Uniform money bought food, goods

Sunday, August 16, 1846:

This was a solemn day of introspection at the Sabbath meetings held at Cutler's Park. Over 400 Saints attended. Elder Orson Pratt urged members to lend obedience to the decisions of the general council. He said: "Is unbelief that causes all our whining. The Council [members] are determined to carry out those principles which are made manifest to them by the whisperings of the holy spirit, if it takes the last shirt from their backs. There has been some fault-finding by those who have recently arrived in camp, because they want to cut their own hay and put in their own turnip patch, but we must be one, and feel a general interest for the whole."President Young discussed the uniform money that had come back to the Camp of Israel from the Mormon Battalion men. He noted that Elders Hyde, Pratt and Taylor had providentially arrived at Fort Leavenworth just as the money was being distributed. Now the whole Church would benefit, because the money could be used to buy foodstuffs and other supplies in St. Louis for half the price that the battalion could get on the Missouri River. The poor and the soldiers' family members would be cared for by a unified people.

Monday, August 17:

Brigham Young and the others of the Quorum of the Twelve spent the day evaluating letters and newspapers, some from Nauvoo and others from various spots in Iowa. They were saddened by reports of all the mob violence that the remaining Saints in Nauvoo were exposed to.

The council also met with Bishop Whitney and his two companions who were readying to leave for St. Louis. They decided to pool resources with the Saints on the other side of the river in obtaining wheat at the best prices.

Willard Richards called on Col. Thomas L. Kane who was still sick. Dr. H. I. W. Edes of the United States Army had just arrived from Fort Leavenworth in response to Brigham Young's appeal a few days earlier.

Tuesday, August 18:

Brigham Young felt unwell in the morning. By mid-day, rain started falling and canceled most of the camp business at Cutler's Park. Eliza R. Snow left Mt. Pisgah with the Stephen Markham family, whom she was assisting. Sister Markham and the children were all ill and Brother Markham's hand lame. Eliza wrote, "I am so nearly tired out by exerting myself to assist the sick, particularly sis. M. that I can do little but sit in the wagon & drive: but withal we get along first rate travelling about 18 miles on a good road."

Wednesday, August 19:

Brigham Young directed the writing of a letter to the Mormon Battalion men, "counseling them to live by faith, using such herbs and mild food, as were at their command." The letter also brought the soldiers up to date on recent affairs with the Camp of Israel, especially that their uniform money would be used by Bishop Whitney to buy food and goods in St. Louis.

Dr. H. I. W. Edes, the Army physician, completed his examination of Col. Thomas L. Kane, made his recommendations, and completed a report. He wrote, "From Col. Kane's unmeasured assurances to me; and from what I myself have observed during my visit to this place, I have no hesitation in testifying to the devoted care and kindness with which he has been treated by his friends the Mormon people. Throughout this camp, where I observe a spirit of harmony and a habit of good order wonderful in so large an assemblage of people, I find that there prevails towards him the warmest and most cordial benevolence of feeling."

Thursday, August 20:

The members of the Twelve at Cutler's Park met with both high councils, one for the west of the Missouri and the other from the east side. They decided to pool their efforts and use battalion money to care for all the people and especially to see to the needs of the poor and the battalion families. They decided to look into hiring some of the Omaha Indians to herd their cattle. The Saints would also strive to teach the Indians some farming practices, mechanical arts, and other forms of education. They decided to write President James K. Polk for his administration's ideas regarding these measures. The councils received from messengers favorable reports about the Mormon Battalion and about Bishop George Miller's company that had left Pawnee Village to live with the Ponca Indians. It was decided that a Church agent would make frequent contact with the Battalion and receive most of their pay to return to Church headquarters. They also wrote to the Mormon captains of the five army companies: "We again urge the importance in all good faith, of the officers being as fathers to their soldiers and counseling them in righteousness in all things, that they remember their prayers continually and that they be kind and courteous in all their deportment."

Friday, August 21:

No major events took place at Cutler's Park except caring for the sick and afflicted. Col. Kane appeared to be recovering somewhat. Hosea Stout, who, very ill, had been visited by Brigham Young and received a blessing for his health, wrote, "He said I should recover to which I replied that I knew all the time if he came I would get well."

Saturday, August 22:

The Mormon Battalion departed Stone Coal Creek. They had difficulty crossing a small stream and had to use long ropes attached to the wagons with 10 to 15 men on each rope to aid the teams in crossing. The sick were much improved in health.

Sources: Manuscript History of Brigham Young, pp. 319-30, 333-46; Wilford Woodruff's Journal, 3:68-70; The Diary of Hosea Stout, 1:186-87; The Journals of William Clayton, p. 288; The Personal Writings of Eliza Roxcy Snow, p. 140; A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion, p. 139-141; Life of a Pioneer, p. 33; Life Writings of Mary Richards, pp. 89-90.

Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed