Document: 1805-1835 RLDS historical information (excerpts)
Source: Smith, Joseph, Jr.History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Vol. 1. IA, 1896; this e-text taken from the 1967 edition.
Other vols.: 2 (full) 2 (Spalding excerpt) | 3 (full) 3 (Sp. excerpt) | 4 (full) 4 (Sp. excerpt)
Note: Only the Spalding-related excerpts from Vols. 1 and 4 in this series have been so far partially transcribed. (more notes forthcoming)
CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST
Of Latter Day Saints.
WRITTEN AND COMPILED BY
PRESIDENT JOSEPH SMITH
APOSTLE HEMAN C. SMITH,
Of the Reorganized Church.
PUBLISHED BY THE BOARD OF PUBLICATION OF THE
REORGANIZED CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST
OF LATTER DAY SAINTS.
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IMPORTANCE OF THE MISSION TO THE WEST -- MISSIONARIES START WEST -- ARRIVE AT KIRTLAND -- PRESENT THEIR TESTIMONY TO S. RIGDON AND OTHERS -- SKETCH OF THE LIFE OF RIGDON -- STORY OF THE MANUSCRIPT FOUND -- THE STORY UNTENABLE -- SIDNEY RIGDON SPEAKS ON THE SUBJECT -- OLIVER COWDERY'S TESTIMONY -- P.P. PRATT MAKES A STATEMENT -- RIGDON'S RECORD -- HIS WHEREABOUTS LOCATED -- RIGDON'S REPUTATION -- HAYDEN'S TESTIMONY -- LYMAN WIGHT CONFIRMS THE ACCOUNT OF JOSEPH SMITH -- P.P. PRATT'S ACCOUNT.
Importance of the mission to the West.
This mission to the West was one of the most important events in the early history of the church. It resulted in the establishment of the church in Kirtland, Ohio, where some of the most thrilling events of the age transpired, and where yet the Temple stands as a monument to their faithfulness and patient endurance. Here the leading quorums of the church were organized; and here were found some of the men who were destined to become prominent in the church and her councils. Here in Northern Ohio were found, among others who were afterwards identified with the history of the church, Sidney Rigdon, Frederick G. Williams, Orson Hyde, Lyman Wight, Luke S. and Lyman E. Johnson, Edward Partridge, and Newel E. Whitney.
The missionaries also proceeded west as far as Independence, Missouri, and into the Territory of Kansas, preaching by the way to many, including some tribes of Indians.
Missionaries start West.
Of this mission Joseph Smith writes: --
"Immediately on receiving this revelation, preparations were made for the journey of the brethren therein designated, to the borders of the Lamanites, and a copy of the revelation was given them. Having got ready for their journey, they bade adieu to their brethren and friends, and commenced their journey, preaching by the
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way, and leaving a sealing testimony behind them, lifting up their voice like a trump in the different villages through which they passed.
Arrive at Kirtland.
They continued their journey until they came to Kirtland, Ohio, where they tarried some time, there being quite a number in that place who believed their testimony and came forward and obeyed the gospel. Among the number was Elder Sidney Rigdon, and a large portion of the church over which he presided.
Present their testimony to S. Rigdon and others.
"As there has been a great rumor, and many false statements have been given to the world respecting Elder Rigdon's connection with the Church of Jesus Christ, it is necessary that a correct account of the same be given, so that the public mind may be disabused on the subject. I shall therefore proceed to give a brief history of his life down, from authentic sources, as also an account of his connection with the church of Christ.
Sketch of the life of Rigdon.
"Sidney Rigdon was born in Saint Clair Township, Allegheny County, State of Pennsylvania, on the l9th of February, A. D. 1793, and was the youngest son of William and Nancy Rigdon. William Rigdon, his father, was a native of Hartford County, State of Maryland; was born A. D. 1743, and died May 26, A. D. 1810, in the sixty-second [seventh] year of his age. William Rigdon was the son of Thomas Baker and Ann Lucy Rigdon. Thomas Baker Rigdon was a native of the State of Maryland, and was the son of Thomas Baker Rigdon, who came from Great Britain.
"Ann Lucy Rigdon, grandmother of Sidney Rigdon, was a native of Ireland, and emigrated to the city of Boston, Massachusetts, and was there married to Thomas Baker Rigdon. Nancy Rigdon's mother was a native of Freehold, Monmouth County, New Jersey; was born March 16, 1759, and died October 3, 1839, and was the eldest daughter of Bryant Gallaher, who was a native of Ireland. Elizabeth Gallaher, mother to the said Nancy Rigdon, was the second wife of the said Bryant Gallaher, and whose maiden name was Reed, and who was a native of Monmouth County, New Jersey. Their parents were natives of Scotland.
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"His father, William Rigdon, was a farmer, and he removed from the State of Maryland some time prior to his marriage; to the State of Pennsylvania; and his mother had removed some time prior to that, from the State of New Jersey to the same State; where they were married, and continued to follow agricultural pursuits. They had four children; viz., three sons, and one daughter. The eldest, sons, were called Carvil, Loami, and Sidney, the subject of this brief history. The fourth, a daughter, named Lucy.
"Nothing very remarkable took place in the youthful days of Elder Rigdon; suffice it to say that he continued at home with his parents, following the occupation of a farmer until he was seventeen years of age, when his father died; after which event he continued on the same farm with his mother, until he was twenty-six years of age. In his twenty-fifth year he connected himself with a society which in that country was called Regular Baptists. The church he united with was at that time under the charge of the Rev. David Phillips, a clergyman from Wales. The year following he left the farm and went to reside with the Rev. Andrew Clark, a minister of the same order. During his continuance with him he received a license to preach in that society, and commenced from that time to preach, and returned to farming occupations no more. This was in March, 1819.
"In the month of May, of the same year, he left the State of Pennsylvania and went to Trumbull County, State of Ohio, and took up his residence at the house of Adamson Bentley, a preacher of the same faith. This was in July of same year. While there he became acquainted with Phebe Brook, to whom he was married on the 12th of June, A. D. 1820. She was a native of the State of New Jersey, Bridgetown, Cumberland County, and had previously removed to Trumbull County, Ohio. After his marriage he continued to preach in that district of country until November, 1821, when he was requested by the First Baptist church of the city of Pittsburg to take the pastoral charge of said church, which invitation he accepted, and in February, A. D. 1822, he left Warren, Trumbull County, and removed to that city and entered immediately upon his pastoral duties, and continued
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to preach to that church with considerable success. At the time he commenced his labors in that church, and for some time before, the church was in a very low state and much confusion existed in consequence of the conduct of their former pastor. However, soon after Elder Rigdon commenced his labors there was a pleasing change effected, for by his incessant labors and his peculiar style of preaching the church was crowded with anxious listeners. The number of members rapidly increased, and it soon became one of the most respectable churches in that city. He was now a popular minister, and was much respected in that city, and all classes and persuasions sought his society. After he had been in that place some time, his mind was troubled and much perplexed with the idea that the doctrines maintained by that society were not altogether in accordance with the Scriptures. This thing continued to agitate his mind, more and more, and his reflections on these occasions were peculiarly trying; for according to his views of the word of God no other church that he was acquainted with was right, or with whom he could associate; consequently, if he was to disavow the doctrine of the church with whom he was then associated, he knew of no other way of obtaining a livelihood except by mental (manual?) labor, and at that time had a wife and three children to support.
"On the one hand was wealth, popularity, and honor; on the other appeared nothing but poverty and hard labor. But notwithstanding his great ministerial success and the prospect of ease and affluence, (which frequently swerve the mind, and have an undue influence on too many who wear the sacred garb of religion, who for the sake of popularity and of wealth can calm and lull to rest their conscientious scruples, and succumb to the popular church,) yet his mind rose superior to all these considerations. Truth was his pursuit, and for truth he was prepared to make every sacrifice in his power. After mature deliberation, deep reflection, and solemn prayer to his heavenly Father, the resolve was made and the important step was taken; and in the month of August, A. D. 1824, after laboring among that people two years and six months. he made known his determination,
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to withdraw from the church, as he could no longer uphold the doctrines taught and maintained by it. This announcement was like a clap of thunder. Amazement seized the congregation, which was then collected, which at last gave way in a flood of tears. It would be in vain to attempt to describe the feelings of the church on that occasion, who were zealously attached to their beloved pastor, or the feelings of their minister. On his part it was indeed a struggle of principle over affection and kindness.
"There was at the time of his separation from that church a gentleman of the name of Alexander Campbell, who was formerly from Ireland, and who has since obtained considerable notoriety in the religious world, who was then a member of the same association, and who afterwards separated from it. There was also another gentleman, by the name of Walter Scott, a Scotchman by birth, who was a member of the Scandinavian [sic] Church, in that city, and who separated from the same about that time.
"Prior to these separations, Mr. Campbell resided in Bethany, Brook County, Virginia, where he published a monthly periodical, called the 'Christian Baptist.' After they had separated from the different churches these gentlemen were on terms of the greatest friendship, and frequently met together to discuss the subject of religion, being yet undetermined respecting the principles of the doctrine of Christ, or what course to pursue. However, from this connection sprung up a new church in the world, known by the name of 'Campbellites;' they call themselves 'Disciples.' The reason why they were called Campbellites was in consequence of Mr. Campbell's publishing the periodical above mentioned, and it being the means through which they communicated their sentiments to the world. Other than this, Mr. Campbell was no more the originator of that sect than Elder Rigdon.
