"Horrible Massacre of Emigrants!!" The Mountain Meadows Massacre in Public Discourse



General Description of Salt Lake Valley.

Narrative of an American Citizen held as a prisoner of war.


From Our Own Correspondent Great Salt Lake City, Saturday, June 26, 1858. General View Of The Salt Lake Valley.

There has been no other time, during many years, probably, in which the valleys of the mountains could have been viewed by a stranger to so great an advantage as the present. You are already aware that your correspondent emerged from Wasatch Mountains to the great table overlooking SaltLLake in the midst of a severe rain storm. A shower of an hour's duration, at this season of advanced verdure, was never known here before during the occupation of this region by the Church of the Latter-Day Saints. It came upon them just as their crops of grain and grasses were up finely under the influence of the Summer sun, having derived their needed moisture from the Winter snows and Spring rains. But this moisture was now exhausted, the earth had begun to be parched, and the time had arrived when the tedious labor of irrigation must be undergone to save the crops. Just then came the three or four days' rain, settling and fastening the dust, reviving the grass, raising the drooping heads of the now-forming grain, and clothing the whole country in its most beauteous garb of green. Viewed from the point where the pass of the mountains opens on the plain, the scene was enchanting beyond descriptions upon the day of my arrival; dripping with rain though I was, chilled and weary with a long ride on horseback after a comfortless night's bivouac in the storm, I could not help checking my pony, and gazing awhile, with profoundest admiration, upon the enchanting scene. But I have already given you a general idea of the appearance of the city and valley, from the "bench" overlooking them. The term "bench" as you are probably aware, is applied to level and smooth elevations of land lying above the valleys—the same which are sometimes designated as steppes. The bench here is covered with gravelly soil, bearing, however, a thin coat of grass and weeds. It slopes down gradually from the mountain base to the site of the city. The Wasatch range realizes to the traveler the idea of mountains more perfectly than many other ridges of greater altitude, for the reason that they rise almost perpendicular from the plains.

The City, lying upon the western slope their base, is regular in shape, laid out in squares, or blocks, of ten acres each, nine of which form a ward, governed in detail by a Bishop of the Church. The streets are about eighty feet in width, intersect each other at right angles, are generally planted with shade-trees brought from the mountains, and are watered by little streams, conducted on each side in shallow graveled ditches, by which the water is brought from the mountains. The popular idea that the City is six miles square is certainly erroneous —at least its buildings do not extend over a space more than three or four miles long, by two and a half broad. The buildings do not stand close together. Every house nearly has a large garden attached, and sometimes there are only two or three buildings to a square. In this way dwellings for perhaps ten thousand people are extended over the surface I have named. The buildings are all constructed of the same material—a well-molded but sun dried brick, and of a light clay blue. The walls are laid up evenly in line, and are pleasant to the eye. The neighborhood affords great abundance of limestone, as well as of plaster of Paris, for finishing. The dwellings generally are very simple, a story, or story and half high-though those of the poorer classes are little more than mud hovels, and there are a few belonging to the higher Priesthood which are spacious and elegant, and furnished, when open, I am assured, with much richness and taste.

The most casual observer cannot fail to be struck by the fact that this people have done wonders to build such a city in the comparatively short period of their sojourn here. Surely, the task was an unpromising one in the beginning, for the soil must have been barren and forbidding. The streets have been graded and graveled where they needed it, many acres of gravel bed having been redeemed and are now in cultivation, and miles upon miles of canals, dykes, and ditches made for purposes of irrigation as absolutely essential to the raising of crops. Without irrigation nor an ear of corn, or wheat, nor a hill of potatoes could be grown here; and so far as the Valley of Salt Lake is concerned, I can now say from personal observation, that there is not arable land enough to support decently the population already ere, even by dint of the most laborious industry— more than half of the land is full of saleratus, or covered by gravel or salt-water. Among the spurs of the Wasatch, lying nearest to the city, is one known as Ensign Peak. It is estimated to rise to the height of over tow thousand feet above the Valley. I supposed it far higher, when it cost me three hours' hard labor, the other day, to reach its summit. That attained, I had a glorious view of the valley below, with the Jordan—the outlet of Utah Lake, far to the south —winding, like a silver thread through the emerald bottoms, away off towards its debouch into Salt Lake. The Lake, too, is plainly visible from the Peak for a distance of thirty or forty miles, and on a clear day the white shore of the desert, bounding it on the West, is easily discernible, though, probably, forty five miles distant.

We have often heard of the great wall "surrounding" the city. This too is a little imaginative, for the wall has never been even commenced in some places. At most, the wall extends two thirds around the settlement. It is a miserably poor affair, consisting of the sod and gravel piled up to a heigh varying from 3 to 8 feet, provided with embrasures at intervals pierced for cannon. It never could have been proof against the lightest of artillery, and is now fast falling to ruin, crumbling and washing away with every Spring thaw or rain. Its estensible purpose when erected was defence against Indians. A glance shows us the insincerity of such a pretence, for even if the entire population of the valley had been numerous enough to defend the wall during a siege at every point on its contemplated length of twenty- four miles, the heights upon the north and west command it so completely that riflemen upon the hill could send their bullets across it with all ease. Even the Mormons themselves now admit that the real object in building the wall was to furnish labor to the thousands of idle men who were here in 1854, and who would have been dangerous to the existence of Mormon theocracy, had not this plan of keeping their hands employed been devised. You can have little appreciation of the deserted appearance of the city upon our arrival, with scarce a building open and nobody in town except the guard of two or three hundred who were left to take care of the property and apply the incendiary torch upon order.

