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 20. 1842> due them even at a great discount; and thus thousands and tens of thousands may be made to rejoice in this land of plenty, while were it not for a concert of action, they might remain where they are for years, or never have the opportunity of appearing among us, on this side the great Waters, until the morning of the first resurrection. But brethren we want to see you here! we long to see all here who want to be here and none others, for we desire the increase of those who love God and work righteousness, that ’s cords may be lengthened, and her stakes stengthened; though the is free to all who will abide her laws, and we have no disposition to cast out any from our midst who will submit thereto. For many particulars in relation to the times and course of emigration, and many other important items connected with the general and particular interests of the Church, we would refer you to our former Epistles: and to enter into a particular and minute detail of all items referred to in this Epistle, would be impossible. will enter into the subject more minutely, and with the assistance of the Presidency among you, will unfold the subject so that no one need misunderstand. The brethren need not suppose that this thing is of our own imagination, simply; or that the result thereof, if fully carried into execution, will be of doubtful character. We have been guided by the Spirit of the Lord in our deliberations concerning the matter; and have been instructed by the Prophet of the Most High, even Joseph, the Seer and Revelator for the Church, whose instructions to us, are as the voice of the Lord, and whose admonitions we ever regard as true and faithful, and worthy the confidence of all who profess the gospel of Jesus Christ. We have been with him in prosperity and adversity, in sickness and health, in public and private, in all situations where men may reasonably associate with each other, and know that his words are true, his teachings sacred, his character unsullied among men of truth; and that he is what the church acknowledge him to be, a man of God, and the Spokesman of the Most High unto his people: and we bear this testimony unto the world, calling on all the honest of heart to uphold him by their faith and prayers, that he may live long, enjoy much, and accomplish great things for the kingdom which he has been the honored instrument of establishing on the earth in these last days, even that he may lead a great multitude into the Celestial Kingdom. That the Saints may enjoy the teachings of the Prophet; those teachings which can be had only at this place so that they may go on from knowledge to knowledge even to perfection, they want to come up hither; and that the plans before suggested may be facilitated, let some individuals of Capital come immediately and build factories; individuals who have the means, understand the business, and are capable of superintending the concerns therof. There is every natural advantage at this place for facilitating such an order of things; water, wood, and coal in abundance; and it only wants the hand of the laborer to bring them forth in form suited to their several uses, and while the gold and the silver is secreted by the hands of unprincipled speculators, let us go forward and accomplish without gold or silver, that which might be ...... more easily and expeditiously done with. Let the brethren ever remember the admonitions we have so often given, that Zion is not to be built up without labor, fatigue and trial of the faith of many; that when John saw the great company on Mount Zion, he saw those who had come up through great tribulation, [p. 2 [addenda]]