IRA AMES' JOURNAL
(This journal was transcribed from Ira Ames' original handwritten journal)
I, IRA AMES, am the son of ITHAMER AMES, who was the son of JOSEPH AMES. My Mother's name was HANNAH CLARK, Daughter of WILLIAM CLARK who was the son of SAMUEL CLARK. My Mother's Mother's name was BETSY ROGERS who was the daughter of MARY ROGERS, who was the daughter of BETHIAL xx. My Grandfather Joseph had eight sons, Nathaniel-Barnabas-William-Henry-Samuel-Abner-Thamer and Joseph and one daughter named Lydia. My father had three sons named Ambrose- Ira V-Clark and two daughters-Lydia & Sally. I was born in Bennington County State of Vermont on the 22nd day of September A.D. 1804. While still an infant, my father moved with his family and purchased a farm in Schyler Township State of New York about six miles from Utica. When I was about five years old, my father was building a large barn, and while in the act of laying the last course of Shingles, the staging gave way and he was precipitate to the ground; falling across one of the staging poles; by which his back was broken. He lived three days without sense of feeling and then died. My father's brother SAMUEL came shortly after to visit my Mother in her affliction, and took myself, my oldest sister Lydia, and my youngest brother Clark home with him to bring up. He lived in Shoveham, Addison County, State of Vermont.
When I was 18 years old, I commenced an apprenticeship to the tanning and currying of leather with one Thomas Atwood in Shoveham; I would here state that my Uncle Samuel and his wife Mercena Sternes always treated me with truly parental kindness. They were excellent people. They were very strict Methodists and lived strictly their religion, and treated us with kindness, affection and tenderness. They had no children of their own. I was brought up by them also after the strictest manner of the Methodists. My Uncle kept me at school every winter until I was 18 years old. I remained working with Thomas Atwood about a year and a half. He took a great liking to me and put me forward in the business. And after a while entrusted me to purchase the hides, sell the leather and keep his books.
At the expiration of 18 months, Jared Carter, my brother-in-law, he, having married my Sister, Lydia, prevailed on me to leave Mr. Atwood and go and work with him. He and his father worked together tanning. I went with them to the town of Benson, Rutland County, State of Vermont. However previous to going to work for Jared Carter, I moved to Benson in the fall of 1824, paid my board and went to school through the winter. And at that School became acquainted with my first wife, Charity Carter.
Early in March 1825 I commenced work with Jared Carter and his father. The following September Jared had planned a journey to Troy, State of New York, to purchase Spanish hides and some other things. He wanted me to accompany him. I had a desire to see Troy so I consented. The night before starting, the horses we were to go with, strayed off into the fields: And I went through the high clover, covered with a heavy dew and found them. But I was wet to the skin and took a heavy cold. The next morning, we started and reached Troy in about four days. Here I began to feel sick and soon became very ill with the Typhoid Fever and lay helpless on the hides in the wagon. And Jared hurried home with me. In two days after my return home, I became senseless and remained very ill for about two months. Charity Carter attended me strictly while I was so ill. In about two months, as I said, I was able to rise from the bed. My uncle Samuel who lived about fourteen miles from there came often to see me and wait upon me with all the ardour and affection of a kind parent. And as soon as I was able to ride in A Carriage, he took me home with him, and there I was nursed with the most tender care; for previous to my illness my Uncle had purchased the right to doctor after the Thomsonian System. He took me through a course of medicine and I soon got well.
My uncle was then very anxious that I should remain at home with him, get married and go no more abroad. I remained with him until the month of March 1826. May Uncle was anxious I should quit tanning and learn farming and Doctoring after the Thomsonian system with him. My Uncle was wealthy, he had plenty of houses and lands and wanted my brother Clark and myself to remain at home with him. Clark had, a short time previous to this, married a young woman named Amanda Spicer, daughter of Michael Spicer but was still living at home with my Uncle.
Upon visiting my brother-in-law, Jared Carter, after my health was re-established, he presented me with a bill for my board while I was ill at his house, also for the board of watchers. And also a bill for his care of me and for the trouble I had been to the house, etc., which I paid him all up amicably.
After paying up Jared I had not enough to pay the Doctor. He was a kindly hearted and attentive man. And waited on me for his pay for two or three years. Tho: I paid him a little occasionally as I could get it. My sister Lydia was very kind and attentive to me during my illness, and always was a kind affectionate sister to me.
I felt grateful to my kind Uncle for his wish to have me with him, but my whole heart was bount up in the tanning business, and I reasoned much with him upon it, and he finally consented to my continuing to learn that trade. In the month of March 1826, as I before stated, I left my Uncle and with a United States Soldier Knapsack on my back I set out for Troy. In Lamingburg I was inquiring about the Tanners of Troy and was recommended to go to John Gary a wealthy tanner. When I reached Troy, John Gary was pointed out to me in the street; I went up to him with my knapsack on my back and asked him for work. He told me to go to a tavern close by and go and see him in the morning. I went to see him in the morning and made an agreement with him to work for him at ten dollars per month which was the regular wages of journeymen tanners in those days.
Mr. Gary had about 30 men to work for him. He was wealthy, and was one of the largest Stockholders in the Farmers Bank of Troy. By close attention to my work, Mr. Gary soon became partial to me. I boarded with him in his house. About October the same year I wanted to return home and mentioned it to Mr. Gary. He would not listen to it, he took me into his bed room, and asked me why I wanted to leave. I told him I was home sick. He offered to increase my wages if I would only stay with him. He said that of all the men he ever had I was the only one he could place implicit confidence in; the only one who was steady and attentive to his business; and urged me all in his power to stay. He had a daughter about my age but my affections were already placed on Charity Carter and it was because of her that I wanted to go home. We had kept up a correspondence all the time I was away at Troy. He urged me to continue a little while longer; so I remained with him about three weeks more, but was only the more homesick. So he paid me off and in doing so, said, it was a hard matter for him to get a man who did not spend all their wages in drinking and folly, which he detested. While I had only taken up of my wages enough to buy me a pair of shoes. He detested drinking the more perhaps for the reason that he had two sons who were profligate drunken creatures. Mr. Gary treated me with kindness during my stay with him, he was a man highly respected in Troy. And held some responsible stations in Troy. The great fire in Troy occurred while I was there.
About the 1st of November 1826 I left Troy taking canal boat to White Hall and from thence by Steamboat to Kinyom Landing, about a mile from Charity Carter's father. I went to her father's house and tarried two or three days; the people around were all very glad to see me; from there I went to my Uncle who advised me to get married at once and come and live with him. So on the 4th of December 1826 I married Charity Carter, daughter of Jabez Carter and Rebeca Dowed, then moved home to my Uncles. I agreed with him to remain with him and take care of him, as long as all would be agreeable. I took charge of the farm and had half of everything, ½ the increase of Sheep, ½ the wool, ½ the Butter, grain, fruit etc. I cleared about 250 dollars, but my Aunt and my wife did not agree very well, or rather I believe it was the workings of the Spirit of the Lord upon me. During the winter of 1827-8 I heard of a farm and tannery for sale in the town of Mooers, Clinton County, State of New York, and went and visited and liked it, made a bargain for it, paid 50 dollars cash and was to pay the rest, $300 in three years. It was not half its worth. In April 1828, I left my Uncle and took my family, my wife Charity, and my Daughter Clarissa, who was born the 16th of December 1827, being our first child and got on board a Sloop on Lake Champlain. And after three days being detained somewhat by head winds, I arrived at my future home. During the journey I reflected much upon the strangeness of the spirit that could induce me to leave my Uncle, a man of wealth, having an abundance of everything around him, living alone, no heir to inherit his wealth, his fondness and affection for me, his repeated earnest entreaty for me to remain with him and take care of him in his old age. The very probability that I would inherit his wealth if I remained with him, and yet I seemed impelled by an unseen hand to leave him.
My brother, Clark in consequence of some feelings had left my uncle about the time of my marriage, but shortly after I left he returned again to my Uncle and remained with him until the following winter. My brother Clark owned a farm about three miles from my Uncles. There was a very large pond or lake between the two farms extending within ½ a mile of my Uncles and quite up to Clarks. During the winter of 1828, I think in January 1829, my brother went down to the pond which was frozen over intending to go to his farm to see to his cattle. He put on his skates and started and was found next morning about forty rods from shore in water up to his chin frozen to death. The ice had broken with him and the weight of his wet clothes and the thinness of the ice prevented him from springing out. He had broken the ice in his endeavor to get out for some little space. He had torn off his finger nails in his struggle. He left behind him a widow and one son about two years old named Samuel.
The tannery was all in complete working order, and a stock of hides and leather ready for tanning and finishing so I went immediately to work, and sent out word through the Country that I would take hides to tan on Shares. This brought me all the hides I wanted and I was prospered in my business. I also raised a good crop of Corn and Oats and Potatoes on the farm. In the summer of 1829 a great revival was got up by the Presbyterians, Baptists and Methodists who on this occasion worked a short time together. The excitement was very great. My wife being a Methodist, I rather leaned that way but in reality knew nor cared but little about the difference. I finally concluded I would join the Methodist, but insisted on being baptized by immersion. The preacher did not like to wet his feet and tried hard to dissuade me from that mode of baptism, but I held out and time and time again he appointed to baptize me, but always avoided it until finally he got me to yield a point and agree to kneel down in the water and let him pour water on my head, but I went so far out in the water that I obliged him to wet his boots whereat I was much amused. They kept up their protracted meetings all the fall and winter and spring; but long before the end thereof, there was wrangling, pulling hauling and contention as to which should get the converts especially the wealthy ones. Matters got so warm that it became a complete confusion disgusting and ridiculous to the thinking portion of the community. This winter I took an opportunity and went in a sleigh with my wife and child, to visit my friends at Shoveham and Benson. We spent about one week with my uncle and one week with my wife's father, and then returned. We had a delightful visit, all were glad to see us, and rejoiced in my prosperity.
I would here state that my Mother came to visit us children at my Uncles when I was about twelve years old and remained about a week. My youngest sister Sally came with her. She made us little presents. We did not recognize each other. My mother wept much at our separation from her because of circumstances, and showed a deep rooted love for us. When I was seventeen years old I paid my mother a visit. She was then living in the township of Arlington, Vermont and had married again. When I started I did not know rightly where my mother lived, so I concluded to go and see my father's father, Joseph Ames, and learn from him of the whereabouts of my mother. I found my Grandfather a hale old man of 86 years. He was rejoiced to see me. And proposed to go at once with me to my oldest brother's Ambrose Ames, who was living a short distance from my grandfather's and was taking the charge of the old man's affairs. He bustled around, got his hat and cane and we went. My brother was not at the house, but I saw his wife and children, who received me with joy. Soon afterwards my brother came in and we all had a happy and joyous meeting. The next morning my brother got up his horses and sleigh and we went over the mountain. At the foot we passed the houses of some of my brother's wife's relations. We passed on without speaking but when they saw us take a course to go to my mothers, they suspected who I was and came down in high glee. I found my dear mother sitting at a weaving machine weaving a piece of cloth, and my youngest sister, Sally was at the Quill Wheel. They received me with warmest affection. I stayed three or four weeks with them visiting all things in the neighborhood worth seeing, among them a large cotton factory and visiting numerous friends. It was a great fruit country and a good fruit year, and in this way I spent my time and had a most delightful visit full of fond recollection.
Now to return to the thread of my history. This summer August 11, 1830 my second daughter Rebecca was born in Mooers. About this time I read some letters that were written by a man named Booth who had been a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He had apostatized and was very severe against the work. When reading his letters, I left an impression that there was something in Mormonism. There was considerable talk about it in the neighborhood but it calmed down again after a while and I had almost forgotten about it. When I was suddenly aroused from my lethargy by a letter from my mother saying she had been baptized or also my sister Sally, my brother-in-law Jared Carter and my sister Lydia into the Mormon Church. My mother and sister Sally and Jared Carter and Lydia had moved previous to this to Cherango County near Norwich, State of New York and were living not far from each other. When reading over my mothers letter it ran through me like lightning it roused every feeling of my mind, the effect was powerful. I read the letter to my wife and to my wife's sister, Rebecca Eaton (she having married a man named Josiah Eaton). My wife and Rebecca laughed mockingly at the letter and cast much ridicule. Rebecca said turning on her heel, "I'll bet $5.00 that Ira will believe in that Book" and went off laughing in mockery. As for myself I left the room and retired to my bedroom and spread the letter upon the bed and kneeled down and laid the matter before my heavenly parent, in faith and humility, urging him to give me a witness whether the letter and the matter of it was true or false. Something seemed to bear upon my mind like a clear calmness that the work was true.
