This day I enlisted in the Mormon Battalion, which is to march to upper California by the way of Santa Fe, under the command of Lieut. Col. Allen, by order of the President of the United States. Our company was this day organized with Nelson Higgins, Captain. I was appointed third Sergeant of the Company. The Company was marched six miles from here to the river flat, to a trading house, where we drew our blankets, etc. ; and on the nineteenth we received many rich instructions from Brigham Young and others of the Twelve, pertaining to this campaign, and the future designs of the Church. On Monday we left this. place and ;moved down the river four miles.
On the 22nd took up line of march for Fort Leavenworth.
Arkansas River, September 17, 1846: On the 16th we camped at this place. 17th still continued our march, leaving the road that goes to Ft. Benton to the right and taking the nearest road to Santa Fe.
October 19; written at California, February 22, 1847: -Journal of the route from Santa Fe, Mexico to this place.
We left Santa Fe October 19, 1846. The face of the country was very broken, mountainous and barren, until we came to Del Norte, or called by some the Rio Grande. Here was a very large Spanish Settlement, the inhabitants of the country are a mixture of Spanish and Indians, and are quite inferior in their habits and customs, and a little below the average size. Their farms are very good for this country; they have no fences at all. Their land is all watered by ditches, and their cattle consists chiefly of herds of stock. There are some parts where grapes are abundant, out of which they make some wine and brandy.
We also went two hundred miles through the thick settlements and there were villages at intervals of from five to ten miles. They raise bitter herbs, also corn and beans and some wheat, although that is not very plenty. On the 13th of November we left the Rio Grande.
November 17: -In a small mountain which layed to the west, there was a gold mine which had been worked a great many years ago. Stopped here on the 18th and on the 19th we passed twenty-six miles and camped on the Membres, a branch of the Rio Grande.
November 20: We started in a nearly westerly course. We are now in the Territory of Chewawa (Chihuahua), Old Mexico.
November 21:-From this place to Cow Springs. Here we stayed one day. Purchased some mules from a party of Spaniards, who had been on a trading expedition to the Apache Nation of Indians, who inhabited the mountains, and lived chiefly by plunder.
At this place the track passed leading from Sonora to the copper mines. It was agreed upon by our officers that we would go to the State of Sonora. Accordingly in the morning we started a southerly course, when it should have been west, contrary to the feelings of the two-thirds of the Battalion. We had not gone more than two or three miles before something stopped us. No person knew the cause of it, but some unforeseen power intercepted our course, and we turned to the west across theplains not knowing whither we went and camped four miles from water. Here one of our men was tied to a wagon wheel six hours in the night for purchasing a piece of pork from a negro servant belonging to Lt. A. J. Smith. By order of Lt. Col.
Cooke. Here was a hole that had about one barrel of water, and the Colonel and his clan let their mules drink that up from the men. We continued our march until ten o'clock that night before we found water. This place we called Dry Lake.
December 2: -The Indians brought into camp a large quantity of Mescal to sell, it being the most part of their living, but our good Col. Cooke would not allow us to buy any of it.
December 3: Remained in camp all day. In the evening there was one of our men come into camp, that had been out hunting wild cattle which were quite plenty, that had got scattered from the old Spanish settlement when this country was in a flourishing condition thirteen years ago. They owned forty thousand head of cattle, and mules and horses in abundance. The who came in from hunting had killed a wild bull about
thirteen miles from camp. I, with some others, started about dark for some of the beef. We arrived at the place sometime after midnight. We made some fires and immediately went to drawing it until we got as much as we could carry, and in the morning of the fourth we started for the camp, arriving there about the middle of the afternoon, after nearly killing ourselves with such heavy loads and behold, the camp had all gone. We found their trail and followed on as fast as possible until about ten at night then came into the camp. Then our fears were that our meat would be taken from us, but we smuggled away most of it.
On the morning of the fifth we found wild cattle plenty, but the Colonel would not let us kill them. After all was still in the night some of our men caught some of the mules and started after some beef which they had killed slyly during the day, which was some eight or ten miles back on the road. They arrived safe with the beef before morning.
