Back to Table of Contents


Section 12  1851 - 1853

At the time I was building the grist mill while I was planking up the penstock thare came on a storm of snow and it froze enough to make it quite slippery James Richey was sawing up lumber for D. B. Huntington's house and he was useing a steel bar (that had been used for a drill) to pry the log along to feed the saw, And at intervals he would set it up against the fort of the penstock, when I saw it standing thare I told him I wished he would lay it down for I was going down inside to planking and I was affraid it would fall onto me, he said he would bear it in mind so I went down to planking, I ownly took up my square to measure the length of the first plank and stood a little leaning forward when I heard a loud nois like something falling on the floor and immediately that bar came onto my head end-ways. I had on a fur cap and a book in it about 1/4 of an inch thick which turned the force of it and it slid forward cutting my head to the bone and cracked my skull about two inches the top end took me on the side of my head nearly stuning me with the blow, again the Angel was with me and saved me Alien Huntington was thare waiting for his lumber that was sawing and I got onto his waggon and rode home I sent for Doct. Vaughan to come and dress my wound which was about 3 inches long. I laid by two days ownly and then resumed my laber on the mill (this bar was 5 feet long, 1-1/4 inch in diameter, sharpened at both ends in form of a drill, but it had been used some and the sharp edges ware worn off) Orville S. Lose had about this time commenced three schools for dancing at 13 evenings each, concluded to go to one of them with my wife.

Soon after this Phineas was taken sick with conjestive fever he was quite sick Doct. Vaughn gave him something which helped him together with prayer of faith so that he soon got better Doctor Vaughn went to one of the schools to learn to dance about this time a young man by the name of John Wyette got his let broke by a fall from a horse, he lived with Madison D. Hum-bbton the Doct was calld to dress his leg and in the course of his visits thare he became acquainted with Humbbton's wife and he took her to school for his partner and he was quite imprudent in his conduct, Humbbton was gone north 25 miles to build a saw mill when he came home he was told of the coarse the doct was taking which much offended him that was Sunday they all came to meeting but sister H when meeting was over Humbbton came out first with me, I shook hands with him as usual and turned around to speak to another man and at that moment I was startled by the sudden report of & pistol in an instant I discovered Humbbton had shot him to the heart in the midst of the congregation he gave one frightful look at Humbbton and one at the people and staggerd off about 2 rods and fell on his face and turned onto his back and died in about two minutes, some ware for arresting Humbbton and some for one thing and some for another, all was confusion, he told them he would now give himself into their hands and they could do whatever they chose the Doctor had distroyed his family and he had killed him for it and he was willing now himself to die, I was standing within 10 feet of them then he shot, now whether he was guilty of adultary or not at that time I do not know but he had sedused a mans wife before in his absence and had promised to lay down his life if he was ever guilty of the same again he however had probably done enough to merit death, but whether he Hambbton was justified in the coarse he persued or not is not for me to say. He lived on with his wife as before until he went to the city, he saw Brother Young and he told him to set her down by herself and provide for her and get him another wife, but he seemingly did not understand him for when he went home he lived on with her still. But when his coarse was made known to Brother Brigham he disapproved of his coarse and sent him word that he wisht to see him. When he came to him he said you have taken the sins of Doctor Vaughan upon yourself by living with that woman When you was told not to do it, thareby taking the responsibility, or in other words being guilty of his blood and you must atone for it Hambbton said he was sorry he had done so, and asked him what he should do to atone for his sins, he was told to go to the United States and hunt up his (Vaughns) connections and to tell them he was his murderer and put weapons in their hands and ask them to slay him which if he would do he should be saved in the reserection He immedeately commenced to settle his business preparatory for leaving to accomplish his mission. He freely imparted his feelings to me from time to time, and I always told him I could not help thinking that thare would be a ram yet found in some thicket, and someone would be sent to his rescue this I said because I always thought he was honest, and had done what he had with an eye single to the good of the kingdom,

