53993290

Letter to Robert D. Foster, 30 December 1839

INTERESTING RELIC.
Alleged Autograph Letter From Joseph Smith.
Through the courtesy of Mr. John R. Kinnear, a Chronicle reporter was yesterday shown an autograph letter written by the famous Mormon prophet, Joseph Smith, a copy of which is given below. The manuscript is written in a somewhat cramped, but still legible hand, and shows a total disregard for the rules of punctuation, not a single point of this character appearing in the original. The letter was addressed to Robert D. Foster

14 Mar. 1811–1 Feb. 1878. Physician, land speculator. Born in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. Son of John Foster and Jane Knibb. Married Sarah Phinney, 18 July 1837, at Medina Co., Ohio. Baptized into LDS church, before Oct. 1839. Ordained an elder,...

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, one of the Mormon apostles, at that time in Washington city

Created as district for seat of U.S. federal government by act of Congress, 1790, and named Washington DC, 1791. Named in honor of George Washington. Headquarters of executive, legislative, and judicial branches of U.S. government relocated to Washington ...

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endeavoring to influence legislation favorably to the new creed The mass of the Mormons were then settled at Nauvoo

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

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, Ills., where dissension was rife between them and the Gentile population. A reference to this disturbance is made by Smith in the subjoined letter, written from near Philadelphia

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

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shortly after one of his visits to that city. The manuscript came into the possession of Mr. Kinnear through a client of his, the executor of Foster

14 Mar. 1811–1 Feb. 1878. Physician, land speculator. Born in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. Son of John Foster and Jane Knibb. Married Sarah Phinney, 18 July 1837, at Medina Co., Ohio. Baptized into LDS church, before Oct. 1839. Ordained an elder,...

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, and is lent additional interest from the present vexed state of the Mormon question. It reads as follows:
Jersey Church, Near Warrenton, December 30th, 1839.
Dear Brother: I received a letter from you and one from President Sidney Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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which gave me much satisfaction. I have had a very good visit in this place and enjoyed myself very agreeably. I have preached and bore testimony several times in this city. The church in Philadelphia

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

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number about forty-five members, and there were four or five more candidates this this morning when I left the city. We came away this morning before the postoffice was open and probably missed of hearing further from you. I was glad to hear that Pres. Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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is gaining further in health, and trust that it will please God to restore him again speedily to health, so that he may be able to attend to the duties which necessarily devolve on him in that place, and also that his voice may be once more heard among the congregations of the saints, and also among those that are not yet saints. He would be a very welcome visitor in Philadelphia

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

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and the rest of the churches in this region. I think a great work will yet be done in Philadelphia

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

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. Our meeting house is very much crowded with attentive hearers and there are no doubt many believers from the favorable expressions, friendly treatment and good feelings which they manifest towards myself and the brethren. I have many invitations to visit private families in almost every part of the city, many more than I can possibly attend to. I am at this time surrounded by a good circle of brethren, sisters and friends. I hope you will by the help of God be able to succeed in Washington

Created as district for seat of U.S. federal government by act of Congress, 1790, and named Washington DC, 1791. Named in honor of George Washington. Headquarters of executive, legislative, and judicial branches of U.S. government relocated to Washington ...

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to the utmost of your expectations in bringing many from darkness to light, and that the deaf may hear the words of the book, that they who erred in judgment may come to understanding, and they that murmured may learn doctrine, and that the fear of God may not be taught by the precepts of men but accorded to the will of God. I expect you will write to us as usual. I have been laboring here so constant that I have not been able to write to you, and Judge Elias Higbee

23 Oct. 1795–8 June 1843. Clerk, judge, surveyor. Born at Galloway, Gloucester Co., New Jersey. Son of Isaac Higbee and Sophia Somers. Moved to Clermont Co., Ohio, 1803. Married Sarah Elizabeth Ward, 10 Sept. 1818, in Tate Township, Clermont Co. Lived at ...

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has been here but a short time. He has been engaged in writing the affidavit that President Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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has called for. We have our wagon and horses in Jersey. We found no sale for them in Philadelphia

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

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, hence we have brought them here. 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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has arrived in this city. He has brought some books here. He has got a new work published of some poems, with a treatise on the eternity of matter. etc., etc. Brother Orson Pratt

19 Sept. 1811–3 Oct. 1881. Farmer, writer, teacher, merchant, surveyor, editor, publisher. Born at Hartford, Washington Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Moved to New Lebanon, Columbia Co., New York, 1814; to Canaan, Columbia Co., fall...

