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


Murdered Innocents. 

In the month of September 1857 a party of emigrants were journeying through Southern Utah, en route for Los Angeles. The party was composed of about one hundred and forty men, women and children; and was finely equiped with wagons, horses, mules, oxen and considerable other valuable property. On a bright and lovely morning of early September, this party entered the Mountain Meadow—traveled down it to the springs, located near the southern extremity, and camped, with the intention of remaining several days for the purpose of recruiting the stock before entering upon the desert country just beyond.

The camp was scarcely settled down, into that quiet comfort, peculiar to an emigrant party when intending to rest several days, ere it was attacked by a body of Indians. The men of this party were not easily frightened or readily whipped. The camp was entrenched by digging away the earth under the wagon wheels—allowing the wagons to settle close to the ground, while the earth was thrown up so as to form, with the wagon beds, a complete breastwork.

For three days the Indians continued the attack without avail. They were unable to conquer those brave men—cumbered as they were with their wives and children. The most damnable duplicity—having no equal on the pages of history —was then employed to consummate what Indian bravery could not do. A white man appeared at the head of the valley with a white flag; and, so glad were those weary men to see a messenger of peace—one of their own blood and nation—that they dressed a little innocent in a white frock and a pair of strong arms held her up so that the messenger could see her. He rode into the camp. Need we follow his words and tell how he led, those men to believe him. Who would not believe a white man under such circumstances? Those men, under pledge of protection, agreed to give up their arms and surrender their property. They were willing to give up all, if in doing so they could save their loved ones. Like true men their wives and children were their first thoughts.

The messenger went away and returned in a few hours with the statement that the Indians had consented to let them go upon the terms already mentioned.

Then commenced the preparation for the final act of the tragedy. The women and children were first started—the men following, totally disarmed and all like sheep going to the slaughter. Less than half a mile from the Springs, the signal was given and then commenced the carnival of white demons. These white men, women and children were shot down—butchered— murderedby men of their own blood and nation. Once instance well substantiated, is shown where a young girl was violated as on bended knee she begged for the boon of life. A few of the children so small that it was thought they could not remember the slaughter were spared. Their then little tongues have grown into a testimony.

One hundred and twenty peaceable men, women and children were thus murdered by white fiends and their Indian allies. The Indians received the old clothing, a quantity of provisions and a few worn out cattle. The balance of the property passed into the hands of the leaders of the Mormon Church.

A few weeks before, the doctrine of shedding human blood for the remission of sin had been advocated. The Mountain Meadow Massacre was but one of the bloody links of a reign of terror then existing in Utah. It was in fact the culmination. From this deedthe community shrunk back stricken with horror. Such an act had never before disgraced humanity.

Who are responsible before God and mankind for this massacre? The perpetrators of it yet stalk through the Territory unpunished. Every obstacle possible has been thrown in the way of the United States Judges when they have attempted to investigate it. Two monuments, erected there by army officers have been destroyed.

Shall we admit Utah into the Union of States while so damnable a crime stands against her and is unavenged?

The blood of the murdered innocents cries to Heaven.

With reverence we bow our head and pray that God will smith the demons of the Mountain Meadow Massacre with the everlasting fires of his wrath—that the fiat of the living and Eternal God will consign them, after this life, to the lowest depths of his punishment.