Charles C. Rich diary, 1846 February-1847 October, 7-16.
Friday, April 16. I left Winter Quarters for Nauvoo to obtain means to fit me for the mountains. I visited Nauvoo, Bishop, Quincy[,] Keokuk, Montrose and the different places about[,] obtained $75 and a horse. After getting my Father[,] Thos. Rich and John Porter on the way, I left for home. My horse died on the way at Pisgah. I got another horse that I had at Pisgah and came on[,] got home on the 21st of May, found the company almost ready to start, found my family all alive, but not all well. I then went on[,] preparing to move; 2 of the brethren offered to assist me to move. Bro. Ezra Shoemaker gave me $89.00 and loaned me $100.00. Bro. A. [blank space] Cherry gave me $50.00 and loanded me $55.00. I was taken sick the next day. After I go home and was confined to my bed a good deal of the time. I fitted up the public affairs.—the canon, the skiff, the bell and etc., also 4 wagons for myself with one span of horses, also 8 yoke of cattle, 5 cows, and 2 year old heifers. Got 46 bushels of corn, 18 bushels of wheat, and 2,000 weight of flour and crackers, 5 bushels of beans, 142 pounds of sugar, some 15 pounds of coffee and etc., and 115 sheep.
I left Winter Quarters on Monday the 14 of June, 1847, my family and drivers numbering 17 persons. Traveld 3 miles and camped (Camp I.) I returned to town to urge forward the artiller[y] and boat. On the 15th I reached the Pappea about 15 miles[,] overtook Bro. Taylor’s company (Camp No. II)
Wednesday, June 16. We reached Elkhorn River after traveling 7 miles, overtook the main camp, found them crossing rapidly. (Camp No. 3)
Thursday, June 17. I crossed the Elkhorn River with my teams, stock and company.
Friday, June 18. We were busly engaged in organizing the different companies. We also held a public council in which it was decided that the marshall should go after the canon. I gave John Van Cott an order for that effect, authorizing him to bring them forthwith. It was decided that some of the company should start on the next day; a heavy rain storm came up about 4 o’clock p.m.
Saturday, June 19. Some teams started for the Platte; Parley waited till noon: he then left me and Jedediah M. Grant with part of his company to wait the arrival of tomorrow[,] and about dark Bishop Whitney and Father Cutler arrived, bringing with them Jacob Weatherby wounded. He had started back on Winter Quarters on business[,] in company with 2 oth[e]r men and one or two women; on the road there were 3 large nacked Indians who sprung up before the teams and cocked their guns. The brethren clinched with 2 of them and one shot that stood a little back shot Bro. We[a]therby. He was tended on through the night and was in great misery.
Sunday, June 20 About 9 oclock a. m. Brother We[a]therby died. About 11 a.m. the cannon, boat and etc. arrived. Bros. Whitney, Cutler and Lott went on early in the morning to the main camp; we crossed the cannon, boat and ammunition with about 25 other teams; About 2 hours by sun the brethren Whitney, Cutler and Lott returned. We concluded to bury Bro. We[a]therby on account of his situation. So we buried him just at dark, about 20 steps east of the Liberty pole. C. Rich offered up prayer. Guards posted out[.] all things passed out well.
On the morning of the 19th we received information from the brethren of the Platte that they had found a man who had been killed by the Indians, together with some government papers, addressed to the farmer at Pawnee. An inquest was held and papers and particulars sent back to the agent at Belfvow.
On the evening of the 20th we held a meeting and were addressed by C[harles]. C. Rich, Cutler, Whitney and grant.
