53992717

History, circa June 1839–circa 1841 [Draft 2]

tance, baptism for the remission of sins, and laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost &c &c, amongst our audience were those who had torn down our dam and who seemed wishful to give us trouble, but did not untill after the meeting was dismissed, when they immediately commenced talking to those whom they considered our friends, to try to turn them against us and our doctrines.
Amongst the many present at this meeting was one Emily Coburn

Jan. 1813–after 1900. Milliner, teacher, nurse. Born in Tioga Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Moved to Unadilla River area of Otsego Co., New York, 1818; to Greene, Chenango Co., New York, by 1820; to Guilford, Chenango ...

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sister to the wife

1804–15 Sept. 1834. Born in Oxford (later in Guilford), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Resided in Oxford, Chenango Co., by 1810. Moved to Greene, Chenango Co., by 1820. Moved to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, by...

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of Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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. The Revd Mr [John] Shearer, a divine of the presbyterian faith, who had considered himself her pastor, came to understand that she was likely to believe our doctrine, and had a short time previous to this, meeting, came to labor with her, but having spent some time with her without being able to persuade her against us, he endeavored to have her leave her sister

1804–15 Sept. 1834. Born in Oxford (later in Guilford), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Resided in Oxford, Chenango Co., by 1810. Moved to Greene, Chenango Co., by 1820. Moved to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, by...

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s house, and go with him to her father’s, who lived at a distance of at least [blank] miles off: For this purpose he had recourse to stratagem; he told her that one of her brothers was waiting at a certain place, wishful to have her go home with him; he succeeded thus to get her a little distance from the house when, seeing that her brother was not in waiting for her, She refused to go any further with him; upon which he got hold of her by the arm to force her along; but her sister

1804–15 Sept. 1834. Born in Oxford (later in Guilford), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Resided in Oxford, Chenango Co., by 1810. Moved to Greene, Chenango Co., by 1820. Moved to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, by...

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, was soon with them; and the two women were too many for him and he was forced to sneak off without his errand, after all his labor and ingenuity. Nothing daunted however he went to her Father, represented to him something or other, which induced the Old Gentleman to give him a power of Attorney, which, as soon as our meeting was over, on the above named sunday evening, he immediately served upon her and carried her off to her father’s residence, by open violence, against her will. All his labor was in vain however, for the said Emily Coburn

Jan. 1813–after 1900. Milliner, teacher, nurse. Born in Tioga Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Moved to Unadilla River area of Otsego Co., New York, 1818; to Greene, Chenango Co., New York, by 1820; to Guilford, Chenango ...

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, in a short time afterwards, was baptized and confirmed, a member of the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.”
However, early on Monday morning we were on the alert, and before our enemies were aware we had repaired the dam, and proceeded to baptize, when the following thirteen persons were baptized under the hands of 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...

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viz: Emma Smith

10 July 1804–30 Apr. 1879. Scribe, editor, boardinghouse operator, clothier. Born at Willingborough Township (later in Harmony), Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Isaac Hale and Elizabeth Lewis. Member of Methodist church at Harmony (later in Oakland...

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, Hezekiah Peck

19 Jan. 1782–25 Aug. 1850. Millwright. Born at Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Son of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, by 1812. Married Martha Long, by 1812. Baptized...

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and wife, Joseph Knight [Sr.]

3 Nov. 1772–2 Feb. 1847. Farmer, miller. Born at Oakham, Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Son of Benjamin Knight and Sarah Crouch. Lived at Marlboro, Windham Co., Vermont, by 1780. Married first Polly Peck, 1795, in Windham Co. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge...

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and wife

16 Apr. 1774–7 Aug. 1831. Born in Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Daughter of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Married Joseph Knight Sr., 1795, in Windham Co. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ...

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—William Stringham and wife—Joseph Knight Jr

21 June 1808–4 Nov. 1866. Miller, carder, millwright. Born at Halifax, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, 1808. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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Aarron [Aaron] Culver and wife—Levi Hale [Hall]—Polly Knight

7 Mar. 1811–28 Apr. 1844. Born in Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Joseph Knight and Polly Peck. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New York, 1811. Baptized into LDS church by Oliver Cowdery, 28 June 1830, in...

