27470

Journal, 1839


Editorial Note
Beginning in late June, malaria borne by the mosquitoes that infested the area’s swamplands spread among the Latter-day Saints. 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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later recounted that “a majority of the people were prostrated with malignant fevers, agues, etc.” JS spent most of this week and much of the following month ministering to the sick. Having been recently driven from 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...

More Info
, many still lived in crowded, ramshackle accommodations. Zina Huntington, whose mother died of the sickness 8 July, later recounted that JS “saw to our being taken care of, as well as circumstances would permit—for there were hundreds, lying in tents and wagons, who needed care as much as we. Once Joseph came himself and made us tea with his own hands, and comforted the sick and dying.” Among the sick were JS’s father

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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and apparently his son Joseph Smith III

6 Nov. 1832–10 Dec. 1914. Clerk, hotelier, farmer, justice of the peace, editor, minister. Born at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Son of JS and Emma Hale. Moved to Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri, 1838; to Quincy, Adams Co., Illinois, 1839; and to Commerce ...

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. 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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later recounted that JS “had taken the sick into his house and dooryard until his house was like an hospital, and he had attended upon them until he was taken sick himself and confined to his bed several days.”

8–20 July 1839 • Monday–Saturday

Monday Tuesday & Wednesday selecting Hymns, with the 12

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 ...

View Glossary
About this time sickiness began to manifest itself much amongst the brethren as well as among the inhabitants of the place, so that this week and next was generally spent in visiting the sick, and ministering

JS’s revelations instructed elders to lay their hands on those who were ill and offer a blessing of healing. Beginning in the mid-1830s, blessings usually included a preliminary anointing with oil. As in the New Testament, having faith was a necessary component...

View Glossary
unto them, some had faith enough and were healed, others had not,

21 July 1839 • Sunday

Sunday the 21rst no meeting on account of much rain, and much sickness, however, many of the sick were on this day, raised up by the power of God, through the instrumentality of the Elders of Israel ministering

JS’s revelations instructed elders to lay their hands on those who were ill and offer a blessing of healing. Beginning in the mid-1830s, blessings usually included a preliminary anointing with oil. As in the New Testament, having faith was a necessary component...

View Glossary
to them

1 Jul. 1839

JS involved in faith healings of sick Saints, Commerce, Illinois, and Montrose, Iowa, areas.

in the name of Jesus Christ

22–23 July 1839 • Monday–Tuesday

Monday & Tuesday also the sick were ministered

JS’s revelations instructed elders to lay their hands on those who were ill and offer a blessing of healing. Beginning in the mid-1830s, blessings usually included a preliminary anointing with oil. As in the New Testament, having faith was a necessary component...

View Glossary
unto

1 Jul. 1839

JS involved in faith healings of sick Saints, Commerce, Illinois, and Montrose, Iowa, areas.

, with great success but many still remain sick & new cases occurring daily.

28 July–3 August 1839 • Sunday–Saturday

Sunday 28 meeting held as usual. Brother 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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, preached, on the gathering of Israel

As directed by early revelations, church members “gathered” in communities. A revelation dated September 1830, for instance, instructed elders “to bring to pass the gathering of mine elect” who would “be gathered in unto one place, upon the face of this land...

View Glossary
, and in the afternoon Orson Pratt

19 Sept. 1811–3 Oct. 1881. Farmer, writer, teacher, merchant, surveyor, editor, publisher. Born at Hartford, Washington Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Moved to New Lebanon, Columbia Co., New York, 1814; to Canaan, Columbia Co., fall...

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addressed the church, on the necessity of keeping the commandments of God. [p. 9]

Editorial Note
Beginning in late June, malaria borne by the mosquitoes that infested the area’s swamplands spread among the Latter-day Saints. 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
later recounted that “a majority of the people were prostrated with malignant fevers, agues, etc.”39

Pratt, Autobiography, 324.  


JS spent most of this week and much of the following month ministering to the sick. Having been recently driven from 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...

More Info
, many still lived in crowded, ramshackle accommodations. Zina Huntington, whose mother died of the sickness 8 July, later recounted that JS “saw to our being taken care of, as well as circumstances would permit—for there were hundreds, lying in tents and wagons, who needed care as much as we. Once Joseph came himself and made us tea with his own hands, and comforted the sick and dying.”40

Tullidge, Women of Mormondom, 213–214; see also Huntington, Diary, 1.  


Among the sick were JS’s father

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...

View Full Bio
and apparently his son Joseph Smith III

6 Nov. 1832–10 Dec. 1914. Clerk, hotelier, farmer, justice of the peace, editor, minister. Born at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Son of JS and Emma Hale. Moved to Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri, 1838; to Quincy, Adams Co., Illinois, 1839; and to Commerce ...

View Full Bio
.41

Woodruff, Journal, 12 and 19 July 1839; “The Memoirs of President Joseph Smith,” Saints’ Herald, 20 Nov. 1934, 1479.  


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...

View Full Bio
later recounted that JS “had taken the sick into his house and dooryard until his house was like an hospital, and he had attended upon them until he was taken sick himself and confined to his bed several days.”42

Historian’s Office, “History of Brigham Young,” 34; see also Mace, Autobiography, 31.  



8–20 July 1839 • Monday–Saturday

Monday Tuesday & Wednesday  selecting Hymns, with the 12

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 ...

View Glossary
43

Brigham Young and others of the Twelve later took this selection of hymns on their mission to the British Isles, and it provided a basis for the new collection of hymns they published there in 1840. (A Collection of Sacred Hymns, for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in Europe, ed. Brigham Young, Parley P. Pratt, and John Taylor [Manchester, England: W. R. Thomas, 1840]; Crawley, Descriptive Bibliography, 121–124; Hicks, Mormonism and Music, chap. 2.)  


