Tuesday, September 1, 1846

North of Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Brigham Young and other leaders continued their exploration of the land to the north of Cutler’s Park, seeking “Old Council Bluffs.”  They arose early, had breakfast and prayers, and then set off on their journey.  At 6 a.m., they started heading back down the river.  They built two small bridges over streams and ascended back up the bluffs on an Indian trail, heading south.

Wilford Woodruff wrote:  “We passed through a flat about 2 miles across it with pea vines grass woods & cane from 5 to 10 feet high which we had to wallow through with our horses & waggons.” 

The weary explorers finally reached their destination near dusk.  Brigham Young’s history records:


. . . arrived at the magazine  [ammunition building] of the old Council Bluffs, the walls of which were standing, the building was about eighteen by twenty‑four feet; this had been a military post of the United States, some thirty years ago, established to counteract British influence among the Indians.  Here, the creek forms an island, which is covered with poplars, on the south is a ravine and the foundation of the arsenal twenty‑eight feet by sixty‑eight or thereabouts, besides other excavations and underground works.


Wilford Woodruff added:  “There was nothing standing of the old barracks except the body of the Magazine with one gable end composed of brick arched over. . . . We looked about the premises of the old Council Bluffs about half an hour & seeing nothing inviting, we started home.” 

The brethren then traveled to the west and found a small spring about a half mile away.  Here, they established camp for the night.  They saw a couple of deer and signs of elk nearby.  It was a nice camp but they were “much annoyed by mosquitoes.” 


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A daughter, Emma Jane Dixon, was born to William and Sabra Dixon.1


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Mormon men in Nauvoo started to train in preparation to defend the city from the mob.  Non-Mormon Lewis Bidamon (future husband of Emma Smith) while traveling to Quincy, was intercepted by a leader of the mob who threatened to take him to the anti‑Mormon camp.  Bidamon was freed and in the evening left for Springfield to take some dispatches to the governor.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched for fifteen miles over a flat prairie, seeing many grasshoppers, and sun flowers three inches in diameter.  The dust from the trail was very irritating to the eyes of Azariah Smith, so he marched ahead of his company.  They camped about a mile south of a location called Lost Spring.  It received this name because “of its being in such a lonesome place and so far from the timber.”  They did their cooking by digging a hole in the ground and burning weeds.2


Pueblo, Colorado:

The Mississippi Saints continued to establish their settlement for the winter on the Arkansas River, in present-day Colorado.  There were a number of brethren who had made this long journey without their families.  It was time for them to return and retrieve them.  Those staying behind were organized into a branch and counseled to build cabins in the form of a fort.  They were instructed to stay at Pueblo until they received word from Church headquarters as to where they should go.  “They were much disappointed as they expected to get with the main body of the Church.  We comforted them all we could and left our blessing with them.” 

Those who left included, William Crosby, D.M. Thomas, John D. Holladay, William Lay, James Smithson, George W. Bankhead, and a man by the name of Wales Bonny who had been to Oregon.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 359‑60; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 159; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:74; Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:428; Avery and Newell, BYU Studies, 19:3:378; Kimball, Historic Sites and Markers along the Mormon and Other Great Western Trail, 190; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 120‑21; Bigler, The Gold Discovery Journal of Azariah Smith, 23


                   Wednesday, September 2, 1846


Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

After breakfast and prayer, Brigham Young and his company of explorers took the Indian trail back to Cutler’s Park, where they arrived at 10:30 a.m. after a journey of about ten miles.

Letters were received which informed the camp about the deaths of William Huntington and Samuel Bent, the presidents of Mount Pisgah and Garden Grove settlements.

Patty Sessions was feeling well enough to write in her diary.  She recorded her experience during her terrible illness:


When they told me I was almost gone, I felt calm and composed. Told them where my garments were and all things necessary for my burial and requested to have the latitude and longitude taken where I was lain. Also to have cedar posts put down in my grave with my name cut on them so that I could be found when called for. Many thought I was dying and the news went out that I was dead, but the Saints held on to me by faith and prayers and through their faith and the power of the Priesthood, I was raised. I got so low that a teaspoon full of cold water or rice water at a time was all I could take for two days. Brigham said they must all hang on to me as long as I breathed and for five minutes after I had done breathing. I had the best care taken of me, friends came from almost every part of the camp to visit me and to sit up with me. I feel thankful to God that I got in that camp for I think I must have died had I been anywhere else but with the main body of the Church.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion traveled fifteen miles and camped at Cottonwood Creek, northwest of present-day Durham.  They had arrived on land inhabited by the Comanches.  Lt. Smith detailed men to guard both the front and rear of the marching battalion.  They found some cottonwood, walnut and elm trees along the creek.  Green wood was used to cook their rations.

Lt. Smith wrote a letter to Adjutant General Roger Jones in Washington, D.C.  He informed the General that he had taken command of the Battalion at Council Grove and would lead it to General Kearny.  He reported, “we are getting along very well so far & I am in hopes to reach Genl K in good season.” 


Pawnee Village, Nebraska:

Over one hundred miles to the west of Winter Quarters, Jacob Gates wrote a letter to Brigham Young.  He informed President Young that the majority of George Miller’s company was gone to the Ponca Village.  Fourteen families had been persuaded to stay behind.  They had moved into the houses at the mission and were doing well.  The Pawnees had returned from their hunting trip about a week after George Miller’s company left.  So far they were friendly, although some were displeased because much of their corn had been destroyed by George Miller’s group.  Jacob Gates, and the brethren who stayed behind, met with the Indians and promised to help them harvest the corn.  This labor would be appreciated by the Indians because the departed Protestant missionaries had promised to help.  The Pawnee wanted the brethren to stay, but some thievery took place which discouraged some of the Saints and made them want to leave.  Jacob Gates committed to Brigham Young that he would stay until he was driven away or counseled by President Young to leave.


Greencastle, Pennsylvania:

Sidney Rigdon, leader of The Church of Christ, issued a proclamation in his periodical, Messenger and Advocate of the Church of Christ.  He declared to the world:


The time is at hand when all shall know, whether they believe us now or not, that what we have here written, is the truth of heaven; ‑‑ for this generation shall not pass till all is fulfilled.  Then as Noah did to the old world, so do we to the new world, and proclaim to all the inhabitants thereof, that this world is drawing near its close, the present order of things is shortly to pass away, and the Lord himself is about to take to himself his great power, and get to himself a great name.


Washington, D.C.:

William Medill of the War Department wrote a letter to Major Thomas H. Harvey of the Indian Bureau regarding the Mormon’s request to stay on Indian lands for awhile.  “If their continuance is really to be temporary and for such length of time only as will enable them to supply their wants and procure the necessary means for proceeding on their journey, the Government will interpose no objections.”  He understood that winter was approaching and that the Mormons were in a difficult situation.  He was worried that they might choose to stay longer.  If they did, it would delay the survey and sales of the lands, it would bring difficulty between Iowa in their efforts with the federal government to become a state, and it would interfere with the removal of the Indians.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 360‑61, 374; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:74; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 190; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 159; Clark, Messages of the First Presidency, 1:302;  Van Wagoner, Sidney Rigdon, 390; Kimball, Historic Sites and Markers along the Mormon and Other Great Western Trails, 190; A.J. Smith to Adjutant General Robert Jones, September 2, 1846; Patty Session diary in Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:62


                     Thursday, September 3, 1846


Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Brigham Young spent the morning traveling around the camp and visiting with the sick.  Willard Richards visited with many of the sisters in camp who had husbands away in the Mormon Battalion.  Elder Richards gave many of them money to meet their immediate needs.  Wilford Woodruff traded his gun with Amasa Lyman for a rifle.  They spent some time shooting their new guns.

At 5 p.m., the Twelve met with the High Council.  A report was given by Elder Orson Pratt regarding his negotiations with the Otoe and Omaha Indian nations.  (See August 31, 1846.)

Brigham Young reported on the trip to Old Council Bluffs.  They concluded that site was not suitable for a settlement because of a lack of timber in the area.  However, the ruins from the old fort, did contain plenty of brick and stones that could be used to build houses.

The council decided to appoint Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball and others to find a good location for a new ferry crossing which would be closer to their current location at Cutler’s Park.  Elder Kimball recommended that the brethren cut hay down by the river, and that the cattle that were not needed, would be herded to the north to feed among the pea vines.

A letter from the Nauvoo Trustees was read which reported some of the terrible events taking place around Nauvoo.  Because of these activities, the Trustees felt that they could not send the men that Brigham Young requested to be sent to the main camp to help make preparations for the winter.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

After three days of very long marches, many of the men’s health failed.  Private Samuel Hollister Rogers started the day marching ahead of his company because he did not feel well enough to march among the ranks.  Soon he was not even able to walk and spent the rest of the day riding in one of the baggage wagons.

The new company surgeon, Dr. George Sanderson, became frustrated with the sick because they would not take his medicine.  Brigham Young had counseled the men to stay away from taking medicine, which was largely experimental at that time.  He had told them, “If you are sick, live by faith, and let surgeon’s medicine alone if you want to live, using only such herbs and mild food as are at your disposal.” 

Lieutenant Smith and Dr. Sanderson ordered all of the sick out of the wagons to be examined.  Sergeant Thomas S. Williams had a few sick men in his wagon.  When Lt. Smith approached to pull the sick out, Brother Williams “ordered” him to stop.  Lt. Smith became furious and drew his sword.  He threatened to run Williams through if he carried any more sick in his wagon without permission.  Brother Williams stood his ground and defiantly told Lt. Smith that the team and wagon were his private property and he would haul whom he pleased.  He said that these men were his brethren who did not believe in taking drugs.  He would never leave one lying sick on the ground if there was room to put him in his wagon.  Lt. Smith backed down and moved on.

Corporal Thomas Dunn wrote: 


They used language that was truly heart rending, such that if we would not take their medicine, we should go on foot and that if any was found to administer to the sick medicine of any kind, they should have their throat cut.  After some time, the sick placed themselves in the wagons and were moved on.  In the course of the afternoon the doctor was heard to say that they would send all to hell they could.  They manifested a revengeful spirit most of the time.

It was also rumored that Dr. Sanderson was a former Missouri mobber “and had been heard to say he did not care a damn whether he killed or cured, but Smith was told plainly that before the men would take the doctor’s medicines they would leave their bones to bleach on the prairies.” 

Daniel Tyler recorded that one of the men tried to explain that the battalion would not take medicine because of religious reasons.  When Lt. Smith asked Adjutant Dykes if this was true, Dykes stated that there was no such religious belief.

The battalion marched for twenty‑six miles over a large prairie without any timber.  They could not find wood or water and had to camp on the open prairie for the night.

In the evening, Lt. Smith sent orders that all the sick were to report to Dr. Sanderson in the morning or they would be left on the prairie.


Bent’s Fort, Colorado:

The brethren who left the Mississippi Saints at Pueblo (see September 1, 1846) reached Bent’s Fort.  They learned about the Mormon Battalion, who were on their way west.  They also heard that a company of forty‑five men had left the fort three days earlier, heading back for the states.  The brethren decided that they would try to overtake them, so that they could travel with  this company through hostile country.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Eliza Graves Rich, a wife of Charles C. Rich, was still in Nauvoo.  She had not been able to leave Nauvoo because of a sick baby.  She spent long months being harassed by some of the new citizens of Nauvoo.  As time passed, she heard nothing from her husband.  He had sent a friend with money to bring her to Mount Pisgah but the man never arrived.  The town gossiped that Eliza Rich and been abandoned by her husband.  On this day, a messenger arrived to take Eliza Rich and her mother to Mount Pisgah.

An agreement was reached about this time between Major Parker and Colonel Singleton, the leader of the mob.  The Mormons would be given sixty days to get out of the city.  In the meantime a force of twenty‑five men from the mob would be stationed in the city.  Half of their expenses would be covered by the citizens of Nauvoo.  The Mormons were to surrender their arms which would be returned to them when they left the state.  As soon as the arms were gathered, the mob would disperse and all hostilities would cease.  The two leaders signed this agreement, but the Nauvoo citizens “unanimously rejected” it.  This agreement made no mention whatsoever of William Pickett.  The mob had been claiming that they were just a posse to arrest Pickett, but their true intentions were shown  by this proposed agreement.

A daughter, Mary Ann Collett, was born to Daniel and Esther Collett.3



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 361‑63; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 159; “Private Journal of Thomas Dunn,” typescript, 7; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 144‑46; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 5:2:38; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 122‑24; Arrington, Charles C. Rich, 107; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:74‑75; Rich, Ensign to the Nations, 41; Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:428; Black, Membership of the Church 1830‑1848


                       Friday, September 4, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Brigham Young and Lorenzo Dow Young went south toward the ferry, hoping to meet up with their brothers, John and Joseph Young.  Albert P. Rockwood traveled north to search for some good pastures and found some excellent land.  Willard Richards continued to disperse funds to the wives of battalion members.  Wilford Woodruff visited many that were sick in camp.  Efforts were made to cut hay, but there were still so many who were sick and could not work.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Jonathan H. Hale, a longtime church member, and member of the High Council at Council Point, died of the fever.  His wife was also very sick and gave up her desire to live.  She was kneeling beside the bed of Jonathan when he died.  Her son Aroet, led her to the wagon which was in the rear of the tent.  She called for Sister Allred and Sister Morley and gave instructions for her husband’s burial.  She also told them that she wanted her sister, Clarisa Harriman, to have her eight-day-old infant child.  Sister Harriman had crossed over the river at Cutler’s Park.

Joseph Hovey wrote:


We came near the ferry on the [Missouri] River.  Brother Brigham and Lorenzo Young met us there.  They crossed the river to meet us.  I was pleased to see President Brigham Young after not seeing him for seven months.  He looked very much like Brother Joseph, the Seer, so much so that at first sight I thought he was the Prophet Joseph.  President Brigham administered to my wife who was very sick.  She felt some better.


William Dally and Mandanda Hillman were married at Trader’s Point.4


Nauvoo, Illinois: 

It was about this time that Emma Smith, the widow of the prophet Joseph, received an anonymous threat that “if she did not move out of the house in three days, it would be burned over her head.”  On the third day, Emma put her children to bed on the ground floor where they could make a quick exit.  They awoke the next morning safe, but found a pile of charred sticks and leaves against the north side of house.  Flames had scorched the siding but the fire had gone out before doing much damage.


Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: 

Judge John K. Kane wrote a letter to his son Thomas L. Kane.  He was relieved to hear that his son was feeling better.  He then reported the results of his visit to President Polk.  “I saw the President last week, and talked over the whole subject.  He assured me definitely that the Mormon should not be disturbed.” 


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

In the morning, the sick reluctantly reported to Dr. Sanderson for their dose of calomel medicine.  Samuel Hollister Rogers wrote, “The Colonel and surgeon are determined to kill us, first by forced marches to make us sick, then by compelling us to take calomel5 or to walk to do duty.” 

At first the medicine was issued to each man on a piece of paper that some would take back to camp and bury.  Later, Dr. Sanderson insisted that the medicine be taken in his presence from an old iron spoon.  Daniel Tyler wrote:  “It was believed by many that this spoon had been thrown away by some soldier at the garrison and picked up by the Doctor, thinking a new one would be either too expensive or too good for the ‘Mormons’ to use in taking their medicine.”  It soon became routine for the sick to march each morning to the tune of “Jim along Joe” to Dr. Sanderson’s quarters.  The men detested a rule stating that no one could administer herbs to the sick, except for Dr. Sanderson.  William Coray wrote, “Hard time, now that the Tyrants are over us.” 

The battalion set off on their march early and travelled about twenty‑four miles to a small creek which was thought to be a fork of the Arkansas River.6 They were told that they were near buffalo country and looked forward to seeing thousands of buffalo soon.  They saw prickly pear cacti for the first time on this day.

In an evening about this time, Lt. Smith patrolled the camp to see if the guards were doing their duty.  He was halted by Thomas Howell.  Lt. Smith gave an incorrect password so Brother Howell held him prisoner until the arrival of his relief guard.  Lt. Smith was furious, but he had apparently given the password of the previous night.  He was later shown the correct password in his own handwriting by Adjutant George Dykes.


Washington, D.C.:

The news of Colonel James Allen’s death reached Washington.  Secretary of War, William L. Marcy immediately requested that a replacement be named.  Adjutant General Roger Johns did not feel that Lt. Smith had sufficient rank and experience to be appointed to this command.  Jones appointed Captain P.B. Thompson, stationed at Jefferson Barracks near St. Louis, to take over the command of the Mormon Battalion.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 363‑66; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:75; “Diary of Lorenzo Dow Young,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 14:147; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 159; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 147‑48; “Aroet Hale Autobiography,” typescript, BYU, 11; Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma‑‑Emma Hale Smith, 236; Kimball, Historic Sites and Markers along the Mormon and Other Great Western Trails, 194‑95; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 124‑26; “William Coray Journal”; “Joseph Hovey Autobiography,” BYU, p.40


                     Saturday, September 5, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Heber C. Kimball, Orson Pratt, Wilford Woodruff and a few others went to search for a location for a ferry crossing.  They started their search about five miles downriver.  Using a leather boat, they crossed the river to meet Isaac Morley and others from the east side who were also helping to find a good place to establish the ferry.  They observed plenty of wildlife on their search:  deer, turkey, wolves, and about two hundred geese on the water.  The elderberries and grapes were numerous and they picked about two bushels.  A good location for a new ferry was found about twenty miles upriver from Council Point.  This site would eliminate the long and hazardous journey up the steep bluffs across from the current ferry.

Thomas L. Kane, feeling much better, was preparing to return to his home in Philadelphia.

In the evening at 7 p.m., a meeting with the High Council was held at Albert P. Rockwood’s tent.  A report was presented of the labor performed in Brigham Young’s company.  They had thus far cut and hauled 657 tons of hay.  Hosea Stout reported that there were 70 officers and 231 privates of the Nauvoo Legion in the camp.  More help was needed to herd the camp’s sheep.  Charles Bird was authorized to call upon the sheep owners for help.  If they did not provide help, the expense would be paid with sheep.

