26017

History, 1834–1836

having heard many reports of an unfavourable character, he desired now to know the truth of the matter.
He appeared to be an honest inquirer. Pres. Smith spent the evening with him, in conversation, & found him to be a candid man; but without any peculiarities about him except his simplicity, he tarried over night [with] us, and acknowledged in the morning, that although he had thought that he knew something about religion, he was now convinced, that he knew but little, which was the greatest trait of wisdom which he displayed.

5 December 1835 • Saturday

Saturday 5th. This morning the weather is cold & the snow is gently dropping from the heavens, & there is a prospect of sleighing again.— Presdts. [Oliver] Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

View Full Bio
& [Frederick G.] Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

View Full Bio
called and spent the fore noon in studying Hebrew with us.— our author Pres. Smith is labouring under a slight indisposition of health; but after taking a little repose, he resumed his wonted cheerfulness and through the blessings of God was abled to attend to his business. on this day he received a letter from Reuben McBride

16 June 1803–26 Feb. 1891. Farmer. Born at Chester, Washington Co., New York. Son of Daniel McBride and Abigail Mead. Married Mary Ann Anderson, 16 June 1833. Baptized into LDS church, 4 Mar. 1834, at Villanova, Chautauque Co., New York. Participated in Camp...

View Full Bio
dated at Villanovia Villanova

Also spelled Villenova. Located in southwest corner of state. Settled by 1810. Taken from Hanover Township, Jan. 1823. Population in 1830 about 1,100; in 1835 about 1,500; and in 1840 about 1,700. While recruiting Camp of Israel volunteers, JS and Parley ...

More Info
NewYork, and another from Parley [P.] Pratt

12 Apr. 1807–13 May 1857. Farmer, editor, publisher, teacher, school administrator, legislator, explorer, author. Born at Burlington, Otsego Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Traveled west with brother William to acquire land, 1823....

View Full Bio
’s mother in law, dated at Herkimer Co. N.Y. of no consequence as to what it contained but cost us 25 cents for postage; he mentioned this because it [is] a common occurrence, and he is subjected to a great expense in this way, by those who he knows nothing about, only that they are destitute of good manners, for if people wish to be benefited by his counsel & instruction, common respect, and good breeding would dictate them to pay the postage on their letters.

6 December 1835 • Sunday

Sunday 6th. He as usual attended meeting, being ever constant at the shrine of public & private devotion, setting an example of unremitting, & untiring zeal and piety teaching, & enforcing, both by precept, and example, the principles, & doctrines, of the holy religion he professes.
Eldr. Gideon Carter

1798–25 Oct. 1838. Born at Killingworth, Middlesex Co., Connecticut. Son of Gideon Carter and Johanna Sims. Moved to Benson, Rutland Co., Vermont, by 1810. Married first Hilah (Hilda) Burwell, 1822. Moved to Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, 1831. Baptized into ...

View Full Bio
occupied the desk in the morning and delivered an interesting discourse. In the P.M. an exhortation was delivered, and the Lords supper administered. br. Draper came forward to make a [p. 141]
having heard many reports of an unfavourable charac ter, he desired now to know the truth of the matter.
He appeared to be an honest inquirer. Pres. Smith  spent the evening with him, in conversation, & found  him to be a candid man; but without any peculia rities about him except his simplicity, he tarried  over night [with]324

Omitted word supplied from the corresponding journal entry.  


us, and acknowledged in the morning,  that although he had thought that he knew som ething about religion, he was now convinced, that  he knew but little, which was the greatest trait  of wisdom which he displayed.

5 December 1835 • Saturday

Saturday 5th. This morning the weather is cold & the  snow is gently dropping from the heavens, & there is a  prospect of sleighing again.— Presdts. [Oliver] Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

View Full Bio
& [Frederick G.] Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

View Full Bio
 called and spent the fore noon in studying Hebrew  with us.— our author Pres. Smith is labouring under  a slight indisposition of health; but after taking  a little repose, he resumed his wonted cheerfulness  and throug[h] the blessings of God was abled to attend  to his business. on this day he received a letter from  Reuben McBride

16 June 1803–26 Feb. 1891. Farmer. Born at Chester, Washington Co., New York. Son of Daniel McBride and Abigail Mead. Married Mary Ann Anderson, 16 June 1833. Baptized into LDS church, 4 Mar. 1834, at Villanova, Chautauque Co., New York. Participated in Camp...

View Full Bio
dated at Villanovia [Villanova]

Also spelled Villenova. Located in southwest corner of state. Settled by 1810. Taken from Hanover Township, Jan. 1823. Population in 1830 about 1,100; in 1835 about 1,500; and in 1840 about 1,700. While recruiting Camp of Israel volunteers, JS and Parley ...

