DEPOSITIONS ON BEHALF OF CHARLES &
JOEL D. MITCHELL
State of Arkansas
County of Carroll
Be it witnessed that on this 22nd day of October, A.D. 1860,
personally came and appeared before me, the undersigned, John Bunch, an acting Justice of
the Peace, duly commissioned and qualified as such within and for said county, William
Mitchell, of the county of Marion, and State of Arkansas, who after being duly sworn
according to law, to testify the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, in
regard to the matters in relation to the property of Charles R. Mitchell and Joel D.
Mitchell, who it is supposed were murdered at a place known as "Mountain
Meadows" and whose property was taken my the murderers. Upon his oath aforesaid
deposed as follows;
I was personally well acquainted with the said Charles and Joel Mitchell. There were my sons, and I assisted them in making
their outfit for the trip in the spring of 1857. They
left in company with John T. Baker and many others, and were murdered, as I am informed
and believe, at "Mountain Meadows",
in September of the same year. They were on
their way to California, and when they left here they had in their possession and under
their control, the following personal property. They
had in cash when they left this county, in April 1857, about the sum of Two hundred and
seventy five dollars. They had thirteen yoke
of good work oxen. They had sixty two head of other cattle and when they reached
Washington county in this state, they wrote to me that they had bought ten head more and
intended getting two more so as to make one hundred head in all. I have no doubt from all the information I have on
this subject, and I fully believe that when they left the state they had with them one
hundred head of good saleable cattle. They had
one large ox wagon, log chains, etc. They had their wearing apparel, beds,
and bedding, and cooking utensils. They had guns, pistols and Bowie knives.
The property they had with them when they left for California in
April 1857 was worth in this market, at the date of their departure, at a
fair and reasonable cash valuation as follows, to wit:
|13 yoke of work oxen @ $ 60.00 per yoke
|74 head of other cattle, cows, steers @$12
|cash on hand when they left here
|1 large wagon, chains, etc
|1 horse saddle & bridle
|Guns, fire arms, knives, etc
|Clothing, beds, and bedding, provisions,
cooking utencils, camp equipage, etc.,
Amounting in all, the property that the said
Charles and Joel D. Mitchell left this state with, for California in the
year 1857, to the sum of Twenty five hundred and thirteen dollars.
I have made the above estimate at what the said property was worth
here, and know all as did know all the property above valued except the ten
head of cattle that was bought in Washington County, of which I have no
knowledge, only from heresay. But
I believe that the amount above stated is a fair estimate of the value of
said property at "Mountain Meadows," where the parties were
murdered and robbed. I have no
knowledge and from heresay but am informed and believe that said property
was of double the value there to what it was here and from all the
information I have been enabled to obtain I believe that said property at
Mountain Meadows could have been worth the sum of about five or six thousand
dollars. This last statement is
only given as the information of others. So help me God.
Wm. C. Mitchell
Sworn to and subscribed to before me this
22nd day of October 1860.
John Bunch, J.P.
And at the same time and place came Samuel Mitchell,
an other witness known to me, to be of lawful age, who, after being duly sworn
in, in relation to the matter in the caption herein mentioned, deposed as
I am a brother to Charles R. and Joel D. Mitchell mentioned
in the foregoing deposition of William C. Mitchell.
I was well acquainted with the outfit of the parties, and acquainted with
all the property set forth in the foregoing statement made by the said William
A. Mitchell, and from my knowledge of the property and its value I believe that
the value therein given and estimated, is a fair cash valuation of the property
and its value in this market at the date of the departure of said parties for
California. They left this county
in company of John T. Baker and many others, all bound for California, and I
have no doubt but what they were all murdered at a place known as "Mountain
Meadows", so help me God.
Sworn to and subscribed on this 22nd day of October 1860 .
John Bunch, J.P.
State of Arkansas
County of Carroll
I, Samuel W. Peel, as the clerk of the circuit court
and exofficio of the county and state aforesaid, duly commissioned and qualified
as such within, and for said county, do hereby testify that John Bunch, whose
official signature appears to be annexed, and foregoing depositions of Wm C.
Mitchell, and Samuel Mitchell, was at the time said depositions were taken, and
now is an acting Justice of the Peace within and for said county, duly
commissioned, and qualified as such, and that his official signature thereunto
annexed is genuine and in his own proper handwriting, and that fullfaith and
credit are due all his official acts as such.
In witness whereof, I Samuel W. Peel, as clerk as aforesaid, have
hereunto set my hand as such clerk, and affixed my private seal (The Public seal
of said court having been destroyed by fire). Given under my hand this 22 day of
S W Peel, Clerk
Source: Territorial Papers
of the United States Senate 1789 - 1873, Roll 15, Utah, December 31, 1849 - June
11, 1870. These records were discovered by
Buford Fancher during the course of his research for
Richard Fancher (1700-1764) of Morris County, New Jersey: Richard Fancher's
descendants 1764-1992: Fancher-Fansher-Fanchier-Fanshier, which was
published in 1993.