Sunday, September 1, 1850 - Saturday, September 7, 1850
Sophia Goodridge's company started the week at Deer Creek which flows into the North Platte River. On Monday Sister Goodridge wrote, "We picked thirty-three quarts of buffalo berries. They taste very much like currants and are red. They have one seed in them and make excellent sauce and pie." On Tuesday they arrived at the river crossing. "We stopped two hours to rest and feed our cattle, and then crossed the river. The scenery along the Platte River is very grand. A very high and long mountain chain extends southwest. We have followed it for three days and have not come to the end of it yet. We crossed the North Fork of the Platte without any accidents." The company ended the week camped about eight miles from Independence Rock.
On Saturday the semiannual General Conference of the Church was convened. The conference was held one month early so Orson Hyde could participate. Elder Hyde was visiting the valley and would soon depart to return to Kanesville. President Brigham Young wished to see that Elder Hyde had the privilege of attending the conference meetings.
President Young announced that volunteers were needed to return with Isaac Morley to settle in Manti. He also announced that elders would be called to serve a missions in the eastern states and in Germany. President Young said it was time to again institute the law of tithing among the Saints.
Isaac Morley spoke to the congregation. "My heart is full of blessings for the people - I want a company of good men and women to go to Sanpete, and I do say that no man shall dwell in that valley who is in the habit of taking the name of God in vain." President Young proposed that Father Morley have the right and privilege to select one hundred men who would accompany him. The proposal was sustained by the conference.
Speaking of Sanpete valley, President Young said, "It is as good a valley as you ever saw; the goodness of the soil cannot be beat; there is only one practicable road into it, and that is up Salt Creek; the inhabitants there are number one; and when I was in that valley, I prayed to God that he never would suffer an unrighteous man to live there."
Washburn Chipman and Arza Adams traveled to American Fork to cut hay for the winter. They camped in a grove at present-day 300 South Center. They soon started construction work on two one-room log homes.
A small branch of the Church was organized in Dublin, Ireland, by Elder Edward Sutherland.
The ship "North Atlantic" sailed from Liverpool, England, with 357 Saints, under the presidency of David Sudworth and Hamilton G. Park.
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 15, p.261 Brigham Young, The Man and His Work, p. 153 THE CONTRIBUTOR, VOLUME 13, p. 326 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 1, p.165
Several pioneer companies arrived at Independence Rock. Men, women, and children went and climbed on the rock. Sister Sophia Goodridge wrote, "I have just climbed Independence Rock and the view is beautiful. The Sweetwater flows southwest at the base of the rock and winds around the foot of the mountain. The Saleratus Lake is seen in the northwest, the Devil's Gate in the west, while mountains are to be seen on all sides. We crossed the Sweetwater and traveled on until we came to the Devil's Gate. We stopped and ate our dinner here. This is a curious freak of nature. The rocks are perpendicular four hundred feet high and in one place the gap between them is only two feet wide. The Sweetwater flows through the gap. Some of us crossed it on foot just for the novelty of it."
The companies crossed the Sweetwater several times during the week. The weather started to become cooler. Ice was found in water pails in the morning and snow was seen in the Wind River Mountains. These companies ended the week about 14 miles east of South Pass.
Many miles ahead, Peter Maughan's company neared the present-day Wyoming-Utah border. On Friday the company passed Cache Cave and then started the long journey down Echo canyon.
On Sunday the semiannual General Conference of the Church was continued. The conference was held one month early so Orson Hyde could participate, prior to his return to Kanesville, Iowa.
President Brigham Young stressed the importance of supporting the Perpetual Emigrating Fund Company. "I am going to bring before the people the necessity of keeping up the fund for the emigration of the poor. I declare openly and boldly, there is no necessity for any man of this community to go to the gold mines, to replenish the fund; we have more property and wealth than we are capable of taking care of. . . .
"Brother Joseph suffered himself to be dragged about the country by a mob, and was dragged into something like forty-six or forty-eight lawsuits, yet he triumphed over all of them, and then they murdered him in cold blood, in Carthage jail, without any shadow of crime attached to him. I then swore that I never would fee a lawyer again, and we don't owe one dime but that we are able to pay at any moment. If I can keep my credit good with the Almighty, I care not whether men speak evil of me, or not.
"I am much gratified to see the warmth of feeling for the poor, by Elder Hyde, and I think the best way to relieve ourselves of all our spare horses and cattle, is to put them into the Poor Fund. We shall not cease our exertions until Zion is redeemed, and all Israel is gathered. From the days of Joseph to the present moment, the prophecies were never fulfilled faster, and that too, upon natural principles; they are miracles and remarkable phenomena to us so long as we do not understand them."
On Saturday an ordinance incorporating the Perpetual Emigrating Fund Company was passed by the general assembly of the State of Deseret. Stansbury Island and Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake were set aside for the exclusive use of the company, for herding cattle.
