Scattered for the present

February 10th, 1887. Juarez, Mexico.

My Dear Father and Mother:

Before you get this you will have heard through Miles’s letter to George of our sad loss. Our dear little Claude [age 7] has gone and left us, and we sorely miss him and it was hard to reconcile ourselves to part with him. But still we feel to acknowledge the hand of God in this great affliction, as well as in the many blessings which he has bestowed upon us.

We certainly have much to be thankful for, that we were able to get what he craved while he was sick, which was fruit and milk and such medicines as we thought would be good for him. Br. [Erastus] Snow very kindly sent some dried fruit for him, so that he had all he needed. I feel great satisfaction in the thought that he was laid away very nicely. As it happened, Hannah had a piece of beautiful linen, just enough to make him a pair of pants, waist, and shoes, which together with a pair of nice white stockings and garments and a white ribbon bow at his neck made up his burial clothes. He looked very natural and had such a sweet expression on his dear little face.

I feel from circumstances connected with his sickness that he had to go. His Pa administered to him many times, as well as calling in others of the brethren very often. The little fellow had great faith in this ordinance, often saying, when suffering so intensely, I want Pa to pray for me and sometimes making the same request of me when I was lying by him in the night. He always wanted either his Pa or me to lie down by him as long as he was conscious. He was unconscious most of the time for the last day and night. He suffered intensely the latter part of his illness and had a great many spasms, but still our faith was strong that he would recover. We held on to him until it seemed cruel to do so any longer. It is needless for me to tell you how hard it was to part with him, since you have several times passed through the same ordeal. I cannot tell you how thankful I am that I am here with my dear husband. The trial would have been a much more bitter one without him to comfort and console me. I always prayed earnestly that their lives might all be spared until we should be privileged to be reunited with our loved ones […]

Park [age 4] is much better again. His bloating has entirely gone, but he is quite thin. Hannah is very sick today. She was taken sick while waiting on Claude on Monday night when he was first taken with spasms. She has been some better for two or three days, but is worse again. I do hope she will soon be all right.

When we got home from burying our little boy I found your letter awaiting us, and were very pleased to hear from you. I had felt quite anxious about you.


February 10th, 1887. Juarez, Mexico.

Dear Father and Mother:

We received your most welcome letter of January 28th the day before yesterday, the first word that I had got from you since I left home. You can imagine how anxious I was. I am so sorry to hear that you have both been sick, but I hope you are reasonably well again. You say Aunty and baby are well. What is the baby and when was it born? […]

Miles sends his love to you. He feels very grateful to you all and often speaks about you. He says he knows you both miss me. He says he knows by the way he missed me himself while we were so long separated. He is well with the exception of his cough.

Hannah is not feeling well lately. I think that some of the children had the scarletina when we got here as two or three of them were quite sick on the road, but I did not know what it was. It has gone through nearly all the family. Thomas [age 10] is quite sick now and has been for three days, but they have all been able to walk about, so it must be a mild form. One of our brethren who lives at Casa Grande has lost three of his children and has several more sick with some disease that is raging among the Mexicans at that place. I suppose it is the scarletina, in an aggrevated form, and perhaps other diseases with it. […]

The boys have shot a duck tonight. There are lots of them on the river […] We have potatoes, and plenty of beans, plenty of corn meal, and some flour. We killed a fine pig just after we came, weighing 150 lbs. and a week after we had a family party.. 21 of us all together had a splendid dinner, lacking only the fruit. We felt grateful to our Heavenly Father that we were permitted to be once more together. The other day Miles bought a deer, which we enjoyed very much. He has been plowing, making a coffin, and planting peas today.

November 16th, 1884. Snowflake, Arizona


Dear Brother:

The Court in Prescott will convene tomorrow. The Bp. Udall, Br. Tenney, Br. Christofferson, Br. Flake, and Br. Kemp indicted for Polygamy, and another Brother, by the name of Milner—a lawyer from Provo— all started for Prescott last Tuesday morning. They went with a wagon as they thought it would be less expensive for them than going by rail and stage. I earnestly pray that they may all come out alright. I suppose Br. Milner will assist them what he can. Miles writes that the are threatening to bring up the Perjury case against him and the Bishop, but I do hope that they won’t succeed in making him any more trouble.

