31371

Minute Book 1

Hiram WintersNathan B. Baldwin
Elias HutchingsBurr Riggs

17 Apr. 1811–1860. Botanist, physician. Born in Oxford, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Gideon Riggs and Susan Picher. Baptized into LDS church and ordained an elder, before 3 June 1831. Ordained a high priest, 25 Oct. 1831, in Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio...

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Henry ShibleyLewis Robbins
Roger Orton

Ca. 1799–1851. Miller. Son of Roger Orton and Esther Avery. Moved to Geneseo, Ontario Co., New York, by 1810. Married Clarissa Bicknell, ca. 1822. Baptized into LDS church. Ordained an elder, by 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri,...

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Darwin Richardson
Jazeniah B. Smith Joseph Young

7 Apr. 1797–16 July 1881. Farmer, painter, glazier. Born at Hopkinton, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of John Young and Abigail (Nabby) Howe. Moved to Auburn, Cayuga Co., New York, before 1830. Joined Methodist church, before Apr. 1832. Baptized into LDS...

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Harvey Stanley

21 Dec. 1812–16 Feb. 1862. Stonecutter, dairyman. Born in Vermont. Son of Benjamin Stanley and Ruth. Baptized into LDS church, by Apr. 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Labored on temple in Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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Alexander Badlam Sr.

28 Nov. 1808–30 Nov./1 Dec. 1894. Coachmaker, realtor, inventor, author. Born at Dorchester, Suffolk Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ezra Badlam and Mary Lovis. Married Mary Ann Brannan, ca. 1833, near Saco, York Co., Maine. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition...

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Jedediah Grant

21 Feb. 1816–1 Dec. 1856. Farmer. Born in Union, Broome Co., New York. Son of Joshua Grant and Athalia Howard. Lived in Springwater, Ontario Co., New York, 1820. Lived in Naples, Ontario Co., 1830. Baptized into LDS church by John F. Boynton, 21 Mar. 1833...

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Zebedee Coltrin

7 Sept. 1804–21 July 1887. Born at Ovid, Seneca Co., New York. Son of John Coltrin and Sarah Graham. Member of Methodist church. Married first Julia Ann Jennings, Oct. 1828. Baptized into LDS church by Solomon Hancock, 9 Jan. 1831, at Strongsville, Cuyahoga...

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Lyman Sherman

22 May 1804–ca. 15 Feb. 1839. Born at Monkton, Addison Co., Vermont. Son of Elkanah Sherman and Asenath Hurlbut. Married Delcena Didamia Johnson, 16 Jan. 1829, at Pomfret, Chautauque Co., New York. Baptized into LDS church, Jan. 1832. Located at Kirtland,...

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Solomon Angell
Joseph HancockJohn D. Parker

22 Nov. 1799–26 Feb. 1891. Farmer, wainwright. Born in Saratoga, Saratoga Co., New York. Son of Abel Parker and Mary Davies. Served in War of 1812 as teamster in General John E. Wool’s company, 1813–1814. Married Harriet Sherwood. Moved to Galway, Saratoga...

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Lyman Smith

Ca. 1817–ca. 1837. Born at Potsdam, St. Lawrence Co., New York. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Resident of Concord Township, Geauga Co., Ohio, 1835. Appointed member of First Quorum of the Seventy, 1835. Served mission to eastern...

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Daniel Stevens
Peter BuchananHiram Stratten Stratton
David Elliott

18 Nov. 1799–2 Dec. 1855. Blacksmith. Born at Charleston, Montgomery Co., New York. Son of Peter Elliott and Phebe Holley. Married first Almira Holliday of Solon, Cortland Co., New York, ca. 1821. Married second Margery Quick. Lived at Ithaca, Tompkins Co...

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Sylvester Smith

25 Mar. 1806–22 Feb. 1880. Farmer, carpenter, lawyer, realtor. Born at Tyringham, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Chileab Smith and Nancy Marshall. Moved to Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, ca. 1815. Married Elizabeth Frank, 27 Dec. 1827, likely in Chautauque...

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Almon Babbitt

9 Oct. 1812–Sept. 1856. Postmaster, editor, attorney. Born at Cheshire, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ira Babbitt and Nancy Crosier. Baptized into LDS church, ca. 1830. Located in Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, July 1831. Served mission to New York, fall...

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Wm. Pratt

3 Sept. 1802–15 Sept. 1870. Schoolteacher. Born at Worcester, Otsego Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Moved to Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 1831. Ordained an elder by Sidney Rigdon, 10 Feb. 1833, in Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio...