On Tuesday, Dan Jones wrote a letter to his friends back in the mission field of Wales. "I am about to leave again from here further away to settle, that is, to the valley of San Pete (Manti), and that according to the counsel of Pres. Young to me, and as many other Welsh brethren as can come. I know not yet who will come. This place is splendid country to settle in with an abundance of water and wood close by. It lies about 130 miles from here. We went through it last year as we searched for the Madocians, and I shall be as much as that on my way to fulfill that venture yet, which thing, if God wills, I shall do before I rest. . . .
"The roads here are still white from the wagonfuls of immigrants. They are like doves coming to their windows from the four corners of the world. The sickness which gathered on my lungs through hard work there has not gotten much better yet. Dear Saints, remember your poor servant and pray for him, he who served you almost to the death; and for him be faithful and diligent in the work of God. We had an excellent conference here last week, and everything here is successful and wonderfully organized, for there is an able leader at the helm and an abundance of assistants."
Shortly after the conclusion of the General Conference, the Richard Clark family, and several others started to travel to Utah Valley. On Friday they reached what is now known as Pleasant Grove. They made their camp and in the morning began to build shelters and clear land for log homes.
On Monday, September 9, 1850, President Millard Fillmore signed a bill that granted statehood to California. This bill also officially created the Territory of Utah. The original size of the Territory was about 225,000 square miles, being bounded on the north by Oregon, east by the summit of the Rocky Mountains, south by the 37th parallel of north latitude, and west by California.
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 15, p.261 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 2, p.380 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 14, p.350 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 6, p.482 Brigham Young, The Man and His Work, p. 154-55 The Call of Zion, p. 212
On Monday, Wilford Woodruff's company crossed the continental divide and camped at Pacific Springs. Elder Woodruff wrote, "We turned our cattle onto the ground of the Pacific Springs. It was all quagmire yet covered with grass. I waded to my knees in mud and water until midnight among the oxen to keep them from the mire." During the day three horses were missing and were thought to be stolen by Indians.
On Tuesday just as the company was about to move on, five Indians came into camp and said they had found the three horses. Elder Woodruff and Brother Atwood went with them to their camp. Elder Woodruff wrote, "They were encamped at the foot of the Wind River chain of mountains. . . . There was about 500 Indians and 1,000 horses. I had an interview with the chief. Informed him that they had got three of our horses and I wanted them. I made him some presents. They were the Snake Indians going to war with the Cheyennes and after buffalo. He treated us kindly. Invited us to his camp or wigwam which we accepted. I had no interpreter yet he informed me that our horses were taken away and he would send after them. He started many Indians on horseback to seek after them. They brought in one horse to me at sundown, another at midnight. I sat in council with the chief and warriors until 12 o'clock at night. They wished me to draw on the ground the river and road and tell where the buffalo were. I did so."
In the morning, on Wednesday, they tried to find the third horse but could not. The Indians explained that it had escaped. Meanwhile, back at the pioneer camp, there was great concern because the brethren had not yet returned. Plans were put into place to send out a search party. But soon Elder Woodruff and Brother Atwood returned. Shouts of joy were heard from far away. The companies continued their journey and ended the week camped on Big Sandy.
The Peter Maughan company's journey was almost complete. On Tuesday they started the journey through Parley's canyon which had recently been opened to emigrants. Mary Ann Maughan wrote, "This morning we entered the canyon and traveled on the most dreadful road imaginable. Some places we had to make the road before we could pass. Passed the toll gate and paid for passing over the road we had made. We had a view of the Valley, and it delighted me much to think I was near my long journey's end. The road today has been the worst we ever saw, but we came safely through without any accident." On the following day they reached the city.
On Sunday a public meeting was held under the bowery at temple square. The Saints were asked to sustain the incorporation of the Perpetual Emigrating Company.
On Tuesday evening, Urban Stewart heard someone in his corn field. He took his gun, fired toward the noise, and ended up killing a chief of the Weber Indians named Terikee. Terikee had only been trying to drive his horses out of the corn. Brother Stewart, extremely upset and alarmed over what he had done ran to his neighbors and asked for protection. Lorin Farr, president of the settlement, arrived at the Stewart home at 2 a.m. President Farr rebuked Brother Stewart and told him to flee for his life.
Meanwhile, Terikee's son, who had witnessed the killing, rode north to his band camped on Box Elder Creek near present-day Brigham City. As expected, the Indians became justifiably enraged. They mounted their horses and rode back toward the settlement.
