26013

Journal, December 1841–December 1842

13 March 1842 • Sunday

Sunday 13 [2 lines blank]

14 March 1842 • Monday

Monday 14 Transacted a great variety of business at the office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info

15 March 1842 • Tuesday

Tuesday 15 Officiated as grand Chaplin. at the Installation 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...

More Info
Lodge. of Free Masons, At the Grove

Before partial completion of Nauvoo temple, all large meetings were held outdoors in groves located near east and west sides of temple site. Had portable stands for speakers. JS referred to area as “temple stand” due to its location on brow of hill.

More Info
. near the 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...

More Info
. Grand Master Abraham Jonas

12 Sept. 1801–8 June 1864. Auctioneer, merchant, newspaper publisher, lawyer. Born in Exeter, Devonshire, England. Son of Benjamin Jonas and Annie Ezekial. Jewish. Immigrated to U.S.; settled in Cincinnati, ca. 1819. Married first Lucy Orah Seixas, before...

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being present.— A Large number of people assembled on the occasion, the day was exceedingly fine, all things were done in order, and universal satisfaction manifested.136

Wilford Woodruff noted that a procession celebrating the lodge’s organization formed at JS’s store and marched to the grove in front of the temple. Woodruff estimated three thousand people were present. The lodge minutes add that “at the Grove, after the ceremonies of installation the Grand Master delivered a highly creditable and finished address on the subject of Ancient York Masonry, after which the lodges returned to the lodge room in Masonic order.” By the end of 1842, the Nauvoo lodge was the largest Masonic lodge in Illinois. (Woodruff, Journal, 15 Mar. 1842; List of Members, Nauvoo Masonic Lodge Minute Book, 15 Mar. 1842; Hogan, Vital Statistics of Nauvoo Lodge, 4.)  


Admitted a member of the Lodge in the evening.137

At this evening meeting JS and Sidney Rigdon were initiated as Entered Apprentice Masons. (Nauvoo Masonic Lodge Minute Book, 15 Mar. 1842.)  


16 March 1842 • Wednesday

Wedy. 16 Continued with the Lodge.138

In the morning JS and Sidney Rigdon were received as Fellow Craft Masons and, later that day, as Master Masons. (Nauvoo Masonic Lodge Minute Book, 16 Mar. 1842.)  


17 March 1842 • Thursday

Thursday 17 Assisted in organizing “The Female Relief Society of 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...

More Info
139

A few weeks earlier, a group of women in Nauvoo drafted a constitution for a proposed charitable “Sewing Society.” When they showed the document to JS, he told them he had “something better” for them and called this meeting. Twenty women, JS, Willard Richards, and John Taylor attended. (Relief Society Record, 29; Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842.)  


in the “Lodge Room”140

The general business office or “Lodge Room” was located on the second floor of JS’s store.  


Sister 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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President. & Sisters Elizabeth Ann Smith Whitney

26 Dec. 1800–15 Feb. 1882. Born at Derby, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Daughter of Gibson Smith and Polly Bradley. Moved to Ohio, 1819. Married Newel K. Whitney, 20 Oct. 1822, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Shortly after, joined reformed Baptist (later Disciples...

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& Sarah M. Kingsley Cleveland councillors, I gave much instruction. read in the New Testament & Book of Doctrine & Covenants. concerning the Elect Lady.141

A revelation dated July 1830 refers to Emma Smith as an “elect lady.” (Revelation, July 1830–C, in Doctrine and Covenants 48:1, 1835 ed. [D&C 25:3]; see also 2 John 1:1.)  


& Shewed that Elect meant to be Elected to a certain work &c, & that the revelation was then fulfilled by Sister Emma

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...

View Full Bio
’s Election to the Presidency of the Society, she having previously been ordained142

JS explained that Emma was “ordain’d at the time, the Revelation was given [July 1830], to expound the scriptures to all; and to teach the female part of community.” (Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842.)  


to expound the Scriptures. her councillors143

Sarah M. Kingsley Cleveland and Elizabeth Ann Smith Whitney. (Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842.)  


were ordaind by Elder John Taylor

1 Nov. 1808–25 July 1887. Preacher, editor, publisher, politician. Born at Milnthorpe, Westmoreland Co., England. Son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor, members of Church of England. Around age sixteen, joined Methodists and was local preacher. Migrated from...

