LATER FROM UTAH.
Important Action of Judge Sinclair—Ad-journment of the United States Court—The Judge's Remarks-Refusal of Mor-mon Juries to Punish Crime—Deplorable Condition of the Territory—General News.
From Our Own Correspondent.
GREAT SALT LAKE CITY,
Utah Territory, Saturday, Jan, 15, 1859.
An event of the utmost importance in connec-tion with the interests of this Territory has occurred during this past week, namely: The adjournment of the United States District Court, in consequence of the evident futility of endeavoring to sustain the dig-nity of the law in this Territory.
The Court having been in session thirty-one days, during which its time was wholly taken up in en-deavoring—quietly and with the utmost decorum and dignity—to establish itself upon the footing, and with the authority to which it is entitled, the Judge, the Hon. CHAS. E. SINCLAIR, on Thursday last, the 13th inst., announced that the Court, having transacted all the business before it arising under the laws of the United States, was now prepared to consider business arising under the Territorial laws. He, however, went on to state, further, that the Legislative Assem-bly had made no provision whatever to defray the ex-penses of the Court while exercising Territorial juris-diction, and has thus failed to comply with the spirit of the Organic act, and receive legally the Courts of the United States provided for them by Congress. That consequently he could not proceed, under these circumstances, to prolong the term of the Court, and take up the consideration of public business.
He then went on, and, in a most earnest and em-phatic manner, addressed those connected with the Court, and told them that he had, in the hope of pro-moting the best interests of the legal profession ; in the hope that justice might finally triumph and prevail over ignorance, error and crime, borne with them pa-tiently, had extended to them every courtesy and as-sistance within his power, but that in return for his exorts he had been resisted at every step, had been opposed by every trick and device which they had it in their power to make use of, and had been met with a determined purpose to catch or take advan-tage of his lenity. That, consequently, after mature reflection and deliberation, and with a full sense of the responsibility of his action, he discharged the traverse jury without going into the consideration of any of the cases on the Court docket, and adjourned the Court until Monday to hear the motions and wind up the business of the Court previous to final adjourn-ment.
Judge SINCLAIR has taken this course upon the idea, which is now but too evident and palpable, and which has been fully confirmed by his experience, that it is utterly impossible—nay, farcical and ridiculous—to attempt to exercise the high functions of a United States Judge under the circumstances at present ex-isting in this Territory.
Whilst the juries are composed of Mormons, the laws cannot be administered impartially. The Church—exercising as it does complete control, not only over the souls and bodies of its followers, but also over their minds and judgments—controls the verdicts of the juries, irrespective of any law or evi-dence before them.
The Grand Jury in the United States District Court—a Grand Jury of which a majority were lead-ing Mormons of this District—have ignored the bill of indictment against the murderer CHRISTIANSEN, who was bound over for trial by Judge SINCLAIR for shooting, and in cold blood cutting the throat of the deaf and dumb boy BERNARD, the full particulars of which I gave you in previous letters.
As I informed you, CHRISTIANSEN shot the poor boy three times whilst he had him alone up in one of the gorges of the Big mountain. But the boy ran, and succeeded in reaching a hut on the main road, where he found protection. He was then placed by CARIS-TIANSEN, wounded and bleeding, on a lumber wagon, to be brought to the city, but, at the mouth of the canon they met EPHRAIM HAWKS, who is noted as a "destroying angel," and the boy was then placed on HANKS' wagon, and taken to a spot about half a mile from the road, under the pretence of hunting some money which, as they reported, the boy stated was there hid. Here, as HANKS testifies, CHRISTIAN-SEN cut the boy's throat in self-defence—the poor wounded deaf and dumb boy, who was entirely un-armed, having attempted to take his life by throwing stones at him.
Notwithstanding all this was proven before them, and notwithstanding CHRISTIANSEN himself acknowl-edged the killing of the boy, yet the Mormons on the Grand Jury, being a majority, refused to indict him, and thus sustained the action of the "Danites," even in a United States Court.
It is now proven beyond a doubt that the Courts here are powerless, and serve to shield rather than punish the worst criminals to be found in this Terri-tory.
The Church has full control over the Juries, and of course exercises that control as best suits its ends.
The proceedings in the Grand Jury-room must re-main secret. But a Grand Juror informed us that if the proceedings which took place in that Jury-room could be made public, they would astound even the "Gentiles" resident here. As it is, however, it is well known that to such a pitch did the dissension be-tween the two parties on the Grand Jury arise, that coats were pulled off and pistols drawn, for a general fight, which was only prevented by the interference of the U. S. Marshal, who hearing the noise rushed into the Jury-room in time to quell the disturbance.
The day following, two of the Grand Jurors—BAY-LISS (Gentile,) and BATES (Mormon,)—met in a saloon on Main-street, and after exchanging a few words not of the most complimentary nature in regard to the action of the Grand Jury, drew their pistols one upon the other, when the police, who were watching them, interfered and separated them.
