“He Got Well But Never Paid Us”: The Carthage Medical Bill of John Taylor

William Mulder and A. Russell Mortensen’s Among the Mormons: Historic Accounts by Contemporary Observers (New York: Knopf, 1958) carries a report of the martyrdom at Carthage from an unusual eyewitness: that of Dr. Thomas L. Barnes, the doctor called in to tend to the wounded John Taylor. Dr. Barnes wrote a letter to his daughter Miranda in 1897 reporting in great detail what he recalled of the events of that day, including these paragraphs:

I suppose by this time you are anxious to know what became of Taylor and Richards? Was they also killed, no they were not. Taylor was severely wounded, Richards was not hurt.

Shall I try to describe the wounds that Taylor received and got over them? Well let me tell you where we found him; I cannot impress your mind of his appearance as he appeared to us when we were called to him by the jailer.

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