The Federal Authority in the Territory—Brigham Young—Judge Eckels and Po-lygamy—Governor Cumming, &c.
From Our Special Correspondent. SAN FRANCISCO, Wednesday, Aug 4, 1858.
I, arrived here last evening from Great Salt Lake having made the trip thence to Placerville, in CHOR-PENNING’S overland mail line, in a little over fourteen days. The contractor has not yet had time to get flat road stocked, but his agents are busily engaged in that duty, and, by the time this reaches you, I have little, doubt that he will be prepared to carry the mail through in ten or twelve days. On the trip hither some of our Mormon mail boys stated to us that BRIGHAM YOUNG had probably left Salt Lake City for parts unknown. Indeed, they deemed quite confident that he left on the 19th ult. the date of our departure. That they are entirely honest and truthful in their intentions I have no doubt, but I am not at all certain that their means of information are good. Your Salt Lake cor-respondent will doubtless have informed you of the facts, however, if BRIGHAM has really abandoned his possessions and his people. Such a move upon his part would not be surprising, for he has been in con-stant fear for weeks past, of vulgar arrest and trial upon criminal charges not covered by the President's Proclamation of pardon. The same parties inform me that the Mormon Bishops have been ordered by the First Presidency to avoid all exercise of other than strictly Ecclesiastical functions. The object of this order doubtless is to prevent as far as possible any collision with the Federal officials.
There is a good deal of fear among the Mormons that they arc to have trouble with Judge ECKLES and his Court, whenever it meets, upon the subject of Polygamy ; and there is little doubt that the Judge will put them to the rack on that question unless the President shall have tied his hands. A careful investigation shows that, there is no neces-sity for relying on the old Mexican law in order to punish Polygamy. The Territorial Legislature has never pasted a law legalizing Polygamy, but has a very stringent law against adultery, which is punished severely. As the law falls to define what adul ery is, the common law definition must pre-vail ; and as that recognizes only one wife for each man—the one to whom he is first married—there would seem to be no difficulty in coming to the conclusion; that all intercourse with others than her is clearly adulterous. It certainly would be well to have the question tested by the Courts.
In a recent letter I referred to the fact that Judge ECKLES was about to issue warrants for the arrest of certain parties upon the charge of kidnapping the adopted son of a Mr. WADSWORTH. Since then one of the brethren, named SPENCER, volunteered his aid to have the matter settled and the child recovered without, the scandal of legal proceedings. WADS-WORTH assented to the proposition ; but no w SPEN-CER, who had led him to believe that there would be no difficulty in the case, declares that he has little hope of success. It is more than probable that the child, by this time, has been carried quite out of reach.
Governor CUMMING was expecting to leave Salt Lake soon on a visit to the States. During his ab-sence Secretary HARTNETT, of course, will be Gov-ernor pro tem., a position for which he possesses not a single qualification. Indeed, in both Governor and Secretary the Administration has been peculiarly un-fortunate, as time will eventually show. Surely Mr. BUCHANAN might find men to fill Federal offices who would be a credit rather than a disgrace to the coun-try—men of whom it could not be said, as it is of the Governor, that he is “a whisky barrel in the morn-ing, and a barrel of whisky at night.”
The commission of Dr. GARLAND HURT, as Indian Agent in Utah, expires within a few weeks, much to the regret of the Gentiles here, who are unanimous in their respect for the man, and in the hope that the President will reappoint him until opportunity offers to make him Superintendent of Indian Affairs in Utah—a post for which he is eminently qualified by high character and long experience. On our trip across the Plains we could not but be struck by the frequent evidences of the love and respect which the Utah Indians entertain for him. Time and again we were asked about him by the savages, all of whom were looking forward with exceeding interest for an opportunity to meet him once more. I believe every Gentile in the Territory would unite in recom-mending HURT as the very best man to be charged with the superintendence of Indian affairs in Utah, for the Indians all know him, and have the utmost confidence in his friendship and good faith.
In looking over files of the TIMES which I find here, I discover a number of errors published in my letters from Salt Lake, one or two of which ought to be cor-rected. RICHARD JAMES, for instance, referred to in my letters of May 28, from Camp Scott, is not and never has been a Mormon, as you understand from the somewhat careless phraseology of my paragraph in relation to him. In the same letter I may to ascribe to BRIGHAM YOUNG the declaration that Salt Lake was his privete property and that he would burn it down to- morrow. The sentence should have read so as to make the Prophet declare that "if" the city was his private property, he would burn it, &c.
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