In 1853, three years after joining the Church, myself and wife agreed to save out of my wages ten shillings a week, equal to $2.50, as we had a great desire to gather with the Church in America. We carried out our plan for six months, then by selling our furniture we had enough to pay our way to Saint Louis, Missouri, U. S. A. We had one little girl name Mary Ann, three and a half years old. We lost one little boy who lived twelve weeks, named Francis. It was the counsel for all Latter-day Saints who could pay their way to St. Louis, Missouri, to do so, for they could get an outfit there to cross the plains easier than they could in England. On November 13th, 1854, we embarked on a ship, the Clara Wheeler, a sailing vessel, bound for New Orleans, Louisiana, with 420 Saints on board. We were almost wrecked on the Irish channel for a day and night, was towed back into the River Mersey, Liverpool, and had to wait two weeks for favorable winds. President of the Mission, Franklin D. Richards, came to our ship and told us if we would fast and pray, and keep the commandments of God we should have favorable winds and a prosperous journey across the ocean. This we did and the next day the wind turned in our favor and we started again. In five weeks we landed in New Orleans safe in fulfillment of Apostle Richards' promise. That was January 1st, 1855. I was taken very sick when about two weeks out at sea and continued so till we got to fresh water. Many doubted my recovery, but I told them I should live to get to the land of Zion. I recovered fast when we got to fresh water. Our fare was paid only to New Orleans. I was weak from my illness, our money reduced to ten shillings. While contemplating our condition I could see no other way only for us to stop at New Orleans and try and get work and earn money sufficient to take us to St. Louis, Missouri, a distance of 1200 miles. While leaning over the side of the vessel, a man came behind me and put his hand on my shoulder and asked me about my circumstances. When I told him, he reached out and gave me 40 shillings, just the required to take us to St. Louis, Missouri. This man was almost an entire stranger, I had seen him on the vessel but do not remember ever speaking to him before. He gave me the money without my asking him. He told me I could pay him back when I got able. Which I did with the first money I got.
A steamboat was chartered to take us up the Mississippi River immediately and we landed at St. Louis, January 10th, 1855. The next day I met a former acquaintance, one Richard Jewkes who had preceded me from the Tipton Branch. He came and took me, my wife and child to his abode, five miles distant; a place called the Gravois. We stayed with him as long as we remained in that part. I dug coal and made some money. The 4th of March, 1855, my wife gave birth to a boy baby that was dead when he was born. Two days after, she died, and was buried at a place called the County Farm. This was sad indeed, leaving me and the little girl to make our way to Zion.
Early in April we started on our way to cross the plains . . . [p.15]
. . . We left Mormon Grove June 13th, 1855, and arrived in Salt Lake City, Sept. 13th, 1855. . . . [p.16]
BIB: Crowther, Thomas, [Autobiography], IN The Crowthers of Fountain Green, Utah (Independence, Missouri: Zion's Printing & Publishing, 1943) pp. 15-16. (CHL)