MORMON LAND GRANTS.
In Our Special Correspondent.
GREAT SALT LAKE CITY, U. T.,
Oct. 1, 1858.
have compiled this week, a list of the principal grants of land, water, and ferry and bridge privileges er made by the Legislatures of this Territory. These which I have omitted are chiefly grants o hd grounds to the Bishops of southern settle ments. When not otherwise described, the dura tion of these grants is usually stated to be during the pleasure of the Legislature, with the exception of the grant of the City Creek and its canon to Brigham Young, which purported to be absolute.
THE FIRST PRESIDENCY.
Act granting the sole control of City Creek and the Cañon through which it flows (now known as Brig-ham's Cañon), upon consideration of the payment to the City Treasury of $500. Approved Dec. 9, 1850.
Act granting the privilege of diverting the waters of Hill Creek to the channel of Big Cañon Creek. Ap-poved Feb. 5, 1852.
Act granting the exclusive right of establishing ferries and bridges on Bear and Weber Rivers, east of the train Wahsatch range, and fixing the rates of toll t the same. Approved Jan. 20, 1854.
Act granting the exclusive use of Kamas Prairie for a rdground. Approved Dec. 18, 1855.
Act granting (in conjunction with Jos. Young) the right to establish and run for three years ferries be-tween the mouth of Bear River and a point five ties east of the cañon where said river comes through the mountains; 10 per cent of the proceeds to go to the Perpetual Emigration Fund. Approved Jan. 4, 1856.
Act granting (in conjunction with Apostle F. D. Rich-ards) all the right to take water out of Mill Creek which Willard Richards ever had during his life-time. Approved Jan. 14, 1857.
Act granting (in conjunction with Apostle Wilford Woodruff, and J. W. Cummings and Wm. A. Hick-man, both prominent Danites, et al.) a tract of land in Rush Valley, for herding and grazing purposes. Approved Dec. 27, 1856.
Act granting all that portion of Tuilla County, known as Aivenpah Valley, and its waters, for herding and farming gurposes. Approved Jan. 8, 1858.
Trustee in trust for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
Act granting the exclusive use of Cache Valley for a hire ground. Approved Dec. 18,1855.
Trustee of the Perpetual Emigration Fund. Act granting the exclusive use of Antelope and Stans-bury's Islands, in the Great Salt Lake. Approved Jan. 12,1856.
HEBER C. KIMBALL.
Act granting the exclusive use of the waters of North Mill Creak Canon, and the canon next north of it, for mills and manufacturing purposes. Approved Jan. 9, 1851.
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with Jedediah M. Grant et al.) of Parley's Park for a herd ground Approved Jan. 19, 1855.
Act granting the exclusive right (in conjunction with Jedediah M. Grant et al.) to run a road and collect tolls on it from the mouth of Big Cañon through Par-ley's Park to Kansas Prairie. Approved Jan. 19, 1855.
Act granting all that portion of country in Cache County, east of the summit of the mountains east of Cache Valley, for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 12,1856.
Act granting the exclusive use of a tract of land in Tuilla Valley and of Box Elder Creek, in said valley, for herding and farming purposes. Approved Jan. 3, 1857.
the excusive into North Cottonwood Cañon. Approved 1851.
Act granting the exclusive right of taking water of the natural channel of Mill Creek for irrigation or other purposes. Approved Feb. 3, 1852.
JEDEDIAH M. GRANT.
(Died A D., 1856.)
Act granting the south end of Weber Valley for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 2, 1856. See Heber C. Kimball.
DANIEL H. WELLS.
Act granting the exclusive right and privilege of run-ning ferries across Green River for three years, from May 15, 1853; 10 per cent of all proceeds to go to the Perpetual Emigration Fund. Approved Jan. 17, 1853.
PHINEAS H. YOUNG.
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with A. P. Rockwood, Brigham's cousin) of Fremont's Isl-and, in the Great Salt Lake, for a herd ground. Approved Dec. 27, 1855.
