31830

Minutes, 1 September 1831

Minutes of a 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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held 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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Geauga County Ohio, Sept. 1. 1831.
Elders

A male leader in the church generally; an ecclesiastical and priesthood office or one holding that office; a proselytizing missionary. The Book of Mormon explained that elders ordained priests and teachers and administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto...

View Glossary
Present
Joseph Smith jr.Ezra Thayer

14 Oct. 1791–6 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...

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Emer Harris

29 May 1781–28 Nov. 1869. Carpenter, scribe, sawmill operator, blacksmith. Born at Cambridge, Albany Co., New York. Son of Nathan Harris and Rhoda Lapham. Moved with parents to area of Swift’s Landing (later in Palmyra), Ontario Co., New York, 1793. Married...

View Full Bio
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...

View Full Bio
Joseph Smith Sr.

12 July 1771–14 Sept. 1840. Cooper, farmer, teacher, merchant. Born at Topsfield, Essex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Asael Smith and Mary Duty. Nominal member of Congregationalist church at Topsfield. Married to Lucy Mack by Seth Austin, 24 Jan. 1796, at Tunbridge...

View Full Bio
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,...

View Full Bio
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
Joseph Coe

12 Nov. 1784–17 Oct. 1854. Farmer, clerk. Born at Cayuga Co., New York. Son of Joel Coe and Huldah Horton. Lived at Scipio, Cayuga Co., by 1800. Married first Pallas Wales, 12 Jan. 1816. Married second Sophia Harwood, ca. 1824. Moved to Macedon, Wayne Co....

View Full Bio
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
Br. 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
was ordained

The conferral of power and authority; to appoint, decree, or set apart. Church members, primarily adults, were ordained to ecclesiastical offices and other responsibilities by the laying on of hands by those with the proper authority. Ordinations to priesthood...

View Glossary
an agent

A specific church office and, more generally, someone “entrusted with the business of another.” Agents in the church assisted other ecclesiastical officers, especially the bishop in his oversight of the church’s temporal affairs. A May 1831 revelation instructed...

View Glossary
unto the Disciples

Generally, a follower of Jesus Christ, and in certain cases, one selected to lead the ministry. In the New Testament, Christ ordained twelve of his disciples as apostles. The Book of Mormon recounted that during his ministry to the Nephites, Christ similarly...

View Glossary
in this land under the hand of br. 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...

View Full Bio
.1

The 30 August revelation that called for Whitney’s appointment as agent also instructed him to raise funds for land purchases in Missouri. Cowdery was to accompany Whitney on his fund-raising journeys. (Revelation, 30 Aug. 1831 [D&C 63:46].)  


Upon testimony given satisfactory to this Conference it was voted that our brethren Edison Edson Fuller

1809–4 Apr. 1879. Carpenter, farmer, storekeeper. Born in Cazenovia, Madison Co., New York. Son of Willard S. Fuller and Tryphena Dryer. Moved to Chagrin (later Willoughby), Geauga Co., Ohio, 1819. Moved to Newburg (later in or near Cleveland), Cuyahoga Co...

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2

An early convert in Kirtland, Fuller had engaged in what many considered to be spiritual excesses. One account claimed that Fuller “while lying on the floor has been seen to jump up and cling to a beam for a while and then drop like a log on the floor.” This same account stated that Fuller and others received their commission to preach “on a roll of paper handed to them from above,” rather than from a group of elders as outlined in the “Articles and Covenants” of the church. On 6 June 1831, Fuller was called in a revelation to travel to Zion with Jacob Scott. Along the way, Scott “threw down the Book of Mormon And jumped on it and said he would go to hell before he would preach it.” (Jones, “Mormon Bible.—No. V,” 135–136; Hancock, Autobiography, 96; Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:64]; Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:28].)  


& William Carter3

Little is known about Carter, but he was also called in the 6 June revelation to travel to Zion, in company with Wheeler Baldwin. What then transpired is not entirely clear. A late nineteenth-century history states that Jacob Scott, Fuller, and Carter “apostatized” and “refused to go” to Zion. Jared Carter wrote in 1833 that David Johnson, whom Fuller had baptized about summer 1831, requested rebaptism because Fuller had been “under the influence of an evil spirit” when he performed Johnson’s baptism. In a copy of minutes from a June 1831 conference that Ebenezer Robinson included in Minute Book 2, “denied the faith” appears next to both Fuller’s and Carter’s names. These parenthetical redactions were probably added after the creation of the original document. (Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:28, 31]; History of the Reorganized Church, 1:195; Carter, Journal, 66–67; Minute Book 2, 3 June 1831.)  


be silenced from holding the office of Elders in this Church.4

Apparently, the conference withdrew Fuller’s and Carter’s authority to preach as elders in the church, probably by taking their elders’ licenses. According to Webster’s 1828 dictionary, to “silence” meant “to restrain from preaching by revoking a license to preach.” (“Silence,” in American Dictionary [1828].)  


By request of br. Lorin Page the Conference received his licence

A document certifying an individual’s office in the church and authorizing him “to perform the duty of his calling.” The “Articles and Covenants” of the church implied that only elders could issue licenses; individuals ordained by a priest to an office in...

