Hoagland, John G. to J.B. Ward, 28 Nov. 1859, in Missouri Historical Society, Selected papers pertaining to Mormonism 1831-1859.
- Related Companies
- Horton D. Haight/Frederick Kesler Freight Train (1859)
- Related Persons
- John Gray Hoagland
Salt Lake City Utah Territory
Nov. 28th 1859.
My dear Sir
Although it is about 6 months we met I have not forgotten the promise I made to write to you. Neither have I forgotten how pleasantly I spent the short time that I was with you.
Our train left Florence Nebraska Territory on the 6th of June. It consisted of 70 waggons, 225 yoke of oxen, two carraiges, 7 horses, 5 mules, some 12 or 14 milch cows and 135 persons. It was principally a freight train. After a journey of 1032 miles we arrived in this City on the 1st day of Sept., haveing been on the road 2 months & 26 days. We had no serious sickness amoung our people nor no deaths, but we had one birth. We get disease amoung our cattle by which we lost about $2000 worth of our best. It bid fair at one time to so cripple us that we should not be able to move the train, but still we kept moveing until we could send forward & get cattle from here. There is a great deal of hard labor attached to (a) journey across the plains, yet there is much of interest in it for there (is) something new to be seen at almost every step. The travel across the plains has been immense this season. We were comeing in contact with parties going East or West daily. The Mormon emigration alone has amounted to about 2000. I visited the celebrated Saleratus pond on my way out. It is truly an interesting sight. It covers about 4 acres & at a distance has much the appearance of a pond covered with white ice. It sells in this city at 25¢ pr pound without any preparation except the action of the atmosphere upon it. I sent back some 3 or 4 pounds of it. I have not yet visited Salt Lake. It is some 17 miles from the City but I have seen plenty of the salt & I never saw nicer. It is beautifully granulated & very white….J[ohn] G. Hoagland