LIFE AND HISTORY OF PHINEAS W. COOK
 

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Section 4 1843 - 1845  


We lived in Camrons house about 3 months we then moved into a house owned by two men by the name of David Moor and John Robison I took a job of them of building a house for 145 dollars I did not commence it for about 2 months after for they ware to furnish materials and they had not yet got them they kept me waiting some 2 or 3 weeks and I went to work for a man by the name of John Potry I put up a frame for a-house 18 by 24 feet about this time I was taken sick with the fewer and ague I was sick 12 days and had the ague every day vary hard I took a teaspoon heaping full of quinine which did not break it the 9th day I sent and got 5 cents worth of opium and took a pill once an hour for 3 hours which broke the feaver and as the chill was comeing on for three days in succession the 3rd day was the last I had. I was much redused so much so that I was not able to sit up in bed had no appetite for anything till I heard someone say that there was a man in the street pedleing peaches I sent out and bought a peck and I never stopt eating till they were all gone this nearly cured me I got about in a day or two and in a few days was able to go to work

While I was sick I had no one to do anything for me but Ann Eliza and she had a cousin by the name of Edward Bailey he worked for a man by the name of John Flint about 4 miles north making brick, he used to come down to see us about once a week and he would cut our wood for us which helpt us vary much, had it not been for him I do not know how it would been with us as we had no friends near us but him we ware in the midtst of strangers and none seemed to care ownly to get all out of me that they could.

When I got able to work I went and hired to a man by the name of Joel Clemens by the day on a Railroad bridge under a man by the name of Benjamine Right. I was to have $1. 25 pr day and to take my pay in a cook stove I worked 21 days had a few things of him in the way of eatables and in about two weeks after the work was done the stove was on hand with all things pertaining thereto, the price of it was 21 dollars (No 2 premium) I took it home with a thankful heart and put it up and it was first rate and Ann Eliza was glad as well as myself I then began on the before named job they had lumber for a part of the window frames and about one half timber enough for the frame I made up all the lumber and then I had to wait again after a while they told me to bring on my hands and they would have the timber as fast as I could work it up. accordingly I did so and in three days I had to discharge them for want of materials, after waiting about three weeks with no prospect of doing anything more I resolved to leave the job after finding they had lied to me and tried to swindle me by feruing me to take notes which ware not good and at the same time saying that it was according to contract now I did agree to take good notes against responsible men but they said that I must sue them and collect them and if the court desided the notes not good then they would pay me some other way. Now by taking this coarse it would compel me to employ a lawyer which would cost me from 5 to 10 dollars each time besides loss of time and I concluded to get off the best way I could, at this time Ann Eliza was quite unwell and I had Whitney and wife to board and could not get clear of them without turning them out doors and for the sake of his wife and child about two years old I determined to bear with him his wife was not vary well and the child was quite sickly. We had moved out of Moor & Robi-sons house and rented one of a man by the name of Hinkle this was a smaller house than the one we had left I thought it would be more confortable for my little family than the former and my plan was to leave Whitney in the house of Moor & Robison but to my surprise when we had got loaded they ware also ready to go along with us I now saw no other way but to keep them all winter without pay for it was impossible to get him to work for he was too lazy however I did succeed in getting him to work a few days but he did not pay me for ownly two weeks board for himself and wife under these perplexing circumstances I determined to take Ann Eliza to her fathers to stay till I could stay and get matters settled so I hired a man by the name of Fairchilds to take my things with Ann Eliza to Ross

The day we started it snowd the most of the day it fell about 6 inches deep we were obliged to leave the stove with Whitny until I could get it home we had to hire an extra horse the going was so bad we met T C. Hall about one mile south of Battle Creek it was vary cold and he had no mittens so I took mine off my hands and gave them to him for this he thanked me and bowd his head in token of his gratitude it was a pair that Eliza his wife had given me a year or two before I told him he need not thank me for they ware already his this was about the first of April 1844 We got home safe the 2nd day the 3rd day I started back to work a few weeks and to try to settle up my affairs if possible I worked for a man that was building a warehouse at the rail road depot four weeks at 1. 25 pr day when my time was out with him I went for my stove but Whitney had moved into another house and had taken the stove along with him I at last found him and he was perfectly indifferent and his wife was quite as much so as himself, they did however promise me that they would come and bring it out in four weeks and that without fail, and as I had no way to carry it I thought I would try them again for I thought that after I had shown them so many kindnesses that they could not have a concience to deceive me. However at the end of the time I looked for a fulfillment of their promice but I looked in vain at the end of six weeks I started after it. When I arrived there I found him in the same place I left him. I told them I had come after my stove his wife told me she could not live without it But I told her I should take it in a day or two and they could look around in the time and get another He went directly to Moor & Robson and told them all I had said and they conived a plan to take it from me which was as follows.

