Wednesday Jan. 10th /50 --This day a many of the Saints began to get about again but the majority still very. [UNCLEAR] Those in "Second Cabin" and at the ends of the ship much the worst--great inconvenience experienced in cooking, there being but two galleys for too great a number of passengers & so much cooking required during and after sickness. Fair breeze ship going on well; met another ship homeward bound could see the men on board learned by the colors [p .73] was a "Yankee" bound for Liverpool. Saw for the first time some fish blubbers and porpoises. The blubbers are a thick made fish with a red spot on the back & the porpoises were to all appearance about 3 or 4 feet long about the shape of a large cod fish with a large fin sticking up from the back --very good for eating--they have to use the harpoon for catching them. Could not see the Blake today [UNCLEAR]. Ally a little better, the rest of our family very ill with the sickness. [p. 74]
Thursday Jan. 17th /50 Wind rather against us ship began to get considerably out of her course--the Saints generally mending in health. Mother, Ann, Edward, Henry & Cally still very sick, much patience required. Learned that I had (with many others) deceived myself in my expectations of what I was going to do on board. All my time took up in cooking, waiting on the sick & taking an account of the provisions given out. Something being given out every day which causes great confusion while it lasts & requires much patience on [p. 75] part of the Saints so many being together in such close quarters. The provisions have been given out about as follows 'viz' one day biscuits, the next day meal, sugar & tea, the next day pork & so on; but the water is given out every day should be 3 quarts for each adult. I would recommend individuals to bring a few spare gallons with them from Liverpool. We been rather pinched in the water. The provisions are of the best quality. All the Saints are well satisfied with the same another cook appointed, one to each fire. [p. 76] Now the Saints have to get the saucepans or kettles ready & give them to the cooks & they put them on & take them off the fires. Thick porridge is a very favorite dish at present--roast & boiled a potatoes very palatable. Water closets repaired, plenty of room about them, not for individuals but for improvements.
Friday Jan. 18th /50 This day most of the Saints are quite recovered from their sickness, still there are some very ill among which [p. 77] is my mother, sister & her husband, Henry, Cally & Father Wright's 3 children. Weather fair but wind against us. Ship running 7 points out of her course. I still find plenty to do attending to sick & taking account of provisions--all provisions of the best quality. I hear of no complaints excepting we have not room to put things "short of journey [UNCLEAR] bags." Days get longer, light till near 7 p.m. Liverpool time. [p. 78]
Saturday Jan. 19th /50 Things in general look a little more cheerful. Several Saints still sick those who are now sick appear to be very costive; some have been so far a week past nothing passing through them but bringing every thing up as soon [as] they eat it. Weather fair but wind still at our head. Met another ship bound for Liverpool spoke to her at some length by colors. Cooking going on briskly on board, cakes in abundance. [p. 79]
Sunday Jan. 20th /50 The second Sunday on board the ship Argo. A most lovely day, sun shining beautiful, nearly all the passengers on board, wind still at our head. Got most of the sick on deck. [In the] afternoon Elder Clinton & others addressed the congregation assembled below deck, the first preaching since we left Liverpool. Some very good instruction given. Saints very cheerful. In the evening most of the Saints on deck, moonlight night. [p. 80]
Monday Jan. 21st /50 â€”This morning at about 4 o'clock Brother [George] Thorpe died aged 72 years with old age---was committed to the deep about 9 a.m. by the ship time that would be 10:30 a..m. our English time. Some of the Saints still sick. Cally very ill, mother & Ann no better. Met another ship this morning, passed close by. Wind still at our head. Going about 7 points out of our course. Night very rough. On watch till 12, 2 watchmen on at a time, 4 hour shifts. [p. 81]
Tuesday Jan. 22nd /50 Tossed about very much during the night---a many of Saints rather worse this morning, wind changed a little in our favor going about 3 points out of our course. Continued rough during the day. Great roars of laughter on deck. So many of the Saints doused with spray dashing over the ship, large quantities of water continually coming down the hatchways not the least manifestation of timidity among the Saints. Got a little [p. 82] gradually worse. Ship rolled about very much when we retired to rest.
