43990773

History, 1838–1856, volume C-1 [2 November 1838–31 July 1842]

October 19 may be perfected, and prepared to meet the Lord Jesus Christ when he shall appear in great glory: can I rely on your prayers to our Heavenly Father on my behalf and on all the prayers of all my brethren and sisters in England (whom having not seen yet I love) that I may be enabled to escape every stratagem of Satan, surmount every difficulty and bring this people to the enjoyment of those blessings which are reserved for the righteous? I ask this at your hands in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Let the Saints remember, that great things depend on their individual exertion, and that they are called to be coworkers with us and the Holy Spirit, in accomplishing the great work of the last days, and in consideration of the extent, the blessings and glories of the same, let every selfish feeling, be not only buried, but annihilated; and let love to God and man, predominate and reign triumphant in every mind, that their hearts may become like unto Enoch’s of old, and comprehend all things, present, past, and future, and come behind in no gift waiting for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. The work in which we are unitedly engaged is one of no ordinary kind the enemies we have to contend against are subtle and well skilled in manoeuvreing, it behooves us to be on the alert to concentrate our energies, and that the best feelings should exist in our midst, and then by the help of the Almighty, we shall go on from victory to victory, and from conquest to conquest, our evil passions will be subdued, our prejudices depart, we shall find no room in our bosoms for hatred, vice will hide its deformed head, and we shall stand approved in the sight of heaven and be acknowledged “the Sons of God”. Let us realize that we are not to live to ourselves, but to God, by so doing the greatest blessings wil rest upon us both in time and in Eternity. I presume the doctrine of “baptism for the dead,” has ere this reached your ears, and may have raised some inquiries in your minds, respecting the same. I cannot in this letter give you all the information you may desire on the subject, but aside from knowledge independent of the Bible, I would say that it was certainly practised by the Ancient Churches, and St. Paul endeavors to prove the doctrine of the resurrection from the same, and says “else what shall they do who are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?” I first mentioned the doctrine in public, when preaching the funeral sermon of brother Seymour Brunson

1 Dec. 1798–10 Aug. 1840. Farmer. Born at Plattsburg, Clinton Co., New York. Son of Reuben Brunson and Sally Clark. Served in War of 1812. Married Harriet Gould of Hector, Tompkins Co., New York, ca. 1823. Baptized into LDS church by Solomon Hancock, Jan....

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, and have since then given general instructions to the Church on the subject. The Saints have the privilege of being baptized for those of their relatives who are dead, who they believe would have embraced the gospel, if they had been privileged with hearing it, and who have received the gospel in the Spirit, through the instrumentality of those who have been commissioned to preach to them while in prison. Without enlarging on the subject, you will undoubtedly see its consistency and reasonableness and it presents the Gospel of Christ in probably a more enlarged scale than some have imagined it. But as the performance of this rite is more particularly confined to this place, it will not be necessary to enter into particulars, at the same time I always feel glad to give all the information in my power, but my space will not allow me to do it. We had [p. 1118]
<October 19> may be perfected, and prepared to meet the Lord Jesus Christ when he shall  appear in great glory: can I rely on your prayers to our Heavenly Father on  my behalf and on all the prayers of all my brethren and sisters in England  (whom having not seen yet I love) that I may be enabled to escape every stratagem  of Satan, surmount every difficulty and bring this people to the enjoyment of  those blessings which are reserved for the righteous? I ask this at your hands in  the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Let the Saints remember, that great things  depend on their individual exertion, and that they are called to be coworkers with  us and the Holy Spirit, in accomplishing the great work of the last days, and in  consideration of the extent, the blessings and glories of the same, let every selfish  feeling, be not only buried, but annihilated; and let love to God and man,  predominate and reign triumphant in every mind, that their hearts may become  like unto Enoch’s of old, and comprehend all things, present, past, and future,  and come behind in no gift waiting for the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The work in which we are unitedly engaged is one of no ordinary kind the  enemies we have to contend against are subtle and well skilled in manoeuvreing,  it behooves us to be on the alert to concentrate our energies, and that the best feelings  should exist in our midst, and then by the help of the Almighty, we shall go  on from victory to victory, and from conquest to conquest, our evil passions will be  subdued, our prejudices depart, we shall find no room in our bosoms for hatred,  vice will hide its deformed head, and we shall stand approved in the sight of  heaven and be acknowledged “the Sons of God”. Let us realize that we are not to  live to ourselves, but to God, by so doing the greatest blessings wil rest upon us  both in time and in Eternity. I presume the doctrine of “baptism  for the dead,” has ere this reached your ears, and may have raised some  inquiries in your minds, respecting the same. I cannot in this letter  give you all the information you may desire on the subject, but aside  from knowledge independent of the Bible, I would say that it was  certainly practised by the Ancient Churches, and St. Paul endeavors to prove  the doctrine of the resurrection from the same, and says “else what shall they do  who are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then  baptized for the dead?” I first mentioned the doctrine in public, when preaching  the funeral sermon of brother <Seymour> Brunson

1 Dec. 1798–10 Aug. 1840. Farmer. Born at Plattsburg, Clinton Co., New York. Son of Reuben Brunson and Sally Clark. Served in War of 1812. Married Harriet Gould of Hector, Tompkins Co., New York, ca. 1823. Baptized into LDS church by Solomon Hancock, Jan....

