53991682

Letterbook 2

“The History of the Persecution,” and my poems— there is a great call for Hymn Books, but none to be had, I wish Sister Smith

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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, would add to the old collection such New ones as is best and republish them immediately: If means and facilities are lacking in the West, send it here, and it shall be nicely done for her, and at least one thousand would immediately sell in these parts wholesale and retail The Book of Mormon is not to be had in this part of the vineyard for love or money, hundreds are wanting in various parts here abouts but there is truly a famine in that respect: The 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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took into consideration the pressing calls for this “Book. and have appointed a Committee to raise means for the publication of the same, and also to publish it if we can obtain leave from you, who hold the copy right. We realized that your press and materials &c in the west were not at present, sufficient for so large a work. We have a printer here who does most of our work, he is a fine man, and thorough in his business. he works very cheap and paper is also cheap we have also Book binder who does a thorough business is very reasonable, and a fine man to deal with. these men have worked so much for me, that I can get business done in their line upon accommodating terms, and in the neatest manner. Elder Foster who is the presiding elder in this place; Bro Ivin of N Jersey and myself are the Committee. We are instructed to write to you immediately requesting leave to publish the Book of Mormon say, two or three thousand copies. If you will write to us immediately and grant us this priviledge we hereby assure you that it shall be done exactly correct and with the utmost care and diligence and on any terms which will best suit you, and secure to you the proffits which may arise. Bro Irvin is a very wealthy man. Bro Foster is a very careful, prudent, honest man in business and one who will go all lengths for the spread of truth and he will carefully superintend and husband every thing pertaining to this matter that nothing shall go at loose ends, if intrusted to his charge, and as to myself I have [p. [78]]
“The History of the Persecution,[”] and my poems— there is a  great call for Hymn Books, but none to be had, I wish  Sister Smith

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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, would add to the old collection such New  ones as is best and republish them immediately: If means  and facilities are lacking in the West, send it here, and it  shall be nicely done for her, and at least one thousand  would immediately sell in these parts wholesale and retail  The Book of Mormon is not to be had in this part of the  vineyard for love or money, hundreds are wanting in various  parts here abouts but there is truly a famine in that  respect: The 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...

View Glossary
took into consideration the  pressing calls for this “Book. and have appointed a  Committee to raise means for the publication of the  same, and also to publish it if we can obtain leave from  you, who hold the copy right. We realized that your  press and materials &c in the west were not at present,  sufficient for so large a work. We have a printer here  who does most of our work, he is a fine man, and thorough in  his business. he works very cheap and paper is also cheap  we have also Book binder who does a thorough business  is very reasonable, and a fine man to deal with. these men  have worked so much for me, that I can get business done  in their line upon accommodating terms, and in the  neatest manner. Elder Foster who is the presiding  elder in this place; Bro Ivin of N Jersey and myself are  the Committee. We are instructed to write to you immedi ately requesting leave to publish the Book of Mormon  say, two or three thousand copies. If you will write to us  immediately and grant us this priviledge we hereby assure  you that it shall be done exactly correct and with the  utmost care and diligence and on any terms which will  best suit you, and secure to you the proffits which may  arise. Bro Irvin is a very wealthy man. Bro Foster is  a very careful, prudent, honest man in business and  one who will go all lengths for the spread of truth and  he will carefully superintend and husband every thing  pertaining to this matter that nothing shall go at loose  ends, if intrusted to his charge, and as to myself I have [p. [78]]
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Letterbook 2, [1839–ca. summer 1843]; handwriting of Howard Coray

6 May 1817–16 Jan. 1908. Bookkeeper, clerk, teacher, farmer. Born in Dansville, Steuben Co., New York. Son of Silas Coray and Mary Stephens. Moved to Providence, Luzerne Co., Pennsylvania, ca. 1827; to Williams, Northampton Co., Pennsylvania, by 1830; and...

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, James Mulholland

1804–3 Nov. 1839. Born in Ireland. Baptized into LDS church. Married Sarah Scott, 8 Feb. 1838, at Far West, Caldwell Co., Missouri. Engaged in clerical work for JS, 1838, at Far West. Ordained a seventy, 28 Dec. 1838. After expulsion from Missouri, lived ...

