began to Blow vary hard[.] About as much as we could do to save our waggons Bows & covers from being smashed[.] the hard wind continued for about an hour then it commenced raining which lasted about one hour accompanied with some hail[,] it turned vary cold[.] I had fears that some of our horses would perish with the cold As such changes were freequent in this region[.] Mr Sarpee related a Circumstance that transpired several years since at about this place on the 22d of May one day earlier than this while travling down this fork of the platt[,] it was warm weather[,] the grass 10 inch high[.] it began to rain some in the Afternoon & turned Cold in the evening & before morning 16 of his best Horses were frozen to death by the side of the waggons & his boats froze into the Ice in the river[.] the Changes are vary great in this Country & when I see it turning so cold I coverd all my horses with Blankets that I could[.] I got up several times in the night to see to them[.] It rained occasionally in the night. the Horses shook with cold but morning came & all was Alive[,] as soon as they were let loose they run to warm themselves.
24th It was A cold morning[.] yesterday morning the Thermometer stood at 52°, at noon 82, & this morning 38 accompanied with north wind, we travled 10 miles & nooned. I dreamed this morning that some Indians came into camp in a friendly manner & stole 6 Horses before our eyes & rode off[.] we gave them chase on horsback & I awoke. As soon as we camped this noon two Indians came to the camp[,] they were Sioux[.] they were well dressed & clean[.] we gave them some dinner & showed them An Indian dog that had followed us several days but the dog would not follow them[.] they soon left the camp[.] Chimney rock still grows plainer to our view[.] we drove in the Afternoon 6 1/2 miles & camped near the quick sand mountain that run in a ridge from the river back. this Apparently had been heaped up by the wind[.] I rode About two miles forward to find grass And A Camping place And on my return I saw about 30 Soux Indians Plunge their Horses Into the River on the opposite side & make towards us[.] I rode with several others to the river & met them as they came out[.] they shook hands with us, vary friendly. the Chief unfurled A large American Flag with the Eagle stars & strips & presented me A Letter[.] It was written in french[,] we however made it out. they were all well dressed[.] the Chief was dressed in A military Coat. the Brethren from Camp brought A white flag & stuck down by the side of theirs[.] they wanted to go into Camp[.] we proposed for 5 of them to go & the rest to remain in Camp but they all wiched to come so we let them[.] we gave them supper. they remained about camp all night, but were good & stole nothing[.] distance of the day 16 1/2 m.
25th The Sioux are in camp this morning. we gave them Breakfas[.] They stayed with us untill we started. some little traiding was done[.] they were men women & children[.] they crossed the river when we left & behaved well[.] we drove 2 miles & Bated our horses, then drove untill 1 oclok & nooned[,] then drove untill 6 oclok & camped for the night[.] distance 12 m[.] I was unwell[.] had the Rheumatism in shoulders & back & toothake[,] had to keep [to] the carriage[.] I read Hastings account of calafornia. He tells some great stories about California & Oregon[.] we camped within about 4 miles of chimney rock.
26th we travled 6¼ miles & nooned in good grass about 2 miles above Chimney rock. we travled in the Afternoon 6¼ miles & camped for the night. The Hunters brought in four Antelope[.] we passed much good grass to day. I rode to day with Br Kimball & Benson to look out the road. I have during the last two days read Mr Hastings account of Oregon & upper Calafornia [California]. He has greatly exhagerated the account of upper Calafornia.
Just before camping at noon while travling on A Smooth prairie An Accurance took place which like to have proven of serious consequence to our camp[.] An Indian Horse that was bought of the Sioux ran away with A singletree to his heels & gave A tremendious fright to the cows, oxen & horses that were Attached to the waggons. And in an instant A dozen or more waggons were darting by each other like lightning & the Horses & mules flying as it were over the ground[.] some turned to the right & some to the left[.] some run into other waggons. the Horse & mule that Br Fowler was driving leaped with all spead. with Br Little hold of the lines & Br Fowler hold of the bits they darted by my carriage like electricity & came within one inch of A collission with my wheels[.] if they had locked we should have been a wreck[.] Another waggon followed by in the same manner with a pair of Mules & one yoke of cattle upon A keen run which would also have smashed my carriage if they had hit it but my own horses by this time started to run but was soon held up by the driver. Br Fowlers waggon continued to roll regardless of rough or Smooth ground for about fifty rods & he draged the whole distance by the bit which was the case with many others but all was soon stoped & returned to there lines without any accident to any team of waggon which Appeared to me truly A miracle[.] William Smoots team run away also with great speed[.] It give us somthing of an Idea what An Indian yell would do in such an encampment with teams hitched to wagons[.] A person can hardly concieve of the power that is manifest in Animals esspecially mules when in such A fright. But I felt thankful that no accident happened.
By An Imperfect measurement by a Trigonometrical observation By the sexton Professor Pratt made the Chimney rock to be 260 feet above the level of the river. distance of the day 12½ m.
27th we started 15 m before 8 oclok travled in a strait line 8 miles & nooned in good grass[.] Br Kimball & myself picked the road in the foornoon & it was left to me in the Afternoon[.] I piloted the road in the Afternoon[,] As strait as any road that had been made on the whole rout & picked out a camping ground on the bank of the river in good feed. We travled 5¾ miles[.] 13¾.
It should be understood that we are piloting A road for the House of Israel to travel in for many years to come[.] therefore it requires the greater care. The Hunters brought in 5 Antilope to day. We Camped at half past 4 oclock opposite Scotts Bluff at Lattitude 41°50'52". The wedth of the river 772 yards[.] Awind soon arose accompanied by thunder & lightning[.] we had but little rain.
28th A Cold rainy morning[.] The Camp Concluded not to start untill it stop raining. So we started at 10 oclok & travled 11½ miles & camped for the night on the bank of the river[.] it was A damp Cold day[.] we passed along side of A clear strem of water with some beaver dams & houses upon it[.] At one place it raised the water about two feet which was lined with fish[,] A good share of which was speckled trout so the brethren informed me[.] this is the first stream I have met with containing trout since I left the New England States, Therefore I name it trout creek[,] it was not more than 3 miles long[,] it arose from a large pure spring. it was but a little above Scotts Bluffs[.] [Illustration] distance of the day 11½
during the evening President Young called at my fire & seeing several of trhe brethering playing dominoes in A waggon nearby began to teach by saying that the devil was getting power over the camp[,] that for several days past nearly the whole camp had drank into A spirit of card, Checker, & domino playing & dancing & the spirit of folley & if they did not spedily repent their works, labours, & Journey would be in vain[,] that we should not accomplish the object for which we had come but should be thwarted in it. He said the Camp did not quarel any to be shure for the devel would not set them to quarreling as long as he could draw them away gradually from duty & fill them with nonsens & folley, for the devil was vary Cuning in drawing away the people of God. I felt the force of his remarks & thought them necessary. during the evening I went in to the doctors waggon, read a Chapter in the Book of Mormon & prayed with them, After which B Young H. C. Kimball W Richards E. T. Benson & W. Woodruff met in council in Br Youngs waggon & Br Young wrote some of the word of the Lord concerning the camp & expressed his views & feelings concerning the camp that they must spedily repent or they would be cursed, that they were forgetting their mission & he had rather travel with 10 righteous men who would keep the commandments of God than the whole camp while in a carless manner & forgetting God, we stayed untill 10 oclok & retired to rest
29th A Cold rainy morning[.] At 10 oclok the horn was blown to gather up the Horses & Cattle which took more than an hours After which President Young called the Camp together and Required each captain to seperate or call out his men & when it was found all was present except two who had gone a hunting He then Addressed them, somthing in the following language, I think I will take for my text to preach my sermon from I am about to revolt from travling with this camp any further with the spirit they now possess, I had rather risk myself among the savages with ten men that are men of faith, men of mighty prayer men of God, than to be with this whole camp when they forget God & turn there hearts to folley & wickedness, Yea I had rather be alone, & I am now resolved not to go any further with the camp unless you will covenant to humble yourselves before the Lord & serve him & quit your folley & wickedness, for A week past nearly the whole camp has been card playing, chequres & dominoes have occupied the Attention of the brethren & dancing & Nigering & Hoeing down[,] all has been the [-] continually, now it is quite time to quit it, & there has been trials & law suits upon evry nonsensical thing & if these things are suffered to go on it will be but a short time befor you will be fighting knocking each other down & taking life & it is high time it was stoped. I do not want to hear any more such reports as I herd last Sunday of mens going to meeting & preaching to the rest after he had played cards untill meeting time, you are A putty set of men going to seek out A location among the mountains for a resting place of the Saints, even the whole Church of God who have been driven out from the gentiles & rejected of them[,] And after you have esstablished A location you are then going out to preach the gospel, seal salvation upon the House of Israel & gather the nations, How would you look if they should know your conduct & Ask you what did you do when you went to seek out Zion, & find A resting place for the Saints whare the Standard of the Kingdom of God could be reared & her banners unfurled for the nations to gather unto du you spend A good deal of your time in dancing pitching quate, Jumping wrastleing &c? yes. yes. did you play Cards, dice checkers & dominoes[?] O! yes, what Could you do with yourself, why you would shrink from the glance of the eyes of God Angels & men even wicked men. then are you not ashamed of yourselves for practicing these things[?] yes you are & you must quit it. After speaking sumwhat lengthy upon these matters He Called the Twelve together the High priest, Seventies & Elders, & found to be 8 of the quorum of the Twelve, 18 High Priest, 80 Seventies & 8 Elders After which President Young Said unto the Twelve if you are willing to Humble yourselves before the Lord & covenant to do right & walk humble before him, make it manifest by raising the right hand[.] when each one raised their hand, the same question was put to the High Priest, Seventies, Elders & Members & all universally Covenanted with uplifted hand to humble themselves before the Lord & repent of their sins & keep his Commandments. President Young then spoke of those who was not in the Church As there were som present that they would be protected in their rights but they must not introduce wickedness in the Camp for it would not be sufferd. He then spoke of the standard & ensign that would be reared in Zion, to govern the Kingdom of God And the nations of the earth for evry nation would bow the knee & evry tongue confess that [illustration] JESUS was the Christ And this will be the standard The Kingdom of God & his Laws & Judgment in [text in shorthand] And on the standard would be a flag of evry nation under heaven so their would be an invitation to all Nations under heaven to come unto Zion, the Saints would have to keep the Celestial law, And all nations & religions would have to bow the knee to God And Acknowledge that Jesus was the Christ, but they would not be under the necessity of being Baptized or embracing the Gospel of Christ, but they must acknowledge the right & reign of Christ[.] then if they felt disposed to reject the gospel & be damned they had A right to & the saints or inhabitants of Zion had no right to take from them their religion or persecute them on account of it or trample upon their rights any way. neither should other nations or religions trample upon the rights & privileges of the Saints who serve & obey the Lord of [-] [and] Keep his Commandments—neither would that be suffered as it has been in times past—And upon this principle All men or religions may dwell with us in peace, if they will keep the outward laws of the kingdom of [God] so as to acknowledg his name & his right to reign & let us keep the law of the gospel & obey his commanndments undisturbed, After making other remarks He left the meeting in the hands of the rest of the Twelve[.] Elder Kimball followed & remarked that what President Young said it was the word of the Lord unto him & was Just as much binding upon him as though it was A written Revelation And it was just as much binding upon the whole camp as it was upon him & urged the saints to give heed to the teachings that were given.
