19

The Diary of
Frederick William Hurst

1858-1860
Owing to a variety of circumstances I have not kept my journal lately, in fact for the last 18 months. Consequently I am under the necessity of writing from memory. I married Miss Aurelia Hawkins on the 3rd of November, 1858. I rented a house in the 14th Ward. Shortly after, my wife's Brother, Leo Hawkins, was laid up with consumption. I cut his wood for him all winter and went and assisted him as often as circumstances would permit. I worked around cutting firewood for President Joseph Young, and David Chandler and others. In the Spring, 3rd March, 1859, we moved to the east boundary of the 13th ward and took a lot on shares belonging to Widow Simpson. I also rented a large room (?) of hers. My Brother-in-law, Creighton Hawkins, gave me 27 rods of land in the 12th Ward, close by. A great deal of my garden stuff failed, however, I got plenty of work around, gardening, etc.

In the month of May (29 May 1859) Leo Hawkins died after a lingering illness of eight months. I hasten to pass over this scene of sorrow. (We, Harry and Ida, insert this information taken from Church Chronology by Jensen. Sunday 29th of May, 1859, Leo Hawkins, Clerk of the Historian's office died in Great Salt Lake City.)

Creighton, Clement and I got a job cutting saw logs in City Creek Canyon. Worked about 6 or 7 weeks. We scarcely earned our salt and almost worked ourselves to death, but I believe E. Ellsworth cheated us. We scarcely cleared $13.00 each according to E. Ellsworth.

I bought a log house off of John Hoagland. Gave him $40.00. Moved it down to the 12th Ward and built it on the land Creighton gave to me. It took me considerable time and labor to build up my winter's wood, however, I got my house finished, and we moved into it November 26, 1859. I had considerable sickness all winter for I worked too hard all summer to get a start and make a comfortable home.

February 23, 1860. My wife was delivered of a fine boy, weighing 10 lbs. The child is very healthy and strong, and Aurelia got along famously. I hired Sister Rogers, a real good nurse. She is a Widow.

April 5, 1860. I attended Conference. The best kind of Spirit prevailed. Everything goes to prove to my mind the Kingdom of God is rolling on with increased velocity. I never felt better in my life.

On the 8th of April I received a letter from Brother Shearman stating that he had got me a situation out at Ruby Valley, Western Route to California. I saw Mr. Egan. He told me he wanted me to start with the first team which would start on the 13th of April, on Friday. He also said he would give me $35.00 per month to start on, etc. I am going out for the express purpose of making a garden.

I made arrangements for my wife to stay with her Mother while I am away. Not having time I left everything for Creighton to move. I rented the house to Mr. Hooper for $3.00 per month. I also wrote out a list of debts due me to the amount of $31.00 and left it with my brother, Clement, to collect.

I started April 13th with Constantine, a Frenchman, he was teamster. Drove one of these large freight wagons with six mules, also a young man, Joseph Wintle. I understood Mr. Egan that I was to ride out to Ruby, but after we started we were given to understand that the wagon was too heavily loaded, consequently we had to walk. Although I was so sick and weak it seemed that I would give out. By the time I had traveled five miles, Constantine very kindly let me ride. Accordingly drove down the state road.

We reached Majo's at the Warm Springs about four o'clock p.m., just in time to see the Bar Keeper and his boss have a quarrel and fight. Pistols were drawn but it ended without shooting. Having no orders, we had quite a fuss to get supper. We were all in a starving condition having had nothing to eat since early morning.

Next morning we started at three o'clock a.m. and arrived at Camp Floyd at 12:00 a.m. Breakfasted at 1:30 p.m. at Thomas Drun's Saloon. The place appeared to me to be worse than a Saloon. How men that call themselves Mormons can live in such a place it is a mystery to me. It was a perfect hell to me. Talk of cursing, and swearing, I have never seen it beat, not even in the Gold Mines.

Next morning, Sunday, April 15th. We drove over to Gilbert and Gerrish's store and took in a quantity of bacon, some sugar, lumber for well curbs, and in fact we filled the wagon to the top of the box. Mr. Egan also hired ten or a dozen of the worst black guards and black legs, loafers that could be scared up around Camp Floyd. I guess I just have to say too much. Suffice it to say I kept myself to myself as much as possible.

We reached Jackson's station in Brush Hollow before sundown, after a weary walk over a perfect sandy rocky desert without water. Distance, 25 miles, 75 miles from the City. Next day traveled about ten miles and then broke down.

Constantine left Joe Wintle and I to mind the goods, etc., while he went back to Camp Floyd for another wagon. The balance of the crowd went on to Simpson Springs. Next day 900 head of cattle passed us, also three rough looking fellows, stating they had been hired by Mr. Egan, which statement afterward proved false.