They ware to sue me on the contract and put an attachment on the stove, he also got the man which I had boarded with to sue me for I owed him for my supper the night before Amongst them all they made out four writs and had them served on me. This was somewhat trying to me for I could not find anyone I dared to trust after thinking the matter over having no place to stop and not more than one or two dollars with me I resolved to leave so I put out on foot and traveld till midnight and got to Battle Creek thare I stopt at an old acquaintances the next day I put home. I related the circumstances to father in law and he said he would go out with me and try to settle the matter so in three days after we started but he could do nothing with them they made their brags that they ware at home and in all probability at the day of trial they should not be ready and should have it adjourned from time to time to suit their convenience after he had found out their plans he advised me to go home and let them work at it and give them the stove to get clear of them. Although it was clear that I could get judgement against them if I could get them to trial for I was entitled to damagees on the contract for their neglect to furnish materials but I found they was in debt more than their property was worth and if it was decided in my favor I should have more trouble to collect it than it would all be worth and considering lawyers fees for which I should have to pay good money for, I thought I would let them slide, so we went home again and left them to law it alone they got a judgement against me of 80 dollars for non-fullfillment of contract so they of course found a way to keept the stove about the same amount of damage should have been given to me but it stands thare at this day and I expect that it will be swept away with the refuge of lies at the day of final settlement of all things. A few days after, I met Moor at Augusta about five miles from whare I lived I immediately got a writ for him and had it served and had a trial he sent a lawyer to attend to it I got a judgement against him of about 14 dollars but the contract was not allowd to come in for the reason as they said that it had been tried and decided once and could not be tried again so I let it stand for the present in a few weeks after this I heard of the death of Whitney child and his wife and soon after he also died a poor vagabond I have to say that I owe none of them anything, but the man that sued me for his meal his name was John Potry how much he charged me I never knew

One circumstance I have forgotten to mention When we ware moving home with Fairehilds we got into Battle Creek it stormed and blowd vary hard, and we had expected to go through in one day but the storm hindered us I had no mony on hand and night had overtaken us but we had started on but we had not got out of town till we met a man that was an entire stranger to me he hailed us and asked whare we was going we stopt and told him how it was, he straitway told us to turn in to his house out of the storm which we was thankful to do he got us some supper and made us comfortable for the night gave us some breakfast and would not take anything for it but we left him our fire shovel When we started out he bade us goodbye and wisht us good luck and I thanked him for his kindness and blesst him in my heart his name And it was his house whare I stopt at the time I traveld till midnight, to get clear of my enemies, which I should not have done but I had no money

I worked for father in law the summer most of the time some of the time at home and some of the time at Kalamazoo I helped him build a barn the 14th day of September Daniel W. died we burried him at or a little east of Rowlands Mills in Henry Shermans field, his wife is cousin to my wife. In the month of July when I was in Kalamzoo at work on Whitcombs Mill the news came in on the Waybill by the mail coach that Joe Smith was killd by a mob in Carthage Illinois, the news had quite an effect on the people and every one had something to say about the matter some said he was an imposter and it was a good thing for the world and some one thing and some another, at this time considerable was said about the doctrine of the Mormons but nobody seemd to say anything good about it, but reports said that there was men around that ware Mormon preachers who ware electionering for Joe Smith as a candidate for the Presidents chair at Washington and they ware at Kaló at the time of his death, about this time I hurd that Eliza my oldest sister had become a Mormon she had belonged to them a year or so This caused me to think that she had turned fool or crazy, I did no know which, This fall father was quite unwell again and he came after me to go home and help him get in his crops and get wood and make preperations for winter so I went after his oxen and waggon to move up with Ann Eliza and my things, and Eliza was thare and she began to talk to me about Mormonism but I ownly laughed at her and told her to quit her talking and send one of her preachers and that would be the end of controvercy for my motto was that the one that was the best at proving their position was bound to win, and if he had more proof than I he was nearest right, and I was bound by my former resolution to embrace it, and if I could produse more scriptur-eal argument than he he must yield to me, or I should consider him dishonest so she said she would send them to preach to me sais I thats right for I have not had a chance for an argument on religion for some time, and I should be glad to have a chance to thrash them and make them haul in their long horns.

Then I left with the team after my family and came up to fathers the next day we got the fall work done we went to log-ing the peace that we had chopt in the winter of 1840 we let a job of spliting rails enough to fince it in, We hauled off all the wood we could the rest we piled in heaps and burned it, we had contracted with Wm Dailey to brake it up in the spring which took five yoke of oxen he had $2. 50 an acre it come to $50. he completed it in June folowing. Harriet B. was born the 28th day of October (1845) she was an 8 month and one week child this was due to a hard cold accompanied by a bad cough her mother was sick for three days and nights,
 

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