Friday, June 20, 2008

Henrick Jensen & Maren Johansen, Denmark to Utah

This History Blog is quite different from other family histories in that, it contains not only the history of Henrick Jensen and his wife Maren Johansen, but it also includes journal entries and histories of other immigrants who came in the same pioneer company. I do not recall the source of the history but I suspect it came from the Church emmigration site. It is hoped that the reader will better understand and appreciate the circumstances underwich many of our Mormon pioneers made their way to the Mountain West.

A History of Henrick Jensen and Maren Johansen
Danish Immigrants & Mormon Pioneers

Conversion in Denmark

Their daughter, Maria Jensen, came to America in 1862; see the Peter Niels Hansen History or Blog for information about Marie Jensen’s immigration.

There was a Henrik Jensen and Maren [Johansen] Jensen listed in the Mormon Immigratin Index, as coming to America on the ship "John J. Boyd" which left Liverpool England, 30 April 1863, and arrived 29 May 1863 at the Port of New york, New York. William W. Cluff was church leader of the company of Immigrants. Sources BMR, Book #1047, pp. 195-224 (FHL #025,691); Customs #502 (FHL #175,585), SMR, 1863 (FHL #025,696)

"About four hundred Saints, emigrating to Utah, sailed form Copenhagen, Denmark, April 20, 1863. This was the first division of a large emigrant company of Scandinavian Saints which left Copenhagen that spring. The emigrants, after a pleasant voyage on the Baltic, landed at Kiel, Holstein, whence they traveled by railroad to Altona and there boarded the steamer 'Tiger,' bound for Hull, and the steamer 'Lord Cardigan,' bound for Grimsby, England, and sailed the same evening. President N. Smith and the mission clerk (Carl Larsen) left Copenhagen by rail in the evening of the 20th for Korsor and thence traveled by steamer to Kiel, where they joined the emigrants and then accompanied them to Altona. Brothers Smith and Larsen went on board the 'Tiger' at Altona in order to accompany the larger company of the two to England. Stormy weather caused delay of 36 hours at Cuxhaven, at the mouth of the Elbe, but at last the ship put to sea. The magnificent vessel fought bravely against the strong contrary wind and the angry sea, and, though the voyage was long and unpleasant, the emigrants arrived safely in Hull in the morning of April 26th. At the landing the emigrants were met by Elder John M. Kay, who was awaiting them with a small steamer, which after an hour's sailing landed the passengers from the 'Tiger' at Grimsby, where a large and convenient house had been hired for the use of the emigrants during their brief stay in Grimsby. The emigrants who had sailed from Altona on the steamer 'Lord Cardigan' arrived in Grimsby April 27th. On both steamers the officers and crews treated the emigrants with all due courtesy. From Grimsby the journey was continued by rail to Liverpool, where the company arrived April 28th, and there joined the second division of Scandinavian Saints which left Copenhagen April 23rd.
A second company of emigrating Saints (about 200 **souls), bound for the gathering places of the saints in the Rocky Mountains, sailed from Copenhagen, April 23, 1863, per steamship 'Aurora.' This was the second division of a large company of emigrating Saints who left Scandinavia that spring for Utah. The steamer 'Aurora' arrived in Kiel in the morning of April 24th, and the same day the Saints went by special railway train to Hamburg where lodgings were secured for them in a large emigrant building, while their baggage was being transferred to the large and beautiful steamer 'Grimsby,' on which they went on board in the evening. This steamer sailed from Hamburg on the 25th and after a successful voyage of two days on the North Sea arrived at Grimsby, England, Monday morning, April 27th. Here the emigrants spent the night is a freight house. The following day (April 28th) the company went by train to Liverpool, where the Scandinavian emigrants and 113 English Saints boarded the ship 'John J. Boyd,' the total number of souls now being 766. The company was organized by President George Q. Cannon, who appointed William W. Cluff leader, with Elders Knud H. Bruun and William S. Baxter as his counselors. Later the company was divided into seven districts. The ship sailed from Liverpool on the evening of April 30th, but anchored out in the river until the next morning (May 1st), when the 'John J. Boyd' lifted anchor and started on its voyage across the Atlantic. The voyage proved a pleasant one and lasted only 29 days. On board, the emigrants received good food in abundance. Every seventh day a ration for each person was issued consisting of one and one-half pounds of rice, two pounds of peas, one pound of pork, two pounds of beef, three pounds of potatoes, three pounds of oatmeal, one-fourth pound of tea, two ounces of pepper, two ounces of mustard, one-half pint of vinegar and a quantity of English sea biscuits. Besides this the sick obtained wine, milk, sago, sugar and soup from the captain's kitchen. Elder Peter O. Thomassen writes that Brother William W. Cluff won for himself the admiration of the Saints and gave perfect satisfaction in performing his difficult duties as leader of the company. The sanitary condition on board was very good; only four or five persons died on the sea. The monotony of the voyage was one day (May 21st) broken by seeing eight mighty icebergs swaying in majestic grandeur upon the shining billows, glittering in forms of purest crystal. They were accompanied by a wintry degree of cold, and to make the illusion of the polar seas more effective five whales were seen playing about the ship, sending the water like springing fountains high in the air. The 'John H. Boyd' arrived safely with its precious cargo of souls in New York harbor, and on Sunday, June 1st, the emigrants were landed at Castle Garden. In the evening of the same day the journey was continued to Albany, New York, and on to Florence, Nebraska. . . .. . .
The emigrants arrived in Florence June 11th, all well. Here some of them remained about six weeks. Soon after their arrival in Florence they were joined by the emigrants who had sailed from Copenhagen April 30, 1863. . .