Monday, June 21.At sunrise we fired the six pounder. After an early breakfast, we set Bro. Whitney, Cutler, Lott, William Kimball, the marshall and etc. over the Elkhorn River: fastened the raft and about nine oclock we started. After traveling about five miles we met Bro. P[arley]. P. Pratt and Daniel Spencer. About four o’clock we reached the main camp on the Platte river after traveling about 12 miles; met in counsel with the captains of Hundreds and Fifties, appointed men to raise 2 yoke of oxen to put on the cannon, also one or two drivers and made arrangements for traveling on the morrow[.] placed out our guard; all is right. (Camp No. 4)
Tuesday, June 22. At 8 o’clock we started. We traveld in 5 companies abreast. Passed up the Platte river which had but very little timber on it; traveled about 15 miles and camped just before sunset (Camp No. 5)
Wednesday, June 23. We rang the bell at daylight for getting up and putting out our herds; rang again at 8 o’clock for starting; Today we made but two tracks, my company ahead, Parley’s next, Taylors, [Jedediah M.] Grants, [Abraham O.] Smoots[.] went about 8 miles, stopped and watered. and at 10 miles we passed a bridge which had to be repaired. Went about 5 miles further and camped on a slough. Not much wood. Parley camped also, leaving Taylor, Grant and Smoot five miles back. (Camp No. 6)
Thursday, June 24. We started at 8:30 a. m. after traveling 2 or 3 miles we were overtaken by Brother Taylor on horseback. He stated that Bro. J[edediah]. M. Grant and John Young had refused to obey orders and were out of their place, hearing that the 3rd Hundred had got before him which was 2nd. We concluded to stop at the first convenient place and have the matter settled. After traveling 8 miles, we stopped at a good watering place. The officers and men of the whole camp were called together. Bro. Taylor entered his complaint against Bro. Young and Grant and after a great deal said by brethren, Bro. Pratt gave us a good lecture and reproved Bro. Young and Grant and said they should ask his forgiv[e]ness which they did; and all was right; placed out picket guards. All safe through the night (Camp No. 7)
Friday, June 25. We started at 8 o’clock, while hitching up my team, one ox became unyoked, was frightened and tried to leap over the skiff. He partly fell on my [son] Joseph and hurt him considerable, and came nigh killing him. We traveled about 7 miles, then watered and moved on: Camped after traveling 14 miles. After we camped some traders met us. Bro. Bartley and them, going to Belview. The camps as all up; all peace and good order. Picked guard out all night. Had a meeting of the officers at 6 o’clock this morning and agreed to travel as we had been doing till Sunday. (Camp No. 8)
Saturday, June 26. We traveled 18 miles, crossed a ridge and Looking Glass Creek, stayed on Beaver Creek; my company crossed; all the rest of the camp stayed on the other side.
Sunday, June 27. We rested. Bros. Pratt, Taylor, Grant[,] Robinson, Hunter and others went up six miles to the Missionary and Farming station of the Pawnees, (also their town), to look at the ford of the river; met several of the farmers, among the number Juds Mackelroy, the government farmer for the Pawnees.
Monday, June 28. Bro. Taylor’s company traveled ahead. Bro. Pratt and myself in the rear. After Bro. Taylor’s started out about 2 miles, Mackelroy sent us word that there was a war party lurking about. Taylor’s returned and [I] went with him. We fired the cannon twice, traveled six miles; and myself and Pratt camped at the Missionary Station; pickets out; all things safe (Camp No. 9).