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is also here, and is on his way to New York

Dutch founded New Netherland colony, 1625. Incorporated under British control and renamed New York, 1664. Harbor contributed to economic and population growth of city; became largest city in American colonies. British troops defeated Continental Army under...

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. Judge

23 Oct. 1795–8 June 1843. Clerk, judge, surveyor. Born at Galloway, Gloucester Co., New Jersey. Son of Isaac Higbee and Sophia Somers. Moved to Clermont Co., Ohio, 1803. Married Sarah Elizabeth Ward, 10 Sept. 1818, in Tate Township, Clermont Co. Lived at ...

View Full Bio
says that he is glad you have remembered him and is obliged for the advice you gave, and that you have such compassionate feelings toward him. Brother Winchester is here in New Jersey with us. He has stemmed the torrent like a good soldier for the cause. In New York

Dutch founded New Netherland colony, 1625. Incorporated under British control and renamed New York, 1664. Harbor contributed to economic and population growth of city; became largest city in American colonies. British troops defeated Continental Army under...

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there are about 160 members. We expect to hold ourselves in readiness to go before the committee. Also P. 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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. You will therefore write concerning the time when you expect the business will be before the committee. We have just received an account going the rounds of the newspapers concerning my person, etc., which perhaps you have seen. They have a good opinion of my sincerity, and upon the whole the piece is not so bad as might be expected. Some of the twelve are on their way to England Brother Wilford Woodruff

1 Mar. 1807–2 Sept. 1898. Farmer, miller. Born at Farmington, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of Aphek Woodruff and Beulah Thompson. Moved to Richland, Oswego Co., New York, 1832. Baptized into LDS church by Zera Pulsipher, 31 Dec. 1833, near Richland. Ordained...

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, Brother Tailor John Taylor

1 Nov. 1808–25 July 1887. Preacher, editor, publisher, politician. Born at Milnthorpe, Westmoreland Co., England. Son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor, members of Church of England. Around age sixteen, joined Methodists and was local preacher. Migrated from...

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and Brother Furley Theodore Turley

10 Apr. 1801–12 Aug. 1871. Mechanic, gunsmith, brewer, farmer, blacksmith, gristmill operator. Born at Birmingham, Warwickshire, England. Son of William Turley and Elizabeth Yates. Associated with Methodism, by 1818. Married Frances Amelia Kimberley, 26 Nov...

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. You may send me letters to Philadelphia

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

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, and we will take them out in masses, and when we get it I am in hopes the blockade will be raised in the west, so that we may get a shower of letters. It seems the trouble still continues between the Iowa

Area originally part of Louisiana Purchase, 1803. First permanent white settlements established, ca. 1833. Organized as territory, 1838, containing all of present-day Iowa, much of present-day Minnesota, and parts of North and South Dakota. Population in ...

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and 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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. The priests in Philadelphia

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

More Info
are very mute. We understand they have advised the people to search the scriptures, which, if they do, will be to our advantage. I pray God that you may have wisdom given you to conduct wisely in all things pertaining to your operations in the ministry. We are going to hold a couple of meetings here, and then expect to return to Philadelphia

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

More Info
Saturday or Monday. Mr. Bangor, a clergyman in the city, has manifested great friendship towards and has invited me to make his house my home while I remain in the city, and he [p. [4]]
INTERESTING RELIC.
Alleged Autograph Letter From Jo seph Smith.
Through the courtesy of Mr. John  R. Kinnear, a Chronicle reporter  was yesterday shown an autograph  letter written by the famous Mor mon prophet, Joseph Smith, a copy  of which is given below. The man uscript is written in a somewhat  cramped, but still legible hand, and  shows a total disregard for the rules  of punctuation, not a single point of  this character appearing in the  original. The letter was addressed  to R[obert] D. Foster

14 Mar. 1811–1 Feb. 1878. Physician, land speculator. Born in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. Son of John Foster and Jane Knibb. Married Sarah Phinney, 18 July 1837, at Medina Co., Ohio. Baptized into LDS church, before Oct. 1839. Ordained an elder,...

