At Florence, Nebraska we were given passage in Capt. [John R.] Murdock’s mule train and began our journey across the plains. My brother James got a job to drive team for Mr. Merrick, and was to receive $50 per month in greenbacks, but as paper money was only worth fifty cents on the dollar his wages did not go very far. The Indians were very bad on the plains and guards had to be kept out every night. Trains ahead and behind us were burned, and two or three times we saw the smoking remains. The Indians came to our camp several times and we gave them beads. and other trinkets, and food and they went away again. We had two deaths in our company, one of our sisters and one of the guard named [Sidley] Beckstead, who accidentally shot himself.