Brigham Young letter, Camp of Israel to Mary A. Young, Winter Quarters, 20 April 1847.
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9 o'clock P.M.
My Dear Companion partner in tribulation. I should have written you by Bro. Rockwood but had not time, the camp was to be organized and a great deal to be dun to prepare for mooving. On Sunday I should have written but did not feele able to. I lade abed and thought of a greatdeal I should like to say to you. The camp is in good helth and first rate Spirits. they have never felt better in their lives I think. My health has very much improved yesterday and to day. You mentioned in your letter that you heard I lay on the grond the night I left home. I did, but due not think it hurt me, but when I arived in camp I found my self completely tired out. I thank you a thousand times for your kind letters to me more especely for your kind acts and still more for your kind hart. I pray for you and the children continualy and for all our famely. I do think the Lord has blest me with one of the best famelyes that any man ever had on the Earth. I due hope the children will be good and mind there mother when I am gon. My Son Joseph you must
May 4 '1847 about 20 mi above the head of grand Island this morning. We have a chance to send a letters to Sarpee--by some traders. I want
xxxx to wright a long letter but have not time. We are all perty well at present though my labour has ben verry hard for me on the jorney. I pray for you continualy[.] the pauness [Pawnees] have watched us close and we have watched them but they have got 2 of our horses Brs [Willard] Richards & [Jesse C.] Littles, our cattle standit well. Edmond [L. Ellsworth] wants I should say a word to Elizabeth for him[.] Edmond has been sick but is nowe well and in good Spirits. John Greene wants to bring the things that Com. Cane sent to him for he thinks he shall not goe back. we stop every Sabath and have a day of rest[.] the Lord has blest us in all things for which we are thankful. I am glad you are not a going to come on this sumer for I want to be with my famely when they come this journey. on Saterday last we saw buffalo for the first time[.] they went on a chase after them[.] they got 4 old ones and 5 calfs which has made us plenty of meat. if this letter re[a]ches there before the next company starts, they had better fetch the 3 canon that are there. keep up a thurer [thorough] g[u]ard every night tie there horses nights keep cattle close. we shall have to cross the Platt[e] River here on the acount of feed[.] the praire is all burnt over in the north Side of the River[.] the Pauneas [Pawnees] have gone a head of us and burnt, the next company had better keep up on the north Side[.] I think it is a good rout[e] for us here after. I want the bretheren to help my famely whilst I am gone and not supress them. Joseph and Brigham be good Boys and mind your mother and Ales Caroline little Johnie and finely all my children and famely be you Blest for ever and ever
[Edited version also published in "The Pioneer Trip," in Heart Throbs of the West, 12 vols. [1939-51], 5:384-85.]