Ann Eliza's Mother Says That Brigham Young Is Responsible for the Massacre.
What Our Salt Lake Correspondent Says of Lee's Confession.
Special Telegram to The Inter Ocean.]
NEW YORK, April 16.—A Herald reporter at Lockport, N. Y., had an interview with Eliza Webb, mother of Ann Eliza, recently divorced from Brigham Young. She was one of the origi-nal Mormons in 1833. The reporter said:
"Have you any opinion in regard to Young's connection with the Mountain Meadows affair?"
"I have positive conviction," she replied.
"To what effect?"
"That Brigham Young instigated, and probably ordered the slaughter. Young's word was law. I, among others, implicitly believed it the word of God the commands of the prophet to do anything whatever, which made obedience a sacred duty. It took away from all crimes the so-cailed taint of criminality. It made vice virtue. It sanc-tified practices totally abhorrent to Christians, even to civilized human nature. The man who wielded influence like this had no difficulty in getting anything accomplished. He made him-self feared as well as respected through the ter-rible order of the Danites, from which the de-stroying angels of the church were selected. Lee, Dame, and others, all belonged to this misnamed, devilish clan. They were ready to strike anybody at the lifting of Brigham Young's finger, even at such a signal as the scratching of his nose. She described the butchery as brutal, and mis-guided resentment and blundering military pol-icy, encouraged by the fanatical desperation of the Mormon priesthood next under him, at that third or fourth time by the power of the United States Government. The first news of the mas-sacre was a secret. It had been carried to Cali-fornia by the other travelers who passed along the trail and came on the unburied bodies, perhaps weeks in advance of our information. When my husband first brought the news to me the whole butchery was generally laid to the In-dians, but he said to me: "A party of Mormons had a hand in this, sure." It was some five years before the fact crept through belief up to knowl-edge. even then no one dared to speak of it ex-cept in whispers. It was a frightening, sickening thought with us all. She had no doubt that Young ordered the butchery, and is alone guilty."
Correspondence of The Inter Ocean.]
SALT LAKE, Utah, April 13, 1877.
District Attorney Howard and United States Marshal Nelson have been attacked by an affi-davit of one Gilman, published in the New York Herald, in regard to Lee's confession, that it was obtained under promise of reprieve.
Lee, I believe, has had the opportunity to turn State's evidence, but he did not improve it. He made from time to time admissions and confessions, but they all shielded himself from any participa-tion in the murder of the emigrants, and were not accepted. When the time came, and he was ready to confess, he could not disclose anything not already known from other sources. I will venture to assert that District Attorney How-ard nor Marshal Nelson never broke faith with Lee. Had they done so Lee would have made it known. As it was, he made no complaint what-ever against either of these gentlemen, and, from a personal knowledge of them, I know they have done their full duty in the premises, and carried out faithfully the execution of their trust. That this man Gilman should make such an affidavit, and that it should be published exclusively in the New York herald, argues that these officers are, in the discharge of their obligations to the United States Government, to punish this great crime, and to pursue it till the guilty, whoever they may be, are brought to judgment. G.
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