In the letter my mother urged me by all the language she could command not to contend against the work if I did not receive it and a long strong testimony of its truth.
Nothing of moment transpired from that time until sometime in June. When, as I went out of the house to go to the Tan Yard, I saw Jared Carter coming towards the front gate. Quick as lightning a spirit flashed into me to oppose him, however I met and shook hands with him over the gate and after saying how d'y do, I said something like this: "I don't want you to say anything about your Mormonism to me." I felt as though I did not want to speak to him. Out of respect to him, however, I invited him into the house and chatted a few moments then went out to the tan yard. On the way I reflected much upon my conduct to Jared; that I ought not to shun investigation, and asked myself why I felt such a strange feeling of opposition all of a sudden. When I had, before, been so anxious to hear: and resolved to broach the matter myself as soon as I got in the house. I stayed but a few minutes in the tan yard then went to the house and commenced questioning Jared about Mormonism and continued investigation, more and more pleased with what I heard. He seemed to me filled with light, he answered all my questions to my satisfaction, and gave out many ideas I had never thought of. On the morning of the 3rd day I was ready for baptism. It was, I think, the forepart of June, 1832. Jared and I went about a mile to Champlain River and there he baptized me and confirmed me at the waters edge, and then started to return to his home. I walked on with him several miles while he instructed me, telling me I was now baptized by the authority of the priesthood which was direct from God, that I as now entitled to obtain the gift of the Holy Ghost which was the same that Christ told his apostles of that it should lead them into all truth, and much other similar instructions. I finally parted from him and returned towards home. On the way back while pondering over what Jared had taught me, a bright light burst on my mind. Many passages of Scripture came most plain and clear to my mind. I understood the work of these last days. I was full of intelligence and light and had a full evidence of the truth of Mormonism. And realized what Jared had been telling me that it was my privilege to obtain from the Lord in relation to the gifts. Jared further informed me before he left that a conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was to be held in the town of Benson, Vermont on August 10th at my wife's father's house, Jabez Carter. He also informed me that two of my wife's brothers Luman and Daniel Carter had joined the church and also many others of her relations and friends. In fact, the work had taken deep hold in her family. Her cousin John S. Carter a free will Baptist Preacher of considerable note was baptized also. About two weeks previous to Jared's visit I had been appointed class leader in the Methodist Church. The suddenness of my change from Methodism to Mormonism had a strong effect upon my wife, she felt very bad about it. However, I went about teaching and exhorting and full of zeal bearing powerful testimonies of the truth of Mormonism.
On the 15th July 1832 my oldest son Clark was born being our third child, in the latter part of this same month I received the visit of Orson Pratt and Lyman Johnson who strengthened and comforted me very much. My wife was still confined to her bed during their visit. They remained but three days and went away. Their visit seemed to anger my wife still more against the church. She became so bitter that she almost lost her reason. One morning in the forepart of August, I had been reasoning with my wife in mildness, meekness and calmness, when she suddenly seized her infant son and left the house determined never to live with me again. She knew that the Methodist circuit preacher was at John Shadins house about a mile from my house. When she reached the house they were at breakfast, the doors all open, and the Methodist preacher sat in such a manner that he saw my wife as she approached the kitchen door. He called aloud to her as she approached, "Ah Mrs. Ames, how is that Mormon husband of yours? If I had been to your house when those two fellows were there I would have cracked their heads together." (Slapping his hands together up over his head.) All this was said in a sneering, jeering mocking tone and manner. It had a powerful effect on the mind of my wife, who turned instantly about without speaking and returned home. She told me she was convinced I was right, told me of the preachers words and that she saw that he was full of a devilish spirit. And from that moment was a humble, obedient, quiet, dutiful wife. I never saw so great a change in anyone. She said she was willing to be subject to me, to gather with the Saints or do whatever I saw proper, for she saw the difference in my spirit and that preachers. About the 6th August 1832, I hired a horse and rig and taking Albert Belding with me I went to Benson, 130 miles to the conference spoken of above. Albert had not been baptized but was inclined to believe. On the way I stopped at my Uncle Samuel's and stayed all night. In the evening there were a number of the neighbors in there and the subject of Mormonism was brought up. Firstly they commenced sympathizing with me because I had been beguiled by Mormonism.
Then they turned in to using the most cutting ridicule, telling over the tales about "Jo Smith" walking on the water, gold hunting etc. It appeared as if the Lord had left me to myself to try me and humble me down, so that I might learn to lean upon him and not on my own powers. I was in deep anguish of mind, their conversation and spirit had seemed to get control over me; I knew not what to think, nor what to believe. I was in an agony. When I retired to my bed room, I bowed myself down in anguish before the Lord and besought him in mighty prayer and faith to give me a testimony of the truth of this work--I wrestled sometime and then went to bed and slept--Towards morning a personage appeared to me in my sleep, and in the dream I appeared as though lying upon a bed, the personage said "Arise and read the Eleventh Chapter of Isaiah." And he went away. And came again soon after and said again, "Arise and read the Eleventh Chapter of Isaiah." And again went away. He came the third time and said "Arise and read the Eleventh Chapter of Isaiah to confirm you of the truth of the work" and then went away. I immediately awoke and saw on the stand at the head of my bed a large Bible. Albert Belding was in the bed with me. My getting out of the bed awoke him, and I told him I was going to read the 11th Chapter of Isaiah to confirm me in relation to Mormonism. I knew nothing of that chapter, did not know that I had ever read it. It was just at dawn of day, barely light enough to read. I read it and the spirit made me understand the latter day work pictured in that chapter. I was satisfied and felt to rejoice and thank the Lord for his kindness in manifesting the thing to me and I told Him it was enough. My Uncle at this time was very deaf, so that he heard but little of general conversation. He was as affectionate to me as ever. My aunt also was as affectionate as ever but Mormonism troubled them a little and I said but little to them about it. I passed on with Albert to the Conference where I met Orson Pratt, Lyman Johns, Sylvester Smith and Jared Carter and Gideon and about twelve others members of the church. I was very young in the Church and knew but little but thought I knew it all. And then when Orson Pratt, Lyman, Sylvester and others spoke to us, they unfolded new principle after new principle, glory after glory, until my Soul was fed with fatness, and I wept many tears of joy. And not to this day (1858) have I ever attended a conference where I enjoyed myself and my religion more than I did there. Conference held Saturday and Sunday, and at this Conference I was ordained a Priest under the hands of Jared and Simeon Carter. I returned from the Conference to my home and commenced at once gathering up my means, disposing of my prosperity, preparing to gather with the Saints. Mormonism found me in prosperous circumstances. My Tan yard and farm yielded me plenty of means. And I was much respected in that country. I held the office of County Commissioner, and some other miner offices. And there was every prospect of my being somebody in the world.
Nothing of interest transpired until January 1833 when I closed a bargain for my property for $400, it was worth $1,000. And the following beginning of May I started with my wife and three children for Kirtland, Ohio. On the way we stopped at Jabez Carter's, my wife's father at Benson, and finding some there who were anxious to gather also, and who desire us to wait for them, I remained at Benson three months; and about the 1st of September, started in company with Amos F. Herrick, Luman Carter & Widow Gibbs; And after a land journey of 700 miles arrived about the beginning of October in Kirtland. When I landed in Kirtland I found the saints had begin to build a temple there, it was raised up to the first floor.
I immediately rented a house and put my family into it. And in a few days had the pleasure of an introduction to the Prophet Joseph Smith Jr. I found him in some respects like all other men. I commenced at once the business of Shoemaking, having means and leather to do so. And did pretty well. I accumulated means to build me a house the next season. This Fall, Nov. 13, 1833 I witnessed the beautiful scene of the falling of the stars, and went from house to house waking up the people to have them see it. I went to Joseph's house, he was standing at his front gate with Oliver Cowdry. A few days after this I met Sidney Rigdon who told me the Saints had been driven from Jackson County Missouri and that he was around gathering means for their relief. I gave him all I had about me which was but $1.00.
In December, Martin Harris stayed all night at my house. Towards morning before day, we were impressed to get up and go to Joseph's house. On reaching his house we found Joseph and Oliver Cowdry at breakfast. Oliver said to us "Good morning Brethren, we have just received news from heaven" and pointed to some sheets of paper lying on the table. They had been up all night receiving and writing the revelation. And Emma had just got breakfast for them. It was the revelation given in December 1833 on the 235 Page of the 1st edition of Doctrine of Covenants. Martin Harris took it up and read it to us. Whereat we rejoiced exceedingly. Early this spring the commandment went forth to gather up the strength of the Lords house and go up to the Redemption of Zion. I went to Joseph who knew well my situation. He told me to tarry at home, build my house and work on the temple. In a short time I completed my house and moved my family into it and worked the whole summer on the temple. And when Joseph returned from Missouri he praised us much for our diligence. I forgot to state that while at Benson, Vermont on our way to Kirtland, Elder Orson Pratt came there, I think in the latter part of August, 1833. My wife had been desiring baptism for some time previous; and took this opportunity and was baptized by Orson Pratt in Lake Champlain and confirmed the same day.
March 13th, 1834 I received my Patriarchal Blessing under the hands of Joseph Smith Senior, at a feast and blessing meeting which I made at my house for the widows and orphaned. Joseph & Hyrum and Joseph Sew, Oliver Cowdry, Orson Hyde and some others were there, and it was a very pleasant time, a glorious meeting.
Brother Ames, I lay my hands upon thy head in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ that the Lord may grant thee long life that thou mayest labor in the vineyard. Behold thou shalt see afflictions, persecutions and things that will cause thee to mourn. Thou hast yet to become a new man all together. Thou shalt receive the ministration of Angels, and the Lord shall uphold thee. Thou shalt be in the midst of pestilence, war, and bloodshed and the Lord shall preserve thee. Thou art initiated into the family of Joseph and shall be one of the Horns of Joseph to push the people together from the ends of the Earth. Thou shalt live til thou art satisfied with life and shall yet see many good days, and thou shalt labor for Zion. And the Lord shall bless thee with thy blessings even the Holy Ministry. Amen--
Given by Joseph Smith Sen. in Kirtland March 13, 1834. My wife was blessed at the same time by Patriarch Joseph Sen. but the blessing is lost. I was present at the organization of the first High Council in February and heard Joseph give the revelation. In relation to it, see Doctrine and Covenants page 95. 1st edition about November 1835. I started in company with Jared Carter to visit our friends in the East. And get some property I had left in the hands of Josiah Eaton, My wife's sister's husband. I went first to Benson and visited my old father in law who received us kindly. I stayed a day or so and then went to Shoveham and visited my Uncle who was in good health, as also my Aunt. After spending a day or so with them I proceeded to Mooers, State of New York, where I had resided. I called upon Josiah Eaton for the 350 dollars worth of leather shoes, which I had left with him for sale. He had in the mean time built a large fine house--and was in debt and could not pay me. However, I got 25 dollars from him and started back. Upon reaching my Uncles' again he told me that he had made a will leaving me 500 dollars but that owing to my joining the Mormons, he had altered his will giving me but 200 dollars and the $300 he willed to my Brother Clarks Son, Samuel. When I was leaving my Uncle, he allowed me to receive the $200 less some interest, this was quite a help to me. At Lyons, in the State of New York, I visited my Mother and Sister Sally who were well. I arrived back in Kirtland sometime in December.
