"Wives." IN Seed of Jude by Darlene Allen Adkins. Jude Family Organization, 2003, p. 10.
- Related Persons
- Sarah Williamson
Martha and her girl friend were happy pushing and pulling the hand cart and sharing the same bed. Then the weather got so cold, and they didn't have enough food to eat or adequate clothing and bedding to keep warm. This poorly clad company was exposed to the piercing winds, bitter storms and icy streams. Many were placed in untimely graves along the way without proper ceremony and in great haste. Under the severe conditions they were forced to push on as fast as possible.
On the Sweetwater, they were about to give up when some missionaries, traveling home to Salt Lake City from the east, helped them and took word to President Young about the terrible condition of these handcart travelers. President Young sent a couple of men ahead in a light wagon with food and to report that help was on the way. This gave these desolate pioneers hope and great encouragement.
Martha said they dug down in the snow to the roots of the wild rose bushes and ate whatever roots they could find; they even ate the red berries on the bush. They scraped the heads and hides of dead animals to make soup, anything to keep them alive. She gave her nephew Robert Allen the little pearl handled knife she used to scrape the heads and hides. The blade was worn to a sharp point.
The company was stranded in a ravine between the Sweetwater and the Platte Rivers. In this ravine Martha and her girl friend spent their last night together. When Martha awoke the next morning., she found her friend frozen stiff beside her. This was a terrible shock to Martha and she never forgot it. The company had all but given up home when help arrived.