Sunday, January 7, 1849 - Saturday, January 13, 1849
On Tuesday, Thomas Mackay, John Bennion, Samuel Bennion, Thomas Turbett, William Blackburst, William Farrer, John Robinson and James Taylor crossed the Jordan River on the ice and moved to establish farms near Joseph Harker at what is now about Thirty-third South and Fourteenth West. This settlement would later be called Forest Dale. They made dugouts near the river. [Later some log houses were moved there from the fort. It soon was determined that it was too difficult to irrigate the land from the river, so they moved one mile further south.]
On Wednesday the Church started to issue Kirtland Bank notes to those who had deposited gold dust. Truman Angell located a font type which could be used to print bills and work began to use this method to produce more bills.
On Thursday Hosea Stout wrote: "This morning the wind still blew hard from the South. The mountain sides and places in the valley begins to look black being now bare of snow and we begin to feel like having a respite from this long and tedious snow storm. But in this we were disappointed for about nine the wind changed to the north-west and was followed by a hard snow storm which lasted until about dark, depositing snow six inches deep which entirely blasted our hopeful idea of soon sowing wheat and other things which we were so very anxious to be doing."
Patty Sessions, the valley's most experienced midwife wrote this sad entry in her journal: "I was called to Willard Snows [on Thursday]. Susan was sick. I stayed all day and all night. She was crippled so that her child could not be born without instruments. The doctor came Friday morning and delivered her with instruments. The child alive but she died in a few minutes. A case of this kind I had never witnessed before although I have practiced midwifery for 37 years and put thousands to bed. I never saw a woman die in that situation before."
Elder Wilford Woodruff received a letter from Orson Spencer in England. Elder Spencer wrote: "The work is rolling forth in much power. I have been of late stirring up the Saints to pay their tithing. I have visited many of the conferences for this purpose. I feel encouraged to believe I shall gather a good sum for the temple. There are four persons expected to come in possession of large sums of money before I go to America. From them I expect to get several thousand pounds as tithing to gladden the hearts of the Saints in the valley. The additions to the churches continue to be great. The emigration falls much short of the increase. There may be 1,500 Saints emigrate this season but what is that among so many? Orson Pratt thinks it would take 300 ships to carry the British Saints at the present time."
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 13, p.334 Smart, Mormon Midwife, 127 Brooks, On the Mormon Frontier, 340 Wilford Woodruff's Journal, 3:403-04
On Sunday a funeral was held for Susan Harvey Snow, who died during child-birth at the age of thirty.
On Wednesday Joseph Holbrook started cutting wood for "coal" in Mill Creek Canyon. He recorded: "The snow was about 6 feet deep in the canyon. Judson and his brother Lyrus and Benjamin and Jefferson Wright helping us. We were glad to get some shorts for bread or even wheat bran, and that not half enough to keep off hunger. We also cut some 250 saw logs and about 1000 poles, one hundred cords of coal wood from which we made about three thousand bushels of coal. The first thousand bushels we hauled to Salt Lake City for 12 1/2 and 15 cents per bushel. The second thousand for 20 cents per bushel. The third for 25 cents per bushel."
Also on Wednesday Eliza R. Snow rode out to her brother home, Lorenzo Snow. The Snow family held a sealing anniversary celebration. Three years earlier Lorenzo Snow was sealed to this four wives in the Nauvoo Temple.
On Saturday the high council voted to construct an armory to store the public arms. Reynolds Cahoon was appointed to head the construction of the building. Thomas Tanner was asked to take charge of the guns.
Elder Wilford Woodruff had a terrible tooth ache all week. He had several teeth that were causing him great pain. On Saturday he wrote: "I did not sleep at all during the night so I had plenty of time for meditation and among the subjects before me I reflected upon a mission that one of the presidents of the Seventies presented to the Eastern Branches while on his mission East to collect funds for building a Seventies Hall in the valley. Why was the mission not signed by President Brigham Young if it was right for such a mission to be taken? Or was it got up to assist the individual in person more than to build the Seventies Hall? I think it right and safe to present all missions and business of importance before the President of the Church when they can be got at."
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 9, p.514 Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 8, p.258 Smart, Mormon Midwife, 127 Beecher, The Personal Writings of Eliza Roxcy Snow, 227 Wilford Woodruff's Journal, 3:407
The week was a little warmer. Some wet snow fell on Tuesday and Wednesday but melted fast. During the rest of the week the snow and ice throughout the city thawed.
On Monday Thomas Bullock and Brigham H. Young worked at setting the type for new 50-cent bills.
On Friday Hosea Stout and Tarlton Lewis went to the canyon to cut cedar posts. But the snow was too deep in the mountains and they had to turn back.