O Pratt followed & said that if the Saints had leasure hours that they could spend them to much better Advantage than playing cards As there was A world of Knowledge to be obtained & evry leasure moment should be improved in storeing the mind with some science or learning some good principle And acknowledged the teachings we had recieved to be of the Lord
W. Woodruff Arose & said He had some things in his heart he wished to Say, that A Burned child dreaded the fire. He had not forgotton his Journey in the camp of 1834 And should He live to the age of Matheusala He should not forget the hour when the Prophet & Seer Joseph Smith stood upon the waggon wheel & Addressed that camp & said that because they had not Harkened to his councel but disobeyed, & transgressed from time to time, that the die was cast & Judgment must come. that we should be visited by the destroying Angels. And so we were & more than twenty of our numbers fell by the stroke & we all suffered much in our feelings. And I pray the Lord I may not see another such a time. And I would now Advise my brethren to be careful in Keeping the covenant we have made lest by & by the word of the Lord come unto us as in the days of Joseph & we cannot escape his judgment. I would Advise all the Brethren who have got cards to burn them up Also checkers & dominoes. for if you keep your covenants you have made you will have no time to use them & they will be useless lumber on your hands. if you keep them for your children they will ownly prove a curse to them. And my prayer to God is that we all may be enabled to keep all our covenants with the Lord & each other. I rejoice that the watchman upon the walls or in our mids are quick to comprehend & warn us of evil & reprove us when wrong that we may be saved & do the will of God
Br S. Markham Arose confessed his sins for card playing on Sunday before he went to preach & asked forgivness. then the camp dispersed to there waggons & we all started on our Journey[.] Br G. A. Smith & myself went together to pilot out the road[.] we travled 8½ miles & camped for the night in good feed though the whole country was vary barren that we had come through. we passed today through layers of good Sand Stone in the edge of the Bluffs[.] one large rock resembled the Hull of A Steemboat loaded with freight So I named it stone steem boat bluff. it commenced raining before we camped. it was vary cold, distance of the day 8½ m[.] during the evening Br B Young went out with the Twelve & had Prayes
30th Sunday We set this day apart for Prayer & fasting, in the morning I shaved & washed all over & Anointed my head & put on Clean Clothing, read A chapter in the Book of Mormon & humbled myself before the Lord & poured out my soul in prayer before the Lord & his spirit desended upon me & I was blessed. I spent some time in writing my Journal. The camp had A Prayer meeting in the morning & met Again in public Meeting. President Young in company with the quorum of the Twelve & a few others went into the vally of the Hills & according to the order of the Priesthood prayed in A circle & Porter & Br Carrington watched to see that no Indians come upon us. we had A good time. there was A heavy storm Appeared but it mostly went Around[.] there was but little rain where we were. we returned to our waggons & took some refreshment having eaten nothing during the day, soon the Son came out plain & plesant. In the evening I went out 2 miles with the quorum of the Twelve onto A High Bluff & had a good views of the Black Hills Also Prayers
31st There are many portions of this country vary barren[.] we travel over several miles at a time of level prairie with little or no grass upon it[.] in this ground we find great quantities of the Prickelly pair & they are an excellent plant to eat though coverd with thorns like needles which have to be carefully paired off with A knife & fork[.] they are quite delicious[.] have A little tart but vary plesant
we had A plesant morning. our cattle was strayed so far it took about 2 hours to get them up & get ready for starting[.] we however started at 8 oclock & travled 9 1/2 miles & nooned on a green flat[,] most of the ground through the day was vary barren[.] grass is again getting vary scarce. Br Pratt took an observation & found the Lattitude to be 42°4'30"[.] we travled in the Afternoon 7 1/4 miles & camped upon the bank of a creek about 15 or 20 miles below Laramie[.] the Hunters brought in one long tailed deer[,] saw several Elk & Antilope but got none of them[.] i went forward to pick out the road through the day[.] I felt some unwell with teeth ake & canker in my mouth. distance of the day 16¾.
I would here mention that which belonged to the mornings Account that there was A crust of frost over the grass[.] the Thermometer stood at 35, At 5 oclok, we Passed to day A grove of large cotton wood but the Sioux had wintered in it & cut down the most of it for brows & wood, we are begining to come to wood more plenty but the camp has had much difficulty to obtain wood to cook with for the last weeks as we had neith[er] timber nor Buffalo chips. the men would follow the river bank all day & Islands to pick up any wood sticks barks or chips that might chanced to have lodged on the bank by the flood or that the Indians may have left. but it is now to be readily obtained[.] it is supposed that the creek we camp on to night is the rawhide
June 1st 1847 A fine pleasant morning. I had suffered much from the tooth Ake [ache] of late. I went before starting on the journey to Luke Johnson A dentist & got my tooth part of it dug out is broke of & left the stump in my Jaw which pained me through the day[.] we travled 6 miles & nooned whare we had but little feed, we travled in the Afternoon [blank space] miles & camped on the bank of the platt opposite of Fort Laramie within 1 1/2 miles of the fort. when we arived we saw some men Approaching us from the fort[.] when they arived on the bank we found them to be a part of the company of the Missisippi Brethren who had been to Pueblo through the winter, Brother Crow & his family 7 waggons & 14 souls were the individuals who were at the fort[.] they soon stood upon the bank of the river[.] we lanchd our boat & crossed the stream to them[.] several of the brethren went over to them Among whom was Br Brown that led up the same company to this place last year, they were truly glad to meet, No one can imagin the joy of friends on meeting each other under Such circumstances Away from the Abodes of white men whare they are ownly visited by Savages. Br Crow came across & met in council with us. And informed us that the remainder of the Missippi company with the portion of the Mormon Battalion that was at Pueblo would start for Laramie About the first of June & follow our trail onto Calafornia, He informed us of 4 of the brethren who had died one of which was Arnold Stephens[,] Had herd nothing of the main body of the Battlion, He soon returned home & the camp met together. President Young suggested the propriety of our leaving all our plows at the fort except such as we should want to use immediately when we got there, to do up our Blacksmithing, Burning Coal, mending waggons &c As soon as possible so that we could go on our Journey as spedily as possible, A company was Appointed to do herding & to attend to all those branches of business, we then retired to rest[.] I am quite unwell & have been for several days[.] I have canker in the mouth, bleed at the nose, do not rest well nights[.] distance of the day 12 m.
2d In company with the Twelve & others I crossed to the river to visit the fort & those who inhabit it[.] we exhamined fort St John which is now evacuated but the walls are standing[.] the dimentions of St John are 144 by 132 outside, the inside of the fort contained 16 rooms, 7 rooms on the North west & 7 on the South east one on the South, the largest on the north 98 feet long 47 wide[.] the Oregon trail runs one rod from the S.W. cornor of the fort[.] we next visited Fort Larimie now occupied by 38 persons French mostly, who have Married the Sioux[.] Mr Burdow is the superinteden[.] this fort is 168 by 116 outside. their are 6 rooms upon two sides, & 3 rooms upon the north & 3 upon the south occupied by stores Blacksmith & dwellings[.] it is quite A plesant situation for A fort. Mr Burdow was A Frenchman And a Gentleman, He recieved us kindly And invited us into A large setting room on the north side of the Fort elevated about 10 feet from the ground, A flight of stairs leading to it, gave us any information He could in relation to our rout. Also furnished us with his flat boat on reasonable terms to assist us in ferrying the Platt[.] He informed us that Gov Boogs & his men had much to say against the mormons & cautioned him to take care of his horses cattle &c lest we should steal them. [He tried to] prejudice him against us all he could. He said that Boggs company was quarrelling all the time & most of the company had deserted him. He finally told Boggs & co that let the Mormons be as bad as they would they could not be any wors than He & his men were. He Had A number of S[i]oux women & children around him while we were there. About 20 of the Sioux men, women & children came with Paltry to the trading House, Provisions of All kinds were vary high & goods at the store flour 25 cts a pound tobacco $1.50 cts per lb. After conversing with him for a length of time we got into the flat boat about 20 of us & went down the Laramie fork to its mouth about 2 miles & up the platt half a mile to our camp, After dinner we met in council & there decided that Amaza Lyman go to Pueblo with several other brethren to meet the detachment of the Battalion that was there for them to come As soon as convenient to Laramie & follow our trail to Calafornia, I finished the letters to send to Bourit & Ferguson[.] I picked some greens & had a good dinner of them though I am not well to day
3d A vary windy day[.] we commenced before Sun ris to ferry over our boats[.] my ten was the first that went over[.] the wind was favorable[.] we saw 3 men arive on pack Horses last evening at the fort on the oregon road[.] we ascertained this morning they were from St Josepheth[.] they report 2,000 waggons on the road to Oregon from St Joes[.] they are divided into companies of 20 to 50 waggons & that they will arive here tomorrow the first co. Mr Burdow called down to see us cross to day. we set up our Blacksmiths Shops in the old fort to do our work, & made fires to do our washing[.] Br Burnham done my washing to day the first time I have washed my clothing since I left winter quarters. Br Frost set 6 shoes for me to day & 2 for Br Smoot. In the evening I walked up onto the Highest peak around us, in company with the Twelve & others. we took a view of the surrounding country[.] on our return to the camp we visited the Indian & French Burying ground[.] the Indians were laid up upon A Staging about 10 feet from the ground, the French were buried in the ground strong pickets around with a cross at the head being Catholics, Snow was discoverd upon the mountains through glasses
4th I wrote two letters to day one to Mrs W. & one to Aphek Woodruff A. O. Smoot & J Benbow & left them in the Hands of Mr. [blank space ] who keeps the Store & Acts As post Masters. He appeared vary friendly said He would for ward our letters that were to go to winter Quarters to the care of Mr Sarpee & those that were to be deliverd to the Mormon Camp would deliver them to the leader of the Camp on our Arival, He truly manifested much friendship towards us. Professor Pratt took observation at the fort for the Longitude at the fort.
