JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. B-1, created 1 Oct. 1843–24 Feb. 1845; handwriting of and ; 297 pages, plus 10 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the second volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This second volume covers the period from 1 Sept. 1834 to 2 Nov. 1838; the subsequent four volumes, labeled C-1 through F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
This document, volume B-1, is the second of the six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church.” The collection was compiled over the span of seventeen years, 1838 to 1856. The narrative in volume B-1 begins with the entry for 1 September 1834, just after the conclusion of the Camp of Israel (later called Zion’s Camp), and continues to 2 November 1838, when JS was interned as a prisoner of war at , Missouri. For a fuller discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to the history.
, serving as JS’s “private secretary and historian,” completed the account of JS’s history contained in volume A-1 in August 1843. It covered the period from JS’s birth in 1805 through the aftermath of the Camp of Israel in August 1834. When work resumed on the history on 1 October 1843, Richards started a new volume, eventually designated B-1.
At the time of JS’s death in June 1844, the account had been advanced to 5 August 1838, on page 812 of volume B-1. ’s poor health led to the curtailment of work on B-1 for several months, until 11 December 1844. On that date, Richards and , assisted by , resumed gathering the records and reports needed to draft the history. Richards then composed and drafted roughed-out notes while Thomas Bullock compiled the text of the history and inscribed it in B-1. They completed their work on the volume on or about 24 February 1845. Richards, , and Jonathan Grimshaw later added ten pages of “Addenda,” which provided notes, extensive revisions, or additional text to be inserted in the original manuscript where indicated.
Though JS did not dictate or revise any of the text recorded in B-1, and chose to maintain the first-person, chronological narrative format established in A-1 as if JS were the author. They drew from a variety of primary and secondary sources including JS’s diaries and letters, minutes of meetings, the first edition of the Doctrine and Covenants, church and other periodicals, reports of JS’s discourses, and the reminiscences and recollections of church members. As was the case with A-1, after JS’s death, , , , and others modified and corrected the manuscript as they reviewed material before its eventual publication.
Beginning in March 1842 the church’s Nauvoo periodical, the Times and Seasons, began publishing the narrative as the “History of Joseph Smith.” It was also published in England in the church periodical the Millennial Star beginning in June 1842. Once a press was established in Utah and the Deseret News began publication, the “History of Joseph Smith” once more appeared in print in serialized form. Beginning with the November 1851 issue, the narrative picked up where the Times and Seasons had left off over five years earlier.
The narrative recorded in B-1 continued the story of JS’s life as the prophet and president of the church he labored to establish. The account encompasses significant developments in the church’s two centers at that time—, Ohio, and northwest —during a four-year-span. Critical events included the organization of the Quorums of the Twelve Apostles and the Seventy, the dedication of the House of the Lord in Kirtland, Ohio, the establishment of the Kirtland Safety Society, dissension and apostasy in Kirtland and Missouri, the first mission to England, JS’s flight from Kirtland to Missouri in the winter of 1838, the Saints’ exodus from Kirtland later that year, the disciplining of the Missouri presidency, and the outbreak of the Missouri War and arrest of JS. Thus, B-1 provides substantial detail regarding a significant period of church expansion and transition as well as travail.
with open arms, and on the 13th of March I with my family, and <March 13> some others arrivedwithin8milesofand put up at Bro Barnerds’ for the night. Here we were met by an escort of the brethren from the town, who came to make us welcome <x> <14 Joseph’s arrival at .> to their little Zion. On the 14th. as we were about entering , many of the brethren came out to meet us, who [HC 3:8] also with open arms welcomed us to their bosoms. We were immediately received under the hospitable roof of brother . who treated us with all possible kindness, and we refreshed ourselves with much satisfaction after our long and tedious journey, the brethren bringing in such things as we had need of for our comfort and convenience.
After being here two or three days, My Brother arrived with his family, shortly after his arrival, while walking with him and certain other brethren, the following sentiments occurred to my mind.
<Motto of the church of Christ &c.> Motto of the Church of <Jesus> Christ of LatterDaySaints. The constitution of our country formed by the Fathers of Liberty. Peace and Good order in Society, Love to God and good will to man. All good and wholesome Laws; and virtue and truth above all things, and Aristarchy* <* <most> Perfect Government.> live forever!!! But wo to Tyrants. Mobs. Aristocracy, Anarchy and Toryism; and all those who invent or seek out unrighteous and vexatious lawsuits, under the pretext or color of law, or office, either religious or political. Exalt the Standard of Democracy! Down with that of Priestcraft, and let all the people say Amen! That the blood of our Fathers may not cry from the ground against us. Sacred is the memory of that blood which bought for us our liberty. Joseph Smith, Jun. . , , , , . .”
Questions and on Scripture.
<Questions on Scripture> Who is the Stem of Jesse, spoken of in the 1, 2, 3, 4, <&> 5th verses of the 11. chapter of Isaiah? Christ.
<answer.> Verily thus saith the Lord, it is Christ.
What is the Rod spoken of in the first verse of the 11th chap. of Isaiah that should come, of the stem of Jesse? [HC 3:9]
Behold! thus saith the Lord. It is a Servant in the hands of Christ. who is partly a descendant of Jesse, as well as of Ephraim, or of the house of Joseph on whom there is laid much power.
What is the Root of Jesse spoken of in the 10th verse of the 11th chapter?
Behold thus saith the Lord. It is a descendant of Jesse as well as of Joseph, unto whom rightly belongs the priesthood, and the keys of the kingdom for an ensign, and for the gathering of my people in the last days.
<Questions by as follows.>
What is meant by the command in Isaiah 52d Chapter 1st verse, which saith put on thy strength O, Zion, and what people had Isa. reference to?
He had reference to those whom God should call in the last days. who should hold the power of Priesthood to bring again Zion, and the redemption of Israel: And to put on her strength is to put on the authority of the priesthood, which she (Zion) has a right to by lineage; Also to return to that power which she had lost.
What are we to understand by Zion’s loosing herself from the bands of her neck, 2d verse? We are to understand that the scattered remnants are exorted to return to the Lord from whence they have fallen, which, if they do, the promise of the Lord is that he will speak to them, or give them revelation, See 6, 7 and 8th verses. The bands of [p. 784]