Thursday Jan. 24th /50 About 1 a.m. was awoke with a sudden crash, some thing like a heavy clap of thunder. At first I thought it was a mast gone but soon found out it was one main sails broke loose. How the hallowing & shouting commenced among the captain & seamen while the sheet kept flapping a short time after the foretop [p. 83] sail was rent in pieces. About 2 a.m. I went on deck to have a peep how things were going on, at the same time we shipped a sea [UNCLEAR] and I got very nicely drenched. Retired to my berth & if ever I went short of rocking in my infancy, I can say I have had my share in the ship Argo. Soon after day break we could discern the mast of a ship at a great distance, was told by a sailor who had been up aloft that it appeared to be a large ship with two of her masts gone. During the day we had large quantities of water teeming down the [p. 84] people & a free people & [who] love to enjoy their freedom with a desire for that we have been induced to leave our native land & thus go forth from the bosom of the great deep to the land of Zion. Since we left Liverpool we experienced much tossing about & we are led to believe that we have been tossed just long enough. We have also experienced a contrary wind for the last 8 days & we feel as though we could hold better were [we] to change in our favor that we might realize a more speedy voyage. It is evident that this company has with it the greatest power of the priesthood that ever left [p. 85] England at one time, this being the case there has been a wrong notion entertained by the Saints. It has been often been remarked by the Saints that there was no fear of being lost there being so many elders on board. It appears that many Saints had an anxious desire to come on with ship on that account & so have put too much trust in man & while we have been thus tossed about on the billows the Saints have been little or not at all concerned about it. Now as this has been the case it is time that we begin to act different that we may realize [p. 86] more ease & that those who are sick may be restored, also that we may have the wind more in our favor. It was also remarked that the Saints had not manifested that love for each other that should be manifested under existing circumstances. They had given way for each other at the cooking galleys especially for the sick & in short the Saints had thought more of their bellies than they had of God. The Saints was then requested to unite in prayer to God that we realize better times. The Saints were well satisfied with the [p. 87] remarks that had been made. The meeting closed by prayer. Shortly after the meeting it appeared that the old gentleman was vexed with resolution passed, for all on a sudden a wave struck us a broad sider that made the Argo tremble again. The water fairly swamped the deck & came down in torrents through the hatchways which very nicely swilled our bottom deck & cleaned our floor for Sunday. A man standing on the ladder got very politely washed up in amongst a lot of boxes, no damage done. This was the heaviest sea [p. 88] we have ship yet [UNCLEAR] & the last we had tonight. The wind abated & we had a comfortable night.
Sunday Jan. 27th /50 This morning the wind had ceased almost to a calm, the sea was still & the ship was going on very steady which caused much rejoiced among the Saints. Early this morning a child died that was born about a week before we started. About 8 a.m. a brother coming down the ladder with a kettle & frying pan in his hands [p. 89] fell & put his shoulder out and scalded himself. We have a Brother a Doctor on board and we soon got shoulder put to right & dressed the scald. The Saints in general very well today had a meeting and the sacrament administered in the afternoon, a most lovely evening.
Monday Jan. 28th /50 A beautiful day, not much wind. Saints nearly all well. [p. 90]
Tuesday Jan. 29th /50 A little more wind today, but not much more in our favor. Ally & Cally were very sick with several others. Wind changed a little in the evening.
Wednesday Jan. 30th /50 The day rather inclined to be squally, the wind still at our head. Ship has to tack as usual, about 2 days on a tack---a many entertain the idea that we shall [have] a long voyage. [p. 91] The Saints about as usual. Ally & Cally very sickly---mother still holds very poorly with many others. First fellowship meeting among the different wards (6 in number) 2 in second cabin & 4 between decks.
Thursday Jan. 31st /50 Morning good breeze but still against us. Sea rather rough. 1 p.m. met & passed about mile off an English barque. Evening at 6:30 p.m. little Alice (i.e.) Ann's daughter died---has gradually declined since we came on board--was buried about 7:45 p.m. [p. 92]
Sunday Feb. 3rd /50 Fine day, sea calm, ship in full sail. Had preaching on the poop in the morning. Sacrament administered in afternoon. Meeting at night between decks. Pleasant evening. Ship going about 2 knots an hour wind still in our favor. Light till after 8 p.m. Liverpool time, 5:30 ship time.[p. 93]
Monday Feb. 4th /50 Fine day, wind right at our stern. Going about 7 knots. Saints all cheerful & begins to forget the little tossing about we experienced at first. Weather begins to get gradually warmer. Evening went on deck to see the phosphoric [ie. luminous/fluorescent] action of the water caused by the speed of the ship; it resembles a stream of fire where the foam runs being completely sprayed with sparks of fire in the water, indeed a pretty sight. Ally a little worse tonight. [p. 94]
Friday Feb. 8th /50 --Experienced a heavy dash of rain this morning with thunder & lightning. Wind changed on a sudden, broke one the stern sail booms (a sail fixed out from the yard arm & hanging out over the sea). Rain ceased about 8:30 p.m. & we found ourselves in a dead calm, not a break of wind. The sea dead still & the ship not moving an inch.