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and Julia Stringham.—
Before the baptism was entirely finished, the mob began again to collect, and shortly after we had retired, they amounted to about fifty men. They surrounded the house of Mr Knight [Joseph Knight Sr.]

3 Nov. 1772–2 Feb. 1847. Farmer, miller. Born at Oakham, Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Son of Benjamin Knight and Sarah Crouch. Lived at Marlboro, Windham Co., Vermont, by 1780. Married first Polly Peck, 1795, in Windham Co. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge...

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(where we had retired to) raging with anger and apparently wishful to commit violence upon us. Some asked us questions, others threatened us, so that we thought it wisdom to leave and go to the house of Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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.
There also they followed us, and it was only by the exercise of great prudence on our part, and reliance on our heavenly Father that they were kept [p. 43]
tance, baptism for the remission of sins, and laying on of hands for the gift of the  Holy Ghost &c &c, amongst our audience were those who had torn down our dam  and who seemed wishful to give us trouble, but did not untill after the meeting was  dismissed, when they immediately commenced talking to those whom they con sidered our friends, to try to turn them against us and our doctrines.
Amongst the many present at this meeting was one Emily Coburn

Jan. 1813–after 1900. Milliner, teacher, nurse. Born in Tioga Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Moved to Unadilla River area of Otsego Co., New York, 1818; to Greene, Chenango Co., New York, by 1820; to Guilford, Chenango ...

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 sister to the wife

1804–15 Sept. 1834. Born in Oxford (later in Guilford), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Resided in Oxford, Chenango Co., by 1810. Moved to Greene, Chenango Co., by 1820. Moved to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, by...

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109

Sarah (Sally) Coburn Knight.  


of Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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. The Revd Mr [John] Shearer, a divine of the  presbyterian faith, who had considered himself her pastor,110

John Shearer served as pastor for the Sanford and Colesville Presbyterian churches from 1830 to 1831 with funding from the American Home Missionary Society. Shearer reported Emily Coburn’s defection from the Presbyterian church to the society’s New York office. (Hotchkin, History of the Purchase and Settlement of Western New York, 303; John Shearer, Colesville, NY, to Absalom Peters, New York City, NY, 18 Nov. 1830, in American Home Missionary Society Papers.)  


came to understand  that she was likely to believe our doctrine, and had a short <time> previous to this,  our meeting, came to labor with her, but having spent some time with her  without being able to persuade her against us, he endeavored to have her leave  her sister

1804–15 Sept. 1834. Born in Oxford (later in Guilford), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Resided in Oxford, Chenango Co., by 1810. Moved to Greene, Chenango Co., by 1820. Moved to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, by...

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s house, and go with him to her father’s,111

Amariah Coburn.  


who lived at a distance of  at least [blank] miles off: For this purpose he had recourse to stratagem; he  told her that one of her brothers was waiting at a certain place, wishful to have  her go home with him; he succeeded thus to get her a little distance from the house  when, seeing that her brother was not in waiting for her, She refused to go any  further with him; upon which he got hold of her by the arm to force her along;  but her sister

1804–15 Sept. 1834. Born in Oxford (later in Guilford), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Resided in Oxford, Chenango Co., by 1810. Moved to Greene, Chenango Co., by 1820. Moved to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, by...

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, was soon with them; and the two women were too many for him  and he was forced to sneak off without his errand, after all his labor and in genuity. Nothing daunted however he went to her Father, represented to him  something or other, which induced the Old Gentleman to give him a power of  Attorney, which, as soon as our meeting was over, on the above named sunday  evening, he immediately served upon her and carried her off to her father’s  residence, by open violence, against her will. All his labor was in vain how ever, for the said Emily Coburn

Jan. 1813–after 1900. Milliner, teacher, nurse. Born in Tioga Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Amariah Coburn and Rose Linda Lyon. Moved to Unadilla River area of Otsego Co., New York, 1818; to Greene, Chenango Co., New York, by 1820; to Guilford, Chenango ...

