Head quarters Nauvoo Legion
Military General Office
G. S. L. City July 29, 1853 Instructions to
Capt. Bennion, Commandant
of Western Jordan Military District
You will probably ere this, have acted under "General Orders," which doubtless you have rec.'d. It is considered necessary that you keep up a vigilant guard, day and night, observe day times as much as possible the whereabouts of Indians, and not permit them to post out their Sentinels at night, before you have yours posted, and when men are on Guard, they should be careful how they place themselves in position of a Target for Indians to Shoot at; but let all Guards act with judgement and prudence, and see an Indian just long enough first to shoot if necessary, before being shot themselves.
We consider that a Picket Guard should be kept up on the South end of this Valley, from the Jordan West to the Mountains, and at the most prominent points, on the West Mountains and Kanyons.
Major Kelsey, of the Cottonwood Military District, will guard from the Jordan East; you will perceive, that if a vigilant Guard is kept up on the South end of this County, and around the point of the West Mountains, <in that direction> that Stock ranging in that direction, and across Jordan will be comparatively safe.
Be vigilant and energetic in saving your grain & Stock. Thrash out your Grain and safely store it as soon as possible.
Let no consideration hinder the rapid advance of your Defences. Let every house be a perfect Fort, in addition to the forts which you are building, & progress with all things, with energy, perseverance and vigilance.
Respectfully, Daniel M. Wells
Lieutenant Commander, Nauvoo Legion