43990868

Nauvoo Relief Society Minute Book

is taught by the gift of tongues, it is not to be received for doctrine.
Prest. S. then offered instruction respecting the propriety of females administering to the sick by the laying on of hands

A practice in which individuals place their hands upon a person to bestow the gift of the Holy Ghost; ordain to an office or calling; or confer other power, authority, or blessings, often as part of an ordinance. The Book of Mormon explained that ecclesiastical...

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— said it was according to revelation &c. said he never was plac’d in similar circumstances, and never had given the same instruction.
He clos’d his instructions by expressing his satisfaction in improving the opportunity.
The spirit of the Lord was pour’d out in a very powerful manner, never to be forgotten by those present on that interesting occasion.
[1 line blank]
The Committee appointed to investigate into the cases of individuals, returned & reported that the objections against A. E. Robison

22 Aug. 1814–8 Apr. 1880. Schoolteacher. Born at Aurelius, Cayuga Co., New York. Daughter of Asa Works and Abigail Marks. Sister of Brigham Young’s first wife, Miriam Works Young. Baptized into LDS church, 1835, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Ebenezer...

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were remov’d; and accordingly she was received by a unanimous vote.
The following names were also read and voted as follows
Lydia [Goldthwaite] Knight

9 June 1812–3 Apr. 1884. Boardinghouse operator, weaver, teacher. Born at Sutton, Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Daughter of Jesse G. Goldthwaite and Sally Burt. Married first Calvin Bailey, fall 1828, but deserted by him, 1832. Moved to home of Eleazer Freeman...

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ayeHannah A. Dibbleaye
Rebecca ReedayePolly Sherwood"
Amy ClothiernoMary C. Miller"
Mary SmithayeLaura Russ"
Aphia Gale"Jane Miller"
Anna Jones noHannah Whitlock"
Elizabeth EatonayeEliza Moses"
Lydia M. SmithayeAbigail Works"
Rosetta L. Snow"[blank] Johnson"
Nancy King"
[1 line blank]
The gentlemen withdrew and the sisters proceeded to business, concerning the poor &c. [p. [41]]
is taught by the gift of tongues, it is not to be received for  doctrine.
Prest. S. then offered instruction respecting the  propriety of females administering to the sick by the laying  on of hands

A practice in which individuals place their hands upon a person to bestow the gift of the Holy Ghost; ordain to an office or calling; or confer other power, authority, or blessings, often as part of an ordinance. The Book of Mormon explained that ecclesiastical...

View Glossary
— said it was according to revelation &c. said  he never was plac’d in similar circumstances, and never  had given the same instruction.
He clos’d his instructions by expressing his  satisfaction in improving the opportunity.
The spirit of the Lord was pour’d out in a very  powerful manner, never to be forgotten by those present on  that interesting occasion.
[1 line blank]
The Committee appointed to investigate into  the cases of individuals, returned & reported that the  objections against A. E. Robison

22 Aug. 1814–8 Apr. 1880. Schoolteacher. Born at Aurelius, Cayuga Co., New York. Daughter of Asa Works and Abigail Marks. Sister of Brigham Young’s first wife, Miriam Works Young. Baptized into LDS church, 1835, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Married Ebenezer...

View Full Bio
were remov’d; and  accordingly she was received by a unanimous vote.
The following persns <names> were also read and voted  as follows
Lydia [Goldthwaite] Knight

9 June 1812–3 Apr. 1884. Boardinghouse operator, weaver, teacher. Born at Sutton, Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Daughter of Jesse G. Goldthwaite and Sally Burt. Married first Calvin Bailey, fall 1828, but deserted by him, 1832. Moved to home of Eleazer Freeman...

