29 May 1856 – Letter from Edward Martin – Mary Taylor Project

Letter from Edward Martin – May 29, 1856

Ship Horizon, Off Cork, May 29, 1856.

Dear President Richards–It is with great pleasure that I write a few lines, to inform you of our favorable position at the present time; we have a fine morning and all is pleasant around us. The captain, Mr. Reed, is a gentleman in every sense of the word, and I have no doubt but that we shall have one of the most agreeable passages that the Saints have ever had while crossing the Atlantic. He spares no pains to make us comfortable, and offers every facility that will, in the least, be of benefit to us. . . . The officers are all agreeable and obliging. Mr. Stahl does all he can to accommodate; in fact, we could not ask for better treatment if we had it of our own choosing.

The Saints are all feeling well, with a very few exceptions, the few that are sick are not dangerous; the sister that was sick when we left is gradually recovering. We have had one birth, the particulars of which you will have in Elder Jaques’ letter.

The couple you spoke to me about were married last night. The captain gave us the use of the cabin to perform the ceremony in, and I was very glad of the opportunity. It gave us a good chance of introducing some of our doctrines, and of correcting some impressions which had been made upon his mind by newspaper reports and the like.

After you left us on Sunday evening, we lashed all the luggage, and thus prepared for seasickness. The Saints thought us very particular at the time, but morning did not make its appearance before they began to realize the benefit, and expressed themselves that it was good to have a head. The majority were sick on Monday, but only for a short time.

This morning I have been through the ship, and I find all in fine spirits. Elders Haven and Waugh are one with me, in carrying out necessary measures for the the [SIC] comfort and convenience of the passengers, and we have everything our own way. . . . .

I make it my business to visit every part of the ship six or seven times a day, but more particularly when I rise up and before I lie down, and I expect to do so during the voyage. We have got our organization pretty well matured, and all are willing to play their part. We have nine wards, nine cooks, and ten men in each watch of the guard which is kept up night and day.

I feel to thank my Heavenly Father for his goodness to us, and I fully realize the truth of the blessings pronounced upon my head, by you, before I left Liverpool. I cannot but think of the happy days, weeks, and months, that I have spent in the office. I cannot express my feelings, in fact language would fail to do it, but please to accept my heartfelt thanks for every kindness which I have received from you benevolent hand.

Please give my kind love to President Wheelock, and to all the brethren of my acquaintance, and believe me to be your humble servant,