JS, “Joseph Smith Jrs Book for Record,” Journal, Nov. 1832–Dec. 1834; handwriting ofPocket-size memorandum book, 5⅞ × 3¾ × ¼ inches (15 × 10 × 1 cm). The text block consists of fifty-four leaves measuring 5⅞ × 3⅝ inches (15 × 9 cm). There are four gatherings of six sheets each of ledger paper. Each sheet is folded so that each gathering has twelve leaves (twenty-four pages). These pages are ruled with sixteen blue horizontal lines—now almost entirely faded—as well as with red vertical lines for recording financial information. The endpapers consist of pastedowns on the inside covers and two free flyleaves in both the front and back. The gatherings are sewn all along on sawn-in cords. The front and back covers of the journal are pasteboard. The ledger has a tight-back case binding with a black calfskin quarter-leather binding. The outside covers are adorned in Schrottel marbled paper, with gray body and veins of black and blue. The volume originally had three leather loops—two in the back and one in the front—that were tipped in between the inside covers and the pastedowns. The former presence of the front cover loop, no longer extant, is evident from creasing and staining on the pastedown, which is now detached. The leather loops and their spacing allowed for the book to be fastened by inserting a pencil between all three loops. The vibrant blue veins and the grain of the marbling, now greatly diminished by water damage, are also visible under the now-loose front pastedown.JS wrote “Joseph Smith 1832.<3–4>” on the front cover in brown ink. On the front pastedown, “Joseph Smith” is written sideways, running upward near the bottom of the outer edge. Also, “Joseph” is written sideways, running downward, near the top of the inside of the same page. The handwriting of these inscriptions has not been identified. The journal entries begin on the recto of the second leaf (the first flyleaf) and end on the recto of the back pastedown, making 105 numbered pages. Regular journal entries, inscribed in various shades of brown ink, continue through page 93. Pages 94 to 102 are blank except for page 98, which has JS’s name in graphite pencil at the top in JS’s handwriting. Pages 103–105 record subscriptions, which were evidently solicited during JS’s 26 February–28 March 1834New Yorkmission, as well as a note apparently inscribed on 20 April 1834 in preparation for the conference held 20–21 April 1834 at
Located in northeast region of U.S. Area settled by Dutch traders, 1620s; later governed by Britain, 1664–1776. Admitted to U.S. as state, 1788. Population in 1810 about 1,000,000; in 1820 about 1,400,000; in 1830 about 1,900,000; and in 1840 about 2,400,...More InfoThe journal’s textual redactions and use marks, in graphite pencil, were made by later scribes who used the journal to produce the multivolume manuscript history of the church. This occurred in1
Historian’s Office. Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904. CHL. CR 100 130.
Johnson, Jeffery O. Register of the Joseph Smith Collection in the Church Archives, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Salt Lake City: Historical Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1973.
- 1 “Schedule of Church Records. Nauvoo 1846,” ; Historian’s Office,  “Historian’s Office Catalogue,” Catalogs and Inventories, 1846–1904, CHL; Johnson, Register of the Joseph Smith Collection, 7.
By late November 1832, when this record began, JS had resided inNew Yorkhad migrated to Ohio in spring 1831; many had subsequently moved on to
Located in northeast region of U.S. Area settled by Dutch traders, 1620s; later governed by Britain, 1664–1776. Admitted to U.S. as state, 1788. Population in 1810 about 1,000,000; in 1820 about 1,400,000; in 1830 about 1,900,000; and in 1840 about 2,400,...More InfoJackson County, Missouri, where they sought to establish a latter-day Zion. As headquarters for the church,JS’s first journal begins 27 November 1832 and ends 5 December 1834, with entries spread unevenly over this period of just over two years. After titling this journal “Joseph Smith Jrs Book for Record,” JS recorded his ambitious intention “to keep a minute acount of all things that come under my obsevation &c.” However, reality failed to match his expectations. From the outset, the level of detail JS preserved in this record was limited. His pattern of journalizing varied widely. After recording only nine more entries, JS abandoned journal keeping for ten months. Yet his original aspiration to keep a journal occasionally yielded significant information. Sporadic notations followed, with three instances of sustained writing covering a consecutive week or more in the remainder of the journal. The events described in these passages are a proselytizing mission to Canada in October 1833, a fund-raising and recruitment mission to Pennsylvania andNew Yorkin March 1834 to prepare for an expedition to help the Mormons in