Elder Wilford Woodruff was visiting Salem with Brother Alexander Badlam. Elder Woodruff still suffered because of aching teeth. His whole face swelled up. On Sunday he struggled to address a company of Saints from England. Afterwards he went home to sleep. "I arose early my face so swollen that I could scarcely see out of my eyes." On Monday he returned to Boston where Sister Woodruff cared for him.
On Monday afternoon, he was visited by Brother Almon W. Babbitt, who did legal work from the Church. Brother Babbitt had recently been to Washington D.C. He wished to take Elder Woodruff to the capital to meet members of Congress. Brother Babbitt had been trying to arrange for bills to be passed in Congress to establish a territorial government called the "Utah Territory." He was doing this to prepare for the time when a state government could be established. [Brother Babbitt had not yet counseled with Brigham Young on this matter, but felt that it was important to push in this direction. The leaders in Salt Lake had recently put together a petition for Congress for a state of Deseret. This petition had not yet reached the east.] Brother Babbitt did succeed in getting approval for a post office in the Salt Lake Valley. He also received approval for post offices at Garden Grove and Mount Pisgah, in Iowa.
On Wednesday Elder Woodruff received letters from the Salt Lake Valley and Council Bluffs. The letters from the valley had been sent in early October. He learned that a new city had been surveyed ten miles north of the temple block and another city ten miles to the south. He received news that Addison Pratt had returned from his mission to the Society Islands. Elder Woodruff learned of the slaying of three brethren in the mountains of California as they were traveling to the valley. He also Woodruff learned that Brother Babbitt had been disfellowshipped because of a rumored statement he made that Orson Hyde had sold Mormon votes for a printing press. On Thursday Elder Woodruff solved his teeth problem. He wrote: "I dug and pulled out two of my worst teeth I had with twine and a jack knife." On Saturday Elder Woodruff read in the New York Herald about the California gold fever. "It seems as though all the world was running stark mad to go to the gold mines of California on the Sacramento. Hundreds of ships and tens of thousands of men are preparing to go there. One of the men preparing to go was Brother Alexander Badlam, who was going to sail to Panama, cross the Ismus, and then join in brother-in-law, Samuel Brannan, in California.
Harwell, Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 142 Brooks, On the Mormon Frontier, 340 Wilford Woodruff's Journal, 3:407-12
On Monday, Brigham Young's journal reads: "The winter, so far, was much more severe than that of 1847-8, and consequently hard on cattle, the ground having been completely covered with snow the past two months. The length and severity of the cold season, compared with that of the preceding year, made some of the people discontented, and rumors were strong that many would leave the valley in the spring."
On Thursday the following public notice was issued: "Notice is hereby given to all the citizens of that portion of Upper California, lying east of the Sierra Nevada mountains, that a convention will be held in Great Salt Lake City, in said Territory, on Monday the fifth day of March next, for the purpose of taking into consideration the propriety of organizing a Territorial or State government."
On Thursday a call went out to search for a lost man named William Crockett. Hosea Stout wrote: "He was deranged and had now been lost for the last 48 hours. We made diligent search in almost every direction but did not find anything of him."
On Friday word came to Brigham Young that William Tubbs was coming into the city to sell whisky. President Young ordered Charles C. Rich to apprehend Brother Tubbs. On Saturday Brother Tubbs was tried before Bishop Tarlton Lewis. He was disfellowshipped from the church for speaking evil against the presidency.
On Saturday the high council met to consider various topics including: whether to sponsor Alanson Eldredge in establishing a tannery, a decision to build a bridge over Jordan River, establishing a standard for weighing grain, and appointing superintendents to apportion fences.
The following was recorded in Brigham Young's history: "The immigrant who arrived from Winter Quarters the past fall, instead of bringing with them eighteen months provisions, as they had been instructed to do, brought much less . . . so by this time many families were destitute of provisions, and it was evident that something must be done for their relief. The council, therefore, resolved that no corn should be made into whiskey, and that if any man was preparing to distill corn into whiskey or alcohol, the corn should be taken and given to the poor."
On Friday Elder Wilford Woodruff went with Brother Alexander Badlam to the ship "Corsiar." Brother Bedlam was going to sail to California via Panama, to go visit his brother-in-law Samuel Brannan. Brother Badlam hoped to obtain some gold from Brother Brannan to help pay off some debts. The ship did not sail that day because of a bad snow storm.
On Monday the ship "Zetland" sailed from Liverpool with 358 Saints on board. They were led by Orson Spencer. [These Saints would arrive in New Orleans on April 2nd and then travel up the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers to Kanesville, Iowa, arriving on May 17. During their passage to St. Louis, cholera broke out among the passengers and two of the Saints died and were buried on an island.]
Our Pioneer Heritage, Vol. 12, p.446 Harwell, Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 142-43 Brooks, On the Mormon Frontier, 341-42 Wilford Woodruff's Journal, 3:413