The Travel diary of Henry Clegg Jr.
(This edition has been updated and edited by Carol Szoke Aug-2010)


            The diary of Henry Clegg Jr. was transcribed and distributed by his granddaughter, Juventa Hamblin [she was named after the ship on which the Clegg family crossed the Atlantic].  Juventa’s accompanying note reads:


            Since I have Grandfather Clegg's Diary, I felt it was only fair that each of you should have a copy  as I have translated it.  The only liberty I have taken is in putting the date in the margin so it is more easily read.


            Some of this record was written in shorthand.  I have been unable to find anyone who could transcribe this 110 year old method.  I have indicated it by a series of [three hyphens] " - - - ".


            I wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and hope that the New Year ahead is Happy and Prosperous.


                                                            Juventa Hamblin



*   *   *   *   *



An Account of the Voyage from Liverpool to Great Salt Lake


By Henry Clegg, Jr. - 1855



April 1855


March 30       Went - - - Friday morning March 30 in the river.  On March 31, 10 o'clock.  In the evening sailed - - - at __ o'clock.


April 1 Fine morning.  At noon it began to feel a headwind.  Turned up my D. (dinner?).  Half the ship began to be sick.  Myself among the lot.  I was very sick for 3 hours.

                        1 forty p.m.

                        We had a - - - 4 ‑ 4.

Elder Glover - - -.  The ship was - - - and - - - cleaning, getting provisions and con ...

       At 5, 4 couples were married but if they were as sick as I was they would not have thought of marriage.  I went and got my Dulcimer and played "The Girl - - -."  It cured me of sea sickness.  Lots that were sick in bed got up and danced.  Eliza was sick all day.  Our Israel and Henry James were as well as could be.  Richard and Israel marched on the deck like a captain.  Same as if he was playing in a garden.  My wife was not sick but was seeing others pull such faces.  It really was laughable.  I could scarce help laughing myself, as bad and sick as I was.


April 2 Monday _ I was very sick all day.  The sea was very rough.


April 3 Tuesday_ Monsterous [sic] rough sea.  The ship cleared the Irish coast and put into the Great William with a Gov't - - -.  The waves ran mountain high.  Mrs. Clegg took sea sick and nearly - - - the - - -.  Was truly awful.

I was also worse than ever but - - - both children still kept well. Which - - - didn't know what might have ...


April 4 Rough sea _ Sailing at a quick speed _ All sick nearly _ Those that were able to render assistance did so.  I was really glad.  Thank God _ I got some tastes from the cabin that did me and mine good.


April 5 Thursday _ Ship going full speed.  Nearly all recovering from sea sickness.  Myself and Mrs. Clegg coming around first rate.  The day very fine.  Turned out all on board _ Was between decks from end to end and made all things begin to look better.  Had a good night's rest.


April 6 Friday _ As well as ever I was in my life.  Mrs. Clegg, I - - - first rate.

We had our - - - of - - - father... .  Well we liked it for we were awful hungry.  We ate the prunes we got of my mother this morning by 6 o'clock.  They were good.  Oh, how often I wished my father and M. was with us.  Had a conference in the afternoon and quite happy.


April 7 Saturday _ A very fine day _ going but slow.  (Line of shorthand)


April 8 (Shorthand)  Bell __ all in good health.


April 9 Monday _ early - - - saw 2 being the first since we left.  In the - - - provisions ...  Going but slow, fine day ...


April 10          (All shorthand)


April 11          - - - very fine.  Afternoon very rough.  A squall _ very rough all night.


April 12          - - - still very rough _ all on board really very sick.  Myself among the lot. Bad all day _ Rough still all night but going at a rapid rate.


April 13          Friday _ Rough in the - - - toward noon it came very fine.  Sickness began to move ... .


April 14          Saturday good wind.  All going on first rate ... .  A child found to be in the measles.  The ship was cleaned out from stem to stern.  Cloride [sic] of lime washed through.  I and family in good health.  We met several ships for the last few days.


April 15          Fine day, favorable wind, going 11 knots an hour.  In the - - - ship bound for England gave 3 cheers and they also in return.  Preaching in the - - -. One of the ship's cooks in a passion flung a pan of hot water on one of the saints without provocation.  He was aranged [sic] before the captain, got lashed and put in irons til the - - -.  The - - - very __ scalded and fears the loss of an eye.


April 16          Monday _ Beautiful day _ fair wind _ going 11-12 knots an hour all day. All in good health.


April 17          Tuesday _ Saw a - - -.  Fine day _ all well.


April 18          Going but slow _ very warm - - -.


April 19          Thursday _ very cold day, as cold as I ever felt.  Hailed in the afternoon. Only made slow progress.  Saw 4 ships - - - the ...