1. A Compilation of General Voyage Notes
"DEPARTURE. ‑‑ The packet ship John J. Boyd, Captain J. H. Thomas, sailed for New York on the 30th ultimo, with 767 souls of the Saints on board. The company was organized the same afternoon by President Cannon, who together with Elders C. W. West, Jesse N. Smith, J. M. Kay, B. Young, junior, and others visited the vessel as she lay in the river. Elder William W. Cluff was appointed to preside over the company, with Elders Knud H. Brown and William S. Baxter for counselors. The Saints, who were mostly from Denmark, Sweden, and Norway, were addressed by President Cannon through an interpreter, also by Elder Jesse N. Smith, president of the Scandinavian Mission, and by Elder William W. Cluff: They appeared to enjoy and appreciate the counsels and instructions which were given to them, and we trust they will remember and practice them. Elder Cluff arrived in England in December, 1860, and proceeded to Scandinavia, where he labored assiduously, traveling throughout the various parts of the mission for upwards of two years, with much success, having been enabled by the blessing of the Lord upon his assiduity and perseverence, to speedily acquire a knowledge of the language. Elder K. H. Brown reached Liverpool in the spring of 1860, and has also been laboring faithfully in Scandinavia, where he presided over the Fyen and Frendericia Conferences. Elder William S. Baxter arrived from Zion in September, 1860, and has been laboring zealously and with good results in the Scottish District, having presided for some time over the Dundee Conference. Elders Frederich E. Muller, of the Swiss and German Mission, and George Stanneforth, from the Sheffield District, who arrived from Zion at the same time as Elder Baxter; Elder Hans C. Hansen, who reached here from the same place in the fall of 1862; Elders Neils Rosengren, who has been presiding over the Skane Conference in Sweden, Peter O. Thomason (and family) who has, for some years, been laboring in the Scandinavian Star Office, and Richard Smyth, who has been traveling in the Liverpool Conference, principally on the Isle of Man, also took their departure for Zion in this vessel. While all who realize the glorious nature of the work in which we are engaged, and live so as to enjoy the light of the Spirit of the Lord, must rejoice in being permitted to labor for the salvation of their fellow beings, even at the sacrifice of their own comfort and feelings, yet we doubt not that the brethren who are returning to their homes in Zion will find the pure air of our mountain home sweeter that ever and all its attractions doubly endeared to them by their temporary absence. We wish them, with all the Saints under their charge, a safe and prosperous journey; pray that the blessings of the Lord may rest upon and his protecting care by round about them, that his Holy Spirit may abide in their hearts and dwell continually with them, not only during their journey but after their arrival, that both those who are returning and those who, for the first time, are gathering to Zion, may alike rejoice in being permitted to breathe its air and associate with its inhabitants."

"Thurs. 30. [Apr. 1863] ‑‑ The ship John J. Boyd sailed from Liverpool, with 763 (or 766) Saints, under the direction of William W. Cluff. The emigrants landed in New York June 1st, and arrived at Florence [Nebraska] June 12th."

Appendix C John J. Boyd Immigration company ;
from the Mormon Immigration Index.
1, A Compilation of General Voyage NotesC
2. A Brief History Of Henry Peter Jacobs
3. Autobiography of James Mills Paxton
4. Autobiography of John Lingren
5. Autobiography of Olaus Johnson
6. Journal of John Redington
7. Journal of Peter Olaff Thomassen
8. Letter Extract
9. Letter from William W. Cluff ‑ May 30, 1863
10. The Story of My Life of Mary Charlotte Jacobs Soffe

