Traveling Church Officers

Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles originally had jurisdiction over all of the church outside of and its . In 1838, was centered in , Missouri. During early 1839, Zion and the stake were disbanded because church members were migrating out of the state under the terms of the expulsion order issued by Governor . On 16 January, the members of the , who were imprisoned in , Missouri, acknowledged in a letter to apostles and that “the gathering of necessity stopt” and stated that the “management of the affairs of the [entire] church” temporarily fell to the quorum.
Dissent and disaffection, combined with the 1838 conflict between the Latter-day Saints and other Missourians, reduced the number of functioning apostles throughout 1838, but by the end of the year, quorum leaders began to ordain new apostles under the direction of the First Presidency. The quorum continued to stabilize in early and mid-1839, and its members embarked on a mission to Europe by the end of the year.
The original members of the quorum were ranked in seniority based on age. Newer members also were ordered by age, ranked below the original members. On 16 January 1839, the First Presidency instructed and to appoint the oldest of the original members to be the president of the quorum. Young, who was the oldest, acted as president of the quorum, although he was not sustained as president until April 1840.
The following are notable events that occurred relative to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles from 7 November 1837 to 8 July 1839:
• Late December 1837: and excommunicated; and appointed (but not ordained).
• 13 April 1838: excommunicated.
• 11 May 1838: removed.
• 8 July 1838: and reappointed (but not ordained); and appointed (but not ordained).
• Circa 20 October 1838: and disaffected.
• 25 October 1838: killed.
• 19 December 1838: and ordained.
• 16 January 1839: appointed as acting president.
• 26 April 1839: ordained.
• 4 May 1839: and suspended; ordained.
• 25 May 1839: restored.
• 27 June 1839: restored.
• 8 July 1839: reappointed (but not ordained).
 
7 November 1837–19 December 1838
7 November 1837 Late December 1837 13 April 1838 11 May 18388 July 1838Circa 20 October 183825 October 183819 December 1838
President President President PresidentPresidentPresidentPresidentPresident
Members Members Members MembersMembersMembersMembersMembers
 
16 January 1839–8 July 1839
16 January 1839 26 April 1839 4 May 1839 25 May 183927 June 18398 July 1839
Acting President Acting President Acting President Acting PresidentActing PresidentActing President
Members Members Members MembersMembersMembers
 
Presidency of the Seventy
A quorum of seventy traveling elders was organized in 1835. The seventy were responsible for proselytizing and for administering to church members in outside of and established , under the direction of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Unlike other quorums in the church, which were generally presided over by one president and two counselors, the First Quorum of the Seventy was presided over by seven presidents. It is unclear whether there was an order of seniority among the presidents. The Presidency of the Seventy had authority to organize further quorums of seventy “until seven times seventy” and was to preside over each quorum, functioning as a distinct group. Second and third quorums were organized in 1836. The members of the quorums occasionally met in general meetings for all seventies; there are no known records of members of an individual quorum meeting together in 1838 or 1839. The Presidency of the Seventy organized the “Kirtland Camp” of Saints migrating to in 1838 and renewed proselytizing efforts in 1839.
The following are notable events that occurred relative to the Presidency of the Seventy from circa 13 January to 13 March 1838:
• Circa 13 January 1838: excommunicated.
• 6 February 1838: appointed.
• 6 March 1838: rejected; ordained.
• 13 March 1838: and appointed pro tempore presidents to fill in for and , who apparently had relocated from to .
By September 1837 Circa 13 January 1838 6 February 1838 6 March 183813 March 1838October 183831 August 1839
Presidents Presidents Presidents PresidentsPresidentsPresidentsPresidents
Presidents pro temporePresidents pro tempore
  1. 1

    Letter to Heber C. Kimball and Brigham Young, 16 Jan. 1839.  

  2. 2

    Letter to Heber C. Kimball and Brigham Young, 16 Jan. 1839.  

  3. 3

    John Smith and Clarissa Lyman Smith, Kirtland, OH, to George A. Smith, Shinnston, VA, 1 Jan. 1838, George Albert Smith, Papers, CHL; Hepzibah Richards, Kirtland, OH, to Willard Richards, Bedford, England, 18–19 Jan. 1838, Willard Richards, Papers, CHL; Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 40–41; Phebe Carter Woodruff, Vinalhaven, ME, to Wilford Woodruff, Castine, ME, 1 Mar. 1838, Wilford Woodruff, Collection, CHL. John Smith listed John E. Page first and then John Taylor, whereas Hepzibah Richards named Taylor first and then Page. The 8 July 1838 revelation that appointed them as new apostles named Taylor first and then Page. (Revelation, 8 July 1838–A [D&C 118:6].)  

    Smith, George Albert. Papers, 1834–1877. CHL. MS 1322.

    Richards, Willard. Papers, 1821–1854. CHL. MS 1490.

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

    Woodruff, Wilford. Collection, 1831–1905. CHL. MS 19509.

  4. 4

    Minutes, 13 Apr. 1838.  

  5. 5

    JS, Journal, 11 May 1838.  

  6. 6

    Revelation, 8 July 1838–A [D&C 118:6].  

  7. 7

    Rockwood, Journal, 21 Oct. 1838; Thomas B. Marsh and Orson Hyde, Affidavit, Richmond, MO, 24 Oct. 1838, copy, Mormon War Papers, MSA; Thomas B. Marsh and Orson Hyde, Richmond, MO, to Lewis and Ann Marsh Abbott, Far West, MO, 25–30 Oct. 1838, in JS Letterbook 2, pp. 18–19.  

    Rockwood, Albert Perry. Journal Entries, Oct. 1838–Jan. 1839. Photocopy. CHL. MS 2606.

    Mormon War Papers, 1838–1841. MSA.