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. & Emma

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...

View Full Bio
was Blessed by the same.—

18 March 1842 • Friday

Friday 18 [2 lines blank]

19 March 1842 • Saturday

Saturday 19 [2 lines blank]

20 March 1842 • Sunday

Sunday 20 Baptized 60 or 70 in the River

Principal U.S. river running southward from Itasca Lake, Minnesota, to Gulf of Mexico. Covered 3,160-mile course, 1839 (now about 2,350 miles). Drains about 1,100,000 square miles. Steamboat travel on Mississippi very important in 1830s and 1840s for shipping...

More Info
. confirmed them in the grove

Before partial completion of Nauvoo temple, all large meetings were held outdoors in groves located near east and west sides of temple site. Had portable stands for speakers. JS referred to area as “temple stand” due to its location on brow of hill.

More Info
& baptized in the Font in the P.M.144

Prior to these baptisms, JS spoke to a large audience in the grove on baptism, death, and the Resurrection. Following the baptisms in the river, JS returned to the grove, where those who had been baptized were confirmed. The same afternoon, members of the Quorum of the Twelve baptized church members for their deceased relatives in the font in the Nauvoo temple. (Wilford Woodruff, “Sabbath Scene in Nauvoo,” Times and Seasons, 15 Apr. 1842, 3:751–753; Woodruff, Journal, 20 Mar. 1842.)  


21 March 1842 • Monday

Monday 21 Commenced a Sittlement with Wm Marks

15 Nov. 1792–22 May 1872. Farmer, printer, publisher, postmaster. Born at Rutland, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of Cornell (Cornwall) Marks and Sarah Goodrich. Married first Rosannah R. Robinson, 2 May 1813. Lived at Portage, Allegany Co., New York, where he...

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145

This could be the settlement between JS and Marks that was closed two weeks later. (JS, Journal, 4 Apr. 1842.)  


22 March 1842 • Tuesday

Tuesday 22 At the General Business office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info
(Sarah Ann. Whhitney’s Whitney’s

22 Mar. 1825–4 Sept. 1873. Born in Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Daughter of Newel K. Whitney and Elizabeth Ann Smith. Moved to Hancock Co., Illinois, by 1840. Member of Nauvoo Fourth Ward, 1842. Married or sealed to JS "for time and eternity," 27 July 1842...

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Birth day (17. years of age) celebration, at the Lodge Room. co. waited upon by the Recr.

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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146

The recorder, Willard Richards.  


) home in the eve.

23 March 1842 • Wednesday

Wednesday 23 At his office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info
in council with 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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, Recr.

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...

View Full Bio
&c.

24 March 1842 • Thursday

Thursday 24 At his office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info
. waited on the members of the Female Relief Society. & entered a complaint againts. Clarissa Marvel for Slander147

At the organizational meeting of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo on 17 March 1842, JS charged the society with “correcting the morals and strengthening the virtues of the female community.” To this end, the organization regularly took roll, voted on the worthiness of its members, and investigated charges of improper behavior. Marvel was here accused of spreading “scandalous falsehoods on the character of Prest Joseph Smith,” concerning his relationship with Agnes Coolbrith Smith (wife of his deceased brother Don Carlos), “without the least provocation.” On 2 April 1842, following the Relief Society’s investigation of the charges, Marvel wrote a statement that she had never “at any time or place, seen or heard any thing improper or unvirtuous in the conduct or conversation” of either JS or Agnes, and that she had never “reported any thing derogatory to the characters of either of them.” The report of the Marvel investigation, presented at the meeting of 14 April 1842, cleared Marvel of charges and stated that her testimony of innocence was satisfactorily received. Mary Ann West, who lived with Agnes in Nauvoo, reported fifty years later that Agnes told her that she (Agnes) had become a plural wife of JS following the death of her husband, Don Carlos. (Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842; 24 Mar. 1842; [31] Mar. 1842; 14 Apr. 1842, 89; Mary Ann West, Testimony, Salt Lake City, Utah Territory, ca. 22 Mar. 1892, pp. 499–500, questions 141–144, pp. 521–522, questions 676–687, 696–699, Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints v. Church of Christ Independence, Missouri, et al. [C.C.W.D. Mo. 1894], typescript, Testimonies and Depositions, CHL.)  


