26098

Letter to Martin Harris, 22 February 1831

 
Kirtland mills

Located in Newel K. Whitney store in northwest Kirtland on northeast corner of Chardon and Chillicothe roads. Whitney appointed postmaster, 29 Dec. 1826. JS and others listed “Kirtland Mills, Geauga County, Ohio” as return address for letters mailed, 1833...

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O)
18¾8

This notation is the cost of the postage on the letter. At the time, single letters that traveled between 150 and 400 miles were charged 18¾ cents in postage. (Force, National Calendar, 227.)  


23 Feby)
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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Palmyra

First permanent white settlers arrived, ca. 1789. Included village of Palmyra. Erie Canal opened, 1825, in southern portion of township. Population in 1810 about 2,200. Population in 1830 about 3,400. Home of Joseph Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith family, beginning...

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Wayne Co
N.Y.
Mail [p. [2]]
 

Postal markings in handwriting of Newel K. Whitney.  


Kirtland mills

Located in Newel K. Whitney store in northwest Kirtland on northeast corner of Chardon and Chillicothe roads. Whitney appointed postmaster, 29 Dec. 1826. JS and others listed “Kirtland Mills, Geauga County, Ohio” as return address for letters mailed, 1833...

More Info
O)
18¾8

This notation is the cost of the postage on the letter. At the time, single letters that traveled between 150 and 400 miles were charged 18¾ cents in postage. (Force, National Calendar, 227.)  


23 Feby)

Address in handwriting of Sidney Rigdon.  


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...

View Full Bio
Palmyra

First permanent white settlers arrived, ca. 1789. Included village of Palmyra. Erie Canal opened, 1825, in southern portion of township. Population in 1810 about 2,200. Population in 1830 about 3,400. Home of Joseph Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith family, beginning...

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Wayne Co
N.Y.
Mail [p. [2]]
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In this letter, JS requested that 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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come to Ohio

French explored area, 1669. British took possession following French and Indian War, 1763. Ceded to U.S., 1783. First permanent white settlement established, 1788. Northeastern portion maintained as part of Connecticut, 1786, and called Connecticut Western...

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as soon as possible. JS and a few other church members from New York

Located in northeast region of U.S. Area settled by Dutch traders, 1620s; later governed by Britain, 1664–1776. Admitted to U.S. as state, 1788. Population in 1810 about 1,000,000; in 1820 about 1,400,000; in 1830 about 1,900,000; and in 1840 about 2,400,...

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had already migrated to the 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, area, arriving by early February 1831.1

[Matthew S. Clapp], “Mormonism,” Painesville (OH) Telegraph, 15 Feb. 1831, [1]; Knight, Reminiscences, 8–9; Letter to Hyrum Smith, 3–4 Mar. 1831.  


Harris was directed to secure a place for himself to settle and to find a place for the other New York church members who would follow. The letter instructs Harris concerning the move without giving any explanation, indicating that he was already aware of the 2 January 1831 revelation instructing believers to remove to Ohio.2

See Revelation, 30 Dec. 1830 [D&C 37:3]; and Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831 [D&C 38:32].  


The letter also appears to refer to a revelation dictated earlier in the month directing “that the 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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of my Church should be called to gether.”3 JS instructed Harris to “inform the Elders” in the Palmyra

First permanent white settlers arrived, ca. 1789. Included village of Palmyra. Erie Canal opened, 1825, in southern portion of township. Population in 1810 about 2,200. Population in 1830 about 3,400. Home of Joseph Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith family, beginning...

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area to come to Kirtland immediately “by Commandment

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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of the Lord.” Harris responded quickly, arriving in Kirtland by 12 March,4

According to the Painesville Telegraph, Harris arrived in Ohio “last Saturday 12 March 1831 from the bible quarry in New-York.” (News Item, Painesville [OH] Telegraph, 15 Mar. 1831, [3], italics in original.)  


only seventeen days after this letter was postmarked in Ohio.

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