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The following is a transcription of the journal written by Alexander Marion Ogan Jr. prior to his death in 1942 at the age of 101. In it he recalls the journey westward by he and his family into California.

In April 1852 the families left their homes near Meadville, in Linn County, Missouri, for California. There was a great deal of rain until reaching Council Bluffs, Iowa, where several families joined to form a wagon train. On May 12 after waiting two days for their turn to cross the Missouri River by flat boat, the wagon train headed west led by Alexander Marion Ogan, Sr. who was elected captain. The family rigged up three wagons with teams of oxen. With the Ogan family were my mother, Sarah Austin, and my brothers and sisters, Mary Jane, Martha Ann, Elizabeth (Parthenia Elizabeth), John Martin, Sarah Francis, Emily Catherine, William Constantine, and Josephine. Some of the other families were Work, Asberry, Howell, Austin,and Cruz [Crews?]. [Several single men including Blue Scott were along with the families.] While waiting our turn to cross the Missouri River the children were all exposed to measles from the other trains there. One of the Work's children died. We had with us for food dried meat, beans, rice, corn meal, bacon, ham, and molasses. Also a keg of vinegar and brandy used as medicine. When we were ready to camp for the night, all the wagons were pulled into a circle. Some of the people slept in the wagons, others had tents. There was always a man on guard all night. The oxen, cattle, and horses were taken out to feed with a guard also. We encountered Indians, all friendly, begging for "tobac", "hoggy meat", sugar, and molasses. Some of them would have a string of trout to trade for some things. Sarah Ogan traded some sugar for a pair of moccasins for Alexander, but the Indian had nothing to put the sugar in so he tied it up in his shirt tail. The next river crossed was the Platte. The teams were doubled and one wagon at a time crossed until we were over. After crossing the Platte River we traveled for 200 miles. We came to a rock standing by itself and resembling a chimney. It was called Chimney Rock. As high as we could climb there were names written on it. Before coming to the Rocky Mountains, we passed a place where there were natural wells. They had no bottoms as some of the men tested them out. Some had boiling water, others on the side of the mountain had the finest water anyone ever drank. Wild timothy was growing all over the meadow, so there was plenty of feed for the stock. We traveled on for days until we reached Sweetwater River. We stopped there for dinner. We ate on a rock called Independence Rock which was twelve miles across. While we were there we saw a storm coming, so we unhitched the oxen. The hail that fell during the storm were as large as hen eggs and cut the skin off the horses and cattle. A large rock called Devil's Slide was near and the hail slid off it in sheets. We camped there all night and in the morning the hail was still lying on the ground. The oxen and horses that were not tied ran away. So we saddled the horses we had, and after a long time, brought the other animals back to camp. One day a man named Blue Scott went hunting while we were in camp and did not come in that night. The trumpets were blown and guns fired, but no response. In the morning as breakfast was being cooked, he came into camp and said he had stayed up in a tree all night looking down at a pack of white wolves. The next river to cross was the Green River. A Mormon had charge of the ferry boat. An Indian and his squaw came and wanted to cross over on the ferry, but the tender wouldn't let them as they had no money. They started to cross with one horse, a pack, and a papoose tied on top. In mid stream the horse and all went under. The squaw yelled "Whoopee" and jumped in and pushed while the big Indian pulled, so they finally got out. We found a wide place and swam all our cattle across. While at the forks of the Green River, Mr. Work's wife died. The coffin was made of some box boards and other material picked up. Many hardships were encountered as we journeyed on. We were short of water and bought water at ten cents a pint, but it was very poor water. It was hard to get the cattle along without feed and water. As we traveled on, the oxen scented water. Then there was no trouble- they ran. After reaching Humboldt Sinks, we camped for two days, as there was plenty of good feed and water for the cattle. We cut grass and tied it in bundles, and filled all the kegs with water. We started on again and traveled a whole day before coming to the desert. During that time we saw no life of any kind. By traveling all night through sand [now called the Forty Mile Desert], we got to the river about seven o'clock in the morning. We stayed there all day. There was a camp called "Ragtown." There were places for stores: some were tents, others were made of logs. They kept bacon, flour, and whiskey. The next day we passed Virginia City. One man named Reese Young was lost while crossing the desert. He went to sleep, and the train passed him. When he awoke he started in the wrong direction until another train came along and told him he was going the wrong way. He finally found his own train. We traveled all day up the river bed over rocks and made just six miles [Carson River]. If we came upon anyone broken down, we had to wait until they were fixed up as there was no way to pass. We camped at the foot of the mountain. Next day we started to climb the hill. With a lot of whooping and hollering we made it to the top. We camped on top of the ridge. The next morning we started down and came into mining country . We traveled twelve miles from Stockton and camped for a week to feed the stock. This was the first of September. The train all broke up here, each family going its own way--some to the mines. We traveled on to French Camp six miles from Stockton and camped two nights. Father sold two of his wagons and yoked up the other cattle and started out for Santa Clara Valley. The first day we camped in Livermore Valley and had the first fresh beef we had eaten since we started on our journey. The next day we camped in Sunol Valley. We then traveled on a few miles to St. Joseph's (San Jose) Mission and camped all night. The next day we traveled about twelve miles to Coyote Creek and camped for two weeks. Father rode around the country looking for some land to buy. Finally he rented a ranch at Lawrence Station and lived there one year until the owner, Mr. Albert Dexter, returned from the East. Father then bought a ranch at Berryessa, six miles from San Jose. San Jose at that time was a Spanish village with dirt streets and sidewalks that were scattered with clothes, shoes, and decks of cards. Where the First National Bank now stands was a big mudhole. There were only one or two stores, the Mariposa being the main store. My first school in California was in a cloth tent. The country was all open and covered with herds of cattle and horses belonging to the Spanish. The Spanish people were happy until the Americans began to settle the country and break up their large ranchos. At that time Joaquin Murietta, the bandit, was raging the country, and we did not know how soon he might pay us a call. A reward was offered for him dead or alive. Captain Yone got up a posse and followed him to Calaveras County. Joaquin Murietta and Three Fingered Jack, his partner, were killed. Joaquin's head and Jack's hand were brought to San Jose so the reward was given. Flour at that time was $20 a barrel, so we lived on potatoes, squash, hominy, and short bread. I was thirteen years old. The first work I did was to turn a fanning mill for three days. My pay was six hens and a rooster. The next work I did was planting potatoes. The first year the [ground] squirrels were so thick that we tried to scare them and shoot all we could. Even then we only got a quarter of a crop. The next year we put out poison and got plenty. The next spring the water was turned out of Penetencia Creek, and many were drowned. After that we made good at farming. We had fine crops on our land as well as land we rented. Father deeded a piece of land to me, so I built a house and batched for about two months. I married Sarah Tillotson on December 10, 1871. We lived on my ranch and farmed and also raised some fruit trees. My younger brother William and I did the farming until his health failed. On April 5, 1875, he passed away. Father passed away the year before on May 5, 1874. My mother spent her remaining days in my house. She was 94 years old when she passed away on December 23, 1898. We raised four girls and two boys. We lived there until the land boom, then sold out and moved to San Jose. We lived in San Jose for seven years. While there I engaged in the livery stable and farm implement business. Not satisfied with city life, I again traded my home for a ranch four miles from Gilroy, where we lived for some time. I sold the ranch and moved into the city limits of Gilroy where we lived until my wife passed away on January 18, 1924. We celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary several years before she passed away. I have since lived with my daughters.

I was given this transcription of Alexander's journal by my grandmother, Mae Ogan Kirkland, granddaughter of Alexander.I do not know who is in possession of the original document at present.