2475714

Letter from Oliver Cowdery, 28 January 1832

Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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January 28th 1832
Bro. Joseph
According to promise I transmit to you the proceedings of the confrences

A meeting where ecclesiastical officers and other church members could conduct church business. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church directed the elders to hold conferences to perform “Church business.” The first of these conferences was held on 9 June...

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held 23–24. and 27.th. which are as follows.
Minuets Minutes of a General Confrence held in the land of Zion

JS revelation, dated 20 July 1831, designated Missouri as “land of promise” for gathering of Saints and place for “city of Zion,” with Independence area as “center place” of Zion. Latter-day Saint settlements elsewhere, such as in Kirtland, Ohio, became known...

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2

Extant records of general conferences held in 1831 and 1832 indicate that all other general conferences during that time period were held in Ohio. (Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831; Minutes, 25–26 Oct. 1831; Revelation, 25 Jan. 1832–A [D&C 75:1–22].)  


(Kaw Township

Settlement by whites commenced after treaty with Osage Indians, 1825. One of three original townships organized in Jackson Co., 22 May 1827. Bordered by Missouri River on north side and Big Blue River on east and south sides; western boundary was state line...

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Jackson County Mo—.) at the dwelling house of bro. Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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3

Knight lived twelve miles southwest of Independence, two miles east of the state border. His stewardship was in the northwestern quarter of Section 33 of Township 49 North, Range 33 West, in Jackson County. (Jackson Co., MO, Land and Property Records, 1832–1857, “Record of Original Entries to Lands in Jackson County Missouri,” 20 Dec. 1898, Township 49 North, Range 33 West, p. [16], microfilm 1,019,781, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Berrett, Sacred Places, 4:84, 109–112.)  


23 First month (Jan.). AD. 1832. 3 oclock P.M.
Names of Elders

A male leader in the church generally; an ecclesiastical and priesthood office or one holding that office; a proselytizing missionary. The Book of Mormon explained that elders ordained priests and teachers and administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto...

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presant who were ordained

The conferral of power and authority; to appoint, decree, or set apart. Church members, primarily adults, were ordained to ecclesiastical offices and other responsibilities by the laying on of hands by those with the proper authority. Ordinations to priesthood...

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to the H.P.H.

The authority and power held by certain officers in the church. The Book of Mormon referred to the high priesthood as God’s “holy order, which was after the order of his Son,” and indicated that Melchizedek, a biblical figure, was a high priest “after this...

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4

“H.P.H.” refers to the high priesthood (in this instance, the office of high priest). Minutes from a 25–26 October 1831 conference at Orange, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, similarly begin with a list of “those ordained to the Highpriesthood.” All but three of those on this list (William W. Phelps, Newel Knight, and Oliver Cowdery) received the high priesthood at an early June 1831 conference held in Kirtland, Ohio. (Minutes, 25–26 Oct. 1831; Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831.)  


Names of Elders who were not ordained to the H.P.H.
Edward Partrage Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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Levi Hancock

7 Apr. 1803–10 June 1882. Born at Springfield, Hampden Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Hancock III and Amy Ward. Baptized into LDS church, 16 Nov. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Clarissa Reed, 20 Mar. 1831. Served mission to Missouri with ...

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John Correll Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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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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Isaac Morley

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

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Selah J. Griffin

Ca. 1795–after 1860. Blacksmith. Born in Virginia. Married first Polly. Lived in Morgan Township, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, by 1820. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1826. Supervisor of highways, 1827, and fence viewer, 1829, in Kirtland. Baptized into ...

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John Whitmer

27 Aug. 1802–11 July 1878. Farmer, stock raiser, newspaper editor. Born in Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Member of German Reformed Church, Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, most likely in Seneca...

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Calvin Bebee Beebe

1 July 1800–17 July 1861. Farmer, merchant, postmaster. Born in Paris, Oneida Co., New York. Son of Isaac Beebe and Olive Soule. Moved to Chardon, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1820. Married Submit Rockwell Starr, 19 Nov. 1823. Baptized into LDS church. Ordained an...

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John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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Peter Dustin

19 Apr. 1781–after 1860. Farmer, laborer. Born at Goffstown, Hillsborough Co., New Hampshire. Son of John Dustin and Sarah (Sally) Webster. Moved to Alstead, Cheshire Co., New Hampshire, by 1803. Married first Aruba (Azubah) Tubbs, 11 Sept. 1803, at Marlow...

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Wm W Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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Joshua Fairchild
Lyman Wight

9 May 1796–31 Mar. 1858. Farmer. Born at Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York. Son of Levi Wight Jr. and Sarah Corbin. Served in War of 1812. Married Harriet Benton, 5 Jan. 1823, at Henrietta, Monroe Co., New York. Moved to Warrensville, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ...

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Daniel Cathcart
Harvey Whitlock

1809–after 1880. Physician. Born in Massachusetts. Married Minerva Abbott, 21 Nov. 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 1831. Ordained an elder, by June 1831. Ordained a high priest, 4 June 1831. Served mission to Jackson Co., Missouri, with David Whitmer, 1831...

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Priest
Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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Hezekiah Peck

19 Jan. 1782–25 Aug. 1850. Millwright. Born at Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Son of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, by 1812. Married Martha Long, by 1812. Baptized...

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Parley P. Pratt

12 Apr. 1807–13 May 1857. Farmer, editor, publisher, teacher, school administrator, legislator, explorer, author. Born at Burlington, Otsego Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Traveled west with brother William to acquire land, 1823....

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Teacher
Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Isaac Bebee Beebe
Edward Partrage

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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appointed moderator and Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Clerk.——
Prayer by bro. John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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.——
By joint resolution commandments

Generally, a divine mandate that church members were expected to obey; more specifically, a text dictated by JS in the first-person voice of Deity that served to communicate knowledge and instruction to JS and his followers. Occasionally, other inspired texts...

