St. Louis Mo. April 27th 1857 [St. Louis, Missouri Monday 1857-04-27]
My Dear Elisabeth [Elizabeth]
A few minutes remain before Bro. Angell [Truman O. Angell ?] leaves who is to take my letters to Independence [Missouri] and I hasten to drop you a few lines. Your letter of 31st January [Saturday 1857-01-31] reached me on the 17th April [Friday 1857-04-17] and at the same time I received one from Minerva, Josephine and Sarah written a month previous [1857-03]. I shall not have time to write each of them separate this time, but I will say through you that I was exceedingly glad to read their letters and to perceive the spirit breathed in them all. It was a feast to my soul. The Deseret News for two or three months arrived at the same time which I have perused much as my time has permitted and I have felt much refreshed. I had been for months almost without news from home and to get such a pile of rich things as your letter and all the other communications of friends and papers seemed almost like coming home. I begin to think more of home as the season approaches. I want to see those little blue eyed and black eyed chatterers and enjoy once more the sweets of home and reap a rich harvest of effection.[affection] But I have but little leisure to indulge in anticipation. I Pray for you and the Little ones and leave you in the hands of God feeling satisfied that he will care for you and all is well.
At the time you mention seeing me in your dream I was visiting sister Lucina Warner [Lucina Snow Warner] and family in Wisconsin and in a sorrowfull [sorrowful] mood as you dreamed. I mourned over the darkness that was in the land and over all their minds. My sister [Lucina Snow Warner] rejoiced to see me and heard me gladly, but she is crushed in spirit and has no power to save herself and children. The wickedness of the people of the States is fearfully on the increase and very many thirst for the blood of the saints.
They are fast ripeneing [ripening] for the Judgements [judgments] of the Almighty. I have had a load to carry and my spirits have been weighed down under it much of the time since I left home but for the past two months since I returned from the East. I have endeavoured [endeavored] to through [throw] it off.
I have asked my Father to take it away or lighten it that I might bear it with greater ease and I feel that strength has greatly increased and my Joy in the Lords service. I lead the way in rebaptism and began to speak the word with sharpness and power to awaken the people out of sleep. This is a terrible den of apostacy [apostasy] and corruption. I am trying to get all away from here that is possible who wish to serve God some with teams and others with Hand Carts.
I had [?] about 225 up to Nebraska to form settlements on the South Fork and Wood River. Bro. G. A. Smith [George A. Smith] went to council [counsel] their opperations [operations] for a little season untill [until] he starts home. I hear that the Ship George Washington has arrived in Boston [Massachusetts] with 800 saints among whom is your Brother Benjamin. All the returning missionaries speak well of him and his labours [labors]. I am looking for Bro. H. S. Eldridge here soon to relieve me and then in conformity with Prest Youngs [President Brigham Young] instructions I shall return home, whether in June [Jun 1857] or later I cannot yet say or do I know how I shall go but presume with Bro. Taylor [John Taylor]. George A. [Smith] and others. Yours effectionately [affectionately] and forever, Erastus [Elder Erastus Snow 1818-1888]