Beard, George, [Reminiscences], in J. Kenneth Davies, George Beard: Mormon Pioneer Artist With a Camera [1980?], 15-20.
"An incident occurred at Benton City which I shall never forget. In the car in which we were riding was a young lady about eighteen years old. Her name was Miss Rose Taylor, who was coming from England to meet her sister who had joined the Church and was living in Salt Lake City. When we were a few miles from Benton City, a powerful stranger boarded the car at a small side station. He inquired for Joseph Quinney. The parents of Miss Taylor had placed her in the charge of Mr. Quinney before they left England. He sat down beside Mr. Quinney and told him he had a warrant from the Court made at the request of her sister in Benton to arrest Miss Taylor and take her to Benton City. Mr. Quinney naturally objected to Miss Taylor going with the sheriff, but when the sheriff showed his star and two pistols and told Mr. Quinney that he would use one of his pistols if it became necessary to take Miss Taylor, Mr. Quinney realized that nothing could be done until we reached Benton City.
"An ox train and a mule train with their teamsters, were camped waiting at Benton City for the trains to arrive with the immigrants. Captain Mumford and Captain Holman (Gillespie in another account) had charge of the trains. Both captains decided to wait until Miss Taylor's case had been decided by the court...
"Mr. Quinney had asked Miss Taylor if she desired to stay with her sister in Benton City or go with the immigrants to Salt Lake City as her parents had desired. She told him she wanted to go to Salt Lake. When she appeared in court she had changed her mind and informed the court that she wanted to stay in Benton City with her sister. After the decision of the court, which decided that Miss Taylor must remain with her sister, a mob, consisting of gamblers, murderers, drunkards and the keepers of brothels, claimed that the Mormons had tried to force Miss Taylor to go with them to Salt Lake City to go into polygamy. The mob started out from Benton City for the purpose of burning the wagons and shooting up the Mormons in the wagons. The two captains received word that the mob was organizing and would soon reach the immigrants. The two captains formed both trains in a circle for defense, running the wagon tongues under the hind wheels of the wagon ahead. All the teamsters who had come from Utah for the immigrants carried guns and a good many of them rifles. The captains ordered all the immigrants who had guns to have them ready. The mob could be seen coming from Benton City, but before they had come very far a company of United States soldiers headed them back to where they belonged. About three days were lost during the time we were waiting. We left Benton City on September 1, 1868.
"The teamsters who had come from Utah had all been sent from Mormon settlements in Utah. These men had accepted the job as a 'calling' and made no charge for their services. They were a happy, jolly, healthy-looking lot of men who used to entertain the immigrants at the campfires every night, dancing and singing and telling stories...
"The trains traveled about 15 or 20 miles a day. I walked most of the way as there wasn't enough room in the wagon for me and I slept at night with only one blanket under the wagon on the hard ground. One day, while camped for dinner, a scorpion stung me on the thumb. It was very painful, but one of the teamsters opened the wound with his pocket knife and sucked the blood from the wound, and covered it with tobacco while he chewed. In a few days I was all right.
"After we had been out for several days, early one morning Henry Harker, who came from Fort Hariman [Herriman], Utah, woke the camp shouting 'antelope, antelope, come and get yours.' It was my first close sight of any wild animals, but I saw several herds of buffalo. One day a herd of them stampeded and headed towards our train. The extra riders who were with our train headed them off. They were so numerous we could feel the ground shake.
"The trail across the prairies was mostly over dreary sandy knolls covered with sage brush. Our trains were the last to come over the plains as the railroad was running their trains always after. The grass was eaten with the animals who had traveled over them ahead of us.
"When we got our first view of the Rockies showing the snow-covered tips, the trip became interesting. The travel across the Rocky Mountains on the eastern hills, through South Pass, was impossible because of the scarcity of feed so the captains decided to go over a new road, over a pass which was called Whiskey Gap. We were all notified that the pass was infested with rattlesnakes. As I had never seen a rattlesnake before, I was very interested when I saw a genuine diamond back dead by the side of trail; it caused a peculiar feeling and a shudder to go over me.
"When we camped on the Sandy River we were shown where Lot Smith and his Mormon band had burned a train of supply wagons loaded with food for the United States soldiers (of Johnston's Army) who were camped further ahead on the trail at Fort Bridger. A large black circle showed the remains of the burned wagons where we could see king bolts, tires, axles, etc. plainly showing that a daring big job had been well done. The charred burned remains of the wagons were in evidence in the large black burned circle...Edmund Eldredge, my next door neighbor in Coalville, was a member of the band. He enjoyed telling the story of how it was done.