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read relative to various subjects.5

Cowdery and Whitmer had recently brought Revelation Book 1, a manuscript book of JS’s revelations, to Missouri.  


Resolution offered by bro. Lyman Wight

9 May 1796–31 Mar. 1858. Farmer. Born at Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York. Son of Levi Wight Jr. and Sarah Corbin. Served in War of 1812. Married Harriet Benton, 5 Jan. 1823, at Henrietta, Monroe Co., New York. Moved to Warrensville, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ...

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to take into consideration the circumstances of two brethren present. (Isaac6

Isaac Beebe Sr. is listed in the 1820 census as living in Chardon, Ohio, and Isaac Beebe Jr. and George Beebe are listed in the 1830 federal census as living in Chardon. The Beebes apparently relocated to Missouri in 1831. Which Isaac is referred to here is not clear. (1820 U.S. Census, Chardon, Geauga Co., OH, 101A; 1830 U.S. Census, Chardon, Geauga Co., OH, 253A; “Deaths,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Aug. 1834, 182.)  


& George Bebee Beebe) who desired to preach the Gospel.——
39.7

This number and the number “30” on the following line apparently refer to corresponding numbers that appear on revelations in Revelation Book 1. In that book, the revelation numbered “39” concerns Partridge’s call to preach. The revelation numbered “30” states that only JS can receive revelation for the church as a whole and gives Cowdery the responsibility to lead the mission to the Lamanites. (Revelation, 9 Dec. 1830, in Revelation Book 1, p. 48 [D&C 36]; Revelation, Sept. 1830–B, in Revelation Book 1, p. 40 [D&C 28].)  


Commandment read by the Clerk

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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certain remarks made by him and bro. Wm W. Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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relative to the subject 30. Commandment read and remarks made by bro. Edward Partrage

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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concerning the duties of Priests

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. In the Book of Mormon, priests were described as those who baptized, administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto the church,” and taught “the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” A June 1829 revelation directed...

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Teachers

Generally, one who instructs, but also an ecclesiastical and priesthood office. The Book of Mormon explained that teachers were to be ordained “to preach repentance and remission of sins through Jesus Christ, by the endurance of faith on his name to the end...

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and Deacons

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. The “Articles and Covenants” directed deacons to assist teachers in their duties. Deacons were also to “warn, expound, exhort, and teach and invite all to come unto Christ.” Although deacons did not have the authority...

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their duties read by bro. John Whitmer

27 Aug. 1802–11 July 1878. Farmer, stock raiser, newspaper editor. Born in Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Member of German Reformed Church, Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, most likely in Seneca...

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from the Articles and Covenants.8

Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:46–59]. In November 1831, a revelation called for the organization of the various offices in the church into bodies of designated sizes and for the appointment of presidents for each to “set in council with them & to teach them their duty.” (Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 107:85].)  


remarks by bro. John Carrell

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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stating the office of a Priest Teacher or Deacon to be as important as that of a High Priest

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. Christ and many ancient prophets, including Abraham, were described as being high priests. The Book of Mormon used the term high priest to denote one appointed to lead the church. However, the Book of Mormon also discussed...

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.9

A November 1831 revelation outlined a hierarchy of offices in the church, ascending “from Deacon to Teacher & from Teacher to Priest & from Priest to Elder,” after which came “the high Priest hood which is the greatest of all.” (Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 107:63–64].)  


Resolved therefore that there be no person ordained in the churches

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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in the land of Zion

JS revelation, dated 20 July 1831, designated Missouri as “land of promise” for gathering of Saints and place for “city of Zion,” with Independence area as “center place” of Zion. Latter-day Saint settlements elsewhere, such as in Kirtland, Ohio, became known...

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to the office of Elder Priest Teacher or Deacon without the united voice of the church in writing in which such individual resides.10

The “Articles and Covenants” of the church merely instructed that “every elder, priest, teacher, or deacon, is to be ordained according to the gifts and calling of God unto them by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is in the one who ordains them.” However, at a November 1831 conference in Hiram, Ohio, where two individuals from Nelson, Ohio, wanted to know whether they could preach the gospel, the conference decided that the two should “be ordained according to the voice of the church in which they live.” That decision was similar to the action taken at this Missouri conference. (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:60]; Minutes, 9 Nov. 1831.)  


——
The above Resolution adopted by unanimous vote.— Records of the church which came from Chardon

Located eight miles south of Lake Erie and immediately east of Kirtland Township. Settled by 1812. Included village of Chardon. Population of township in 1820 about 430; in 1830 about 880; and in 1840 about 1,100. Two of JS’s sisters resided in township. ...

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Geauga Co. Ohio. received and laid on the Table. Presented by their Teacher Isaac Bebee11

The Articles and Covenants directed that congregations “send one of their priests or teachers to attend the several conferences held by the elders of the church with a list of the names the several persons uniting themselves to the church since the last conference.” Presenting Ohio records in Zion was in harmony with a November 1831 revelation that stated that the “Saints which are abroad in the Earth should send forth their accounts to the Land of Zion for the Land of Zion shall be a seat & a place to receive & do all these things.” (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:81–82]; Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–A [D&C 69:5–6].)  


The Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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brought forward a statement of the lands purchased for inheritances

Generally referred to land promised by or received from God for the church and its members. A January 1831 revelation promised church members a land of inheritance. In March and May 1831, JS dictated revelations commanding members “to purchase lands for an...

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for the saints amounting to nearly twelve hundred acres.—12

Partridge purchased these lands in several different transactions, all in his own name. They included a sixty-three-acre plot purchased in December 1831, which the Saints dedicated for the building of a temple. (Jones H. Flournoy and Clara Hickman Flournoy to Edward Partridge, Deed, Jackson Co., MO, 19 Dec. 1831, CHL; Edward Partridge, Petition for Redress, 15 May 1839, Edward Partridge, Papers, CHL; Land Patents for Edward Partridge, Jackson Co., MO, nos. 14, 1871, 1872, 1873, 1961, 1962, General Land Office Records, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Department of the Interior.)  


