1861 November 12 Letter to John M. Bernhisel


1861 November 12 Letter to John M. Bernhisel


Updates are given on the telegraph, construction projects, and new settlements. Financial matters and the possibility of civil war are discussed.




Brigham Young


John M. Bernhisel


1861 November 12


Great Salt Lake City
Washington City, D. C.

Number of Pages



Financial Matters
Civil War
Building and Construction

Item sets

G. S. L. City, Nov. 12, 1861.

Hon. [?] John M. Bernnisel, M. C.,
Washington City, D. C.,

Dear Brother:-- Your welcome and interesting favors of Oct 5, 11, 7 21 came safe to hand, and gratified us with the intelligence of your speedy and prosperous journey to the mountains of Pennsylvania.

The telegraph wires from east and west reached this City on the 17th and 2[?] ult., since when we have been privileged with very fresh dates of news of current events in the States, so far as they will trust them to the wires. Occasionally in the afternoon we receive and have printed what transpired in the State in the forenoon, which we trust will quite often be the case when the wire is stretched from Omaha to Davenport, a work they are now busily engaged upon. The completion of the overland telegraph will afford us facilities for speedy transmission of information concerning any points either of us may desire prompt action or intelligence upon, which I shall avail myself of whenever my judgement dictates, as I trust you also will.

Thus far the weather has been very favorable for outdoor operations, which are being very industriously prosecuted. The roof timbers are being put onto the theatre, and we expect to have the building inclosed before rough weather, and in a short time to have it so far completed as to be ready for use during a part of the coming winter.

The brethren selected and volunteered for settling on the Santa Clara and Rio Virgin rivers are fast leaving for their destination. Elders Orson Pratt, George A. Smith, Erastus Snow, Horace S. Eldredge, and a few others, precede the companies to select the site for the principle settlement in that region. Much attention will be given to raising cotton, of which we should like  the be[?] that the locality will produce; and as we hear very flattering accounts of the kind called "Upland Long Staple," I would be pleased to have you, if convenient, procure some seed of that kind, and forward to me in time for me to forward south for next Spring's planting. A small quantity will answer to give Who is "C. E. L." in the Washington Daily National Intelligencer of October 24? Please learn, if possible, and inform me. Also inform me of the remittance to the Liverpool Office, when it is made, of the $600 deposited in a New York Bank by br. N. V. Jones, and of the $928.83 you expected to collect, and remit as aforenamed. Upon the receipt of your remittance of the last named amount I will forward your acceptance of br. George Neal's order.

This morning we have before us the States news of yesterday, among which are the rumors of the taking of Beaufort and the attack of Port Royal. But how is cotton to be got to those ports when they are subdued? If a regiment, more or less, has to be sent to the interior after each bale, the staple will cost much more than it will pay. From other items in the latest telegram we perceive that the torch of civil war is being lit up in new and widely distant points in our land, and that waste and destruction are increasingly rife in Virginia, South Carolina, Kentucky, and Missouri, while at home we continue to enjoy the great blessings of peace, and the uninterrupted prosecution of plans and labors tending to ameliorate and improve the condition of our fellow beings. The wise can appreciate the contrast, and understand much of the cause, while "the simple pass on,"

Very generally the people are blest with good health as are also your family and friends, so far as I am informed.

Your Brother in the Gospel,

Brigham Young

P. S. Please at your earliest convenience, procure and send to me a copy of the Army Register, late date; also a copy of the Post Office Directory, of latest date previous to secession.

Also please keep me promptly informed upon current Congressional doings.

B. Y.