Joseph Hovey crossed over the ferry in the morning and spent that day traveling toward Cutler’s Park.  He wrote: 


About 11 o’clock, I took a severe attack of ague and fever.  I shook from head to foot.  We tied our cattle to the side of the flat boat and swam them across the river.  Brother Brigham asked if he should drive my team to camp and have my wife and Joseph and our little babe ride in his buggy wagon and let Brother Lorenzo drive them.  We had about 14 miles to go to reach camp.  We arrived at the camp of the Saints about sundown.  I had a very hot fever and my wife Martha was so sick she could not sit up.  My son Joseph was also very sick.  Brother Young took us in his tent.  Truly I felt to thank my Heavenly Father for his kindness and mercy in sparing our lives and also that I had the opportunity again of beholding my brethren and the grand spectacle of beholding the Camp of Israel on a prairie far from her nativity.  I feel very thankful to Brother Brigham for his kindness in taking my tent and in meeting us.  Truly I shall always remember it, for the prophet of the Lord to drive my tent was an example of service to me.  It reminded me of what Jesus said, ‘Whosoever shall be great among you let him be your minister; even as the Son of Man came not to be ministered unto but minister.’ I hope that I may always do likewise.

Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched on a barren prairie.  The grass was less then four inches high.  Many of the tired men could not keep up and were scattered along the trail.

After traveling about twenty miles, they made their camp on Cow Creek, in Rice County.  The creek was bordered with many of wild grapes.  They met up with thirty wagons of provisions -- a welcome relief.  Some Indians were seen nearby so Lt. Smith posted an extra guard during the night.  Levi Hancock, David Pettigrew, and William Hyde met together to pray for the sick.


New York City, New York:

John Taylor and Orson Hyde were in New York City on their way to journey to England.  On this day, John Taylor wrote a poem of sorts, in the album of Abby Jane Hart of New York City.  Included here is a portion:


Abby:  Knowest thou whence thou camest? Thine Origin? Who thou art? What? and whither Thou art bound? A chrysalis of yesterday:  Today a gaudy fluttering butterfly‑‑A moth; tomorrow crushed, and then an end Of thee.  Is this so? And must thou perish Thus, and die ingloriously without a Hope?

Ah, no; thou’rt no such thing.  Thou in the Bosom of thy Father bask’d, and liv’d, and Mov’d thousands of years ago.  Yes, e’er this Mundane sphere from chaos sprung, or sun, or Moon, or stars, or world was fram’d:  before the Sons of God for joy did shout, or e’er the Morning stars together sung‑‑thou liv’dst.

Thou liv’dst to live again.  Ah, no! thou liv’d But to continue life eternal‑‑to Live, and move, and act eternally.  Yes; Long as a spirit, God, or world exists; From everlasting, eternal, without end.  And whilst thou dwelt in thy paternal home, And with thy brethren shar’d ecstatic bliss, All that a spirit could not cloth’d in flesh, Thou through the vista of unnumbered years Saw’st through the glimmering veil that thou would’st Dwell in flesh‑‑just as the Gods.  Tread in the Footsteps of thine elder brother, Jesus‑‑The “Prince of Peace,” for whom a body was Prepared.

Thou hop’d for this.  At length it came; and thou Appear’d on this terraqueous ball, Body and spirit; a living soul, forth From the hands of Elohim‑‑eternal As himself‑‑part of thy God.  A small spark Of Deity struck from the fire of his Eternal blaze.  Thou came! thou came to live! Of life thou art A living monument; to it thou still Dost cling eternal life.  To thee all else Are straw and chaff and bubbles, light as air; And will be all, until thou gain once more Thy Father’s breast; rais’d, quicken’d, immortal; Body, spirit, all:  a God among the Gods forever bles’t.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 366‑67; “Diary of Lorenzo Dow Young,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 14:147 Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:75; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 159; Talbot, A Historical Guide to the Mormon Battalion and Butterfield Trail, 25; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 147‑48; Taylor, The Gospel Kingdom, 388‑89; Kimball, Historic Sites and Markers along the Mormon and Other Great Western Trails, 195; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 126‑27; “Joseph Hovey Autobiography,” BYU, 40

                      Sunday, September 6, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

A Sabbath meeting was held in the morning at the grove.  Speakers included Joseph Young, Orson Spencer, and Brigham Young.  Many of the sick could not attend, but those who could received excellent counsel from the brethren.

In the afternoon, the members of the Twelve met together with the High Council.  Albert P. Rockwood reported that there were plenty of nice pastures located several miles to the north.  The council agreed that cattle should be sent there under the direction of John Tanner.  Brigham Young recommended that a small settlement be established above Old Council Bluffs for those guarding the cattle.  President Young also suggested that the council find a way to send teams back to Nauvoo to help the brethren there remove the poor.

Ira Eldredge was appointed to employ nine men to make a road to the location selected for the new ferry.  The marshal, Horace Eldredge, was instructed to collect money from each camp division to purchase wheat.

Joseph Hovey wrote:


To look around upon the camp and see the tents in motion and hear the large herds of cattle lowing, it caused me to meditate upon the Camp of Israel in the days of Moses.  Says I to myself, ‘Can it be possible that we have been driven from the land of our fathers who did lay down their lives for our liberty that we might worship God according to the dictates of our conscience?’ But I feel to rejoice that we have a promise of a more sure inheritance, even when this earth shall be celestialized.  That inspires my heart to endure all things.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched on a very sandy prairie with very little grass and they passed over a ridge which they named Plum Buttes.  From this high point, they were able to see three large herbs of buffalo grazing on the western plains.  They also came across four dead buffalo which they supposed had been killed by the Missouri Volunteers ahead.  The only portion that was used, was the tongue.  Robert S. Bliss wrote, “[We] are told ahead they are so thick that it is dangerous traveling for they when frightened will rush & break through even the ranks of soldiers.” 

For the most part, the landscape was very flat.  John Steele wrote, “The eye may wander many miles without resting on any object save the great expanse‑like ocean.” 

After marching about fourteen miles, they established their camp for the night.  Soon, a thunderstorm rolled through the camp and a cow was killed by lightning.  There was also no wood and they had to use buffalo chips for fuel.  Some buffalo meat was brought into the camp, later in the evening.  Henry Standage commented, “It was really the best meat I ever ate.” 


Fort Leavenworth, Kansas:

John D. Lee and Howard Egan arrived at the fort on the way to meet up with the Mormon Battalion.  James Pace, a battalion member, also had traveled with them from St. Joseph, Missouri.  He had been back to Council Bluffs to share the news regarding Colonel Allen’s death and then was given permission to visit his family in Mount Pisgah.  Now, he was traveling back to join his company.  Brother Lee and Pace met with Colonel J. Wharton, the commander for the fort.  Colonel Wharton asked them to deliver some mail to Santa Fe.


Society, Islands, South Pacific:

Elder Addison Pratt administered the sacrament to the Saints on one of the islands.  A woman came to him asking that her name be taken off the Church records.  “Said she was tired of trying to serve the lord.  Said she wisht to go and serve the devil with her whole heart.” 



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 368‑69; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 111; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 75; Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 287;  Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 160; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly 5:2:38; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 127‑28; “Diary of John Steele”; “Joseph Hovey Autobiography,” BYU, 41


                      Monday, September 7, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

In the morning, Bishop Newel K. Whitney and his companions tried to leave for St. Louis, Missouri.  They were taking hundreds of dollars to purchase provisions for the camp.  Orrin Porter Rockwell went along to provide protection.  They traveled to the ferry landing but the boat they had hoped to take did not arrive, so they returned in the evening.

Thomas L. Kane was also preparing to leave.  Even though he was not a member of the Church, he desired to have a Patriarchal Blessing.  Elder Wilford Woodruff took him to Patriarch John Smith’s tent.  In the blessing, Thomas L. Kane was told that


God is well pleased with thine exertions, he hath given his angel’s charge over thee to guard thee in times of danger, to deliver thee out of all they troubles and defend thee from all thine enemies, not a hair of they head shall every fall by the hand of an enemy, for thou art called to do a great work on the earth and thou shalt be blest in all thine undertakings, they shall be had in honorable remembrance among the saints to all generations.


Willard Richards penned several letters, including one from Brigham Young to President James K. Polk.  He informed the president about the recent negotiations with the Omaha Indians, who were willing to let the Saints tarry on their lands.  The Church would help the Indians by teaching them and assisting them with their teams.  It was anticipated that goods would be traded with the Indians for much needed furs and skins to replace worn out clothing and tents.  The President was asked to approve of the agreement and to grant a license to trade with the Indians.

Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A son, Lorin Ezra Forbush, was born to Rufus and Sarah Forbush.7


Ponca Village, Nebraska:

The Saints led by George Miller decided to relocate their camp upriver on the north side of the Niobrara.  A few did not want to move.  Asahel Lathrop and others moved farther down the Missouri and established their own site.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion broke camp very early in order to reach water as soon as possible and traveled twelve miles before breakfast.  During their march, they met a man and his family of six who were returning to Missouri.  The family had been disenchanted with the Rocky Mountains.  They shared an account of a snow storm during the previous July.

Buffalo were spotted during the entire day.  Sometimes over five hundred of the animals could be seen at one time.  Henry Standage wrote, “The brethren now have great sport chasing and hunting the buffalo.”  They camped at 10 a.m.,  at Walnut Creek, and rested the teams for the remainder of the day.  Two buffalo almost came into the camp and one was shot which provided a nice meal for the battalion.  Later, another old bull weighing almost eighteen hundred pounds had mingled within the cattle.  It was shot by the guards.  Robert Bliss described the ground in camp as “stamped, worn, hoofed, & trod up by those old fellows.”  There were buffalo bones scattered all over the prairie.

At 5 p.m., the battalion had the military law read to them for the first time in order to help them learn their duties.  During the evening they feasted on buffalo pot pie.


East of Bent’s Fort, Colorado:

The brethren from the Mississippi Company reached the Arapahoes’ village.  They were trying to overtake another company heading east



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 369‑72; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 160; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 129; “Journal of Robert S. Bliss,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 4:71‑2; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 148; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 5:2:39; Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:429; Hartley, My Best for the Kingdom, 217; Bigler, The Gold Discovery Journal of Azariah Smith, 24


                     Tuesday, September 8, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

As Thomas L. Kane was about to leave, Brigham Young and Willard Richards called on him to express their warm thanks and good wishes.  Colonel Kane expressed a strong determination to continue to help the Saints in any way that he could.  He left the camp at 9 a.m.

Many of the cattle were herded towards the north.  Brigham Young’s brother, Phinehas, arrived from Nauvoo and no doubt shared with the brethren tales of persecution by the mob including his many days of imprisonment.

Willard Richards wrote to his parents and other family members back in England.  He told them that his family was well, doing better than when they lived in Nauvoo.


We have been detained and shall not pass over the mountains till spring, shall stay where we are, now in a tent, shall soon be in a winter cabin.  The little ones are lively, cheerful, and happy, talk often of Mother, Grandpa, Ma, &c in England, a word or anything from you is dear to them, and I endeavor to cherish your remembrance in their hearts with the greatest pleasure, hoping the time will come when I can present them to you as some of the choice gems of unfading love. . . .  I must just say to you that on the first of July last there were upwards of 2500 wagons loaded with our friends and their provisions &c between this and Nauvoo going West.  Many have come out since and many more will this fall and when we shall have arrived over the mountains we shall leave this a great thoroughfare such as hardly has been since the exit of Moses.


The members of the Twelve met together as a council in the evening.  The brethren decided to search for a new location for Winter Quarters.  A committee was formed for the search including:  Alanson Eldredge, Alpheus Cutler, Albert P. Rockwood, Jedediah M. Grant, and Ezra Chase.

They also decided to assign John Pack to go to Savannah, Missouri to obtain a carding machine purchased by the Church.  They decided to count all the teams in each camp division to determine how many could be sent to Nauvoo to help the poor out of the city.  It started to rain in the evening.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Olive Hale died just a few days after her husband Jonathan Hale died.


St. Louis, Missouri:

A son, Joseph Albert Murray, was born to John and Sarah Bates Murray.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

During the day’s march, hundreds of buffalo were seen by the battalion members along with many prairie dog villages.  Henry Standage became ill after just one mile and rode the rest of the day in a wagon.  Samuel Hollister Rogers wrote that the plains were “eaten off as close as any old pasture field and well covered with buffalo dung for a distance of 25 miles.” 

As they passed Pawnee Rock, some of the men added their names to the register.8   Rain started to fall at about 2 p.m.  After a long, weary, thirty-mile march, they camped by a small creek in Pawnee Indian territory.  They had heard the Pawnees were very fierce and warlike.  From their camp they could see five hundred buffalo gazing near the junction of the Pawnee and Arkansas Rivers.


East of Bent’s Fort, Colorado:

The brethren from the Mississippi Company overtook and joined the company of traders with whom they wished to travel.  As they continued east, they were amazed how many troops and baggage waggons were heading to Santa Fe.


New York City, New York:

Elders Orson Hyde and John Taylor set sail on the ship “Patrick Henry” bound for Liverpool, England.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 372‑73; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 160‑1; “Diary of Samuel Hollister Rogers”; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 129‑31;  Our Pioneer Heritage, 3:141‑42; Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:429; Taylor, The Kingdom or Nothing, 166‑17


                   Wednesday, September 9, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

It was a very rainy day.  Brigham Young received a letter from Orson Pratt, while he had been in Saint Louis.  He and Elder John Taylor were on their way to England and were doing fine.  Elder Pratt reported that there were sixty‑four families in the branch there who were ready to emigrate to the west.  There were eighty‑two other families who wished to go as soon as they obtained provisions.

In the evening, the Twelve met with the High Council.  It was reported that only twelve teams were found to send back to Nauvoo to help the poor.  President Young proposed that brethren donate their teams to the cause.  He set the example by offering three yoke of his cattle.  Marshal Horace Eldredge was instructed to gather up the teams that could go right away and seek additional teams that would not be needed by the hay operations.

Brigham Young next shared some thoughts regarding the establishment of a winter quarters. 


I said my feelings were at present to stay here and locate our families for a year or two; meanwhile, fit out companies to go over the mountains with seed grain, mills, etc., to sow, build and prepare for our families that we need not carry provisions for them over the mountains, and wished the committee to have this in view in settling this camp, and select healthy locations.  There were teams enough in the Church to do all that is needed in gathering Israel and establishing ourselves in the mountains.


The letter written by Jacob Gates at the Pawnee village on September 2, was read.  The brethren felt that it would be dangerous to leave such a small company of families with the Pawnee for the winter and directed that a messenger be sent to have them return to the Missouri River.

Heber C. Kimball reported that he had visited the third company at Cutler’s Park and found many sick including Lucian Woodworth and family.  Cornelius P. Lott offered to take care of them.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Edson Whipple and his family were camping on Pony Creek, about thirty miles down the Missouri River.  The place was very unhealthy and everyone except two people were sick in the camp.  On this day his mother, Basmoth Hutchins Whipple died and a few days later he lost his wife.  Before they left this location, they would bury entire families.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

A mob of seven hundred men organized to march on Nauvoo.  Governor Ford had authorized Major Flood, the commander of the militia in Adams County, to raise a force to preserve order in Hancock County, but Major Flood feared angering the anti‑Mormons and disregarded the governor’s request.  In Hancock County, Major Parker withdrew from service and Major William Clifford was put in command in Nauvoo.  The defenders of the city started to take positions on the high ground about one mile east of the temple, placing themselves between the mob camp and the city.

About this day, Mary Fielding Smith, widow of Hyrum, crossed over the river.  Her daughter, Martha Ann Smith wrote: 


We left our home just as it was, our furniture, and the fruit trees hanging full of rosy peaches.  We bid goodbye to the loved home that reminded us of our beloved father everywhere we turned.  I was five years old when we started from Nauvoo.  We crossed over the Mississippi in the skiff in the dusk of the evening.  We bid goodbye to our dear old feeble grandmother [Lucy Mack Smith].  I can never forget the bitter tears she shed when she bid us goodbye for the last time in this life.  She knew it would be the last time she would see her son’s family.


Mary’s seven-year-old son, and future prophet, Joseph F. Smith, later shared his memories of this difficult day.


I can remember the time when I was quite a little boy, when we were hurried very unceremoniously across the river Mississippi from the city of Nauvoo just previous to the bombardment of the town by the mob.  I had a great anxiety then ‑‑ that is for a child ‑‑ to know where on earth we were going to.  I knew we had left home.  We had left it willingly ‑‑ because we were obliged to ‑‑ we left it in a hurry, and we were not far away when we heard the cannonade on the other side of the river; but I felt just as certain in my mind then ‑‑ as certain as a child could feel ‑‑ that all was right, that the Lord's hand was in it, as I do to‑day.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The rain throughout the night slowed down the progress of the battalion.  They made a difficult crossing over the Pawnee River.  The wagons were eased down the banks by ropes and hauled up the other side by twenty men.  As they were traveling, they came across a note dated, May 18, 1846, that read, “Look out for Indians for one of our men was killed supposed by a Camanche.”  They only marched about five miles up the river, where they found better grasses for the cattle.  There, they rested for the day.  Several wagons of “sutlers” followed the battalion to sell them goods.  Henry Standage learned first‑hand what the over inflated prices of these “sutlers” did to his pockets.  He bought a coat worth eight dollars for fifteen dollars.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 373‑76; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 1:192, 233; Rich, Ensign to the Nations, 42; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 161; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 131‑32; Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:583; Holzapfel, Women of Nauvoo, 163; Corbett, Mary Fielding Smith, Daughter of Britain, 195;  Journal of Discourses, 24:150


                    Thursday, September 10, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball rode out in the morning to search for a location for Winter Quarters.  They returned in the afternoon, after which a severe storm hit the camp.  It lasted for an hour and blew down several tents.  Hosea Stout wrote, “The clouds rolled up white & circling rising in all directions seemed to be strangely crazed & swirling and at length a west storm of wind & rain which blew down my tent and many others and exposed my things to the storm again.” 

Sister Eliza R. Snow was very sick during this time.  She wrote:  “A heavy rain came on & the bed where I lay was wet almost from head to foot, but the Lord preserv’d my life & while I live I will speak of his goodness.”

In the evening members of the Twelve met with the Cutler’s Park High Council and selected a location for Winter Quarters.  They chose a site to the north on both sides of Willow Creek.

A letter was written to Joseph L. Heywood, one of the Nauvoo Trustees, advising him to come to the camp.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Thomas S. Brockman was appointed by John Carlin to take over the leadership of the mob forces.  Governor Ford later described Brockman as “a Campbellite preacher, nominally belonging to the Democratic party, a large, awkward, uncouth, ignorant, semi‑barbarian, ambitious of officer, and bent upon acquiring notoriety.” 

The mob advanced from Carthage to Nauvoo, under the leadership of Brockman, to what used to be Hyrum Smith’s farm, and started to fire upon the city with three cannons.  Many of the women and children fled the city and crossed over the Mississippi River into Iowa.  The defenders were organized into three companies under the overall leadership of Colonel Johnson.  They met the mob resolutely and soon the mob retreated.

