2476692

Minutes, 26–27 April 1832

And the right hand of fellowship given him by the Bishop

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. JS appointed Edward Partridge as the first bishop in February 1831. Following this appointment, Partridge functioned as the local leader of the church in Missouri. Later revelations described a bishop’s duties as receiving...

View Glossary
Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
in the land of 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
in the name of 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
4

JS later remembered Partridge’s extending of the hand as “solemn, impressive, And delightful.” Extending the right hand of fellowship was a practice of some Protestant churches at this time. Congregationalists, for example, performed it “when men were set apart to the pastoral office, to give them a public pledge of christian and ministerial fellowship.” Other denominations, including the Baptists, extended the right hand to those intending to join their church. Such practices were patterned after Galatians 2:9, which states that James, Cephas, and John gave to Paul and Barnabas “the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.” (JS History, vol. A-1, 210; Emerson, “Right Hand of Fellowship,” 51; see Strickland, Backwoods Preacher, 31.)  


Br. 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
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 Highpriest

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. Christ and many ancient prophets, including Abraham, were described as being high priests. The Book of Mormon used the term high priest to denote one appointed to lead the church. However, the Book of Mormon also discussed...

View Glossary
under the hand of br. Joseph Smith jr.5

Gilbert’s ordination may have been necessary in order for him to participate in the United Firm. All others in the firm were already high priests. Similarly, at a conference of high priests convened in Kirtland, Ohio, on 4 June 1833, JS dictated a revelation that John Johnson Sr. be admitted as a member of the United Firm and “accordingly he was ordained unto the high Priesthood and admited.” (Minute Book 1, 4 June 1833.)  


Br. 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...

View Full Bio
then stated the items embraced in a Revelation received in 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...

More Info
& the reason why we were commanded to come to this land & sit in council with the Highpriests here, for the particulars of which read the commandment

Generally, a divine mandate that church members were expected to obey; more specifically, a text dictated by JS in the first-person voice of Deity that served to communicate knowledge and instruction to JS and his followers. Occasionally, other inspired texts...

View Glossary
.6
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
adjourned for one hour.
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...

View Full Bio
Clerk.
Council

A gathering of church leaders assembled “for consultation, deliberation and advice”; also a body responsible for governance or administration. As early as 9 February 1831, a revelation instructed that “the Elders & Bishop shall Council together & they shall...

View Glossary
convened
Prayer by br. Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
.
All differences settled & the hearts of all run together in love7

A later JS history indicated that at a break in the council, “a difficulty or hardness which had existed between Bishop Partridge and Elder Rigdon was amicably settled, and when we came together in the afternoon all hearts seemed to rejoice.” (JS History, vol. A-1, 210.)  


A Revelation received through him whom the Church has appointed respecting organization.8
Council adjourned until to-morrow 9 o’clock A.M.
Prayer by Jesse Gause

Ca. 1784–ca. Sept. 1836. Schoolteacher. Born at East Marlborough, Chester Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Gause (Goss) and Mary Beverly. Joined Society of Friends (Quakers), 1806. Moved to Fayette Co., Pennsylvania, 1808; to Chester Co., 1811; and to Wilmington...

View Full Bio
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...

View Full Bio
.
Council convened. Opened by singing “He dies the friend of sinners dies &c.”9

Isaac Watts (1674–1748) composed the words of this hymn, which were originally “He dies! the Heavenly Lover dies.” Martin Madan later changed the first line to “He dies! the Friend of sinners dies!” The hymn was popular among several denominations at the time, appearing in its modified form in hymnbooks such as John Wesley’s A Collection of Hymns for the Use of the People Called Methodists. (Davidson, Our Latter-day Hymns, 206.)  


& prayer by br. 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...

View Full Bio
Resolved. that the name of the Firm

An organization that supervised the management of church enterprises and properties from 1832 to 1834. In March and April 1832, revelations directed that the church’s publishing and mercantile endeavors be organized. In accordance with this direction, the...

View Glossary
mentioned in the commandments yesterday be Gilbert, Whitney & Company

The branch of the United Firm responsible for overseeing the church’s mercantile endeavors in Missouri. Sidney Gilbert and Newel K. Whitney were partners in the mercantile business in Kirtland, Ohio, before Gilbert relocated to Missouri, by January 1832, ...

View Glossary
in 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
, And Newel K. Whitney & company

A partnership between Newel K. Whitney and Sidney Gilbert; later the branch of the United Firm responsible for overseeing the church’s mercantile endeavors in Kirtland, Ohio. In late 1826 or early 1827, Whitney and Gilbert established this partnership to ...

