Battle of Crooked River
25 October 1838
Compilation of Sources by Ron Romig and Mel Tungate, 11-6-2003
John Rigdon, related, “The mob routed, his brethren gathered about their wounded leader in deepest sorrow, and everything possible was done to minister to his comfort. Word was dispatched to Far West for medical assistance to meet the party, the wagons of the mob were pressed into service, and the victorious, but sorrow-stricken company took up their dreary march toward Far West. Seven of the brethren were wounded, and one, Gideon Carter, had been killed outright.” [The Life and Testimony of Sidney Rigdon John Wickliffe Rigdon, Dialogue, 1, No.4, 32].
"Gideon Carter, who was also a faithful Saint, was shot in the head, and left dead on the ground, so defaced that the brethren did not at first know him.” [Orson F. Whitney, Life of Heber C. Kimball, 215].
Sampson Avard testified, "In reference to Bogart's battle, I know but little, personally, as to the start of the troops to fight Bogart. I was called upon to go along with the company (which was commanded by Patten) as surgeon. This was about mid-night; but as I thought a little sleep would do me more good than fighting, I remained at home. In the morning of the fight, about 6 o'clock, I was called upon by a Mr. Emmett, who informed me that Captain Fearnaught was wounded mortally. I went to Patten, about three miles from the battle-ground, where I found Jos. Smith, jr., present, laying hands on the wounds, and blessing them to heal them. A Mr. O'Bannion was also mortally wounded." [Sampson Avard, Senate Document 189, 9].
This meeting must have occurred at the Widow Medcalf's [in the vicinity of Henry Snyder's] at the Log Creek timber. The severely wounded must have briefly been taken into Widow Medcalf's home. Apparently here Sister Hendricks found her husband. Phoebe Ann Patten had also arrived and was already at her husband's side.
Drusilla Hendricks awoke early that morning, anticipating the return of her husband, "Finally I saw Bro. Emit [Emmitt] coming through the timber. I watched and saw that he did not stop at home but he hollered something about Bro. Hendricks. I could not tell what it was but he was on express to Farwest. The [Emmitt] children soon came over and told me that their father said that Bro. Hendricks was shot. Then I went to the field to give vent to my feelings and while there I saw a man pass through the field on horseback, it looked like he had a great roll of blankets; I went back to the house and found the children all crying. I went to the loom to try and weave to let on to them that I did not believe the report about their father. I could not weave at all; but had not sat there but a few moments when I saw a Mr. T. [Henry?] Snider [Snyder] (he did not belong to the church, but [was] a good man) get off his horse at the gate. (I saw him wipe his eyes, I knew that he was crying.) He came to the door and said, Mr. Hendricks wishes you to come to him. I asked where. He said to the widow Medcalf's and that he had come for me. I asked where and how he was shot and he thought he was shot in the hip.
There was a woman in the house that I had taken care of for weeks. I told her to do the best she could with the children and I mounted the horse behind Mr. Snider. We had four miles to ride and on reaching there we met nine of the brethren that were wounded and they were pale as death. They were just going to get into the wagon to be taken to their homes. I went into the house. Sister Patten had just reached the bed where her husband lay and I heard him say, "'Ann don't weep. I have kept the faith and my work is done.'" My husband lay within three feet of Brother Patten, and I spoke to him. He could speak but could not move any more than if he were dead. I tried to get him to move his feet but he could not. This was Thursday, October 25, 1838, and the next Tuesday was the Battle of Hauns Mill where men and boys were slaughtered and thrown into a dry well 18 or 48 in number, out of which only one (Benjamin Lewis) received a decent burial.
There were three beds in the room where my husband lay - he in one, Brother David Patten in one, and Brother Hodge in the other. Brother Hodge was the one shot in the hip. Brother Obanyon was on the floor begging for a bed and some of the sisters ran and got him one. My husband was shot in the neck where it cut off all feeling of the body. It is of no use for me to try and tell how I felt for that is impossible, but I could not have shed a tear if all had been dead before me. I went to work to try and get my husband warm but could not. I rubbed and steamed him but could get no circulation. He was dead from his neck down.
