27468

Journal, March–September 1838

be impeached by other witnesses before such Council

A governing body of twelve high priests. The first high council was organized in Kirtland, Ohio, on 17 February 1834 “for the purpose of settling important difficulties which might arise in the church, which could not be settled by the church, or the bishop...

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, and when a descision is had by such an Council in Zion

A specific location in Missouri; also a literal or figurative gathering of believers in Jesus Christ, characterized by adherence to ideals of harmony, equality, and purity. In JS’s earliest revelations “the cause of Zion” was used to broadly describe the ...

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, it shall only be for Zion, it shall not answer for her stakes

Ecclesiastical organization of church members in a particular locale. Stakes were typically large local organizations of church members; stake leaders could include a presidency, a high council, and a bishopric. Some revelations referred to stakes “to” or...

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, but if such descision be acknowledged by the Council of her stakes, then it shall answer for her stakes, But if it is not acknowledged by the stakes, then such stake may have the privilege of hearing for themselves or if such descision shall be acknowledeged by a majority of the stakes, then it shall answer for all her stakes And again,
The Presidency

The highest presiding body of the church. An 11 November 1831 revelation stated that the president of the high priesthood was to preside over the church. JS was ordained as president of the high priesthood on 25 January 1832. In March 1832, JS appointed two...

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of my Church, may be tried by the voice of the whole body of the Church in Zion, and the voice of a majority of all her stakes And again
Except a majority is had by the voice of the Church of Zion and a majority of all her stakes, The Charges will be concidered not sustained and in order to sustain such Charge or Charges, before such Church of Zion or her stakes, such witnesses must be had as is named above, that is the witnesses to each President, who are of long and faithfull standing, that cannot be immpeached by other witnesses before the Church of Zion, or her stakes, And all this saith the Lord because of wicked and asspiring men, Let all your doings be in meekness and in humility before me even so Amen—
Revelation Given the same day January 12th 1838, upon an inquiry being made of the Lord, whether any branch of the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints

The Book of Mormon related that when Christ set up his church in the Americas, “they which were baptized in the name of Jesus, were called the church of Christ.” The first name used to denote the church JS organized on 6 April 1830 was “the Church of Christ...

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can be concidered a stake of Zion, untill they have acknowledged the authority of the first Presidency by a vote of such Church
Thus saith the Lord, Verrily I say unto [p. 52]
be impeached by other witnesses before such  Council

A governing body of twelve high priests. The first high council was organized in Kirtland, Ohio, on 17 February 1834 “for the purpose of settling important difficulties which might arise in the church, which could not be settled by the church, or the bishop...

View Glossary
, and when a descision is had by such and  Council in Zion

A specific location in Missouri; also a literal or figurative gathering of believers in Jesus Christ, characterized by adherence to ideals of harmony, equality, and purity. In JS’s earliest revelations “the cause of Zion” was used to broadly describe the ...

View Glossary
, it shall only be for Zion, it shall  not answer for her stakes

Ecclesiastical organization of church members in a particular locale. Stakes were typically large local organizations of church members; stake leaders could include a presidency, a high council, and a bishopric. Some revelations referred to stakes “to” or...

View Glossary
, but if such descision be  acknowledged by the Council of her stakes, then  it shall answer for her stakes, But if it is not ackn owledged by the stakes, then such stake may have  the privilege of hearing for themselves or if such des cision shall be acknowledeged by a majority of  the stakes, then it shall answer for all her stakes  And again,
The Presidency

The highest presiding body of the church. An 11 November 1831 revelation stated that the president of the high priesthood was to preside over the church. JS was ordained as president of the high priesthood on 25 January 1832. In March 1832, JS appointed two...

View Glossary
of my Church, may be  tried by the voice of the whole body of the Church  in Zion, and the voice of a majority of all her stakes140

Authorizing consideration of charges against the church presidency by the general membership of the church in Zion and in the stakes, as an alternative to a trial before high councils in Zion and the stakes, was a novel approach. Thomas B. Marsh and the Missouri high council followed a similar procedure in bringing charges against the Missouri presidency before the general membership of the church in Caldwell County, Missouri, in early February 1838. Marsh indicated that he was acting in accordance with instructions from JS, which Marsh may have received during JS’s visit to Missouri in November 1837. (See Historical Introduction to this journal.)  


 And again
Except a majority is had by the  voice of the Church of Zion and a majority of all  her stakes, The Charges will be concidered not  sustained and in order to sustain such Charge  or Charges, before such Church of Zion or her stakes,  such witnesses must be had as is named above, that is  the witnesses to each President, who are of long and faithfull  standing, that cannot be immpeached by other witnesses  before the Church of Zion, or her stakes, And all this saith  the Lord because of wicked and asspiring men,  Let all your doings be in meekness and in humility  before me even so Amen—141

In May 1837, JS was the target of a complaint from Lyman Johnson and Orson Pratt to the bishop and his council in Kirtland, charging him with “lying & misrepresentenation—also for extortion—and for speaking disrespectfully, against his brethren behind their backs.” While the charges produced no documented result, they illustrated a potential problem. In order to protect the presidency against removal by special interests or localized opposition, the revelation of 12 January 1838 stipulated qualifications for witnesses and required the concurrence of a majority of the stakes with any adverse decision made in Zion. (Complaint, Lyman Johnson and Orson Pratt, Kirtland, OH, to Bishop and council, Kirtland, OH, 29 May 1837, Newel K. Whitney, Papers, BYU.)  


