Great Salt Lake City
June 9th, 1867
President B. Young, Jr. and John W. Young
Our trains have started East to go to the terminus of the Rail Road. They will probably reach there in time to start back between the first and fifteenth of July. This will be too early for you, and they will be on the way back before you reach there. In all probability there will be trains leaving the Rail Road still later than these to which I allude. You will do well to provide yourselves with vehicles and also with teams. You should make inquiries and find out what you can respecting affairs on the Plains when you get to the States. When you reach New York you can communicate with me at your pleasure by telegraph, and let me know your movements, and I can also communicate anything I may wish in return. The Indians are reported to be very hostile at present on the plains, east of us, stealing stock, attacking stages &c. These stories lose nothing in their transmission, and we are sure <to hear> all there is of the Indian depredations.
Everything is peaceable at present in the city and vicinity. Our enemies are very quiet. The Indians are stealing in San Pete county. They made a raid on Fountain Green a few days ago and killed a Bro. Lund, and wounded Bro. Jasper Robinson. They also ran off considerable stock, most of which was retaken, information being communicated by Telegraph to Mount Pleasant, from which place a force started to intercept them; but they were a few minutes too late. They, however, pressed on the rear of the Indians so hard that they abandoned that portion of the stock they did not shoot. Four of our brethren, who with others, had been sent from this and Utah county to help to guard the country against Indian attack, were riding from Manti to Gunnison last Sunday evening and were fired upon by Indians in ambush. Major John W. Vance and Bro. Heber Houtz were both wounded; the former mortally, being shot through the heart and died instantly. Bro. Houtz, besides being wounded, had his horse killed; he fought them for a few minutes, but was finally overpowered and killed. Captain O.P. Miles and Nathan Tanner, Jr., escaped by riding to Manti, being chased by the Indians for a considerable distance. The loss of these brethren is mourned by their relatives and the whole community, and most forcibly teaches the necessity of extreme vigilance and caution being exercised by the brethren while traveling in places exposed to Indian attack.
With love to you all, in which your mother and the folks join, and praying the Lord to bless you, and in His mercy to preserve you through every danger and to bring you home in safety
I remain Your Father
We learn that other trains are going to start out soon; when we get the facts we will write to you at New York