The Saints had been promised reinforcements from the governor’s troops, but none had come.  Governor Ford later downplayed the serious nature of this battle by stating that they were more than a half mile apart and “not near enough to do each other material injury.”  He numbered the forces of the mob at 800 armed men, 600‑700 unarmed men and the Nauvoo force at 150 fighting men.  These brave men stepped forward to defend a city that was mostly inhabited by the sick, widows, orphans, children, and those too poor to leave.

The defenders had to rely on their own forces and converted some steamboat shafts into cannons.  During the night there was some skirmishing between the forces.  Each of the Nauvoo companies built a fort for defense on the north side of Mulholland Street under the command of Andrew L. Lamoreaux.  They were complete by 3 a.m.  The defenders then began to fire a cannon at the mob’s campfire which caused great confusion in the enemy’s camp.  The mob moved their whole force about one and a half miles further to the north, to New LaHarp road.

Thomas Bullock later wrote:


. . . the sharp cracking of the rifles kept us in an awful state of suspense and anxiety.  Our devoted city was defended by about 150 poor, sickly persecuted Saints, while it was cannonaded by about 1500 to 2000 demoniacs, in the shape of men, who had sworn to raze our temple to the ground, to burn the city, to ravish our wives and our daughters, and drive the remainder into the river.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Leonard Hill, age forty-six, died.  He was the father of nine children.


Keosauqua, Iowa:

A daughter, Sarah Marinda Smith, was born to Warren and Amanda Barnes Smith.9


Montrose, Iowa:

A daughter, Almira Snow, was born to Willard T. and Melvina Harvey Snow.10


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

As with each morning, the sick came to the “black wagon” of Dr. Sanderson to take their medicines.  William Coray reported that many of the sick were not able to walk to the wagon.  Dr. Sanderson replied, “You bring them here, I know my duty.”  Sergeant Coray went to appeal to Lt. Smith who thought Sanderson should send his assistant to see those who couldn’t walk.  However, Dr. Sanderson made all the sick be carried to his wagon that was located some distance from the rest of the camp because the doctor “was afraid to camp near us for fear of his life.” 

Daniel Tyler was very sick.  He did not want to take the poisonous drugs and begged his companions to just leave him behind and report him dead.  His company officers directed that he be put in a wagon and that his name be entered on the sick list.

At 10 a.m., while the battalion was preparing to march, an express of six men came from Santa Fe on the way to Fort Leavenworth with news that General Kearny had taken the town without firing a gun.  The battalion was advised to not travel to Bent’s Fort, be rather to go directly to Santa Fe, taking what is known as the Cimarron cut-off of the Santa Fe Trail.  One of these six men was Francis Parkman who wrote in his journal, “Rode on and as we ascended the hollow where the water lay, saw the opposite swell covered with wagons and footmen, and the water itself surrounded by white tents, cattle, and wagons drawn up in order.  These were . . . the Mormon Battalion commanded by Col. Smith, and wagons of Mormon emigrants.” 

They traveled about twenty miles and camped on Coon Creek which had water but no wood.  They had to use Buffalo chips for the fires.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 376‑77; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 1:192, 233; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 161; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 132‑33; “William Coray Journal”; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 148‑49; “Alexander Neibaur Diary,” LDS Archives, 19; Nielson and Flack, The Dutson Family History; Rich, Ensign to the Nations, 42; Our Pioneer Heritage, 8:234; Whitney, History of Utah, 1:272; Wade, ed., The Journals of Francis Parkman, 479;  Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church, 3:13; Beecher, ed., The Personal Writings of Eliza R. Snow, 144


                      Friday, September 11, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

In the morning, Brigham Young and the other members of the Twelve at the camp at Cutler’s Park walked a few miles to the north, officially selected a site for Winter Quarters, and then returned to camp.

In the afternoon, Brigham Young went again to Winter Quarters along with members of the Cutler’s Park High Council.  They began to survey the new settlement and selected a location for Main Street.11

After returning to Cutler’s Park, Brigham Young directed that a number of members be asked to come to the camp including, Thomas Bullock, Addison Everett, Truman O. Angell, Mary Fielding Smith, Joseph Knight Jr., Peter Maughn, John Rushton, George Alley, Susannah Liptrot, A.C. Hodge, Stephen Longstroth, William Jones, Agnes M. Smith, Edmond Bosley, John Stiles, Wilmer B. Benson, Edward Miller, Daniel Thomas, Samuel Smith, Ann Broddock, Elvira L. Wheeler, Henry I. Young, Stephen H. Goddard, and Conrad Staley.

Heber C. Kimball visited Joseph Hovey’s family about this time and invited them to camp with his division.  The family was sick and had been staying with Joseph Young’s family, who was also very sick.  Elder Kimball felt that the Hovey family could better be cared for by moving into his camp.  Joseph Hovey wrote:


Accordingly, Brother James Smith drove me over to Father Kimball’s division.  I spread my tent beside my wagon and got a bedstead and placed my wife on an ordinary bed once more.  She was very weak, and we could hardly get her out of the wagon.  With much difficulty we got her to bed.  Father Kimball got us a girl to help take care of our baby which was not well.


In a letter to the Nauvoo Trustee, Brigham Young communicated the current plan. 


Our present design is to settle our families at this point in such a manner that we can leave them one season, or more if necessity requires, and fit out a company of able men with our best teams and seed, and at the earliest moment in the ensuing spring, start for the Bear River Valley, find a location, plant seeds, build homes, etc., and the next season be ready to receive our families into comfortable habitation, filled with plenty of bread, etc.  We design to build log cabins here and make every possible exertion this winter for an abundant harvest her next summer.


President Young asked for all those brethren who had comfortably settled their families and young men without families, to come to Winter Quarters to prepare to go over the mountains.  Nauvoo should be cleared, and wagons were on the way to help move the poor out the city.  More teams would have been sent, but the Nauvoo Trustees did not send men to help drive them.  Most of the men could not leave the Missouri because the hay needed to be cut.  He concluded, “Send us men to drive teams, soon if you can, but be sure to urge all spare men to be here early in the spring.” 

A son, Don Carlos Smith, was born to George A. and Lucy Smith.12


Nauvoo, Illinois:

In the morning, shots continued to be fired from the mob and were returned from the defenders.  The mob had moved north toward William Law’s field and fired thirty‑five cannon balls.  One of the Nauvoo companies advanced in an effort to prevent the enemy from entering the city.  They laid a “powder plot” in the road and then hid themselves in Daniel Well’s cornfield.13  The mob spotted them and opened fire.  The shots split a fence, cut down corn, and endangered the lives of the defenders.  Soon the defenders were ordered to retreat. 

A small band of thirty men commanded by William Anderson, who were called the “Spartan Band,” were firing on the mob with their fifteen shooters and were forced to retreat.  Major William Clifford recorded in his field notes:


They [the mob] were coming in with flying colors apparently without any obstructions except from the 30 men when suddenly, when only one & a quarter miles from the Temple, our home-made cannon (of steam boat shafts) opened upon them under the command of Captain Hiram Gates, manned by William I. Green & William Summerville.  The effect was electric.  They halted in their tracks and after exchanging a few shots, retreated over the brow of a commanding emenence, and camped for the night.


Non‑Mormon Nauvoo citizen, Curtis Edwin Bolton wrote:


We retreated into town as a last forlorn hope, threw ourselves into some log houses, determined to do or die.  [The mob leader] Brockman, ordered his horses and men to move down and take possession of this valuable point.  The men numbered 120.  They charged gallantly down the gentle slope and then charged ungallantly back again for we were there with our repeating rifles, which would be fired 7 and 8 times without reloading


William Mace added:  “The little band of brethren and some of the new citizens made a brave stand against the mob.  Sometimes the cannon balls from the mob would be picked up and loaded into our steamboat shaft cannon and fired back at them.  Ammunition was scarce with us and we were but a handful.” 

Many of the Saints started to flee to the cross the river.  Joseph Fielding wrote: 


They hastened to the river but the citizens judged it not best to let men leave when they were so much needed, but the sick, the women and children got over as fast as they could.  I went down to the bank of the river and found many of the Saints in distress.  Some had left their goods and were destitute of food and clothing.  Others had left their husbands in the battle.  The cannons roared tremendously on both sides for several days.


On one of these nights, Henry Grow, one of the Nauvoo defenders, heard a voice during the night distinctly say:  “Get up and get out of here in the morning.”  He arose in the morning, hitched a yoke of cattle to his wagon, took only a few things and loaded up his family into the wagon.  When they had moved about fifty yards from the house, a cannon ball was fired through the house causing much destruction to it.  He continued on and took his family across the river.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

A report was circulating around the camp that the Missouri Volunteers ahead had been surrounded by Comanche Indians.  Some of the Volunteers had angered them by killing a buffalo.  While they were skinning it, three Indians fired arrows at them from the bushes.

The battalion marched across the prairie and reached the Arkansas River at about noon where they set up camp after a twelve-mile march.  Abner Blackburn wrote: “We then came to the Arkansas River and were very much disappointed as we expected to see a large stream of water with steamboats running on it as they passed through thickly timbered country.  But instead we were compelled to dig in the bed for water.”


The river was about 400‑500 yards across.  Henry Bigler wrote: 


As I stood on the bank and looked across, I could scarcely see there was any water and the view to me was a beautiful bed of sand from bank to bank.  I took off my shoes, rolled up my pants and crossed over to get wood for our cooks.  There were 4 little channels of water clear as crystal and about one foot deep we were enabled to get plenty of water, but where the river was not dry and the water running, the boys caught fish, such as cat, white bass and buffalo fish by spearing them with bayonets.


They also found fish buried in the wet sand.  Many of the men and women took advantage of the water to do much needed washing of clothes.  The men were able to dig two or three feet in the river bed to find water.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 377‑78;  Bennett, Mormons at the Missouri, 1846‑1852, 73; Clark, Messages of the First Presidency, 1:305‑06; Nibley, Exodus to Greatness, 236‑7; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 161; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 5:2:39; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 134; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 150; “Alexander Neibaur Diary,” LDS Archives,  19; Nielson and  Flack, The Dutson Family History; Joseph Fielding Diary in “Nauvoo Journal,” BYU Studies 19:165; “Wandle Mace Autobiography,” typescript, BYU, 203; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861,  234; Jenson, LDS Biographical Encyclopedia, 3:94; William Clayton’s Journal, 63; “Joseph Hovey Autobiography,” BYU, 41; Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma Emma Hale Smith, 237; Bagley, Frontiersman: Abner Blackburn’s Narrative, 40


                    Saturday, September 12, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

An early morning council meeting was held at 6 a.m. to meet with ten volunteers who would go back to Nauvoo to help the poor Saints travel to Winter Quarters.  Orville M. Allen was appointed to lead this company.

A sad assignment was given to Marshal Horace Eldredge.  He was asked to see that there was enough lumber sawed to make coffins.  Assignments were also made to repair some of the muddy roads.

At 7:30 a.m., Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball started for Daniel Spencer’s camp to obtain money to pay for the shipping of a carding machine from Savannah, Missouri.  They obtained thirty dollars and then headed back for Cutler’s Park.  On the way, they received a letter from the Indian agent, Robert B. Mitchell.  He asked the leaders to not waste any timber.  He also wrote, “Please prevent any trading or intercourse with the Indians.”  In addition, the brethren received a letter from Thomas L. Kane who had met with Mitchell.  He also mentioned the need to be careful in cutting timber.  Major Thomas Harvey, the Superintendent of Indian Affairs in St. Louis, stated that the Mormons should stay no longer than was necessary on Indian lands.

In the evening, members of the Twelve and the Cutler’s Park High Council met together.  Several matters relating to the conduct of camp members needed to be addressed.  No dogs were to be killed except by order from the Council.  No shooting would be allowed in, or near the camp after sunset.  Some young men had recently been whipped by order of the marshal because of immoral behavior.  President Young stressed that strict discipline was needed in the community or anarchy would prevail in a few years.  Any stealing of property would not be tolerated.  Unruly cattle that continued to break out of the fencing would be sent to the slaughter house.  Dogs must be kept in their own yards.  “No man has a right to keep a dog to tip over his neighbor’s milk pans.”  Two brethren were appointed to superintend the cutting of timber and Marshal Eldredge was asked to see that those cutting hay left the timber alone.  If any timber was cut without permission, it would be used by the Council for the poor.  The meeting was concluded about 10 p.m.


Keosauqua, Iowa:

A daughter, Martha Elmira Norton, was born to Alanson and Sarah Freeman Norton.14


Nauvoo, Illinois:

In the morning, river boat captain Grimes ignored the mob’s threats and docked at Nauvoo to pick up passengers.  Emma Smith and her family were among those who left Nauvoo on this morning.  Her children included, David, (almost 2), Julia (15), Joseph III (13), and Frederick and Alexander (8).  The Uncle Toby was filled with others also leaving Nauvoo.  Emma was heading to Fulton, Illinois, about 150 miles upriver, where her friends William and Rosannah Marks were residing.

Colonel Johnson, leader of the Nauvoo defenders, became sick and William E. Cutler took over for him with Daniel H. Wells at his side.  In the morning, the enemy was more determined after receiving a few wagon loads of ammunition.  They attempted to advance on Nauvoo but were forced back several times by defenders who fired upon them from behind houses.  Cannon balls were being fired constantly. 

Major William Clifford’s field notes read:


After negotiations had passed at about 12 o’clock the mob commenced deploying to the left taking advantage of cornfields to mask their movements, with 4 pieces of artillery and about 800 men--and showed a determination to take the City by storm at all hazzards.  We had to oppose them about 200 men, 130 whom were in line--the rest stationed elsewhere and 5 pieces of steam boat shafts--only 3 of which were in the action and one them disabled after the third shot.


Wandle Mace wrote, “The little band of brethren and some of the new citizens made a brave stand against the mob.  Sometimes the cannon balls from the mob would be picked up and loaded into our steamboat shaft cannon and fired back at them.  The defenders’ cannons would only shoot about a quarter mile.  Ammunition was scarce with us and we were but a handful.”  Daniel Wells agreed:  “During the fight the boys would watch the cannon ball strike & run & get it & bring it to us & we would send it back.”

Even some of the brave women helped to gather up these balls in their aprons.   Sister Player came up to Captain Bolander, who was shooting the steamboat cannon.  She presented him with a cannon ball that had fallen in her door yard.  She said, “Captain, please return this ball to the anti-Mormons with my compliments.”

Other sisters gathered on porches out of range of the cannons, listening to every sound of the conflict.  Mary Ann Stearns Winters wrote, “The anguish and suspense of those dreadful hours can never be told in words.  And I will never forget the unflinching faith and courage of that devoted group of women.  They never thought of fleeing or turning away.” 

At 1 p.m., the mob advanced on the city.  A fierce battle soon ensued, which became known as “The Battle of Nauvoo.”  It lasted about seventy‑five minutes.  The mob fired 42 cannon balls and the defenders fired 32.  Brother Daniel H. Wells would ride on his white horse encouraging and directing the men.  His courage was looked upon as a tower of strength for the men defending their homes and families.  He directed a company of men who provided critical support in repelling the advancing mob.

The battle centered around Winchester Street near Boscow’s store.  The two forces were separated by two blocks.  The mob fired a number of times into Barlow’s old barn, expecting many of the brethren to be hiding there.  It was said that while Amos Davis was running through a field, he stumbled and fell on his left arm which formed a triangle with his head.  As he fell, a cannon ball was said to have passed through the angle of his arm.

Sadly, there were three fatalities on the side of the defenders.  The first two were Captain William Anderson15 and his fifteen‑year‑old son Augustus.  Captain Anderson was a leader of the “Spartan Band,” a group of riflemen.  His company was advancing toward the mob when he was hit by a musketball that was shot by some members of the mob who were hiding in a house nearby.  Captain Anderson died encouraging his men.  About the same time, his young son Augustus Anderson was killed by a cannon ball that passed through the corner of a house and struck him down.

David Norris and few other men were stationed in a house that was being battered with cannon fire.  They were ordered to march double file to another house.  As they were marching, the mob started to fire upon them.  David Norris was hit directly in the head by a cannon ball and died instantly.  He left behind a wife and five children.16  About ten others were wounded in this battle.

A few men were said to be recuperating beneath the walls of the house of an old widow, Mrs Naggle.  They were surprised to see the old lady come out of her house with a broom stick and call them “cowardly dogs” for not fighting the mob.  They explained that they had been ordered to fall back, but she responded, “And I order you to the front!”  They soon advanced forward “considering the cannon balls a less danger than that which threatened them from the enraged and spunky old lady of the broom stick.”

 Soon the mob retreated to the house of a Mr. Carmichael, where they waited for wagons and returned to their camp.  Apparently when the mob leader, General Brockman discovered that the cannon balls had been used up, he did not have the courage to continue the battle that day.  If was reported that about twelve of the mob were wounded and one of them later died.  However, the casualty report may have been false.  A nonmember saw fifteen bodies of the mob in one wagon being handled as if they were dead.  There were other reports of many wounded and plenty of blood was found on the battle ground.

The mayor of Quincy watched the battle from the top of the temple and afterwards declared that the defenders were the bravest little band of men that ever lived.  William Cutler reflected back on this battle, when such a small force repelled hundreds of the mob, “The hand of God was so visible in that battle that many that were weak & faltering have been much strengthened by it and will gather with the Saints.  I did not expect that God would deliver [us] into their hands, but expected that God would save [us] out of the hands of [our] enemies and this he has done.” 

During this violence, a son, Joseph S. McArthur, was born to Duncan and  Susan McKeen McArthur.  Little Joseph died the same day.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched about twenty miles along the Arkansas river, passing hundreds of white sand hills in drifts that looked like snow, some higher than treetops.17  Some of the men walked in the middle of the river.  As they traveled, they met the brethren from the Mississippi company who had left Pueblo on September 1.  The Mississippi brethren were very happy to meet up with the battalion and to hear news about the Camp of Israel.  The battalion camped for the evening by the Arkansas River across from an Island.  Many fish were caught by spearing them with swords and bayonets.