There were only two females in the city when the Gentiles entered, and even they were sent away at once; so that today there are absolutely no ladies here except the wife of Governor Cummings and a lady who spent the Winter at Camp Scott and who returned in our company. There are now here probably five hundred men, the number having been increased by farmers who came up from their families to look after the crops. The house windows still remain boarded up, and the gardens are luxuriant with the weeds that have checked out all more useful vegetation. It would be difficult to imagine a scene of sadder desolation than that presented by this city now. Indeed it looks as though some terrible pestilence had swept over its face, leaving the traces of it dread path vividly marked as the course of a tornado through a vigorous well-grown forest. The workshops in Temple Block have all been despoiled of their roofs, and the foundations of the Temple covered with sods to hide them from the gaze of Gentile curiosity. Temple Block, as is already known, is the square devoted to the construction of the great Mormon Temple, now in process of erection. It is surrounded by a superior wall of stone, covered with a plastic, and some ten or twelve feet high; within the walls stand not only the wreck of extensive workshops, but the "Bowery" —or present church-meeting house-also, and the Endowment House, that scene of horrible mysteries which the initiated apostates from among the "Saints" unite in denouncing as the hell of hells. The "Bowery" is also closed up now. It is an extensive building, fully capable, I should think, of seating three thousand persons, as claimed by it constructors.

The square adjoining Temple Block, is occupied chiefly by the " Tithing House" and two of BRIGHAM YOUNG's palatial residences, including the celebrated "Lion" house, which he constructed with especial reference to the accommodation of an extensive and well-regulated harem. The "Lion" house is two stories and a half high, with a row of twelve Gothic gabled windows on each side, to the upper story, each window opening, it is said, into a separate room. Directly alongside this building, and connecting with it by a range of offices, is another of liberal proportions, in which BRIGHAM chiefly domiciles himself and the elder Mrs. YOUNG, who is divided off from her numerous rivals by a high fence. This building is surmounted by the "Bee Hive" emblem of the Territory;—but a profane wretch at my elbow insists, that the more fitting location for this emblem of industry, would be upon the Lion House aforesaid. I neither ask his reasons for the suggestion, nor discuss its soundness.

The tithing stores and BRIGHAM'S "domestic institutions" are surrounded by a fine and impenetrable wall of cobble-stones laid in cement, rising to a height of ten feet, three feet thick at the base and one foot thick at the top. This wall is divided into sections by columnar buttresses, which rise above the wall about two feet each, and are designed eventually to form pedestals for a collection of statues. The walls are entered by heavy gates, constructed so that no outsider could hope to got a peep at the mysteries inclosed, nor any discontented female hope to escape from the grounds without the friendly aid of a turnkey. Indeed, the whole establishment has very much the air of the desperate nunnery of the romances, the walls of which are understood to bury forever from the world those females who once pass their portals. Within this wall, too, BRIGHAM has extensive stables and barns, sufficient in size for a stud of fifty or sixty horses. The dwelling which he first constructed for his own use, and which is now occupied by one of his children, stands on the lower edge of the bench on the square east of that containing the Zion house. This building is the best located, and is altogether the cosiest house of the group. Back of it stands another of BRIGHAM'S spacious barns, looking much more like a large country church. Opening the gate by which it is approached we read the injunction, "Shepherds, feed your flocks."

Near by is a small saw mill, which is rim exclusively for the purpose of cutting BRIGHAM'S fire wood. The grounds about YOUNG's dwellings are not extensive nor elegant, although kept in the finest order. They are filled chiefly with fruit trees, strawberry beds, and kitchen gardens, They are carefully guarded, and strangers are generally excluded, although your correspondent was favored with an opportunity to ramble over them, and to luxuriate at some length in the luscious mysteries of the strawberry beds.

The square, north of BRIGHAM'S, is occupied chiefly by the group of a dozen houses, occupied by HEBER C. KIMBALL and his polygamous family. These, also, are surrounded by expensive and impenetrable walls. The dwellings of the YOUNGS, and other leading men in the church, are generally fine, exhibiting in all their surroundings a vast amount of the hardest of later wrung from the people. This fact is evident to the most superficial observer. BRIGHAM is immensely rich, yet has he not toiled, and one cannot fail to see that this is no country in which a man may become wealthy without labor or adventure, for scarce a blade of tame grass can be had without effort. BRIGHAM'S grounds occupy a site formerly covered by hard gravel, and every inch of soil has been carted upon it from a distance. The same is true of HEBER C. KIMBALL'S but the people, in their blind fanaticism, bow their necks readily to the yoke, and seem quite content to remain poor, that their prophets and priests may roll in wealth. On every hand, too, we see evidences of BRIGHAM'S policy of keeping his people hard at work. I do not exaggerate in the least, when I say that it is with the utmost difficulties that the masses can eke out an existence by the most laborious industry; for their tithes and taxes, paid in work, time and produce, take so largely from their means, and their soil is naturally so barren, that nothing less than the closest application saves them from starving. I would not be misunderstood. Their crops of grain and of vegetables are superior, when not cut off my insects, but the labor of reclaiming the soil and of irrigation, is so great as to absolutely forbid the cultivation of more than a small patch of land by each. On this score, it is clear that the most shameful imposition is practiced upon proselytes in the east and in the old world, who are continually urged to come to "Zion," a land flowing with milk and honey, and assured that the earth here yields abundantly upon slight wooing. Thus thousands have been deceived into abandoning comfortable homes, and bringing their families here to suffer all the pangs of keenest poverty. If those who contemplate coming here will but send some trusty agent in advance to examine and make honest reports, fewer families will finally decide to come here, where they must necessarily wear out a wretched existence.


