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2. The Church and the Mexican-American War

Larry C. Porter, “The Church and the Mexican-American War,” in Nineteenth-Century Saints at War, ed. Robert C. Freeman (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2006), 41–76

 

The Church and the Mexican-American War

Larry C. Porter

Larry C. Porter was a professor emeritus of Church history and doctrine at Brigham Young University when this was published.

 

On May 13, 1846, just months after the first wagons began their westward exodus from Nauvoo, Illinois, the United States declared war on Mexico. In the emergency, President James K. Polk directed William L. Marcy, secretary of war, to prepare the necessary orders for the formation of a battalion of Iowa volunteers from among the camps of the Mormons, who were then on the plains of that territory. Accordingly, Marcy drew up instructions for Colonel Stephen W. Kearny on June 3, 1846, and sent them by dispatch to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.[1]

Brigham Young, circa 1846. © by Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Colonel Kearny, in turn, issued an order pertaining to Mormon enlistment to one of his experienced company commanders, Captain James Allen (later promoted to lieutenant colonel) of the First Dragoons. Accompanied by three men, Captain Allen made his first contact with the Mormons at Mount Pisgah, Iowa, and there read to the high council a circular he had issued explaining his mission.[2] Elder Wilford Woodruff, who was in the camp, sent a special messenger to alert President Brigham Young concerning the nature of Allen’s request. And, after giving Allen a letter of introduction to William Clayton, clerk of the Camp of Israel, Elder Woodruff directed him to the principal encampment of the Saints at Council Bluffs.[3]

Fort Leavenworth, Kansas

Built in 1827 by Colonel Henry Leavenworth and the Third Infantry Regiment, Fort Leavenworth served as a key military installation during the United States’ westward expansion of the nineteenth century. During the Mexican-American War, Fort Leavenworth served as a staging area as well as supplier and outfitter of the Army of the West. During its early years, soldiers garrisoned at Fort Leavenworth were responsible for protecting supply trains heading west on the Santa Fe and Oregon trails. During the Civil War, Fort Leavenworth was the reception and training center for Kansas volunteers. After the war, the fort was assigned to provide protection to migrants and to oversee control of Native Americans on the Western Plains. In 1881, General William T. Sherman organized and established the School of Application for Cavalry and Infantry (now known as the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College) at Fort Leavenworth. This school soon became renowned for producing effective leaders and great military minds. Today, Fort Leavenworth stands as the oldest operating U.S. Army post west of the Mississippi River. It has never been subject to an enemy attack. Besides the Command and General Staff College, it is also home to the National Simulation Center and the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks.

After he arrived at Council Bluffs, Captain Allen was invited to a meeting with President Young and his council, held on July 1, 1846, at the camp of John Taylor on Mosquito Creek. In addition to President Young, those in attendance were Heber C. Kimball, Willard Richards, Orson Hyde, Orson Pratt, George A. Smith, John Taylor, “Uncle” John Smith, Levi Richards, and others.[4] Captain Allen made known the terms offered by the government, which were acceptable in principle to the council. An invitation was sent to the Brethren of the camp to assemble. Captain Allen explained his orders from Colonel Kearny. President Young then commented on the proposal that a battalion be formed:

I said, the question might be asked, Is it prudent for us to enlist to defend our country? If we answer in the affirmative, all are ready to go.

Suppose we were admitted into the Union as a State, and the government did not call on us, we would feel ourselves neglected. Let the Mormons be the first to set their feet on the soil of California. Capt. Allen has assumed the responsibility of saying that we may locate at Grand Island, until we can prosecute our journey. This is the first offer we have ever had from the government to benefit us.

I proposed that the five hundred volunteers be mustered, and I would do my best to see all their families brought forward, as far as my influence extended, and feed them when I had anything to eat myself.[5]

The Mustering In

On July 16, 1846, Captain Allen summoned the four and a half companies of Iowa Mormon volunteers who had been recruited, and he formed the battalion into a hollow square at the designated location on Mosquito Creek.[6] Captain Allen mustered them into the service of the United States Army for the period of one year. The oath administered to enlistees during the Mexican War era reads as follows:

I __________, do solemnly swear, that I will bear true allegiance to the United States of America, and that I will serve them honestly and faithfully against all their enemies or opposers whatsoever; and observe and obey the orders of the President of the United States, and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to the Rules and Articles for the government of the armies of the United States.[7]

After the enlistment ceremony, James Allen was automatically designated a lieutenant colonel of infantry by order of Colonel Kearny at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

The Saints enlist in the Mormon Battalion at Council Bluffs, Iowa, under
the watchful eye of Captain James Allen and President Brigham Young.
© by Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

Elder Woodruff witnessed the formation of the companies by their captains and the mustering-in ceremony with the administration of its attendant oath and affirmation on that historic day, July 16, 1846. The significance and nature of the enlistment of the battalion of Iowa Mormon Volunteers created very poignant feelings in his bosom. He wrote:

James Allen (1806–46)

Captain James Allen.
Courtesy of Church Archives.

James Allen began his military career as a graduate of West Point near the bottom of his class. His graduating class of 1829 also included future Civil War general Robert E. Lee. Allen’s first assignment found him at the edge of the wilderness in the Michigan Territory. He is credited with producing the first map correctly depicting the relationship between the many lakes and streams that form the Mississippi River. Later he was transferred to Fort Leavenworth, having been promoted to first lieutenant and attached to the First Regiment of Dragoons, where he served as an engineer in the exploration of the Indian territories of the southwest.

Not long after his transfer to Fort Leavenworth, Allen was promoted to captain and given command of Company I, First Regiment of Dragoons. His continued exploration of the area around the Des Moines River led to the founding of Fort Des Moines, later to become the city of Des Moines, Iowa. It was perhaps his intimate knowledge of this area, gained by years of exploration, that led to his receiving orders from Colonel Kearny of Fort Leavenworth to travel to Council Bluffs, Iowa, and organize five hundred Mormon soldiers for the war with Mexico. Having secured the volunteer force of Latter-day Saints, Captain Allen was promoted to lieutenant colonel and took command of the Mormon Battalion. Allen was immediately popular with the soldiers, but unfortunately his command lasted approximately one month, as he became ill and was forced to remain at Fort Leavenworth while he ordered his men to begin their march to California along the Santa Fe Trail. Soon afterward, he died of “congestive fever” on August 23, 1846, and became the first officer buried in what would later be named the Fort Leavenworth National Military Cemetery.