April 20          Friday _very cold, hailed and rained.  Came to the New Foundland [sic] banks.  Saw whales.  Some large _ near ...  (Here he sharpened his pencil, which had become dull and thick.)


April 21          Saturday _ very cold in the morning.  very rough in the sea _ in the afternoon we got orders to make our - - - very firm for we should have one and no mistake.  It- - - and - - -.  Witnessed one of the heaviest hurricanes that has been experienced for 9 years.


April 22          Sunday _ At one in the (3 lines in shorthand)   We were driven back on the - - -.  About ... .  Had our sails ripped to slivers.  Saw another ship apparently in difficulties.  (Here a blank space of 6 lines.)  Abated a little and glad we were for we needed it ...


April 23          Monday _ Rough sea but mending _ very cold, saw many whales.  I was sick all day.  In the evening we had another - - - very much ...


April 24          Tuesday _ Cold in the - - -.  In the afternoon it came warm.  We had a calm for a few hours.  Saw many sea pigs.  I was mending in my health very much ...  The others well.


April 25          Very cold day _ going but slow.


April 26          Very cold day.  Early in the morning the wind changed.  We had 24 hours good sail at the rate of 12‑15 knots an hour.


April 27          Friday _ Very cold day as ever I saw in my life.  Rough sea.


April 29          Sunday _ Fine morning.  Saw a large ship pass us.  In the morning the wind a little more favorable.  Had preaching on deck.  Morning and evening Israel bad in his mouth and head sore.  Saw 2 small fishing boats pass.


April 30          Very fine day.  Wind changed last night at 11 o'clock.  Exactly right for us.  We went along all day.  Israel still rather unwell.



May 1855


May 1             Tuesday _ We sailed all night at a rate of 16 knots per hour.  Israel unwell all night.  During the day his mouth burst and he had - - - and bled.  A great deal came up so - Saw a large ship (Union ship).  Sailed fast and safe all day.  At 7 we had a - - - 15 - - - to look after the luggage.  When we got on - - - P. (Philadelphia?) as we expected to reach the mouth of the river the following day.


May 2             Wednesday _ Israel a little better but his mouth awful - very sore.  Cannot eat, only drink.  Had his mouth lanced by a sister.  Still a favorable good wind.  In the evening it became nearly calm.  River ahead - rocks -  tacked extra sail.  - - - at - - - 15 men - - - when P. and  - - - and - - - ... .


May 3             Thursday _ Fine morning.  Very little wind so we almost stayed still.  We were busy looking out for the pilot all day - but did not succeed til 6 at night.  The Captain gave a signal and he came on board.  About 7 we got late news from him which we were eager to hear.  Vessels that had sailed from Liverpool 8 days before us had not arrived.  Israel getting better.  Saw many ships, as many as 240 at a time ... .  That last - - - 5 weeks before us had arrived 2 weeks ago.


May 4             Friday _ Fine morning - saw the shores of America for the first time at 8 o'clock a.m.  Saw Cape May and Cape - - - (can't read it).  Steam tug came to tug us up the river but the C. (captain) and the __ could not agree on a fee.  Israel much better.  Pleasant to see land once more.


May 5             Saturday _ Arrived at Philadelphia at 10 o'clock at night.


May 6             Sunday _ Went ashore for the first time  Saw Elder Eloyos - his sister and brother‑in‑law.  Had a discussion with a Jew.


May 7             Monday _ Got our boxes examined by the CO (custom office?) and shipped them to the - - -.  We slept in a hotel - got good accommodations, fasted - - - everyone.  (3 lines of shorthand.)  Columbia - - - Capitol.


May 9             Wet morning.  Saw many kinds of scenery.


May 10           Thursday _ Fine morning.  Very - - -.  Got some cheese and biscuits. Arrived at Pittsburg [sic] at 4 a.m.   - - - Equinox lodged on - - - night.


May 11           (Unreadable)  Friday saw - - -.  Got plenty of (exercise?).  Got made into

                        - - -.


May 12           Saturday _ Fine day, very hot.  Got cheese, bread and biscuits.


May 13           Sunday _ Fine morning, very hot.  Saw Indiana and Louisiana.  [Most likely the reference should be:  West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.]  Arrived at Cincinatti [sic] at 12 o'clock noon and stayed until 4 o'clock, then pressed forward.  Fulmer stopped at C. to await the arrival of the  - - - Sunday evening and then to return to P. ... missed the company of the saints at P.


May 14           Monday _ Fine morning.  Very warm.  Arrived at Louisville at 7 o'clock in the morning.  One of our brethren caught a snake.  Louisville is in Kentucky, Bro - - - informs us - - -.


