The good ship Thornton, from Liverpool, with seven hundred and fifty Mormons on board, arrived at this port yesterday, and the Saints were safely housed in the emigrants's retiring rooms at Castle Garden before night. They are a solid and comfortable looking body of passengers for the New Jerusalem of the Great Salt Lake. See our reporter's account in another column.
At this rate of increaseâ€”for the brethren appear to be sending out to the Salt Lake reinforcements at the rate of from twenty to thirty thousand a yearâ€”at this rate, we say, the Mormon Territory of Utah, upon the score of population, will probably be entitled to admission before Kansas, notwithstanding the fact that Utah appear, amid this Kansas fuss and fury, to be wholly overlooked. At all events they may expect at Washington, in a week or two, a formal application from the Saints of Utah for admission into the Union as a sovereign state, polygamy and all. And here comes a nice questionâ€”nicer than niggersâ€”between Congress or does squatter sovereignty cover the question of polygamy? Does the Constitution reach it? What is to be done with it? The question will soon be put, and it will have to be met. We should in the meantime, like to have the opinion of some of our belligerent clergymen, so anxious about the nigger question in Kansas, whether under the constitution , a state can or cannot be admitted into the Union, the religion of which state allows a man two, five, ten or fifty wives at his discretion. Utah and the Saints must be looked after.â€”[New York Herald]
June 17th. We like amazingly the Herald's notion about "belligerent clergymen giving their opinion on Utah's admission into the Union. They are so remarkably united in their interpretation of the Bible, we should think their interpretation of the constitution would be beyond all price. Congress could not fail to be greatly assisted by the light of clerical opinions. What would the Herald think of getting "belligerent clergymen" into the Senate, like Bishops in the British House of Lords? Oh! we forgot, there is no national religion in the United States, and it would never do to have Unitarians and Trinitarians, sprinklers and dippers, Shakers and Quakers. and all the other ers and isms, in congress. They would spoil the "peace and harmony" of the honorable body. Should anything of the sort ever take place, Washington might count on the opening of gutta percha cane stores.
Great Arrival of Mormons: Castle Garden filled with Latter-day Saintsâ€”a Runaway Wife and a Habeas Corpus, etc.
The packet ship Thornton, from Liverpool, arrived on Saturday bringing 750 Mormons, the most of whom are bound for Salt Lake. The passengers were landed at Castle Garden, where they remain until this morning, when they start in a body for Utah. Among them are 160 Swedes and Danes, and the remainder are composed of English and Scotch, the larger portion being English. They come from all parts of England, from the extreme north to the isle of Jersey, and consist of farmers, mechanics and laborers. Among the mechanics are weavers, carpenters, boot and shoemakers, joiners, miners, potters, &c. The Swedes are mostly farmers, with a few blacksmiths. Our reporter, who visited Castle Garden yesterday, was told by one of the Elders who came out with them, that they were mostly old converts, of ten or fifteen years standing, and were brought out at the expense of the Mormon Emigration fund. A good many, however, he stated, came out on their own expense. Some of them intend stopping here, but the majority are going direct to Utah. They are mostly families, and appear to belong to the better class of emigrants. There seemed to be a preponderance of females among them; so indeed there ought to be, to sustain the system of polygamy which prevails at Salt Lake. If Brigham Young should be in want of some fresh wives, we can promise him at least a dozen from this party whom he will not find it bad to take. The number of children, too, is very large, there being nearly one hundred under six years of age. There were three births on board the vessel during the voyage. The party is accompanied by several Elders, and Priests who are returning from their foreign missions. The chief of them is Elder James G. Willey [Willie], who has spent the last three or four years in England collecting this flock together, and who now returns to conduct them to the promised land.
[Elder [Willie] has been laboring in England as stated by the reporter and is accompanied by a number from his pastorate but his relationship, with the company of the Thornton has only been since his appointment to the Presidency on board.â€”Ed. of Mormon.]
The Captain of the Thornton speaks very highly of Mr. Willey's [Willie's] management of the Saints during the voyage. He divided the ship into seven wards, and appointed an Elder over each ward to attend to the temporal and spiritual wants of the brethren, and see that they did their praying and got their rations at regular hours. The lower deck was divided into three wardsâ€”the first ward being occupied by the Swedes and Danes, the second ward by the Scotch, and the third by the single men of all nations. The upper deck consisted of four wards, and was occupied by English families. Under this arrangement everything went on like clock-work, and the passengers were kept clean, orderly and pious. The only accident that happened was the three births aforesaid, and this the Elders state resulted from causes above and beyond their control.
Among the passengers was a Mrs. Jervis, from Herefordshire, England, who, it appears left her husband at home, and taking her two children with her, embarked in company with the Saints for the promised land. The husband, however, took the steamer and arrived here ahead of her. Yesterday, he entered a complaint before one of our courts, and a writ of habeas corpus was issued to bring up the children, and investigate the merits of the case.
Our reporter was informed by several of the Saints who knew Jervis in the old country that he was utterly unfit to have the guardianship of his children; that he treated his wife in the most brutal manner, and that this was the cause of her leaving him, &c., &c., all of which we received with some grains of allowance, although the Saints averred their willingness to swear to the same in court. [New York Herald.] [p .1]
BIB: "More Mormons" [Newspaper article], Journal History (June 14,1856), p. 1. (CHL)