When this 500 men were Called for they steped forth instantly at the Call of the President notwithstanding the Ill treatment & suffering we had endured in the Persecutions of the United States. Yes we steped forward as A People while in the midst of a long journey And left families teams wagons & cattle standing by the way side not expecting to meet with them again for one or two years. Yes wives & Children were left in this way to the mercy of God And the brethren And went away with Cheerful hearts Believing that they were doing the will of God. And while casting my eyes upon them I considered I was viewing the first Battalion of the Army of Israel engaged in the United States service for one year And going to lay the foundation of A far greater work even preparing the way for the building of Zion.[8]

That same day, Colonel Allen marched the command about eight miles south of Council Bluffs to Trader’s Point, or Point aux Poules (on or near the Pottawattamie and Mills County line), on the Missouri River. Here, Peter A. Sarpy, a licensed government merchant, was authorized to issue provisions on credit to the U.S. Army. Members of the battalion were thus enabled to obtain blankets and other standard items needed to sustain them on their march to Fort Leavenworth, where they would finish being fitted out. The costs of their purchases were to be deducted from their first pay from the government.[9]

In addition to the approximately 513 men who were mustered-in at Council Bluffs, the U.S. Army made provision for each company to have four laundresses, for a total of twenty women in the battalion. Twelve young men under enlistment age were also designated as “servants of officers,” and a few older men, such as Elisha Smith, acted as teamsters, driving private wagons. Allowances were also made for some wives and children to accompany their husbands and fathers, but the wives and children were required to provide their own transportation. Under this provision, thirty-five women, including the laundresses, and forty-two children, including the servants to officers, also marched. An older couple, John and Jane Boscoe, accompanied Captain Jefferson Hunt’s family.

Beginning of the Long March

A steamboat, which was expected to transport the men down the Missouri River, never arrived at Trader’s Point. Of necessity, Colonel Allen elected to follow the land route down the east side of the river through Iowa and Missouri and then cross over to Fort Leavenworth.[10] Four companies of the battalion commenced their march about noon on July 21. Company E moved downriver to meet them on July 22.

Mormon Battalion Officers and the Civil War

Several of the officers in command of the Mormon Battalion served as military leaders during the American Civil War and later as civic leaders. At least three—Lieutenant Colonel Philip St. George Cooke, Lieutenant Andrew Jackson Smith, and Lieutenant George Stoneman—went on to play prominent roles during the Civil War. In addition, Stoneman later served as a political leader.

Though greatly disliked by the men of the Mormon Battalion for his strict and often harsh discipline, Andrew Jackson Smith later proved his ability as a military leader. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he was promoted to the rank of colonel and joined the Second California Volunteer Cavalry. By 1862 he had been given the rank of brigadier general in the U.S. Volunteers and was involved in many successful campaigns during the war, his most notable being a complete rout of General Nathan Bedford Forrest during the Battle of Tulepo in Mississippi.

George Stoneman’s first military assignment out of West Point was with the Mormon Battalion’s march west. His service during the Civil War began early, while he was in command of Fort Brown, Texas. At the beginning of hostilities between the North and the South, Stoneman refused to relinquish the fort to Confederate authorities in the area. He was able to escape north with the majority of his command and soon joined the First U.S. Cavalry. He was selected adjutant to General George B. McClellan. His service as Cavalry Corps commander of the Army of the Potomac was largely unsuccessful because of the company’s poor use of cavalry. Serving as scapegoat for the army’s failures during several campaigns, Stoneman was relieved of his command and sent to Washington to serve in more administrative duties. Becoming quickly impatient with the tediousness of administration, Stoneman appealed to his home state of Ohio and was quickly reassigned as commander of the Cavalry Corps for the Army of Ohio, which fought in the Atlantic Campaign under General William Tecumseh Sherman.

Lt. George
Stoneman
Lt. Andrew
Jackson Smith

In this new theater, Stoneman quickly found success participating in many successful battles and raids. In 1865 he almost captured Jefferson Davis, confederate president. Stoneman retired from military service in 1871 and moved his family to California, where he settled in the San Gabriel Valley. He had fallen in love with California during his service there with the Mormon Battalion. He served as railroad commissioner for several years and then as governor of California from 1882 to 1886.

The first fatality occurred in the early morning hours of July 23. Between midnight and 1:00 a.m., Private Samuel Boley, of Company B, who had become ill soon after leaving Council Bluffs, died and “was wrapped in his blanket and buried in a rough lumber coffin, which was the best we could get.”[11] Private Boley was but one of twenty-three men who died from a variety of causes during active duty—from first enlistment, July 16, 1846, to July 16, 1847—and also during the reenlistment period of Captain Daniel C. Davis’s Company A, Mormon Volunteers, from July 21, 1847, to March 14, 1848. Other deaths also occurred among nonmilitary personnel associated with the battalion, and three members who had been mustered out of the service were killed by Indians during their return to the body of the Saints.[12]

After traveling about 160 miles on the east side of the Missouri River, the battalion was ferried across to the garrison at Fort Leavenworth on August 1, 1846. Here they were issued tents, one tent to each mess of six men, and were directed to camp on the public square. They had marched the entire distance from Council Bluffs without the benefit of tents, lying on the open ground. One of the men commented, “Our tents, being new, and pitched in military order, presented a grand appearance, and the merry songs which resounded through the camp made all feel like ‘casting dull care away.’”[13]

A number of new personnel were added to the battalion roster at Leavenworth; namely, William Beddome, Thomas B. Finlay, Thomas Gilbert, and Robert W. Whitworth, who enlisted at that post. The battalion also received its equipage. Some of the men who had been designated as sharpshooters and hunters received new guns—cap-lock Yaugers. James S. Brown described some of the additional items of issue: “We got flintlock muskets, and accoutrements consisting of bayonets, cartridge-boxes, straps and belts, canteens, haversacks, etc., also a knapsack each. . . . With all the paraphernalia of soldiers, we seemed so burdened as to be able neither to run nor to fight.”[14] When Colonel Allen observed the excitement of the men at the arsenal as they received their weapons, he quipped, “Stand back, boys; don’t be in a hurry to get your muskets; you will want to throw the d—d things away before you get to California.”[15]

Much-Needed Funds

Elders Parley P. Pratt, John Taylor, Orson Hyde, and Jesse C. Little met with the members of the battalion on August 4, 1846. These Brethren had come from Council Bluffs with the express purpose of collecting money for the families of the men and obtaining some assistance for the Church. Each battalion enlistee was given $42 outright, which represented his entire clothing allowance for the year ($3.50 per month). From this allotment, the men contributed $5,192 to the Brethren out of approximately $21,000 paid them.[16] These monies proved of inestimable worth to the pioneer Saints in their movement to the Rocky Mountains. On August 20, 1846, President Brigham Young expressed the Saints’ gratitude, from his camp at Cutler’s Park, Nebraska, for this selfless service of the battalion: “We consider the money you have received, as compensation for your clothing, a peculiar manifestation of the kind of providence of our Heavenly Father at this particular time, which is just the time for the purchase of provisions and goods for the winter supply of the camp.” That same day, the Church council at Cutler’s Park authorized sending a man into Missouri with a thousand dollars to buy wheat for the Camp of Israel.[17] The effect of their generosity was immediate.