December 6:-The sixth we lay in camp all day. On the night of the sixth, a brother by the name of Smith, died. He did not belong to the Battalion, but was a servant for Capt. Davis of Company "E". He was an old man. His wife had gone back from Santa Fe under Capt. J. Brown, by the way of Pueblo.
December 9:-We continued our march down the San Pedro stream and camped along near an old Spanish ranch that had been vacated for many years. Here I had a warm contest with Dykes about some of his meaness.
December 10:-About noon we had a regular pitched battle with the wild cattle of this valley. Some men had been out hunting them and drove them in towards the command. Several of them were shot, which had a tendency to make the rest more furious. They charged upon us strongly, killed two mules and wounded one man, named Cox. He belonged in the same mess that I did. He was unable to walk for several weeks.
December 12:-We waited all day for pilots to come back. Late in the evening one of them came bringing favorable news. Accordingly on the morning of the 13th we set off across a long sand plain. Just at night we camped near an Indian Still house where they made a kind of liquor from Mescal. There were some soldiers there from the Garrison of Tucson, a Spanish fort in the borders of Sonora, which we were abliged to pass through.
December 13: --We started across the plain for the fort. After we had traveled about three miles the Colonel ordered two of the Spanish soldiers under arrest, supposing they had one of our pilots confined in the Fort.
December 15: During the night our guide had come back. They had put him in confinement and it was fortunate that we had confined the two Spanish soldiers the day before or they would not have let him go. About six miles before we came into the Garrison we met several men from there who tried to have us pass around the fort, but the Colonel pushed on with double speed, until we came to the town, when on our arrival the soldiers fled, and many of the inhabitants with them, taking all their public arms, cannons, etc.
We marched through the town and camped on the west side of it. Here we were enabled to purchase, from the inhabitants that remained, a few beans and a little flour, by selling our clothing for it. There were about eighty soldiers and near twice that amount of inhabitants that fled with them.
December 16:-On the 16th we laid in camp. In the afternoon Col. Cooke called for fifty volunteers to go with him six miles to a small town where the soldiers and the inhabitants had fled to, and take away their public arms and supplies. Fifty men turned out immediately to go with him. They set off and went about three miles, called a halt expressed some fears turned around and came back. That night we placed out a strong guard through all the town and in the public roads. About midnight there were two guns fired. The Battalion was formed in line of battle. A detachment was sent out to scour though the town but they found nobody there. Accordingly all was still once more.
December 17 :-About nine in the morning we started on our journey.
December 18:-Started early, traveled until ten or eleven that night before we found water, and but very little then, not half enough for the men to drink. Our men had to do without entirely.
December 19:-Today about noon we found some water and camped for the day.
December 20:-Soon after we started we came in sight of the timber on the Gila River, where we were visited by a large number of Pima Indians, with beans and corn to trade.
December 21: Traveled down the river until about three in the afternoon and camped in their village. Their village extended some twenty-six miles down this river and was very thickly settled. They are almost entirely naked, both men and women, the most they have on is a piece of cloth of their own manufacture tied around their hips and sometimes not that. They appear to be the most healthy people I ever saw and the most children I ever saw in any country.
December 23 :-In the same place we purchased some meal and beans and sold our clothes off from our back to do that, and then our generous Colonel issued an order that there should not be any carried and we must leave it and Dykes was the man to enforce it in our company. Through the assistance of Lt. Hulett and some others we succeeded in carrying it along and no thanks to Dykes or the Colonel.
December 24: ---We started across a stretch of forty miles without water or anything else except prickles.
December 25:--We camped on the plains without water.
December 26:--Came to the river after dark.
December 31:--Started in good season this morning, and at night camped on the bank of the river. Here in consequence of the mismanagement of Dykes we had our rations of beef lowered.
January 2, 1847: Stayed in camp all day; here we left one wagon, and made boats of two wagon beds and put about twelve oxen in each boat and started down the river. We met one American and two Spaniards with three women going to Tucson. They informed us that General Kearney had fought one battle, and was then on his way to the Pueblo De Angeles, fighting his way into the place. We then pushed on in double quick.