Among the natural curiosities of this region, Great Salt Lake is preeminent. It has already been so fully described that I can add nothing new. A party of us visited it a day or two ago, and tested its saline virtue, floating like logs upon its surface, and strangling desperately when a drop or two of the brine succeeded in penetrating nostrils or mouth. This inland sea certainly is among the most remarkable facts in the geography of the world. If I remember aright, Capt. STANSBURY'S soundings make it only thirty-five feet deep in its deepest part. Three rivers—the Weber, the Bear and the Jordan River—all empty into it, pouring large bodies of fresh water into the basin continually; nevertheless, although it has no visible outlet, the water of the Lake maintains its character of strongest brine unimpaired. Standing upon the jutting point of Black Rock, distance eighteen miles from the City, and looking thence down upon the water, it seems of a bluish white color in body, though quite clear when taken up in a glass. The salt-boilers upon the banks state that four buckets of water will usually make one of salt, and a clearer, purer article could not be desired. I tried a bath, and found it impossible to sink; wading out far enough to bring the water up to one's arm-pits, it becomes impossible to keep one's feet upon the sandy bottom, so buoyant is the water. Lay upon your back, double up your limbs, and lock your arms around your knees and you bob around in the ceaseless swell of the Lake like a stray cork. The water is so excessively salt as to be bitter. A drop in one's eye is painful as would be the same amount of tobacco juice, and the greatest care is necessary to prevent strangulation if the swimmer "ships" the smallest mouthful.

We found only one salt-boiler at work. All the rest had "gone South," as we were informed by the now solitary monarch of the spot, Mr. Warn, formerly of Salem, Mass. At his shanty, near the Black Rock on the shore of the lake, we found his wife—an intelligent and practical woman from Cushing, Me., and a pretty little flaxen-haired daughter nine or ten years of age, bringing vividly to the mind of your correspondent a blue eyed, brown-haired little one two or three thousand miles away in a happier land It is a sad sight to witness a naturally bright child growing up in such a spot, without a companion of her own years, or any means of education. Mr. WHITE and his wife came here several years ago, undoubting disciples of the Mormon faith. Some time since they lost several head of cattle, the responsibility for which they traced directly to PHINEAS YOUNG, a nephew of the Prophet. WHITE did not hesitate to accuse him of the theft, and to demand justice. In response he was told by his priestly leaders to "shut up,"—and as he persisted in scandalizing the Church by making oath that the Prophet's nephew was a thief, he was cut off from the Church. This, however, had no terrors for him, as he and his wife had already become satisfied by the "fruits" of Mormonism, that the tree was vicious and corrupt, They assured us that even within a few days post, since the arrival of the Governor and the arrangement made by the Peace Commissioners, the Mormon Bishops have been engaged in driving the people away from his neighborhood, some of them being reluctant to go South, but were afraid to "disobey Council." The effort was made to send the WHITES away, but they positively refused, notwithstanding they were told very distinctly by the Bishop that the fractious Apostates would be put out of harm's way. Mr. WHITE states, upon his own knowledge, that very many families went South under orders, who were loth to do so grumbling audibly at the tyranny to which they submitted. I am assured that not a few of the people have been made to believe that Batons, as "Governor," has the right to order them where he will. We have abundant evidence of these tyrannical orders to leave the city. I saw in Emigration Canon yesterday several apostatizing families, who had come up from the South. They desired to stop in this city and await the arrival of the army, but the "Saints" told them positively that they would allow no women to be in town while the army was here, and so compelled them to start to the Eastward. These and a dozen other families similarly situated, who are now camped on the "bench," will come in here with the army and test the question with their persecutors.


Returning from, this digression, I must say a word of the Hot and Warm Springs. The former boil up out of the Valley at the foot of the mountain three miles above the city; they are sulphurous, and of so high a tem- perature as to be unendurable, Indeed there can be little doubt that they would cook an egg, although I have had no opportunity to try the experiment, A story is told of a big Missourian; an emigrant to California, who, passing these Springs in 1850 stripped for a bath. He had been assured that the Mormons bathed here, and so when cautioned against trying the experiment, swore that he'd be d—d if he couldn't stand anything that the Mormons could. With this declaration he plunged into the see thing pool. A yell of pain brought the bye-standers to his aid. They dragged him out,—for he was helpless to aid himself,—and carried him to town, where he lay for weeks before he was able to proceed on his journey. The Warm Springs are just outside the city wall noon the North. Their temperature is lower than that of the Hot Springs, affording an exceedingly agreeable bath. There is a bathhouse within the walls, supplied from the springs, but, like all else here at this time, has been broken up and left in ruins. Some of the Gentiles not long since went in, as the house was open, fixed up a bathing tub, and arranged it so that it could be used; but this was too much of luxury for Gentile brethren, and some good Mormon brethren accordingly cut off the water and destroyed our plans of comfort. Fortunately they can't choke the springs themselves, which well up out of the ground, forming two or three natural basins, from 12 to 18 inches deal), in which we roll and plunge ad libitum. The water is both sulphurous and saline, very clear, and possessing cleansing qualities which cannot but be healthy and invigorating to the skin.


