2476866

Letter to William W. Phelps, 31 July 1832

with the requirements of them in not obtaining reccommends &c4

Revelations in December 1831 specified that those going to Zion needed to obtain “a certificate from three Elders of the church or a certificate from the Bishop” in Ohio that they were “a wise steward.” Such certificates—which are probably the recommends to which JS refers here—were to be given to Bishop Edward Partridge in Jackson County, Missouri. This apparently was a means of regulating the numbers of people who went to Missouri and ensuring that those to whom Partridge issued inheritances had been deemed “wise steward[s].” (Revelation, 4 Dec. 1831–C [D&C 72:24–26]; see also Revelation, 4 Dec. 1831–B [D&C 72:16–18].)  


seccondy secondly, that the church

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

View Glossary
should procede to receive Wm McLelin William E. McLellin

18 Jan. 1806–14 Mar. 1883. Schoolteacher, physician, publisher. Born at Smith Co., Tennessee. Son of Charles McLellin and Sarah (a Cherokee Indian). Married first Cynthia Ann, 30 July 1829. Wife died, by summer 1831. Baptized into LDS church by Hyrum Smith...

View Full Bio
into there fellowship & communion on any other conditions, then the filling his mission to the South countries according to the commandment of Jesus Christ, I cite your minds to thise saying he that loveth Father or Mother wife & Children more than me is not worthy of me thus saith the Lord5

See Matthew 10:37.  


Thirdly the unorganized & confused state in leaving here, and the evil surmisings which were among them & neglect of duty &c6

This third reason may be related to the first: the company’s failure to obtain the proper permissions to go to Missouri. The Evening and the Morning Star noted in July 1832 that when the necessary recommends were not obtained, the result was “confusion, which would produce pestilence.” Such confusion resulted from the lack of coordination regarding how many people could be accommodated by the church in Missouri. (“The Elders in the Land of Zion to the Church of Christ Scattered Abroad,” The Evening and the Morning Star, July 1832, [5].)  


more then this I do not wish to mention, now therefore the buffitings of the advasary be upon all those among you who are eniquitous persons and rebelious, I would inform them they do not have my right hand of fellowship, but I will leave this subject for will not my God and your God do right, I return to your letter you informed me slightly that you heard of the accident to broth 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...

View Full Bio
at Greenvill

Located thirteen miles northwest of Louisville, Kentucky, in hilly area with poor soil and good timber. First permanent white settlers arrived in area, early 1800s. Population in 1833 about 200. En route from Missouri to Kirtland, Ohio, spring 1832, JS and...

More Info
Idn. Indiana7

Whitney broke his leg while trying to leap from a runaway stagecoach as he, Sidney Rigdon, and JS traveled back to Ohio. Rigdon went on to Kirtland, Ohio, but JS stayed in Greenville with Whitney while Whitney recuperated. (Letter to Emma Smith, 6 June 1832; see also JS History, vol. A-1, 214–215.)  


A question how did you hear, did any of you receive letters writen by any of us informing you of the critical situation we were placed in, if so how did you treat them if not so have you writen to us to give us that information which would be calculated to releave the mind of its painful anxciety concerning you, whether that fellowship and brotherly love continued among you towards us which you professed when we left you, it is true we received a letter from brother John Carl 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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by the hand of Broth 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...

View Full Bio
after we arived home from Indiana

First settled by French at Vincennes, early 1700s. Acquired by England in French and Indian War, 1763. U.S. took possession of area following American Revolution, 1783. Area became part of Northwest Territory, 1787. Partitioned off of Northwest Territory ...

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who had arived here before us,8

JS and Whitney probably arrived in Kirtland in late June. In his 6 June letter to Emma Smith, JS wrote that he and Whitney intended to return by about 20 June. His later history indicates that they departed from Greenville sooner than they expected. Martin Harris traveled from Kirtland to Greenville within five days, which suggests that JS and Whitney could not have reached Kirtland before 10 June. Gilbert left Independence for Kirtland on or soon after 2 June 1832 (the date of Corrill’s letter), bringing Corrill’s letter with him. Travel between Ohio and Missouri took roughly three weeks on other trips made in 1831 and 1832, making it unlikely that Gilbert was in Kirtland before 20 June. Rigdon later recalled that JS and Whitney arrived in Kirtland about four weeks after his own 26 May arrival. (JS History, vol. A-1, 215; Letter to Emma Smith, 6 June 1832; JS History, vol. A-1, 142–146, 209–210; Sidney Rigdon, Statement, ca. 1842, Historian’s Office, JS History Documents, ca. 1839–1856, CHL.)  


but what did it contain, it gave us this inteligence, that the Devel had been to work with all his inventive immagination to reward us for our toils in travling from this country to 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...