January 4, 1847:-Camped near the foot of the mountain close to the river. Here we had a contest with Dykes.
January 5: Camped half a mile from the river near the Salt Lake. We had a weighing frolic. I weighed 128; weight when I enlisted, 198.
January 7:-Started early in the morning; traveled all day on a plain and camped three miles from the' mouth of the Gila River.
January 8:-Traveled all day across the plains of the Colorado; at night camped near the crossing.
January 9:--Stayed in camp all day preparing to cross the river. The evening of the 9th commenced crossing and it was nine the next morning before they all got across,
January 11 :-Left one of our wagons. Our road was all the way through the sand. We camped on the plain without water.
January 12:-Early in the morning started out and found it still all sand. About twelve in the day we came to water -- that is, to where we could get it by digging for it; it was salty. Here we left one of our wagons, it being the last.
January 14: We continued our march through the almost impassible sands until about twelve in the day, when we came to another place where we found water that is nearly half enough for the men. This place is called Posohonda. At the Posohonda we met some of our guides that had gone ahead for the purpose of fetching some fresh animals, mules and beef cattle. They brought about forty mules and eight or nine cattle.
January 15:-This morning we started through a rough, mountainous country and continued on until the next day, when we came to water and some grass. The men were scattered for fifteen or twenty miles along the road. Some sick and some given out for the want of water, and others with their feet so sore they could not walk. There were mules scattered from the Colorado to this place that had died or given out, for we have had no grass from the San Pedro to this place, a distance of four-hundred miles, and no water for the last hundred miles, except the little that we got by digging for it and that poison.
January 17:--Pursued our march through the Elpaso; that is, a long narrow pass through the mountains. About twelve in the day we came to the springs called the Pometo. Here we saw the palm trees growing. Here for the first time we camped at a large spring and found plenty of grass.
January 21:-Came to Warner's about two in the afternoon., the first settlement in California. Here we found one white man and about three hundred Indians. Warner was formerly from Burton.
January 23:-Started on our journey. In the morning, before we started, it was concluded that we would go to the Pueblo De Los Angeles to meet General Kearney. We camped in a small valley close in by the side of a small mountain. It commenced raining just at night and continued to rain all night. There was an Indian came to us that night who appeared very friendly and he would not leave us that night, but laid all night on the ground before our tent, and it rained and the wind blew a gale until morning, then we gave him some meat for which he appeared very thankful. The Indians, a few days before we came to Warner's had taken eleven Spaniards and killed them in cold blood. The Spaniards had killed some forty of the Indians for it. They probably thought that we were their friends and would kill off the Spaniards.
January 25: At night we passed through the valley of Indians. I call it this because the Indians turned out of their village to salute us and paraded themselves before us in single file across the valley.
January 26: In the evening of the day before there was an express came to us from San Diego, from General Kearney, for us to turn back that way. It came by a man by the name of Walker, a Dane, who had lived in this country three years. Accordingly in the morning we set off for San Diego. Traveled all day over a mountainous road and camped on San Louis River.
January 27:-Traveled down the river in a beautiful valley about twelve in the day when we came to the San Louis Mission. We went about one mile below the mission and turned upon the bluffs. There for the first time my natural eyes looked upon the ocean. Here we were about three miles from the great Pacific.
January 28: We traveled all day over a rough, broken country. Here I saw the wild oats of California, that I had heard so much talk about. The hills were covered with them and the flats with clover. No timber at all.
February 1:-At about four in the afternoon we came to the San Diego Mission, about four miles from the town in the same valley. Camped in the space between the vineyards in front of the Mission. I think the country has been misrepresented by every account that I ever read. There is no land fit for cultivation, except that in the valleys, and they are small and scarce, considering the amount of surface, and is fit for nothing but the thing it is used for mainly raising stock under the direction of capitalists.
Today General Kearney started for Monterey. Captain J. Hunt sent him a letter informing him of our situation and he agreed to see us in the course of three or four weeks at the San Louis Mission.