About this time sickiness began  to manifest itself much amongst the  brethren as well as among the inhab itants of the place, so that this week  and next was generally spent in  visiting the sick, and ministering

JS’s revelations instructed elders to lay their hands on those who were ill and offer a blessing of healing. Beginning in the mid-1830s, blessings usually included a preliminary anointing with oil. As in the New Testament, having faith was a necessary component...

View Glossary
 unto them, some had faith enough  and were healed, others had not,

21 July 1839 • Sunday

Sunday the 21rst no meeting on  account of much rain, and much  sickness, however, many of the sick  were <on> this day, raised up by the power  of God, through the instrumentality  of the Elders of Israel ministering

JS’s revelations instructed elders to lay their hands on those who were ill and offer a blessing of healing. Beginning in the mid-1830s, blessings usually included a preliminary anointing with oil. As in the New Testament, having faith was a necessary component...

View Glossary
to  them

1 Jul. 1839

JS involved in faith healings of sick Saints, Commerce, Illinois, and Montrose, Iowa, areas.

in the name of Jesus Christ44

JS called on a number of men to bless the sick—among them his brother Don Carlos Smith, his cousin George A. Smith, and apostles John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff. (Woodruff, Journal, 12 July 1839; Benjamin F. Johnson to George F. Gibbs, Salt Lake City, UT, 1903, 8–9, Benjamin Franklin Johnson, Papers, CHL.)  


22–23 July 1839 • Monday–Tuesday

Monday & Tuesday <also> the sick were  ministered

JS’s revelations instructed elders to lay their hands on those who were ill and offer a blessing of healing. Beginning in the mid-1830s, blessings usually included a preliminary anointing with oil. As in the New Testament, having faith was a necessary component...

View Glossary
unto

1 Jul. 1839

JS involved in faith healings of sick Saints, Commerce, Illinois, and Montrose, Iowa, areas.

, with great success  but many still remain sick & new  cases occurring daily.45

Brigham Young’s later history stated that on 22 July, “Joseph arose from his bed of sickness and the power of God rested upon him he commenced in his own house and dooryard, commanding the sick in the name of Jesus Christ to arise and be made whole, and they were healed according to his word; he then continued to travel from house to house, and from tent to tent upon the bank of the river, healing the sick as he went.” The history further reported that JS crossed the Mississippi and healed a number of Iowa Saints, including Young himself. (Historian’s Office, “History of Brigham Young,” 34–35.)  


28 July–3 August 1839 • Sunday–Saturday

Sunday 28 meeting held as usual.  B[rother] P[arley] 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
, preached,46

Pratt, one of the last two to escape from prison in Missouri, had just recently rejoined the Latter-day Saints in Commerce. (Parley P. Pratt, Commerce, IL, to Aaron Frost, Bethel, ME, 21 July 1839, Parley P. Pratt, Letters, 1838–1839, CHL; Pratt, Autobiography, chaps. 22–23, 32–33, 36.)  


on the  gathering of Israel

As directed by early revelations, church members “gathered” in communities. A revelation dated September 1830, for instance, instructed elders “to bring to pass the gathering of mine elect” who would “be gathered in unto one place, upon the face of this land...

View Glossary
, and in the  evening afternoon Orson Pratt

19 Sept. 1811–3 Oct. 1881. Farmer, writer, teacher, merchant, surveyor, editor, publisher. Born at Hartford, Washington Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Moved to New Lebanon, Columbia Co., New York, 1814; to Canaan, Columbia Co., fall...

View Full Bio
 addressed the church, on the necessity  of keeping the commandments of God. [p. 9]
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JS, “Minute Book. 1839 J. Smiths Journal Escape from Prison,” Journal, Apr.–Oct. 1839; handwriting 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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; fifteen pages; JS Collection, CHL. Includes redactions and archival marking.
Makeshift notebook, 10 x 4 inches (25 x 10 cm). The journal was fashioned by folding eight 10 x 8 inch (25 x 20 cm) sheets of paper in half lengthwise to form the notebook of sixteen leaves (thirty-two pages). Inscriptions that reach the end of a line and cross the gutter onto another leaf indicate that the folded pages were not sewn during their original use. Wear on the first and last pages indicates that the pages were not bound for some time. The text of the journal is inscribed on the first fifteen pages in black ink that later turned brown. The remaining seventeen pages are blank. At some point a cover for the notebook was made with a 10 x 16 inch (25 x 41 cm) sheet of blue-colored cover stock folded in half twice to create a 10 x 4 inch cover, which was then pamphlet bound with hand stitching. On the front cover, 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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wrote “Minute Book. | 1839 | J. Smiths Journal | Escape from Prison” with seven decorative underlines in black ink. On the back cover, the lines “Joseph Smith’s Journal | Escape from Prison 1839” are written sideways near the top in black ink. This notation, in unidentified handwriting, appears to be early archival marking. Textual redactions and use marks made in graphite pencil were added by later scribes who used the journal to produce the multivolume manuscript history of the church.
This thin journal was probably among the miscellaneous documents collectively listed in Nauvoo and early Utah inventories of church records.1

Historian’s Office, “Schedule of Church Records”; “Inventory,” [2]; “Historian’s Office Inventory,” [3], Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL.  


The use of the journal in connection with the manuscript history, early inventories, and recent archival records indicate that this journal—like the other JS journals—has remained in continuous church custody.2

See Johnson, Register of the Joseph Smith Collection, 7.  


Facts