New Orleans, March 20th, 1854
Dear President S. W. Richards -- Agreeable to your request, we cheerfully proceed to give you an account of the pleasant voyage of the "Golconda Emigrating Conference", and its safe arrival in New Orleans.
We left the shores of Old England, Feb. 4, Zion-wards bound, in good health and spirits. On the same day, we organized our conference, dividing it into seven branches. We agreed to call our conference the "Golconda Emigrating Conference". We appointed meetings to be held five times a week, in which we were richly blessed with the gifts of the Spirit, in tongues, interpretations, vision, revelations, and prophecies, which caused the hearts of the Saints to rejoice exceedingly, and to magnify the name of the Lord their God, that they lived in this day and age of the world, when the God of Israel had set his hand the second time to redeem his people, and gather them from the uttermost parts of the earth, to establish his kingdom, no more to be thrown down.
With this order in our midst, we set out for the west, as we have already remarked, in excellent spirits. The winds were rather contrary for the two or three first days, but afterwards they turned in our favor, and continued so the greater part of the voyage. We had not as much as one storm or very heavy gale of wind during the whole passage. We had two marriages and one death at sea. The marriages were -David Lewis and Esther Williams, both from Carmarthenshire; and William Gillman, Monmouthshire, and Ann Davis, Pendilion. Glamorganshire. A little child died of the thrush and inflammation on the chest, aged 25 days, daughter of George and Eliza Alexander, both from Hampshire.
March the 5th, we held our conference, in which the representations of the different branches were brought in, which were reported as being in good health, and a very good spirit prevailing amongst them--all in love and union with each other.
The authorities of the church were all upheld and sustained by a unanimous vote of the whole conference. In the afternoon and evening, addresses were delivered in a very spirited manner by several of the elders, upon the gathering, the duties of the Saints on ship boards, and other kindred subjects, to the joy and consolation of all present, that felt an interest in the great work we are engaged in.
The pleasantness of the voyage, the love and union amongst the Saints in general, the unremitting attention and kind regard paid us by our worthy captain, Captain Kerr, all combined to make our voyage across the great Atlantic what may indeed by very properly called, a pleasure trip.
We arrived safe and sound at this place on Saturday, the 18th, making our passage in 42 days from the time we left Liverpool.
Not wishing to intrude upon your time or space, we curtail our remarks, praying God, our Eternal Father, to bless you abundantly with every qualification to enable you to honor the high and holy calling appointed unto you, that the hearts of thousands may be made to rejoice in being brought to the knowledge of the truth through your instrumentality.
Dorr P. Curtis, President.T. SquiresW. S. Phillips, Counselors
[We have much pleasure in presenting the above letter to our readers, concerning the agreeable voyage of the Golconda, and her safe arrival at New Orleans. Elder Curtis also informs us that the fare up the river is higher than formerly. Elder Brown had chartered a fine steamer to take the company up to St. Louis, at three dollars per head, under 14 years half price. A few of the company were stopping at New Orleans, or want of means. Elder Curtis says-- "I can truly say we have got along well, without a quarrel. Captain Kerr, and in fact all the crew speak in our favor. The steward intends to emigrate next season. Several of the crew are going with us, and wish to be baptized." The "Benjamin Adams," with the second company of Danish and German Saints, had not arrived.--Ed.]
BIB: Curtis, Dorr P., et. al. [Summary of Letter] Latter-day Saints' Millennial Star. 16:16 (April 22, 1854) p. 255. (L)