"Having now retired from the ministry, and having no way by which to sustain his family besides his own industry, he was necessitated to find other employment in order to provide for his maintenance, and for this purpose he engaged in the humble capacity of a journeyman tanner, in
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that city, and followed his new employment, without murmuring, for two years, during which time he both saw and experienced that by resigning his pastoral vocations in that city and engaging in the humble occupation of a tanner he had lost many who once professed the greatest friendship, and who manifested the greatest love for his society; that when he was seen by them in the garb suited to the employment of a tanner, there was no longer that freedom, courtesy, and friendship manifested; that many of his former friends became estranged and looked upon him with coolness and indifference too obvious to admit of deception. To a well-regulated and enlightened mind -- to one who soars above the arbitrary and vain lines of distinction which pride or envy may draw, such conduct appears ridiculous, while at the same time it cannot but cause feelings of a peculiar nature in those who for their honesty and integrity of heart have brought themselves into situations to be made the subjects of it.
"These things, however, did not affect his mind so as to change his purpose. He had counted the cost before his separation, and had made his mind known to his wife, who cheerfully shared his sorrow and humiliation, believing that all things would work together for their good, being conscious that what they had done was for conscience' sake and in the fear of the Lord.
"After laboring for two years as a tanner, he removed to Bainbridge, Geauga County, Ohio, where it was known that he had been a preacher, and had gained considerable distinction as a public speaker, and the people soliciting him to preach, he complied with their request. From this time forward, he devoted himself to the work of the ministry, confining himself to no creed, but held up the Bible as the rule of faith, and advocating those doctrines which had been the subject of his, and Mr. Campbell's investigations; viz.: Repentance and baptism, for the remission of sins.
"He continued to labor in that vicinity one year, and during that time, his former success attended his labors. Large numbers invariably attended his meetings. While he labored in that neighborhood, he was instrumental in building up a
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large and respectable church, in the town of Mantua, Portage County, Ohio. The doctrines which he advanced being new, public attention was awakened, and great excitement pervaded throughout that whole section of country, and frequently the congregations which he addressed, were so large that it was impossible to make himself audible to all. The subjects he proposed were presented in such an impressive manner to the congregations, that those who were unbiased by bigotry and prejudice, had to exclaim, 'we never heard it in this manner before.' There were some, however, that opposed the doctrines which he advanced, but not with that opposition which ever ought to characterize the noble and ingenious. Those by whom he was opposed, well knew that an honorable and public investigation, would inevitably discover the weakness and fatality of their doctrines; consequently they shunned it, and endeavored, by ridiculing the doctrines which he promulgated, to suppress them.
"This, however, did not turn him from the path which he felt to be his duty; for he continued to set forth the doctrines of repentance, and baptism for remission of sins, and the gift of the Holy Ghost, according to the teachings of Peter, on the day of Pentecost, exhorting his hearers in the meantime, to throw away their creeds of faith-to take the Bible as their standard, and search its sacred pages-to learn to live by every word that proceedeth from the mouth of the Lord, and to rise above every sectarian sentiment, and the traditions of the age, and explore the wide and glorious fields of truth which the scriptures holds out to them.
"After laboring in that neighborhood one year, he received a very pressing invitation to remove to the town of Mentor, in the same county, about thirty miles from Bainbridge, and within a few miles from Lake Erie, which he some time afterwards complied with. The persons by whom he was more particularly requested to move to that place were the remnants of a Baptist church, which was nearly broken up, the members of which had become attached to the doctrines promulgated by Elder Rigdon.
"The town of Mentor was settled by wealthy and enterprising individuals, who had by their industry and good
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management made that township one of the most delightful in that country, or probably in the Western Reserve. Its advantages for agricultural purposes could hardly be surpassed, while the splendid farms, fertile fields, and stately mansions made it particularly attractive to the eye of the traveler, and gives evidence of enterprise and wealth. In that beautiful location he took up his residence, and immediately commenced his labors, with that zeal and assiduity which had formerly characterized him.
"But being a stranger, and many reports being put in circulation of a character calculated to lessen him in the estimation of the people, and consequently destroy his influence, some persons were even wicked enough to retail those slanderous reports which were promulgated, and endeavored to stir up persecution against him; consequently many of the citizens were jealous, and did not extend to him that confidence which he might otherwise have expected.
"His path was not strewed with flowers, but the thorns of persecution beset him, and he had to contend against much prejudice and opposition, whose swollen waves might have sunk one less courageous, resolute, and determined; yet notwithstanding these unfavorable circumstances, he continued to meet the storm, to stem the torrent, and bear up under the reproach for some time.
"At length the storm subsided, for after laboring in that neighborhood about eight months, he so wrought upon the feelings of the people by his consistent walk and conversation-his sociability, combined with his overwhelming eloquence, that a perfect calm succeeded; their evil apprehensions and surmisings were allayed, their prejudices gave way, and the man whom they had looked upon with jealousy was now their theme of praise, and their welcome guest. Those who had been most hostile now became his warmest admirers and most constant friends.
"The churches in which he preached, which had heretofore been filled with anxious hearers, were now filled to overflowing; the poor flocked to the services, and the rich thronged the assemblies.
"The doctrines he advanced were new, but at the same
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time were elucidated with such clearness and enforced with an eloquence altogether superior to what they had listened to before that those whose sectarian prejudices were not too deeply rooted, who listened to the deep and searching discourses which he delivered from time to time, could not fail of being greatly affected and convinced that the principles he advanced were true and in accordance with the Scriptures. Nor were his labors and success confined to that township alone, but calls were made in every direction for him to preach, which he complied with as much as he possibly could, until his labors became very extensive, and spread over a vast extent of country.
"Wherever he went the same success attended his ministry, and he was everywhere received with kindness and welcomed by persons of all classes. Prejudice after prejudice gave way on every hand; opposition after opposition was broken down, and bigotry was rooted from its strongholds. The truths he advanced were received with gladness, and the doctrines he taught had a glorious ascendancy wherever he had the opportunity of promulgating them.
"His fame as an orator and deep reasoner in the Scriptures continued to spread far and wide, and he soon gained a popularity and an elevation which has fallen to the lot of but few, consequently thousands flocked to hear his eloquent discourses.
"When it was known where he was going to preach there might be seen long before the appointed time, persons of all classes, sects, and denominations, flocking like doves to their windows, from a considerable distance. The humble pedestrian, and the rich in their splendid equipages might be seen crowding the roads.
"The churches in the different places where he preached were now no longer large enough to contain the vast assemblies which congregated from time to time, so that he had to repair to the widespread canopy of heaven, and in the woods and in the groves he addressed the multitudes which flocked to hear him. Nor was his preaching in vain. It was not empty sound that so closely engaged the attention of his audiences and with which they were so deeply interested
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but it was the truths which were imparted, the intelligence which was conveyed, and the duties which were enforced.
"Not only did the writings of the New Testament occupy his attention, but occasionally those of the ancient prophets, particularly those prophecies which had reference to the present and to the future, were brought up to review and treated in a manner entirely new and deeply interesting. No longer did he follow the old beaten track, which had been traveled for ages by the religious world, but he dared to enter upon new grounds; called in question the opinions of uninspired men; showed the foolish ideas of many commentators on the sacred Scriptures-exposed their ignorance and contradictions-threw new light on the sacred volume, particularly those prophecies which so deeply interest this generation, and which had been entirely overlooked, or mystified by the religious world-cleared up scriptures which had heretofore appeared inexplicable, and delighted his astonished audience with things 'new and old' -- proved to a demonstration the literal fulfillment of prophecy, the gathering of Israel in the last days, to their ancient inheritances, with their ultimate splendor and glory; the situation of the world at the coming of the Son of Man -- the judgments which Almighty God would pour out upon the ungodly prior to that event, and the reign of Christ with his saints on the earth, in the millennium.
"These important subjects could not fail to have their weight on the minds of his hearers, who clearly discerned the situation in which they were placed, by the sound and logical arguments which he adduced; and soon numbers felt the importance of obeying that form of doctrine which had been delivered them; so that they might be accounted worthy to escape those things which were coming on the earth, and many came forward desiring to be baptized for the remission of sins. He accordingly commenced to baptize, and like John of old, there flocked to him people from all the region round about -- persons of all ranks and standings in society-the rich, the poor, the noble and the brave, flocked to be baptized of him. Nor was this desire confined
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to individuals, or families, but whole societies threw away their creeds and articles of faith and became obedient to the faith he promulgated, and he soon had large and flourishing societies throughout that whole region of country.
"He now was a welcome visitor wherever he traveled-his society was courted by the learned, and intelligent, and the highest encomiums were bestowed upon him for his biblical lore and his eloquence.
"The work of the ministry engaged all his time and attention; he felt deeply for the salvation of his fellow man, and for the attainment of which he labored with unceasing diligence.
"During this state of unexampled success, the prospect of wealth and affluence was fairly open before him; but he looked upon it with indifference, and made everything subservient to the promotion of correct principles; and having food and raiment, he learned therewith to be content. As a proof of this his family were in no better circumstances, and made no greater appearance in the world, than when he labored at the occupation of tanning. His family consisted of his wife and six children, and lived in a very small, unfinished frame house, hardly capable of making a family comfortable; which affords a clear proof that his affections were not set upon things of a worldly nature, or secular aggrandizement.
"After he had labored in that vicinity some time, and having received but little pecuniary aid, the members of the church which he had built up, held a meeting to take his circumstances into consideration, and provide for his wants, and place him in a situation suitable to the high and important office which he sustained in the church. They resolved upon erecting him a suitable residence, where he could make his family comfortable, and accommodate his numerous friends, who visited him. A committee was appointed to make a purchase of land, and to erect such buildings as were necessary. The committee soon made a purchase of a farm in a beautiful situation in that township, made contracts for erecting a suitable dwelling house, stable, barn, etc., and soon made a commencement on the house, and had a quantity
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of the building materials on the spot. He being held in the highest respect by that people, they entered the work with pleasure, and seemed to vie with each other in their labors of love, believing it a duty to make their beloved pastor and his family comfortable. His prospects, with regard to temporal things, were now brighter than they ever had been; and he felt happy in the midst of a people who had every disposition to promote his welfare.