Located in northeast region of U.S. Area settled by Dutch traders, 1620s; later governed by Britain, 1664–1776. Admitted to U.S. as state, 1788. Population in 1810 about 1,000,000; in 1820 about 1,400,000; in 1830 about 1,900,000; and in 1840 about 2,400,...More InfoDespite its brevity, this first journal contains more of JS’s handwriting than do any of his other journals. Almost half of the entries in the journal were written either entirely or primarily by JS himself; some of the remainder were apparently dictated. His openly expressed hopes and concerns, prayers and blessings, and observations on his own state of mind are a rich source of insight into spiritual and emotional dimensions of JS’s personality.This journal illustrates how closely leadership in the early church was intertwined with record keeping. Trusted associates who served as scribes for JS for key projects in the earliest years soon found themselves called to join JS in church leadership, with continued scribal responsibilities.The journal’s first ten entries, covering 27 November to 6 December 1832 and all written in JS’s handwriting, describe a trip to visit family, a happy return, receipt of a new revelation, and translation work. JS’s state of mind is apparent in phrases such as “my mind is calm and serene,” “found all well to the Joy and satisfaction of my soul on my return,” and “Oh Lord deliver thy servent out of temtations.”Revelation persistently nudged JS and his fellow believers toward building communities with a central focus on education and spiritual empowerment. In late December 1832, less than four weeks after this journal lapsed into silence, a new revelation called for a “solemn assembly” of the lay ministry, amplifying a promise in a revelation of January 1831 that in4A “School of the Prophets” began in January 1833, and in April land was purchased on which to build a structure that would be called the
A Book of Commandments, for the Government of the Church of Christ, Organized according to Law, on the 6th of April, 1830. Zion [Independence], MO: W. W. Phelps, 1833. Also available in Robin Scott Jensen, Richard E. Turley Jr., Riley M. Lorimer, eds., Revelations and Translations, Volume 2: Published Revelations. Vol. 2 of the Revelations and Translations series of The Joseph Smith Papers, edited by Dean C. Jessee, Ronald K. Esplin, and Richard Lyman Bushman (Salt Lake City: Church Historian’s Press, 2011).House of the Lord. A subsequent revelation called for the Saints to use this temple as the central reference point around which to develop a substantial community to be known as “the city of the stake of Zion.”
JS revelation, dated Jan. 1831, directed Latter-day Saints to migrate to Ohio, where they would “be endowed with power from on high.” In Dec. 1832, JS revelation directed Saints to “establish . . . an house of God.” JS revelation, dated 1 June 1833, chastened...More Info5As for Zion itself, on 25 June 1833 JS and his associates sent plans to church leaders inJackson County, Missouri, envisioning the purchase of new lands and the expansion of Mormon settlement there, building outward from a cluster of centrally located temples.6
Plat of City of Zion, 1833. CHL. MS 2567 1.But by the time the plans arrived inJackson County, Zion’s future looked bleak. Negotiations in mid-July between Mormon settlers and their unwilling neighbors broke down, and violence erupted. With the 9 August 1833 arrival ofOrson HydeandJohn Gouldto Missouri to advise the Saints.
21 Dec. 1784–25 June 1855. Pastor, farmer. Born in New Hampshire. Married first Oliva Swanson of Massachusetts. Resided at Portsmouth, Rockingham Co., New Hampshire, 1808. Lived in Vermont. Moved to northern Pennsylvania, 1817. Served as minister in Freewill...View Full Bio7
JS Letterbook 2 / Smith, Joseph. “Copies of Letters, &c. &c.,” 1839–1843. Joseph Smith Collection. CHL. MS 155, box 2, fd. 2.
Cowdery, Oliver. Letter with Joseph Smith postscript, Kirtland Mills, OH, to [William W. Phelps, John Whitmer, Edward Partridge, Isaac Morley, John Corrill, and Sidney Gilbert], [Independence, MO], 10 Aug. 1833. CHL. MS 3594.