I conversed with A mountaineer who had wintered at the great Basin of the Salt & Eutau lakes & he recommends the Country vary Highly for A healthy fertile Country the Lakes & streams Abounding with trout & other fish A good supply of shugar maple & other timber &c. before we left Br Clayton Erected A guide board on the north side of the river containing the following information which He took from his Journals on the distances which was correct as it was obtained from the wheelometer[:] 543¼ miles from Winter Quarters 227 1/2 miles from the Junction of the Platt 142¼ miles from Ash Hollow 70¼ miles from Chimney Rock And 50½ from Scotts Bluff.
we left the Fort & started on our Journey[.] we took the right hand road up the platt & travled 8¼ miles & camped for the night. the travel now Appears to be attended with A good deal of interest as we begin to ascend the black Hills which are universally coverd with pine & ceder[.] we saw one vary High peak coverd the top with Snow[.] Br Robert Crow Joined us which Added to our company 9 men 5 women 3 Children 6 waggons 13 yoke of oxen 20cows 3 Bulls 10 young cattle And Horses which makes in the whole camp 148 men, 8 Women, 5 Children, 79 waggons 96 Horses 51 Mules 90 oxen, 43 cows 3 Bulls 9 calves 16 dogs And 16 Chickins[.] 8½
I was in great pain in the Afternoon & night with the nervous Head & tooth Ake
5th we have freequent slight showers yesterday & to day while among the hills[.] I was som better to day[.] we had quite A rough road to day[.] we travled up & down the Hills untill we arived at what is called the warm spring which is at the fork of the two roads that comes from Laramie[.] we here nooned & visited the head of the Spring which was quite warm for drinking water. It boiled out of the bluff & made A little rivulet about 4 feet wide & 3 inches deep[.] it was clear soft water but no warmer than I have freequently found water in rivulets exposed to the sun. the bluffs, peaks & Hills begin to be more lofty as we get into the Hills[.] we are begining to come to an elk, bear & mountain sheep country, we saw their signs to day[.] we came in the forenoon 6 1/2 miles making 15 miles from Laramie to the springs[.] soon after we arived the first company of Missouri emigrants came up 12 waggons of them. Professor Pratt took an observation for the Lattitude At the head of the warm spring & found it to be 42°15'6"[.] We travled in the Afternoon 10½ miles & camped on the west side of A small pure stream of water in good feed. the Missouri company camped ¼ of a mile below us on the same stream, they started this morning from the fort & took the South road which is 5 miles nearer than the Noth road which we took & A much better road[.] distance of the day 17 miles
6th Sunday this day was Also devoted to prayer & fasting. the Missouri company that camped near us started on this morning[.] I am still troubled with the teeth ake. the camp met for A prayer meeting at 8 oclok[.] the spirit of the Lord was with the people. the camp Also met for A preaching meeting at 11 oclok. we had A shower of rain & the meeting closed[.] Another company of Mo [Missouri] waggons of 20 passed us[.] it soon cleared off & the camp moved forward 5 miles & camped for the night on Bitter Creek whare the road leaves the Creek for the Hills[.] we camped between the two Mo encampments one each side of us. 12 waggons in one & 20 in the other And A plenty of grass. 5 m.
7th The two companies started out before us this morning[.] we travled 7 3/4 miles & nooned on A small creek which scarsly afforded water for our stock & but little grass. while here Another Mo company of 13 waggons passed us. we were in fair view of Laramie Peak with its top coverd with snow, I found an Abundance of Sweet thisaly in the bitter creek bottom whare we camped last night[.] much of the shrubery which we past to day was the black currant & goosbury [gooseberry.]
we travled this Afternoon 5¼ miles & camped for the night on the Horse shoe Creek in the most splendid feed we have met with on the journey[.] the other three companies went ahead[.] Hors shoe [Horseshoe] Creek is heavily timbered with cotton wood Ash & willow[.] it is quite A large Stream[.] I went to fishing with a hook & line to see if I Could not get some trout but I caught nothing. the Black Hills Are A good deal timbered with pine. The Hunters brought in two black tailed deer & one Antilope to night. distance of the day 13 mils.
Professor Pratt took several Barometrical observations at Larimie during 3 days & found the highth above the level of the sea to Be 4,090 feet, the Lattitude was 42°12'13"[.] By a mean of six sights with a good sextant the Longitude west from Greenwich was in time 6 h 46 m 47 s.5 equal to 104°11'53". Lat of the warm springs west of Laramie 42°15'6"
8th we travled 6¾ miles & nooned upon A small creek with little water & fair grass[.] We formed A company of men & went forward of the teams & cleaned the road of stone[.] we used pick Axes, bars, spades &c[.] it was A great help to our week wagons[.] the road was exceding Hilly & mountaineous, in the Afternoon we travled 8¾ over the most mountaineous road we have had on the rout. We then desended into A valley & camped for the night on Labant [La Bonte] Creek with an abundance of timber water & good grass. we saw nothing of the Mo companies[.] Br John Higby went forward Hunting & saw them when they started out, & they had such strife one with another in trying to start first they did not stop to milk their cows, & in clearing up their breakfast they strewed their meal, salt, bacon, Short Cake, Jonney cake Beans & other things upon the ground through their encampment & when we came up 3 wolves were feeding upon the fragments[.] I picked up a pocket knife & Spoon left upon the ground. When we came over the high Hills to day it was so cold it pierced us like winter[.] when we reached the valley we found fires the companies in advance had built[.] we piled on the wood. soon got warm[.] An Antelope lay before us the Hunters had brought in[.] we carved it up with our knives & stuck it on sticks & roasted it on the fire & it satisfyed our Appetites finely without Salt[.] Some traiders came into camp from the mountain on their way to the fort[.] G A. Smith Sent A letter by them back to the fort[.] distance 15½ miles
during the evening we visited the traiders & got some information from the Salt lake country which was flattering or good account was given of it
9th We started at 5 oclok & drove one mile into better feed & turned out our teams, the brethren traided some for robes mogacines & skin shirts & pants with the Hunters who camped near us[.] And at about 7 oclock 15 waggons of our party was chosen to go forward to make A boat to ferry the Platt. they went forward. we followed them. the traiders started At the same time[.] Soon another party of traiders over took [us] who were direct from Santifee [Santa Fe][.] they informed us the Mormon Battalion was at calafornia[,] Went in Jan. & that Capt Brown was in Santafee for money for the detachment & would come on as soon as possible[.] we travled 11¼ miles & nooned in a valley without watter, in the Afternoon we travled 8 miles & camped upon A,la,preel [LaPrele] Creek[.] when we rode up to the Creek we overtook our little pioneer company that we sent on in the morning to built the boat, the Missouri company was also in sight notwithstanding their exhertion to get ahead of us. our detachment followed the Mo company[,] how far they travled I know not[.] or Hunters killed two Black tailed deer & one Antilope yesterday & An Antilope to day[.] I am still troubled much with the teeth Ake[,] with the exception of this I feel vary wel[.] distance 19¼.
10th In company with G. A. Smith I went forward to A large creek 8¾ miles from our camping place[.] Here we overtook the Mo Company[.] they were about 4 miles from our camp[.] we nooned upon this creek, in the Afternoon we reached the platt river & camped upon a cleer creek. 9 miles[.] whole distance of the day 17¾[.] I examined A splendid grind stone queyry on the east side of the road as it leaves the Hills & strikes the platt. It was 30 rods long above the ground & could readily be got at[.] the grit was fine & nise[.] the Hunters brought in two Antilope. We have good feed & our Horses & Cattle are gaining. In the afternoon Presidents Young & Kimball rode with us. our detached company camped last night with the fore most company & we have not herd from them since. Br Carrington found A vary extensive coal bed in this creek[,] one layer of about 10 feet thick[,] another 5 feet[,] length not known but was examined for 20 rods or more[.] the specemins of Coal produced wer excellent. the Twelve walked on to the river bank examined[,] the river, feed, &c had prayers & returned. At the blowing of the Horn I did not feel much like retiring to bed so I walked ½ a mile from the camp on the bank of Deer Creek & found Br Clayton fishing with a hook. He Had caught about two dozen good fish[.] Another Br Harmon had caught some[.] they resembled the eastern Herrin. they were about to leave & they left their lines for me to fish with so I Sat down for half an hour musing alone as unconcerned as though I had been sitting upon the banks of Farmington river. vary suddenly I herd A rustling in the bushes near me & for the first time the thought flashed across my mind that I was in A country Abounding with the griselly bear[,] wolves & Indians, And was liable to be attacked by either of them at any moment & was half a mile from any Company & had no weapon not even enough to have defend myself against A Badger & I thought wisdom dictated for me to return to camp so I took up my polls & fish & walked leasurely home & retired to rest which Closed the business of the day.
