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 .
<September 9> minds than has been done. There are some things however I wish to mention: we have learned from what we have heard this day that great blessings will be given to the faithful when the is finished. I will speak of some of the consequences that will follow if we do not obey. When the is reared, God will manifest himself in a peculiar manner; if we are obedient, he has told us he will make manifest to us things we are now ignorant of; he has said he will reveal things which pertain to this dispensation that have been hidden and kept secret from the foundation of the world. No former age or generation of the world have had the same things revealed; all other dispensations will be swallowed up in this. He declares in his revelations the consequences of not building the unto his name within such a time. The Lord says, if you build the in that time you shall be blessed; but if not you shall be rejected as a church with your dead, saith the Lord. So if that is not built, then in vain are all our cares; our faith and works, our meetings and hopes are vain also— our performances and acts will be void. The servants of God who are faithful and do their duty will get the blessing; and we are determined to do our duty, and lay these principles before the Saints, so that they may have the privilege of contributing; We will turn this responsibility upon the heads of the Saints; then our garments will be clear, and the Lord is able and will be willing to endow all the faithful in some other place. This Church in its infancy was directed to do a certain work, and the consequences pointed out. The Lord gave a Revelation several years since to the church to appoint our wise men, and send up our moneys by them to buy lands; if not, we should not have an inheritance, but our enemies should be upon us. We went through and told the Saints these things; but did the churches do as God commanded? No, they did not, but the revelation was fulfilled, and the enemies of the Saints came upon them, and drove them from their houses and homes, [HC 6:22] and finally from the State of . This was in consequence of their disobeying the commandments of God through his servant Joseph. Many suppose they must get direct revelation from God for themselves; not so; He has a Prophet, and he says the church shall give heed to the words of the Prophet, as he is to hold the keys of the kingdom of God in this life, and in the world to come. Then it is of much consequence that you give heed to his word. Says one, suppose we are not satisfied that this is the work of God? You can ask God if the work is true, and he will give you a testimony. You can put every confidence in the Book of Mormon, and in Joseph the Prophet, and if you are not satisfied go to God. I doubt in my own mind if any man can stand what they will have to pass through, unless they do get a witness for themselves: And I pray you to give heed to the words which the Twelve have taught you, and ask God to help you.”
“The Conference was adjourned until 10 o’Clock to morrow morning”