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, in a short time afterwards, was baptized  and confirmed, a member of the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.”112

Emily Coburn’s later account of these events varied from JS’s history on numerous details. According to Coburn, prior to her extended visit with Sally and Newel Knight at Colesville, she had been living at the home of her brother Esick Lyon Coburn at Sanford, about twelve miles from Colesville. An unnamed messenger found Emily among the congregation assembled at the home of Newel Knight and told her that her brother was waiting nearby to talk with her. During Coburn’s conversation with her brother, Shearer joined them and attempted to take her to her uncle, who was apparently waiting to escort her back to Sanford. After her father, who was living at Guilford, Chenango County, New York, signed a power of attorney, Coburn was returned to the home of her brother Esick at Sanford. In autumn 1830 Newel and Sally Knight obtained permission from Coburn’s parents to take her home to Colesville for another visit. Within a week of her arrival there, Coburn was baptized and confirmed. (Austin, Life among the Mormons, 30–31, 40–46, 57.)  


However, early on Monday morning we were on the alert, and  before our enemies were aware we had repaired the dam, and proceeded to  baptize, when the following thirteen persons were baptized under the hands of  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...

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viz: Emma Smith

10 July 1804–30 Apr. 1879. Scribe, editor, boardinghouse operator, clothier. Born at Willingborough Township (later in Harmony), Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Isaac Hale and Elizabeth Lewis. Member of Methodist church at Harmony (later in Oakland...

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, Hezekiah Peck

19 Jan. 1782–25 Aug. 1850. Millwright. Born at Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Son of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, by 1812. Married Martha Long, by 1812. Baptized...

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and wife,  Joseph Knight [Sr.]

3 Nov. 1772–2 Feb. 1847. Farmer, miller. Born at Oakham, Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Son of Benjamin Knight and Sarah Crouch. Lived at Marlboro, Windham Co., Vermont, by 1780. Married first Polly Peck, 1795, in Windham Co. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge...

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and wife

16 Apr. 1774–7 Aug. 1831. Born in Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Daughter of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Married Joseph Knight Sr., 1795, in Windham Co. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ...

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—William Stringham and wife—Joseph Knight Jr

21 June 1808–4 Nov. 1866. Miller, carder, millwright. Born at Halifax, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, 1808. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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 Aarron [Aaron] Culver and wife—Levi Hale [Hall]—Polly Knight

7 Mar. 1811–28 Apr. 1844. Born in Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York. Daughter of Joseph Knight and Polly Peck. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New York, 1811. Baptized into LDS church by Oliver Cowdery, 28 June 1830, in...

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and Julia String ham.—113

The women mentioned are, respectively, Martha Long Peck, Polly Peck Knight, Esther Knight Stringham, and Esther Peck Culver. These baptisms were performed on 28 June 1830 in a stream that flowed from Pickerel Pond, on the farm of Joseph Knight Sr., to the Susquehanna River. Anna Knight DeMille may also have been baptized at this time. (Berrett, Sacred Places, 2:124–125; Porter, “Colesville Branch and the Coming Forth of the Book of Mormon,” 372–373.)  


Before the baptism was entirely finished, the mob began  again to collect, and shortly after we had retired, they amounted to about  fifty men. They surrounded the house of Mr Knight [Joseph Knight Sr.]

3 Nov. 1772–2 Feb. 1847. Farmer, miller. Born at Oakham, Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Son of Benjamin Knight and Sarah Crouch. Lived at Marlboro, Windham Co., Vermont, by 1780. Married first Polly Peck, 1795, in Windham Co. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge...

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(where we had  retired to) raging with anger and apparently wishful to commit vio lence upon us. Some asked us questions, others threatened us, so that  we thought it wisdom to leave and go to the house of Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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.
There also they followed us, and it was only by the exercise of great  prudence on our part, and reliance on our heavenly Father that they were kept [p. 43]
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In addition to working on an initial draft of JS’s history in summer 1839, 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 ...