25 March 1842 • Friday

Friday 25 [2 lines blank]

26 March 1842 • Saturday

Saturday 26 [p. 91]

13 March 1842 • Sunday

Sunday 13 [2 lines blank]

14 March 1842 • Monday

Monday 14 Transacted a great variety of business at the office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info

15 March 1842 • Tuesday

Tuesday 15 Officiated as grand Chaplin. at the Installation 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...

More Info
 Lodge. of Free Masons, on At the Grove

Before partial completion of Nauvoo temple, all large meetings were held outdoors in groves located near east and west sides of temple site. Had portable stands for speakers. JS referred to area as “temple stand” due to its location on brow of hill.

More Info
. near the 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...

More Info
. Grand  Master [Abraham] Jonas

12 Sept. 1801–8 June 1864. Auctioneer, merchant, newspaper publisher, lawyer. Born in Exeter, Devonshire, England. Son of Benjamin Jonas and Annie Ezekial. Jewish. Immigrated to U.S.; settled in Cincinnati, ca. 1819. Married first Lucy Orah Seixas, before...

View Full Bio
being present.— A Large number of people  assembled on the occasion, the day was exceedingly fine,  all things were done in order, and universal satisfaction  manifested.136

Wilford Woodruff noted that a procession celebrating the lodge’s organization formed at JS’s store and marched to the grove in front of the temple. Woodruff estimated three thousand people were present. The lodge minutes add that “at the Grove, after the ceremonies of installation the Grand Master delivered a highly creditable and finished address on the subject of Ancient York Masonry, after which the lodges returned to the lodge room in Masonic order.” By the end of 1842, the Nauvoo lodge was the largest Masonic lodge in Illinois. (Woodruff, Journal, 15 Mar. 1842; List of Members, Nauvoo Masonic Lodge Minute Book, 15 Mar. 1842; Hogan, Vital Statistics of Nauvoo Lodge, 4.)  


Admitted a me[m]ber of the Lodge in the evening.137

At this evening meeting JS and Sidney Rigdon were initiated as Entered Apprentice Masons. (Nauvoo Masonic Lodge Minute Book, 15 Mar. 1842.)  


16 March 1842 • Wednesday

Wedy. 16 Continued with the Lodge.138

In the morning JS and Sidney Rigdon were received as Fellow Craft Masons and, later that day, as Master Masons. (Nauvoo Masonic Lodge Minute Book, 16 Mar. 1842.)  


17 March 1842 • Thursday

Thursday 17 Assisted in organizing “The Female Relief Society of  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...

More Info
139

A few weeks earlier, a group of women in Nauvoo drafted a constitution for a proposed charitable “Sewing Society.” When they showed the document to JS, he told them he had “something better” for them and called this meeting. Twenty women, JS, Willard Richards, and John Taylor attended. (Relief Society Record, 29; Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842.)  


in the “Lodge Room”140

The general business office or “Lodge Room” was located on the second floor of JS’s store.  


Sister 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...

View Full Bio
 President. & Sisters <Elizabeth Ann [Smith]> Whitney

26 Dec. 1800–15 Feb. 1882. Born at Derby, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Daughter of Gibson Smith and Polly Bradley. Moved to Ohio, 1819. Married Newel K. Whitney, 20 Oct. 1822, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Shortly after, joined reformed Baptist (later Disciples...

View Full Bio
& <Sarah M. [Kingsley]> Cleveland councillors, <I> gave  much instru[c]tion. read in the New Testament & Book of  Doctrine & Covenants. concer[n]ing the Elect Lady.141

A revelation dated July 1830 refers to Emma Smith as an “elect lady.” (Revelation, July 1830–C, in Doctrine and Covenants 48:1, 1835 ed. [D&C 25:3]; see also 2 John 1:1.)  


