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Introduction to Boosinger v. JS et al. and Boosinger v. Cowdery et al.

Boosinger v. JS, Cowdery, Rigdon, and H. Smith
Caldwell Co., Missouri, Circuit Court, 10 November 1839
 
Boosinger v. Cowdery, JS, and H. Smith
Caldwell Co., Missouri, Circuit Court, 12 November 1839
 
Historical Introduction
In early 1839, Asa D. Brashear, an agent representing Latter-day Saint , initiated two lawsuits against JS and other Latter-day Saint leaders, seeking payment on past-due debts. Boosinger had loaned $935 to the church in May 1836, and JS and other church leaders signed two promissory notes on those loans—one for $735 and the second for $200—due in two years, with interest. In 1838, conflict between Latter-day Saints and other Missourians resulted in Governor ordering the expulsion of church members from the and the arrest of JS and other church leaders. Boosinger granted power of attorney to Brashear on 31 October 1838, authorizing him to collect Boosinger’s outstanding debts, and left Missouri soon thereafter. He resettled in , while JS and spent the winter of 1838–1839 confined in the in , Missouri.
The two promissory notes remained unpaid, and in January 1839, Brashear, with the assistance of , Missouri, attorney , initiated a lawsuit against , JS, and on the $200 note in the circuit court of , Missouri. Brashear and Rees employed a “petition in debt” action, a special debt-collection provision passed by the legislature “for the speedy recovery of debts due on bonds and notes.” In accordance with the statute, Brashear filed a petition and a copy of the promissory note with the court, as well as an affidavit alleging that the defendants intended “to remove or convey— or dispose of their property or effects so as to hinder or delay their creditors.” Based on the affidavit and an accompanying bond, circuit court clerk issued a writ of , a document that ordered Sheriff to seize the defendants’ property in the county in advance of the trial.
Two months later, during the March 1839 term of the Circuit Court, Brashear and initiated a lawsuit against JS, , , and on the other promissory note for $735, filing a employing the common law action of , or breach of contract, and claiming $1,000 in damages. As in the earlier suit, Brashear asked the court to issue a writ of , asserting in the accompanying affidavit that JS and his cosigners would dispose of their property to defraud their creditors. issued the writ of attachment to John Skidmore—the new Caldwell County sheriff—who levied both land and personal property belonging to Hyrum Smith. Skidmore found no property in the county belonging to JS, Cowdery, or Rigdon, leading the court to dismiss the writ of attachment against them at the July 1839 term.
Both cases came to trial at the November 1839 term of the court, with Judge of the fifth judicial circuit presiding. The court record indicated that both parties were represented by their attorneys. The suit on the $735 note was heard on 10 November. The defense counsel filed a motion to have the writ of dismissed; King denied the motion. The counsel then pleaded , presumably arguing that Brashear’s construal of the original agreement between and the defendants was incorrect. King ruled in favor of the plaintiff, assessing the damages at $805 plus costs. As for the suit on the $200 note, which was heard on 12 November, King held that the plaintiff should recover the amount of the note and $23.61 in damages. issued writs of in each suit, ordering Skidmore to sell the property previously attached in both cases in order to satisfy the judgments. The sheriff held an auction for the properties on 9 March 1840. Brashear won both auctions, bidding $30 for the 97 acres seized for the suit for the $735 note and $45 for the 180 acres attached in the suit for the $200 note.
 
Calendar of Documents
This calendar lists all known documents created by or for the court, whether extant or not. It does not include versions of documents created for other purposes, though those versions may be listed in footnotes. In certain cases, especially in cases concerning unpaid debts, the originating document (promissory note, invoice, etc.) is listed here. Note that documents in the calendar are grouped with their originating court. Where a version of a document was subsequently filed with another court, that version is listed under both courts.
Boosinger v. JS, Cowdery, Rigdon, and H. Smith
Caldwell Co., Missouri, Circuit Court, 10 November 1839
 
Boosinger v. Cowdery, JS, and H. Smith
Caldwell Co., Missouri, Circuit Court, 12 November 1839
 
Historical Introduction
In early 1839, Asa D. Brashear, an agent representing Latter-day Saint , initiated two lawsuits against JS and other Latter-day Saint leaders, seeking payment on past-due debts. Boosinger had loaned $935 to the church in May 1836, and JS and other church leaders signed two promissory notes on those loans—one for $735 and the second for $200—due in two years, with interest. In 1838, conflict between Latter-day Saints and other Missourians resulted in Governor ordering the expulsion of church members from the and the arrest of JS and other church leaders. Boosinger granted power of attorney to Brashear on 31 October 1838, authorizing him to collect Boosinger’s outstanding debts, and left Missouri soon thereafter. He resettled in , while JS and spent the winter of 1838–1839 confined in the in , Missouri.
The two promissory notes remained unpaid, and in January 1839, Brashear, with the assistance of , Missouri, attorney , initiated a lawsuit against , JS, and on the $200 note in the circuit court of , Missouri. Brashear and Rees employed a “petition in debt” action, a special debt-collection provision passed by the legislature “for the speedy recovery of debts due on bonds and notes.” In accordance with the statute, Brashear filed a petition and a copy of the promissory note with the court, as well as an affidavit alleging that the defendants intended “to remove or convey— or dispose of their property or effects so as to hinder or delay their creditors.” Based on the affidavit and an accompanying bond, circuit court clerk issued a writ of , a document that ordered Sheriff to seize the defendants’ property in the county in advance of the trial.
Two months later, during the March 1839 term of the Circuit Court, Brashear and initiated a lawsuit against JS, , , and on the other promissory note for $735, filing a employing the common law action of , or breach of contract, and claiming $1,000 in damages. As in the earlier suit, Brashear asked the court to issue a writ of , asserting in the accompanying affidavit that JS and his cosigners would dispose of their property to defraud their creditors. issued the writ of attachment to John Skidmore—the new Caldwell County sheriff—who levied both land and personal property belonging to Hyrum Smith. Skidmore found no property in the county belonging to JS, Cowdery, or Rigdon, leading the court to dismiss the writ of attachment against them at the July 1839 term.
Both cases came to trial at the November 1839 term of the court, with Judge of the fifth judicial circuit presiding. The court record indicated that both parties were represented by their attorneys. The suit on the $735 note was heard on 10 November. The defense counsel filed a motion to have the writ of dismissed; King denied the motion. The counsel then pleaded , presumably arguing that Brashear’s construal of the original agreement between and the defendants was incorrect. King ruled in favor of the plaintiff, assessing the damages at $805 plus costs. As for the suit on the $200 note, which was heard on 12 November, King held that the plaintiff should recover the amount of the note and $23.61 in damages. issued writs of in each suit, ordering Skidmore to sell the property previously attached in both cases in order to satisfy the judgments. The sheriff held an auction for the properties on 9 March 1840. Brashear won both auctions, bidding $30 for the 97 acres seized for the suit for the $735 note and $45 for the 180 acres attached in the suit for the $200 note.
 
Calendar of Documents
This calendar lists all known documents created by or for the court, whether extant or not. It does not include versions of documents created for other purposes, though those versions may be listed in footnotes. In certain cases, especially in cases concerning unpaid debts, the originating document (promissory note, invoice, etc.) is listed here. Note that documents in the calendar are grouped with their originating court. Where a version of a document was subsequently filed with another court, that version is listed under both courts.
 
 
Boosinger v. JS et al., Caldwell Co., Missouri, Circuit Court
 
Boosinger v. Cowdery et al., Caldwell Co., Missouri, Circuit Court