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Journal, December 1842–June 1844; Book 2, 10 March 1843–14 July 1843

Journal, December 1842–June 1844; Book 2, 10 March 1843–14 July 1843

25 March 1843 • Saturday

Saturday March 25. 1843 In the office at 8 o clock. heard a report from Hyrum Smith

9 Feb. 1800–27 June 1844. Farmer, cooper. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Randolph, Orange Co., 1802; to Tunbridge, before May 1803; to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804; to Sharon, Windsor Co., by...

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concerning theives, as given by Z. Wilson and directed. a proclamation to be published offering security to all who will divulge their secrets,—64

In the proclamation, JS as mayor noted the reported existence of a “band of desperadoes, bound by oaths of secrecy, under severe penalties in case any member of the combination divulges their plans of stealing and conveying properties from station to station, up and down the Mississippi and other routes.” Having heard that some members of the group would not provide legal authorities with information about the criminals for fear of retaliation, JS promised to “grant and ensure protection against all personal mob violence, to each and every citizen of this city” who would provide him with the names of those who were in any way involved with the thieves. (JS, “Proclamation,” The Wasp, 29 Mar. 1843, [3].)  


Received a letter from 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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requesting the use of a cannon to celebrate the creation of the New. County of Marquetts

To counter 1839–1840 political movement to relocate Adams Co. seat from Quincy to Columbus, community leaders in Quincy used influence with Illinois legislature to form new Marquette Co., consisting of ten eastern townships from Adams Co., 1843. Citizens ...

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and answerd it that he might have it.—65

Contrary to what the entry states, Jonas, a resident of Columbus, Illinois, was requesting the cannon to celebrate the fact that the proposed county of Marquette would not be created—and to irritate the residents of Quincy as well. At the time, citizens of Quincy were agitating that Adams County, home to both Quincy and Columbus, be split into two counties, Adams and Marquette. Residents of Columbus, which was to be in the new Marquette County if the plan were approved, opposed the move. Residents of Quincy fired off a cannon every time favorable news was received from Springfield regarding the creation of the new county—a gesture Columbus residents found offensive. The state legislature approved the new county, but as Jonas pointed out in his letter, its organization depended “on the people electing County officers—on the 1st Monday in April.” Jonas wrote that those living in the proposed county “have determined not to Organize—nor elect officers—consequently the law will be inoperative.” Residents in the new county finally elected a state representative in 1846, although two years later the county (renamed “Highland” by this time) was merged with Adams County. (Abraham Jonas, Columbus, IL, to JS, Nauvoo, IL, 21 Mar. 1843, JS Collection, CHL; JS, Nauvoo, IL, to Abraham Jonas, Columbus, IL, 25 Mar. 1843, Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU; Collins and Perry, Past and Present of the City of Quincy and Adams County, Illinois, 94–95; An Act to Change the Name of the County of Marquette . . . [27 Feb. 1847], Laws of the State of Illinois [1846–1847], pp. 38–41.)  


also Recd. Letter from Senator Richard Young

20 Feb. 1798–28 Nov. 1861. Attorney, judge, politician. Born in Fayette Co., Kentucky. Moved to Jonesboro, Union Co., Illinois. Admitted to Illinois bar, 1817, in Jonesboro. Served as state representative from Union Co., 1820–1822. Married Matilda M. James...

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containing a bond for ¼ Section of Land from Welch John C. Walsh—66

JS was in the process of purchasing the northwest quarter of Section 8, Township 6 North, Range 8 West from Walsh for $2,500. Young was acting as a liaison between JS and Walsh during the transaction. (JS per William Clayton, Nauvoo, IL, to Richard M. Young, Washington DC, 23 Dec. 1842; JS per William Clayton, Nauvoo, IL, to Richard M. Young, Washington DC, 9 Feb. 1843, copy, Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU.)  


9 Baptizd Esqr Miflin of Philadilphia

Port city founded as Quaker settlement by William Penn, 1681. Site of signing of Declaration of Independence and drafting of U.S. Constitution. Nation’s capital city, 1790–1800. Population in 1830 about 170,000; in 1840 about 260,000; and in 1850 about 410...

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25 March 1843 • Saturday

Saturday March 25. 1843  In the office at 8 o clock. heard a  report from Hyrum [Smith]

9 Feb. 1800–27 June 1844. Farmer, cooper. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Randolph, Orange Co., 1802; to Tunbridge, before May 1803; to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804; to Sharon, Windsor Co., by...