& Shewed  that Elect meant to be Elected to a certain work &c, &  that the revelation was then fulfilled by his Sister Emma

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...

View Full Bio
’s  Election to the Presidency of the Society, she having  previously been ordained142

JS explained that Emma was “ordain’d at the time, the Revelation was given [July 1830], to expound the scriptures to all; and to teach the female part of community.” (Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842.)  


to expound the Scriptures.  her councillors143

Sarah M. Kingsley Cleveland and Elizabeth Ann Smith Whitney. (Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842.)  


were ordaind by Elder J<ohn> Taylor

1 Nov. 1808–25 July 1887. Preacher, editor, publisher, politician. Born at Milnthorpe, Westmoreland Co., England. Son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor, members of Church of England. Around age sixteen, joined Methodists and was local preacher. Migrated from...

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. & Emma

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...

View Full Bio
<was>  Blessed by the same.—

18 March 1842 • Friday

Friday 18 [2 lines blank]

19 March 1842 • Saturday

Saturday 19 [2 lines blank]

20 March 1842 • Sunday

Sunday 20 Baptized 60 or 70 in the River

Principal U.S. river running southward from Itasca Lake, Minnesota, to Gulf of Mexico. Covered 3,160-mile course, 1839 (now about 2,350 miles). Drains about 1,100,000 square miles. Steamboat travel on Mississippi very important in 1830s and 1840s for shipping...

More Info
. confirmed them in  the grove

Before partial completion of Nauvoo temple, all large meetings were held outdoors in groves located near east and west sides of temple site. Had portable stands for speakers. JS referred to area as “temple stand” due to its location on brow of hill.

More Info
& baptized in the Font in the P.M.144

Prior to these baptisms, JS spoke to a large audience in the grove on baptism, death, and the Resurrection. Following the baptisms in the river, JS returned to the grove, where those who had been baptized were confirmed. The same afternoon, members of the Quorum of the Twelve baptized church members for their deceased relatives in the font in the Nauvoo temple. (Wilford Woodruff, “Sabbath Scene in Nauvoo,” Times and Seasons, 15 Apr. 1842, 3:751–753; Woodruff, Journal, 20 Mar. 1842.)  


21 March 1842 • Monday

Monday 21 Commenced a Sittlement with Wm Marks

15 Nov. 1792–22 May 1872. Farmer, printer, publisher, postmaster. Born at Rutland, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of Cornell (Cornwall) Marks and Sarah Goodrich. Married first Rosannah R. Robinson, 2 May 1813. Lived at Portage, Allegany Co., New York, where he...

View Full Bio
145

This could be the settlement between JS and Marks that was closed two weeks later. (JS, Journal, 4 Apr. 1842.)  


22 March 1842 • Tuesday

Tuesday 22 At the General Business office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info
(Sarah Ann. Whhitney’s [Whitney’s]

22 Mar. 1825–4 Sept. 1873. Born in Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Daughter of Newel K. Whitney and Elizabeth Ann Smith. Moved to Hancock Co., Illinois, by 1840. Member of Nauvoo Fourth Ward, 1842. Married or sealed to JS "for time and eternity," 27 July 1842...

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Birth day (17. <years of age)>  celebration, at the Lodge Room. co. waited upon by the Recr.

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...

View Full Bio
146

The recorder, Willard Richards.  


) <home in the eve.>

23 March 1842 • Wednesday

Wednesday 23 At his office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info
in council with H[eber] 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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, Recr.

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...

View Full Bio
&c.

24 March 1842 • Thursday

Thursday 24 At his office

Term usually applies to JS’s private office, which was located at various places during JS’s lifetime, including his home and red brick store. While in JS’s red brick store, office served as church headquarters and location where JS kept his sacred writings...

