Jacob Weiler autobiographical sketch, 1892-1895, 3-4.
In April, 1847, I was chosen to be one ot [of] the Pioneers of one hundred and forty four men and three women with Brigham Young as our leader. Our first camping place was at the Elk Horn River. Here we stayed five days fixing up things for the Journey. Our teams were thin and feed was very scarce, it being too early for green grass. We travelled up the north side of the Platte River, when about frour [four] hundred miles up we decided to cross. We were at a loss to know how to cross the river without injuring the contents of our wagons. I proposed to raise the bed of the wagon with blocks of wood, the proposition was accepted, and the company was soon landed on the south side of the river. We proceeded on our journey across a trackless uninhabited deseret. We met some bands of Souix [Sioux] Indians and many large herds of buffalo. We traveled in order. Morning and evening the whole camp was called to order, and we all knelt down and called upon the God of Israel, asking for His guidance and protection.
Many times when gathered around the camp fire we would plan and talk over the future of the dreary wastes through which we were traveling. I remember more than once the possibility of a railroad to the Pacific was spoken of as being in the near future. I must say the hardships and privation of that journey were a pleasure to me; we felt willing to brave danger and deny ourselves of the pleasures and comforts of civilization if it was possible that we might gain a resting place where we could worship god according to the dictates of our own conscience in peace.
Arriving at Fort Bridger we were met by an old mountaineer who told us we never could raise a crop in the valley of the Great Salt Lake, He said he would give one thousand dollars for the first ear of corn we raised in this valley, for it could not be done, but we came here to try and we did, and all the world knows the result. We crossed the Wasatch range of the Rocky Mountains and camped in a grove of maple trees. This is the place where the Hastings company divided up, and pulled their wagon up over the mountain into the valley. We followed the creek and cut our way through into the valley on the 22nd of July; on the 23rd of July Orson Pratt, one of the twelve apostles, dedicated the land to the Lord. On the 24th of July, Brigham Young and the rest of the company came in, all the camp knelt down and returned thanks to God for His preserving care through a long, tedious journey.