Knight, Newel. Autobiography and Journal, ca. 1846. CHL. MS 767.When journal keeping resumed on 4 October 1833, much had changed for JS and his followers. The impending eviction of theHouse of the Lordin
JS revelation, dated Jan. 1831, directed Latter-day Saints to migrate to Ohio, where they would “be endowed with power from on high.” In Dec. 1832, JS revelation directed Saints to “establish . . . an house of God.” JS revelation, dated 1 June 1833, chastened...More InfoFreeman Nickerson, a Mormon visiting from
5 Feb. 1779–22 Jan. 1847. Seaman. Born at South Dennis, Barnstable Co., Massachusetts. Son of Eleazer Nickerson and Thankful Chase. Moved to Cavendish, Windsor Co., Vermont, 1800. Married Huldah Chapman, 19 Jan. 1801, at Cavendish. Served as officer in Vermont...View Full BioMissouri Riverand found temporary refuge in nearby
One of longest rivers in North America, in excess of 3,000 miles. From headwaters in Montana to confluence with Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri River drains 580,000 square miles (about one-sixth of continental U.S.). Explored by Lewis and Clark...More InfoMost of the subsequent entries of this journal involve either direct or indirect responses to the8Journal entries cover the monthlong trip of JS and Pratt through northeastern Pennsylvania and western
The Doctrine and Covenants of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints; Carefully Selected from the Revelations of God. Compiled by Joseph Smith. 2nd ed. Nauvoo, IL: John Taylor, 1844. Selections also available in Robin Scott Jensen, Richard E. Turley Jr., Riley M. Lorimer, eds., Revelations and Translations, Volume 2: Published Revelations. Vol. 2 of the Revelations and Translations series of The Joseph Smith Papers, edited by Dean C. Jessee, Ronald K. Esplin, and Richard Lyman Bushman (Salt Lake City: Church Historian’s Press, 2011).Geauga CountyCourt of Common Pleas. There he testified in a trial against
Located in northeastern Ohio, south of Lake Erie. Rivers in area include Grand, Chagrin, and Cuyahoga. Settled mostly by New Englanders, beginning 1798. Formed from Trumbull Co., 1 Mar. 1806. Chardon established as county seat, 1808. Population in 1830 about...More InfoJS made no journal entries during the expedition toDaniel Dunklinacknowledged the legal right of the Mormons to their
14 Jan. 1790–25 July 1844. Farmer, tavern owner, businessman, investor, lawyer, politician. Born near Greenville, Greenville District, South Carolina. Son of Joseph Dunklin Jr. and Sarah Margaret Sullivan. Moved to what became Caldwell Co., Kentucky, 1806...View Full BioThe volunteers thus halted near the border ofHouse of the Lordat9Members of the expedition distributed food and supplies to the refugee Mormons living in nearbyClay County, and JS strengthened local church leadership by appointing a presidency and a “high council” consisting of twelve men. Meanwhile, about sixty-eight of the volunteers, including JS, contracted cholera; thirteen died. After the cholera abated at the end of June, the surviving members were discharged and the expedition officially ended, having failed in its ostensible mission.
Settled ca. 1800. Organized from Ray Co., 1822. Original size diminished when land was taken to create several surrounding counties. Liberty designated county seat, 1822. Population in 1830 about 5,000; in 1836 about 8,500; and in 1840 about 8,300. Refuge...More Info10In early August, JS returned to Kirtland amidst criticism about the expedition. There he faced two heavy financial challenges: to purchase new lands in
Kimball, Heber C . “History of Heber Chase Kimball by His Own Dictation,” ca. 1842–1856. Heber C. Kimball, Papers, 1837–1866. CHL. MS 627, box 2.
Launius, Roger D. Zion’s Camp: Expedition to Missouri, 1834. Independence, MO: Herald Publishing House, 1984.
- 1 Frederick G. Williams, Statement, no date, Frederick G. Williams, Papers, CHL.
- 2 Minute Book 1, 22 Jan. 1833.
- 3 Entries for 28 and 30 Nov. 1832; 4 Dec. 1832.
- 4 Revelation, 2 Jan. 1831, in Book of Commandments 40:28 [D&C 38:32]; Revelation, 27–28 Dec. 1832 and 3 Jan. 1833, in Doctrine and Covenants 7:19–23, 36–46, 1835 ed. [D&C 88:70–84, 117–141].
- 5 Revelation, 2 Aug. 1833–B, in Doctrine and Covenants 83:1, 1835 ed. [D&C 94:1].
- 6 Plat of City of Zion, 1833, CHL.
- 7 John Whitmer, Independence, MO, to JS and Oliver Cowdery, [Kirtland, OH], 29 July 1833, in JS Letterbook 2, pp. 52–55; Oliver Cowdery with JS postscript, Kirtland Mills, OH, to [William W. Phelps] et al., [Independence, MO], 10 Aug. 1833, CHL; Knight, Autobiography, 39.
- 8 Revelation, 24 Feb. 1834, in Doctrine and Covenants 101, 1844 ed. [D&C 103].
- 9 Revelation, 22 June 1834, in Doctrine and Covenants 102:3, 8, 1844 ed. [D&C 105:9–13, 27–28].
- 10 Kimball, “History,” 21–24; Launius, Zion’s Camp, 110–155.
13 Mar. 1811–13 Nov. 1893. Farmer, newspaper editor. Born at Royalton, Windsor Co., Vermont. Son of Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack. Moved to Lebanon, Grafton Co., New Hampshire, 1811; to Norwich, Windsor Co., 1813; and to Palmyra, Ontario Co., New York, 1816...View Full Bio