View Full Bio
ayeHannah A. Dibbleaye
Rebecca ReedayePolly Sherwood"
Amy ClothiernoMary C. Miller"
Mary SmithayeLaura Russ"
Aphia Gale"Jane Miller"
Anna Jonesaye noHannah Whitlock"
Elizabeth EatonayeEliza Moses"
Lydia M. SmithayeAbigail Works"
Rosetta L. Snow"[blank] Johnson"
Nancy King"
[1 line blank]
The gentlemen withdrew and the sisters proceeded  to business, concerning the poor &c. [p. [41]]
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On 17 March 1842, JS first formally organized Latter-day Saint women in a group with distinct responsibilities and authority. At JS’s invitation, twenty women assembled in the large room above his dry goods store in Nauvoo

Principal gathering place for Saints following expulsion from Missouri. Beginning in 1839, LDS church purchased lands in earlier settlement of Commerce and planned settlement of Commerce City, as well as surrounding areas. Served as church headquarters, 1839...

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, Illinois, to be organized, as one woman recalled his description, “under the priesthood after the pattern of the priesthood” (Sarah M. Kimball, “Auto-biography,” Woman’s Exponent, 1 Sept. 1883, 51). Priesthood quorums—units of men assembled according to priesthood office and usually headed by a president and two counselors—had been organized previously. The women assembled on 17 March elected JS’s wife Emma Hale Smith

10 July 1804–30 Apr. 1879. Scribe, editor, boardinghouse operator, clothier. Born at Willingborough Township (later in Harmony), Susquehanna Co., Pennsylvania. Daughter of Isaac Hale and Elizabeth Lewis. Member of Methodist church at Harmony (later in Oakland...

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president, and she selected two counselors; a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles ordained or set apart the three-member presidency to their new callings or offices. These were the first ecclesiastical positions in the church for women.
The name the women selected for their institution, the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo, paralleled that of contemporaneous women’s benevolent societies in the United States

North American constitutional republic. Constitution ratified, 17 Sept. 1787. Population in 1805 about 6,000,000; in 1830 about 13,000,000; and in 1844 about 20,000,000. Louisiana Purchase, 1803, doubled size of U.S. Consisted of seventeen states at time ...

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. Two or three weeks prior to the 17 March meeting, a group of Nauvoo

Principal gathering place for Saints following expulsion from Missouri. Beginning in 1839, LDS church purchased lands in earlier settlement of Commerce and planned settlement of Commerce City, as well as surrounding areas. Served as church headquarters, 1839...

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women had met to form a “ladies society” to sew shirts for temple workmen, an effort probably informed by the broader benevolent movement. When JS invited these women to be organized as part of the church structure, they abandoned their plans for an independent society with a constitution and bylaws. JS told them at the initial meeting, “The minutes of your meetings will be precedents for you to act upon—your Constitution and law” (Minutes, 17 Mar. 1842). This record of Relief Society “organization and proceedings” includes minutes for seventeen meetings in 1842, thirteen in 1843, and four in 1844. By the last recorded meeting in March 1844, a total of 1,331 women had enrolled as members, most of them joining the first year (Maureen C. Ward, “‘This Institution Is a Good One’: The Female Relief Society of Nauvoo, 17 March 1842 to 16 March 1844,” Mormon Historical Studies 3 [Fall 2002]: 87–203).
JS attended nine Relief Society meetings in 1842 and addressed six of them. These minutes document his instructions regarding women’s new responsibilities, authority, and forthcoming temple blessings—the only record of teachings JS directed specifically to women. The minutes detail donations for and visits with the poor, contributions for temple

JS revelation, dated Jan. 1841, commanded Saints to build temple and hotel (Nauvoo House). Cornerstone laid, 6 Apr. 1841. Saints volunteered labor, money, and other resources for temple construction. Construction directed by committee, which included Reynolds...

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construction, and women’s efforts at moral reform and civic activism. Discussions reported in this record refer explicitly or implicitly to tensions mounting in Nauvoo over JS’s political influence and threatened extradition 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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, the defection of prominent church and civic leader John C. Bennett

3 Aug. 1804–5 Aug. 1867. Physician, minister, poultry breeder. Born at Fairhaven, Bristol Co., Massachusetts. Son of John Bennett and Abigail Cook. Moved to Marietta, Washington Co., Ohio, 1808; to Massachusetts, 1812; and back to Marietta, 1822. Married ...

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, and the tumult surrounding the introduction of plural marriage. The record of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo ends on 16 March 1844; a decade passed before Relief Society meetings resumed in the Salt Lake Valley.

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