Nobody has any confidence that the present season of peace can last. Indeed, I venture the assertion that if Commissioners POWELL and McCULLOCH—who have fulfilled their duties here with prudence, judgment and fidelity—can be induced to give expression to their views upon the subject, it will be found that they have no idea that this people can live in peace under the Constitution and laws of the Union, to which they all profess attachment the most profound. We see the symptoms of collision on every hand The Mormons themselves, though subdued, are surly, gloomy and discontented. They are impudent, too, in their manner and conversation, and will provoke personal difficulties by their conduct, out of which a general collision may spring at any hour. Get a Mormon in conversation, and, ten to one, he will tell you very soon how brave he is, and how they would have whipped the Army if the President had not offered so large a price for peace. An amusing instance of this sort occurred between a private of MAGRAW'S company of volunteers and two Mormons, who went out to camp the other day with produce to sell. The soldier, after listening to their braggadocia awhile, suggested that they numbered about the same proportion to him that the Mormon army did to that of the United States, that this was a fair opportunity to test their relative strength, and that be intended to whip them both for their impudence. The braggarts were saved the flogging by the timely appearance of an officer.

Again there are many Gentiles here and in the neighborhood, who have long been under the heel of Mormon oppression, suffering great loss and many hardships, as well as personal indignities. These begin to feel a little security now, and are turning upon their persecutors with a good deal of bitterness. One of them, a Mr. McNEILL, whose experience I propose to note more at length before I close, meeting "Adjutant-General" JAMES FERGUSON, last evening, in the presence of sundry Government officials and others, denounced him bitterly as a scoundrel who had oppressed him, and demanded of him satisfaction at any given number of paces, with weapons to be selected. FERGUSON did not accept the invitation. Scenes of this character will become more and more frequent day by day, and fan the insane zeal of not a few of the fanatics of these mountains who seem anxious to be made "martyrs for the faith."

But polygamy is the rock on which they are most certain to split. To any interference with it they say they will not submit under any circumstances. This I have been told repeatedly by the chiefs among the Mormons here. They declare tha come what may, they will recognize no attempt to break up the plurality system. They admit that their legislature has passed no law legalizing and establishing polygamy, and give as a reason therefor the certainty that Congress would disapprove and so annul such a law. This being so, there can be little doubt that the old Mexican law on that subject prevails here, and that polygamy can be punished under it. At any rate, Judge ECKLES will make the experiment, unless he should get instructions from Washington to the contrary, which is hardly to be anticipated. The people themselves evidently expect a collision to arise out of this or some other cause, and I think they are carefully considering the policy of leasing the country altogether, and going to some place where they can wield the civil as well as ecclesiastical authority. Meantime, a strong body of troops should always be stationed near the city, ready for instant duty, to maintain the laws and to prevent bloodshed by private hands.

Already the Mormon leaders here are at work to get rid of a portion of the federal officials sent among them, Major S. M. BLAIR told me that they had already petitioned for the removal of Judge ECKLES, Postmaster. MORELL, and Indian Agents HURT and CRAIG. ECKLES has excited their hostility by his official course in Camp Scott last winter, where he had the unparalleled impudence to hold the Mormons to be traitors, and to indicate his disposition to execute upon them the laws against treason and sedition. The other officials mentioned have been among them be- fore; and of course as they drove them out by force, it is annoying and humiliating to find them back again. Dr. HURT certainly is a most honorable and excellent gentleman, loved and respected by all who know him, and one who has proven his patriotism within a year past by desperate public service, in which he has sacrificed comfort and health, and it is to be feared, has even cut short his life. We shall see now whether justice or the Mormons are strongest in their influence over the Administration of JAMES BUCHANAN. Governor CUMMING, who seems to have been taken into full communion by the brethren, evidently sympathizes with them in their kind intentions toward his brother officials, and will, doubtless, exert his influence in support of the petitions of removal, which, I am inclined to think, he forwards by this mail. The President, however, will be apt to await the return of the Peace Commissioners before he acts upon the petitions; and I am greatly in error if they do not see, what every other "Gentile" here sees clearly, that it is the Governor who should be removed from a position which he is utterly unfit to fill. His official intercourse with the Mormons here is making smooth sailing for himself at the present; but it will assuredly, in time, complicate the difficulties which cannot be avoided. Firmness and dignity are required in the Governor, but CUMMING substitutes for these vulgar familial fly. Besides, he is naturally excitable, and notoriously gets steam up to an alarming point over the whisky-jug. He is not the man for the position, and should be replaced forthwith by some one who will command respect for himself, and so be better able to exact respect for the Government he represents. He is, withal, vain as a boy of 13, and offensively imagines himself the embodiment of all that is great and grand. There can be no question that former Administrations have sent some appointees here, justly obnoxious to the people; and it is of the highest importance that those who, in future, are sent to preside over them should be unobjectionable men in all respects, Probably the best mode of dealing with this people would be to repeal the organic act altogether, and then appoint some such man as Gen. JOHNSTON both civil and military Governor. BLAIR, and others of the most influential men in this community, do not hesitate to say, even today, that they will be d—d if they will submit to have MORELL, ECKLES &Co. admininister the Post Office and other offices of the Government here. They demand, too, "as a right," a share of the offices for themselves its well as the appointment of men to all of the offices, whom they shall approve, and he adds that there are a thousand who will jump when he gives the word. I suggest that Mr. BUCHANAN send his nomination here for confirmation, rather than to the Senate of the United States. It is rumored that BLAIR rather expects to be appointed to Judge ECKLES place; and if he falls to get it, I should not be surprised if Dr, BERNHISEL is requested to resign, to give the Major a chance to go to Congress.


