“A History, of the Persecution, of the Church of Jesus Christ, of Latter Day Saints in Missouri,” December 1839–October 1840

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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constitution thereof. But the young man deaf to every thing but death and murder, regarded not the old man, but seizing an old corn cutter or piece of a sythe, commenced first to hew off the old man’s fingers while holding them up for mercy, and next cutting his hands from his arms, and then severing his arms form his body, and last of all, laying open the skull and beheading the body of the poor sufferer who had fought and spilt his blood for the privileges enjoyed by his murderer.
There not being any men left, or not enough to bury the dead, the women were compelled to bury their husbands by throwing them into a well close to the black-smith shop. The next day after the massacre a large company of them came back, blowing their bugle and firing their guns in an exulting manner. They carried off goods of all description, horses, wagons, and harnesses, stripping the horses and moving wagons of all the goods, furniture and clothing of any value, leaving the widows and orphans to suffer in that inclement season of the year. Cows, hogs, and horses were driven off in droves. They robbed the families of all their beds and bedding, and even took the widow’s cloaks; the dead men strip[p]ed of their clothing; also, another of the persons engaged in this horrid affair was a man by the name of Stephen Bunnels [Reynolds], who made his boasts, at public places, that he was the man who killed one of the little boys. This boasting has been made in the presence of the authorities of the state at , when innocent men were kept in chains for nothing but defending themselves, wives and children from such savages as these.
After this bloody affray was ended, a young man had crept from his hiding place and returned to the shop was sent to to obtain assistance to bury the dead, (a distance of about 20 miles.) The young man arrived within two or three miles of , where he met a company of men: he was asked where he was from and where he was going; and answering them correctly he was then asked if he knew where the militia were; he told them he did not know of any. They then told him to face about and go with them, and they would lead him where there were five or six thousand of them. He was then compelled to go to , and stopped at Samuel McCriston’s that night. In the morning they robbed him of a fine fur cap, and ordered him to take off his overcoat, telling him it was too fine for a Mormon to wear. They then concluded to shoot him, and disputed among themselves who should do it. And some hard words and threats were used among themselves who should have the fine horse the young man rode. However they soon quit their dispute and , (a Presbyterian Preacher of long standing in Corrilton [Carrollton], the county seat of Corril [Carroll] county,) saddled the young man’s horse, and rode him about for some time, as if trying him, to see if he would answer his purpose. This was also the same man who took the young man’s cap, and his boy wears it now, or did the last information received from that quarter. After being thoroughly satisfied with riding the the hores, he dismounted and Samuel McCriston mounted and rode for some time, while was equally engaged in the trial of another horse, which it appeared had been obtained in the same way in which they intended to get this.
McCriston rode off the horse and the young man was taken to , although he begged to be let loose that he might go and help the widows and children bury the dead at ; still he was kept for many days a prisoner at , in Ray county.
The mobbing party here mentioned, consisted of nine persons, , (preacher,) Joseph Ewing, (preacher,) Jacob Snorden, Wiley Brewer, John Hills (preacher,) and four more, their names not mentioned or known. After tormenting the young man all in their power, he was let go, and returned to mourn the loss of friends, without being able or privileged to pay the last debt of honor and respect to his murdered relatives.
A short time after this affair at , Capt. , the same who commanded a Massacre, with forty or fifty others, took possession of the mill for two or three weeks, and thus cut off all the resources of the widows and orphans who had [p. 149]
constitution thereof. But the young man deaf to every thing but death and murder, regarded not the old man, but seizing an old corn cutter or piece of a sythe, commenced first to hew off the old man’s fingers while holding them up for mercy, and next cutting his hands from his arms, and then severing his arms form his body, and last of all, laying open the skull and beheading the body of the poor sufferer who had fought and spilt his blood for the privileges enjoyed by his murderer.
There not being any men left, or not enough to bury the dead, the women were compelled to bury their husbands by throwing them into a well close to the black-smith shop. The next day after the massacre a large company of them came back, blowing their bugle and firing their guns in an exulting manner. They carried off goods of all description, horses, wagons, and harnesses, stripping the horses and moving wagons of all the goods, furniture and clothing of any value, leaving the widows and orphans to suffer in that inclement season of the year. Cows, hogs, and horses were driven off in droves. They robbed the families of all their beds and bedding, and even took the widow’s cloaks; the dead men stripped of their clothing; also, another of the persons engaged in this horrid affair was a man by the name of Stephen Bunnels Reynolds, who made his boasts, at public places, that he was the man who killed one of the little boys. This boasting has been made in the presence of the authorities of the state at , when innocent men were kept in chains for nothing but defending themselves, wives and children from such savages as these.
After this bloody affray was ended, a young man had crept from his hiding place and returned to the shop was sent to to obtain assistance to bury the dead, (a distance of about 20 miles.) The young man arrived within two or three miles of , where he met a company of men: he was asked where he was from and where he was going; and answering them correctly he was then asked if he knew where the militia were; he told them he did not know of any. They then told him to face about and go with them, and they would lead him where there were five or six thousand of them. He was then compelled to go to , and stopped at Samuel McCriston’s that night. In the morning they robbed him of a fine fur cap, and ordered him to take off his overcoat, telling him it was too fine for a Mormon to wear. They then concluded to shoot him, and disputed among themselves who should do it. And some hard words and threats were used among themselves who should have the fine horse the young man rode. However they soon quit their dispute and , (a Presbyterian Preacher of long standing in Corrilton [Carrollton], the county seat of Corril [Carroll] county,) saddled the young man’s horse, and rode him about for some time, as if trying him, to see if he would answer his purpose. This was also the same man who took the young man’s cap, and his boy wears it now, or did the last information received from that quarter. After being thoroughly satisfied with riding the the hores, he dismounted and Samuel McCriston mounted and rode for some time, while was equally engaged in the trial of another horse, which it appeared had been obtained in the same way in which they intended to get this.
McCriston rode off the horse and the young man was taken to , although he begged to be let loose that he might go and help the widows and children bury the dead at ; still he was kept for many days a prisoner at , in Ray county.
The mobbing party here mentioned, consisted of nine persons, , (preacher,) Joseph Ewing, (preacher,) Jacob Snorden, Wiley Brewer, John Hills (preacher,) and four more, their names not mentioned or known. After tormenting the young man all in their power, he was let go, and returned to mourn the loss of friends, without being able or privileged to pay the last debt of honor and respect to his murdered relatives.
A short time after this affair at , Capt. , the same who commanded a Massacre, with forty or fifty others, took possession of the mill for two or three weeks, and thus cut off all the resources of the widows and orphans who had [p. 149]
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