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Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 March 1839

religion, and mine, is, that I firmly believe in the prophets and apostles, Jesus Christ, being the chief cornerstone. And speak as one having authority among them, and not as the scribes, and am liberal in my sentiments towards all men, in matters of opinion, and rights of conscience, whereas they are not. But enough of this. I feel highly gratified to learn of a man who had sympathy, and feelings of friendship towards a suffering, and an injured, and an innocent people: if you can do them any good, render them any assistance, or protection, in the name of suffering humanity, we beseach you, for God’s sake, and humanity’s sake, that you will do it. If you should see Gov. Robert Lucas, I wish you would have the kindness to state to him, the contents of this letter; as we know him from information to be a man of character and a gentleman. I would be glad therefore, if it were possible that he, and not only him, but every other patriotic, and humane man, should know the real facts of our sufferings: and of the unjust and cruel hand that is upon us. I have been in this State

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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one year, the 12th, day of this month; I have never borne arms at any time. I have never held any office, civil or military in this State

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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. I have only officiated as a religious teacher, in religious matters, and not in temporal matters. The only occasion I have given, was to defend my own family, in my own door yard, against the invasions of a lawless mob: and that I did not at the expense of any man’s life: but risked my own in defence of an innocent family, consisting of a wife

10 July 1804–30 Apr. 1879. Scribe, editor, boardinghouse operator, clothier. Born at Willingborough Township (later in Harmony), Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Isaac Hale and Elizabeth Lewis. Member of Methodist church at Harmony (later in Oakland...

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, five children, hired servants &c. My residence was in Far West

Originally called Shoal Creek. Located fifty-five miles northeast of Independence. Surveyed 1823; first settled by whites, 1831. Site purchased, 8 Aug. 1836, before Caldwell Co. was organized for Latter-day Saints in Missouri. William W. Phelps and John Whitmer...

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. I was surrounded with a noble, generous, and enterprising society, who were friendly to the laws, and constitution of our country: they were broken up without cause, and my family now as I suppose, if living, are in Quincy

Located on high limestone bluffs east of Mississippi River, about forty-five miles south of Nauvoo. Settled 1821. Adams Co. seat, 1825. Incorporated as town, 1834. Received city charter, 1840. Population in 1835 about 800; in 1840 about 2,300; and in 1845...

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, Illinois.
We are informed that the prisoners in Richmond

Area settled, ca. 1814. Officially platted as Ray Co. seat, 1827. Population in 1840 about 500. Seat of Fifth Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri; also location of courthouse and jails. JS and about sixty other Mormon men were incarcerated here while awaiting...

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jail, Ray county

Located in northwestern Missouri. Area settled, 1815. Created from Howard Co., 1820. Initially included all state land north of Missouri River and west of Grand River. Population in 1830 about 2,700; in 1836 about 6,600; and in 1840 about 6,600. Latter-day...

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, are much more inhumanly treated than we are; if this is the case, we will assure you, that their constitutions cannot last long, for we find ourselves wearing away very fast: and if we knew of any source whereby aid and assistance could be rendered unto us, we should most cordially petition for it: but where is liberty? Where is humanity? Where is patriotism? Where has the genius of the pedistal of the laws and constitution of our boasted country fled? Are they not slain victims at the feet of prejudice, to gratify the malice of a certain class of men, who have learned that their craft and creed cannot stand against the light of truth, when it comes to be investigated?— hence they resort to the vilest of the vile means, and to foul calumnies, and to physical force to do what? To deprive some fifty thousand, of the right of citizenship, and for what? because they are blasphemers? no: For this is contrary to their practice, as well as faith. Was it because they were tavern haunters, and drunkards? no. This charge cannot be substantiated against them as a people; it was contrary to their faith. And finally was it for any thing? no sir, not for any thing, only, that Mormonism is truth; and every man who embraced it felt himself at liberty to embrace every truth: consequently the shackles of superstition, bigotry, ignorance, and priestcraft, falls at once from his neck; and his eyes are opened to see the truth, and truth greatly prevails over priestcraft; hence the priests are alarmed, and they raise a hu-in-cry, down with these men! heresy! heresy! fanaticism! false prophet! false teachers! away with these men! crucify them! crucify them! And now sir, this is the sole cause of the persecution against the Mormon people, and now if they had been Mahomedans, Hottentots, or Pagans; or in fine sir, if their religion was as false as hell, what right would men have to drive them from their homes, and their country, or to exterminate them, so long as their religion did not interfere with the civil rights of men, according to the laws of our country? None at all. But the mind naturally being curious wants to know what those sentiments are, that are so at varience with the priests of the age, and I trust you will bear with me, while I offer to you a few of my reflections on this subject, and if they should not meet your mind, it may open a door for an exchange of ideas, and in the exercise of a proper liberality of spirit, it may not be unprofitable.
In the first place, I have stated above [p. 53]
religion, and mine, is, that I firmly be lieve in the prophets and apostles, Je sus Christ, being the chief cornerstone.  And speak as one having authority  among them, and not as the scribes,  and am liberal in my sentiments to wards all men, in matters of opinion,  and rights of conscience, whereas they  are not. But enough of this. I feel  highly gratified to learn of a man who  had sympathy, and feelings of friend ship towards a suffering, and an injur ed, and an innocent people: if you can  do them any good, render them any  assistance, or protection, in the name  of suffering humanity, we beseach you,  for God’s sake, and humanity’s sake, that  you will do it. If you should see Gov.  [Robert] Lucas, I wish you would have the  kindness to state to him, the contents  of this letter; as we know him from  information to be a man of character  and a gentleman. I would be glad  therefore, if it were possible that he,  and not only him, but every other pat riotic, and humane man, should know  the real facts of our sufferings: and of  the unjust and cruel hand that is upon  us. I have been in this State

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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one year,  the 12th, day of this month; I have  never borne arms at any time. I have  never held any office, civil or military  in this State

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...