2. A Brief History Of Henry Peter Jacobs
Written by his daughter‑Pearl Jacobs Green‑Incidents given by Himself
I, Henry Peter Jacobs, was born 27th of July, 1851 in Heckenberga, Sweden, about 21 miles from Malmö, Sweden. Heckenberga is one of five islands surrounded by a large lake. The only entrance to this island was by a high stone bridge. It was a very beautiful mountainous country, with rich soil. I can well remember spending many days picking all kinds of wild berries in the mountains. The owner of this island lived in a beautiful mansion. My father had a life lease on a house and five acres of land on this island from which we gained a substantial living together with a job my father had in working in his landlord=s distillery.
There was a very fine school on this island, one side being enclosed by water. There was wonderful skating on the lake all during the winter weather.
We were all happy and everything went well with us until father joined the Mormons. Two Mormon missionaries came on the island, and my father was very much interested in what they had to say, saying that that was just what he had been looking for. He joined the church and was baptized in the year 1854 in the Baltic Sea. Mother was baptized the following year. When I became eight years old I was also baptized in the Baltic Sea.
When the owner of the island heard that father had joined the Mormons he became very angry and had him discharged from his work at the distillery after 18 years of faithful service. He used his influence in seeing that he couldn't get any other kind of work, so it made it hard for us to eke out a living. One winter we lived mostly on potatoes. Out land wasn't all productive, some of it being quite rocky, and other parts swampy. The landlord took father to court to try to get the land lease away from him, but the verdict was against him. This made him all the more angry, and he tried hard to starve us out. [p.1]
. . . My mother and four children, the baby being only eleven months old, left Malmö, Sweden, on the 15th of April, 1863. Our first stop was at Copenhagen, Denmark. Next we went by water through the North Sea to Kiel, Germany. Then by rail to Hamburg, Germany. Here we encountered a big storm and had to anchor for two days by an island called Cuxhaven in the North Sea. We next set sail on the 30th of April on a three mast sailing vessel, called the John J. Boyd. The ship was so crowded we could hardly move around, and some of the Saints things were stolen.
On our way crossing the ocean we witnessed many harrowing experiences. The sailors were really a tough lot, and would steal anything they could lay their hands on. In our group of Saints the men would take turns standing guard during the nights. There were five people died on the way over. We witnessed one man's body being thrown overboard. They wrapped him in a blanket and tied him on a slab, then tied a sack of coal to his feet then tossed it overboard into the ocean. It was a terrible sight. Some screamed, others fainted. It was the last time they let anyone witness this again. When we neared the coast of Greenland we got in among five big icebergs, and we nearly froze.
We were four weeks on the ocean and how glad we were when we saw New York. We were taken from the ship in rowboats to Castle Garden for inspection which took two days.
Now we had sad news. When mother went to the Branch President to get our money, he said he didn't have any for us. Father had given him enough money to get us to Utah. We weren't the only ones that had this happen to us, and when the authorities heard of this he was excommunicated. [p.3]
Some of the Saints were very kind to us and shared their sea biscuits with us but this didn=t last very long, and by the time we reached Chicago we were pretty hungry. We had eleven changes by rail and by boat before we reached St. Joseph, Missouri. There were no bridges over the river so we had to go by ferry. There was one place in Missouri that we had to go by rail and some soldiers had tried to derail our train by putting big logs on the track and had burned some passenger cars, so we had to go in big stock cars with only a little straw on the floors and we were locked in until we reached St. Joseph.
When our train struck these big logs on the rails we were all pretty well shaken up and some were hurt, but not seriously. When we arrived at St. Joseph we were all pretty hungry, and it was pretty hard on Mother with a nursing baby. My sister Mary had an expensive necklace and she pawned this to get us something to eat and a warm drink for mother. The white bread she got was wonderful. We had never seen white bread before.
Now we had to take a boat again and were three days reaching Florence, which was about six miles to Omaha, Nebraska. We had to sleep on the ground here. The next morning we were told that there were to be rations for all the Saints. While the Saints were getting ready to cross the plains my sister went to Omaha to see if she could get some work, which she did.
She got a job with an apostate family for 50 cents a day. She saved enough to get some shoes for herself and a few things for the rest of us. These people used their influence to try to get her to stay with them, and offered her anything if she would stay. She prayed about it, and some of the Saints told her not to and if she did she would never get to Utah. It didn=t take much persuasion, because she said there was such an awful feeling when she was in their home.
We crossed the plains in John Murdock's Company. We left Florence Nebraska June 15, 1863. I was then 12 years of age. . . . [p.4]
. . . We turned north over the mountain down Emigration Canyon, and on to Salt Lake City. We first went to the Eighth Ward Square which is now known as the City and County Building Grounds. We arrived there about 3 p.m. on the 2nd of September [1863.] . . . . [p.6]
BIB: Jacobs, Henry Peter. Brief History of Henry Peter Jacobs [by Pearl Jacobs Green], pp. 1,3‑4, 6, IN Maxine L. Breinholt, Biographies (Ms 8691), reel 2. (HDA)