The Mormons have determined to make an earnest effort for immediate admission into the Union, in order that they may pass laws establishing the eminently "domestic institution" of Polygamy, and so defy interference therewith. If they fail in that—as I take  
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it for granted they must—they are likely to get out of the country as quickly as they can. Notwithstanding BRIGHAM so recently declared the determination of himself or his people to "live or die in these mountains," it is very evident that he has not altogether rejected the propositions made to him by Colonel KINNEY for the sale of 3,000,000 acres of land in Mosqueto. Messrs. COOPER and HARBIN, the Kinney Commissioners, are still at Provo in consultation with BRIGHAM, and the chances are that he will make some conditional arrangements. At least, such are the indications. If so, it is supposed that Major HUNT the old Mormon pioneer—and another person will be sent down to take a look at the country and report, and if their report is favorable, that Missionaries will be sent there to receive and look after the foreign immigration of proselytes, who will be directed to that new Mecca, and he followed, in time, by all of the faithful from this "Zion" as rapidly as they can get means of transportation. All this, however, is very vague and indefinite yet, and may never obtain further development.


There are now in this city two American citizens, who have been held, for months past, prisoners of war, and treated, in some respects, most shamefully. One of these is Mr. F. E, McNEILL, of New Orleans, La, who came to Fort Laramie last year, as a guide to the Fifth Infantry. He came from Laramie to Fort Bridger in November last, with Rosser, & WADDELL'S team, and arrived in this city on the 1st December, with several other teamsters, all of whom proposed to proceed at once to California, from here. McNEILL went to see BRIGHAM YOUNG, on learning that no one could move safely without his aid and assistance YOUNG advised him not to go south, as the Indians were very bad, but said that, if he insisted upon going out of the Valley, he would give him and his friends an escort eastward as far as Fort Laramie. The escort offered was to have been under the command of "Cherokee THOMPSON," the scoundrel who has been all Winter, and still is, a prisoner in Gen. JOHNSTON'S camp, and whom McNEILL, heard declare his intention to incite the Cheyennes to activity in cutting off "American" travelers across the Plains. It is a significant fact that this Southern route, on which the Indians are so bad, according to BRIGHAM'S account, is the same over which the California and Salt Lake mail has been carried now for two and a half years, by Mormons, without over having been interrupted in a single instance. Yet very many travelers have there found graves, according to Mormon accounts, entirely by Indian hands! The fact adds seeming corroboration to the charge so frequently made against the Mormons, of having a secret understanding with the savages, by which they receive aid in, tied immunity for, robbing and murdering others, so long as they let the Saints pass unmolested.

McNEILL had seen enough of the Saints already to satisfy him that he must he very circumspect if he hoped to escape with safety, so he concluded not to accept an escort, and never called for it. After remaining in the Valley for a month or more, during which time he traveled north a ways, to see the people, he determined some time in January to start for Fort Bridger, which he did with three others, to wit: Mr. C. L, MILES, of Michigan, — BROWN, of Southern Missouri, a one eyed and one-armed man, and HENRY C. FADENS, of Salem, Mass. This party of four plunged at once into the mountains, where they floundered about for 21 days in the snow, which oft times was neck deep. For six days they were entirely without food. They were discovered at last near Yellow Creek by the Mormon out-post force under Capt. WINANS, brought back to this city, and put in imprisonment, under a guard of eight armed men BROWN, however, escaped while at the Mormon station on the Weber River, and is understood to have reached the Army in safety. After the prisoners had been in custody four weeks, the Mormons wanted McNEILL to start for California with the mall, which he refused to do, having been warned by friendly apostate Mormons that he would assuredly be murdered if he went. Upon his refusal a heavy ball and chain were put upon him, and he was again confined. Subsequently he succeeded in getting the guard drunk one day, and then got the Captain to go with him to BRIGHAM'S. Not finding the Prophet in he left a letter upbraiding him for his oppression. Half an hour later an order came from BRIGHAM directing the fetters to be removed. When Governor CUMMING first came into the city McNEILL again succeeded in getting his guard under the influence of liquor, and then under pretence of going after beer, slipped away from his custodians and proceeded to see the new Governor to claim his protection. He found STAINS' house, where the Governor was stopping, rigorously guarded,—but he pushed his way in, told the Governor his own story briefly, and claimed his protection. The Governor, who seemed to be alarmed and fearful of personal danger, failed to respond to his plea more than to take his name down. He also stated to the Governor that he could tell him of some shocking murders perpetrated by Snake Indians, with the cognizance and under the influence of prominent Mormons; and of cattle stealing under the direction of CHAUNCEY W. WEST, Bishop of Ogden. One case in particular, he mentions, is that of an Arkansas emigrant, who got his cattle back subsequently, by contracting with WEST to give him a portion of them for returning the remainders. A teamster, named RHODES, who assisted in driving the cattle, while at the Indian camp of BEN and JIM SIMONS, was told by the Indians there that prior to the robbery WEST asked JIM to undertake the running off of the cattle. JIM replied by suggesting to WEST the propriety of running his own hand into the fire, promising if it didn't burn him, he also might be induced to try. The Indian cautioned him, however, that it would burn badly. Somebody else was found to do the job, however, for the cattle were carried off immediately after, and the owner, besides paying WEST to find them for him, was also compelled to pay for their herding during the Winter. McNEILL further states, that while on the Weber River during the Winter, some time, he saw the cattle which, were stolen from GILBERT & GERRISU, and JOHN RADFORD, sutlers and merchants, while on the plains last Fall, herding under the care of a Mormon named THURSTON.

