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do I know whose horse it is !” Tracy—“where did you get him ?" Jim—" I stole him from an Indian, of coursc. I have no doubt his declarations were true, for he claimed the credit (and I was informed he deserved it) of being the most accomplished horse-thief in all New Mexico. He informed Tracy that he was "dead broke" and hungry, and wished him to ask me for something to eat. I requested Prince to get him some breakfast, after which he was as rich as Crcesus, and commenced giving me his life. It was a most exciting romance, interspersed with thrilling adventures and “hair-breadth 'scapes." I was convinced that his story, in the main, was true, not because he swore to it all, but because Tracy was acquainted with the most important facts. He was a mixture of the negro, Indian, and Anglo-Saxon blood, and born in New Mexico. His earliest training was in the art of horse and mule stealing, in which art he had become a connaisseur. He commenced by stealing one at a time, and soon became so proficient, that he could steal whole droves with perfect impunity. He declared that he furnished General Taylor's army with most of their horses and mules, and that he could raise two thousand head, with twelve hours' notice—sometimes stealing of the Indians, and at others of the Mexicans. Sometimes he would associate with the whites, and at others with the natives. He was for years, chief of the Crow Indians, and still has a wife and family with them. He led them in numerous battles against the neighboring tribes, alternately winning and losing. He was engaged in the Texan war, was at the battle of San Jacinto, and at most of the battles fought by General Taylor. He was never enrolled in the army, but always fought on his "own hook," and ready to chase the party that was defeated. He took a middle ground, and was always just in time to join the victorious party.
Indians in their wars have their own peculiar signs and marks by which warriors of the same tribe are informed of the locality of the enemy. These signs are made on the trees, rocks, earth, &c., &c. A detachment of a thousand warriors will start in the evening, and after arriving at a certain point, separate, to scour the country in different directions, and meet at a concerted point, when the moon is at a certain altitude. The party arriv. ing first, drops an arrow, with the point in the direction they
have taken; the latter party moving in that direction soon find their friends. But if the enemy is on the alert, the first arrow is dropped, and soon another, which is found at right angles with the first. This is a caution. They move on still farther in the direction indicated by the first arrow, and if there is danger they find two arrows, one across the other. They now stop and secrete themselves. Soon one of the first party approaches them cautiously and informs them of the position of the enemy. In cases of storm, when the sun is hidden, they resort to other indications for the point of compass. They find the moss much thicker on the north side of trees and rocks, than on the south. They also cut into the trees and find the annual growth much thicker on the south, than on the rorth side. Jim's legs had the appearance of being bound with cords under the skin, in consequence of the general rupture of the blood vessels. He says he was taken prisoner by the Indians, and in making his escape was chased ninety miles, without stopping for food or rest. The condition of his limbs then compelled him to stop, and secrete himself, where, in consequence of his lameness, he was obliged to remain for three weeks subsisting on roots. Jim, with his other accomplishments, was considered one of the best "monte” dealers in Mexico. On visiting the frontier towns, he would spend his time in gambling. Sometimes he would win several thousand dollars in one night, and the next day he would have every man drunk in town; what he could not spend in drink, he would give to the poor, or to his friends. Money was an incumbrance to which he would not submit. After remaining two or three days he mounted his horse and started up the river, designing, as I supposed, not to return.
THE MORMONS-THE ATTEMPTED MURDER OF GOV. BOGGS-CANALLING MORMON BAR-FALSE
THEORIES IN REFERENCE TO GOLD DEPOSITS — INFLUENCE OF AMASA LYMAN, THE PROPHET"-EXCITING SCENEJIM RETURNS-A MONTE BANK “TAPPED"-JIM'S ADVENT AT SACRAMENTO CITY.
My immediate neighbors were mostly Mormons, headed by Amasa Lyman, one of "the twelve.” The person who shot Gov. Boggs, of Missouri, was also here, under an assumed name. It will be remembered that at the time of the Mormon disturbance in Missouri, it was thought by them that Gov. Boggs connived at their persecution, and several attempts were made upon his life. Scofield, alias, “Orin Porter,” a reckless, daring fellow, loaded a pistol and went to his house; it was in the evening; the Governor was sitting by the light reading a paper. Porter went to the back window, and aiming at his head, discharged the pistol, the ball taking effect in the back part of his head. Porter deliberately laid the pistol on the window-sill, and left. The wound did not prove mortal, and at the time of which I am writing, Gov. B., and two sons, were in California. They had heard of Porter's rendezvous, and were supposed to be in search of him. He went armed with a brace of revolvers, and one of duelling pistols; he had a dog that was constantly with him, sleeping with him at night to give the alarm in case of danger. He declared his determination to sell his life dearly if attacked. He was much esteemed by the "faithful" for his heroism in the above act, consequently they kept an eye to his safety, keeping him informed of the whereabouts of the enemy.
