"Our Immigration," Deseret News [Weekly], 8 August 1855, 172.
[From the St. Louis Luminary]
VISIT OF THE EDITOR TO THE CAMPS AT ATCHINSON.—We have just returned from a three weeks tour in the upper country, and too late to furnish our readers this week with more than a bird's—eye glance at the position of affairs on the frontiers, and the events of out tour.
The fine steamer F. X. Aubry landed us on the levee at Atchinson, at two o'clock on the morning of the 29th ult., where we found Elder Glover, with part of his company, still on the levee, who had landed from the Equinox the previous day.
After taking a morning nap, and breakfasting with Elder McGaw, we surveyed the town, and the few tents and detachments of companies still remaining on the old camp ground just back of town, and later in the day visited the general encampment at Mormon Grove—four miles west—which presented the appearance of a city of tents and wagons beautifully arranged in the open woodland, and covering several undulations. Our visit was emphatically one of business, but it proved equally one of pleasure.
The lowing of cattle—the din and bustic of camp—and the joyful greetings, were to us what martial music is to the soldier. Altho' we had allotted ourselves only three or four days in camp, the great amount of business relating to the P. S. Fund emigration, as well as the Danish and other independent companies, which required our personal attention, detained us until the 10th inst., and then it was with reluctance that we bid them adieu, to return to our duties in the city.
During our stay, we organized our companies for the plains, consisting of about fifty wagons each.
The first under Capt. Kinley consisted chiefly of the emigrants from St. Louis, and other parts of the States.
The second under Capt. Jacob F. Secrist, embraced the Danish and part of the British independent company.
The third under Capt. S. M. Blair, embraced the Texas camp, and portions of the Saints from other parts of the States an adjacent provinces.
The fourth under Capt. Richard Ballantyne, embraced a part only of the Perpetual Emigrating Fund emigration.
The first drew out and formed a separate encampment on the 1 inst., and soon were on their march for the mountains. The 2d were also moved out, and the 3d was moving out when we left, and the 4th were preparing to follow soon as their outfits could be completed.
The general health of the camps was good, altho' several deaths have occurred in the Danish camp and among the passengers ex-ship Juventa, who had almost entirely escaped until they reached Atchinson.
Among the lamented dead of this company, we have to mention Elder Simpson, long and favorably known among the British saints, and Elder Bell, late President of the Malta mission, and his wife.
The saints who remain in camp are bustly engaged plowing and planting, and thus laying a foundation for the sustenance of the poor that may be left.
The merchant train of Messrs. Livingston, Kinkead & Co., of Salt Lake, passed near Mormon Grove, on the 2d inst., being the first of the season, and one month later than previous years.
Several other merchant trains were being fitted out at Atchinson and Leavenworth City.
Our business called us by the way of Weston, Kansas and Independence, whereon the 12th, we took passage on the 'Polar Star,' the universal favorite in the Missouri trade.
Up to the time of our leaving Independence, no tidings had been heard from Salt Lake Mail, due on the 30th ult. It was reported that the party with the April mail, outward bound, had been robbed of every animal at Devil's Gate, and fearful apprehensions were entertained for the safety of the party. Some early trains of Californians are also reported to be stripped of all their animals.
Capt. Heath of the U. S. Army, direct from Fort Kearney, who was a fellow passenger down the river, informed us that the May mail, outward bound, with which was Hon. J. M. Bernbisel, had been safely escorted by a part of his command as far as Ash Hollow, an safely delivered to a like escort from Laramie. Dragoons have started from Fort Leavenworth to patrol the line, and keep Indians off the road.
The 'Ben Bolt' with a company of saints, was just landing at Atchinson, as the Polar Star left there, on the 11th.
DEPARTURE FOR THE PLAINS.—We shipped on Tuesday the 19th inst. on the Ben Bolt, upwards of 200 P. R. Fund passengers, under the presidency of Elder Francis St. George, Louis A. Bertrand, Secretary.This company had been encamped near this city about 14 days, and had enjoyed general good health, and have left this city with light hearts and buoyant spirits.It was uncertain for some time whether this company would be sent thro' this season, therefore when it was announced that they could embark, they were perfectly delighted, and ready to shout hosannah to God and the Lamb.This is the company that was said to be disaffected and determined not to proceed further on their journey-but we will say to their credit that they felt well notwithstanding their temporary disappointment, and as a general thing were fully resigned to their lot, and had pretty generally made up their minds to remain another year. They are consequently rejoicing in the Lord and praising Him for their deliverance.Elder John S. Fulmer left this city on Thursday the 21st inst., by the F. X. Aubry. We purpose to ship one more company this season, which will be mostly of the passengers of the ship Germanicus, which arrived here about 12 months since.
With this company we shall roll off the entire emigration of this season from this city, and in a few weeks we hope to roll off the entire emigration not only from this city but also from Atchinson; our hands will then be measurably free, and our mind considerably relieved, and we shall feel better prepared for the performance of other duties and engagements.——[St. Louis Luminary, June 23]