26013

Journal, December 1841–December 1842

[pages 27–30, donation records dated 30 November–16 December 1841]

15 December 1841 • Wednesday

Dec 15th. In reply to enquiries concerning Almon Babbitt

9 Oct. 1812–Sept. 1856. Postmaster, editor, attorney. Born at Cheshire, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ira Babbitt and Nancy Crosier. Baptized into LDS church, ca. 1830. Located in Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, July 1831. Served mission to New York, fall...

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. the Printing Press

Following destruction of church printing office in Independence, Missouri, July 1833, JS and other church leaders determined to set up new printing office in Kirtland under firm name F. G. Williams & Co. Oliver Cowdery purchased new printing press in New ...

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. 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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, &c contained in a letter written at 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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, Nov 16th 1841. by by Lester Brooks

5 Nov. 1802–22 July 1878. Stove plate molder. Born in Lanesborough, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Sheldon Brooks and Sarah Noble. Moved to Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., before 1820. Married Amy Sophia Hazen, July 1827. Moved to Waterville, Oneida Co.,...

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& Zebedee Coltrin

7 Sept. 1804–21 July 1887. Born at Ovid, Seneca Co., New York. Son of John Coltrin and Sarah Graham. Member of Methodist church. Married first Julia Ann Jennings, Oct. 1828. Baptized into LDS church by Solomon Hancock, 9 Jan. 1831, at Strongsville, Cuyahoga...

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, acting Prests.— & Thomas Burdick

17 Nov. 1795/1797–6 Nov. 1877. Farmer, teacher, judge, postmaster, clerk, civil servant. Born at Canajoharie, Montgomery Co., New York. Son of Gideon Burdick and Catherine Robertson. Married Anna Higley, 1828, at Jamestown, Chautauque Co., New York. Baptized...

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, Bishop. & council. To. Presidents Joseph Smith & 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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&c. it was decided as follows;
“It remains for Almon Babbitt

9 Oct. 1812–Sept. 1856. Postmaster, editor, attorney. Born at Cheshire, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ira Babbitt and Nancy Crosier. Baptized into LDS church, ca. 1830. Located in Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, July 1831. Served mission to New York, fall...

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to offer satisfaction. if he wishes so to do, according to the minutes of the Conference, You are doubtless all well aware that all the stakes except those in Hancock, Co.

Formed from Pike Co., 1825. Described in 1837 as predominantly prairie and “deficient in timber.” Early settlers came mainly from mid-Atlantic and southern states. Population in 1835 about 3,200; in 1840 about 9,900; and in 1844 at least 15,000. Carthage ...

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Illinois, & Lee

Located in north-central Illinois, with part of northern county boundary formed by Rock River. Fertile agricultural area. French trappers frequented area, by 1780. Second Black Hawk campaign fought in area, 1832. Illinois Central Railroad construction began...

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county Iowa. were discontinued some time Since by the First Presidency, as published in the Times and Seasons; but as it appears that there are many in 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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who desire to remain there. and build up that place, and as you have made great exertions, according to your letter, to establish a printing press, & take care of the poor, &c. since that period, you may as well continue operations according to your designs. & go on with your printing, & do what you can in Righteousness to build up Kirtland but do not suffer yourselves to harbor the Idea that 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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will rise on the ruins of Nauvoo. It is the privilege of brethren emigrating from any quarter To come to this place, and it is not right to attempt to persuade those who desire it, to stop short,”
(Extract from the letter of the presidents in reply— Decr 15th 1841.)

16 December 1841 • Thursday

December 16th. 1841 This day William Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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, of Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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, deliverd to Prest. Joseph Smith, sole Trustee in Trust, the deed. for the unsold & bonded Lots of land in the town of Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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, bearing date Decr 8th 1841: also the plat of the “first addition To Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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.” and the notes which have been received of Individuals who have purchased lots. and the Bonds of William Miller

15 Feb. 1782–20 Dec. 1849. Farmer, author, military officer, preacher. Born in Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Miller and Paulina Phelps. Moved to Hampton, Washington Co., New York, 1786. Married Lucy Phelps Smith, 29 June 1803. Moved...