11th we rode 9 miles & camped upon the Platt bottom for nooning. we travled in the Afternoon 8 miles & camped upon the bank of the Platt within A short distance of the Mo camp who were trying to ferry over their waggons. they reported our camp to be At the ferry 10 miles or so Above us. the Hunters brought in 13 Antelops. the Mo company had killed 3 Buffalo. A young Antelope had hid behind A bunch of sage to keep out of the way of the Hunters. I discoverd him & crawle up & Caught him in my hands, but He gave such a spring He Cleared himself from me. wWe rode our Horses into the river to day several times to see if we could find A fording place but we could not find Any As the stream had risen by the melting snows of the mountains, we passed some snow to day on the highest peaks[.] distance of the day 17 m
12th I started in the morning to go forward in company with Br A. P. Rockwood who was riding President Young Stud when suddenly he sprung upon my horse but instead of striking my horse he took my knee into his Jaw & bruised me considerable[,] Sunk one tooth to the bone through three thicknesses of clothing & one of them buck skin[.] G A Smith & myself then rode on to the ferrying ground & found our detachment ferrying over the Missouri Company[.] they Paid the Brethren $1.50 cts per each waggon & load, & Paid in flour at $2.50 per cwt, generally flour is considerd worth at the fort[s?] through this country at least $10 per cwt. It was difficult getting over the river[.] they carried the goods over in a boat & drew the waggons over by hand with ropes but when the curant struck them they would freequently rool [roll] several times over in the watter & smash their bows out[.] they also came near drowning their Horses And one man would have been lost if the brethren had not picked him out with the boat, we saw also on the road whare the Company had a run away of their teams[.] A Horse came runing among them & frightened their oxen And they all started to run[,] two run up onto A bank & turned both waggons over with women & children in & bruised them much, smashed Jars[,] crockery, dishes, boxes & sundrys to peaces. one team run into the river & would probably have drowned & lost all had not A little boy Jumped out beside the off ox which frightend him & He out run the other hawed off & run onto a sand bar[.] He However kicked the boy against the wheel & the wheel knocked [him] down into the water which hurt him, but the scene ended without any loss of life. The Blacksmiths had been to work for the Missouri Company. got flour money &c. the company of 4 traiders had camped near the brethren. Our hunters had been busily engaged in getting game, they had killed 5 fat buffalo[,] 4 Bear[,] one old she bear & 3 cubs, & shot at 2 griselly [grizzly] bear but did not get them[,] those killed were the black bear. Saw A plenty of Antiope[,] deer[,] Elk & Mountain Sheep[.] the mountains near us Abound with Bear & other game[.] I found some buffalo meet the Hunters were not agoing to save, So I Cut out of the hump of A Buffalo about 40 lbs of good fat stake & spread it to dry[,] Also tryed out about 8 lbs of good tallow[.] I visited the traiders Camp. they also was drying fine fat Buffalo, one of the bears feet that was killed measured 7½ inches long 5 inch wide 2½ inch thick. toe nails 2¾ inch long 3/4 inch wide. Our Hunters brought into Camp 8 Antilope[.] the camp came up & camped within one mile of the ferry ground in good feed[.] had travled 11¼ miles[.] 11¼ m
13th Sunday A vary warm day. the camp met for prayer meeting At 9 oclok. O P Rockwell, Brown, And another man were out all night Hunting. One of the men of the camp started out at dark to go to the mountain to get some snow[.] the distance looked so short he said He could go & return before 8 oclok & was foolish enough to make A bet of one dollar upon it, but he did not get to the mountain by 8 oclok & about 10 oclok A Company of Horsman was sent out with A bugle after him fearing the bears would eat him up. We had A meeting at 10 oclok[.] H. C. Kimball Addressed the meeting in an interesting manner, & was followed by Br Young who spoke upon the liberty of the gospel, Showed what it done for us, Saved us daily, exhaulted us to glory immortality & eternal life brought us evry good thin[.] but in doing this it did not do away with the law of God or the dictation of the Almighty. Some thought they wanted their liberty to curse, swear, stray whare they were A mind to, run over the mountains, not regard the laws & rules of the Camp, but would that be liberty, no, it would lead to death & not life, the man that left the camp & went to the mountains last night, had he have met A bear He would have had the liberty to have run for his life, Clumb [climb] A tree or been destroyed[.] The way to worship God the most acceptable is to do each day the vary things that will bring the most good to the human family. there is A great differance to be seen between us As A camp & the Missouri companies that are going the same road or A part of the way[.] they Curse & swear, rip & tare, & are a trying to swallow up the earth. but though they do not wish us to have A place on earth the earth will soon swallow them up & they will go to the land of forgetfulness, while the Saints if faithful though they should suffer some privations here will ultimately inherit the earth & increase in dominion power & glory untill the Lord shall say to them, go to now make your thousands of worlds & people them & make such laws to govern them as you are a mind to for I Know you have no disposition to make any laws but those that are good for you always desired to do good on the earth, & many other goodly words bid He say unto our edefycation. He was followed by O Pratt who exhorted us to give heed to the teaching we had herd & to improve our time in treasuring up usful knowledge that we ought not to spend A moments time needlessly. Meeting dismissed And the Twelve, Colonels, Captains, &c of the Camp met at the Presidents waggon to consult upon what measures to adopt to get across the river[.] it was finally agreed to go immediately to the mountains with a waggon & team for evry two tens & get polls & lash two or four waggons abrest to keep them from turning over & float them across the river with boats & ropes, So A company of Horsmen Started for the mountains & teams to draw the polls. In the evening the flour[,] meal & bacon was distributed through the Camp equally that had been recieved from the Mo company for ferrying them over, it amounted to 5½ lbs of flour 2 lbs of meat & A small peace of Bacon to each individual in the camp. It looked as much of A miricle to me to see our flour & meal bags replenished in the midst of the black Hills as it did to have the Children of Israel fed with manna in the wilderness. But the Lord has truly been with us on this Journey[.] we have had peace & union in our midst, our Horses & cattle have been wonderfully preserved from death & Accident on the way & our waggons from Breaking down. great good will grow out of this mission if we are faithful in keeping the commandments of God[.] I have taken great delight of late in reading the book of Mormon seeing the great & glorious things revealed & recorded in that book & that we are now trying to fulfill the great things or some of them that Lehi[,] Nephi[,] Alma, Moroni, Isaiah And many other prophets had in view in the last days in building up Zion, redeeming Israel, warning the Nations & sealing salvation upon the meek of the earth & laying A foundation that the earth may be prepared for the coming of the Mes[s]iah.
14th At day light the first two tens were Called together to make Arangments for crossing[.] The Proposal was made in the camp to lash 4 waggons to gether & float them but the curant was so strong many did not like that moad[.] we Appointed Br Grover As our Captain to direct the rafting over[.] we finally concluded to put our polls into A raft[,] carry our goods over in a boat & put our waggons onto A raft[.] we commenced at 5 oclok & At 9 AM being 4 Hours we had landed eleven waggon loads of goods upon the North Shore with the little leather boat & during the day we got over all the waggons belonging to our tens being Eleven in all. And All of the rest encampment being twelve tens ownly got over the same number that we did[.] they floated their waggons by tying from two to four to gether. but they turned clear over each other bottom side upwards & back again[,] broke the bows covers & boxes to peices & lost ploughs[,] Axes & Iron that was left in the boxes. Most of our Company was in the water from morning to night & all was vary weary[.] when the work was done, we Saw A Heavy storm Approaching us. we had just drawn Dr Richards two waggons to [of] his goods on the shore & loaded them into his waggons with all speed. Just got through as the storm struck us[.] I sprung into my Carriage & tied all down tight but the rain wind & Hail beat upon me so Heavy that I had to lay out most of my strength to hold my waggon cover on. both hail & rain came insid my Carriage untill my bed & things were nearly drenched[.] it ownly lasted 7 minutes but was vary severe[.] most of the waggons & goods were more or less wet[.] our Horses run two or three miles in the storm. when it was over I crossed the river & went after them tied them up returned back & went to rest vary weary, But had some plesant dreams.
15th It is vary windy to day & our companies cross the river vary slow. Another Missouri company has come up with us. I felt somewhat unwell to day with the exposers of yesterday & the teeth Ake16th About 20 men went down the river to day & dug out two large canoes to cover over to make A ferry boat off to ferry over the large companies of emegrants that have arived & are on the way[.] President Young thought it wisdom to leave A number of the brethren here & keep a ferry untill our company came up. emegrants will pay for ferrying $1.50 cts per waggon. Pay in flour, Cows, Beans &c[,] flour at $2.50 per cwt[,] Cows $10. The brethren also made two new rafts & got quite A number of our pioneer waggons over. I was quite unwell A part of the day with Ague in the face[.] I walked out however with O. Pratt about 3 miles onto some of the bluffs to view the country[.] we saw mountains to the North towering into the Clouds. we judged they were not much short of 100 miles from us. we had our guns with us I Hunted some. I shot one Antelope cut his throat with a bullet & He fell dead in his tracts. Br Pratt Shot at Another but did not get him. this was the first Antelope I ever Killed, I tried to back him into camp but could not do it well so I got two men to help me. we had some Heavy squals of wind & some rain in the Afternoon[.] In the evening many of us went over the river to tie up our horses & when one company was coming back in the leather boat they filled it half full of water & came near sinking
17th Early this morning we swam our Horses over the river. one mule came near drowning by being tangled in a rope but the curant carried him ashore & He made A live of it. the men went to work to finish their ferry boat while the men continued to cross waggons on the raft[.] All of our company got over to day & the brethren crossed some of the Missourians, Some of the emegrants report 1,000 waggons between Laramie & this place & there companies Are ariving daily at the fording places, Brs Young & Kimball got over to day & we all moved our waggons once more into A circle, this is the 6th day since our arival to this place which is the longest henderance I ever saw At A ferry or crossing A river. Our brethren run the ferry boat All night to cross the Missourians but did not get over but few waggons. I Am still in much pain with the teeth Ake & sore lips & mouth. I had the privlege of milking A Mo Cow which gave me A plenty of milk for Supper & breakfast
18th We Are Still ferrying over the gentiles. Another large company arived to day. Bro Frosst mad me some nails & set two shoes for me on my Saddle Horse, we commenced gathering cattle at 10 oclok & Harnessed but did not start at all, but turned out teams again, as all were not ready. We held a council in the After noon & resolved to leave 9 men to tend the ferry to cross emegrant companies & also our brethren who should come After us. the men were Chosen & we met with them again in the evening, one Brother had petitioned to Stay that President Young wished to go along with the company[,] his name was Glines[.] he did not manifest a good spirit & Br Young reproved him, He then deliverd A short lecture which was interesting & instructive, And said that when He gave A man council He did not want him to reject that council or to bring up many arguments to try to Alter it for when A man did it I will turn on my heal & leave him, He Sayes there is another principle that has tried many in the Church because more will follow me than some Young Elder who has not proved himself but if he was to try to gather to himself the fruits of the labours of the Twelve & other men would that be right. No he would be pulling back that that was before him[,] but let the Elders do as I have done & my Brethren the Twelve & other faithful men[.] go and preach the gospel for years & do the will of God & you would have A train following you even the fruits of your own labour & you would be putting them After you & not drawing back that which is before you[.] the Lord is determined to esstablish his kingdom in the last days & He will have A faithful diligent & obedient people And He chastizes the Saints to keep them humble & make them do there duty[.] if we had not been mobed & Afflicted but always been in prosperity we should have been lifted up in the pride of our hearts & not gatherd together & built up Zion as we ought to have done, so that these trials will work to gether for our good.
Instructions was also given to the Brethren who were to tarry to keep to gether & be united, divide the means equally among yourselves according to your labor, let each essteem his brother as himself, In no wise retain that which belongeth to the traveler, Steal not at all, be careful of the lives & property of those you ferry over, & forget not your prayers. Keep together come up with the next company of Saints.
