Sarah Charlotte Neil, biographical sketch.
[Written by her daughter, Martha Dunn.]
In the year 1853 , I and my sister Charlotte, left my Mother and started for Utah with a company of fifty (50) wagons under the direction of Captain [William] Fielding [Field]. Brother Lorenzo [Dow] Niel [Neil] was in the company. I drove an Ox team across the plains, purchased with means I earned and saved by my owns hands at St. Louis. We had a pleasant trip, mixed with the usual alarms of flood and Indians, depredations, as the Indians were hostile that season. It was the year that General [William Selby] Harvey killed so many at Ash Hallow, on the plains.
A remarkable thing happened. We had traveled for many days when we discovered we were being followed by a band of Indians. We had camped by a wide spreading river, and a large band of Indians had followed us for one or two days. They threatened to plunder our camp. Great excitement prevailed as we saw the Indians prepare to cross the water. All the men of our train got out their arms, preparing to resist the expected attack. Just as the Indians started to cross the stream their attention was arrested by the appearance of an eagle, perfect in form, wings outspread, beak and talons already to drop on them. As they looked up a cry of fear came from them and they turned and fled for their lives over the plains to the south. It was a peculiar providence. All the people of the camp witnessed the peculiar phenomenon.
After many trials and hardships we arrived in Salt Lake City, Utah on Sunday, October 6, 1853.