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devoted some of his time to inscribing the history compiled to that point into a large manuscript book. He began this new draft of the history in the back of the volume in which the 1834–1836 history had been inscribed, turning it over so the back cover became the front cover. Serving as principal sources for this version of the history were the manuscript that JS, Sidney Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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, and George W. Robinson

14 May 1814–10 Feb. 1878. Clerk, postmaster, merchant, clothier, banker. Born at Pawlet, Rutland Co., Vermont. Baptized into LDS church and moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1836. Clerk and recorder for Kirtland high council, beginning Jan. 1836. Married...

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had created in 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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in 1838, and Draft 1. Textual evidence that the nonextant 1838 material was used when composing Draft 2 is found in the second paragraph of the latter, which situates the composition in “the eighth year since the [1830] organization of said Church,” and a later passage that gives the date of composition as “the Second day of May, One thousand Eight hundred and thirty eight.”1

JS History, vol. A-1, 1, 8.  


Starting at 15 May 1829, the remainder of the text in Mulholland’s handwriting is a copy of Draft 1. Although the first seven pages of Draft 1 match Draft 2 quite closely, the two versions are markedly less similar after that point. This contrast may indicate that an intermediate draft of the history was made beginning at about page 7 of Draft 1 and that Mulholland copied the text from this intermediate draft, not directly from Draft 1.
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 ...

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inscribed pages 1–59 in the large history volume. After his death in November 1839, Robert B. Thompson

1 Oct. 1811–27 Aug. 1841. Clerk, editor. Born in Great Driffield, Yorkshire, England. Member of Methodist church. Immigrated to Upper Canada, 1834. Baptized into LDS church by Parley P. Pratt, May 1836, in Upper Canada. Ordained an elder by John Taylor, 22...

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served as scribe for the history. Little is known about the circumstances surrounding Thompson’s inscription, totaling only sixteen pages, in the large history volume. The transcript of Draft 2 presented herein ends on page 61 of the manuscript volume, after the first two pages of Thompson’s inscription, to correspond with the end of Draft 3; the other fourteen pages in his hand give a biographical sketch of Sidney Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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, including a brief narrative of his conversion to Mormonism. Because the majority of the pages in Thompson’s hand deal with Rigdon’s life before joining the church, Rigdon was likely consulted for this portion of the narrative.
The opening statement of the draft in the large manuscript volume refers to defamation and persecution to which the Latter-day Saints and JS in particular had been subjected, and it characterizes such maltreatment as one motivation for telling the story of the church and its founder: “Owing to the many reports which have been put in circulation by evil disposed and designing men,” JS proclaimed, the history was designed to “disabuse the publick mind, and put all enquirers after truth into possession of the facts” and set the record straight “in relation both to myself and the Church.” This introduction was written not long after JS had fled 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, for 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, under threat of several lawsuits; thus, when he began the history in summer 1838 he was especially motivated to justify himself and the church in light of what he considered a long history of persecution. Such an introduction may also have been written as a more general response to the accumulated negative reports transmitted orally and in the press beginning in JS’s youth and continuing throughout the 1830s.2

Although the history was begun in 1838, it is possible that the preamble in the first paragraph was added in 1839 when James Mulholland wrote Draft 2. If so, the concern with negative publicity may also have been a reaction to the widespread news of the Mormon conflict in Missouri in fall 1838 andJS’s imprisonment, or to the growing number of publications critical of JS and the church since 1838. See, for example, Origen Bacheler, Mormonism Exposed, Internally and Externally (New York, 1838), and La Roy Sunderland’s eight-part series published in the Methodist Zion’s Watchman from 13 January to 3 March 1838 and republished in pamphlet form as Mormonism Exposed and Refuted (New York: Piercy & Reid, 1838).  


After briefly narrating JS’s birth and early years, Draft 2 proceeds immediately to the circumstances that culminated in his first vision of Deity in the spring of 1820, followed closely by the visitations of an angel in 1823 and JS’s commission to retrieve a sacred record buried nearby. JS’s religious mission is the primary focus; his personal affairs, like his marriage to Emma Smith

10 July 1804–30 Apr. 1879. Scribe, editor, boardinghouse operator, clothier. Born at Willingborough Township (later in Harmony), Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Isaac Hale and Elizabeth Lewis. Member of Methodist church at Harmony (later in Oakland...

