Handcart companies had to carry everything they needed on their handcarts
False, they had some help
Handcarts didn’t carry everything they needed just on the handcarts. Just like how LDS stakes that recreate these journeys have vehicles that help carry gear, so did the original pioneers. All handcart companies traveled with supply wagons that carried tents, extra food and other items. There was usually about one wagon for every 100 handcarts.
Sources: “111 Days to Zion,” by Hal Knight and Dr. Stanley B. Kimball; Deseret News archives; lds.org; “The History of Emigration Canyon,” The National Park Service; Mel Bashore and Chad Orton of the LDS Church History Library.