"Under these pleasing circumstances, and enjoying this full tide of prosperity, he hardly thought that, for his attachment to truth, he would soon see the prospect blasted, and himself and family reduced to a more humble situation than before.
"At this time, it being in the fall of A. D. 1830, Elders Parley P. Pratt, Ziba Peterson, Oliver Cowdery, and Peter Whitmer, called at that town on their way to the western boundary of the State of Missouri, testifying to the truth of the 'Book of Mormon,' and that the Lord had raised up a prophet, and restored the priesthood. Previous to this, Elder Parley Pratt had been a preacher in the same church with Elder Rigdon, and resided in the town of Amherst, Lorain County, in that State, and had been sent into the State of New York, on a mission, where he became acquainted with the circumstances of the coming forth of the Book of Mormon, and was introduced to Joseph Smith, Jr., and others of the Church of Latter Day Saints. After listening to the testimony of the 'witnesses,' and reading the 'Book,' he became convinced that it was of God, and that the principles which they taught, were the principles of truth. He was then baptized, and shortly after was ordained an elder, and began to preach, and from that time became a strenuous advocate of the truth.
"Believing there were many in the church with whom he had formerly been united, who were honest seekers after truth, induced him, while on his journey to the West, to call upon his friends, and make known the great things which the Lord had brought to pass. The first house at which they called was Elder Rigdon's; and after the usual salutations, presented him with the Book of Mormon-stating that
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it was a revelation from God. This being the first time he had ever heard of or seen the Book of Mormon, he felt very much prejudiced at the assertion; and replied that, 'he had one Bible which he believed was a revelation from God, and with which he pretended to have some acquaintance; but with respect to the book they had presented him he must say that he had considerable doubt.' Upon which they expressed a desire to investigate the subject, and argue the matter; but he replied, 'No, young gentlemen, you must not argue with me on the subject; but I will read your book, and see what claim it has upon my faith, and will endeavor to ascertain whether it be a revelation from God or not.' After some further conversation on the subject, they expressed a desire to lay the subject before the people, and requested the privilege of preaching in Elder Rigdon's church, to which he readily consented. The appointment was accordingly published, and a large and respectable congregation assembled. Oliver Cowdery and Parley P. Pratt severally addressed the meeting. At the conclusion, Elder Rigdon arose and stated to the congregation that the information they had that evening received was of an extra-ordinary character, and certainly demanded their most serious consideration: and as the apostle advised his brethren 'to prove all things, and hold fast that which is good,' so he would exhort his brethren to do likewise, and give the matter a careful investigation; and not turn against it, without being fully convinced of its being an imposition, lest they should, possibly, resist the truth.
"This was, indeed, generous on the part of Elder Rigdon, and gave evidence of his entire freedom from any sectarian bias; but allowing his mind full scope to range, untrammeled, through the scriptures, embracing every principle of truth, and rejecting error, under whatever guise it should appear. He was perfectly willing to allow his members the same privilege. Having received great light on the Scriptures, he felt desirous to receive more, from whatever quarter it should come. This was his prevailing characteristic; and if any sentiment was advanced by anyone, that was new, or tended to throw light on the Scriptures, or the dealings of
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God with the children of men, it was always gladly received, and treasured up in his mind. After the meeting broke up, the brethren returned home with Elder Rigdon, and conversed upon the important things which they had proclaimed. He informed them that he should read the Book of Mormon, give it a full investigation, and then would frankly tell them his mind and feelings on the subject-told them they were welcome to abide at his house until he had opportunity of reading it.
"About two miles from Elder Rigdon's, at the town of Kirtland, were a number of the members of his church, who lived together, and had all things common -- from which circumstance has arisen the idea that this was the case with the Church of Jesus Christ -- to which place they immediately repaired, and proclaimed the gospel to them, with some considerable success; for their testimony was received by many of the people, and seventeen came forward in obedience to the gospel.
"While thus engaged, they visited Elder Rigdon occasionally, and found him very earnestly engaged in reading the 'Book of Mormon,'-praying to the Lord for direction, and meditating on the things he heard and read; and after a fortnight from the time the book was put in his hands, he was fully convinced of the truth of the work, by a revelation from Jesus Christ, which was made known to him in a remarkable manner, so that he could exclaim 'flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto me, but my Father which is in heaven.'
"Being now fully satisfied in his own mind of the truth of the work, and the necessity of obedience thereto, he informed his wife of the same, and was happy to find that she was not only diligently investigating the subject, but was believing with all her heart, and was desirous of obeying the truth, which, undoubtedly, was a great satisfaction to his mind.
"The consequence of obeying the truth, and embracing a system of religion so unpopular as that of the Church of Jesus Christ, presented itself in the strongest possible light.
"At present, the honors and applause of the world were
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showered down upon him, his wants were abundantly supplied, and were anticipated. He was respected by the entire community, and his name was a tower of strength. His counsel was sought for, respected and esteemed. But if he should unite with the Church of Christ, his prospects of wealth and affluence would vanish; his family dependent upon him for support must necessarily share his humiliation and poverty. He was aware that his character and his reputation must suffer in the estimation of the community.
"Aware of all these things, there must have been feelings of no ordinary kind, agitate his bosom at that particular crisis; but yet they did not deter him from the path of duty. He had formerly made a sacrifice for truth and conscience' sake, and had been sustained; consequently, he felt great confidence in the Lord, believing that if he pursued the path of duty, no good thing would be withheld from him.
"Although he felt great confidence in the Lord, yet he felt it a trial of some magnitude, when he avowed his determination to his beloved companion, who had before shared in his poverty, and who had cheerfully struggled through it without murmuring or repining. He informed her what the consequences would undoubtedly be respecting their worldly circumstances if they obeyed the gospel; and then said: 'my dear, you have once followed me into poverty, are you again willing to do the same?' She then said: 'I have weighed the matter, I have contemplated on the circumstances in which we may be placed; I have counted the cost, and I am perfectly satisfied to follow you; it is my desire to do the will of God, come life or come death.' Accordingly, they were both baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ; and, together with those who had been previously admitted to baptism, made a little branch in this section of Ohio, of about twenty members, whom the brethren, bound for the borders of the Lamanites, after adding to their number one of their converts, Dr. Frederick G. Williams, bade an affectionate farewell, and went on their way rejoicing." --Times and Seasons, vol. 4, pp. 172, 177, 178, 193, 194, 209, 210, 289, 290, 305.
The above extract gives quite a full account of the former life of Sidney Rigdon and his connection with the Latter
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Day Saints. We reproduce it here, believing it will be found to be correct.
Story of the Manuscript Found.
But an effort has been made to show that he had acquaintance with Joseph Smith before the publication of the Book of Mormon, and that he in fact furnished the basis of it by supplying him with a copy of the "Spalding Story" or "Manuscript Found," written at New Salem, Ohio, by one Solomon Spalding, who was, it is claimed, a graduate of Dartmouth College. This was written about the year 1812, and was read to many of his neighbors. After its completion Mr. Spalding removed to Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, where he exhibited it to a Mr. Patterson, who borrowed it for perusal, "retained it for a long time," then made a proposition to Mr. Spalding to publish it on certain conditions. These conditions were not accepted. The manuscript was returned to the author, who removed to Amity, Washington County, Pennsylvania, and died there in 1816. On this latter point the widow of Mr. Spalding states: --
"At length the manuscript was returned to its author, and soon after we removed to Amity, Washington County, etc., where Mr. Spalding deceased in 1816. The manuscript then fell into my hands, and was carefully preserved."
It is further claimed that the manuscript was in the possession of Mrs. Spalding until after the Book of Mormon was published, and that it was delivered into the hands of Dr. P. Hurlbut in 1834. If Rigdon had access to this manuscript it was before 1816.
Coming more particularly to dates, on page 282 of E. D. Howe's "History of Mormonism," published at Painesville, Ohio, in 1840, we find a statement by Henry Lake in which he states:-
"Spalding left here (Conneaut, Ohio) in 1812, and I furnished him the means to carry him to Pittsburg, where he said he would get the book printed, and pay me."
On page 287 of the same book we find this: --
"A messenger was dispatched to look up the widow of Spalding, who was found residing in Massachusetts. From her we learned that Spalding resided in Pittsburg, about two years," etc.
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Then he left Pittsburg in 1814, and, as we have seen, took the manuscript with him. So if Rigdon had access to it, it was before 1814.
The story untenable.
But it is claimed that he copied it while at the publishing house of Patterson, in Pittsburg. We think this theory untenable for several reasons: --
First. Sidney Rigdon being born in 1793 was only twenty or twenty one years of age at the time. It is not likely that a boy of that age would conceive of such a scheme; besides, the testimony shows that during this period and for years after he was at home on his father's farm.
Second. It has not been shown that he resided in Pittsburg until 1822, eight years after the manuscript had left there.
Third. It has never been shown that he was associated with Joseph Smith in any way until December, 1830, and the Book of Mormon was delivered to the printer in August, 1829, and the printing all done by March, 1830.
Fourth. This theory assumes without proof that Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, Oliver Cowdery, P. P. Pratt, and others were all guilty of lying, perjury, and deceit; which is not only contemptibly unfair, but has no warrant in law, nor in practice among men of honor, hence should receive no countenance by the historian.
Joseph Smith's version of the matter has already been given.
