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 10> Wednesday 10th. was spent in the examination of witnesses before the Grand Jury Dr. was one of the Witnesses. was not permitted to give his testimony— Our Guard went home— and Colonel Blakesly and others took their place.
<’s Letter> “. Ill. April 10. 1839. To the Saints in Prison— Greeting— In the midst of a crowd of business, I haste to send a few lines by the hand of Br. [Wandle] Mace our messenger. We wish you to know that our friendship is unabating, and our exertions for your delivery, and that of the Church unceasing
For this purpose we have labored to secure the friendship of the of this with all the principal men in this place. In this we have succeeded beyond our highest anticipations. assured us last evening, that he would lay our case before the Legislature of this , and have the action of that body upon it; and he would use all his influence to have an action which should be favorable to our people. He is also getting papers prepared, signed by all the noted men in this part of the Country to give us a favorable reception at , whither we shall repair forthwith, after having visited the of , of whose friendship we have the strongest testimonies. We leave this day to visit him. Our plan of operation is to impeach the State of , on an item of [HC 3:310] the Constitution of the . That the General Government shall give to each State a Republican form of Government. Such a form of Government does not exist in , and we can prove it— and his Lady enter with all the enthusiasm of their natures into this work, having no doubt but we can accomplish this object. Out plan of operation in this work is to get all the Governors in their next Messages to have the subject brought before the Legislatures, and we will have a man at the Capital of each State to furnish them with the testimony on the subject; and we design to be at to wait upon Congress and have the action of that body on it also; all this going on at the same time, and have the action of the whole, during one Session. Br. will be engaged all the time, between this and the next Sitting of the Legislatures in taking affidavits and preparing for the tug of war; while we will be going from State to State visiting the respective Governors to get the case mentioned in their Messages to Legislatures, so as have the whole going on at once. You will see by this that our time is engrossed to overflowing. The Bishops of the Church are required to ride and visit all scattered abroad, and collect money to carry on this great work. Be assured Brethren that operations of an all important character are under motion, and will come to an issue as soon as possible. Be assured that our friendship is unabated for you, and our desires for your deliverance intense. May God hasten it speedily is our prayer day and night— Yours in the bonds of affliction . To J. Smith Jr. , , , .”
<’s Letter.> “, Ill. April 10. 1839. “Dear Brethren in Christ Jesus. It is with feelings of no small moment, that I take pen in hand to address you, the [p. 915]