Minute Book 1

14–15 February 1835 • Saturday–Sunday

Ordination Blessings
Kirtland February 14 1835
This day a meeting was called of those who journeyed to  Zion for the <purpose of laying> the foundation of its redemption last season with  as many more of the Brethren & Sisters as felt disposed to  attend. President Joseph Smith Junr presided over the meet ing. After the Congregation assembled. he arose and re quested the attention and read the 15th chapter of John  and said, let us endeavor to solemnize our minds that  we may receive a blessing by calling on the Lord & said let us pray,
After an appropriate and affecting prayer was made  the Brethern who went to Zion, were requested to take  their seats together in one part of the house by them selves. President Smith arose and stated the reason  why this meeting was called. It was this. God had comma nded it and it was made known to him by vision and  by the Holy Spirit. he then gave a relation of some of  the circumstances attending us while journeying to  Zion, our trials, sufferings &c. &c. He said God had not  designed all this for nothing, but he had it in remem brance yet, and those who went to Zion, with a deter mination to lay down their lives, if necessary, it was  the Will of God, that they should be ordained to the  ministry and go forth to prune the vineyard  for the last time, or the coming of the Lord, which  was nigh, even fifty six years, should wind up  the scene. He said many things, such as the weak  things, even the smallest and weakest among us shall  be powerful and mighty and great things, should  be accomplished by you, even from this hour.  He said, you shall begin to feel the whisperings  of the Spirit of God, and the works of God, shall begin  to break forth from this time. you shall be en dowed with power from on high. [p. 147]
Minute Book 1, [ca. 3 Dec. 1832–30 Nov. 1837]; handwriting of Warren A. Cowdery, Frederick G. Williams, Orson Hyde, Marcellus F. Cowdery, George W. Robinson, Phineas Richards, and Harlow Redfield; 263 pages; CHL. Includes dockets, redactions, copy notes, use marks, and archival stamping and marking.
Medium-size blank book. The paper, which is ruled with thirty-four blue-green horizontal lines (now faded), measures 12 × 7½ inches (30 × 19 cm). The book originally contained 149 leaves, consisting of twelve gatherings of twelve leaves each, two front flyleaves, and three back flyleaves. The text block is sewn all along over recessed cords. The front and back covers of the volume are pasteboard. The book has a tight-back case binding with a brown calfskin quarter-leather binding, the bound volume measuring 12⅜ × 7¾ × 1 inches (31 × 20 × 3 cm). The outside covers are adorned with shell marbled paper, with a red, green, and black body and veins of black. The back pastedown bears the inscriptions “c”, “c/i”, and “pep”—possibly original merchandising notes.
A single leaf—the conjugate of the leaf bearing pages 15 and 16—was removed from the first gathering of the book, but this occurred before the adjacent leaves were inscribed or paginated. Page 1 is the first lined page. Minutes were inscribed in the book on pages 1–219 and 226–265. Pages 220–225 were left blank, except for their page numbers. Following page 265, the remaining twenty-one pages and the three back flyleaves were left blank. At some point, Frederick G. Williams began a table of contents, which was continued by Warren A. Cowdery but never completed; this table of contents is inscribed on all four pages of the two front flyleaves. The minute book was kept with quill pens. The entries and pagination were inscribed in ink that is now brown. Pages 39–55 include entry-dividing lines inscribed in red ink. There is also residue from an adhesive wafer on pages 156 and 157, indicating a sheet of paper was attached there at one time.
At some point, probably in the early 1840s, the front cover of the volume was labeled “Conference | A” in black ink. The “A” is written in a formal style that matches the covers of other early manuscript books in the CHL’s holdings. Copy notes and use marks, in¬scribed in graphite, were made by later scribes who used the minute book when compiling JS’s 1838–1856 history. At some point, probably in Utah, a white paper label was pasted on the spine; the label is now only partially extant, with the remaining inscription illegible. Another white paper label, also only partially extant, was pasted over this. It reads: “Kirtland Coun”. The rest of the label, which would have included approximately two more words, is missing. The pastedown on the inside of the book’s front cover bears an archival identification number inscribed in black ink and a more recent Historian’s Office library sticker. The spine also bears a more recent sticker with an identification number. Ink has bled through on several of the pages. The book has also suffered some wear and staining in the front and back.
The volume is listed in the 1846 Historian’s Office inventory as “Book of Conference A” and referred to as a Kirtland High Council record in subsequent Historian’s Office inventories from the 1850s. In 1988, the Church History Department transferred Minute Book 1 to the First Presidency’s Office. The minute book was transferred to the Church History Library in 2009. Archival records and the markings mentioned above indicate continuous institutional custody.