Sidney Rigdon stated, in a communication to the Boston Journal, from Commerce, Illinois, May 27, 1839: --
"In your paper of the 18th instant, I see a letter signed by somebody calling herself Maltilda Davison, pretending to give the origin of Mormonism, as she is pleased to call it, by relating a moonshine story about a certain Solomon Spalding, a creature with the knowledge of whose earthly existence I am entirely indebted to this production; for surely, until Dr. Philastus Hurlbut informed me that such a being lived, at some former period, I had not the most distant knowledge of his existence. . . It is only necessary to say, in relation to the whole story about Spalding's
1830] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 145
writings being in the hands of Mr. Patterson, who was in Pittsburg, and who is said to have kept a printing office, and my saying that I was concerned in the said office, etc., etc., is the most base of lies, without even the shadow of truth."
This is rather harsh and forcible language to be sure, but we do not expect humanity to be always calm when accused of stealing, lying, and fraud.
Oliver Cowdery, as we have seen, stated in 1848: --
"I wrote, with my own pen, the entire Book of Mormon (save a few pages), as it fell from the lips of the Prophet Joseph Smith, as he translated it by the gift and power of God. . . . I beheld it, my eyes and handled with my hands the gold plates from which it was translated.... That book is true. Sidney Rigdon did not write it. Mr. Spalding did not write it. I wrote it myself as it fell from the lips of the Prophet."
Pratt makes a statement.
P. P. Pratt Writes to the New Era, from New York, November 27, 1839, as follows: --
"Mr. Rigdon embraced the doctrine through my instrumentality. I first presented the Book of Mormon to him. I stood upon the bank of the stream while he was baptized, and assisted to officiate in his ordination, and I myself was unacquainted with the system until some months after its organization, which was on the 6th of April, 1830."
The life of Sidney Rigdon was that of an active minister, and his whereabouts can be determined by public records so frequently as to make it impossible that he could have made the long and tedious journeys to New York (which this story makes necessary) for the purpose of conspiring with Joseph Smith in those days of slow transportation.
His whereabouts located.
The following is a list of events and dates collected, verified, and arranged by Elder E. L. Kelley, while a resident of Kirtland, Ohio: --
Times and places definitely settled by positive and undisputed evidence as to the whereabouts, occupation, and business
258 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1832
TRANSLATING -- TRIP EAST -- JOSEPH WRITES TO HIS WIFE -- BIRTH OF HIS SON JOSEPH -- OTHER CHILDREN -- LETTER TO PHELPS -- PARABLE OF WHEAT AND TARES -- REVELATION ON REBELLION -- HISTORICAL EVENTS -- LETTER TO SEATON -- PUBLISHED BY RICHARDS -- JOHN HYDE -- TROUBLE IN MISSOURI -- ZION WARNED -- GIFT OF TONGUES -- WASHING OF FEET -- TRANSLATION OF NEW TESTAMENT FINISHED -- WORD OF WISDOM -- KEYS OF THE KINGDOM -- FIRST PRESIDENCY -- APOCRYPHA -- SCHOOL OF THE PROPHETS -- FIRST PRESIDENCY ORGANIZED -- COUNCIL PROCEEDINGS [D.P. Hurlbut ordained] -- AFFAIRS IN ZION -- LETTER TO ZION.
During the latter part of the summer and autumn of 1832 Joseph spent the time in translating, and in ministering to the churches in Ohio, with the exception of a hurried journey to Albany, New York, and Boston, Massachusetts, in company with Bishop Whitney.
Trip East.   - Joseph writes to his wife.
One letter written to his wife while on this journey, and dated New York, October 13,1832, has been preserved, and is now in the hands of President Joseph Smith, of Lamoni, Iowa, who was born on the 6th day of November following the date of this letter, which circumstance will serve to explain the extract that we shall here produce. We gladly quote from this letter, for it gives us a partial insight into the inner life of the man and his feelings and solicitude for loved ones. Sometimes we can only get at the true character of a man by some such incident, where we are enabled to read that which was not intended for the public.
The letter throughout is expressive of the tenderest love and sympathy, of which the following is a specimen: --
"I returned to my room to meditate and calm my mind, and behold, the thoughts of home, of Emma and Julia, rush upon my mind like a flood; and I could wish for a moment to be with them. My breast is filled with all the feelings and tenderness of a parent and a husband, and could I be with
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to revelation, in prayer, by S. Rigdon. Doctor Hurlbut was ordained an elder; after which Elder Rigdon expressed a desire that himself and Brother F. G. Williams should be ordained to the office, to which they had been called; viz., that of presidents of the high priesthood, and to be equal in holding the keys of the kingdom with Brother Joseph Smith, Junior, according to the revelation given on the eighth of March, 1833.
"Accordingly I laid my hands on Brother Sidney and Frederick and ordained them to take part with me in holding the keys of this last kingdom, and to assist in the presidency of the high priesthood, as my counselors; after which I exhorted the brethren to faithfulness, and diligence in keeping the commandments of God, and gave much instruction for the benefit of the saints, with a promise that the pure in heart would see a heavenly vision; and after remaining a short time in secret prayer, the promise was verified; for many present had the eyes of their understandings opened by the Spirit of God so as to behold many things.
"I then blessed the bread and wine, and distributed a portion to each, after which many of the brethren saw a heavenly vision of the Savior, and concourses of angels, and many other things, of which each one has a record of what they saw, etc.
"March 23. A council was called for the purpose of appointing a committee to purchase land in Kirtland upon which the saints might build a stake of Zion. Brothers Joseph Coe and Moses Daily were appointed to ascertain the terms of sale of certain farms; and that Brother Ezra Thayer ascertain the price of Peter French's farm; and the brethren agreed to continue in prayer and fasting for the ultimate success of their mission.
"After an absence of about three hours, Brothers Coe and Daily returned and reported that Elijah Smith's farm could be obtained for four thousand dollars, and Mr. Morley's for twenty-one hundred, and Brother Thayer reported that Peter French would sell his farm for five thousand dollars. The council decided to purchase the farms, and appointed Ezra Thayre and Joseph Coe to superintend the purchase,
1833] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 289
PERSECUTION IN ZION -- SAINTS ERR -- NO EXCUSES FOR THEIR ENEMIES -- CONFERENCES OF HIGH PRIESTS IN KIRTLAND -- HURLBUT'S TRIAL -- DIMENSIONS OF TEMPLE -- ERECTION OF TEMPLE -- HURLBUT ON APPEAL -- PLAT OF THE CITY OF ZION -- LETTER TO PHELPS -- LETTER TO ZION -- HOSTILITIES IN MISSOURI -- LETTER OF ELDERS IN ZION -- ITS TEACHING -- APPEAL TO THE GOVERNOR -- HIS REPLY -- FREE PEOPLE OF COLOR -- SLAVERY -- MOB VIOLATE THEIR AGREEMENT -- P.P. PRATT'S ACCOUNT -- LYMAN WIGHT'S EXPERIENCE -- H. RATHBUN'S TESTIMONY -- SHERIFF GREGG ON THE SITUATION -- JOHN CARROLL -- BISHOP PARTRIDGE -- ATTOURNEY GENERAL WELLS -- JUDGE RYLAND -- A.S. GILBERT.
Persecution in Zion.
In April, 1833, there commenced a series of persecutions and outrages which has no parallel in the history of our country. We heartily wish we could pass these things unnoticed; but alas! they are a part of the history, and must be recorded. We are not willing to say that the Latter Day Saints always acted wisely, or that they were in every particular right. Joseph Smith acknowledged that, at the time, and doubtless many others have acknowledged the same. He wrote: --
"But to return to my subject: After having ascertained the very spot, and having the happiness of seeing quite a number of the families of my brethren comfortably situated upon the land, I took leave of them and journeyed back to Ohio, and used every influence and argument that lay in my power to get those who believe in the everlasting covenant, whose circumstances would admit and whose families were willing to remove to the place which I now designate to be the land of Zion. And thus the sound of the gathering, and of the doctrine, went abroad into the world; and many, we have reason to fear, having a zeal not according to knowledge, not understanding the pure principles of the doctrine of the church, have no doubt, in the heat of enthusiasm, taught and said many things which are derogatory to the
294 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1833
Conference of high priests.   - Hurlbut's trial.
On Monday, June 3, a council met in the translating room in Kirtland, of which Joseph writes: --
"A conference of high priests convened in the translating room in Kirtland on the third of June, and the first case presented was that of Dr. P. Hurlbut, who was accused of unchristian conduct with the women, while on a mission to the East. On investigation it was decided that his commission be taken from him, and that he be no longer a member of the Church of Christ.
Dimensions of temple.
"The next case before the conference was to ascertain what should be the dimensions or size of the house that is to be built for a house of worship and the school of the prophets, and received a revelation on the size of the house. The word of the Lord was, that it shall be fifty-five feet wide, and sixty-five feet long, in the inner court; and the conference appointed Joseph Smith, Jr., Sidney Rigdon, and Frederick G. Williams to obtain a draft or construction of the inner court of the house.
chosen have sinned a very grievous sin, in that they are walking in darkness at noonday; and for this cause, I gave unto you a commandment, that you should call your solemn assembly; that your fastings and your mourning might come up into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth, which is, by interpretation, The Creator of the first day; the beginning and the end.
2. Yea, verily I say unto you, I gave unto you a commandment, that you should build an house, in the which house I design to endow those whom I have chosen with power from on high, for this is the promise of the Father unto you; therefore, I commanded you to tarry, even as mine apostles at Jerusalem; nevertheless my servants sinned a very grievous sin; and contentions arose in the school of the prophets, which was very grievous unto me, saith your Lord; therefore I sent them forth to be chastened.