Henry Standage felt much better and wrote, “I can thank God that I have been preserved from the hands of the Dr and have not been compelled to take Calomel.  Lieu Smith and the Dr. seem to wish to force every one to take medicine. . . . We seem to have fallen into the hands of a tyrant.  There are a great many sick in the Battalion at present.”  Daniel Tyler was not as lucky to avoid the medicine.  However, on this day his fever broke because he disobeyed the doctor’s order and drank cool water from the river.  The doctor had warned the sick that if they drank cool water that they would die.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 378‑83; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 161; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 134‑35; Mormon Battalion Trail Guide, 14; “David Pettigrew Journal”; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 150; “Alexander Neibaur, Diary,” LDS Archives, 19; Our Pioneer Heritage, 11:526; Rich, Ensign to the Nation, 42‑3; Nielson and Flack, The Dutson Family History; Whitney, History of Utah, 1:273; “Wandle Mace Autobiography,” typescript, BYU, 203; Mary Ann Stearns Winters, “The Nauvoo Battle,” in The Relief Society Magazine, 4:78; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861,  234;  Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:87‑8; William Clayton’s Journal, 65‑66; Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma Emma Hale Smith, 237‑38; Hallwas and Launius, Cultures in Conflict, 333


                     Sunday, September 13, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

A Sabbath meeting was held.  Orson Pratt arose and stated that he would like to preach a sermon that was somewhat beyond the first principles of the gospel.  He chose to speak about truth.  “Every truth should be acknowledged as from God. . . . Men should be learned in order to convince the learned. . . . Many truths come by reflection, thinking and not by seeing, feeling, hearing, eating and drinking.” 

Elder Pratt expressed the belief that worlds existed before the earth was formed.  “Matter is eternal and this earth was formed out of unorganized matter.”  He told the congregation that they could see unorganized matter for themselves with a spyglass if they looked at the Orion Nebula where there was enough unorganized matter to make millions of worlds as large as the sun.  “Learning is a good thing, A blessing from God. . . . There are many hours that both parents and children squander away that might be spent in learning. . . . The Lord will not do a miracle to give us learning when we can get it ourselves.” 

Elder Kimball next addressed the congregation.  “It is necessary for this people to be subject to counsel like clay in the hands of the potter. . . . While on this journey many said they would do so and so if the Presidency commanded them. . . . But we should do good without being commanded to do it.”

President Brigham Young testified: 


Heaven and all of God’s creations are governed by law. . . . And if Heaven was not controlled by law, what [kind] of a place would it be?  I would not wish to be there. . . . The Celestial law is a perfect order of things, a perfect system of light, law, intelligence, exhaltation and glory where every persons’ rights are sustained to the fullest extent. . . . We must begin to be governed by law here before we are prepared to receive those blessings.  The whole law has not been given and you cannot abide the whole law as yet.  If it had all been given, we should have been smashed up and destroyed.  A people must become acquainted thoroughly with law before they can abide it.


President Young than discussed some hard feelings in the camp relating to some unruly boys who had been disciplined by the marshal.  President Young spoke forcefully that wickedness should be put to a stop.  “Such conduct shall be stopped and shall not be permitted in this camp. . . . This people have the law of liberty and the gospel and the more the light and liberty and greater the privileges, the stricter the law.”  He then referred to those who were striving to be obedient.  “A woman that has the Spirit of God will go with a good man who has been faithful and spent much of his time in saving mankind and has the priesthood.  Such men if they continue faithful will be saved in eternal glory and those that are with him.” 

A Council meeting was held in the afternoon.  Jedediah M. Grant reported that he had visited with an interpreter for the Omaha Indians.  He said that the Omahas would be satisfied if the Saints would build their city two miles north of Old Council Bluffs.18  John Tanner reported that the cattle were doing well and getting fat.

The brethren in the Council held a “singing school” during the evening.  John Scott held a meeting to organize the artillery.  Orders were given to organize at least eighty men into four companies during the week.

A son, Thomas Callister, was born to Thomas and Caroline Callister.19 Also born was Heber C. Grant, son of George and Margaret Grant.20  Silvy A. Pendleton, age twenty-nine, died of canker.  She was the wife of Calvin C. Pendleton.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A daughter, Ellen Maria Rice, was born to William K. and Lucy Gear Rice.21


Nauvoo, Illinois:

The mob was running short on ammunition and sent to Quincy for some more.  No cannons were fired by the mob.  The lull in the battle gave the men time to attend to the burials of their brethren, who had fallen the day before in the Battle of Nauvoo.  William Pace wrote of Brother William Anderson, “He was a noble man, a brave officer, a good man.  At the grave I bade farewell to his almost heart‑broken wife.”

One of the brethren put on a sheep bell and went near to the enemy camp as a spy.  The mob was fooled and thought he was only a sheep.  This brother observed that many in the mob camp had been wounded, including the man who had been captain of the guard when the prophet, Joseph Smith was killed.

The “Spartan Band” and some sharp shooters from Captain Gait’s company harassed the mob’s wing companies and their watering places.  In the evening, the defenders moved their four cannons, approached the mob’s camp, and opened fired.  No shots were returned and the defenders soon returned to the city.

A committee of citizens from Quincy stepped forward and started to negotiate a settlement to end the hostilities.  Andrew Johnson was the chairman of the committee.  They drafted letters to Thomas S. Brockman, the commander of the posse (mob) and to Major William Clifford, the commanding officer of the Illinois volunteers in Nauvoo.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched twenty‑one miles up the river road.  Henry Standage noted that there was “nothing but one eternal plain, no hills in sight.”  They did see many herds of antelope, buffalo, elk and other animals including wolves and badgers.  They camped for the night just east of present‑day Dodge City.

The brethren from the Mississippi company, heading east (who had met the battalion the day before) met John D. Lee, Howard Egan, and James Pace who were on their way to catch up with the battalion.  The brethren asked John D. Lee for advise and counsel.  Brother Lee advised them to continue to pursue their journey to Mississippi, to gather their families before going to Council Bluffs.


Sheffield, England:

A conference of the church was held in Sheffield with 404 members.  The conference report indicated that twenty-two people had been baptized in the conference during the previous three months.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 383‑85; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:77‑82, 87, 89; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 193, 234; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 164; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 135, 260‑1; Our Pioneer Heritage, 2:429


                     Monday, September 14, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

In the morning, five men started with teams for Nauvoo to help bring the poor to Winter Quarters.  Orrin Porter Rockwell left on horseback for Mount Pisgah with a package of letters.  Brigham Young and others of the brethren continued to survey Winter Quarters.

Norton Jacob was on the work detail to cut and gather hay.  After arriving at the meadow, as he was getting out the wagon, an ox kicked him very hard in his side.  This injury ended up disabling him for a week.

Wealthy Lovisa Richards, two‑year‑old daughter of Franklin D. and Jane Richards, died.  Franklin D. Richards was away on a mission so this is a very difficult time for Jane Richards to be alone and to lose her only child.  Wealthy had been sick for some time and had received blessings from Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball.  Two weeks earlier she took a turn for the worse and her uncle, Willard Richards, would visit her almost every day.  Her strength finally left her and she died of diarrhea and the black canker (caused by poor nutrition).


Her aunt, Mary Richards wrote: 

Peaceful her gentle Spirit fled,

The Heavenly Courts to adorn.

Her body slumbers with the death,

To wait the resurrection morn.


Mary Richards wrote to her husband, “Oh! my dear ‘twas a distressing sight to see the affliction or sorrow that Jane endured at the death of her only Child.  It would be impossible for me to describe it.”

Genet Gardner, age three years, also died.  She was the daughter of William and Genet Gardner.  James Willard Cummings Jr. was born to James W. Cummings and his wife.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion continued their march up the Arkansas River.  Lieutenant  Smith cut the rations in half which prompted grumbling among the ranks.  As they marched, they passed by large piles of lime which had looked as if it had been burned hundreds of years ago.  They were white, like chalk, and looked like plaster of Paris.  The animals were becoming very weak because of the lack of grass in the area.  They made their camp after traveling about fifteen miles.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

The mob fired a cannon ball into the city to let the defenders know they had some ammunition left.  The Saints quickly sent the ball back to the mob.  The “Spartan Band” continued to harass the mob.


Society Islands, in the South Pacific:

Addison Pratt sailed to Tukuhora.  As he was passing Otekofai, a signal was spotted which requested him to land.  He did, and was asked to administer to a sick woman.  He set sail again and when he came to Tukuhora, he saw a large ship in the bay that turned out to be a French Ship.  On board was a Mr. Chapman, the American consul at Tahiti, and a Mr. Wilson, son of an English missionary.  In the evening he met with these men and later wrote,


In the evening they called on me, and in speaking of the mission in which I am engaged, they said there had never seen a mission started in the Pacific Ocean that had met with success that this had, and when our means and encouragement from home were considered, it was a wonder.  And since our labours have been so favored of the Lord!!  Why is it that we are so neglected by the church at home? One letter is all we have received from them.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 385‑86; Rich, Ensign to the Nations, 42; Joseph Fielding Diary in “Nauvoo Journal,” BYU Studies 19:165; “Wandle Mace Autobiography,” typescript, BYU, 203; Bigler, The Gold Discovery Journal of Azariah Smith, 26; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 193, 234

                    Tuesday, September 15, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

In the morning, Brigham Young took his family and rode with Willard Richards to Winter Quarters.  They surveyed the Winter Quarter’s cemetery, located on a hill to the west.22  This cemetery was immediately put to use.  Wealthy Lovisa Richards was buried this day, the first to be buried in the new cemetery.  When they returned to Cutler’s Park, they watched twelve wagons leave for Nauvoo with two to five yoke of oxen each.

Wilford Woodruff took his family for an outing into the country.  They traveled four miles to the hay field, crossed over to the bluff, and then rode two miles to a large lake which was two miles across.  “It was surrounded by high grass, weeds, & peavine.  The surface of the lake was dotted over with a great variety of ducks & old geese.”  Elder Woodruff shot six ducks and had to wade out into the lake to retrieve them.  As he did, he lost one of his shoes and had to travel back bare foot.

William Clayton tried to take a letter to the camp headquarters.  He wrote, “Before I got half way there, my knees failed me and it was with great difficulty I got there and home again.”  He was still very weak from his long illness.

In the evening, a joint council meeting was held.  A letter was sent to Jacob Gates, asking him to bring his company back from the Pawnee Village.  Solomon Case and John Kidding were appointed to take the letter to the village located about 115 miles to the west.  Jedediah M. Grant was asked to meet with Peter Sarpy regarding moving the Church’s ferry to a new location near Cutler’s Park.  They had a previous agreement with Sarpy that he would be able to use the ferry when it was not in use by the Church.  The Council decided to sow some rye and fall wheat near the river.

Vincent Shurtleff and Jacob Houtz arrived in the afternoon from the Ponca Village where George Miller’s company was located.  They had traveled for nine days and about 200 miles to reach Cutler’s Park.  They reported that the camp was doing well and were getting along fine with the Poncas.  There were 175 wagons in the company.  The company was living according to a common stock principle, having all things in common.

William Thaddeus Kelley, age eight months, died.  He was the son of Alvey and Rosey Kelley.  Caroline E. Gates, wife of Jacob Gates (away at Pawnee Village) died.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A son, Benjamin Martin Ivie, was born to James and Eliza Ivie.  A son, Daniel Seavey Pendleton, was born to Calvin and Salley Pendleton.23

Mount Pisgah, Iowa:

A daughter, Ann Karren, was born to Thomas and Ann Karren.24


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched for twelve miles and then crossed over the Arkansas River into what was then called Texas Territory, but was still in present-day Kansas.  Lt. Smith ordered that several of the families stay on the north side of the river and to head to Pueblo [Colorado] for the winter, where the Mississippi Saints were located.25

Most of the Mormon officers strongly opposed this decision to split up the battalion.  Levi Hancock wrote, “I wanted it distinkly understood that it did not agree with my feelings for it was told to us that we must hold together not to devide but it must be done.”  Ten men were assigned to escort the families to Pueblo.  They were led by Captain Nelson Higgins and Quartermaster Sebert Shelton who were instructed to rejoin the battalion within thirty days.

The rest of the battalion crossed over the river and overtook Colonel Sterling Price’s company of five hundred members of the Missouri Cavalry.  They camped for the night near present‑day Ingalls, Kansas.

Historian John Yurtinus pointed out that Francis Parkman, later a famous American historian, was on the Santa Fe trail at that time and camped with the battalion on this day.  He left this very interesting description: 


The stream glistened at the bottom, and long its banks were pitched a multitude of tents, while hundreds of cattle were feeding over the meadows.  Bodies of troops, both horse and foot, and long trains of wagons, with men, women, and children, were moving over the opposite ridge and descending the broad declivity before us.  These were the Mormon Battalion in the service of the government, together with a considerable number of Missouri volunteers.” 


Nauvoo, Illinois:

In the morning, members of the Quincy Committee started to meet with both sides to negotiate a treaty.  Thomas Brockman, leader of the mob, wrote an “ultimatum” to the commanding officer in Nauvoo and the Nauvoo Trustees.  He stated that if the Mormons left the city in five days, all of the posse’s arrest warrants would be discarded.  All arms must be surrendered.  A committee of five and their families would be allowed to remain in Nauvoo until May, 1847, to dispose of property.  If all these conditions were met, the posse pledged to not destroy “person or property.” 

Even though these demands were unjust, Daniel H. Wells pled with the defenders to accept a treaty and no longer try to defend the city which they would eventually have to give up.  Their lives were in peril and it seemed foolish to hold out much longer.  William Cutler later reflected:


It was sensible [that] we must leave Nauvoo.  The time has come for us to depart.  God has called upon us to go and if we will not he will let the mob loose upon us to drive us out.  But they will not get any glory for it but will have to suffer for their wrongs to the [Saints].  I hope the day will come when we shall not have to suffer from the Mobs as we have done.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 387‑8; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:82; William Clayton’s Journal, 63; Nibley, Exodus to Greatness, 238; Francis Parkman, The Oregon Trail:  Sketches of Prairie and Rocky‑Mountain Life, 348‑49; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 136‑37; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 164; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 5:2:39; Letter from Thomas S. Brockman to Nauvoo Trustees, Lee Library, BYU; Rich, Ensign to the Nations, 43; Nielson and Flack, The Dutson Family History


                  Wednesday, September 16, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

It was a rainy morning.  A council meeting was held at which Albert P. Rockwood reported that more than one thousand dollars had been collected within the camp to buy goods in St. Louis.  John S. Higbee was appointed as the ferryman and was assigned to move his family to the location of the new ferry.  Samuel Russell was selected to run a hotel, a tent for strangers who came into the camp.

The council discussed plans for Winter Quarters.  Some of the brethren were concerned that the site was too close to the river.  They believed this would pose a health risk.  Much of the sickness was blamed on fumes coming from the river.  But Orson Pratt and Heber C. Kimball argued that any poisonous gases would rise and be blown away by the winds.  The council decided that the brethren could begin moving to Winter Quarters to start building homes on their assigned lots.

At about 11 a.m., Sister Martha A. Hovey, age thirty-two, died of “bilious fever.”  Her husband Joseph wrote,


She was laid out in her robes to come forth in the morning of the resurrection.  She was full of faith and good works.  She delighted in the blessings of the Kingdom.  It was her meat and drink to hear them spoken of.  She often spoke of the Glory of God and what a blessing it would be to live and enjoy it.  She did desire to live and gain more knowledge of God and his plans.  She died without a struggle or groan.  I stopped beside her bed until she drew her last breath and closed her eyes.  She showed in her countenance that she was at rest.  A number spoke of her pleasant countenance and peaceful corpse.  If I am faithful, I anticipate meeting her and embracing her when she comes forth in the morning of the resurrection.  I will behold her with a glorious body that cannot be diseased and afflicted, and all tears will be wiped away.  My daily prayer is that I may hold out until the end and enjoy the glories of the Celestial Kingdom with her, and reign with my brethren throughout all eternity.

Brigham Young and others traveled to Winter Quarters and selected places for their cabins.  Wilford Woodruff picked out his lot and then went at night to search for some cows.  He became lost on the river bottoms and could not find the bridge to cross the stream.  Finally he returned home at 10 p.m.

Agnes Swap, age three months, died of chills and fever.  She was the daughter of William and Elizabeth Swap.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

Francis Parkman, later a famous American historian who on the trail, observed the Mormon Battalion on this day and wrote:


In the morning the country was covered with mist.  We were always early risers, but before we were ready, the voices of men driving in the cattle sounded all around us.  As we passed above their camp, we saw through the obscurity that the tents were falling, and the ranks rapidly forming; and mingled with cries of women and children, the rolling of the Mormon drums and the clear blast of their trumpets sounded through the mist.


As the men were packing up, orders came to pitch their tents again.  They would be staying at this location for another day, washing clothes and cooking food for the long march ahead.

Lt. Smith requested some provisions from Colonel Sterling Price of the Missouri Volunteers.  Colonel  Price refused the fill the order, stating that he did not haul provisions to be used by Mormons.26  Lt. Smith became very angry and sent word to Price that “if they did not let him have some provisions, he would let loose the Mormons and come down upon them with his artillery.”  Price did send the provisions.

The families across the river started out for their journey to Pueblo for the winter.  Many of the rest of the battalion members went fishing and caught more fish than they could personally use.

Brother Alva Phelps died in the evening.  It was believed that the Calomel medicine killed him.  Samuel Gully wrote:  “We have death with us & Hell immediately following after in the way of our 1st surgeon.”  Henry Standage recorded:  “He was a faithful brother and had not been sick but a little while.  I help’d to dig his grave by torch light.”  Christopher Layton wrote: 


It is understood that he begged Dr. Sanderson not to give him any medicine, as he needed only a little rest and then would return to duty; but the doctor prepared his dose and ordered him to take it, which he declined doing whereupon the doctor, with some horrid oaths forced it down him with an old rusty spoon.  A few hours later he died, and the general feeling was that the Doctor had killed him.


Later at night, many of the battalion saw a curious star in the east that would move north and south and up and down.  Levi Hancock wrote that the star was between two others as if dancing.  He interpreted the event as a sign that something was going to happen.  Henry W. Bigler wrote that he arose to see the spectacle, “At this I got up to see the moving star but could not see anything of the sort, while others said it did move up and down and sideways.”


Nauvoo, Illinois:

In the morning, Wandle Mace ascended the temple to look over to Iowa.  He could no longer see his family’s wagon and became very concerned.  There had been a great deal of excitement on the Iowa side, in Montrose, so he feared for their safety.  He was given permission to cross over the river to find his family.  He wrote: 


I crossed the river to Montrose and walked along down the river to where I had left my family in camp.  I met my wife and son John just about to step into a skiff to cross over to Nauvoo to see what had become of me; the noise of battle, the booming of cannon had made them so anxious, they concluded they must go over and learn if I was still alive.  As I approached toward them, my son saw me and joyfully exclaimed, “By George, there’s Father!” It was a great relief to my anxious wife and children to see me once more safe.