The Mission of the San Diego is beautifully situated on a gentle elevation of table land which is about three-fourths of a mile in length and half a mile in width and about half as high as the general bluffs along the streams. The building is about fourteen rods in front and is a little over one story high. The walls are of unburnt brick and white-washed outside and in. The building is covered with concave tile, which are laid on and lashed fast. The burying ground is on the east side, the church on the west. The church is nearly two stories high. The front has a rude representation of a steeple. This building is constructed upon the same principle as the buildings of New Mexico, having a square in the center. The square here was nearly the west end in the rear of the church. The rooms are dark and damp with brick floors. There are two beautiful vineyards on the flat in front of the building. They are interspersed with olive trees in the front and in the front of the vineyard on the left are two beautiful palm trees with a large wine press in the front corner.
We have now been one hundred and three days from Santa Fe. We started with sixty pounds of flour to the man, thirty days rations of pork, two-thirds rations of sugar and coffee. It was all called sixty days rations, and we lost several hundred pounds of flour on the Gila. Thus we traveled under, greater embarrassments than it is possible to realize except by passing through them. We have opened roads through impassable mountains and trackless deserts, without wood, water, or grass, and almost without provisions. We now find ourselves without clothes and worn down with fatigue. For nearly thirty days we have had nothing but beef and not enough of that all the time.
On the first of February we started for San Louis Mission accompanied by one company of the dragoons.
February 2:-About two in the afternoon we arrived safe at San Louis Mission.
February 5 to 20:-Nothing but drill and beef.
February 13:-A detachment started to Robidoux' ranch, 70 miles north for flour. They returned on the 20th with 2,300 pounds of mashed wheat. Four days rations of that and the beans were issued to us in the evening. Two ounces of the coarse flour and two-thirds of a gill [equal to one-quarter of a pint or five fluid ounces (0.142 litre)] of beans for a day's rations:
February 21:-A detachment was sent to San Diego for provisions, and returned on the twenty-fifth, with flour, sugar, coffee, soap and candles.
February 28:-This day we were mustered for the first time in California.
March 17:-There was a great deal of dissatisfaction in consequence of the rations and I was misused on this occasion by Dykes.
March 18:-He carried false reports to the Colonel and through his false reports broke me of my office, which he had purposed on doing from the first, and he bragged of it.
March 19:-We left San Louis; however, I will give a description of this place. The whole front is about ten thousand two hundred feet in length. There was a beautiful piazza which was separated by beautiful turned arches about ten feet in width and two and a half feet thick. The front was beautifully finished, and the rooms were finished inside in fine style and decorated with birds painted on the walls. Over the doors and windows the colors were red and black. The building covered nearly four acres of ground with a square in the center of something near one and three-fourth acres, with a fig tree, an orange tree, and two pepper trees in the center. There was a beautiful piazza all around the square with a high battlement made of burned brick. The piazzas are covered with cement and the roof is covered with tile. The church is on the east. Taking it all through it is the best building I have seen in California.
There is a beautiful flat in front of the building covered with olive trees and several palm and fig trees and a beautiful spring all enclosed by a high adobie wall. On the west there is a large vineyard with some pepper and olive trees with a large reservoir for watering the whole. This also is enclosed by a high wall. This place is situated in a small valley on a rise of ground about four miles from the coast. It was built by the Indians about one hundred years ago, under the direction of the Catholics, with capital, from old Spain.
Today, the 19th, we left for Pueblo De Los Angeles. We left the sick and some well ones to take care of the public animals. Camped after night at a ranch on the edge of the plains of Domingo.
March 22:-At noon we came to the Pueblo De Los Angeles; camped at the east edge of the town.
March 27:-Moved camp about a mile north of where we first camped and three-quarters of a mile from the Pueblo on the bank of the stream.
March 29: --Commenced drill again.
April 2:-This morning an Indian was sent to San Louis Rey to have that detachment come to this place.
April 6:-Today there was a petition formed by brother Nerl, to be presented to our officers for our discharge. It was signed by a majority of the Battalion present, though the most part of. our officers went strongly against it, perhaps for the reason that they had been holding out inducements to Captain Turner, the general aid-de-camp, that we were wanting to get the privilege of building garrisons and forts under the pay and in the service of the United States, which was not in the minds of the men, and they did not feel free to contradict their former statements and went hard against it. A meeting was called and the men called "damned fools" and such like sayings.