3. Verily I say unto you, It is my will that you should build an house; if you keep my commandments, you shall have power to build it; if you keep not my commandments the love of the Father shall not continue with you; therefore you shall walk in darkness. Now here is wisdom and the mind of the Lord: let the house be built, not after the manner of the world, for I give not unto you, that ye shall live after the manner of the world, therefore let it be built after the manner which I shall show unto three of you, whom ye shall appoint and ordain unto this power. And the size thereof shall be fifty and five feet in width, and let it be sixty-five feet in length, in the inner court thereof; and let the lower part of the inner court be dedicated unto me for your sacrament offering, and for your preaching; and your fasting, and your praying, and the offering up your most holy desires unto me, saith your Lord. And let the higher part of the inner court, be dedicated unto me for the school of mine apostles, saith Son Ahman; or, in other words, Alphus; or, in other words, Omegus; even Jesus Christ your Lord. Amen.
1833] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 295
"On the fourth a similar conference assembled at the same place and took into consideration how the French farm could be disposed of. The conference could not agree who should take charge of it, but all agreed to inquire of the Lord." -- Times and Seasons, vol. 6, p. 784.
It will be seen by the above that Dr. Hurlbut, who afterwards played so conspicuous a part in ferreting out the Spalding Romance and in striving to connect Sidney Rigdon with it, was expelled from the church for immorality.
In answer to the inquiry mentioned above, a revelation was received. 3
On Thursday, June 6, a conference was held at Kirtland, at which two very important items of business were transacted to which we wish to invite special attention; viz., the preparation for beginning the erection of a temple; and the hearing of Dr. Hurlbut's case, on appeal, and his confession of guilt. Joseph's account of it is as follows: --
"June 6. A conference of high priests assembled and chose Orson Hyde a clerk to the Presidency of the High Priesthood. This conference was more especially called to counsel the committee, who had been appointed to take the oversight of the building of the house
3 1. Behold, I say unto you, Here is wisdom whereby ye may know how to act concerning this matter, for it is expedient in me that this stake that I have set for the strength of Zion, should be made strong therefore, let my servant Ahashdah take charge of the place which is named among you, upon which I design to build mine holy house; and again let it be divided into lots, according to wisdom, for the benefit of those who seek inheritances, as it shall be determined in council among you. Therefore, take heed that ye see to this matter, and that portion that is necessary to benefit mine order, for the purpose of bringing forth my word to the children of men, for, behold, verily I say unto you, This is the most expedient in me, that my word should go forth unto the children of men, for the purpose of subduing the hearts of the children of men, for your good. Even so. Amen.
2. And again, verily I say unto you, It is wisdom, and expedient in me, that my servant Zombre, whose offering I have accepted, and whose prayers I have heard, unto whom I give a promise of eternal life, inasmuch as he keepeth my commandments from henceforth; for he is a descendant of Seth, and a partaker of the blessings of the promise made unto his fathers. Verily I say unto you, It is expedient in me that he should become a member of the order, that he may assist in bringing forth my word unto the children of men; therefore ye shall ordain him unto this blessing; and he shall seek diligently to take away incumbrances [encumbrances], that are upon the house named among you, that he may dwell therein. Even so. Amen.
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of the Lord. The conference voted that the committee (Reynolds Cahoon, Jared Carter, and Hyrum Smith) proceed immediately to commence building the house; or, to obtaining materials, stone, brick, lumber, etc., for the same.
Hurlbut on Appeal.
Doctor Hurlbut being dissatisfied with the decision of the council on his case, presented the following appeal: --
"It was voted by the council present, when this was received, that Brother Hurlbut be granted a rehearing; and after prayer (which was customary at the opening of all councils of the church), the council proceeded to ordain two high priests to make out the number (twelve) that the council or church court might be organized. Brothers John and William Smith were ordained under the hands of Elder Rigdon, by the choice of the council.
"Brother Hurlbut's case was then laid before the court, and the testimony against him given in by Orson Hyde and Hyrum Smith, and duly investigated. The decision of the court was that Brother Hurlbut should be forgiven because of the liberal confession which he made. This court also decided that the bishop's council decided correctly on the case, and that Bro. Hurlbut's crime was sufficient to cut him off from the church; but on his confession he was restored. . . .
"June 23. Brother Doctor P. Hurlbut was called in question, by a general council; and Brother Gee, of Thompson, testified that Brother Hurlbut said that he deceived Joseph Smith's God, or the spirit by which he was actuated, etc. There was also corroborating testimony brought against him, by Brother Hodges, and the council cut him off from the church." -- Times and Seasons, vol. 6, p. 785.
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SPECIAL PRAYERS [Hurlbut item 1 item 2] -- COUNCIL OF HIGH PRIESTS -- ORGANIZATION OF THE HIGH COUNCIL -- WORD OF WISDOM -- MESSENGERS FROM ZION ARRIVE -- REVELATION ON ZION -- WORK IN CANADA -- IN MAIN -- MISSION EAST -- PURPOSE OF ZION'S CAMP -- HURLBUT BEFORE THE COURT [Court Record] -- H. SMITH AND L. WIGHT GO TO ZION VIA MICHIGAN -- PREPARATIONS FOR STARTING TO ZION -- REVELATION TO ENOCH -- NAME OF THE CHURCH -- THE START FOR ZION -- KIMBALL AND PRATT ON THE PURPOSE OF THE EXPEDITION.
The year 1834 opened with activity upon the part of the church in Kirtland. The leading officers humbled themselves in special and earnest prayer for certain purposes. Of this and other items of history the writings of Joseph Smith are the best authority. He states: --
"On the evening of the eleventh of January, Joseph Smith, Jr., Frederick G. Williams, Newel E. Whitney, John Johnson, Oliver Cowdery, and Orson Hyde united in prayer, and asked the Lord to grant the following petitions:-
"That the Lord would grant that our lives might be precious in his sight, that he would watch over our persons, and give his angels charge concerning us and our families, that no evil nor unseen hand might be permitted to harm us. . .
"That the Lord would grant that Brother Joseph might prevail over his enemy, even Doctor Hurlbut, who has threatened his life, whom Joseph has caused to be taken with a precept; that the Lord would fill the heart of the court with a spirit to do justice, and cause that the law of the land may be magnified in bringing him to justice.
"That the Lord would provide in the order of his providence the bishop of this church with means sufficient to discharge every debt that the order owes, in due season, that the church may not be brought into disrepute and the saints be afflicted by the hands of their enemies.
"That the Lord would protect our printing press from the
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 425
hands of evil men. and give us means to send forth his record, even his gospel, that the ears of all may hear it, and also that we may print his Scriptures; and also that he would give those who were appointed to conduct the press wisdom sufficient that the cause may not be hindered, but that men's eyes may thereby be opened to see the truth.
"That the Lord would deliver Zion, and gather in his scattered people to possess it in peace; and also, while in their dispersion, that he would provide for them that they perish not by hunger or cold; and finally, that God, in the name of Jesus, would gather his elect speedily, and unveil his face, that his saints might behold his glory, and dwell with him. Amen.. . .
"On the 22d, the Presidency of the High Priesthood wrote from Kirtland to the brethren in Christ Jesus, scattered from Zion, scattered abroad from the land of their inheritance;
Greeting: -- We your companions in tribulation embrace the present opportunity of sending you this token of our love and good will, assuring you that our bowels are filled with compassion, and that our prayers are daily ascending to God in the name of Jesus Christ in your behalf.
"We have just received intelligence from you through the medium of Brother Elliott, of Chagrin, making inquiries concerning the course which you are to pursue. In addition to the knowledge contained in the above on this subject, we say if it is not the duty of the Governor to call out and keep a standing force in Jackson County to protect you on your lands, (which it appears, must be done, as we understand the mob are determined to massacre you if the Governor takes you back upon your lands and leaves you unprotected,) it will become your duty to petition the Governor to petition the President to send a force there to protect you when you are reinstated.
"The Governor proposes to take you back to your lands whenever you are ready to go, (if we understand correctly,) but cannot keep up any army to guard you; and while the hostile feelings of the people of Jackson County remain unabated, probably you dare not go back to be left unguarded. Therefore, in your petition to the Governor, set
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all these things forth in their proper light, and pray him to notify the President of your situation, and also petition the President yourselves, according to the direction of the Lord. We have petitioned Governor Dunklin in your behalf, and inclosed it in a printed revelation, the same as this, which we now send to you. The petition was signed by something like sixty brethren, and mailed for Jefferson City, one week ago, and he will probably receive it two weeks before you receive this.
"We also calculate to send a petition and this revelation to the President forthwith, in your behalf, and then we will act the part of the poor widow to perfection, if possible, and let our rulers read their destiny if they do not lend a helping hand. We exhort you to prosecute and try every lawful means to bring the mob to justice, as fast as circumstances will permit. With regard to your tarrying in Clay County, we cannot say; you must be governed by circumstances; perhaps you will have to hire out, and take farms to cultivate, to obtain bread until the Lord delivers.
"We sent you a fifty dollar United States note some time ago. If you have received it, please acknowledge the receipt of it, to us, that we may be satisfied you received it. We shall do all that is in our power to assist you in every way we can. We know your situation is a trying one, but be patient and not murmur against the Lord, and you shall see that all these things shall turn to your greatest good.
"Inquire of Elder Marsh and find out the entire secret of mixing and compounding lead and antimony, so as to make type metal, and write us concerning it. Joseph has sent you another fifty dollar note, making in all one hundred dollars; write us concerning it. There is a prospect of the eastern churches doing something pretty handsome towards the deliverance of Zion, in the course of a year, if Zion is not delivered otherwise.
"Though the Lord said this affliction came upon you because of your sins, polluting your inheritances, etc., yet there is an exception of some; namely, the heads of Zion, for the Lord said your brethren in Zion begin to repent, and the angels rejoice over them, etc. You will also see an exception
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 427
at the top of the second column of this revelation: therefore this affliction came upon the church to chasten those in transgression, and prepare the hearts of those who had repented, for an endowment from the Lord.
