Heritage Gateways

Official Sesquicentennial K-12 Education Project
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Pioneer Date Summary

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05/28/1847 - Crockett

Location: Mitchell, Nebraska - Location: 41:56:25N 103:48:29W Elevation: 3945 feet

Date: May 28, 1847

On the North Platte River, Nebraska:
The morning was rainy, which delayed the day's journey until 11 a.m. Thick, heavy clouds remained in the sky. While they were waiting, Howard Egan and Luke Johnson took the boat wagon, "Revenue Cutter" up the river about three miles in search of wood. They found a beautiful, clear stream from a spring with a large number of small fish.

As the pioneers traveled, the crossed the clear stream found by the brethren earlier in the morning. Wilford Woodruff commented: "We passed along side a clear steam of water with some beaver dams & houses upon it. At one place it raised the water about two feet which was lined with fish, a good share of which was speckled trout."

Orson Pratt described: "A very few scattering trees were seen on the opposite side of the river . . . I believe, the first seen for several days, with the exception of small cedars or pines, which are thinly scattered over and upon the sides of the bluffs. . . . Small hillocks or ant-hills are numerous; they consists of small pebbles or gravel, accumulated with great industry from the neighbouring soil. Mingled with these were found, in different places, small Indian beads, which these insects had collected to beautify and adorn their habitations."

After traveling eleven and a half miles, they camped near the river. There was plenty of driftwood to use for building fires. Porter Rockwell and Thomas Brown went out hunting and spotted five or six Indians.

Appleton Harmon wrote: "President Young and Brother Kimball have been privately exhorting some of the brethren to forsake an excess of mirthfulness and indulging in plays, dances, sham trials, etc., which have been carried to excess for the last few days and would have a tendency to cause a neglect of duties which ought not to be."

Wilford Woodruff also wrote on this subject: "During the evening President Young called at my fire & seeing several of the brethren playing dominoes in a waggon nearby began to teach by saying that the devil was getting power over the camp. That for several days past nearly the whole camp had drank into a spirit of card, checker, & domino playing & dancing & the spirit of folley & if they did not speedily repent their works, labours, & journey would be in vain." Wilford Woodruff felt the Spirit testify to him that President Young's words were true. Elder Woodruff went to Willard Richard's wagon where they read a chapter in the Book of Mormon and offered prayers. Afterwards, a council meeting was held at Brigham Young's wagon with other members of the Twelve. They wrote "the word of the Lord" receive by Brigham Young for the camp concerning their need to repent.

Winter Quarters, Nebraska:
Mary Richards visited two hours with her new neighbors, Sisters Wilder and Matson. "Had an interesting talk with them about the principles of the Gospel after which I came home, got supper, molded some candles."

St. Louis, Missouri:
Elder Lyman O. Littlefield arrived at St. Louis on the way to his mission in England. He wrote of St. Louis: "A large number of Saints resided there. They were in good spirits and held meetings regularly for the preaching of the gospel."


  • Watson, ed., The Orson Pratt Journals, 410
  • Diary of Howard Egan, Pioneering the West, 51
  • Appleton Milo Harmon Goes West, 24
  • Wilford Woodruff's Journal, 3:185-86
  • Lyman Littlefield Reminiscences (1888), p.190
  • Ward, ed., Winter Quarters, The 1846-1848 Life Writings of Mary Haskin Parker Richards, 144
Source: 150 Years Ago Today ©These materials have been created by David R. Crockett. Copies of these materials may be reproduced for teacher and classroom use. When distributing these materials, credit must be given to David R. Crockett. These materials may not be published, in whole or part, or in any other format, without the written permission of Mr. Crockett, TucsonAz, crockett@goodnet.com.