After a long discussion upon the expediency of mechanics13

“Pertaining to artisans or mechanics.” As evidenced by the request later in the letter for specific individuals skilled in blacksmithing, shoemaking, and masonry to come to Jackson County, “mechanics” as used here apparently meant craftsmen of various kinds. (“Mechanic,” in American Dictionary [1845], 523.)  


immediately moving to this land for the benefit of the church. the following resolution was proposed. Resolved that the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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be instructed to request the churches in the east to send to this land one blacksmith, two shoemakers one carpenter and joiner one mason one waggon and plow maker one tanner and currier one millwright one hatter one chair & cabinet maker, one silver Smith and one wheel wright.18

Because the Santa Fe Trail began at Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, the town probably already had some craftsmen. This resolution indicates that the elders were committed to building a self-sustaining Mormon community. (See History of Jackson County, Missouri, 170.)  


The above Resolution adopted by unanimous vote Upon motion of the Clerk

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Confrence adjourned until half past 8. Oclock A.M. Closed.——
Prayer by brother Daniel Cathcart.20

The conference report in Minute Book 2 records that John Corrill offered the closing prayer. Corrill offered the opening prayer at the conference held at Sidney Gilbert’s home on 27 January 1832, which may have confused the recorder of the minutes in Minute Book 2. (Minute Book 2, 23 Jan. 1832.)  


Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Clerk of Confrence 9. OClok eve.
24 January 1832
Confrence convened according to adjournment names called and prayer by the Clerk

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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.——
Minuets of yesterdays proceedings read. The Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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brought forward his account of moneys received from the church and also a statement of the expenditures of the same.21

See Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:34–36]; and Revelation, 20 May 1831 [D&C 51:8].  


The Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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made certain remarks relative to the subject now before the confrence stating that in consequence of not making minuets at the time of paying out moneys last summer while traveling to this land and after arriving he could not account for nearly sixty dollars and after presenting the account bro. Wm W Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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arose and said that he was knowing to the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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s paying at one time more than thirty dollars last summer for passage to this land which was not on the account presented.22

Partridge distributed funds to elders who were required by a 6 June 1831 revelation to travel to Zion. An 8 August 1831 revelation instructed Partridge to aid these elders on their return journey as well. (Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52]; Revelation, 8 Aug. 1831 [D&C 60:10].)  


By unanimous vote the above sum allowed the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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. The following is a list of the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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s account.——
Amount of funds paid over to the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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up to Jan 24. 1832. including moneys of his own
$4508.24
Amount of disbursments for lands and other necessaries for the church up to Jan 24. 1832. $3449.90 23

It is unclear how much Partridge had expended on land to this point. He purchased much of the land for $1.25 an acre. This would mean that he had paid approximately $1,500 for the nearly 1,200 acres he had purchased. Records indicate that he had spent at least $875 for nearly 660 acres by the end of 1831. (Land Patents for Edward Partridge, Jackson Co., MO, nos. 14, 1871, 1872, 1873, 1961, 1962, General Land Office Records, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Department of the Interior; Jones H. Flournoy and Clara Hickman Flournoy to Edward Partridge, Deed, Jackson Co., MO, 19 Dec. 1831, CHL.)  


Total amount of funds now remaining in the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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s hands at this date Jan 24. 1832.
$1058.34
By unanimous vote the above account accepted
Resolved that the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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lay before each General Conference held by the Elders in this land a regular account of moneys and properties received and expended for the use and benefit of this church The above carried by unanimous vote
The Con. then proceeded to take into consideration the subject of Schools. After deliberate discussion the following Resolution passed by unanimous vote. Resolved that this Confrence appoint Brs, Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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William W. Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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and John Correll

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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to superintend Schools in the Churches in this land.—24

A June 1831 revelation assigned Cowdery and Phelps the task of publishing schoolbooks. Some leaders in Kirtland objected to the appointment of Corrill to superintend schools, believing that his work as an assistant to Partridge required his full attention. (Revelation, 14 June 1831 [D&C 55:4]; Charges against Missouri Conference Preferred to JS, ca. Mar. 1832.)  


The Records of the Church which came from Colesville

Area settled, beginning 1785. Formed from Windsor Township, Apr. 1821. Population in 1830 about 2,400. Villages within township included Harpursville, Nineveh, and Colesville. Susquehanna River ran through eastern portion of township. JS worked for Joseph...

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N.Y. received and laid on the Table. presented by their Priest Hezekiah Peck

19 Jan. 1782–25 Aug. 1850. Millwright. Born at Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Son of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, by 1812. Married Martha Long, by 1812. Baptized...

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.25

About sixty church members from Colesville, New York, relocated together to Kaw Township after a sojourn in Thompson, Ohio, arriving in late July 1831. They settled on an eighty-acre tract of land in the northwest corner of Section 33 of Township 49 North, Range 33 West. (Knight, Reminiscences, 9; Jackson Co., MO, Land and Property Records, 1832–1857, “Record of Original Entries to Lands in Jackson County Missouri,” 20 Dec. 1898, Township 49 North, Range 33 West, p. [16], microfilm, 1,019,781, U. S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Berrett, Sacred Places, 4:110n12.)  


Upon motion of bro. John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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bro. John Correll

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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appointed by unanimous vote to keep the General Church Record of names of the Desiples

Generally, a follower of Jesus Christ, and in certain cases, one selected to lead the ministry. In the New Testament, Christ ordained twelve of his disciples as apostles. The Book of Mormon recounted that during his ministry to the Nephites, Christ similarly...

