JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. E-1, created 20 Aug. 1855–5 Apr. 1856; handwriting of Robert L. Campbell, , and Jonathan Grimshaw; 392 pages, plus 11 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the fifth volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This fifth volume covers the period from 1 July 1843 to 30 Apr. 1844; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, C-1, D-1, and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
History, 1838–1856, volume E-1, constitutes the fifth 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 July 1843 to 30 April 1844, and it was compiled in Utah Territory in the mid-1850s.
The material recorded in volume E-1 was initially compiled under the direction of church historian , who was JS’s cousin. Smith collaborated with in collecting material for the history and creating a set of draft notes that Smith dictated to Bullock and other clerks.
Robert L. Campbell, a recently returned missionary and member of the Historian’s Office staff, transcribed ’s notes into the volume along with the text of designated documents (such as letters and meeting minutes). The Church Historian’s Office journal entry for 2 May 1855 pinpoints the beginning of his work: “R. L. C. on Book D forenoon, afternoon began book E.” Campbell’s work on the volume apparently concluded on 5 April 1856; entries in the Historian’s Office journal indicate that he then moved on to other assignments while another clerk, Jonathan Grimshaw, began work on volume F-1, the last manuscript in the series. (Historian’s Office, Journal, 2 May 1855; 5 and 9 Apr. 1856.)
Volume E-1 contains 391 pages of primary text and 11 pages of addenda. The initial entry on page 1637 is a continuation of the 1 July 1843 entry that closed volume D-1. The final entry in volume E-1 is for 30 April 1844.
The 391 pages of volume E-1 document a crucial period of JS’s life and the history of the church. Important events recorded here include
• An account of JS’s 2 July 1843 meeting with several Pottawatamie chiefs.
• JS’s 4 July 1843 address regarding his recent arrest, the Legion, and Mormon voting practices.
• JS’s 12 July 1843 dictation of a revelation regarding eternal marriage, including the plurality of wives, in the presence of and .
• Dispatch of the first missionaries to the Pacific Islands on 20 September 1843, led by .
• JS’s 1 October 1843 announcement of ’s appointment to a mission to Russia.
• Minutes of a 6–9 October 1843 general conference inserted under the date of 9 October at which pled his case in regard to his 13 August 1843 disfellowshipment and was permitted to continue as counselor in the First Presidency.
• Text of JS’s appeal to the Green Mountain Boys of , inserted under the date of 29 November 1843.
• A 20 January 1844 entry that includes a poem by commemorating the presentation of two copies of the Book of Mormon to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert by .
• JS’s nomination on 29 January 1844 as an independent candidate for the presidency of the .
<12> Thursday 12. Prayer meeting in my room. We prayed for , who was sick.
I sent to , to borrow $50 that I might be able to redeem $5.000 worth of property, which was published to be sold to day, at Rhodes’s, but refused: he also went to Eli Chase’s, but was also refused by him: I was grieved that the brethren felt so penurious in their Spirit, altho’ they profess<ed> to be guided by the [HC 6:54] revelations which the Lord gives through me. On my afterwards giving a pledge that I would repay the $50. in 48 hours lent the money and enabled me to redeem the land.
I received the following from :—
“ 27th. Sepr. 1843 Rev. Jos Smith, Dear Sir— I see by the News-papers that there has been a meeting of citizens at relative to the Mormons, and that several severe resolutions have been passed condemning the conduct of the Mormons— knowing how little I can rely upon public rumor upon such subjects, I have taken the liberty of applying directly to you for correct information and solicit as a particular favor that you will communicate at your earliest convenience the facts in the case—
Of course I feel an interest in the prosperity of and an interest also in the success of the Mormon enterprize, and a deep interest in the welfare of your people, and the more so certainly, as their pecuniary interest is identified with my own— I make this frank acknowledgement because it is always best for men of sense to talk as they mean— I should however be solicitous for a successful termination of your great enterprize had I not one Dollar invested in , because the complete triumph of energetic exertions is always gratifying to all business men. Your obedt <Servt>, .”
Wrote this Reply:—
“ Ill Oct. 12, 1843. Dear Sir Your letter of the 27th. ult. is at hand, soliciting information concerning the “ resolutions.” In answer to your very candid inquiry and “interest” relative to our welfare, brevity will suffice. Unprincipled men and disappointed demagogues, with here and there an “untamed sucker,” composed that disgraceful and disgracing, as well as mobocratic assemblage; and I feel proud to say that patriots and honest men generally frown upon such audacious proceedings, as beneath the dignity of freemen. It is to be hoped that public opinion will continue to spurn at such doings, and leave the actors to fester in their own shame.
With the smiling prospects around us at present, success seems [HC 6:55] certain, and with the blessings of Jehovah, we shall reap the reward of virtue and goodness. I go for the good of the world, and if all honest men would do so, mean men would be scarce. You are at liberty to use this to counteract falsehoods, as you may deem proper. Respectfully, I am, your obt. Servt.