The following are the names: Thomas Grover, John S. Higby, Luke Johnson, Wm Empy[,] Edmond Elsworth, Benjamin F. Stewart, Francis Pomeroy, James Devenport, Appleton Harmon. Thomas Grover was Appointed captain
19th We parted with the brethren who were to attend the ferry & the camp moved on having been one week. we travled through A barren country to a spring of water
Our camping place for the night was the most wretched of any ground we have found on the way[.] President Young thought it might properly be called Hell gate[.] All the water tasted as though it run through A bed of salt, salts, saltpeter, sulpher like. it was naucious Horrible[.] the ground in the valleys & marshes was Apparently one half of it composed of the saline floresance or salty substance of which this country abounds. Our Horses & cattle being thirsty drank a little of the watter & quit it[.] Some of the cattle got badly miered in the marshes. The traiders informed us these grounds were poison & would kill Cattle but ours did not drink much or feed long[;] we tied them up. The Hunters brought in one buffalo & one deer & 3 Antelope
20th Sunday We hitched up early in the morning without feed[ing] or watering & left our encampment of death, poison waters, salt marshes &c & rode 3 miles to A good camp ground & sweet water & turned out & bated 2 hours & took breakfast. this camp ground was on the willow spring branch about [-] miles from the head. President Young wished me to go on about 15 miles & look up a Camp ground for the night, so I went forward. G. A. Smith went with me to the head of the willow springs[.] we there found A doctor belonging to a Missouri company who had been doctoring A sick family in a company that was forward[.] He was of [the] opinion that the willow springs were still 10 miles ahead which was incorrect as he was then sitting at the head of them. Br Smith stoped with the Dr to wait for our waggons to come up & I rode on alone[.] After travling several miles Br John Brown came up with me & we rode on to gether over A sandy barren, sage country to a creek of good water containing some small fish about 10 miles west of the willow springs[.] we arived Here at half past 1 oclok. We turned out our Horses to bait & tarried untill 4 oclok watching for our company to come in sight. but we could see no waggons but saw two horsman approaching us. We waved A small flag for them to come to us[,] Supposed they were some of our company, but they were two Hunters Capt Smith & another man from the Mo company carrying in Buffalo meat to there camp[.] they thought we were Indians in the distance & made off. I mounted my horse & put after them & soon overtook them, And made inquiries about our camp[.] they said they had not seen it, but had seen A company of about A dozen waggons coming by themselves. I then concluded our camp had Stoped at the willow Springs, So Captain Smith who was the leader of the Mo Company invited us to go on & camp with them for the night As they did not expect to go but a few miles further than the creek we were now on. As it was 5 oclok & we could see 5 miles on the road back & no waggons in sight I concluded our company would not come on & if they should they would go no further than the creek so we accepted Capt Smith proposal & went on with him to spend the night with his camp
but instead of his going but little distance he continued on mile after mile, & could neither find feed or water except the salt & Alkalie ponds & lakes untill we struck the sweet water river at Indipendance [Independance] Rock which is so noted in Freemonts Journal & other travellers which was about 12 miles west of the creek before spoken off[.] their Oxen had tiered [tired]out having travled about 27 miles & much of the road vary sandy & we had road about 30 miles And was quite weary. the sweet water is truly sweet to man & beast after travling through so much ground coverd with salt, pertash, And Alkilie water as is found on the way[.] we turned out our horses in good feed got supper which was Bacon, Buffalo, corn bread, coffee Milk &c then lay down upon the ground & spent the night under A tent with the Missourians but did not rest well. I found A great differance between the Missouri emigrant companies & our own, for while the men, women, & children were all cursing, swaring, quarelling, scolding finding fault with each other & other companies, there was nothing of the kind allowed or practiced in our own camp. But to return to our camp I will say At a late hour they came up to the creek that we left back 12 miles, & grass being poor continued on 4 miles west of the creek & camped for the night[.] they travled 20 miles while I travled 30 miles. 30 miles
The camp not finding me at the creek nor hearing from me at all felt some Alarmed lest I was lost, or got into trouble with the Indians or some difficulty[.] they blowed their bugle & watched for me untill midnight & finally fired there Cannon while I was camped 10 miles from them not thinking that I was giving them any trouble
21st June 1847 (INDEPENDANCE ROCK) I arose early this morning took breakfast And in company with Br Brown we rode clear around Independance Rock. I should judge the distance to be about ¾ of A mile. we exhamined the many names & lists of names of the trappers, traders, travellers, & emigrants which are painted upon these rocks[.] nearly all the names were put on with read, Black & yellow paint. Some had washed out & defaced. the greatest number was put on within A few Years. Some of them were quite plain of about 30 years standing[.] nearly all the Companies pass by put some of their names on the rock[.] After going around and exhamining it we staked our horses And mounted the rock[.] I went forward & gained the highest point of the South end of the Rock which contains the names. After exhamining it I then went to the North end which is the highest part of the rock. here is An opening or cavern that would contain 30 or 40 persons And A rock stands on the highest peak of about 3 tons wait. we got upon this rock & offered up our prayers according to the order of the priesthood, We prayed earnestly for the blessings of God to rest upon President Young & his brethrn the Twelve & all of the Pioneer Camp & the whole Camp of Israel & House of Israel, our wives & children, & relatives[,] the Mormon Battalion, all the Churches Abroad And that the Lord would hasten the time of the fulfillment of his promises to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Lehi, Nephi, Alma, & Moroni And all the sayings of the Lord concerning the building up of Zions in the last days And Avenging the blood of the Prophets, And while offering up our prayers the spirit of the Lord desended upon us and we truly felt to rejoice[.] And while we were attending to our prayers the Missourians was burying A woman A little distance from the rock by the name of Rachel Morgan 25 years of Age being the third one of the family buried on the road[.] they were supposed to be poisoned by cooking in new Copper vessels[.] After surveying the rock what we wished[,] we again desended to the ground. I was the first Latter Day Saint that ever went onto that Rock or offered up prayers according to the order of the Priesthood, we had A view of our Camp from this rock And expected they would noon there[,] So we mounted our horses & concluded to examine the country in the regions round about[.] we rode to the North East about 5 miles[,] went to the top of a high bluff And saw the camp in motion[.] we then rode to the foot of the Mountain to the N.W. & followed under the foot of the mountain All of the way to the Devils gate through which the sweet water runs. while taking this circuitous rout we passed A Salt lake Covering about 50 acres of Ground. we spent but few minutes at the Devils gate at this time & Hurried on back to the Rock as our camp had come up[,] but before we could get to them they had camped half a mile east of the Rock[.] I met Br Young going up to the Rock[.] I related to him my travels since I left the camp. He asked me to go back with him to the rock. So I turned out my horse having rode all of 20 miles during the forenoon exhamining bare rugged rocks & barren grounds, & Salt ponds &c And I returned with President Young W Richards G. A Smith & others & we again ascended the rock together & spent about half an hour upon it & returned to Camp mounted our horses & rode to the Devils gate which is the name of the channel through the Mountain through which the sweet waters run. It is  miles from Indipendance Rock & while Approaching this place from the rock As is the case while approaching the foot of any mountain through this country A person is greatly decieved in the distance for while An object appears but a mile Ahead of you you will have to ride 5 or 6 before you can reach it. we rode as far as we could into the gate hitched our horses & walked into about the centre of the cavern. This opening or Devils gate is 100 feet high[,] Perpendicular Rocks 120 feet wide & 50 rods long & the water rushes through it with A roar. the rocks are composed [of] coarse grey granite with A vein of Black trap rock runing through it. W e spent about half an hour visiting this place then had to back out & ride around it on the south side[,] some of the footman walked over the top of it[.] We camped for the night on the bank of the sweet water About one mile west of the Devils gate the camp having travled during the day 15¼ miles And I[,] 30 miles[,] Distance to guide board was put up at the gate saying it was 175¼ miles from the Fort Laramie, & 50¼ from the ford or ferry of the Platt River[.] 15¼[,] 30 miles.
22d we travled 10 miles & nooned. Br Lorenzo Young broke An Axeltree of his waggon which detained the camp some, two more Missouri companies overtook us at noon, the camp started on & Br Young, Benson[,] Little & myself went back to meet Lorenzo & help him get up his waggon & we were behind all the Afternoon. A company that arived at noon informed us that A man was drowned At the ferry After we left in trying to swim his Horses across & they had not found his body when they left. two men also got sume Alarmed At the Independance Rock by A large griselly [grisly] bear. they stoped to put their names on the rock & the Company left them[,] they started to follow on, one man was on foot & the other on a horse & were met in the road by A griselly bear who made A tract 10 inch long, they had no weapons not even a knife. the Bear sat up & looked at them A few moments & walked off & they came Along, the griselly bear are more Apt to attack men than any other kind. we travled in the Afternoon 10¾ miles & camped at the foot of A mound about 200 feet high on the bank of the Sweat water[.] Br Kimball & mysel went to the top of it & looked down upon the camp & it look heavenly. we offered up our prayers & the spirit of the Lord rested upon us[.] we descended again to the Camp[.] the moon shone beautiful. during the evening the brethren put in A new Axeltree into Br Lorenzo' wagon[.] distance of the day 20¾ miles.
23d we travled in the forenoon 8½ miles & noond by the Sweet water with the mountains piled up near by us[.] our road to day has been through A level, sandy, barren sage region for A mountain Country. we travled in the Afternoon 8½ miles & camped on the bank of the Sweetwater whare the road leaves it for about 0 miles across the sandy sage plains without water or feed. we had excellent grass for our camp at night[.] we Are in plain view of the Rocky Mountains at the pass & beyond[.] we had A vary sandy draging road all day[.] whole distance 17 miles.
24th We travled to day 5 miles & came to the frozen or Ice spring and stoped And exhamined it & found the spring to be strongly impregnated with Sulpher[,] so much so it could not be drank[.] the water would boil up out of A peace of Bog ground[,] yet all around it it was so cold that After removing the turf about 6 inch A solid body of Ice was found about 18 inches thick[,] some of it we cut up with Axes & spades. near this was small ponds of water salt & saltpeter & sulpher & pertash seemed to be in the body of the water, pure pertash was found in such quantities on the edges of these waters that the brethren gatherd pail fulls of it [to] raise bread with. Others would fill their cups with Salt so pure from other mixtures that they used it[.] we travled from this place 12¾ miles & camped upon the bank of the Sweet water [Sweetwater]
two days 18 miles from one foot of the pass[,] 3 companies camped near us to night. this is the last time we shall see the sweet water on this Journey. we did not bait to day but camped at 4 oclok[.] whole distance of the day 17¾ miles.
Br Youngs team run away with A wagon[.] I cought them by the bit Just as they were about to plunge into the stream
Soon after we camped Br Holman was driving up the [-] with his gun in his hand[.] He went to punch a Horse with the musel of his gun[.] the lock Caught in his cloths & discharged into the best Horse there was in camp owned by president Young called his John Horse[.] He lived A few hours & died. There are many Accidents happen in that way by caring loaded guns with caps upon their tubes.
