JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. D-1, created 4 July 1845–4 Feb. 1846 and 1 July 1854–2 May 1855; handwriting of , Robert L. Campbell, and ; 275 pages, plus 6 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the fourth volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This fourth volume covers the period from 1 Aug. 1842 to 1 July 1843; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, C-1, E-1 and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
History, 1838–1856, volume D-1, constitutes the fourth of six volumes documenting the life of Joseph Smith and the early years of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The series is also known as the Manuscript History of the Church and was originally published serially from 1842 to 1846 and 1851 to 1858 as the “History of Joseph Smith” in the Times and Seasons and Deseret News. This volume contains JS’s history from 1 August 1842 to 1 July 1843, and it was compiled after JS’s death.
The material recorded in volume D-1 was initially compiled under the direction of church historian , with the assistance of . After Richards’s death in 1854, continued work on the volume as the new church historian with Bullock’s continued help. The process adopted by Richards and Bullock involved Richards creating a set of rough draft notes and Bullock transcribing the notes into the volume along with the text of designated documents (such as letters and meeting minutes). George A. Smith followed a similar pattern, though he dictated the draft notes to Bullock and other scribes.
According to the Church Historian’s Office journal, finished the third volume of the series, volume C-1, on Thursday, 3 July 1845, in , Illinois. He began work on the fourth volume, D-1, the next day, beginning on page 1362 with the entry for 1 August 1842. (The pages in volumes A-1–E-1 were numbered consecutively.) Bullock continued work on the record, drawing upon ’s draft notes, until 3 February 1846—the day before D-1 and the other volumes were packed up in preparation for the Latter-day Saints’ exodus from Nauvoo. At that point he had reached page 1485 with the entry for 28 February 1843. Subsequently, apparently after the collection had arrived in Utah, Bullock added a brief comment beneath that entry: “end of W. Richard’s compiling[.] the books packed Feby. 4— 1846 in Nauvoo[.] Miles Romney— present. The records carried by T Bullock from Winter Quarters to G S L [Great Salt Lake] City in 1848.”
A notation at the top of page 1486 reports that “the books were unpacked in G. S. L. City by and . June 7. 1853. J[onathan] Grimshaw & Miles Romney present.” Vertically, in the margin, is a poignant epitaph: “Decr. 1 1853 Dr. Willard Richards wrote one line of History—being sick at the time—and was never able to do any more.” With Richards’s death on 11 March 1854, JS’s cousin was called to the office of church historian. The notation on the top of page 1486 acknowledges this change in officers, noting, “commencement of George A. Smith’s compiling as Historian. April 13. 1854[.] [C]ommenced copying July 1. 1854.” From mid-April to the end of June 1854, George A. Smith, in collaboration with Thomas Bullock, worked on the draft notes for the history before a new scribe, , resumed writing in D-1 on 1 July 1854, beginning with the entry for 1 March 1843.
continued transcribing intermittently into the late fall of 1854, when he was assigned other duties in the Historian’s Office. He had reached page 1546 with the entry for 5 May 1843. Work resumed in February 1855 in the hand of Robert L. Campbell, recently returned from a mission. He concluded volume D-1 on the morning of 2 May 1855 and began writing in E-1 that afternoon.
The 274 pages of volume D-1 contain a record of much that is significant in the life of JS and the development of the church he founded. Among these events are
• JS’s 6 August 1842 prophecy that the Saints would become a mighty people in the midst of the Rocky Mountains.
•JS’s 8 August 1842 arrest on a warrant for being “an accessory before the fact” to an attack on former governor .
• ’s 17 August 1842 letter to governor , pleading for the humane treatment of her husband and family.
•JS’s 1 and 6 September 1842 instructions regarding the proper procedures for performing baptisms for the dead.
• JS’s 15 November 1842 “Valedictory” as he stepped down as editor of the Times and Seasons.
• The 26 December 1842 arrest of JS on a “proclamation” by former governor , and subsequent hearing in , Illinois.
• The 7 February 1843 recovery of a volume of patriarchal blessings given by , which had been stolen in , Missouri.
• JS’s 21 February 1843 remarks regarding the and .
• JS’s 2 April 1843 instruction at , Illinois, on the nature of God and other subjects.
• JS’s 16 May 1843 remarks at , Illinois, on the everlasting covenant and eternal marriage.
• The account of JS’s 23 June 1843 arrest and his hearing the following week at .
<February 15> the weak, the injured, and the oppressed, ye have pampered the libertine, the calumniator and the base. Ye have winked at vice, and trodden underfoot the virtuous and the pure. Therefore hear, all ye loins of the Forest. The Lord God will take from you your teeth, so that you shall no longer devour. He will pluck out your claws, so that you can no longer seize upon your prey. Your strength will fail you in the day of trouble, and your voice will fail, and not be heard afar off; but mine elect will I uphold with mine arm, and my chosen shall be supported by my power. And when mine anointed shall be exalted, and all the lions of the forest shall have lost their strength, then shall they remember that the Lord he is God. Joseph Smith.
I copy the following from the public prints
“An English officer writing to his friend in from Chin Heang foo, says; “I never saw such loss of life and property as took place here; we lost officers and men enough, but it is impossible even to compute the loss of the Chinese, for when they found—— they could stand no longer against us, they cut the throats of their wives and children, or drove them into wells and ponds, and then destroyed themselves; in many houses there were from eight to twelve bodies, and I myself have seen a dozen women and children drowning—— themselves in a small pond the day after the fight. The whole of the City and suburbs are a mass of ruins— whole streets have been burnt down” O the Horrors of Christian Warfare.
About 1 o’clock <in the> afternoon I started for Shokoquon, with Mr. and Elders and on Sleighs, when we came on the Prairie it was so extremely cold I proposed to to wait till tomorrow, but he chose to go forward, and we arrived in safety at Mr. Rose’s, where we had supper, and in the evening I gave a long exposition of Millerism. That night I slept with . [HC 5:277]
<16> Thursday 16. After breakfast we proceeded towards Shokoquon: After travelling five miles brother and ’s Sleigh upset. hurt his hand, the horse ran away, and we brought it back, after dinner at Mc.Queen’s Mills we went to Shokoquon, viewed the place and found it <a> very desirable <location> for a City. When we returned to the place where we dined. prayed, and I preached to a large and attentive audience two hours— (from Revelations xix<ch>. 10. <v>) and proved to the people that any man that denied himself as being a prophet, was not a preacher of righteousness. They opened their eyes and appeared well pleased. When we had returned as far as Mc.Queens Mills halted and proposed to call. While waiting a moment ’s horse ( came with our Company) which was behind, ran and jumped into our Sleigh as we jumped out, and thence over our horse and the fence, Sleigh and all, the Sleigh being still attached to the horse and the fence 8 rails high, and both horses ran over lots and through the woods clearing themselves from the Sleighs and had their frolic out without hurting themselves or drivers. It was a truly wonderful feat, and as wonderful a deliverance for the parties— We took supper at ’s, and I staid at Mr. Rose’s that night. [HC 5:278]
invited the brethren to come to my house on Monday next to chop and pile up my wood. <17> Friday 17 returned with me to my house, where we arrived about noon, and I enjoyed myself by my own fire side with many of my friends around me, the remainder of the day— proposed to give me one fourth of the City lots in Shoquoquon.