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in this land. according to the church Covenants.26

That is, the Articles and Covenants. These stated that a “regular list of all the names of the members of the whole church” were to be kept in a book “by one of the elders whomesoever the other elders shall appoint from time to time.” That list was called “the general church record of names.” Although a March 1831 revelation gave John Whitmer the responsibility to “keep the Church Record & History continually,” Corrill was here appointed to keep the record for Zion—an assignment to which some Ohio leaders objected. (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:82–83]; Revelation, ca. 8 Mar. 1831–B [D&C 47:3]; Charges against Missouri Conference Preferred to JS, ca. Mar. 1832.)  


—— Resolved that the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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be instructed to establish a house of entertainment in the Town of Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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to accommodate the traveling Elders of this Church and other brethren whose circumstances may require.28

There is no extant record that a “house of entertainment” was ever built or begun. By 1838, Smallwood Noland, who was not a member of the church, was operating a log hotel and tavern in Independence that Parley P. Pratt called a “respectable hotel.” Whether that hotel was in operation in January 1832 is unclear. (Berrett, Sacred Places, 4:49–50; Pratt, History of the Late Persecution, 46.)  


Also inquirers from a distance &c. to be supported out of the General Church fund a regular return of its expenditures and income to be made to each [p. [1]]
Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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January [2]8th1

TEXT: “[Hole in paper]8th”.  


1832
Bro. Joseph
According to promise I trans mit to you the proceedings of the confrences

A meeting where ecclesiastical officers and other church members could conduct church business. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church directed the elders to hold conferences to perform “Church business.” The first of these conferences was held on 9 June...

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held 23–24. and 27.th. which are as follows.
Minuets [Minutes] of a General Confrence held in the land of Zion

JS revelation, dated 20 July 1831, designated Missouri as “land of promise” for gathering of Saints and place for “city of Zion,” with Independence area as “center place” of Zion. Latter-day Saint settlements elsewhere, such as in Kirtland, Ohio, became known...

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2

Extant records of general conferences held in 1831 and 1832 indicate that all other general conferences during that time period were held in Ohio. (Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831; Minutes, 25–26 Oct. 1831; Revelation, 25 Jan. 1832–A [D&C 75:1–22].)  


(Kaw Township

Settlement by whites commenced after treaty with Osage Indians, 1825. One of three original townships organized in Jackson Co., 22 May 1827. Bordered by Missouri River on north side and Big Blue River on east and south sides; western boundary was state line...

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Jackson County Mo—.)  at the dwelling house of bro. Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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3

Knight lived twelve miles southwest of Independence, two miles east of the state border. His stewardship was in the northwestern quarter of Section 33 of Township 49 North, Range 33 West, in Jackson County. (Jackson Co., MO, Land and Property Records, 1832–1857, “Record of Original Entries to Lands in Jackson County Missouri,” 20 Dec. 1898, Township 49 North, Range 33 West, p. [16], microfilm 1,019,781, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Berrett, Sacred Places, 4:84, 109–112.)  


<23> First month (Jan.). AD. 1832. 3 oclock P.M.
Names of Elders

A male leader in the church generally; an ecclesiastical and priesthood office or one holding that office; a proselytizing missionary. The Book of Mormon explained that elders ordained priests and teachers and administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto...

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presant who  were ordained

The conferral of power and authority; to appoint, decree, or set apart. Church members, primarily adults, were ordained to ecclesiastical offices and other responsibilities by the laying on of hands by those with the proper authority. Ordinations to priesthood...

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to the H.P.H.

The authority and power held by certain officers in the church. The Book of Mormon referred to the high priesthood as God’s “holy order, which was after the order of his Son,” and indicated that Melchizedek, a biblical figure, was a high priest “after this...

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4

“H.P.H.” refers to the high priesthood (in this instance, the office of high priest). Minutes from a 25–26 October 1831 conference at Orange, Cuyahoga County, Ohio, similarly begin with a list of “those ordained to the Highpriesthood.” All but three of those on this list (William W. Phelps, Newel Knight, and Oliver Cowdery) received the high priesthood at an early June 1831 conference held in Kirtland, Ohio. (Minutes, 25–26 Oct. 1831; Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831.)  


Names of Elders who were  not ordained to the H.P.H.
Edward Partrage [Partridge]

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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Levi Hancock

7 Apr. 1803–10 June 1882. Born at Springfield, Hampden Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Hancock III and Amy Ward. Baptized into LDS church, 16 Nov. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Clarissa Reed, 20 Mar. 1831. Served mission to Missouri with ...

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John Correll [Corrill]

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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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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Isaac Morley

11 Mar. 1786–24 June 1865. Farmer, cooper, merchant, postmaster. Born at Montague, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Morley and Editha (Edith) Marsh. Family affiliated with Presbyterian church. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, before 1812. Married...

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Selah J. Griffin

Ca. 1795–after 1860. Blacksmith. Born in Virginia. Married first Polly. Lived in Morgan Township, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, by 1820. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1826. Supervisor of highways, 1827, and fence viewer, 1829, in Kirtland. Baptized into ...

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John Whitmer

27 Aug. 1802–11 July 1878. Farmer, stock raiser, newspaper editor. Born in Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Member of German Reformed Church, Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, most likely in Seneca...

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Calvin Bebee [Beebe]

1 July 1800–17 July 1861. Farmer, merchant, postmaster. Born in Paris, Oneida Co., New York. Son of Isaac Beebe and Olive Soule. Moved to Chardon, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1820. Married Submit Rockwell Starr, 19 Nov. 1823. Baptized into LDS church. Ordained an...

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John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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Peter Dustin

19 Apr. 1781–after 1860. Farmer, laborer. Born at Goffstown, Hillsborough Co., New Hampshire. Son of John Dustin and Sarah (Sally) Webster. Moved to Alstead, Cheshire Co., New Hampshire, by 1803. Married first Aruba (Azubah) Tubbs, 11 Sept. 1803, at Marlow...

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Wm W Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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Joshua Fairchild
Lyman Wight

9 May 1796–31 Mar. 1858. Farmer. Born at Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York. Son of Levi Wight Jr. and Sarah Corbin. Served in War of 1812. Married Harriet Benton, 5 Jan. 1823, at Henrietta, Monroe Co., New York. Moved to Warrensville, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ...

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Daniel Cathcart
Harvey Whitlock

1809–after 1880. Physician. Born in Massachusetts. Married Minerva Abbott, 21 Nov. 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 1831. Ordained an elder, by June 1831. Ordained a high priest, 4 June 1831. Served mission to Jackson Co., Missouri, with David Whitmer, 1831...

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Priest
Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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Hezekiah Peck

19 Jan. 1782–25 Aug. 1850. Millwright. Born at Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Son of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, by 1812. Married Martha Long, by 1812. Baptized...

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Parley [P.] Pratt

12 Apr. 1807–13 May 1857. Farmer, editor, publisher, teacher, school administrator, legislator, explorer, author. Born at Burlington, Otsego Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Traveled west with brother William to acquire land, 1823....

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Teacher
Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Isaac Bebee [Beebe]
Edward Partrage

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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appointed moderator and  Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Clerk.——
Prayer by bro. John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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.——
By joint resolution commandments

Generally, a divine mandate that church members were expected to obey; more specifically, a text dictated by JS in the first-person voice of Deity that served to communicate knowledge and instruction to JS and his followers. Occasionally, other inspired texts...

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read  relative to various subjects.5

Cowdery and Whitmer had recently brought Revelation Book 1, a manuscript book of JS’s revelations, to Missouri.  


Resolution of fered by bro. Lyman Wight

9 May 1796–31 Mar. 1858. Farmer. Born at Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York. Son of Levi Wight Jr. and Sarah Corbin. Served in War of 1812. Married Harriet Benton, 5 Jan. 1823, at Henrietta, Monroe Co., New York. Moved to Warrensville, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ...

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to take into con sideration the circumstances of two brethren  present. (Isaac6

Isaac Beebe Sr. is listed in the 1820 census as living in Chardon, Ohio, and Isaac Beebe Jr. and George Beebe are listed in the 1830 federal census as living in Chardon. The Beebes apparently relocated to Missouri in 1831. Which Isaac is referred to here is not clear. (1820 U.S. Census, Chardon, Geauga Co., OH, 101A; 1830 U.S. Census, Chardon, Geauga Co., OH, 253A; “Deaths,” The Evening and the Morning Star, Aug. 1834, 182.)  


& George Bebee [Beebe]) who desired to  preach the Gospel.——
39.7

This number and the number “30” on the following line apparently refer to corresponding numbers that appear on revelations in Revelation Book 1. In that book, the revelation numbered “39” concerns Partridge’s call to preach. The revelation numbered “30” states that only JS can receive revelation for the church as a whole and gives Cowdery the responsibility to lead the mission to the Lamanites. (Revelation, 9 Dec. 1830, in Revelation Book 1, p. 48 [D&C 36]; Revelation, Sept. 1830–B, in Revelation Book 1, p. 40 [D&C 28].)  


Commandment read by the Clerk

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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certain  remarks made by him and bro. Wm W. Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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 relative to the subject 30. Commandment read and remarks made by bro. Edward Partrage

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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 concerning the duties of Priests

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. In the Book of Mormon, priests were described as those who baptized, administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto the church,” and taught “the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” A June 1829 revelation directed...

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Teachers

Generally, one who instructs, but also an ecclesiastical and priesthood office. The Book of Mormon explained that teachers were to be ordained “to preach repentance and remission of sins through Jesus Christ, by the endurance of faith on his name to the end...

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and Deacons

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. The “Articles and Covenants” directed deacons to assist teachers in their duties. Deacons were also to “warn, expound, exhort, and teach and invite all to come unto Christ.” Although deacons did not have the authority...

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their duties read by bro. John Whitmer

27 Aug. 1802–11 July 1878. Farmer, stock raiser, newspaper editor. Born in Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Member of German Reformed Church, Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, most likely in Seneca...

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 from the Articles and Covenants.8

Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:46–59]. In November 1831, a revelation called for the organization of the various offices in the church into bodies of designated sizes and for the appointment of presidents for each to “set in council with them & to teach them their duty.” (Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 107:85].)  


remarks by bro. John Carrell

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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stating the office of a Priest  Teacher or Deacon to be as important as that of a High Priest

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. Christ and many ancient prophets, including Abraham, were described as being high priests. The Book of Mormon used the term high priest to denote one appointed to lead the church. However, the Book of Mormon also discussed...

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.9

A November 1831 revelation outlined a hierarchy of offices in the church, ascending “from Deacon to Teacher & from Teacher to Priest & from Priest to Elder,” after which came “the high Priest hood which is the greatest of all.” (Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–B [D&C 107:63–64].)  


Resolved therefore that there  be no person ordained in the churches

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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in this the land of Zion

JS revelation, dated 20 July 1831, designated Missouri as “land of promise” for gathering of Saints and place for “city of Zion,” with Independence area as “center place” of Zion. Latter-day Saint settlements elsewhere, such as in Kirtland, Ohio, became known...

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to the office of Elder Priest Teacher or Deacon  without the united voice of the church in writing in which such individual resides.10

The “Articles and Covenants” of the church merely instructed that “every elder, priest, teacher, or deacon, is to be ordained according to the gifts and calling of God unto them by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is in the one who ordains them.” However, at a November 1831 conference in Hiram, Ohio, where two individuals from Nelson, Ohio, wanted to know whether they could preach the gospel, the conference decided that the two should “be ordained according to the voice of the church in which they live.” That decision was similar to the action taken at this Missouri conference. (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:60]; Minutes, 9 Nov. 1831.)  


——
The above Resolution adopted by unanimous vote.— Records of the church which came  from Chardon

Located eight miles south of Lake Erie and immediately east of Kirtland Township. Settled by 1812. Included village of Chardon. Population of township in 1820 about 430; in 1830 about 880; and in 1840 about 1,100. Two of JS’s sisters resided in township. ...