I was present at a general assembly of the Church on the 17th August, 1835, to accept the Book of Doctrine and Covenants as our rule of faith, and gave my vote as president of the Priests Quorum. See D&C page 257 1st edition. Ever since my arrival in Kirtland I had stood guard at night in consequence of the Mob and persecutions we endured. Especially the winter of 1835 and frequently taking my blanket and sleeping in Joseph's house and guarding my portion of the time and continued as one of Joseph's body guard until I left Kirtland.
This winter an organization was entered into by Joseph & Hyrum Smith, Oliver Cowdry, Reginold Cahoon, Jared Carter and William Smith. Called the "Building Committee." Hyram & Oliver went to Buffalo and bought a large amount of goods on Credit which reached Kirtland as soon as Spring opened. In the mean time, I was entrusted with the Temple Books to post them and right them up. They were in complete confusion when I took them. I also had the receiving of the tithings and donations and their distribution; and after the arrival of the goods, I was appointed Clerk in the store and remained there through the season. I was Chorister at the dedication of the Temple and had charge of the donations given at the door. There were three large tin pans full of gold and silver. The dedication lasted three days. A great many strangers came from the Country to see it and all donated freely. I also received my washings and anointings in the temple. There was a meeting held at which all who had done anything towards building the temple were blessed and the blessings recorded. I was blessed at that meeting. This same season in consequence of the honorable conduct of the "Building Committee" in paying up the Merchants of Buffalo, Hyrum and Oliver received a recommend from the Merchants in Buffalo to the Merchants in New York, and went to New York and bought forty thousand dollars worth of goods and got them to Kirtland before winter set in. These goods were all sold to Jacob Bump. And About the same time say Nov. 1856, I sold out my house to Jacob Bump for twenty five hundred dollars. One thousand in cash and fifteen hundred to be paid in store pay. This I received. Then I went to Joseph for counsel as to whether I should go to Missouri. Clerking in the store did not agree with me and I was in bad health. Joseph said he did not want me to go until the Church went. This I did not understand. He also told me I had done wrong to sell my house without consulting him first. I was foolish enough to urge my request for permission to go to Missouri. He told me to lay the matter before the High Council. I went to Uncle John Smith and he ordered the High Council to be called and the matter was laid before them. But they could make nothing of it, and finally decided to refer the matter to Joseph for him to get a revelation upon it. Such babes were we in those days. Joseph received the word of the Lord about as follows: Verily this saith the Lord unto my Servant Ira it is not my will that you should go up to the land of Missouri until the residue of my church go.
After receiving this revelation I asked Joseph what I should do with my money. He said he had no counsel for me on that and I was a free agent over it, and that I must do with it as I pleased. Previous to this John Boyington and Lyman Johnson had been to New York and in some unaccountable manner had got many thousand dollars worth of goods on credit. Upon their return they bought a farm of one Ariel Hanson, a gentile. They paid him part down, and gave him a mortgage on the place for the rest. The Farm lay just north of Kirtland and was included in the City Limits. I bought 18 acres of the farm at $100 per acre paid $1500 down and gave a Mortgage for the $300.
The next Spring came a universal crash in the Kirtland among the speculators. Scare one but lose all he was worth. Boyington & Johnson failed to pay off the mortgage on the farm. And the whole reverted back to Hanson and I lost all I paid and the land too. And further Boyington and Johnson tried to get my horses from me on the $300.00 but I foreseeing that, put them in Daniel Carter's hands who saved them for me. I then got a little means together and bought a small farm of Durfee, paying 1000 dollars for it upon which I remained until the following Spring and in April 1838 sold it again for a horse worth $90.00, a Wagon worth thirty dollars and harness worth sixteen dollars and $136.00 I started for Missouri about one week after Bro. Joseph, with my family. Consisting of my wife and four children, Clarissa, Rebecca, Clark and Ira, Jr. Ira Junior was born in Kirtland, Geauga County, Ohio on the 3rd October 1836. My whole outfit for my Journey to Missouri was one wagon three horses, $30.00 in money and $30 dollars worth of dry goods not made up. In consequence of the illness of our youngest child Ira Junior we were very much detained on the road stopping sometimes a week in a place. In consequence of this my means failed and my wife who was an excellent stock maker made stocks (Neck stock) as we went along and sold to the amount of $30.00 sustaining us by that means. We traveled on until we arrived within 80 miles of Far West at the house of one Amos F. Herrick a member of the church, the same with whom I had traveled from Benson to Kirtland. He urged me to stop at this place. He had plenty of house room, it was getting late in the season, most too late to plant corn so I stopped and put in about three acres of corn and a large amount of Buckwheat. And when the wheat harvest was ready I took a very large piece to cut and thrash for one third and did well at it.
However, I ought to state that previous to my leaving Kirtland, Bishop Newel K. Whitney recommended that I be ordained a High Priest as I had been with the brethren so long in Kirtland and was now leaving and did not know where my lot would be cast, that I might be somewhere where it would be necessary for me to preside in preference to some who had always been away from the body of the church. And I was ordained a High Priest in the Temple at Kirtland, just before I left.
A couple of weeks after I arrived at Bro Herricks in Randolf County Father Joseph Smith came along and stopped with me some days. He proposed that I be appointed president of the branch and proceed and organize it. Bro. Herrick had been chosen by the Saints then as president, He was an elder, and was very anxious, I should be president, so I was chosen and appointed. There were about 80 saints in the County. When the word reached us of the general mobbing, I felt that I ought to be at Far West with the body of the Church. I called the brethren together and counseled them to pack up and be off to Far West; that I was going as quick as I possibly could and recommended them to follow on. I soon got under way, and went on until I reached about eight miles from Grand River. There I met a small company of Saints who told me that the mob had sunk the Ferry boat to prevent Mormons from passing over. I told them I was going to Far West and called on them to follow, but none followed only a widow woman and her family, her husband had died in Randolf County. I left these people and turning to the right, I struck boldly out on the prairie, the widow following and crossed Grand River about 16 miles above at Comptous Ferry. The negro who ferried us over said a man had been there a few minutes before to forbid him ferrying over Mormons. Said he, I don't know whether you are Mormons nor don't care. I again struck out on to the prairie without a road and struck Shoal Creek at a bridge, providence certainly guided me. That night I camped on Shoal Creek and reached Far West next day full of joy and rejoicing. I obtained a small house for my family and went and saw Joseph and from that time until the day of surrender of Far West, I and my horses were every day either riding express or going into the regions around with a wagon to bring in families who were in danger. And actually wore my coat out carrying my gun on my shoulder. I arrived in Far West about six weeks before the surrender. On the day of the Surrender in November, I with the rest was marched out of Far West very early in the morning. The mob formed a large hollow square about half a mile east of the Town. Joseph, Hyram, and others were there with the mob as Prisoners. Call Hinkel lead us into the Square of the Mob and there we were forced to lay down our arms. Then we were marched out of the Square to about a quarter of a mile from town and there Hinkle formed us into a hollow square, and immediately there was a guard placed around us of about 300 men and we were kept there until night. Our little children came out to us and we sent them to bring us food. My wife came as near as she dare, so that this guard behaved themselves well. The next day Far West was full of Brethren who had come in from the country with nothing to eat; I turned out a fat ox, the only ox I had. Far West was immediately put under martial law and they allowed no one to enter or leave without a permit.
One day I obtained a permit to go out and get a load of corn to feed my family and horses. We lived mostly on huled corn then in those days. Some days after the surrender some mob officers formed all the men in a line and we were marched to the South East Corner of the Public Square and there, between two rows of troops we were forced to sign a Document deeding all our property to the State to "Defray the Expenses of the Mormon War". I lost by this mob all my crop and everything I possessed, except my two horses and had to build a wagon to move to Illinois. One day after, the Mob had entirely left us, I met Orson Hyde who had apostatized, and I bore a strong plain and faithful testimony to him of the truth of this work and of his position. I told him I knew this work was true and he knew that he had preached powerfully under the influence of the Holy Ghost which he had received through the administration of the Priesthood. He knew this and now if he continued in his apostasy he would lose that spirit entirely. It was now decided that we were all to leave the State. I went to work at Shoemaking and by this means obtained a wagon, and sustained my family, while living in Randolf County, Missouri. On the 1st day of September 1838, my third son Daniel was born, being our fifth child.
Sometime in March I left Far West with one wagon and a span of horses for Illinois. My wife had been ill for sometime previous and was now so weak that I had to lift her in and out of the wagon. We were 18 days on the road to Quincy. I made no halt there but was lead to go to the little town of Clayton about 25 miles east of Quincy. The same night of my arrival there, a man named Mr. Cooms came to me and I bargained with him to work for him at Tanning at $1.00 per day. He had just built a new tan yard.
On the twenty second day of June 1839 my wife Charity died. Her illness was occasioned by the hardships the severe trials of mind and the scenes she had passed through in the mobbing at Far West. She was a most excellent wife and mother. She was all a man could ask of a wife. My affection for her was powerful and death will loose much of its sting in the joyful anticipation of seeing her again.
I was thus left with five small children the youngest only nine months old, and I was entirely dependant upon my $1.00 per day for their support, so that I could give them little or no attention. There were several Mormon families in the place. And the women were kind, calling in now and again and cleaning up everything about the house. Among those who were the most frequent there was a Sister Sarah Johnson, a young woman of 25 years old. Her kindness and attention to my children begot in me an affection for her. O Porter Rockwell's mother and others felt much for my situation and finally proposed that I should marry Sarah Johnson and I gave Mother Rockwell permission to talk with Sarah about it, and if agreeable I would meet her at Mother Rockwell's house. We met next day and agreed to marry. Sarah made her home at her Sister's husbands, James Huntsman. She wished to have the marriage performed at her sisters house who lived about three miles from town. She bought some groceries and we went. She told her sister about her marriage, who was well pleased. And when her husband came in she told him. He flew to pieces like glass and said she should not marry. Sarah told him she would, that he should not again stop her from marrying. He told her if she would marry she must leave his house. Sarah said, "You'll let me stay until morning won't you?" and he said yes. So early in the morning Sarah gathered up her budget and returned to town across the prairie through the dew and was wet to her knees and stopped at Brother Saml Rolf's. Sister Rolf came to my house and let me know she was there. I went and met her coming. She said she was ready and willing to fulfil her promise and on the 10th of August 1839 we were married at O. Porter Rockwell's house by Elder William Gould. Sarah Johnston was born May 6th in Belmont County, Ohio. She was the daughter of Saml Johnston and Elizabeth Huntsman. Nothing worthy of note occurred from this time until the year 1840 when I went alone to Nauvoo bought a lot on the Hotchkiss purchase and built a small log house and returned to Clayton gathered up my family hired our passage and landed in Nauvoo in the beginning of April. I was reduced to real poverty. One horse had died and I sold the other and the wagon to Samuel Rolf but he never paid me for them to this day (1858) except a mere trifle.
