1864 October 19 Letter to Daniel H Wells and Brigham Young, Jr.


1864 October 19 Letter to Daniel H Wells and Brigham Young, Jr.


Details given on the latest semi-annual conference and Brigham's travels to southern settlements. Updates are given on church business, settlements, associates and the status of the mission in Hawaii and the Sandwich Islands. Brigham counsels against printing gospel that hasn't first been approved by the apostles. He offers advice on business and bookkeeping matters and includes a list of financial drafts.




Brigham Young


Daniel H. Wells
Brigham Young, Jr.


1864 October 19


Great Salt Lake City
[Liverpool, England]

Number of Pages



Church Leadership
Financial Matters
Overland Travel
Church Business

Item sets

Presidents Office
Great Salt Lake City
Oct 19th 1864

President Daniel H. Wells
Brigham Young, Jr.

Dear Brethren:-- Your welcome favors (Pres. Brighams of August 17th, and Bro Daniels of Aug 29th) have both been received, and perused with interest. The mail fron the East for some months back have been almost entirely interrupted, and the letters mentioned are the only ones which have been received from you since your arrival in England. The information which is contained in your letters respecting your health, movements since reaching your field of labor and its general condition so far as you have had opportunity of observing it, is satisfactory and pleasing.

My last to you was written Aug't. 31st, just as I was on the eve of starting on a trip to our Southern settlements. That letter I have had duplicated and send it herewith thinking that, through the irregularity of the mails you may not have received the original. As I then contemplated, I started on the first of Sept. accompanied by Brothers Wilford Woodruff, John Taylor, Geo. A Smith, Ezra T. Benson, Lorenzo Snow & Franklin D. Richards of the Twelve, from this City, and Brother Orson Hyde, Amasa M. Lyman, and Erastus Snow joined the company on the road. Besides these there was a large number of other brethren along, and as we passed through the settlements, there were constant accessions made to the company. We held meetings in the settlements, both going and returning thirty-seven settlements being visited and one hundred and twentyfour discourses delivered. From Cedar City we traveled, via Pinto Creek, to St George, and crossed from there, through Washington City, Toquerville. FFrom there we traveled up the Virgin to Grafton, returning to Toquerville. As we came back we passed through San Pete, and in coming down Spanish Fork Kanyon to Springville, on our way home, we had an escort of about one hundred vehicles highly, and the teachings which imparted unto them by the various speaker were rich in and edifying and such as were adapted to the circumstances of the people. We had a brass and stringed band of music which accompanied us from Nephi on our entire route South, which enlivened our journey and was very agreeable to the people. On our return to the City, on the 29th ult., we had the pleasure of meeting my son Joseph A., and the brethren who traveled in company with him, near the Mousley farm. He and his company came in from the East simultaneously with myself & company from the South, and we thus met and proceeded to my Office together.

Our Semi-annual Conference commenced on the 6th instant, and continued until the evening of the 9th. The weather was very propitious, admitting general attendance of the Saints, and the Conference was very numerously attended. The Spirit of the Lord was abundantly poured out upon speakers and hearers, and all rejoiced together. This Conference has been one of the best that we have ever had; much precious instruction has been imparted, which if treasured up and practiced by the Saints will be of invaluable benifit to them.

At one O'clock in the afternoon of the 1Oth instant the members of Zion's Camp met in the Social Hall and partook of a fine dinner and supper prepared for them by Bishop Hunter and his Counsellors. The assemblage did not separate until about two o'clock in the morning of the 11th. Dancing was carried on with great spirit in the early part of the meeting, but, later in the evening, addresses from various ones of the brethren were listened to with great interest and were preferred to the dancing. It was a very pleasing and highly interesting re-union of Zions veterans for the first time in thirty years and many reminiscences of the journey of the Camp were dwelt upon, which excited varied emotions in the breasts of those who were present. The meeting was much enjoyed that we all felt that the Camp should in future meet once a year, and it therefore adjourned until the same day next year. There were 54 men and 4 women present at the meeting out of the 63 known to be in the Territory who went up to Missouri in Zion's Camp.

My son John W. Young and Elder George Q. Cannon arrived in good health and spirits in this City on the 1Oth instant. They were the first through passengers with the exception of Ben Holladay and Warren Irland from Atchison since the interruption of the Stages by the Indians. The stages are now regularly running through from that point to this without any serious interruption.