As Governor CUMMING could not or would not help. McNEILL, he returned to his prison. This was on Saturday. On Monday the Mormon guard renewed the ball and chain upon their victim, an American citizen, against whom no crime is alleged, and who was only held as a prisoner of war, as was confessed to me by prominent Mormons to whom I have addressed inquiries on the subject within the last day or two. On the midnight following the renewal of his fetters, McNEILL was suddenly seized by an armed force under Adjutant-General FERGUSON, and sent to the Penitentiary in irons, while his fellow prisoners were left in the City, in total ignorance of his fate. There can be no doubt of the fact that this step was taken to prevent him from again communicating with the Gentile Governor, Three weeks later he was taken out of prison by an armed guard, carried over two hundred and fifty miles to the southward to the settlement of Beaver, and there turned loose in the vicinity of the most vicious Indians in this region, without provisions or arms or ammunition of any kind with which to help himself. The point of his desertion he supposed to be about 400 miles distant from California, the road lying in part across the Great Desert. He walked down as far as the scene of the Mountain Meadows massacre, where he saw the bones of the murdered emigrants lying in heaps; but no traces of the wagons or other property belonging to them. He saw in the care of good Mormons in that neighborhood a large number of cattle, which he was informed, by men who were secretly apostates to the Church, were those taken from the murdered emigrants. This corroborates the testimony of certain Indians, referred to in a former letter, who declared that the Mormons carried off the cattle, although when they induced the Indians to go into the massacre, they promised them that they should have all the plunder except the wagons. While upon this Subject, let me add the testimony of a very intelligent gentleman who has been traveling in the vicinity of the Mountain Meadows massacre, and who wormed out of some of his Mormon friends additional facts in connection with that catastrophe. According to these admissions the emigrants, finding themselves the subject of a continuous succession of Indian attacks, which were fast reducing and weakening them, (again confirming the Indian story of my former communication,) to that extent, resolved to make a stand and prepare for vigorous defence. They accordingly camped by a little stream, made a corral with their wagons, the wheels of which they sunk into the ground so as to make a sort of breastwork, and in this position recieved the assaults of their savage enemies under "Saintly" leaders, determined to die there rather than yield their, wives and children to the fury of their asailiants, Thus they defended themselves nearly three weeks, killing, it is estimated, over one hundred of the enemy, and they were beaten at last only by strategy—the assailants turning the stream of water away from the besieged, and then killing them as they came out one by one in search of the means of quenching their maddening thirst. It is fully admitted that this affair occured almost within sight and sound of the Mormon settlements, and that the Mormons knew day by day the progress of the fight. Had the "Saints" been disposed to assist the little band and save them, they could have sent even to Salt Lake City for horsemen and had them upon the ground within the first week of the siege—,for a hundred miles a day is no uncommon travel for these mountaineers. The conclusion is irresistable that they were content to see the Gentiles slaughtered and when we have this evidence of the extent to which their hearts were steeled against the pleadings of the commonest claims of humanity, it is easy to believe the declarations of the Indians that they engaged in the affair under Mormon influence and leadership, I learn also that a number of the children of the murdered emigrants are in the hands of Indians and Southern Mormons. Dr. FORNEY, the Superintendent of Indian Affairs, designs taking a trip southward very soon, with a view to ransoming them and also of inquiring into the facts relative to the massacre. I fear, however, that the Doctor will never get at the bottom of the mystery— for although apparently an honest man, who desires to do his duty faithfully, he is exceedingly simple, easily influenced, and completely disarmed of all suspicion by the most superficial kindness. Already he has been taken complete possessession of by this people, and upon their own testimony, is satisfied that they have been greatly abused and lied about, and that they are in reality among the most honest and most pious people upon earth,—notwithstanding their polygamy. Indeed, hath he and Governor CUMMING seem to be in the best possible frame of mind for the sowing of Mormon seed, and I should not be surprised if they became full converts to the doctrines of JOSEPH SMITH before another month passes. I would be sorry to do the Doctor injustice—and wish again to express my full conviction that he desires to do right,—but he seems to me to be moulded of entirely too malleable material for an independent and discriminating public officer among a people whose system and practice are entirely at war with the moral sentiment of the civilized and Christian world.

But I have unintentionally wandered from the history of Mr. McNEILL, who on viewing the ghastly skeletons of his murdered countrymen, and obtaining evidence of the fact that they were victims no less of Mormon than of Indian iniquity, determined at once that it would be madness for him to attempt the passage towards California. He accordingly returned at once to Great Salt Lake, arriving here two or three days ago, having walked two hundred and fifty or three hundred miles in six days, supporting himself on the way upon wild rabbits, which he killed with a rifle furnished by a sympathizing apostate Mormon in one of the southern settlements. On his way he learned that peace had been made—but, in any event, he felt that his chance of life was better while wandering in the neighborhood of settlements than it would be in plunging away from them into the southern wilderness, where there would be no witnesses of any outrage to which it might be desired to subject him. I add the following items upon the testimony of McNEILL, some of which you will recollect have been already referred to by evidence from other sources.

Last Fall six young men, came into the Valley from California, intending to go to the East through the camp, of the U. S. Army. They were arrested here, searched, robbed of a portion of their personal property, and then sent southward, to return to California, escorted by a band of Danites, under PORTER ROCKWELL. Arriving at one of the southern settlements, ROCKWELL told the men to go ahead, and he would soon overtake them They passed on, and that night were attacked, and some, if not all of them, were killed, by a party in ambush on their road. This was related to McNEILL by men professing to be privy to the facts, one of whom saw ROCKWELL riding back on a mule belonging to the travelers. This incident is probably the same narrated much more fully in the story told by RICHARD JAMES, in my letter of the 29th May, from Fort Bridger. It will be remembered, that a man named YEATES was murdered in the Mountains last Fall, as was supposed, because he had sold ammunition to, the Army in hostility to Mormon interests. The horse of the murdered man is now in the possession of a Mormon named CONOVER at Provo.

