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 .
<November 13> this quarter that I have no connection with the Legion; you will; of course, remain silent, as I shall do it in such a way as will make all things right.
I may yet run for a high office in your , (when you would be sure of my best services in your behalf, therefore a known connection with you would be against our mutual interest. It can be shewn that a commission in the legion was a Herald hoax, coined for the fun of it, [HC 6:72] by me, as it is not believed even now by the public. In short I expect to be yet, through your influence Governor of the State of —
My respects to , , and all friends. Yours, most respectfully. .
P. S. As the office of inspector General confers no command on me, being a mere honorary title, if, therefore, there is any gentleman in , who would like to fill it in a practical way, I shall with great pleasure and good will resign it to him, by receiving advice from you to that effect. It is an office that should be filled by some scientific officer— ”
I insert my reply.
“, Illinois, Nov. 13, 1843, Dear Sir:— Your letter of the 24th. ult. has been regularly received; its contents duly appreciated, and its whole tenor candidly considered; and, according to my manner of judging all things in righteousness, I proceed to answer you; and shall leave you to meditate whether mathematical problems, founded upon the truth of revelation, or religion as promulgated by me, or Moses, can be solved by rules and principles existing in the systems of common knowledge.
How far you are capable of being ‘a most undeviating friend, without being governed by the smallest religious influence,’ will best be decided by your survivors, as all past experience most assuredly proves. Without controversy, that friendship, which intelligent beings would accept as sincere, must arise from love, and that love grow out of virtue, which is as much a part of religion, as light is a part of Jehovah. Hence the saying of Jesus; ‘Greater love that no man than this, that a man lay down his life for a friend.’
You observed, ‘as I have proven myself to be a philosophicaldivine, I must excuse you, when you say that we must leave these influences to the mass.’ The meaning of ‘philosophical divine’ may be taken in various ways. If, as the learned world apply the term, you infer that I have achieved a victory, and been strengthened by a scientific religion, as practiced by the popular sects of the age, through the aid of colleges, seminaries, Bible Societies, missionary boards, financial organizations, and gospel money schemes, then you are wrong; Such a combination of men and means, shows a form of godliness without the power; for is it not written, ‘I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the rudiments of the world and not after the doctrines of Christ.’ But if the inference is, that by more love, more light, more virtue, and more truth [HC 6:73] from the Lord, I have succeeded as a man of God, then you reason truly; though the weight of the [p. 1774]
JS, Nauvoo, IL, to James Arlington Bennet, Arlington House, Long Island, NY, 13 Nov. 1843, draft, JS Collection, CHL; JS, Nauvoo, IL, to James Arlington Bennet, Arlington House, Long Island, NY, 13 Nov. 1843, in Times and Seasons, 1 Nov. 1843, 4:372–375; James Arlington Bennet, Arlington House, Long Island, NY, to JS, Nauvoo, IL, 13 Nov. 1843, in Nauvoo Neighbor, 13 Dec. 1843, .
Smith, Joseph. Collection, 1827–1846. CHL. MS 155.
Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.