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Proclamation, 15 January 1841

A PROCLAMATION,  TO THE SAINTS SCATTERED  ABROAD;
Greeting:
Beloved Brethren:—
The relationship  which we sustain to the Church of Je sus Christ of Latter Day Saints, ren ders it necessary that we should make  known from time to time, the circum stances, situation, and prospects of the  church, and give such instructions as  may be necessary for the well being  of the Saints. and for the promotion of  those objects, calculated to further their  present and everlasting happiness.
We have to congratulate the Saints  on the progress of the great work of  the “last days;” for not only has it  spread through the length and breadth  of this vast continent; but on the conti nent of Europe, and on the Islands of  the sea, it is spreading in a manner en tirely unprecedented in the annals of  time.
This appears the more pleasing when  we consider, that but a short time has  elapsed, since we were unmercifully  driven from the State of Missouri, af ter suffering cruelties and persecutions  in their various, and horrid forms.—  Then our overthrow, to many, seemed  inevitable, while the enemies of truth  triumphed over us, and by their cruel  reproaches endeavored to aggravate  our sufferings. But “the Lord of  Hosts was with us, the God of Jacob  was our refuge!” and we were deliv ered from the hands of bloody and de ceitful men; and in the State of Illinois  we found an asylum, and were kindly  welcomed by persons worthy the char acters of freemen. It would be im possible to enumerate all those who in  our time of deep distress, nobly came  forward to our relief, and like the good  Samaritan poured oil into our wounds,  and contributed liberally to our neces sities, as the citizens of Quincy en masse  and the people of Illinois, generally,  seemed to emulate each other in this  labor of love. We would, however,  make honorable mention of Governor  [Thomas] Carlin, Judge [Richard M.] Young, General [Samuel] Leech,  Judge [James] Ralston, Rev. Mr. Young, Col.  Henry, N[ehemiah] Bushnell, John Wood, I[saac]  N. Morris, S[ylvester] M. Bartlett, Samuel  Holmes, and J. T. Holmes, Esquires,  who will long be remembered by a  grateful community for their philan thropy to a suffering people, and  whose kindness on that occasion is in delibly engraven on the tablet of our  hearts, in golden letters of love.
We would, likewise, make mention of  the Legislature of this State, who,  without respect of parties, without re luctance, freely, openly, boldly, and no bly, have come forth to our assistance,  owned us as citizens and friends, and  took us by the hand, and extended to  us all the blessings of civil, political,  and religious liberty, by granting us,  under date of Dec. 16, 1840, one of  the most liberal charters, with the  most plenary powers, ever conferred  by a legislative assembly on free citi zens, for the “City of Nauvoo,” the  Nauvoo Legion” and the “University  of the City of Nauvoo.” The first of  these charters, (that for the “City of  Nauvoo,”) secures to us in all time to  come, irrevocably, all those great bles sings of civil liberty, which of right  appertain to all the free citizens of a  great civilized republic—’tis all we ever  claimed. What a contrast does the  proceedings of the legislature of this  State present, when compared with  those of Missouri, whose bigotry, jeal ousy, and superstition, prevailed to such  an extent, as to deny us our liberty and  our sacred rights—Illinois has set a glo rious example, to the whole United  States and to the world at large, and  has nobly carried out the principles of  her constitution, and the constitution of  these United States, and while she re quires of us implicit obedience to the  laws, (which we hope ever to see ob served) she affords us the protection of  law—the security of life, liberty, and  the peaceable pursuit of happiness.
The name of our city (Nauvoo,) is of  Hebrew origin, and signifies a beauti [p. [273]]
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JS, Sidney Rigdon, and Hyrum Smith, Proclamation, Nauvoo, IL, 15 Jan. 1841; in Times and Seasons, 15 Jan. 1841, 2:273–277.

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