Upon arriving in Nauvoo I had but little provisions or anything else. I took a job of splitting out oak pickets and picketing in an acre lot for Brother..... and took my pay all in provisions. I also put in my own garden. Sometime in July I went in a canoe up the river with a young man to get some timber off the island, we had a long cross cut saw with us by some means we up set the canoe in about 17 feet water, near the shore. We made a kind of a rake but could not get it up. So after trying sometime I concluded to dive for it. I dove twice before I obtained it. A day or two after, I was taken down with the chills and fever, and did no more work until the next spring. Early in the Spring Lyman White came to me and desired me to move to Augusta in Iowa where he was living. He wanted me to set up the shoemaking business which he said was much wanted there. I got into his wagon and went with him, hired a house of Levi Moffit, returned to Nauvoo, hired a team and took my family to Augusta. I was very poor when I went there, but was greatly prospered all the time I was there. Shortly after I moved to Augusta, I was appointed to preside over that branch, which was quite numerous. All things went off smoothly and well that summer. I enjoyed it much. In the winter I gathered up all the grain that I had earned, had it floured at Moffit's Mill, built a flat boat and early in the Spring put all my effects on board. Took my family and some three other families, and floated down Skunk River and landed in Nauvoo all safe, and I moved with my family into my house there, which I had not sold. Here Samuel was born on the 12th July 1842, Sarah's first born. In August at a meeting in the grove east of the Temple, a large number of Elders were being called upon missions. Bro. Brigham Young happened to get his eye upon me and gave in my name. My first acquaintance with Bro. Brigham Young was in Kirtland before he was called to the Apostleship. He came frequently to my house to sing, of which we were both very fond. I always had a peculiar attachment for Bro. Brigham from that day until the present moment (1858). My wife Sarah was quite sick and I was poor but the moment I was called I felt the spirit of my mission. Everything from that moment turned to my hand I made arrangements for the support of my family. I had sold my flat boat to Bro. John Burkett, and he was to furnish my family $40.00 worth of wood but he never furnished one stick. On the 26th day of September 1842, I left my wife and her child sick and started with James Emmett on my mission East. James Emmett had two horses. He got me to ride one and he rode the other. We traveled in a zig zag course trying to find an opening, preaching every chance we could get until we reached the borders of Indiana near Bearfield. There we halted as there was a prospect of doing something. We tarried three weeks preached often, held a discussion baptized two persons left one horse here then proceeded on east preaching as we went as opportunity offered until we reached Richland County Ohio. We there tarried with my wife Sarah's relations about three days and preached once. They treated us very friendly and kindly. They were none of them members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. From thence we wended our way to Huron County Ohio where my mother was residing. As we were approaching the house we agreed we would try her faith a little. So I stept up to the door and knocked. My mother came to the door, it was just at dusk. She did not recognize me at first. I asked her if she could accommodate a couple of travelers, Mormon Elders with food and a bed, she said she could. I looked smilingly at her and said that perhaps she might recognize a friend. She looked stearlily at me a moment and said, Why, if that ain't Ira, she was glad indeed to see me. She was spinning and weaving and was very cheerful. We tarried over night. Then next morning my brother- in-law Horace Childs to whom my sister Sarah had been married some 8 or 10 years and they were living with my mother, Horace went around and notified the neighbors for a meeting in the School House. Horace & Sarah and my Mother were members of the church. In the evening we met and I felt a little backward and requested Brother Emmett to preach. He arose but could say little or nothing and in ten minutes he sat down. And before he sat down the spirit came upon me and I never spoke with greater freedom than I did that night. After the meeting was over, all retired to their houses peacefully. My Mother came and took hold of my arm and said "Ira, I am astonished. I never had an idea you were capable of preaching so powerful, such learning, such power of language," said I, "Mother, it was not I that preached it was the Holy Ghost, the power of God and not me. Brother Emmett is a far greater preacher than I, yet he could not say a word because you all wanted to hear me and the spirit restrained him". That night I talked to my Mother & Sister and Horace, teaching them to gather, urged it upon them, and the next morning at Breakfast table I donbined the same subject urging them to sell out and go to Nauvoo. Horace went out of doors and wept like a child and when he was more calm returned and urged my mother and sister to gather saying he knew that if they did not it would be to them destruction and condemnation. Bro. Emmett and I consulted what course we should now take. We concluded to go to Kirtland. We went thence to Cleveland and put up at a Brother's House who lived just out of Cleveland. He informed us that he thought if we would tarry a little while and preach there that we might do a good work. Consequently we tarried a few days preached some, baptized eight or ten persons and in about ten days proceeded to Kirtland. On arriving there we found Lyman White one of the Twelve Apostles with whom we counseled. He advised us to continue our course east towards Erie Pennsylvania. And told us of a place on the way where we could stop. We stopped there two days but seeing no opening we went on to Erie arriving there in January 1843. We found a man named Benjamin Souls who with his wife had been baptized. He received us with hospitality. The next morning he took me to a store and got me some cloth for a pair of pants and took it to a tailor and had a pair of pants made for me. Bless him. In conversation with the old man he told me he thought there was a good chance for an opening in the regions around and proposed that he and Brother Emmett should go in a sleigh to Venango township in Pennsylvania to Jackson Butler's house. While I was left at Erie to go to Wesleyville about four miles from Erie, there I went to the house of Bro. John Sprigs, who received me kindly and preached there that evening and the next and had a good time. But Wesley was there, God and I could baptize no one. Bro. Sprigs told me he had an appointment out to preach about eight miles south of Erie at Green Township. I went with him there and found the meeting was to be in a school house in Brown's settlement. It was Sunday evening and we went direct to the meeting. It was very full. There to our mutual astonishment I net Bro. Emmett with Bro. Souls and Brother Andrew Altle also came. When the meeting was opened Bro. Sprigs desired me to preach. I told him it was his meeting and he ought to preach, but there was Brother Emmett who was a preacher which I was not, and also there was Elder Lytle. But he could not prevail upon them to preach. So it fell to my lot. I was full to overflowing and could hardly get my words out fast enough. The Lord aided me and the words sunk deep into the hearts of many. After this meeting was over. Several stepped forward and invited us to go home with them and preach in their neighborhood. I told them that was my business and I was on hand. The next morning Bro. Emmett and I consulted together and concluded to go to where Bro. Lytle was. We went there to Mr. Charles Fisk's but Brother Lytle was gone. Our reception was so cold we left in a few moments and while returning towards the main road, Bro. Emmett halted and said, "Brother Ames, I have it in my mind that you and I should part and not meet again on the mission". I told him I did not at all feel so not in the least. The fact was I felt my weakness and had leaned a great deal upon him. Emmett was a good reasoner, and was powerful in argument in the Chimney Corner. I was loth to part from him, I liked him, but when I saw him so resolved, and perceiving that it was only jealousy on his part and after talking with him firmly resolved, I consented. And told him that I should consider Brown's settlement my field of labor and he might take Jackson Butler's in Venango township for his field, they were eight miles apart. I verily believed that Emmett had an idea that there was considerable that could be done in Venago and wanted alone, the glory of it, and after parting with him I said to myself if you do much good from this time I shall guess wrong. He went to Butler's and burrowed up all winter, baptizing Jackson Butler and his wife and no other. I made my place of rendezvous at Ezekiel Brown's through the winter where I was treated with the highest respect and were glad to receive me whenever I passed that way. I preached in the regions around, and baptized Alfred Walton and wife Sally. Michael Lane and Wife, Elizabeth Mathison and Abigail Nichols. It was a very cold winter and a great deal of snow and people could not get out to hear. I held several debates in public with ministers of different denominations. From the leaving Nauvoo up to the time we separated, Bro. Emmett and I had held 52 public meeting, and here is the place to state a circumstance about Emmett. After he had said he wanted no more to travel with me he met me one time at Joel Olds where I had introduced him. He told me he had something to propose to me, and that was that we buy a light wagon together and go east visiting among the churches (As I was lead to believe to get money). I told him I did not feel so. That I had not one cent to buy a wagon with, he pointed to Mr. Olds wagon, a very good one, there, said he, is one that will suit our purpose and if you will back me up I think we can get it. You and I have each a watch, we can leave them in pawn, and we can get a harness, and have a horse and we can go. I felt that he meant virtually to steal the wagon and then swindle the brethren East, by pretending to raise money for the Temple etc., and if he could have got me linked in to back him up he thought he could make a good speck out of it. These were my reflections at the time and I determined never to have anymore to do with him. I further told him I considered our mission ended, and that the whole country further East had been faithfully preached to, and I was going to return home from this moment we separated and I saw no more of him until his return from his wild goose chase among the Indians when I met him on the Prairie near Kanesville, and have never seen him since. At that time he threw out many shy insulting insinuations against President B. Young. I rebuked him and told him I was sorry he had taken the round about course he had, and was astonished he should attempt to find fault with President Young. That I stuck close to President Young and therefore knew his course and conduct and could find no fault with him.
In April after being about three months at Brown's settlement I spoke to Bro. Alfred Walton and urged him to get up a team and take his family consisting of a wife and five children, and I would go with him to Nauvoo. He received the proposition with gladness of heart, got all together and we started, before leaving the friends and brethren made up some money and clothing for me. Ezekiel Brown gave me six yards of cloth. Joel Olds gave me $3.00 in money about 14 yards Calico, Rowland Nichols gave me 12 yds Calico and some other things. Mathews & Graham also helped me a little and many others.
Brother Walton had about 40 dollars in money of a bank in Erie, not very good by my advice, we went into a store in Cleveland and purchased goods to exchange on the road for provisions. We arrived in Cleveland on Sunday morning. The brethren were rejoiced to see me, and ran around and soon got a large congregation together and I preached twice that day. Then we started for Nauvoo, the goods we had bought were a great blessing to us on the road, provisions were very cheap, Corn 10¢ per bushel and they allowed us a large price for our goods, for instance we paid 3 cents a paper for pins and we paid them out at 10 cents getting a bushel of corn for a paper of pins that cost 3 cents. Thus we journeyed and reached Nauvoo sometime in June 1843. I found my family in health and tolerably comfortable. My wife had planted the garden and it was all up nice.
Soon after I came home Daniel Carter who had previously purchased 160 acres of land about 8 miles north East of the Temple, came to me and I contracted with him to help him fence all that land in and then live on it and cultivate it, there was a log house on it, I therefore moved my family out on the farm. That same fall we broke up ten acres of sod and sowed it to wheat. And during the winter and spring we got out good oak rails and fenced in the whole 180 acres. Daniel Carter had buried his wife sometime previous and he now lived with us with his two children. I broke up considerable prairie sod this spring and put in a large amount of Corn and had a good garden living where I did, and overburdened with work and in such poverty that I stuck very close to my work and had no particular hand in the events that transpired previous to Joseph's death. The morning after his death on the 28th June 1844 while at breakfast a messenger arrived who told us Joseph and Hyrum had been shot in Carthage Jail and that their bodies would be brought into Nauvoo on that day. My wife and I took our infant, Samuel near two years old and went to Nauvoo, carrying the child. We stayed in Nauvoo until the funeral was over. And had the agonizing satisfaction of seeing them dead in their coffins. My feelings I will not attempt to describe, language can't pait it. I returned to my farm with my wife and Child in a strange frame of mind. This was the hardest summer I ever spent in my life for food. And our minds were in constant tension expecting the Mob to come and destroy all our labor, but we were not molested by the mob at that time. We harvested about 300 bushels of wheat between us, and about twenty acres of corn, fattening several fine hogs and vegetables plenty. This fall we sowed twenty acres of wheat.
This spring, we gathered a strong force, broke up a large amount of sod and planted it to corn, oats, buckwheat, peas and everything common to that Country. February 13, 1845 Ithamer was born being my wife Sarah's second child, he lived but three weeks and died in fits on the 2nd day of March 1845 and was buried on Daniel Russels farm and Bishop Leonard Harrington's Child was buried in the same grave. This year we raised 1,000 bushels of corn 400 of wheat, and a large quantity of other grain, peas, potatoes etc. I fattened a number of hogs, My position was such that I was not called upon to take part in any of the actions against the mob this year, nor was I molested by them, nor did any man in that neighborhood have any part in it.
In the fall I made a contract with a man in Appenoose, two miles from my house to deliver him 550 Bushels of Corn at 12½ cents per bushel sacked. I and my two boys Clark and Ira thrashed it out and delivered it and with the money I bought a splendid yoke of Cattle which proved my salvation. In April 1846 about the middle of the month we crossed the Mississippi River to Fort Madison and camped there for a week or ten days. My family consisted of my wife, Sarah, my children were Rebecca, Clark, Ira Junior, and Samuel, My outfit was two yoke of Oxen a wagon, two Cows and three Sheep. I had 1200 lbs flour and 300 lbs bacon and a few other trifles.
