I found this in the Journal History of the Church, 14 October 1916, on Selected Collections from the Archives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
vol. 2, DVD 33:
"PIONEER INCIDENTS." BY Col. J. H. Mortineau. NEPHITE MONEY."
An incident occurred to me in 1854 in Parowan, which greatly interested me then and still does so.
Walker, the great Utah chieftain-"King of the mountains" as he styled himself - camped near Parowan at his return from one of his annual raids against the Indians of the Colorado river country for plunder and the capture of Indian children to sell to whites. I knew him well and as I met him one day, he motioned to me to stop and talk. He could not speak English but both could speak the Pah-Ede (incorrectlyspelled-Pieede [sic]) sufficiently to understand each other.
From a small buckskin pouch he took two metallic balls, each having six flat faces, upon which were raised characters. One of these balls was about one inch in diameter and the other about three-fourths of an inch. He handed them to me, inquiring if they were money.
"Let me see," I said, and examined them closely. They were so greatly oxidized that I could not tell whether they were silver or some base metal, and with my knife I was about to scrape off the rust to see if they were composed of silver or of copper.
Seeing this, he snatched them from me and replaced them in his pouch.
"Where did you get them?" I asked. He said, "In a cave near the big river," (the Colorado) and said he believed they were money; also that there was more of it in the cave and if it was money, he would go and get more.
I never knew what he did with those ancient relics, but he evidently never got anymore of them.
"What were those balls of not intended for money? And how came they in that cave? To me the answer is plain.
When the Nephites were driven northward by their enemies, some rich man fled for safety to te [sic] cave, taking with him his wealth, hoping, doubtless, at some future time when danger should be passed, to again enjoy his wealth. Doubtless he was captured, killed or starved in the cave, never again able to remove or enjoy his possession. When the Nephites were driven northward they now and then obtained a victory and were able for one or more years to remain long enough in one place to raise crops sufficient for the support of such a host until again attacked and compelled to retreat farther northward. And this alternate halt and drove continued for years until the Nephites made their last stand at the hill Cumorah.
In this connection I will say that many traditions of the Pali-Edes seemed like reading from the Book of Mormon--a book to them unknown.
They tell of great wars between Indians who were white, who lived by cultivation of fields and had houses, horses and cattle like white people, whose enemies they called dark Indians, who lived entirely by hunting and by war. They said the white Indians for years prevailed against their enemies until their leader was killed with all his people.
There is one place in southern Utah which no Indian would cross in the night time for any consideration, nor by daylight if possible to avoid it--a place three or four miles in extent. They say a great battle occurred here, lasting three days, until one could walk for miles upon dead bodies without touching the ground, and that at night they can hear the wailing of the dead. There are several places in southern Utah where large, smooth-faced rocks are covered with inscriptions which the Indians say tell of these great events. I, myself, have seen those inscriptions in several places, but of course their meanings to me were unknown.
Above taken from the Deseret Evening News of Oct. 14, 1916.
Edited by mapman, 24 April 2011 - 07:59 AM.