3. Autobiography of James Mills Paxton
. . . no sooner closed than the workman who had been listening attentively gave a hearty three cheers for young Brigham and that was the name I went by till I left the shores of England; and took passage on the John J. Boyd (a sailing vessel) on my way to Utah April 30th 1863. The following ideas journal by inquiring was written on board the ship, and my first attempt at poetry.
The quiver played on the lip of pride
as we parted by the railway side.
Swiftly from your view we went
To cross the seas in our assent.
Then on the prairie pitched our tent
As through the wilderness we went
The Rocky canyons we passed through
Then Salt Lake City came in view
And joy from soul to soul did flow
As we viewed the landscape area
Here is light and here is love
Here is blessings from above
Here is peace and unity
The gospel in simplicity.
We had beautiful weather crossing the ocean. Sighted the AGreat Eastern@ and passed very close to an iceberg floating about six hundred feet above water. Mrs. Polks being seasick asked me to make rice pudding. I done yet being so it was like the widows [‑‑]. [p.5]
Began to rise and after taking out more than I had in the [‑] was this full. After 30 days voyage we were delighted with the beautiful scenery as we neared Castle Garden, New York. I was forcibly struck by the contrast between the English and American soldiers seeing many of the latter when passing through the States from New York to Omaha. Reaching Florence June 12 we left Florence with an ox train under Captain McCarter, and I walked all the way to Salt Lake City about one thousand miles driving a cow and carrying a gun most of the time. . . . [p.6]
. . . We arrived in Salt Lake Valley one beautiful evening Saturday Oct. 3 [1863.] . . . . [p.7]
BIB: Paxton, James Mill. Autobiography. (Special Collections & Manuscripts, Ms 949), pp. 5‑ 7 (Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah)

4. Autobiography of John Lingren
April 21, 1863, I immigrated from my native country Sweden with happiness in my soul. Those I left behind were also satisfied that I should leave for a better country as some of them wished to follow in the near future. My brother Lars, was the only one who went with me a little distance. His parting words were: APlease, brother, be faithful.@ As tears ran down his cheeks we shook hands and I was off for the seaport. I had obtained, through the kindness of my elder brother, Anders, 140 rixdaler ($37.80), enough to pay my journey to Florence on the Missouri River. The company of Saints I traveled with went to Copenhagen, Denmark, Hamburg, Germany, and from there across the North Sea to Grimsby, England, and over the country to Liverpool, where we stopped a few days to get us ready to go abroad the sail ship John J. Boyd, which was to convey us over the great Atlantic.
I was somewhat seasick crossing the mighty deep. My berth was down in the hold, 3rd deck in the ship where all single people above 18 years and under 40 were huddled together, male and female. I and my bunk fellows slept alongside of two young ladies on the right and left of us. The weather was favorable all the way. We saw icebergs and a few whales. We landed in New York, June 1, 1863, after a voyage of 30 days being destitute of money to assist me the next ten days as we now had to board ourselves until we reached Florence. On our journey through the states we saw railroad wrecks and destruction in many places. The Civil War was about to terminate.
Going up the Missouri River from St. Joseph to Florence was the most pleasant trip we had had so far. But soon we were where the Saints had their Winter Quarters when they were driven from civilization. Here were relics of different natures; a house that Brigham Young had lived in, a well that Heber C. Kimball had dug and the remains of the dugouts, camping places and other sacred memories of gone‑by times.
We stayed here among the hills and hazel brush for a littler over two weeks, when Captain Sanders with his mountain boys gathered us up and started across the plains. . . . [p.238]
. . . A little this side of the base of the mountains we see the city of Great Salt Lake. It resembles in the distance below something like a village where every house was surrounded by a ten‑acre lot. Arrived in the church pasture on Sept. 5, 1863. The next day we looked over the city we had dreamed about.
The picture in our minds of the city, and the real city, failed to have any resemblance. We nevertheless gave it but very little thought. The city itself was nothing to us, we did not own one house or one foot of ground in it, and I for my part, had not a cent even to buy a meal with if I had been wanting one. . . . [p.240]
BIB: Lingren, John, Autobiography, Treasures of Pioneer History comp. By Kate B. Carter, vol. 1 (Salt Lake City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1952) (HDL) pp. 238, 40.

