The next day, Mr. Johnson wrote, …
“On the morning of the 23rd, I was up and around looking to my cattle, doing this and that, not knowing what the next would be. I went to the river and looked at the marks made last night, and found the water four inches lower and went back to the camp and turned the cattle loose, that they might eat plenty of good grass, made a fire and got me another ‘poor’ breakfast. Then I went back to the river, being anxious to see some team coming from the East crossing the river, to see if it was fordable.
“About one mile east of us is Grange station, which is a junction of the Union Pacific and the Oregon Short Line, running within twenty rods of my camp. About nine o’clock, the express train from the East passed by. After the passing of this train, I saw four teams coming from the East. Three were heavy wagons and one a light Eastern wagon on springs, drawn by two horses each. On coming to the river, they stopped; their trail from Granges was close to the railroad track, and not more than forty feet from the bridge. As they got to the bank, the men, women, and children, to the number of twenty-three, got out and made for the river. I was some distance from them and went to the junction of the two rivers, opposite to them. We tried to talk across, but the roar of the waters prevented us from hearing one another.
“They went back to their wagons; two horses were then taken from one of the wagons, unharnessed, and two men mounted them and rode down into the river and out on its opposite banks, then they rode on about eight rods and down into the larger river and across to where I was. The first river was about four rods across, the second about eight rods. As soon as they got to me, they commenced asking me, where I was from, where going, and how long had I been at the river? I told them where I was from and where I intended to haul up, and so on. I told them that I reached this river yesterday, and had been waiting there since that time, and now I will cross with them.
“They re-crossed the river, I following close after and got over all right.
“The teamsters now got ready to cross with their wagons, and I watched them at a distance of twelve rods. They drove their largest wagon first down to the river, the two men on horseback leading. As the big, heavy team went into the river, the wheels sunk deep into the mud, but the horses were game and pulled it across the two rivers all right. The second wagon got across with the same good fortune and [they] returned for the third team, which was the covered light carriage, with springs, the horses were fine and spirited ones. In this carriage were four women and two children. As they were going down into the river, the bank being cut up by the other teams in crossing, the horses stepped deep into the mud and began to act meanly. The driver, however, was an excellent horseman and spoke to his horses sharply, and led them out safely. One of the women, however, was so badly frightened that she lay unconscious for over two hours.
“The fourth vehicle was got across all right. It was eleven o’clock when we all had forded the two rivers, and seeing them safely across I went on my way, and about three o’clock I came to another river. I followed this river for several miles, until coming to a fine plat of grass where I went into camp for the night, turning my cattle loose to graze. I made a fire and got my supper, and after bringing the cattle and fastening them up for the night I went to bed.”