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concerning theives, as  given by Z. [[Wilson]]63

TEXT: Transliteration from Taylor shorthand: w-l-s-n  


and directed. a  proclamation to be published offering se cur[i]ty to all who will divulge their  secrets,—64

In the proclamation, JS as mayor noted the reported existence of a “band of desperadoes, bound by oaths of secrecy, under severe penalties in case any member of the combination divulges their plans of stealing and conveying properties from station to station, up and down the Mississippi and other routes.” Having heard that some members of the group would not provide legal authorities with information about the criminals for fear of retaliation, JS promised to “grant and ensure protection against all personal mob violence, to each and every citizen of this city” who would provide him with the names of those who were in any way involved with the thieves. (JS, “Proclamation,” The Wasp, 29 Mar. 1843, [3].)  


Received a letter from A[braham] 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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 requesting the use of a cannon to  celebrate <the creation of> the New. County of Marquetts

To counter 1839–1840 political movement to relocate Adams Co. seat from Quincy to Columbus, community leaders in Quincy used influence with Illinois legislature to form new Marquette Co., consisting of ten eastern townships from Adams Co., 1843. Citizens ...

More Info
 and answerd it that he might have  it.—65

Contrary to what the entry states, Jonas, a resident of Columbus, Illinois, was requesting the cannon to celebrate the fact that the proposed county of Marquette would not be created—and to irritate the residents of Quincy as well. At the time, citizens of Quincy were agitating that Adams County, home to both Quincy and Columbus, be split into two counties, Adams and Marquette. Residents of Columbus, which was to be in the new Marquette County if the plan were approved, opposed the move. Residents of Quincy fired off a cannon every time favorable news was received from Springfield regarding the creation of the new county—a gesture Columbus residents found offensive. The state legislature approved the new county, but as Jonas pointed out in his letter, its organization depended “on the people electing County officers—on the 1st Monday in April.” Jonas wrote that those living in the proposed county “have determined not to Organize—nor elect officers—consequently the law will be inoperative.” Residents in the new county finally elected a state representative in 1846, although two years later the county (renamed “Highland” by this time) was merged with Adams County. (Abraham Jonas, Columbus, IL, to JS, Nauvoo, IL, 21 Mar. 1843, JS Collection, CHL; JS, Nauvoo, IL, to Abraham Jonas, Columbus, IL, 25 Mar. 1843, Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU; Collins and Perry, Past and Present of the City of Quincy and Adams County, Illinois, 94–95; An Act to Change the Name of the County of Marquette . . . [27 Feb. 1847], Laws of the State of Illinois [1846–1847], pp. 38–41.)  


also Recd. Letter from Senator [Richard] Young

20 Feb. 1798–28 Nov. 1861. Attorney, judge, politician. Born in Fayette Co., Kentucky. Moved to Jonesboro, Union Co., Illinois. Admitted to Illinois bar, 1817, in Jonesboro. Served as state representative from Union Co., 1820–1822. Married Matilda M. James...

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 contain[i]ng a bond for ¼ Section of Land  from Welch [John C. Walsh]—66

JS was in the process of purchasing the northwest quarter of Section 8, Township 6 North, Range 8 West from Walsh for $2,500. Young was acting as a liaison between JS and Walsh during the transaction. (JS per William Clayton, Nauvoo, IL, to Richard M. Young, Washington DC, 23 Dec. 1842; JS per William Clayton, Nauvoo, IL, to Richard M. Young, Washington DC, 9 Feb. 1843, copy, Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU.)  


9 Baptizd Esqr Miflin of Philadilphia

Port city founded as Quaker settlement by William Penn, 1681. Site of signing of Declaration of Independence and drafting of U.S. Constitution. Nation’s capital city, 1790–1800. Population in 1830 about 170,000; in 1840 about 260,000; and in 1850 about 410...

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JS, “President Joseph Smith’s Journal,” Journal, 4 vols., Dec. 1842–June 1844; handwriting and signatures of Willard Richards

24 June 1804–11 Mar. 1854. Teacher, lecturer, doctor, clerk, printer, editor, postmaster. Born at Hopkinton, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Joseph Richards and Rhoda Howe. Moved to Richmond, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts, 1813. Moved to Chatham, Columbia...

