53992720

John Corrill, “Brief History,” Manuscript, circa 1838–1839

John Fletcher Darby Papers, Missouri History Museum Archives, St. Louis.
were used and especially by Doctor Arverd

23 Oct. 1800–15 Apr. 1869. Physician. Born at St. Peter, Isle of Guernsey, Channel Islands, Great Britain. Migrated to U.S., by 1830. Married Eliza, a native of Virginia. Located at North Carolina, 1830. Moved to Virginia, by 1831. Moved to Freedom, Beaver...

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to persuade all to join.

Chapter 27

Chap 27
Healing the sick. Blessing children. Age of accountability. Patriarchs. Words of wisdom. Sacrament. Resurrection and future state. Matter eternal. War law. Cause of difficulty. Remarks to the church.
X The Mormons believe in and constantly practice the laying on of hands and praying for the healing of the sick; sometimes they have been healed, sometimes partly healed and sometimes not benefited at all: if they are healed they say it was because of their faith as the Saveour promised, “according to thy faith be it unto thee; thy faith hath made the whole” &c Math. 8.13 and 9.22. If partly healed it is still according to their faith as it was said of some in old times “and he began to mend from that very hour;” but if they are not healed or benefitted at all then it is for the want of faith as when the Lunatic was brought to the disciples and they could not heal him because of their unbelief Math 17.20 & 13.58. But they think in this as in many other cases, practice makes perfect, and it is necessary to an increase in Faith confidence and the powr of God.
The members of the church are required to bring their children under eight years old into meeting and have the elders lay hands -[on and bless them 47— sig 7. in the name of the Lord. This they say was according to the custom of the ancients, also of the Saviour who commanded little children to be brought to him for that purpose. They also believe that a child begins to be accountable at eight years old and not sooner, and it is the duty of the [p. 86]
<were used and especially by Doctor Arverd

23 Oct. 1800–15 Apr. 1869. Physician. Born at St. Peter, Isle of Guernsey, Channel Islands, Great Britain. Migrated to U.S., by 1830. Married Eliza, a native of Virginia. Located at North Carolina, 1830. Moved to Virginia, by 1831. Moved to Freedom, Beaver...

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 to persuade all to join.>

Chapter 27

<Chap 27>
<Healing the sick. Blessing children. Age  of accountability. Patriarchs. Words of  wisdom. Sacrament. Resurrection and  future state. Matter eternal. War law.  Cause of difficulty. Remarks to the church.>
<X 27> The Mormons believe in and constantly  practice the laying on of hands <and praying> for the  healing of the sick; sometimes they are <have been>  healed, sometimes partly healed and sometimes  not benefited at all: if they are healed  they say it was because of their faith  as the Saveour promised, “according to  thy faith be it unto thee; thy faith hath  made the whole” &c Math. 8.13 and 9.22. If  partly healed it is still according to their  faith as it was said of some in old times  “and he began to mend from that very  hour;” but if they are not healed or  benefitted at all then it is for the want  of faith as when the Lunatic was brought  to the disciples and they could not heal  him because of their unbelief Math 17.20  & 13.58. But they think in this as in  many other cases, practice makes perfect,  and <it> is necessary to an increase in Faith  confidence and the powr of God.
They <members of the church> are also required
The members of the church are  required to bring their children under  eight years old into meeting and have  the elders lay hands -[on and bless them <47— sig 7.>  in the name of the Lord. This they say  was according to the custom of the ancients,  also of the Saviour who commanded little  children to be brought to him for that purpose.  They also believe that a child begins to  be accountable at eight years old and  not sooner, and it is the duty of the [p. 86]
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Even while the embers of the 1838 Mormon War smoldered 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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, John Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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labored on the manuscript for his 1839 publication, A Brief History of the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints, (Commonly Called Mormons;) Including an Account of Their Doctrine and Discipline; with the Reasons of the Author for Leaving the Church. Corrill had begun serving the church as a historian after 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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’s excommunication in March 1838, replacing Whitmer in that role in April. Whatever his initial labors as historian, Corrill completed A Brief History after distancing himself from JS and the Saints, as the full title implies.
Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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, a careful observer, had enjoyed a close association with Mormon leaders, and consequently his account provides valuable insights into the development and structure of the early church. He summarized many of the doctrines taught by JS and provided a detailed description of the conflict between the Latter-day Saints and other 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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settlers. But his chronicle also related the story of a personal spiritual journey into and then out of the church as Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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came to disapprove of the church’s course in 1838 in Missouri. Yet despite his estrangement from the church and his excommunication in 1839, he retained a degree of sympathy for the Saints and maintained some contact.
Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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apparently began compiling portions of his account while serving as an officially appointed church historian in Far West

Originally called Shoal Creek. Located fifty-five miles northeast of Independence. Surveyed 1823; first settled by whites, 1831. Site purchased, 8 Aug. 1836, before Caldwell Co. was organized for Latter-day Saints in Missouri. William W. Phelps and John Whitmer...

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. He probably completed his narrative by 11 February 1839, when he secured a copyright with the 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
district federal copyright office. He arranged for Thomas Watson & Son of St. Louis

Located on west side of Mississippi River about fifteen miles south of confluence with Missouri River. Founded as fur-trading post by French settlers, 1764. Incorporated as town, 1809. First Mississippi steamboat docked by town, 1817. Incorporated as city...

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to print A Brief History. The entire print run may have included up to twelve hundred copies.
The document presented here, Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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’s circa 1838–1839 rough draft of his history, is incomplete. It includes the title page, copyright notice, and preface but is missing twenty-one pages, including the nineteen pages that constitute chapters 1 through 6. The manuscript is almost entirely in Corrill’s handwriting, though some of the chapter summaries (added after he drafted the narrative) were written in a different hand, possibly that of the printer.
Corrill

17 Sept. 1794–26 Sept. 1842. Surveyor, politician, author. Born at Worcester Co., Massachusetts. Married Margaret Lyndiff, ca. 1830. Lived at Harpersfield, Ashtabula Co., Ohio, 1830. Baptized into LDS church, 10 Jan. 1831, at Kirtland, Geauga Co., Ohio. Ordained...

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’s published version of A Brief History receives comprehensive treatment in volume 2 of the Histories series of The Joseph Smith Papers and is available on this website as part of the history series.

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