Tuesday, June 29. About 11 o’clock we started, the camp ahead being detained crossing a creek. We found an arrow shot into a calf. Crossed Council Creek and Willow Creek. Passed through the Pawnee Village, and camped on the Loup Fork, after traveling 6 miles. (Camp No. 10)
Wednesday, June 30. We traveled up the Loup Fork about ten miles, crossing several small ravines; overtook the whole camp and camped on the river just below the old Loup Fork Villiage. (Camp No. 11)
Thursday, July 1. The whole camp crossed over the Loup Fork, my company last. We set tires and repaired wagons till 3 o’clock, after which we crossed our company over. Last evening the company elected Louis Robinson captain of the company. The ford was good. (Camp. No. 12)
Friday, July 2. We started to cross over to the main Platte river, traveled 18 miles, crossed some ridges; it was very disaggreeable, A heavy shower about 5 o’clock: camped on the prairie without wood or water. (Camp No. 13)
Saturday, July 3. We started early, traveled about a mile. The Sow (the six pounder) left by Capt. Hunter’s company about three quarters of a mile to our left; the carriage broke, Horn gone. My company rigged a team and drove on, showed up the carriage and brought it on. The artillery was furnished Capt. Hunter on the first, traveled about 12 miles, camped on the main Platte, the whole company together, at the mouth of Wood river. [Camp No. 14]
Sunday, July 4. Laid by, repaired the cannon, and had a meeting. Bro. Pratt preached, had a council of the officers. The picket guard out. Saw an Indian near the camp about 11 o’clock in the evening.
Monday, July 5. Crossed Wood river, traveled up Grand Island 12 miles over a beautiful plain. Bro. [Abraham O.] Smoot’s company left back one wheel broke. (Camp No. 15)
Tuesday, July 6. Traveld 18 miles, camped on the River opposite Grand Island. Smoot still behind. Fired both cannons in the morning. (Camp No. 16)
Wednesday, July 7. Traveled 10 miles, passed the head of Grand Island. Brother Oackey had his axel tree broken. We were left in the rear. Bro. Smoot camped near us; here; here we found an abundance of prairie dogs, a small animal that burrowed in the ground; looks like a young pup. (Camp No. 17)
Thursday, July 8. Traveled 15 miles, camped on a small creek between Grant’s and Smoot’s companies. Two miles from Parley’s and Taylor’s. Passed an abundance of these prairie dogs, several killed by the company. (Camp No. 18)
Friday, July 9. Traveled 12 miles, overtook Parley’s and Taylor’s companies on the river; here we came to some buffaloes, but none killed. (Camp No. 19)
Saturday, July 10. We traveld 5 miles and stopped for cooking, washing, repairing and etc. Some hunters went out and buffaloe killed by Parley’s company. A large herd seen about ten miles up the river. (Camp No. 20)
Sunday, July 11. More hunters went out of the various companies, but none from mine; meeting held in the camp. I spoke, also Bro. Taylor and others; held council in the evening; two large buffalo bulls came within a mile of our camp, two of my men gave them chase and killed one. Capt. Robinson shot him about 3 miles from camp. He won’t way [weigh] more than 3,000 lb. Parley’s company killed four (Camp No. 22. )
Monday, July 12. Traveled 12 miles over beautiful prairie today; today ate the first buffaloe meat; it was good. We had a good supply for my company. The whole camp up all right. (Camp No. 22)
Tuesday, July 13. Traveled 15 miles; about the middle of the afternoon we got news that there was a large herd of buffaloe near; I with several others went after them. I killed 3 large bulls about 8 miles from camp. They would average about 1000 lbs. apiece. (Camp No. 23)
Wednesday, July 14. Laid by; hunted for some horses that had been seen the day before. Bro. Grant’s company also laid bye. Their herd having run out and broken a wagon and done considerable damage. (Camp No. 24)
Thursday, July 15. Today we passed over some ridges and sandy bottoms. Traveled 15 miles. Camped between Grant’s and Smoot’s companies about one mile from each. Pratt’s and Taylor’s ahead about 3 or 4 miles. (Camp No. 25)
Friday, July 16. Today we passed up a sandy bottom, saw several buffaloes; some one killed near us; several killed by the different companies, overtook Smoot and Taylor and camped with them. Traveled 12 miles. (Camp No. 26)
Saturday, July 17. This morning we saw a large herd of buffaloe over the river on the south side, numbering several thousands; after starting we saw several small herds in the bottom; we went after them. Got out into the bluffs about 3 or 4 miles and saw large herds; there seems to be no end to them. I should think there were ten thousand at least in sight in every direction. My company killed two large bulls that would weight 8 or 9 hundred lbs. each. Traveled 15 miles and camped with Parley and Taylor’s, above the mouth of the South Fork. Some men came accoss the river out of a company from Oregon, 25 in number. They said they had letters from the Pioneers; also five of our brethren out of the army were with them. We sent one man out of each company to get letters. Heard that Grant had lost fifty head of cattle. (Camp No. 27)
Sunday, July 18. Laid by. I went over to the South Platte; Parley preached.