"We shall not be able to send you any more money at present, unless the Lord puts it into our hands unexpectedly. There is not quite so much danger of a mob upon us as there has been. The hand of the Lord has thus far been stretched out to protect us. Doctor P. Hurlbut, an apostate elder from this church, has been to the State of New York, and gathered up all the ridiculous stories that could be invented, and some affidavits respecting the character of Joseph, and the Smith family, and exhibited them to numerous congregations in Chagrin, Kirtland, Mentor, and Painesville, and fired the minds of the people with much indignation against Joseph and the church.
"Hurlbut also made many harsh threats, etc., that he would take the life of Joseph, if he could not destroy Mormonism without. Bro. Joseph took him with a peace warrant and after three days trial, and investigating the merits of our religion, in the town of Painesville, by able attorneys on both sides, he was bound over to the county court. Thus his influence was pretty much destroyed, and since the trial the spirit of hostility seems to be broken down in a good degree, but how long it will continue so we cannot say.
"You purchased your inheritances with money; therefore, behold, you are blessed; you have not purchased your lands by the shedding of blood, consequently you do not come under the censure of this commandment, which says, 'If by blood, lo your enemies are upon you, and ye shall be driven from city to city.' Give yourselves no uneasiness on this account.
Farewell in the bonds of the new covenant, and partakers in tribulation.
"(Signed) ORSON HYDE,
A council of high priests was held at the house of President Joseph Smith, in Kirtland, Ohio, on February 12, 1834, of which Joseph states: --
428 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
Council of high priests.
"At a council of the high priests and elders, at my house, In Kirtland, on the evening of the 12th of February, I remarked that I should endeavor to set before the council the dignity of the office which had been conferred on me by the ministering of the angel of God, by his own voice, and by the voice of this church; that I had never set before any council in all the order of it, which it ought to be conducted, which, perhaps, has deprived the councils of some, or many blessings.
"And I continued and said, No man is capable of judging a matter, in council, unless his own heart is pure; and that we frequently are so filled with prejudice, or have a beam in our own eye, that we are not capable of passing right decisions, etc.
"But to return to the subject of order: In ancient days councils were conducted with such strict propriety that no one was allowed to whisper, be weary, leave the room, or get uneasy in the least; until the voice of the Lord, by revelation, or by the voice of the council by the Spirit, was obtained; which has not been observed in this church to the present. It was understood in ancient days, that if one man could stay in council, another could; and if the President could spend his time, the members could also; but in our councils, generally, one will be uneasy, another asleep; one praying, another not; one's mind on the business of the council, and another thinking on something else, etc.
"Our acts are rendered, and at a future day they will be laid before us, and if we should fail to judge right and injure our fellow beings, they maybe there, perhaps, condemn us; there they are of great consequence, and to me the consequence appears to be of force, beyond anything which I am able to express, etc. Ask yourselves, brethren, how much you have exercised yourselves in prayer since you heard of this council; and if you are now prepared to sit in council upon the soul of your brother?
"I then gave a relation of my situation at the time I obtained the record, the persecutions I met with, etc., and prophesied that I would stand and shine like the sun in the firmament, when my enemies and the gainsayers of my testimony
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 429
shall be put down and cut off, and their names blotted out from among men."
-- Times and Seasons, vol. 6, p. 992.
Organization of High Council.
On February 17, 1834, the standing High Council of the church was organized at the house of President Joseph Smith, in Kirtland, Ohio. For an account of this organization and other matters connected with it, we cite the history of Joseph Smith: --
"Minutes of the organization of the High Council of the Church of Christ of Latter Day Saints, Kirtland, February 17, 1834.
"This day a general council of twenty-four high priests assembled at the house of Joseph Smith, Jr., by revelation, and proceeded to organize the high council of the Church of Christ, which was to consist of twelve high priests, and one or three presidents, as the case might require. This high council was appointed by revelation for the purpose of settling important difficulties, which might arise in the church, which could not be settled by the church, or the bishop's council, to the satisfaction of the parties.
"Joseph Smith, Jr., Sidney Rigdon, and Frederick G. Williams, were acknowledged presidents by the voice of the council; and Joseph Smith, Sr., John Smith, Joseph Coe, John Johnson, Martin Harris, John S. Carter, Jared Carter, Oliver Cowdery, Samuel H. Smith, Orson Hyde, Sylvester Smith, and Luke Johnson, high priests, were chosen to be a standing council for the church, by the unanimous voice of the council. The above-named councilors were then asked whether they accepted their appointments, and whether they would act in that office according to the law of heaven; to which they all answered, that they accepted their appointments, and would fill their offices according to the grace of God bestowed upon them.
"The number composing the council, who voted in the name and for the church in appointing the above-named councilors, were forty-three, as follows: nine high priests, seventeen elders, four priests, and thirteen members.
"Voted: that the high council cannot have power to act without seven of the above-named councilors, or their regularly appointed successors, are present. These seven shall
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have power to appoint other high priests, whom they may consider worthy and capable, to act in the place of absent councilors.
"Voted: that whenever any vacancy shall occur by the death, removal from office for transgression, or removal from the bounds of this church government, of any one of the above-named councilors, it shall be filled by the nomination of the president or presidents, and sanctioned by the voice of the general council of high priests, convened for that purpose, to act in the name of the church.
"The president of the church, who is also the president of the council, is appointed by revelation, and acknowledged, in his administration, by the voice of the church; and it is according to the dignity of his office, that he should preside over the high council of the church; and it is his privilege to be assisted by two other presidents, appointed after the same manner that he himself was appointed; and in case of the absence of one or both of those who are appointed to assist him, he has power to preside over the council without an assistant; and in case that he himself is absent, the other presidents have power to preside in his stead, both or either of them.
"Whenever a high council of the Church of Christ is regularly organized, according to the foregoing pattern, it shall be the duty of the twelve councilors to cast lots by numbers, and thereby ascertain who, of the twelve, shall speak first, commencing with number 1; and so in succession to number 12.
"Whenever this council convenes to act upon any case, the twelve councilors shall consider whether it is a difficult one or not; if it is not, two only of the councilors shall speak upon it, according to the form above written. But if it is thought to be difficult, four shall be appointed; and if more difficult, six: but in no case shall more than six be appointed to speak. The accused, in all cases, has a right to one half of the council, to prevent insult or injustice; and the councilors appointed to speak before the council, are to present the case, after the evidence is examined, in its true light, before the council; and every man is to speak according to equity and justice. Those councilors who draw even numbers
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that is, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12, are the individuals who are to stand up in the behalf of the accused, and prevent insult or injustice.
"In all cases the accuser and the accused shall have a privilege of speaking for themselves, before the council, after the evidences are heard, and the councilors who are appointed to speak on the case, have finished their remarks. After the evidences are heard, the councilors, accuser, and accused have spoken, the president shall give a decision according to the understanding which he shall have of the case, and call upon the twelve councilors to sanction the same by their vote. But should the remaining councilors, who have not spoken, or any one of them, after hearing the evidences and pleadings impartially, discover an error in the decision of the president, they can manifest it, and the case shall have a rehearing; and if, after a careful rehearing, any additional light is shown upon the case, the decision shall be altered accordingly; but in case no additional light is given, the first decision shall stand, the majority of the council having power to determine the same.
"In cases of difficulty respecting doctrine, or principle (if there is not a sufficiency written to make the case clear to the minds of the council), the president may inquire and obtain the mind of the Lord by revelation.
"The high priests, when abroad, have power to call and organize a council after the manner of the foregoing, to settle difficulties when the parties, or either of them, shall request it; and the said council of high priests shall have power to appoint one of their own number, to preside over such council for the time being. It shall be the duty of said council to transmit, immediately, a copy of their proceedings, with a full statement of the testimony accompanying their decision, to the high council of the seat of the first presidency of the church. Should the parties, or either of them, be dissatisfied with the decision of said council, they may appeal to the high council of the seat of the first presidency of the church, and have a rehearing, which case shall there be conducted, according to the former pattern written, as though no such decision had been made.
432 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
"This council of high priests abroad, is only to be called on the most difficult cases of church matters; and no common or ordinary case is to be sufficient to call such council. The traveling or located high priests abroad, have power to say whether it is necessary to call such a council or not.
"There is a distinction between the high council of traveling high priests abroad, and the traveling high council composed of the twelve apostles, in their decisions: from the decision of the former there can be an appeal, but from the decision of the latter there cannot. The latter can only be called in question by the general authorities of the church in case of transgression.
"Resolved, that the president, or presidents of the seat of the first presidency of the church, shall have power to determine whether any such case, as may be appealed, is justly entitled to a rehearing, after examining the appeal and the evidences and statements accompanying it.
"The twelve councilors then proceeded to cast lots, or ballot, to ascertain who should speak first, and the following was the result, namely: --
OLIVER COWDERY,} Clerks
"On the 18th I reviewed and corrected the minutes of the organization of the high council; and on the l9th of February the council assembled, according to adjournment from the 17th, when the revised minutes were presented and read to the council. I urged the necessity of prayer, that the Spirit might be given, that the things of the Spirit might be judged thereby, because the carnal mind cannot discern the things of God, etc. The minutes were read three times, and unanimously adopted and received for a form and constitution of the high council of the Church of Christ hereafter; with this provision, that if the president should hereafter discover any lack in the same he should be privileged to fill it up.
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 433
"The number present, who received the above named documents was twenty six high priests, eighteen elders, three priests, one teacher, and fourteen private members, making in all sixty-two.