More Info
. I have only officiated  as a religious teacher, in religious mat ters, and not in temporal matters. The  only occasion I have given, was to de fend my own family, in my own door  yard, against the invasions of a lawless  mob: and that I did not at the expense  of any man’s life: but risked my own  in defence of an innocent family, con sisting of a wife

10 July 1804–30 Apr. 1879. Scribe, editor, boardinghouse operator, clothier. Born at Willingborough Township (later in Harmony), Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Isaac Hale and Elizabeth Lewis. Member of Methodist church at Harmony (later in Oakland...

View Full Bio
, five children, hired  servants &c. My residence was in  Far West

Originally called Shoal Creek. Located fifty-five miles northeast of Independence. Surveyed 1823; first settled by whites, 1831. Site purchased, 8 Aug. 1836, before Caldwell Co. was organized for Latter-day Saints in Missouri. William W. Phelps and John Whitmer...

More Info
. I was surrounded with a  noble, generous, and enterprising so ciety, who were friendly to the laws,  and constitution of our country: they  were broken up without cause, and my  family now as I suppose, if living, are  in Quincy

Located on high limestone bluffs east of Mississippi River, about forty-five miles south of Nauvoo. Settled 1821. Adams Co. seat, 1825. Incorporated as town, 1834. Received city charter, 1840. Population in 1835 about 800; in 1840 about 2,300; and in 1845...

More Info
, Illinois.
We are informed that the prisoners  in Richmond

Area settled, ca. 1814. Officially platted as Ray Co. seat, 1827. Population in 1840 about 500. Seat of Fifth Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri; also location of courthouse and jails. JS and about sixty other Mormon men were incarcerated here while awaiting...

More Info
jail, Ray county

Located in northwestern Missouri. Area settled, 1815. Created from Howard Co., 1820. Initially included all state land north of Missouri River and west of Grand River. Population in 1830 about 2,700; in 1836 about 6,600; and in 1840 about 6,600. Latter-day...

More Info
, are  much more inhumanly treated than  we are; if this is the case, we will as sure you, that their constitutions can not last long, for we find ourselves wearing  away very fast: and if we knew of  any source whereby aid and assistance  could be rendered unto us, we should  most cordially petition for it: but  where is liberty? Where is humanity?  Where is patriotism? Where has the  genius of the pedistal of the laws and  constitution of our boasted country  fled? Are they not slain victims at the  feet of prejudice, to gratify the malice  of a certain class of men, who have  learned that their craft and creed can not stand against the light of truth,  when it comes to be investigated?—  hence they resort to the vilest of the  vile means, and to foul calumnies, and  to physical force to do what? To de prive some fifty thousand, of the right  of citizenship, and for what? because  they are blasphemers? no: For this is  contrary to their practice, as well as  faith. Was it because they were  tavern haunters, and drunkards? no.  This charge cannot be substantiated  against them as a people; it was contra ry to their faith. And finally was it  for any thing? no sir, not for any thing,  only, that Mormonism is truth; and  every man who embraced it felt him self at liberty to embrace every truth:  consequently the shackles of supersti tion, bigotry, ignorance, and priestcraft,  falls at once from his neck; and his  eyes are opened to see the truth, and  truth greatly prevails over priestcraft;  hence the priests are alarmed, and they  raise a hu-in-cry, down with these men!  heresy! heresy! fanaticism! false proph et! false teachers! away with these men!  crucify them! crucify them! And now  sir, this is the sole cause of the persecu tion against the Mormon people, and now  if they had been Mahomedans, Hotten tots, or Pagans; or in fine sir, if their  religion was as false as hell, what right  would men have to drive them from  their homes, and their country, or to ex terminate them, so long as their reli gion did not interfere with the civil  rights of men, according to the laws of  our country? None at all. But the  mind naturally being curious wants to  know what those sentiments are, that  are so at varience with the priests of  the age, and I trust you will bear with  me, while I offer to you a few of my  reflections on this subject, and if they  should not meet your mind, it may  open a door for an exchange of ideas,  and in the exercise of a proper liberal ity of spirit, it may not be unprofitable.
In the first place, I have stated above [p. 53]
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JS, letter, 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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, MO, to Isaac Galland

15 May 1791–27 Sept. 1858. Merchant, postmaster, land speculator, doctor. Born at Somerset Co., Pennsylvania. Son of Matthew Galland and Hannah Fenno. Married first Nancy Harris, 22 Mar. 1811, in Madison Co., Ohio. Married second Margaret Knight, by 1816....

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, 22 Mar. 1839; Times and Seasons, Feb. 1840, pp. 51–56.

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