In an email dated 11 October 2018, Kirt W. wrote:
My 2nd great grandfather (John Hopwood Bleazard–the ships’ manifest shows the name as “Bliyard”) and his family came to the US in 1840 aboard the ship ‘North America” Theodore Turley was the Mormon Elder that was the “leader” of that group. The Ship landed in New York and traveled by rail? to Buffalo. There the group split into two separate groups–one of which went to Kirtland because of a lack of funds for the remainder of the journey. The other group went directly to Nauvoo. My grandfather was one of those who went to Nauvoo. But, I would like to know how they got to Nauvoo. Did they travel via the great lakes to Chicago and then somehow get to the Mississippi river and float down or?
Did Turley record any data of that portion of the journey or did some other member of the group keep a diary that you are aware of?
Response by Mary Ann Clements:
I don’t believe Theodore Turley made a record of this leg of the trip (his missionary diary ends several months earlier). Luckily, William Clayton’s diary is very detailed, and he was in the same group. His diary is available at the missionary diaries online database at BYU. It looks like the group indeed traveled via the Great Lakes from Buffalo to Chicago. From there they went overland about 100 miles to Dixon, Illinois. From there they took the Rock River down to the Mississippi and arrived in Nauvoo on November 24th.
I’ve included the full transcription of the applicable pages from the missionary diaries database below. You can access it here: https://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/digital/collection/MMD/id/59471/rec/4
 This evening the Greenhalgh’s concluded either to go to Kirtland or stay at Buffalo which grived me much ________________ Monday 26 . The weather very wet and cold. It was concluded that the Wisconsin Steamboat should not go. Consequently the company had to embark on board the Illinois capt Blake Tuesday 27 . This A M the Boat should have left Buffallo but could not on account of storm The Greenhalghs have took a house and two [of] them got work. I have bought a cap for 12 Dollars and a pair of Boots for 4 A Rifle for 16 powder 11 ¢ [We] also bought Saw & plan[e] Wednesday 28 The weather continues stormy at night we moved from amongst the shipping to the end of the Creek- the other ___________ brethren near creek ____ Thursday 29 about 1 this A M we left Buffallo for chicago. The names of those who are gone to Kirtland are T. Green & family, Josh West & family. Alice Whiss & family. M blake & wife. Josh Jackson & wife from Manchester. T. Featherstone. Martha Shelmerdine & Jane Fyldes from Stockport. J. Crompton & Wife from Bolton. [Josh] Hutchinson & family. [John] Craig & family. Ralph Thompson & family from Cum- berland. George Slater & family from Penwor- tham. Saml Bateman & family from Pendle bury. Thos Hooper and family from Herefordshire. George Naylor and family from [B]olton Jane Harris from Manchester These all had their names on a recommend except T. Hooper whose conduct has been very bad. This company generally appeared chearful and rejoiced in the prospect of soon having a place of rest. Some was inclined almost to wish they had not left England rather than be left short of Commerce.
 We proceeded on our way pretty well until we arrived at Fairport partly to take in wood & part on account of strong wind Here some of us went on shore and had we time E r T and myself would have gone to Kirtland as we were then only 11 miles from that place. Sometime in the night we started forwards again. Friday 30 . We had a place sail at night we anchored at the mouth of the river between lakes Erie & Huron ________ Saturday 31 – This A M about 7 o clock we arrived at Detroit. This is a very pleasant looking place of about 20000 inhabitants Here we took in some more passengers which crowded us up very much. We left Detroit after taking in wood and proceeded up lake St Clair where we saw many hundreds wild ducks. Some amused themselves by shooting at them with their Rifles. ____________________ Sunday Nov e 1 st We are on lake Hurn in the P M we called at Pesqu Isle to take in wood. Here I picked us some curious pebble stones. The lake is bounded by gravel of the whitest and hardest kind. at Night we arrived at Mackinau were we again took in wood ______________________ Monday Nov 2 – We are on lake Michigan and for some time could not see land. we called at the Manitou Islands to take in wood. Here I took up some more pebbles. Some of the company
 shot a few rabbits and small birds we continued here some hours on account of strong head wind. ____ Wednesday Nov 4 . About ½ pt 1 this A M we arrived at Chicago. Very early in the morning we moved our luggage from the boat and Er T went to seeking teems to go to Dixons ferry as that was considered to be the best rout. We engaged two teems for our family but after loading both & weighing one we found it necessary to have another I went back to were the boat landed & after a little time met with another. We got loaded about 2 o clock & proceeded on our way. After leaving Chicago we enter ed a wide prairie which was to us a new scene. we travelled about 12 miles & rested for the night. We made our fire and cooked our victuals out of doors. We slept on the floors of the tavern we had no beds-but some bedding. __ Saturday Nov. 7 – This day we arrived at Dixon after travelling about 100 miles We saw a wolf on one prairie and many prairy hens, at one house we saw a wild cat which had been shot in the woods it was as large as a common sized dog We have several times had one of the teems fast in the sloughs. During this journey brothers Cope & Benbow went with their teems foremost and thus secured to themselves the best accommodations and provisions &c. We was obliged to submit to it and take what we could get
