“Extract, from the Private Journal of Joseph Smith Jr.,” July 1839

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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houses, and abused the innocent and unoffending inhabitants. They went to my house and drove my family out of doors. They carried away most of my property and left many destitute.— We were taken to the town, into the public square; and before our departure from , we, after much entreaties, were suffered to see our families, being attended all the while with a strong guard; I found my and children in tears, who expected we were shot by those who had sworn to take our lives, and that they should see me no more. When I entered my house, they clung to my garments, their eyes streaming with tears, while mingled emotions of joy and sorrow were manifest in their countenances. I requested to have a private interview with them a few minutes, but this privilege was denied me, I was then obliged to take my departure, but who can realize my feelings which I experienced at that time; to be torn from my , and leaving her surrounded with monsters in the shape of men, and my children too, not knowing how their wants would be supplied; to be taken far from them in order that my enemies might destroy me when they thought proper to do so. My wept, my children clung to me and were only thrust from me by the swords of the guard who guarded me. I felt overwhelmed while I witnessed the scene, and could only reccomend them to the care of that God, whose kindness had followed me to the present time; and who alone could protect them, and deliver me from the hands of my enemies and restore me to my family
I was then taken back to the camp and then I with the rest of my brethren, viz: , , , , , and , were removed to , Jackson county. They did not make known what their intention or designs were in taking us there; but knowing that some of our most bitter enemies resided in that , we came to the conclusion that their design was to shoot us, which from the testimony of others. I do think was a correct conclusion. While there, we were under the care of Generals and , we had to find our own board, and had to sleep on the floor with nothing but a mantle for our covering, and a stick of wood for our pillow. After remaining there a few days we were ordered by General to return; we were accordingly taken back as far as , and there we were thrust into prison and our feet bound with fetters. While in , we were under the charge of from , who suffered all manner of abuse to be heaped upon us. During this time my afflictions were great, and our situation was truly painful. After remaining there a few days we were taken before the court of inquiry, but were not prepared with witnesses, in consequence of the eruelty [cruelty] of the mob, who threatend destruction to all who had any thing to say in our favor: but notwithstanding their threats there were a few who did not think their lives dear so that they might testify to the truth, and in our behalf, knowing we were unlawfully confined; but the court who was prejudiced against us, would not suffer them to be examined according to law, but suffered the State’s Attorney to abuse them as he thought proper. We were then removed to in Clay county, and there kept in close confinement in that place for more than four months. while there, we petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus, but on account of the prejudice of the jailor all communication was cut off; at length however, we succeeded iin getting a petition conveyed to him, but for fourteen days we received no answer. We likewise petitioned the other Judges but with no success. After the expiration of fourteen days ordered us to appear before him, we went and took a number of witnesses, which caused us considerable expense and trouble; but he altogether refused to hear any of our witnesses. The lawyers which we had employed refused to act; being afraid of the people. This being the case, we of course could not succeed, and were consequently [re]manded back to our prison house.— We were sometimes visited by our friends whose kindness and attention, [I] shall ever remember with feelings of [li]vely gratitude, but frequently we were not sufiered to have that privilege. Our vituals were of the coarsest [p. 6]
houses, and abused the innocent and unoffending inhabitants. They went to my house and drove my family out of doors. They carried away most of my property and left many destitute.— We were taken to the town, into the public square; and before our departure from , we, after much entreaties, were suffered to see our families, being attended all the while with a strong guard; I found my and children in tears, who expected we were shot by those who had sworn to take our lives, and that they should see me no more. When I entered my house, they clung to my garments, their eyes streaming with tears, while mingled emotions of joy and sorrow were manifest in their countenances. I requested to have a private interview with them a few minutes, but this privilege was denied me, I was then obliged to take my departure, but who can realize my feelings which I experienced at that time; to be torn from my , and leaving her surrounded with monsters in the shape of men, and my children too, not knowing how their wants would be supplied; to be taken far from them in order that my enemies might destroy me when they thought proper to do so. My wept, my children clung to me and were only thrust from me by the swords of the guard who guarded me. I felt overwhelmed while I witnessed the scene, and could only reccomend them to the care of that God, whose kindness had followed me to the present time; and who alone could protect them, and deliver me from the hands of my enemies and restore me to my family
I was then taken back to the camp and then I with the rest of my brethren, viz: , , , , , and , were removed to , Jackson county. They did not make known what their intention or designs were in taking us there; but knowing that some of our most bitter enemies resided in that , we came to the conclusion that their design was to shoot us, which from the testimony of others. I do think was a correct conclusion. While there, we were under the care of Generals and , we had to find our own board, and had to sleep on the floor with nothing but a mantle for our covering, and a stick of wood for our pillow. After remaining there a few days we were ordered by General to return; we were accordingly taken back as far as , and there we were thrust into prison and our feet bound with fetters. While in , we were under the charge of from , who suffered all manner of abuse to be heaped upon us. During this time my afflictions were great, and our situation was truly painful. After remaining there a few days we were taken before the court of inquiry, but were not prepared with witnesses, in consequence of the eruelty [cruelty] of the mob, who threatend destruction to all who had any thing to say in our favor: but notwithstanding their threats there were a few who did not think their lives dear so that they might testify to the truth, and in our behalf, knowing we were unlawfully confined; but the court who was prejudiced against us, would not suffer them to be examined according to law, but suffered the State’s Attorney to abuse them as he thought proper. We were then removed to in Clay county, and there kept in close confinement in that place for more than four months. while there, we petitioned for a writ of habeas corpus, but on account of the prejudice of the jailor all communication was cut off; at length however, we succeeded iin getting a petition conveyed to him, but for fourteen days we received no answer. We likewise petitioned the other Judges but with no success. After the expiration of fourteen days ordered us to appear before him, we went and took a number of witnesses, which caused us considerable expense and trouble; but he altogether refused to hear any of our witnesses. The lawyers which we had employed refused to act; being afraid of the people. This being the case, we of course could not succeed, and were consequently remanded back to our prison house.— We were sometimes visited by our friends whose kindness and attention, I shall ever remember with feelings of lively gratitude, but frequently we were not sufiered to have that privilege. Our vituals were of the coarsest [p. 6]
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