Anderson, Emily Pickering, Reminiscences, in Denmark to Manti: History of William Anderson and His Family , 67-69.
My father [Richard Pickering], accompanied by Elder Ezra T. Clark, a returned missionary, myself, and two girlfriends went to dinner. When we were going back to the depot, the two men fell as if they had been shot, it proving to be a sunstroke. Brother Clark never regained consciousness. They put the body on the train and went two or three stations further. They called for a donation to purchase a metal casket. Father, hearing this, was sent into unconsciousness for twenty-four hours. Seven elders gathered around him, asked the Lord to spare his life, which he did at that time.
Three times we were left in different places in the depot. We girls would go out and get water, but were pushed back. Sometimes we were left. We knew we could catch the next train, as the immigration train was always slow.
Arriving at Laramie, (Fort Laramie) the Mormon boys surrounded the train. They had their belts and chaps on. I was very frightened, thinking we were surely captured, when they quickly explained that they were the Mormon boys, Salt Lake Teamsters, driving the horses for us.
Crossing the plains, there were eight companies going. I looked at the oxen and they looked at me. I pled with my father not to go in the company with the ox teams, as I was frightened of their big horns. He hired a man driving a horse and mule to haul our provisions.
Before leaving with our company, I wanted to write a letter to my mother. I was just fourteen years of age and a long way away. Homesickness crept into my heart nearly every hour of the day. I wanted to write very often back home to my mother. The captain very courteously offered his tent to me to do our correspondence in, which we gladly accepted.
On this day, returning from writing, the assistant captain offered me a piece of pie. However, I had seen him roll the dough out on the wagon tongue. I said, 'No thank you. I don't care for any!' Father ate the pie and relished it, saying to me, 'You were very foolish not to have taken any, as it tasted very good.' Before I reached Salt Lake City, I would have had that piece of pie.
Thirty wagons were in our company. The next company of emigrants went 116 miles further by train than we did.
The captain called us all to prayers every night and morning and we always sang religious hymns.
We camped in an oblong circle, opening at both ends to drive the horses and mules inside, so they could not stray away and could be hitched up inside the circle. The night herders guarded us by night.
Every night the Saints would join each other, some nights on one side of the river and some nights on the other.
One night we didn't know we were so close to a river, and as the men had gathered the fuel to prepare the evening meal, my girlfriend and myself were walking along arm in arm trying to step over the harnesses laying on the ground, we made one more step and plunged into the river, my companion falling on top of me. She caught some bushes and was immediately rescued, but I went down the stream and sank twice.
One family of Italians were in our company. A young boy dove in after me and brought me to shore, but lost his watch and shoes rescuing me. I couldn't thank him in Italian, but when I revived I did my best to make him understand how much I appreciated his kindness to me. I had been unconscious from eight until two o'clock in the morning.
A few days later, just at noon, we heard our stock stampeding. Looking around, we could see they were driven off by the Indians. The men and boys ran after them. All the women and older people were left to guard the camp. I was more frightened of the gun that I held than I was of the Indians. The cattle were brought back safely, but we all went to bed without eating. We were afraid to make a fire for fear of the Indians returning.
I walked nearly all the way across the plains in order to let my father ride, he being nearly 70 years of age at that time.
After arriving in Salt Lake, my heels and feet for months, would gather in sores and break out, from the hard trip and walking in saleratus.
At Echo Canyon, the teamsters fired their revolvers so we could hear the echo. The Mormon boys were working in the middle of Echo Canyon building the railroad. My husband was among them, but I was not aware of it then.
We arrived in Salt Lake the last of August, 1867.