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. Sept 21. 1840; & of Uti [Ute] Perkins

15 July 1761–11 Mar. 1844. Born at Anson Co. (later Lincoln Co.), North Carolina. Son of Robert Biggan Perkins and Elizabeth Lollar. Served in American Revolution, 1778–1779. Moved to what became Abbeville Co., South Carolina, 1779. Married Sarah (Sally) ...

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Nov 26th 1840: & of Wm G. Perkins. Nov 7. 1840. & of John F. charles Nov 16. 1841. for lots of land adjoining Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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. and which may hereafter be added. to the Town plat; (a part of the land included in Wm Miller

15 Feb. 1782–20 Dec. 1849. Farmer, author, military officer, preacher. Born in Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Miller and Paulina Phelps. Moved to Hampton, Washington Co., New York, 1786. Married Lucy Phelps Smith, 29 June 1803. Moved...

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s Bond is included in the first addition to Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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;) The above described property in Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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. & the Notes were transferred to the sole Trustee in trust. for the benefit of the whole church. (by a vote of the Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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Conference Decr 4 & 5th. 1841.) after applying sufficient of said property to liquidate the claims of those from whom the Town was purchased, and also paying two notes given by Wm. Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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for money borrowed to pay for the above property, viz, To Lyman prentice $11.45: & James Cummings $50.00 and some other small demands against said Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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which have been contracted for the benefit of the church in Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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.

5 January 1842 • Wednesday

1842 January 5.th. William Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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. Signed over & delivered the Town Plot of Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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to the sole trustee in Trust Joseph Smith. [p. 31]
[pages 27–30, donation records dated 30 November–16 December 1841]

15 December 1841 • Wednesday

Dec 15th. In reply to enquiries concerning Almon Babbitt

9 Oct. 1812–Sept. 1856. Postmaster, editor, attorney. Born at Cheshire, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ira Babbitt and Nancy Crosier. Baptized into LDS church, ca. 1830. Located in Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, July 1831. Served mission to New York, fall...

View Full Bio
. the Printing Press

Following destruction of church printing office in Independence, Missouri, July 1833, JS and other church leaders determined to set up new printing office in Kirtland under firm name F. G. Williams & Co. Oliver Cowdery purchased new printing press in New ...

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.  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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, &c contained in a letter written at 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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, Nov 16[th] 1841. by  by Lester Brooks

5 Nov. 1802–22 July 1878. Stove plate molder. Born in Lanesborough, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Sheldon Brooks and Sarah Noble. Moved to Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., before 1820. Married Amy Sophia Hazen, July 1827. Moved to Waterville, Oneida Co.,...

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& Zebedee Coltrin

7 Sept. 1804–21 July 1887. Born at Ovid, Seneca Co., New York. Son of John Coltrin and Sarah Graham. Member of Methodist church. Married first Julia Ann Jennings, Oct. 1828. Baptized into LDS church by Solomon Hancock, 9 Jan. 1831, at Strongsville, Cuyahoga...

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, acting Prests.— & Thomas Burdick

17 Nov. 1795/1797–6 Nov. 1877. Farmer, teacher, judge, postmaster, clerk, civil servant. Born at Canajoharie, Montgomery Co., New York. Son of Gideon Burdick and Catherine Robertson. Married Anna Higley, 1828, at Jamestown, Chautauque Co., New York. Baptized...

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,  Bishop. & council. To. Presidents Joseph Smith & 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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&c.8

The letter acknowledged the action taken in the 2 October 1841 conference in Nauvoo to disfellowship Kirtland, Ohio, stake president Babbitt for teaching “doctrine contrary to the revelations of God and detrimental to the interest of the church” and requested counsel on his case. The letter also explained the hopes of Kirtland church leaders to build up the city and their attempt to establish a printing office. Babbitt had attempted to explain his actions in an earlier letter to the First Presidency. (Lester Brooks et al., Kirtland, OH, to JS et al., Nauvoo, IL, 16 Nov. 1841, JS Collection, CHL; “Minutes of a Conference,” Times and Seasons, 15 Oct. 1841, 2:577; Almon Babbitt, Kirtland, OH, to JS et al., Nauvoo, IL, 19 Oct. 1841, JS Collection, CHL.)  


 it was decided as follows;
“It remains for Almon Babbitt

9 Oct. 1812–Sept. 1856. Postmaster, editor, attorney. Born at Cheshire, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ira Babbitt and Nancy Crosier. Baptized into LDS church, ca. 1830. Located in Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, July 1831. Served mission to New York, fall...