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
Geauga Co. Ohio.10

Both Gilbert and Whitney were already operating stores in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, and Kirtland, Ohio, respectively. Whitney established N. K. Whitney & Co. with Gilbert in Kirtland in December 1826. The 20 July 1831 revelation establishing Missouri as the “Land of Zion” and Independence as Zion’s “centre place” also instructed Gilbert to “establish a store” in Independence so that the church could receive “money to buy lands for the good of the Saints.” After his arrival in Missouri in January 1832, Gilbert did so, transacting business under the name Gilbert & Whitney. (Staker, Hearken, O Ye People, 217; Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:3, 8, 14]; Rollins, Reminiscences, 3–4; Jackson Co., MO, Deed Records, 1827–1909, vol. B, p. 33, 20 Feb. 1832, microfilm 1,017,978, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Eakin and Eakin, Jackson County Missouri Court Minutes Book 1, 127, 143–144.)  


Resolved that brs. 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
draft the bond for the above named Firm.11

The revelation of 1 March 1832 instructed that the firm be formed by “an everlasting covinent.”a The 26 April 1832 revelation went a step further, stating that the group should be “bound together by a bond & Covennant,” apparently meaning that all firm members had to sign a legal and binding agreement, which Gilbert and Phelps were to draft.b Although such an agreement is no longer extant, John Whitmer may have started to copy the bond into his history of the church. A few lines before he recounted JS’s spring 1832 visit to Missouri, he wrote (but then crossed out) the words “Kn◊◊ all en by these presents, that we Edward P◊◊tidg, Newel.”c  


aRevelation, 1 Mar. 1832 [D&C 78:11].

bRevelation, 26 Apr. 1832 [D&C 82:11, 15]; see also JS, Journal, 7–9 Apr. 1834.

cWhitmer, History, 38.

As there was not any business of importance before the council; Brethren 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...

View Full Bio
Joseph & William

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
gave desertations on the Gospel, its appendages &c. Council closed in prayer by br. Joseph Smith jr.
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...

View Full Bio
Clerk.
April 27. 1832. [p. 25]
And the right hand of fellowship given him by the Bishop

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. JS appointed Edward Partridge as the first bishop in February 1831. Following this appointment, Partridge functioned as the local leader of the church in Missouri. Later revelations described a bishop’s duties as receiving...

View Glossary
 Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
in the land of 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
in the name of 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
4

JS later remembered Partridge’s extending of the hand as “solemn, impressive, And delightful.” Extending the right hand of fellowship was a practice of some Protestant churches at this time. Congregationalists, for example, performed it “when men were set apart to the pastoral office, to give them a public pledge of christian and ministerial fellowship.” Other denominations, including the Baptists, extended the right hand to those intending to join their church. Such practices were patterned after Galatians 2:9, which states that James, Cephas, and John gave to Paul and Barnabas “the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.” (JS History, vol. A-1, 210; Emerson, “Right Hand of Fellowship,” 51; see Strickland, Backwoods Preacher, 31.)  


Br. 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
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 Highpriest

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. Christ and many ancient prophets, including Abraham, were described as being high priests. The Book of Mormon used the term high priest to denote one appointed to lead the church. However, the Book of Mormon also discussed...

View Glossary
under the hand  of br. Joseph Smith jr.5

Gilbert’s ordination may have been necessary in order for him to participate in the United Firm. All others in the firm were already high priests. Similarly, at a conference of high priests convened in Kirtland, Ohio, on 4 June 1833, JS dictated a revelation that John Johnson Sr. be admitted as a member of the United Firm and “accordingly he was ordained unto the high Priesthood and admited.” (Minute Book 1, 4 June 1833.)  


Br. 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...

View Full Bio
then stated the items embraced in a Revelation  received in 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...

More Info
& the reason why we were commanded to come to  this land & sit in council with the Highpriests here, for the  particulars of which read the commandment

Generally, a divine mandate that church members were expected to obey; more specifically, a text dictated by JS in the first-person voice of Deity that served to communicate knowledge and instruction to JS and his followers. Occasionally, other inspired texts...

View Glossary
.6
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
adjourned for one hour.
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...

View Full Bio
Clerk.
Council

A gathering of church leaders assembled “for consultation, deliberation and advice”; also a body responsible for governance or administration. As early as 9 February 1831, a revelation instructed that “the Elders & Bishop shall Council together & they shall...

View Glossary
convened
Prayer by br. Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
.
All differences settled & the hearts of all run together in love7

A later JS history indicated that at a break in the council, “a difficulty or hardness which had existed between Bishop Partridge and Elder Rigdon was amicably settled, and when we came together in the afternoon all hearts seemed to rejoice.” (JS History, vol. A-1, 210.)  


A Revelation received through him whom the Church has appointed  respecting organization.8
Council adjourned until to-morrow 9 o’clock A.M.
Prayer by Jesse Gause

Ca. 1784–ca. Sept. 1836. Schoolteacher. Born at East Marlborough, Chester Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Gause (Goss) and Mary Beverly. Joined Society of Friends (Quakers), 1806. Moved to Fayette Co., Pennsylvania, 1808; to Chester Co., 1811; and to Wilmington...