This Morning 13th [-] aged 35 died & was buried in about 2 hours after his death. [p. 95] He caught cold in Liverpool & had gradually declined since being troubled with asthma beforehand. Evening wind rose a little, but not in our favor.
Saturday Feb. 9th /50 The day very fine, with good breeze. Wind varying but not in our favor. Ship bearing due south instead of southwest by west. Saw several flying fish, they run about the size of mackerel & fly about an [-]. [p. 96]
Tuesday Feb. 12th /50 Fine day wind in our favor, sailing very steady. Ally much better today. Preaching at night between decks.
Wednesday Feb. 13th /50 Fine day with fair wind. 2 dolphins caught, one by the captain & one by a brother with lines a piece [of] fat pork for bait. The first we have seen--several others trying but no success; one weighed 14 pounds, the other a little larger---they are very sweet eating fish. Ally worse again today. [p. 97]
Thursday Feb. 14th /50 Fine weather, wind still in our favor. Some talk that we shall put into the West India Islands for water. Weather gets very warm---light till past 9 p.m. English time. Elder Andrews preached tonight, showed the folly & danger of Saints watching for iniquity, exhorted the Saints to mind their own businesses a little more & other people's a little less. [p. 98]
Friday Feb. 15th /50 This morning a ship could be seen with a glass a great distance ahead of us. Toward noon we could see it very plain & towards [UNCLEAR] began to draw close to it. Supposed to be 20 miles off when first seen. A fine day, wind in our favor. Ship carrying 21 sails & riding very steady. Since we passed the Azores Islands, we have rode very steady up till that time; we experienced much rocking about at times. [p. 99]
Saturday Feb. 16th /50 Found ourselves ahead. The ship we saw yesterday, had passed it in the night. Gained considerable distance during the day & lost sight of it at night---fine day---all things going on well.
Sunday Feb. 17th /50 Almost lovely day with fine breeze. Elder Cook preached in morning on the poop (top of second cabin). Sacrament administered in the afternoon below. [p. 100] Elder [John] Banks preached at night on the great plan of human redemption, did justice to his subject.
Monday Feb. 18th /50 Fine day, all things going on well.
Tuesday Feb. 19th /50 Fine day ship going on steady [FOLLOWED BY SOME TYPE OF SHORTHAND]
Wednesday Feb. 20th /50 --A dead calm, the sea as smooth as some beautiful lake. Saw several dolphins [p. 101] round the ship during the day. They are pretty creatures to look at while swimming. Towards night, the wind began to rise & the ship began to move on briskly. Weather very hot, thermometer at 95.
Thursday Feb. 21st --Ship moving on at about 2 knots. Passed an island on our left, could see it best part of the day, it appeared to be very mountainous.
Friday Feb. 22 Day rainy. Passed the island of "Puerto Rico" on our left, [p. 102] very mountainous. Towards evening saw land, appeared to be very level. Ally still hold very poorly [she] has sunk gradually as the weather became warmer. Obtained some port wine which appeared to revive her very much.
Saturday Feb. 23rd /50 Fine day all things going well [SHORTHAND FOLLOWS]
Sunday Feb. 24th /50 Most lovely day. Preaching in morning, sacrament in afternoon and preaching at night. [SHORTHAND FOLLOWS]. This day we passed "St. Domingo" [p. 103]
Monday Feb. 25th /50 Sister Stevens [-] again this morning. Sea very calm, ship scarcely moving. Came in sight of Cuba early this morning at a great distance on our right. Towards afternoon saw Jamaica on our left [-] set the we [UNCLEAR] appeared to be very close to Jamaica. Lost sight of Cuba. Saw three ships in different directions. This night caught a rat up a sister's petticoats.
Tuesday Feb. 26th /50 --Fine morning. Overtook & passed close by the ship that was ahead of yesterday. Jamaica still close to our left. Some tremendous [p. 104] mountain tops peeping above the clouds.
Wednesday Feb. 27th /50 --Fine day. Sea very calm. Making little or no progress.
