Journal, 1832–1834

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28 November 1832 • Wednesday

November 28th this day  I have [spent?] in reading and wr iting this Evening my mind  is calm and serene for which  I thank the Lord

29 November 1832 • Thursday

November 29th this day  road from 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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to  Chardon

Located eight miles south of Lake Erie and immediately east of Kirtland Township. Settled by 1812. Included village of Chardon. Population of township in 1820 about 430; in 1830 about 880; and in 1840 about 1,100. Two of JS’s sisters resided in township. ...

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to see my Sister  Sopronia [Sophronia Smith Stoddard]

16 May 1803–22 July 1876. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Daughter of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804; to Sharon, Windsor Co., by Aug. 1804; to Tunbridge, by Mar. 1808; to Royalton, by Mar. 1810; to Lebanon...

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and also came  to see my Sister Catheri [Katharine Smith Salisbury]

28 July 1813–2 Feb. 1900. Seamstress, weaver. Born at Lebanon, Grafton Co., New Hampshire. Daughter of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Norwich, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1813; to Palmyra, Ontario Co., New York, 1816–Jan. 1817; and to Manchester, Ontario...

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Katharine and her husband, Wilkins Jenkins Salisbury, had apparently settled in the Chardon area, near Calvin and Sophronia Smith Stoddard.  


TEXT: Faded word rendered as “and”.  

found them all [well?]
this Evening Brother Fr ederic [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...

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Prophcyed tha[t]  next spring I should  go to the city of Pitts Burg

Also spelled Pittsbourg, Pittsbourgh, and Pittsburg. Major industrial port city in southwestern Pennsylvania. Near location where Monongahela and Allegheny rivers converge to form Ohio River. French established Fort DuQuesne, 1754. British captured fort, ...

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to establish a Bis hopwrick

Initially referred to a bishop’s ecclesiastical jurisdiction, but eventually described the ecclesiastical body comprising the bishop and his assistants, or counselors. John Corrill and Isaac Morley were called as assistants to Bishop Edward Partridge in 1831...

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and within  one year I should go to  the city of New York

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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the Lord spare me the life  of thy servent Amen 4

It is unclear whether Williams had accompanied JS or was in Chardon independently. Williams earlier owned property in Chardon and may have had medical patients or other connections there.a Williams’s prophecy may have been motivated by recent events. A month earlier, JS visited New York City, and Sidney Rigdon had recently organized a branch in Pittsburgh, where he had formerly served as the pastor of a congregation of Regular Baptists.b In 1845, Rigdon claimed that while on this mission to Pittsburgh he received a revelation that it would become a gathering center, which would require a bishopric there.c
Comprehensive Works Cited


aCuyahoga Co., OH, Deeds and Mortgages, 1815–1866, vol. G-7, pp. 443–444, 23 Oct. 1828, microfilm 1,994,221, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL.

bJS, New York City, NY, to Emma Smith, Kirtland, OH, 13 Oct. 1832, CCLA; Van Wagoner, Sidney Rigdon, 26–29, 96.

cSidney Rigdon, “History of Facts,” Messenger and Advocate of the Church of Christ, 15 June 1845, 235–237; see also “Letters from David and John C. Whitmer,” Saints’ Herald, 5 Feb. 1887, 90.


U.S. and Canada Record Collection. FHL.

Smith, Joseph. Letter, New York City, NY, to Emma Smith, Kirtland, OH, Materials, 13 Oct. 1832. CCLA.

Van Wagoner, Richard S. Sidney Rigdon: A Portrait of Religious Excess. Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 1994.

Messenger and Advocate of the Church of Christ. Pittsburgh. Apr. 1845–Sept. 1846.

Saints’ Herald. Independence, MO. 1860–.

[p. 2]
JS, “Joseph Smith Jrs Book for Record,” Journal, Nov. 1832–Dec. 1834; handwriting 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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, JS, 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...

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, 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....