May 15           Tuesday _ Fine morning.  Arrived at Evansville in the morning.  4 shops on fire and likely for the whole square to burn down.


May 16           Wednesday _ Wet morning.  Thunder and lightning very savage.  Afternoon came very fine.  Saw Ill. and Mo. at a distance.


May 17           (2 lines unreadable, last word is) Sunday.  We stayed in Louisville Sunday night when we again set sail for Utah.  We had also ‑

                        (Page gone.  Next entry lacks date, but must be Friday 18, Saturday 19,

            Sunday 20.  An entry on one of these pages, perhaps Sunday, says:)  The other company of saints with us who came by the Washington city but did not arrive at Louisville (?) (must be St. Louis) until another day longer than the - - - (unreadable).  I had come up in - - -.  We all started on board.  The Equinox on.


May 21           Monday _ 9 o'clock at night up the Missouri River.  It was a beautiful night.  I have had a thought this day about my wife.  That she would be a corps [sic] by my side.


May 22           Tuesday _ All day my wife washed some clothes and got cold.  She took sick in her bowels and went worse.  Nothing would stay in her stomach.


May 23, 24, 25 are blank.


May 26           My wife still worse.  Henry James and Israel took it also.


May 27           Sunday _ Arrived at the Camp Ground at 11 o'clock in the forenoon ...


May 28           Monday _ My dear wife died at 1/2 past 4 o'clock in the afternoon.


May 29           Tuesday _ My wife burried [sic] at Atchison at 11 o'clock in the saints grave yard next to Amelia Mercer on the north side ... forward.  In the afternoon my lovely son Henry James Clegg died at 6 o'clock.  I burried him that same night next to his dear mother.  Went forward to the camp, 5 miles, very wet night.  I was very tired and ready to die with fatigue.


May 30           Wednesday_ Israel well but I went worse and worse and worse.  For several days I was brought to death's door.  I cannot describe my situation nor the hardships I endured.  Must be felt to be known.


(No further entry until June 7)



June 1855


June 7            Thursday _ Being my birthday, I am now 30 years of age.  This afternoon I took a change and began to mend fast.


June 8            Much better - Thank God for all his mercies to me.  22 had died since we landed and several still ailing.


June 9            Still moving but short of men (unreadable) and what little I had I must cook for myself.


June 10         Sunday _ Felt considerably worse and low spirited.


June 11         Monday _ Still sickly.  Given to fret overmuch after my dear wife and child who had gone and left me alone by myself.


June 12         A little better - Walked out a little.


June 13         A great deal better - increasing in strength and spirits.


June 14         Got to feel well but weakly - worked in the - - - (could be garden)


June 15         Worked in the garden among the potatoes - felt much better.


June 16         Felt well - Israel also.  Got orders to move to the others - - - in the - - -.

June 17         We moved to the - - - to go off with them.


June 18         Felt first rate and in better spirits.


June 19, 20, 21 are blank.


June 22         Thursday _ Both in good health.  Learning the art of Ox driving.


June 23         Friday _ Both in good health.


June 24         Fine day.  Both in good health.


June 25         Sunday _ Wrote 6 letters - - - Father - - - Father - - - Brother Lawronsons and P. Thuman - 2 for others.


June 26         Fine day.  Both in good health.


June 27         Jobbed around camp.


June 28         Went a falling trees and drawing timber.  Israel and I well.


June 29         Good health - served our provisions - - -  Saw Bro. Lily and R. Beck from London.


June 30         All well.  (Two lines of shorthand)  About 20 saints blow town.


June 31         (?)  Started for the plains - Went only a few 100 yards - stopped to make things ready.



July 1855


July 1             Sunday _ Fine day.  Got out guns and learned our ox gone away.


July 2             Found ox - started for good to cross the plains.  The camp moved 12 miles and stopped by a creek.  Fine day - both well - Saw an ox eaten by wolves.


July 2 [3]        (Lost day here) Tuesday _ Make a start to go to Utah - Went 12 miles.


July 3 [4]        Moved 15 miles over plain land.


July 4 [5]        Moved 12 miles.


July 5 [6]        Moved 18 miles.


July 6 [7]        Moved 8 miles.


July 7 [8]        Camp stopped and observed Sabbath.


July 9             - 15 mi; [10th] - 12 mi; [11th] - 13 mi; [12th] ‑ 15 mi; [13th] ‑ 12 mi.


July 14           Arrived at sandy river - good water - - -


July 15           Sunday _ stopped all day - not so well.


July 16           Moved 2 mi.  All well.


July 17           Moved 15 mi.  Ancient looking place.


July 18           16 mi.


