THE UTAH ARMY.
Brigham Young's Unsuccessful Advances to the Shoshonee Indians—Sufferings of the Expedition.
A letter to the New-Orleans Picayune, from the Utah Expedition camp on the Sweetwater, furnishes some interesting details. The writer says:
"BRIGHAM YOUNG has been very anxious to secure the aid and cooperation of the Indian tribes of Utah and its vicinity in his present treasonable and rebel-lious opposition to the Government of the United States. I have it from the best authority that he spared no efforts to induce WAH-SA-KEE, the Chief of the great Shoshonee or Snake tribe, to become his confederate, promising any amount of flour, pro-visions, &c.. for himself and tribe, if he would only side with the Mormons in the approaching contest. But old WAH-SA-KEE, who, for one of his race, is a very intelligent and wise man, was neither to be ca-joled nor inveigled by the saintly BRIGHAM, or bribed by his flour and bran, into entering into any such league with him.
His reply to BRIGHAM I have from one perfectly fa-miliar with the Shosonee language, and who was present and heard it. 'The skin of the Mormons is white, that of the blue-coats is also white. My skin is dark. I will war with none of the white race ; if a white man strikes me, I will not return the blow. If the Mormons will fight the blue-coats, WAH-SA-KEE will stand upon a hill and look on, but will take no part. His skin is dark, and he will not fight with the white man. The skin of the Crow and the Sioux are dark like his own, and if they trespass upon his hunting grounds with them he will fight.' When the armed bands of Mormon marauders made their appearance on Green River and the Sandy, WAH-SA-KEE and his people withdrew from there and pitched their lodges on the north of the Wind River moun-tains.
As the Shoshonees are a powerful and numerous tribe, and as the scene of the operations of the army ; would to a great extent be in their country, it was deemed advisable by Colonel JOHNSON to have an in-terview with WAH-SA-KEE to confirm him in his good intentions and to assure him that his people would not be molested or interfered with so long as they pursued the wise and prudent course he had deter-mined upon. A runner was consequently dispatched after the Chief, and the next evening he made his ap-pearance, with three or four of his tribe, at our camp, and Colonel JOHNSON and he had a grand pow-wow, which, I believe, was highly satisfactory to both sides. Old WAH-SA-KEE is a splendid specimen of his race, with a most expressive and intelligent face.
One thing I was surprised to learn with regard to this mountain tribe, whose country is mostly on the Pacific slope, and that is that the Shoshonee or Snake language is identical with that of the Camanches of Texas. An intelligent Frenchman, who has resided along time on Green River, and had much inter-course with the Shoshonees, informs me that there is a tradition among them that many years ago a por-tion of the Shoshonees separated from the tribe and wandered off to the plains of the southeast and there became a nation more numerous than those who re-mained behind in the mountains.
The weather is so extremely cold that it would be utterly out of the question for any one to attempt to write without a fire. I have fabricated a stove out of an old camp-kettle. As it could not be used at all in a wall tent, I am occupying a common tent; one of the bell-pattern now in use in the army, with an aper-ture on the top for ventilation, which may be opened or closed at will. By making this serve as a chimney, my camp-kettle stove works admirably as long as I can manage to keep the fire in bright blaze, but as soon as it goes down the thing smokes worse than a tar-kiln, so that I am kept in a delightful state of os-cillation between death by freezing and death by suf-focation. This little explanation may account for any incoherence of style or illegibility of manuscript which may be noticed in this letter, for it is written most emphatically under difficulties.
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