(Camp No. 27)
Monday, July 19. We sent two men from each fifty to help hunt Jedediah M. Grant’s cattle. Bro. Pratt and myself went up the river, 8 or 10 miles to look out a road. I killed a large buffaloe bull.
Tuesday, July 20. We traveled 8 miles up the river over some sandy ridges, that put up to the river. Camped on the river, good feed. Heard that Grant had not found his cattle. (Camp No. 28)
Wednesday, July 21. Traveld over some more sand ridges; saw large herds of buffaloes, traveled 10 miles; camped on the bottom; found a letter deposited by the Pioneers. (Camp No. 29)
Thursday, July 22. Found a number of buffaloes killed by the Indians; about 5 o’clock p. m. we came in sight of about one hundred lodges of the Ogallala Indians; about one hundred of their principal men came to our camp. We gave them something to eat. Fired the cannon. Put out a strong guard. Only about 3 miles from their camps. Taylor’s, Grant’s and Smoot’s company back. Traveled 12 miles. (Camp No. 30)
Friday, July 23. We continued in camp, Taylor and Smoot’s company came up. We were visited by 2 or 3 hundred Indians. who came to trade and see our camp.
Saturday, July 24. Traveled 13 miles, passed Indian lodges, and went over. Bought some buffaloe robes. (Camp No. 31)
Sunday, July 25. Tarried and had meeting. Bro. Grover, Phine[a]s H. Young and Edmund El[l]sworth and others met us in the morning from the Pioneer camp, some of them from Green River, beyond the mountains.
Monday, July 26. We traveled 20 miles, crossed Raw Hide Creek, passed over a bad sandy ridge of one mile; passed Ash Creek. (Camp No. 32)
Tuesday, July 27. Traveled 20 miles and camped. (Camp No. 33)
Wednesday, July 28. Traveled 15 miles[,] passed several dry sand creeks, crossed a sand ridge, encountered a hard blow and rain, overtook all the companies. (Camp No. 34)
Thursday, July 29. Traveled 18 miles, in sight of Chimney Rock. (Camp No. 35)
Friday, July 30. Traveled 23 miles and camped above Chimney Rock, which is a large mound with a rock standing up in the centre about 250 ft. high. (Camp No. 36)
Saturday, July 31. Traveled 18 miles and camped opposite Scott’s Bluffs. (Camp No. 37)
Sunday, August 1. Today we laid by, good feed; had a meeting in my company.
Monday, August 2. Traveled 20 miles, and first [saw] Laramie Peak about 12 o’clock at noon. (Camp No. 38)
Tuesday, July [August] 3. Traveled 15 miles, passed over some sand. (Camp No. 39)
Wednesday, August 4. Traveled 12 miles, passed over some bad sands, camped near the burned fort, (Camp No. 40).
Thursday, August 5. Traveled 8 miles, and camped on the river opposite old Laramie Fort about 12 o’clock; put up our shop and went to repairing. Traded some horses with a Frenchman for cows and oxen. (Camp No. 41)
Friday, August 6. Tarried at the same place and repaired. Did some more trading.
Saturday, August 7. Crossed the river at noon, went up on the west side four miles and camped. (Camp No. 43)
Sunday, August 8. Laid by and repaired.
