Henry P. Richards diary, 1856 October-1858 March in Henry P. Richards papers, 1854-1900.
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- Source Locations
- Church History Library, MS 1487
- Related Companies
- Chester Loveland Company (1857)
- Related Persons
- George Washington Bean
- George Pierce Billings
- Marion Billings
- Peter Wilson Conover
- Henry Dalton
- [Brother] Hamilton
- Fred Heath
- [Brother] Higgins
- Oliver Boardman Huntington
- [Brother] Kay
- [Brother] Larson
- Chester Loveland
- John Lytle
- George Dilworth Nebeker
- Ida Eliza Nebeker
- John Leonard Nebeker
- Mariah Louise Nebeker
- [Brother] Parks
- [Sister] Patton
- Henry Phinheas Richards
- [Brother] Riter
- William Reed Smith
- [Brother] Tompson
Thurs Sept 24th/57 The Camp assembled in the forenoon to organize. Chester Loveland was appointed Captain of the Company. W[illia]m [R.] Smith, Capt of the first, and John Lytle of the Second fifty (Capt's of tens names unknown) H P Richards Chaplain for the Camp, [blank space] Hamilton sergent of the guard, P.W. Conover, Capt of front and rear guard, O Huntington assistant Captain, &C [etc.] In camp the majority of the day.
Fri Sept 25th/57 Busy preperations being made throughout the camp for rolling on the morrow.
Sat Sept 26th/57 Early preperations were made for starting on our journey, at about 9 A M the Teams began to draw out into line. Some little difficulty was encountered by a number, occasioned by wild teams and unskillful teamsters. My off wheel Horse when attempting to start threw himself onto the tongue and broke it,—another was replaced and in about 10 minutes we were again ready to roll.—Bro Tompson in attempting to leap from his Wagon fell under the Wheel and broke his leg. Bro Henry Dalton also broke a wheel. We passed Gold Kanyon [Canyon], traveled 14 miles, and camped on Carson River.
Sun Sept 27th/57. Traveled 4 miles in the fore noon and camped on Carson River, in the after noon the Camp was called together and addressed by Capts Loveland, Smith, and Lytle upon subjects pertaining to our traveling.—duties &C
We greesed our Wagons and made preperations for an early <start> across the Desert.
In the evening the "Ten" was called together for prayers, as the company was so large and unwieldy, as not to admit of our coming together en masse. I was appointed Chaplain for the 2nd ten in the 2nd fifty. The different tens were instructed to meet at their respective places for their evening devotions until such times as we could come together as a camp when the different tens with their Chaplains would be subject to the Chaplain for the Camp.
Mon Sept 28th /57. Started in good season and crossed a 26 miles Desert. road somewhat rocky and sandy, and also a portion of it very good—Camped about sun down on Carson River. Prospered exceedingly as a camp during the day,
Tues Sept 29th/57. Traveled 16 miles & camped Sun 1 hour high on Carson River.
Wed Sept 30th/57. Made preperations for crossing the 40 miles Desert. Started at 11 A.M. and after traveling 3 miles arrived at Rag Town (just a trading post for the accommodation of travelers) here we watered our Teams and took some water in our wagons when we started on to the Desert. the first ten miles was very heavy sand, we traveled all night and arrived at the link of the Humbol[d]t, or Mary's River just at daybreak[.] was very much over-come during the night with sleep so much so that it was almost an impossibility to keep my eyes open, which as I ascertained in the morning was a general complaint throughout the Camp. The water at this place is brackish.
Thurs Oct 1st/57. Men and animals very much fatigued from last nights exercise,—myself extremely so. concluded to lay by to day and rest,— I was asleep a portion of the forenoon. At about 4 P M a meeting was called and the Camp instructed in their duties by Capt's Loveland, Smith, and Lytle,
Fri Oct 2nd /57 Started betimes in the morning and traveled up the north side of the Humbolt River about 25 miles & Camped about Sun down, A bottom road and pretty good all day,—There was considerable disorder and confusion in traveling. Wagons passing each other &C. In the evening a meeting was called for the purpose of ascertaining the best mode of traveling together with Horse and Ox Teams, there was considerable opposition manifested towards the President by Bro's Hamilton, Higgins & others. I was not in attendence being on guard.
Sat Oct 3rd/57. Traveled about 25 miles[.] road very dusty and a great many deep ruts. otherwise pretty good. Camped sun 1 hour high on the bank of the Humbolt River.
The Spirit of disunion and rebelion is growing rife—a great deal of fault finding with many concerning the order of traveling with Horse and Ox Teams, but little order observed and the instructions of the Officers trampled under foot.
