History of 2nd Street, Ogden, Utah

Stories of Bingham's Fort, Lynne, Five Points

Archive for April, 2021

NATIVE AMERICANS ON 2ND STREET

Posted by weberhistory on April 29, 2021

In the 1860s there were 20 to 25 cabins on 2nd Street on both sides of the road from the Fort to 1200 W, a distance of 1 ½ miles.[1] Between these cabins and behind them were Indian encampments.

Although some Indians stayed year-round, most of them migrated in the fall for a warmer climate and returned in the spring setting up camps again in the Meadows and along 2nd Street up to the Fort.  One day in the 1860s Mary Elizabeth Hutchens and her sister were left home alone in a house on today’s 2nd Street in the Meadows while their parents drove a wagon to Ogden.  

Before their parents returned home, the Indians started to migrate to the Meadows.   All day 2nd Street was crowded with Indians moving west and settling in the Meadows.   Their parents were delayed getting home because the road was so crowded with Indians.[2]  

Shoshone campsites were always erected in the same places at the same times of year in locations near fresh water and protected by trees, willows, shrubs, or brush.[3]  West 2nd Street had a large pond, later known as Stone’s Pond, and many springs on the north side of the street.  Mill Creek and its wandering branches were on the south side of the street extending down from the Fort to Slaterville. These areas were favorite camping grounds for Indians before and after the pioneers came.

During the 20th Century, a shoe-box was filled with arrowheads from the fields of the Bingham/Stone farm located on the south side of 2nd Street.  

Four arrowheads found on the Bingham/Stone Farm located on the south side of 2nd Street; the farm is former Indian camping ground.
Photo May 2021.

Tepee covers were typically made of ten to twelve buffalo hides stretched over twenty to twenty-five poles erected in a cone shape.  Flaps around a smoke hole at the top regulated airflow according to the wind direction.  Tepee hides were decorated with drawings of animals, birds, or designs. Great dreams and acts of bravery were also remembered in drawings, like trophies for all to see – the Shoshone way of recording history.[4]

Mary has seen Indian women pitch their tents with the help of the smaller children. The poles were evidently numbered, as everything seemed to go forward without any mix-up. The tents were pitched so there was always room to go from one to another.[5]

The tepees were always furnished and made comfortable inside. Rabbit skins braided like rugs were made into quilts. Buffalo robes served as blankets, and sometimes as floor coverings.  Dried moss blankets were not unusual. Woven sagebrush and juniper bark served as mats and mattresses along with boughs and cattail fluff.  The Shoshone people were very good at weaving willows and sage brush and other natural resources. [6]

INDIANS SETTLING IN THE MEADOWS

Several tribes would camp together in The Meadows, and Mary Hutchens liked to watch them as they settled in. Jack Indian, the head Chief, would always come visiting her father, William Hutchens, as soon as he arrived.  Jack was like a close and friendly neighbor.  He would greet her father, always calling, “Hi Brother”, and then the two would pass into the Indian encampment. She has seen her father shaking hands with Indians as he and Jack moved around the camp, Jack always being with him and presenting him to the others.

One time when her father returned after greeting the on-coming Indians he said to his wife, “Eliza, there are seven tribes of Indians camped over there this time.”[7]

In 2005 a road on the north side of 2nd Street near Stone’s Pond was named Indian Camp Road.


[1] 1860 and 1870 US Federal Census; Fred N. Stone, A Reminiscent History of the Lynne Ward, manuscript, 1934, p. 1, 2.

[2] Autobiography of Mary Elizabeth Hutchens Sherner, Mary Elizabeth – Her Stories, dictated to her daughter Dorothy A. Sherner, manuscript, 1933, p. 88.

[3] Darren Parry, The Bear River Massacre, Common Consent Press, 2019, p. 16.

[4] Parry, The Bear River Massacre, p. 15.

[5] Sherner, Mary Elizabeth- Her Stories, p. 91.

[6] Parry, The Bear River Massacre, p. 15, 16.

[7] Sherner, Mary Elizabeth- Her Stories, p. 90.

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