JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. C-1, created 24 Feb. 1845–3 July 1845; handwriting of , , Jonathan Grimshaw, and ; 512 pages, plus 24 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the third volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This third volume covers the period from 2 Nov. 1838 to 31 July 1842; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, D-1, E-1 and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
This document, “History, 1838–1856, volume C-1 [2 November 1838–31 July 1842],” is the third of six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church” (in The Joseph Smith Papers the “Manuscript History” bears the editorial title “History, 1838–1856”). The completed six-volume collection covers the period from 23 December 1805 to 8 August 1844. The narrative in this volume commences on 2 November 1838 with JS and other church leaders being held prisoner by the “’s forces” at , Missouri, and concludes with the death of Bishop at , Illinois, on 31 July 1842. For a more complete discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to this history.
Volume C-1 was created beginning on or just after 24 February 1845 and its narrative was completed by 3 May 1845, although some additional work continued on the volume through 3 July of that year (Richards, Journal, 24 and 28 Feb. 1845; Historian’s Office, Journal, 3 May 1845; 3 and 4 July 1845). It is in the handwriting of and contains 512 pages of primary text, plus 24 pages of addenda. Additional addenda for this volume were created at a later date as a supplementary document and appear in this collection as “History, 1838-1856, volume C-1 Addenda.” Compilers and Thomas Bullock drew heavily from JS’s letters, discourses, and diary entries; meeting minutes; church and other periodicals and journals; and reminiscences, recollections, and letters of church members and other contacts. At JS’s behest, Richards maintained the first-person, chronological-narrative format established in previous volumes, as if JS were the author. , , , and others reviewed and modified the manuscript prior to its eventual publication in the Salt Lake City newspaper Deseret News.
The historical narrative recorded in volume C-1 continued the account of JS’s life as prophet and president of the church. Critical events occurring within the forty-five-month period covered by this text include the Mormon War; subsequent legal trials of church leaders; expulsion of the Saints from Missouri; missionary efforts in by the and others; attempts by JS to obtain federal redress for the Missouri depredations; publication of the LDS Millennial Star in England; the migration of English converts to ; missionary efforts in other nations; the death of church patriarch ; the establishment of the city charter; the commencement of construction of the Nauvoo ; the expedition that facilitated temple construction; the introduction of the doctrine of proxy baptism for deceased persons; the dedicatory prayer by on the Mount of Olives in Palestine; publication of the “Book of Abraham” in the Nauvoo Times and Seasons; publication of the JS history often referred to as the “Wentworth letter;” the organization of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo; and the inception of Nauvoo-era temple endowment ceremonies.
<February 6> who treated me very insolently, and it was with great reluctance he listened to our message, which when he had heard, he said “Gentlemen, your causeis just, butI can do nothing for you,” and “If I take up for you, I shall lose theVote of ,” His whole course went to shew that he was an office seeker, that self aggrandisement was his ruling passion, and that justice and righteousness were no part of his composition. I found him such a man as I could not conscientiously support at the head of our noble republic— I also had an interview with Mr. whose conduct towards me very ill became his station. I became satisfied there was little use for me to tarry, to press the just claims of the Saints on the protection of the or Congress, and staid but a few days, taking passage in Company with and on the Railroads, and in Stages back to , Ohio.
<20> Thursday 20. I left at , and he wrote me as follows. [HC 4:80]
“ February 20. 1840— Dear Brother— I have just returned from the Committee Room, wherein I spoke about one hour and a half, there were but three of the Committee present, for which I am very sorry— I think they will be obliged to acknowledge the justice of our cause. They paid good attention; and I think <my remarks> were well received— It was a special meeting appointed to hear me by my request. The Senators and Representatives were invited to attend, and attended, and God gave me courage, so that I was not intimidated by them, , I thought felt a little uneasy at times; but manifested a much better Spirit afterwards than ; I told them firstly that I represented a suffering people who had been deprived, together with myself of their rights in ; who numbered something like fifteen thousand souls; and not only they, but many others were deprived of the rights guaranteed to <them> by the Constitution of the ; at least the amount of one hundred and fifty thousand free born Citizens are deprived the enjoyment of Citizenship, in each or, every State, that we had no ingress in the State of ; nor could any of us have only at the expence of our lives, and this by the order of the , I then took their own declaration of the cause of our expulsion: referred them to s Pamphlet, which I held in my hand, then shewed that the first accusation, therein contained, was on account of our religious tenets, furthermore that the others were utterly groundless: I went on to prove that the whole persecution from beginning to end was grounded on our religious faith— For evidence of this I referred them to ’s testimony and P. Powells; I stated that there was abundant testimony to prove this to be a fact among the documents I then gave a brief history of the persecutions from the first settlement in the to our final expulsion— I also stated that the Society were industrious [p. 1016]