A young man, whose name McNEILL does not remember, came here from California last year, and went to board with a man named TERRY, at Springville. Some time afterwards his revolvers were stolen from the house during the day-time, and his horse carried off from the field. TERRY told him that they had been carried off by Indians, and he was never able to get any trace of them. On a Sunday evening, a little subsequent to the thefts, TERRY started for Church, as he said, and the young man went out with him—which is the last time the latter was ever seen alive. Three days later an Indian reported a corpse lying three and a half miles below in the woods; which, upon examination, proved to be that of the young stranger; and the next day Terry was seen riding the stolen horse about town with the pistols of deceased in his belt! The facts of this case are certified by certain honest Mormons who knew them, who denounce them privately, and will probably testify to them as soon as the protection of the army is afforded. One of these, an old gentleman named. WARREN, for expressing his opinion on the subject rather freely, was dragged out of his house in the night, and would probably have been murdered had not his son come to his rescue in the nick of time with one of Colt's revolving persuaders. Of such crimes as these the theocracy with which BRIGHAM YOUNG has practically displaced the Government and laws of the Union takes no cognizance whatever. A Mr. RHOADES, of Arkansas, was stopped in broad daylight upon the streets in Ogden City, and robbed of his brestpin and finger-ring. He represented the facts to Bishop CHAUNCEY W. WEST, who took no notice of his complaint, nor made the least effort to ascertain who of his flock had thus earned their title to a call in the Penitentiary. A young man named C. L. MILES, was in the employ of Bishop MELLOW ANDRUS, of Cottonwood, a settlement a few-miles from here, and boarded in his family. ANDRUS had eight wives, of one of whom he became exceedingly jealous, suspecting her of improper intimacy, with MILES. He did not profess to have any proof, but said to MILES one day that if he was sure his suspicion was well grounded he would not hesitate to shoot him and cut his wife's throat. MILES protested his innocence, but, becoming alarmed, ran away from the Valley, and attempted to reach the army. He was subsequently arrested, however, by the Mormon out-post at Yellow Creek, this side of Bear River, and brought back with several others, as already stated above. Upon his return he sent a Mormon to ANDRUS to ask for his buffalo robe which he had left with him when he went off. ANDRUS refused to deliver the robe, and told the messenger that he would kill MILES if he got where he was. The messenger, a man named SHEEN, who has the reputation of having murdered some one on Council Bluffs a year or two ago, replied significantly that he must murder MILES then, because he was in his charge, intimating that another opportunity might be made. Five or six days later MILES was sent North, under Mormon escort, to meet a party of Cailfornians whom the Mormons said were going West by the northern route, since which time nothing has been heard of him by Gentiles here. Do his friends in Michigan know anything more of his fate? If they have not heard from him of late, there can be no doubt that he, too, was murdered. Within a fortnight after MILES' departure ANDRUS went to the house of his suspected wife's father in this city, and cut her throat, but BRIGHAM has passed the occurrence by without even a word of rebuke. Contrast this single incident with the fact that Mormons have kicked and beaten Gentiles to death here in Salt Lake City, confessedly for imprudent denunciation of the doctrines and practices of the "Saints!'' These facts were narrated coolly and with evident satisfaction, by full-fledged Mormons, to Mr. McNEILL and to a Mr. FABENS, whose narrative I will give hereafter. Mormons have also boasted to him that the mules lost by General JOHNSTON'S picket-guard this Spring, during one night when Colonel KANE was in camp, were taken by the Mormon escort who accompanied him into Fort Bridger, and were sent at once into the Valley by one of their number. General JOHNSTON suspected the theft, and complained of it to Colonel KANE who, upon repeating the complaint to his Mormon friends, was answered by the suggestion that the mules had doubtless strayed away, and would turn up again. It is a favorite joke with the Mormons here, now that their treasonable robberies have been pardoned, to bay, with a contemptuous laugh, that the animals of JOHNSTON'S army "strayed" into the herding grounds of the church.

Mr. McNEILL has had considerable opportunity for observation here, and confirms the declaration that there are large numbers of men and women ready to abandon this community as soon as they see an opportunity to do so safely, and to carry with them the means necessary for the long journey to the States. JOHN M. STEWART, one of the counselors of Bishop JOHNSON, at Springville, attempted to escape to the Army this Spring—went up one canon towards the East, but lost way, and came down another canon back to the Valley when he was arrested and brought back. For this act of apostacy he was cut off from the Church, and his wife has abandoned him.