5. Autobiography of Olaus Johnson
. . . My parents had decided already to leave Norway and emigrate to Utah for their religion. Selling their homes, namely Nordstrand and Grundvick, they obtained enough money to take us all to Zion. In April 1863, I left the home of my childhood and came to the land of Zion in company with my parents, sisters, and brother.
We left Christiania the first of April on the steamer AExcelensen@ and arrived in Copenhagen on the fourteenth. Here we [p.298] remained eight days until the Saints had gathered from Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. Among these Saints was a sister by the name of Anna Helena Dyresen, whom I later became engaged to. She had been staying in Denmark with her sister Marie Hansen, and had also prepared to sail in the same company. From Copenhagen we left by steamship to Kiel, from there to Hamburg, where we were joined by more Saints, and again traveled to Liverpool. Here we boarded a steamship called the John J. Boyd, captained by J. N. Thomas. The same afternoon, we were given our respective cabins where we took quarters for our journey, being one thousand in number, of which seven hundred sixty‑five were Mormons.
After twenty‑nine days on the ocean we arrived in New York, May 29, 1863. All members had to remain on board until examined by the doctors to make sure no disease would be spread. This took considerable time. After being examined, we were transferred to a place called Castle Garden where we remained until evening. Here we were transferred by rail across the Hudson and further across the states. Due to the Civil War at the time, we were transferred several times to several trains a day, sometimes being forced to ride in cattle cars. This was not very comfortable, as there were no seats and we had to sit on the floor. In transferring our baggage, the handlers would often break into our trunks and cut holes in our leather satchels to steal our belongings. We had to be on guard constantly, day and night. By doing this, they got little for their trouble. After three days, we arrived in Florence, Nebraska, on the thirteenth day of June. Dyre Amundsen, a brother of my wife, who had come to Utah in 1862 in Captain Hooker=s company, was called to go back to Florence, Nebraska, to meet the Saints and bring them on to Utah. While there, he met his sisters, Anna Helena; Berta Marie, her husband, Ole Hansen; and Olaus, Charles, Lilie, and our father Johan and mother Karen Olsen. We stayed here until July first, when we continued our journey by ox team over the plains with John Young as our leader. While here, Anna Helena and I became engaged. We were married in Echo, Weber Valley, September 9, 1863 three days before arriving in Salt Lake City. . . . [p.299]
BIB: Johnson, Olaus, AAutobiography of Olaus Johnson,@ Chronicles of Courage, vol. 5 (Salt Lake City: Daughters of Utah Pioneers, 1994) pp. 298‑99. (HDL)

6. Journal of John Redington
. . . I received a notification to be in Liverpool with my wife & child on the 29th of April. I made the best preparations I could, and was there at the time appointed and at once went on board the sailing ship John J. Boyd. Here was a company of Latter‑day Saints of near 700 all bound for Utah, about 6/7 of these were from the Scandinavian Mission the remainder made up of English, Welsh, Scotch & Irish families. The next day Apr. 30th we were towed out into the River Mersey and on out to sea and thus commenced our journey to Utah.
Our journey across the Atlantic was made in safety & we landed in New York on May 29th . My wife however was confined to her berth nearly the whole journey, our darling little girl stood the journey across the water most bravely, she was a little hero. I was well, with a slight exception all the way across. As we neared New York my wife improved, but our darling child sickened.
We took the railroad cars at New York, traveled up near the Hudson River to Albany. Changed cars & on to Niagara, crossed the river just below [p. 351] the Falls into Canada, run across a portion of Canada to Windsor, then crossed a small lake to the American side at Detroit. From Detroit on the Chicago, then again to Quincy on the Mississippi River, cross the River to Hannibal, then to Palmyra and on to St. Joseph City, Missouri. Here ended our journey by rail. We then went on board a river steamboat and traveled up the Missouri River to Florence, Nebraska, being on the boat 3 days and 2 nights. We were about 2 weeks on this part of our journey from New York. Here myself & wife were called to meet one of the greatest trials of life. Our darling little Polley who was sickening when we left the ship at New York, daily grew worse as we traveled west, and a few days after we reached Florence on June 19th she died. At her death she was 1 year, 9 months, & 15 days old. Since that time we have become more sadly familiar with the sickness that took her from us, having lost two other children in a similar manner in Payson, from that complication of children's diseases often spoken of as summer complaint, embodying, teething, canker, diarrhea, fever &c. We buried her the next day in what is known as the Latter‑day Saints old burying ground at Florence. Here is buried many Latter‑day Saints who died on the way from Nauvoo & other places to the Valley, or Utah. Florence is located on the bank of the Missouri River, some 6 or 8 miles from Omaha.
At Florence we were to commence our journey across the plains with ox teams that were on the way from Utah to meet us. They, or a least some companies arrived here a few days after our arrival from the east, and it was only about two weeks after we arrived here that all was ready to start out one company on their journey across the plains.
Myself and wife (We could carry our darling no further) were in the [p. 352] first company under the charge of Captain John Murdock, then of Lehi, Utah, we commenced this part of our journey on June 30th/ 63. . . .
. . . We arrived in Salt Lake City on the 29th of August, making just one day less that 4 months from the time we were towed out of Liverpool docks. One month on sea, one month passing through the States and remaining at Florence, and two months on the plains & passing through the mountains. . . . [p. 353]
BIB: Redington, John. Journal (Ms 4514),

7. Journal of Peter Olaff Thomassen
BIB: Thomassen, Peter Olaff. Journal (Ms 1536), pp. 8‑9 (Danish). [DOCUMENT NOT INCLUDED IN DATABASE]

