1868 April 1 Letter to George Nebeker


1868 April 1 Letter to George Nebeker


The Hawaiian natives are cultivating sugar and Brigham inquires into the sale price. Foreigners should not get a foothold on mission properties. Machinery should be purchased with little debt. Emigration details are shared. The mines and railroad may bring cash to Utah and the word of wisdom is observed.




Brigham Young


George Nebeker


1868 April 1


Great Salt Lake City
Laie, Oahu, Sandwich Islands

Number of Pages



Missionary Work
Business Matters
Financial Matters
Word of Wisdom

Salt Lake City,
April 1, 1868.

Elder George Nebeker,
Laie, Oahu, Sandwich Islands.

Dear Brother:-

Your welcome favor of Feb. 24 came safely to hand, and we rejoice with you in the improved and improving prospects of the Mission over which you preside and in the increasing willingness an diligence of the brethren, and were much pleased to learn of your and their good health. Their organizing for the purpose of cultivating the sugar cane and performing other useful labors requsite for their temporal well being is correct and commendable, and I trust the will be blest in so doing, that they may be encouraged to persevere in those and all other good works, both temporal and spiritual.

As with yourself, so I also regret that you could not manage to keep all your affairs and carry on all your business within yourselves, but presume you have done the best you could under the circumstances surounding you, out of two evils choosing what you deemed to be the least, and which I hope will result in the success you anticipate. But in making the arrangements you mention I wish you to be very careful and not let out-siders get a foot hold upon the farm and other possessions of the mission, by selling land to them or leasing it to them for any length of time, nor deprive yourselves of the privilege of purchasing the sugar machinery from those you have contracted with, or from others, so soon as you may be able. And try to arrange, as early as possible, if you have not already, so as to be able to purchase the machinery at a fair rate so soon as you can. In regard to running in debt at Honolulu, strive to make the debt as small as you can possibly, and plan at once for paying it at as early a date as practicable, for there, as elsewhere, debt savors more or less of bondage.

I would recommend to br. Green not to call on you to pay the $600 at present, and only ask of you so much of the purchase price of the property you buy of him as will enable him to pay his way home, and leave the balance in your hands until a more convenient period. How much can you sell raw sugar for there? Also what can you sell it for in San Francisco, and what is the duty and freight on it to that place?

Scarce as money is here at present, and dull as business consequently is, the money donations for gathering the poor already amount to $50,000, besides large numbers of stock which we shall endeavor to sell for money in time for this season's operations, which, if we are so favored, will greatly increase the aforenamed amount. In addition to the donations, the brethren are now looking up 500 four-yoke teams, with flour, meat, dried fruit, &c., to go to the terminus of the railroad to bring in the emigration from that point. You will see at a glance that the sum of all this aid is very considerable, and the zeal and liberality of the brethren in contributing it is realy marvelous, when all the circumstances are considered 

Br's Hiram B. Clawson and W. C. Stains are now in New York to attend to the business of this season's emigration; and thus far report very favorably of their interviews with railroad men and others.

There is considerable excitement about the Sweetwater gold mines, and the transients who wintered here are leaving almost daily and others are passing through from west and north to try their fortunes in the late discovery. There is also a rumor that the U. P. Railroad Company is talking of breaking ground between Weber Canon and our eastern boundary. These operations will doubtless tend to make money plentier in our market so soon as the harvest comes off, but until then we have but little surplus for sale, except cattle for beef.

At present there is a very general observance of the "word of Wisdom" in regard to dispensing with the use of liquor, tobacco, tea, coffee and striving to walk in "obedience to the commandments" and to attain to that oneness which is both our privilege and duty.

Elder Franklin D. Richards writes favorably of the condition of the work in the British Isles and adjacent countries, and that the poor ar anxiously labouring and praying for the day of their deliverance from Babylon, for which we are also making such great efforts in extending aid to so large an amount.

I presume you receive letters from your relations and friends here which give you details of their condition; so far as I am informed, they are all well at present.

Ever praying for all needed blessings to attend you, your associates, the Saints over whom you preside and throughout the world, I remain,

Your Brother in the Gospel,
Brigham Young