. . . We bade farewell to uncles, cousins, aunts, friends, many of them, who seemed to feel very sorry for us, but we felt sorry for them who might, if they would, have believed our testimony and rejoiced in the glorious gospel, and been happy in leaving all for the same. We were happy in leaving the fatherland and traveling over seas, railroads, plains, rocky mountains, sandy hills in all kinds of weather, braving the danger of Indian attacks, buffalo herds and much else in a wild wilderness. We had great faith in the Lord and his prophets and inspired servants and on the 18th day of April, 1857, said a last farewell to dear old Denmark. Arriving at Liverpool, England, we embarked on the sailship Westmoreland, and seven weeks later docked in the harbor of Philadelphia.
The tedium of crossing the ocean was relieved to some extent when we were not too seasick. We danced on the deck. The captain amused himself by throwing small cakes on the deck and watching youngsters scramble for them. The Saints on the ship were divided into four wards, each with a president. We held ward meetings, also general meetings. We often amused ourselves by watching the big fish and sea animals rolling in the water. Our worst trouble was that of appetite. Father was the only one of our family who could eat sea biscuits, so when we reached America we had lots of them. I think we sold them when we got ashore.
In Philadelphia it was awkward for us to do our trading because we could not speak English, but we bought a number of things. I got a new suit of clothes.
We soon were on a train speeding west, and arrived in Iowa City seven or eight days after leaving Philadelphia, and were very busy picking out our outfits for crossing the plains. These outfits seemed wonderful to us, for many of us had never seen and ox before. The scenes to be witnessed the first few days [p.52] are difficult to portray. You had to be there to appreciate them. It was indeed comical as well as pitiful. Driving oxen must, like everything else, learned, and mastering the art took time. Sometimes the oxen would be piled up on top of each other in spite of the efforts of men on each side of them, for many of them had never been worked. However, we got along in a sure way. We left the yokes on until we reached Florence three weeks later. No one was hurt. There we found a handcart company and traveled with them most of the way to Utah, often camping with them for the night. We soon learned to yoke and drive our oxen and I was picking up English expressions. After 9 or 10 weeks we arrived in Salt Lake City on September 15. . . .
BIB: Sorensen, Isaac, Journal, Utah Historical Quarterly 24 (1956) pp. 52-53. (CHL)