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 .
<June 27> and gave them a couple of dollars, with directions to replenish the bottle, to <BY HCK JMG GAS okd to here TB—> stimulate them in the fatigues of their sleepless journey.
Peter W Conover gave me the following relation of the trails travels of the brethren from , to the place where I met them
“I started with General , and about 175 men. On Sunday the 25th June at 8 P.M. in the direction of [HC 5:450] Peoria; travelled part of the night. about 1 o’Clock next morning Gen took 35 of the Company and <continued> towards Peoria. The 2 Laws with their Company started up the river road, in the direction of — we travelled till day light on Monday morning— crossed Honey creek, eat a cold breakfast and fed the horses, then continued on till noon when a consultation was held, and ten of the best mounted men viz , Peter W. Conover, , Philemon Merrill, Philander Colton, Henry Hoyt, , Daniel F Cahoon and , were selected to take the nearest road to , with instructions to continue until we found you. We took the middle road between Oquaka and , and continued on until Tuesday at 2 A.M. when we rested for one hour, then passed through Hendersonville on to the Prairie, about 9 A.M. at which time we met Col with your letter of instructions to Gen , we read the letter. Philander Colton was sent with the dispatch to , we then made a halt at where the Inhabitants refused to sell us food, here we held a Council, and sent Daniel Cahoon and Henry Hoyt back to , with instructions to the brethren to wait there, until they got further orders, we then travelled ten miles and obtained some corn at a farm house. 1 p.m. left there and travelled on to the Prairies until we met your”
Here Conover exchanged with me one of Allens 4 inch barrel 6 shooter revolvers for the single shooter which had slipped into my pocket at . ¶ About 8 P.M. , , and the Landlord consulted about sending out to raise a company to take me by force, and run with me to the mouth of Rock river on the , as there was a company of men ready to kidnap me over the . overheard the conversation and notified the Sheriff of , who immediately ordered a guard placed, so that no one might pass in or out of the house during the night.
<x see below> <x started at day break and went about 20 miles passing thro at 8 a.m. and about 9 met Captn and a Company of 10 men to whom he delivered my message: held a [HC 5:451] Council and forwarded it on to by Philander Colton— turned back with the company.>
My wife and children arrived in this evening having burned off one arm—— of the carriage coming home.
Many strangers reported in the , the watch doubled in the night.
<28> We left about 8 O Clock went to a little grove at the head of Elleston Creek, where we staid an hour to feed our animals. said “now we will go from here to the Mouth of Rock River and take Steam boat to ”, said “No for we are prepared to travel and will go on land” and both spoke and said “No by God we wont, we will never go by alive, and both draw their pistols on who turned round to Sheriff Campbell of . [p. 1588]