Account of the Saints' emigration

Ronald D. Dennis, trans. and ed., Defending the Faith: Early Welsh Missionary Publications (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 2003).

D4 DAVIS, John. Hanes ymfudiad y Saint i Galifornia; yn gyn­nwysedig mewn dau lythyr o New Orleans, America, un oddiwrth Capt. D. Jones, a’r llall oddiwrth Mr. Thos. Jeremy, (gynt o Lanybydder), at olygydd Udgorn Seion. (An account of the Saints’ emigration to California; contained in two letters from New Orleans, America, one from Capt. D. Jones, and the other from Mr. Thomas Jeremy, [originally from Llanybydder], to the editor of Zion’s Trumpet.) Merthyr Tydfil: Printed and for sale by J. Davis, Georgetown, 1849.

iv[5]–24 pp. 17 cm. Welsh Mormon Writings 27.

The two letters contained in this pamphlet were intended to appear in Zion’s Trumpet; because of their length, however, John Davis elected to have them constitute a separate publication.

The emigration mentioned in the title refers to the first group of Welsh Mormon converts to leave Britain for “Zion,” located in the Rocky Mountains. (The whole area from the Rocky Mountains to the west coast was called “California” by the British Saints during the late 1840s.)

On 26 February 1849 the Buena Vista left Liverpool with 249 Welsh members of the Church on board. Captain Dan Jones, their leader, had been the leader of all Mormons in Wales prior to his depar­ture in February. His letter (17 of the 24 pages of the pamphlet) is a comprehensive and at times literary account of the 50-day crossing to new Orleans. Thomas Jeremy’s letter (3 pages of the 24) adds a few events not covered by Jones’s account, but he covers essentially the same material.

Both Jeremy and Jones hoped that others of their compatriots would follow after them; consequently, their letters are filled with encouragement and positive experiences. Even the burials at sea are viewed in a positive light—the sea would preserve the body for resur­rection better than would the earth.

The pamphlet was published in two states. After 1,500 copies were printed (the preface is dated 26 May 1849), Davis received yet another letter from New Orleans, this one from Thomas Richards, who sailed on the Hartley, a ship that left Liverpool one week after the Buena Vista. On board the Hartley were approximately seventy-five Welsh members of the Church who had not been able to travel on the Buena Vista because of space limitations. Upon receiving Richards’s letter, Davis inserted an eleven-line paragraph about the Hartley travel­ers on page iv of the pamphlet (the last page of the foreword).














By the Saint in general, and many Bookdealers,

throughout the South and North.




I wish to inform the reader, that the reason for publishing the fol­lowing letters as a pamphlet, is, because they are too long to put in Zion’s trumpet, as the writers intended. The account they contain is very interesting and edifying, and interwoven with valuable teachings concerning many extremely beneficial things, especially for those who intend to emigrate. While the captain has plenty of work with his dear followers on the way to a distant country, he can in no way forget his brothers and sisters back in Wales, for he takes special pains to describe to them everything concerning their departed brethren, so they can be comforted and consoled in his absence.

When Capt. Jones was thus taking care of us, I can only smile when I see the kindness of the devil trying to imitate him. I present here a copy of the letter I received a short time ago from one Capt. Jones, the purpose of which was to deceive the Saints. It is written on paper which is used by the Oddfellows, and contains their emblem; an attempt is made to imitate the post marks on it, by stamping it with a seal of the Oddfellows’ secretary, on which there is a word rather similar to “Llansamlet.” Here is the letter:—

“New Orleans, Gulf of Mexico, Feb. 27, 1849.

“My Dear Brother in the Lord,—I am pleased to be able to inform you that we have landed safely in New Orleans, after a short and com­fortable voyage. There is evident care in our behalf, which is clear proof to the world of the truthfulness of our religion, despite so much talk against it by the numerous false religions of the world; and perhaps this letter will come to your hand also rather miraculously; if so, proclaim it before the public, and proclaim in Gath and Ashkelon about the provi­dential care of our Heavenly Father over us. We are going from here to Nauvoo, on the banks of the Mississippi, in the state of Illinois, and from there to Council Bluffs, in the state of Missouri. An angel showed the directions to you in a dream; inform everyone of this also. Tell all the brethren that we are well and comfortable, and that we are convinc­ing the world as we go along; and our numbers will be thousands by the time we reach the end of our journey: and before long, we shall overthrow all the kingdoms of the earth, and we shall live one thousand two hundred and sixty years after that happens. I do not have time to write much to you, for I have much to do.

“I am, yours affectionately,

“Your father in the Lord,”

“Capt. Dan Jones.

“To Mr. W. Llewellyn, Merthyr.”

The outside address is like this:—”Mr. J. Walter Llewellyn, to Mr. Ed. Morris, Schoolhouses, Llansamlet, near Swansea, Glamorganshire, Wales.” I shall say no more about it, except to counsel the Saints to refrain from condemning all Oddfellows because of the bad deeds of some; and may they strive always to be wise as the serpent, and harm­less as doves.

It is seen from the letters of my revered brethren, how many false prophets in Wales will shortly have to be ashamed for what they proph­esied falsely about the Saints. Despite that, all that was prophesied will be a great benefit; because the honest in heart will have the opportunity to recognize who their friends are.

J. Davis.

Merthyr, May 26, 1849.

After printing about fifteen hundred of the following letters, we saw another letter, from New Orleans, dated April 30, 1849, from Mr. Thomas Richards, formerly from Mynydd Merthyr, to his brother Mr. William Richards, from the same place, reporting that the rest of the Saints who went away on the ship “Hartley,” about a week or more after the other ship, arrived well and safe on the 29th of April, and had a pleas­ant voyage. He says that two children were born, and that four sailors were baptized, on the sea; and he reports that Capt. Jones and his Saints went on to St. Louis, a little before their arrival at New Orleans.

Emigration of the Saints

A letter from Capt. D. Jones to the editor of “Zion’s Trumpet.”

New Orleans, April 18, 1849.

Dear Brother Davies.—

According to my frequent promise to the dear Saints whom I left behind in Wales, I shall give an account of our voyage across the ocean up to this point. There are no doubt many tales about us which have spread through Wales, and prophecies about our drowning, &c.; therefore, I beseech you to announce through your “Trumpet” that all these are false up to now—that we are still alive, even though on the other side of the sea from you. I hope they do not believe that this letter came from the spirit world. Furthermore, the Captain has not as yet turned the ship to Cuba, and sold the Saints into slavery, as was prophesied through the “Star of Gomer,” &c., that he would do. Facts like these are what proves who the false prophets really are.

