THE MOUNTAIN MEADOWS MASSACRE. 1867.
An Arkansas Emigrant Party Arrives at Salt Lake City—Assassination Of Parley P. Pratt—Ill Feeling against the Emigrants— Alleged Outrages—Their Arrival at Mountain Meadows—They are Attacked by Indians—A Flag or Truce—Plan of the Massacre —surrender of the emigrants—the butchery—burial of the Slain—The Survivors—Judge Cradlebaugh's Investigation—The Aiken Massacre—John D. Lee on Trial— The Jury Disagree—The Second Trial—Lee Convicted and Sentenced—His Confession and Execution.
1 In Forney's Rept, in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. lst Sess., ii. no. 42, p. 79, and the Hand-Book of Reference,
p. 75, . Forney, as superintendent of Indian affairs, made a close investigation into the details of this tragedy, the result of which is given in his report ut supra, pp. 87-9, and elsewhere in this
document, which occupies 139 pages, and contains all the official information then
to be had on the subject. His reports are dated Salt Lake City, 1859. Burton, City of the Saints, 411-12, note, also quotes an official
report, in which See also Lee's confession in Mormonism Unvailed, 218, 237, 239, where At Lee's trial James Haslem testified, as we shall see later, that he was sent from Cedar City by Isaac C. Haight, with a letter to Brigham , on Monday, Sept. 7th, and that he reached S.L. City at 11 A. M. On Thursday. Deseret News, Sept. 20, 1876. The next day was the 11th.
I will now proceed to give the incidents as they occurred. In the spring of 1857 a
party of ,2 ,3 .
2 U.S. Attorney Wilson, in his report in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Sec., ii. no. 42, p. 102, states that , and . Forney and Burton say that ; Waite, The Mormon Prophet, 66, that the party consisted of , besides. Stenhouse, Tell It All, 324, mentions .
4 They travelled leisurely and in comfort, stopping at intervals to
recruit their cattle, and about the end of July arrived at Salt Lake City,5 where they hoped to replenish their stock of
For several years after the gold discovery the arrival of an emigrant party was
usually followed, as we have seen, by friendly traffic between saint and gentile,
the former thus disposing, to good advantage; of his farm and garden produce. But
now all was changed.
5 I find no mention of their arrival in the files of the Deseret News, although the names of passing emigrants were registered in that paper at a nominal charge; and when the party was a large one, its passage was usually noticed among the local items of news.
Thus, when arrived at Salt Lake City, they found the Mormons in no friendly mood and at once concluded to break camp and move on. They had been advised by Elder Charles C. Rich to take the northern route along the Bear River, but decided to travel by way of southern Utah.
7 This account of Parley's murder is based on the testimony of Geo. Higginson and Geo. Crouch, whose letter, dated Flint, Arkansas, May 17, 1854 was first published in a New York paper. Copies of it will be found in the Millennial Star, iii. 478, and Burton's City of the Saints, 412-13, note. They state that the tragedy occurred close to the
residence of a farmer named Win, and was witnessed by two men who were in the house at the time, and from whose evidence at the wroner's jury the above version is taken. Pratt lived long enough to give instructions as to his burial and the disposition of his property. The account given by Stenhouse, in Rocky Mountain Saints, 429-30, does not differ materially, except that he makes no mention of any accomplices.
8 In his deposition at the trial of John D. Lee and others, George A. Smith, the prophet's cousin, states that he found them at Corn Creek on Aug. 25th. Millenial Star xxxvii. 675; Lee's Mormonism Unvailed. 307.
It is alleged by the Mormons, and on good authority, that during their journey from Salt Lake
City to Cedar City
12 'Conflicting statements were made to me of the behavior of
this company,' says the superintendent of Indian affairs. 'I have accordingly
made it a matter of material importance to make a strict inquiry to ascertain
reliable information on this subject...The result of my inquiries enables me to
say that the company conducted themselves with propriety.' Forney's Rept, et supra, p. 88.
ranges of hills, some fifty feet
high and four hundred yards apart. On either side of their camp were ravines
connected with the bed of the stream.
