"From Salt Lake City," Frontier Guardian, 23 Jan. 1850, 2
- Related Companies
- Company Unknown (1850)
The following interesting letter from the Valley, written to Judge Holly, was published in the St. Joseph Gazette and forwarded to us by Judge H. He has our thanks for this favor in advance of the mail. We are glad to hear good news from the Mormons in the Valley, God bless them! They have labored--they have toiled--and have not fainted. May they live forever!! We publish the letter with the remarks of the editor of the Gazette.
Judge Holly of Andrew county, has kindly furnished us with the following extracts of a letter written by Mr. Frederick Rohrer, formerly a citizen of that county, who left for California some four weeks after the foremost trains had left the States. Mr. R. is well known in Andrew and his statements may be relied on. The letter is dated "City of the Great Salt Lake, August 9th, 1849." * * * The only bad road to this place is about 40 miles, running across the "Utah Mountains." We could travel but 10 miles each day. From Fort Kearny to the mountains--say 1000 miles, the road is as good as any in the States, and for 200 miles after leaving the South Pass, it is as good as any turnpike. * * This is a beautiful country, and one of the finest climates in the world--equal to that of Italy. The City is laid out in large wards, the houses being about 100 yards apart. Each ward is enclosed with a straight fence and in profuse cultivation--which gives to the city somewhat the appearance of a town. The wards are all irrigated by leading water from the mountains, in small channels, running in every directing. The crops look well. Corn, though as good as ours, grows finely. Wheat is as good, if not better than ours, yielding from twenty to sixty bushels per acre. Barley and Oats are also cultivated and yield abundantly. Indeed, all kinds, and every variety of vegetables flourish profusely.
The harvest being over, the Mormons are stacking their grain--of which they have a considerable surplus--but owning to the great rush of emigrants--thousands of whom will have to abide here until spring--a high price is asked for it. Wheat $4 per bushel flour $12 per hundred.
We are boarding at a private house and are vegetating upon the luxuries of the Valley--such as milk, butter, cheese, green corn, peas, beans, turnips, &c--the beef is the best I ever tasted.
The water is sweet free stone, cold as ice and the best I ever tasted. Any quantity of it can be drank without injury--which cannot be said of any other liquid. There are several sulphur springs of pure water, near the city, and a warm white sulphur one, used for bathing-- which would make a hydropathist laugh. The water running from it would turn a mill and is very warm giving from its surface a continual cloud of vapour. Its medical virtues are very great curing nearly every kind of disease, such as scurvy, itch, mange, sore eyes, rheumatism, &c., &c. In fact the most that is known in the "Valley."
The grasses are various and luxurious; blue grass, grows of the best quality and in abundance, -also, wild flax. I can scarcely realise that I am a thousand miles from home! The cultivation of an old settled county--the bustle and activity of a city--the necessaries and even the refinements of civilized life--together with the habits and manners of an educated race of people are all around me! I am in the midst of a desert, and yet I see a large city, teeming with life and enterprise--with an exhaustless soil to sustain it--destined to become the metropolis of a mighty empire! I am away from home, and yet home influences are around and about me; and, in imagination. I forget the distance that intervenes between us! The Mormons are a great people, and whatever may be though of the peculiarities of their religious creed, the rapidity with which they increase, the oneness of their councils--their discipline--all foreshadow their ultimate destiny.