But on with the account of our voyage. Since I am writing to many who intend to follow us sooner or later, for whose happiness we are desirous, allow me to itemize the most educational things, so that they may benefit from our experience. According to the account concerning us which you heard from Liverpool, I report that before sailing, that is, the first Sunday after boarding the ship, we established ourselves as an emigrating or float­ing branch on the depths, yet, in another sense, as an established Branch, and the various officers were chosen to fill the different responsibilities appertaining. We held a meeting of the Saints, distributed the sacrament and received open evidence that our worship was accepted by Heaven, through the presence of the Holy Spirit in his lovely influence; and we received open evidence that the enemy, as in the days of Job, had come there also, by his possessing of one sister, until she was driven out of her senses, causing her to scream and utter inhuman things and frightening curses; but her disturbance did not keep up very long, for through the lay­ing on of hands of the elders and the prayer of faith, our Father saw fit to seal the promise of his Son “to them that believe,” on land and on sea, that is—”In my name shall they cast out devils;” and Oh, how valuable was the blessing this time.

The ship was divided into eight sections according to the number of the families. Elders were assigned to supervise each section, to see that everyone acted properly and received justice impartially, to foster and nur­ture love and unity, and especially to see that all kept the places clean and healthful. To that end, it was arranged for two each morning to arise before the others around them and wash the deck, &c., clean, and dry it. These eight presidents, together with another triad, namely, William Morgans, Merthyr, and Rice Williams and William Davis, Rhymni, his counselors, constituted a council to organize all temporal and spiritual matters. In this manner we prepared ourselves through agreement without exception.

On Monday, the 26th of February, about two o’clock in the afternoon, we set sail from the port, and all the Saints, accompanied by the harp, sang “The Saints’ Farewell” as we left the dock. Their sweet voices resounded throughout the city, attracting the attention of and causing amazement to thousands of spectators, who followed us along the shore as if charmed. We were followed here by our dear and faithful brethren, William Phillips, of Merthyr, Abel Evans, Eliaser Edwards, and some of the other faithful elders, together with David Jeremy from Brechfa. These brethren, having shown every other kindness and assistance they could, like dear kins­men to loved ones at the graveside, vied with each other in showing yet additional love, by buying oranges, and throwing them to us in the ship, as long as they could reach it. The fall of the oranges out of our reach into the sea proved that we were too far to shake hands with each other anymore. It was only this last separation from them that could agitate the fountains of tears in spite of ourselves. By this time, almost unawares, all we could see behind us were their handkerchiefs, like flags waving in the breeze, in a language shouting from the aching heart, “Farewell, farewell! to sail across the vast sea to dear Zion;” while all they heard back were the echoes of our warm hearts coming with the breeze from the water, “Farewell, farewell! land of Britain,” &c. We thought that not only foreign men, but all nature as well, had become calm to observe the scene, and that the winds of February had turned into summer breezes in our behalf. With indescribable feelings, we were dragged by two large steamers out of sight of the city; and before nightfall our ship was rocking just like a hut on the surging waves of the sea. The steamers turned back after escort­ing us about 30 miles, and inwardly the scene changed on us. Now some would go to light fires, boil water, make tea, &c.; while others, made more miserable by seasickness, staggered to their beds. When eight o’clock came and the ship was under full sail—the wind from the west and every­thing in order as much as possible—a meeting was held for family prayer, and everyone went to lie down, but hardly anyone could sleep; and even though the wind was not stormy, and the sea was not rough, still it was suf­ficiently rough to make almost everyone so sick, that I shall not forget that night for a long time; though hardly anyone could sleep, yet no one slept less than myself and a few of the other elders, as we were back and forth comforting and assisting the sick as much as we could throughout almost the entire night. The sunlight was beautiful the next day, and some of the sick improved; yet they could hardly walk by themselves across the deck without someone guiding them, which service kept me quite busy, but it was no less pleasant than every other guidance in their behalf. This morn­ing I tried hard before I succeeded in getting some of the sick out of bed to breathe the healthful air, since seasickness causes such a debilitating feeling. Some were almost angry with me because of my insistence; but I wouldn’t be refused, even though I was obliged to carry many a person on the deck; and I was well paid for my trouble through patience, once they realized that the topside and healthful air would improve them gradually and without exception, so that it was easy to see the difference between those who succumbed to their desires to stay in their beds, and the others who showed their courage by coming to the healthful air on deck, whose healing, together with the testimonies of these to others, convinced others to follow their example,—and I cannot encourage too much those who will yet come, to do all they can to come on deck in similar circumstances; and it was not long before those who resisted most strongly to come top­side with me were thanking me the most, because of almost forcing them to come. This day, I got enough men to come to the “Company Shop” (as was called the storeroom at the back of the ship where the supplies were kept); and the three members of the first presidency, and myself, became makeshift shopkeepers, to weigh the following different foods for each family, as they wished; so that each one could prepare it how and when he wished. To all over 14 years of age the following amounts were distrib­uted, with half that to everyone between one and 14; that is,—10 pounds of hard bread, white and good; 4 pounds of sugar; 3 pounds of cheese; 3 pounds of butter; 4 pounds of raisins; 2 pounds of rice; 2 pounds of cof­fee; 4 pounds of molasses; 11/4 pounds of tea. This food was of extremely high quality, and a gift from President Pratt, something which no one else gave to emigrants; and no matter how sad some of the women’s faces were, the sight of such a gift caused them to go cheerfully to the shop; and although they stepped on each other’s feet, and sometimes fell into each other, because of the shaking of the ship, yet I declare that they laughingly called for help “to raise the lowest,” and they tried again. There was no respecting of persons in this, rather it was the best on his feet who kept his head up, and everyone agreed that the one leg was too short, or that the other was too long, almost every step.

In the afternoon, since there was a cross wind, the ship stayed along the coast of Ireland, until its steep mountains and jagged rocks threatened to mangle us if we came closer; and we all rejoiced when the sailors turned the other side of the ship to the wind, with its point toward the borders of our own beloved country. There were several other large ships in our sight sailing to the west, but it was absolutely incredible how our ship sped by them all one by one so that we could see them no longer. In the middle of the night the winds increased, when we were very close to the lights of the Holyhead peninsula;— almost everyone, except for myself and brother Daniel Daniel, was sick.