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, Robert B. Thompson

1 Oct. 1811–27 Aug. 1841. Clerk, editor. Born in Great Driffield, Yorkshire, England. Member of Methodist church. Immigrated to Upper Canada, 1834. Baptized into LDS church by Parley P. Pratt, May 1836, in Upper Canada. Ordained an elder by John Taylor, 22...

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, Willard Richards

24 June 1804–11 Mar. 1854. Teacher, lecturer, doctor, clerk, printer, editor, postmaster. Born at Hopkinton, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Joseph Richards and Rhoda Howe. Moved to Richmond, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts, 1813. Moved to Chatham, Columbia...

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, John Fullmer

21 July 1807–8 Oct. 1883. Farmer, newsman, postmaster, teacher, merchant. Born at Huntington, Luzerne Co., Pennsylvania. Son of Peter Fullmer and Susannah Zerfass. Moved to Nashville, Davidson Co., Tennessee, spring 1832. Married Mary Ann Price, 24 May 1837...

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, William Clayton

17 July 1814–4 Dec. 1879. Bookkeeper, clerk. Born at Charock Moss, Penwortham, Lancashire, England. Son of Thomas Clayton and Ann Critchley. Married Ruth Moon, 9 Oct. 1836, at Penwortham. Baptized into LDS church by Heber C. Kimball, 21 Oct. 1837, in River...

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, and George Walker; 271 pages, including twenty-six pages of an index; JS Collection, CHL.
This letterbook was inscribed in a large-size, commercially produced ledger book measuring 14¼ × 9½ × 1¾ inches (36 × 24 × 4 cm) with leather-covered boards. It contains 238 leaves. The leaves, which measure 13½ × 8⅞ inches (34 × 23 cm), are vertically ruled with eight single red lines and three interspersed double red lines and horizontally ruled with thirty-nine blue lines and one double red line at the top or bottom of the page depending on how the ledger book was turned. The book was originally used as a financial ledger book for 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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, Smith, and Co., beginning in September 1836; eighty-three pages of financial entries were inscribed. In April 1839, the book was inverted, and what would have been the back of the book for the financial firm became the front of a letterbook. A title is inscribed on the blank leaf before the letterbook that reads “Copies of Letters, &c. &c. 1839 AD.” Following the title page, there are 245 pages of inscribed letters. There is a mix of contemporaneous letters, earlier letters, church records, and church business records. The first fifty-one pages of Letterbook 2 contain letters on the 1838 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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difficulties, and many of them appear to be copies of letters that JS or others received while in jail in Liberty, Missouri, in winter 1838–1839. These pages also feature copies of letters sent to and from church leaders 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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and Commerce

Located near middle of western boundary of state, bordering Mississippi River. European Americans settled area, 1820s. From bank of river, several feet above high-water mark, ground described as nearly level for six or seven blocks before gradually sloping...

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, Illinois, in spring and early summer 1839; JS’s journal provides evidence that he was “employed dictating letters and attending to the various business of the Church” during this time, indicating that this volume was an active letterbook, with letters being contemporaneously copied into it. On page 52, following a 27 June 1839 letter and a 12 November 1837 letter, the copies of much earlier letters began to be inscribed; these letters include a letter originally written on 29 July 1833 by 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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with a postscript by 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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to 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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and JS, which is followed by a letter from JS to Emma Smith

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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dated 4 June 1834 and a 17 June 1829 letter from Jesse Smith to Hyrum Smith

9 Feb. 1800–27 June 1844. Farmer, cooper. Born at Tunbridge, Orange Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Randolph, Orange Co., 1802; to Tunbridge, before May 1803; to Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1804; to Sharon, Windsor Co., by...

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. Copying these documents may have coincided with the writing of JS’s history or with the writing of the history of the difficulties in Missouri per JS’s instructions in March 1839. The active recording of contemporaneous letters continued after these few earlier letters until February 1843.

Facts