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Hosea Stout Journals

January 14, 1848

Location: Winter Quarters - 1014 miles left, Nebraska - Location: 41:21:41N 95:56:45W Currently the site of Florence, Nebraska, Winter Quarters was settled in September, 1846 as a temporary resting place for the pioneers. It is located just west of the Missouri river in Nebraska.

Summary: The deserter is found; Mr. Long is accused of kidnapping.

Journal entry: Friday Jan 14th 1848. I & 3 more of the Police viz E. Gardner G. D. Grant and W. J. Earl started at sun rise with four of the soldiers in search of Smith the deserter. We crossed the river and proceeded up the river to Knowlton settlement and gaining no information of him we separated & I & two of the soldiers went across the bluffs to Little Pidgeon & took dinner at mother Taylors. We could get no trace of him. So we started back home.

The rest of the company went along the bottom and got track of him in McIel lands settlement where he had staid all night & borrowed a gun. From here they discovered him on a hill at a great distance. Whereupon they proceeded towards him. He hid but they soon scared him up and took him and had started home with him when we passed by there & recieved the intelligence. So we hurried on and over took them and all went in together about sunset one hour.

Mr Long now that he found he was in no danger about stealing Calkins girl, had began to boast about what he had done. That he could outwit even the police.

We concluded to give him a round on the subject of outwitting tonight. So several of the police geathered in W. Cox shop near to Calkins where Mr Long was & we sent Wm Miller into Calkins to get a pint of whiskey as an excuse but to arrest Long. He went in, got the whiskey & started and as it happened Long came out with him. Not proceeding for Miller took hold of him saying "You are my prisoner. We intend to learn you what it is to kidnap young girls in this place as you have done you now have got to atone for it now before you leave this place". This spoken in an austerere and commanding tone had the desired effect. It scared Long almost to death. He trembled like a leaf in the wind.

He was detained in Main Street while the North wind swept furiously over, untill he nearley froze. Gardner wanted him to go to a stock yard near by but he would not as he expected to have his throat cut & that was only to get him to one side for that purpose.

At length he was taken into Cox Shop where we were assured at the same time that his time had come He need not expect to have friends to help him now. The atonement must be made. He must go before the Council & stand his trial but pretending to have some sympathy for him they undertook to plead with me not to report him if he would do anything fair.

After a long consultation in which all agreed that they would not divulge any thing that had passed we agreed to let him go in case he would pay four gallons of whiskey which amounted to 3.75 He gave Calkins orders to let us have it & he would pay it.

After all this was over & the bargain fairley made we then ran upon him without mercy to suppose that we cared anything about a man marrying a girl whenever they could agree themselves. That we only wanted to let him know that we could outwit him. He was badly plagued & confessed that he did expect to die. We were bamboosing him around in this way till midnight.

Source: On the Mormon Frontier: The Diary of Hosea Stout 1844-1861 Volume I - Edited by Juanita Brooks. Permission to use excerpts granted by Utah State Historical Society and the University of Utah Press.