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Geauga Co. Ohio. received and laid on the Table. Presented by their Teacher Isaac Bebee11

The Articles and Covenants directed that congregations “send one of their priests or teachers to attend the several conferences held by the elders of the church with a list of the names the several persons uniting themselves to the church since the last conference.” Presenting Ohio records in Zion was in harmony with a November 1831 revelation that stated that the “Saints which are abroad in the Earth should send forth their accounts to the Land of Zion for the Land of Zion shall be a seat & a place to receive & do all these things.” (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:81–82]; Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–A [D&C 69:5–6].)  


The Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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brought forward a statement of the lands purchased for inheritances

Generally referred to land promised by or received from God for the church and its members. A January 1831 revelation promised church members a land of inheritance. In March and May 1831, JS dictated revelations commanding members “to purchase lands for an...

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for the saints amo unting to nearly twelve hundred acres.—12

Partridge purchased these lands in several different transactions, all in his own name. They included a sixty-three-acre plot purchased in December 1831, which the Saints dedicated for the building of a temple. (Jones H. Flournoy and Clara Hickman Flournoy to Edward Partridge, Deed, Jackson Co., MO, 19 Dec. 1831, CHL; Edward Partridge, Petition for Redress, 15 May 1839, Edward Partridge, Papers, CHL; Land Patents for Edward Partridge, Jackson Co., MO, nos. 14, 1871, 1872, 1873, 1961, 1962, General Land Office Records, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Department of the Interior.)  


After a long discussion upon the expenditures expedi ency of mechanics13

“Pertaining to artisans or mechanics.” As evidenced by the request later in the letter for specific individuals skilled in blacksmithing, shoemaking, and masonry to come to Jackson County, “mechanics” as used here apparently meant craftsmen of various kinds. (“Mechanic,” in American Dictionary [1845], 523.)  


immediately moving to this land for the be[n]efit14

TEXT: “be[hole in paper]efit”.  


of the church. the follow ing resolution was proposed. Resolved that the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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be instructed to request the churches  in the east to send to this land o[n]e15

TEXT: “o[hole in paper]e”.  


blacksmith, two shoemakers one carpenter and joiner one mason  one waggon and plow maker o[n]e16

TEXT: “o[hole in paper]e”.  


tanner and currier one millwright one hatter one chair &  cabinet maker, one silver Sm[it]h17

TEXT: “Sm[hole in paper]h”.  


and one wheel wright.18

Because the Santa Fe Trail began at Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, the town probably already had some craftsmen. This resolution indicates that the elders were committed to building a self-sustaining Mormon community. (See History of Jackson County, Missouri, 170.)  


The abo[v]e19

TEXT: “abo[hole in paper]e”.  


Resolution adopted by unanimous vote  Upon motion of the Clerk

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Confrence adjourned until half past 8. Oclock A.M. Closed.——
Prayer by brother Daniel Cathcart.20

The conference report in Minute Book 2 records that John Corrill offered the closing prayer. Corrill offered the opening prayer at the conference held at Sidney Gilbert’s home on 27 January 1832, which may have confused the recorder of the minutes in Minute Book 2. (Minute Book 2, 23 Jan. 1832.)  


Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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Clerk of Confrence 9. OClok eve.
[24 January 1832]
Confrence convened according to adjournment names called and prayer by the Clerk

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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.——
Minuets of yesterdays proceedings read. The Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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brought forward his account of moneys received  from the church and also a statement of the expenditures of the same.21

See Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:34–36]; and Revelation, 20 May 1831 [D&C 51:8].  


The Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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made certain rem arks relative to the subject now before the confrence stating that in consequence of not making minuets at the  time of paying out moneys last summer while traveling to this land and after arriving he could not  account for nearly sixty dollars and after presenting the account bro. Wm W Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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arose and said  that he was knowing to the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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s paying at one time more than thirty dollars last summer for pas sage to this land which was not on the account presented.22

Partridge distributed funds to elders who were required by a 6 June 1831 revelation to travel to Zion. An 8 August 1831 revelation instructed Partridge to aid these elders on their return journey as well. (Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52]; Revelation, 8 Aug. 1831 [D&C 60:10].)  


By unanimous vote the above sum al lowed the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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. The following is a list of the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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s account.——
Amount of funds paid over to the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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 up to Jan 24. 1832. including moneys of his own
$4508.24
Amount of disbursments for lands and other  necessaries for the church up to Jan 24. 1832. $3449.90 23

It is unclear how much Partridge had expended on land to this point. He purchased much of the land for $1.25 an acre. This would mean that he had paid approximately $1,500 for the nearly 1,200 acres he had purchased. Records indicate that he had spent at least $875 for nearly 660 acres by the end of 1831. (Land Patents for Edward Partridge, Jackson Co., MO, nos. 14, 1871, 1872, 1873, 1961, 1962, General Land Office Records, Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Department of the Interior; Jones H. Flournoy and Clara Hickman Flournoy to Edward Partridge, Deed, Jackson Co., MO, 19 Dec. 1831, CHL.)  


Total amount of funds now remaining in the  Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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s hands at this date Jan 24. 1832.
$1058.34
By unanimous vote the above account accepted
Resolved that the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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lay before each Gen eral Con[ference] held by the Elders in this land a reg ular account of moneys and properties recei ved and expended for the use and benefit  of this church The above carried by unanimous vote
The Con. then proceeded to take into considera tion the subject of Schools. After deliberate  discussion the following Resolution passed  by unanimous vote. Resolved that this  Confrence appoint Brs, Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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William W. Phelps

17 Feb. 1792–7 Mar. 1872. Writer, teacher, printer, newspaper editor, publisher, postmaster, lawyer. Born at Hanover, Morris Co., New Jersey. Son of Enon Phelps and Mehitabel Goldsmith. Moved to Homer, Cortland Co., New York, 1800. Married Sally Waterman,...