25th We travled 8¾ miles & nooned upon A branch of the sweet water in as good grass As we have had on the way. Early in the Afternoon we began to ascend the highest & longest Hill that we have passed over on the Journey[.] we travled about 5 miles before [we] reached the top[.] on the way up the brethren found snow Banks 20 or 30 rods long from 5 to 10 feet deep about ¼ of a mile from the road[.] they brought some to me & I ate some[.] the road was vary rocky a part of the way over the Hills. we passed by 3 Mo camps who had passed by us[.] we travled in the Afternon 11½ miles & camped for the night on A small branch of the sweet water. the Chain of the wind River mountain seemed quite near us & covered with vast quantities of Snow & we are so near the top of the mountains & surrounded with snow that the air feels like winte[r]. whole distance of one day 20 1/4 mils. our teams fed upon white Clover to night[.] we are nearly at the head of the sweet water
26th We Started this morning at 8 oclok & travled untill 1 oclok & nooned again on the branch of the Sweet much larger than [the] original Stream in consequence of the melting of the vast body of Snow on the wind river range & the Hills that surround us[.] the watter run into many of our waggons, whare we camped at noon there was A large quantity of strabury [strawberry] vines in bloom & white Clover[.] we travled in the forenoon 11 miles & in the Afternoon 7¾ miles & camped Again upon the branch of the sweet water that we nooned upon, we camped opposit the table rock & near the summit of the South pass or dividing ridge And I was quite asstonished at the road & country to day considering that we were crossing what is called the South pass of the rocky mountains[.] it was the best road we had had for many days & had it not have been for the wind river range of mountains full in view on our right & the table coverd with eternal snow, & some snow banks 10 feet deep by the side of the road as we passed along & the table rock on the left[,] I should have thought myself traveling over the beautiful prairies of Illinois & Missouri except the country was coverd more with sage that prairie grass the road for many miles & Also the valley or plain of beautiful grass lying North of table rock was perfectly strewn with vary handsom Cornelian stones. I saw more in one hour this evening than I ever saw during my whole life either in the rude state or polished & set in breast pins in all the Jewellers shops I ever saw in my travels in the world from the sice of a goose egg to A pea. distance of the day 18¾.
Elders Kimball[,] Pratt[,] G. A. Smith & Brown continued on to take in observations with the Barrometer on the dividing ridge & they continued on to the waters of the green river 7 miles from us that run into the pacific while we were on the Sweet water that runs into the Atlantic; they supposed we should come on to them And As they did not return several of us mounted our Horses to go in search of them[.] soon After we started we met Br Kimball on his return after us[.] He informed us that the Brethren were camped with about one dozen men from Oregon on their way to the States & they would stay together over night.
During our travels to day I walked most of the way with Professors Pratt, & Carrington And our conversation turned upon the subject of the original formation of God, Angels, men, & Devils[,] the begetting of Spirits in the eternal world, & who by, the begetting of Children on the earth, the Death of men & children & the resurrection of All, Each one gave his views, opinions, & reasoning & many interesting remarks were truly made. And Any person who should chance to read these lines I wish them to understand that the Ideas given upon these points were not given as doctrin but opinion untill somthing better should present itself or be decided by revelation, One of the most important Items If true was presented by Professor Pratt upon A Subject that Heretofore has been entirely out of the reach of All mankind from the days of Adam to the present time As far as is revealed to us. It was upon the subject of the original formation of the first God; We all admitted in the first place that which we believed to be an important truth ie the eternal formation of matter spirit, intelligence in some form or other. we also Agreed in the opinion that Neither God nor man Always had from all eternity the same formation that they now have but did exhist in some form for if we Admitted the fact that one being exhisted in the present form all might have exhisted in the same form as well as one, then the question arose how did God recieve his present formation? the Answer given by Professor Pratt was somthing in the following language. He sayes I trow out my Ideas not as doctrin but for you to look at. you know when A Chemist goes to work to Analize or try new experiments they often have to try many times before they put a thing perfect & take certain processes which are unnecessary and are afterward laid aside And pursue the most perfect Course that can be pursued. It may reasonably have been the case with the first being formed which may be Called God. As eternity was filled as it were with particles of intelligence who had there Agency, two of these particles in process of time might have joined their interest together[,] exchanged ideas found by pursueing this course that they gained [-] strength to what one particle of intelligence would have & afterwards were joined by other particles & continued untill they formed A combination or body though through a long process[.] yet they had power over other intelligences in consequence of their combination, organization & strength And in process of time this being body of God seeing the Advantage of such an organization desires company or A companion And Having some experiance goes to work & organizes other beings by prevailing intelligences to come to gether & may form somthing better than at the first, And After trials of this kind & the most perfect way sought agin it was found to be the most expeditious & best way to recieve there formations or bodies either spiritual or temporal through a womb.
June 27th 1847 Three years ago this day the Prophets Joseph and Hyrum Smith were martered. Though it was Sunday morning we Harnessed up our teams & drove 6 miles to the place whare Brs Pratt & Smith Camped in Company with Mr Harris who has been A traider & trapper in the rocky mountains & travled through Oregon to Calafornia 25 years[.] we found him to be a man of much experience & knowledge & acquaintance with the Country[.] He brought A file of Oregon Papers & one Published by S Brannon of Calafornia[.] many of us had much conversation with him about the Country[.] He spoke unfavorable of the Salt Lake Country for a settlement but spoke of other places not far off that were good. He said we generally could go through the pass as late as November but should we get blocked in with snow we would find A small stream of water 4 or 5 miles from the Devils gate near Independance rock[.] this stream is 5 miles west of the gate[.] follow that up A short distance & it would lead to A road that crosses it to the west which would lead up through A large plain following to the mountains whare there is but little snow[.] when you come to the pass or Hill get onto some of them & you will see A large bute[.] leave it to the [-] Hand & follow down [-] And it will lead into the open valleys. See * below. [Asterisk is Woodruff's.]
It is 275½ miles from fort Laramie to the South pass
At 9 oclok this morning I passed the dividing ridge that seperates the dividing waters of the Atlantic And pacific[.] we camped at noon on muddy creek the waters of which run into the green river & the pacific[.] I drank its waters for the first time in my life that I tasted of waters runing into the pacific[.] we had a warm dusty day[.] I conversed considerable with Mr Harris about the country[.] we camped at night upon dry Sandy[.] whole distance 15¼ mil
*3 miles above the gate look to the South[.] You will see an open pass in the Mountains[.] go through that & let your Course be west till you top the Hill out of the great plain, then look to the south[,] you will see a square but[t]e[.] leave that to the left[,] go on & cross the green River[,] then let your Course be west to Bridgers Fort, (And I think) He said we should go by blacks fork
28th We Parted with Major Harris After doing some traiding with him. He promised to meet us Again on bear River, we travled to little Sanday & nooned[,] the stream was high. in the Afternoon we travled 2 miles & met Mr Bridger of the fort on the way with two other men going to fort Laramie, He was expecting us & was to have an interview with President Young & the Twelve And also we wished to have an interview with Him. So we immediately turn onto the creek we nooned on & camped for the night & Mr Bridger & his men camped with us, we met in Council & spent some hours in conversations. we found him to have been a great traveller And A great knowledge of nearly all Oregon & Calafornia[,] the Mountains, lakes, Rivers, Brooks, springs, valleys[,] mines, Creeks, &c if what He told us was true. He knew of gold, silver, copper, lead[,] Coa[,] Iron, Sulpher & Saltpeter mines[.] He spoke more Highly of the great Salt Lake for a settlement than Major Harris did. That it was his [-] & if this people settled in it He wanted to settle with them, there was but one thing that could operate against it becoming A great grain country & that would be frost[.] He did not know but the frost would affect the corn. He Said there was A spring at the end of the Salt Lake that produced both Hot & cold fresh water, & Hot & Cold Salt water out of the same Hole or spring, & formed A large body of verdegreece below which the Indians get to paint skins, Arrors &c. He informed us whare to find A mine of silver & lead ore on big timber Creek[.] we conversed about A great variety of things, He said he was Ashamed of the Maps of Freemont for He knew nothing about the Country ownly the plain travled road, that He could correct all the maps that had been put out about the western world. He Said if we wanted any of his services to let him know. the American fir Company had paid him $2000 dollars per year while in their employ. He spent the time conversing untill 10 oclok. we then retired to bed[.] several of the brethren bought dressed deer skin shirts & pants of [him.] then they would swap An outside dress for one Hickory or checked shirt.
We had good grass & water & plenty of musketoes to night. dis 15.
29th we parted this morning with Mr Bridger who remarked that it would not be prudent to bring A great population into the bason untill we ascertained whether grain would grow or not[.] we travled on to big Sandy 8 miles & nooned[,] it was A vary Hot day, these streams are now up but during Summer they become entirely dry, we nooned two hours & then drove onto the bank of the big Sandy 15¾ miles & camped for the night[.] this camp ground is the last time we meet with Big Sandy 8 miles east of the ferry on green River[.] the road to day, As has been the case through A great portion of this Country has been over A Hot Sandy desert with scearsly any green thing except the various species of the wild sage from 6 inches to 8 feet high with stocks from ¼ of an inch to 4 inches in diameter[.] we have to use it for firewood & it makes quite a good Substitute. O. P. Rockwell & myself went forward to pick out a camp ground[.] we was Ahead about 6 miles of the camp when we found one which was the first place we could get grass for 15 miles from whare we nooned. it made the longest days journey we had made on the whole route, I returned to meet the camp about 4 miles & was informed that Br Fowler was vary sick & in my carriage I went back & met him & found him in great distress in his head, back, & bones through out He complained bitterly of the jar of the wagon. And finally was out of his head & became wild. I did not get into camp untill near 9 oclok, I then commenced doctoring him with composition, tea, pills &c & He soon began to get better & had a comfortable nights rest[.] distance of the day 23¾
30th Br Fowler was some better this morning[,] seemed to be threatened with the Ague[,] kept his bed & rode in the wagon, we travled 8 miles & camped upon the bank of the green river at the ferry & the Afternoon was spent in building A Raft. As the river was high it could not be crossed ownly upon rafts or boats, It was 275½ miles from the fort Laramie to the South pass of the rocky mountains[.] During the afternoon the Arival of Elder Samuel S Brannan at the bay of San Francisco was Anounced in camp. We were truly glad to meet with him that we might hear from him & the Saints who were with him. He gave us an account of there landing[,] their travels & the present settlement which was 200 miles up the river from the [-]. They were putting in wheat & preparing for us. He had come all the way with ownly two men to meet with us. the Saints were settelled with & the Mormon Battalion was 400 miles from him. He said Br Pratt was doing well. The inhabitants of one whole Island numbering 3000 Had imbraced the faith. He told us many interesting things & we were truly glad to see him[.] distance of the day 8 m.