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Levi GiffordEzra Thayer

Ca. 1792–6 Sept. 1862. Farmer, gardener, builder. Born in New York. Married Elizabeth Frank. Lived at Bloomfield, Ontario Co., New York, 1820. Lived at Farmington, Ontario Co., 1830. Baptized into LDS church by Parley P. Pratt and confirmed by JS, fall 1830...

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Joseph B. Nobles Noble

14 Jan. 1810–17 Aug. 1900. Farmer, miller, stock raiser. Born in Egremont, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ezekiel Noble and Theodotia Bates. Moved to Penfield, Monroe Co., New York, 1815. Moved to Bloomfield, Ontario Co., New York, ca. 1828. Baptized...

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Levi Hancock

7 Apr. 1803–10 June 1882. Born at Springfield, Hampden Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Hancock III and Amy Ward. Baptized into LDS church, 16 Nov. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Clarissa Reed, 20 Mar. 1831. Served mission to Missouri with ...

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Lorenzo BoothSalmon Warner
Zerah S. ColeIsrael Barlow
Leonard Rich

1800–1868. Farmer. Born in New York. Married first Keziah. Lived at Warsaw, Genesee Co., New York, 1830. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Served as a president of First Quorum of the Seventy, 1835–1837. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga...

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Willard Snow
Harrison BurgessHazen Aldrich

10 Jan. 1797–after 1876. Carpenter, farmer, newspaper publisher, day laborer. Born in Lebanon, Grafton Co., New Hampshire. Son of Andrew Hazen Aldrich and Annes. Moved to Dorchester, Grafton Co., by 1810. Married first Betsey Manchester, 28 Oct. 1819, in ...

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Alden BurdickCharles Kelly
Wm. F. Cahoon

7 Nov. 1813–6 Apr. 1893. Shoemaker, carpenter, joiner. Born at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio. Son of Reynolds Cahoon and Thirza Stiles. Baptized into LDS church by Parley P. Pratt, 16 Oct. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained a priest by Oliver...

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Wilkins Jenkins Salisbury

6 Jan. 1809–28 Oct. 1853. Lawyer, blacksmith. Born at Rushville, Yates Co., New York. Son of Gideon Salisbury and Elizabeth Shields. Baptized into LDS church in New York. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1831. Married JS’s sister Katharine Smith, 8...

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Harpin RiggsGeorge A. Smith

26 June 1817–1 Sept. 1875. Born at Potsdam, St. Lawrence Co., New York. Son of John Smith and Clarissa Lyman. Baptized into LDS church by Joseph H. Wakefield, 10 Sept. 1832, at Potsdam. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, 1833. Labored on Kirtland temple...

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R. Orton

Ca. 1799–1851. Miller. Son of Roger Orton and Esther Avery. Moved to Geneseo, Ontario Co., New York, by 1810. Married Clarissa Bicknell, ca. 1822. Baptized into LDS church. Ordained an elder, by 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri,...

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’s Blessing
You shall be blessed more than once your heart desired. You shall go forth and preach the everlasting gospel. You shall be delivered from your enemies. If there be no other way to escape them, you shall walk upon the waters. We ordain you to be one of the Seventy. Your tongue shall be loosed, The Heavens shall be open your head, And you shall say as Paul of old, I have heard things unutterable, [p. 165]
Hiram WintersNathan B. Baldwin
Elias Hutchin[g]sBurr Riggs

17 Apr. 1811–1860. Botanist, physician. Born in Oxford, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Gideon Riggs and Susan Picher. Baptized into LDS church and ordained an elder, before 3 June 1831. Ordained a high priest, 25 Oct. 1831, in Orange, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio...

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Henry ShibleyLewis Robbins
Roger Orton

Ca. 1799–1851. Miller. Son of Roger Orton and Esther Avery. Moved to Geneseo, Ontario Co., New York, by 1810. Married Clarissa Bicknell, ca. 1822. Baptized into LDS church. Ordained an elder, by 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri,...

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Darwin Richardson
J[azeniah] B. Smith Joseph Young

7 Apr. 1797–16 July 1881. Farmer, painter, glazier. Born at Hopkinton, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of John Young and Abigail (Nabby) Howe. Moved to Auburn, Cayuga Co., New York, before 1830. Joined Methodist church, before Apr. 1832. Baptized into LDS...

