Chapter XXVI.


Duties at Home--Building the Provo Canyon Road--Indulge in

a Row--Move to Salt Lake City--The Black Hawk War-- List of The Slain--No Help from the U. S. Troops

AS I DO not consider an account of my home life of any particular interest to the general reader I will give only a brief sketch of it.

On returning and settling up with Bachman and Hanks, who had furnished much of our trade supply, I found I would have to sell my home to pay them.

In 1861, I went to Provo valley and took up land on Snake creek, where I fenced a farm, built a house, and corrals and raised a crop of wheat and potatoes and while binding wheat had to wear a heavy coat and woolen mittens as the weather was so cold. After gathering slip in my crop, I concluded to return to Provo and work at saddlery, expecting to go back in the spring and continue farming.

During the early spring a flood came and destroyed the road through Provo Canyon, stopping all travel. In the fall of 1862, a company was organized to rebuild the road, the funds being furnished by voluntary contribution. Shadrick Holdaway, Chas. Kenedey, and I were chosen as committee; I being selected as secretary and treasurer. Having taken the work in hand it was pushed forward with considerable force. I was greatly interested as I wished to get back to my farm and could only do so by going around by Salt Lake City and through the Park to the valley, a distance of nearly one hundred miles, while the direct route was only twenty-five miles. Neither did I wish to be cut off from Provo, which I considered my real home. Many times I found funds hard to raise, so much so, that finally, in a tight-place I sold my farm to help on the road; so that by the time the road was finished and paid for, I had no individual use for it. But like many others of my labors for public good, my pay was in the satisfaction of seeing the work finished so as to be of use. To illustrate my situation and extremes in making payments I will relate one circumstance.

The whole funds contributed were left in the hands of the contributors until wanted, all donations being named. Some donated flour, others potatoes, wood, lumber, and any and everything in the shape of produce being on the list. When jobs on the road were finished and accepted by the two other committee men, they would draw an order on the treasurer, who would have to draw on the contributors. Sometimes the means would not be just ready to the day, but almost invariably donators paid honorably. In fact I have no remembrance of a single instance where agreements made were not fulfilled in good time.

There was one company of Welshman that took a contract amounting to twelve hundred dollars. The committee docked them, their job not being up to contract. This soured them so much that they sought to make trouble with me about their pay, allowing me no time whatever to settle up in the usual manner. After paying all but some fifty dollars, I asked a little time to see who was ready to pay that amount. I was given to understand that not much time would be allowed, so I gave them an order where I supposed they would be paid, but the party not being quite ready asked them to wait a few days and he would settle. This they would not do, but three of them returned to my house to whip me. I tried to reason with them but to no purpose. A row had to be had. I ordered them out of my house. They went out, picking up rocks and stood facing my door and abusing me, and daring me out. I grabbed a pair of hames fastened at the top with a strap. Without describing all that occurred, I did not get hurt, but paid a cow and calf for damages done to the leader of the party.

When the row was over I started to the nearest alderman to complain about myself. Just as I approached, meeting the officer in his door-yard, a man came driving his team up the street on the full run, and shouting at the top of his voice not to listen to me, but have me arrested, that I had killed a man and nearly killed a lot more. This so enraged me that I gathered up some rocks and commenced war upon him, turning him back and chasing him down the street, team and all. The alderman fined me five dollars on my own complaint, but nothing for chasing Bob Caldwell and team. For a short time there were hard feelings in the community against me. I knew that I had been both hasty and severe, and gave a cow of my own free will, and settled up with good feelings to all parties.

After the road was made passable and all accounts settled, I concluded to give up the project of becoming a farmer, and stick to my trade. In those days money was a little more plentiful among business men than before the Johnston army visited Utah. Still, much of the business was done with grain as the circulating medium. This made business rather slow, as at times I would have to load up a wagon and go to Salt Lake City, taking from three to five days, sometimes going with ox teams. I would sell my grain and return with about as much as I could carry under my arm.

While on one of my trips for leather, Brother Isaac Brockbank made me an offered to come to the city and work for him, he being in charge of William Howard's tannery, shoe and harness factory. Considering this better than the slow manner in Provo, I moved to Salt Lake in 1863, where I continued to live and work at my trade uninterruptedly most of the time. I carried on business until the summer of 1871.

During the time I lived in Salt Lake, Connor's army occupied Camp Douglas. The Civil war was still going on, also the Black Hawk war, so known in Utah from the fact that the leader of the depredating Utes, who broke up so many of the frontier settlements of Sanpete and Sevier counties, was called Black Hawk, after the old warrior of that name.

The people of Salt Lake had many duties to perform in those days. Strong police forces (unpaid) had to be kept ready, as much prejudice and ill-filling existed at times. There were continual threats to arrest our leaders, which caused the people to be constantly on the alert.

It is not my intention to write much in this work except that which the title justifies. Still, there are a few incidents that certainly would be of interest. For dates I'm indebted to "Church Chronology."

