THE MORMON WAR.
We judge from the published dispatches of Col. Alexander and Col. Johnston to the War Depart-ment that no attempt will be made during the pres-ent season by the Utah expedition to penetrate to Salt Lake City. Col. Johnston, who is the com-mander-in chief, writes that if he could communi-cate with Col. Alexander (in command of the ad-vance, which includes the main force of the expedi-tion), he should order him to take up a "good position for the Winter" on Ham's Fork, that is, to remain where he was at the time of the Mor-mon attack on the wagons, thirty miles this side of Fort Bridger, and more than a hundred and fifty miles from Salt Lake City. Col. Alexander in his dispatches intimates an intention to advance, not directly on Salt Lake City, but northwardly to Soda Springs, a distance of a hundred miles or so, but no nearer Salt Lake City than the position which he then occupied. At Soda Springs, two courses would be open to him. He might, if he found the Mormons too strong for him, more off north east, still further from Great Salt Lake toward the Wind River Mountains, where are good valleys for wintering, well supplied with grass for the stock. Or, if able to overcome the opposition which he anticipates at Soda Springs, he might then move down the valley of the Bear River toward Great Salt Lake. But, even in that case, he proposes no more than to occupy some of the Mormon villages in Bear River valley, under the expectation that the Mormons, after a defeat, would be willing to treat, and would bring in provisions. It will thus be seen that neither Col. Johnston nor Col. Alexander con-templates an advance this Winter against Salt Lake City, and most likely Col. Johnston's plan will be carried out of wintering on Ham's Fork. Col. Alexander writes that he has already supplies for six months, beside those with the trains which have not yet come up. The great difficulty in the expedition would seem likely to be not so much in feeding the men as in feeding the stock. If the Mormons are diligent in destroying the grass, they might put the army to great distress.
Not much further light is thrown beyond what can be gathered from Brigham Young's proclama-tion upon the intentions of the Mormons. Young had assured Capt. Van Vliet that if the troops did not advance beyond Fort Bridger no armed re-sistance would be attempted, and that such was Young's intention would seem to be confirmed by the fact that previous to the removal of the troops at Ham's Fork more than a hundred contractors' wagons had been parked there, which, though unde-fended, had not been molested by the Mormons, though containing provisions and supplies. As no further communications had been received from Brigham Young, the officers in command did not know whether or not he took the responsibility of the destruction of the wagons. A Mr. Lander, the Chief Engineer of Magraw's Wagon-Road Survey, who recently passed through St. Louis on his way to Washington, states, according to The St. Louis Republican, that Brigham Young has already dis-claimed any knowledge or participation in the overt act of burning the trains. But it is not stated to whom this disclaimer was made, and, as the officers make no mention of it, the statement is doubtless merely conjectural. It is not very likely that the destruction of the wagons would have been at-tempted without Young's orders. It is stated that the advance party of this wagon survey have made explorations and discoveries in the Wahsatch moun-tain chain which may prove of great use to the fur-ther operations of the Utah expedition, particularly in tracing to their sources the tributaries of the Upper Green River, and in the discovery of new passes by which the Wahsatch Mountains may be crossed and the valley of the Great Salt Lake entered.
We conclude, however, that the troops will re-main for the Winter where they are; in which case it does not seem probable that the Mormons, beyond attempts to intercept their supplies, will do any-thing to annoy them.
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