Valley Tan publishes William H. Rogers details of the remains at the massacre site in April 1859.

Feb 29, 1860
William H. Rogers

William H. Rogers, "Statement of Wm. H. Rogers," The Valley Tan, February 29, 1860, 2-3

The Valley Tan
John Cradlebaugh, William H. Rogers, Jacob Hamblin, John Doyle Lee, Isaac C. Haight
Reading Public

When we arrived here in April 1859, more than a year and a half after the massacre occurred, the ground, for a distance of more than a hundred years around the central point, was covered with the skeletons and bones of human beings, interspersed in places with rolls or bunches of tangled and matted hair, which from its length, evidently belonged to females. In places the bones of small children were lying side by side with those of grown persons, as if parent and child had met death at the same instant and with the same stroke. Small bonnets and dresses, and scraps of female apparel were also to be seen in places on the ground there, like the bones of those who wore them, bleached form long exposure, but their shape was in many instances entire. In a gulch or hole in the ravine by the side of the road, a large number of leg and arm bones, and also skulls, could be seen sticking above the surface, as if they had been buried there, but the action the water and digging of the wolves had again exposed them to sight. The entire scene was one too horrible and sickening for language adequately to describe . . . One of the men who called thus on Judge Cradlebaugh, confessed that he participated in the massacre, and gave the following account of it: Previous to the massacre, there was a council held at Cedar City, which President Haight, and Bishops Higby and Lee attended. At this council they designated or appointed a large number of men residing in Cedar City, and on other settlements around, to perform the work of dispatching these emigrants. The men appointed for this purpose, were instructed to report, well armed at a given time, to a spring or small stream, lying a short distance to the left of the road leading into the meadows, and not very far from Hamblin's ranch, but concealed from it by intervening hills. This was the place of rendezvous; and there the men, when they arrived, painted and otherwise disguised themselves so as to resemble Indians. From thence they proceeded early on Monday morning, by a path or trail which leads from this spring directly into the meadows, and enters the road some distance beyond Hamblin's ranch. By taking this route they could not be seen by any one at the ranch. On arriving at the corral of the emigrants a number of the men were standing on the outside by the campfires, which, from appearances, they had just been building. These were first fired upon, and at the first discharge several of them fell dead or wounded; the remainder immediately ran to the inside of the corral, and began fortifying themselves, and preparing for defence as well as they could, by showing their wagons closer together and digging holes into which to lower them, so as to keep the shots from going under and striking them. The attack continued in a desultory and irregular manner for four or five days. The corral was closely watched, and if any of the emigrants showed themselves, they were instantly fired at from without. If they attempted to go to the spring, which was only a few yards distant, they were sure to fall by the rifles of their assailants. In consequence of the almost certain death that resulted from any attempt to procure water, the emigrants, before the siege discontinued, suffered intensely from thirst. The assailants, believing at length that the emigrants could not be subdued by the means adopted, resorted to treachery, and stratagem to accomplish what they had been unable to do by force. They returned to the spring where they had pained and disguised themselves previous to commencing the attack, and there removed those disguises, and again assumed their ordinary dress. After this, Bishop Lee, with a party of men, returned to the camp of the emigrants, bearing a white flag as a signal of truce. From the position of the corral, the emigrants were able to see them some time before they reached it. As soon as they discerned it, they dressed a little girl in white, and placed her at the entrance of the corral, to indicate their friendly feelings to the persons bearing the flag. Lee and his party, on arriving, were invited into the corral, where they stayed about an hour, talking with them about the attack that had been made upon them. Lee told the emigrants that the Indians had gone off over the hills and that if they would lay down their arms and give up their property, he and his party would conduct them back to Cedar City; but if they went out with their arms, the Indians would look upon it as an unfriendly act, and would again attack them. The emigrants trusting to Lee's honor and to the sincerity of his statement, consented to the terms which he proposed, and left their property and all their arms at the corral; and, under the escort of Lee and his party, started towards the north in the direction of Cedar City. After they had proceeded about a mile on their way, on a signal given by Bishop Higby, who was one of the party that went to the corral with Lee, the slaughter began. The men were mostly killed or shot down at the first fire, and the women and children, who immediately fled to different directions, were quickly pursued and dispatched. Such was the substance, if not the exact words, of a statement made by a man to Judge Cradlebaugh, in my presence, who at the same time confessed that he participated in the horrible events which he related. He also gave Judge Cradlebaugh the names of 25 or 30 other men living in the region, who assisted in the massacre. He offered also to make the same statement in court and under oath, if protection was guaranteed to him. He gave as a reason for divulging these facts that they had tormented his mind and conscience since they occurred, and he expressed a willingness to stand trial for his crime.

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