Dec. 17, 1864. A landing and site for a church warehouse, afterwards known as Callsville, was selected by Anson Call, on the Colorado River, 125 miles from St. George, and the land along the Muddy found suitable to settle on. It was then contemplated to send the emigration from Europe by way of Panama and up the Colorado river to this landing, which was the head of navigation on the river named.

I believe that I have heard about as much criticism and fault-finding against Brigham Young, for the effort made at Call's Landing to prepare for what the above refers to, as anything that was ever directed by him. Some few persons were advised to spend a few thousand dollars on the speculation. It failed, and they have been mourning about it ever since. I would ask how many of Brigham Young's enterprises have succeeded? His failures were but few.

I always felt to honor and respect Brigham Young, but I have thought, that men sometimes honor him more than he asked, or then common sense could expect. That he was a good adviser and generally clear headed on business matters, all who knew him acknowledge. But that he could never make a mistake would have been unreasonable to expect. The work previously spoken of might have been useless. Still I do not think it was, and will give some of my reasons for thinking so. I have been much in the far south; have watched and studied the interests and progress of the southern country and its developments. I know that President Young's mind for some reason, was much drawn toward Southern Utah, Arizona, and Mexico. The settling of St. George and other places consider desert wastes, the building of the temple, etc., all show this.

In carrying out this move, as far as it went, a road had to be opened up as far as the river. Soon this road was opened farther on into Arizona. Thus a thoroughfare such as the country would support, was opened up now clear through to some of the most fertile valleys and Arizona and Mexico. Some have been settled by our people, and others will be in time, as the best are not yet occupied.

The commencement of the Black Hawk war was in 1865. The immediate cause was the whipping of an Indian by a white man. This occurred April 9th. Next day three white men were killed by Indians. April 12, in a battle, two more; July 14th two; July 26th, drove off most of the cattle from Glenwood, Sevier County; Oct. 17, eight persons were killed near Ephraim.

1866. Jan. 8, two men were killed in Kane County; April 12th, three more in the same county. April 20th, Salina was raided, two men killed, and two hundred head of stock taken. Place was now vacated. April 22nd, one killed and two wounded in Piute County. June 10th, two men killed in Millard County. June 24th, one wounded in Thistle valley. June 26th, one white man killed in fight with Indians, who raided Spanish Fork.

1867. March 21st, one man and three women were killed in Sevier County. Many southern settlements were alarmed on account of the raids during the spring of the year. June 1st, one killed and one wounded near Fountain Green. June 2nd, two killed on Twelve Mile creek. Aug. 13th, two killed at Springtown.

By this time the people of Sanpete and Sevier counties began to get into shape to protect themselves better than they were at first; so that during the years 1869 and 1870 not many were killed, but raids were still common, the Indians often getting away with stock.

Companies of home militia were sent out to guard and assist the settlements. Records show that General Connor and his army occupied Camp Douglas during the whole time of this bloodshed but I cannot find anything on records showing that any moves were made by Conner to assist, or in any way protect the settlements in their distress. Neither does my memory furnish an instance of help being furnished by the troops stationed at Camp Douglas to the people of Sanpete and Sevier Counties.

It may be interesting to put on record some things that I do remember. For five years, from 1866 to 1871, I lived in the eastern part of Salt Lake City, directly in the exposed portion to the depredations of numbers of Connor's army. I know of many instances where the people were insulted and abused in a violent manner, often by large parties of soldiers headed by non-commissioned officers. In some instances even commissioned officers taking the lead in lawless acts.

It was often hard to tell which were the most to be dreaded, the Indians in the South or the soldiers about the city.

While the soldiers without organization or authority annoyed us, the commander lent his influence and offered his support to our political enemies, holding his army over the Mormons as a continual menace.

The Mormons are being accused of disloyalty; possibly this is a correct and just accusation, owing to their ignorance of what loyalty means. I will not accuse any one of disloyalty, simply because I am in the same dilemma--ignorant; but will ask, is it right and legal to fit out with government supplies, tools, and animals, and take enlisted men to work prospecting for mines, for private interests, under pretense of going to protect American citizens in their legitimate business against the Mormons? Or what it be consistent to suppose that the Mormons would be able to molest these prospectors even if so inclined, when so much occupied in protecting themselves against the Indians and the more savage and unreasonable attacks of the soldiers? Again is it legal to sell to miners and freighters by the thousands, and then to allow the commissary store-houses to get fire and burn down, allowing this fire to get so extremely hot as to burn up log-chains by the hundreds.

Now the Mormons had never taking part in anything of this kind. They are called disloyal. I do decline to be sworn on the subject, but rumor says that these things were done and headed by parties who are now called intensely "loyal."

During the war with the Indians numbers of them were killed or wounded. About the year 1868 or 1869 there was some little effort made to bring about a peace. Brother D. B. Huntington had a talk with some in Thistle valley who wished peace, but many thefts and small raids were made after this, continuing from time to time. The Indians began to have a dread of some settlements as guards and patrols were out at times. One small party had stolen some stock from Provo valley. They were killing a beef, when they were surprised and all killed. The Indians acknowledged to me that they were afraid of Provo and Rhodes' valley people.

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