 

 

Captain Jefferson Hunt, senior
Mormon officer in the battalion.
Courtesy of Church Archives

The men also donated funds to Elders Parley P. Pratt, Orson Hyde, and John Taylor to help them on their missions to England. Similarly, assistance was given Elder Jesse C. Little on his return to the Eastern States Mission.[18] Some of the men outfitted themselves with new clothes and shoes to replace worn-out items for the march. Others chose to make do with what they had so they could conserve or send monies to their families.

On August 13, 1846, Companies A, B, and E began the march from Fort Leavenworth to Santa Fe via Bent’s Fort.[19] Companies C and D were still not equipped to move out and so followed on August 15. Unfortunately, the battalion commander, Colonel Allen, became ill and remained at Leavenworth to recover. Colonel Allen turned the command over to Captain Jefferson Hunt, commander of Company A and the senior Mormon officer, directing him to set a course for Council Grove until he was able to rejoin the unit.

Levi Ward Hancock

Levi Ward Hancock.
Courtesy of Church Archives.

One notable member of the battalion of volunteers was Elder Levi Ward Hancock, member of the Quorum of the Seventy and the only General Authority in the ranks of the Mormon Battalion. Born in Massachusetts, Elder Hancock was very concerned with spiritual matters even from a young age and was nicknamed “Little Christian” by his siblings and friends. He had been taught by his mother that God hears and answers prayers, and as such “began to call upon the Lord seriously.” At age twenty-seven, when Elder Parley P. Pratt and three other missionaries visited his hometown, Levi listened with great interest, saying, “I gathered faith and [i]t seemed like a wash of something warm took me in the face and ran over my body which gave me a feeling I cannot describe. The first word I said was ‘it is the truth, I can feel it.’” He followed Elder Pratt back to Kirtland, Ohio, and was baptized and immediately ordained an elder and sent back to his hometown on a mission. Elder Hancock served several missions for the Church in Canada, the Northeast, and Missouri. He was also a member of Zion’s Camp. A carpenter by trade, he helped build many of the buildings for the Saints settling Jackson County, including the Print Office, later destroyed by a mob. In 1835, Levi Ward Hancock was chosen as a member of the first Quorum of Seventy and was called to serve as one of the seven Presidents of Seventy. He served faithfully as a General Authority for the rest of his life (courtesy of Keith Perkins).

A tremendous storm, bolstered by severe winds and heavy rains, swept the camp on August 20. As the turbulence finally passed, the men of the battalion could be heard giving thanks to the God of Israel for sparing their lives. Levi Hancock, one of the Seven Presidents of Seventy and the only General Authority on the march, requested that Captain Jefferson Hunt allow them to hold a religious meeting with the men to express thanksgiving. Samuel H. Rogers remembers that they also received “first-rate instructions” from Daniel Tyler, Levi W. Hancock, William Hyde, David Pettegrew (Pettigrew), and Captain Hunt, “concerning our duties as soldiers of the United States, as Saints, and particularly as Elders of Israel, as men who have received endowments in the Temple of the Lord, admonishing us to observe our Covenants, and to conduct ourselves in all our deportment as belonging to the family of heaven, as sons of the Most High. We were also entreated to . . . prove ourselves good and loyal subjects of the government of the United States, notwithstanding we had been persecuted by its citizens.”[20]

Colonel Allen Replaced

On August 26, Second Lieutenant Samuel L. Gully and Sergeant Sebert C. Shelton brought sad news to the camp that Colonel Allen had died of “congestive fever” at Fort Leavenworth on August 23. Sergeant William Hyde expressed the sentiments of the command when he recorded: “This information struck a damper to our feelings as we considered him a worthy man, and from the kind treatment which the battalion had received from him, we had begun to look upon him as our friend, and a person from whom we should receive kind treatment.”[21] Colonel Allen was buried fifth man in on “Officer Row A” at the post cemetery.

Lieutenant Colonel Clifton Wharton, then commanding officer at Fort Leavenworth, dispatched First Lieutenant Andrew Jackson Smith, of the First Dragoons, to Council Point, where he met with the officers of the battalion. Captain Jefferson Hunt had retained command of the troops to this point. However, Lieutenant Smith, a West Point graduate, explained his ability as a regular army officer to sign for quartermaster stores and conduct official correspondence, while they had not received their commissions or their certificates of command. With assurances that Colonel Allen’s promises to the battalion would be carried out, the officers voted that Smith assume command. He then became the acting lieutenant colonel[22] of the battalion.

Dr. George B. Sanderson of Platte County, Missouri, who had received an appointment as assistant surgeon of volunteers at Fort Leavenworth on August 20, accompanied Lieutenant Smith. Dr. Sanderson was a contract surgeon hired by the U.S. Army. The men of the battalion soon developed a prejudice against him. The large doses of calomel he prescribed that he administered with an old “iron spoon” created considerable resentment. Dr. William L. McIntyre, a “good botanic physician” and a Latter-day Saint, was not allowed to administer any medicine to the men without Dr. Sanderson’s orders. Hostilities developed between the men and acting Lieutenant Colonel A. J. Smith over his demands that the men report to Dr. Sanderson’s wagon for sick call.[23]

With the arrival of Lieutenant Smith and Dr. Sanderson came a page of battalion history that needs to be completed. Sergeant Daniel Tyler mentions the presence of “negro servants” accompanying the two men.[24] Who these black bond servants were and how many there were is unknown. They go unnamed and yet were participants in the march who should be recognized.