Wm H. FABENS, of Salem, Massachusetts, is another of the late prisoners of war in the Mormon hards. He started from the Missouri last year with RUSSELL & WADDELL'S trains, with the intention of pushing on to California. He was with the trains burned on Green River last October, and arrived in Salt Lake City with his own horses on or about the 21st of October. Upon his arrival here he went to BRIGHAM YOUNG, told him of his desire to go to California, and received from him a pass, which stated that he was a "teamster from the expedition against Utah," and requested that he should be permitted to pass freely. Noticing that the pass was different in form from others issued by BRIGHAM, and which did not state the former connection of those who held them with "the enemy," he was afraid to use it. He started, however, for California by the Southern road, in company with three others, JAMES DONAHUE, of Indiana County, Penn., and two Irishmen who had been with RUSSELL'S train, one of them called PETER, and the other JIMMY. The party went down to Fillmore. Here DONAHUE and FABENS stopped a little while to get feed for their horses, and the Irishman wont or ahead. When FABENS and his companion followed they found the bodies of the Irishmen only four miles below the town, lying on the roadside, entirely stripped of clothing. They returned at once to Fillmore, and were told that the murders were committed by Indians, but FABENS states that he saw no signs of Indians anywhere in the vicinity. Feeling unsafe, FABENS and DONAHUE rode back to Springville hard as they could drive. Finding their horses broken down they concluded to remain at that place a while to recruit, so they hired a horse and proceeded to keep bachelors' hall. After they had been here for a fortnight, a Mormon, named MOSES DALY, told FABENS that his two sons were going to California, and offered to take him through safely if he would give his horses for the service, and money to buy provisions for the road. FABENS agreed to the terms, when the DAUB took the horses, sold them immediately, and then went north to do business as grain threshers. FABENS went to the old man and demanded the fulfillment of the contract or the value of his horses. DALY told him to hush up or he would get into difficulty, and that many a man had had his throat cut for far less than he had said. From this time FABENS found himself the subject of continued surveillance of a sort of secret police. On the 8th of February he escaped from Springville and went to Provo, from where he started with the BROWN alluded to in McNEILL'S narrative, across the mountains towards Camp Scott. In Weber Canon they met McNEILL and CHARLES MILES, and proceded together. When within twenty or thirty miles of Camp, they were taken by the Mormon outposts and brought back. The party were entirely without arms, and were without provisions during several days. The day subsequent to their capture, they were taken to the Weber, where they were detained in a log hut five days. During the 4th day, BROWN, who being a sort of cripple, was not watched very closely, slipped out while his guard were at "evening prayer,"(they forgot the scriptural injunction to watch, and pray,) and it is understood, made his way in safety to Fort Bridger. FABENS fully confirms the story of McNEILL in various points, and especially in respect to the robbery and murder of the young man who boarded with TERRY. The fact that when the young man's body was found several days after death, his clothes were still upon him, presents abundant evidence that he was not killed by Indians. A Mr. HENLETT, as well as Mr. WARREN, knew the name of the murdered man, and are both understood to be able to fasten the crime upon his Mormon assassin. FABENS was sent south with McNEILL, shared his fortunes there and returned with him. He seems to be a of some education, and good natural abilities, but is physical endurance has been subjected to a serious test by his recent sufferings.


We are still living out of doors. It is evident that the people are pursuing a system of police, designed to render the neighborhood unpleasant to the Gentiles. Thus it is quite impossible yet to hire a room anywhere. So universal is this Mormon exhibition of Christian charity which compels a man to sleep out of doors who would gladly pay for shelter, that we are entitled to consider it the result of something else than accident,—although "General" FERGUSON requests me to state that the Church has not issued any orders to the people directing them to close their doors upon us. As he evidently feels that such an order would reflect discredit upon "the Church," I wonder if it has occurred to him that an exhortation to the people to exhibit at least savage hospitality towards strangers whom they recognize as gentlemen, would be a more practical method of saving "the Church" from the suspicion which the General manifests a desire to avoid.


As Mr. FREDERICK LOBA has been assaulted by some of your rivals, because of his narrative published in the TIMES, it is but just to him to say that I have found no man where who ventures to make any specific charge reflecting upon his character. The worst anybody will say of him is that they don't think him as "smart" a man as he pretends to be,—but, so far as I can judge, I have no found his equal here yet, either in natural intelligence or scholastic acquirements. I met here, a day or two ago, one of the victims of the misrepresentations to which Mr. LOBA referred as being continually made in Europe by the Mormon missionaries, who assert there that the ancient power of healing the sick, and the lame and blind has been fully restored to the Prophets here in "the Valley." A young Englishman, affected with paralysis, and having some little property, was converted to the faith, induced to cross the ocean and traverse the plains to get to this modern pool of Bethesda, where he fully expected to become whole again. Of course, he was sadly disappointed. When the people went South, he was left here to starve and is subsisting now upon the charity of the Peace Commissioners and others.

I omitted to mention sooner, that one of the causes which make it difficult for families to leave this community after having lived some time in the Valley, arises from the fact that they have no titles to their lands, and so cannot leave then except by entirely abandening all their property. The public lands here have never been sold at all, and no man has a clear. title to a single foot of it, even in this city. It would be good policy for the Government to bring these lands as quickly as possible into the market, issue patents therefor to those entitled to preemptions and so make basis for titles. When this is done, the process of Mormon disintegration will be promoted, because dissatisfed Mormons can then set readily and go away, while their places will often, be supplied by Gentiles. It certainly is important that the Federal Government should avail itself of all proper means of allaying the exclusiveness of the Mormon element by diffusing as widely as possible its antidote.

It is not impossible that the will he quite a large emigration from this region to the Pacific coast before Winter, if the road is found to be safe. The Mormon horsemen, militia and missionaries, tramping over the country in every direction, have found a now route to California, which, seems to be a much better route than any now in use. Its direction is almost on a bee-line west from this City. It; distances are estimated as follows :

To Black Rock on: Salt Lake 18 miles. Thence to Scull's Springs Valley 30 miles. Thence to Redding Springs Valley 11 miles Thence to March Springs Valley 18 miles. Here the road strikes Reba Valley, in which there is an abundance of wood and water all the way down to the sink of the Humboldt, estimated to be a distance of 250 miles. At this point the route strikes the old California road to Carson Valley, supposed to be distant about 50 miles. Total 380 miles.

If these estimates prove to be correct upon examination, it will be seen that the route hence to California may be shortened nearly one-half, simply by substituting a direct line for the circuitous one now in use. It is hoped that the army here will avail itself of an opportunity to make a satisfactory reconnoissance of it.

The new overland mail contracts are doing finely. The mail which left St. Joseph's, Mo., on the 5th of June, arrived here on the evening of the 24th, nineteen and a half days' time, or two and a half less than that stipulated in the contract. The conductor states that with the arrangements now completed, there will be no difficulty in making the time through regularly in sixteen or eighteen days. S.