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.
<April. 7> President Joseph Smith then arose and stated that it was wrong to make the Covenant referred to by him; that it created a lack of confidence for two men to covenant to reveal all acts of secrecy or otherwise to each other— and showed a little Grannyism. He said that no two men when they agreed to go together ought to separate, that the prophets of old would not and quoted the circumstance of Elijah and Elisha 2nd. Kings, 2nd. chapter when about to go to Gilgal, also when about to go to Jericho, and to Jordan, that Elisha could not get clear of Elijah, that he clung to his garment until he was taken to heaven, and that should have stuck by , and he might have gone to , that there is nothing very bad in it, but by the experience let us profit; again the Lord made use of as a scape goat to procure funds for . When returns we will re-consider the matter, and perhaps send them back to , we will fellowship until comes, and we will then weld them together and make them one. A vote was then put, and carried that we hold in full fellowship. Voted that be sent to . Sung a hymn— adjourned for one hour and a half, at one o’clock.
Met agreeable to adjournment— Choir sung a hymn— Prayer by Elder — Elder called to know if there were any present of the rough and weak things, who wished to be ordained, and go, and preach, who have not been before ordained. Elder then addressed those who intended to be ordained, on the subject of their duty and requirements to go to preach. President spoke concerning the elders who went forth to preach from , and were afterwards called in for the washing and anointing at the dedication of the , and those who go now will be called in also, when this is about to be dedicated, and will then be endowed to go forth with mighty power having the same anointing, that all may go forth and have the same power, the first, second, and so on, of the Seventies and all those formerly ordained. This will be an important and beneficial mission, and not many years until those now sent will be called in again. He then spoke in contradiction of a report in circulation about Elder<s> , , himself, and others of the Twelve, alleging that a Sister had been shut in <a> <a> room for several day’s, and that they had endeavored to induce her to believe in having two wives. Also cautioned the Sisters against going to the Steam Boats. [HC 4:585] President Joseph Smith spoke upon the subject of the Stories respecting and others showing the folly and inconsistency of spending any time in conversing about such stories or hearkening to them, for there is no person that is acquainted with our principles would believe such lies, except the editor of the “Warsaw Signal.” Baptisms for the dead, and for the healing of the body must be in the font, those coming into the Church, and those rebaptized may be done in the river. A box should be prepared for the use of the font, that the clerk may be paid and a book procured by the monies to be put therein by those baptized, the remainder to go to the use of the . Sung a hymn. Ordinations to take place tomorrow morning, Baptisms in the font also— There were 275 ordained to the office of Elder under the hands of the Twelve during the Conference. [p. 1315]