A hand drawn black and white map of Mountain Meadows.
It was Saturday evening when encamped at Mountain Meadows. On the sabbath they rested, and at the usual hour one of them conducted divine service in a large tent, as had been their custom throughout the journey.
13 Lee's Confession, in Mormonism Unvailed, 226-7; see also Forney's Rept. in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Sess., ii. no. 42, p. 88.
By whose order the massacre was committed, or for what reasons other than those already mentioned, has never yet been clearly ascertained; but as to the incidents and the plan of the conspirators, we have evidence that is in the main reliable. During the week of the massacre, Lee, with several other Mormons, was encamped at a spring within half a mile of the emigrants' camp; and, as was alleged, though not distinctly proven at his trial, induced the Indians by promise of booty to make the attack; but, finding the resistance stronger than he anticipated, had sent for
14 'Thursday morning I saw two men start from the corral with buckets, and ran to the spring and fill their buckets with water, and go back again. The bullets flew around them thick and fast, but they got into their corral in safety.' Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, 230.
aid to the settlements of southern Utah.15 Thus far the evidence is somewhat contradictory.
Higbee,17 who was in charge of the detachment, was to give the signal by saying to his command, "Do your duty;" whereupon the militia were to shoot down the men,
15 See the district attorney's opening address to the jury, in the Deseret News, Sept. 2, 1877. Lee states that his object in sending for aid was to protect the emigrants. Confession, in Mormonism Unvailed, 229.
16 A full list of the company is given in Id., 379-80, and in the S. L. City Tribune, June 2 1877. See also the speech delivered by Judge Cradlebaugh in the house of representatives, Feb. 7, 1863. Cong. Globe, 1862-3, app. 119. The speech was afterward published in pamphlet form, one copy of it being entitled Mormonism, and another Utah and the Mormons.
The former was reprinted from the S. L. Daily Tribune,
Apr. 8, 1877. The parts of it relating to the massacre will be found in Waite's The Mormon Prophet, 65, and Stenhouse's Rocky Mountain Saints, 447-50.
17 First councillor to Haight.
18 Forney's Rept, ut supra, 89; Burton's City of the Saints, 412, note. Lee also says that . Mormonism Unvailed, 244. Cradlebaugh states that . Mormonism, 12. Life in Utah. 184.
, and .19
20 Lee, in his confession, denied having killed any of them, but admits that he intended to do his part. He says: 'I drew my pistol and
cocked it, but somehow it went off prematurely, and I shot McMurdy across the thigh, my pistol-ball cutting his buckskin pants. McMurdy turned to me and said: "Brother Lee, keep cool; you are excited."' Mormonism Unvailed, 242.
22 'After breakfast,' says Lee, The above account of the Mountain Meadows massacre is taken mainly from Forney'a Rept, in Sen. Doc., 35th Cong. lst Sess., ii. no. 42, pp. 87-9; Cradlebaugh's Mormonism, 12; the affidavit of Philip Klingon Smith (Klingensmith), bishop of Cedar City, who was present at the massacre, made in 1871 before the clerk of
court of the seventh judicial district of Nevada, in Stenhouse's Rocky Mountain Saints, 439-42; the confession of Lee, in Mormonism Unveiled, 244, and his trial in Id., 302-76. In the S. P. Call, July 30, 1881, it is stated that Bishop Klingensmith was murdered in Mexico. There is no important discrepancy in the several versions. Forney and Cradlebaugh officially investigated the matter in 1859. The statements of both are very brief, and why the investigation was not made sooner does not appear. News of the massacre was first received in Washington in Feb. 1858. See letter of C. E. Mix, acting commissioner of Indian affairs, to Senator W. K. Sebastian, and of the secretary of war to Representative A. B. Greenwood, in Sen.