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Harvey Stanley

21 Dec. 1812–16 Feb. 1862. Stonecutter, dairyman. Born in Vermont. Son of Benjamin Stanley and Ruth. Baptized into LDS church, by Apr. 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Labored on temple in Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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Alexander Badlam [Sr.]

28 Nov. 1808–30 Nov./1 Dec. 1894. Coachmaker, realtor, inventor, author. Born at Dorchester, Suffolk Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ezra Badlam and Mary Lovis. Married Mary Ann Brannan, ca. 1833, near Saco, York Co., Maine. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition...

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Jedediah Grant

21 Feb. 1816–1 Dec. 1856. Farmer. Born in Union, Broome Co., New York. Son of Joshua Grant and Athalia Howard. Lived in Springwater, Ontario Co., New York, 1820. Lived in Naples, Ontario Co., 1830. Baptized into LDS church by John F. Boynton, 21 Mar. 1833...

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Zebedee Coltrin

7 Sept. 1804–21 July 1887. Born at Ovid, Seneca Co., New York. Son of John Coltrin and Sarah Graham. Member of Methodist church. Married first Julia Ann Jennings, Oct. 1828. Baptized into LDS church by Solomon Hancock, 9 Jan. 1831, at Strongsville, Cuyahoga...

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Lyman Sherman

22 May 1804–ca. 15 Feb. 1839. Born at Monkton, Addison Co., Vermont. Son of Elkanah Sherman and Asenath Hurlbut. Married Delcena Didamia Johnson, 16 Jan. 1829, at Pomfret, Chautauque Co., New York. Baptized into LDS church, Jan. 1832. Located at Kirtland,...

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Solomon Angel[l]
Joseph HancockJohn D. Parker

22 Nov. 1799–26 Feb. 1891. Farmer, wainwright. Born in Saratoga, Saratoga Co., New York. Son of Abel Parker and Mary Davies. Served in War of 1812 as teamster in General John E. Wool’s company, 1813–1814. Married Harriet Sherwood. Moved to Galway, Saratoga...

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Lyman Smith

Ca. 1817–ca. 1837. Born at Potsdam, St. Lawrence Co., New York. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Resident of Concord Township, Geauga Co., Ohio, 1835. Appointed member of First Quorum of the Seventy, 1835. Served mission to eastern...

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Daniel Stevens
Peter BuchananHiram Stratten [Stratton]
David Elliott

18 Nov. 1799–2 Dec. 1855. Blacksmith. Born at Charleston, Montgomery Co., New York. Son of Peter Elliott and Phebe Holley. Married first Almira Holliday of Solon, Cortland Co., New York, ca. 1821. Married second Margery Quick. Lived at Ithaca, Tompkins Co...

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Sylvester Smith

25 Mar. 1806–22 Feb. 1880. Farmer, carpenter, lawyer, realtor. Born at Tyringham, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Chileab Smith and Nancy Marshall. Moved to Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, ca. 1815. Married Elizabeth Frank, 27 Dec. 1827, likely in Chautauque...

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Almon Babbitt

9 Oct. 1812–Sept. 1856. Postmaster, editor, attorney. Born at Cheshire, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ira Babbitt and Nancy Crosier. Baptized into LDS church, ca. 1830. Located in Amherst, Lorain Co., Ohio, July 1831. Served mission to New York, fall...

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Wm. Pratt

3 Sept. 1802–15 Sept. 1870. Schoolteacher. Born at Worcester, Otsego Co., New York. Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson. Moved to Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 1831. Ordained an elder by Sidney Rigdon, 10 Feb. 1833, in Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio...

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Levi GiffordEzra Thayer

Ca. 1792–6 Sept. 1862. Farmer, gardener, builder. Born in New York. Married Elizabeth Frank. Lived at Bloomfield, Ontario Co., New York, 1820. Lived at Farmington, Ontario Co., 1830. Baptized into LDS church by Parley P. Pratt and confirmed by JS, fall 1830...

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Joseph B. Nobles [Noble]

14 Jan. 1810–17 Aug. 1900. Farmer, miller, stock raiser. Born in Egremont, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of Ezekiel Noble and Theodotia Bates. Moved to Penfield, Monroe Co., New York, 1815. Moved to Bloomfield, Ontario Co., New York, ca. 1828. Baptized...

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Levi Hancock

7 Apr. 1803–10 June 1882. Born at Springfield, Hampden Co., Massachusetts. Son of Thomas Hancock III and Amy Ward. Baptized into LDS church, 16 Nov. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Clarissa Reed, 20 Mar. 1831. Served mission to Missouri with ...