About the 6th of May 1853 as I was moving from San Pete to Great Salt Lake City he came along in the morning just as we ware hitching up our teams and he walked along with me for some distance talking about his misfortunes and trials he said he had made his will and done all he could for his exit to the other world whare he expected to be sent as soon as he could find any of Vaughns relatives for no doubt they would kill him as soon as it was possible I told him that my faith was as it ever had been that some way would be open for him yet. He said he hoped there might be for he hated to throw his life away for he, when he died wanted to do it in defence of Gods kingdom he was willing to be put in the front of battle against the enemies of Israel and thare he could die like a valient man, but to give his life away into the hands of his enemies was a loss to him and he did not see how it could benefit anyone, but that was not his business to do as he had been told, was salvation for him and he should do it the Lord being his helper I at that time resolved that if I could say anything to help him I would do it when I got into the city, so after I arrived thare I got in company with Jedadiah M Grant and I told him how he (Hambbton) felt, he told it to Brigham and then calld on me to state it as he told it to me which I cheerfully did. Brigham then said he wanted to see him before he went and sent him word, when he came he talked matters over pertaining to it and he found him truly humble and he told him he was willing to take the will for the deed he might go free his sins ware forgiven him to go in peace and sin no more Hambbton then asked if the Lord would forgive him he answered yes! if I do: Hambbton was glad and came and told me and we rejoist much together. I will now return to my own history.

Soon after I started the mill to grinding which was the 25th day of Dec as before stated I had used tobacco from the time I was sick with the fever in Michigan it was 11 years and it had become a 2nd nature to me. And I had tried to leave it off a number of times but in the coarse of a week or so, I was always sure to get sick and a little tobacco would always cure me At length I became disgusted at myself because I had no more con-troal over myself and I determined I would not be a slave to any one thing or any such foolish thing, for often when I went into a neighbers house I had it in my mouth and I could not sit long without wanting to spit, and frequently the woman was cooking around the fire but if not I would leave my seat and spit in the fire place, then I was asked to sit near the fire but I generaly declined (for fear of crowding some of the family away) by saying thank you I am not cold atal, or I would go to the door and spit out thare they would say dont be in a hurry no said I, I ownly wanted to spit, do you use tobacco was the reply! Oh yes a little, But some never take that trouble they sit and spit on the floor, which however I was ashamed to do. I got along about two weeks before I was taken sick and then I was taken vary bad with the rheumatism it drawd my shoulder out of joint twice in the coarse of the night, and Ann Eliza got hops and vinegar and rubed it as hard as she could I thinking at the same time that one chew of tobacco was better than all she could do, but I was determined not to give it up but to stand by my resolution even until death, the next day I was some better and I got Orvel S Case to go with me to the creek and baptize me for the remission of my sins and for my health and when I came out of the water feeling much better. And I have not craved it since, and I think if all would take the same coarse, that we should not annoy each other with so much tobacco juice on our floors and on our walls

Jesse W Fox taught school in the daytime of reading writing and arithmatic etc. I was chosen 2nd Alderman of the City Council of Manti City Brother Joseph L Haywood was presant at our first meeting and spoke to us on our duty The spring of 1851 I was calld upon by the council to make a draft of a fort and send a copy to Brigham Young. We located the fort on the creek, about 1/3 of a mile from our houses it was to be built of rock, 10 rods on each side. I labord on it 11 days which was an average for all. We held the 4th of July in our new fort and had a picknick dinner. I was appointed reader of the day and discharged my duty as well as I could; at dinner or just before while it was being prepard by the hostess all children had been forbiden to come around the table but my little son Phineas had crept unobserved into one of the alleys and John E. Warner came along and took him up suddenly by one arm and threw him over a bench and his neck fell accross a chair round which hurt him vary much. I came vary near being angry with him but a 2nd thought forbid it lest it would disturb the quiet of the day, so I let it pass by, and chose rather to suffer wrong than to do a wrong all things moved quietly along All seemd to enjoy it vary well.

While we were building Shumways sawmill Father Morley appointed a fast meeting the 1st Thursday in May I think it was, and wisht to have the people attend as many as could, And I supposed that it would be as usual, that was for the women to go while the men attend to their labers and on that account I went to my work with Shumway and fasted at the same time, at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon Father Morley sent the Martial after us with a written charge for not attending fast meeting We responded to the call and appeared before the council. I was questioned as to my excuse I told them if I had have known that I was wanted I should have been on hand but I did not know that the call was anything more than common I was a little tried in my feelings but it soon passt off.