Sun Oct 4th/57. Traveled 16 miles, road dusty and somewhat rough—disorder still reigns and the Devil showing himself big in camp. I conversed with Cap't Smith until quite late in the evening concerning the situation of the camp, the best course to be pursued &C.
Mon Oct 5th/57. Traveled about 7 miles in the forenoon and camped at the Lawson Meddows [Meadows],—A fire accidentally broke out in the dry grass, which recuired the united efforts of the camp to extinguish.
A meeting was called <at> about 5 PM, when Capt Loveland laid before the camp a new order, or mode of traveling , which he though[t] would have a tendency to give more general satisfaction,—Cap't Smith followed for some ¾ of an hour, chastising the Saints for their fault-finding, disunion &C; he spoke with power and by the spirit of God. which had a very beneficial effect.
Tues Oct 6th/57 Weather threatning, at about 10 AM it commenced raining,—cold and very windy, from which I experienced considerable inconvenience, continued raining all day. In the morning Cap't Higgins informed me that Bro Geo Bean and myself had been appointed to act in the capacity of Teachers in the second fifty,—Traveled 12 miles & Camped on the bank of the River.
Wed Oct 7th/57. Weather cold and somewhat showery,—Snow on the neighboring Mountains,—Traveled some 14 miles & Camped on the bank of the River. Peace and harmony is beginning to be restored in camp, and more of the spirit of the Lord enjoyed. and manifested by the Saints.
Thurs Oct 8th/57 Was on guard last night from 12 till morning. Suffered considerable with the wet and cold. The Train crossed the River in the morning and traveled up the south side about 16 miles over a pretty good road with the exception of a short, but very steep hill to assend and decend.
Fri Oct 9th/57 Traveled about 16 miles over a pretty good road.
Sat Oct 10th/57. Rolled about 18 miles, left the River and crossed over a low range of hills, a short place of which was very rough, made 4 miles of new road and came to the river again at night where we camped,—Good feed for the animals,—I stood morning guard.
Sun Oct 11th/57. The camp was detained by Bro Patten's wife who was delivered of a Daughter until 1 PM when we resumed our journey and crossed back to the north side of the River, traveled 5 miles.
Mon Oct 12th/57. Was on guard last night until 12 with the Stock over the river, and slept out the remainder of the night[.] I was appointed Cap't of the guard belonging to our ten,—returned to camp in the morning when I learned that Bro Geo Billing's Child died just before day-break.
We resumed our journey in good season and rolled on to "Stoney Point" about 20 miles. good road all day. In the evening administered to Bro Geo Nebeker's Child. in connection with a number of Elders.
Tues Oct 13th/57. Fresh signs of Indians and as they have been very hostile to Emigrants the past season it was considered wisdom to post a double guard. The Camp started early and passed around the stoney point of a mountain, or over it, which broke down three Wagons,—Traveled 15 miles, principally good bottom road. The broken Wagons were repaired and came up to the Camp at night.
Wed Oct 14th/57. Good bottom road, with the exception of two or three of the last miles previous to reaching Gravelly Ford, when we had a long steep hill to decend. Traveled 12 miles and Camped at Gravelly Ford, Two Indians seen in the evening. A meeting was called in the evening and the brethren admonished to hearken to counsel,—observe the rules of the Camp &c.
Thurs Oct 15th/57. Bro. Geo Nebaker's Child died last night,—I was on guard the latter part of the night and took charge of the same.
Traveled 18 miles over an uneaven portion of the Country,—a succession of Hills and Hollows, also passed up a Kanyon 3 miles in length, and very rough,—crossed the River four times, & Camped on its banks.
Fri Oct 16th/57. I assisted Bro Nebaker in the morning, he being busy preparing the Corpse to take through to the Valley.
We journied 12 miles over a tolerably good road. some portions of it on the bottom, & some on the ridge.
Sat Oct 17th/57 Traveled about 15 miles over a tolerably good bottoms road.
Sun Oct 18th/57. Stood guard the forepart of last night, quite windy and disagreeable,—Traveled 16 miles over a pretty good road. A meeting was held in the Eve.
Mon Oct 19th/57. This morning Bro's Conover, Huntington, and four or five others left the Company and took the "Cut off" for Salt Lake City. We traveled 15 miles, and forded the Humbol[d]t about 2 miles below the Bridge, and left it on our left,—Camped on a small Creek,—water good—Wood scarce.
Tues Oct 20th/57. A small company, Bro's Parks, Riter, Larson and Fred Heath, broke off from the Company and took a "Cut Off' in direct opposition to Counsel.