 When our teems viz our 3 & Copes 1 & Benbows 2 & Walter Cran 1 arrived at Dixon the others being considerable behind we made inquiry as to the probability of boats going down the river. We was told that some boats had gone a week previous but it was not likely that any more would go this season. We then asked if there was any boat we could buy but of this we could get no satisfaction. We were advised to take our teams & go over to Fulton & there take steamboat. To this I objected on account of Turley not being arrived. S Cope was disposed to go & would not unload his waggon I engaged a house for the whole company at a Dollar 24 hours. We went to the house and unloaded our waggons myself being determined not to moved until the others arrived. I paid the teamsmen 75 Dollars for the 3 teams but desired them to wait till morning to see what course Er. T would pursue. It appears that at this place I offended bro Cope from what he said afterwards In the building was 3 rooms one a small room which would scarce hold our folks Into this we moved our boxes & laid down our bedding (no beds) During this time Mr Copes brought some of their luggage in saying they would go in their for they had as much right as any one else or something like this. but when they saw us lay our bedding down they took
 their things out apparently much griev[ed] but I would not submit to move out as we had submitted to the worst fare all the way from Chicago & I had took the house & considered myself at liberty to go into any part I choosed _________ Sunday Nov 8 – This morning Walter Cran engaged his team and started for Fulton Mr Cope wanted to do likewise and asked my inte[nt]ions I told him I would not move any further untill the remainder of the company arrived He seemed a little vexed and would rather have gone on. In order to pacify him & others I started back with our teams to meet the others. We met them about 7 miles from Dixon. I gave Turley a statement of things as I had found them and that I believed it was possible to go down Rock river. Bro Cope still desired to go by land to Fulton. I told him I had no disposition to go and leave the poor behind as was evident we should have to do if we went that way) he then man ifested anger and said he had not either &c. We arrived back about 2 o clock ___ Monday Nov 9 . This day Er Turley purchased a boat bottom for 75 Dollars and engaged 2 men to fit it up ready for sailing ________ Friday Nov 13 – During this week the boat has been got ready myself and many of the brethren assisted. We got our luggage on board to start but it being late and beginning to snow it was decided not to move untill morning. While load-
 ing the boat bro Cope and I had a few words again- I had fixed some of our boxes in one corner of the boat and Cope brought his and was determined to have them fixed up to ours so that we could get no more of ours up to them. I told him what I had intended to do. He was vexed and said-“You nasty scamp I pay as much as you”- We had not many more words but seemed much vexed. I told him to use his pleasure & I would be satisfied _________ Saturday Nov 14 . This A M bro Cope de- clined going with us in the boat and would not pay his share according to his agreement. I paid down one half of the expenses and we got loaded and prepared to start. We left Wood got at Dixon and started about 10 o clock. We went about 12 miles and tarried overnight at Stirling. The weather was very cold _____ Friday Nov 20 – This day we passed over the rapids- The greater part of us walked while the boat went over. It stuck fast once but was not damaged. Soon after this we entered the Mississippi River which caused us to rejoice much Saturday Nov 21 – This night we had to camp at a wood there being no houses near. We [had] some rain. Er Turley and some others camped in the wood he spoke much to them and cald upon those who had had quarrels to forgive each and manifest it. many acknowledged their faults & asked forgiveness. Some spake in tongues and W m Poole interpre ted it was a time of rejoicing.
 Sunday Nov 22 – We arrived at Burlington this evening and as we anticipated land ing at Commerce on the morrow many of us washed ourselves and changed our cloths Many of our family slept on a carpet on the floor _______________________________ Monday 23 rd This A M Er Turley and my self had some unpleasant words in consequence of his taking the boat rond some Islands which appreared to me and others to be considerable out of our course. I spake to him about it but he would not listen. I then turned my conversation to C Price. Er Turley then said if I did not cease to agitate the minds of the company he would put to shore and leave the boat- This was said in an unpleasant spirit In the P.M we got the boat fast on a tree and lost considerable time After Er Turley had tried his own way to move the boat a long time but in vain I begged of him to let me have my plan. After much request he partially consented and finding it likely to answer he yeilded to my plan and the boat was soon loosed. We sailed untill after dark almost determined to go to Comerc that night. but seeing a light on shore we made towards it and hearing a man we asked how far we were from C he said 9 miles at which report we concluded to stay for the nigh[t.]
 Tuesday 24 – This A M Er Turley having been in company with a man from Commerce said that if any choose to walk that man would conduct them at which W m Poole myself and several others went along with him by land to Commerce where we arrived at about 12 o clock- We called at the Upper stone house and found sister Garner from Manchester. They had arrived about one week previous having been 6 months on their way. We then went to Sister Hyrum Clarks and on our way called at Francis Moon’s. After we had been here a little while we perceived Er Turley and some others coming. Knowing then that the Boat had arrived we returned to the boat and after taking a little dinner we proceeded according to the appoint- ment of Committee to move our luggage to a new house on the banks of the Mississippi river. Thus ended a journey of over 5000 miles having been exactly 11 weeks and about 10 hours between leaving Liverpool and arriving at our journeys end. We had been much exposed to cold weather and suffered many deprivations and disconveniences yet through the mercy of God we landed safe and in good health with the ex- ception of 2 persons one of whom died soon after landing. We were pleased to find ourselves once more at home and felt to praise God for his goodness