History, 1838–1856, volume E-1 [1 July 1843–30 April 1844]

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
Page 1648
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<​July 1​> in, and we were introduced to him— the awkward manner in which he entered and his apparent embarrassment was such as to force a smile from me. [HC 3:461] He was then asked for what he had thus cast <​us​> into prison?— to this question he could not or did not give a direct answer. He said he would let us know in a few days, and after a few more awkward and uncouth movements he withdrew. After he went out I asked some of the guard what was the matter with , that made him appear so ridiculous? They said he was near sighted: I replied that I was mistaken if he were not as near witted, as he was near sighted.
We were now left with our guards, without knowing for what we had been arrested, as no civil process had issued against us— for what followed until came in again to tell us that we were to be delivered into the hands of the civil authorities, I am entirely indebted to what I heard the guards say— I heard them say that had promised them before leaving Coles County that they should have the privilege of shooting Joseph Smith Senior and . And that was engaged in searching the military law to find authority for so doing; but he found it difficult as we were not military men and did not belong to the militia; but he had sent to Fort Leavenworth for the military code of law, and he expected, after he got the laws, to find law to justify him in shooting us.
I must here again digress, to relate a circumstance which I forgot in its place. I had heard that had given a military order to some persons who had applied to him for it, to go to my house and take such goods as they claimed. The goods claimed, were goods sold by the Sheriff of on an execution which I had purchased at the sale. The man against whom the execution was issued, availed himself of that time of trouble to go and take the goods wherever he could find them.— I asked if he had given any such authority. He said that an application had been made to him for such an order, but he said, “your lady wrote me a letter, requesting me not to do it— telling me that the goods had been purchased at the Sheriff’s sale, and I would not grant the order.” I did not, at the time, suppose that , in this, had barefacedly lied; but the sequel proved he had— for some time afterwards, behold there comes a man to with the order, and shewed it to me, signed by . The man said he had been at our house, and taken all the goods he could find. So much for a lawyer, a Methodist, and very pious man at that time in religion, and a Major General of .
During the time that was examining the military law, there were some thing took place which may be proper to relate in this place. I heard a plan laying among a number of those who belonged to ’s army, and some of them officers of high rank to go to , and commit violence on the persons of Joseph Smith Senior’s , and my wife and daughters. [HC 3:462]
This gave me some uneasiness. I got an opportunity to send my family word of their design, and to make such arrangements as they could to guard against their vile purpose. The time at last arrived, and the party started for . I waited with painful anxiety for their return. After a number of days, they returned. I listened to all they said, to find out, if possible, what they had done. One night I think the very night after their return, I heard them relating to some of those who had not been with them, the events of their adventure. Inquiry was made about their success in the particular object of their visit to . The substance of what they said in answer, was, “that they had passed and repassed both houses, and saw the [p. 1648]
July 1 in, and we were introduced to him— the awkward manner in which he entered and his apparent embarrassment was such as to force a smile from me. [HC 3:461] He was then asked for what he had thus cast us into prison?— to this question he could not or did not give a direct answer. He said he would let us know in a few days, and after a few more awkward and uncouth movements he withdrew. After he went out I asked some of the guard what was the matter with , that made him appear so ridiculous? They said he was near sighted: I replied that I was mistaken if he were not as near witted, as he was near sighted.
We were now left with our guards, without knowing for what we had been arrested, as no civil process had issued against us— for what followed until came in again to tell us that we were to be delivered into the hands of the civil authorities, I am entirely indebted to what I heard the guards say— I heard them say that had promised them before leaving Coles County that they should have the privilege of shooting Joseph Smith Senior and . And that was engaged in searching the military law to find authority for so doing; but he found it difficult as we were not military men and did not belong to the militia; but he had sent to Fort Leavenworth for the military code of law, and he expected, after he got the laws, to find law to justify him in shooting us.
I must here again digress, to relate a circumstance which I forgot in its place. I had heard that had given a military order to some persons who had applied to him for it, to go to my house and take such goods as they claimed. The goods claimed, were goods sold by the Sheriff of on an execution which I had purchased at the sale. The man against whom the execution was issued, availed himself of that time of trouble to go and take the goods wherever he could find them.— I asked if he had given any such authority. He said that an application had been made to him for such an order, but he said, “your lady wrote me a letter, requesting me not to do it— telling me that the goods had been purchased at the Sheriff’s sale, and I would not grant the order.” I did not, at the time, suppose that , in this, had barefacedly lied; but the sequel proved he had— for some time afterwards, behold there comes a man to with the order, and shewed it to me, signed by . The man said he had been at our house, and taken all the goods he could find. So much for a lawyer, a Methodist, and very pious man at that time in religion, and a Major General of .
During the time that was examining the military law, there were some thing took place which may be proper to relate in this place. I heard a plan laying among a number of those who belonged to ’s army, and some of them officers of high rank to go to , and commit violence on the persons of Joseph Smith Senior’s , and my wife and daughters. [HC 3:462]
This gave me some uneasiness. I got an opportunity to send my family word of their design, and to make such arrangements as they could to guard against their vile purpose. The time at last arrived, and the party started for . I waited with painful anxiety for their return. After a number of days, they returned. I listened to all they said, to find out, if possible, what they had done. One night I think the very night after their return, I heard them relating to some of those who had not been with them, the events of their adventure. Inquiry was made about their success in the particular object of their visit to . The substance of what they said in answer, was, “that they had passed and repassed both houses, and saw the [p. 1648]
Page 1648