, Letter, [, Herefordshire, England], to JS “and counselors,” [, Hancock Co., IL, 29 Apr. 1840]. Featured version published in Times and Seasons, June 1840, 121–122. For more complete source information, see the source note for Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 Mar. 1839.
On 29 April 1840, wrote a letter to JS and his counselors in the . Young had left , Iowa Territory, on 14 September 1839 to serve a mission to and was informing the First Presidency of the growth and status of the in Great Britain. The document appears to have primarily served as a cover letter for a report of a general of the church held two weeks earlier in , England. The letter asked JS and his counselors to correct any action of the conference they felt was amiss, conveyed the English Saints’ request for a new hymnal, and included a personal note from Young about his desire to reunite with his old friends.
The report of the conference gave detailed information about the numbers of church members and holders in the various in and Scotland. It recorded business the conference conducted, including decisions to compile and publish a hymnal and a monthly periodical and to select and a —all under the direction of the . The report, which also contained minutes of meetings the Twelve held in Preston on 14 and 16 April, was published in , Illinois, in the June 1840 issue of the Times and Seasons immediately preceding the published version of ’s letter. No manuscript copy of the letter has been located. The Times and Seasons version does not include a date or place of production. However, the published version is followed by a letter from , which Woodruff indicated was written in unused space on Young’s letter. Woodruff’s letter was dated 29 April 1840 and gave , England, as the location from which the letter was sent.
The manuscript report of the conference is in the Wilford Woodruff Collection, CHL. The letter from Wilford Woodruff to the Times and Seasons editors, Ebenezer Robinson and Don Carlos Smith, was printed accompanying the conference report in the June 1840 issue of the periodical and was apparently written on the same paper as Young’s letter. Woodruff opened his letter by saying, “As elder Young is writing, I am privileged with a space for a few lines.” (Minutes, 15 Apr. 1840, Wilford Woodruff, Collection, 1831–1905, CHL; “From England,” Times and Seasons, June 1840, 1:122.)
Woodruff, Wilford. Collection, 1831–1905. Digital scans. CHL. Originals in private possession. MS 19509.
Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.
friends: I like new friends, but I cannot part with my old one’s for them.
Concerning the Hymn book, when we arrived here, we found the brethren had laid by their old Hymn books, and they wanted new ones; for the bible religion, and all is new to them. When I come to learn more about carrying books into the , or bringing them here, I found the duties were so high that we never should want to bring books to the . * * I request one favor of you, that is, a letter from you, that I may hear from my old friends. I trust that I will remain your friend through life, and in eternity.
Between his baptism in April 1832 and his return from this mission to England in July 1841, Young served eight missions for the church, spending more than one third of the decade after his baptism away from his friends and family. (Whittaker, “Brigham Young and the Missionary Enterprise,” 86–87.)
Whittaker, David J. “Brigham Young and the Missionary Enterprise.” In Lion of the Lord: Essays on the Life and Service of Brigham Young, edited by Susan Easton Black and Larry C. Porter, 85–106. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1995.
Before departing on their mission to England, Young and other apostles had selected some hymns, copies of which Young took with him, in hopes of publishing them in England. At a meeting on 27 October 1839, the Nauvoohigh council decided that Emma Smith would compile the new hymnal and that Young should not publish one in England. The council then resolved that Young would be notified of the decision. (Minutes, 27 Oct. 1839.)