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Lorenzo BoothSalmon Warner
Zera[h] S. ColeIsrael Barlow
Leonard Rich

1800–1868. Farmer. Born in New York. Married first Keziah. Lived at Warsaw, Genesee Co., New York, 1830. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834. Served as a president of First Quorum of the Seventy, 1835–1837. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga...

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Willard Snow
Harrison BurgessHazen Aldrich

10 Jan. 1797–after 1876. Carpenter, farmer, newspaper publisher, day laborer. Born in Lebanon, Grafton Co., New Hampshire. Son of Andrew Hazen Aldrich and Annes. Moved to Dorchester, Grafton Co., by 1810. Married first Betsey Manchester, 28 Oct. 1819, in ...

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Alden BurdickCharles Kelly
Wm. F. Cahoon

7 Nov. 1813–6 Apr. 1893. Shoemaker, carpenter, joiner. Born at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio. Son of Reynolds Cahoon and Thirza Stiles. Baptized into LDS church by Parley P. Pratt, 16 Oct. 1830, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained a priest by Oliver...

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[Wilkins] Jenkins Salisbury

6 Jan. 1809–28 Oct. 1853. Lawyer, blacksmith. Born at Rushville, Yates Co., New York. Son of Gideon Salisbury and Elizabeth Shields. Baptized into LDS church in New York. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1831. Married JS’s sister Katharine Smith, 8...

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Harpin RiggsGeorge A. Smith

26 June 1817–1 Sept. 1875. Born at Potsdam, St. Lawrence Co., New York. Son of John Smith and Clarissa Lyman. Baptized into LDS church by Joseph H. Wakefield, 10 Sept. 1832, at Potsdam. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, 1833. Labored on Kirtland temple...

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R. Orton

Ca. 1799–1851. Miller. Son of Roger Orton and Esther Avery. Moved to Geneseo, Ontario Co., New York, by 1810. Married Clarissa Bicknell, ca. 1822. Baptized into LDS church. Ordained an elder, by 1834. Participated in Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri,...

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’s Blessing
You shall be blessed more than once your heart  desired. You shall go forth and preach the ever lasting gospel. You shall be delivered from your  enemies. If there be no other way to escape  them, you shall walk upon the waters. We  ordain you to be one of the Seventy. Your  tongue shall be loosed, The Heavens shall be open  your head, And you shall say as Paul of old,  I have heard things unutterable, [p. 165]
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On 12 February 1834 JS held a council meeting with high priests and elders at his home in 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. To those gathered he observed, “I shall now endeavor to set forth before this council, the dignity of the office which has been conferred upon me by the ministering of the Angel of God, by his own will and by the voice of this church. I have never set before any council in all the order in which a council ought to be conducted, which, perhaps, has deprived the councils of some, or many blessings.” Along with other instructions, JS related that “in ancient days, councils were conducted with such strict propriety, that no one was allowed to whisper, be weary, leave the room, or get uneasy in the least, until the voice of the Lord, by revelation, or the voice of the council by the spirit was obtained; which has not been observed in this church to the present.” (Minute Book 1, 12 Feb. 1834, 27–29.)
The record of this occasion is one of many found in Minute Book 1, also known as the “Kirtland Council Minute Book” or the “Kirtland High Council Minutes.” This and its companion, Minute Book 2 (also known as the “Far West Record”), are now published as part of the Administrative Records series on the Joseph Smith Papers website. These volumes illuminate many of the principles and practices that ordered early church governance and administration. They illustrate the early Saints’ determination to respond to revelation and divine guidance while simultaneously acknowledging the doctrine of common consent. Furthermore, these records demonstrate JS’s personal endorsement of and participation in a conference or council system of church government.
Entries for various conferences and councils recorded in Minute Book 1 stand as witness to several seminal events in early church history. Among these were the receipt of the revelation known as the “Olive Leaf” in late December 1832 and early January 1833; the organization of the School of the Prophets on 22–23 January 1833; the ordination of 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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and 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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as presidents of the high priesthood on 18 March 1833; revelations concerning construction of 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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House of the Lord

JS revelation of Jan. 1831 directed Latter-day Saints to migrate to Ohio, where they would “be endowed with power from on high.” JS Revelation of Dec. 1832 directed Saints to “establish . . . an house of God.” JS Revelation of 1 June 1833 chastened Saints...