The Indian difficulties at the lower end of the road have not interfered with the traveling of our Companies. Capt. Preston's Train (the first Ox train) reached here Sept. 15th. Capt. J. S. Rollins' on the 20th of Sept. Capt. Wm S Warren's on the 4th instant, and Capt. S. a. Canfield on the 5th instant. There are two trains still on the road (Capt. Wm Hyde's and Capt. Warren S. Snow's) which are expected to reach here on the 26th and 29th instant. By a telegram from Brother Joseph W. Young dated Ham's Fork the 16th instant. I am informed that Capts. Hydes company was then there, and Capt. Warren S. Snow's was expected to encamp that evening at Green River. Brother John L. Smith arrived from Bro. Hyde's train to day, in good health and reports that the sickness which has been rather prevalent in that train is decreasing, and it is probable that as soon as they can reach our settlements and obtain vegetables it will entirely disappear. By letter from Capt. W. S. Snow we learn that Elder John M. Kay died on the 27th of Sepr. after an illness of about three weeks. Just before his decease, he appeared to be improving in health, and hopes were entertained for his recovery, but these were doomed to disappointment.

It is our intention to immediately select brethren and send them down to the head of navigation on the Colorado River, near the mouth of the Rio Virgin, to establish a settlement and build A Store House there. We contemplate the probability of our emigration coming to this Territory sometime hereafter by the way of Aspinwall and the Isthmus of Panama, and from there up the Pacific to the mouth of the Colorado, and thence by steamer to the before-mentioned settlements if everything works favorably--For the speedy transit of the emigration by this rout it may be necessary for us to purchase and run our own steamers, unless, indeed, suitable class of vessels be chartered at satisfactory rates to perform the service; but this is an after consideration. The best time for the emigration to leave England and have an early start by this rout, should it be adopted, will doubtless be in January and February; but this is a matter that we shall not act upon at present.

By a letter from Joseph F Smith recently written from the Sandwich Islands, we learn that A friendly Cheif there -- he who owned the land on which the natives gathered, and where Gibbson has been operating -- has offered the brethren a good tract of land, suitable for a plantation and settlement on the Island of Hawaii, consisting of 15,000 acres, for $3,000. I have written to Bro. Joseph F. that, if the land be as good and as suitable for a plantation and settlement as represented, to close for it, and draw on me for the amount.

Brother Francis A. Hammond who is familiar with the Islands and the people has been appointed a mission to those lands. He will establish a tannery there, and as fast as practicable, commence the cultivation of Cotton and Sugar cane, and other tropical productions. An effort will be made to gather the people, and to teach them to labor and to exert themselves for their own support and development and exaltation temporally and spiritually. Brother Hammond will probably take stage from this place and proceed by the quickest conveyance to the Islands. If we carry out the contemplated mission his family and some few others will follow.

In one of my former communications I alluded to the vigilance which should be exercised that no ideas or doctrine be published at the Office in Liverpool, or at any other point in the Missions under your presidency, which will not bear the strictest investigation. We do not wish doctrines to be published to the Saints and the world, with the sanction and under the name the Apostles and Elders of this Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints which are unsound, and which, in justice to the Saints who live now, and to posterity, and in order that the great truths of the gospel may be clearly and unmistakable understood we have to discountenance and correct

As there may be times when letters may come to your office which may require immediate attention and reply, it is advisable that your correspondents should be informed through the Star that all comunications be jointly addressed to you both-- Danil H. Wells or Brigham Young Jr. Then if one of you should be absent, the other can open letters and promptly attend to any business they may contain. Always leave business at the Office so that can be attended to immediately. It would be well for each of you to keep a cash book, in which the money received can be entered, together with all the disbursements.

I should like to know how you are situated for Clerk-help, and whether you have sufficient or not. Your business will probably not be so heavy next year as it has been; the withholding of the teams which we have sent down for the past few years to carry the poor from the Missouri River to this point, will cause the emigration to be comparatively light.

There are large sums debited and credited to the P. E. Fund a/c and the Tithing a/c in your office which would be better transfered to the Church a/c, and a new start made from the time that the Books and business were transferred to you. When you transfer these amounts, please advise me of there extent that I may have them entered upon my Office books.

The people Generally are well. Your families have been called upon this morning, and they are all in very good health Jane was safely delivered of a fine healthy son on Sunday, the 16th instant; both mother and child are doing well. The name of John Washington has been mentioned for him to be called by.

Praying the Lord to bless you and your co-laborers with all the qualifications and power necessary for the proper magnifying of your high callings, and desiring you to accept my love to yourselves and families, in which Br Heber Joines,

I remain as ever
Your Brother in the Gospel

Brigham Young


P. S. I have drawn the following drafts Draft 497 L850.0.0 favor Riggs & Co; 499, 14.0.0 favor William Freeman; 500, 4.0.0, Sophe Knudsen; 501, 5.0.0, Jonas N. Beck; 502, 71.16.7 C. W. West; 503 1.10.0, W. Lewis Cr. Trustee in Trust 6.4.3 and charge R. C. Miller am't paid him here.

The proceeds of my drafts No 434 for L22.0.0 456, L3.0.0 & 469, L11.8.10, favor of J. M. Plant, not being required now for the use intended I have returned the amounts to the sender. Please Cr T. in T.

Draft no 504. L22.0.0 favor Richard Hemsley " 505, L 6.0.0 " Mary Hawkins " 506 L.62.5.0 " G. Q. Cannon