JULY 1st we tried this morning to swim our cattle over the river but had great difficulty in it. About 15 persons have been taken sick within A few days with fever Ague &c which is said to be common to emegrants coming from the snowy mountains to the plains or valleys whare it is Hot wether. Br Fowler is better to day[.] some others of the sick are better some are worse. Each division made A good raft yesterday & Are lanched this morning[.] Brother Brannon Brought A file of his papers that He is publishing with him to camp & A letter to Br Fowler from his wife. He also informed us that Captain Sutter was vary friendly & wished us to come & Settel near him. He informed us that He saw more timber on green River whare we now are than He had seen on His route since He left Calafornia. He came through A par[t] of Oregon. we are new in Calafornia. We got over 10 waggons to day among others my own So we camped over night on the South bank of the green river
2d Two rafts have been runing through the day & most of the waggons have been brought over[.] we swam our Horses & cattle over this morning though with some difficulty, we held A council in the Afternoon with the Twelve & 4 men was Appointed to return & meet the camp & pilot them up, Br Brannan was with the council. we each one wrote our views concerning the council to be given to the camp, it is an exeeding hot day, And both man & beast are much annoyed with mosketoes. Several salmon trout were caught at the mouth of a slue on green river near the ferry[,] one weighing 7¼ lbs. Several of the brethren gatherd A quantity of Salaratus from the Salaratus bedes about 3 miles east of the indipendance rock near the road & thought it answered as good A purpose As the manufactured article for raising bread & family purposes
3d A light sprinkle of rain, cool, cloudy & High winds, so they could not finish ferrying, the pilots Are preparing to start back to meet the companies[.] I wrote A letter by them to Aphek Woodruff[,] A O. Smoot And John Benbow. the wind laid & we finished ferrying in the evening & the whole camp moved 3 miles & camped[.] A guide board was put up A mile from the ferry saying 340 mile from Fort Laramie
Sunday Independance July 4th 1847[.] A meeting was held last evening & the 4 men were Appointed as pilots to go back & meet the company were called upon to start this morning to go on their journey. I accompanied Presidents Young[,] Kimball[,] Richards & others to the ferry to put them across the river & when we arived at the river we saw 13 Horsman on the opposite bank with there baggage on one of our rafts. But to our great joy who should they be but our Brethren belonging to the Mormon Battalion who volunteered into the service of the U.S.A. one year ago this month & belonged to Capt Browns Detachment who had been at Pueblo through the winter. Br A Lyman who we sent unto them had reached them & informed them whare we are & the whole detachment of 140 of the brethren were within 7 days drive of us, we drew up the raft & crossed them all over but one who returned with our pilots to meet the company. when we met it was truly A Harty greeting & shaking of hands. they accompanied us into camp and all were glad to meet, this small detachment had come on to meet some Hors thieves who had Stolen about a dozen horses from them[.] they had overtaken them & got all but one[.] He had gone on to Bridgers fort & they calculated to follow him & get their Horse. they spent the night in camp with us, Among the number of those who died was Mervin Blanchard who drove teams for me last summer. But I must stop writing[.] the Musketoes [mosquitoes] have filled my carriage like A cloud And have fallen upon me as though they intend to devour me. I never saw that insect more troublesome than in certain places in this country[.] Several traiders passed by our camp just at night
5th we left the green river (which are the head waters of the Coloradoe [Colorado],) & drove 20 miles & camped on blacks fork[.] there is neither feed or water since we left the green river to this place but is similar to the last 200 miles¬-A sandy desert coverd with sage, but we find good grass on the Streams. most of the day was vary Hot & dusty yet towards night we saw A hard shower of rain-some wind towards the mountains. A few drops reached us in this country. It rains about the mountains but not much in the valleys & plains. distance of the day 20 miles
6th A warm windy dusty day, man & beast Harnesses & waggons were all coverd with dust. we crossed black fork at 9 oclok, muddy fork at 10 & camped on the west side of Hams fork at 5 oclok. we did not noon at all to day[.] whole distance of the day 18 miles
The sick in Camp are most universally getting better. the face of the country is the same to day as usual Barren, Sand & Sage, with occasionaly A sprinkling of flowers some vary beautiful. the country during the last weeks drive has Appeared vary destitute of game[.] none to be seen except occasionally An Antilope[,] one was killed yesterday
7th we Crossed hams fork And drove to Fort Bridger & in the region of the fort before we got onto our Camping ground we crossed more than a dozen trout Brooks, the water run swift but clear, hard, cold gravelly, bottoms. the brethren cought several brook trout the first I had seen since I left England, the whole region of country all up & down these streams were coverd with grass knee deep, 10 of battalion found A Hors thief at the fort who had assisted in Stealing 10 of their Horses[.] they had got all but two, & the man said they had gone to Oregon. we saw About A dozen traiders lodges about the fort[.] the fort was nearly A small traiding post ore one building not large[.] distance of the day 17¾ miles
8th The calculation was to spend the day at the fort. As soon as I got my breakfast I riged up my trout rod that I had brought with me from Liverpool, fixed my reel, line, & Artificial fly & went to one of the brooks close by Camp to try my luck catching trout. the man at the fort said there were but vary few trout in the streams, And a good many of the brethren were already at the creeks with their Rods & lines trying their skill baiting with fresh meat & grass hoppers, but no one seemed to ketch any, I went & flung my fly onto the water And it being the first time that I ever tried the Artificial fly in America, or ever saw it tried, I watched it as it floated upon the water with as much intens interest As Franklin did his kite when he tried to draw lightning from the skies And as Franklin recieved great Joy when he saw electricity or lightning desend on his kite string in like manner was I highly gratifyed when I saw the nimble trout dart my fly hook himself & run away with the line but I soon worried him out & drew him to shore & I fished two or three hours including morning & evening & I cought twelve in all And About one half of them would weigh abought ¾ of a pound each while All the rest of the camp did not ketch during the day 3 lbs of trout in all which was proof positive to me that the Artificial fly is far the best thing now known to fish trout with. In the Afternoon I went to Bridgers House & traided off my flint lock rifle for four Buffalo robes[.] the robes were large & nice well taned or dressed[.] He Called the gun $20 & the robes $5 each, the Articles generally at Bridgers fort were at least one third or one half higher than at any other traiding post in America that I ever saw[.] His robes were $5.buck skin shirts $6.pants $6 dressed skins $3.&c while At fort hall. Doe skins 50 ct Buck 75 Elk $1.shirts & Pants $1,50, Robes $2.&c
Professor Pratt took observations At fort Bridger in Lat 41°19'13". Highth above the sea 6665 feet
9th I arose this morning quite unwell. felt threatend with the camp fever. yet I mounted my horse And rode untill 10 oclok[.] before Starting however I was Called upon to Administer to Br Carter who was taken with the fever[.] there Are new Cases evry day in Camp. I took to my bed at 10 oclok with distressing pain in my head, back, joints bones, marrow & all through the system Attended with cold Chills & hot flashes through the body, And we travled 13 miles over as bad road as we had had on the journey, which makes it exeeding painful to the sick, the day seemed exeeding long to me[.] when we stoped at night I took composition cayeene And A dose of vegitable pill, And I had A better nights rest than I expected[.] distance of the day 13.
10th I felt quite feeble this morning but felt that my fever was broke[.] we travled up & down some of the steepest Hills we have found on the Journey & the largest,. we passed through A valley 611 miles long grass knee deep strong mineral springs. Any amount of Copper, lead, & coal, & lime & great stone on each side of the valle[y]. it is an 18 mile drive without water that can be drank[.] there are a number of springs in the valley but they run through mineral beds And are not good to drink. we camped for the night 1½ miles from bear River by the best spring of water we had found on the route & A small stream near by. An Indian Came from Bridgers fort & travled with us & Camped with us for the night, Camp fires were discoverd about 3 miles from our camp[.] G.A.S & others went over to them And found it to be Mr Miles Goodyier & several others with him[.] some were from Calafornia going back to the States. Mr Goodyier goes by the name of Miles though it is his Christian name[.] He has setled at the Salt lake[.] has A garding & vegitation of all kinds He says doing well. He spoke of 3 rodes to the Lake & talked about the Country[.] the Missourian that was going to the States came through the 80 miles drive without water or grass[.] had to leave 5 of his mules on the road, could not get any through & this is on the Calafornia road. The subject was brought up again concerning the emigrant Company who perished in the Mountains last winter[.] they were mostly from Independance & Clay County Missouri And were A mob company & threatned to drive out the mormons that were in Calafornia & started for Calafornia with that spirit in there hearts[.] but it seemed as though they were ripe for Judgment[.] the snows fell upon them 18 feet deep on a level & they died & eat up each other[.] about 40 persons perished & were mostly eat up by those who survived them. Mrs L. Murphy of Tenn whom I Baptized while on a mishion in that Country but since Apostitizd & joined the mob was in the company died or was killed & eat up[,] her bones sawed to peaces for her branes & marrow & left strewd upon the ground.
distance of the day 18 miles. whole distance from Bridgers fort to Bear River 32½ miles.
Br Luce was taken vary sick this Afternoon[,] there are new cases daily[,] it is vary severe but does not generally last the brethren more than 2 or 3 days. Three griselly bear were seen by the brethren to day[.] some were within A few rods of them dut they made of & did not give battle which they are more Apt to do than any other bear.
11th Sunday we spent the day in camp[.] Some of the brethren rode out to seek out the road & found A mineral tar spring, it run pure tar or substance that looked like tar quite as thick & black, Some thought it was oil[.] it had A strong smell & was 15 miles south of our camp[.] several of the brethren thought of getting it to tar waggons with.
12 I started early in the morning & rode to bear River And for the first time I saw the long looked for Bear River valley yet the spot whare we stuck it was nothing vary interesting[.] there was Considerable grass in the valley & some timber & thick bushes on the bank of the river[.] my object in visiting the river before the camp was to try my luck in ketching trout as it was A stream famed for containing that kind of fish. it was cloudy & cool but I found it A difficult stream to fish in with the fly in consequence of the thick underbrush. I fished several hours & had all sorts of luck good bad and indifferent, I some of the time would fish half an hour & could not start a fish, then I would find an eddy with 3 or 4 trout in it & they would jump at the hooks as though there was A bushel of trout in the hole, And in one instance I caught two at a time. I fished some of the time on horsback riding in the middle of the stream which was about 3 rods wide & when I could not desend longer in the stream for swift & deep water I would have to plunge my horse through the bear thickets which was hard work to penetrate And I knew not at what moment I would have A griselly bear upon my back or An Indian Arrow in my side for I was in danger of both[.] Some of the time I would have A dozen bites at my hook in one & nearly drown 3 or 4 trout & not get one. I finally wound up my fishing & started after the camp Having caught [-] trout in all[.] the Camp travled 9 miles & nooned in a valley[.] I found President Young vary sick with the fever[.] The camp started on But President Young being so sick concluded not to move from whare He was[.] Brs Kimball, Benson, Rockwood & others stoped with him with there wagons, we drove without any road over Hills & dales[,] had to make our own road as we went along. we camped at night in Mathews valley by the side of Reddings Cave. this Cave is about 20 feet wide at its mouth 7 feet high & 30 feet long, at the back part of the cave Are large wolf dens or other Animals[.] the cave is composed of light coulored sand stone vary soft[.] many of us cut our names in it[.] there are many curious rocks that surround it[.] we passed by A mountain of pudding stone composed of gravel sand & cement &c. its spires were reaching up like the pyramids of Egypt[.] The valleys begin to grow more fertile & the Air more pacific than in the wind River Country. Professor Pratt informed me that his Barometrical observation made the South pass to be 7,085 feet above the level of the sea[.] Also it was 280 miles from Laramie. the distance of the day 16¾ miles
13th I arose quite unwell this morning[.] sore throat, mouth, lips &c. Several Brethren went to meet President Young[.] the Camp lay still waiting for him to come up, Br Kimball came to camp at noon And A council was called of the whole camp & Resolved that O Pratt take A company of about 20 waggons & 40 men & go on to the canion [canyon] make the rode as they go & if they could not go through the Canion to find Smiths Cut off & make a road over the mountain that we need not be hindred when we come along[.] there was 23 waggons in all & started At 1 oclok. the Hunters brought in 12 Antelope yesterday & to day 10[.] we have found but little game for many days untill yesterday & to day[.] President Young is better to day but will not move untill to morrow. In the Afternoon Elder Richards & myself walked out to search for springs or water & talked over old times my mishion to Fox Islands And his labours in Preston & our mishions in England together.