More Info
NewYork, and  another from Parley [P.] Pratt

12 Apr. 1807–13 May 1857. Farmer, editor, publisher, teacher, school administrator, legislator, explorer, author. Born at Burlington, Otsego Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Traveled west with brother William to acquire land, 1823....

View Full Bio
’s mother in law,325

Thankful Cooper Halsey.  


dated at Herk imer Co. N.Y. of no consequ[e]nce as to what it contained  but cost us 25 cents for postage; he mentioned this beca use it [is]326

Omitted word supplied from the corresponding journal entry.  


a common occurrence, and he is subjected  to a great expense in this way, by those who he  knows nothing about, only that they are destitute  of good manners, for if people wish to be benefited  by his counsel & instruction, common respect, and  good breeding would dictate them to pay the postage  on their letters.

6 December 1835 • Sunday

Sunday 6th. He as usual attended meeting, being ever  constant at the shrine of public & private devotion, setting  an example of unremitting, & untiring zeal and piety  teaching, & enforcing, both by precept, and example, the  principles, & doctrines, of the holy religion he professes.327

This paragraph is a scribal elaboration by Warren Parrish; the 1835–1836 journal has only “went to meeting at the us[u]al hour.”  


Eldr. Gideon Carter

1798–25 Oct. 1838. Born at Killingworth, Middlesex Co., Connecticut. Son of Gideon Carter and Johanna Sims. Moved to Benson, Rutland Co., Vermont, by 1810. Married first Hilah (Hilda) Burwell, 1822. Moved to Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, 1831. Baptized into ...

View Full Bio
occupied the desk in the morning  and delivered an interesting discourse. In the P.M. an  exhortation was delivered, and the Lords supper  administered. br. Draper came forward to make a [p. 141]
PreviousNext
JS, History, [Dec. 1834–May 1836?]; handwriting of Warren Parrish

10 Jan. 1803–3 Jan. 1877. Clergyman, gardener. Born in New York. Son of John Parrish and Ruth Farr. Married first Elizabeth (Betsey) Patten of Westmoreland Co., New Hampshire, ca. 1822. Lived at Alexandria, Jefferson Co., New York, 1830. Purchased land at...

View Full Bio
, Warren Cowdery

17 Oct. 1788–23 Feb. 1851. Physician, druggist, farmer, editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Married Patience Simonds, 22 Sept. 1814, in Pawlet, Rutland Co. Moved to Freedom, Cattaraugus Co., New York, 1816...

View Full Bio
, Frederick G. Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

View Full Bio
, and Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

View Full Bio
; includes genealogical and financial tables; 154 pages; verso of JS History, 1838–1856, vol. A-1, CHL. Includes redactions, use marks, and archival marking.
Large blank book composed of ruled paper printed with forty horizontal lines in (now faint) blue ink. The text block includes thirty gatherings of various sizes, each about a dozen leaves per gathering, and originally had 384 interior leaves cut to measure 13⅝ x 9 inches (35 x 23 cm). The text block, which was conserved in the late twentieth century, was probably originally sewn on recessed cords and was apparently also glued on leather tapes. The binding features false bands. The endpapers were single-sided marbled leaves featuring a traditional Spanish pattern with slate blue body and black and red veins. The block was bound to pasteboard covers, probably with a hollow-back ledger binding, making a book measuring 14¼ x 9½ x 2½ inches (36 x 24 x 6 cm). The boards were bound in brown suede calfskin. At some point, blind-tooled decorations were made around the outside border and along the board edges and the turned-in edges of the inside covers.
Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

View Full Bio
began the text of the document on the thirteenth page of the text block, numbering it as page 9. Cowdery set aside pages 9–16 for genealogical tables for the members of the church presidency. He inscribed the page numbers, table headings, and column and row ruling for the tables in red ink with a quill pen. The content of the tables was inscribed in ink that is now brown with a quill pen, as was the rest of the history. Cowdery inscribed journal-like entries for 5 and 6 December 1834 on pages 17–20. Pages 21–45 are blank except for page numbering. Frederick G. Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

View Full Bio
and Warren Parrish

10 Jan. 1803–3 Jan. 1877. Clergyman, gardener. Born in New York. Son of John Parrish and Ruth Farr. Married first Elizabeth (Betsey) Patten of Westmoreland Co., New Hampshire, ca. 1822. Lived at Alexandria, Jefferson Co., New York, 1830. Purchased land at...

View Full Bio
copied Cowdery’s 1834–1835 historical articles, published serially in the Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate, onto pages 46–103. A passage that Parrish missed while copying the first installment of the Cowdery history is supplied on a slip of paper attached to page 50 with adhesive wafers. On pages 103–104, Parrish copied part of a JS letter, also published in the church newspaper. On pages 105–187, Parrish and Warren Cowdery

17 Oct. 1788–23 Feb. 1851. Physician, druggist, farmer, editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Married Patience Simonds, 22 Sept. 1814, in Pawlet, Rutland Co. Moved to Freedom, Cattaraugus Co., New York, 1816...