—28. We went on deck at the break of day, and the first thing that attracted my attention was Bardsey Island, not far from us; and beyond it the huge mountains of Caernarvonshire lifted up their snowy peaks, vying with each other in height and in their desire to see, at the crack of dawn, whether the children who had been raised on their breasts were still alive, or whether they had drowned; or if what they heard on the ocean, were the lovely voices of their emigrant sons echoing as before in the forests and glens of their land. In this eager search, like a nostalgic mother in the midst of her daughters, dear Snowdon above the rocks of Snowdonia stretched her neck most, and raised her head highest into the heavens, gazing after us;—she forgot, because of her desire, to take off her (snowy) night cap to greet us: yet, there were none of these sons, except myself, who had strength to echo back her motherly farewell, before she lowered her comely head behind her daughters one by one in the eastern ocean. But my vessel did not wait for my affection to embrace for long its object (that is, the dear land of my fathers) because of her greyhound-like desire to speed along her way across the seething white caps, as though frolicking, splen­did and fearless, on the tops of the furious waves. But it was not the green ocean, in spite of its commotion—nor the blue sky, in spite of its feroc­ity—not even the comfort of my fellow travelers, nor how much I wanted this—nor was it the last farewell to the shores of my country,—which mainly filled my thoughts; rather, I pondered seriously the condition of her inhabitants. I see myself now with a small handful, like a wave offering, of the inhabitants of Wales, looking from afar on the country that is called the “garden of Christianity”—”the country of the Bibles,” that had erected the lofty tops of her numerous houses of worship to the sky, as a monument to her zealous enthusiasm; yes, behold this, and even more: and is it a fact, or just a dream, that I have escaped on the water from the midst of my Welsh brothers with my life, by the skin of my teeth? If so, why is that? If not, why all the persecution, the slander, and the false accusations I suffered for years from the press and the pulpits? Why did my residence have to be guarded for weeks? Why was my life safe only among guards? Why did I have to flee in secret before the time? Why was I not able to bid farewell to my dear wife and my baby? It was doubtless not for transgression in the world; for once, twice, yes, even three times I challenged any man to prove me guilty of transgression. Oh, it must be admitted, it cannot be hidden, that religious persecution is what caused it all; there must be strength in my religion, if nothing else but that could prove it, for it to have been able to excite the old passion of every false religion to persecute it: persecution does not originate from God; neither does the religion which persecutes come from him * *. Oh, yes, ‘tis a fact, the sun dawns cheerfully on my head as an exile from the borders of my country—the winds try to beat me back as an exile for his belief—my beloved vessel, my castle, strives to defend me against danger as an exile cast out by his brothers whose benefit he seeks, and she opens her sails to the wind to carry me, as if her kinsman, safely home to Zion, like a victorious soldier to his home. These thoughts, unawares, drew my affection and my eyes toward the west, to ponder on Zion and her glories, until once again, like a flowing stream, it came to my memory, that of her dear children thousands are left behind in Wales—that of my gentle fellow nation there, multitudes would love the true faith if they had a chance. Once again I turned my face to the east, and my spirit in prayer to the God who initiated this good work, and blessed His gospel with success in Wales, to make His servants mighty men, and beloved, like the great sons of thunder, to sound the trump more loudly, until the inhabitants of hill and vale are awakened from the sleep of false religion, to embrace the gospel;—so that His Spirit, like the purifying fire, could refine those who obeyed. But by this time, the blue cover of the sky, and the high whitecaps of the waves, between them nearly hid under their covers the little green garden, that is, the country that raised me. I vowed that I would not be angry for the evil that I received there, nor am I exiled forever, rather I shall yet come across the depths to the home of my loved ones, to try, if there be a way, to take them in time to worthy Zion in my embrace. O my country! my love binds itself around your beautiful vales; your rocky shores are all “magnets;” for I want to benefit your people. May the gospel of heaven raise its white banners on every brow and hill within your land, and wave in all your breezes. But yet, there is within your land something that surpasses everything I have noted, something far above, more beloved and fair, though so far away now, and closer than anything else to my heart! O my mind, stop, come, return back; why do I break the strings of my heart? Why do I call? she will not come back. Well, then, just for an instant, raise your wings to the wind, and feast in her company. Angels of heaven now surround her bed, lulling her to sleep; her cheeks red, and her smile happy, as if she sees me; she reaches out her pure arms; she embraces tightly, as if her dear lord were in her arms; but he is not there, just his image. O little rosebud, and the only one, hardly as old as a new moon, why did I leave thee? Even until this morning, my beloved, [1] for following me across land and sea, and many countries—for happily sharing the troubles and comforts of my breast— for many times having caused me to forget the world and its things, and for having kept so tightly the keys of my heart for ten years—for everything and every­one who has ever been, even until this morning, until my mind shot at the break of dawn to your bedchamber—I have loved you. Oh, if only my mind could stay here longer, yes, wait for you to awake? but the first parting was sorrow enough—why cause a second wound? Take courage, my spirit; this must be for Christ’s religion—it is not for long, nor is this separation without its everlasting reward. You, angels pure, I charge you to care for my wife and baby; I go courageously on,—watch over her until I return; she is precious to my soul, for she was content for my sake; for this, great Snowdon will jump into the sea before I shall ever, ever, forget her;—to thy arms, my Father, I commend everything I have. One look yet—one more greeting ere I leave; my spirit bows above the place where she lies; now take strength for this adventure! Hush! what is the matter? where am I? what, on the high sea? yes, with a call to hasten to the sick. Well, well, I wandered far; but I shall return to my account. There was hardly anyone able to prepare food today; but Daniel Daniel and William Jenkins, and myself, agreed on an attracting device by helping several onto the deck; we made a comfortable place for a row of the women to sit in the air, and I set about making a gruel out of oat flour for them, which strengthened them greatly; and so, pot after pot we apportioned to them in a circle, on the condition that they stay up to eat it. It is hard to describe the good this did them; and I would counsel everyone to bring a sufficient quantity of good oat flour, and oat bread with them, for they shall see that this will taste better to them than anything else for awhile.

In the evening, Ireland was in sight; the wind increased, so that it was necessary to lower the top sails to the lowest position, and pull all the other sails in. The ship was turned with its stern to the south for awhile, and then back to the other side throughout the night; but whether on one side, or the other, it was totally impossible for it to remain still, or to allow anyone else to lie or stand in his place; rather like a door on its hinge, it continually swayed those who were lying down; but as for those standing, it was throwing them along the deck, with the boxes and their crockery, as recklessly and without warning as the wild horse throws its unskilled rider across the hedge, and leaves him there; but, without any pity when the rider got up, the ship would throw him somewhere else, until he crawled home. It was no use begging her to stop; the grumbling of the one, or the groaning of the other, together with the voices of the children, had the same effect on her, that is to increase her drunkenness; many agreed with me before morning, that it was better to let her have her own way; let her rock until she was tired; and so it was. She has hardly ceased yet.

March 1. For a good part of the day we were running a race with the steeple of St. David’s, Pembrokeshire; but before night we got ahead of it, thanks to the help of the wind. By this time, many, especially the men, had taken courage, in spite of falling so much like the baby, until they had learned to walk along the sides. A prayer meeting was held in the evening, and soon after that the wind turned to our favor, something which greatly encouraged the sick. Only oat bread tasted good today.

—2. We were out of sight of land, and only blue sky and green water around us, except for an occasional ship sailing her own way. The majority improving considerably.

—3. Beautiful weather, and the little children playing all along the ship, and the parents laughing upon seeing an occasional pile of them on top of each other on the deck, yet not daring to venture there to interfere. Until today we were escorted by birds of our country, but no longer; rather, having entrusted our care to multitudes of sea birds, they returned.

