. . . I took my departure for Liverpool as I had not time to go and see my mother, brother William, and sisters Mary and Ann and other relations, so I wrote letters to them notifying them of my departure. We set sail from Liverpool on the 17th of January 1853, on the ship Ellen Maria about 10 o'clock. We got a good fair wind, all the Saints on board was up on deck waving their handkerchiefs. We sung the hymn, "Yes My Native Land I Love Thee." Some few felt a little uneasy on account of the meeting we had in the Liverpool meeting room. The night previous as there was quite a number of elders came from the Valley on missions and this was their mission to preach the principle of polygamy. This was the first time it had been preached publicly. Elder Orson Spencer delivered the first address on that subject and we all went and heard him the night before we started so this caused a little excitement among the Saints on board. We lay in the river all night on the 18th the steamer came and tugged us out into the ocean. She left us about 10 o'clock in the morning. The captain name was [-]. He had the sails hoisted. It is a calm fine morning and all feel well. At night [p.13] it began to get rough. It lasted on till the 22, both night and day then it got pretty fine. The 23rd we got out of the Irish Channel into the Atlantic Ocean. It is a fine calm morning, many has been seasick. My wife has been very sick, but feels better this morning so that she went on deck. On the 24th it got rough again and continued on till the 26th, when it got a little calmer and continued up to the 30th. This has been Sunday we all assembled on deck and held meeting in which we felt to rejoice and praise God. Brother Moses Closen [Clawson] was captain of the company over the sea. We had 2 weddings during the day. The wind got rough again. In the evening we attend prayers after it got in our favor.
On the 31st and up to 2 of March we had the winds and waves all the time in our favor. At night we got into a very dangerous place where we had only 1 foot and a half of water under the bottom of the vessel. We then called upon the God of Israel and we felt that he would hear us as we had left our home and kindred friends to obey the commandments of God. Therefore, God heard our prayers so that got over the dangerous point safe. We sailed on day after day having the blessings of God with us until the 2 day of April when we got to the bar at the mouth of the [HERE THE WRITER HAS CROSSED OUT MISSOURI, INDICATING HE HAS REALIZED HIS MISTAKE. IT IS THE MISSISSIPPI] River where we waited on till the 4th. Then there was 2 steamboats came and pulled us up the river to a place, New Orleans where we left the ship and went on board a steamer called "James Rob." We left New Orleans on the 9th and went up the Mississippi River. We arrived at Saint Louis on the 18th. Here we was met by a old friend from Bristol that had been in this place for 2 years. Truly it was good to meet a friend so far away in a strange land. This friend's name was Peter Pageler and wife. They took us to their house and made us welcome and may God bless them for their [p.14] kindness to us. The company which numbered 450 souls that we came with, had to stay in St. Louis 5 weeks, then go to a place called Keokuk to wait for the cattle to take us across the plains after being in St. Louis 5 weeks about 2 weeks. I was one out of 13 that was called upon to go into Bonvil 5 hundred miles in the state of Missouri to by up 8 hundred head of oxen to take that seasons emigration across the plains to Salt Lake city in Utah. We made the trip and bought the oxen and returned to Keokuk on the 27th of May. After traveling over one thousand miles here my wife was glad to see me. We remained at this place on till the 4th of June. Then we took up our line of March for Salt Lake City. . . .
. . . We reached Salt lake city on the 11th of October 1853. . . . [p.15]
BIB: Hart, John Isaac. Autobiography and journal (Ms 5181), pp. 13-15; [Acc. #24666] (CHL)