View Full Bio
, one of the Mormon  apostles, at that time in Washing ton city

Created as district for seat of U.S. federal government by act of Congress, 1790, and named Washington DC, 1791. Named in honor of George Washington. Headquarters of executive, legislative, and judicial branches of U.S. government relocated to Washington ...

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endeavoring to influence  legislation favorably to the new  creed The mass of the Mormons  were then settled at Nauvoo

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

More Info
, Ills.,  where dissension was rife between  them and the Gentile population.  A reference to this disturb ance is made by Smith in the sub joined letter, written from near  Philadelphia

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

More Info
shortly after one of  his visits to that city. The manu script came into the possession of  Mr. Kinnear through a client of his,  the executor of Foster

14 Mar. 1811–1 Feb. 1878. Physician, land speculator. Born in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. Son of John Foster and Jane Knibb. Married Sarah Phinney, 18 July 1837, at Medina Co., Ohio. Baptized into LDS church, before Oct. 1839. Ordained an elder,...

View Full Bio
, and is lent  additional interest from the present  vexed state of the Mormon question.  It reads as follows:
Jersey Church,  Near Warrenton,  December 30th, 1839.
Dear Brother: I received a  letter from you and one from Presi dent [Sidney] Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

View Full Bio
which gave me much  satisfaction. I have had a very  good visit in this place and enjoyed  myself very agreeably. I have  preached and bore testimony sev eral times in this city. The church  in Philadelphia

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

More Info
number about for ty-five members, and there were  four or five more candidates this  this morning when I left the city.  We came away this morn ing before the postoffice was  open and probably missed of hearing  further from you. I was glad to  hear that Pres. Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

View Full Bio
is gaining  further in health, and trust that  it will please God to restore him  again speedily to health, so that he  may be able to attend to the duties  which necessarily devolve on him  in that place, and also that his  voice may be once more heard  among the congregations of the  saints, and also among those that  are not yet saints. He would be a  very welcome visitor in Philadel phia

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

More Info
and the rest of the churches in  this region. I think a great work  will yet be done in Philadelphia

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

More Info
.  Our meeting house is very much  crowded with attentive hearers  and there are no doubt many  believers from the favorable expres sions, friendly treatment and good  feelings which they manifest to wards myself and the brethren. I  have many invitations to visit  private families in almost every  part of the city, many more than I  can possibly attend to. I am at this  time surrounded by a good circle of  brethren, sisters and friends. I  hope you will by the help of God be  able to succeed in Washington

Created as district for seat of U.S. federal government by act of Congress, 1790, and named Washington DC, 1791. Named in honor of George Washington. Headquarters of executive, legislative, and judicial branches of U.S. government relocated to Washington ...

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to  the utmost of your expectations in  bringing many from darkness to  light, and that the deaf may hear  the words of the book, that they  who erred in judgment may come  to understanding, and they that  murmured may learn doctrine, and  that the fear of God may not be  taught by the precepts of men but  accorded to the will of God. I ex pect you will write to us as usual. I  have been laboring here so constant  that I have not been able to write  to you, and Judge [Elias Higbee]

23 Oct. 1795–8 June 1843. Clerk, judge, surveyor. Born at Galloway, Gloucester Co., New Jersey. Son of Isaac Higbee and Sophia Somers. Moved to Clermont Co., Ohio, 1803. Married Sarah Elizabeth Ward, 10 Sept. 1818, in Tate Township, Clermont Co. Lived at ...

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has been here but  a short time. He has been engaged  in writing the affidavit that Presi dent Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

View Full Bio
has called for. We  have our wagon and horses in Jer sey. We found no sale for them in  Philadelphia

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

More Info
, hence we have brought  them here. P[arley] 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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has arrived  in this city. He has brought some  books here. He has got a new  work published of some poems,  with a treatise on the eternity  of matter. etc., etc. Brother  O[rson] Pratt

19 Sept. 1811–3 Oct. 1881. Farmer, writer, teacher, merchant, surveyor, editor, publisher. Born at Hartford, Washington Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Moved to New Lebanon, Columbia Co., New York, 1814; to Canaan, Columbia Co., fall...