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, whom he met while employed in digging for a rumored silver mine, are discussed only briefly and in the context of that mission.
Following JS’s recitation of his retrieval of the ancient record, the beginnings of his translation thereof, and the loss of the translation manuscript, 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 ...

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began including the full texts of JS’s revelations, which became a major element of the account. The revelations were integrated into the history starting with July 1828, and they generally appear in chronological order. Mulholland copied the revelations into the history from the 1835 edition of the Doctrine and Covenants, rather than from earlier versions. Many of JS’s early revelations underwent significant updating and expansion in order to suit rapidly changing circumstances after the organization of the Church of Christ in 1830, so the inclusion of the 1835 version of revelations into a narrative covering events before 1835 introduced numerous anachronisms. Significant instances of anachronism are identified in the annotation of the text herein.
Additionally, the narrative itself, composed beginning in 1838, necessarily reflects the perspective of JS and his collaborators at the time of its production, thus inadvertently introducing terminology and concepts that were not operative a decade earlier in the period the narrative describes. Examples include using later priesthood nomenclature such as “Aaronic” and “Melchizedek” and calling the church JS established “the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,” a name not designated until 1838. Such usage makes it difficult to trace the details of the unfolding of church governance and doctrine in the faith’s dynamic early years. Readers wishing to more fully understand these issues may consult the revelation texts and other documents found in the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers.
While much of the narrative is anchored by documents, particularly published revelations, JS and his associates were dependent upon unrecorded memories for the balance of the historical account found in Draft 2. JS used collective memory and oral recollections of fellow participants, such as Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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, to reconstruct the events of early church history. Such reminiscences formed the basis for not only factual details in the history but likely for quotations as well, such as long portions of the report of the 1830 trial proceedings in South Bainbridge and Colesville

Area settled, beginning 1785. Formed from Windsor Township, Apr. 1821. Population in 1830 about 2,400. Villages within township included Harpursville, Nineveh, and Colesville. Susquehanna River ran through eastern portion of township. JS worked for Joseph...

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, New York. JS evidently had to rely on his own memory and that of others to provide some extensive quotations, such as the words of the angel Moroni during his first appearance to JS and the remarks scholars in New York City

Dutch founded New Netherland colony, 1625. Incorporated under British control and renamed New York, 1664. Harbor contributed to economic and population growth of city; became largest city in American colonies. British troops defeated Continental Army under...

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made to Martin Harris

18 May 1783–10 July 1875. Farmer. Born at Easton, Albany Co., New York. Son of Nathan Harris and Rhoda Lapham. Moved with parents to area of Swift’s landing (later in Palmyra), Ontario Co., New York, 1793. Married first his first cousin Lucy Harris, 27 Mar...

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when he showed them characters copied from the gold plates. Lists of persons baptized may have come from records no longer extant or possibly from eyewitnesses consulted for the production of the history.
The manuscript itself was a dynamic text, emended at several times by various scribes. Revisions made in the hand of 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 ...

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at the time of inscription or shortly after are included in the transcript herein. Later changes in the hand of 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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, made beginning in December 1842, are not incorporated into the transcript, although substantial changes are described in annotation. Thus, the transcript of Draft 2 presents the history in an early stage, before changes were made by Richards and others, and it approximates the state of the history when Howard Coray

6 May 1817–16 Jan. 1908. Bookkeeper, clerk, teacher, farmer. Born in Dansville, Steuben Co., New York. Son of Silas Coray and Mary Stephens. Moved to Providence, Luzerne Co., Pennsylvania, ca. 1827; to Williams, Northampton Co., Pennsylvania, by 1830; and...

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used it for a new history draft in about 1841.
For more information about the relationship between this draft and Drafts 1 and 3, see Introduction to Early Drafts of History, 1838–1856.

Facts