—4. (Sunday). At two o’clock, we had a splendid, lovely meeting of the Saints, and everyone was perfectly content, except for an occasional one of them who refused every counsel to come on deck, who have by now gotten fevers in their beds; all this caused us great concern and trouble, along with sincere prayers before they were restored to health. I would warn others to refrain from doing the same thing. Many beneficial and interesting admonitions were given in the meeting; after the sacrament, several testified of the goodness of God, &c. The sick improving. At night the Saints divided into two prayer meetings, half of them at each end of the ship. The wind supported us pleasantly.

—5. Beautiful weather throughout the day; constant strolling on the deck; the musicians playing eleven musical instruments and everyone except a few sick fairly comfortable.

—6. Rather unexpectedly to any of us, our dear sister, wife of Brother Hugh Davies from Liverpool, died, over 60 years of age; her health was very poor when she came on board, so that she hardly expected to get across the sea, yet her wish was to come with her family. The captain and the officers of the ship were very kind in view of the circumstances, and everyone throughout the ship felt that our dwell-ing place today is a house of mourning. A prayer meeting was held in the evening, and everyone’s health has improved; the death had the effect of causing others, who had up until now refused, to rise from their beds, and the result was their improvement.

—7. The climate beautiful and the wind fair, the ship sailing about 7 miles per hour. Preparations were made to commit the body of our sister to her watery grave; I preached her funeral sermon at two o’clock on the text, “How are the dead raised up and with what body do they come?”—(Paul.) I answered the last question briefly, but the answer to the other question was continued along for several Sundays; and it has not been completely answered yet! After the sermon, the coffin was placed on a large plank, the ship was stopped, and after the Saints had sung a hymn, the sailors raised the inward end of the plank so that the coffin slipped down the other end to the salty deep, which, because of the weight of the stones which were placed in the coffin to sink it, opened up to swallow its precious treasure, and to keep it safe until the day when the command shall be given for the “sea to yield up the dead which are in it.” Some have very mistaken ideas, and are greatly afraid to think of being buried in the sea. Some think they would float on the surface, a prey to the fish; and even if it were so, it is no worse than rotting in the cold gravel, and being food for grave worms; but the fish do not have those who are buried in the sea, for the purpose of putting weights with the body is so that it will sink down quickly and go lower in the ocean than the fish ever go, and lower than they can live, and there it will float in peaceful salt water, which will keep it from decomposing or rotting forever; yes, until the day of their rising, when the “sea will boil,” they will be kept better than the best of the Egyptians were kept through embalming. This understanding does away with the conflict that is in the thought of being buried in the sea, and rather makes it preferable. Also, I think that this is what the apostle had in mind when he said that the sea gave up the dead, not alive, I would think, but the body that was buried in it, and that was preserved in this manner, never to be made alive, for “the body which is sown is not that which shall be,” whether it be sown in the sea or land, but an incorrupt­ible body which shall be united with the spirit that possessed the body before. After the sea had closed its jaws on its morsel, and after our little ship had stood for us to be able to behold this majestic sight for a few minutes, her sails were filled with breezes and she galloped across the waves as if nothing had ever happened. The wind continued in our favor, and everything was comfortable, and all the sick had improved as everyone ate his allowance throughout this week. Prayer and counsel meetings were held each night.

—11. (Sunday). The wind, light and against us; the sea, calm, with each person having scrubbed himself before the meeting, which began at two o’clock, and continued until five o’clock; we were for over two hours trying to answer the previous question, that is, “How are the dead raised up?” and it was postponed until the next meeting. Everyone appeared to be happy and rejoicing in the teaching. Before the end of the meeting the wind turned strongly in our favor, according to our prayers, and it continued for the most part in our favor throughout the week; sometimes it blew us over 10 miles an hour. We felt the wind and the climate by now, gradually getting warmer, since we had sailed still to the southwest; several began to complain that their woolen clothing was too heavy, and that they could not bear it any longer. Better for everyone to have additional light clothing. We have had hardly any rain, except for a few showers, but it was not raining at that time, rather pouring water down from the clouds. At times, we saw several different kinds of fish, some very big, others smaller, jumping from the water. This helped the lazy ones to come on deck, which helped them with every breath they took.

—16. The wind was against us greatly in the afternoon. A prayer meeting was called at seven, to pray for fair wind. After the meeting, I said to some who were near me, that I felt the desire to go on deck, and not return until our Father would give us fair wind. As I was going, having put my foot on the lowest rung of the ladder, those around me were chatting about one thing and another, and one asked what I wanted most. I answered that I would most like to hear the mate on the deck shouting, “Haul in the weather braces; [2] and before I had moved my foot, I, and the others who had heard my wish, heard the mate above our heads shouting loudly, “Haul in the weather braces,” yes, word for word as I had said; and behold a fair wind blowing strongly in our favor which within a few days had driven us about a thousand miles home­ward, that is toward Zion. Great was our thanks to our God for that.

—17 (Sunday). Beautiful weather, and everyone comfortable. In the afternoon we had an excellent meeting of the Saints, with more on “How are the dead raised up?” Meeting in the evening. Fair wind, and weather so beautiful throughout the week that it was almost like Wales in June. An occasional squall and cloud breaking to supply us with water for washing. It is beautiful to see the children playing across the deck, and entertaining their parents; some singing here, others talking or reading there; some walking arm-in-arm, while others prepare foods of as many kinds almost as could be obtained in any cookshop. The musicians did their best to beautify the atmosphere; also the harp with its pleasant sounds alone in the evening entertained us as it sang fare­well to the king of the day, as he lowered his red head into the western sea. To light the scene in his place, lovely Phebus awakes from her sleep, as if she envied him. No wonder that scenes less wondrous than this excited the heels of David of old, to the point that he even took off his garment in the temple—and for what? Hush! shall we reply? What is the use of hiding the fact; did he not do this in order to dance! Yes, yes, and there was hardly anyone in our midst, except for an occasional dry sectarian, who did not prefer to imitate him, rather than to find fault. At least, it would be hard to deny that it was so here at times, and it did not even cause a storm. “The company store” was open, without books or money, to distribute a sufficiency of either white beans, rice, wheat flour, oat flour, bacon, or anything else, and plenty of it for everyone. Some complained of a cold, from getting wet in the rain.