"After giving such instruction as the Spirit dictated, I laid my hands severally upon the heads of the two assistant presidents and blessed them, that they might have wisdom to magnify their offices, and power over all the power of the adversary.
"I also laid my hands upon the twelve councilors, and commanded a blessing to rest upon them, that they might have wisdom and power to counsel in righteousness upon all subjects that might be laid before them. I also prayed that they might be delivered from those evils to which they were most exposed, and that their lives might be prolonged on the earth.
"My father Joseph then laid his hands upon my head and said, 'Joseph, I lay my hands upon thy head and pronounce the blessings of thy progenitors upon thee, that thou mayest hold the keys of the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, until the coming of the Lord; Amen.'
"He also laid hands upon the head of his son Samuel and said, 'Samuel, I lay my hands upon thy head, and pronounce the blessing of thy progenitors upon thee, that thou mayest remain a priest of the Most High God, and like Samuel of old, hear his voice, saying, "Samuel, Samuel;" Amen.'
"John Johnson, also, laid his hand upon the head of his son Luke and said, 'My Father in heaven, I ask thee to bless this my son, according to the blessings of his forefathers, that he may be strengthened in his ministry, according to his holy calling; Amen.'
"I then gave the assistant presidents a solemn charge, to do their duty in righteousness, and in the fear of God; I also charged the twelve councilors in a similar manner, all in the name of Jesus Christ.
"We all raised our hands to heaven in token of the everlasting covenant, and the Lord blessed us with his Spirit. I then declared the council organized according to the ancient order, and also according to the mind of the Lord." -- Times and Seasons, vol. 6, pp. 993-995.
434 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
Word of Wisdom
A conference met at Kirtland on February 19, and on the next day-the 20th-the High Council was called to decide a question concerning the worthiness of a man to officiate who disregarded the "Word of Wisdom." But we will quote the words of Joseph Smith on this meeting and decision: --
"KIRTLAND, February 20, 1834."The high council met this evening to determine concerning the elders going out to preach, etc. The president opened the council by prayer.
"At a church meeting held in Pennsylvania, Erie County, and Springfield Township, by Orson Pratt and Lyman Johnson, high priests, some of the members of that church refused to partake of the sacrament, because the elder administering it did not observe the Words of Wisdom to obey them. Elder Johnson argued that they were justified in so doing, because the elder was in transgression. Elder Pratt argued that the church was bound to receive the supper under the administration of an elder, so long as he retained his office or license. Voted that six councilors should speak upon the subject.
"The council then proceeded to try the question, whether disobedience to the Word of Wisdom was a transgression sufficient to deprive an official member from holding an office in the church, after having it sufficiently taught him.
"Councilors Samuel H. Smith, Luke Johnson, John S. Carter, Sylvester Smith, John Johnson, and Orson Hyde, were called to speak upon the case then before the council. After the councilors had spoken, the president proceeded to give a decision: --
"That no official member in this church is worthy to hold an office, after having the Words of Wisdom properly taught to him, and he the official member neglecting to comply with or obey them; which decision the council confirmed by vote.
"The president then asked if there were any elders present who would go to Canada and preach the gospel to that people; for they have written a number of letters for help. And the whole council felt as though the Spirit required the
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 435
elders to go there. It was therefore decided by the council that Lyman Johnson and Milton Holmes should travel together into Canada. And also that Zebedee Coltrin and Henry Harriman travel together into Canada. It was also decided that Jared Carter and Phineas Young travel together, if they can arrange their affairs at home so as to be liberated.
"It was also decided that Elder Oliver Granger should travel eastward as soon as his circumstances will permit, and that he should travel alone on account of his age; it was also decided that Elder Martin Harris should travel alone whenever he travels; that Elder John S. Carter and Jesse Smith travel east together as soon as they can. The council also decided that Elder Brigham Young should travel alone it being his own choice, decided also that James Durfee and Edward Marvin should travel together eastward; also that Sidney Rigdon and John P. Green go to Strongsville; also that Orson Pratt and Harrison Sagers travel together for the time being; and that there should be a general conference held in Saco, in the State of Maine, on the 13th day of June use, 1834.
"It was furthermore voted that Elder Orson Hyde, accompanied by Elder Orson Pratt, go east to obtain donations for Zion, and means to redeem the farm on which the house of the Lord stands.
"The church and council then prayed with uplifted hands that they might be prospered in their mission.
ORSON HYDE,} Clerks
-- Times and Seasons, vol. 6, pp. 1022, 1023.
Messengers from Zion Arrive.
On February 22 Parley P. Pratt and Lyman Wight, messengers from Missouri, arrived in Kirtland, and on Sunday, the 23d, they addressed the people at the Methodist church.
On the 24th a revelation concerning Zion was received. 1
1 1. Verily I say unto you, my friends, Behold, I will give unto you a revelation and commandment, that you may know how to act in the discharge of your duties concerning the salvation and redemption of your brethren, who have been scattered on the land of Zion, being driven and smitten by the hands of mine enemies; on whom I will pour out my
440 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
To arm themselves was declared by the Governor to be not only their right but their duty, and in so doing they were acting under advice from officers of State.
Joseph states: --
"Wednesday, February 26, I started from home to obtain volunteers for Zion, in compliance with the foregoing revelation, and the 27th staid at Brother Roundy's."
He continues: --
"We continued our journey and on the 28th February staid at a stranger's, who entertained us very kindly; and on the first of March arrived at Brother Lewis'; and on the 2d which was the Sabbath, Brother Parley preached, and I preached in the evening; we had a good meeting. There is a small church in this place, which seems strong in the faith. O may God keep them in the faith, and save them and lead them to Zion.
"March 3 we intended to start on our journey east, but concluded to tarry another day. O may God bless us with the gift of utterance to accomplish the journey and the errand on which we are sent, and return safe to the land of Kirtland, and find my family all well. O Lord bless my little children with health and long life, to do good in their generation for Christ's sake, Amen.
"After leaving Kirtland we had passed through Thompson, Springfield, Elk Creek, Erie, Westfield, Livonia, Silver Creek, Perrysburg, Collins, China, Warsaw, Geneseo, Centerville, Catlin, and Spafford, before we arrived at Westfield. On the 4th inst. we continued our journey from Westfield, accompanied by Elder Gould, and after a ride of thirty-three miles at Villanova and tarried all night with a Brother McBride. The next morning, March 5, we went to Brother Nickerson's, and found him and his household full of faith and of the Holy Spirit.
"We called the church together, and related unto them what had happened to our brethren in Zion, and opened to them the prophecies and revelations concerning the order of the gathering to Zion, and the means of her redemption; and I prophesied to them, and the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon them, and with all readiness the young and
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 441
middle aged volunteered for Zion. The same evening we held two meetings, three or four miles distant from each other.
"March 6. We held another meeting at Bro. Nickerson's. The few unbelievers that attended were outrageous, and the meeting ended in complete confusion.
"March 7. We proceeded on our journey accompanied by Bro. Nickerson, leaving Brothers Gould and Matthews to prepare and gather up the companies, in the churches in that region, and meet us in Ohio, ready for Zion on the first of May. We arrived after dark, at Elliotville, the county seat of Cattaraugus, and tried for lodgings at every tavern in the place. It being court time we found no room, but were obliged to ride on in the dark, through mud and rain, and found shelter, after traveling about one mile, for which we paid more than tavern fare.
"On the 8th we arrived at Palmersville, at the house of Elder McGown's, where we were invited to go to Esquire Walker's to spend the evening. We found them very friendly and somewhat believing, and tarried all night.
"Sunday 9th, we preached in a schoolhouse, and had great attention. We found a few disciples who were firm in the faith; and, after meeting, found many believing and could hardly get away from them, and appointed a meeting in Freedom for Monday, the 10th, and staid [stayed] at Mr. Cowdery's, where we were blessed with a fullness of temporal and spiritual blessings, even all we needed or were worthy to receive.
"Monday. Met our appointment, and preached to a great congregation; and at evening, preached again to a crowded assembly, an overflowing house. After meeting I proposed if any wished to obey, and would make it manifest, we would stay and administer at another meeting, the next day.
"Tuesday 11th. Fulfilled our appointment, and baptized Heman Hyde, after which we rode nine miles and put up at Stuart's tavern.
"Wednesday 12th. We arrived at Father Bosley's, after a ride of thirty-six miles.
"Thursday 13th. I preached.
"Friday 14th. At Father Beman's.
"March 15th. While at Father Beman's, Elders Rigdon
442 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
and Wight arrived, much to the joy of their souls, and the saints in Livonia.
"Sunday 16th. Elder Rigdon preached to a very large congregation in Geneseo. Elder Pratt preached in the afternoon of Monday the 17th.
"There was also the same day, March 17, a conference of elders, at Avon, Livingston County, New York, at the house of Alvah Beman, which I attended. There were present also Sidney Rigdon, Parley Pratt, Lyman Wight, John Murdock, Orson Pratt, and Orson Hyde, high priests, and six elders. I stated that the object of the conference was to obtain young men and middle aged to go and assist in the redemption of Zion, according to the commandment; and for the church to gather up their riches, and send them to purchase lands according to the commandment of the Lord; also to devise means, or obtain money for the relief of the brethren in Kirtland, say two thousand dollars, which sum would deliver the church in Kirtland from debt; and also determine the course which the several companies shall pursue, or the manner they shall journey when they shall leave this place.
"It was voted by the council that Fathers Bosley and Nickerson, Elder McWithey, and Bro. R. Orton, should exert themselves to obtain two thousand dollars, for the present relief in Kirtland. They all agreed to do what they could to obtain it, firmly believing it could be accomplished by the first of April. It was also decided that Elder Orson Hyde should tarry and preach in the regions round about, till the money should be obtained and carry it with him to Kirtland. It was also voted that I should return to Kirtland accompanied by Elders Rigdon and Wight. Elders John Murdock and Orson Pratt were appointed to journey to Kirtland, preaching by the way; and Elders Parley P. Pratt and Henry Brown to visit the churches in Black River country, and obtain all the means they could to help Zion.