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, 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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, Freeman Nickerson

2/12 Apr. 1806–16/14 Sept. 1862. Merchant, farmer. Born at Cavendish, Windsor Co., Vermont. Son of Freeman Nickerson and Huldah Chapman. Moved to Dayton, Cattaraugus Co., New York, mid 1820s. Moved to Mount Pleasant, Brantford Township, Wentworth Co. (later...

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, and six unidentified scribes; 105 pages; JS Collection, CHL. Includes redactions and archival marking.
Pocket-size memorandum book, 5⅞ x 3¾ x ¼ inches (15 x 10 x 1 cm). The text block consists of fifty-four leaves measuring 5⅞ x 3⅝ inches (15 x 9 cm). There are four gatherings of six sheets each of ledger paper. Each sheet is folded so that each gathering has twelve leaves (twenty-four pages). These pages are ruled with sixteen blue horizontal lines—now almost entirely faded—as well as with red vertical lines for recording financial information. The endpapers consist of pastedowns on the inside covers and two free flyleaves in both the front and back. The gatherings are sewn all along on sawn-in cords. The front and back covers of the journal are pasteboard. The ledger has a tight-back case binding with a black calfskin quarter-leather binding. The outside covers are adorned in schrottel marbled paper, with gray body and veins of black and blue. The volume originally had three leather loops—two in the back and one in the front—that were tipped in between the inside covers and the pastedowns. The former presence of the front cover loop, no longer extant, is evident from creasing and staining on the pastedown, which is now detached. The leather loops and their spacing allowed for the book to be fastened by inserting a pencil between all three loops. The vibrant blue veins and the grain of the marbling, now greatly diminished by water damage, are also visible under the now loose front pastedown.
JS wrote “Joseph Smith 1832.<3–4>” on the front cover in black ink that later turned brown. On the front pastedown, “Joseph Smith” is written sideways, running upward near the bottom of the outer edge. Also, “Joseph” is written sideways, running downward near the top of the inside of the same page. The handwriting of these inscriptions has not been identified. The journal entries begin on the recto of the second leaf (the first flyleaf) and end on the recto of the back pastedown, making 105 numbered pages. Regular journal entries, inscribed in various shades of brown (formerly black) ink, continue through page 93. Pages 94 to 102 are blank except for page 98, which has JS’s name in graphite pencil at the top in JS’s handwriting. Pages 103–105 record subscriptions, which were evidently solicited during JS’s 26 February–28 March 1834 New York

Located in northeast region of U.S. Area settled by Dutch traders, 1620s; later governed by Britain, 1664–1776. Admitted to U.S. as state, 1788. Population in 1810 about 1,000,000; in 1820 about 1,400,000; in 1830 about 1,900,000; and in 1840 about 2,400,...

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mission, as well as a note apparently inscribed on 20 April 1834 in preparation for the conference held 20–21 April 1834 at Norton

Area first settled, 1814. Formed from Wolf Creek Township, 1818. Reported location of “great Mormon excitement,” 1832–1838. Population in 1830 about 650. Primarily populated by immigrants from New England states. Increased German Pennsylvanian immigration...

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, Ohio. The book has suffered from water and mud damage, evidenced in part by some extremely faded ink on page 2. Glue from tipping in a damaged leaf has also obscured several characters in the gutter of page 2.
The journal’s textual redactions and use marks, in graphite pencil, were made by later scribes who used the journal to produce the multivolume manuscript history of the church. This occurred 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...

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, indicating the journal remained in JS’s possession. The journal is listed in Nauvoo and early Utah inventories of church records, indicating continuous custody.1

Historian’s Office, “Schedule of Church Records”; Historian’s Office, “Historian’s Office Catalogue,” [7], Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL; Johnson, Register of the Joseph Smith Collection, 7.
Comprehensive Works Cited



Historian’s Office. Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904. CHL.

Johnson, Jeffery O. Register of the Joseph Smith Collection in the Church Archives, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Salt Lake City: Historical Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1973.