You say you wish we could have come and made you a visit. If we had known in the spring that we should have had to stay away so long, I think Miles would have tried hard to get us home […]

Oh you wouldn’t be surprised at the frauds that have been perpretrated at the County Election last week. I expect the same old Anti-Mormon ring to be in office again, and the people will continue to suffer.

You say you are getting old and grey-headed. I too sometimes find a grey hair in my head. Miles is getting quite grey.

November 11th, 1884 Snowflake, Arizona

Dear Parents:

Bp. Udall brought us a letter from Miles. He [Bp. Udall] and the other brethren indicted for Polygamy are on their way to Prescott. I pray they may return all right […] Four months yesterday since I saw the children.

November 9th, 1884. Snowflake, Arizona.

Dear Father and Mother:

There is but little doubt that the Anti-Mormon ticket will win the day, as they have resorted to every kind of fraud to forward their purposes. The “Era” that should have been here a week ago has not come yet, detained no doubt at the St. John’s Post Office for fear of it influencing voters. Br. Harris was in St. John’s last Tuesday at the Electino and got here on Thursday. He said the Era was out on time as usual and he brought one in his pocket— the only one which has come here as yet. If we were in a civilized country I think the offenses of Post Masters would be punishable by law, but here nothing can be done, by way of justice, for Mormons. And there is little doubt but if those wicked men at St. John’s come into office again they will be more bitter in their feelings than before, as our people have unitedly voted against them, and the paper has strongly advocated their being retired from office. But if our people do all in their power to maintain their rights, I believe the Lord will do his part and it will come out all right, though we can’t always understand it at the time.

Dear Father and…

Dear Father and Mother:

Miles came over last Sunday afternoon and has just gone back this morning. He stayed longer than he expected to as the weather has been very stormy. It has rained very hard the last two days and nights, and still looks threatening. I hope he won’t get wet and make his cough bad again, but he couldn’t wait longer as he has to print tickets for the Election that will come off in a week or two.

He has just learned by the paper since he came here of the death of his Mother, and was pleased that your letter came while he was here so that he could learn a little more of the particulars. Poor dear soul, she has suffered a long time and it is no doubt a happy change, and a joyful meeting with the loved ones gone before[…]

Oh, I do hope the time will soon come that we can live together again in peace. Hannah wrote that she wants to see us very badly and especially this little stranger, and her Pa says Caroline would give her ears to see [me]. Just think of her being thee months old, almost big enough to shorten and never been home. 

September 15th, 1884. Snowflake, Arizona.

Dear Father and Mother:

This is Monday night. Been a busy night. Conference is just over. Miles came Friday forenoon. He brought Gaskell [Hannah’s son, age 12] to tend the team.

We were much disappointed as we fully expected to go home, as we thought the St. John’s men wouldn’t have anything to do with Polygamy anymore, but Miles says the Comissioner [George S. McCarter] has just the same power as ever and they feel just as vindictive. However, thank God, President [Joseph N.] Smith and Br. [Erastus] Snow will be in St. John’s in a week and he will counsel with them in regard to the matter. So we will soon know what we are going to do. I feel so thankful that Br. Snow is coming. I believe they will come from St. Johns here, so we will likely get to see him

September 7th, 1884. Snowflake, Arizona.

Dear Father and Mother:

Last Thursday was Fast Day, so I took the baby [Emma Romney] to meeting and had her blessed. Miles spoke to Bishop [John] Hunt when he was here about having it done, and sending report to St. Johns to be recorded.

We haven’t heard a word from home since Miles got home from Prescott. Conference is next Saturday and Sunday at this place, when I feel inclined to think Miles will come and take us home, but we don’t know.

I understand that Br. [Peter J.] Christopherson of Round Valley and Ammon Tenney passed through Holbrook this week with the U.S. Marshall, on the way to Prescott and under arrest for Polygamy. So you see the Officials in this Territory appear to mean business, and are quite zealous in the good work of persecuting or prosecuting the Mormons. But we know it is God’s work and we ought to feel proud of suffering in the good cause. I only hope that we may all hold out faithful to the end and be able to bear all our trials with meekness and patience.

August 23rd, 1884. Snowflake, Arizona.

