1860 December 20 Letter to William H Hooper


1860 December 20 Letter to William H Hooper


There is debate over secession in the States. Utah Judges are still at odds with their assignments. Brigham will likely put up poles and wires for the telegraph and plans to send oxen and cattle to Florence for the emigration.




Brigham Young


William H Hooper


1860 December 20


Great Salt Lake City
Washington D. C.


Financial Matters

Item sets

G.S.L. City, Dec. 20, 1860.

Hon. W.H. Hooper, M.C.,
Washington D.C.

Dear Brother:-- The pony of the 17th inst. brought two very welcome letters from you, date Dec. 4, a copy of the President's Message, and a clipping of some sayings and doings of the Senate and House on the day the Message was read. So far as I know, the Message you sent is the only copy yet in the Territory, and, whether of much or little value it is gratifying to receive information of matters of any particular moment, at as early a date as practicable. The letter you advise me of, written in St Louis, Nov 23, has not come to hand, though New York dates of Nov 24 came in last mail.

By your letters and the papers, I perceive that the secession question was still being violently agitated, but without much definite action. Latest accounts seem to indicate that the South will so far back down as to give "Old Abe" a trial as to what course he will pursue. It is not surprising that men should hesitate about breaking up a Union under which so many and great civil blessings and privileges have been enjoyed; the surprise is that they have and have had no better sense than to take a course in which dissolution of the Union is sooner or later inevitable. And while public speakers, preachers, news papers, Governors, &c., &c., are pouring forth a steady stream of inflamatory and vituperative statements, North and South, it is rather amusing to sensible persons in this altitude to note the twaddle about "peaceable secession."

But while the waves of commotion are whelming nearly the whole country, Utah, in her rocky fastnesses, is biding her time to step in and rescue the Constitution and aid all lovers of freedom in sustaining such laws as will secure justice and rights to all, irrespective of creed or party. In such case home news is not of that stirring, varied and spicy character incident to most other localities. Our Assembly has been in session since the 10th inst., but as yet are hardly under full head way in legislation, farther than adopting some memorials, presenting a few bills, and preparing bills and reports to present. Their action, thus far, has been characterized by the usual harmonious feeling and action.

Mr. Edward Creighton, Telegraph Agent, arrived here with the last mail, and on Monday last called upon me and presented your letter of introduction. He showed me his certificate of Agency and other papers, and we conversed generally on telegraphic matters, but without concluding any definite arrangements. He is very anxious, and so represents the Directors, that I should become a Director in the company and take the sole management of the business in this region. It is quite likely that myself and others will take hold of the matter to a greater or less extent, say to put up the poles and stretch the wires for about 150 miles East and 150 or 250 miles West of this City, if satisfactory arrangements can be made.

I have written to br's N.C. Jones and Jacob Gates, and, not knowing their whereabouts, have inclosed the letter, open, to you, and wish you to read, seal, and address it, and mail for its destination.

Last winter I received a speech delivered by James Harlan, Senator from Iowa, (printed in pamphlet form, which I chiefly valued for its apparently reliable and extensive Historical information, and, as my copy was lost by lending, I would be pleased to have you forward me another; I presume Mr. Harlan can furnish you another, if not probably can inform you where you can procure one.

Our four Judges are still some what at odds and ends in relation to their assignments. At the Extra Session of the Assembly, convened by the Governor, Flenniken was assigned to the first, Crosby to second, and Kinney to the Third District, but the Governor did not sign the assigning Act. Directly upon the meeting of the required annual session, the Council passed an Act assigning, Crosby to the first, Flenniken to the Second, and Kinney to the Third District, which is still in the hands of a special Committee of the House. The Second assignment does not please Crosby, and which is to give way, whether the Governor or Crosby, is not yet concluded upon; either assignment suits the Assembly. In the meantime the Second or Carson District is provided with a [line cut off in typescript] Cradlebaugh, in whose place he was appointed, but Cradlebaugh emphatically refuses to be superceded, claiming that his appointment runs for four years from date of his commission.

Last years experiment with the oxtrain to Florence demonstrated the feasibility of doing our freighting and transportation of the poor with oxen sent from here, and also that cattle can be sent from here to Florence and perform the return trip better than cattle purchased there. These facts make me anxious, for the welfare of the people while money is scarce at home, to arrange to furnish from here at Florence as many good, well broke cattle as our immigration may wish to purchase for money, thereby keeping that amount of money in our own hands, and enabling the brethren here who have surplus cattle to purchase and freight such articles of import as they need, at a very reasonable rate, and in a manner in which they will not particularly feel the outlay.

The carriage I wanted you to buy for yourself, as advised in my last to you, I am in no way anxious about, unless your eastern indebtedness is cancelled and you are in funds that can be conveniently spared for that purpose.

Our winter thus far has been very mild being unusually favorable for the prosecution of out-door operations. The new lattice bridge over Jordan on North Temple Street, will soon be completed, and will be quite a creditable as well as useful and beneficial work. The framing of the lattice bridge across Weber on the Territorial road will soon be commenced in my upper garden, where the Jordan bridge was framed, and the abutments are expected to be ready by the time the framing is done, when the timber and plank will be hauled to their place and soon put up. We have now quite a passable road, in many places very good, from this City by way of Big Canon Creek Canon and Silver Creek Canon to the coal bed on the Grass Creek, and a considerable quantity of coal is already being hauled.

Legislative and general affairs are progressing favorably.

Your Brother in the Gospel

Brigham Young