The battalion reached the Arkansas River on September 11, 1846. The next day, while making their way up the river, they were surprised to meet a group of eight Latter-day Saints coming downstream. Their captain was William Crosby, and the company was on its way from Fort Pueblo, Colorado, to Monroe County, Mississippi, to bring out members of their families whom they had left behind. The “Mississippi Saints” from Monroe County, Mississippi, and Perry County, Illinois, were said by Crosby to number forty-three persons and nineteen wagons.[25] The company originally planned to join Brigham Young for an anticipated journey to the Great Salt Lake Valley during the 1846 season. However, they had missed their contact with President Young. The Mississippi Saints continued their journey to a point just a few miles east of Fort Laramie, on the Platte River. Here, they found that the main pioneer company under Brigham Young had not arrived and were not expected until the following year. They determined they must find a place to spend the winter. At that juncture, they met a French trapper named John Reshaw. He recommended that Fort Pueblo, Colorado, at the head of the Arkansas River—a post for mountaineers, traders, and trappers—would serve their needs. Accepting his advice, Reshaw served as their guide to Fort Pueblo.[26]

The Mormon Battalion fords the Arkansas River. Courtesy of Church Archives.

Departure for Pueblo

The chance meeting of the Mormon Battalion with William Crosby on September 11 introduced an unexpected option to acting Lieutenant Smith that took shape as the battalion continued its march up the Arkansas River. Struggling to maintain the discipline of an arduous march, Lieutenant Smith felt very keenly the burden of so many families and saw that a growing number of men were becoming disabled because of illness. On September 15, 1846, the worsening condition of Private Alva Phelps of Company E undoubtedly influenced Lieutenant Smith’s command to send certain individuals and families that were obviously struggling with health and the difficulties of the march to recoup at the Mormon encampment at Fort Pueblo. Private Phelps died on the evening of September 16.[27] Lieutenant Smith detailed Captain Nelson Higgins and a small contingent of soldiers to escort selected families to Pueblo. They left on the morning of September 16. This escort was to then rejoin the main unit in Santa Fe.[28] Although there were heated protests at the ordered separation, it would, in retrospect, provide a needed reprieve for some from the physical hardships created by an inhospitable environment. The Higgins Detachment, which separated from the main body on September 16 and arrived at Pueblo during October, consisted of fifty-five persons: thirteen men, nine women, and thirty-three children.[29]

The main body of the battalion then commenced a fifty-mile trek across the dreary Cimarron Desert, during which the marchers suffered extensively from the heat and lack of water. When water was periodically encountered, it was gratefully received. Sergeant Daniel Tyler declared: “We passed one lone pond full of insects of all sizes and shapes. Out of this pond we drove several thousand Buffalo. Even when the water was not roiled it was discolored and had a most disgusting appearance. The animals, doubtless, rendered it more noisome than it otherwise would have been by gathering in it to defend themselves from the flies. . . . The few whose canteens and flagons were not exhausted, of course did not use it, but, bad as it was, it was very welcome to most of us.”[30]

Arrival in Santa Fe

Having crossed what is now the state of Kansas, the southeast corner of Colorado, and the northwest tip of the Oklahoma Panhandle, the Mormon Battalion finally reached Santa Fe, New Mexico, in two staggered elements. Lieutenant Smith, with an advanced unit of 250 men and a series of forced marchers, was the first contingent to arrive on October 9, 1846. They received a gun salute from the rooftops, as directed by their old friend and former legal counsel during the former trouble of the Saints in Missouri, Colonel Alexander W. Doniphan, commander of the garrison. The rear element of the Mormon Battalion, under command of First Lieutenant George Oman, with many who were ailing, marched in on October 12. One onlooker described the greeting exchanged between the Mormon and Mexican women on that occasion: “When the wagons containing the women stopped at the plaza, all the Mexican women near went up and shook hands with them, apparently both rejoiced and surprised to see them. The kindness and hospitality of the women throughout Mexico is proverbial, and in this instance the burst of feeling was as cordial and warm as a greeting of old friends and acquaintances after a long separation.”[31]

Colonel Alexander W. Doniphan,
friend and former legal counsel to the Church.
Courtesy of Church Archives.

Brigadier General Stephen W. Kearny, commander of the Army of the West, had been anxious to reach the center of his operations in California and had departed Santa Fe before the arrival of the battalion. On the Rio Grande he had received an express notifying him of the death of Colonel Allen. Kearny immediately issued orders on October 2, appointing Captain Philip St. George Cooke, then in the general’s camp, to take command of the Mormon Battalion as acting lieutenant colonel.[32]

Philip St. George Cooke (1809–95)

Philip St. George Cooke.
Courtesy of Church Archives.

A Virginia native, Philip St. George Cooke graduated from the U.S. Military Academy in 1827 as a second lieutenant and was sent to the West. Before his service in the Mexican-American War and as leader of the Mormon Battalion, Cooke fought in the Black Hawk War of 1832 under the command of General Henry Atkinson. His leadership and association with the Mormon Battalion led to a lasting friendship with the Church as well as a close, personal friendship with Brigham Young. Despite this, he was ordered to take part in the Utah Expedition under command of General Albert Sidney Johnston. After serving as an official U.S. military observer in the Crimean War, Colonel Cooke returned to Utah to take command of Camp Floyd until the outbreak of the Civil War forced his return to Washington.

After being promoted to brigadier general, Cooke led a brigade of regular army cavalry for a short time during General George B. McClellan’s Peninsula Campaign, but then served in more administrative positions for the remainder of the war. Although a native of Virginia, Cooke chose to join the Union, a decision that fractured his family. Of three daughters and one son, only one of his daughters followed him to the Union side. She later married a Union general. Cooke’s military career ended in 1873 with his retirement as a brevet major general after more than fifty years of service. He died in 1895 in Detroit, Michigan.

Colonel Brown's Sick Detachment

Returning to Santa Fe, Colonel Cooke restructured certain components of the battalion. Lieutenant Smith was to act as commissary of subsistence, and Brevet Second Lieutenant George Stoneman of the First Dragoons received the assignment as assistant quartermaster. Major Jeremiah H. Cloud acted as additional paymaster of volunteers. Captain James Brown was ordered to form a detachment of “the men reported by assistant Surgeon as incapable, from sickness and debility, of undertaking the present march to California.” The detachment also included the four laundresses from each of the five companies. The detachment was to be transported to a place “near the source of the Arkansas river”—Fort Pueblo.[33]

The design was for all the women and children, except some servants of officers, to join the earlier Higgins detachment in Pueblo. However, a remonstration by some of the women and their spouses was amicably settled when two wives of officers and two wives of noncommissioned officers were allowed to continue the march with their husbands to California—that is, Lydia Edmunds Hunter, who would give birth to a son, Diego (James) Hunter, at San Diego, California, on April 20, 1847; Susan (Susanna) Moses Davis and her four-year-old son, Daniel C. Davis Jr.; Phebe Draper Palmer Brown; and Melissa Burton Coray. When Sophia Tubbs, wife of Private William Tubbs, was denied her wish to go, she stowed away in a wagon and came out only when it appeared too late to send her back. However, William became so ill that he could not continue, and the Tubbses became part of the later Willis sick detachment to Pueblo from the Rio Grande. Of the women in the battalion, only the four named above reached their California destination.

