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“Contents,” Ensign, July 1975, 1


July 1975

Volume 5 Number 7

On the cover: The Church in Bear Lake Valley, page 34. (Photography by Paul Proctor.)

Inside back cover: Pioneers Crossing the Plains of Nebraska. Painted by C. C. A. Christensen (1831–1912). Carl Christian Anton Christensen, an early Danish convert and trained artist, pushed a handcart to the Salt Lake Valley and there completed a major work—22 paintings of significant events in Church history on eight-by-ten foot pieces of heavy linen. Rolling these paintings on a long wooden pole, he traveled around in his wagon, lecturing on Church history. One of these was this impression of the crossing of the Platte River by the first company of pioneers under Brigham Young. Of the crossing, Brother Christensen wrote:

“About 150 of our leading brethren, including three women (and two children), left Winter Quarters in the spring of 1847. They would travel in two parallel lines (in 73 wagons) so, in case of Indian or Buffalo attacks, they could draw together the two ends of the train and thus fortify themselves a little; and at night a circle of this kind would answer for a corral in which they could better handle their horses.

“In crossing the North Platte River on a quicksand bar which might shift at any moment, they humbly asked the Lord to see them safely over this dangerous stream. No sooner had the last wagon pulled off the sand bar than it washed away. One of the brethren tried to return on horseback to see if anything had been forgotten, but the ford was gone. The Lord heard and answered their prayers and they went on rejoicing.”