More Info
. waited on the members of the Female Relief  Soci[e]ty. & entered a complaint againts. Clarissa Marvel  for Slander147

At the organizational meeting of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo on 17 March 1842, JS charged the society with “correcting the morals and strengthening the virtues of the female community.” To this end, the organization regularly took roll, voted on the worthiness of its members, and investigated charges of improper behavior. Marvel was here accused of spreading “scandalous falsehoods on the character of Prest Joseph Smith,” concerning his relationship with Agnes Coolbrith Smith (wife of his deceased brother Don Carlos), “without the least provocation.” On 2 April 1842, following the Relief Society’s investigation of the charges, Marvel wrote a statement that she had never “at any time or place, seen or heard any thing improper or unvirtuous in the conduct or conversation” of either JS or Agnes, and that she had never “reported any thing derogatory to the characters of either of them.” The report of the Marvel investigation, presented at the meeting of 14 April 1842, cleared Marvel of charges and stated that her testimony of innocence was satisfactorily received. Mary Ann West, who lived with Agnes in Nauvoo, reported fifty years later that Agnes told her that she (Agnes) had become a plural wife of JS following the death of her husband, Don Carlos. (Relief Society Minute Book, 17 Mar. 1842; 24 Mar. 1842; [31] Mar. 1842; 14 Apr. 1842, 89; Mary Ann West, Testimony, Salt Lake City, Utah Territory, ca. 22 Mar. 1892, pp. 499–500, questions 141–144, pp. 521–522, questions 676–687, 696–699, Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints v. Church of Christ Independence, Missouri, et al. [C.C.W.D. Mo. 1894], typescript, Testimonies and Depositions, CHL.)  


25 March 1842 • Friday

Friday 25 [2 lines blank]

26 March 1842 • Saturday

Saturday 26 [p. 91]
PreviousNext
JS, Journal, Dec. 1841–Dec. 1842; handwriting of William Clayton

17 July 1814–4 Dec. 1879. Bookkeeper, clerk. Born at Charock Moss, Penwortham, Lancashire, England. Son of Thomas Clayton and Ann Critchley. Married Ruth Moon, 9 Oct. 1836, at Penwortham. Baptized into LDS church by Heber C. Kimball, 21 Oct. 1837, in River...

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, 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...

View Full Bio
, Eliza R. Snow

21 Jan. 1804–5 Dec. 1887. Poet, teacher, seamstress, milliner. Born in Becket, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Daughter of Oliver Snow and Rosetta Leonora Pettibone. Moved to Mantua, Trumbull Co., Ohio, ca. 1806. Member of Baptist church. Baptized into LDS ...

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, and Erastus Derby

14 Sept. 1810–3 Dec. 1890. Tailor, carpenter, farmer, joiner. Born in Hawley, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Edward Darby and Ruth Phoebe Hitchcock. Moved to Ohio, by 1834. Married Ruhamah Burnham Knowlton, 10 Aug. 1834, in Carthage, Hamilton Co., Ohio...

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; signatures of William Clayton

17 July 1814–4 Dec. 1879. Bookkeeper, clerk. Born at Charock Moss, Penwortham, Lancashire, England. Son of Thomas Clayton and Ann Critchley. Married Ruth Moon, 9 Oct. 1836, at Penwortham. Baptized into LDS church by Heber C. Kimball, 21 Oct. 1837, in River...

