492 - 497
G. S. L. City U. T.
Feb. 28th 1865.
Presidents Daniel H. Wells and Brigham Young Jun.
Your welcome favors (Bro. Daniel's of Dec 22nd, 1864, and Brigham's of Jan. 5th) came to hand last evening, and were perused with pleasurable interest. So long a time has elapsed since we received any news from you, that the arrival of your letters have been looked for with considerable desire. I regret to hear of the sickness of some of the Elders; but am gratified to know that they are recovering, and are likely to be able soon to fully resume their labors. The birth of a daughter to Brigham and Katie, and the improvement in Katie's health and strength, are causes of much pleasure to myself and the family, and I can only express the desire again, which I have expressed in previous letters, that you all may be blessed with that health and vigor of mind and body that will enable you to perform your labors with ease and comfort, and that the little new-comer will participate with you in all these enjoyments.
The reports which you furnish me of the condition and prospects of the work in your field are very satisfactory. The Lord is granting unto the Saints and the honest-in-heart in Europe a favorable time to hear and obey the gospel and to gather out from the midst of Babylon before the judgments and calamities overtake them, which will undoubtedly be poured out upon the ungodly. The Lord's word will be fulfilled respecting the wicked nations; his purposes are hastening towards their accomplishment, and it behooves every one who bears the priesthood to exert himself to make the message of salvation known, while there is an opportunity, that all may be left without excuse. The saints who are scattered abroad should be warned by the signs of the times, and be on the alert, that they be not overtaken by the evils which are coming upon Babylon. For Great Babylon is ripening in iniquity; the wickedness of the inhabitants of the earth causeth the earth to groan and the sound thereof ascendeth unto Heaven. The Lord's indignation will not be stayed; he will vex the people in His wrath and smite them in His sore displeasure, and He will cleanse the heritage which He has promised unto His obedient and faithful children, and truth and righteousness shall sweep the earth as with a flood and prevail upon its face. Jesus will reign and sway an undisputed sceptre over the earth; but if the Saints would Participate in all the blessings of this glorious and happy future, they must be humble and faithful and diligently seek to obey every commandment which the Lord has given.
Since I last wrote you, we have had very cold weather and considerable snow has fallen. There is pretty good sleighing now, and there is but little prospect of milder weather for some time ahead. We are having the heaviest part of the winter now, and there has never been so much snow in the mountains, since we first settled here, as there is now. We shall be very fortunate if we escape a flood this Season.
The necessary steps to organize the Deseret Irrigation and Navigation Canal Company were taken under the general Incorporation Bill, and an election was held at which the people in the different precincts voted for the tax deemed necessary to levy upon the land on the East side of Jordan to build the Canal and also for the Board of Trustees chosen at the Mass Meeting of the citizens.
Meetings were held on Sunday, the 19th instant, at Centreville, Bountiful and Farmington, at which myself, President Kimball, my brother Joseph, my son Joseph A. and John W. Elders John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff, Geo. Q. Cannon and several other Elders attended and gave instructions to the people. The weather was very stormy, nevertheless the Saints turned out well. The previous day (Saturday) we attended a party at Centreville. Brothers Geo. A. Smith, F. D. Richards, H. S. Eldredge, John Van Cott, Joseph W. Young and M. B. Shipp, some other Elders, have recently made a preaching tour south as far as Sanpete Valley and have had crowded meetings wherever they have preached.
The mails do not run regularly to and from the East yet. The Telegraph wire has been destroyed for a number of miles, and we have been for some time without any telegrams until quite lately, when they have come in more regularly.
Respecting your manner of conducting the business at the Liverpool Office, as described in Bro Daniel's letter which has just been received, I perfectly agree with your view in relation to the names &c. It is quite right and proper that Bro. Daniel's name should be used, and it suits me the best. <in relation to the names &c.> I much gratified to learn that Bro. Daniel's health has improved so much. In the letter, which has just come to hand, you state, Bro. Daniel, that when you studiously apply your mind to write an article for the "Star", or any other close mental labor, you feel the effects of it for a few days after in your head; but you trust, through the blessing of the Lord, to eventually overcome those disagreeable feelings. The best course for you to take to be freed from those disagreeable feelings is to abstain from all mental exertions that will be in any wise trying to your brain, and when you have something to write about, do not write unless it will write itself, that is, unless thoughts flow so freely that you will not over-tax your brain by writing them. I want you take this counsel.
Bro Geo. Nebeker arrived here from the Sandwich Islands last week. He left there for the purpose of arranging his and Bro. F. A. Hammord's business and to take the families back. When he left, they had not completed a purchase for a place; but the prospects were so favorable that they thought it safe for one to return and report and take on the families. Before Bro. Nebeker reached here, I received a telegram from Bro. Hammond, at San Francisco, informing me that he had closed a bargain for a plantation containing 6,500 acres of land on the Island of Oahu--the Island on which the capital is situated for which he would have to pay $14,000 the entire cost; $5,000 to be paid ten weeks from the time of purchase; $3,000 by the 1st of July, and the remaining $6,000 in two years. There were 600 head of cattle, 500 head of sheep, 250 goats, 20 horses, one large frame house furnished, five native houses furnished, five acres of cotton which was doing well, and some other improvements which were on the land, and all of which were included in the sale. The brethren who are acquainted with the place say it is the best place on that Island, and Bro. Hammond thinks it a good bargain. Bro Nebeker and he take the place on their own responsibility-- such being my wish, if it were taken at all-- and agree to refund the money, which I advance them to help them make the first payment. Br. Hammond telegraphs that he expected to have 100 acres of cotton planted by the first of March, and Bro's Alma S. Smith and Benjamin Cluff were left in charge until he and Bro. Nebeker returned. There were Seventy of the native Saints already living on the land; they will form a nucleus for the gathering. How lo[missing] the brethren will be suffered to remain there to pursue their operations in peace is a question; but they may be undisturbed sufficiently long to give them an opportunity to save a small remnant of those who belong to the Church, or of their children, from that extinction which seems to be impending over the nation and from which the Saints cannot escape by gathering to this continent-- the laws of that kingdom prohibiting emigration in effect. The brethren think of taking Sister Alma L. Smith over with them, when they return, and keeping bro. Alma there.
To celebrate the important victories achieved by the armies of the Union in the capture of Charleston and other prominent places in the South, and also the inauguration of Mr Lincoln as President for the second term, a committee was appointed yesterday from among the folks on the Bench to erect a stand for an Orator &c., &c., and to take the necessary steps to make a grand demonstration in the City. The Chairman of the Committee, a Captain who has been Editor of the Vedette, applied to the City Marshal for the use of the Council House grounds for the purpose. He was informed that they could have the City Hall lot Tabernacle, and that the Citizens here generally would then be able to participate in the rejoicing on the occasion, which it was their intention to do. The City council met and arranged proceedings for the Celebration. An Orator will be appointed by the City Council. The effect of this action will be a good one, which you can readily discover.
Your families have been seen and are well. My health has not been very good for a fortnight past; I have suffered from cold but am now improving. Bro. Heber's health is now about as it was when I last wrote. Accept my love to yourselves and wives, in which President Kimball and the brethren of the twelve join. That the Lord may bless, preserve and uphold you in all your labors and enable you to accomplish all the labors devolving upon you in such a manner as to advance the interests of the work of our God.
I remain Your Brother, as ever,