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to offer satisfaction. if he wishes so to  do, according to the minutes of the Conference, You are doubtless  all well aware that all the stakes except those in Hancock, Co.

Formed from Pike Co., 1825. Described in 1837 as predominantly prairie and “deficient in timber.” Early settlers came mainly from mid-Atlantic and southern states. Population in 1835 about 3,200; in 1840 about 9,900; and in 1844 at least 15,000. Carthage ...

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 Illinois, & Lee

Located in north-central Illinois, with part of northern county boundary formed by Rock River. Fertile agricultural area. French trappers frequented area, by 1780. Second Black Hawk campaign fought in area, 1832. Illinois Central Railroad construction began...

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county Iowa. were discontinued some time Since by the  First Presidency, as published in the Times and Seasons;9

JS, “To the Saints Abroad,” Times and Seasons, 1 June 1841, 2:434.  


but as  it appears that there are many in 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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who desire to remain  there. and build up that place, and as you have made great  exertions, according to your letter, to establish a printing press, &  take care of the poor, &c. since that period, you may as well  continue operations according to your designs. & go on with your  printing, & do what you can in Righteousness to build up  Kirtland but do not suffer yourselves to harbor the Idea  that 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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will rise on the ruins of Nauvoo.10

According to a letter from Babbitt to the First Presidency, approximately five hundred church members lived in Kirtland at this time. At a church conference in Kirtland on 2 October 1841, it was decided that the printing press would publish a periodical titled The Olive Leaf and that profits from the proposed printing operation would be used to benefit the church; however, there is no evidence that this press produced any publications. (Almon Babbitt, Kirtland, OH, to JS et al., Nauvoo, IL, 19 Oct. 1841, JS Collection, CHL; “Conference Minutes,” Times and Seasons, 1 Nov. 1841, 3:587–589.)  


It is the  privilege of brethren emigrating from any quarter To come  to this place, and it is not right to attempt to persuade  those who desire it, to stop short,”
(Extract from the letter of  the presidents in reply— Decr 15[th] 1841.)

16 December 1841 • Thursday

December 16th. 1841 This day William Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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, of Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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, deliverd to Prest. Joseph  Sole Smith, sole Trustee in Trust, the deed. for the unsold <& bonded> Lots of land  in the town of Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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, bearing date Decr 8th 1841:11

The deed, signed by Wightman and his wife, Dolly Eaton Wightman, is recorded in the Hancock County Deed Record Book. Wightman was instructed on 13 December 1841 to “transfer all the Church property in Ramus to the Sole trustee in trust Joseph Smith.” (Hancock Co., IL, Deed Records, vol. K, pp. 19–20, microfilm 954,599, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; JS, Journal, 13 Dec. 1841.)  


also the plat  of the “first addition To Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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.” and the notes which have been  received of Individuals who have purchased lots. and the Bonds  of William Miller

15 Feb. 1782–20 Dec. 1849. Farmer, author, military officer, preacher. Born in Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Miller and Paulina Phelps. Moved to Hampton, Washington Co., New York, 1786. Married Lucy Phelps Smith, 29 June 1803. Moved...

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. Sept 21. 1840; & of Uti [Ute]  Perkins

15 July 1761–11 Mar. 1844. Born at Anson Co. (later Lincoln Co.), North Carolina. Son of Robert Biggan Perkins and Elizabeth Lollar. Served in American Revolution, 1778–1779. Moved to what became Abbeville Co., South Carolina, 1779. Married Sarah (Sally) ...

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Nov 26[th] 1840: & of Wm G. Perkins. Nov 7. 1840. & of John F. charles Nov 16. 1841. for lots of land adjoining  Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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. and which may hereafter be added. to the Town plot plat; (a part of the  land included in Wm Miller

15 Feb. 1782–20 Dec. 1849. Farmer, author, military officer, preacher. Born in Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Miller and Paulina Phelps. Moved to Hampton, Washington Co., New York, 1786. Married Lucy Phelps Smith, 29 June 1803. Moved...