April 7:-This evening the officers met and counselled together about the matter, and the honorable body threw the bill under the table.
April 12:-Today Col. Mason of the regiment of first dragoons gave us the praise of being the best volunteers of any he had ever seen in the manual of arms. This afternoon that detachment came in from the Luis Rey. One of their number had died at San Luis and was buried in the garden between the building and the church as you go through the Tally Port in the northeast corner. His name was [Milton] Smith. He belonged to Company "C."
April l3:-Company "C" was ordered out east to guard the pass in the mountains about sixty miles from this place with nineteen days' rations.
April 18:-Today there was a meeting called of all the Seventies, and president H. John was chosen to preside. He then stated the object of the meeting. They then organized themselves into a quorum and proceeded to business. The first was John Allen, and he was cut off without a dissenting voice. They went strongly against the business of shading public property, and went against all kind of wickedness. Gave us good advice and dismissed us.
April 21:-A detachment was ordered out to relieve Company "C" and let them come in and get their pay. An equal number was taken from each company.
April 22:-Today they drew their money.
April 23:-This morning they started with Lieut. Pace at their head. They had bought themselves some horses and Col. Cooke came out just at the time they were starting, and ordered them all back, took all their horses from them, sent them off on foot and ordered their horses sold to the highest bidder, which was done accordingly.
April 24:-Today Company A was paid off.
April 25:-Today there was considerable excitement about the Spaniards. It was said that they were coming to give us a charge in the night, but nothing of the kind happened.
April 26:-This morning the order came for us to go down to get our pay. We drew for six months. Last night there was an express sent out to Company "C", Lieut. Pace's detachment, to come in. At twelve o'clock we had orders to move camp. We moved on the hill on the north side of town which has the command of the town; this day Company "A" went to work building a fort on the hill. They had moved the day before. The express came in from OC after having traveled one hundred twenty miles in sixteen hours.
April 28:-Today there was twenty-eight men ordered out to work on the fort from this company. Today "C" Company came in and Lieut. Pace.
April 29: --They got their pay.
April 30: We mustered and continued our work on the fort. There are now eighteen men detailed from each company. They work four days and are released. There was some ammunition fetched in from Santa Barbara by a detachment of Stevenson's regiment from New York City.
May 2: --Hard at work on the fort.
May 5:-News from San Diego. Captain J. D. Hunter's wife died on the thirteenth and left a small child about two weeks old. The particulars concerning her death I did not learn. Not a word from William and Melissa [Burton Coray, she being his wife's sister]. I fear they must be sick or they would have sent me some word. It cannot be that they have forgotten me.
May 7:-Today took an excursion out in the country in search of an outfit to go back to the States with, in consequence of the late revelation. Everything is very high and hard to get. This evening there was an order read from General Kearney appointing Col. Stephenson to the command of the southern post. Two companies of his regiment are orderd to this place.
May 8:-Today news came that General Kearney had arrived at San Pedro. This morning there was a detachment of twenty ordered out to take some Indians in the mountains. I was detailed as one of the number. On the 9th, at the mouth of the canyon, we separated, eight of us went up on the mountain to cut off their escape in that way. We attacked them in the head of the canyon. We killed six of them. How many there were in the first place I do not know but there were some escaped certain. We then returned to camp just before night. There were two men wounded, one in the face and one in the thigh, though not dangerous. There was one Spaniard wounded in the leg. The Spaniards used the Indians very brutally, scalped them and cut off their ears and nose before we knew what they were about or we would have prevented them. We learned that General Kearney came into the Pueblo with Col. Stephenson.
May 10:-This morning the Battalion was paraded for General Kearney and Stephenson to inspect. He made a great many remarks concerning us, and spoke of us in the highest terms, so much so that I thought it was flattery. He promised to represent our conduct to the President and in the halls of congress, and give us the justice that we merited. He promised us some clothing and advised us to re-enlist into the service for twelve months, and many other things. Today there was an order issued to have three men detailed from each company to go to the States as an escort for him. I was detailed as one of that number.