"Our wagons crossed Green River on a ferry boat which was run by a couple of Mormons from Utah. They lived in a fresh new log house, the first I had seen. The lady took a big pan full of hot biscuits from the oven and filled one with good delicious butter and oh how I did enjoy it, as it was the first hot biscuit I had seen. I was half-starved and hungry and I must have eaten so ravenously that the husband laughed and told his wife to give me another.
"When we left the railroad cars at Benton City I am sure there wasn't an immigrant who wasn't 'lousy'. They were covered with genuine 'Emerald Isle' lice. Every seam in my pants shone with knits. At our first camp my pal, Joe Barber, and I went hunting, hunting for a place to hide so that we could strip stark naked to 'delouse' ourselves. We went over a knoll and found a depression, but a bunch of girls from camp beat us to it. None of them had a rag of clothing on; there were fat girls, thin girls, and just girls, some with red hair, brunettes and blondes. They ordered us away and told us to find a place of our own, but Joe and I lingered around there and made haste very slowly.
"When we camped on the Muddy River just a little before sundown, a wagon with a brand new cover drove into our camp and a man with a grin all over his face inquired of the captain for the wagon containing the Beard family. When we found it was our brother John who had immigrated several years before, who had come from Coalville with warm clean bedding and plenty of good fresh food to meet us, our joy knew no bounds. We laughed and we cried and talked and we went to bed that night in a good, clean comfortable bed in the wagon, the first comfortable bed which we had since leaving Stoneheads. Next morning, bright and early, John left the train...as his stepping young steers could travel much faster than the poor old hungry worn-out oxen of the train could do.
"We camped next night at Fort Bridger, which had several large log buildings and one large fort with portholes to shoot through. All of these buildings were built of heavy green cottonwoods by Jim Bridger, who had two young pretty squaws who were desperately in love with him and raised two nice families. Their eyes always sparkled and they were pleased when Jim addressed them with his pet names for them, 'Damn your eyes' and 'Blast your eyes.'
"Bridger kept a trading post and kept supplies for the trappers, hunters and immigrant trains. I am informed that it was he who led the first white group of men to the Yellowstone Falls. He was an agile runner, wrestler and a famous shot and was both loved and feared by the Indians. He offered Governor Brigham Young a thousand dollars for the first bushel of corn that could be raised in Salt Lake Valley"...
"After leaving Fort Bridger, we came through Bear River City, which was then the terminus of the railroad builders. I saw six limp bodies hanging and dangling with ropes around their necks from telephone (telegraph) poles. I wanted to stop and look into the matter but was told by my brother to keep going and keep my mouth shut. He said evidently vigilantes had been busy there last night.
"Bear River City was located about six miles above the present city of Evanston, Wyoming. At that time the Mormon trail crossed Bear River, went past Yellow Creek and came into Echo Canyon at Cache Cave. Brigham Young, John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff and many of the leaders scratched with a nail their names in the soft sandstone ledge in the cave and can be seen today.
"The trip down Echo Canyon was very interesting to me. As I watched the wagon ahead of us go out of sight in the bend of the road and saw the cliffs getting higher and closer together, I was sure we would never be able to find our way out of the canyon. When we got to the narrowest place, which just had room for the road and the creek, my brother stopped and called our attention that there was where the Mormons decided to stop the soldiers from coming down the canyon and that a high bank, about ten to twelve feet high, had been made so that the dam could be filled with water and cover the road a long ways back up the canyon. High on the south side of the canyon, from which the Mormons could protect the dam, were tiers of long trenches, one above the other—the Mormons had built, on top of the towering upright cliffs on the north, rock forts; I later photographed some of them. Tons and tons of loose rocks were piled on top already to come crushing down on the soldiers in the narrow road. A path had been made into Lost Creek Canyon a few miles to the north. Later, I saw several rifle pits made by the Mormons where they cached their supplies, to be moved to Echo Canyon as needed. A little below this point the cliffs rose higher and were shaped so that they echoed every sound from below...At that point the road narrowed and went through a space between two huge rocks, which sometime before had fallen from the ledge and just left space enough to allow a wagon with a hay rack on top to pass through.
"When we came to the mouth of Echo Canyon, where Echo Canyon Creek joins the Weber River coming from the South, my brother John pointed to a rocky ridge in the south and said, 'Behind that ledge lies Home Sweet Home in Coalville.'"