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History, 1838–1856, volume B-1 [1 September 1834–2 November 1838]

because it was conferred upon Aaron and his seed, throughout March 28 all their generations. Why it is called the lesser priesthood, is because it is an appendage to the greater, or the Melchisedek priesthood, and has power in administering outward ordinances. The Bishopric is the presidency of this priesthood, and holds the keys or authority of the same, no man has a legal right to this office, to hold the keys of this priesthood, except he be a literal descendant of Aaron. But as a high priest, of the Melchisedek priesthood, has authority to officiate in all the lesser offices, he may officiate in the office of bishop when no literal descendant of Aaron can be found; provided he is called, and set apart, and ordained unto this power, by the hands of the presidency of the Melchisedek priesthood.
authority of the Melchisedek P.d. 9. The power and authority of the higher or melchisedek priesthood, is, to hold the keys of all the spiritual blessings of the church,— to have the privilege of receiving the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven,— to have the heavens opened unto them,— to commune with the general assembly and church of the first-born, and to enjoy the communion and presence of God the Father, and Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant.
authority of the Aronic priestd 10. The power and authority of the lesser, or Aaronic priesthood, is, to hold the keys of the ministering of angels, and to administer in outward ordinances, the letter of the gospel,— the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, agreeably to the covenants and commandments.
Presiding offices. 11. Of necessity there are presidents, or presiding offices growing out of, or appointed of, or from among those who are ordained to the several offices in these two priesthoods. Of the Melchisedek Three, Quorum of the presidency. priesthood, three presiding high priests, chosen by the body, appointed and ordained to that office, and upheld by the confidence, faith and prayer of the church, form a quorum of Twelve travelling Councellors,= Apostles the presidency of the church. The twelve travelling counsellors are called to be the twelve Apostles, or special witnesses of the name of Christ, in all the world: Thus differing from other officers in the church in the duties of their calling: And they form a Quorum equal in authority and power, to the three presidents, previously The Seventy mentioned. The Seventy are also called to preach the Gospel, and to be especial witnesses unto the Gentiles in all the world: Thus differing from other officers in the church in the duties of their calling: and they form a quorum, equal in authority to that of the twelve especial witnesses or Apostles just named: And every decision made by either of these quorums, must be by Decisions of the quorums, equal. the unanimous voice of the same; that is every member in each quorum, must be agreed to its decisions, in order to make their decisions of the same power or validity one with the other. -[A majority may form a quorum when circumstances render it impossible to be otherwise.]- Unless this is the case, their decisions are not entitled to the same blessings which the [p. 583]
because it was conferred upon Aaron and his seed, throughout  <March 28> all their generations. Why it is called the lesser priesthood, is  because it is an appendage to the greater, or the Melchisedek priesthood,  and has power in administering outward ordinances. The Bishop ric is the presidency of this priesthood, and holds the keys or  authority of the same, no man has a legal right to this office,  to hold the keys of this priesthood, except he be a literal descend ant of Aaron. But as a high priest, of the Melchisedek priest hood, has authority to officiate in all the lesser offices, he may  officiate in the office of bishop when no literal descendant of  Aaron can be found; provided he is called, and set apart, and  ordained unto this power, by the hands of the presidency of the  Melchisedek priesthood.
<authority of the  Melchisedek P.d.> 9. The power and authority of the higher or melchisedek priest hood, is, to hold the keys of all <the> spiritual blessings of the church,—  to have the privilege of receiving thee mysteries of the kingdom  of heaven,— to have the heavens opened unto them,— to commune  with the general assembly and church of the first-born, and  to enjoy the communion and presence of God the Father,  and Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant.
<authority of the  Aronic priestd> 10. The power and authority of the lesser, or Aaronic priest hood, is, to hold the keys of the ministering of angels, and  to administer in outward ordinances, the letter of the  gospel,— the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins,  agreeably to the covenants and commandments.
<Presiding offices.> 11. Of necessity there are presidents, or presiding offices growing out  of, or appointed of, or from among those who are ordained to  the several offices in these two priesthoods. Of the Melchisedek  <Three, Quorum of  the presidency.> priesthood, three presiding high priests, chosen by the body, ap pointed and ordained to that office, and upheld by the con fidence, faith and prayer of the church, form a quorum of  <Twelve travelling  Councellors,= Apostles> the presidency of the church. The twelve travelling counsellors  are called to be the twelve Apostles, or special witnesses of the name  of Christ, in all the world: Thus differing from other officers in  the church in the duties of their calling: And they form a Quorum  equal in authority and power, to the three presidents, previously  <The Seventy> mentioned. The Seventy are also called to preach the Gospel,  and to be especial witnesses unto the Gentiles in all the world:  Thus differing from other officers in the church in the duties of  their calling: and they form a quorum, equal in authority to  that of the twelve <e>special witnesses or Apostles just named: And  every decision made by either of these quorums, must be by  <Decisions of the  quorums, equal.> the unanimous voice of the same; that is every member in  each quorum, must be agreed to its decisions, in order to make  their decisions of the same power or validity one with the other.  -[A majority may form a quorum when circumstances render  it impossible to be otherwise.]- Unless this is the case, their  decisions are not entitled to the same blessings which the [p. 583]
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This document, volume B-1, is the second of the six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church.” The collection was compiled over the span of seventeen years, 1838 to 1856. The narrative in volume B-1 begins with the entry for 1 September 1834, just after the conclusion of the Camp of Israel (later called Zion’s Camp), and continues to 2 November 1838, when JS was interned as a prisoner of war at Far West