May 13:-Left Los Angeles with a detachment of nine men; the other three are going round by water with the Gen. Lieut. Sherman. Three regiments of artillery has taken command of us.
May 15:-We came thirty miles and camped at the Mission of San Clare.
May 16:-We traveled all day on the coast. Came to Santa Barbara at night, a distance of thirty miles.
May 18:-Camped in a valley near a ranch, just at night. About twelve in the day we passed the Mission of San Tenara. Yesterday we took a prisoner that had deserted from Monterey, and today we took another at the Mission of Tenara.
May 21:-This morning we traveled through the mountains seven miles, and came to the Mission of San Margaretha.
May 22:-Came down the same valley all day. About eleven in the day we came to the Mission of San Miguel.
May 23:-Still down "the same valley. The river is called Monterey River. Very little timber. The land is poor. Came forty miles and camped at the Mission of San Obispo.
May 25:-Traveled about fifteen miles through the mountains and came to Monterey about twelve in the day. Quartered in the south part of the town in a building that had been occupied by some of Col. Stephenson's regiment. Today there was sixty ordered out to fight the Indians in the mountains. The General had not come as we expected.
May 26:-I was herding mules all day.
May 27 ~I went on board the Columbus, a seventy-four gun ship. Her length is two hundred fourteen feet, from the top sail to the stern hold, forty-five feet. She has three decks and mounts ninety-eight guns, and has on board seven-hundred sailors and mariners. In every way it is a splendid, well-finished craft. Today the Frigate of war "Congress" came in from Stockton. Just at evening the Sloop "Lexington" came in with General Kearney and Lieut Col. Cooke on board.
May 29:-We drew seventy-five days' rations, and some mules.
May 31:-Started. Came fifteen miles and camped with General Kearney.
June 3: Camped at night in the valley. It is called the valley of San Joaquin.
June 9:--This morning we prepared for crossing the Stanis laus. We had to swim the animals and carry our plunder across in skins. This morning I learned that there was a settlement of our people some six miles below on the river. We have been passing through the Indians for several days. They are very numerous and are called the "diggers." They live upon grass seed and roots, and go naked except a wisp of grass tied around them.
June 11:-About one in the afternoon we came to the best valley that I have seen in California. Here we found some Americans. Here I saw the first field of corn in California. Today we learned that there had been an express through from the church and that brother Brannan has gone back to pilot them through the mountains. This evening there was a brother came to see us by the name of Rhodes. He came here last October from Missouri. The brethren are settled in different places through this country.
June 13:-We came sixteen miles over a very good country. Came down the American Fork about four miles and crossed the river one and one half miles from the Sacramento. Here we found another man that was a Mormon. This is settled by Americans. Sutter's Fort is on and one-half miles from the crossing; there are twenty-five soldiers stationed at this place. Crossed the river just at night. This is called St. Clare Fort.
June 14: Today we received one horse more to every man. Dried some beef, baled some flour and pork. We are thirty-five miles from the head of the bay. Corn does not do so well unless it is watered. Mechanics wages are very high, also all kinds of common labor. Land can be bought for twenty-five cents per acre, wheat one dollar per bushel.
June 15:--We were all day fitting out, baling our packs and effects. We started late, came fifteen miles.
June 17:-Thursday, camped on Bear Creek at Johnson's ranch, the last house we expect this side of Fort Hall. It is called forty miles from this place to Sutter's.
Foot of California. Bear Creek, Friday, 18th. Started early in the morning. Came thirty-five miles through the mountains. Wood all the way. We passed a place where somebody had been buried.
June 20:-Sunday, 20th. Came through some snow-banks. Banks of snow lying all over on the tops of the mountains. The vegetation has just started. Stopped about three hours in Bear Creek valley. A small valley of about one-hundred fifty acres. Here we found a cabin that some emigrants had built last fall. From this place there were five women started for the settlement through the snow on foot, and those who did not die were relieved by a party that came out for that purpose. They left a great many things in the cabin. They were from the state of Missouri.