View Full Bio
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...

View Full Bio
.
Council convened. Opened by singing “He dies the friend of  sinners dies &c.”9

Isaac Watts (1674–1748) composed the words of this hymn, which were originally “He dies! the Heavenly Lover dies.” Martin Madan later changed the first line to “He dies! the Friend of sinners dies!” The hymn was popular among several denominations at the time, appearing in its modified form in hymnbooks such as John Wesley’s A Collection of Hymns for the Use of the People Called Methodists. (Davidson, Our Latter-day Hymns, 206.)  


& prayer by br. 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...

View Full Bio
Resolved. that the name of the Firm

An organization that supervised the management of church enterprises and properties from 1832 to 1834. In March and April 1832, revelations directed that the church’s publishing and mercantile endeavors be organized. In accordance with this direction, the...

View Glossary
mentioned in the  commandments yesterday be Gilbert, Whitney & Company

The branch of the United Firm responsible for overseeing the church’s mercantile endeavors in Missouri. Sidney Gilbert and Newel K. Whitney were partners in the mercantile business in Kirtland, Ohio, before Gilbert relocated to Missouri, by January 1832, ...

View Glossary
in 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
,  And Newel K. Whitney & company

A partnership between Newel K. Whitney and Sidney Gilbert; later the branch of the United Firm responsible for overseeing the church’s mercantile endeavors in Kirtland, Ohio. In late 1826 or early 1827, Whitney and Gilbert established this partnership to ...

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
Geauga Co. Ohio.10

Both Gilbert and Whitney were already operating stores in Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, and Kirtland, Ohio, respectively. Whitney established N. K. Whitney & Co. with Gilbert in Kirtland in December 1826. The 20 July 1831 revelation establishing Missouri as the “Land of Zion” and Independence as Zion’s “centre place” also instructed Gilbert to “establish a store” in Independence so that the church could receive “money to buy lands for the good of the Saints.” After his arrival in Missouri in January 1832, Gilbert did so, transacting business under the name Gilbert & Whitney. (Staker, Hearken, O Ye People, 217; Revelation, 20 July 1831 [D&C 57:3, 8, 14]; Rollins, Reminiscences, 3–4; Jackson Co., MO, Deed Records, 1827–1909, vol. B, p. 33, 20 Feb. 1832, microfilm 1,017,978, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL; Eakin and Eakin, Jackson County Missouri Court Minutes Book 1, 127, 143–144.)  


Resolved that brs. 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
draft the  bond for the above named Firm.11

The revelation of 1 March 1832 instructed that the firm be formed by “an everlasting covinent.”a The 26 April 1832 revelation went a step further, stating that the group should be “bound together by a bond & Covennant,” apparently meaning that all firm members had to sign a legal and binding agreement, which Gilbert and Phelps were to draft.b Although such an agreement is no longer extant, John Whitmer may have started to copy the bond into his history of the church. A few lines before he recounted JS’s spring 1832 visit to Missouri, he wrote (but then crossed out) the words “Kn◊◊ all en by these presents, that we Edward P◊◊tidg, Newel.”c  


aRevelation, 1 Mar. 1832 [D&C 78:11].

bRevelation, 26 Apr. 1832 [D&C 82:11, 15]; see also JS, Journal, 7–9 Apr. 1834.

cWhitmer, History, 38.

As there was not any business of importance  before the council; Brethren 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...

View Full Bio
Joseph & William

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
gave desertations  on the Gospel, its appendages &c. Council closed in prayer by br. Joseph  Smith jr.
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...

View Full Bio
Clerk.
April 27. 1832. [p. 25]
Previous
On 26–27 April 1832, JS held a council of high priests

An ecclesiastical and priesthood office. Christ and many ancient prophets, including Abraham, were described as being high priests. The Book of Mormon used the term high priest to denote one appointed to lead the church. However, the Book of Mormon also discussed...

View Glossary
and 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
in 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...

More Info
, Jackson County, Missouri. This was in accordance with a 1 March 1832 revelation that instructed JS, 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...

View Full Bio
, and 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
to travel from 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...

More Info
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...

More Info
and “sit in councel with the saints who are in 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
.” The revelation also directed the three men to “organize . . . by an everlasting covinent which cannot be broken” the “Literary and Merchantile establishments of my church.”1

Revelation, 1 Mar. 1832 [D&C 78]. For more information on the church’s publishing and mercantile concerns, see Historical Introduction to Revelation, 1 Mar. 1832 [D&C 78].  


