Letter from John M. Bernhisel, 11 April 1842
, Letter, , New York Co., NY, to JS, , Hancock Co., IL, 11 Apr. 1842; handwriting of ; one page; JS Materials, CCLA. Includes address and dockets.Bifolium measuring 9⅞ × 7⅝ inches (25 × 19 cm). The first three pages are ruled with twenty-seven horizontal lines; the fourth page is unlined. An illegible embossment, probably that of a paper mill, appears on the upper left corner of each recto page. The letter was inscribed on the first page. The document was trifolded twice in letter style, sealed with a red adhesive wafer, and addressed. The left edge of the second leaf was torn when the letter was opened, and remnants of the adhesive wafer appear on the recto of the second leaf. The letter was later refolded for filing and at some point stapled in the upper left corner; the staple has been removed.The document was docketed by , who served as scribe to JS from 1842 to 1844 and as Nauvoo temple recorder from 1842 to 1846, and an unidentified scribe. Clayton’s docket suggests that the document was in institutional custody for some time after its reception. The letter likely remained in the Smith family’s possession until it was transferred, on an unknown date, to the custody of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (now Community of Christ).
Jenson, Andrew. Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia: A Compilation of Biographical Sketches of Prominent Men and Women in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 4 vols. Salt Lake City: Andrew Jenson History Co., 1901–1936.
Clayton, William. History of the Nauvoo Temple, ca. 1845. CHL. MS 3365.
On 11 April 1842 wrote a letter from to JS in , Illinois, concerning JS’s recent purchase of land in Nauvoo on Bernhisel’s behalf and donations for the construction of the in Nauvoo. Bernhisel began corresponding with JS in March 1841, seeking to obtain property in the Nauvoo area before relocating. In July 1841 he sent JS a certificate of deposit for $425, and in August he conveyed an additional $40. On 4 January 1842 JS informed him that he had purchased sixty acres on his behalf for $480. JS asked for $15 to complete payment on the land. On 29 March, Bernhisel sent the remaining payment to JS. On 5 April, Bernhisel mailed JS a certificate of deposit for donations he had collected, as a local leader in , for the construction of the temple in Nauvoo. In the 11 April letter featured below, Bernhisel wrote to inform JS that he had sent the payment and the certificate.The absence of postal markings suggests this letter was hand carried to , likely by Bush Reynolds, who wrote would deliver to JS an additional donation for the . The 2 May 1842 issue of the Times and Seasons acknowledged the donation from the Saints in . If JS personally replied to this letter, the document has not been located.