View Full Bio
and 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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; 90 pages; in “The Book of the Law of the Lord,” Record Book, 1841–1845, CHL. Includes shorthand; also includes redactions and use marks.
JS’s journal for December 1841–December 1842 was inscribed in a large, leather-bound blank book made with thick paper. The paper bears a star-shaped watermark in the middle of each leaf and was printed with forty-seven blue lines on each side. The text block was originally formed with thirty gatherings of eight leaves each. The second gathering, however, has only six leaves. This six-leaf gathering was either a binding error or one sheet came loose from the binding before the book was inscribed (the book’s inscription and pagination runs through this gathering without skipping any text or page numbers). The gatherings were sewn all along. Each set of front and back endpapers consisted of a gathering of four leaves of unlined paper, but only two leaves are now extant in the back gathering. The trimmed pages measure 16¼ × 10½ inches (41 × 27 cm). Headbands were sewn onto the text block. The exterior pages of the endpapers are joined to the pasteboards with a strip of pink cloth. Marbled papers featuring a shell pattern with green body and veins of red and yellow are glued to the inside covers of the boards and to the exterior page of each gathering of endpapers. The leaf edges are stained green. The text block is bound in a ledger style to the boards. The spine was constructed with four false raised bands demarcating five panels. The boards and spine are covered in suede leather with additional leather strips over the top and bottom of the book. The suede leather was blind tooled on the outside covers, the raised bands of the spine, and the turned-in edges on the inside cover. The additional leather strips, which also cover the first and fifth panels of the spine, are embossed with dual lines and vegetal designs along the borders and have gold line filling. The spine is further embossed with the number “6” in 20-point type on the fifth panel. The second and fourth panels have black-painted squares of paper glued to them. These feature gold lining and decoration at the top and bottom. The completed volume measures 17 × 11 × 2¼ inches (43 × 28 × 6 cm) and includes 244 free leaves. A penciled inscription at the inside top corner of page [ii]—the verso of the front marbled flyleaf—gives what appears to be an expensive price for this high-quality blank book: “bth | 10.00”.
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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inscribed nine revelations in the book on the first twenty-three pages of lined paper. 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 minor revisions to these revelation texts. Apparently either Richards or Thompson inscribed page numbers on pages 3­–18, beginning at the first page of lined paper, in a stylized script. Richards inscribed page numbers on pages 19–25 as well as on the next several dozen pages—which included journal entries for JS and records of donations in cash and in kind for the 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...

More Info
. At some point page [1], the recto of the last leaf of unlined endpaper in the front of the book, was inscribed with a title: “THE | BOOK | of the | LAW | of the | LORD”. Because these words are hand lettered in various ornate styles, the handwriting cannot be identified. A matching title appears on the spine of the volume: the square label of black paper on the second panel of the spine bears a smaller square label of white paper with a hand-lettered inscription: “LAW | — of the — | LORD.” Willard Richards inscribed pages 26–126 of the book, with help from William Clayton

17 July 1814–4 Dec. 1879. Bookkeeper, clerk. Born at Charock Moss, Penwortham, Lancashire, England. Son of Thomas Clayton and Ann Critchley. Married Ruth Moon, 9 Oct. 1836, at Penwortham. Baptized into LDS church by Heber C. Kimball, 21 Oct. 1837, in River...

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on pages 27–28 and 72–87. Clayton inscribed the rest of the volume, pages 127–477, with help from Erastus Derby

14 Sept. 1810–3 Dec. 1890. Tailor, carpenter, farmer, joiner. Born in Hawley, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Edward Darby and Ruth Phoebe Hitchcock. Moved to Ohio, by 1834. Married Ruhamah Burnham Knowlton, 10 Aug. 1834, in Carthage, Hamilton Co., Ohio...

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on pages 168–171 and from Eliza R. Snow

21 Jan. 1804–5 Dec. 1887. Poet, teacher, seamstress, milliner. Born in Becket, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Daughter of Oliver Snow and Rosetta Leonora Pettibone. Moved to Mantua, Trumbull Co., Ohio, ca. 1806. Member of Baptist church. Baptized into LDS ...

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on pages 189–190 and 192–201. These clerks and scribes generally paginated the book and inscribed dateline page headers along the way as they inscribed its texts.1

The page numbers on pages 19–71, 86–90, and 122–125 are in the handwriting of Willard Richards; on pages 72–85, 91–121, 126–167, and 171–477, in the handwriting of William Clayton; and on pages 168–170, in the handwriting of Erastus Derby. There are two pages numbered 453. Pages 476–477 constitute the last leaf of lined paper. The headers generally consist of a year or a month and year. The headers inscribed on pages 26–27, 29–71, 88–95, 119, and 121–126 are in the handwriting of Richards; the headers inscribed on pages 28, 72–87, 96–118, 120, 127–167, and 172–215 are in the handwriting of Clayton; pages 168–171, which were inscribed by Derby, have no headers. A few other pages are missing headers.  