8. Letter Extract
America.‑‑Since the letter from Elder Staines, of May 28, was in type, we have been favored by the receipt of another, dated the 4th instant, from which we make the following interesting extract:‑‑
The John J. Boyd arrived on Saturday, 30 ultimate, having had a prosperous voyage. The Saints were well and in good spirits; had four deaths on board‑‑two old persons and two small children. One sister died on Saturday, after they arrived; she had recently been confined with a stillborn child. They all speak well of the brethren who had charge of them. They left for Florence at twelve midnight; I accompanied them as far as Albany, and returned yesterday. They left Albany on Tuesday, at seven p.m., all in good spirits. The two ships have arrived with the African Saints, all well. They went on with the companies. I was sorry to see so much luggage; 597 adult passengers in all, had 90,330 pounds of baggage! This was not weighed until we arrived at Albany. They did not land at the Garden [CASTLE GARDEN] until twelve a.m. on Monday and they were all at the depot at seven p.m., and had it not been for two luggage cars getting off the track we should have started at half‑past seven.
The vessels came three days sooner than we expected, but all went off very satisfactory to all parties. . . . [p.411]
BIB: AAmerica [Letter Extract],

Letter from William W. Cluff ‑ May 30, 1863
On board the John J. Boyd,
May 30, 1863.
President Cannon.
Dear Brother,‑‑Realizing that you are ever anxious to hear of the progress and welfare of the emigrating Saints, I hasten to report the safe arrival of the John J. Boyd, and give you a few items concerning our progress thus far.
We cast anchor in New York harbor at seven p.m., yesterday, having made the voyage in 29 days. We were much prospered and blessed of the Lord [p.428] while journeying on the mighty deep. The company was comprised of people from seven different nations, speaking different languages, yet the utmost harmony, good feeling and order prevailed. The brethren associated with me, Elders K. H. Brown, W. S. Baxter and the district presidents, labored faithfully for the welfare of the Saints, administering to the wants of the sick, and giving good advice to all how to make themselves comfortable and happy.
I am sorry at having to report four deaths. The first occurred on the 15th instant. Hans Petersen, aged 46 years, a native of Sjaelland. He died at five in the afternoon, and was buried at nine p.m. The cause of death was debility, accelerated by the sea passage. Elizabeth Ann, daughter of William and Mercy Parkinson, aged eleven months and three days, died of bronchitis, on the 23rd, at half‑past eight a.m. and was buried at five p.m. An infant daughter of Sister Ann [Ane] Jensen died at midnight on the 27th, and was buried next day at five p.m. It was born at eight a.m. on Monday the 25th. The other was Sister Ann [Ane] Andersen [Anderrson] , from Sjaelland, aged 72 years. She died on the 29th, at nine a.m., and was buried at eleven a.m. At eight a.m., on Tuesday, the 5th, Sister Elizabeth Pearce; from England, gave birth to a daughter. Mother and child are well. There was, comparatively, little sickness in our midst; the strict attention to the regulations for cleanliness, and a prompt attention to all who are sick, with the blessing of God, preserved the Saints, generally, in very good health. We had a number of men appointed in each district, who made it their first duty every morning to brush and scrape the floor around and under the berths, thus preventing filth and rubbish accumulating, and keeping the air as pure as possible. I mention this plan because I found it to work beneficially, and other companies may also be benefitted by adopting it.
The weather was very changeable all the time. Sometimes there would be a day or two of calm and delightful weather, when the Saints would crowd on the upper deck and enjoy themselves, and then again several days of hard blowing, that made the moveable goods tumble about and rendered it rather difficult for the Saints themselves to Amaintain their standing;@ but we did not experience a single storm. On the 21st, which was an extremely cold day, we passed seven icebergs. Two of them were within a quarter of a mile to leeward ‑ one was very large ‑ and as the sun shone upon the glittering masses they appeared beautiful. The AGreat Eastern@ came in sight to leeward of us on the 26th, and crossed our bow at a distance of about five miles.
By strictly observing the AMormon creed,@ that is, Aminding our own business,@ we were preserved from having any serious difficulty with the officers or crew. The medical inspectors here, stated that they never saw such a healthy‑looking and cleanly company of emigrants come into the port of New York as that on board the John J. Boyd. The provisions served to the passengers have given general satisfaction. They were all of the best quality; much better, in fact than the majority had expected to receive. We held meetings, for general instruction, as often as possible during the voyage, and prayer meetings were held morning and evening in each ward. Several social meetings were held in the English ward, in which the Scandinavian Saints joined, and we were much enlivened by the comic and sentimental songs and recitations which a number of the brethren and sisters engaged in.
Chicago, June 6th, 1863.
It was my intention to have had this report finished and posted in New York, but our stay there was so short and movements so hurried, that it was impossible to attend to it, so, having an opportunity while waiting to change cars, I will just add a little.
Sister Ann Jensen‑‑the mother of the child whose death is mentioned in the previous part of the letter from Kallehave, Denmark, died on the evening of the 30th ultimate, from the effects of childbirth. The body was taken on shore and buried. We were landed at Castle Garden at two p.m., on Monday, June 1st, and the same evening at seven took the cars for Albany, at which place we arrived next day at [p.429] two p.m., and changed cars. We changed again at Niagara Suspension Bridge on the 3rd, at Detroit on the 4th, and arrived here last night at seven p.m. A child named Brighamine Eleanora Henritte daughter of Brother [Christian H.] and Sister [Eleonora] Braase, from Denmark, aged 8 2 months, died in the cars on the morning of the 4th instant.
This includes the particulars of our journey thus far. There are many details that might be interesting to those who have not crossed the Atlantic or traveled through the States, but in writing to you I think it is unnecessary to enter into details. We leave here at noon today.
The brethren join me in sending their kind love to yourself and associates. Yours faithfully,
William W. Cluff.
President of Company.
D. M. M>Allister [McAllister], Assistant Clerk. [p.430]
BIB: Cluff, William W. AAmerica