More Info
amidst a crooked & preverse generation9

See Deuteronomy 32:5; Revelation, Oct. 1830–B [D&C 33:2]; and Revelation, 4 Nov. 1830 [D&C 34:6].  


leaving our familys in affliction amidst of death upon the mercy of mobs & of brethren who you know sometimes are found to be unstable unbeleiving, unmerciful & unkind, and in this trying situation to keep the commandment of God we took our lives in our hands and traveled through evry combination of wickedness to your country for your salvation10

JS, Sidney Rigdon, and Whitney were commanded to travel to Missouri and “sit in councel with the saints who are in zion otherwise satan seeketh to turn there hearts away from the truth that they become blinded & understand not the things which are prepared for them.” (Revelation, 1 Mar. 1832 [D&C 78:9–10].)  


& for our travail & our toils, suffering & privations as I said before [p. 2]
with the requirements of them in not obtaining reccommends &c4

Revelations in December 1831 specified that those going to Zion needed to obtain “a certificate from three Elders of the church or a certificate from the Bishop” in Ohio that they were “a wise steward.” Such certificates—which are probably the recommends to which JS refers here—were to be given to Bishop Edward Partridge in Jackson County, Missouri. This apparently was a means of regulating the numbers of people who went to Missouri and ensuring that those to whom Partridge issued inheritances had been deemed “wise steward[s].” (Revelation, 4 Dec. 1831–C [D&C 72:24–26]; see also Revelation, 4 Dec. 1831–B [D&C 72:16–18].)  


 seccondy [secondly], that the church

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

View Glossary
should procede to receive Wm McLelin [William E. McLellin]

18 Jan. 1806–14 Mar. 1883. Schoolteacher, physician, publisher. Born at Smith Co., Tennessee. Son of Charles McLellin and Sarah (a Cherokee Indian). Married first Cynthia Ann, 30 July 1829. Wife died, by summer 1831. Baptized into LDS church by Hyrum Smith...

View Full Bio
into  there fellowship & communion on any other conditions, then the filling his mission to the South countries according to the commandment of  Jesus Christ, I cite your minds to thise saying he that loveth Father  or Mother wife & Children more than me is not worthy of me  thus saith the Lord5

See Matthew 10:37.  


Thirdly the unorganized & confused state  in leaving here, and the evil surmisings which were among them  & neglect of duty &c6

This third reason may be related to the first: the company’s failure to obtain the proper permissions to go to Missouri. The Evening and the Morning Star noted in July 1832 that when the necessary recommends were not obtained, the result was “confusion, which would produce pestilence.” Such confusion resulted from the lack of coordination regarding how many people could be accommodated by the church in Missouri. (“The Elders in the Land of Zion to the Church of Christ Scattered Abroad,” The Evening and the Morning Star, July 1832, [5].)  


more then this I do not wish to mention, now  therefore the buffitings of the advasary be upon all those <among you> who are  eniquitous persons and rebelious, I would inform you them they do not  have my right hand of fellowship, but I will leave this subject  for will not my God and your God do right, I return to your let ter you informed me slightly that you heard of the accident to  broth [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...

View Full Bio
at Greenvill

Located thirteen miles northwest of Louisville, Kentucky, in hilly area with poor soil and good timber. First permanent white settlers arrived in area, early 1800s. Population in 1833 about 200. En route from Missouri to Kirtland, Ohio, spring 1832, JS and...

More Info
Idn. [Indiana]7

Whitney broke his leg while trying to leap from a runaway stagecoach as he, Sidney Rigdon, and JS traveled back to Ohio. Rigdon went on to Kirtland, Ohio, but JS stayed in Greenville with Whitney while Whitney recuperated. (Letter to Emma Smith, 6 June 1832; see also JS History, vol. A-1, 214–215.)  


A question how did you hear, did any  of you receive letters writen by any of us informing you of the crit ical situation we were placed in, if so how did you treat them  if not so have you writen to us to give us that information which  would be calculated to releave the mind of its painful anxciety  concerning you, whether that fellowship and brotherly love con tinued among you towards us which you professed when we  left you, it is true we received a letter from broth[e]r  John Carl [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...

View Full Bio
by the hand of Broth [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...

View Full Bio
after we arived home  from Indiana

First settled by French at Vincennes, early 1700s. Acquired by England in French and Indian War, 1763. U.S. took possession of area following American Revolution, 1783. Area became part of Northwest Territory, 1787. Partitioned off of Northwest Territory ...