Brother Mace then went into Montrose and found crowds of people gathered, talking about the fighting which was taking place in Nauvoo. 


One man standing upon a dry goods box was making a vehement speech, saying terrible things of what the Mormons were doing.  He said a red flag was flying on the top of the temple, and that meant blood.  He told them the Mormons had done awful things, he tried to tell all about our defenses we had made . . . there was many present who knew me, had he mentioned my name I should have stood a poor chance of escape for they were blinded by fury and excitement.  I was armed with a six shooter and a bowie knife inside my buttoned up coat, had they molested me I would have defended myself to the best of my ability. . . . One man standing nearby spoke a little favorable of the Mormons was knocked down instantly.  I concluded the best thing for me to do was to move off quietly, and as speedily as possible.


There were some hostilities in the morning.  Major William Clifford recorded:


The enemy deployed as on the 12th and were met by the “Spartan Band” and 3rd Company of infantry commanded by Captain Gaits & his two pieces of cannon.  Rifles & Musket shots flew thick--and the cannon shots were rapidly exchanged--and the mob retreated for the fourth time; finding our fortifications, which we had been constantly throwing up, were too strong for them.


Soon, both sides agreed to sign a treaty.  The Saints would surrender to the mob forces.  Thomas S. Brockman, leader of the mob forces, would enter and take possession of the city on the next day.  All arms would be delivered to the Quincy committee and later returned after the Saints crossed the river.  The mob promised that there would be no violence or property damage.  The sick and helpless would be protected and treated well.  The Saints would cross the river immediately.  Five men, including the Nauvoo Trustees would be permitted to remain in the city to dispose of property.  Hostilities would cease immediately.

In the evening, in the Mormon camp west of Montrose, Iowa, William Pickett (the man who the mob posse was trying to arrest) came into the camp in disguise.  He had fled Nauvoo to bring the camp news of the treaty that had been made with the mob.  Pickett remained in camp and talked late into the night about the tragic events of the past several days.

Isaac Chauncy Haight wrote: 


Here we are exiled from the United States and without a home, dwelling in tents and wagons exposed to the inclemency of the weather.  We are even like the Saints of old having no abiding city but are wanderers and pilgrims on the earth but we count the present suffering not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to his Saints.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 388‑89;  Bennett, Mormons at the Missouri, 1846‑1852, 73; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:82‑3; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 164‑165; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 139‑40; “Joseph Hovey Autobiography,” BYU, 42; “Wandle Mace Autobiography,” typescript, BYU, 203‑05;  Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church, 3:15; Talbot, A Historical Guide to the Mormon Battalion and Butterfield Trail, 25; “Journal of Isaac Chauncey Haight”; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 234;


                    Thursday, September 17, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

In the morning, Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, Wilford Woodruff, and Alpheus Cutler went to look at land for farming near the new location for the ferry.  Afterwards, they visited Brigham Young’s brother, John, who was still quite sick.

In the evening, a joint‑council meeting was held.  A rule was put in place that no cattle should be taken from the herdsmen without an order.  Jedediah M. Grant reported that Peter Sarpy had no objection with the plans to move the ferry to the north, near Cutler’s Park.  He also relayed an alarming report from Mr. Sarpy that a United States marshal from Missouri was on the way to Council Bluffs to arrest the Twelve.  Mr. Sarpy promised to send a warning as soon has the marshal arrived.  Brother Grant also reported that the Secretary of War had instructed the Indian agent, Robert Mitchell, to have all the Mormons removed from the Pottawatomie lands (east side of the Missouri River) by April, 1847.

The council meeting was adjourned, but another small private meeting was held to discuss what actions should be taken if the marshal did try to arrest the Twelve.  It was decided to have Hosea Stout send two spies over to the east side of the river to see what was going on.  Brigham Young also expressed his wish to have the Nauvoo Legion put into operation as soon as possible.

In the evening, Brigham Young and Willard Richards worked on drafts of the design plot for Winter Quarters.

Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The Mormon Battalion set off for a long ninety‑mile march across the Cimarron Desert.  As Levi Hancock looked back to the east where the star had been seen the night before, he saw John D. Lee and Howard Egan on the horizon overtaking with the battalion.  They were on their mission to obtain the pay from the battalion members.

Brother Lee asked that the battalion stop their march so that letters could be read from Brigham Young.  He was astonished to learn that Lt. Smith was commanding the battalion instead of Jefferson Hunt.  Adjutant George P. Dykes told Brother Lee that they did not have time to stop because they had to cross the desert.

John D. Lee became outraged when he learned of the terrible treatment of the sick.  He learned of Alva Phelps’ death the day before that was blamed on the forced treatment of calomel only hours before his death.  He wrote:  “When I came up with the Bat. & saw the suffering & oppression of these Soldiers my blood boiled in my veins to such an extent that I could scarce refrain from taking my Sword in hand & ridding them of such Tyrants.” 

Brother Lee invited Lt. Smith and Jefferson Hunt to ride in his wagon and he proceeded to verbally attack Lt. Smith.  He accused him of inhumane treatment and abuse that was comparable to the persecution endured by the Saints in Missouri.  “I consider the oppression here as great as it was in Mo. They would say if you don’t renounce Mormonism damn you I’ll kill you.  You say to them, if you don’t take calomel, I’ll cut your damned throats.  I see no difference at all.”

He accused them of killing Alva Phelps.  “Not withstanding his entreaties, the Dr. poured an even spoonful of calomel down him & about twice that amount of spirits of turpentine, which ended his career.”  Lt. Smith replied that he was not responsible for what the doctor did.  Brother Lee was outraged and related reports that Lt. Smith had threatened to cut men’s throats if they did not take the medicine.  He knew that the doctor purposely had administered double portions of calomel “through spite saying that he did not care a dam whether it killed or cured and the more killed the better that the dam rascals out to be sent to hell as fast as possible.” 

Finally, Brother Lee threatened mutiny, stating that the Mormons were “ready to revolt & it is with much difficulty that they can be constrained from rising up & bursting off the yoke of oppression.”  At the close of the tongue lashing, Brother Lee expected Lt. Smith to challenge him for a duel, but instead the Lieutenant simply walked away.

The enlisted men were on the side of John D. Lee.  Henry Standage wrote, “The star last night that was seen moving was an omen of the arrival of the messengers in as much as the officers were consenting to almost anything that Lieu Smith our Tyrant would propose.  But we sill call upon the Lord to protect us.”  

The battalion marched on across twenty‑six miles of desert.  Christopher Layton noted that they kept seeing mirages:  “It had the appearance of fog rising from water and then would look like a lake of clear water, but it went on ahead of us and stopped when we did.”  Henry Standage added, “We traveled . . . across one of the most dreary deserts that ever man saw, suffering much from the intense heat of the sun and for want of water.” 

Water was extremely scarce and John D. Lee was appalled to watch men have to rush up to filthy puddles and strain the water through their teeth to keep the insects and mud from being swallowed.  These puddles even contained buffalo droppings.  They would fill their canteens with water standing in the tracks of oxen and mules.  Christopher Layton wrote, “We put the water in a vessel and then sucked it through a silk handkerchief.”  Men started to become sick and collapse on the trail.  Brother Lee loaded up his wagon with three or four sick men who did not have the strength to walk.

A large number of buffalo were seen during the day and two of them came running near the line of men.  Thirty or so muskets were fired which stopped and killed them.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Throughout the night and during the morning, the Saints were fleeing across the river before the mob was to take possession of the city in the afternoon.  Even many of the non‑Mormon citizens left, especially those who participated in the battle.  They had no confidence that the terms of the treaty would be upheld by the mob.

Governor Ford’s official observer, Mason Brayman, reported: 


In every part of the city scenes of destitution, misery and woe met the eye.  Families were hurrying away from their homes, without a shelter, without means of conveyance, without tents, money, or a day's provision, with as much of their household stuff as they could carry in their hands.  Sick men and women were carried upon their beds, weary mothers with helpless babes dying in their arms hurried away ‑‑ all fleeing, they scarcely knew or cared whither, so it was from their enemies, whom they feared more than the waves of the Mississippi, or the heat and hunger and fingering life and dreaded death of the prairies on which they were about to be cast.  The ferry boats were crowded, and the river bank was lined with anxious fugitives, sadly awaiting their turn to pass over and take up their solitary march to the wilderness.


The formal treaty was signed during the morning and at about 3 p.m., the mob forces numbering between 1500‑2000 marched into the city yelling, hooting, and howling.  Thomas Bullock arose from his sickbed and watched them march along Mulholland Street.  He recorded: 


I never heard [such howling] from men, or even the wild savages of the forest . . . terror and dismay surely for once overcame the sick, the poor women and children . . . such an awful and infuriated noise I never again heard. . . . We expected that an indiscriminate massacre was commencing.  I, with others who were sick, was carried into the tall weeds and woods, while all who could, hid themselves; many crossed the river, leaving everything behind.


Daniel H. Wells reported: “As the mob came in, we left 2 blocks in advance.  We met many of the Saints on this side of the river in distress & it drew tears from the eyes of some of the mob.”  They proceeded to the temple, received the keys from the leader of the Quincy Committee, marched around the temple, and then camped on a field on Parley Street.  Thomas Bullock wrote:   “When they encamped, some speeches were made and the men yelled and screamed like Savages.” 

The mob ignored the terms of the treaty and soon sent a company to search the wagons that were on the bank of the river waiting to cross.  They took all the guns that they could find.  An elderly Brother John Stiles was forced to the river at the point of a bayonet and baptized face down in the name of Tom Sharp, a leader of the mob and editor of the Warsaw Signal.

They entered the homes of Nauvoo Trustees, John S. Fullmer and Joseph L. Heywood, and seized anything that looked like arms or ammunition.  As they made this search, they threatened the families.  They also defiled the temple with drunkenness, gambling and filthy songs.  Joseph Fielding wrote with sadness regarding the desecration of the temple:  “They rendezvoused in the [Nauvoo] temple.  We had guarded it by night and day, a long time feeling unwilling to leave it in their hands, but they now had it to themselves.  They even preached in it and cursed the Saints, but did no great damage to it, thinking it would add to the value of their property.” 

Benjamin Ashby recalled: “At night we could hear the sound of the bell and the bass drum from the tower of the temple where the mob were carousing after banishing from their pleasant homes, innocent men, women and children to perish in the wilderness among tribes of savage Indians.” 



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 389‑90; Juanita Brooks, John Doyle Lee, 98-99; Juanita Brooks, Mormon Battalion Mission, 206; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 140‑44; Talbot, A Historical Guide to the Mormon Battalion and Butterfield Trail, 26; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 5:2:40; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 165‑66; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 194;  Roberts, Comprehensive History of the Church, 3:16‑7; Nielson and Flack, The Dutson Family History; Our Pioneer Heritage, 8:234; “Wandle Mace Autobiography,” typescript, BYU, 207; Rich, Ensign to the Nations, 45; Joseph Fielding Diary in “Nauvoo Journal,” BYU Studies 19:165‑66; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:88; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints; “Benjamin Ashby Autobiography,” copy of holograph, BYU, 16


                      Friday, September 18, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Members of the  Twelve and others went to Winter Quarters to lay out the city.  They considered that it might be wiser to establish the settlement closer to the Missouri River.  The original layout was on prairie ridges.  After some discussion they agreed to move the settlement to a table of land nearer to the River.  This land would be protected better by high bluffs from the wind, Indians, and the mob.

Little three‑week‑old Clarissa Martha Hale died.  Both her parents died earlier in the month.  George Corry, age three years, died of chills and fever.  He was the son of George and Margaret Corry.  David Gouldsmith, age four years, died of chills and fever.  He was the son of Gilbert D. and Abigail Gouldsmith.

Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

Many of the battalion members received letters from their families delivered by John D. Lee.  Philemon C. Merrill was very disappointed that there was not a letter for him.  He later wrote to his wife: 


With the mail from the Camp of Israel & most every brother in the army had a letter from their dear wife & children and friends.  But not a word from you and my friends which caused me to weep to think that I had not heard a word from you since we parted at the Fort [Leavenworth] which day I shall not forget while time shall last, to see you go one way and I the other, not knowing that I shall every see you and my children which was near to me than life. . . . I take courage, feeling that if we put our trust in God that he will preserve our lives and that he will take care of us and that we shall live to see each other again and enjoy each other’s society again.  Pray for me that I may be preserved and fill my mission with honor to God and myself.


The battalion broke camp at daylight and continued their long, hot journey across the Cimarron Desert.  No water was found.  Henry Standage wrote that there was “nothing to look at but a large dreary desert and here and there a herd of Buffaloes or antelopes.  I suffered much more than yesterday for want of water; found some rain water about 2 o’clock, mixed with Buffalo dung and urine; drank some of it which seemed to be a blessing.”  Another soldier wrote:  “but that we did not mind but drank freely and many of us was greatly refreshed and thought it drank first rate.”  Henry Bigler added, “but Oh gracious how sick it made us.” 

After a journey of twenty‑six miles, they camped at a dry creek called Sand Creek.27

In the evening, John D. Lee tried to stir up the troops to remember the counsel from Brigham Young.  He read a letter from Brigham Young stating that Jefferson Hunt should be at the command.  (See August 27, 1846.)  He then read his letter of instruction relating to gathering the pay from the battalion.


Saint Louis, Missouri:

News arrived from Washington D.C. that Captain P.B. Thompson was to take over the command of the Mormon Battalion because of Colonel James Allen’s death.  (See September 4, 1846.)  Captain Thompson immediately left for Fort Leavenworth to start a journey to overtake the battalion.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Thomas Brockman, leader of the mob, ordered the expulsion from the state of all the non‑Mormons who had taken part in defending the city with the Mormons.  This was a clear violation of the treaty.  More than one half of the new citizens were forced from their homes.

In the morning, a band of thirty men armed with guns and bayonets marched by the house where Thomas Bullock was staying.  The captain called the group to halt and he demanded that the owners of the wagons come out of the house.  Brother Bullock and his family were very sick.  He was taken from his bed and led outside supported by his sister‑in‑law.  The captain pointed a sword at his throat and four others pointed their guns at his chest.  The captain declared, “If you are not off from here in twenty minutes, my orders are to shoot you.”  Thomas Bullock replied:  “Shoot away, for you will only send me to Heaven a few hours quicker, for you see I am not for this world many hours longer.”  The captain then told him, “If you will renounce Mormonism you may stay here and we will protect you.”  To this Brother Bullock replied, “This is not my house, yonder is my house (pointing to it) which I built and paid for, with the gold that I earned in England.  I never committed the least crime in Illinois, but I am a Mormon, and if I live, I shall follow the twelve.”  “Then,” said the captain, “I am sorry to see you and your sick family, but if you are not gone when I return in half an hour, my orders are to kill you and every Mormon in the place.” 

Thomas Bullock, with the help of his brother‑in‑law, George Wardle, drove the wagon down to the ferry.  They were searched five times for firearms and took a gun which was never returned.  While on the bank of the river, Brother Bullock crawled over to bid good‑bye to a sister heading for St. Louis.  One of the mob cried out, “Look, look, there’s a skeleton bidding Death good bye!”

John William Dutson had concealed some bullets in a small chest that was locked.  He was ordered to unlock the chest to be searched.  Brother Dutson threw them the key and said that he did not want to unlock it for them, but they could help themselves.  They concluded that he had nothing to hide and moved on.

The mob marched through the temple, up to the top of the tower.  They rang the temple bell and shouted.  Thomas Bullock wrote: 


Other detached bodies were roving thro the city, searching for arms, and driving the Saints from their homes, bursting open trunks, chests, tearing up floors, appropriating to themselves such things as they saw fit.  A Mob preacher ascended to the top of the Tower and standing outside proclaimed with a loud voice “Peace, Peace, Peace to all the Inhabitants of the Earth, now the Mormons are driven.”


Fulton, Illinois:

Emma Smith and her family arrived in Fulton, about 150 miles upriver from Nauvoo.  She found temporary lodging in the city. Abbey Rice commented, “I like her appearance very well.”


Society Islands, in the South Pacific:

Addison Pratt was very excited to be reunited with his missionary companion Benjamin Grouard.  Elder Grouard had been away doing missionary work on other islands.  He had visited nine islands and had baptized 114 people.  Elder Pratt wrote:  “The satisfaction that we enjoy at meeting each other on these barren rocks and lonely isles is known only to those who experience it. . . . All of those islands he visited are anxious to have a missionary from America come and live among them.” 



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 390; “Diary of Lorenzo Dow Young,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 4:148; Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 288; Letter from Philemon. C. Merrill to Cyrena Merrill, Church Archives;  Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:83; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 166; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 144‑46; Our Pioneer Heritage, 8:235; Newell and Avery, Mormon Enigma Emma Hale Smith, 239‑40; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


                    Saturday, September 19, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

It was a very windy day.  Many tents were taken down in order to protect them from harm.  Some of the wagon covers were blown off and several tents that remained up were badly damaged.

Members of the Twelve arose early and went to the new location for Winter Quarters where they surveyed sixty lots, enough to settle about 150 families.  Before leaving for home, they cast their hooks into the river and caught some nice catfish.

In the evening, the Twelve were still very concerned about the arrival of a marshal from Missouri to issue arrest warrants.  Wilford Woodruff wrote, “O Missouri when will thou cease seeking for the blood of the Twelve Apostles and the Saints of God?”  Twelve United States army horses had been seen on an island near the other side of the river, along with three men.  The horses were fully equipped and the brethren were worried that their purpose there was to kidnap some of the Twelve.  Brigham Young asked that two men be sent down the river to find any hiding places for troops and generally to explore all of the routes to the camp.  This information would help prepare for any attack from those intent on persecuting the Church leaders.

Lydia Owen, age thirty-five, died of fever.  She was the wife of Seeley Owen.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Sister Ursulia Hascall wrote to her family in the east telling them about “black walnuts in abundance and hundreds of bushels of grapes, orchards of mile plumbs.  Fifty bushels in a place.  You never saw anything better [to] make pies and preserves.” 


