The Late Massacre near Fort Hall

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The Late Massacre near Fort Hall
by J. C. Wright

The Late Massacre near Fort Hall

Brigham City, Sept 12, 1859
Editor Deseret News--SIR:-

This morning Milton J. Harrington, wife and child, of Buchanan Co. Iowa arrived here, survivors of the company of emigrants lately massacred by the Indians about the 2nd inst., 25 miles west of Fort Hall between Portneuf Bridge and the Snake River.

Mr. Harrington makes the following statement in relation to the murderous affair: “Our company numbered 19 persons 6 men 3 women and 10 children between 1 and 10 years old. Some of the company was from Michigan and the others from Buchanan County, Iowa. At the last crossing of the Sweet Water, we were advised to travel on Lander’s Cuttoff being told that that route was nearer, better feed, and safe from Indian depredations.

Our journey was prosperous until the night of the 2nd when we were selecting our place for camping and were making our camp fires. We were startled at the report of a gun, followed immediately by a number of others. We soon ascertained that our rear wagons which had not yet arrived in camp were attacked by the Indians. A boy about out 10 years old came running to us and said the Indians had killed his father and were killing all the rest. In a moments time we were surrounded by the savages, whose hideous yells and constant cracking of their rifles at this moment rendered the scene too horrid for description. Those of us who survived made our escape by taking refuge in some rushes and willows on the bank of the Portneuf where we remained during the night. Next day we started on our journey on foot and after traveling three days on scant rations we came to Lieut. Livingston’s company of dragoons who were escorting a party to Fort Walla Walla, Oregon.

After informing the command of our distress, Livingston sent a detachment of nine men with one of our company to pilot them to the place of the massacre. Upon their arrival, they found the dead bodies of 5 persons on the ground out of the 8 that were missing. The dead were horribly mangled and scalped. One little girl five-years-old, had both her legs cut off at the knees. Her ears were also cut off and her eyes were dug out from their sockets and, to all appearances, the girl after having her legs cut off had been compelled to walk on the stumps for the sole purpose of gratifying the hellish propensity of savage barbarity.

Their animals were taken and their wagons plundered according to the usual mode of Indian spoliation.

The names of the MURDERED are:
Edward Miltimore, James Miltimore Jr., Wm Miltimore, Mary Ellen Miltimore, and Myron Cline.

MISSING:
Mrs Miltimore and child three months old and Albert Miltimore.

ESCAPED:
Milton J Harrington, wife and child, A. Hill, wife and child, Geo. Alonzo, Neilson Miltimore, Frank Hubbard, Nathan Titus and Wm. Marsh."

Respectfully, J. C. WRIGHT

This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.