On Tuesday last the case of the United States vs. JAMES FERGUSON, indicted fox threatening to intimi-date Judge GEO. P. STILES whilst in the discharge of his duty, as a Judge on the bench, was decided (as was predicted most safely in advance) by the Jury who brought in a verdict of not guilty. This Jury was composed of eight Mormons and four Gentiles, who were drawn by lot from the panel. As the history of this case is interesting at this time in illustration of the means made use of to annoy the Judges of the Courts and disgust them with their po-sition, I will give you a summary of it.
The case was before the Court ten days, and this time was almost wholly occupied in arguments and speeches upon the following pleas:
FERGUSON first offered a plea in abatement in order to object to the Gentiles on the Grand Jury. The next day, however, this plea was withdrawn.
He next moved to quash the indictment found against him on the ground of some irregularity upon its face. This Motion was overruled by the Court.
He next requested to offer as a plea in bar the Pres-ident's pardon—in so doing he confessed his guilt; for no one can be pardoned for that of which he is not guilty. Time was granted him to prepare this plea, but the next day instead of presenting it it was withdrawn.
He then pleaded not guilty and stated that he was ready for trial, but filed a bill of exceptions to the ruling of the Court in not quashing the indictment.
When about calling the Jury, he requested leave to withdraw his plea of not guilty in order that he might object to the legality of the sitting of the Court.
Upon the calling of the Jury, he made peremptory challenges to the Gentiles on the Jury, which were overruled by the Court. To this ruling he filed an-other bill of exceptions.
He then made challenges to three of the Gentile jurors on the ground that they were not residents of the Territory ; these were also overruled by the Court. After the calling of the Jury he moved for a continu ance of his case until the next term of the Court, on the ground that a material witness for the defence, Judge STILES, could not be procured.
On the examination of the witnesses it was testified positively by four different witnesses, that FERGUSON told Judge STILES in open court, that if he dared to decide a question which was then before the Court, by the laws of the United States in preference to the Statutes of Utah, he would "take him off from his bench d—d quick, and that he had the boys there to do it". Also, that several men who were standing around in the court-room pulled off their coats, and drew their revolvers around on their belts so as to place them in full view. Upon this demonstration the Judge adjourned his Court.
The only rebutting evidence on the part of the de-fence was, that they did not hear this language used, and that the men who pulled off their coats did so quietly and without any evil intention. Governor CUMMING is at present annoyed and beset by the Legislature as badly as the Judge was pre-viously in the Court. He has vetoed the first bill passed by the Legislature, viz: the act changing the Judicial Districts of the Territory. Fortunately the Governor's veto is absolute. He has expressed his determination to veto also, all acts involving the pay-ment of taxes into the Church treasury. No bills of importance have been brought up before the Legisla-ture, in addition to those already noticed.
The Saints have indulged during the past week in a great many small parties. If a Gentile attended one of these parties he was not permitted to dance, but was pointed out as a mark of derision. Two negro balls have also been given this week, at which, I am informed by eye witnesses, some ten or a dozen white women attended and danced with the negroes with perfect freedom and familiarity. White men were also "mixed in," and were dancing with the negro wenches. In fact, it presented the most disgusting of spectacles—negro men and women, and Mormon men and women, all dancing on terms of perfect equality.
ORSON PRATT delivered his second sermon on the au-thenticity of the Book of Mormon, at the Tabernacle, on Sunday last, to a crowded house, two-thirds of whom were men.
In his sermon, he argued that if he could show as satisfactory proof of the divine origin of the Book of Mormon as there was of the Bible, the Book of Mor-mon was entitled to the same weight and credibility as the Bible. In order then to prove the divine au-thenticity of the Book of Mormon, he endeavored to throw as much doubt as possible upon the origin of the Bible.
The Deseret News, the Church organ, has studiously avoided the least allusion to the Valley Tan, and has never made the least allusion to it in its columns. So far has this policy been pursued, that although the Valley Tan obtained a copy of the President's Mes-sage two weeks ago by express and published it, the News waited until a copy arrived by regular mail this week to copy from. The Valley Tan, although not a "paying institution," will be sustained for at least one year by the Gentiles in the Territory.
KIRK ANDERSON, Esq., the indefatigable editor, is de-termined not to be backed down by any bullying on the part of the Mormons, but will remain at his post, giving faithful and correct-information in regard to events here, as long as they allow his press to stand and a roof to remain over his head. If they disturb him here he will move to the camp of the army.
The snow is about eighteen inches deep on the ground, and the sleighing is excellent. We are sur-prised to see so few good teams among the numerous teams driven about now by persons indulging in the sport of sleigh-riding. We certainly imagined that there were many fine horses in the country, but from what we have seen, you could not pick out a village in the States which does not boast more of fine teams than are to be seen here.
The California mail arrived here on Friday morn-ing, three days ahead of schedule time, bringing us dates from San Francisco up to the 1st of January.
A. B. C.
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