The Conservative (Nebraska City, Neb.) 1898-1902, June 08, 1899, Page 12, Image 12
'I * ' A' ® fllJ tffet 12 'Cbe Conservative * TIVE on the rear platform ; and dust is projected in such quantities as only the most conscientious correspondent would endure. But the Weber river is really a fascinating stream , and one imagines how Fremont would have enjoyed riding its waves in his famous india-rubber boat , with faithful Basil Lajounesse be hind to pick up the pieces. Wo pass the 1000-mile tree , one of the most in teresting of relics to the observer of rail road antiquities. It is a venerable pine , rather the worst for wear , which stands facing a formidable cliff of red rock ; a painted sign , hanging from one of its few remaining boughs , tells a tale which is no longer truthful , for changes in the line have set the real 1000-mile post some miles further on , and other cut offs now contemplated will , it is said , dislocate it some thirty miles more. Now we outer a state with a unique history , which will perpetuate the mem- . ° iy ° f BriSham Utah. Young when Mor mons are no more , should such a time over come. There is no lack of Mor mons , however , at present , and at Mor gan , our first stop , we see a token of their presence in the sign on the front of the main store , where the letters Z. O. M. I. appear : indicating that great cor poration in whoso title religion and business are so characteristically blended , the Zion's Cooperative Mercantile In stitution. Ogden seems to be a thoroughly modern town ; it has a great power plant , driven by water from the mountains , the power of which is carried across the plain by electric wires to Salt Lake City. Ogdeu is said to be a gentile town ; two gentiles of the seed of Abra ham are busy disputing on the platform , presenting a spectacle to bo enjoyed no where in the world outside Utah. But on the train we are among Mormons ; a tall gaunt female with a keen eye re calls Artemus Ward , and sends a chill down a conservative spine ; and a scrap of overheard conversation reveals the presence of unaccustomed forces ; "so- and-so holds his place , not through his own ability , but thanks to his ecclesias tical position. " On the return journey there are a dozen young men setting forth on a mis- Mormons. sionary career , Chattanooga being their objective point. It is known that they are paid no salary , but one wonders by what means they are chosen. "Are you also among the lucky ones ? " says one to another. They have the hands of workiugmeu , but their clothes and their persons are apparently clean ; illustrat ing two cardinal points of Brigharn Young's creed , industry and cleanliness. None of them is observed to chew to bacco , drink anything from a pocket- flask or tell unsavory stories ; each is armed with a King James' Bible and the Book of Mormon , and their conver sation is on technical subjects , illustrated with chapter and verso. Two of them are discussing the apostolic hvjniiction , "Saluto ono another with a holy kiss. " It does not appear that either one is so liciting that refreshment , they merely argue for the joy of disputation. It is learned that it is not displeasing to them , to bo called Mormons , and that each one firmly believes that Joseph Smith found golden plates with the Book of Mormon written on them , in characters which learned men from New York considered to be Hebrew and Egyptian mixed ; that he read them by means of miraculous spectacles , and that the One who brought them to him subsequently removed them whence he came. Thirty hours from the Missouri river we come again upon Captain Fremont , _ . . , . , who himself is The Lulu : . . , . , , ninety-eight days from the bank of that stream. We meet upon the shore of the Great Salt Lake , and it is a most unearthly looking sheet of water that bears that name. Many uncanny and superstitious legends in re gard to it were current among the early explorers ; Fremont's men told him things about it which excited his liveliest curiosity , and he began to speculate on what he would find two or three weeks before he came to it. "Among the trap pers , " he says , for example , "were many who believed that somewhere on its sur face was a terrible whirlpool , through which its waters found their way to the ocean. " If its appearance today is fairly representative of its ordinary as pect , it is little wonder that it aroused suspicion in the minds of the hunters who came upon it in the midst of this laud of desert and mirage. Its gray levels stretch without apparent bounds to the west , where everything vanishes in an indistinct haze. There is no horizon zen line , the water , strange long shad ows and stratified bands in the distance all running together in a perplexing way. Mountains of uncouth configuration loom through the murky air , some near , some indefinitely remote ; and the water , instead of a sparkle of blue waves , exhibits only a dead white surface which glistens unwholesomely. The flats along the shore are muddy ex panses with a white fringe of salt , and resemble the tidal marshes of the New England coast. Entering Salt Lake City , one hardly thinks himself in America , for the very g ° ° d reaSOU that The City. he sees no foreign ers on the street and hears only English spoken. The pleasant impression made upon strangers by this city is a frequent remark among travelers. It lies agree ably , for one thing , with a most satis factory set of mountains behind it , very restful to travel-strained eyes. It is a green city , moreover , having many trees , prevalent among which is the tall Lombardy poplar , not a common tree elsewhere in this country , at least not to this extent. Hero it is the favorite , in country and city as well , owing its thrift apparently to the free use of water. It is doubtful if any other inland city in the world is so lavish with water ; not every town has unlimited mountain- water to command , to begin with. On the corner north of the Temple , in a quiet residence street stands a stone structure , from within which emerges a fine rushing mountain-torrent , which flows thence down the very middle of the street in a miniature canyon of its own ; and the sewer-basins at the street corners , reversing the usual practice , give forth tiny mountain-rivulets of the clearest water , which run prettily down the street , a streamlet on each side , next the curb. On the side streets , a little off-shoot diverges into each man's gar den , for him to irrigate with if he choose ; on the main business street there are the same swift clear brooks , flowing around the feet of standing horses and bearing away the banana-peels of the populace. Again ono is reminded that he is in an extremely cleanly com munity. The Temple and Tabernacle are there , as represented , but they are surrounded by a twelve-foot fence which is not shown in the pictures. On the main corner is the statue of President Young , the work of a native sculptor , which strikes THE CONSERVATIVE as being an unusually effective figure ; the extended left hand mny be a little equivocal , but the artist has come by an attitude of the right , holding the historic cane , which expresses tremendous force. Salt Lake City appears to be not only a good place to live , but a very tempting place to ono interested in what Ameri can men have done , within the space of a life-time , with the wilderness that Fremont , now only nine years dead , traversed when ho was a young man ; opposite the Temple is what they call the tithing-lot , a kind of corral with thick and lofty walls of rough stone , which has an air of fortification ; the town is full of the adobe houses that the immigrants built when the days of their first hardships were over ; within a cou ple of blocks of the Temple , two even of the primitive log-cabins , still in use , are observed ; but THE CONSERVATIVE for its part , has antiquities nearer home which demand more immediate atten tion than do those of Salt Lake City. How many Americans understand that public offices were created for pub lic utility ? How few Americans real ize the importance of fewer executive or ministerial offices with better incum bents ? To those who falsely assert Jefferson to have been the "father of universal suffrage" the following is recommended for rumination : "The cement of this Union is in the hearts' blood of the people ple ; the yeomanry of the country are not tUe canaille of Paris. "