—25. (Sunday). Light gusts of wind at times; again the scene around us was “like a calm sea of glass;” and not only the elements, but our ship and all her children as well, were observing this holy Sabbath by resting quietly; but the sun gazed too intently on some, until it was a relief to retreat to anywhere from its presence. A meeting of the Saints in the afternoon, and a lecture on “How are the dead raised up?” A ser­mon in English on deck in the evening, and nearly all the sailors spoke well of the teaching. The wind rose strongly in our favor in the night. Hardly any scene in particular this week worthy of note, except for an occasional cross breeze, which changed almost consistently in the middle or at the end of our prayer meeting held each night; there was also an occasional appearance of fish to entertain us, and a ship here and there in the distance to gladden the lonely scene. Also the devilish foe, himself, asserted his right with Neptune (the god of the sea) to journey with us, though his company was not so sweet; nevertheless, it was hard work to cast him overboard because of his cleverness; and not infrequently in hard times, he would turn himself into an angel of light, and as such would occasionally hide in the pocket of an officer. Of everyone who may be left behind in Babylon let this one be the last! He is a poor sailor, a troublemaker; and a worse guide than Ahithophel. Not to the swine—not to the sea, but to some of the Babylonians he escapes at times; and the next time that I cross the sea with a group of the Saints to Zion the other two kinds can stay home! A great benefit is felt by drinking and bathing in the sea water in the morning. Let everyone have his children do so as often as possible. Let everyone take care to refrain from suspending anything which would keep the air from going through the ship; also let everyone take care that neither they, nor their children, become constipated,—take a laxative. Because of this neglect, some have suffered until they were almost incurable. Refrain from eating a lot of heavy food, for this idleness does not allow it to digest. Above any other valuable thing to bring to the sea, do not forget to bring a generous supply of patience; there will be a great deal of wear on this commod­ity, let care be taken that it may not fail. Even more valuable than much gold, is a little grain of true faith on the sea, for that will buy a fair wind and everything essential. But in spite of everything that has happened, I have not heard anyone repent for having undertaken the journey, rather they are desirous of reaching Zion. It has been a great pleasure to hear almost everyone, over and over again, praising the goodness of God in our behalf,—the fair weather, the beautiful breezes, the excellent food, and the general success we have had better than expected before getting underway. And truly, it was not a small pleasure to see the cooks by the fire making their puddings, their pancakes, and their fries, piling up, and the one inviting the other to drink tea together; and in the evening “they arose” happily as did those earlier to—”dance.” In this manner frequently many pleasant days came and went on the ocean. Who can blame them?

April 1 (Sunday). This Sabbath again all nature agreed with us to pause and gaze on the excellence of the creation of our God. Two other ships did the same, in the distance. A very lovely meeting of the Saints; a lecture for two hours on “How are the dead raised up?” Several took off all their woolen clothing, like myself, and caught cold. Take care against this; although summer clothing is lovely now, it is better to check yourself, so say my sufferings; for in this climate, the clouds suddenly rend under the weight of their watery burden; and especially do not wear wet clothing. At noon today, our time here was four hours later than London time; that is, when it was twelve o’clock or noon here, it was four o’clock in the afternoon in London, which proves that we are 60 degrees to the west of London, with 30 degrees and 9 minutes to the west to run yet before reaching New Orleans. I observed the sun today again through the sextant, and I determined our latitude to be 23 degrees and 54 minutes north, or within 14 miles of the tropics, where, in the middle of summer, the sun would be above our heads; but, since it is in the south now, and lovely breezes temper the weather, we did not feel uncomfortable heat. Our distance from New Orleans today is about 2000 miles. Our distance from the land we expect to see on our journey, that is “Hole in the Wall,” one of the islands of the Bahamas, is between nine hundred and a thousand miles. Our southerly distance from Liverpool is 1806 miles.

—2. We had some storms and rain, and rough winds from several directions, which threatened to swallow our little shell into the depth of the salty cauldron; in spite of all this, through the protection of our God, and the skill of our captain and his sailors, our ship climbed upwards from wave to wave, as the swallow would fly through the gentle breeze. When the sea perceived that its awful, fierce waves did not turn our little vessel back, although it shook her and all the passengers, as does the whirlwind with the crow’s nest at the top of the oak tree, without being able to disturb even one of the small chicks therein—the sea changed its appearance, and smiled pleasantly; the sun, which had earlier worn sackcloth, with a stern and ugly gaze, now took off his clothing a cloak at a time, and laughed at the battle, promising fairly as he lowered his head amidst the red sky, that we would have a fine night for sleeping;—for this, everyone offered thanks, and made the most of it. Perhaps the next statement will be incredible to the ignorant, but it is absolutely true, nonetheless, that we saw almost every day after that fish flying! sometimes we saw scores of them together. They flew at times a good mile or more, and then they would wet their wings in the top of a wave, and off they would go a second time. They are chased by other fish, who jump several feet out of the water after them; it is a good thing for the defenseless that the Creator in this case had provided them with wings for their protection. These fish do not fly very high, but higher when the wind is strong than when it is peaceful. And other times, in these areas, I saw them fly against the sails of the ship and fall on the deck; and inasmuch as they can rise only from water, we caught them. They are generally not as big as a mackerel. Their wings are not feathers, rather a kind of bright and very thin skin; in the water they close and serve the same purpose as fins; their length is from 6 to 10 inches. They cannot fly unless they keep their wings wet, and they are seen only in warm weather.