On Thursday, April 19th, Constantine arrived with the running gears of a wagon. We put the bed of the other wagon, had them loaded up, and although it was 3:00 p.m. we started for Simpson Springs, where we arrived at 11:00 p.m. I was in hell all night for the men carried on shamefully and kept me awake most all night.

On the 20th we started at 4:00 in the evening to cross what they call the 40 mile desert. We reached the Dugway Station after midnight. We had no shelter and it kept storming. Nothing but a very little sagebrush to burn. The wagon did not arrive until about 3:00 a.m. I thought I would perish with the cold. I never shivered more before in my life. After a scant breakfast we traveled two miles, then had the pleasure of packing a sack of potatoes each up the dugway, about a quarter of a mile. Then walked 25 miles farther to Fresh Springs. We ate up everything on the station before the wagon arrived which was about 11:00 p.m. I and Brother Crossbey took our blankets and went out to the haystack where I really did enjoy a good night's rest. Many of the party complained of sore feet.

Saturday evening, after traveling in the rain most of the day we arrived at Willow Springs. No shelter again. Just like the Dugway station, nothing but a small tent. However we had plenty of wood. They had nothing but a little flour. I made some kind of cake till the wagon arrived at 11:00 p.m. I then cooked supper for all hands, the rest being too tired.

Sunday we traveled 18 miles. Camped in the mountains. Next day early, arrived at Deep Creek Station. While resting I wrote letter No. 1 to my wife, Aurelia.

Same evening rolled out again and traveled 9 miles. Camped at the Springs with neither wood nor food. The consequence was the mules strayed off while we were eating supper. Hunted till near midnight in the rain. At last we laid down.

I had just got fairly to sleep when I was aroused by the cry of "Fire", and sure enough we were all in flames. Some of the bedding was burned considerably. I had lent my quilt to a Brother who had no bedding and it was entirely spoiled.

At early down next morning, Constantine and I tracked the mules for about seven miles. We had a great deal of trouble to catch them. Got back to the wagons about 9:00 a.m. I rode a good part of the way for I really was too tired to walk. When we got within 7 miles of Antelope Springs we met Brother W. H. Shearman. We had a short chat together. I gave him the letter I wrote to Aurelia at Deep Creek Station. I did not catch the wagon till we got to Antelope Springs.

Next day we laid by and I wrote to Clement, and next day when we got to Pete Neil's I left it to him to put in the mail. We laid out one to Brother Shearman from his wife.

We narrowly escaped a fuss with the Indians through that hot-headed fellow, Constantine. They were begging as usual and wanted to trade. Constantine only answered them with curses. At last one of them said he was like a wolf running away. It was downhill at the time and the mules were on the lope. With that, Constantine stopped the team, jumped down, seized his revolver and ran to the hind end of the wagon as the Indians (there were two of them) started to run. We drove on, we got about 100 yards and one of them stopped and drew a bead on us but didn't fire.

We reached Shell Creek about 3:00 p.m. Next day drove on to Egan's Station, Saturday to Butte, and on Sunday, April 29th, 1860 we arrived at Ruby Valley Station, etc., etc., etc.

There are six rooms and a Blacksmith Shop at this Station. During Brother Shearman's absence Mr. E. N. Dillon had charge and Brother George Aly, assistant. Also one express rider, Brother William Fisher or James Carlow.

After noting my new home it put me in mind of a prison, built wholly of logs and the never failing dirt roof. Next day, Brother George and I fixed up what few tools there were around and the balance of the day we spent gardening.

Last week we expected a fuss with the Indians for we heard they were going to drive off our stock. We watched all night but they did not come, however, we have kept out watch ever since.

Last Saturday received a letter from Aurelia and was truly glad to hear from home. Both her and the little child are well. I also received a nice letter from Howard Egan telling me to take charge of the station and all of the mail properly belonging to the same, and give Mr. Dillon a receipt, and proceed with all the necessary improvements as fast as possible.

Yesterday morning Brother James Carlow arrived from Diamond Springs and stated that the Indians had killed Raphael Lazier at Dry Creek, John Applegate and James Aulcoutt (?) at Simpson Fork, and set fire to the Station. That Lafayette Ball and Silas McCandless had run on foot all the way from Dry Creek to Robert Creek. That they also left that station at 12:00 last night and came over to Diamond, 25 miles from here. He also stated that all the Stations from Diamond to Carson were deserted, also that 60 men had been killed by the Indians near Carson. I sat down and wrote to H. Egan explaining the particulars and sent it off by express.

In the evening much to our astonishment, the Expressman from the West arrived, but we could not send it on for the horses were used up. The mail also arrived after dark from the West. They corroborated James Carlo's statement. Also reported that large companies of volunteers will have ere this started on the road to revenge the death of the white men.

<<< Back Home Next >>>
Pages 107 - 111 in the 1961 edition of the Diary of Frederick William Hurst