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s Bond is included in the first addition to Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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;)  The above described property in Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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. & the Notes <were> is transferred to the sole  Trustee in trust. for the benefit of the whole church. (by a vote of the Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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 Conference Decr 4 & 5th. 1841.) after applying sufficient of said property to  liquidate the claims of those from whom the Town was purchased,12

The branch at Ramus appointed Bishop William Wightman, in a meeting on 15 July 1840, to acquire land on which the town would be built from Miller and from Ute, William, and Absalom Perkins. (Macedonia Branch, Record, 15 July 1840.)  


and  also paying two notes given by Wm. Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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for money borrowed to pay for  the above property, viz, To Lyman prentice13

Probably Lyman Prentis, a resident of Warsaw, Illinois. (Jacob B. Backenstos, “Names of Carthage Greys & Mobbers,” 1846, Historian’s Office, JS History Documents, ca. 1839–1880, CHL.)  


$11.45: & James Cummin[g]s $50.00  and some other small demands against said Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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which have been  contracted for the benefit of the church in Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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.

5 January 1842 • Wednesday

1842 January 5.th. William Wightman

12 Dec. 1807–Sept. 1842. Married Dolly Eaton, 31 Oct. 1832. Baptized into LDS church, by 1836. Ordained an elder, 27 Feb. 1836, in Geauga Co., Ohio. Laid out town of Ramus (later Webster), Hancock Co., Illinois, 1840. Served as bishop, 1841, in Ramus. Lived...

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. Signed over & delivered the Town Plot14

TEXT: Possibly “Plat”.  


to of Ramus

Area settled, 1826. Founded by Latter-day Saints, 1839–1840, following exodus from Missouri. Town platted, Aug. 1840. Post office established, Sept. 1840. Incorporated as Macedonia, Mar. 1843. Renamed Webster, 23 July 1847. Population in 1845 about 380. Crooked...

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 to the sole trustee in Trust Joseph Smith. [p. 31]
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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...

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, 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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, 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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recorded JS’s journal entries from 13 December 1841 through 20 December 1842 in a large leather-bound blank book. The book was first used by church recorder 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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to copy revelations. Between January 1841 and his death on 27 August the same year, Thompson recorded nine of JS’s revelations, beginning with the 19 January 1841 revelation commanding the building of the Nauvoo

Principal gathering place for Saints following expulsion from Missouri. Beginning in 1839, LDS church purchased lands in earlier settlement of Commerce and planned settlement of Commerce City, as well as surrounding areas. Served as church headquarters, 1839...

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, Illinois, temple

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

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and a boardinghouse called the Nauvoo House

JS revelation, dated 19 Jan. 1841, instructed Saints to build boarding house for travelers and immigrants. Construction of planned three-story building to be funded by fifty-dollar shares. Cornerstone laid, 2 Oct. 1841, but building never completed beyond...

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. On 11 December 1841, following his election as “sole Trustee in Trust for the Church” earlier in the year, JS instructed that all donations for building the Nauvoo temple be received directly through his office rather than through the committee overseeing construction of the temple. Two days later, he appointed Willard Richards of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles as recorder for the temple and as his personal scribe. Richards then became custodian of the book Thompson had used for recording revelations, and Richards apparently began recording journal entries and tithing donations in some manner on that same day. However, the quality of inscription for the journal entries in the book suggests that they are copies of previously inscribed notes, and if Richards began making such notes in mid-December it is less certain when he began copying them into the book.1

One of Richards’s entries records that he was ill “& did not take notes.” Other entries, such as those dictated by JS to William Clayton while in hiding, are clearly copies of previously inscribed notes. (JS, Journal, 17 June 1842; 16 and 23 Aug. 1842.)  


The book apparently was kept in the “counting room” on the lower floor of JS’s red brick store

Completed 1841. Opened for business, 5 Jan. 1842. Owned by JS, but managed mostly by others, after 1842. First floor housed JS’s general store and counting room, where tithing was received and recorded. On second floor, one of two small rooms served as JS...

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on Water Street, where Richards received and entered donations and also inscribed JS’s journal.2

Clayton, History of the Nauvoo Temple, 16; Brigham Young et al., “Baptism for the Dead,” Times and Seasons, 15 Dec. 1841, 3:626.  


