1860 August 9 Letter to John Van Cott


1860 August 9 Letter to John Van Cott


The Lord accomplishes his purposes through weak and humble instruments. An Indian and two whites were killed in Cache Valley. The oxtrain was successful and the emigration is progressing.




Brigham Young


John Van Cott


1860 August 9


Great Salt Lake City
Copenhagen, Denmark

Number of Pages



Missionary Work
Indian Affairs

Item sets

G.S.L. City, August 9, 1860

Pres. John Van Cott,
Copenhagen, Denmark,

Dear Brother:-Your very welcome letter, June 11, is at hand, and we rejoiced in learning of the welfare of yourself and associates, and of the prosperity attending the work in your field of labor.

As you write the "religious bonds," riveted by men upon their fellows, will be broken in nation after nation, until the human family merge into the full enjoyment of religious liberty. Our God is visibly dealing with the nations; and will not stay his hand from turning and overturning until all bands are broken, and He reigns whose right it is to reign-- The work may seem slow, but will in reality be very rapid and short, when its vastness is considered. And though we, as individuals, may seem to ourselves to be accomplishing but little, and could easily wish for more ability and success, yet the Lord has a way of accomplishing his mighty purposes through very weak and humble instruments, such as men in this probation are at best. Wherefore, be of good cheer, for the kingdom belongs to the faithful, weak though they be.

As usual, since "civilization" became less and less rife, but little occurs to mar the onward and steady improving current of home events. During a visit to Cache Valley and the intermediate settlements in June last, in company with Pres's Kimball and Wells, and several others, I could but mark the rapidity with which our valleys are filling up with strong settlements of cheerful, faithful, and industrious brethren and sisters, the great majority of whom to a goodly degree realize and profit by the fact that Utah far exceeds all other localities for making Saints Cache Valley, in particular, is being settled very rapidly, and already enrolls from eight hundred to a thousand men. Last month a few vagabond Indians in that Valley undertook to release one of their number arrested at Smithfield for horse stealing, and in the melee the arrested Indian and two whites were killed, and three whites were wounded, only one, however, severely, Since then there has been no further disturbance.

Haying, harvesting, and building are being vigorously prosecuted. The season has been so cloudy, cool, and showery that the crop of hay and wheat is generally very good; and the hot weather in July has caused the corn to grow very luxuriantly, with a good prospect of an abundant yield. The tillers of the soil, thus far this season, have been greatly blest.

At our latest date, Aug. 1, our emigration were getting along admirably well as to time, spirit, and rate of travel that day brs George Q. Cannon, W.R. Hooper, H.S. Eldredge, and On A.J. Moffitt were at Laramie, and we expect them to arrive between now and the 15th inst. The first company of our emigration is expected to arrive to day. The oxtrain sent to Florence for freight, &c., arrived there on the 1st of July, and the cattle were in such good condition that Capt. J.W. Young could have started back immediately, but waiting for freight would detain until the 23 ult., which, however will give him ample time, and, doubtless, demonstrate the practicability and good policy of sending oxtrains from here in the spring to deposit flour at suitable points on the way down, and freight back with the poor, and such articles as it may be advisable to import.

We trust that you are realizing the benefit of the assistance of the Elders lately sent from here to your aid.

I nearly forgot to mention Camp Floyd, for it has dwindled to such small dimensions that we are but seldom reminded of its existence.

The Saints in Utah are rejoicing in the blessings of the God of their salvation, and especially in the privilege of being gathered to Zion's threshing floor where the chaff is from time to time so easily blown away.

The families of yourself and br. Liljenquist are well, so far as I am informed, as also are the people in general.

Ever praying for your welfare and that of all who love the truth, I remain

Your Brother in the Gospel,

Brigham Young