Now Mrs. Williams, originally from Ynysybont, who has been sick with a fever for several days, is gradually improving. Jane Morgans from Cardiff, who had suffered painful sores on her legs off and on for nine years, and had been considered completely incurable by the doc­tors, is worsening; she has become more and more discouraged about the Church ordinances, and her faith has weakened. Ever since we reached warm weather, we have arranged for each section on its day to have a turn to spread out its beds and bedding, &c., on the deck in the sun, something which has been very healthful for all. Let everyone do so, as often as possible. Our captain has graciously given us some kind of liquid to sprinkle along our sleeping places, &c., which purifies the air wonderfully, and we use it frequently. We have several elderly people on the ship, and they are all improving, as they come to the deck every lovely day. One old gentleman, close to a hundred years old, says cheerfully that he is happier than he has ever been,—that many of the sectarians in Wales, and even in Liverpool, the Rev. H. Rees and other reverends, tried to dissuade him from coming, prophesying that he would not arrive across the sea, and many other things; “but I am,” says he, “determined, through the power of God, to prove them all false prophets.” He had lost his hair, except for a few strands white as snow, but by now he has an abundant new crop just like the hair of a child; and he says that he feels younger and younger! Fair and lovely wind. On Saturday, the 7th, I had been up all through the night, looking for land until 4 o’clock in the morning; and I had hardly slept before the loud shout and its exciting effect on everyone else, that is, ‘Land ahead,’ had awakened me. Great was the joy this caused to all the emigrants; there was nothing else mentioned or noticed for a time, except land. By sun­rise, we were sailing nicely along to the south, along the coast of Abaco Island, one of the Bahamas. This is quite a deserted island, populated mostly by fishermen, or people who cut firewood and carry it to other parts to sell it. Earthquakes chase everyone away from here from time to time, and cause much damage. Not a very pleasant sight. Nine o’clock in the morning, we turned the ship to the west to round the southern edge of the island, within three miles or less of land. At this southern tip 9 there is a lighthouse on a rock, and a dwelling nearby in which the light­house keeper lives. There are three other ships sailing along with us past the lighthouse, but keeping more to the south toward Cuba. By midday, the island had disappeared out of sight behind us, and there appeared several other islands and rocks to the south of us less than ten miles away. For the understanding of those who will come this way, since they will come close to the aforementioned lighthouse, I should have com­mented that its name is Hole in the Wall, and thus, those who see it will remember it through the eyes of someone who has looked on it before them. I call their attention to the meaning of the words, or their origin; namely, you can see a large hole through the high rocks on the rocky mound where the lighthouse is located. It looks like a bridge or a large arch of artificial work, but either nature or the struggle of the elements is what has made it. There was earlier another more remarkable bridge, reaching from the top of one rock to the other round rock which is now by itself, about 300 yards out to sea from it. This area is considered the most dangerous place to navigate in the whole world; for several hundred miles we are surrounded by rocks, some above the surface and others below, islands, and sandbanks. We see some small ships fishing, and some other small ships called “wreckers,” that is, ships that know the seas and sail around continually, depending for their livelihood on the misfortune of other ships. Whenever ships have lost their way, these lead them back to the right way, and save many lives. If this were all they do, their work would be good; but they are accused of using false signals to mislead ships from their path, in order to get thousands of dollars for guiding them back out of danger. Many ships must lose their way to support the numerous wreckers surrounding us now; but there is no need for their assistance, and I hope that such will continue to be the case. Sunset, the bottom of the sea was no further than twenty fath­oms down. We navigated slowly and carefully through the night, and our Leader brought us safely to see the light of Sunday again, and it was Easter Sunday; and although hardly anyone had many new clothes to wear today, we saw many new and wondrous things around us. We saw a lighthouse on another island, and several Frenchmen who lived on the shore, having built their houses, or rather their simple mud huts, along the shore. We sail now to the south along side the Grand Bahama Bank. A lovely wind from the southeast; the ship traveling six miles per hour through the water, also the water running with us from three to four miles per hour. This southern current is less than a mile wide, from which the “Gulf Stream” to the north runs totally contrary. Here the bot­tom of the sea is in green water, ranging from five to twenty fathoms, and the water is cold; a few yards away to the south, however, the color of the water is black, its flow directly opposite, and much warmer. We saw on the rocky shores the remains of shipwrecks. Several “wreckers” sailing along with us. Everyone contentedly observing the land, and especially delighted to leave it so quickly behind us, and pull toward the end of our voyage. The island of Cuba is to the south not far from us, and the ridiculous and loathsome prophecy of the “Star of Gomer,” [3] that the Saints would be sold as slaves here, is the subject of scorn between almost every two people along the deck. That correspondent has immortalized his foolishness with poor taste, and has brought Cuba more notoriety than anything else. This now serves to bring to the rec­ollection of the emigrants, the lies and false accusations that were said and published about them and their dear religion, by their fellow nation, until it loosened their love, knot after knot, even from the country of their birth; and instead of thinking of turning back, it prompted them to turn their faces, not toward the east, but into the sunset, for freedom to worship God, and for those rights of which they were deprived by “zealous Christians” of their own country! Yes, the constant prayer of everyone throughout the ship is “Blow, east wind, blow us fiercely to the western ocean.”

Oh, it is beautiful to contemplate this scene! Hope fills everyone’s breast, as the ship sails along, propelled by the lovely breeze. All on the seas give many thanks to their Savior. In Zion, however, is the “lodestone;” from that they derive all their comfort. But we shall not continue to put forth our own thoughts, lest this letter be too long for your columns. I shall concentrate more on the account, and each one can think for himself; perhaps that is what I should have done from the beginning.

I forgot to mention that we had a meeting of the Saints Thursday night last, as we did several times before, but this time was the first in which we put the gifts into practice, and great was the commotion this caused up and down the ship, among the Babylonians! They clustered, along with the officers of the ship, at the entrance of our place, and listened in amazement. We wondered greatly what had caused this; then we perceived that “Achan” was in our midst—that two or three of the Saints, who had transgressed, were there with them, translating for them, and causing them to believe evil things about us, so that the officers of the ship, and the captain also, were more bitter toward us then than ever before, and I had a hard time calming him down. To our dismay, their interference obliged us to cease practicing the gifts in the middle of the meeting, but not before we had received great comfort through them, and learned some things about you there, &c. We were informed that the party of those who failed in their designs on me as I was about to leave Wales, is plotting revenge on my dear fellow officers who are there in my place; but they will not succeed. O Lord in Heaven, watch over them. Also, we learned that many of the Babylonians are praying for our failure, and the Saints for our success. Afternoon, wind fair. An excellent meeting of the Saints; we had retired to the back of the ship, where neither the Babylonians, nor the traitors in our midst, could prevent us from enjoying the spiritual gifts, which gave us great comfort. Daniel Daniel and Benjamin Francis were ordained elders. Many counsels were given concerning health and clothing, and the necessity for each one to care for the condition of his stomach, which caused nearly everyone to come asking for medicine, inasmuch as the oil was depleted. This is necessary to forestall diarrhea. Let everyone take care in this matter.

—9. Our God brought us safely through the dangers of this night also and smiled on us by continuing the wind in our favor. At 8 o’clock, a steamboat came by us, on its way from Havana to New York, and we also saw three British warships. Afternoon, we saw the borders of Florida, American continent. The land was low and sandy, a few trees here and there; and, only judging from the smoke rising in columns to the clouds from one place and another, there are also some kind of inhabitants living here. We sailed along the coast until nightfall. We saw two lighthouses,—one there, and the other on a cluster of small, rocky islands that are named the Tortugas. After rounding these, at the break of the next day, we changed our course to the northwest; and here we left the Gulf Stream behind us, with scarcely 500 miles to reach New Orleans. The “N. E. trade winds,” which have carried us steadily and quickly for almost the last fortnight, are fair here still. More water was apportioned out for washing, as we have plenty on board to last for another month. And I cannot liken this bustling scene with the sisters all around the deck doing their washing any better than to the scenes I remember seeing by the hot waters of the iron furnaces in Merthyr on washday! The lowest deck was washed, and under the beds, with “chloride of lime,” in order to purify the air. Mrs. Williams is worse. All busy preparing their chests, &c., and to be ready to leave the ship before long. More food was offered from the “company store;” but everyone had such an abundance that they did not come to get it; they said that all their sacks and vessels were full, so that they had no room to hold any more; and many say that they have never before had such a variety or abundance of foods in their lives. And I maintain that anyone who is not happy with this food, should be shut in the oven for a while, like the lap dog of that gentle lady!

Tuesday afternoon; wind light, and the sea calm; the weather uncom­fortably warm. We saw some ships that appeared to be coming out of New Orleans. Mrs. Williams, of Ynysybont near Tregaron, is worsening fast, and signs are that she will not live long. She told her sons and me that it mattered little to her, whether she died now, or whether she was allowed to live longer. “I have a great desire,” she said, “to reach Zion; and I fear, if I die on the sea, that that will discourage others, in their old age, from venturing across the ocean after me; for I am content to die, rather than be an obstacle to the cause of God: on the other hand,” she said, “I wish to go to rest now in the bosom of Jesus, if that is pleasing in His sight.” She said that the greatest honor she had ever received was to be able to become a member of the true church of the Son of God—that there was no fear in her breast concerning the other life, and that her religion now proved its strength more than ever before. She was asked if she was sorry that she had left the Methodists (with whom she had been a respected member for 55 years). She replied that she preferred now more than the whole world, to have been able to live to hear the preaching of the gospel by the Saints; and she solemnly coun­seled her sons to continue faithful until death, so that they would obtain, with her, a better resurrection. She depended, through her feebleness, on the ordinances of the Church, and no complaint was heard from her lips. She continued lucid through the night; and at a quarter past four the next morning, her spirit departed in peace, leaving a smile on her lips. She received every care, assistance, and kindness from everyone, and especially from her faithful sons, who revered her as they did their own souls; and they did not weary in serving her almost day and night, comforting her and attending her. She had reached far more than eighty years of age.