Journal entries and donations were kept concurrently in the book, alternating sometimes every other page and chronologically leapfrogging each other. This pattern was especially pronounced near the beginning of the book, where donations and journal entries occasionally appear together on a single page. Over time, however, larger and larger blocks of text were dedicated to either donations or journal entries until eventually, in December 1842, the journal was transferred to another book. This slow separation or disentanglement of the journal and donation records—the reasons for which are unclear—was completed long before the volume was filled; indeed, only 90 of the volume’s 478 pages include journal entries, and all of these are within the first 215 pages. In several places it is clear that lists of donations were recorded earlier than were the journal entries found on preceding pages; that is, Richards and William Clayton—who was assigned to assist in the recorder’s office 10 February 1842—left several pages blank between lists of donations and then later filled in those pages with journal entries.3

Clayton, History of the Nauvoo Temple, 18; Clayton, Journal, 10 Feb. 1843.  


This practice sometimes left the scribes with insufficient space to finish a journal entry before running into the list of donations, requiring them to continue the entry several pages later.4

For example, the donation records on pages 136–163 were evidently inscribed before the 16 August 1842 journal entry, which begins on page 135 and is continued on page 164.  


The interspersing of journal entries with pages of donation records, as well as JS’s conscious efforts to record the names of people who helped him, suggests that the volume as a whole was understood in terms of an 1832 revelation that “a hystory and a general church record” must be kept “of all things that transpire in Zion and of all those who consecrate properties . . . and also there manner of life and the[ir] faith and works.” This record was to be kept in a book called “the book of the Law of God”—a book whose name parallels that of “the book of the law of the Lord” mentioned in the Old Testament.5

JS, Kirtland, OH, to William W. Phelps, [Independence, MO], 27 Nov. 1832, in JS Letterbook 1, pp. 1–2 [D&C 85:1–2, 5]; 2 Chronicles 17:9; 34:14; Nehemiah 9:3.  


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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continued the pagination of 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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’s revelation transcripts and, at some point in time, the title “The Book of the Law of the Lord” was inscribed in the front of the book Richards was filling with journal entries and donation records. That the revelation transcripts, donation records, and journal entries appear under the same title and pagination suggests the book’s creators understood its title to comprehend all of its parts.
During the first few months of keeping JS’s journal, 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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included events that occurred before his appointment as JS’s scribe and temple recorder as well as current journal entries. For example, in his 13 December 1841 entry on deteriorating conditions in Warsaw

Located at foot of Des Moines Rapids of Mississippi River at site of three military forts: Fort Johnson (1814), Cantonment Davis (1815–1818), and Fort Edwards (1816–1824). First settlers participated in fur trade. Important trade and shipping center. Post...

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, Illinois, Richards explained what led church members to settle there in the first place. At times these retrospective entries eclipse the events of the day on which they were written and have no apparent connection to surrounding entries. The entries for 17 and 29 December 1841, for example, relate to 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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’s July 1841 arrival at Nauvoo

Principal gathering place for Saints following expulsion from Missouri. Beginning in 1839, LDS church purchased lands in earlier settlement of Commerce and planned settlement of Commerce City, as well as surrounding areas. Served as church headquarters, 1839...

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following his mission to England and to the October 1841 laying of the cornerstone for the Nauvoo House

JS revelation, dated 19 Jan. 1841, instructed Saints to build boarding house for travelers and immigrants. Construction of planned three-story building to be funded by fifty-dollar shares. Cornerstone laid, 2 Oct. 1841, but building never completed beyond...

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, respectively, but they record nothing about the events of 17 and 29 December. Multiple entries for individual days, sometimes separated by several pages, add to the complexity of the first part of the journal and also suggest that Richards wrote retrospectively at least part of the time. Only after Richards moved into the Smith home in mid-January 1842 and was able to more closely observe JS’s actions did the entries become more regular, and even then multiple entries occasionally occurred. Immediately preceding the entry for 15 January 1842, the header “Journal of President Joseph” appears—showing that by the time he moved into JS’s home, Richards considered the daily entries he was keeping as journal entries.6

See also the entry for 29 June 1842, in which Richards transferred “this Journal” to his assistant William Clayton.  


