Elders’ Journal, , Caldwell Co., MO, Aug. 1838. For more complete suorce information, see the source note for Elders’ Journal, Oct. 1837.
The Elders’ Journal, which published two issues in , Ohio, in 1837 before the church’s was destroyed, was reestablished in , Missouri, in 1838, after JS and most other church leaders migrated from Kirtland to Far West. was the proprietor of the newspaper, and JS was the editor, though the amount and nature of JS’s involvement and editorial oversight is unclear. By May 1838, JS and began working on material for the first Far West issue, dated July 1838. Ultimately, two issues were published in , dated July 1838 and August 1838. The July issue included letters to and from church serving proselytizing missions, as well as articles, minutes of meetings, and other items. The August issue contained similar material, including an editorial by JS and a letter that the commissioned to write to who had not yet gathered to Missouri. The August issue also included an obituary for Ethan Barrows Jr., who died in mid-August 1838, indicating that the issue was published sometime in the second half of the month or later.
Note that only the editorial content created specifically for this issue of the Elders’ Journal is annotated here. Articles reprinted from other papers, letters, conference minutes, and notices, are reproduced here but not annotated. Items that are stand-alone JS documents, such as the Minutes from a 28 June 1838 conference, are annotated elsewhere.
The obituary in the Elders’ Journal states that Barrows died on 15 August, but his father’s later autobiography gives the date of 18 August. (Obituary for Ethan Barrows Jr., Elders’ Journal, Aug. 1838, 64; “The Journal of Ethan Barrows,” Journal of History, Jan. 1922, 46; see also “The Journal of Ethan Barrows,” Journal of History, Oct. 1922, 451–452.)
Journal of History. Lamoni, IA, 1908–1920; Independence, MO, 1921–1925.
as author to their book than , so substituted his name. The change however was not much better. Asahel Howe one of ’s. brothers who was said to be the likeliest of the family, served a prenticeship in the work house in , for robbing the post office. And yet notwithstanding all this, all the pious priests of all denominations, were found following in the wake of these mortals.
and the Howe’s, are among the basest of mankind, and known to be such; and yet the priests and their coadjutors hail them as their best friends, and publish their lies, speaking of them in the highest terms. And after all this, they want us to say, that they are pious souls and good saints. Can we believe it? surely men of common sense will not ask us to do it.
Good men loves to associate with good men; and bad men with bad ones; and when we see men making friends with drunkards, thieves, liars, and swindlers, shall we call them saints? If we were to do it, we might be justly charged with “partaking of their evil deeds.”
Therefore until we have more evidence than we have now, we shall always think when we see men associating with scoundrels, that they themselves are scoundrels. And there we shall leave them for the present, firmly believing, that when the day of decision has come, that we shall see all the priests who adhere to the sectarian religions of the day, with all their followers, without one exception, receive their portion with the devil and his angels.
CELEBRATION OF THE 4th OF JULY.
The order of the day for the 4th of July, as directed by the committee of arrangements.
The committee of arrangements, which had been previously chosen, to make arrangements for the celebration of the 4th of July, and laying the corner stones of the , reported the following which was strictly adhered to.
First that Presidents Joseph Smith Jr. be president of the day, vice president, and orator.
Second that , be marshal of the day, and Col. and Major , be assistant marshals.
Third that act as Colonel for the day; , as Lieut. Colonel; as Major, and as Adjutant.
Fourth that , , and , act as Generals, before whom, the military band shall pass in review.
Fifth that the procession commence forming in the morning, at 10 o’clock A. M. in the following order.
First the Infant[r]y in front.
Second the civil procession as follows:
1st the patriarchs of the Church.
2nd the President and , of the day.
3rd the Twelve.
4th the Presidents of the stake with the high Council.
5th the and Council.
6th the architects.
7th the ladies, and then the gentleman of the civil procession.
Then the Cavalry brought up the rear.
After the procession was formed, which was exceedingly large. The whole marched to the notes of a small band of music under the direction of , around the cellar which had been dug for the house. The ladies forming a circle immediately around the cellar, the gentleman, of the civil procession in a circle next to the ladies. The infantry in a circle next, and the cavalry outside.
After the whole procession was thus completely formed, prayer was made by the president of the day, and a tune played by the band, and then, proceeded to lay the corner stones, as follows.
1 The south east corner was laid, by the presidents of the stake, assisted by twelve men.
2 The south west corner, by the presidents of the Elders, assisted by twelve men,
3 The north west corner, by the bishop assisted by twelve men.
4 The north east corner, by the president of the teachers, assisted by twelve men.
After each stone was laid, the music played a tune.
When the ceremony of laying the stones was completed, the ladies were formed in a circle, immediately, around the stand, where the oration was to be delivered, and the whole procession formed around them, as previously at the cellar of the house. The gentleman visitors were invited to come to the stand.— After which the oration was delivered, at the close of which, there was a shout of hosanna. A song was then sung by , composed by for the occasion.
The military band then marched from the stand, and the President, , and of the day, attended with the visitors, marched to the south side of the public square, and the troops under the command of their officers chosen for the occasion, passed in review before them. After which the whole procession was dismissed.
The whole ceremony of the day, was performed without the least disorder or confusion, and the people, in the most perfect order, retired to their homes.
The Committee of arrangements, take this opportunity of tendering their thanks, to the whole multitude who was in attendance, for their good behavior on the occasion, and for the due respect which they paid to the solemnities of the scene.
A conference meeting of Elders, and members, of the church of Christ o[f] Latter Day Saints, was held in this place, this day, for the purpose of organziing this stake of Zion, calle[d] . The meeting convened at 10 o’clock A. M. in the grov[e] near the house of elder [.] President Joseph Smith Jr. was calle[d] to the chair, who explained the objec[t] [p. 60]