Dilworth, John Taylor, Letter, 1847 Sept. 7, Rocky Mountains to William Wollerton, Lionville, Pennsylvania.
- Related Companies
- Jedediah M. Grant/Willard Snow Company (1847)
Uncle William W
I once more have the opportunity of writing to you in this wilderness Country[.] I can Say that I have had my health first rate sinse I left my native land[.] Mother is well and has bin since she left winter quarters and all the rest[.] Mother recieved 60 dollars by letter from you which I laid out for provisions and one yoke of cattle with great economy[.] we have a good supply of Provision for 18 months
By next July I will have an opportunity of raising some grain
We are now 260 miles from the great Salt Lake in Calafornia [California] where we will Settle and build a City[.] We met our pioneers to day on there way to winter quarters on the Missouri river[.] They give a very favourable acount of that olace [place] as being as being one of the most healthy places in the whole world, you have to leave there to die[.] Old Mathusah [Methuselah] is but a child to some of the indians there[.] We have had snow in the valeys on the mountains there is snow all the years round[.] we Can see snow where ever we cast our eyes on the hills and is cold in the valeys in the evenings and mornings hot in middle of the day[.] This is a cold icelated country here not worth the death of a good soolger [soldier] to the U States in my opinion [.] The black hills are the Commencement of of the mountains Destitute of vegitation with the exception of the black Sage from w[h]ich it takes its name[.] the mountains are vast bodys of solid rock[.] The road among these mountains is very bad, and all most impasable in Yet we have got along very well considering
The greatest misfortune we have had was our Cattle[.] takeing fright at Buffaloo and Indians from which we lost 50 head at one time[.] At another time 16 ran away B[u]t another man and myself got on the track acros the black hills And with great difficulty followed them to Fort Larame [Laramie] where they where headed by the S[i]oux Indians and Sold to a Frenchman for one horse, who was going over the Arcansaw [Arkansas] river to Winter
However with great dificulty we got them from them[.] A[n]d by riding 4 days and knight with out any thing to eat or drink across t[h]os[e] barren planes and the Indians at our heels we got with in 2 miles of our Company where we w[e]re about to give up the chase[.] the rain fell in torrents and so dark we could only see when it lighting[.] In this Perdicament [predicament] at 12 Oclock at knight I stoped[.] meantime Ito [to] my great satisfaction heard a dog bark which told me I was near camp[.] I put a whip to my hoss and was soon in camp with my Scalp on[.] There is Poison Sabarated sulphur saltpeter and all other combustables here from which we have lost a great number of Cattle
You would be Serprised to Se the herds of Buffaloo on the plat[te] river[.] We have had to Skare them [with] guns to get through[.] There meat is better than any I ever eat[.] the grisly Bear is much like our pork but very dangerous[.] they weigh from 12 to 16 hundred[.] The wolvs houl around us in abundance. I will now Stopp writing about the mountains for time would fail to tell all with my pen . . .