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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kept JS’s journal in the Book of the Law of the Lord through 29 June 1842, shortly after which he left for Richmond, Massachusetts, to bring his family to 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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. Among the numerous topics addressed in Richards’s entries are problems relating to the purchase of land in the Nauvoo area, the organization of the Female Relief Society, and the developing rift between JS and two of his close associates, John C. Bennett

3 Aug. 1804–5 Aug. 1867. Physician, minister, poultry breeder. Born at Fairhaven, Bristol Co., Massachusetts. Son of John Bennett and Abigail Cook. Moved to Marietta, Washington Co., Ohio, 1808; to Massachusetts, 1812; and back to Marietta, 1822. Married ...

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and 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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. When Richards left for Massachusetts

One of original thirteen colonies that formed U.S. Capital city, Boston. Colonized by English religious dissenters, 1620s. Population in 1830 about 610,000. Population in 1840 about 738,000. Joseph Smith Sr. born in Massachusetts. Samuel Smith and Orson Hyde...

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, he transferred the book—and therefore JS’s journal—to his assistant, 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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, to keep during his absence. Two months later, in early September, Clayton was appointed temple recorder, officially replacing Richards as custodian of the Book of the Law of the Lord. Some of Clayton’s entries include accounts of JS’s activities during the day as well as his activities later in the evening. In some of these entries, the record of the evening events is inscribed in an ink that differs from the ink he used to record JS’s activities earlier in the day yet matches that of the following day’s entry. This indicates that he was probably writing in the book about some events the very day they occurred.7

Pages 207–209, for example, contain such inscriptions. Willard Richards’s entry for 10 March 1842 also indicates contemporaneous inscription.  


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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’s first entry (30 June 1842) retrospectively records three events dealing with the Nauvoo temple

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

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—the dedication of the baptismal font on 8 November 1841, a miraculous healing in the waters of the font in February 1842, and a deposit made in the cornerstone on 25 September 1841. JS may have directed the inclusion of this material after having “heard the Recorder [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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] Read in the Law of the Lord” the day before;8

JS, Journal, 29 June 1842.  


alternatively, Clayton may have recorded it on his own in his role as assistant temple recorder. Either way, its inclusion clearly demonstrates the desire to include information about the temple in the record. The Book of the Law of the Lord was to be kept in the temple when it was completed.9

Brigham Young et al., “Baptism for the Dead,” Times and Seasons, 15 Dec. 1841, 3:626.  


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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had kept JS’s journal for little more than a month when, on 8 August 1842, JS was arrested as part of an effort to extradite him to 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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to stand trial for alleged complicity in the attempted assassination of former Missouri governor Lilburn W. Boggs

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

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.10

JS, Journal, 8 Aug. 1842; see also Appendix 1.  


JS’s subsequent efforts to avoid extradition to Missouri were attended by a flurry of letter writing among JS, his associates, and Illinois

Became part of Northwest Territory of U.S., 1787. Admitted as state, 1818. Population in 1840 about 480,000. Population in 1845 about 660,000. Plentiful, inexpensive land attracted settlers from northern and southern states. Following expulsion from Missouri...

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governor Thomas Carlin

18 July 1789–14 Feb. 1852. Ferry owner, farmer, sheriff, politician. Born in Fayette Co., Kentucky. Son of Thomas Carlin and Elizabeth Evans. Baptist. Moved to Missouri, by 1803. Moved to Illinois, by 1812. Served in War of 1812. Married Rebecca Hewitt, 13...

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. 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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, a private teacher living in the Smith home, 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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, who also had clerical skills, assisted Clayton in copying these and other letters into the journal. Among other things, this correspondence provides valuable insight into the thoughts and character of several 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...

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’s leading citizens. 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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’s articulate and thoughtful letters to Carlin, for example, in which she argued against the legality of Boggs’s affidavit and the entire extradition proceedings, reveal a woman of ability and resourcefulness. Two of JS’s letters written to members of the church during this period provided important instructions regarding proxy baptisms for deceased persons and record keeping. Clayton and Snow also copied into the journal three of the early letters in a lengthy series between JS and his 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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correspondent James Arlington Bennet

21 Dec. 1788–25 Dec. 1863. Attorney, newspaper publisher, educator, author. Born in New York. Married first Sophia, ca. 1811. Served as third and later second lieutenant in First U.S. Artillery, 1 Aug. 1813–14 Oct. 1814. Published American System of Practical...