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with Apostles Lorenzo Snow and F. D. Richards) of a tract of land south-east of Malade River, along the shore of the Great Salt Lake, for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 12, 1856.
JOSEPH AND JOHN YOUNG.
Act granting the exclusive right for three years of run-ning ferries on Bear River, and also" of bridging the Malade River; 10 per cent of all proceeds to go to the Perpetual Emigration Fund. Approved an. 21, 1853. See also Brigham Young.
LORENZO D. YOUNG.
Act granting the exclusive use of a tract of land south-east from Great Salt Lake City, fox a herd-ground. Approved Jan. 14, 1857.
THE APOSTLES. ORSON PRATT.
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with Bishop E. D. Wooley) of a portion of Lone Rock Valley for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 5,1856.
Act granting a tract of land in Tuilla Valley, bordering on the Great Salt Lake, for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 8, 1858.
EZRA T. BENSON.
Act granting the exclusive control of Twin Springs and Rock Spring in Tuilla Valley, for mill and irri-gating purposes. Approved Dec. 9,1850.
Act granting the exclusive control of the timber in all the canons (and on all the mountains neighboring those cañon) leading into Tuilla Valley. Approved Jan. 9, 1851.
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with W. H. Hooper and David Caudland, an adopted son of Heber C. Kimball) of a portion of Lone Rock Valley for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 5,1856.
GEORGE A. SMITH.
Act granting the exclusive control of the timber in all the canons on the east side of the range of mountains west of the Jordan. Approved Jan. 9, 1851.
Act granting the exclusive right to build bridges over Carson River, in Carson Valley, and run a road up the cañon of that river, and collect tolls on the same; ten per cent of all proceeds to go to the Perpetual Emigration Fund. Approved Jan. 19, 1855.
Act inserting his name among the grantees in an act donating a herd ground in Rush Valley to Seth M. Blair et al. and extending said grant so as to take in all the valley not included in a grant to Brigham Young et al. Approved Jan. 14,1858.
Act granting the exclusive use of Box Elder Valley in Box; Elder County for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 14,1858. See also Phineas H. Young.
FRANKLIN D. RICHARDS.
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with Bishop Aaron Johnson of Springville) of portions of Cedar and Juab Vallies for a herd ground. Jan. 5, 1856. See also Brigham Young. See also Phin-eas H. Young.
See Brigham Young.
(Quartermaster General of Nauvoo Legion).
Act granting the exclusive privilege (in conjunction with Bishop Isaac Bullock) of running ferries on Green River for three years from May, 1856; ten per cent of all proceeds to go to the Perpetual Emi-gration Fund. Approved Dec. 27; 1855.
Act granting a tract of land about five miles square, on Black's Fork, around Fort Bridger, for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 14, 1857.
(Bishop of Springville, among whose wives are four sisters, his own nieces).
Act granting the right to take one third of the water of Spanish Fork tor irrigating purposes. Approved Dec. 27, 1855.
Act granting the right (in conjunction with Bishop John L. Butler) to take also one fourth of the water of the Spanish Fork for irrigating purposes. Ap-proved Jan. 14, 1857. See also Apostle F. D. Rich-ards.
(Judge of Probate in G. S. L. City, and ex-Postmaster).
Act granting the exclusive use (in conjunction with S. W. Richards, a young man with more than a dozen wives) of a portion of Juab Valley for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 2, 1856.
W. W. PHELPS
(The Devil in the Mormon endowment).
Act granting the exclusive use of a tract or land along the Weber River for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 12, 1856.
SETH M. BLAIR
(Engineer of the fortifications in Echo Cañon and candidate for the office of Chief Justice in the place of Judge Eckels. Five wives.)
Act granting the exclusive use of the tract of land in Rush Valley for a herd ground. Approved Jan. 14, 1857.
CAPT. JAMES BROWN
(Of Ogden; one of the most notorious Danites). Act granting the exclusive right to erect toll bridges on the Territorial road across Ogden and Weber Rivers. Approved Jan. 6, 1855.