Doc., 35th Cong. 1st Sess., ii. 42, pp. 4, 42. On the 18th of this month
Senator Gwin of California moved that the secretary of war be called upon to report what steps had been taken to bring the offenders to justice. Gwin's Memoirs, MS., 138 a, 138 e. No steps had been taken, and for
reasons that will presently appear, none were taken—or none that were
effectual—until nearly 20 years later. For other accounts of the massacre,
see Stenhouse's Rocky Mountain Saints, 435-9; Stenhouse's Tell It All, 328-37; Beadle's Life in Utah, 180-4; Waite's The Mormon Prophet,
60-9; Beadles' Western Wilds, 306-7, 496-501; Young's Wife No. 19, 228 et seq.; Bowie's
Our New West, 266-8; Rusting, Across America,
188-90; Hayes' Scraps, Los Angeles, viii. 228-31, xvii. 3-7;
Hutching's Cal. Mag., iv. 345-9; Utah
Review, Feb. 1682, 243-6. The story of the massacre has, of course, been
related thousands of times in the magazines and newspapers of Europe and America.
Some of these accounts are substantially correct and some are absurd. For statements and comments of the press of the Pacific slope, see, among
others, the Deseret News, Dec. 1, 1869; 8.
L. City Tribune, Jan. 3, Aug. 22, Oct. 3, Nov. 28, 1874; Aug. 14, 1875;
Sept. 9, 1876; Apr. 23, 1879;. S. F. Bulletin, Oct. 12, 27,
Nov. 12, 1867; Apr. 13, May 14, Aug. 12, 1858; Apr. 23, Aug. 25, Oct. 28, 1859;
Sept. 23, 27, Nov. 27, 1872; Nov. 17, 1674; July 26, 1875; March 24, Apr. 12, 1877;
S. F. Call, July 21, 1866; May 23, Sept. 23, 1872; Oct.
14, 1874; July 18, 22, 25, 1875; Feb. 16, March 9, 24, 25, May 29, 1877; S. F. Alta,
Oct. 12, 21, 1867; Aug. 13, 1858; Jan. 6, May 8, June 26, 1859; Feb. 9, 1873; July
28, Aug. 23, 1875; March 24, Apr. 7, 1877; S. F. Chronicle,
March 22, 23, 31, Apr. 8, 1877; S. F. Post, March 22, 23, 1877; S.
F. Herald, Oct. 12, 27, Nov. 2, 1857; Mining and
Scientific Press, July 31, 1875, March 31, 1877; Pacific
Rural Press, March 31, 1877; Oakland Tribune, Apr.
9, 1877; Sac. Daily Union, Oct. 13, Dec. 18, 1857; March 1,
Aug. 14, 1868; Apr. 14, 25, 1859; Jan. 29, 1867; Nov, 28, 1872; Nov. 24, 1874; Cal. Mercantile Journal, 1860, pp. 183-4; Stockton Independent, June 11, 1879; San Jose Weekly
Argus, Dec. 5, 1874; Santa Cruz Sentinel, May 12,
1877; San Buenaventura Signal, June 23, 1877; Winnemucca Silver State, July 19, 1875; Antioch Ledger, Nov. 21, 1875; Austin Reese River
Reveille, July 12, 1864; Gold Hill News, Sept. 21,
1872; Feb. 1, 1875; Sept 12, 1876; Carson State Register,
Sept. 26, 1872; Prescott Miner, Dec. 12, 1874, Apr. 11, 1870;
Idaho World, Oct. 1, 1875; Portland
Weekly Standard, Apr. 6, 1877; Or. Argue, Dec. 12,
1857, July 16, 1858; Or. Statesman, Nov. 3, 1857. For cuts of
the massacre, see Beadle's Western Wilds, 498; Beadle's Life in Utah, facing p. 183; Stenhouse's Rocky Mountain Saints, facing p. 424; Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, facing p. 210.
23 Rept of Assistant Surgeon Brewer, dated Mountain Meadows, May 6,1859, in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Seas., ii. no. 42, pp. 16-17; Captain Campbell's rept., in Mess. and Doc., 1859-60, pt 2, p. 207; Hutchings' Cal. Mag., iv. 316-7. See his letter to C. E. Mix, in
Sen. Doc., ut supra, pp. 44-5.
25 Forney's, rept, in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Seas., ii. no. 42, pp. 79-80, where their names are given; see also p.
87; Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, 243. Bishop Smith's statement, in Stenhouse's Rocky Mountain Saints, 441-2. In giving the result of his investigation, Forney states (p. 76) that Hamblin had left his home several weeks before the massacre, and did not return until several days after it occurred. This statement was confirmed, at the trial of Lee, in the deposition of George A. Smith, who alleged that Hamblin was encamped with him at Corn Creek on Aug. 25, 1857. Millennial Star, xxxvii. 675. See also Little's Jacob Hamblin, 45. Nevertheless Hamblin was accused of complicity. Affidavit of Capt. Jas Lynch, in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Sess., ii. no. 42, p. 83.
To Brigham Young, as governor and superintendent of Indian affairs, belonged the duty of ordering an investigation into the circumstances of the massacre and of bringing
the guilty parties to justice. His reasons for evading this duty are best explained
in his own words. In his deposition at the trial of John D. Lee, when asked why he had not instituted proceedings, he thus made answer: "Because another governor had
been appointed by the president of the United States, and was then on the way here
to take my place, and I did not know how soon he might arrive; and because the
United States judges were not in the territory. Soon after Governor Cumming arrived I asked him to take Judge Cradlebaugh, who belonged to the southern district, with him, and I would accompany them with sufficient aid to investigate the matter and bring the offenders to justice."28
27 Mormonism, 14.
28 The Lee Trial, 37; Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, 305-6; Millennial Star, xxxvii. 675; Tullidge's Hist. S. L. City, 243. In a
conversation with Governor Cumming, George A. Smith remarked: 'If the business had not been taken out of our hands by a change of officers in the territory, the
Mountain Meadows affair is one of the first things we should have attended to when a
U.S. court sat in southern Utah. We should see whether or not white men were concerned in the affair with the Indians.' Little's Jacob
Accompanied by a military guard, as there was no jail within his district and no
other means of securing the prisoners, the judge opened court on the 8th. "To allow these things to pass over," he observed, "gives a color as if they were done by authority.
29 Cradlebaugh's letter in Mess. and Doc., 1859-60, pt ii. 140.
30 The grand jury refused to find bills against any of the accused, and, after remaining in session for a fortnight, were discharged by Cradlebaugh as "a useless appendage to a court of justice," the judge remarking: "If this court cannot bring you to a proper sense of your duty, it can at least turn the savages held in custody loose upon you."31
Judge Cradlebaugh address was ill advised. The higher authority of which he spoke could mean only the authority of the church, or in other words, of the first presidency; and to contemn and threaten to impeach that authority before a Mormon grand jury was a gross judicial blunder. Though there may have been cause for suspicion, there was no fair color of testimony, and there is none yet, that Brigham or his colleagues were implicated in the massacre. Apart from the hearsay evidence of Cradlebaugh and of an officer in the army of Utah,32 together with the statements of John D. Lee,33 there is no basis on which to frame a charge of complicity against them. ; ;
30 A copy of the judge's charge will be found in Stenhouse's Rocky Mountains Saints, 403-6.
31 Cradlebaugh's Mormonism, 11; The Lee Trial, 6.
32 Major Carleton, of the first dragoons. In a despatch to the assistant adjutant-general at San Francisco, dated Mountain Meadows, May 25, 1859, he says: Mormonism, 11.
33 Lee's confession, in Mormonism
34 The massacre is thus mentioned for the first time in the Millennial Star,. xxxix. 785 (Dec. 3, 1877). 'The reader cannot fail to perceive that any overt act—much less the terrible butchery —was farthest from Brigham Young's policy at that time, to say nothing of humanitarian considerations. .' Forney states that the names of the guilty parties were published in the Valley Tan. Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Sess., ii. no. 42, p. 86.
35 Letter to the commissioner of Indian affairs, in Sen. Doc., 36th Cong. 1st Sess., ii. no. 42, p. 74. Capt. Lynch, Id., p. 84, calls Forney 'a veritable old granny,' but, with the exception of Gov. Cumming, he appears to be the only one who kept his head at this juncture.