Thursday, April 12, every funeral preparation possible having been made, Sister Williams’s funeral sermon was preached; afterwards, she was committed to her watery bed, in the presence of hundreds of emigrants who looked in a simple and orderly fashion on this sobering sight, while a choir sang. And after that, our oscillating dwelling made her way forward away from the mournful scene; alone on the huge sea, she proceeded slowly with the black darkness as her garment of mourn­ing. The sun also, despite its great strength and courage, was already trimmed in its cloudy cloak of mourning, in the distant west, when it perceived that one of the mothers of Israel had fallen on her way to Zion. All! all with a look of sadness. That night passed; and only the shark, that cruel fish, with its long, forked teeth, as if a faithful dog by the grave of its master, stayed as a marker of the resting place of the departed. Though she is among the fish in the severe ocean, until her resurrection, peace be to her remains, and praise to her name. The next morning, at the break of dawn, welcome, pleasant east wind; it zealously took pity on our condition, and blew away the garment of mourning—our sorrow, bestirred from her sullenness—like Phoenix from the ashes, changed her appearance from head to foot—in short, like David of old after his son died, our ship, in full sail, like a stallion to battle, hastened over the untamed waves,—she strove to cheer up her mourners with the hope of seeing their port tomorrow. In spite of that, before morning came, she had turned treacherously against us, and other winds blew us toward the eastern world. As for the sun, by this time, despite its mourning and sympathy the night before, it became a tormentor; from its hot cage it issued forth strong punishment with its scorching rays.

Friday.—Several other ships were seen. Also seen was the greatest wonder which some had ever seen in their lives. In spite of seeing a burial yesterday in the somberest of scenes, today we saw a strange and majestic marriage between the “waters which are beneath the firmament and the waters above the firmament,” intermingling through powerful and mighty water spouts. The elements, in their boasting, tried, by resounding together, to eliminate all else in our firmament, and mix everything together in a water world. In this endeavor, they roar fright­fully; they stir an acre or more of the briny foam, as if in a cauldron; in the depths of its cauldron the fish, in spite of themselves, are seen flying helter skelter from their element to the sky. The enormous and heedless vat, in its self-activated womb, gives birth to a powerful whirlwind, which according to its nature blows its opponent like chaff across the surface of the waters. Despite that, and despite the spectacular marriage, he battles and struggles for mastery! He stretches out his head to the sky majestically and boldly, like a cliff of our country’s Snowdon; from the sky he awaits his assistance;—nor does he wait in vain, for anon he perceives his help above, and I see their chariots hastening to meet him! Despite their thickness, the clouds part; from the pieces is woven a long, thick, spinning neck. Quickly downward the neck goes, and the lowest part frolics to join with it! Now a union occurs; they combine—a beautiful marriage between the great salty liquid and its element above! Such an embrace is a surprise! yes, mixing and kissing, until all the sea perspires with the effort! Truly, this is the element that turned in mar­riage previously; now, through sweetening that which was salty, the ele­ments forge the miracle of their Lawgiver! For a moment one thought that the water would prevail, and swallow everything into its turmoil. But in time, just as when our earth was flooded, mercy from heaven smiles; a “rainbow,” the covenant-sign of Noah, was given—which revived the faith of the onlookers. Then, God released wind “from his hand” to help the feeble whirlwind below; they join in a terrible attack; before them they sweep the wondrous water spouts into fragments back to their places. And, although they try, time after time, to lift their heads from their watery grave, they are unable to rise any higher than the top of their waves.

Not only the elements around us today are stirred up, but also the emotions of the sojourners; some also, at the bidding of the prince of the air, are boiling. Those in his treacherous army become tailors; their work is to make a mask of the darkness to enshroud the heads of their magicians; ‘tis painful to say that they succeeded in so doing; their caps fit so comfortably that I fear that they will be worn by some to their very destruction. The mighty king of Babylon has not only land armies, but I understand by now, that also his navies wave their flags on all the seas. May his kingdom be shattered speedily; may his subjects on land and on sea turn traitor on him, would that his majesty be swallowed by a whale; may he go to the depths of the ocean, with a lock on his mouth—with myself keeping the key!

Saturday, the 14th. Wind contrary. The land birds flying to the ship are tired, and the children catch them and tame them. Busy looking out for land.

Sunday, the 15th. Wind rather contrary, and blowing hard; many half sick, between homesickness and seasickness. It was passed in the council to excommunicate William, the son of B. Jones, Aberdare, and his wife; others of the family not much better: they cause much worry to the Saints, through their false accusations to the captain, disgracing our dear religion, &c. There is every hope that Eben. Thomas will repent. Much trouble has resulted through too much association with the people of the ship, back and forth. One of them, in spite of our best efforts, succeeded in bemusing and confusing the maid of one who had been so kind as to pay her cost from Babylon. I shall take more care next time, that generous people will not be deceived by lasses who come to make love, instead of to serve. Prayer meeting was held at two and at six. The sea thrashing violently through the night.

Monday, the 16th. At eight in the morning, I went to the fore of the ship, and saw a column of smoke in the distance, rising in the air. We soon perceived that it was a steamboat from New Orleans, coming to meet us; another steamboat, from the other side, came running towards us as fast as it could; and within two hours the two were by our side. We gave a large rope to one of the two, which pulled us to the mouth of the Mississippi by noon. Great was everyone’s joy and gratitude for arriving here. We have 100 miles yet to the city. We arrived Tuesday, the 17th, all healthy. Soon, we shall leave from here to go up the river, to St. Louis.

Now, in haste, I shall say farewell for now, since other matters are calling me. Dear Saints, be faithful to the heavenly calling you have received, and hasten to prepare to follow us. Listen to the voice of your presidents; that the Lord will bless you, is the constant prayer and heartfelt wish of,

Your brother in the Gospel of Christ,


Letter from Thomas Jeremy to the editor of “Zion’s Trumpet”

New Orleans, April 18, 1849.