View Glossary
as a Priest

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. In the Book of Mormon, priests were described as those who baptized, administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto the church,” and taught “the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” A June 1829 revelation directed...

View Glossary
.5

Page attended the June 1831 conference in Kirtland and was listed in the minutes as a priest. (Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831.)  


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...

View Full Bio
, Clerk of Con. [p. 5]
Minutes of a 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
held 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...

More Info
Geauga County Ohio,  Sept. 1. 1831.
Elders

A male leader in the church generally; an ecclesiastical and priesthood office or one holding that office; a proselytizing missionary. The Book of Mormon explained that elders ordained priests and teachers and administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto...

View Glossary
Present
Joseph Smith jr.Ezra Thayer

14 Oct. 1791–6 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...

View Full Bio
Emer Harris

29 May 1781–28 Nov. 1869. Carpenter, scribe, sawmill operator, blacksmith. Born at Cambridge, Albany Co., New York. Son of Nathan Harris and Rhoda Lapham. Moved with parents to area of Swift’s Landing (later in Palmyra), Ontario Co., New York, 1793. Married...

View Full Bio
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...

View Full Bio
Joseph Smith [Sr.]

12 July 1771–14 Sept. 1840. Cooper, farmer, teacher, merchant. Born at Topsfield, Essex Co., Massachusetts. Son of Asael Smith and Mary Duty. Nominal member of Congregationalist church at Topsfield. Married to Lucy Mack by Seth Austin, 24 Jan. 1796, at Tunbridge...

View Full Bio
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,...

View Full Bio
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
Joseph Coe

12 Nov. 1784–17 Oct. 1854. Farmer, clerk. Born at Cayuga Co., New York. Son of Joel Coe and Huldah Horton. Lived at Scipio, Cayuga Co., by 1800. Married first Pallas Wales, 12 Jan. 1816. Married second Sophia Harwood, ca. 1824. Moved to Macedon, Wayne Co....

View Full Bio
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
Br. 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
was ordained

The conferral of power and authority; to appoint, decree, or set apart. Church members, primarily adults, were ordained to ecclesiastical offices and other responsibilities by the laying on of hands by those with the proper authority. Ordinations to priesthood...

View Glossary
an agent

A specific church office and, more generally, someone “entrusted with the business of another.” Agents in the church assisted other ecclesiastical officers, especially the bishop in his oversight of the church’s temporal affairs. A May 1831 revelation instructed...

View Glossary
unto the Disciples

Generally, a follower of Jesus Christ, and in certain cases, one selected to lead the ministry. In the New Testament, Christ ordained twelve of his disciples as apostles. The Book of Mormon recounted that during his ministry to the Nephites, Christ similarly...

View Glossary
 in this land under the hand of br. 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...

View Full Bio
.1

The 30 August revelation that called for Whitney’s appointment as agent also instructed him to raise funds for land purchases in Missouri. Cowdery was to accompany Whitney on his fund-raising journeys. (Revelation, 30 Aug. 1831 [D&C 63:46].)  


Upon testimony given  satisfactory to this Conference it was voted that our brethren Edison [Edson]  Fuller

1809–4 Apr. 1879. Carpenter, farmer, storekeeper. Born in Cazenovia, Madison Co., New York. Son of Willard S. Fuller and Tryphena Dryer. Moved to Chagrin (later Willoughby), Geauga Co., Ohio, 1819. Moved to Newburg (later in or near Cleveland), Cuyahoga Co...

View Full Bio
2

An early convert in Kirtland, Fuller had engaged in what many considered to be spiritual excesses. One account claimed that Fuller “while lying on the floor has been seen to jump up and cling to a beam for a while and then drop like a log on the floor.” This same account stated that Fuller and others received their commission to preach “on a roll of paper handed to them from above,” rather than from a group of elders as outlined in the “Articles and Covenants” of the church. On 6 June 1831, Fuller was called in a revelation to travel to Zion with Jacob Scott. Along the way, Scott “threw down the Book of Mormon And jumped on it and said he would go to hell before he would preach it.” (Jones, “Mormon Bible.—No. V,” 135–136; Hancock, Autobiography, 96; Articles and Covenants, ca. Apr. 1830 [D&C 20:64]; Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:28].)  


& William Carter3

Little is known about Carter, but he was also called in the 6 June revelation to travel to Zion, in company with Wheeler Baldwin. What then transpired is not entirely clear. A late nineteenth-century history states that Jacob Scott, Fuller, and Carter “apostatized” and “refused to go” to Zion. Jared Carter wrote in 1833 that David Johnson, whom Fuller had baptized about summer 1831, requested rebaptism because Fuller had been “under the influence of an evil spirit” when he performed Johnson’s baptism. In a copy of minutes from a June 1831 conference that Ebenezer Robinson included in Minute Book 2, “denied the faith” appears next to both Fuller’s and Carter’s names. These parenthetical redactions were probably added after the creation of the original document. (Revelation, 6 June 1831 [D&C 52:28, 31]; History of the Reorganized Church, 1:195; Carter, Journal, 66–67; Minute Book 2, 3 June 1831.)  


be silenced from holding the office of Elders in  this Church.4

Apparently, the conference withdrew Fuller’s and Carter’s authority to preach as elders in the church, probably by taking their elders’ licenses. According to Webster’s 1828 dictionary, to “silence” meant “to restrain from preaching by revoking a license to preach.” (“Silence,” in American Dictionary [1828].)  


