Malan, Stephen, “Stephen Malan Autobiography and Family Record,” 14-15.
It was while these last were in charge [Elder Samuel Francis of England and James Ruban of Geneva] that our family departure for Salt Lake City took place, being the 10th day of March, 1955 . One company had proceeded us the year before comprising three families. Our small company was comprised of 8 members of our family, my oldest brother [John Daniel Malan] having emigrated the previous year, having in the interval resided part of the time with Lorenzo Snow's family. Besides us were three related to us and a young man named James Bonnet, as also a aged Elder, name Bertsch [Bertoch], whose family had also emigrated on the previous year, and was to join them in the valleys of the Deseret.
An incident may be mentioned worthy of remark while on our way to Salt Lake City, arriving at Liverpool we tarried a couple of weeks. pending our sea voyage, at the Emigrant Home. During our short sojourn in that city we visited, and were introduced to several families of saints, enjoyed our selves exceedingly, attended one meeting of Latter-day Saints with large assemblage filling the copious hall, presided by Apostle F. D. Richards with several eminent elders from Salt Lake City.
Elder Richards visited us in our lodging quarters, and while he was blessing us and pouring forth his soul to God in our behalf, the spirit of prophecy rested upon him as to announce what should transpire in our onward journey; saying prophetically that we would witness death upon every hand, but that our family should be preserved and would all live to see Salt Lake City. This was verified to the letter, for as we and thousands of Saints had established a temporary camp at a place five miles west of our landing called Mormon Grove, near Atchison, that terrible scourge the cholera reaped a large number of victims from among our brethren. Our captain of ten, Elder James Bell, whom had charge of us died with his wife, also Elder Bertoch who was among our small company died also. My mother, my sister Madeline and your humble servant, also partook of the scourge and according to the severity of the attack we would have succumbed like others had it not been through faith and in accordance to the fulfillment of God's servant, Elder Richards, prophecy. So fierce was the effect upon my sister, Madeline, that she completely lost her hair and the skin on her feet and hands and even her nails came out like a pair of socks. It will never be effaced from my memory, a true manifestation of the power of the priesthood and of a favor of God in our behalf, and that Elder Richards was a elect of God.
Under the leadership of Captain Charles Harper we departed from Mormon Grove July 22, 1855; arrived at Salt Lake City October 28, 1855.