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion had camped near the Missouri Cavalry.  It was decided to start the march very early before sunrise, at 4 a.m., in order to reach Cimarron Springs before the Missouri Volunteers.  After a twelve‑mile march on the trail known as the Cimarron Cutoff, the weary soldiers arrived at the springs at 9 a.m., well ahead of the Cavalry.  They found water by digging into the sand, but it tasted as if it were mixed with mineral salts and they couldn’t stand drinking it.28

Captain Jefferson Hunt requested the soldiers’ pay from the paymaster, who claimed that he did not have small enough change to distribute the money nor could he make the pay in checks larger than the amount due each individual.  No pay would be issued until they arrived to Santa Fe.

Lieutenant Smith called on the sergeants of each company to ask why certain men not on the sick list were not fulfilling their guard duties.  William Coray reluctantly explained that the men dreaded taking the doctor’s medicine and his insults.  On hearing this, Lt. Smith was very angry and threatened to put the sergeants in irons for writing false reports.  After this exchange, the sick men would choose to stand guard rather than go to the doctor.

In the evening a number of the battalion officers met together in a private meeting to discuss how they should handle John D. Lee’s continued hostile words towards the officers.  His words were also stirring up many of the enlisted men towards mutiny.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

The Quincy Committee gave a report of their negotiations for the surrender of the city at a public meeting in Quincy.  The mob held a court martial at the temple for some of the prominent new citizens of Nauvoo.  They were ordered to all cross the river immediately.

A correspondent for the Burlington Hawkeye, in Iowa, visited Nauvoo and reported his experience in the newspaper.  “We proceeded to the Mansion House, where we met with a small detachment of soldiers and a number of strangers.  From thence we went to the Temple.”  There he observed soldiers sleeping in the seats of the pulpits.  “On every hand lay scattered about in beautiful confusion, muskets, swords, cannon balls, and terrible missiles of death.  Verily thought I, how are the holy places desecrated!”

He left the temple and wandered through the city streets.  “All was stilled and hushed as the charnel house.  Not a human being was seen.  Houses appeared suddenly deserted, as though the inmates had precipitately fled from a pestilence or the burning of a volcano.  Some had windows open and the flowers blooming on the casements.”  As he approached the Mansion House, he met a woman holding a baby who asked him if he was a member of the Quincy Committee.  He replied that he was a stranger.  He asked her where her friends were.  She responded:  “I have none‑‑not one.  The soldiers say I must leave in two hours.  The child is sick and my other is a cripple.”  She only had enough flour for one dinner.

The correspondent crossed the river over to Montrose.  He wrote, “I stopped at the door of one tent, arrested by the subdued sobs of a young mother, whose heart was broken with grief.  By her side lay her infant, a corpse.  She had neither friend or relative to bury her child, nor a mouthful of food to eat.”  

In the evening, William Green and three others crossed back over to Nauvoo after ferrying some of their possessions over to Montrose earlier during the day.  They were confronted by a company of thirty men who asked if they were Mormons.  They replied, “Yes.”  The men advanced and were ordered to take aim with there muskets at the unarmed men.  The word, “Halt” was heard.  William Green tried to explain why they were there.  The soldiers conferred amongst themselves and one suggested that the Mormons be thrown in the river.  They called the ferry operator over who vouched for the men and chastised the soldiers for driving them out of the city and also for treating them like dogs.  The brethren were taken prisoner and locked up in a room for the night.


Yerba Buena, California:

The Saints who arrived on the Brooklyn, struggled to find work and to obtain food.  Samuel Brannan had sent Daniel Stark and others to the Marin Forest to get a load of redwood.  They returned from this assignment on this day.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 390; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:83; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 194; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 166; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 146‑48; “Journal Extracts of Henry W. Bigler,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 5:2:40; Our Pioneer Heritage, 3:498; Mormon Manuscripts to 1846:  Guide to Lee Library, BYU; Nielson and Flack, The Dutson Family History; Kimball, Historic sites and Markers along the Mormon and other Great Western Trails, 200‑01; Ward, ed., Winter Quarters, 87, 302; Letter of Ursalia B. Hastings Hascall to Col.  Wilson Andrews; Mulder &  Mortensen, Among the Mormons, 193‑94; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


                     Sunday, September 20, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

The Saints met at the stand at Cutler’s Park to hear Heber C. Kimball and Brigham Young speak.  Elder Kimball announced plans to build Winter Quarters at a better spot, a few miles away, near the river.  Brigham Young stated that he did not feel like preaching much because there were so many sick brethren that needed to be administered to.  He expressed sorrow for the suffering that he had seen the Saints endure.  He saw so many who were struggling to live and he had deep feelings for those who were suffering for their religion.  Wicked men were running to Missouri reporting lies to stir up the people.  He wanted to leave Missouri alone.  Those who persecuted them would pay for it in the eternities.

At 5 p.m., a council meeting was held.  Volunteers were called to go up north of Old Council Bluffs to establish a small settlement.  Frederick Kester reported that a good site for a mill had been found near the new location for Winter Quarters.  Assignments were made to start building a mill.

Brigham Young wrote a letter to Bishop George Miller, who was located with a large company of Saints at the Ponca’s village, far up the Missouri River.  He counseled the company to not hold “all things in common.”  He explained that “until we are more perfect, all such attempts will end in poverty and confusion.”  President Young also counseled George Miller to abandon the settlement and return to the main camp.  “If you want to locate your families here you have only to build a boat and drop them down to this place where you can become partakers of such like blessings as we enjoy.”

Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Across the river at Council Point, Ira Oviatt was appointed to serve in the High Council, replacing Jonathan H. Hale, who had recently died.


Mount Pisgah, Iowa:

Molly Marston Sweat, wife of John Sweat, died.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The Mormon Battalion took down their tents early in the morning and traveled twelve miles to the Cimarron River “if it can be called a river.  No water, nothing but a bed of sand,” wrote Henry Standage.  There was plenty of grass for the animals to feed on and there were many buffalo, antelope and deer.  They dug a deep well, but the water was quite black.  They had not found wood to burn for ten days, but there were plenty of buffalo chips.

In the evening, the battalion officers met with John D. Lee.  Captain Jesse Hunter stated that Brother Lee had been out of place in abusing Lt. Smith and Dr. Sanderson.  Levi Hancock and David Pettigrew supported Brother Lee’s position.  Jefferson Hunt finally spoke, stated that Brother Lee was stirring up the battalion to revolt, and did not have the right to counsel the battalion.  Captain Hunt said that he alone had the authority to counsel the battalion.  Brother Lee was told to cease stirring up the battalion towards mutiny.

John D. Lee responded that he did not want to command the battalion, but Captain Hunt had not taken his rightful position as commander of the battalion.  He was angry that the officers had given their support to Lt. Smith.

Several officers commented that they did not believe that Brother Lee intended to do anything wrong.  The meeting was concluded with Howard Egan stating that he saw “that they [the officers] did not want any council, so he thought in as much as they had burned their backsides, they might sit on the blisters.”

Eventually, good feelings were restored and Captain Hunt offered free board for Brothers Lee and Egan while they traveled with the battalion until the pay could be collected from the soldiers.


On the way to Pueblo, Colorado:

While traveling up the Arkansas River with the battalion families, Private Norman Sharp accidentally shot himself in the arm.  He was taken to a nearby Indian village to be treated.  He would start to get better but gangrene would later set in and he soon died.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

In the morning, John William Dutson and the other brethren were unlocked from their room and were told they were free to go.  They had been held there overnight by the mob.  As they descended the stairs, Brother Dutson was asked how he slept.  He replied, “I would not care if they put me in that room again tonight for I have not slept for about three weeks and it is quite a treat.”

The flat boats were very busy as many Saints continued to cross over the river.  About this time, Mary Field, a widow, packed her wagon and took her six children down to the ferry.  Her daughter wrote: 

We hurried to pack some food, cooking utensils, clothing and bedding, which was afterward unpacked and strewn over the ground by the mob as they search for fire‑arms.  A sympathetic member of the mob offered to carry mother’s baby down to the ferry.  Mother had some bread already in the kettles to bake.  Of course she did not have time to bake, so she hung it on the reach of our wagon and cooked it after we crossed the Mississippi River.


In the evening, Thomas Bullock crossed over on the Trustee’s boat.  The mob rang the temple bell for preaching in the evening.


Near Montrose, Iowa:

Bishop Newel K. Whitney and Edwin Woolley arrived into the camp of the destitute Saints.  They were on their way to St. Louis to purchase goods for the Saints on the Missouri River.  On their way to Montrose, they met Brothers Daniel Wells and William Cutler, who were heading towards the Missouri River to make a report about the Battle of Nauvoo.  Bishop Whitney, realizing the terrible condition of the Saints, purchased flour in Bonaparte which he gave to the Saints in the camp near Montrose.  He also gave them counsel and advice.  He observed that about fifty wagons would be needed to help take the poor across Iowa.

In the evening, Bishop Whitney and Brother Woolley crossed the river to Nauvoo where they stayed at Joseph Heywood’s home.  During the night there were three discharges from a cannon stationed at the temple between nine and ten o’clock.  The brethren worried that the war was beginning again, but it ceased.

Mary Field wrote, “The suffering and sadness of that camp I shall never forget.  It is impossible to describe the cries of the hungry children, the sadness of others for the loss of their loved ones.  What a terrible night of misery.  We did not even have a light, except a candle which flickered out in the wind and rain as it was carried from one place to another.” 



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 390‑91, 408; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 166; Juanita Brooks, John Doyle Lee, 100; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:84; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 148‑50, 263; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 195; Beecher, ed., The Personal Writings of Eliza R. Snow, 144; Nielson and Flack, The Dutson Family History;  Hartley, My Best for the Kingdom, 220;  Bennett, Mormons at the Missouri, 1846‑1852, 89; Arrington, From Quaker to Latter‑day Saint, 167‑69; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints; Holzapfel, Women of Nauvoo, 176; Mary Field Garner Papers, BYU


                     Monday, September 21, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

Wilford Woodruff and other members of the twelve spent a hard day working at Winter Quarters staking out lots. 

At 9 p.m., as the Camp of Israel was retiring for the night, an alarm was sounded.  A message was spread throughout the camp that the mob was on the way to camp.  All the brethren were instructed to quickly assemble in the square with their guns.  The scene was one of great confusion as the men tried to calm their anxious families and went off to receive instructions.

This meeting was held at 10 p.m.  President Young informed the company about his letter from Peter Sarpy informing him that U.S. marshals were on the way from Missouri to arrest the Twelve.  It was reported that they were on their way to camp with a large force, hoping to catch the camp by surprise.  All the brethren were asked to clean their guns and have ammunition ready.  They were to pray with their families and keep their dogs tied up at night.  Two spies were sent to the north and two to the south to collect information regarding this potential threat to the camp.  Two six‑pounder guns were prepared for action.  The meeting concluded and the men were told to retire to bed with their guns in their hands.  The military would be organized the following day.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion marched on another very warm day for eighteen miles in and along the dry Cimarron River.  They found some water by digging four feet in the sand, but most of the men suffered greatly from thirst.  Jefferson Hunt told Lt. Smith that if John D. Lee would not keep the peace, he would put him under guard.

Zadoc Judd wrote of activities during the evenings: 


There were several good fiddlers among us and some one had managed to get his fiddle stowed away in a captain’s wagon and after a hard day’s march, the fiddle was brought out and a lively dance would commence and would continue for the entire evening.  There were no girls but many of the boys would take the girls side and do the dance all right.  The boys did say it was the best way to rest and they felt better than they would to sit down and sit still.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Bishop Newel K. Whitney, in Nauvoo on business with the Trustees, was stopped by an anti‑Mormon posse.  They demanded to know his name, and asked if he was Mormon or anti‑Mormon.  He gave them his name and in order to continue his mission, stated he was anti‑Mormon.  They wrote down his name and then left for the temple.  Bishop Whitney believed some trouble was brewing and immediately left for Iowa.

Edwin Woolley wrote of Nauvoo:


The city is now in possession of the Mob, who are ransacking every house in it except those that are known to be not of the highest order.  The temple is their headquarters, they have a barrell of whiskey in it and are drinking and carousing in mob style.  The eastern part of the city I am told presents a dreadful spectacle, as that was the place of the engagement. . . . The log buildings of that part of the town were torn down by the Mormons and hauled together to make forts and breastwork for the defense of the city. . . .

Nauvoo is now like Babylon of old, a sink of iniquity, a place of foul spirits, and a gathering place for the damned.  All that beauty, all the grandeur and all the loveliness that once was there has fled, it has gone and gone forever.  Desolation and the cries of the damned are the only sounds that you hear, even in hours of the night that should be still and quiet.


Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 391‑92; William Clayton’s Journal, 63; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 195; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:85; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 166‑67; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 152; “Norton Jacob Autobiography,” BYU, 36 ‑ p.37; Our Pioneer Heritage, 8:236; Jakeman, Daughters of the Utah Pioneers and Their Mothers, 68; “Zadoc Judd Autobiography,” BYU, 26; Arrington, From Quaker to Latter‑day Saint, 167‑69


                    Tuesday, September 22, 1846

Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

All of the brethren in the camp met in the morning at the springs for a meeting to organize the Nauvoo Legion.  Brigham Young explained the purpose of this organization was to “take care of ourselves in this savage country and prepare for going over the mountains.”  President Young again mentioned that Peter Sarpy, of Trader’s Point, had informed him that two men from Missouri had told him that the Missourians were assembling a company to attack the Saints and intended to arrest the Twelve and others.

The brethren voted to accept the old officers of the Legion.  These officers were called out to lead 16 companies of 25 men, 400 in all.  Brigham Young was accepted as the commander‑in‑chief with Albert P. Rockwood as his aid.  President Young discussed plans to move to the Winter Quarters site which would provide better protection.

Four yoke of oxen were asked for to take a cannon to George Miller’s company at the Ponca village.  Colonel Stephen Markham was asked to raise a company of mounted men for an exploring party.  President Young issued orders that all discharging of firearms around the camp must cease unless special permission was given.  The firing of a gun would now be a signal for an alarm.

At 2 p.m., the officers of the Nauvoo Legion met together at Colonel Stephen Markham’s tent to establish regulations.  Hosea Stout also taught them drilling instructions including the “old Missouri Danite drill” which was an entertaining, short and simple drill to maneuver a small company.

In the afternoon, Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, and Willard Richards rode to the new site for Winter Quarters and selected the lots on which to build their homes.  A number of teams arrived from Cutler’s Park.

In the evening a council meeting was held to discuss plans for the mill at Winter Quarters.  They discussed whether the mill should be powered by horses or water and chose to build a water‑powered mill.  It would be able to grind one barrel of flour per hour.  Brigham Young would be the superintendent of the mill.  The council voted to have “back houses” dug at the rear of each lot,  eight feet deep.

A son, Appleton Harmon, was born to Appleton M. and Elmira Harmon.  Little Appleton died the same day.29  Abigail Carpenter, age six, died of chills and fever.  She was the daughter of Samuel Carpenter.


Mormon Battalion in Kansas:

The battalion continued their journey on the Cimarron River.  Some of the mules were overcome with thirst and exhaustion and had to be left behind.  At noon, they came to a large spring and passed some rocky bluffs in the afternoon.30  After a fifteen-mile journey, they made their camp for the night.  In the evening a thunder storm rolled in, the first one for many days.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

The mob took Colonel Johnson prisoner.  He was, for a time, a leader of the Nauvoo defenders.  Thomas Bullock wrote that they “led him to the Temple, held a Court Martial on him, passed the sentence of death on him, squabbled about the manner of his execution and finally ordered him to leave the City.”

Colonel Thomas L. Kane, friend of the Mormons, arrived at Nauvoo.  Four years later he told of his impressions in dramatic form to the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.


I was descending the last hill‑side upon my journey, when a landscape in delightful contrast broke upon my view.  Half‑encircled by the bend of the river, a beautiful city lay glittering in the fresh morning sun; its bright new dwellings, set in cool, green gardens, ranging up around a stately dome‑shaped bill which was crowned by a noble marble edifice whose high tapering spire was radiant with white and gold.  The city appeared to cover several miles; and beyond it, in the back‑ground, there rolled off a fair country, chequered by the careful lines of fruitful husbandry.  The unmistakable marks of industry, enterprise and educated wealth everywhere, made the scene one of singular and most striking beauty. . . .

I procured a skiff, and rowing across the river, landed at the chief wharf of the city.  No one met me there.  I looked and saw no one.  I could hear no one move, though the quiet everywhere was such that I heard the flies buzz, and the water‑ripples break against the shallow of the beach.  I walked through the solitary streets.  The town lay as in a dream, under some deadening spell of loneliness, from which I almost feared to wake it; for plainly it had not slept long.  There was no grass growing up in the paved ways; rains had not entirely washed away the prints of dusty footsteps. . . .

Only two portions of the city seemed to suggest the import of this mysterious solitude.  On the southern suburb, the houses looking out upon the country showed, by their splintered woodwork, and walls battered to the foundation, that they had lately been the mark of a destructive cannonade.  And in and around the splendid temple which had been the chief object of my admiration, armed men were barracked, surrounded by their stacks of musketry and pieces of heavy ordnance.  These challenged me to render an account of myself, and why I had the temerity to cross the water without a written permit from a leader of their band.

Though these men were generally more or less under the influence of ardent spirits, after I had explained myself as a passing stranger, they seemed anxious to gain my good opinion.  They told the story of the dead city; that it had been a notable manufacturing and commercial mart, sheltering over 20,000 persons; that they had waged war with its inhabitants for several years, and been finally successful only a few days before my visit, in an action brought in front of the ruined suburb, after which they had driven them forth at the point of the sword. . . .

They also conducted me inside the massive sculptured walls of the curious temple, in which they said the banished inhabitants were accustomed to celebrate the mystic rites of an unhallowed worship.  They particularly pointed out to me certain features of the building . . . they led me to see a large and deep chiseled marble vase or basin, supported by twelve oxen, also of marble, and of the size of life, of which they told some romantic stories.  They said the deluded persons, most of whom were emigrants from a great distance, believed their deity countenanced their reception here of a baptism of regeneration, as proxies for whomsoever they held in warm affection in the countries from which they had come.  That here parents went into the water for their spouses, and young persons for their lovers.  That thus the great vase came to be for them associated with all dear and distant memories, and was, therefore, the object of all others in the building to which they attached the greatest degree of idolatrous affection.  On this account the victors had so diligently desecrated it, as to render the apartment in which it was contained too noisome to abide in.

They permitted me also to ascend into the steeple to see where it had been lightning‑struck on the Sabbath before, and to look out east and south, on wasted farms like those I had seen near the city, extending till they were lost in the distance.  There, in the face of the pure day, close by the scar of divine wrath left by the thunderbolt, were fragments of food, cruises of liquor, and broken drinking vessels, with a brass drum and a steamboat signal‑bell, of which I afterwards learned with pain.