"Tuesday, March 18. Tarried at Father Bosley's through the day.
"On the l9th commenced my journey for Kirtland, and staid [stayed] this night at Bro. Withey's tavern.
"20th; continued our journey, dined at Bro. Joseph Holbrook's,
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 443
and at night tried three times to procure lodgings in the name of disciples, but could not succeed. After night had commenced we found a man, in China, named Reuben Wilson, who would keep us for money; thus we learn there is more places for money than for the disciples of Jesus. . . .
"March 21. We came to a man named Starks, six miles east of Springville, and on the 22d arrived at Bro. Vinson Knight's, in Perrysburgh, Cattaraugus County. On the 23d we arrived at Father Nickerson's, in Perrysburgh, where we held a meeting, etc. On the 24th I was not able to start, but felt determined to go the next morning. Twenty-fifth; journeyed from Father Nickerson's to Father Lewis' in Westfield, accompanied by Father Nickerson. On the 26th continued our journey to Elk Creek, and staid with Elder Hunt. The 27th I came to Springfield, where I found Elder Rigdon, who had come on by a different route, and we arrived that night within sixteen miles of Painesville, and arrived home at Kirtland, on the 28th of March, finding my family all well, and the Lord be praised for this blessing. The 29th, remained at home and had great joy with my family. Sunday the 30th, was at home, except going to hear Elder Rigdon preach." --Times and Seasons, vol. 6, pp. 1026, 1027.
In connection with the above an item from the journal of Elder Wight will serve to show the spirit of the times and the purpose of this special mission. Under date of April 13 he writes: --
"Preached to a large congregation (in Kirtland) upon the subject of having been driven from Jackson County, of our extreme sufferings, and of the great necessity of being obedient to the commandments; and also the necessity of those of like faith sympathizing with their brothers and sisters. This discourse appeared to have a good effect; about seventy volunteered to fly to their relief even if death should be the consequence thereof. Many donated largely of their substance to supply the wants of the needy. I spent the night with Bro. Joseph. and had much conversation with him concerning our peculiar circumstances."
Joseph gives the following account of the trial of Dr. Hurlbut,
444 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
which shows that Joseph was vindicated by courts of civil law as well as by church courts, and that Hurlbut was condemned by both. He states: --
"Monday, March 31. I went to Chardon to attend the court, in the case against Dr. P. Hurlbut."
He continues the account as follows:-
"April 1,1834. This day at Brother Rider's, in Chardon. The court has not brought forward Hurlbut's trial yet, and we were engaged in issuing subpĪnas for witnesses. My soul delighteth in the law of the Lord, for he forgiveth my sins, and will confound mine enemies.
Hurlbut on trial.
"Wednesday the 2d and Thursday the 3d, attended the court. Hurlbut was on trial for threatening my life. Friday morning I returned home.
"Saturday, March 6. I went to Chardon, as a witness for Father Johnson, and returned in the evening. Mr. Russell, the State's Attorney, for Portage County, called on me. He appeared in a gentlemanly manner, and treated me with great respect.
"April 7. Bishop Whitney, Elders Frederick G. Williams, Oliver Cowdery, Heber C. Kimball, and myself met in the council room, and bowed down before the Lord, and prayed that he would furnish the means to deliver the Firm from debt, that they might be set at liberty; also that I might prevail against the wicked man, Hurlbut, and that he might be put to shame.
"April 9. After an impartial trial the court decided that Doctor P. Hurlbut be bound over under two hundred dollar bonds, to keep the peace for six months, and pay the cost, which amounted to near three hundred dollars, all of which was in answer to our prayers, for which I thank my heavenly Father." --Times and Seasons, vol 6, pp. 1040, 1041.
[The State of Ohio v. Doctor P. Hurlbut.]
The court record of the case agrees with this. 2
2 Pleas before the Court of Common Pleas within and for the County of Geauga in the State of Ohio at a term of said Court begun and held at Chardon in said County on the thirty-first day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty-four.
Be it remembered that now at this term of the Court came Reuben Hitchcock Esquire on behalf of the State of Ohio and placed on file a transcript from the docket of William Holbrook Esquire, in the words
1834] HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. 445
H. Smith and Wight go via Michigan
On April 14,1834, it was agreed that Hyrum Smith and Lyman Wight should go west by the way of Michigan and the northern part of Illinois, visiting the churches and ascertaining what they would do for the brethren in Missouri, while Joseph, with the main company, was to take a more southerly route.
and figures following, that is to say: The State of Ohio Geauga County ss.
The State of Ohio }
Doctor P. Hurlbut. }
Complaint to compel the defendant to give bond to keep the peace. On complaint of Joseph Smith Junr. against the defendant against J. C. Dowen, a Justice of the Peace for Kirtland Township in said County made on the 21st day of Dec. 1833 a warrant was issued by said J. C. Dowen, Justice aforesaid which was returned before me William Holbrook a Justice of the Peace for Painesville township in the County aforesaid on the 4th day of January A D 1834 by Stephen Sherman a Constable of Kirtland township with defendant in Court. And not being ready for the examination said Constable is directed to keep the defendant in custody and return him again before the Court on the 6th day of January A. D. 1834 at 9 O'clock A. M. at his office in Painesville, at which time the defendant again appeared and not being yet ready for the examination on the part of the state this cause is again postponed to the 13th of January 1834 at 9 O'clock A. M. and the defendant required to be kept in custody by A Ritch Const. of Painesville township, at which time the defendant was again brought before the Court by A Ritch Constable. And all parties being ready for trial the Court commenced the examination and the following witnesses were examined on the part of the State, Amos Hodges C. Hodges, Sarah Wait, Burr [Riggs] Mary Copley Joseph Allen M. Hodges D. Elliot J. Smith Jr. L. Copley C. Holmes S. I. Whitney S. Slayton Mr. Wakefield, I. Wait and E. Goodman and the same were examined by the defendant. The examination commenced Monday the 13th January 1834 and ended January 13, 1834. After hearing the testimony it is the opinion of the Court that the complainant had reason to fear that Doctor P. Hurlbut would beat wound or kill him or injure his property as set forth in his complaint, and it is the consideration of the Court that the defendant enter into a recognizance to keep the peace generally and especially towards the complainant and also to appear before the Court of Common Pleas on the first day of the term thereof next to be holden in and for said County and not depart without leave, or stand committed till the Judgment of the Court be complied with.
The defendant forthwith complied with the judgment of the Court & entered into a recognizance as provided by the Statute.
The State of Ohio } I certify the foregoing to be substantially a true
Geauga County ss. } copy of my docket entry in the above entitled examination.
William Holbrook Justice of the Peace.
And thereupon came the Prosecuting Attorney for the County and also the said defendant, and the Court having heard the said complaint and also all the testimony adduced by the said complainant, and also by the said defendant and having duly considered the same are of opinion that the said complainant had ground to fear that the said Doctor P. Hurlbut would wound, beat or kill him or destroy his property as set forth in said complaint. Wherefore it is ordered and adjudged by the Court that the said Doctor P. Hurlbut enter into a new recognizance with good
446 HISTORY OF THE CHURCH. [1834
On the 21st Elders Smith and Wight started on their mission, traveling by team.
Of current events Joseph wrote as follows: --
"Friday, April 11. I attended meeting, and Father Tyler was restored to the fellowship of the church.
"On the 12th I went to the lake and spent the day in fishing and visiting the brethren in that place.
"Sunday the 13th; was sick and unable to attend meeting.
"On Monday 14th I purchased some hay and oats and got them home.
"Tuesday 15th; drew a load of hay, and on Wednesday ploughed and sowed oats for Brother Frederick.
"Thursday, the 17th of April, I attended a meeting agreeably to appointment, at which time the important subject of the deliverance of Zion and the building of the Lord's house in Kirtland, was discussed by Elder Rigdon. After the lecture I requested the brethren and sisters to contribute all the money they could for the deliverance of Zion, and received twenty-nine dollars and sixty-eight cents.
and sufficient security in the sum of two hundred dollars hereafter to keep the peace and be of good behavior to the citizens of the State of Ohio generally and to the said Joseph Smith Junior in particular for the period of of six months, and it is further ordered that the said Doctor P. Hurlbut pay the costs of this prosecution taxed at the sum of one hundred and twelve dollars and fifty-nine cents. And thereupon came the said Doctor P. Hurlbut with Charles A. Holmes and Elijah Smith as his sureties in open Court, entered into a recognizance in the penal sum of two hundred dollars each, conditioned that the said Doctor P. Hurlbut shall for the period of six months from and after this day keep the peace and be of good behavior to all the citizens of the State of Ohio generally and to the said Joseph Smith Jun. in particular.
M. Birchard P. J.Certificate to Common Pleas Record.
The State of Ohio, }
Geauga County, ss. }
I, B. D. Ames Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas, within and for said County,
And in whose custody the Files, Pleadings, Journals, Records, Execution Dockets, and Seal of said Court, are required by the Laws of the State of Ohio to be kept, hereby certify that the foregoing copy of Record is taken and copied from the Records of the proceedings of the Court of Common Pleas within and for said Geauga County, and that said foregoing copy has been compared by me with the original Record and that the same is a correct transcript therefrom.
In Testimony Whereof, I do hereunto subscribe my name officially, and affix the Seal of said Court, at the Court House in Chardon in said County, this l6th day of July, A. D. 1896.
(Seal) B. D. AMES Clerk.