We traveled 15 miles through a Kanyon some portions of it pretty rough. Camped on a small Creek, no wood, but plenty of "Ox Chips"
Wed Oct 21st/57, On guard the latter part of the night, and suffered considerably with the Cold. Continued our journey some 20 miles the first eight of which was very hilly and rough,—decended into "Thousand Spring Valley"
Thurs Oct 22nd/57. Traveled to Poison Spring Valley 15 miles, but very little feed for stock.
Fri Oct 23rd/57. Started early and traveled 6 miles when we watered our Teams, continued on a short distance, and stopped about two hours to bait our animals, and get breakfast,—then proceeded on some 8 miles further and camped on the Head waters of Goose Creek. Some parts of the road stoney and hill,— about 14 miles travel to day.
Sat Oct 24th/57. Stood guard the latter part of last night,—journied 20 miles down Goose Creek,—road first rate all day.
Sun Oct 25th/57 Crossed the Goose Creek Mountains, and Camped some 2½ miles from the sumit, in a small Valley,—water scarce. The weather was exceedingly pleasant which is a rare thing in this vicinity,—made 18 miles,—Two Indians in Camp.
Mon Oct 26th/57. Passed the City Rocks, and the junction of the road about 5 miles from the sumit, some parts of the road is quite rocky, but principally good,—traveled 12 miles camped on the Decashier or Horse Creek
In the evening Bro George Bean and myself visited Bro[ther]s's Parks, Riter, and Larson (they having returned to our camp, not being successful in finding the <cut-off> road as they had anticipated) in the capacity of Teachers[.] Bro Parks appeared quite humble, and acknowledged that he had done wrong in leaving the company, contrary to counsel. but the two latter were more obstinate more especially Bro Larson and his wife, who treated us with utter contempt.
Tues Oct 27th/57. On guard last night and took charge as usual,—weather very cold.
I was notified <at> about 9 O clock in the evening that the two Indians that had been traveling with us for two or three days past, had left the Camp, and it was expected that they intended to steal some of our Stock. I therefore informed the guard of the fact, and ordered every man to secure a Horse so that in case there was an attempt made to Stampede our Stock we would not be left on foot.
Traveled about 16 miles over an upland road, somewhat stoney, but generally good. Camped near the Willows springs. which is some distance off from the road to the right, water scarce. I retired to rest in good season, being afflicted with a very severe Head ache.
Wed Oct 28th/57. Was up before day break and made preparations for an early start,—The road was a little decending and first rate, so that we made the crossing of Deep Creek, sun one hour high distance 25 miles.
In the evening Capt Smith, and one or two others, started on Horse back ahead of the Company for home.
Thurs Oct 29th/57. Road somewhat rolling and some stoney points to cross. Camped at the blue Spring sun 1 hour high, after traveling 16,—Here we met with Bro's Godby and Gammel from the City. who informed us that thousands of our brethren were in the Mountains and Kanyons for the purpose of keeping the U.S. Troops from entering the Valley, as it is evident that their feelings and intentions are hostile towards us as people,—Also that 76 of the Government Wagons with their contents had been burned by our brethren
Fri Oct 30th/57. On guard the latter part of last night, continued our journey betimes in the morning and traveled some 30 miles to within about 4 miles of the crossing of Bear River. good road all day. camped on the bank of the River.
Sat Oct 31st/57. Crossed Bear River at the old Ford and arrived at Box Elder. Sun two hours high, where we camped,—dis' 24 miles[.] As Bro Kay thought of stopping his Teams north of G S L City for some length of time, he released me from further obligations to him with the understanding that I should proceed on, the first opportunity to the City. I accordingly put my Baggage on board of Bro Geo Nebaker's Wagon agreeable to his kind offer,—when I mounted one of his Horses, and we proceeded on to Willow Creek some 8 miles further, making some 32 miles travel[.] Camped in company with Bros's Nebeker, Jackman, and Layton.
Sun Nov 1st/57 I was called up before daybreak by Bro Jackman to administer to Sister Parson's child, near whose House we had camped, while making preparations to administer the ordinance, in company with Bro's Nebeker and Jackman, the child breathed it's last. We accordingly returned to the Camp and prepared breakfast, when I mounted Bro Jackman's Horse and proceeded on leaving the Wagons behind,– reached Bro Wm. Smith's residence <at> about 5 P.M. took supper at his House. when he provided me with a fresh Mule, and I left his House just at dark homeward bound, where I arrived at about 9 P.M,—Rode some 55 miles to day. When I entered the House my wife met me at the door with our little daughter Henrietta whome I had never before seen, now 5 years and near 5 months old.