10. The Story of My Life of Mary Charlotte Jacobs Soffe
. . . On the 15th April, 1863, we hired a team to take us into town, and from there we took a steamboat for Copenhagen, Denmark.
My father and eldest brother were left standing on the port, and I felt as if my heart would sink within me. My brother came the following year, with an old man who wanted company, but my father was never seen by us again‑having taken pneumonia and died on Good Friday on the 14th day of April, 1865 at the age of 52 years, five months and three days.
Before we left Malmo, my father had given the captain of the Mormon emigrants $30.00 to keep us going until we were settled, but when we arrived in New York this man denied that father had given him this money, and we underwent a great many hardships because of not having the money.
The first night out on the steamboat, someone stole part of our bed clothes. The next day we landed in Kiel, Germany. From there we went by rail to Hamburg, which was 11 miles from the harbor, and we had to walk from the depot to the shore and carry our things. I was so tired I fainted which frightened my mother very much. We now boarded a freighter for England, traveling on the North Sea when we got in the Catiga. [UNCLEAR] A heavy storm came up and we were very nearly drowned. Here we had to cast anchor for two days near an island called Cuxhaven with over one hundred men, women and children on board. [p. 9] We were a week getting to England whereas we should have only been two days.
We arrived in Grimsby, England, but had to wait a half a day until the tide came in and they then opened the flood gates so we could land. After we did land, I was unable to walk naturally.
After we landed, another boat landed and they mixed their boxes with ours, so the other company took our boxes and we never had as much as a comb to comb our hair with until someone gave us an old one. Before we landed in Liverpool we had to pass through five tunnels in one or two of which we nearly succumbed with the smoke and dust.
In Liverpool, England, and there we boarded a three‑mast sailing vessel named John J. Boyd. They would not take less than 1,000 passengers on a regular steamer, and our company only numbered 850. I was so used to walking A sailor fashion@ that I felt fine on the Atlantic.
After we had been sailing for about two weeks we ran into five icebergs. We came so close to these that we could see the large chunks of ice floating in the water. It was very cold and a number of people nearly froze.
While on our journey five people died on the ship three old people and two children. I had the experience of seeing them bury the first personCan old man. They wrapped him in a blanket, head to the East, then laid him on a plank and tied a sack of coal to his feet, and while reading the sermon they tipped the plank down and he went in the water. It was an [p. 10] awful sight to see. Some of the people watching screamed and some fainted, so they never let them see anything like that again.
After we had been on the water about 25 days we saw the coast of Greenland. One day a small boat came out with a doctor on board to see if any of us were sick, but we were all well, and the next day when we landed in the harbor of New York a small boat came out to our vessel, then all of the sailors left the captain and threatened to kill him and also the Mate if they came ashore. Sometime before this the captain and the sailors had had some trouble while out to sea. We landed in the harbor on Thursday, but this trouble with the sailors and the Captain kept us on the ship until Monday, then a boat came and took us to Castle Garden, and that was my first glimpse of New York.
We only stayed in Castle Garden long enough to get our baggage through the custom house and on the train. Castle Garden did not appeal to me in the least. In the middle of the street I saw a dead cat and dog and filth and dirt existed everywhere. Nevertheless, we were all glad to be on land again. We were on the Atlantic one month and two days.
I remember the first night we were off the ship. I sat up all night drinking in fresh air, as it seemed wonderful to get off the ship with its stench and terrible odors.
After considerable trouble our president of the Mormon company obtained a ticket for us with eleven changes from [p. 11] New York to St. Joseph, Missouri.
Before leaving Sweden my father had given the captain of the Mormon emigrants $30.00 for mother to keep us going until we were settled, but when we arrived in New York this man denied that father had given him this money, and it was only the hand of fate that kept us from starving to death again. The emigrants gave us some of their sea cakes, and it was indeed hard on mother as she had a nursing baby.
When we arrived in Chicago we were nearly starved to death. Mother told the president if he did not give us money to buy food she would let people know he was letting us starve so he gave us one dollar. With this dollar I went to buy some bread, and on my way back from the store I met a lady with some bologna so I traded her two loaves of my bread for some of her meat. This was the first time I had ever eaten or seen white bread, as we had been used to dark bread in Sweden.
