The Scene of the Mountain Meadows Massacre.
Beaver (Utah) Cor. Chicago Int.-Ocean, Sept.19.]
Nineteen years ago an emigrant train of one hundred and thirtyseven persons, while on their way to California, were massacred in this territory at a place call-ed Mountain Meadows, and, beyond a doubt, it was done by the Mormons, at the instigation of their prophet, Brigham Young. John D. Lee, an adopted son of Brigham, figured most conspicuously in the awful tragedy.
Feeling that to intelligently conduct the prosecution it was necessary to visit the scene of the butchery, Sumner How-ard esq., United States District Attorney for Zion, determined to do so. Accompa-nied by Marshal Nelson, Official Court Reporter A. S. Patterson, your corre-spondent, and a Mormon guide, he set out for that place on the morning of the 7th instant.
At the scene of the massacre we came across numbers of human bones. A rib as white as snow, a shoulder blade half buried in the sand, and other fragments of human frames, scattered for a mile, lay bleaching in the sun. The old camp grounds where the emigrants corralled their wagons was a level strip of meadow terminating in a bluff-like manner, and commanding a view of half a mile down the canon, and in turn commanded from tha hills on every other side. There it was determined the train had to stop for a week or ten days to allow their teams to recruit on the rich grass which grew in abundance on the hills and in the mead- ows. The Indians and Mormons attack-ed them furiously; and, notwithstanding they barricaded by throwing up sod breastworks under their wagons, quite a number of their men were picked off by arrows and bullets. For several days they held their murderers at bay, but finally, by the treachery of John D. Lee, they were decoyed out, and the whole company, men, women and children, ex-cepting seventeen babes, were slaughtered. Their effects, even the clothing in which they were shot down, were carried off and appropriated by the Mormon priesthood and the Indians.
In 1859 a detachment of Colonel John-ston's command of United States soldiers from Camp Floyd did the Christian ser-vice of gathering together all they could find of the bones of these victims and burying them in two graves. One of these graves was made within the limits of the little corral where the Arkansans had so gallantly defended their wives and children against the foe, and where sev-eral of their number had been shot before the treachery of Lee brought death and ruin on them all. Above their sacred dust the soldiers erected a rude monu-ment of granite boulders and a wooden, cross to their memory. Brigham spat upon the cross, and the Mormons demol-ished the monument. It is now simply a heap of stones, three feet wide and a rod long, running east and west, and is all, save the blight which has come upon the spot, that marks their hallowed resting-place. In 1862 a cloud-burst cut the meadows into gullies, one of which, twen-ty feet deep, turned from its course and missed this grave. Thus, it seems, Prov-idence spared the rude monument and mouldering bones, but the Mormons did not.
The other grave was half a mile north of the monument at the fork of the road which led back to the main route, but at the present time it is lost. The spring is almost dry; what there is of it is oozing out in the bottom of the gulley which just misses the monument; the meadow where the train stood is now a shifting sand hill; the barricade thrown up is blown away; it is barren of vegetation, recognizable only by the heap of boulders once serving to designate a common grave. A few feet west of it there are three rocks lying in a line, and at one end an oaken stick stands in the ground, evidently marking the grave of one who fell before the train surrendered. Our party picked up a few bits of chinaware, a nail from the wooden cross, an ounce slug, a navy bullet, a few flint and moss-agate arrow heads, and fragments of human remains. These mark the scene of the siege, and the bleaching bones strewn among the sage-brush for a mile above show that the butchery was not confined to a single spot.
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