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.
<March 16> “, Illinois, March 16. 1840 I Jesse W. Johnstone Certify that the following circumstances took place in the State of while I was a Resident of that — viz— I was taken prisoner by ’s Exterminating militia— I saw one man killed belonging to the Mormon Church and was forced by them to take corn out of the Fields of the Mormon Church without leave, this was in the fall of 1838 Jesse W. Johnston”— Sworn to before C. M. Woods Clk Circuit Court Illinois
“, Hancock Co. Ill. March 17. 1840. Esqre. Dear and Honored Sir— It is with greatest pleasure I sit down to write to you at this time; to inform you of the situation and state of the Church as regards the object of your mission. Since President Joseph Smith returned we have been favored with several communications from you, giving a statement of the proceedings before the Committee &c— On monday evening last your letters were read to a large concourse of our brethren, and other persons who were assembled to hear the same, and I must say that the greatest satisfaction was manifested by the assembled multitude, with the [HC 4:96] noble stand and straightforward and honorable course which you had pursued, and before the assembly separated, a vote of thanks to you was unanimously agreed upon; I can assure you that from the feelings there, as well as upon other occasions, there is not only a disposition, but a fixed determination to uphold you in your righteous cause and sustain you in your efforts to obtain redress, for the injuries which the Saints have borne from their unfeeling oppressors, and in bringing their case before the authorities of the nation. In the evening the High Council assembled at the house of the President Joseph Smith Junr., and took your letters into consideration; when it was unanimously resolved that a letter should be written to you approving the measures which you were taking— The High Council likewise send you a list of the names of such persons as they think will testify to such facts as you want to substantiate—
The names are as follows:
Amanda [Barnes] Smith
Merrick Edward Partridge
There probably may be others, who may occur to your mind; whom you can send for if you think necessary, We should feel glad if you had <the> assistance of Prest. Smith and at this critical time, while you have to contend with , &c &c. However I hope you will go forth in the strength of the Lord; and that truth will prevail— and I would say “twice is he armed who [p. 1030]