Among other atrocities laid to the charge of the Mormons was one known as the Aiken massacre, which also occurred during the year 1857. Two brothers of that name, with four others, returning from California to the eastern states, were arrested in southern Utah as spies, and, as was alleged, four of the party were escorted to Nephi, where it was arranged that Porter Rockwell and Sylvanus Collett should assassinate them. While encamped on the Sevier River they were attacked by night, two of them being killed
36 Copies of all the correspondence in this matter, which is somewhat voluminous, will be found in Mess. and Doc. 1859-60, ii. 139 et seq. The action of Cumming was afterward sustained by the secretary of war, in a letter addressed to Johnston, in Id., p. 157. The judges also received a sharp rebuke at the bands of Attorney-general Black, who thus sums up the case: 'On the whole, the president is very decidedly of opinion: 1. That the governor of the
territory alone has power to issue a requisition upon the commanding general for the whole or part of the army; 2. That there was no apparent occasion for the presence of the troops at Provo; 3. That if a rescue of the prisoners in custody had been attempted, it was the duty of the marshal, and not of the judge, to summon the force which might be necessary to prevent it; 4. That the troops ought not to have been sent to Provo without the concurrence of the governor, nor kept there against his remonstrance; 5. That the disregard of these principles and rules of action have been in many ways extremely unfortunate.'
37 For copy of protest see Deseret News, March 30, 1859, where is also a protest from the grand jury against their dishonorable discharge.
and two wounded, the latter escaping to Nephi, whence they started for Salt Lake City, but were murdered on their way at Willow Springs. Although the guilty parties were well known, it was not until many years later that one of them, named Collett, was arrested, and in October 1878 was tried and acquitted at Provo.39 All the efforts of Judge Cradlebaugh availed nothing,40 and soon afterward he discharged the prisoners and adjourned his court sine die, entering on his docket the following minute: "The whole community presents a united and organized opposition to the proper administration of justice."
39 Deseret News, Oct. 16, 23, 1878, where is a report of Collett's trial. A sensational account of this affair is given in Hickman's Destroying Angel, 205-9. It is there stated that the party had with them money and other property to the amount of $25,000. See also Young's Wife No. 19, 270-6; S. F. Bulletin, May 30, 1859; S. F. Post, Oct. 11, 1878; S. L. City Tribune, Oct. 12, 1878. In the report of the trial I find no mention of the murdered men's property.
40 The judge also mentions the cases of Henry Fobbs, murdered near Fort Bridger while on his way from California, and of Henry Jones, said to have been castrated at S. L. City, and afterward shot at Pond Town, near Payson. Stenhouse's Rocky Mountain Saints, 404-5. This writer relates that the marshal and his posse approached Springville before daylight and surrounded that settlement, but on entering the houses, it was found that the culprits had already escaped, and after searching the canon some few miles farther on, the party returned, having accomplished nothing. See also Deseret News, Apr. 6, 1859.
After some delay, caused by the difficulty in procuring evidence, the 12th of July, 1875, was appointed for the trial at Beaver City in southern Utah.44 At eleven o'clock on this day the court was opened, Judge Boreman presiding, but further delay was caused by the absence of witnesses, and the fact that
41 Appproved June 23, 1874. See Deseret News, July 8, 1874.
42 Letter. to the commissioner of Indian affairs, in Sen. Doc., 30th Cong. 1st Sens., ii. no. 42, p. 86.
43 A detailed account of the arrest of John D. Lee by Wm Stokes, deputy U. S. marshal, is given in Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, 293-301. See also Beadle's Western Wilds, 490-2, where is a cut showing the scene of this incident. The two versions differ somewhat, Beadle stating that the arrest was made by Marshal Owens.
More than 100 subpoenas had been issued, but though many obeyed the summons, several material witnesses were not forthcoming—among them being Philip Klingensmith, Joel White, and William Hawley, all of whom were present at the massacre. Klingensmith, who had promised to make a confession, arrived a day or two later, in custody of a deputy, and Joel White was induced to trust himself to the notorious Bill Hickman, then acting as special deputy marshal. The Lee Trial, 8.