One of the brethren told me how he fell for he was close to him. After he had fallen one of the brethren asked him which side he was on (for it was not yet light enough to see) and all the answer he made was the watch word '"God and Liberty.'" On hearing this it melted me to tears and I felt better. Then I was told how many of the brethren were wounded and who they were and was shown the weapons used and they bore blood from hilt to point. It makes me chill to think of it." [Historical Sketch of James Hendricks and Drusilla Dorris Hendricks; http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~raymondfamily/ddorris5.htm].
The rest of the company was anxious to move on toward Far West for defensive reasons. The less severely wounded were loaded into a wagon and taken directly home from this point. Patten, O'Banion and Hendricks were left behind. Before long, Patten and O'banion were carried on to Stephen Winchester's. James Hendricks was left behind with his wife at Widow Medcalf's.
Wyatt Craven, (a member of Bogart's militia company at the battle of Crooked River), stated that he was taken prisoner by the Mormons after the battle. Craven added, "I saw Joseph Smith, Jr., come up to the Mormons [the wounded] at a house in Log Creek timber, a few miles from the battle-ground. The wounded were taken out of the wagon there, and we started on towards Far West. J. Smith jr., passed on by me to the head of the company, where Pratt and Wight were riding. After getting into the prairie, Wight halted the company. He, Pratt, and four others, rode off a piece, and conferred together, and then returned to the company…" After the party let Craven go, Parley P. Pratt shot at him, lodging a bullet in Craven's hip, then left him for dead." [Testimony of Wyatt Cravens, Senate Document 189, 10-11]. John D. Lee substantiates Craven's testimony, even though he confuses the name of the prisoner. "I saw a man by the name of Tarwater [Craven], on the Gentile side, that was cut up fearfully. He was taken Prisoner. The Danites routed the Gentiles, who fled in every direction. The night being dark, Jas. Holbrook and another Danite met, and had a hand-to-hand fight, in which they cut each other fearfully with their swords before they discovered that they were friends. After the Gentiles retreated, the Mormons started for Far West, taking Tarwater [Craven] along as a prisoner. After traveling several miles, they halted in a grove of timber, and released Tarwater [Craven], telling him he was free to go home. He started off, and when he was some forty yards from the Mormons, Parley P. Pratt, then one of the Twelve Apostles, stepped up to a tree, laid his gun up by the side of the tree, took deliberate aim, and shot Tarwater [Craven]. He fell and lay still. The Mormons, believing he was dead, went on and left him lying where he fell. Tarwater [Craven] came to, and reached home, where he was taken care of, and soon recovered from his wounds. He afterwards testified in court against the Mormons that he knew." [Confessions of John D. Lee].
With the severity of Patten's pain increasing during this leg of the journey, the party made little further progress, this time stopping at Stephen Winchesters nearer Goose Creek, where Patten was again placed on a bed. Alan Stout recalled, "next morning I heard that the brethren had had a fight with Bogart and retook the prisoners, but David W. Patten, Gideon Carter, and Patterson [Patrick ?] O'Banion were slain in the fight. I helped to tend on Patten while he was dying." [Alan Stout, journal, http://www.farwesthistory.com/stout.htm"].
The party divided further, some continued on, conveying O'Banion to Far West. This group encountered Sidney Rigdon coming south along the highway.
Rigdon received news of the battle early that morning, but did not start south for some time. "Some time after I got up in the morning, the sheriff of the county stopped at the door, and said that David Patten, had had a battle with the mob last night at crooked river, and that several were killed and a number wounded; that Patten was among the number of the wounded, and his wound was supposed to be mortal. After I had taken breakfast another gentleman called, giving me the same account, and asked me if I would not take my horse and ride out with him and see what was done. I agreed to do so, and we started, and after going some three or four miles, met a company coming into Far West, we turned and went back with them." [Sidney Rigdon, Times and Seasons, 4, No. 18 (August 1, 1843)].
Parley P. Pratt claimed, "Having conveyed the wounded to this place of hospitality [Winchester's], we hastened home to Far West, and delivered the horses and spoils of the enemy to Col. Hinkle, the commanding officer of the Regiment." [Parley P. Pratt, Times and Seasons, 1: 114].
Log and Goose Creek Participants in Battle of Crooked River