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and John Correll

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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to superintend Sch ools in this land. the Churches in this land.—24

A June 1831 revelation assigned Cowdery and Phelps the task of publishing schoolbooks. Some leaders in Kirtland objected to the appointment of Corrill to superintend schools, believing that his work as an assistant to Partridge required his full attention. (Revelation, 14 June 1831 [D&C 55:4]; Charges against Missouri Conference Preferred to JS, ca. Mar. 1832.)  


The Records of the Church which came from Colesville

Area settled, beginning 1785. Formed from Windsor Township, Apr. 1821. Population in 1830 about 2,400. Villages within township included Harpursville, Nineveh, and Colesville. Susquehanna River ran through eastern portion of township. JS worked for Joseph...

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N.Y. rece ived and laid on the Table. presented by their Priest Hezekiah Peck

19 Jan. 1782–25 Aug. 1850. Millwright. Born at Guilford, Cumberland Co., New York (later in Windham Co., Vermont). Son of Joseph Peck and Elizabeth Read. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, by 1812. Married Martha Long, by 1812. Baptized...

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.25

About sixty church members from Colesville, New York, relocated together to Kaw Township after a sojourn in Thompson, Ohio, arriving in late July 1831. They settled on an eighty-acre tract of land in the northwest corner of Section 33 of Township 49 North, Range 33 West. (Knight, Reminiscences, 9; Jackson Co., MO, Land and Property Records, 1832–1857, “Record of Original Entries to Lands in Jackson County Missouri,” 20 Dec. 1898, Township 49 North, Range 33 West, p. [16], microfilm, 1,019,781, U. S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Berrett, Sacred Places, 4:110n12.)  


Upon motion of bro. John Murdock

15 July 1792–23 Dec. 1871. Farmer. Born at Kortright, Delaware Co., New York. Son of John Murdock Sr. and Eleanor Riggs. Joined Lutheran Dutch Church, ca. 1817, then Presbyterian Seceder Church shortly after. Moved to Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, ca. 1819....

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 bro. John Correll

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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appointed by unanimous vote to keep the General Church Record of <the> names of the Desiples

Generally, a follower of Jesus Christ, and in certain cases, one selected to lead the ministry. In the New Testament, Christ ordained twelve of his disciples as apostles. The Book of Mormon recounted that during his ministry to the Nephites, Christ similarly...

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 in this land. according to the church Covenants.26

That is, the Articles and Covenants. These stated that a “regular list of all the names of the members of the whole church” were to be kept in a book “by one of the elders whomesoever the other elders shall appoint from time to time.” That list was called “the general church record of names.” Although a March 1831 revelation gave John Whitmer the responsibility to “keep the Church Record & History continually,” Corrill was here appointed to keep the record for Zion—an assignment to which some Ohio leaders objected. (Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:82–83]; Revelation, ca. 8 Mar. 1831–B [D&C 47:3]; Charges against Missouri Conference Preferred to JS, ca. Mar. 1832.)  


—— Resolved that the Bishop

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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be instructed to estab lish a house of entertainment i[n]27

TEXT: “i[hole in paper]”.  


the Town of Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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to accommodate the traveling Elders of this  Church and other brethren whose circumstances may require.28

There is no extant record that a “house of entertainment” was ever built or begun. By 1838, Smallwood Noland, who was not a member of the church, was operating a log hotel and tavern in Independence that Parley P. Pratt called a “respectable hotel.” Whether that hotel was in operation in January 1832 is unclear. (Berrett, Sacred Places, 4:49–50; Pratt, History of the Late Persecution, 46.)  


Also inquirers from a distance &c. to be supported  out of the General Church fund a regular return of its expenditures and income to be made to each [p. [1]]
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This 28 January 1832 letter from Oliver Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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provided JS with important information about the welfare of the Mormon community in 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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. Cowdery and John Whitmer

27 Aug. 1802–11 July 1878. Farmer, stock raiser, newspaper editor. Born in Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Member of German Reformed Church, Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, most likely in Seneca...

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were directed in a November 1831 revelation to travel to Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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, Jackson County, Missouri, carrying copies of JS’s revelations, which the church planned to publish.1

Revelation, 11 Nov. 1831–A [D&C 69:1–2].  


They were also instructed to take with them money donated by church members to aid in purchasing land in the Independence area.2

An August 1831 revelation instructed Sidney Rigdon to write “an Epistle & subscription to be presented unto all the Churches to obtain money to be put into the hands of the Bishop to purchase lands for an inheritance for the children of God.” (Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:50–51].)  


Departing on 20 November 1831, Cowdery and Whitmer arrived in Independence on 5 January 1832.3

Whitmer, History, 38; Minute Book 2, 23 Jan. 1832.  


On 23–24 January, they held a two-day conference

A meeting where ecclesiastical officers and other church members could conduct church business. The “Articles and Covenants” of the church directed the elders to hold conferences to perform “Church business.” The first of these conferences was held on 9 June...

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in the home of Newel Knight

13 Sept. 1800–11 Jan. 1847. Miller, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Knight Sr. and Polly Peck. Moved to Jericho (later Bainbridge), Chenango Co., New York, ca. 1809. Moved to Windsor (later in Colesville), Broome Co., New...

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in Kaw Township

Settlement by whites commenced after treaty with Osage Indians, 1825. One of three original townships organized in Jackson Co., 22 May 1827. Bordered by Missouri River on north side and Big Blue River on east and south sides; western boundary was state line...

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, Missouri; they supplemented it with a special conference on 27 January at Sidney Gilbert

28 Dec. 1789–29 June 1834. Merchant. Born at New Haven, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Eli Gilbert and Lydia Hemingway. Moved to Huntington, Fairfield Co., Connecticut; to Monroe, Monroe Co., Michigan Territory, by Sept. 1818; to Painesville, Geauga Co...