Captain James Brown’s detachment took up its march from Santa Fe to Pueblo on October 18, 1846, and the unit arrived at its destination on November 17. The contingent was made up of 128 individuals, including twenty women and nine children, one of whom, Fent F. Allred, was born en route to Pueblo from Santa Fe.[34]

Originally, a number of underage young men and some older men who were not enlisted in the battalion accompanied the unit from Council Bluffs as servants of officers. However, after the departure of the Higgins and Brown detachments, only the following individuals remained for the march from Santa Fe to California: Henry A. Bowing, who later enlisted in Captain Daniel Davis’s reenlistment company, Company A, Mormon Volunteers in California[35]; Charles Edwin Colton, son of Private Philander Colton; Nathan Hart, brother of Private James S. Hart, Company E; James A. Mowery, brother of Private John Thomas Mowery; William Byram Pace, son of First Lieutenant James Pace; Wilson Daniel Pace, son of William Franklin Pace; Zemira Palmer, son of Phebe Draper Palmer Brown by her first husband, George Palmer; Elisha Smith, who was hired by Captain Davis as a personal teamster and who died en route to California on December 5, 1846, near Ash Creek, New Mexico; and Nathan Young, son of Valentine W. Young.[36]

Colonel Cooke and the battalion departed Santa Fe on October 19. Their route took them to the Rio Grande and downriver to a point approximately where the small community of Williamsburg, New Mexico, is today. This is the site where General Kearny had left the river and had begun his more direct march toward the Gila River and on to California. He had taken pack animals, leaving the charge to Colonel Cooke to go farther south and prepare a wagon road to the Pacific.

Private James Hampton died at camp on the Rio Grande on November 3, 1846, and others were failing badly. Soon afterward, Colonel Cooke deemed it advisable to send a third detachment of sick personnel to Santa Fe for reassignment by the post commander, Colonel Sterling W. Price.[37] This detached command, under Second Lieutenant William W. Willis, commenced the excruciating journey on November 10, during the middle of winter. Levi Hancock painfully remembered the departure of his ailing brethren. He lamented: “Such a sight I never saw they was stowed away in the wagon like so many dead Hogs no better way could be done so it was said I went to the Lieu [Lieutenant Willis] and asked him if he would see that they was well taken care of when he had it in his power to do it and gave him my hand he griped it and I could say no more neather could he many gave me there hand.”[38]

Sixty-two men, one woman, and one child comprised the march unit bound for Pueblo.[39] At Santa Fe, Colonel Price ordered the Willis detachment to proceed on to Pueblo for their winter quarters, where they arrived on December 20.[40] Colonel Cooke’s reduced battalion now numbered 343 men. This figure included seven members of the command and staff and 336 company personnel.[41]

There were also ten additional men whose names we know who acted as guides and interpreters. They were variously hired by the military during the march sequence and were assigned to help pilot the battalion to California; namely, Philip Thompson; Willard Preble Hall; Antoine Leroux; Pauline W. Weaver, whom General Kearny met on the Gila River (Arizona) when Weaver was coming out of California and sent him as a guide for Cooke; Jean Baptiste Charbonneau; Dr. Stephen Clark Foster, hired as an interpreter; Francisco, who had accompanied General Kearny and who was later sent back to assist Colonel Cooke; Appolonius; Chacon; and Tasson.[42]

Battle of the Bulls

The Battle of the Bulls. Courtesy of Church Archives.

Continuing the march, Colonel Cooke ordered his bugler to “blow to the right” near what is today Hatch, New Mexico, and the battalion headed west—away from the Rio Grande. Cutting through the southeast corner of present-day Arizona, the column moved into Old Mexico, reaching the ruins of the abandoned Rancho San Bernardino on December 2, 1846. Reentering Arizona, they marched along the San Pedro River, encountering hundreds of wild cattle that had congregated in the bottoms along the stream near present-day Charleston, Arizona. Battalion hunters with their Yaugers wounded two animals that stampeded into the column. Although it was contrary to orders, virtually every man had loaded his musket for protection. As more bulls approached the marchers, a battle followed. Sergeant Tyler reported:

One small lead mule in a team was thrown on the horns of a bull over its mate on the near side, and the near mule, now on the off side and next to the bull, was gored. . . . One or two pack-mules were also killed. The end-gates of one or two wagons were stove in, and the sick, who were riding in them, were of course frightened. Some of the men climbed upon the wheels of the wagons and poured deadly fire into the enemy’s ranks. Some threw themselves down and allowed the beasts to run over them; others fired and dodged behind mezquit brush to re-load their guns, while the beasts kept them dodging to keep out of the way. Others, still, climbed up in small trees, there being now and then one available.

Brother Amos Cox was thrown about ten feet into the air, while a gore from three or four inches in length and about two or three in depth was cut in the inside of his thigh near its junction with the body. Sanderson sewed up the wound. Cox was an invalid for a long time, but finally recovered.[43]

Trouble near Tucson

Rather than following the San Pedro to its junction with the Gila River, Colonel Cooke elected to march overland to Tucson through a trackless waste with little water and a good deal of physical suffering. As they approached Tucson, battalion guides Antoine (Joaquin) Leroux, Pauline W. Weaver, Stephen C. Foster, Chacon, and Tasson reconnoitered the area and learned that about two hundred Mexicans had been gathered for the defense from several presidios of Sonora and that the garrison was commanded by Commandante Don Antonio Comaduran. Dr. Stephen Foster was captured by the Mexicans while scouting the enemy position. Concerned over Dr. Foster’s long delay in returning, and not knowing whether he was being held, Colonel Cooke secured four Mexican soldiers as hostages. These soldiers had been encountered on the morning of December 15, 1846, and were taken prisoner. One of the Mexicans was reportedly the son of Commandante Comaduran. An exchange of hostages occurred between the two forces. Negotiations over the fate of Tucson broke down, and the Americans prepared for battle.

