THE MOUNTAIN MEADOWS MASSACRE.
An Old Mystery Solved—The Real Murderers Not Indians, But White Men—A Horrible Story of Mormon Perfidy.
SALT LAKE CITY, September 13.—The following is the affidavit in full, by one of the least guilty among the participants in the affair, showing con-clusively that the terrible Mountain Meadows mas-sacre was the act of the Mormon authorities. It will be remembered that a large company of emi-grants, on their way to California, are known to have been all killed, with the exception of the young children. When their massacre was discov-ered the Mormons set afloat the story that they had perished by the hands of the Indians; but from time to time circumstantial evidence has appeared indi-cating that they were murdered In cold blood by the Mormons in revenge for previous outrages upon the latter perpetrated in Illinois and Missouri. A com-petent witness now states under oath that the Mor-mon militia attacked the emigrants, and after a fight of several days without result sent in a flag of truce, offering them protection if they would lay down their arms. These terms being complied with, the entire party were butchered by their captors.
State of Nevada, County of Lincoln, ss:
Personally appeared before me, Peter B. Miller Clerk of Court of the Seventh Judicial District of the State of Nevada, Philip Klingon Smith, who, being duly sworn, on his oath says: My name is Philip Klingon Smith; I reside in the County of Lin-coln, in the State of Nevada; I resided at Cedar City, in the County of Iron, in the Territory of Utah, from A. D. 1852 to A. D. 1859; I was residing at Cedar City at the time of the massacre at Mountain Meadows, in said Territory of Utah; I had heard that a company of emigrants was on its way from Salt Lake City, bound for California: said company arrived at said Cedar City, tarried there one day,—and passed on for California; after said company had left Ceder City, the militia was called out for the purpose of committing acts of hostility against them; said call was a regular military call from the superior officers to the subordinate officers and privates of the regiment at Cedar City and vicinity, composing part of the militia of the Territory of Utah; I do not recollect the number of the regi-ment. I was at that time the Bishop of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints at Cedar City; Isaac C. Haight was President over said church at Cedar City, and the southern settlements in said Territory; my position as bishop is subordinate to that of said President. W. H. Dame was Presi-dent of said church at Parowan, in said County. Said W. H. Dame was also colonel of said regiment; said Isaac C. Haight was lieutenant-colonel of said regiment, and said John D. Lee, of Harmony, in said Iron County, was Major of said regiment. Said regiment was duly ordered to muster, armed and equipped as the law directs, and prepared for field operations. I had no command nor office in said regiment at that time, neither did I march with said regiment on the ex-pedition which resulted in said company's being massacred at the Mountain Meadows in County of Iron. About four days after said co-mpany of emigrants had left Cedar City, that of said regiment then mustered at Cedar City up its line of march in pursuit of them. About two days after said company had left said Cedar City, Lieutenant-Colonel I. C. Haight expressed in my presence a desire that said company might be permitted to pass on the way in peace; but afterwards he told m that he had orders from headquarters to kill all of said company of emigrants except the little children. I do not know whether said head-quarters meant the regiment headquarters Parowan or the headquarters of the Commandwe-in-Chief at Salt Lake City. When the said company had got to Iron Creek, about twenty miles from Cedar City, Captain Joel White started for the Pinto Creek settlement, through which the said company would pass, for the purpose of influencing the people to permit said company to on their way in peace. I asked and obtained mission of said White to go with him and aid him in his endeavors to save life. When said White and myself got about three miles from Cedar City we met Major John D. Lee, who asked us where we were going. I replied that we were going to try to prevent the killing of the emigrants. Lee re-plied: "I have something to say about that." Lee was at that time on his way to Parowan, the headquarters of Colonel Dame. Said White and I went to Pinto Creek; remained there one night, and the next day returned to Cedar City, meeting said company of emigrants at Iron Creek. Before reaching Cedar City we met one Ira Allen, who told us that ''The decree had passed devoting said com-pany to destruction." After the fight had been going on for three or four days a message from Major Lee reached Cedar City, who stated that the fight had not been altogether successful, upon which Lieu-tenant- Colonel Haight ordered out a reinforcement. At