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Posted 21 Dec 2001   For week ended December 21, 2001
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News about Mormons, Mormonism,
and the LDS Church
Sent on Mormon-News: 18Dec01
By Kent Larsen
Download to My Handheld!

New video about the Willie and Martin handcart companies

WEST JORDAN, UTAH -- The West Jordan Utah Stake has produced a play, The Mormon Trail, about the Willie and Martin handcart companies of 1856.

The two companies left Iowa City late in the summer (July) and didn't reach Salt Lake City until November. Early storms and freezing weather caused great suffering and death among the pioneers. In the midst of these trials, the Saints held true to their testimonies and looked to God for help. Help came in the form of Saints helping each other, angels from God helping push the carts and comfort the Saints, and supply wagons arriving from Salt Lake.

Members of the two companies are featured in the play, including Francis and Ann Elizabeth Webster, Elizabeth and Aaron Jackson, Jens and Elsie Nielson, Levi Savage, Ephraim Hanks, Harvey Cluff, and the four men who carried the Saints across the ice-filled Sweetwater.

Members of the West Jordan Utah Stake spent thousands of man hours over three years in producing the play. The play was produced as a "teaching play," using the trials of the pioneers as object lessons to help us realize that we can overcome our trials by applying Gospel principles to our lives.

The video can be purchased for the cost of duplication and shipping by going to . That site has a number of pictures from the play.


Allen Leigh 15Dec01 A2


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