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.
JS spent much of the last five months of 1842 in hiding to avoid arrest and extradition to 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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. Periods of enforced solitude gave him time for sustained reflection and opportunity to commit his thoughts to paper. Lengthy recitations of the names and deeds of his loyal friends, and explicit references to his desire to have them recorded in the Book of the Law of the Lord are unique features of this part of his journal and contribute—like the lists of donations for the temple—to the unusual character of the book as a whole.
Although 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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returned to 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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with his family on 30 October 1842, 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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continued keeping JS’s journal in the Book of the Law of the Lord through 20 December of that year. Clayton’s entries end with a recital of his, Richards’s, and several other men’s efforts in Springfield

Settled by 1819. Incorporated as town, 1832. Became state capital, 1837. Incorporated as city, 1840. Sangamon Co. seat. Population in 1840 about 2,600. Stake of LDS church organized in Springfield, Nov. 1840; discontinued May 1841; branch organized, Jan. ...

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, Illinois, to resolve a bankruptcy case involving JS. While there, they also counseled with Judge Stephen A. Douglas

23 Apr. 1813–3 June 1861. Lawyer, politician. Born at Brandon, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of Stephen Arnold Douglass and Sarah Fisk. Moved to Ontario Co., New York, 1830. Moved to Jacksonville, Morgan Co., Illinois, 1833. Served as attorney general of Illinois...

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, United States district attorney Justin Butterfield

1790–Oct. 1855. Teacher, lawyer. Born in Keene, Cheshire Co., New Hampshire. Ca. 1810, moved to Watertown, Jefferson Co., New York, where he taught school and studied law. Admitted to bar, 1812, at Watertown. Practiced law in Adams, Jefferson Co., and Sackets...

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, and newly elected Illinois governor Thomas Ford

5 Dec. 1800–3 Nov. 1850. School teacher, newspaperman, lawyer, politician, judge, author. Born in Uniontown, Fayette Co., Pennsylvania. Son of Robert Ford and Elizabeth Logue Forquer. Moved to St. Louis, 1804; to New Design (later American Bottom), Randolph...

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regarding the effort to extradite JS to 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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. All three gave suggestions for how JS might safely and successfully proceed in the case against him. On 21 December 1842, the day following the party’s return to 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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, JS appointed Richards his “private se[c]retary & historian” and Richards began keeping a new journal for JS in a small memorandum book.11

JS, Journal, 21 Dec. 1842.  


As temple recorder, Clayton retained possession of the Book of the Law of the Lord, in which he continued to record tithing and other donations.
 
Chronological Index to Journal Entries
 
Journal entries in the Book of the Law of the Lord were not always dated sequentially. In addition, there are several dates for which more than one entry was made, often with entries for other dates intervening. This chronological index helps to locate journal entries. In this index, sequential journal entries are not individually listed, and dates with no journal entry are not noted.
DateManuscript PagePage in JSP, J2
December 184126, 31, 33, 36, 39, 43–4410–21
Dec. 18413616
11–13 Dec. 18413314–15
13 Dec. 184126, 3310–11, 15–16
14 Dec. 18412611
15–16 Dec. 18413113–14
17 Dec. 18412611
22 Dec. 18413616–17
24–28 Dec. 18413917–19
29–31 Dec. 184143–4419–21
January 184231, 43–44, 48, 56–60, 66–6714, 21–32, 36–38
1 Jan. 18424421
4 Jan. 18424823–24
5 Jan. 184231, 4414, 21
6 Jan. 18425725–26
12–16 Jan. 18424824
15 Jan. 18425826–27
16 Jan. 184248, 5824, 27
17 Jan. 184243, 56, 5820–21, 24–25, 27
18–22 Jan. 18425827–30
23 Jan. 184259, 6630, 36–37
24 Jan. 18425930
25 Jan. 184259, 6630, 37
26–27 Jan. 18425930–31
28 Jan. 184259, 6731, 38
29–31 Jan. 18426031–32
February–July 184260–61, 88–95, 122–12832–36, 38–80
August 1842128–135, 164–167, 179–18480–99, 115–124
3–15 Aug. 1842128–13580–92
16 Aug. 1842135, 164–16593–96
17–21 Aug. 1842165–16796–99
Copied Correspondence168–178100–114
23–31 Aug. 1842179–184115–124
September–December 1842184–215124–183

Facts