Monday, June 21:--Struck the head of Truckee River. Here is a small lake, one mile in width and three miles in length. We camped near the head of the lake.
June 22:-We came down the lake to some cabins that had been built by some emigrants last fall. They were overtaken in the snow. There were eighty of them in number, and only thirty of them that lived. The rest of them starved to death. The General called a halt and detailed five men to bury the deserted bodies of the others. One man lived about four months on human flesh. He sawed their heads open, ate their brains and mangled up their bodies in a horrible manner. This place now goes by the name of Cannibal Camp. While we were stopped here the men came up with our pack mules. Col. Fremont passed us here, the first time we have seen him since we left Fort Sutter. After we had buried the bones of the dead, which were sawed and broken to pieces for the marrow, we set fire to the cabin. I started about two in the afternoon came seven miles and camped. One mile above here there was another cabin and more dead bodies but the General did not order them buried.
June 23:-This morning Jigly shot himself through the arm.
Thursday, June 24:-Left Col. Fremont at the crossing of the Truckee.
Friday, June 25:-Came twelve miles down the river from where we camped last. Indians plenty. About two miles from here up the river there had been one wagon and load cached. It was dug up by the Indians. They wasted everything.
Saturday, June 26:-We camped by an Indian Village (If it would be proper to call it such) for there were no signs of it except some brush which had been cut and stuck in the ground. There were about two-hundred Indians in number, some ran to the mountains and others laid in the brush. Some of them came out after we had been there a short time. Men and women go naked.
Sunday, June 27:-Then we came to the hot spring. It was a curiosity. The water was thrown out by steam in a solid column four feet high and sometimes higher. The steam could be seen three or four miles off. It would discharge one barrel in one minute. The ground all around there seemed to be hollow underneath, and it was hot for half a mile around. There was a mule broke through a half a mile or more from the spring. The stream came up very hot.
The place where we camped is called Mary's River. It is a sunken river. It sinks in the sand where we struck it. No wood and but little grass. The water is salty and bitter. It seems as though the curse of God rested upon this country. It is all a barren unfruitful waste. Some of our mules and horses gave out today.
Sunday, July 4:- One of our party by the name of Minek was left back very sick, did not come up till some time after we had camped, which was on the Mary's River.
Thursday, July 8:-Last night the Indians stole four of our horses. We followed them to the mountains. This tribe is very had; they are called the Snake Indians. Camped this afternoon at the head of Mary's River.
Friday, July 9: We are now in Oregon. One mile from camp there was a large hot spring, we came thirty miles, camped at the big springs. Yesterday we were two days' journey from the Salt Lake by the way of Hasting's cutoff-our day's journey fifty miles.
Saturday, July 10: Head waters of the Columbia river. Col. Fremont was just behind us.
Monday, July 12: Col. Fremont travels with us.
Tuesday, July 13: Camped for noon at the forks of the road; here the old Oregon trail turns off to our left. We came down the stream crossed over, struck across to the Columbia River, eight miles without water. The road is first rate.
Wednesday, July 14:-Met some Oregon emigrants, in company forty-three wagons. In the afternoon met some more emigrants.
Thursday, July 15:-Came fifteen miles to Fort Hall. Here we got some bacon. Started in the afternoon came sixteen miles. A great many emigrants. The road is full of them.
Friday, July 16: Today our enlistment is out. Camped in a branch of Bear Valley, on a small stream.
Saturday, July 17:-Came to the Soda Pool (Soda Springs) and five miles to Bear River. One mile and a half up the river is another Soda Spring, stronger than the other.
Monday, July 19:-Camped one mile from a trader by the name of Smith. There are about twenty Indian lodges here. They have a great many horses. I saw a man by the name of Smith, who came from California with Brother Brannan, and had been with our emigrants and gave us some valuable information concerning them.
Tuesday, July 20: Started very early in the morning, struck across the mountains without any road. Came twenty-five miles and struck the road again. Here were some more lodges. We got some more animals here.
Wednesday, July 21:-A great many emigrants.