It was after nightfall when I was ready to cross the river on my return.  The wind had freshened since the sunset, and the water beating roughly into my little boat, I hedged higher up the stream than the point I had left in the morning, and landed where a faint glimmering light invited me to steer.

There, among the dock and rushes, sheltered only by the darkness, without roof between them and sky, I came upon a crowd of several hundred human creatures, whom my movements roused from uneasy slumber upon the ground.  Passing these on my way to the light, I found it came from a tallow candle . . .  shone flickeringly on the emaciated features of a man in the last stage of a bilious remittent fever.  They had done their best for him.  Over his head was something like a tent, made of a sheet or two, and he rested on a partially ripped open old straw mattress, with a hair sofa cushion under his head for a pillow. . . .

Dreadful, indeed, was the suffering of these forsaken beings, bowed and cramped by cold and sunburn, alternating as each weary day and night dragged on.  They were, almost all of them, the crippled victims of disease.  They were there because they had no homes, nor hospital, nor poor house, nor friends to offer them any.  They could not satisfy the feeble cravings of their sick; they had not bread to quiet the fractious hunger‑cries of their children.  Mothers and babes, daughters and grandparents, all of them alike, were bivouacked in tatters, wanting even covering to comfort those whom the sick shiver of fever was searching to the marrow. . . .

There were, all told, not more than six hundred and forty persons who were thus lying upon the river flats.  But the Mormons in Nauvoo and its dependencies had been numbered the year before at over twenty thousand.  Where were they? They had last been seen, carrying in mournful train their sick and wounded, halt and blind, to disappear behind the western horizon, pursuing the phantom of another home.


This scene certainly left an impact on Thomas L. Kane.  He wrote this day a letter to Brigham Young in which he said, “I am getting to believe, more and more every day, as my strength returns, that I am spared by God for the labor of doing you justice.” 

Bishop Newel K. Whitney also wrote a letter to the Twelve:


We shall leave here in about two hours for Keokuk where we expect to meet a boat (for St. Louis) tonight.  I have not been able to do any business in Nauvoo, owing to the state of affairs there, and am obliged to keep secluded even here. . . . Col.  Kane has been here today, but I have not had but a short interview with him.  He is now over the river and in all probability I shall not see him before I leave.


Thomas Gregg, a non-Mormon also visited Nauvoo on this day.  He published a description in the Missouri Republican.  


I took a stroll through  a portion of the now deserted streets, and for miles, I may safely say, I passed nothing but tenantless houses; some of them closed and barred, and others with doors wide open, as if left in haste.  All along the city, for miles, wherever I went, might be seen on the doors, or on the walls, some notice that the tenement was for sale, or for rent.

During my stay I took several occasions to look at the city and surrounding country from the top of the Temple.  It is, indeed, a grand and imposing scene, and presents the most magnificent view to be found any where on the banks of the Mississippi. . . . I took occasion to ascertain as near as possible the number of houses in the city.  From my position on the Temple, I could count a large portion of the city; and from actual count, and estimate based upon count, I think there are at least two thousand houses in the city proper, and in the suburbs five hundred more -- making two thousand five hundred houses.  About one-half of these are mere shanties, built some of logs, some of poles plastered over, and some framed.  Of the remaining portion -- say twelve hundred houses -- all are tolerably fit residences, and one-half are good brick or frame houses.  There are probably five hundred brick houses in the city, most of which are good buildings, and some are elegant and handsomely finished residences, such as would adorn any city.


He further estimated that only one in twelve houses still had tenants, some Mormons, some new citizens, and some anti-Mormons.  He also mentioned “the ceremony of dipping” when Mormons were forced across the river.


New York City, New York:

Parley P. Pratt, Samuel W. Richards, Franklin D. Richards, and Moses Martin sailed for Liverpool, England.  Elder Pratt did not have funds for the passage, but an Elder Badlam kindly helped him.


Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 392‑94; Jakeman, Daughters of the Utah Pioneers and Their Mothers, 68; William Clayton’s Journal, 63‑4; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 195‑97; Whitney, History of Utah, Vol.  1, p.275‑78; Nibley, Exodus To Greatness, 239; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 166‑67; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 152‑53; Kimball, Historic sites and Markers along the Mormon and other Great Western Trails, 201‑3; Autobiography of Parley P. Pratt, 346; Nibley, Exodus to Greatness, 248; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints; Hallwas and Launius, Cultures in Conflict, 343-44


                  Wednesday, September 23, 1846

Cutler’s Park to Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

The camp began to move to Winter Quarters.  The city had been laid out into blocks of 380 by 660 feet, consisting of 20 lots of size 72 by 165 feet.  Wilford Woodruff was assigned one of these blocks for his company of forty families.  He assigned two families to each lot.  The city was situated on six to eight hundred acres.  Brigham Young assisted the brethren to build a large yard, south of the city, big enough to hold all the cows in his division.  Others lost many of their cattle during the night because they weren’t fenced in.


Garden Grove, Iowa:

A son, Oscar Marion Stewart, was born to Alvin and Camera Stewart.31


Bonaparte, Iowa:

Nathaniel Ashby, age forty-one, died.  He was the husband of Susan Hammond Ashbey and the father of twelve children.


Mormon Battalion, in Kansas, Colorado:

The battalion took up their march on very sandy roads along the Cimarron River.  They traveled fifteen miles and probably crossed into the far southeastern corner of present‑day Colorado.  They dug into the sand to find water and at times also found fish two or three inches long.  The landscape looked desolate.  Nathaniel Jones felt that the area was cursed.

In the evening there was again contention over the medicine issued by Doctor Sanderson.  The Sergeants told Lt. Smith that the doctor was administering calomel for every kind of disease including boils.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

George Wardle crossed back over the river and went into the city to try to sell his three wagon works.  Four men started to pursue him.  He ran and hid in a Brother Robinson’s wagon, under their beds.

Near Montrose, Iowa:

A tremendous thunder storm poured on the desolate, sick Saints who had been driven out of their city.  Thomas Bullock wrote: 


Not a dry thread left to us; the bed a pool of water, my wife and sister‑in‑law lading it out by basins full, and I in a burning fever and insensible, with all my hair shorn off to cure me of my disease.  Many had not a wagon or tent to shelter them from the pitiless blast.  One case I will mention.  A poor woman stood among the bushes, wrapping her cloak around her three little orphan children, to shield them from the storm as well as she could through that terrible night, during which there was one continued roar of thunder and blaze of lightning while the rain descended in torrents.


He added in his journal, “Seven or eight poor shaking creatures and others burning with fever went to one tent and cramd themselves in, [while] others crept under Wagons, and bushes, and a more doleful day and night was seldom if ever equalled.” 

A son, Samuel Wadsworth, was born to  William C. and Ann Wadsworth.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 394‑95; Our Pioneer Heritage,  8:236; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:85; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 167; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 153‑54; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 197; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


                    Thursday, September 24, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

Companies continued to arrive at Winter Quarters.  More lots were surveyed.  Hosea Stout described seeing the city for the first time:


The City for so it was laid out, was situated on a level flat on the second bluff from the river, and about 50 or 60 feet above the watter and was quite narrow at the North End of the city. . . . The city is one mile from South to North & bounded at each end by two brooks of good running water.  The North brook is calculated to have a mill built on it with some 20 feet or more fall. . . . This was a most beautiful and delightful situation for a City & I was well pleased with this, my first view of it.


Joseph Hovey moved into Winter Quarters.  He wrote:  “I was very sick as well as my son Joseph and my little babe Martha Jane.  My tent was spread near the other tents.  My little babe I boarded out to Sister Dunlap.  I paid one dollar per week and furnished the bed for the child.  The little thing was very sick, and I did not expect her to live from one day to the next.” 

In the evening, Daniel H. Wells and William Cutler arrived from Nauvoo on their one‑horse buggy, with letters from the Trustees and letters from Mount Pisgah.  They gave a sad report about the battle, the death of three brethren, and surrender of Nauvoo.

Elizabeth H. Brinton, age twenty-nine, died of chills and fever.  She was the wife of David Brinton.  John Proctor, age twenty-nine, died of chills and fever.


Cutler’s Park, Nebraska:

In the morning, at Cutler’s Park, a problem arose in the camp.  Brigham Young had ordered that a cannon be taken to George Miller’s company, far to the northwest at the Ponca Village.  Jacob Houtz went to receive the gun from John Scott who was in charge of the artillery.  As Brother Houtz was about to leave with the gun, Brother Scott asked who was going to sign the receipt for the gun and take responsibility for it.  Stephen Markham objected to this stating that the order from Brigham Young was sufficient.  He told Brother Houtz to go ahead and drive his teams with the gun out of the yard.  John Scott stood his ground and stated that the gun would not leave until he had a receipt for it.  Brother Scott began unhitching the team when Brother Markham collared him and they began fighting.  Stephen Markham told his assistant to gather an armed force to take the cannon.  Men started to assemble with guns and swords.  Soon the two men separated but still would not back down.  Brother Houtz offered to sign the receipt.  Cooler heads prevailed, the receipt was made out, and Jacob Houtz drove off with the cannon while the armed force looked on.

Shortly, Elder Heber C. Kimball arrived and spoke out against what had taken place.  He told the brethren to not let their passions govern them.  Rather, they should act with calmness and moderation.  Brothers Scott and Markham gave each other a hand of fellowship and the contention seemed to be settled.  Norton Jacob, who witnessed this event wrote:  “Well, may the Lord reward them for their iniquitous practices, and hasten the time when righteousness and the law of God shall prevail, and tyranny and oppression be purged out from among the people of the Lord, yea and driven from the face of the earth.” 

Elizabeth Garret Hoopes, wife of George Hoopes died.  John Proctor also died.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A son, William Henry Mower, was born to Henry and Susan Mower.32


Garden Grove, Iowa:

John Bennion, age fifty-nine, died of “Bilious fever.”  He was the husband of Elizabeth Roberts Bennion and the father of six children.  Emoline Wilson was born to Henry H. and Frances Kelley Wilson.33


Nauvoo, Illinois:

Thomas Bullock reported that the mob was seizing every person they could find left in Nauvoo, would lead them down to the river, and would throw them in.  Charles Lambert was one of them.  Brother Lambert was helping many of the poor Saints cross the river.  He was seized by a member of the mob and before he was thrown in, the man said, “By the holy saints, I baptize you by the order of the commanders of the temple.”  He was then thrown in the river and held under, pulled out and thrown in again, “The Commandments must be fulfilled and God damn you ‑‑ you must have another dip.”  He was pulled out and thrown in a third time.  He was then sent across the river and told that if he returned to Nauvoo, they would shoot him.

Jane Johnston was also threatened about this time.  Her husband was away in Canada.  She recalled that as she approached the river to cross, a mob surrounded her wagon and demanded that she give them all her weapons.  “I then had a pistol in my bosom which I drew out and told them it was there, and that I would use it before I gave it up.”  The mob retreated, but threatened to return at night and throw her into the river.


Mormon Battalion in Colorado and Oklahoma: 

It had rained very hard during the night.  Everything was wet, even some buffalo chips that the men had taken into their tents to keep dry.  They set off on their march and traveled over an area where rocks had been thrown up by volcanic eruptions.  They passed the bones of hundreds of mules which had died in a snow storm the previous fall.  After a march of about fifteen miles, they camped at the Cimarron Crossing in the present‑day Oklahoma panhandle.  They could see “the Rabbit’s Ears” off in the distance, two large mountains in today’s New Mexico.  A large company of traders passed by who were on the way to Mexican settlements (Chihuahua) south of Santa Fe.


On the road to Pueblo, Colorado:

Private Norman Sharp of the battalion died of gangrene in his arm which he had accidentally shot with a gun.  (See September 20, 1846.)


Society Islands, in South Pacific:

A conference of the Church was held at Putuahara under the direction of Elders Addison Pratt and Benjamin Grouard.  It was reported that there were 852 members of the Church on nine islands.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 395; Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 288; “Norton Jacob Autobiography,” BYU, 37 ‑ 41; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 201‑02; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 167; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 155; “Joseph Hovey Autobiography,” BYU, 42; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints; Holzapfel, Women of Nauvoo, 176


                      Friday, September 25, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

Members of the Twelve and others met with Daniel H. Wells and William Cutler to learn details about the Battle of Nauvoo.  After hearing of the battle, William Clayton wrote, “Truly, the Lord fights the battles of his saints.” 

In the afternoon, Brigham Young continued to survey the city of Winter Quarters.  He asked Hosea Stout to raise a company of rangers to explore the country.  He wanted the country to the south explored for a good crossing place over the Elkhorn and Platte Rivers.  He also wished to find good places to winter the stock.

Samuel Carpenter, age forty-three, died of chills and fever.  His six-year-old daughter Abigail died three days earlier.


Mount Pisgah, Iowa:

Harrison Sperry wrote: 


We were living in a little shanty covered with bark.  I remember father telling me to go over to Brother Mansfield’s up the river about 20 rods or more, and it was through brush and very dark.  When I got there, and asked him to come he said:  I cannot, for we are all sick too.  When I hurried back my mother [Mary Lamont Sperry] was just breathing her last breath.  There we were; father was sick, my sister Betsy was sick, and no neighbors anywhere.  My mother died on September 25, 1846.  She had to lay there until morning when I could get help.  They brought a rude coffin and buried her in Mt. Pisgah burying ground.  None of us were able to go and see where she was buried.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

After being “baptized” in the river by the mob on the previous day, Charles Lambert again returned to the Nauvoo side of the river to help the Saints leave the city.  While there, he was detained for the night and his anxious wife spent the night walking up and down the bank of the river, watching and praying for his return. 

A band of the mob seized Brother William Jewell and unmercifully beat him on his head and shoulder with clubs.  Thomas Bullock added:  “He was then let go, and two dogs turned loose on him.  One seized him by the arm, the other by the leg and tore him bad.  The monsters again beat him with their clubs on his head and body ‑‑ loosed him and again started the dogs on him, which tore him again.” 


Mormon Battalion, in Oklahoma:

The battalion marched twenty miles through hilly, rocky, broken land.  A few men climbed a rocky hill and on top found a cave surrounded by a smooth stone with some writing carved into it that looked like Egyptian hieroglyphics.  Thomas Dunn also explored the hills.  He wrote: 


As I drew near the foot of the mound, the surface was covered with huge rock full of seams and crevices.  In some places there was piled one rock upon another weighing perhaps 50 tons.  On the height of this curious scenery where I succeeded in getting by climbing on the rocks, it was mostly level with cracks and crevices.  This mound covered from three to six acres.


On the trail, they met some teams returning to Fort Leavenworth from Santa Fe.  They came in sight of the timber for the first time in over nine days and camped at Cold Springs.  There, they drank the first good water for many days.

Santa Fe, New Mexico:

General Stephen Kearny and his company left Santa Fe, heading for California.


Yerba Buena, California:

A son, William Francisco Glover, was born to William and Jane Glover, who had come to California on the ship Brooklyn.34



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 395; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 202; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 167; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 156; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 161; “Private Journal of Thomas Dunn,” typescript, 7; “Norton Jacob Autobiography,” BYU, 40‑1; Our Pioneer Heritage, 16:421; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


                    Saturday, September 26, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

Brigham Young rode over to Turkey Creek with Willard Richards and Albert P. Rockwood to examine it for a possible site for the mill.  Many of the Saints continued to roll into Winter Quarters and take their assigned lots in the city.

John Scott went to see Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball to determine a place to have the artillery camp in Winter Quarters.  He was given a cool reception because of his recent altercation with Stephen Markham.  After Brother Scott explained the details of his conduct, the leaders felt better about his actions in the matter.  They then chose the location for the artillery camp, north of the city, on the other side of Turkey Creek.

Wilford Woodruff rode up and down the river exploring and searching for cattle.  He wrote:  “I also got wet feet to day hauling several cattle out of the mud to save life. . . . In the evening a drove of wolves caught a calf that bauled at a dreadful rate untill he was dead.  It was heard over the encampment.” 

Great sadness again struck Hosea Stout.  He had already lost two of his children to sickness and death since the beginning of the journey.  On this day, one of his wives, Marinda, age twenty, delivered a stillborn child during the night and Marinda later died in the afternoon of dropsy.  She had been very weak and sick for some time.  He wrote:


She did not seem to realize much pain all day although her looks had for some day indicated her approaching end.  She retained her senses perfectly well as long as she could hear or see and only seemed to drop to sleep with the exception of the death glare of her eyes.  She died about two o’clock p.m.  Her death came by the dropsy . . . she had ever been true & faithful to me . . . . There is now only four of us left and whose turn will be next God only knows.


Philena L. Cox, age twenty-three months, died of worms.  She was the daughter of Andrew J. and Elizabeth Ann Cox.  A daughter, Helen Mar Callister, was born to Thomas and Hellen Callister.35  Also born was Luther Terry Tuttle, son of Azariah and Ann Tuttle.36


Council Point, Iowa:

The High Council at Council Point (Council Bluffs) was reorganized because the senior member, Isaac Morley moved on to Winter Quarters.


Garden Grove, Iowa:

A son, Michael David Yeamans, was born to Michael and Cynthia Stephens Yeamans.


Mormon Battalion, in Oklahoma:

Messengers arrived from General Kearny stating that he intended to start for California, from Santa Fe, without the Mormon Battalion.  Lt. Smith sent back a message urging the commander to wait until the battalion arrived.  He also asked permission for a portion of the battalion to spend the winter at Bent’s Fort.  After a march of about fifteen miles, the battalion camped on a ridge overlooking Cedar Springs.  They were finally able to find wood for their cooking for the first time in more than ten days.

The daily routine was becoming difficult for the men.  Private James Scott recorded, “Nothing new.  Just go ahead seems to be the only word, no rest.  March, march is the daily task.”  After the long march they would stack their arms, pitch tents, and “run over all creation gathering buffalo chips or a little brush & getting water, draw rations, cook supper, etc.; while this is going on, roll call comes on again.  By the time the evening chores are finished, dark is at hand, attend to evening duties, go to bed & sleep on the rough cold ground with only one blanket & a thin tent to shelter from the cold.” 


Society Islands, in the South Pacific:

Elder Addison Pratt was provided with a canoe to go to Nake.  It turned out to be very leaky,


and as the wind still continued ahead and blew very fresh, we had to tow it and as that took most of the crew, I was obliged to bail boat.  The wind was so strong I could keep my hat on my head only as I held it there with my hand, and when I workt I laid it off to save it from being blown away, and consequently got my face burnt by the sun till the skin peelled off.  Arrived there in safety.


Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 395; S. George Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 289; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 202; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:86; “James Scott Diary”; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 156‑57; “Norton Jacob Autobiography,” BYU, 41‑2


                     Sunday, September 27, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

In the morning, a cry of “fire” was heard on the prairie grass near the camp.  Many ran to help and it was soon extinguished.

William Clayton arrived at Winter Quarters and camped on the same block as Heber C. Kimball.  Norton Jacob also arrived.  He wrote: 


Some five or six of our company together with Major Scott and myself took a two horse wagon and went down to search out the spot for our encampment.  About eighty rods north of the head of main street in small valley well sheltered from the winds of winter by the surrounding hills, we found one of the best springs of living water that has been found in this part of the country and here we determined to fix our camp.


Hosea Stout attended to the burial of his wife, Marinda.

The first Sabbath meeting was held at Winter Quarters on a rise of land on the west side of Main Street at 2 p.m.  Elder Orson Pratt opened the meeting with prayer and offered some remarks.  “We [have] suffered by the gentiles a long time; but [have] now gone out of their midst & hope we should rest for a season from their grasp. . . . I have heard the prophet [Joseph Smith] say that God could not control the wicked at all times and let them act upon their agency without operating upon them as a machine.” 

Daniel Wells and William Cutler gave reports on the Battle of Nauvoo.  They described scenes that melted many hearts.  They spoke of the aftermath including the whipping of old men.  Brother Cutler stated, “I hope the day will come when we shall not have to suffer from Mobs as we have done.” 

Brigham Young arose and expressed his joy that these two brethren had arrived safely.  He reintroduced the Saints to Daniel H. Wells who had lived with the Saints for several years and only recently had been baptized into the Church.  Next, he turned his remarks to the suffering of the Saints. 


I have felt sensible there was a good deal of suffering among the saints in Nauvoo, and there has been amongst us, but the Lord God who has fed us all the day long, has his care still over us and when the Saints are chastened enough it will cease.  I have never believed the Lord would suffer a general massacre of this people by the mob.  If ten thousand men were to come against us, and no other way was open for our deliverance, the earth would swallow them up.


Volunteers were asked to go across the river and prepare to go back to Montrose, to bring the poor to Winter Quarters.  A vote was again taken to sell the temple and all Church property.  The funds should be used to help the poor.

In the evening, a council meeting was held.  Joseph Matthews reported that he and Daniel Russell had purchased $400 of wheat at Savannah, Missouri.  The Council wrote a letter to the brethren on the east side of the Mississippi, in Iowa, about the conditions of the Saints who had been driven from Nauvoo.  “The poor brethren and sisters, widows and orphans, sick and destitute, are now lying on the west bank of the Mississippi, waiting for teams and wagons, and means to remove them, which Brothers Cutler and Wells have come to raise.  Now is the time for labor.  Let the fire of the covenant which you made in the House of the Lord burn in your hearts like fire unquenchable.”  They called for men to be raised to bring the poor from Nauvoo.  “Let those who go be as fathers to the poor, whom they shall take up, and not leave until they are comfortably situated.” 

A letter was also written to Trustees back at Nauvoo.  They were informed about the historic plans to send a company of pioneers over the mountains.  “We fully contemplate sending a few hundred men and teams, without families, over the mountains very early in the spring.”  The Saints who were left behind in Iowa and on the Missouri River would be well off with shelter and employment.

They wrote of the historic Nauvoo Bell which is presently hanging on Temple Square in Salt Lake City:  “As you will have no further use for the Temple bell, we wish you to forward it to us by the first possible chance, for we much need it at this place.”  The Trustees were also instructed to send two printing presses and the stereotype plates for the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants.

The Trustees were asked to quickly sell the Church property.  “The Lord wants every pure hearted soul to get out of Nauvoo as speedily as possible and if any shall neglect the first opportunity, it is quite possible he will let loose more effectual means to help them out.” 


Ponca, Nebraska:

A Council meeting was held at the camp led by Bishop George Miller.  James Emmett tried to convince the people “to let all we have be in common, and all draw rations alike.”  Newel Knight and Hyrum Clark argued against this practice without the Twelve’s authorization.  George Miller proclaimed that “the Lord had his eye upon him” and told the brethren that God wanted them to enter into this united order.


Poor Camp, Near Montrose, Iowa:

A thick frost fell during the night making everything white in the morning.  A meeting was held to consider if the camp should be moved away from the “sickly” spot near the Mississippi River to another location.  A committee was chosen to search for better locations.


Mormon Battalion, in Oklahoma:

The battalion traveled twelve miles over sand hills.  The teams continued to become very weak and were failing because of the lack of grass.  They were left behind one by one on the desert.  The companies camped by a muddy pond at McNees Creek.  Their camp covered nearly six acres.  They again had to use buffalo chips for fuel, but some of the men traveled another two miles to gather wood.


Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 396‑97; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:87‑89; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 202; William Clayton’s Journal, 67; Nibley, Exodus to Greatness, 243‑46; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 168; “The Journal of Robert S. Bliss” in The Utah Historical Quarterly, 4:73 Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 157; Hartley, My Best for the Kingdom, 219‑20; “Norton Jacob Autobiography,” BYU, 42; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


                     Monday, September 28, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

Letters of counsel were sent to Charles C. Rich at Mount Pisgah and Brothers Aaron Johnson and David Fullmer at Garden Grove.  The ferry at the new location was in operation.  Wilford Woodruff crossed over the river and spent the day digging out a canoe.  Lorenzo Dow Young and his wife crossed over to gather grapes on the west side of the river.  Men in John Scott’s artillery camp found work available at Bellevue from the Presbyterian missionaries.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

Horace Datus Ensign Sr., age forty-nine, died.  He was the husband of Mary Brunson Ensign and the father of seven children.


Ponca, Nebraska:

A daughter, Emily Electa Noble, was born to Lucian and Emily Noble.


Poor Camp, near Montrose, Iowa:

Fanny Wardle, wife of George Wardle, delivered a boy, John Wardle, who died in the afternoon.37  A meeting was held in the camp, at which a committee reported finding three different places that would be healthier for the camp.


Voree, Wisconsin:

In the Strangite town of Voree, a son, Amos Botford Fuller Jr. was born  to Amos B. and Esther Smith Fuller.38


Mormon Battalion, in Oklahoma:

After the day’s march began, it was noticed that Elijah Allen was missing from one of the wagons carrying the sick.  Several men went back on the trail to look for him.  They found him asleep at the last camp.  He felt that he had been holding up the company so he had climbed out of the wagon during the night and hid in the sagebrush.  After the wagons pulled out, he fell asleep by the campfire.  They put him back in a wagon and by nightfall he was feeling better.

The weary men traveled fourteen miles as they approached the present‑day New Mexico border.  They could only find poor water and very little wood.  They saw bears, turkeys,  plenty of antelope, and passed a pyramid‑shaped mound close to the road that many climbed to get a good view of the surrounding landscape.  They camped in a small grass‑covered ravine.


Society Islands in the South Pacific:

Addison Pratt was planning to return to America from his mission on the islands.  At Nake, he was given many gifts from the members of the Church.  He was given mats, shells, fish hooks, coconut string, pearls, fish nets, pigs, and chickens.  He wrote, “Of these articles, I received liberal contributions, besides they bestowed upon me their hearty thanks and good wishes and urged me to return to them after I had visited America and bring my family with me.  Many of them were anxious to go to America with me, but said they could not for lack of means.” 



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 400 Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:90; “Diary of Lorenzo Dow Young,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 14:148;  Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 289; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 168; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 158; “Norton Jacob Autobiography,” BYU, 42;  Ricketts, Melissa’s Journey with the Mormon Battalion, 32; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


                    Tuesday, September 29, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

Daniel H. Wells and William Cutler left Winter Quarters to return to Nauvoo.  They took with them twenty‑nine letters for Nauvoo and eleven for Mount Pisgah.

Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, and Willard Richards chose a site to build a bridge across Turkey Creek at the head of Main Street.  In the afternoon they accepted contracts for the mill which would be constructed.  Wilford Woodruff worked very hard with others cutting one hundred house logs.  Lorenzo Dow Young and his wife crossed over to gather grapes on the west side of the river.

Louisa Conlee Tanner, age thirty-five, died of fever.  She was the wife of Sidney Tanner.


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A daughter, Margaret Elizabeth Guymon, was born to Noah and Margaret Guymon.39

Poor Camp, near Montrose, Iowa:

In the afternoon, George Wardle buried his infant child on the banks of the Mississippi.  Later, Tommy Travis died in the camp.  A son, Royal Edwin Hatch, was born to Josephus and Melinda Durfee Hatch.40


Mormon Battalion, in New Mexico:

The Mormon Battalion traveled into present‑day New Mexico and passed a landmark, two peaks called the Rabbit Ears.  A number of men wandered to these mountains, several miles to the south of the trail, to hunt antelope.  They discovered a ring of stones about fifty feet across with a pile of rocks shaped like a wing in the center.  Levi Hancock believed that it was an old Nephite construction.  After about twelve miles they camped on a grass‑covered ravine which they called Extra Valley.


Society Islands in the South Pacific:

Elder Addison Pratt traveled to Otepipi.  In the evening, he was summoned to cast out an evil spirit from a woman.  “As she was a small sized woman, some of the stouter sisters were holding her down by main strength, and she was rageing with all the fiendish words and actions of a maniac.  At times she would flutter her hands as if she was trying to fly.  The natives said she was possesst of a [flying devil].”  Elder Pratt had been badly frightened by a crazy man as a child and it took him some time to gather the courage to lay his hands on the woman.  He wrote:  “When I did, she raved worse than ever, but when I commanded in a strong firm voice, in the name of Jesus Christ, those evil spirits that were troubling her to leave her, she caught hold of the sheet with which she was covered, and drew it over her face and lay completely passive.”  He called her by name and asked how she felt.  She stated that she was well, was cheerful, and acted as if nothing happened.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 400; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:90; “Diary of Lorenzo Dow Young,” Utah Historical Quarterly, 14:148; Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 289‑90 Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 168; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 158‑59;  “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints;


                  Wednesday, September 30, 1846

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:

Brigham Young started to dig a well and worked with others to continue surveying Winter Quarters.  Wilford Woodruff helped cut more logs for houses.  Hosea Stout traveled down to the river bottoms.  He observed that “it was in a large thick bottom land and thick set with pea & grape vines & good cottonwood timber.” 

During this time, Sister Eliza R. Snow was very ill, probably with malaria.  She later wrote, “I realized that I was near the gate of death; but in this suffering and exposed condition, I did not feel that God had forsaken me ‑‑ my trust was in Him, and His power preserved me.  While passing through this trying scene, I not only realized the goodness of God, but experienced many kindnesses from my sisters.” 

Mary Richards started a letter to her husband on a mission in England.  “I once more take my pen in hand to address a few lines to you which I trust my dear will find you enjoying health, peace, and the Spirit of God to comfort & strengthen you in the discharge of every duty until you shall have completed your mission and returned in safety to your home, although I know not where you will find it.  But I trust it ‘twill be according to your prayers.”


Council Bluffs, in Iowa:

A son, John Alphonzo Saunders Graham, was born to Thomas and Sarah Graham.41


Poor Camp, near Montrose, Iowa:

The Saints were alarmed and surprised in the morning when the mob in Nauvoo fired their cannon three times at the camp.  All the shots fell short.  The last one struck the water in a direct line with Thomas Bullock’s wagon.  One of the cannon balls was sent to Governor Ford as evidence that the mob was breaking the terms of the treaty.  A heavy thunderstorm rolled through during the evening and it rained all night.


Nauvoo, Illinois:

J.W. Brattle, a leader in the mob seized a man named Silas Condiff and brought him to the river.  Thomas Bullock wrote: 


When Brattle marched in with Condiff and plunged him in the Water saying, “I baptize you in the name of Jo Smith.” When Condiff arose he pulled Brattle to the bottom of the River, both went out amidst the shouts and laughter of the remainder of the crew.  The mob also passed resolutions that no Mormon should be allowed to recross the River, to transact any business in the City.


Mormon Battalion, in New Mexico:

The traveling was very hard for the Mormon Battalion on this hot day.  Near dusk, they stopped for supper for one hour.  Then they continued on  another seven miles until about 11 p.m. because no feed could be found for the animals.  Their total journey of about twenty‑four miles took them over a rolling sandy plain with stones and high mounds.

William Hyde wrote, “Many a soldier’s coat is now worn through on the shoulder by the constant rubbing of his musket, and many are now troubled with scalded or blistered shoulders, which make it quite inconvenient to carry our muskets and cartridge boxes.” 

The end of the month report showed that the Mormon Battalion consisted of 498 soldiers.

Society Islands in the South Pacific:

The Church members prepared a farewell feast for Elder Addison Pratt that included three roasted hogs and coconuts.  After the feast, he rowed to Tukuhora and found Elder Grouard who had just arrived from Putuahora.


Independence, Missouri:

William Crosby and other members of the Mississippi Company arrived in Independence on their journey back home to get their families.



Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 400; Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:90; Brooks, ed., On the Mormon Frontier, The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844‑1861, 203; Ellsworth, The Journals of Addison Pratt, 290; Journal of Henry Standage in Golder, The March of the Mormon Battalion, 168; Yurtinus, A Ram in the Thicket, 159‑60; “William Hyde Journal”; Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, 162; Ward, ed., Winter Quarters,  91; Our Pioneer Heritage,  2:429;  Beecher, ed., The Personal Writings of Eliza R. Snow, 23, 24; “Thomas Bullock Poor Camp Journal” in Bagley, ed., Pioneer Camp of the Saints


1The Dixon family later settled in Ogden Utah.

2The spring is located 2.3 miles west of the town of Lost Springs.  It is identified by a sign north of the highway.

3The Collett family later settle in Smithfield, Utah.

4The Dally family would later make their home in Summit, Utah.

5Mercurous chloride.

6They crossed over the Little Arkansas River, 18 miles west of McPherson, near U.S. 56.

7Lorin would settle in Union, Utah.

8This rock was named for a battle between the Pawnee and Osage Indians.  The register had names of many travelers dating back to 1820.

9Warren Smith joined the Church in 1830.   He would later settle in Carson, Nevada for twenty years and return to Utah in 1874.

10Willard Trowbridge Snow was baptized in 1833 by Orson Pratt.  He served in Zion’s Camp.  He later arrived in Utah in 1847.  He served a mission to England in 1851-52 and in the Scandinavian Mission 1852-3, where he served as the mission president.  He died in 1853, on his mission, on a ship enroute from Denmark to England.

11This first site for Winter Quarters was located on some prairie ridges, away from the river.  A week later, the brethren would decide to move the planned settlement to a bench of flat land closer to the river, located in present‑day Florence, Nebraska.

12Don Carlos would die July 21, 1847 in Winter Quarters.

13This “powder‑plot” was a barrel of gun‑powder and old iron which was to be set off by a fuse.  However, some traitors would later inform the mob about the mines.

14Alanson Norton joined the Church in 1843.  He went to Utah in 1851 and was said to have operated the first woolen and carding mills in Utah.  He later settled with his family in Brigham City, Utah.

15William Anderson joined the Church in 1841.  He served missions to Chicago, Illinois.

16David Norris joined the Church in 1840.  He was married to Sarah Louisa Aser.  He died at the age of forty-six.

17These sand hills are near present‑day Kinsley, Kansas.

18Later, a “Summer Quarters” would be established at this location.

19Thomas Callister (Sr.) would later serve as the first stake president in Millard, Utah.  Thomas (Jr.) would die in Winter Quarters in May, 1847.

20Little Heber would die at Winter Quarters in December, 1846.

21William Rice’s home, in Camp Creek, Illinois, was burned by the mob in November, 1845.  During the trek across Iowa, he had carried some of Orson Pratt’s provisions for a time.  Later he would arrive in Utah, in 1847.  He settled with his family in Farmington, Utah.

22This was the first of two cemeteries in Winter Quarters.  The second one, probably very close to this first one, was put into use in November, and is the famous “Old Mormon Cemetery” at Florence, Nebraska.  Located there is the beautiful statue by Avard Fairbanks of a pioneer father and mother standing at the open grave of their infant child.

23The Pendleton family would later settle in Parowan, Utah

24Thomas was away in the Mormon Battalion.  The Karren Family would later settle in Lehi, Utah.  Little Ann would live for only two days.

25Pueblo had been founded about five years earlier as the headquarters for trappers in the area.  “It was a square fort of adobe, with circular bastions at the corners, no part of the walls being more than eight feet high.  Around the inside of the plaza, or corral, were half a dozen small rooms inhabited by as many Indian traders and mountain‑men.”

26Daniel Tyler wrote that Col.  Price had been the commander of a portion of the mob. at Far West, Missouri in 1838.  He had sat on a court martial that condemned Joseph Smith and others to be shot.

27This was four or five miles southeast of present‑day Ulyssess, Kansas.

28These springs are thirteen miles south of Ulysses, Kansas.  There is a historical marker recognizing the Mormon Battalion at the springs.

29Appleton Milo Harmon was baptized in 1833 by Orson Hyde.  He was later one of the original pioneers of 1847.  He helped to construct the roadometer used by the pioneer company.  He settled with his family in Salt Lake City, Spanish Fork, and Toquerville, Utah.

30This is probably the Middle Springs and Point of Rocks, eight miles north of present‑day Elkhart, Kansas.

31The Stewart family would later settle in Richmond, Utah.  After Oscar grew up, he settled with his family in Mesa, Arizona.

32The Mower family would later settle in Springville, Utah.

33The Wilson family later settled in St. George, Utah.

34The Glovers would later settle in Farmington, Utah.  After William grew up, he settled in Lewiston, Utah.

35The Callister family would later settle in Fillmore, Utah.

36The Tuttle family would later settle in Manti, Utah.

37The Wardle family would later settle in Provo, and then Vernal, Utah.

38Amos B. Fuller Jr. would be baptized at the age of ten, three years after the death of his father.  He later went to Utah and settled in Salt Lake City.

39The Guymon family would later settle in Springville, Fairview, and Fountain Green, Utah.

40The Hatch family would later settle in Ogden, Utah.

41Thomas Bedford Graham joined the Church in 1842.  The family would settle in Salt Lake City and later in Mendon, Cache, Utah, where Thomas would be killed by a bear in 1864.