Under the direction of Brigham Young, the apostles who remained in Winter Quarters prepared the first pioneer company to leave for the West in the spring of 1847. Upon returning from England, John and Parley P. Pratt were to organize a second company to come west that same summer. They began their trek in June with six hundred wagons, 1,553 pioneers, 2,213 oxen, 887 cows, 358 sheep, 716 chickens and quite a few pigs. The group was divided into six sections of one hundred wagons each.11
This second pioneer company that John and Brother Pratt were in charge of reached the Salt Lake Valley on October 5th. By Christmas John had built housing, barns, and corrals and laid out a garden spot. The Saints had very little to eat that winter besides corn meal, flour, and tough beef. They needed better nourishment. John prayed that he would know how to find more food for his family.