The donation records constitute the bulk of the volume. The journal entries are inscribed on pages 26, 31, 33, 36, 39, 43, 44, 48, 56–61, 66–67, 88–95, 122–135, and 164–215. As is also the case with the pages bearing donation records, many of the pages bearing journal entries have vertical margin lines inscribed in graphite. The journal entries themselves are inscribed in ink that is now brown. Pages 165–181, however, either include or are entirely in blue ink. Some of the entries begin with a descriptive heading as well as a dateline. The entry for 6 January 1842, for example, features the large heading “The New Year”. Page 58 features the large double underlined heading “Journal of President Joseph”. Many of the entries are divided by horizontal lines. Where groups of journal entries span several pages, notes written at the beginning and end of these spans reference the previous or succeeding pages of journal entries.2

For example, page 135 points the reader to page 164, which begins by noting the continuation from page 135.  


At various stages in the production of the volume, 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 Clayton

17 July 1814–4 Dec. 1879. Bookkeeper, clerk. Born at Charock Moss, Penwortham, Lancashire, England. Son of Thomas Clayton and Ann Critchley. Married Ruth Moon, 9 Oct. 1836, at Penwortham. Baptized into LDS church by Heber C. Kimball, 21 Oct. 1837, in River...

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signed their names to their work (pages 126, 181, 215).
The volume contains a number of redactions that were made as the journal entries were later revised for inclusion in the “History of Joseph Smith” published in Mormon newspapers in the mid-nineteenth century.3

This serialized history drew on the journals herein, beginning with the 4 July 1855 issue of the Deseret News and with the 3 January 1857 issue of the LDS Millennial Star.  


Most of these redactions, made in graphite, were subsequently erased.4

Most of these now-erased graphite inscriptions are recoverable with bright white light and magnification. Pages 209–215, which were not erased, represent the state of the journal entries generally when they were used for drafting the “History of Joseph Smith.”  


The upper left-hand corner of page 3 bears the graphite inscription “6”, a redactive note on page 43 is inscribed in purple pencil, and red-penciled “X”s appear in the margins next to entries on pages 164 and 180. Notes written on three white and three blue slips of paper of various sizes have been inserted in various places, as well as a clipped portion of a 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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-era elder’s certificate form with no notes (apparently just a placeholder). There are also two leaves of pink paper just inside the front of the volume. All of these slips and leaves of paper are loose and appear to have been added to the book subsequent to its use as a journal.
The book is intricately related to its successor volume, the 1844–1846 donation record, and to a volume that indexed the donation records.5

Tithing and Donation Record, 1844–1846, CHL; Trustee-in-trust, Index and Accounts, 1841–1847, CHL.  


The “Law of the Lord” is listed as such in inventories of church records made in Salt Lake City, Utah, in the 1850s. These show that the volume was held for a time in the office of church president Brigham Young.6

Historian’s Office, “Inventory. Historian’s Office. 4th April 1855,” [1]; Historian’s Office, “Inventory. Historians Office. G. S. L. City April 1.1857,” [1]; Historian’s Office, “Historian’s Office Inventory G. S. L. City March 19. 1858,” [1]; Historian’s Office, “Historian’s Office Catalogue Book March 1858,” [11], Historian’s Office, Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL.  


In 1880, John Taylor

1 Nov. 1808–25 July 1887. Preacher, editor, publisher, politician. Born at Milnthorpe, Westmoreland Co., England. Son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor, members of Church of England. Around age sixteen, joined Methodists and was local preacher. Migrated from...

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, president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, carried the book to a stake Relief Society conference in Salt Lake City.7

Emmeline B. Wells, “Salt Lake Stake Relief Society Conference,” Women’s Exponent, 1 July 1880, 9:22.  


At some point the book was marked on the spine with an archival sticker, which was later removed. The book eventually was housed with the papers of Joseph Fielding Smith, apparently during his tenure as church historian and recorder (1921–1970), and then became part of the First Presidency’s papers when he became church president in 1970.8

“Inventory of President Joseph Fielding Smith’s Safe,” 23 May 1970, First Presidency, General Administration Files, CHL.  


In 2010, the First Presidency gave custody of the book to the Church History Library.9

Letter of transfer, Salt Lake City, UT, 8 Jan. 2010, CHL.  


This evidence indicates continuous institutional custody and authenticity.

Facts