Comaduran’s forces abandoned the community and withdrew to the nearby Mission of San Xavier del Bac. The battalion entered Tucson unopposed on December 16, 1846. Colonel Cooke instructed the soldiers to show respect to the people and their individual property rights. However, some public property, administered by the civil government and consisting of fifteen hundred bushels of wheat, was confiscated and issued to the hungry men and animals. Desiring to maintain Tucson as an established outpost of civilization against the marauding Apache Indians, the Mormon Battalion did nothing to destroy or impair the garrison. On December 18, the soldiers resumed their march northwest, leaving the presidio to Comaduran and its Mexican inhabitants.[44]

California Gold Rush of 1849

In 1848, John Sutter contracted with James Marshall to construct a sawmill on the south fork of the American River. Marshall, who had been Sutter’s neighbor, had returned from his service in the Mexican-American War to find that he had lost his ranch and all of his cattle. The mill provided another possibility for an income. After scouting a suitable location for the mill, Marshall enlisted the help of members of the Mormon Battalion who had just been mustered out of the army and were on their way home to Salt Lake City. After completion of the mill, the workers discovered that the mill’s tailrace did not provide enough water volume to operate the wood saws effectively. Marshall devised a plan to let the river’s flow, with help, naturally carve out a greater tailrace. This had to be accomplished during the night so that the men weren’t endangered while working in the mill during the day. It was Marshall’s practice first thing each morning to inspect the work done during the nighttime.

On the morning of January 19, 1949, while inspecting the waterways below the mill, Marshall noticed several shiny flecks in the water. In Marshall’s own account, he reported:

I picked up one or two pieces and examined them attentively; and having some general knowledge of minerals, I could not call to mind more than two which in any way resembled this—sulphuret of iron, very bright and brittle; and gold, bright, yet malleable. I then tried it between two rocks, and found that it could be beaten into a different shape, but not broken. I then collected four or five pieces and went up to Mr. Scott (who was working at the carpenters bench making the mill wheel) with the pieces in my hand and said, “I have found it.” (quoted in “The Discovery of Gold in California,” Hutchings Illustrated California Magazine, November 1857, 200–201)

Marshall was uncertain of the date but later settled on January 19, 1848. However, Mormon Battalion member Henry William Bigler kept a daily diary, which identifies the date as January 24, 1848, generally accepted by historians as correct.

News of this discovery quickly found its way into the newspapers of the eastern United States and before long throughout the world. Soon, prospectors by the thousands were converging on the American and Sacramento rivers in hopes of finding gold and securing their fortunes. While members of the Mormon Battalion were among the first to collect gold from the riverbed, virtually none stayed to earn their fortunes but collected only enough to fund their journey east toward Zion.

After traversing seventy miles of difficult desert terrain, the battalion finally reached the Gila and camped on the river bottoms just east of present-day Sacaton, Arizona. Here they enjoyed the hospitality of the Pima Indians. These cordial people brought corn, wheat, flour, pumpkins, and other refreshing foods to the famished men.[45] The battalion next marched fifteen miles to the Maricopa Indian settlement, where they met three guides sent by General Kearny. These men were to direct them over the trail to Warner’s Ranch, the first permanent settlement they would encounter in California. The soldiers camped at the Maricopa village that night. Sergeant Tyler described the Indian homes:

They lived in dome-shaped houses, thatched with corn-stalks and straw, varying from about twenty to fifty feet in diameter, with arbors in front, on which lay, piled up, cotton stalks, with unopened bolls, to dry. This was probably from late crops, as the rule for picking out cotton is when the bolls open in the field. We saw domesticated animals here, the horse, mule, ox, dog and even Spanish fowls. Their implements of husbandry consisted of axes, hoes, shovels, and harrows. . . . The natives showed no signs of fear, and did not run like the Apaches, who, at the time, were said to be hostile.

Colonel Cooke very kindly suggested to our senior officers that this vicinity would be a good place for the exiled Saints to locate. A proposition to this effect was favorably received by the Indians.[46]

A limited examination of the Pima country was carried out with the colonel’s blessing. In later years, numbers of battalion men, including members of the Pueblo, Colorado, detachment, established themselves in various parts of Arizona. Among them were Rufus C. Allen, Reuben Allred, Henry G. Boyle, Henry W. Brizzee, Edward Bunker, William A. Follett, Schyler Hulett, Hyrum Judd, Zadock K. Judd, Christopher Layton, William B. Maxwell, David Pulsipher, Samuel H. Rogers, Lot Smith, Henry Standage, George Steele, John Steele, and Samuel Thompson.[47]

Desert March

After crossing the Colorado River near Yuma and entering a fifty-mile stretch of present-day Mexico, the battalion encountered the trials of the Imperial Desert. Veering northeast into California, the marchers negotiated the difficulties of Box Canyon and preserved the integrity of “Cooke’s Wagon Road” against seemingly insurmountable odds. At Warner’s Ranch, they were able to recoup sufficiently for a sustained march to the Pacific Ocean.

The Mormon Battalion is officially mustered out of service in Los Angeles,
July 16, 1847. Courtesy of Church Archives.

Although Colonel Cooke’s orders directed him to San Diego, he had assessed the military situation and determined to march to Los Angeles. However, a messenger from General Kearny met the battalion in the Temecula Valley on January 25 and redirected them to San Diego.[48] On January 27, the unit halted briefly at the deserted San Luis Rey Mission. For Samuel H. Rogers this was “the best building I have seen since entering Mexican territory.”[49] Colonel Cooke described the mission:

This is a fine large church of stuccoed brick, with an immense quadrangle of apartments with a corridor, and pillars and arches on each side within and on one face without. There are all the arrangements and appurtenances of a monastery, not omitting the wine apartments and brewery. I saw furniture and some paintings, but no occupants. The church was closed; it had a steeple with bells. In the center of the court is an oblique sundial, with orange and pepper trees, etc., in four large walled beds. The orange tree was bearing fruit of the size of a walnut. The Indians, too, had disappeared. Some two hundred of them I left in Temécula.[50]

Their first long-sought-after view of the Pacific was experienced from a bluff about a mile south of the mission. The emotions of Private Henry Boyle perhaps reflected those of his comrades in arms as they surveyed the body of water they had journeyed so far to see:

I never Shall be able to express my feelings at this enraptured moment. when our colums were halted evry eye was turned toward its placid Surface evry heart beat with muttered pleasure every Soul was full of thankfulness, evry tongue was Silend, we all felt too ful to give Shape to our feelings by any expression. . . . The Surrounding hills are covered with wild oats & grass nearly a foot high, green & luxuriant as midsummer and how Sweet and refreshing is the breeze that is winging its way from the ocean up this fertile valley which Stretches itself from the Shore back to the “Sieras”. What an expansive view! how bright & beautiful evry thing looks!![51]

Arrival in San Diego"