Monday, August 9. Traveled up the river 8 mile[s] and camped on the river near Hunter’s company. (Camp No. 44)
Tuesday, August 10. Took the large cannon, entered the Black Hills, traveled 12 miles, passed the Hot Springs. (Camp No. 45)
Wednesday, August 11. Traveled 21 miles, camped on the prairie, one mile from water. (Camp No. 46) Good.
Thursday, August 12. Traveled one mile to Horse Shoe creek, camped and rested, by a splendid spring called Kimball’s Spring. Good feed. (Camp No. 47)
Friday, August 13. Went up the worst hill on the road. Passed over a very hilly road., bad gravel, camped on a dry sand creek, after traveling 18 miles; dug in the sand for water. (Camp No. 48)
Saturday, August 14. Traveled 3 miles and camped on the creek; plenty of wood and water; put up a coal pit shop; set tire and etc. (Camp No. 49)
Sunday, August 15. Laid by and repaired; got a letter from Bro. Benson.
Monday, August 16. Met Bro. Benson and Porter Rockwell from Salt Lake; traveled 15 miles, and camped without water. (Camp No. 50)
Tuesday, August 17. Traveled 3 miles over rough roads, and camped on a creek near Bro. Taylor’s. Bro. Benson preached in the evening. (Camp No. 51)
Wednesday, August 18. Traveled 21 miles and camped at the mouth of Deer Creek. Good feed. (Camp No. 52)
Thursday, August 19. Traveled 3 miles and camped. It rained all day and night. (Camp No. 53)
Friday, August 20. Bro. Benson and Porter started back towards Salt Lake; we traveled 15 miles and camped on the river; Good feed. (Camp No. 54)
Saturday, August 21. Traveled 12 miles and camped at the upper ferry. Lost a cow and [an] ox which died suddenly. (Camp No. 55)
Sunday, August 22. Traveled 12 miles, lost a cow; Camped opposite Red Butte. Killed a buffaloe. (Camp No. 56)
Monday, August 23. Traveled 13¼ miles, camped on a Spring Branch; not much grass. (Camp No. 57)
Tuesday, August 24. Passed the Willows. Stopped on a small stream for the night after traveling nine miles. One ox died. (Camp No. 58)
Wednesday, August 25. Traveled 15 miles, passed the Salaratus [Saleratus] Lakes. Camped at Independence Rock. Frost in the night. (Camp No. 59)
Thursday, August 26. Laid by. Four oxen died, and several sick. I left the two boats. Tore up one wagon, and took the irons.
Friday, August 27. Traveled 12 miles and stopped on the river; one ox died. (Camp No. 60)
Saturday, August 28. Traveled 12 miles, passed a Salaratus [Saleratus] Lake. <Camped near the Sweetwater.> (Camp No. 61)
Sunday, August 29. Traveled 7 miles. Bro. Taylor passed us going ahead to see if he could get oxen. (Camp No. 62)
Monday, August 30. Traveled 6 miles, met Bro. Taylor, and had a meeting; Bro. Taylor spoke; we let him have one yoke of oxen, camped between the mountains. (Camp No. 63)
Tuesday, August 31. Traveled 7 miles and camped on Sweetwater, washed and baked. (Camp No. 64)
Wednesday, Sept. 1. Traveled 18¾ miles, camped on Sweet Water, passed over a good deal of sand; met some soldiers, (Camp No. 65)
Thursday, Sept. 2. Traveled 10 miles and camped on the Sweetwater; met 30 wagons of the Pioneers and soldiers returning to Winter Quarters. Bro. Clayton and Pack among the number. It blew up cold, and rained some. (Camp No. 66)
Friday, Sept. 3. Traveled 10 miles and camped on a small creek. (Camp No. 67)
Saturday, Sept. 4. Traveled 12 miles, camped on the Sweetwater, lost one ox in my company. (Camp No. 68)
Sunday, Sept. 5. Traveled 14 miles and camped at the Pacific Springs, having past through the South Pass. Here we met the Twelve and Pioneers, and also overtook Capt. Smoot’s hundred; meeting in the evening. (Camp No. 69)
Monday, Sept. 6. Laid by. Meeting; also met in council
Tuesday, Sept. 7. Pioneers started also Smoot and my company. It commenced snowing and snowed about half the day. Weather cold. Stayed at Dry Sandy, after traveling 8 miles. I lost an ox. (Camp No. 70)
Wednesday, Sept 8. Traveled 14 miles. Camped on the Little Sandy. Good feed. (Camp No. 71)
Thursday, Sept. 9. Traveled 8 miles and camped on Big Sandy, good feed. (Camp No. 72)
Friday, Sept. 10. Traveled 20 miles and camped on Big Sandy; good feed; lost an ox. (Camp No. 73)
Saturday, Sept. 11. Traveled 15 miles, crossed Green river and camped 4 miles down. (Camp No. 74)
Sunday, Sept. 12. Laid by to rest our teams.