View Full Bio
wrote historical entries based on the entries in JS’s 1835–1836 journal. The genealogical table headings written by Oliver Cowdery, the letter headings and closings written by Williams and Parrish, and the datelines written by Parrish and Warren Cowdery are slightly larger than the ordinary script of these individuals. Parrish’s datelines also feature a vertical stress that contrasts with the oblique stress of his entry inscriptions. In their copying from the Messenger and Advocate, Frederick G. Williams and Warren Parrish often used a slightly larger script for words that appear in small caps in the printed version. Although pagination for the 1834–1836 history was inscribed up to page 241, the actual chronicle reaches only to page 187. Oliver Cowdery numbered pages 9–21, Frederick G. Williams numbered pages 22–58, Warren Parrish numbered pages 59–111, and Warren Cowdery numbered pages 112–241. Sometime later, Willard Richards

24 June 1804–11 Mar. 1854. Teacher, lecturer, doctor, clerk, printer, editor, postmaster. Born at Hopkinton, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Joseph Richards and Rhoda Howe. Moved to Richmond, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts, 1813. Moved to Chatham, Columbia...

View Full Bio
inscribed year and month-and-year headings in black ink on pages 17–20, 46–47, 105–173, and 176–187. Various pages also bear redactions in unidentified handwriting in black and blue pencil.
In 1839, the book was repurposed for the inscription of a new history. The book was turned over so that the back cover became the front and the last leaf became the first. From this new front of the book, JS’s scribes began writing what became the first volume of JS’s multivolume manuscript history (the first 61 pages of which are transcribed as “Draft 2”). That later history filled most of the remaining leaves of the book, running well into the blank pages that were numbered for the 1834–1836 history and up to within five pages of the inscribed entries in the earlier history. However, only numbering on pages 235–241 of the 1834–1836 history were erased (by knife eraser). With the later history’s side of the book upward, the spine of the book was labeled as volume “A | 1” of the multivolume history. Archival stickers were also added at some point to the spine and the inside front cover. Two interior leaves are now missing from the initial gathering of the volume and one leaf is missing from the final gathering. The flyleaves and pastedowns were also lost or removed from the book.1

See JS History, vol. A-1, microfilm, Dec. 1971, CHL. Only one leaf of the original pastedowns and flyleaves is extant. The pastedowns were replaced with undecorated paper in 1994, according to a conservation note on the verso of the extant marbled leaf archived with the volume.  


The volume shows moderate wear, browning, water staining, and brittleness. It has been resewn, rebound, and otherwise conserved.
While the 1834–1836 history was being created, the volume was apparently kept in the homes of JS’s scribes.2

See JS, Journal, 29 Oct. 1835 and 25 Jan. 1836 (see also entry for 29 Oct. 1835 herein).  


In 1839, scribe James Mulholland

1804–3 Nov. 1839. Born in Ireland. Baptized into LDS church. Married Sarah Scott, 8 Feb. 1838, at Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri. Engaged in clerical work for JS, 1838, at Far West. Ordained a seventy, 28 Dec. 1838. After expulsion from Missouri, lived ...

View Full Bio
converted the book into the first volume of JS’s multivolume manuscript history.3

Jessee, “Writing of Joseph Smith’s History,” 439–441, 450–451, 464.  


In 1842, the church newspaper in Nauvoo

Principal gathering place for Saints following expulsion from Missouri. Beginning in 1839, LDS church purchased lands in earlier settlement of Commerce and planned settlement of Commerce City, as well as surrounding areas. Served as church headquarters, 1839...

More Info
, Illinois, began publishing this later history.4

The serialized publication of this history began in the 15 March 1842 issue of the Times and Seasons.  


JS maintained custody of the volume through his later life, as indicated by a note he inscribed memorializing his deceased brother Alvin Smith

11 Feb. 1798–19 Nov. 1823. Farmer, carpenter. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Randolph, Orange Co., 1802; returned to Tunbridge, before May 1803. Moved to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804, and to...

View Full Bio
, which was attached to the verso of the flyleaf preceding the later history. The volume is listed in the first extant Historian’s Office inventory, made in Nauvoo in February 1846 by clerk Thomas Bullock, and it is listed in inventories of church records made in Salt Lake City in the second half of the nineteenth century.5

“Schedule of Church Records. Nauvoo 1846,” [1]; “Historian’s Office Catalogue 1858,” 2, Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL.  


These and later archival records, as well as archival marking on the volume, indicate continuous institutional custody.

Facts