JS and Whitney, accompanied by Jesse Gause

Ca. 1784–ca. Sept. 1836. Schoolteacher. Born at East Marlborough, Chester Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Gause (Goss) and Mary Beverly. Joined Society of Friends (Quakers), 1806. Moved to Fayette Co., Pennsylvania, 1808; to Chester Co., 1811; and to Wilmington...

View Full Bio
and Peter Whitmer Jr.

27 Sept. 1809–22 Sept. 1836. Tailor. Born at Fayette, Seneca Co., New York. Son of Peter Whitmer Sr. and Mary Musselman. Baptized by Oliver Cowdery, June 1829, in Seneca Lake, Seneca Co. One of the Eight Witnesses of the Book of Mormon, June 1829. Among six...

View Full Bio
, left for Missouri on 1 April 1832, meeting up with Rigdon the following day.2

JS History, vol. A-1, 209. Although this entry in JS’s multivolume manuscript history suggests Sunday was 2 April, it was actually 1 April. When the manuscript was first published as “History of Joseph Smith” in the Times and Seasons, the date remained “Sunday, April second,” an error that was corrected in a later publication. (“History of Joseph Smith,” Times and Seasons, 2 Sept. 1844, 5:624; History of the Church, 1:265.)  


The group arrived in Independence on 24 April.3

This is according to Whitney’s recollection. However, Whitney also stated that the group departed Hiram, Ohio, on 25 March, which conflicts with JS’s account. (Newel K. Whitney, Statement, ca. 1842, Historian’s Office, JS History Documents, ca. 1839–1856, CHL.)  


On 26 April, the council of high priests and elders convened, transacting several items of business. The high priests present also acknowledged JS as president of the high priesthood

Both the office of the president of the high priesthood and the body comprising the president and his counselors; the presiding body of the church. In November 1831, a revelation directed the appointment of a president of the high priesthood. The individual...

View Glossary
.
The council then resolved a long-standing difficulty between 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...

View Full Bio
and Edward Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

View Full Bio
. In September 1831, Rigdon charged Partridge with insulting JS and disrespecting his position as prophet.4

See Historical Introduction to Revelation, 1 Aug. 1831 [D&C 58].  


On 10 March 1832, before the arrival of the 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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visitors, a 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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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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considered Rigdon’s charges, after which Partridge stated his willingness “to make every confession which br. Sidney as a disciple of Christ could require & forever bury the matter.”5

Minute Book 2, 10 Mar. 1832.  


The April conference marked the first opportunity for the two to reconcile their differences face to face. After the two made amends, JS dictated a revelation that discussed the concept of forgiveness and instructed the council to organize the church’s publishing and mercantile endeavors through the establishment of a governing firm.6

JS History, vol. A-1, 210–211; Revelation, 26 Apr. 1832 [D&C 82].  


On 27 April, the council took steps towards the creation of this firm (which would become known as the United Firm

An organization that supervised the management of church enterprises and properties from 1832 to 1834. In March and April 1832, revelations directed that the church’s publishing and mercantile endeavors be organized. In accordance with this direction, the...

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) and assigned 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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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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to prepare a bond that presumably all in the firm would sign.
By taking these actions, the council solidified church administration in 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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and fostered greater unity between the church in 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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and the church 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. In acknowledging JS as president of the high priesthood on 26 April, for example, Partridge

27 Aug. 1793–27 May 1840. Hatter. Born at Pittsfield, Berkshire Co., Massachusetts. Son of William Partridge and Jemima Bidwell. Moved to Painesville, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Lydia Clisbee, 22 Aug. 1819, at Painesville. Initially a Universal Restorationist...

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extended to JS “the right hand of fellowship” on behalf of the Missouri church. This action was particularly significant given 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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’s earlier charges that Partridge “assumed authority” over JS “in open violation of the Laws of God.”7

JS History, vol. A-1, 210; Minute Book 2, 10 Mar. 1832.  


JS’s acceptance of “the right hand of fellowship” from Partridge may have confirmed to those present his continuing regard for Partridge as the leader of the Saints in Missouri.8

See Minute Book 2, 11 Sept. 1833.  


In a similar way, the formation of the governing firm promoted unity between Independence and Kirtland leaders by joining them together in an enterprise that would benefit the church in both areas. As a later JS history declared, the business conducted by the 26–27 April council furthered JS’s efforts “to so organize the church, that the brethren might eventually be independent of every incumbrance beneath the celestial Kingdom, by bonds and covenants of mutual friendship, and mutual love.”9

JS History, vol. A-1, 212–213. John Whitmer, church historian, later recorded his view of what the council accomplished: “Joseph the seer and Sidney the Scribe and N. W. [Newel K.] Whitney and one Jesse Gause came to Zion to comfort the Saints and Setle som little dificulties, and regulate the church and affairs concerning it.” (Whitmer, History, 38.)  


As clerk, 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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kept minutes of the 26–27 April council. 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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entered the minutes into Minute Book 2.

Facts