JS, Letter, , Hancock Co., IL, to , [, Wayne Co., IL], 8 Aug. 1840. Featured version copied [probably ca. 8 Aug. 1840] in JS Letterbook 2, pp. 176–178; handwriting of ; JS Collection, CHL. For more complete source information, see the source note for JS Letterbook 2.
On 8 August 1840, JS wrote from , Illinois, to in , Illinois. JS was responding to three letters Bennett had sent reminding JS and that he had offered to assist the during their difficulties and declaring that he intended to join with them in Nauvoo. This 8 August letter states it was in response to a 25 July 1840 letter from Bennett, but JS’s lengthy paragraph on the environment, location, and population of Nauvoo as well as the postscript indicate that JS was also responding to Bennett’s letters of 27 and 30 July. Bennett did not receive this response from JS before writing another letter on 15 August.
The original letter is apparently not extant. copied it into JS Letterbook 2, probably around the time the letter was written.
A charter has been obtained from the Legislature for a Rail road from being immediately below the rapids of the to this place a distance of about Tewenty miles which if carried into opperation will be of incalculable advantage to this place as steam Boats can only asscend the rapids at a high stage of water. The soil is good and I should think not inferior to any in the . Cropps are abundant in this section of the Country, and I think provisions will be reasonable. I should be very happy could I make arrangements to meet you in at the time you mention but cannot promise myself that pleasure; if I should not, probably you could make it convenient to come and pay us a visit here prior to your removal.
is very sick, and has been for nearly twelve months with the fever and Ague which disease is very prevalent here at this time; at present he is not able to leave his room
Joseph Smith Jr.
P.S. Yours of the 30th. is just received in which I am glad to learn of your increasing desire to unite yourself with a people “that are every way spoken against” and the anxiety you feel for our welfare for which you have my best feelings and I pray that my Heavenly Father will pour out his choicest blessings in this world and enable you by his grace to overcome the evils which are in the world that you may secure a blissful immortality in the world that is to come.
On 19 February 1839, the Illinois General Assembly approved an act incorporating the “Des Moines Rapids Rail Road Company.” The rail line, proposed by commissioners Daniel Witter, Calvin Warren, Isaac Galland, and Mark Aldrich, would have run along the Mississippi River between Commerce and Warsaw, Illinois, allowing goods to be transported year round past the Des Moines rapids. (“Our Town and County,” Western World [Warsaw, IL], 13 May 1840, ; “The Des Moines Rapids,” Western World, 10 June 1840, ; “Des Moines Rapids Rail Road Company,” Western World, 17 June 1840, .)