The battalion reached the Mission of San Diego a little before sunset on January 29, 1847. Colonel Cooke voiced his satisfaction with the accomplishments of the Mormon Battalion in a written order that, though dated January 30, 1847, was not read to the men until February 4.[52] Interestingly, when the order was read, the men were no longer at the San Diego Mission but rather back at the San Luis Rey Mission. On January 31, 1847, the battalion was ordered to return to San Luis Rey for garrison duty. The march from San Diego began February 1, 1847, and the troops arrived on the third. This was a strategic move that would give General Kearny some flexibility if there were hostilities at Los Angeles or San Diego. The entire battalion remained at San Luis Rey from February 3 to March 19, 1847.[53] Adjutant Philemon C. Merrill read the colonel’s order on February 4, as follows:

Order Number 1

Headquarters Mormon Battalion

Mission of San Diego, January 30, 1847

The lieutenant-colonel commanding congratulates the battalion on their safe arrival on the shore of the Pacific ocean, and the conclusion of the march of over two thousand miles. History may be searched in vain for an equal march of infantry. Nine-tenths of it has been through a wilderness where nothing but savages and wild beasts are found, or deserts where, for want of water, there is no living creature. There, with almost hopeless labor, we have dug deep wells which the future traveler will enjoy. Without a guide who had traversed them, we have ventured into trackless prairies where water was not found for several marches. With crowbar and pick and ax in hand we have worked our way over mountains which seemed to defy aught save the wild goat, and hewed a passage through a chasm of living rock more narrow than our wagons. To bring these first wagons to the Pacific, we have preserved the strength of our mules by herding them ever over large tracts, which you have laboriously guarded without loss. The garrisons of four presidios of Sonora, concentrated within the walls of Tucson, gave us no pause. We drove them out with their artillery, but our intercourse with the citizens was unmarked by a single act of injustice. Thus, marching half naked and half fed, and living upon wild animals, we have discovered and made a road of great value to our country. Arrived at the first settlement of California after a single day’s rest, you cheerfully turned off from the route to this point of promised repose to enter upon a campaign, and meet, as we believed, the approach of the enemy; and this, too, without even salt to season your sole subsistence of fresh meat. Lieutenants A. J. Smith and George Stonemen, of the First dragoons, have shared and given valuable aid in all these labors. Thus, volunteers, you have exhibited some high and essential qualities of veterans. But much remains undone. Soon you will turn your strict attention to the drill, to system and order, to forms also, which are all necessary to the soldier.

By order of Lieutenant-colonel P. St. Geo. Cooke,

P. C. Merrill, Adjutant.[54]

The men of the Mormon Battalion had been called upon to enlist and to leave their families and friends in destitute circumstances. They did so knowing their enlistment would greatly aid the westward migration of the Saints, assist in the building of Zion, and render the requested patriotic service to their country during the emergency. On December 19, 1847, at the Log Tabernacle in Kanesville (Council Bluffs), Iowa, President Brigham Young, referring to the presence of some of the battalion boys who had returned to the Midwest following their term of enlistment, said to President Heber C. Kimball and others, “These men were the salvation of this Church.”[55]



This chapter was modified from a chapter in David F. Boone and others, eds., Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: California (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 1998), 31–56.

[1]. Philip St. George Cooke, “Cooke’s Journal of the March of the Mormon Battalion, 1846–1847,” in Exploring Southwestern Trails, 1846–1854, ed. Ralph P. Bieber and Averam B. Bender, vol. 7 of The Southwest Historical Series (Glendale, CA: Arthur H. Clark, 1938), 23.

[2]. Journal History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, June 26, 1846; Scott G. Kenney, ed., Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 1833–1898 (Midvale, UT: Signature Books, 1983–84), 3:54–55.

[3]. Elden J. Watson, ed., Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 1846–1847 (Salt Lake City: Elden J. Watson, 1971), 201–202.

[4]. Watson, Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 203–207.

[5]. Watson, Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 205–207. In this and all other quotations, original spelling and grammar have been retained.

[6]. Mosquito Creek is near the Iowa School for the Deaf at the junction of present U.S. Highway 275 and State Highway 92, on the southeast edge of Council Bluffs.

[7]. Letter of John J. Slonaker, Chief, Historical Reference Branch, U.S. Army Military History Institute, Carlisle Barracks, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, to Larry C. Porter, May 31, 1996.

[8]. Kenney, Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 3:60.

[9]. Erwin G. Gudde, ed., Bigler’s Chronicle of the West: The Conquest of California, Discovery of Gold, and Mormon Settlement as Reflected in Henry William Bigler’s Diaries (Berkley: University of California Press, 1992), 19.

[10]. John F. Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket: The Mormon Battalion in the Mexican War,” 2 vols. (PhD diss., Brigham Young University, 1975), 1:62–63.

[11]. Daniel Tyler, A Concise History of the Mormon Battalion in the Mexican War, 1846–1847, (n.p.: Sergeant Daniel Tyler, 1881), 131.

[12]. Other deaths associated with the Mormon Battalion include Lt. Col. James Allen, Battalion Commander; Pvt. Marvin S. Blanchard, Company A; Pvt. Richard Carter, Company B; Pvt. Abner Chase, Company D; Pvt. George Coleman, Company A; Pvt. Eli Dodson, Company A; Pvt. Neal Donald, Company C; Pvt. Albert Dunham, Company B; Pvt. Elijah N. Freeman, Company B; Cpl. Lafayette Frost, Company A; Pvt. John Green, Company C; Pvt. James Hampton, Company A; Pvt. Milton Kelley, Company E; Pvt. Melcher Oyler, Company A; Pvt. John Perkins, Company C; Pvt. Alva Phelps, Company E; Musician Joseph W. Richards, Company A; 3rd Cpl. James A. Scott, Company E; Pvt. Norman Sharp, Company D; Pvt. David Smith, Company E; and 1st Cpl. Arnold Stephens, Company D.