Thursday Feb. 28th /50 --Fine day. Moving very steady . 4 p.m. Sister Thorpe died & at 5:15 was committed to the deep. Wife to the late Brother Thorpe that died the forepart of the voyage, between 70 & 80 years of age. Weather very hot. Thermometer above 80 in the shade (the hottest day we have experienced). [p. 105]
Friday March 1st /50 Fine day but very hot. Making very little progress. The nights are very hot. Many of the Saints sleep on their boxes & on the floor opposite their berths (Ally still very poorly)
Saturday March 2nd /50 --[WRITTEN OVER ENTRY: Blind sister gave birth to little girl] Fine day. Ship making better progress. Several children fell down the ladders today & got seriously hurt. Towards night the wind began to freshen up, ship going 8 to 9 knots. Many entertained the idea that we were in the Gulf of Mexico. About 9 p.m. was aroused with the noise of captain & sailors above deck. Went up to see what [p. 106] was on the move. First thing that struck my observation was land right ahead of & very near ascertained that the captain had been deceived; thought he had cleared the south point of Cuba but through a most remarkable phenomena that was a light shining in the air, his attention was drawn to notice land which lay directly before the ship & in less than 10 minutes the [ship] would have dashed to pieces. He ran to the wheel, turned the ship long side, & then called the seamen from their berths. With great perseverance they managed to clear the land but only to find out that he was [p. 107] again deceived for instead of our having cleared the Cape, we found ourselves about (12 o'clock) running into another point of land which struck into the sea. The ship had immediately turned round and it was found that we were in 27 feet of water & ship taking 17 feet, found it very difficult to keep out from the land as the wind blew directly onto the shore. When we turned ship the storm appeared to be but a short stone throw from land the moon shining we could see the breakers dashing against the shore many yard [yards] high which formed a snow white ridge as for as the eye could trace. They [p. 108] turned the ship several times to clear the point, but could not succeed till towards day break when we cleared & sailed gaily around. (Thanks be to our God) it was a most miraculous escape. Most of the brethren were on deck & found plenty to do in turning the sails & getting the anchor ready. Several sisters came up but was soon ordered down again. About 9 a.m. Sunday morning, we loss sight of land that part of Cuba to be very low which accounts for their not seeing it before dark. Five day, had preaching at night. About 500 miles from Cuba to the Mississippi River. [p. 109]
Monday 4th March '50 Sailing on gaily across the Gulf of Mexico all well.
Tuesday 5 Making our way across the Gulf in fine style. A sister was confined with another little [-] but it died shortly after. At night took a runaway nigger on board.
Wednesday March 6th '50 Many anxious eyes & longing hearts to see our long desired haven. 60 miles off at 8 a.m. ship making her way gaily no land appeared in sight up till dark. Ship dare not venture too near land so captain gave [p. 110] orders for ship to tack about till morning. Weather gets very cold to what it has been.
Thursday Mar. 7th /50 --Morning rather cold, could see 2 light houses & a great many sand banks. About 8 a.m. saw a steam packet a long way off. Before 10 a.m. had a pilot on board & the packet called "Hercules" towing us towards the mouth of the river. It is a most extraordinary place & appears to be very dangerous for [a] ship unless well piloted. Not a hill in sight, but all appears marshy. The steamer took us over the "bar" & left us for a short time but soon returned & at 1 p.m. we were on our way up the river steamer in middle [p. 111] of a ship on each side with two schooners behind and [did] not travel very fast, a strong current & a great load for the steam packet. The water very muddy & river narrow. 2 alligators seen in the river, traveled all night.
Friday March 8th /50 --The Saints appeared all alive & much to enjoy the scenes. Up the river at 3:45 p.m American time or 9:40 p.m. England time. We arrived at New Orleans which lay on the right hand side of the river. The shipping which extends for miles lay alongside the river. Soon we arrived, a great many lounging characters [p. 112] came on board, but was not allowed to go down below which grieved them very much.
Monday March 11 '50 Left New Orleans on board the "Uncle Sam" with nearly 400 passengers on board. Had very little sickness during our journey up the river which took 13 days. [p. 113] [PAGE 114 IS BLANK IN JOURNAL]
Sunday March 24th '50 Arrived at St. Louis after 13 days on the river. Met with the Saints that left Walford, found all well & happy to see us. Accompanied H. [NAME UNCLEAR, PROBABLY Kibbell] had tea with him & made some arrangements respecting stopping at his house for a short time. [p. 115]
Mon. March 25th 1850 Got luggage to Henry Kibbell house which was to be my home for time being. . . . [p. 116] [NO SALT LAKE CITY ARRIVAL DATE GIVEN]
BIB: Margetts, Richard Bishop. Diary. (Ms 6248) pp. 73-116. (CHL)