Act granting the exclusive use of Ogden Hole for a herd ground. Approved Dec. 27, 1855.
This is beyond question one of the most extraor-dinary records which any Territory can present. Thanks to the patriotism of the frontier population of the United States, it is the only instance in which a Territory for eight successive years has perse-vered in a series of statutes which every legislator at the time of their enactment is new to be uncon-stitutional. Not a foot of land in this Territory has yet been opened even to preëmption by the United States, and the Territorial Legislature has no more right to dispose of it than it has to sell the Capitol grounds at Washington. Nevertheless, these grants have practically had all the validity which the grantees could desire; and this has happened for two reasons: first, because the people are ignorant of their rights and of the illegality of such acts of their Legislature; and secondly, because there has been a combination of ecclesiastical influence to sustain the grants, against which no Mormon dare rebel. The only instance in which resistance was ever made to one of the grantees was in 1853. An act was passed, which will be found among those I have enumerated, granting the exclusive privilege of running ferries on Green River to Daniel H. Wells for three years. This was a most valuable grant, for Green River spans the whole Territory from north to south, and all the Californian emi-gration is obliged to cross it. There were ferries already on the river at a point north-east from Fort Bridger, in the hands of some moun-taineers, who had built the boats at great ex-pense, strung the ropes across the river, and in the Spring of 1853 were expecting from the com-ing emigrants a return for their labor. Suddenly a party of Mormons, commanded by Robert Burton and James Ferguson, which had been fitted out from this city, made its appearance on the bank of the river and demanded in the name of the Legisla-ture and of Mr. Wells, a surrender of the ferry. The mountaineer who had charge of the boats, a stout, honest fellow named William Walker, re-fused, saying that he and his partners had built the boats, etc., and had a better right to own them than anybody else he knew of; whereupon he was set on, shot in the back, and a volley of rifle balls was poured into him as he lay bleeding oil the ground. One of the parties concerned in this butchery, a Mormon named Wakely, was arrested at Camp Scott last Spring, and held to bail in the sum of $5,000, to await the action of a grand jury m his case.
After list of grants, it will not be sparity of wealth in this comm of the of wealth here are grass and cattle. Burning the Summer there is no difficulty in pasturing the herds, for the animals can graze up to the very summits of the Wahsatch range; but with the ap-proach of cold weather, they must descend the mountain slopes, and, when Winter comes, seek pasturage on the sheltered bottom lands. It is then that these apostolic landed proprietors reap their golden harvest, charging so much per head for wintering stock upon their illegally granted herd-grounds. Most of them also take good care to have large herds of their own. Just so in re-spect to wood. During the months of August, September and October, every family is busy lay-ing in its stock of firewood for the Winter. Where the family is large, one son is usually employed a whole month long with an ox-team for this pur-pose. The most eligible spot in the vicinity of the city for cutting wood is Brigham's Cañon; but the priestly proprietor under the illegal grant demands that every third load cut there shall be hauled to his own corral, in payment for the privilege of cut-ting the other two loads. He has built a strong stone wall across the mouth of the canon, and men are constantly stationed there to enforce the regu-lation.
The plain English of the matter is that these grants, unauthorized and unconstitutional in them-selves, have been so distributed as to benefit a few church dignitaries at the expense of the mass of the people. Those to Apostle Benson alone have made him one of the wealthiest men in the Terri-tory. By means of them he has built up a settle-ment in Tuilla Valley called, after the initials of his own name, E. T. City. Tracts of land which would make continental earldoms, are bestowed on favorites with utter disregard to the right of the squatter to pick a claim wherever he can find un-improved and unoccupied land. It would be dan-gerous to the personal safety of any man, Mormon or Gentile, to contest the validity of these grants. Let the fate of Wm. Walker bear witness to the truth of my assertion. It is a matter in which Congress ought to take action. The mass of the people of the Territory are ignorant of their rights, and too pusillanimously subject to their hierarchy to maintain them if they knew them.
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