We now traveled on and crossed the Mississippi River on a ferry, then we arrived in Missouri . This was during the Civil War and all of the passenger cars had been burned as they locked us up in cattle cars which had straw floors. There were no seats. We passed a soldiers= camp and it was here we ran into a place where logs had been placed to disrail the cars. I happened to be standing up when the cars struck the logs and the jolt threw me head foremost to the other side of the car among the women and children. Everyone was crying and screaming. A few were hurt.
The cars were put back on the tracks again and we proceeded on our journey and arrived in St. Joseph, nearly starved, [p. 12] about the 15th day of June 1863. We had no food nor no money to buy any with. All we had was a necklace of cherry colored beads that my aunts and given me. I asked a man to give us some bread and a cup of something warm for mother to drink, in exchange for my necklace, but all he gave us was a cup of coffee and one piece of bread. We children did not get a thing to eat.
We were then hurried on and we boarded a steamboat on the Missouri River. That afternoon mother saw our president buy bread as she went to him and told him we were starving and the children were crying for bread, but he refused her. She started to tell what he had done, so he told someone to give us a loaf of bread, and that was the last we received for the $30.00 father had given us for our expenses. We later found out for a certainty that he had received the money, for when we arrived in Utah father sent word and told us he had given the money to the president.
We were on the steamer on the Missouri River two days and two nights. On the first day about noontime I had to pass the sailors when they were eating lunch and one of the men gave me a large piece of pie, but I was afraid to take it and went to the end of the boat and threw it into the river, for I had heard and seen so much of the bad sailors that I thought they wanted to poison me.
The boat could not travel at night on that river because of sandbars, and on the second day another boat came alongside of ours, and we had a terrible scare for they tried to steal a woman, and they did steal a man's clothes, watch and keys [p. 13] when he was bathing while the boat was stopped. He called for someone to bring him a blanket to wrap around him to enable him to get back to the boat so he could break into his trunk to get something to put on. Evidently some sailors who had taken leave off their ship had stolen his clothes.
On the third night we landed at Florence, which is six miles north of Omaha on the banks of the Missouri River at 11:00 p.m., June 15, 1863. Here we had to lie on the ground until the next morning with nothing over us, for all of our things were put in one big heap and we could not find any of our bedding until it was light.
In the morning mother walked to Omaha which was six miles to get something for us to eat. She was able to get some bread so we were alright for that day. It was scheduled that the next day we would get our allowance of flour and bacon which was sent to us from Utah by the Mormons that were already there and were now helping new emigrants to come. Mother sent me to get our allowance, but when I arrived there the place was so crowded that I sat down in a corner and fell asleep. I did not come home and Mother was worried and came after me to see what was the matter. The place was all closed up so we did not get anything to eat until the third day. They told me to come back and hep make tents and wagon covers for two or three days.
Then mother talked with some of the apostates in Omaha and they told her to send me down there to stay and not go on to Utah, as the journey was so hard we would die crossing the plains. They told mother they had a job for me cleaning house, and I [p. 14] received 50 cents per day and by doing this was able to get me a new pair of shoes. Some of the apostates in Omaha wanted us to all stop there and not come to Salt Lake, as they said we would die crossing the plains, and they persuaded me to get a room ready for us to move into, but a terrible feeling came over me every time I thought of it, but mother thought we should stay. Then someone told me if I stayed I would not get away and this made me more determined than ever to go. I told mother I was going on to Utah and would not be persuaded to stay. Mother then said if I was going she would have to go too, as she could not make a living for the children all alone.
The third week we were there, there were ox teams which arrived from Utah. Captain John Murdock and Mr. Hatch were in charge of this expedition.
We were afraid we were not going to get to go with this company, as it was entirely filled up, but one man became ill and the captain told them that he was too ill to make the trip, and advised them that it would be better to stay and wait for the next train. Because of this man=s dropping out, we were able to load our things and go in his place. . . . [p. 15]
. . . We arrived on the 8th Ward square, (which is now know as the City and County building grounds) about 3:00 p.m. on the 2nd of September. We were three months coming form Omaha to Salt Lake City and we made from 15 to 20 miles per day. . . . [p.19]
BIB: Soffe, Mary Charlotte Jaco