Life sketch of Henry Jolley, 4.
Trail excerpt transcribed from "Pioneer History Collection" available at Pioneer Memorial Museum [Daughters of Utah Pioneers Museum], Salt Lake City, Utah. Some restrictions apply.
We had many trials and hardships along the way. It was a large company and the roads were often muddy from the spring rains which slowed us up. Some days we were able to make only a few miles. I came close to losing my wagon and oxen when we crossed the Platte River which was then at flood stage, but God was with us and we were able to master the torrent.
There were many fascinating experiences on the plains. The scenery was different and fascinating—no mountains as far as one could see. Waving expanses of bunch grass stretched our in every direction. The wide open spaces were beautiful and inspiring. After the day's travel, evening socials and dances were enjoyed. The young folks had much fun and enjoyment, although at times they had to walk. The road generally was not too bad. Many people had traveled on their way to Oregon and California ahead of us. We were overjoyed when we would see trappers and Saints returning from the Valley to Winter Quarters. They would tell us intriguing stories about the beautiful canyons and Valley of the New Zion. These would be our refuge from our enemies. Occasionally, we would see a buffalo herd and some Indians which caused some anxiety, but our company was large and our scouts were always on the lookout for any sign of danger.
What a thrill when we first sighted the snow-capped Rockies! The spiraled peaks looked like far away sentinals, and we encountered some snow over the great South Pass. At Fort Bridger we rested a couple of days, and shoed our oxen because the road from here on would be rockier and rougher. There would be deep canyons and streams of water to cross. But these beautiful canyons would lead us to the place of our dreams.
Oh, what a breath—taking scene at the sight of the beautiful Salt Lake Valley. The wide stretching plain with the lake as a back—ground was thrilling to see, indeed. We were welcomed by the Saints who had arrived ahead of us and made us feel at home.