14th I Rode in the fore part of the day back 7 miles to visit Br Young Dr Richards G A Smith the evening before went out together & Prayed before the Lord for the Recovery of Br Young & we felt a testimony that He would begin to recover from that hour. And when I arived whare he was I found him much better in health & quite Cheerful, But I found Br Rockwood much the sickest man that had been in camp[.] I tarried with them untill near night Assisting the sick & then returned back to our encampment. Travled (14 mil). during the evening we also went out & Prayed for Br Rockwood & felt convinced we should find him better in the morning
l5th I Started early in the morning with my Carriage & Horses after President Young & Br Rockwood[.] I was two hours driving 17 miles to their Camp[.] made up the bed in the waggon & took them both in[.] I found them much better in health & they thought they could ride As my carriage was the easiest veicle in camp. So all the waggons started & drove to our camp & the sick seemed refreshed by their ride. And After making A short halt the whole camp drove 4½ miles further & we camped for the night. drove (8½ m) And [-] camped.
16” I took Brs Young & Rockwood into my carriage & dr[ove] on with the Camp 6½ miles & nooned in the same valley which we named Mathews vale[.] we travled in the Afternoon 9½ miles with perpendicular Rocks on one side & steep Bluffs on the other thousands of feet high[.] we had a bad road for the sick to travel in & wearied Br Young out & He was sick at night. for several miles on the North side of the Road we discoverd A dark substance Runing out of the holes of the Rocks which congeled[.] it had some the Appearance of gum myrr or opeum ownly it was hard & bitter As Allows[.] we could discover it for 10 miles in places along on the rocks[.] distance of the day 16m. I went to webers fork 1 miles from our encampment & cought one trout for Br Young
17th Br Young is vary Poorly this morning. 9 of our horses lost among whom is two that Br Fowler drives, we start out & drive 3 miles on webers fork & camp[.] A number of trout was caught by the Brethren some that would weigh A lb[.] Br Young was wors & could not Journey & we stoped & camped for the day. the Horses were found 10 miles back. I fished with the fly & cought several trout. The Twelve with some others went out together & prayed in due form for Br Young & all the sick & had a good time. distance 3 miles. We rode to the canine in the night[.] 8 miles whole distance 
18th Sunday Spent the day Holding meeting. 41 waggons went on this morning among whom was Dr Richards & G. A. Smith. 15 waggons remained with President [Young]. Among the number was two of my own. In company with H C Kimball E T Benson, & H Egan I rode over the mountain called Pratts Pass with the company that went on & returned to camp[,] it was A Hot day. Several Brethren cought some trout that would weigh near two lbs each[.] I cought 2 with the fly but they did not seem to take it well in that stream. we moved our camp 2 miles. 2 miles. The whole distance that I travled during the day 25 miles[.] during the evening I went onto A High hill with Brothers Kimball & Benson & had Prayers together & A good time[.] conversed much upon the things of the Kingdom of God.
19th we started early in the morning & rode with the President 5 miles & stoped & took Breakfast[.] Br Youngs fever is still on him but He stood the morning ride well[.] I carried him in my Carriage. We are now travelling through Pratts Pass to avoid the Canion [canyon], We travled After the mornings Halt [-] miles over the worst road we have had on the Journey[.] the whole distance of the day was 15 miles
We camped at night on A trout creek about 10 feet across it[.] We found 3 waggons that had stoped on this creek in consequence of the sick[.] Brs. Sherwood Johnson & Dewey were so sick they could not Journey & we camped on the same ground with them. Sherwood & Johnson were Baptized for their sickness & I confirmed them. Br Young stood the Journey well considering the hard road. He was quite weary come night. Several of the Brethren caught some small trout in the streams we camped on[.] Br Fowler dished [ditched] one of his waggon wheels & G. A. Smith who was in the company before dished two of his stoped & burned coal & set the tyre. This meant Pratt & Company was ownly 8 miles ahead of whare we camped.
21st we set the tire on one wheel of Fowlers waggon. We remained in camp to day in consequence of sickness. Brs Kimball[,] Benson & Lorenzo Young went through the Canion of Ogdens fork which is the name of the creek we camped on, the rout we are taking is [-] Pass which we have named Pratts Pass in consequence of his going on to make the road[.] It is A Hot day. the report is we have a rougher road on ahead than any thing we have met with, the country is vary mountainous rough & steep[,] many of the springs we meet with on the way are saltish or mineral. The Stream we are on [is] Ogdens fork. In the Afternoon I waided the creek two miles & fished with the fly down to the mouth of the canion & caught 8 trout[,] thare is none vary large in this part of the stream[,] ¼ of a lb was as large as we caught
22d we travled 8 miles to day on Ogdens fork Canyon Creek &camped on the creek whare the Pratts Pass leaves the fork for good & turnes to the west[.] we crossed the creek eleven times in going 8 miles & the worst 8 miles we have had on the journey[.] Br Case smashed one of his hind waggon wheels to peaces & we had to wait 2 hours to bring his oxen up & continued the Journey drawing the axeltree on a pole[.] I caught 2 trout in the creek while waiting, the sick stood the Journey better than we expected considering the road
23d We Left Ogdens fork /webber river East Canyon Creek & travled to the west 5 miles up Hill an exceding hard hill to clime. 5 miles brought us to the summit of the Hill[.] we then descended the Hill 6 miles through a thick timberd grove of Aspen &
spruce Balsom &c[.] the timber had been cut out of the road yet it was full of stumps & it kept evry teamster vary busy to dodge the stumps & not break his wagon[.] One man turned over his ox wagon & smashed the top all to a rock[.] there was two children in the waggon but they were not Hurt. the last 6 miles was as bad as any thing we had found, Having travled 5 miles up hill & 6 down total 11 miles we nooned by A splendid spring in A small Birch grove, we saw more timber during this half days travel than we had seen in a month, & the valley both ascending & descending was extremely fertile & coverd with vegitation even to the top of the Hills. At the spring whare we nooned we were met by Brothers Pack & Mathews from the forward camps[.] they brought A letter to us, & informed us it was ownly 10 miles to the valley of the Salt Lake or great bason & 14 to their Camp[.] they had explored the country as far as possible & had made choice of a spot to put in seeds[.] they considered it the greatest grrazig country in the world but was destitute of timber as far as they had been, several fine streams of fresh water cutting through the valley, After nooning we travled up another vary tedious Hill & down it into a valley & camped for the night, with Hills miles high on each side of us[.] I climbed to the top of one hill over 2 miles high[,] was in a high state of perspiration when I reached the top of it. whole distance of the day 15 mi.
JULY 24th 1847 This is an important day in the History of my life and the History of the Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter Day Saints. On this important day after trav[eling] from our encampment 6 miles through the deep ravene, valley, ending with the canion through last creek we came in full view of the great valley or Bason [of] the Salt Lake and land of promise, held in reserve by the hand of GOD for a resting place for the Saints upon which A portion of the Zion of GOD will be built. We gazed with wonder and admiration upon the vast rich fertile valley which lay for about 25 miles in length & 16 miles in wedth Clothed with the Heaviest garb of green vegitation in the midst of which lay a large lake of Salt water of [-] miles in extent in which could be seen large Islands & mountains towering towards the Clouds also the glorious valley abounding with the best fresh water springs rivlets creeks & Brooks & Rivers of various sizes all of which gave animation to the sporting trout & other fish while the waters were wending there way into the great Salt lake. our hearts were surely made glad after A Hard Journey from winter Quarters of 1200 miles through flats of Platt Rivers steeps of the Black Hills & the Rocky mountains And burning sands of the eternal Sage regions & willow swails & Rocky Canions & stubs & Stones, to gaze upon A valley of such vast extent entirely Surrounded with a perfect chain of everlasting hills & mountains Coverd with eternal snow with there inumerable peaks like Pyramids towering towards Heaven presenting at one view the grandest & most sublime scenery Probably that could be obtained on the globe, Thoughts of Pleasing meditations ran in rapid succession through our minds while we contemplated that not many years that the House of GOD would stand upon the top of the Mountains while the valleys would be converted into orchard, vineyard, gardings & fields by the inhabitants of zion & the Standard be unfurled for the nations to gather there to[.] President Young expressed his full satisfaction in the Appearance of the valley as A resting place for the Saints & was Amply repayed for his Journey. After gazing awhile upon the scenery we travled across the table land into the valley 4 miles to the encampment of our Brethren who had arived 2 days before us. they had pitched there encampment upon the bank of two small streams of pure water & had commenced plowing. Had broke about 5 acres of ground & commenced planting Potatoes[.] As soon As we were formed in the encampment before I took my dinner having ½ a bushel of potatoes I repaired to the ploughed field & planted my potatoes Hopeing with the blessings of God at least to save the Seed for another year. The Brethren had damed up one of the creeks & dug a trench & by night nearly the whole ground was Irrigated with water[.] we found the ground vary dry. towards evenig in company with Brs Kimball Smith & Benson I rode several miles up the creek into the mountain to look for timber in this country &c. there was A thunder Shower & it rained nearly over the whole valley & also it rained some the fore part of the night[.] we felt thankful for this As it was the general consideration] that it did not rain in the valley during summer [-].
*Multiple sources confirm that it was Joseph Hancock, not Solomon, who was involved in this incident. Wilford Woodruff recorded the wrong name.