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, and have since then given general  instructions to the Church on the subject. The Saints have the privilege of being  baptized for those of their relatives who are dead, who they believe would have  embraced the gospel, if they had been privileged with hearing it, and who  have received the gospel in the Spirit, through the instrumentality of those who  have been commissioned to preach to them while in prison. Without  enlarging on the subject, you will undoubtedly see its consistency and reasonableness  and it presents the Gospel of Christ in probably a more enlarged scale  than some have imagined it. But as the performance of this rite is  more particularly confined to this place, it will not be necessary to enter  into particulars, at the same time I always feel glad to give all the information  in my power, but my space will not allow me to do it. We had [p. 1118]
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This document, volume C-1, is the third of six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church.” The collection was compiled over an eighteen-year span from 1838 to 1856 and covers the period from 23 December 1805 to 8 August 1844. The narrative in this volume commences on 2 November 1838 with JS and other church leaders being held prisoner by the “Governor

14 Dec. 1796–14 Mar. 1860. Bookkeeper, bank cashier, merchant, Indian agent and trader, lawyer, doctor, postmaster, politician. Born at Lexington, Fayette Co., Kentucky. Son of John M. Boggs and Martha Oliver. Served in War of 1812. Moved to St. Louis, ca...

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’s forces” 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, and concludes with the death of Bishop Vinson Knight

14 Mar. 1804–31 July 1842. Farmer, druggist, school warden. Born at Norwich, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Rudolphus Knight and Rispah (Rizpah) Lee. Married Martha McBride, 14 Mar. 1826. Moved to Perrysburg, Cattaraugus Co., New York, by Mar. 1834....

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at 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...

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, Illinois, on 31 July 1842. For a more complete discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to this history.
Volume C-1 was created beginning on or just after 24 February 1845 and its narrative completed on 3 May although work continued on the volume through 3 July of that year (Richards, Journal, 24 and 28 Feb. 1845; Historian’s Office, Journal, 3 May 1845; 3 and 4 July 1845). It is in the handwriting of Thomas Bullock and contains 512 pages of primary text, plus 24 pages of addenda. Additional addenda for this volume were created at a later date in a separate volume, and will appear in this collection as a separate document. Compilers 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 drew heavily from JS’s letters, discourses, and diary entries; meeting minutes; church and other periodicals and journals; and reminiscences, recollections, and letters of church members and other contacts. At JS’s behest, they had maintained the first-person, chronological-narrative format established in previous volumes, as if JS were the author. 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 reviewed and modified the manuscript prior to its eventual publication in the Salt Lake City newspaper Deseret News.
The historical narrative recorded in volume C-1 continued the account of JS’s life as prophet and president of the church. Critical events occurring within the forty-five-month period of this volume include the 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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Mormon War; subsequent legal trials of church leaders; expulsion of the Saints from Missouri; missionary efforts in England by the Twelve

Members of a governing body in the church, with special administrative and proselytizing responsibilities. A June 1829 revelation commanded Oliver Cowdery and David Whitmer to call twelve disciples, similar to the twelve apostles in the New Testament and ...

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and others; attempts by JS to obtain federal redress for the Missouri depredations; publication of the LDS Millennial Star in England; the migration of English converts to America; missionary efforts in other nations; the death of church patriarch Joseph Smith Sr.

12 July 1771–14 Sept. 1840. Cooper, farmer, teacher, merchant. Born at Topsfield, Essex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Asael Smith and Mary Duty. Nominal member of Congregationalist church at Topsfield. Married to Lucy Mack by Seth Austin, 24 Jan. 1796, at Tunbridge...

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; the establishment of the 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...

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city charter; the commencement of construction of the Nauvoo temple

JS revelation, dated Jan. 1841, commanded Saints to build temple and hotel (Nauvoo House). Cornerstone laid, 6 Apr. 1841. Saints volunteered labor, money, and other resources for temple construction. Construction directed by committee, which included Reynolds...

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; the Wisconsin “pinery”

Also known as pinery. Area near Black River where lumbering operation was established to provide timber for construction of Nauvoo temple, Nauvoo House, and other public buildings. Four mills established on Black River, ca. Sept. 1841: three near Black River...

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expedition that facilitated temple construction; the introduction of the doctrine of proxy baptism for deceased persons; the dedicatory prayer by Orson Hyde

8 Jan. 1805–28 Nov. 1878. Laborer, clerk, storekeeper, teacher, editor, businessman, lawyer, judge. Born at Oxford, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Nathan Hyde and Sally Thorpe. Moved to Derby, New Haven Co., 1812. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, ...

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on the Mount of Olives in Palestine; publication of the “Book of Abraham” in the Nauvoo Times and Seasons; publication of the JS history often referred to as the “Wentworth letter;” the organization of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo; and the inception of Nauvoo-era temple endowment ceremonies.

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