WILL YOU be so kind as to give the loan of your ‘Trumpet’ to me, to blow in it for the first time from a distant country. What I wish to make known in it, above all else, is the story of our voyage from Liverpool to here. Monday, the 26th of February, about two o’clock in the afternoon, we began our journey; and as we left from the Waterloo Dock, we sang the Saints’ Farewell. At that time, there were in me some very strange feel­ings; yes, so strange, that it is too difficult a task for me to describe them on paper and ink. I remember the cheerful faces of my faithful brethren, William Phillips of Merthyr, Abel Evans, Eleaser Edwards, John Davies, David my brother, and Daniel Evans, Felinfach, Ystrad, Cardigan, who came from Wales to escort us as far as they could. Oh, how lovely was the association I had with some of these brethren on numerous occasions in Wales. Sometimes the day was too short for us to talk about the things pertaining to the kingdom of God we would frequently take the night as an extension to it, and sleep would stand in the distance from us, while others would be abundantly comfortable in its grasp. At that time it came to my mind, when will I see them again? I imagined hearing something in answer, that it would not be long before seeing them over in Zion; and at that I took courage.

As we were going out of the port I saw my dear brethren following after us along the bank of the river as far, I think, as they could; I imagine that I hear their voices, carried along by the gentle breeze, saying, “O Father, watch over them,” while we ourselves echoed back—

God of Israel, keep them all

In the midst of the host of enemies

Like the sons of thunder on the field,

Until they conquer the black enemy.

After we had gone out to sea about 30 miles, the steamboats that had escorted us turned back, leaving us alone on the huge ocean. The wind was rather contrary to us the first day, but the weather was very lovely.

Tuesday, we came in sight of Ireland: the land seemed barren, and the mountains very high; nevertheless, dwellings could be seen very frequent­ly at the foot of the mountains. The following Wednesday and Thursday, most of us were in rather bad spirits because of seasickness; some of us made it without one sick day. In these days, our revered president, Capt. D. Jones, was very attentive to the sick. He showed his love for us greatly; he walked back and forth along our large ship, administering to the sick. He and brother Daniel Daniel from Brechfa, together with William Jenkins from Cardiff, and a few faithful others, painstakingly made gruel for us. This was the most tasty food of any other during that time. It was better to stay in our stomachs, than anything else. I did not request salt or but­ter in the soup then, nor was I able to eat bread with it. It was the same with my dear wife and the children. Mary, our youngest daughter, was not sick during the entire journey, although some had predicted, before we left Wales, that she would surely die on the sea, because she was still nursing; but thanks be to God for keeping us all alive. We were sick but a few days; and I see now that the sickness was beneficial to us, through cleansing our stomachs. I advise everyone who comes yet to Zion, to bring oat flour and oat bread with them; they will find that this is the best food when they are sick. The best way for those who yet come after us to Zion, with respect to their health, is to try to stay often up on the deck. This will be advantageous counsel to them, from our sad experience. Brother Jones was very diligent to get some to the deck; some tried to linger in their beds, and tried to hide from him when he went past; I was not far from doing so myself. Jokingly, he at times would threaten to pull the pulley down from the deck, and put a rope around us to pull us to the top, even if we did not want to go; but everyone went to the deck on his own, without Bro. Jones’s having to carry out his threat. Love for us is what compelled Bro. Jones to continually do everything in our behalf. I saw all his worth in our midst from the time we started our journey to this place; and there is no doubt in my mind also that Bro. Jones will do his best yet to do everything in our behalf, until we reach the valley of the mountains; and I also believe that his chief effort there will be to make us happy, and able to enjoy temporal and spiritual blessings.

Dear brother, you can publish in your melodious Trumpet, that all are false prophets who prophesied, from the press and the pulpits, that brother Jones would sell us as slaves, take our money, &c. It is very obvious to me and to all the Saints which spirit it is that leads them to imagine such things about him.

But to return to the account of our journey. Hardly any of us contin­ued sick after the first few days. I do not intend to give the account of our journey day by day in this letter, as I had first thought; because brother Jones gave such a detailed account of our journey in his letter. Let it suffice for me to testify that he has given the account properly. I have a daybook, in which I put down the most wondrous things we saw each day, together with what kind of weather we had. At times we saw rather large fish, swarming to follow our ship, and jumping up a little higher than the water; their length was between four and five feet, and some larger. They are called sea sows. Also we saw the dolphin, which was lifted up on deck alive by one of the sailors; this is considered the most beautiful of all the fish in the sea; it is about the size of the common salmon of the Teifi. We saw the flying fish, dozens of them; they were flying above the water from one place to another. On the l9th of March, we saw a fish about 12 feet long, which some called a shark, and others a young whale. We left many ships and islands behind, and each day our vessel hastened toward the sunset. We had lovely weather and fair wind frequently each day; in fact, it was much more pleasant for us than I had thought it would be; the middle of March was like the middle of June. While in one part of the ship the musicians were playing, edifying books were being read somewhere else; others were chatting about our dear compatriots—about the success of the gospel in their midst—how many of their relatives had been obedient to the truth. My prayer for all my relatives, and everyone throughout Wales, especially those who heard my preaching in the counties of Carmarthen and Cardigan, is that they will grasp the true light. May the seed that I sowed grow luxuriantly; I do not doubt that it had good soil in different places, and that it will give fruit. May my brethren who are still there care for the weak shoots, so that nothing will destroy them; and may they sow all their seed in fertile soil, so that it will bear much fruit.

We held prayer meetings almost every night, instead of family prayer. Our Father poured out His spirit greatly on us from the heavens; he answered our prayers, and even caused the wind to obey our request. Every Sunday we held meetings of the Saints, in remembrance of our blessed Lord; at times in these meetings, we received knowledge through the Spirit about you there in Wales; yes, great things were revealed to us; and, oh, how sweet was the teaching that brother Jones shared with us about the resurrection of the dead—that is, “How are the dead raised up and with what body do they come?” There is more mystery in this than many think.

I see that my letter is getting long; I must close, despite how enjoyable it is for me to give the account of our lovely journey; but, before closing, I wish to inform my dear brothers and sisters, who intend to follow us yet to Zion, to take care to obey their leaders in every counsel they receive from them from time to time; and thus they can have great joy in the Holy Spirit; on the other hand, if they forget this counsel, and disregard the holy priesthood, it is better for such to stay behind, until they come to have enough of the Spirit of God, to be humble, meek, gentle, and tractable.

Dear brothers and sisters, hasten to come after us, remembering to keep the above counsel in your minds, and remember the saying of Jesus Christ that blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

Now dear brother Davis, having been so lengthy, I close, telling you that we have arrived here in health. My wife joins me in remembering you kindly, wishing you every goodness.

Your dear brother in Christ,



[1] As noted in the TRUMPET lately, Mrs. Jones improved so quickly, that she was able to leave after her dear husband, and he has most likely seen her in Council Bluffs by now—J. D.

[2] Order to pull on the ropes that set the sails across the ship and means without exception fair wind.

[3] Is it erroneous if asserted that the Rev. H. W. Jones, publisher of the Star, is the above false prophet who was writing under the name of “Anti-Humbug,” in the Star of Gomer, Oct., 1848 ?—J. D.