53991747

Letter from Joseph Bosworth, 17 February 1834

taken of to View an other Sight which then presented itself to my view— I now Saw— two armies one from the north and the other from the South parraded in two Strait Lines faceing Each other near together Extending from East to wist as I thought through the hole Earth all mounted on horses Equipt with arms of warfare in the highist pomp all Standing Still prepared for a most tremendious battle—. I Saw no fighting Except one Exchange of Shots by a few men Verry far in the west So far that I could not here the report of guns but Saw the motion and the Smoke of burning powder I Stood on the ground with Some of my Breathren where this great Light Shone So bright not armed our Selves in this battle nor was I the Least Intimidated Brother Thomas Gordon

8 Apr. 1805–10 Oct. 1889. Farmer, shoemaker, justice of the peace, store clerk, carpenter. Born in New York. Married Mary Holmes. Resided at Norton, Medina Co., Ohio, by 1830. Listed as having appeared in one of several visions Joseph Bosworth recounted in...

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2

Thomas Gordon was a member of the Church of Christ in the New Portage, Ohio, area. (Minute Book 1, 8 Sept. 1834; 18 Nov. 1835; 10 June 1836.)  


Stood by and Said Br Joseph I am not a fraid on which I asked him if he Saw the Smoke in the west
thus the Scene closed and I Came out of my Vision— I then arose out of bed put on my clothes Left my house and went to my usual Lonely place of Secret prayer— and there prostrating my boddy and face to the Dust gave thanks to God for the things which he had Shown to me and prayed to God in the name of Jesus Christ if it was Consistant for me to know the interpetation or any part of it that it might be given to me.
I then returned to my house and Soon retired to rest again it being about the 12th hour of the night— on which I all most immediately had the following revalation or Vision as an interpetation of the first
Vision Second
first I Saw my self in Various parts and in in Differant Congregations of men and Woman many of which I Knew— Laboring with great Diligence in the word of God and proclaiming the things which I had Seen in a Vision of the two Lights and the Great armies of horse men. Many times relating all the particualars with Great Candor— on which Some believed and Some persecuted me most unsufferably [p. [2]]
taken of to View an other Sight which then presented it self to my view— I now Saw— two armies one from  the north and the other from the South parraded  in two Strait Lines faceing Each other near together  Extending from East to wist as <I> thought through the  hole Earth all mounted on horses Equipt with arms  of warfare in the highist pomp all Standing Still  prepared for a most tremendious battle—. I Saw  no fighting Except one Exchange of Shots by  a few men Verry far in the west So far that  I could not here the report of guns but Saw  the motion and the Smoke of burning powder  I Stood on the groun[d] with Some of my Breathren  where this great Light Shone So bright not  armed our Selves in this battle nor was I the Least  Intimidated Brother Thomas Gordon

8 Apr. 1805–10 Oct. 1889. Farmer, shoemaker, justice of the peace, store clerk, carpenter. Born in New York. Married Mary Holmes. Resided at Norton, Medina Co., Ohio, by 1830. Listed as having appeared in one of several visions Joseph Bosworth recounted in...

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2

Thomas Gordon was a member of the Church of Christ in the New Portage, Ohio, area. (Minute Book 1, 8 Sept. 1834; 18 Nov. 1835; 10 June 1836.)  


Stood by and  Said Br Joseph a I am <not> a <not> fraid on which I asked  him if [he] Saw the Smoke in the west
thus the Scene closed and <I> Came out of my  Vision— I then arose out of bed put on my  cloth[e]s Left my house and went to my usual  Lonely place of Secret prayer— and there  prostrating my boddy and face to the Dust  gave thanks to God for the things which he had  Shown to me and prayed to God in the name of  Jesus Christ if it was Consistant for me to know  the interpetation or any part of it that it  might be given to me.
I then returned to my house and Soon retired  to rest again it being about the 12th hour of  the night— on which I all most immediately  had the following revalation or Vision as  an interpetation of the first
Vision Second
first I Saw my self in Various parts and in  in Differant Congregations of men and Woman  many of which I Knew— Laboring with great  Diligence in the word of God and proclaiming  the things which I had Seen in a Vision of the  two Lights and the Great armies of horse men.  Many times relating all the particualars with  Great Candor— on which Some believed and  Some persecuted me most unsufferably [p. [2]]
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In this letter, Joseph Bosworth

6 Mar. 1790–16 July 1850. Farmer. Born at Scituate, Providence Co., Rhode Island. Son of Benajah Bosworth. Moved to Burlington, Otsego Co., New York, by 1800. Married Lucina Hopkins, 17 May 1815. Moved to Copley, Medina Co., Ohio, by 1818. Baptized into LDS...

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recounted two visions he experienced the night of 16 February 1834, one week after meeting with JS and others at a conference in New Portage

Settled by 1815. Population severely diminished by epidemic, possibly typhus, in late 1820s. Mormon missionaries visited and preached at many meetings in town, by 1831. Large branch of LDS church organized, early 1830s. JS attended several church conferences...

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, Medina County, Ohio.1 As the letter indicated, Bosworth was a former associate of Sidney Rigdon

19 Feb. 1793–14 July 1876. Tanner, farmer, minister. Born at St. Clair, Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania. Son of William Rigdon and Nancy Gallaher. Joined United Baptists, ca. 1818. Preached at Warren, Trumbull Co., Ohio, and vicinity, 1819–1821. Married Phebe...

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and Walter Scott

31 Oct. 1796–23 Apr. 1861. Teacher, minister/preacher, editor/publisher, author. Born in Moffat, Dumfriesshire, Scotland. Son of John Scott and Mary Innes. Raised Calvinist. Studied music at University of Edinburgh, in Scotland. Immigrated to U.S., ca. 1818...

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, two men who before joining the Church of Christ

The Book of Mormon related that when Christ set up his church in the Americas, “they which were baptized in the name of Jesus, were called the church of Christ.” The first name used to denote the church JS organized on 6 April 1830 was “the Church of Christ...

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had been associated with Alexander Campbell

12 Sept. 1788–4 Mar. 1866. Teacher, minister, magazine publisher, college president. Born near Ballymena, Co. Antrim, Ireland. Son of Thomas Campbell and Jane Corneigle. Raised Presbyterian. Moved to Glasgow, Lanark, Scotland, 1808. Immigrated to Buffalo ...

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’s religious movement. Bosworth’s association with Rigdon and Scott suggests that he too had been involved with Campbell and the Disciples of Christ. Bosworth’s belief in the reality of visions—as opposed to Campbell’s disregard for such experiences in modern times2

Alexander Campbell, “A Restoration of the Ancient Order of Things, No. I,” Christian Baptist, 7 Feb. 1825, 50; Alexander Campbell, “The Creed Question,” Christian Baptist, 2 Apr. 1827, 197.  


—may have influenced his decision to join the Church of Christ. Bosworth’s probable familiarity with at least some of JS’s visionary experiences—including his and Rigdon’s “Vision” of 16 February 1832, published in the July 1832 issue of The Evening and the Morning Star3

Vision, 16 Feb. 1832, in “A Vision,” The Evening and the Morning Star, July 1832, [2]–[3] [D&C 76].  


—may have contributed to his desire to share his own visions with church leaders in Kirtland

Located ten miles south of Lake Erie. Settled by 1811. Organized by 1818. Population in 1830 about 55 Latter-day Saints and 1,000 others; in 1838 about 2,000 Saints and 1,200 others; in 1839 about 100 Saints and 1,500 others. Mormon missionaries visited township...

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, Ohio. No response to Bosworth’s letter has been located.

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