Thursday, July 22:-I met Orlando Strickland, an old acquaintance. Stayed in camp until two in the afternoon. Eight miles to the river, it is called Green River. The road is rough. Left the river about :five in the afternoon, traveled nearly all night. Came to the Big Sandy about ten the next morning.
Saturday, July 24:-Came five miles on to the Little Sandy. Came through the pass and camped on the Sweetwater, making in all twenty-three miles.
Sunday, July 25: Came seventeen miles down the Sweetwater and camped for breakfast. Considerable game here. Buffalo and Antelope.
Monday, July 26:-We came through the Rocky Buttes and camped on the east side, making in all forty miles. This is called Rose Camp.
Tuesday, July 27:-Camped at Independence Rock,
Thursday, July 29: Here we found some brethren, that were camped and waiting for their families which were behind, and expected every hour. This was the first news that I have had correct, since I left. They left there in March. Here we left one party that was unwell, by the name of John Bindley.
Monday, August 2:-Camped on the Laramie Fork of the Platte, three miles up from the Fort.
Tuesday, August 3: Having heard from the people, I got permission from the General, to go with the others and meet them. We started this morning at sunrise and came twenty miles. and stopped to grass our horses.
Wednesday, August 4:-Started from Fort Laramie early this morning in company with two other men, to overtake the brethren. We rode twenty miles and met them. We found a great many of brethern, and we heard of our families, and a great deal of other good news. We camped by them at night, when the General came up. This morning we found a great many that I was acquainted with. I received a letter from Rebecca (my wife) the first that I have had since I left Fort Leavenworth. It was written on the 6th of June. We traveled down on the left hand side of the river on the trail that our people had made. The country on this side of the river is broken and rough. Distance today forty miles. Camped opposite Scotts Bluffs.
Thursday, August 5:-Stopped about five miles above the Chimney Rock.
Saturday, August 7:-Another rain last night: Came seventeen miles today. Col. Fremont's men killed two buffalo. Camped and cooked breakfast, then came twenty-three miles, making in all forty miles. Camped at Ash Hollow. There De Quigly was very sick and not able to ride. Matthew Caldwell, C. Webb, and W. W. Spencer, hospital steward. We gave them their rations and one animal apiece and two packs.
Sunday, August 8:-Left at sunrise. We here struck across the plain leaving the North Platte, twenty miles and camped on the South Platte.
Monday, August 9:-Left camp very early this morning. Buffalo very plentiful. Camped on an island and killed several buffalo.
Tuesday, August 10: Started very early. The buffalo are in innumerable herds. It is marvellous how they subsist in such vast herds. Came twenty miles and camped for breakfast.
Saturday, August 14:-Moved camp early this morning, left the Platte and made a cutoff today of several miles. Came thirty miles and camped on Little Blue Creek; it is fifty miles by the road to the Platte.
Wednesday, August 18:-Struck for the Big Blue. Arrived there after noon.
Thursday, August 19:~Made twenty miles and camped on the Wolf River.. This forenoon we overtook a brother by the name of` Davenport. He was on his way from the North Platte and traveled with some Oregon emigrants, among them was a missionary by the name of Little John. Then men from Oregon came in late at night.
Friday, August 20:-I bought a horse of the Oregon men, for which I gave twenty dollars.
Saturday, August 21:-Our rations are all gone. We ate the last this morning for breakfast and did not have half enough at that. Started at noon and struck the road about three miles from the camp, and followed it to the Independence Creek, which we reached late in the night. Here we got some flour from Major Sewards, for supper.
Sunday, August 22:-We drew our pay this forenoon and started for Weston. Arrived there just at night. Stayed at Brother Green's Hotel. Saw the wife of Sterling Davis, and Mother Covey.
Monday, August 23:-Moved early this morning, traveled eighteen miles and came to Fort Leavenworth. Turned over our public property this afternoon. Only received $8.60, eight dollars and sixty cents for our extra service.
Tuesday, August 24:-Today we got some clothes. for ourselves and started at noon. Came sixteen miles and put up at a house one mile this side of Bloomington. Started, came to St. Joe, traveled some there, started again at noon and met a man right from Waldon's Ferry. Camped with Brother Colton at Savannah.