.45 The last was the very point that the prosecution desired to establish, its object, compared with which the conviction of the accused was but a minor consideration, being to get at the inner facts of the case. The district attorney46 refused, therefore, to accept the confession, on the ground that it was not made in good faith. Finally the case was brought to trial on the 23d of July, and the result was that the jury, of whom eight were Mormons, failed to agree, after remaining out of court for three days.47 Lee was then remanded for a second trial, which was held before the district court at Beaver City between the 13th and 20th of September, 1876, Judge Boreman again presiding.48
45 Portions of this first confession will be found in Id., 8-0; B. F. Call, July 21, 1875; B. F. Bulletin, July 21, 1875.
46 William C. Carey, who was assisted by R. N. Baskin. Sutherland and Bates, Judge Hoge, Wells Spicer, John McFarlane, and W. W. Bishop appeared for the prisoner. Sutherland and Bates were the attorneys of the first presidency.
47 For names of jurors, see The Lee Trial, IL On p. 52, it is stated that the foreman, who was a gentile, sided with the Mormons, the three remaining gentiles being in favor of a conviction. In The Lee Trial, published in pamphlet form by the B. L. Daily Tribuse-Reporter (S. L. City, 1875) we have a fair account of the proceedings at the first trial, except that the publishers seem
unduly anxious to cast the onus of the charge on the first presidency. Other reports will be found in the files of the Deseret News, commencing July 28, 1875; Beadle's Western Wilds, 504-13; Young's Wife No. 19, 256-60; the Elko Independent, Aug. 7, 1875; the Helena Independent, July 29, 1875.
48 For names of jurors, see Deseret News, Sept. 20, 1876. Lee had been cut off from the church in 1871, and among anti-Mormon writers it is stated that the church authorities now withdrew all assistance and sympathy, and determined to sacrifice him. Lee's Mormonism Unvailled, 32; Beadle's Western Wilds, 515. In his introduction to the Mormonism Unvailed, W. W. Bishop says that the attorneys for the defendant were furnished with a list of jurymen, and that the list was examined by a committee of Mormons, who marked with a dash those who would convict, with an asterisk those who would probably not convict, and with two asterisks those who would certainly not convict. The names of the Jurors accepted were, of course, marked with two asterisks, but they found Lee guilty, as directed by the church authorities.
49 Sumner Howard, who was assisted by Presley Denny. The prisoner's counsel were Wells Spicer, J. C. Foster, and W. W. Bishop. The trial of John Lee, in Mormonism Unvailed, 302.
50 A summary of Howard's opening address to the jury, which was forcible and well studied, will be found in the Deseret News, Sept. 20, 1876.
51 Ibid. Haslem's testimony, together with other evidence tending to exculpate the dignitaries of the church, is omitted in the account of the trial given in Lee's Mormonism Unvailed.
A few days before his execution, Lee made a con-
53 Deseret News, Sept. 20, 1876; confirmed in the trial of John D. Lee, in Mormonism Unveiled, 361, 365-7.
54 In a sworn statement made at S. L. City, Oct. 24, 1884, Wilford Woodruff states that he was present when Lee had an interview with Brigham Young in the autumn of 1857; that the latter was deeply affected, shed tears, and said he was sorry that innocent blood had been shed. A copy of it will be found in The Mountain Meadows Massacre, 51-3, a republished lecture by Elder C. W. Penrose (S. L. City, 1884).
55 Reports of the proceedings at the second trial will be found in Lee's Mormonism Unveiled, 302-78; The Deseret News, Sept. 20, 27, 1876; Beadle'. Western Wilds, 515-19.
Ten days later he was led to execution at the Mountain Meadows.
56 It will be found entire in Lee's Mormonism Unveiled, 213-92; and in part in Beadle's Western Wilds, 519-23, Stenhouse's Tell It All, 633-48, the last of these versions being somewhat garbled. For other accounts and comments, see Deseret News, March 28, 1877; 8. F. Post, March 22, 23, 24, 1877; San Buenaventura Signal, March 31, 1877; Sonoma Democrat, March 31, 1877; Napa County Reporter, Apr. 7, 1877; Los Angeles Weekly Express, March 24, 1877; Los Angeles Herald, March 24, 1877; Anaheim Gazette, march 24, 1877; Western Oregonian, Apr. 7, 1877; Portland Weekly Oregonian, Apr. 7, 1877.