July 19           - -15 - - - miles and got lost.  Delayed us some time.


July 20           Moved - - - saw hundreds of buffalo.  We - - - the 2 men - 6 lost -shot a buffalo.


July 21           Moved 20 mi.  Saw Amos A.  Buffalo - Fine country.  Ate some buffalo meat for the first time.  Arrived at Platte River.


July 22           Sunday _ Not being much wood, we moved 10 miles farther.


July 23           Went 18 miles.  Saw Ft. Carney.  (Ft. Kearny)  A great Indian trading place.


July 24           Moved 24 miles up - Lots of buffalo and fish.


July 25           18 miles - fine land.


July 26           18 miles.


July 27           20 mi.  Thunder and L. very heavy. (rain?)


July 28          Moved 15 mi.


July 29           Moved 12 mi.  Sunday.


July 30           Moved 14 mi.  Saw lots of buffalo every day, also wolves, hares, bears and snakes - numerous others.  I have been in bad health for 5 days - I was extremely bad - So we camped all day (July 31 ?) - Some of the brethren went to shoot buffalo.


August 1855


August 1        Moved 16 miles.


August 2        Came to Platte where we have to cross it being 1/2 mile across.  Saw the

 first Indians since we started.  Several of their squaws came in our camp begging.  I looked at their features and took stock of them.


August 3        3:00 in the morning we crossed the river and camped on the other side until afternoon when we moved over a large hill toward another river called the South Platte.  Got a quantity of cherries.  Being my father's birthday, I made a large pie and some coffee and drank [to] my father's health on the fourth. [of August]


August 5        Sunday _ Stopped all day by river Platte.


August 6        8 miles very rough sandy road.


August 7        10 miles still a rough road.


August 8        15 miles - better road.


August 9        15 miles - barren land.


August 10      16 miles.


August 11      5 miles - Saw Indian - Sioux - Rouby Dodd's an Indian trader.


August 12      Sunday _ went 17 miles.  Pleasant road with one exception.


August 13      Went 16 miles.  Good road ‑ got cherries and currants in abundance ‑ also on previous day.


August 14      Went 15 miles ‑ good road ‑ got some currants and camped near the river.  2 sisters died that had met with an accident - one had got run over her chest - the other was shot through the arm, which caused her death.   It occured [sic] through the carelessness of leaving the gun loaded, in the way, and with a cap on it.  Another - - - acc't - - - ...


August 15      Went 10 miles and camped 2 hours - then went on 4 miles more - Saw many Indians.  Camped several miles from Ft. Laromy. [Ft. Laramie]


August 16      Passed Ft. Laromy, camped 4 miles other side Ft. Laromy.  Sunday [Thursday ?]  Bands of Indians came all day - 500 at least

(2 unreadable lines) paid 30 beads for a pound of biscuits - A woman got shot - - - frightened.

August 17      Went 15 miles over the Black Hills - saw a camp of Indians.


August 18      Went 15 miles over the hills - very rough country.  It was dark long before we camped.  Brother Fulmer overtook us.


August 19      Sunday _ 5 miles in the morning - several in the afternoon.


August 20      Went 24 miles.


August 21      Went 15 miles.  (5 lines unreadable) was badly hurt (must have been his foot).


August 22      Went 12 miles.  The road from Laramie is very rough.  My foot much better and I walked nearly all day.  Camped soon in the day.  Elder Fulmer took leave of us and went forward.


August 23      Went 9 miles - camped at nice creek - Sage Creek - My foot much better ‑ almost.


August 24      Went 16 miles - came to the Platte soon in the day - All in good spirits.


August 25      Went 22 miles.  Camped at the side of the Platte where we had to cross - a beautiful place - everything necessary for man and beast.


August 26      Sunday _ Went 8 miles - crossed the Platte in the morning - very rough bad road - tremendous mountains.


August 27      Went 16 miles.  Rough country - - -


August 28      Went 24 miles.  Started from 3 in the morning to 8 at night.  Came to the Sweet Waters and camped by the side of Independence rock - 332 miles from the valley.


(Last 2 pages unreadable except mileage.)


August 29      8 miles                                               September 1      went 21 miles

August 30      went 20 miles                                   September 2      went 18 miles

August 31      went 10 miles                                   September 3      went 23 miles

                                                                                    September 4      went 14 miles.


End of Entries


Carol Kohler Szoke’s note: March 17, 2009.  When there was an X, a letter, a number or a combination of more than one, e. g. X, 7X or G7X, in Juventa’s transcription, I put “ ... ” in this copy.  


Note: The original copy of this diary is held in the Historical Archives of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‑day Saints in Salt Lake City, Utah.  The call number on the microfilm is:   MS 6613.