Journal of Western Travel
by John McTurk Gibson
edited by Weldon Hoppe
May 8th, 1859 -- Was sick as a dog all day, slept nearly all the time in the wagon, and consequently did not see the best farming land that any of our crowd ever saw, got a ride from a stranger some 5 miles from Glenwood, the prettiest town in the west, little groves of small timber, trimmed and thinned out, part of them in full bloom, it must undoubtedly render the town peculiarly inviting during the warm weather. Leaving it behind we passed a place in the road where some workmen in tearing out a stump, killed 273 snakes of all sorts and sizes. We saw the pile, rather a nasty sight, with a far worse smell. A short drive brought us into Pacific, or California City, three miles from Glenwood, more than one half the houses are deserted, and oh how changed for the worse since 1857, when I was here before. Most of the inhabitants have gone to the mines. Here we camped for the night.
Travelled seventeen miles. We crossed Rey and Poney Creeks to day. We passed Glenwood, it is the county seat of Mills County. Glenwood is beautifully located and contains about one thousand inhabitants. Where it now stands was once one of the thickets of hickory groves about the size of my arm or larger, all the yards contain a few yet for shade. We are encamped in the vicinity of Pacific City, it being on the east side of the Missouri River. It is a small town of some four hundred inhabitants. It is quite bluffy along the river, the bottom here is some six miles wide. Just as we came down on the bottom we smelt rather a sweet smell and upon looking by two large stumps there we saw snakes of almost all sizes and kinds, the people told us they numbered two hundred and seventy three when taken from under these stumps a few days before.
Copyright © 1997 Weldon Hoppe