57 He mentions the case of an Irishman, whose throat was cut by John Weston, near Cedar City, in the winter of 1857-8; of Robert Keyes, whose assassination was attempted about the same time by Philip Klingensmith; of three California-bound emigrants, who were suspected of being spies and were slain at Cedar City in 1857. An attempt was made, he says, to assassinate Lieut Tobin in the same year. A young man (name not given) was murdered near Parowan in 1854. At the same place William Laney narrowly escaped murder, his skull being fractured with a club by Barney Carter, son-in-law to William H. Dame. Ramos Anderson, a Dane, had his throat cut at midnight by Klingensmith and others near Cedar City. Lee's Confession, in Mormonism Unvailed, 272-83. Some of these cases are imputed to the Danites, but I find no mention of them in Hickman's Destroying Angel, whose narrative covers the period 1850-65.
About ten o'clock on the morning of the 23d a party of armed men alighting from their wagons approached the site of the massacre. Among them were the United States marshal, William Nelson, the district attorney, a military guard, and a score of private citizens. In their midst was John Doyle Lee. Over the wheels of one of the wagons blankets were placed to serve as a screen for the firing party. Some rough pine boards were then nailed together in the shape of a coffin, which was placed near the edge of the cairn, and upon it Lee took his seat until the preparations were completed. The marshal now read the order of the court, and, turning to the prisoner, said: "Mr Lee, if you have anything to say before the order of the court is carried into effect, you can do so now." Rising from the coffin,58 he looked calmly around for a moment, and then with unfaltering voice repeated in substance the statements already quoted from his confession. A Methodist clergyman,59 who acted as his spiritual adviser, then knelt by his side and offered a brief prayer, to which he listened attentively. After shaking hands
58 "He first requested one James Fennemore, who was taking photographs of the group in which Lee formed the central figure, to send a copy to each of his three wives, Rachel, Sarah, and Emma Fennemore promised to do so.
59 "The Rev. George Stokes.
with those around him, he removed a part of his clothing, handing his hat to the marshal, who bound a handkerchief over his eyes, his hands being free at his own request. Seating himself with his face to the firing party, and with hands clasped over his head, he exclaimed: "Let them shoot the balls through my heart. Don't let them mangle my body." The word of command was given; the report of rifles rang forth on the still morning air, and without a groan or quiver 60
60 The body was afterward interred by relatives at Cedar City. Accounts of the execution will be found in Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, 383-90; Stenhouse's Tell It All, 627-31; Stenhouse's Western Wilds, 524-5; S. L. City Tribune, March 31, 1877; S. L. Herald, March 28, 1877; S. F. Bulletin, March 24, 1877; S. F. Post, March 24, 1877; Oakland Tribune, March 24, 1877; Los Angeles Weekly Express, March 31, 1877; Los Angeles Reporter, March 23, 24, 1877; Sonoma Democrat, March 31, 1877; Anaheim Gazette, March 31, 1877; Mariposa Gazette, March 31, 1877; Jacksonville (Or.) Dem. Times, March 31, 1877. Portraits of Lee will be found in the frontispiece of Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, and in Stenhouse's Tell It All, facing p. 632; cuts representing the execution in Id., facing p. 630; Beadle's Western Wilds, 525; Lee's Mormonism Unvailed, facing p. 384.
John Doyle Lee was a native of Kaskaskia, Ill., where he was born in 1812. After engaging in the several occupations of mail-carrier, stage-driver, farmer, soldier, and clerk, he joined the Mormon church at Far West in 1837. At Nauvoo he was employed as a policeman, one of his duties being to guard the person and residence of Jos. Smith. After the migration he was one of those who laid out and built up the city of Parowan. He was later appointed probate judge of Iron co., and elected a member of the territorial legislature, holding the former position at the time of the massacre.