Revelation Given the same day January 12th 1838,  upon an inquiry being made of the Lord, whether any  branch of the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints

The Book of Mormon related that when Christ set up his church in the Americas, “they which were baptized in the name of Jesus, were called the church of Christ.” The first name used to denote the church JS organized on 6 April 1830 was “the Church of Christ...

View Glossary
 can be concidered a stake of Zion, untill they have  acknowledged the authority of the first Presidency  by a vote of such Church
Thus saith the Lord, Verrily I say unto nay. [p. 52]
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JS, “The Scriptory Book—of Joseph Smith Jr.—President of The Church of Jesus Christ, of Latterday Saints In all the World,” Journal, Mar.–Sept. 1838; handwriting of George W. Robinson

14 May 1814–10 Feb. 1878. Clerk, postmaster, merchant, clothier, banker. Born at Pawlet, Rutland Co., Vermont. Baptized into LDS church and moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1836. Clerk and recorder for Kirtland high council, beginning Jan. 1836. Married...

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and James Mulholland

1804–3 Nov. 1839. Born in Ireland. Baptized into LDS church. Married Sarah Scott, 8 Feb. 1838, at Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri. Engaged in clerical work for JS, 1838, at Far West. Ordained a seventy, 28 Dec. 1838. After expulsion from Missouri, lived ...

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; sixty-nine pages; in “General,” Record Book, 1838, verso of Patriarchal Blessings, vol. 5, CHL. Includes redactions and archival marking.
JS’s “Scriptory Book” is recorded on pages 15 to 83 of a large record book entitled “General” that also includes a list of church members in Caldwell County

Located in northwest Missouri. Settled by whites, by 1831. Described as being “one-third timber and two-thirds prairie” in 1836. Created specifically for Latter-day Saints by Missouri state legislature, 29 Dec. 1836, in attempt to solve “Mormon problem.” ...

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, Missouri (pages 2–14), a copy of JS’s 16 December 1838 letter from the jail in Liberty

Located in western Missouri, thirteen miles north of Independence. Settled 1820. Clay Co. seat, 1822. Incorporated as town, May 1829. Following expulsion from Jackson Co., 1833, many Latter-day Saints found refuge in Clay Co., with church leaders and other...

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, Missouri (pages 101–108), and an aborted record partially entitled “Recor” in unidentified handwriting (page 110). The book, which measures 13 x 8¼ x 1¾ inches (33 x 21 x 4 cm), has 182 leaves of ledger paper sized 12½ x 7¾ inches (32 x 20 cm) with thirty-seven lines in blue ink per page. There are eighteen gatherings of various sizes, each of about a dozen leaves. The text block is sewn all along over three vellum tapes. The heavy pink endpapers each consist of a pastedown and two flyleaves pasted together. The text block edges are stained green. The volume has a hardbound ledger-style binding with a hollow-back spine and glued-on blue-striped cloth headbands. It is bound in brown split-calfskin leather with blind-tooled decoration around the outside border and along the turned-in edges of the leather on the inside covers. At some point the letter “G” was hand printed in ink on the front cover. The original leather cover over the spine—which appears to have been intentionally removed—may have borne a title or filing notation.
The journal is inscribed in black ink that later turned brown and is almost entirely in the handwriting of George W. Robinson

14 May 1814–10 Feb. 1878. Clerk, postmaster, merchant, clothier, banker. Born at Pawlet, Rutland Co., Vermont. Baptized into LDS church and moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1836. Clerk and recorder for Kirtland high council, beginning Jan. 1836. Married...

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. James Mulholland

1804–3 Nov. 1839. Born in Ireland. Baptized into LDS church. Married Sarah Scott, 8 Feb. 1838, at Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri. Engaged in clerical work for JS, 1838, at Far West. Ordained a seventy, 28 Dec. 1838. After expulsion from Missouri, lived ...

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’s handwriting appears in a copy of the 23 July 1837 revelation for Thomas B. Marsh

1 Nov. 1800–Jan. 1866. Farmer, hotel worker, waiter, horse groom, grocer, type foundry worker, teacher. Born at Acton, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of James Marsh and Molly Law. Married first Elizabeth Godkin, 1 Nov. 1820, at New York City. Moved to ...

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(D&C 112) on pages 72–74. Running heads added by Robinson throughout the journal indicate the months of the entries on the page. The volume was later used 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, as a source for JS’s multivolume manuscript history of the church. During the preparation of the history, redactions and use marks were made in graphite pencil. Redactions in graphite and ink may have been made at other times as well. In 1845, the book was turned over so that the back cover became the front and the last page became the first. This side of the book was used to record patriarchal blessings. The original spine may have been removed at this time. The spine is now labeled with a number “5”, designating its volume number in a series of books of patriarchal blessings.
The volume is listed in Nauvoo and early Utah inventories of church records, indicating continuous custody.1

Historian’s Office, “Schedule of Church Records”; “Historian’s Office Catalogue,” [2]; Historian’s Office, “Index of Records and Journals,” [12], Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL; JS, Journal, Mar.–Sept. 1838, microfilm, JS Collection, CHL.  


At some point, the leaf containing pages 54 and 55 was torn from the journal. This removed leaf—which is transcribed herein and contains, among other writings, the earliest extant text of an 8 July 1838 revelation for the Quorum of the Twelve (D&C 118)—was for a time kept in Revelation Book 2.2

Best, “Register of the Revelations Collection,” 19.  


It is now part of the Revelations Collection at the Church History Library.

Facts