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’s residence in Independence. As clerk of the conferences, Cowdery kept the minutes and shortly thereafter copied them into this 28 January letter to JS.4

Cowdery’s minutes in this letter are more expansive than those Ebenezer Robinson later copied into Minute Book 2. It is possible that Whitmer, who kept minutes of several Missouri conferences in 1832, kept his own record of the 23 January meeting. If so, Robinson may have copied Whitmer’s minutes. (See Minute Book 2, 23 Jan. 1832.)  


The minutes highlight the continued development of 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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in northwestern Jackson County

Settled at Fort Osage, 1808. County created, 16 Feb. 1825; organized 1826. Named after U.S. president Andrew Jackson. Featured fertile lands along Missouri River and was Santa Fe Trail departure point, which attracted immigrants to area. Area of county reduced...

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and the role of leaders such as Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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and Gilbert

28 Dec. 1789–29 June 1834. Merchant. Born at New Haven, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Eli Gilbert and Lydia Hemingway. Moved to Huntington, Fairfield Co., Connecticut; to Monroe, Monroe Co., Michigan Territory, by Sept. 1818; to Painesville, Geauga Co...

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in that development. As bishop

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. JS appointed Edward Partridge as the first bishop in February 1831. Following this appointment, Partridge functioned as the local leader of the church in Missouri. Later revelations described a bishop’s duties as receiving...

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, Partridge was responsible for overseeing the purchase of land in Jackson County in concert with Gilbert, who was an agent to the church in 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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. Partridge also had the task of providing Saints with their “inheritance[s]

Generally referred to land promised by or received from God for the church and its members. A January 1831 revelation promised church members a land of inheritance. In March and May 1831, JS dictated revelations commanding members “to purchase lands for an...

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,” and Gilbert was directed by revelation to operate a store

JS revelation, dated 20 July 1831, directed A. Sidney Gilbert, Newel K. Whitney’s Ohio business partner, to establish store in Independence. Gilbert first purchased vacated log courthouse, located on lot 59 at intersection of Lynn and Lexington Streets, to...

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in Independence

Located twelve miles from western Missouri border. Permanently settled, platted, and designated county seat, 1827. Hub for steamboat travel on Missouri River. Point of departure for Santa Fe Trail. Population in 1831 about 300. Mormon population by summer...

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to generate revenues with which to purchase more land and to provision the church members who settled it.5

Revelation, 20 May 1831 [D&C 51:3–4]; Revelation, 8 June 1831 [D&C 53:4]; Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:4–8].  


The minutes contain accountings from both Partridge and Gilbert of the moneys expended by them and a report from Partridge on land purchases. The minutes also record discussions concerning plans for schools for the Saints, the need for more skilled craftsmen to come to Missouri, and other subjects. In addition to the minutes, Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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’s letter includes a transcript of a note from Partridge to JS, a few words of general correspondence from Cowdery himself, and a list of projected costs of printing the revelations, which was to be conveyed to Martin Harris

18 May 1783–10 July 1875. Farmer. Born at Easton, Albany Co., New York. Son of Nathan Harris and Rhoda Lapham. Moved with parents to area of Swift’s landing (later in Palmyra), Ontario Co., New York, 1793. Married first his first cousin Lucy Harris, 27 Mar...

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.
Cowdery

3 Oct. 1806–3 Mar. 1850. Clerk, teacher, justice of the peace, lawyer, newspaper editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Raised Congregationalist. Moved to western New York and clerked at a store, ca. 1825–1828...

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’s letter was written to JS, who was living in Hiram

Area settled by immigrants from Pennsylvania and New England, ca. 1802. Located in northeastern Ohio about twenty-five miles southeast of Kirtland. Population in 1830 about 500. Population in 1840 about 1,100. JS lived in township at home of John and Alice...

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, Ohio, but it was sent to Newel K. Whitney

3/5 Feb. 1795–23 Sept. 1850. Trader, merchant. Born at Marlborough, Windham Co., Vermont. Son of Samuel Whitney and Susanna Kimball. Moved to Fairfield, Herkimer Co., New York, 1803. Merchant at Plattsburg, Clinton Co., New York, 1814. Mercantile clerk for...

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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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, Ohio, even though there was a post office in Hiram.6

Register of Officers and Agents [1830], 49 (second numbering).  


Cowdery had directed previous correspondence from Missouri

Area acquired by U.S. in Louisiana Purchase, 1803, and established as territory, 1812. Missouri Compromise, 1820, admitted Missouri as slave state, 1821. Population in 1830 about 140,000; in 1836 about 240,000; and in 1840 about 380,000. Mormon missionaries...

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to Whitney, who served as the postmaster of Kirtland, in part because he believed Whitney’s position allowed Whitney franking privileges, which gave him “the benefits of free postage.”7

Letter from Oliver Cowdery, 8 Apr. 1831. According to the statute governing franking, postmasters could use the privilege for both incoming and outgoing correspondence that was business related and weighed no more than half an ounce. It is unclear, however, whether Whitney ever invoked his franking privilege for letters to or from Cowdery. (An Act to Reduce into One the Several Acts Establishing and Regulating the Post-Office Department [3 Mar. 1825], in Post-Office Laws, Instructions and Forms, 15–16, sec. 27.)  


JS may have obtained the letter when he made a short visit to Kirtland from 29 February to 4 March 1832, or someone from Kirtland could have brought the letter to JS in Hiram before then.8

Note, 8 Mar. 1832. Mail between Independence and Kirtland generally required three to four weeks of travel time. (Hartley, “Letters and Mail between Kirtland and Independence,” 176.)  


Regardless of the method of delivery, it is clear the letter reached Kirtland because in March, several leaders issued charges of misconduct against the Missouri conference based on their reading of Cowdery’s minutes.9 Also, the list of printing costs intended for Harris was cut from the letter, as Cowdery suggested, and presumably given to him.

Facts