this time I was ordered out by Captain John M. Higby, who ordered me to muster ''armed and equipped as the law directs." It was a matter of life or death to me to muster or not, and I mustered with the reinforcing troops. It was at this time that Lieutenant-Colonel Haight said to me that it was the orders from headquarters that…..little children of said company were to be killed Said Haight had at that time just returned from headquarters at Parowan, where a military council had been held. There had been a like council…at Parowan previous to that, at which we prese… Colonel Dame, Lieutenant-Colonel I. C. Haight, a…Major John D. Lee. The result of his….council was the calling out of said regime for the purpose already stated. The reinforcement aforesaid was marched to the Mountain Meadows, and there formed a junction with the main body. Major Lee massed all the troops all spring and made a speech to them, saying that….orders from headquarters were to kill the ent…company except the small children." I was not…the ranks at that time, but on one side talking to a man named Slade, and could not have seen a paper in Major Lee's hands. Said Lee then sent a flag of truce to the emigrant camp, offering said emigrants that ''if they laid down their arms he would pro-tect them." They accordingly laid down their arms, came out from their camp, and delivered themselves up to the said Lee. The women and children were then, by the order of said Lee, sep-arated from the men and were marched ahead of the men. After the said emigrants had marched about a half mile towards Cedar City the order was given to shoot them down. At that time said Lee was at the head of the column. In was in….rear. I did not hear Lee give the order…fire, but heart it from the under officers as it ….passed down the column. The emigrants wee then and there shot down, except seventeen little chil-dren, which I immediately took into my charge. I do not know the total number of said company, as I did not stop to count the dead. I immediately put the little children in baggage-wagons belonging to the regiment and took them to Hamlin’s Ranch, and from there to Cedar City, and procured them homes among the people. John Willis and Samuel Murdy assisted me in taking chargs of said children. On the evening of the massacre Colonel W. H. Dame and Lieutenant I. C Haight came to Hamlin’s where I had the said children, and fell into a dis-pute, in the course of which said Haight told Colonel Dame that if he was going to report of the kill-ing of said emigrants he should not have ordered it done. I do not know when or where said troops were disbanded. About tw…weeks after said massacre occurred said Major Lee (who was also Indian Agent) went t…Salt Lake City and as I believe, reported said fight and its results to the commander-in-chief; I was not present at either of the before mentioned councils, nor at any council connected with the aforesaid military operations or with said company. I gave no orders except to those connected with the saving of the children, and th…after the massacre had occurred, and said ord…were given as bishop and ot in a military sen…At the time of the firing of the first volley I …charged my piece. I did not fire afterwards though several subsequent volleys were fired. After the first fire was delivered I at once about sav-ing the children. I commenced to gather up the children before the firing had ceased. I have made the foregoing statements before the above entitled Court for the reason that I believe that I would be assassinated should I attempt to make the same before any court in the Territory of Utah. After said Lee returned from Salt Lake City, as aforesaid, said Lee told me that he had reported full to the President, meaning the Commander-in-Chief, the fight at Mountain Meadows and the killing of said emigrants. Brigham Young was at that time Com-mander-in-Chief of the Militia of the Territory of Utah; and further deponent saith not.
(Signed) PHILIP KLINGO SMITH.
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 10th day of April, A.D. 1871.
(Signed) P.B. MILLER, County Clerk.
[Copy of Seal-District Court, Seventh Judicial District, Lincoln County, Nevada.]
Utah Territory, County of Salt Lake.
I, O. F. Strickland, Associate Justice of the Su-preme Court of Utah Territory, hereby certify that I have carefully compared the foregoing copy of affidavit with the original of the same, and that the foregoing copy is a true literal copy of said original, and that such comparison was made this fourth day of September, 1872.
(Signed) O. F. STRICKLAND.
Territory of Utah, Salt Lake County.
I, James B. McKean, Chief Justice of the Su-preme Court of said Territory, do certify that I have carefully compared the above copy of an affidavit with the original of the same, and know the same to be in all particulars a true copy theref.
(Signed) Jas. B. MCKEAN, Chief Justice, &c.
Dated September 5, 1872.
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