Death Valley in '49 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 581 pages of information about Death Valley in '49.

He gave a thrilling account of passing through Mountain Meadows, where he saw, here and there little groups of skeletons of the unhappy victims of the great massacre at that place of men, women and children, by J.D.  Lee, and his Mormon followers and told me the terrible story, which I here omit.

Smarting under the terrible taxation of one tenth of everything, Bennett grew poorer and poorer and at last resolved that he must go away, but his wife could not leave her own people, and so he set off with his children, somewhat afraid he might be shot down, but he reached Los Angeles Co. in safety.  One daughter married a lawyer in San Bernardino, and died a few years afterwards.  The other married a Capt.  Johnson of Wilmington, and Bennett and two sons went to Idaho.

A few years ago in passing from San Jose to the Coast, my wife and I spent Sunday at Scott’s Valley.  Mrs. Scott invited us to visit them in the evening at the house when all would be at home.  Mrs. Scott was the lady to whom Bennett gave his girl baby when he started away for Utah, and I felt very anxious to see her now she was grown up.  Mrs. Scott introduced us, and I sat and looked at the little woman quite a long time, but could not see that she resembled either father or mother.  My mind ran back over the terrible road we came and I pictured to myself the woman as she then appeared.

I studied over our early trials, crossing the plains over the deserts and our trying scenes out of Death Valley and turned all over in my mind for some time and finally all came to me like a flash and I could clearly see that the little lady was a true picture of her mother; I now began to ask questions about her folks, she said her father lived near Belmont, Nevada, and her grand-father died at the Monte, Los Angeles county Cal..  Our visit now became very interesting and we kept a late hour.


Since writing the connected story which has thus far appeared, I turn back to give some incidents of life in the mines, and some description of those pioneer gold days.

I have spoken of Moore’s Flat, Orleans Flat and Woolsey’s Flat, all similarly situated on different points of the mountain, on the north side of the ridge between the South and Middle Yuba River, and all at about the same altitude.  A very deep canon lies between each of them, but a good mountain road was built around the head of each canon, connecting the towns.  When the snow got to be three or four feet deep the roads must be broken out and communication opened, and the boys used to turn out en masse and each one would take his turn in leading the army of road breakers.  When the leader got tired out some one would take his place, for it was terrible hard work to wade through snow up to one’s hips, and the progress very slow.  But the boys went at it as if they were going to a picnic, and a sort of picnic it was when they reached the next town,

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Death Valley in '49 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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