Thursday morning before sunrise

Dear Father and Mother:

I went to meeting last Sunday for the first time in Snowflake. After meeting I went to look at the new Stake meeting house, which is being built here. It is a fine building and reminds me of the Tabernacle at St. George. Thought not quite as large, it faces the same way, has a spire on the same end, is the same color being made of brick. The windows and doors are not in yet, but they are trying to get it ready to hold Conference in, on the 13th of next month. They have to send for glass again as much of what came was found to be broken. President [Jesse N.] Smith is at present in the East selecting goods for the Co-Op Store, and expects to be home before Conference.

Yesterday, we got a letter from Miles from Prescott. He said he and the Bishop were well, didn’t know how long they would have to stay but hoped not long. Nothing had yet been done. Grand Jury had been in Session two days but had not reported any indictments up to that time. The Judges charge to them was very fair. 

July 20th, 1884. Snow Flake, Arizona.

Dear Father and Mother:

You will see by this that I have again changed my location. You know there is an old saying “there is no rest for the wicked.” So perhaps we are of that class. At any rate, we haven’t had much lately. However it is quite likely that we shall remain here for some time, and there is one thing about it: I shall feel much better in writing and receiving letters, as they will not have to pass through the St. John’s Post Office. Please direct till further notice to this place to C.J. Cottam, and please tell Emma and the boys, and Aunt Marriette, and let Charles know when you write, so that I shall get my letters without delay. I have never got a line from Charles since he left St. George.

You would likely see by the “Era” that a week ago last Thursday Br. Ammon Tenney was arrested on a charge of polygamy and his wife Eliza Udall Sopeoned, quite unawares, to appear against him. She told the Officer she wouldn’t go, and upon his leaving she also left and went to our house, and from there to a place of safety. I had just gone to see Sr. Rizpah Gibbons, and soon got word from Miles to stay till after dark. I was soon joined by Ida [Hunt Udall, plural wife of Bishop David K. Udall] as the Bishop and Miles learned that writs were out for them, only waiting a chance to procure the witnesses. About midnight, Miles and the Bishop took us three miles from home, to the lower end of the field, where we stayed with a Br. White and family. We spent a very anxious time, I assure you, for the next four days, as we had none of the children with us except Annie’s baby [Orrin, age 3 months].

The first Sr. [Ana Eager] Tenney was brought down from their farm, 16 miles, and put under $1,000 dollar bond to appear as a witness at her husband’s examination, which was put off until the 22nd of August (which is entirely unlawful) and he was placed under $5,000 bond to appear at that time. Their house was guarded and watched, also the roads leading out of town, and of course Eliza’s prospects were rather gloomy, as that nasty filithy jail is not an inviting place.

Sr. Udall had a baby six days old when Ida had to leave, but she was doing pretty well when we last heard from her.

Hannah packed up what things she thought we would need, and on Monday night late the brethren started with us four fugitives for this place, making quick time, and arriving here Tuesday afternoon. They got counsel and insructions from President Jesse N. Smith and started back home Thursday morning. Miles rented a house for Annie and I. Of course Ida and Eliza are at Br. Hunts. Everybody is very kind, and make us very welcome. But still it is quite cross to be away from all the children. I feel so bad aobut having Hannah left with so much additional care and labor, and her health is not the best, but she is ever good, true, and faithful.

It is a great tax and expense on Miles, and he feels so bad to have us away, but Br. Smith thinks it best to be scattered for the present until something else takes the time and attention of our enemies. The children will be sent to us if we have to stay long. The Distrcit Court sits in St. Johns on the first Monday in August, with Sumner Howard, who used to be in Utah, as judge. His Fourth of July Oration in Prescott was a bitter tirade against the “Mormons” so we can’t look forward with much hopes to the justice of his rulings.

Dear Parents, I have written to you full particulars, so that you would understand how matters are, and not feel uneasy. Of course, I wouldn’t have dared to do this if it had to pass through the St. Johns Office. These details are in confidence to you alone, though the general items may be known to anyone.

Poor little Park [age 2] is young to be left without a mother. Miles says the children are all very good while we have been away from them. We just got home for a few minutes before leaving, but the little ones had all gone to bed, and we didn’t think it wise to wake them, so I just got to speak to Caroline [age 10] as she was awake. Poor little thins, they have learned to keep a sharp lookout for the officers, and all suspicious characters.

Times would look very gloomy indeed if it were not for our faith in God, and his power and will to protect and bless us in striving to keep his commandments. This he has certainly done, for which I feel very thankful.


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