We started about the latter end of April for Council Bluffs in company with James Huntsman and Brother Whittle. I found Bro. Whittle to be a MAN, We had to frequently double team as we journeyed and arrived without accident at the Bluffs a few days previous to the Call for the Mormon Battalion. I look back even at this day wonder how singular it is that I escaped all the wars in which the church was engaged to that time but I attributed it to the very lowest dregs of poverty and sickness through which I and my family had to pass for several years; we really and truly drank the dregs of the cup of poverty. But neither my wife Sarah nor I ever murmured or complained once, but struggled patiently on in hope and faith. On my way to the Bluffs on arriving at Grand River, I found there a camp of Saints scant of provisions. I halted, pealed bark, built a bark shanty put my family and effects into it and by counsel of the authorities there, I went back to the Des Moines river and with my own means purchased flour and corn meal and returned to Grand River and distributed it around among the saints. Then loaded in my family and effects into the wagon and went on to the Bluffs and arrived as before stated. I was present at the organization of that battalion and its departure for Mexico. I remained on the South side of the Missouri River, chose a location about three miles from Kanesville, west near the Banks of the River. There I built three log houses and opened a farm of fifty acres.
On the 5th July 1848 Hannah was born, being my Wife Sarah's third child, and died on the 14th June 1850 at Kanesville. We remained at the bluffs farming and raising Stock being greatly blessed and prospered until the year 1851, when I sold out my farm, gathered up my means and started for Great Salt Lake. My outfit was two new wagons, 4 yoke of Oxen, 2 yoke Cows and some two or three head of loose stock. 100 lbs coffee 100 of sugar 100 of soap and plenty of other necessaries, and two good cook stoves.
I crossed the Missouri River at Old Winter Quarters about the first of May and travelled out about three miles where I joined one hundred wagons of the Saints and we there organized. James Allred was chosen Captain of 100 and William Shirtliff was chose Captain of 50, and I was chosen Br. Shirtliffs 1st Counsellor. The bottoms of the Elk Horn River were all overflowed and impassible for wagons at this time. And by counsel of Orson Hyde President of the Twelve and Presiding Elder over all that region of Country and had the charge of Emigrating the Saints, we were to travel around the head of the Elk Horn. My own mind at that time was to remain in Camp where we were, busy ourselves in making roads and let our cattle be fattening on the rich prairie grass until we could cross the Horn, which would have been in 2 or 3 weeks. And we would have gained time by it as by the rout we took we traveled 250 miles, and struck the Platt River about 100 only from where we started, and had to cross the Horn at last. The country we passed through up the Horn had the appearance of having been a Desert of Sand. The wind had swept the sand into hills which were movable by the winds. It was a wild country as ever I saw, it was cut up with Buffalo pawing holes, pretty good grass and water except the latter part where we suffered much for water. We saw no buffalo except one which had been killed, until we reached the Platt and there on the Platt Bottoms we saw thousands on thousands of them, and traveled through immense herds of them, where we were obliged to ride through them with our horses to open the way for our teams to pass.
The whole camp felt deeply chagrined that they had been sent around. It was a source of constant vexation to them, for the road was very bad. We had to cross a great many little muddy streams, which had to be bridged and no brush or timber to bridge them. We would cut hay and fill it in then run, 2 or 3 wagons, then the water would rise and require more hay, etc. A more tedious wearisome journey can scarce be imagined. In one place we were obliged to empty our wagons, hitch chains together about 15 rods and after unyoking our cattle we drove the over. Then yoked them together and put on about 10 yoke to an empty wagon and haul it over. I then formed a bridge of wagons and we passed our effects over in this manner. We broke a great many chains in the operation, this operation had to be performed in three different places. We had 4 stampedes of cattle before we reached the Platt by which some damage was done but nobody hurt. Just before we reached the Platt one night fearing a Stampede, we gathered up our cattle onto a knoll and placed a strict guard around them. I was one of that guard. About 10 at night, I was stooping down with my gun across my knee and looking steadily at the cattle, all was as still as death, not a word was spoken by the guard and it was a still calm night. There was nothing struck the ear but the cattle (who were all laid down) breathing and grunting. In one instant as quick as a flash of lightening every animal was up and off. They ran about a quarter of a mile in one body and then divided in two bodies and continued on from ten to 15 miles before they stopped. But we got them all again, but I lost two cows, one was hurt in the corral and the other gave out at the pass. There was about 250 wagons that took this desperate route.
In fact our cattle got into such a spirit of Stampeding before we reached the Platt that we had a great deal of trouble with them. One day I was obliged to keep my wheels locked for several hours to restrain my cattle. At one time the cattle stampeded, some ran but a short distance we drove up and yoked up. Moved our wagons into the form of an L and hitched them to the wheels with chains on the inside of the L and every yoke had someone to stand by them and guard them. About once in half an hour a spirit of stampede would get into the whole of them in one instant and they would all start, Cringe down, tremble, shudder, hold their breath every head turned in the same direction and their bodies would shring from that direction. We would speak to them and after some minutes would get them calmed down again. We found the balance of our cattle hitched up and drove on. About two or three days drive from the Platt one captain Smith, captain of ten, got a spirit of revolt or Stampede into him which was communicated to his whole ten. They wanted to go a little faster. Did not want to be kept back by the rest. He started ahead in the morning and drove on ahead and camped about five miles ahead of us that night. The next morning we drove on and came up to his camp, his cattle had stampeded in the night and the men were all out hunting them. We halted a few moments and held a consultation, then drove about a half a mile further and called a halt and I then spoke to the Captain of 50 and consulted with him as to whether it was not best for us to stop and help them. He laid the matter before the camp. It appeared the unanimous spirit of the camp to go ahead and leave them, move especially as the other fifty were still back of them who would undoubtedly see to them, and no doubt they would find their cattle again. And we felt it was a just retribution for their revolt. So we drove on. I have since learned that they never found only very few of their cattle but they were picked up by some of the ten who were behind and they lightened up their wagons by throwing away a great many things and finally reached the valley, but a few days after us. One can scarce imagine the joy we all experience when we rose over the Bluff and saw the winding Platt River spread out before us. We drove down to the river and camped on its banks, and used the water out of the river. The next morning a brother shot a Buffalo about 60 rods from Camp. He was very fat and good. It was the first Buffalo we had been able to get.
Before we reached the Platt we halted in the middle of the day to do up some baking and washing. A young man and I started out on a hunt. We marked our course as we went along steering due west, noticing the various trees formation of the hills etc. After traveling about six or seven miles we saw a large flock of Antelope feeding quietly on a high bluff. We agreed to separate and crawl quietly towards them, giving time for both to get a position for a shot. The young man fired first and the whole herd came bounding towards me. I fired and they bounded off but stopped about 80 yards off. We started after to get another shot, but they ran again a short distance. On looking back I saw something lying like a dead Antelope. We went to see it and found it fine and fat. And concluded to let it lay and try to get another shot. Upon reaching a high point we saw at the distance of three or four miles a very large herd of Buffalo in a kind of bottom or basin, but it was getting late, we thought, too late to go there, so we returned and time slipped by. The sun was just going down as we started with our Antelope for the camp. We took our course among the hills, it soon became perfectly dark but we kept on our course, being both agreed but after traveling as far as we thought we ought to, to reach Camp, there was no camp to be seen, and we soon came to a swampy place that we knew we had not seen before, and a short distance further it became miry, so we retraced our steps and took to the left to go around it, and upon rising a slight elevation we found ourselves only about 40 rods from camp. My wife had been going from wagon to wagon full of fear that I was lost. Nothing of any interest occurred until we reached Great Salt Lake Valley, except the usual incidents of a journey over the plains and through the mountains. Our cattle lost the stampede Spirit when we reached the Platt. We were much amused and interested at the Dog towns as we passed along. The animals are about the size of a weasel and they live in towns, burrowing holes in the ground and are of the social order. Upon the approach of danger each one runs to his hole and popping into it stands with his head partly out and makes a sharp, piercing, barking, noise, and so peculiar that it is almost impossible to tell from what direction the sound proceeds. It is not a loud noise but a small weak shrill noise and it can be heard quite a distance. They pile the dirt around the mouth of their holes. They are of a tawny yellow color and they are difficult to shoot, and when shot difficult to get. As you have to shoot at their little heads in the hole and if shot, will drop down in their holes and have to be dug out.
We arrived in the Valley on the 22nd or 23rd of September, 1851 and my heart was poured out in thankfulness to God, that I was once more with his true servants in the chambers of the Lord in the tops of the mountains. I felt heavenly. I felt I was at home again.
A day or two after my arrival I reported myself to Brother Brigham Young, Bro. Heber C. Kimball and Willard Richard were with him. Their unanimous counsel to me was to go into the tanning and currying business. I immediately set myself about finding a place to accommodate my family, I purchased two city lots in the 19th ward in the North West corner of the City of Great Salt Lake. There was a log house on one of them. I paid $250.00 for the two. I spent the fall and winter in getting out lumber in Bingham Canyon in the West mountains to prepare for building in the Spring. I was aided by my son Ira and son in law John Williams, he having married my daughter Clarissa in Kanesville the 27th day of December 1850.
On February 26, 1852 John D. Williams died from Exposure in ditching. The cold settled on his lungs. Clarissa gave birth to a son the 1st day of April and named him Charles, her only child by John. About this time I became acquainted with my third Wife Isabella Caulder who was born in Scotland, Northern Part on the 9th day of January 1822. Her father's name was John Caulder, her mother name was Catherine McCoy. John Caulders mother's name was Mary Catherine, McCoy's father's name was McCoy Donald and his wife's name was McCoy (Margaret). ( Isabella's Story>> My father and mother were living with my Grandfather, when I was born, when I was still and infant, say about 18 months old, my father who was a tall stout healthy man was seized by the Press Gang in the night in his bed and was marched off to the war, and about January 1824 a letter was received by mother stating that my father was shot in battle and was dead. My sister Mary was born that same night of that news. Then, I was 4 years old my mother and self and sister Mary and my Grandfather and his family all moved to Prince Edwards Island near the mouth of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. When 7 years old I went out to service with one Kenneth McLeod and remained with him working very hard 18 years. I then went to live with John Maxfield as a servant. He and his family were Mormons, before I went to live with them. They took a liking to me and when they were about to start for Great Salt Lake, Mr. Maxfield having a sick child, they persuaded me to go with them. They had treated me well and I liked them, so I consented to go with them. At that time I knew or cared but little about Mormonism. On the 1st day of June 1850, I left Prince Edwards Island with John Maxfield and family took steamer for Montreal and proceeded from thence as speedy as possible to Kanesville, but got there a day or so too late to meet the last company that crossed the plains that season. The next season we came on and arrived in Great Salt Lake Valley the 10th of September 1851. Upon arriving here I was taken into the family of Brother Ames Daughter Clarissa who was not well. I was baptized in Great Salt Lake City by Ira Ames July 14, 1852 and on the 21st of July 1852 received by endowments in the Council House in Great Salt Lake City and was sealed the same day to Ira Ames. )
January 31st 1852 My son Henry was born in Great Salt Lake City being my wife Sarah's third son. On the 27th of March 1852 My first wife Charity Carter and my second wife Sarah Johnson were sealed to me by H. C. Kimball in the Council House Great Salt Lake City. Early in the Spring I purchased a lot in the 19th ward of one Benjamin H. Tolman being Lot 6, Block 133 on the State road near the warm spring. I then busied myself putting a log house upon it. Moved part of my family into it and then proceeded to dig down and lay my tan vats, And obtained about a cord of pine bark and about the 1st day of May putting in the first pack of skins.
About the 1st of September I commenced taking out my first leather and currying it. And about the same time commenced laying the foundation of an adobe House and got up the Walls, but owing to the winter setting in so early did not get it enclosed and had to hire a house of Erra Thompson and put my family into it. In October I paid Bro. Tolman for the lot I bought of him.
In the first days of April I moved all my family into my house, it being completed, having four rooms. The same day Sister Destamona Fulmer wife of Joseph Smith came to live with my family and remained with us about six months and then married.......... This summer I built an addition of two shed rooms on the west side of my house. My time was fully occupied with tanning, and the Lord prospered me more than at any other period of my life.
In the fall of 1854 I built a tan house 25 feet by 30.
I will here state that in 1852, when I first started the tanning business I expended everything I had almost to get started. I parted with 4 yoke of Oxen two cows two wagons 2 cooking stoves, groceries, etc. Everything in the tanning process worked awkward. I had to experiment in many ways. In fact I met so many obstacles that it was like learning the trade over again. I had to pay $20 per cord for Pine bark, Tallow from 30 to 40 cents per Pound, Oil could not be had but I sent to the States this year by Livingston & Kinkead and obtained about 40 gallons of fish oil at a cost of six dollars per gallon. Frequently I was obliged to use butter, lard, wolf oil, tar etc (the white pine tar). The dryness of the climate also affected the hides, made it more difficult to break them.