By request of br. Lorin Page the Conference received his licence

A document certifying an individual’s office in the church and authorizing him “to perform the duty of his calling.” The “Articles and Covenants” of the church implied that only elders could issue licenses; individuals ordained by a priest to an office in...

View Glossary
 as a Priest

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. In the Book of Mormon, priests were described as those who baptized, administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto the church,” and taught “the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.” A June 1829 revelation directed...

View Glossary
.5

Page attended the June 1831 conference in Kirtland and was listed in the minutes as a priest. (Minutes, ca. 3–4 June 1831.)  


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...

View Full Bio
, Clerk of Con. [p. 5]
On 1 September 1831, soon after his return from 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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, JS held a 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
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...

More Info
, Ohio, in which 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
was ordained

The conferral of power and authority; to appoint, decree, or set apart. Church members, primarily adults, were ordained to ecclesiastical offices and other responsibilities by the laying on of hands by those with the proper authority. Ordinations to priesthood...

View Glossary
a church agent

A specific church office and, more generally, someone “entrusted with the business of another.” Agents in the church assisted other ecclesiastical officers, especially the bishop in his oversight of the church’s temporal affairs. A May 1831 revelation instructed...

View Glossary
and others were disciplined. Whitney was the second such agent appointed in the church. A May 1831 revelation had mandated the appointment of the first agent, who would “provide food & raiment according to the wants of this people,”1

Revelation, 20 May 1831 [D&C 51:8] .  


and 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...

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was called to fill that role.2

Revelation, 8 June 1831 [D&C 53:4] .  


After Gilbert, JS, and other elders

A male leader in the church generally; an ecclesiastical and priesthood office or one holding that office; a proselytizing missionary. The Book of Mormon explained that elders ordained priests and teachers and administered “the flesh and blood of Christ unto...

View Glossary
arrived in Missouri, a 1 August revelation directed that there be “an agent appointed by the voice of the Church”—apparently a second agent in addition to Gilbert.3

Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:49].  


Upon JS’s return to Ohio

French explored area, 1669. British took possession following French and Indian War, 1763. Ceded to U.S., 1783. First permanent white settlement established, 1788. Northeastern portion maintained as part of Connecticut, 1786, and called Connecticut Western...

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, a 30 August revelation designated Whitney as the “agent unto the Desiples

Generally, a follower of Jesus Christ, and in certain cases, one selected to lead the ministry. In the New Testament, Christ ordained twelve of his disciples as apostles. The Book of Mormon recounted that during his ministry to the Nephites, Christ similarly...

View Glossary
that shall tarry.”4

Revelation, 30 Aug. 1831 [D&C 63:45]; see also Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58:49–51].  


Accordingly, 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...

View Full Bio
ordained Whitney to this position at the 1 September conference of elders.
The conference also revoked the right to preach from Edson Fuller

1809–4 Apr. 1879. Carpenter, farmer, storekeeper. Born in Cazenovia, Madison Co., New York. Son of Willard S. Fuller and Tryphena Dryer. Moved to Chagrin (later Willoughby), Geauga Co., Ohio, 1819. Moved to Newburg (later in or near Cleveland), Cuyahoga Co...

View Full Bio
and William Carter. Using conferences as a venue for institutional discipline was common among some Protestant denominations at this time; conferences were especially used to discipline those who had been called to preach.5

Wigger, Taking Heaven by Storm, 89–90.  


Disciplinary procedures within the Church of Christ

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...

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at this time were still developing, though the February 1831 revelation of the “Laws of the Church of Christ” outlined procedures for adjudicating charges against those accused of committing adultery. These same procedures were apparently also to be applied when individuals committed “any manner of iniquity.”6

Revelation, 23 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:87].  


According to these instructions, the accused would “be tried before two Elders of the Church or more and every word shall be established against him by two witnesses of the Church.”7

Revelation, 23 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:80].  


These procedures were apparently followed in this conference, although the minutes do not specify the identity of those testifying, how many people testified, or the specific offenses with which Fuller and Carter were charged. The minutes do not record whether Fuller and Carter were present during the proceedings.
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...

View Full Bio
served as the clerk of the conference and kept minutes. Sometime in 1838, Ebenezer Robinson

25 May 1816–11 Mar. 1891. Printer, editor, publisher. Born at Floyd (near Rome), Oneida Co., New York. Son of Nathan Robinson and Mary Brown. Moved to Utica, Oneida Co., ca. 1831, and learned printing trade at Utica Observer. Moved to Ravenna, Portage Co....

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copied the minutes into Minute Book 2.

Facts