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is also here, and is on his  way to New York

Dutch founded New Netherland colony, 1625. Incorporated under British control and renamed New York, 1664. Harbor contributed to economic and population growth of city; became largest city in American colonies. British troops defeated Continental Army under...

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. Judge

23 Oct. 1795–8 June 1843. Clerk, judge, surveyor. Born at Galloway, Gloucester Co., New Jersey. Son of Isaac Higbee and Sophia Somers. Moved to Clermont Co., Ohio, 1803. Married Sarah Elizabeth Ward, 10 Sept. 1818, in Tate Township, Clermont Co. Lived at ...

View Full Bio
says that  he is glad you have remembered  him and is obliged for the advice  you gave, and that you have such  compassionate feelings toward him.  Brother Winchester is here in New  Jersey with us. He has stemmed  the torrent like a good soldier for  the cause. In New York

Dutch founded New Netherland colony, 1625. Incorporated under British control and renamed New York, 1664. Harbor contributed to economic and population growth of city; became largest city in American colonies. British troops defeated Continental Army under...

More Info
there are  about 160 members. We expect to  hold ourselves in readiness to go  before the committee. Also P.  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....

View Full Bio
. You will therefore write  concerning the time when you ex pect the business will be before  the committee. We have just re ceived an account going the rounds  of the newspapers concerning  my person, etc., which perhaps  you have seen. They have a  good opinion of my sincerity, and  upon the whole the piece is not so  bad as might be expected. Some of  the twelve are on their way to Eng land Brother [Wilford] Woodruff

1 Mar. 1807–2 Sept. 1898. Farmer, miller. Born at Farmington, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of Aphek Woodruff and Beulah Thompson. Moved to Richland, Oswego Co., New York, 1832. Baptized into LDS church by Zera Pulsipher, 31 Dec. 1833, near Richland. Ordained...

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, Brother  Tailor [John Taylor]

1 Nov. 1808–25 July 1887. Preacher, editor, publisher, politician. Born at Milnthorpe, Westmoreland Co., England. Son of James Taylor and Agnes Taylor, members of Church of England. Around age sixteen, joined Methodists and was local preacher. Migrated from...

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and Brother Furley [Theodore Turley]

10 Apr. 1801–12 Aug. 1871. Mechanic, gunsmith, brewer, farmer, blacksmith, gristmill operator. Born at Birmingham, Warwickshire, England. Son of William Turley and Elizabeth Yates. Associated with Methodism, by 1818. Married Frances Amelia Kimberley, 26 Nov...

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. You  may send me letters to Philadelphia

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

More Info
,  and we will take them out in mas ses, and when we get it I am in  hopes the blockade will be raised  in the west, so that we may get a  shower of letters. It seems the  trouble still continues between the  Iowa

Area originally part of Louisiana Purchase, 1803. First permanent white settlements established, ca. 1833. Organized as territory, 1838, containing all of present-day Iowa, much of present-day Minnesota, and parts of North and South Dakota. Population in ...

More Info
and 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...

More Info
. The priests in  Philadelphia

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

More Info
are very mute. We  understand they have advised the  people to search the scriptures,  which, if they do, will be to our ad vantage. I pray God that you may  have wisdom given you to conduct  wisely in all things pertaining to  your operations in the ministry.  We are going to hold a couple of  meetings here, and then expect to  return to Philadelphia

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

More Info
Saturday or  Monday. Mr. Bangor, a clergyman  in the city, has manifested great  friendship towards and has invited  me to make his house my home  while I remain in the city, and he [p. [4]]
Next
JS, Letter, near Warrenton, PA, to Robert D. Foster

14 Mar. 1811–1 Feb. 1878. Physician, land speculator. Born in Braunston, Northamptonshire, England. Son of John Foster and Jane Knibb. Married Sarah Phinney, 18 July 1837, at Medina Co., Ohio. Baptized into LDS church, before Oct. 1839. Ordained an elder,...

View Full Bio
, Washington DC

Created as district for seat of U.S. federal government by act of Congress, 1790, and named Washington DC, 1791. Named in honor of George Washington. Headquarters of executive, legislative, and judicial branches of U.S. government relocated to Washington ...

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, 30 Dec. 1839; Salt Lake Daily Herald, 16 Nov. 1883, pp. 4–5.

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