The Mormons held no religious meetings here. They believe in the inspiration of Smith, or “Joseph,” as they call him, and calculate time from the date of his death, as an era, speaking of an occurrence, as in the first second, or third year of the death of "Joseph.” They believe the Book of Mormon to be a history of the western, as the Bible is a history of the eastern continent. Those here were a good set of fellows, somewhat reckless, fine horsemen, fond of sprees, and an occasional fight. Many of them had belonged to the “Mormon battalion,” under the late Gen. Kearney, of whom they spoke in the most enthusiastic terms. They had all been at “Salt Lake," and considered that their country, and home, many of them having left their families there. They believe all other religions heresy, and quote Scripture to prove, that the appearance of Smith, and the promulgation of his doctrine, was predicted long before the Christian era, and that that doctrine must prevail universally before the coming of the Millenium. They were all hard work. ers, and fond of gambling. They had spent ten weeks in canalling the bar, and the first indications were extremely favorable, but it was soon necessary to incur additional expense, in order to drain the deep holes in the bed of the river. The edges of these holes were rich with gold; in spots the granite being quite yellow, so that the gold was scraped up with spoons. It was the natural conclusion that the edges being rich, the bottoms must be more so. The company, that is to say, Amasa Lyman, (for, being one of the prophets, his word was law,) resolved to construct a hose of duck to carry off the water as it was pumped from the holes, consequently sent to town and purchased three hundred yards of duck, which, using three widths, made the hose one hundred yards in length, costing $600—the pump costing $50.
We now commenced draining the deepest and consequently the richest hole, and soon had it in working order; the richness of the margin was, as we thought, infallible evidence that the bottom must yield abundantly; we removed a quantity of dirt and stone, and commenced to wash from the bottom, but, to our surprise, it did not contain a particle of gold; this, like most of the theories in reference to operations in California, was not founded on correct principles. The influence of the stag. nant water in the holes seemed to extend to the surface, holding the passing water in check. The current, as it is bearing the gold down stream, comes in contact with this dead water, and parts; receiving a sufficient check to allow the gold to deposit
around the margin. Several experiments were tried without success, and it was soon apparent that the speculation was to prove disastrous. The operations were managed without system or discretion. The "faithful,” having a majority, had it all their own way; and they managed as seemed best calculated to victimize the “Gentiles.” As the sequel will show, they were drawn into the same vortex. I had hired a man to work my share, but the dividends did not pay his wages, and it was apparent that we must dissolve the company, and each man work or abandon his share as he saw fit. It was proposed to divide the bar into equal shares, to be drawn by numbers representing them; the “faithful,” however, opposed this mode of distribution; they were in favor of going on, and each getting all he could; each to be allowed ten feet in width, wherever he might locate his machine. They having canalled and worked the bar, knew every foot of it, and the relative richness of the different parts. The “Gentiles” saw no alternative but to be victimized, as they must submit to the majority, and it being Lyman's motion it was sure to carry. The place of deliberation was at the tents on the side of the mountain, some distance from the bar, and as the work had been suspended for several days, many of the implements had been carried up.
There was an unusual anxiety and excitement on this particular occasion, and as the vote was about to be taken, first the implements, then the bar would be scanned, with marked solicitude; the clenched hand and determined gesture giving token of the fearful struggle that was at hand. The vote was given; each man "broke loose" for the bar as if his life depended upon the exertion of the moment; some with machines on their shoulders, others laden with shovels, tin pans, pickaxes, India rubber boots, and spades, all rushing down, pellmell, some crossing the canal on the log, others, finding the log full, would rush in and wade, or swim across; the implements of some, coming in contact with others, all would tumble in to meet again at the bottom. Any one who has witnessed a charge in battle, can form a faint idea of the confusion and excitement on this occasion. The vanquished, however, instead of being drenched in blood were drenched in water, and instead of broken bones, cries of the wounded, the beating of drums,