East to West through North and South: Mormon Immigration during the Civil War

The Saints gathering to Zion during the years of the Civil War endured the threat of wartime violence from the time they left their homelands. They encountered warships on the seas and the agitation and commotion of troops in the cities once they landed. They withstood cramped and malodorous journeys in cattle cars, endured searches and inspections by troops, and were subjected to the unnerving sound of nearby battles. They experienced delays, crowded conditions, and short supplies. They bore the antagonism and taunts of soldiers and faced the possibility of abduction or conscription. However, despite the danger, apprehension, and inconvenience caused by war, it did not become a major hindrance to the Saints’ immigration. In fact, the war probably enhanced their sense of urgency to gather to Utah, where they could find security and safety. In spite of obstacles created by the conflict, the Saints continued to gather to Utah at a steady pace and under the Lord’s watchful eye.

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