In the morning, President Farr went to Brown's Fort to bring news of the killing, and to warn the captain that Terikee's band would likely return to avenge the death of their chief. A messenger was sent to take the news to Brigham Young to ask for aid. David Moore visited the camp of some Ute Indians camped on Weber River who had heard the news of the killing. Brother Moore convinced them that Stewart had been totally responsible for the act, and that the settlement should not be blamed. The Utes promised that they would not join in with Terikee's band an any attempt to make war on the settlement.
Meanwhile, Terikee's band came upon a group of men who had been sent out to gather cattle. They killed a Mr. Campbell, a non-Mormon who had been hired by President Farr to help construct a mill. When President Farr learned about the retaliation, he sent Daniel Burch with a message to Brigham Young asking for immediate support.
Brigham Young sent 150 men under the direction of Horace Eldredge to protect the Weber colony. Terikee's band took the body of their chief and fled north ahead of the troops. With peace established, the troops returned to Great Salt Lake City.
William Miller and several families who had recently arrived in the valley travelled south to settle on Hobble Creek. They arrived at the location of present-day Springville on Wednesday. On the following day men were sent into the canyons for logs to build a fort. [The fort would be built near present-day State Street and Second West.]
Sister Louisa Pratt and other missionaries began their long voyage to Tahiti on the brig, "Jane A. Hersey." Sister Pratt wrote, "There were several very clever young men sailors who seemed desirous of showing us every little kindness in their power; likewise the steward was a well bred negro from Boston; he was obliging and endeavored to make us comfortable. Our cabin was large, built on purpose for us between decks; there were in all twenty-two passengers of the Mormon fraternity."
On Wednesday Elder Jabez Woodard arrived from England to join Elders Lorenzo Snow and Thomas Stenhouse in their missionary efforts. On the following day, September 19, 1850, Elder Lorenzo Snow proposed that they begin formal missionary work for the first time in Italy and that the Church be organized.
The three elders climbed a high mountain near La Tour. On a "bold projecting rock" they sang praises to the Lord and offered a prayer. Their petition to the Lord included: "From the lifting up of this Ensign, may a voice go forth among the people of these mountains and valleys, and throughout the length and breadth of this land; and may it go forth, and be unto thine elect as the Voice of the Lord, that the Holy Spirit may fall upon them, imparting knowledge in dreams and visions concerning this hour of their redemption."
The elders formally organized the Church in Italy with Lorenzo Snow as the president. The brethren sang, prayed and prophesied regarding the work in Italy. Elder Snow laid hands on Elders Stenhouse and Woodard, blessing them with comfort and power.
As they were about to descend from the mountain, Elder Snow proposed the mountain would be known to the Saints as "Mount Brigham" and the rock on which the stood would be called "Rock of Prophecy."
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 15, p.261 Wilford Woodruff's Journal 3:572-75 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 2, p.380 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 8, p.117 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 9, p.129 Biography of Lorenzo Snow, 134-35 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 20, p.432 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 20, p.23
On Friday the companies camped at Fort Bridger. Elder Woodruff took out his fishing rod and caught 22 trout in 10 minutes. On Saturday he had to deal with some petty murmuring in one of his division. Some of the men resented that Elder Woodruff's company had traveled ahead of their's. Elder Woodruff wrote, "I called them together at night and gave them a sharp rebuke and reproof for I was constrained by the spirit of God so to do. And I advised that division to go ahead in the morning and not wait for me."
"Thus in full strength and mature years has one of the oldest, most exemplary and most useful members of the Church fallen suddenly; leaving a large family to mourn the loss of an affectionate husband, and a kind and generous father.
"In him the Church suffers the loss of a wise and able counselor and a thorough and straight-forward business man. It was ever more gratifying to him to pay a debt than to contract one, and when all his debts were paid he was a happy man, though he had nothing left but his own moral and muscular energy.
"He has long held the office of presiding bishop of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints--to receive from the rich by consecration and to distribute to the poor, the goods of this world. He has gone down to the grave leaving a spotless name behind him, and thousands to mourn the loss of such a valuable man."
Wilford Woodruff's Journal 3:575-76 Orson F. Whitney, History of Utah, Vol. 4, p.236 Ellsworth, The History of Louisa Barnes Pratt, 122-23
Trading activity was busy in the stores as merchants sold goods that had recently arrived in the valley. Hosea Stout observed, "Stores still crowded. We are decieved by the merchants about the quality of the groceries which they were to bring. Not a sufficient supply."
On Saturday the Legislature met and organized Davis County, named after D. C. Davis. The county started north of Hot Springs and continued until Weber River. News arrived that some Indians had killed a company of emigrants near Fort Hall (Idaho). They had taken women and children prisoners.
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 15, p.263 Wilford Woodruff's Journal 3:576 Ellsworth, The History of Louisa Barnes Pratt, 123 Harwell, Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 337 Brooks, On the Mormon Frontier, 2:381 THE CONTRIBUTOR, VOLUME 13, p. 326 - 327