In the summer of 1855 I built a room adjoining my house on the South for a Store 18 ft. by 24 ft. And finished it complete with shelving etc. This Spring I was fortunate in purchasing a good sized cast Iron bark mill, of one Fields, for which I paid $100. and continued prospering in my business. This fall I counselled with President Heber C. Kimball in relation to using the waste water from the warm spring for a water power. My first idea was to put up a water power to grind bark, roll the leather and a pulling machine to break the hides to soften them. There were several springs a short distance east of my house that I spoke with Brother Kimball about. All was agreeable to him. Bro. Kimball told me, "Bro. Ames go ahead here, use the water, put up your machinery, spread yourself and do all you can. Put up what machinery you please". I commenced digging the race this fall. The whole race is about one hundred rods long.
This winter I purchased of William Nixon at different times dry goods to the amount of about one thousand dollars and put them in my store. This winter was a very sever one, the snow was very deep and immense numbers of cattle died of starvation and many drowned by collecting on the ice in the Weber River and breaking in. Their hides were very plenty and my stock of goods aided me much in the purchase of those hides. I obtained about 700 hides.
About the first of June 1856, I laid the corner stone for a mill. I had changed my mind about the mill and from seeing the wants of the poor people of a mill that they could go to near by with wheel barrows and hand carts and by the advice of several of my friends, I concluded to put up a grist mill. So I built this season a Mill twenty one feet by Thirty four feet with basement and two stories above, and put in a run of stone and a bolt, smuttting machine, Elevators etc. I obtained the stone in the Mountain about half a mile north east of the house which proved to be very good stone. William L. Perkins was the Master Mason and aided a great deal mixing and carrying morter and handing adobes. And in fact they had done so when building my houses and were real help mates to me. Erza Thompson was my head Mill wright--he did his work faithfully and well. The mill cost four thousand five hundred dollars all complete, race included and about the time I started the Mill I had paid off the hands all but a trifle on the 21st March 1856. I took to wife for time, Sarah Ann King who was the widow of John M. King, Bro. King was a faithful member of the Church, always ready and willing at every call, and was on of the old Police in Nauvoo, was one of the Mormon Battalion, was dismissed in California returned to Council Bluffs gathered up his family came to the valley and settled near me. Was one of the Police for three years in Great Salt Lake City and died on the 13th November 1855. It was by her particular request that I took her to wife.
Previous to the first of January I had ground in the Mill some corn and chopped stuff for feed, but on the first of January I commenced bolting flour. The Mill was immediately crowded with small grist especially, and some large ones, and proved a blessing to the community for owing to the warmth of the water it never freezes up. While all the others do. In April I commenced building twenty seven rods of Cobble stone wall and completed it in about a month. And about this time I deeded all my property without reservation to Brigham Young Trustee in Trust for the Church for and in consideration of the good will and love I have for the church. And having all I possessed consecrated in pursuance of the teachings of President Brigham Young. This Spring I set out about sixty peach trees some shade trees, apple trees, currant bushes etc.
The season I purchased fifteen hundred dollars worth of pine bark. Hides being very scarce, this bark will last two years. On the 24th July I went by invitation up Big Cotton Wood Canyon with President B. Young. There is about 15 miles up the Canyon a pretty little lake about three quarters of a mile long and about 1\3 of a mile wide. There we raised a flag on a pine tree, perhaps the highest point upon which a flag had ever been raised by such a large concourse of people (say about 3,000). That same evening (July 24th) we were called together by the sound of the bugle and President B. Young made a short speech to the people. He said He had things on his mind to tell that he had never told to any people before. The time had now come he could have the privilege of revealing them. These are the Secret chambers of the mountains, we have sought diligently to find any marks or signs or traces of Indians in this canyon but have not been able to find any. We have had men ranging these mountains ever since we have been here, hunting for secret retreats, and mountain passes. The formation of the mountain around this place are such that they are calculated to ward off the traveler on the outside from coming down in here."
The next morning we were again called together, "He then said that he had no particular request of the brethren for the day, but they could go and wander through the groves and on the mountains wherever their minds should lead them, and contemplate the handy work of God in the scenery that lay before them and in the planting the groves and raising the mountains etc. Early in the afternoon News was brought to President B. Young by O.P. Rockwell and Judson Stoddard that an army was on the way, sent by the United States Government against Utah. Thus while we were all rambling about enjoying ourselves in peaceful tranquil happiness this news reached us and it aroused a deep sensation that thrilled through us all like electricity. All were on tiptoes to hear the news. Towards Sundown the people were all called together and President Daniel H. Wells stood upon an isolated rock of immense size and about eight feet high and read some letters from the United States stating the reasons why the mail was stopped and information in relation to the army. Brother Wells then spoke a few moments full of the spirit of prophecy and predicted many things in relation to the United States, and these troops that are coming toward Utah. He then made a prayer so solemn and powerful that all were effected. Many tears were shed.
At early candle light the places of amusement built up like a bowery, and laid with plank floors, were lit up. and dancing commenced and was kept up until one or two o'clock. In the bowery nearest President Young's tent many songs were sung, anecdotes were told, historical incidents also, and many prophecies were delivered, and there was dancing occasionally. I never enjoyed a day more in my life so calm, contemplative, mild and peaceful. The next morning Bro. Brigham, called all together by five o'clock blessed them and dismissed them, warning all to be careful returning down the canyon, and so far as I know not an accident occurred. All returned in safety. This Fall when the troupes of The United States were approaching this place, and army of our own men was raised to oppose them. Of this army I furnished six men with necessaries. On the 11th of September 1857 I took my 5th wife Catherine Slayson. We were sealed in the endowment house on the temple block in Great Salt Lake City. She was born in the town of Remson, Oneida County, State of New York on the 26th day of May 1806. Fathers name Peter Slauson, Mothers name Lucy Hinckley, Fathers Father's name Stephen, Stephen's wife Hannah Judson, Mothers fathers name Gershum Hinckley, his wife's name Catherine.
She was baptized in July 1850 in Erie City and County and Lake Erie Penn. and confirmed the same day. She was first convinced of the truth of this latter day work under my preaching. She left Erie City 24 June 1855 with six children and two grandchildren to gather to the Valley with about $200.00. A man named Alonzo Estes borrowed $30.00 from her in Saint Louis to pay his passage to the bluffs but never paid only $6.00 of it back to her. She landed at Atchison the 5th of July 1855 and tarried at Mormon Grove that summer and winter, sending on her daughters Lucy, Jane & Amelia and her grandchildren Dwight Martin and Etta Martin who arrived safely in the valley. She was helped by Brother James McGaw the Bishop and George Rust her son in Law. And left there the 7th April 1856 in company with Geo Rust and her daughter Eliza his wife and Isadore and Meridith. And arrived in the valley the 16th day of August having all enjoyed good health since starting. Her daughter Lucy married Andrew McCombs December 16, 1855. And on 19th April 1857, Amelia was married to the same man. Both sealed for time and eternity. Isadore was sealed on the same day 19th April 1857 to Bishop William Smith, Bishop of Centerville, Davis County. Jane was married to John Martin the tenth of September 1851. And in the Spring 1853, left her in Erie with her mother and went to California. When he heard of her arrival in the valley 1856, he came after her and took her to California, with her children Etta & Dwight. Meredith remains now in the valley (1858). Two of her sons, Samuel and Peter not members of the church went to California.
In the year 1850 my oldest son Clark became disaffected with my family and partook of a roving spirit and was not subject to my counsel. And having heard much of the talk that then filled the United States in relation to the Gold Mines of California he concluded to leave his father's house and seek his fortune there. He went, found things there very different from what he expected, and came to Great Salt Lake City the 20th of October 1852 with $59 in money and the clothes on his back. He then came to live with me and worked in the tan yard until he married, Francis Jane Bevan and shortly after on the 14th September 1854 he was sent on a mission to Santa Clara in Washington County, Utah from which mission he returned June 13, 1855 having been released honorably from the mission.
In the beginning of winter 1852 my second son Ira Jr. having had some contention in the tan yard with Clark where they were working, Ira Jr. took offence and ran away from home without any one knowing he was going. He went North; herded sheep and when he had worn out all his clothes he returned home again, he was gone about two months. He remained at home until April 1855 when he was called to go on a mission to Salmon River. He went and remained there until fall. In the spring of 1856 he again returned to Salmon River and remained one year. Previous to his second trip to Salmon River he married Mary Walton, I married them in my house. I had my mind much engaged for sometime past on the subject of family orders good feelings and a spirit of union, the family in all its branches should be got together. I spoke with them upon the subject and finding it agreeable, I, on the 21st February 1858 called my wives and my sons and daughters and my sons wives together in my house. And we held a family meeting. I opened the meeting by prayer and then spoke upon family order and manifested my desires in relation to family order. My oldest son Clark rose next with an excellent spirit, he showed that a family was just like a tree, no branch should interfere with another or break itself off from the tree but all should be centered firmly to the trunk of the tree. He spoke well, I felt exceeding joy to hear him. He spoke of considerable length and made use of many figures to convey his ideas. Ira Jr. then arose with a good spirit and talked well. Felt that he would stick to his father anyhow and take his father's counsel in all things and be subject to him. Ira Jr. spoke at considerable length, all were well pleased. After he ceased to talk Clark drew a comparison. That sometimes a steam boat would approach the dock, but not come up right, and have to back off again, and then come up the second time, and the second time would miss it, and have to back off again, and perhaps the third time would succeed in coming nicely alongside the dock. And now he proposed that we should all come up alongside the first time, right, and lash fast without having to back and come again.
I put this motion to vote and all voted it. By this time it being late the meeting was dismissed. On the 1st of March we held another meeting, all the family were present as before. Clark opened the meeting by prayer, I then made some remarks expressive of my gratitude in seeing my family together for the purpose for which we had met: to tell over our feelings and wishes. Clark then arose and expressed his feelings and views on the subject of parents government of children, and also gave good exhortation to Samuel his younger brother in relation to obedience and improving his mind. Ira Jr. then arose and spoke upon his boyish folly and disobedience, and gave some of the causes that lead him to run away from his fathers house in 1852. My wife Catherine then arose, deprecating any idea except the best of feelings toward any of the family and expressed good wishes and desires for all. On the 6th day of March 1858 I again called all my family together and some of my grandchildren (my daughter Rebecca wife of Isaiah Huntsman and her children were not present, they are living in Fillmore). I called them all around me to give them a father's blessing. After a few preliminary remarks from myself I proceeded to bless the children and grandchildren in the following order and in the words as follows:
Clark Ames, Son of Ira and Charity Ames Born in Mooers Clinton County State of New York on the 15th July 1832.
CLARK I lay my hands upon thy head in the name of Jesus Christ, to place upon thee a fathers blessing. And I feel to ask my Heavenly Father to let his Holy Spirit rest upon thee at this time that the faith may Mingle with my faith, that I my may by our union of faith, be enabled to predict things to come hereafter or rather that I my be enabled to predict upon thy head thins that shall happen to thee hereafter. Thou art my oldest son, my first born son, thou wast born in the strength of my youth or thou wast begotten in the days of my strength. Whilst thou wast still in thy youth the adversary sought to lead thee away and destroy thee. The adversary sought to lead thee from thy father's House and from the counsel of thy father, and he did lead thee away, thou didst leave thy father's House very much to the grief and annoyance of thy father's feelings. Nevertheless the Lord heard my prayers and thou didst return to thy fathers house in due season. While thou wast afar off in a strange land, the faith of thy father prevailed and his prayers were heard and thou didst return and thy father received thee with joy and rejoicing. Nevertheless thou hast been under an evil influence, the adversary has sought to lead thee in paths that were not right.