Three additional battalion men were killed by Indians following their discharge while crossing the Sierra Nevada Mountains: musician Ezra H. Allen, Company C; Sgt. Daniel Browett, Company E; and Pvt. Henderson Cox, Company A; John and Jane Boscoe, an older couple with Capt. Jefferson Hunt, both died on the Arkansas River (Kansas) on August 27 and 30, 1846, respectively. Tyler specifies their deaths as being August 28 and 29 (Concise History, 142); Parley Hunt, infant son of Capt. Jefferson Hunt, died at Pueblo; Fent Allred, a child, died between Santa Fe and Pueblo; Betsy Prescinda Huntington, a child, died at Pueblo; a private teamster for Capt. Daniel C. Davis, Elisha Smith, died near Ash Creek, New Mexico, December 5, 1846; Lydia Ann Edmonds Hunter, wife of Capt. Jesse D. Hunter, died at San Diego on April 27, 1847, and was buried on Point Loma on the Fort Rosecrans Military Reservation; Maj. Jeremiah H. Cloud died near Sutter’s Fort, August 4, 1847. The march of the battalion and later garrison duty in the respective locations were not without significant sacrifice of human life, and the names of those who died are held in “honorable remembrance” (see military and family records in possession of writer); Elmer J. Carr, ed., Honorable Remembrance: The San Diego Master List of the Mormon Battalion (San Diego: Mormon Battalion Visitors’ Center, 1978), 74–80, 90–97; Carl V. Larson, comp. and ed., A Data Base of the Mormon Battalion, 2nd ed. (Salt Lake City: U.S. Mormon Battalion, 1997); Norma Baldwin Ricketts, The Mormon Battalion (Logan: Utah State University Press, 1996); Carl V. Larson and Shirley N. Maynes, eds., Women of the Mormon Battalion (n.p.: ABC Printing, 1997), 124, 126–27; Dan Talbot, A Historical Guide to the Mormon Battalion and Butterfield Trail (Tucson: Westernlore Press, 1992), 103–13.

[13]. Tyler, Concise History, 134.

[14]. James S. Brown, Life of a Pioneer (Salt Lake City: George Q. Cannon & Sons, 1900), 29.

[15]. Tyler, Concise History, 136.

[16]. Journal History, August 11, 1846.

[17]. Journal History, August 21, 1846; Watson, Manuscript History of Brigham Young, 344.

[18]. Tyler, Concise History, 136.

[19]. Frank Alfred Golder, comp., The March of the Mormon Battalion from Council Bluffs to California Taken from the Journal of Henry Standage (New York: Century, 1928), 146.

[20]. Journal of Samuel Hollister Rogers, August 20, 1846, 57, typescript, 79–80, L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah.

[21]. Journal of William Hyde, August 26, 1846, 19, Church Archives, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City.

[22]. Tyler, Concise History, 143–44.

[23]. Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket,” 1:122–26; Tyler, Concise History, 147.

[24]. Tyler, Concise History, 150.

[25]. Journal History, September 14, 1846. The research of Mary Lindenmuth Scarcello has produced a larger figure than the forty-three persons suggested by William Crosby. She has identified some eighty-five persons who were associated with the “Mississippi Company” during its tenure at the fort. However, her research includes bond servants, children born at the site, and perhaps other categories of people who interacted with the company during the period of occupancy and were not part of the Crosby count (see Mary Linenmuth Scarcello, Mormon Pioneers in Pueblo, Colorado, 1846–1900 [n.d.: Mary Lindenmuth Scarcello, 1993], 119–52).

[26]. Scarcello, Mormon Pioneers in Pueblo, 31–33, 119–52.

[27]. Journal History, September 16, 1846; Tyler, Concise History, 158.

[28]. Captain Nelson Higgins and those able-bodied men who formed the escort to Pueblo rejoined the Battalion at Santa Fe. Since Colonel Philip St. George Cooke had already left for the Rio Grande, the commander at Santa Fe directed Captain Higgins and his men to serve on detached duty in Pueblo with the stipulation that they would provide for their families there (see Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket,” 1:263).

[29]. For a complete listing of personnel comprising the Capt. Nelson Higgins detachment from the Arkansas River to Pueblo, September 16, 1846, see author’s original article in Boone, Regional Studies.

[30]. Tyler, Concise History, 159.

[31]. George Rutledge Gibson, Journal of a Soldier under Kearny and Doniphan, 1846–47, ed. Ralph P. Bieber, The Southwest Historical Series (Glendale, CA: Arthur K. Clark, 1935), 3:252.

[32]. Stephen W. Kearny, Orders No. 33, October 3, 1846, Headquarters, Army of the West, Camp on the Rio Del Norte near Joya, Church Archives.

[33]. “Orders No. 8,” in Tyler, Concise History, 166–68.

[34]. For a complete listing of personnel comprising the Capt. James Brown detachment from Santa Fe to Pueblo, October 18, 1846, see author’s original article in Boone, Regional Studies.

[35]. He is listed as “Bowing” on the reenlistment company muster roll and as “Boring” on a document in William Hunter’s pension file

[36]. Family records in possession of writer; Tyler, Concise History, 125; Carr, Honorable Remembrance, 88; Ricketts, Mormon Battalion, 280–81; Larson, Data Base of the Mormon Battalion, 30, 69, 182–84, 219. Nathan Young’s Pension File stipulates he was a servant to Capt. Jesse D. Hunter (see letter of F. H. Morris, Auditor, War Department, March 28, 1900).

[37]. Order No. 16, see Journal History, November 10, 1846.

[38]. Journal of Levi W. Hancock, November 10, 1846, Church Archives.

[39]. For a complete listing of personnel comprising the Lt. William W. Willis detachment from the Rio Grande to Pueblo, November 10, 1846, see author’s original article in Boone, Regional Studies.

[40]. Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket,” 1:287–88; Tyler, Concise History, 192.

[41]. For a complete listing of the men of the Mormon Battalion who continued the march to California from the Rio Grande, see author’s original article in Boone, Regional Studies.

[42]. Cooke, “Cooke’s Journal,” 70, 74, 85–86, 107, 175–76, 201; Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket,” 1:190, 230; 2:345, 357, 372, 395, 401; Carr, Honorable Remembrance, 68–70.

[43]. Tyler, Concise History, 218–19.

[44]. Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket,” 2:405–13.

[45]. Yurtinus, “A Ram in the Thicket,” 413–17.

[46]. Tyler, Concise History, 236.

[47]. James H. McClintock, Mormon Settlement in Arizona (Phoenix: Manufacturing Stationers, 1921).

[48]. Cooke, “Cooke’s Journal,” 233–34.

[49]. Samuel H. Rodgers, “Samuel H. Rodgers Diary,” January 27, 1847, 114, L. Tom Perry Special Collections.

[50]. Cooke, “Cooke’s Journal,” 235–36.

[51]. Diary of Henry G. Boyle, January 27, 1847, 34, typescript, L. Tom Perry Special Collections.

[52]. Diary of Henry G. Boyle, 35.

[53]. Golder, March of the Mormon Battalion, 208–10; Robert S. Bliss, “Journal of Robert Bliss,” 86, Church Archives; Henry W. Bigler Diary, February 3, 1847, typescript, 63, L. Tom Perry Special Collections.

[54]. Cooke, “Cooke’s Journal,” 238–40; emphasis added.

[55]. Diary of Redick N. Allred, December 19, 1847, in Kate B. Carter, comp., Treasures of Pioneer History (Salt Lake City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1956), 5:310.