More Info
who had arived here before us,8

JS and Whitney probably arrived in Kirtland in late June. In his 6 June letter to Emma Smith, JS wrote that he and Whitney intended to return by about 20 June. His later history indicates that they departed from Greenville sooner than they expected. Martin Harris traveled from Kirtland to Greenville within five days, which suggests that JS and Whitney could not have reached Kirtland before 10 June. Gilbert left Independence for Kirtland on or soon after 2 June 1832 (the date of Corrill’s letter), bringing Corrill’s letter with him. Travel between Ohio and Missouri took roughly three weeks on other trips made in 1831 and 1832, making it unlikely that Gilbert was in Kirtland before 20 June. Rigdon later recalled that JS and Whitney arrived in Kirtland about four weeks after his own 26 May arrival. (JS History, vol. A-1, 215; Letter to Emma Smith, 6 June 1832; JS History, vol. A-1, 142–146, 209–210; Sidney Rigdon, Statement, ca. 1842, Historian’s Office, JS History Documents, ca. 1839–1856, CHL.)  


but what did it  contain, it gave us this inteligence, that the Devel had  been to work with all his inventive immagination to  reward us for our toils in travling from this country to 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...

More Info
 amidst a crooked & preverse generation9

See Deuteronomy 32:5; Revelation, Oct. 1830–B [D&C 33:2]; and Revelation, 4 Nov. 1830 [D&C 34:6].  


leaving our familys  in affliction amidst of death upon the mercy of mobs &  of brethren who you know sometimes are found to be u[n]stable  unbeleiving, unmerciful & unkind, and in this trying  situation to keeping the commandment of God we took our  lives in our hands and traveled through evry combination  of wickedness to your country for your salvation10

JS, Sidney Rigdon, and Whitney were commanded to travel to Missouri and “sit in councel with the saints who are in zion otherwise satan seeketh to turn there hearts away from the truth that they become blinded & understand not the things which are prepared for them.” (Revelation, 1 Mar. 1832 [D&C 78:9–10].)  


& for our  travail & our toils, suffering & privations as I said before [p. 2]
PreviousNext
JS, Letter, Hiram Township

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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, OH, to 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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, “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...

More Info
” [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 Co., MO], 31 July 1832; retained copy; handwriting of Frederick G. Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

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; signature of JS; seven pages; JS Collection, CHL. Includes docket and notations.
Two bifolia, each measuring 12⅞ × 8 inches (33 × 20 cm) when folded. The pages from the first bifolium are in reverse folder page order; the second bifolium is in leaflet page order. Pagination is in the top left corner of each inscribed page in the handwriting of 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...

View Full Bio
. The letter was tri-folded in letter style. The final page bears an inscription in the handwriting of Frederick G. Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

View Full Bio
: “Copy of a letter written to Broth | William 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,...

View Full Bio
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...

More Info
| Editor of the Evening & morning Star”. A docket on the final page, “Joseph Smiths Letter | to Zion 1832,” is in the handwriting of Newel K. Whitney. Appended to this docket is “July 1831 | N. K. Whitney.” in the handwriting of Thomas Bullock

23 Dec. 1816–10 Feb. 1885. Farmer, excise officer, secretary, clerk. Born in Leek, Staffordshire, England. Son of Thomas Bullock and Mary Hall. Married Henrietta Rushton, 25 June 1838. Moved to Ardee, Co. Louth, Ireland, Nov. 1839; to Isle of Anglesey, Aug...

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. Also on the final page is a separate Bullock notation: “July 31— 1845 | N. K. Whitney handed to me”. There is soiling at folds and tearing at fold corners on the final page, obscuring the text on page 7. Ink spotting, smears, and fingerprints are found in the letter.
This version of the letter is a contemporaneous retained copy made by Williams

28 Oct. 1787–10 Oct. 1842. Ship’s pilot, teacher, physician, justice of the peace. Born at Suffield, Hartford Co., Connecticut. Son of William Wheeler Williams and Ruth Granger. Moved to Newburg, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, 1799. Practiced Thomsonian botanical system...

View Full Bio
and later filed by 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...

View Full Bio
. The notation on the last page of the document indicates Whitney gave the letter to Historian’s Office clerk Thomas Bullock

23 Dec. 1816–10 Feb. 1885. Farmer, excise officer, secretary, clerk. Born in Leek, Staffordshire, England. Son of Thomas Bullock and Mary Hall. Married Henrietta Rushton, 25 June 1838. Moved to Ardee, Co. Louth, Ireland, Nov. 1839; to Isle of Anglesey, Aug...

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on 31 July 1845, the date of its receipt in the Historian’s Office.

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