Thou hast reflected upon the course that thou wast pursuing, and thou hast now placed thyself under thy father's care and counsel. Thou hast promised to take the counsel of the father as thou shouldest do. And inasmuch as thou wilt now seek to listen to the counsels of thy father, thou shalt see prosperity; Yea, thou shalt be blessed with prosperity. Let thy mind be steady to receive the counsel of thy father. Let thine interest be thy fathers interest, and they father's interest thy interest. Thou shalt be in trying places, thou shalt be in places where thou shalt see dangers, yea, where thou shalt see trying things; but thou shalt be lead in paths of safety and thou shalt triumph over thine enemies. They shalt not have power to take thy life from the earth. Thou shalt be safe in the midst of fierce battles, thou shalt be a defender of Zion, and thou shalt receive an inheritance in Zion with the People of God. When they receive their inheritances, thy posterity should be numerous and they shall share in thy blessings, and thy shalt share in the blessings of the Holy Priesthood. I sealed these blessings upon thy head in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit--Amen. Curtis E. Bolton Scribe
BLESSING of Frances Jane Beavan first wife of Clark Ames, she was born in Essley, Herrefordshire, England on the 2nd February 1837. Her fathers name was James Beavan. Her mothers name was Hannah Jones. Her father's name was Evan Beavan. Her father's mother's name was Marry. Her mothers father's name was David Jones.
Frances Jane. I feel to lay my hands upon thy head to give thee a father's blessing and to seal upon thy head those things that shall happen hereafter or to predict upon thy head those things that shall come to pass. The Lord has preserved thy life until this present time. And thou art in the way of Salvation. And inasmuch as thou will give heed to the dictations of the Holy Spirit. Thou shalt be lead in a path that shall lead thee to many blessings. Thou shalt increase in wisdom and in knowledge in the things of God, Yea, thou shalt increase in knowledge in the things pertaining to the Kingdom of Heaven.
Thou shalt be an instrument in assisting thy husband as an help mate, and thou together with him shall do a work that shall be of great benefit to the Kingdom of God. Thou shalt have wisdom given thee of God to direct thee in all thy ways. And thou shalt be able to teach thy posterity the principles of Eternal Truth. Thou shalt be able to lead them, And thou shalt dictate them and guide them in the path of truth and salvation. Thy posterity shall be eminent in their day and generation. They shall be ornaments around thee. And thy heart shall be made to rejoice in them in days to come. Thy posterity shall be blessed with all the blessings and gifts of the Gospel, which are to be shed forth upon the people of God in these last days. And if thou wilt be faithful in the order of Heaven upon the earth, thou shalt never lack for any good thing in this world. Thou shalt not lack for food nor for raiment nor for houses nor for lands, nor shall thy children cry for bread. These blessings I seal upon thy head in the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit Amen. Curtis E. Bolton Scribe
BLESSING of Harriet Queen 2nd wife of Clark Ames. They were sealed by President Brigham Young, Sunday March 7, 1858. She was born in the Island of Jersey Channel Islands June 7, 1837. Her father's name was William Queen, Her mothers name was Mary Ann Hoskins.
HARRIET. In the name of Jesus Christ I lay my hands upon thy head to bless thee. And I say that thou shalt be blessed. Thou shalt have the gift of discernment that thou shalt be able to order thy life that wheresoever thy lot is cast thou shalt have wisdom to make peace. This blessing I seal upon thy head inasmuch as thou art faithful to thy god. And inasmuch as thou art humble before god the Lord shall direct thy foot steps in a path that shall cause joy and peace to thy soul. Thou hast in days that are past seen much affliction; thou hast seen things that have caused thee to mourn; but thou hast preserved thine integrity; and thou hast been preserved in the principles of truth. Thou shalt live to see the day that thy mind shall expand that thou shalt understand the deep things of god. Thou shalt be a help to thy partner in life. Also thou shalt be lead in a way that thou shalt be an instrument in the hands of God or performing acts in thy life that shall result in great good. Thou shalt live to see events transpired in thy life time. That shall cause thy heart to rejoice and to praise thy god. And I feel to say thou shalt never lack for food nor for raiment, nor for houses and lands nor for flocks and herds; but all these things shall be secured unto thee. Thou shalt be a teacher in Israel, Thou shalt be able in thy day to give good instruction to many around thee and be able to dictate in things that shall be for their good.
These blessings I seal upon thy head in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Recorded 11th March 1858 Curtis E. Bolton Scribe
BLESSING of Ira Ames Junior son of Ira Ames an Charity Carter was born in Kirtland Geauga County Ohio October 3, 1836.
IRA, My second born son, I lay my hands upon thy head in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth to place upon thy head a fathers blessing. Thou wast deprived of thy mother in thine infancy. The adversary has also sought to destroy thy life from the face of the earth by the power of the disease he implanted in thy system in thine infancy. That disease has been preying upon thee from thine infancy until now; I feel now to rebuke that disease that has been trying to destroy thy body. I feel to rebuke it in the name of the Lord. And I say to Satan be thou rebuked. And I say to the disease be thou rebuked. And I pray my Heavenly Father to ratify and seal this rebuke, and to cause every principle of disease to be rebuked. And I ask my Heavenly Father to rebuke the disease that thou mayest grow to a sound and healthy constitution. And if thou art obedient to the counsels of thy father thou shalt realize that the spirit of health is upon thee. And if thou will seek to do the will of God thou shalt have health. And thou shall have power to do much good in thy day and generation. Thy desires to do good are right, In other words, thou hast naturally a desire to do right; but the adversary seeks to lead thee away in by and forbidden paths, but if thou art faithful he shalt not have power over thee. Thy blessings shalt increase from this very time, and these blessings hall attend thee through the journey of life. Thou shalt be preserved from the hands of wicked men; they shalt not have power to take thy life from the earth, but if thou trusted in God he shalt deliver thee and Thy God shall lead thee in safety through the journey of life. And Ira, thou shalt live to see Zion redeemed. Thou shalt live to see the time when the nations of the earth shall come up to see the glory of Zion. Thou shalt live to behold the events of that great day spoken of by the prophets of the redemption of Zion the destruction of the wicked. Thou shalt have prosperity. And thy prosperity shall be blessed with the Holy Priesthood; they shall be an ornament around about thee; and thou shalt rejoice in thy posterity through the years to come. These blessings I seal upon thy head in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
BLESSING of Mary Elizabeth Walton Wife of Ira Ames Junior, she was born in Richland County Town of Plymouth, State of Ohio 24th November 1839. Father's name was Alfred Walton, Mother's name Sarah Boice.
MARY. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, I lay my hands upon thy head to seal upon thee a father's blessing, even the blessing of thy father-in-law. I feel to ask my heavenly Father that his spirit may rest upon thee that thy mind may be illuminated, that thy mind my be enlarged, that thou mayest realize the importance to be attached to thy Being upon the Earth. Thou art placed in a position that requires all the powers and facilities of they soul and all the energies of thy mind, that together with thy husband you may procure the necessary comforts of life. I feel to ask my heavenly father to seal upon thee the blessing of health. And I do seal upon thee the blessing of health, the blessing of peace and prosperity inasmuch as thou wilt be guided by a proper spirit. Thou art in thy youth, therefore thou hast need to apply thy heart to wisdom to guide thee and lead thee in a right path. And inasmuch as thou wilt be humble before thy God, and inasmuch as thou wilt humble thyself to those who have a right to counsel thee, thou shalt be lead in the path of prosperity, and the blessing of food and of raiment shall not be taken from thee. This gift and blessing of prosperity shall be conferred through the providences of God. Thou shalt live to see the day that thou shalt rejoice with thy posterity, and they shall be as ornaments around thy head. And inasmuch as thou wilt be humble before thy God, thou shalt have wisdom to teach thy posterity the principles of Eternal Truth. Thou shalt yet be called a mother in Israel. Thy life shall be preserved long upon the earth. Thou shalt live to see many of the great events that are to transpire in the last days in the Redemption of Zion, and the work of God among the nation. Thou shalt behold the power of God as it will be made manifest in the heavens and in the earth. And thou shalt rejoice with thy companion and with thy posterity in the land of Zion. These blessings I seal upon the head in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.
BLESSING of Samuel Ames son of Ira Ames and Sarah Johnson,, Born in Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois the 12th July 1842. The mother laid her hands upon his head with his father.
SAMUEL. We lay our hands upon thy head unitedly to give thee a father's blessing. And to predict on thy head those things that shalt be given us of the Holy Spirit. And we pray our heavenly Father to give us his Holy Spirit, that we may place upon thy head such blessings as shall be right and pleasing in the sight of our Heavenly Father. Such blessings as shall transpire to the hereafter. Thy course in life shall be directed by the Spirit of Heaven, the spirit of revelation shall lead thee throughout thy life. The Holy Ghost shall lead thee in days to come. Thou shalt be lead and guided in such a way that thou shalt be an instrument of performing a great work on the Earth in thy day and generation. And, Samuel, we fell to dedicate thee unto the Lord. And we fell to give thee up, and we say that the Lord shall direct thee, that he shall guide and direct thee throughout thy life and thou shalt be made the instrument of doing a great work in these last days. Thou shalt be a instrument in aiding in the rolling forth of the Kingdom of God in these last days upon the earth. Thou shalt be in places of danger from Enemies, but the Lord shall sustain thee, and thine enemies shall not have power to take thy life from the Earth. But in the midst of all the dangers and trying scenes pertaining to the restoration of Israel and of the gathering of the nations and the overthrow and destruction of the wicked thou shalt be a nighty instrument in the hands of the Lord. And thou shalt have health and be sustained to a good old age. Thou shalt live to see the coming of the son of Man and rejoice in the blessings of the people of God when Zion is established in her glory. And thy last days shall be the best days. These blessings we seal upon thy head in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.
BLESSING of Henry Ames Son of Ira Ames and Sarah Johnson, born in Great Salt Lake City January 31, 1852, His mothers hands being also on his head.
HENRY. In the name of Jesus Christ we lay our hands upon thy head to give thee a fathers blessing. And we feel to seal upon thy head the Gift and power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Although thou art young, we feel to seal thee up that Satan shall not have power to take thy life from the Earth until thou shalt receive the Priesthood. Thou shalt be lead by the dictation of the Holy Spirit. Thou shalt be made and instrument in doing much good in thy day and generation. Thou shalt become an honor to thy father and to thy mother. Thou shalt have power to speak and thy voice shall be heard. Utterance shall be given unto you. And great power shall be given thee. Thou shalt rebuke the winds and waves and they shall obey you, and thou shalt have power to do many things by the gift and power of god. Thou shalt rise in fame and in the scale of intelligence. Thou shalt live to become one of the great ones of the earth, Thou shalt be might in thy day and generation. Thou shalt live until the coming of the son of man. Thou shalt be an instrument of proclaiming the Gospel to the nation and of gathering many to Zion in the latter days. These blessings we seal upon thy head in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
BLESSING on the head of Clarissa Ames, wife of Phillip Pugsley. She was born in the town of Shoveham, Addison County, Vermont on the 16th of December 1827.
CLARISSA: I now place my hands upon thy head to give thee a fathers blessing which is what thou hast desired many times in thy life. Thou hast seen many things in thy life that have cased thee to mourn, OR, thou has had many things to happen to thee that have cased thee to mourn and have sorrow of heart. Thou hast had as uneven life, full of sorrows and troubles, thy path has been an uneven and unpleasant course. Thou hast been afflicted with many trials which have made thy heart to grieve and mourn. Thy Soul has been grieved in consequence of the things that have transpired in thy life. But thou hast been sustained by the power of god. Yea, In the midst of thy grief and trials the lord has sustained and upheld thee and his power has preserved thee and thou art still a member in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. The adversary has sought to lead thee away, that he might bring about thine overthrow, but through the desires of thy father, and through his prayers and faith thou hast been preserved, thou hast been saved from the power of the adversary, and thou art still in the way of Salvation at this time. Thou shalt still be preserved by the power of God, and in thy days to come, thy life shall be more even though thou mayest yet have trials yet thy last days shall be thy best days. And in time to come thou shalt be satisfied with thy place and lot. The blessings of Heaven and earth shall be thine. Thou shalt never lack for bread nor thy children after thee, neither shalt thou want for raiment, Thy life shall be prolonged upon the earth, thou shalt live to see many of the great events that are to transpire in the redemption of Zion, and the work of the last days. Thy heart shall expand and thy mind shalt be strengthened and enlightened and thou shalt be enabled to teach thy posterity in the way of truth and salvation, And thou shalt live to rejoice in their society. And from this time thou shalt be able to make thy life more easy. Thou shalt have the gift and power of the Holy Spirit which shall lead thee and dictate thee, and which shall reveal to thee the things of God in which thou shalt have joy, that thy mind may rest in peace, tranquility and that thou mayest rejoice in thy God in thy latter days. These blessings I seal upon thy head in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
BLESSING on the head of Charles John Williams Son of John D. Williams and Charles Ames, born in Great Salt Lake City, April 1st 1852 his mothers hands being also on his head.
