Sidney Rigdon, Appeal to the American People, 1840, Second Edition

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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When men ran out and called for peace, they were shot down; when they held up their hats and handkerchiefs, and crying for mercy, they were shot down; when they attempted to run, they were cut down by the fire of guns; and when they stood still, they were shot down by putting their guns through the cracks of the building. After pleading for mercy, and having none shown us, and seeing they were determined to slaughter us en masse, and many of our brethren slain around us, leaving our numbers but few, and seeing it was but death for us, we concluded to sell our lives as dear as possible, and soon commenced firing at the mob, who were firing from all directions at us. But few of the mob were injured, in consequence of their shielding themselves by trees and logs; women and children were equally brutally treated with the men, and found no place upon the sympathies of these murderers. One women, by the name of Mary Steadwell was shot through the hand while holding it up in the attitude of defence. As she ran from the mob, others pierced her clothes; after running as far as she could, she threw herself behind a log, whilst a volley of balls poured after her, filling the log where she lay, twelve or fourteen of which were taken out and preserved for future generations to witness. Many other women had balls shot through their clothes, while fleeing into the woods with their children in their arms; others were brutally insulted and abused. One small boy was killed, having his brains blown out; and during the affray two other boys belonging to , (who was also killed at the time) hid themselves under the bellows, and when those murderers came into the shop, after killing all within except two men, (one wounded and the other not) who lay concealed from their view, by being covered with blood and dead bodies of the slain. The elder of the boys crying for mercy from his hiding place, was immediately put to death, by putting the muzzle of a gun to the lad’s ear and blowing off the top of his head. One of these savages who participated in this transaction, accosted his comrade (while committing this horrid deed) thus,—“it is a damned pity to kill boys;” but was hushed by having the thought put into his head in reply, that “little sprouts soon become large trees,” and that if these boys were suffered to live, they, like their father, would be Mormons—a crime punishable with death, even before committed—a faith now extant in , where it is supposed to have its birth, and it is hoped will have its burial. The other lad was supposed to have been killed, but they did not quite accomplish their object, the younger received a wound in the hip which carried off his hip bone. While the mob were in the shop, if they perceived life remaining in any of the wounded, while struggling in the agonies of death, they were immediately dispatched, at the same time plundering the pockets of the dead, stripping off their boots, shoes, and clothing. After the mob learned that the two men escaped with their lives, they would declare publicly, that if they got into another such affair, they would inspect more closely, by sticking their knives in their toes. This massacre took place about sun an hour high on Tuesday, and continued until seventeen were killed and fifteen wounded, the remaining few escaping. [p. 42]
When men ran out and called for peace, they were shot down; when they held up their hats and handkerchiefs, and crying for mercy, they were shot down; when they attempted to run, they were cut down by the fire of guns; and when they stood still, they were shot down by putting their guns through the cracks of the building. After pleading for mercy, and having none shown us, and seeing they were determined to slaughter us en masse, and many of our brethren slain around us, leaving our numbers but few, and seeing it was but death for us, we concluded to sell our lives as dear as possible, and soon commenced firing at the mob, who were firing from all directions at us. But few of the mob were injured, in consequence of their shielding themselves by trees and logs; women and children were equally brutally treated with the men, and found no place upon the sympathies of these murderers. One women, by the name of Mary Steadwell was shot through the hand while holding it up in the attitude of defence. As she ran from the mob, others pierced her clothes; after running as far as she could, she threw herself behind a log, whilst a volley of balls poured after her, filling the log where she lay, twelve or fourteen of which were taken out and preserved for future generations to witness. Many other women had balls shot through their clothes, while fleeing into the woods with their children in their arms; others were brutally insulted and abused. One small boy was killed, having his brains blown out; and during the affray two other boys belonging to , (who was also killed at the time) hid themselves under the bellows, and when those murderers came into the shop, after killing all within except two men, (one wounded and the other not) who lay concealed from their view, by being covered with blood and dead bodies of the slain. The elder of the boys crying for mercy from his hiding place, was immediately put to death, by putting the muzzle of a gun to the lad’s ear and blowing off the top of his head. One of these savages who participated in this transaction, accosted his comrade (while committing this horrid deed) thus,—“it is a damned pity to kill boys;” but was hushed by having the thought put into his head in reply, that “little sprouts soon become large trees,” and that if these boys were suffered to live, they, like their father, would be Mormons—a crime punishable with death, even before committed—a faith now extant in , where it is supposed to have its birth, and it is hoped will have its burial. The other lad was supposed to have been killed, but they did not quite accomplish their object, the younger received a wound in the hip which carried off his hip bone. While the mob were in the shop, if they perceived life remaining in any of the wounded, while struggling in the agonies of death, they were immediately dispatched, at the same time plundering the pockets of the dead, stripping off their boots, shoes, and clothing. After the mob learned that the two men escaped with their lives, they would declare publicly, that if they got into another such affair, they would inspect more closely, by sticking their knives in their toes. This massacre took place about sun an hour high on Tuesday, and continued until seventeen were killed and fifteen wounded, the remaining few escaping. [p. 42]
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