  8. 8

    Pratt, History of the Late Persecution, 36.  

  9. 9

    Minute Book 2, 19 Dec. 1838.  

  10. 10

    Letter to Heber C. Kimball and Brigham Young, 16 Jan. 1839.  

  11. 11

    Historian’s Office, General Church Minutes, 26 Apr. 1839.  

    General Church Minutes, 1839–1877. CHL. CR 100 318.

  12. 12

    Minutes, 4–5 May 1839; Historian’s Office, General Church Minutes, 26 Apr. 1839.  

    General Church Minutes, 1839–1877. CHL. CR 100 318.

  13. 13

    Woodruff, Journal, 25 May 1839.  

    Woodruff, Wilford. Journals, 1833–1898. Wilford Woodruff, Journals and Papers, 1828–1898. CHL. MS 1352.

  14. 14

    Woodruff, Journal, 27 June 1839; JS, Journal, 27 June 1839.  

    Woodruff, Wilford. Journals, 1833–1898. Wilford Woodruff, Journals and Papers, 1828–1898. CHL. MS 1352.

  15. 15

    Revelation, 8 July 1838–A [D&C 118:6]. Richards was ordained 14 April 1840. (Quorum of the Twelve, Minutes, 14 Apr. 1840; Woodruff, Journal, 14 Apr. 1840; Heber C. Kimball, Clitheroe, England, to Vilate Murray Kimball, Commerce, IL, 25 May 1840, typescript, Compilation of Heber C. Kimball Correspondence, CHL.)  

    Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Minutes, 1840–1844. CHL.

    Woodruff, Wilford. Journals, 1833–1898. Wilford Woodruff, Journals and Papers, 1828–1898. CHL. MS 1352.

    Heber C. Kimball Family Organization. Compilation of Heber C. Kimball Correspondence, 1983. Unpublished typescript. CHL.

  16. 16

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  17. 17

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  18. 18

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  19. 19

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  20. 20

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  21. 21

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  22. 22

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  23. 23

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  24. 24

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  25. 25

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  26. 26

    John Smith and Clarissa Lyman Smith, Kirtland, OH, to George A. Smith, Shinnston, VA, 1 Jan. 1838, George Albert Smith, Papers, CHL; Hepzibah Richards, Kirtland, OH, to Willard Richards, Bedford, England, 18–19 Jan. 1838, Willard Richards, Papers, CHL; Phoebe Woodruff, Vinalhaven, ME, to Wilford Woodruff, Castine, ME, 1 Mar. 1838, Wilford Woodruff, Collection, CHL.  

    Smith, George Albert. Papers, 1834–1877. CHL. MS 1322.

    Richards, Willard. Papers, 1821–1854. CHL. MS 1490.

    Woodruff, Wilford. Collection, 1831–1905. Digital scans. CHL. Originals in private possession.

  27. 27

    Minutes, 7 Nov. 1837.  

  28. 28

    Instruction on Priesthood, between ca. 1 Mar. and ca. 4 May 1835 [D&C 107:25, 34]; Minutes and Blessings, 28 Feb. 1835–1 Mar. 1835; Minutes, Discourse, and Blessings, 1 Mar. 1835.  

  29. 29

    Minutes and Discourse, 2 May 1835–A; Instruction on Priesthood, between ca. 1 Mar. and ca. 4 May 1835 [D&C 107:93–94].  

  30. 30

    Instruction on Priesthood, between ca. 1 Mar. and ca. 4 May 1835 [D&C 107:95–96].  

  31. 31

    JS, Journal, 3 and 7 Feb. 1836; Post, Journal, 1 and 4 Feb. 1836; Cowdery, Diary, 7 Feb. 1836; Kirtland Elders Quorum, “Record,” 8 and 11 Feb. 1836; Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 6–16, 22; The Twelve Apostles [Kirtland, OH: ca. Apr. 1836], copy at CHL. For a list of known seventies, see Organizational Charts, General Church Officers, Oct. 1835–Jan. 1838.  

    Post, Stephen. Journals, 1835–1879. Stephen Post, Papers, 1835–1921. CHL. MS 1304, box 6.

    Cowdery, Oliver. Diary, Jan.–Mar. 1836. CHL. MS 3429. Also available as Leonard J. Arrington, “Oliver Cowdery’s Kirtland, Ohio, ‘Sketch Book,’BYU Studies 12 (Summer 1972): 410–426.

    Kirtland Elders Quorum. “A Record of the First Quorurum of Elders Belonging to the Church of Christ: In Kirtland Geauga Co. Ohio,” 1836–1838, 1840–1841. CCLA.

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

    The Twelve Apostles. [Kirtland, OH: ca. Apr. 1836]. Copy at CHL.

  32. 32

    Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 41.  

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

  33. 33

    Backman, Heavens Resound, 352–367; Kirtland Camp, Journal, 6 and 13 Mar. 1838; Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 57–60, 65–70.  

    Backman, Milton V., Jr. The Heavens Resound: A History of the Latter-day Saints in Ohio, 1830–1838. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1983.

    Kirtland Camp. Journal, Mar.–Oct. 1838. CHL. MS 4952.

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

  34. 34

    Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 40.  

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

  35. 35

    Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 41.  

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

  36. 36

    Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 43–44.  

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

  37. 37

    Quorums of the Seventy, “Book of Records,” 48.  

    Record of Seventies / First Council of the Seventy. “Book of Records,” 1837–1843. Bk. A. In First Council of the Seventy, Records, 1837–1885. CHL. CR 3 51, box 1, fd. 1.

  38. 38

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.  

  39. 39

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.  

  40. 40

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.  

  41. 41

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.  

  42. 42

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.  

  43. 43

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.  

  44. 44

    Minutes, 3 Sept. 1837.