CHARLES: We lay our hands upon thy head to seal upon thee a fathers blessing. Thou never knew what it was to have a father. But thy Grand Father has been a father to thee and now places his hands upon thy head to bless thee and tell thee such things as the spirit of God shall dictate:
Thou shalt have health and thy life shall be prolonged upon the earth. Thou shall live to behold the great events that are to transpire in the redemption of Zion. The Lord shall sustain thy life and he shall uphold thee. Thou shalt be guided and dictated through life by the spirit of God. And thy path shall be lead in the path of safety. Thou shalt rise in the scale of being. And thou shalt become eminent in the day, and generation. And thou shalt be an honor to the family of the father. Thou shalt be an instrument in the hands of the Lords, in doing much good in thy day and generation. Thou shalt have long life, thou shalt live to see the coming of the Son of man. Yea, thou shalt live to see the blessings which the Lord will pour out upon his people in these last days, in the redemption of Zion, and when the glory of God shall rest upon her. We seal the blessings of health upon thee, and all these blessings and say that thou shalt be preserved amid all the trying scenes that are about to transpire on the earth and the Lord shall lead thee in the path of truth in such a way that thou shalt have the gift and power of the Holy Priesthood sealed upon thee and by it thou shalt have power to do many great things in the accomplishment of the work of God on the earth. And thou shalt be looked up to for counsel and for wisdom and thou shalt become a great counsellor in these last days. These blessings we seal upon thy head in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
BLESSING on the head of JOHN HENRY KING, Son of John Morris King and Sarah Ann Jewell. He was born at Council Point, Patawattamie County, Iowa on the 2nd August 1851. His mother having also her hands upon his head.
JOHN. In the name of Jesus Christ we lay our hands upon thy head to confer upon thee a fathers blessing, and we feel to bless thee with the blessing of life and of health. Thou hast bee bereft of thy father in thy youth, thou hast been left an orphan in this world, but though thy father has left thee thy lot has been cast among the people of god, and thou hast bee sustained with the necessaries of life. God shall continue to bless thee. He shalt bless thee with food and raiment and he shall watch over thee and thou shalt be an instrument in the name of God of doing a great work. Thou shalt receive the ordinances in the house of God and by the power of the priesthood thou shalt there receive and do many mighty works. Thou shalt display much wisdom in thy day and generation and thou shalt live to perform many great things that shall be of great worth to thy ancestors, and they shalt bless thee, thou shalt be an instrument in the hands of God, of s\aiding in the gathering of Israel and the great work that is to be performed among the nations. Thou shalt live to see the glory of Zion in her redemption and receive an inheritance in Zion on the earth, and thou shalt rejoice in all the blessings that God has in store for his people on the earth. These blessings we seal upon thy head in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.
Curtis E. Bolton Scribe.
This interesting meeting closes about 5 o'clock P.M. March 17th, 1858 I held another meeting of all my family.
in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Given G.S.L. City Jan. 4, 1860 by John Young upon the head of Lucy S. McCombs born Dec. 3, 1832 Pennsylvania Daughter of Ezekiel and Catherine Brown.
Sister Lucy in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ I lay my hands upon your head, and bless you with a fathers blessing, and the blessings of the heavens and of the earth. You have embraced the truth in your youthful days with an honest heart before the Lord, desiring to live the life of the righteous to obtain eternal life in the Kingdom of our God. I seal the blessings of the new and everlasting covenant upon you and say in the own due time of the Lord, you shall hold a portion of the priesthood in connection with your husband, be blessed with a numerous posterity who shall rise up and call you blessed; You shall have houses and land, flocks and herds and all the good things of the heavens, and of the earth. You are a lawful heir to all that is promised to the faithful in Christ, being a literal descendant of Joseph through Ephraim entitled to all your heart desires in righteousness. You shall be able to control yourself and your household, if you will obey the counsel of your husband, and be able to overcome your weaknesses. Your name shall be honorable among the daughters of Zion, and the destroyer shall not have power to injure you, but in all time of sorrow and affliction the angel of mercy shall be round about you, and if you put your trust in the Lord, no blessings shall be withheld from you. Your mind shall expand to understand the law and the principles of the celestial Kingdom. In all your outgoing, and in comings, you shall experience the favor of the Lord, be a blessing to your progenitors, do a good work upon the earth, be numbered among the saints, who shall rejoice in the fullness of the Gospel, you shall enjoy health and life be blessed with fortitude and notwithstanding, you may be tempted, you shall withstand the grasp of the enemy. There shall be a way for your escape, have power to administer to your own family. Do much good in you day and generation, be prepared to enter into the Kingdom with the faithful and the obedient. I seal you up to the day of redemption to a place in the first resurrection and to dwell with the hosts of heaven with your family and friends and all holy men and women and the Lord almighty shall make all things new. Be humble and prayerful, never forget your God, cleave unto that which is good and everlasting, life shalt shine in your path and you shalt walk in the light continually until you finish your work on the earth; I do this in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen. J.V. Long.
Given Salt Lake City January 4, 1860 by John Young upon the head of Amelia L. MacCombs born January 30, 1840 Green Town Pa. daughter of Ezekial and Cathrine Brown.
Sister Amelia I lay my hands upon your head to bless you with the gospel which you have embraced in your youthful days with a firm determination to live the life of the righteous. You are a literal descendant of Joseph through Ephriam entitled to all the blessings in Christ; You shalt have the good things of the heavens and of the earth, the blessings of the Fathers shall be upon you, be an ornament to the cause, be a blessing to your husband and to the family in which you are attached, have a family that shall be numerous, rejoice in the blessings of the new covenant, enjoy the blessings of natural life, you shalt be blessed with health, life and prosperity, see good days in the land of the living, live upon the earth until you are satisfied with life, the destroyer shall not have power over you, you shall overcome all your weaknesses and inasmuch as you believe in celestial Kingdom the blessings thereof shall be yours; you shall be a blessing to many even in administering unto them those things that they need hold a portion of the priesthood with your husband grow up into Christ your living head, be prepared to inherit eternal lives in the kingdom of our God therefore I say be faithful and humble, and no good thing shall be withheld from you, the visions of the heavens shall be upon you, and the candle of the Almighty shall be light to your feet, that you may always walk in the paths of virtue and truth; you shall be numbered among the redeemed. Free from the very appearance of evil and you shall become a mighty woman in Israel. The Lord has his eye upon you and will preserve you from every Soil. If you will be obedient to the holy commandments these and all your heart desires in righteousness shall be given unto you for I confer them upon you and seal you up to eternal life in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen. J.V. Long, Reporter
Given G.S.L. City January 4, 1860 by John Young upon the head of Meridith Ames son of Ira and Catharine, born January 26, 1845 Green Town (Father Assisted).
Brother Meridith, I in the name of the Lord Jesus, we his servants place our hands upon your head to bless you with the blessings of the everlasting Gospel. We ask our heavenly Father to let his spirit rest upon us, that we may say such things as shall be pleasing in his sight. Inasmuch as do right, obey your parents and the counsel of those set to lead you, you shall become a might man in Israel, hold a portion of the priesthood, for you are a lawful heir entitled to the blessings of the new covenant and of the Fathers; in the own due time of the Lord, you shall have wires and children, flocks and herds, houses and land, power to control yourself, Satan shall not lead you feet astray but the Angel of mercy shall lead you in the paths of virtue and intelligence until you become a man: be useful in your day and generation, be a blessing to those you all associate with, to your Father's house and his progenitors Administer for them wield the sword of justice; your arm shall be nerved up to avenge the blood of the prophets, live on the earth to see the downfall of nations, the building of the houses of the Lord, the Temple of our God upon the center stake of Zion. If you will give your mind to study the chambers of your mind shall be well stored with knowledge, your tongue shall be like the pen of a ready writer and the wicked shall tremble at the sound of your voice do much good in your life time, have all the Blessings of both temporal and spiritual salvation, live till your hair becomes as white as the pure wool, you shall never fall by the hand of enemy if you will obey the voice of the spirit for we seal you up to eternal life upon conditions of obedience in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. J.V. Long, Reporter
Given G.S.L. City January 4, 1860 by John Young upon the head of Henry Johnstone Ames Son of Ira and Sarah born January 31, 1853 G.S.L. City, Utah (Father Assisted)
Brother Henry we now lay our hands upon your head to give you a Father's Blessing, and pray that the holy spirit may rest upon the lad. We bless you in the name of our redeemer that you may be prospered from this time and for ever. You are a lawful heir to the blessings of the new and everlasting covenant and say that in the own due time of the Lord you shall receive a fullness of the holy priesthood you shall grow up unto Christ, your living head. Obey your parents that you may live long in the land. Satan shall not have power to beguile you, or to lead you astray, but the Angel of mercy shall be upon your right hand and upon your left, power to refuse the evil and choose the good, be preserved to a good old age, participate in the blessings of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Even wives and children, be a blessing to your fathers and forefathers children, be qualified to do a great and glorious work upon the earth, be blessed with intelligence and with the Love of the truth; your mind shall be stored with knowledge and you shall be able to administer in the holy ordinances of the Lord's house see the temple built upon the promised land, assist in building and administering therein; be famous for the truth valiant in the cause of our redeemer, not a hair of your head shall ever fall by the hand of an enemy and though you may be brought into circumstances where men may fall upon the right and from the left yet there shall be a way for your escape. The Angel shall be with you, be a bright and shining light, be a blessing to thousands, and many shall call you blessed, your possessions shall be great upon the earth, have a disposition to do good come forth in the resurrection of the just, The blessings of the heavens and of the earth, of the sun and of the moon and all things you desire shall be yours. Always be careful to follow the counsel of your parents; never give heed to wicked boys or their sayings, and you shall be mighty upon Mount Zion, assist in the redemption of those who have died without the gospel. I seal these blessings upon the lad in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen. J.V. Long Reporter
Given as before G.S.L. City Jan 4, 1860 by John Young upon the head of John Henry King Son of John and Sara Ames Born Aug 2, 1851 Council Point Iowa.
Brother John in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I lay my hands upon your head to bless you with a Father's blessing and all that pertains to the gospel of Jesus. The spirit of the Lord shall rest upon you, and your feet shall be kept from the slippery paths of youthful folly and vanity. You shall have the blessings of the Fathers for you are a lawful heir to all the blessings of the Kingdom; you shall do a good work, help to bear of the Kingdom, Satan shall not have power to injure you, therefore be a good boy and you shall become mighty in Israel, Help to build Temples. Your posterity shall be numerous upon the earth, you shall have wives and children, the Holy Priesthood shall be conferred upon you and the power of the spirit shall dwell with you. Do right, administer to the sick and they shall be healed, abide celestial laws and celestial blessings shall be upon you, with power to cleave unto that which is good, to refuse every evil thing have the spirit of the beloved deciple John to rest upon you, the visions of the heavens open before you, and not an hair of your head fall by an enemy, you shall be able to fill up the measure of your creation with usefulness, and be a savior upon Mount Zion. I seal and confer all these blessings with all you desire in righteousness before you Father who is in heaven, and no good thing shall be withheld from you and we say live for ever in the Kingdom of our Father, Even so, Amen. J.V. Long Reporter