Smith, Edward Whitfield, Autobiographical sketch, 5-6.
Having heard that we might get work ar [at] Canton in Fulton county Ill. Brother George [Smith] and I went there and engaged to work for a Mr Sauville about three miles west of Canton we then moved our house hold goods to Mr Sayville Place, where we remained for some time, when we commenced to open up a mine for a Mr Smith thus getting a warmer house to live in we continued to work for Mr Smith until Spring of 1859 opened. but we could not get no pay from Mr Smith for our work. This put us in an unpleasant and embarassing position, for we had spent what money we had on hand and were depending on Mr Smith for enough to fit us out desently but that gentleman publicly declared that that he thanked God that he was able to do something to stop us from going to Utah, However we concluded to make a start on our journey, and place ourselves in the hands of the Lord to open up our way. Mother thereupon sold a nice set of bed curtains to Mr Sayville, for a Yoke of steers one 18 months old the other 2 years (those curtains were very fashionable among the better class of people when we left England, they were about eight feet from the floor to the top and completely surrounded the bed) this with the yoke of oxen would take us along. with a bed quilt on the wagon instead of a wagon cover and on the morning of April 15th 1859 we commenced our journey towards Florence with only provisions to last one week, our first day of travel was a rainy day roads somewhat muddy and our ox that had been hurt, gave out on us and we had to camp early, in fact the ox gave out quite frequently but having a light load we traveled some each day when our provisions were gone mother would go to the houses we past and ask for a little assistance and was never refused in some way or other in corn meal tea coffee, sugar bacon eggs and sometimes a little money, but flour was out of the question on account of the rush for Pikes peak gold mines, when asked as to where we were going our answer was to Nebraska (we had learned enough by experience not to advertise ourselves as mormons). We continued by making short drives, and arrived in Florence about the middle of May, with provisions enough to provide for our wants while in Florence, We made our wants known to those in charge of the emigration, with a desire to proceed to Utah this season, finally the way was opened up for us to proceed on our journey. We were furnished with provisions for the four of us (that is Mother, brother George, Thomas and myself) also with a wagon cover on the condition on our part that we take a passenger, a young lady, the daughter of a Mr [William Law] Pickard, a tanner of Salt Lake City, While in Florence I traded for a durham bull, and had broken him with the sound ox, making us five head, I had also fitted a half yoke with tugs ect. [sic] for the ox that was hurt during the thunder storm at Canton Ill. thus making us a spike team. With this outfit we commenced our journey on the On the 13th June 1859 in captain James S. Brown's company The journey being comparatively pleasant, It was travel, travel, travel nothing worthy of note untill we had crossed green river. however we porceeded on our way, and made camp on Hams Fork. Next morning when the cattle were brought in I was informed that one of our steers was dead, captain Brown and others advised me to trade the bull and other steer for a sound ox. A trader post was near by and the trade was soon made, I giving the bull and the steer for a stag four or five years old. we were soon on our way and arrived in Salt Lake City on the 29 day of August 1859. I will here state that when we had got fairly started on our journey from Florence that brother George was engaged to drive team for brother John Gordon from St Louis After our arrival in Salt Lake Mr Pickard came and took the wagon cover claiming that it was only loaned for the journey before arriving in Salt Lake we were all rebaptized, in accordance with the instructions given for all the saints to be rebaptized before entering Salt Lake City.