egarding the little
piece about Bruce Helin's find at Fern Glen: In the papers of Norm Nevills, which we have here in the Marriott Library at the University of Utah, I found a note in a Nevills Expeditions envelope, labeled “Note found in cairn at FERN GLEN CANYON 1942.” The note is in faded ink. Here's what it says:
Jan. 4 1932
We have explored the north side of the Colorado river from the hell's trail to this point all of its side canyons we have found one vain [sic] of white gold quartz, but the things we find in the drift wood, and the [s]cenery, are by far the most interesting up to date. We are out of supplies now we will have to climb out and find some meat as there is no life along the river.
J. L. Bisbee
I remember hearing about someone finding mining and other supplies and tools in a cave nearby… was that Bruce? And I wonder what the “hell's trail” would be? Anyway, Nevills brought the note home and kept it, so that's how we ended up with it.
Hope this information proves to be of some use. There was nothing more in the Nevills papers about M. Johnson, although I'll bet a little research either with Southern Utah University or the Daughters of Utah Pioneers would turn up something.