Monday, Sept. 13. Traveled 18 miles and camped on Black’s Fork; good feed; (Camp No. 75)
Tuesday, Sept. 14. Traveled 15 miles and camped on Black’s Fork; fixed one of my wagons. (Camp No. 76)
Wednesday, Sept. 15. Traveled 10 miles and camped on Black’s Fork. Camp traded for some steers. (Camp No. 77)
Thursday, Sept. 16. Traveled 8 miles and camped at Bridger. (Camp No. 78)
Friday, Sept. 17. Traveled 13 miles and camped on the Muddy. (Camp.79)
Saturday, Sept. 18. Traveled 20 miles and camped at Cold Springs and Tar Springs. Left Stephensen’s [Edward Stevenson’s] Ten behind. (Camp No. 80)
Sunday, Sept. 19. Laid by and rested. Stephensen’s [Stevenson’s] came up.
Monday, Sept. 20. Traveld 8 miles and crossed Bear River. (Camp No. 81)
Tuesday, Sept. 21. Traveled 8 Miles and stopped at the cave. (Camp No. 82)
Wednesday, Sept. 22. Laid by to hunt; Cattle and <killed two> antelope.
Thursday, Sept. 23. Traveled 8 miles; camp scattered. (Camp No. 83)
Friday, Sept. 24. Traveled 2½ miles. Shoemaker broke an axle tree. (Camp No. 84)
Saturday, Sept. 25. Traveled 10 miles and camped on the Weber River. (Camp No. 85)
Sunday, Sept. 26. Traveled 10 miles; broke down one of my wagon wheels; took cannon wheel. Left Robinson to repair the same. (Camp No. 86)
Monday, Sept. 27. Traveled up the canyon 5 miles and camped altogether. (Camp No. 87)
Tuesday, Sept. 28. Traveled five miles and camped along the dry canyon; Capt. [James Sawyer] Holman’s ten went ahead. (Camp No. 88)
Wednesday, Sept. 29. Went about 2 miles, broke an axle tree; my teams and Cheery’s [Cherry’s] stopped. The rest went on. (Camp No. 89)
Thursday, Sept. 30. Traveled 7 miles, crossed the Big Mountain. I went down a bad road. Cherry upset a wagon. Company scattered. (Camp No. 90)
Friday, Oct. 1. Traveled 9 miles, passed over a mountain, bad road, camped on the edge of the valley. Mother [Nancy O’Neal Rich] very sick; the company have got together. (Camp No. 91)
Saturday, Oct. 2. We traveled 6 miles and reached the Stockade and camped.
Monday, Oct. 4. The Council met.
Tuesday, Oct. 5. The Council met, and at 5 o’clock p. m. Mother died after a hard time crossing the mountains. She died in full faith and confidence in the glorious reserection [resurrection].
Wednesday, Oct. 6. Late in the evening Mother was buried beside the grave of Jedediah M. Grant’s wife. <buried southeast of the fort on a lot afterwards owned by Charles Lambert.>