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; the organization of the first standing high council in February 1834; church courts held in the aftermath of the Camp of Israel (Zion’s Camp) march in August 1834; the calling, ordination, and blessing of the Twelve Apostles and the Seventies in February 1835; the acceptance by the church of the 1835 Doctrine and Covenants in August of that year; preparation for the dedication of the Kirtland House of the Lord in winter and early spring 1836; and events related to the Kirtland Safety Society, its demise, and the concomitant dissension within the Kirtland stake of Zion in 1837. Some of these minutes, especially those where JS was a participant in the meeting, will also appear with individual introductions in the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers.
In the texts of the various minute entries, and occasionally in separate entries accompanying them, the register records ordinations, blessings, disciplinary councils, testimonies, Pentecostal outpourings, callings and releases, missionary appointments, and fund-raising activities. Thus, Minute Book 1 provides a rich survey of JS’s interactions with associates and others during many dramatic, and often challenging, episodes beginning in October 1832 and concluding in November 1837. Sixteen different clerks took original minutes that were later copied into the volume by 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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, Orson Hyde

8 Jan. 1805–28 Nov. 1878. Laborer, clerk, storekeeper, teacher, editor, businessman, lawyer, judge. Born at Oxford, New Haven Co., Connecticut. Son of Nathan Hyde and Sally Thorpe. Moved to Derby, New Haven Co., 1812. Moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, ...

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, 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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, Warren Cowdery

17 Oct. 1788–23 Feb. 1851. Physician, druggist, farmer, editor. Born at Wells, Rutland Co., Vermont. Son of William Cowdery and Rebecca Fuller. Married Patience Simonds, 22 Sept. 1814, in Pawlet, Rutland Co. Moved to Freedom, Cattaraugus Co., New York, 1816...

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, Marcellus Cowdery, George W. Robinson

14 May 1814–10 Feb. 1878. Clerk, postmaster, merchant, clothier, banker. Born at Pawlet, Rutland Co., Vermont. Baptized into LDS church and moved to Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio, by 1836. Clerk and recorder for Kirtland high council, beginning Jan. 1836. Married...

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, Phineas Richards

15 Nov. 1788–25 Nov. 1874. Cabinetmaker, joiner, carpenter, botanic physician. Born at Framingham, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Joseph Richards and Rhoda Howe. Served as sergeant major during War of 1812. Married Wealthy Dewey, 24 Feb. 1818. Moved...

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, and Harlow Redfield

25 Sept. 1801–3 Aug. 1866. Farmer. Born at Chestnut Hill, Killingworth Township, Middlesex Co., Connecticut. Son of Levi Redfield and Weltha Stevens. Christened member of First Congregational Church, 21 Jan. 1821. Married first Caroline Foster, 1824. Moved...

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Minute Book 1 was initiated during a remarkable upsurge in record keeping, beginning with the calling of 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 later 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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as church historians in 1830 and 1831. Revelations and commandments recorded in Revelation Book 1 were sent to 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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to be published on the church’s first press in late 1831, and Revelation Book 2 was in use in 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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by February 1832. Sometime in 1832, probably between July and September, JS and 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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worked together on a brief history of JS’s early visionary experiences. JS purchased the small volume that contains his first journal in November 1832 and began penning entries that same month. That fall another record, containing retained copies of early church correspondence and now designated Letterbook 1, was commenced. In January of the following year, in an epistle recorded in Letterbook 1, JS wrote 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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encouraging him as editor of the church’s first periodical, The Evening and the Morning Star, then printed in Jackson County

Settled at Fort Osage, 1808. County created, 16 Feb. 1825; organized 1826. Named after U.S. president Andrew Jackson. Featured fertile lands along Missouri River and was Santa Fe Trail departure point, which attracted immigrants to area. Area of county reduced...

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, Missouri, to set “forth the rise and progress and faith of the church,” that is, to begin publishing items on the history of the church.
This upwelling was quite unusual for the time. As scholar Dean C. Jessee has observed, “So primitive were some aspects of record keeping in nineteenth-century America that much of the early Latter-day Saint experience was a pioneering effort. . . . Although Mormon record keeping was inaugurated by [an] 1830 revelation, details for carrying out that commandment were largely hammered out on the anvil of experience in the years that followed.” (Dean C. Jessee, “The Reliability of Joseph Smith’s History,” Journal of Mormon History 3 [1976]: 27.) Thus, during a brief span in the early 1830s, JS, along with those working under his direction, commenced the systematic collection and recording of critical documents pertaining to church governance and administration. Throughout the remainder of JS’s lifetime minute-taking, revelation-recording, correspondence-copying, journal-keeping, and history-writing activities would remain imperative commitments.

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