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; 1,045 pages; JS Collection, CHL. Includes shorthand and illustrations; also includes redactions, use marks, and archival stickers.
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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kept “President Joseph Smith’s Journal” in four small memorandum books. The paper in book 1 is blue, while the paper in books 2–4 is white. In the first two books, the paper was printed with seventeen blue lines and extra space for page headers, whereas the paper for book 3 was printed with nineteen blue lines and no header space. The first eight gatherings of paper for book 4 were printed with sixteen blue lines and header space, while the last nine gatherings were printed with nineteen blue lines and no header space. The four volumes have 147, 160, 142, and 190 free leaves, respectively, and were sewn with all-along sewing. The leaves in books 1–3 were trimmed to measure 6 × 3¾ inches (15 × 10 cm), while the paper in book 4 measures 6¼ × 3¾ inches (16 × 10 cm). Books 2–4 have the same red-speckled stain on the page edges. All four books were bound with a tight-back case binding and have brown leather over pasteboards. Books 1–3 measure 6¼ × 4 × ¾ inches (16 × 10 × 2 cm); book 4 measures 6⅜ × 4 × ¾ inches (16 × 10 × 2 cm). The outside covers of book 1 feature an embossed pattern around the borders. The cover of book 4 is red and features a gold pattern around the borders on the front and the back.
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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inscribed most of the journal entries in these memorandum books with a quill pen in ink that is now brown, although he also used blue ink for several entries. Some of the graphite inscriptions in the volumes are also contemporaneous. Richards paginated the first 114 of the 285 inscribed pages in book 1—discounting the title page that precedes the pagination—and the first 20 of the 309 inscribed pages in book 2. There is no pagination in books 3–4. In book 2, pages 11, 17, and 20–21 feature illustrations of celestial observations.
The 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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memorandum books include later inscriptions that are not transcribed in this edition. At the end of book 2, Thomas Bullock added a list 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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-era plural marriages. A few revisions, additions, or notes are penciled in throughout the volumes. There are also several use marks throughout the volumes—probably made when the journal entries were later revised for inclusion in the “History of Joseph Smith” published in Mormon newspapers in the mid-nineteenth century.1

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


The spines of the volumes are now labeled with blue-colored paper stickers that probably date from the early Utah period.2

The labels on the spines of the four volumes read respectively as follows: “Joseph Smith’s Journal—1842–3 by Willard Richards” (book 1); “Joseph Smith’s Journal by W. Richards 1843” (book 2); “Joseph Smith’s Journal by W. Richards 1843–4” (book 3); and “W. Richards’ Journal 1844 <Vol. 4>” (book 4; Richards kept JS’s journal in the front of this volume, and after JS’s death Richards kept his own journal in the back of the volume).  


Each of the four volumes also bears the mark of a square sticker removed from the upper right-hand corner of the outside front cover. Finally, a “Historian’s Office Archives” self-adhesive paper sticker appears in the front inside cover or on the first flyleaf of each book.
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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identified himself as the scribe for the journal on the title pages of books 1 and 4. Because Richards kept the journals for JS and kept his own journal in the back of book 4 after JS’s death, the books may be included in the listing of “Drs private books & Papers”3

“Drs” in the quotation is a reference to Richards, a Thomsonian doctor. (“History of Willard Richards,” Deseret News, 23 June 1858, 73)  


in the inventory of church records made in Nauvoo

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

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, Illinois, in 1846.4

“Schedule of Church Records,” Historian’s Office, Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL.  


The volumes are listed in inventories made in Salt Lake City, Utah, by the Church Historian’s Office in 1855, 1858, and 1878, as well as in the 1973 register of the JS Collection.5

“Inventory. Historian’s Office. 4th April 1855,” [1]; “Contents of the Historian and Recorder’s Office G. S. L. City July 1858,” 2; “Index of Records and Journals in the Historian’s Office 1878,” [11]–[12], Historian’s Office, Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL; Johnson, Register of the Joseph Smith Collection, 7.  


These archival records and the physical evidence of archival stickers indicate continuous institutional custody and authenticity.
Note: The journal 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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kept for JS is divided into four physical books. The transcript and annotation here are for the first part of book 2, covering 10 March through 30 April 1843. The transcript and annotation for the entirety of book 1, covering 21 December 1842 through 10 March 1843, are also available on this website. The transcript and annotation for the remainder of book 2 and for books 3 and 4 will be published later.

Facts