In the fall Brother Young came out thare and said he wanted me to build him a house (and collect in the subscriptions for the news) and lay it out on the house He let me have three oxen and a cow to buy lumber and shingles with fer it and told me to collect in all I could on tithing laber I went at it as hard as I could he let the job of stone werk to father Millet, under my direction. Father Millet got the cellar dug and I got the most of the lumber on the ground in the spring ready to commence operations as soon as possible. I then gave the mill into the hands of Father Morley this was in the summer of 1852 I finished the house all off and got done in the spring of 1853 In the summer of 1852 Brigham gave council to move the mill down to the city out of danger of Indians, I advised with Father Morley about it he said if he could have his way about it he would not move it atall he thought it was needless labor and of coarse I could not carry out the council. I then reported his feelings to Brigham he said he could have his way as far as he was conserned and advised me to sell out and to sell his part if I could and I had better go into some other business I then went to Uncle John and told him how matters stood he said if I would come to the city and go to laying down pump logs to water the city I could do well and wisht me to go to Brigham and ask him what he thought about it, which I did. He answered me that he had wanted someone to go at it but he had never found anyone yet that was willing Well sais I, I am willing to do it if you say so he sais he was willing if I could do it. I told him I could do anything he would say, or at least I could be found trying He then said he would arrange it as soon as convenient. I had better go home and arrange my business as soon as convenient and move down They got a charter by the name of the Great Salt Lake City Water Works in the name of B. Young Jesse C. Little P. W. Cook from the Legislature next session I then returned home and went to work to carry out his council finished off the house done all things up April 28 settled with Thomas Bullock for on house and Brigham asked me what I was going to charge him pr day I said he might set his own prices and I would be satisfied he said I must set it myself I then said two dollars and a half he then told Bullock to put it down three, he then owed me two hundred eighty seven dollars and sixty one cts for laber on his house my laber on the mill amounted to considerable more than his or Father Morlys either so that thare was considerable due me which was never paid me. I gave the accounts into the hands of Hiram Clawson which he filed away I paid my tithing at the time of settling which amounted to fifty three dollars and ten cents for laber on house. Brigham being presant He sold his 1/3 of the mill to Father Morly for five hundred dollars and I done the same. We took his notes I hired Henry Higgins to go down to help me move my family and household goods to Salt Lake City we was to start the 4th day of May the day before we got word that the Spanish Fork was so high that it was impossible to cross it Higgins said he did not think it was wisdom to start I told him if he ever went with me now is your time or I shall hire someone else he then concluded to start We could hear of the high water all the way but when we came to it we went over dry shod Soon after we crosst over it rose again so that it was impassible to cross Higgins said he did not know how he should get over again to go home I told him he had believed me once and found I could tell the truth and if he would believe me once more I would Prophecy again he said he would I then told him when he came back the water should not interfere with him but he should pass the river on dry ground he then said if that proved true he would call me a true prophet forever after. When he came to it he found it as I had said although but the day before it was a foot or more deep all over the bottom

I arrived in the city the 12th day of May 1853 I rented a house of Van Vacanberg on 4th South temple street in the 8th ward and went to work on the water works building a machine for housing logs by water. I lived in the wrented house about three months. I then went to Brigham and told him my time of wrent was about out and I wished he would pay me so that I could buy me a small place as I knew of one for sale that I could buy for two hundred dollars, he said he would sell me one, I might move in to a house in the 18th ward whare one of his wives was living whose name was Zina Huntington he would hire me to build one for her and then he would sell it to me I accordingly went to work building a house according to his directions, a few days before I got done he told me I might move in with Zina as soon as I pleased

Before I commenced working on the Water Works I worked for J. M. Grant during which time I was appointed City Water Master which proved to be a vary responcible office which I shall speak more of hereafter.

Journal Sections
  1. Brief history of Phineas' ancestry
  2. Childhood to 1838
  3. 1839 - Spring of 1843
  4. 1843 - 1845
  5. Conversion to the Mormon Church
  6. Leaving the family to join with the Mormons in the west 1845-46
  7. To Mechanicsville, Winter Quarters
  8. Winter Quarters 2
  9. Traveling West to Utah
  1. Settling in the Valley
  2. Run in with Indians
  3. 1851 - 1853
  4. 1854-1855
  5. Events of 1855
  6. September 1855- March 1856
  7. May - July 1856
  8. August - December 1856
  9. 1857 - Journal Conclusion