Originally called Shoal Creek. Located fifty-five miles northeast of Independence. Surveyed 1823; first settled by whites, 1831. Site purchased, 8 Aug. 1836, before Caldwell Co. was organized for Latter-day Saints in Missouri. William W. Phelps and John Whitmer...

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, Missouri. For a fuller discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to the history.
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...

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, serving as JS’s “private secretary and historian,” completed the account of JS’s history contained in volume A-1 in August 1843. It covered the period from JS’s birth in 1805 through the aftermath of the Camp of Israel in August 1834. When work resumed on the history on 1 October 1843, Richards started a new volume, eventually designated B-1.
At the time of JS’s death in June 1844, the account had been advanced to 5 August 1838, on page 812 of volume B-1. 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...

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’s poor health led to the curtailment of work on B-1 for several months, until 11 December 1844. On that date, Richards and William W. Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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, assisted by Thomas Bullock, resumed gathering the records and reports needed to draft the history. Richards then composed and drafted roughed-out notes while Thomas Bullock compiled the text of the history and inscribed it in B-1. They completed their work on the volume on or about 24 February 1845. Richards, Willmer Benson, and Jonathan Grimshaw later added ten pages of “Addenda,” which provided notes, extensive revisions, or additional text to be inserted in the original manuscript where indicated.
Though JS did not dictate or revise any of the text recorded in B-1, 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...

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and Thomas Bullock chose to maintain the first-person, chronological narrative format established in A-1 as if JS were the author. They drew from a variety of primary and secondary sources including JS’s diaries and letters, minutes of meetings, the first edition of the Doctrine and Covenants, church and other periodicals, reports of JS’s discourses, and the reminiscences and recollections of church members. As was the case with A-1, after JS’s death, Brigham Young

1 June 1801–29 Aug. 1877. Carpenter, painter, glazier, colonizer. Born at Whitingham, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of John Young and Abigail (Nabby) Howe. Brought up in Methodist household; later joined Methodist church. Moved to Sherburne, Chenango Co., New...

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, Heber C. Kimball

14 June 1801–22 June 1868. Blacksmith, potter. Born at Sheldon, Franklin Co., Vermont. Son of Solomon Farnham Kimball and Anna Spaulding. Married Vilate Murray, 22 Nov. 1822, at Mendon, Monroe Co., New York. Member of Baptist church at Mendon, 1831. Baptized...

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, George A. Smith

26 June 1817–1 Sept. 1875. Born at Potsdam, St. Lawrence Co., New York. Son of John Smith and Clarissa Lyman. Baptized into LDS church by Joseph H. Wakefield, 10 Sept. 1832, at Potsdam. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, 1833. Labored on Kirtland temple...

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, and others modified and corrected the manuscript as they reviewed material before its eventual publication.
Beginning in March 1842 the church’s Nauvoo periodical, the Times and Seasons, began publishing the narrative as the “History of Joseph Smith.” It was also published in England in the church periodical the Millennial Star beginning in June 1842. Once a press was established in Utah and the Deseret News began publication, the “History of Joseph Smith” once more appeared in print in serialized form. Beginning with the November 1851 issue, the narrative picked up where the Times and Seasons had left off over five years earlier.
The narrative recorded in B-1 continued the story of JS’s life as the prophet and president of the church he labored to establish. The account encompasses significant developments in the church’s two centers at that time—Kirtland

Located ten miles south of Lake Erie. Settled by 1811. Organized by 1818. Population in 1830 about 55 Latter-day Saints and 1,000 others; in 1838 about 2,000 Saints and 1,200 others; in 1839 about 100 Saints and 1,500 others. Mormon missionaries visited township...

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, Ohio, and northwest Missouri

Area acquired by U.S. in Louisiana Purchase, 1803, and established as territory, 1812. Missouri Compromise, 1820, admitted Missouri as slave state, 1821. Population in 1830 about 140,000; in 1836 about 240,000; and in 1840 about 380,000. Mormon missionaries...

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—during a four-year-span. Critical events included the organization of the Quorums of the Twelve Apostles and the Seventy, the dedication of the House of the Lord in Kirtland, Ohio, the establishment of the Kirtland Safety Society, dissension and apostasy in Kirtland and Missouri, the first mission to England, JS’s flight from Kirtland to Missouri in the winter of 1838, the Saints’ exodus from Kirtland later that year, the disciplining of the Missouri presidency, and the outbreak of the Missouri War and arrest of JS. Thus, B-1 provides substantial detail regarding a significant period of church expansion and transition as well as travail.

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