THE MORMON MASSACRE
In our telegraphic dispatches will be found an account of the trial now pro- gressing at Beaver, Utah, of the Mor- mon assassins of a train of immigrants at Mountain Meadows, nearly twenty, years ago. For that long interval stretching backward into the past, the dreadful horror was clothed in mystery and the silence of the dead hung around it. Years ago we read the story as it reached us then, of a band of im- migrants killed upon the plain. We were told of a green meadow stretch-ing into a beautiful valley whose carpet verdure was stained with blood. On the imagination of the reader rose a rampart of hills and ragged bluffs over-looking a beautiful summer Eden. Camped by a running stream, and on the soft green grass were bearded men, tender women and helpless infancy Scattered over the plain the kine grazed in peace and the ripple of childish glee answered the music of laughing waters; a hundred and fifty immi- grants en route for California. Some were pioneers returned from the land of gold to bring away their wives and little ones. They had gathered around them on that little plain in the wilder- ness their household treasures and the love and glory of their rugged lives; an immigrant band on their west- ward way. On their glad eyes were visions of a happy future and their hearts were full of hope. The past, with its toil and trouble; the long sep-aration arid the sad parting from friends, and kindred had been left be- hind, and the rosy dream of a gladder life shone bright and beautiful. Peace- ful and tender, hopeful and content, their hearts were attuned to the music of joyful songs and not to the dirges of woe. They took no warning from the dark Sierras that frowned above them ; no cloud obscured the sunlight that fell upon their camp ; no presentment chilled their hopes; no warning came of death and fate.
But of a sudden, from the hanging cliff and bristling craig came savage shouts and Indian yells. The fierce crack of the rifle and whiz of the deadly arrow broke upon the kindly scene; there were wounds and death ; the strong man in his agony and the woman in her anguish ; the scared faces of little children, screams of ter- ror and moans of horror and distress. But there were bravemen in that im- migrant band and they fought to the last. Caring as they could for the women and children, they bared their breasts to the storm. Day and night they stood to their posts and gave shot for shot. On the sixth day a parley was had and then they discovered that their foes were Mormons disguised as Indians. They were assured of pro- tection if they would only surrender. The terror of the women, the shriek and cry of infancy pleaded for safety even at the sacrifice of their worldly goods and so the men laid down their arms. They were promised protection; they got such as vultures give to lambs — such safety as death affords. As the long file of men and women marched out upon the plain, the signal was given and a deadly fire from Mormon rifles swept them down. Every man and woman was savagely butchered; childhood even was done to death. The rank grass was strewn with the bleeding and the dead, and not a living soul of all the immigrant band was left to tell the tale of horror and dismay.
The Mormons gave out that Indians had committed the deed, and so it was believed all these long years. But the truth came at last. The savage butchers have been found and caught, and are now on trial for their lives. What shall be done with them ?
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