Times and Seasons (, Hancock Co., IL), 1 Apr. 1842, vol. 3, no. 11, pp. 735–750; edited by JS. For more complete source information, see the source note for Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 Mar. 1839.
The 1 April 1842 issue of the ’s , Illinois, newspaper, Times and Seasons, was the fourth issue to name JS as editor. The issue included a report of the organization of the , a lengthy doctrinal article titled “Try the Spirits,” and two short editorials, all of which are featured below. Also included in the issue, but not featured here, were a letter dated 20 March 1842 from the to the Latter-day Saints in Europe, extracts from a letter by , an excerpt of a letter to from his mother, another installment of the serialized “History of Joseph Smith,” and a letter about Nauvoo from “an Observer” to the Columbus Advocate. In addition, the issue included a petition from residents of to church leaders in Nauvoo, with an editorial comment. The comment is one of the editorials featured here; the petition is not reproduced below, but it is featured as a stand-alone document in this volume.
Note that only the editorial content created specifically for this issue of the Times and Seasons is annotated here. Articles reprinted from other papers, letters, conference minutes, and notices, are reproduced here but not annotated. Items that are stand-alone JS documents are annotated elsewhere; links are provided to these stand-alone documents.
While JS likely authored many of the paper’s editorial passages, John Taylor reportedly assisted him in writing content. No matter who wrote individual editorial pieces, JS assumed editorial responsibility for all installments naming him as editor except the 15 February issue. (Woodruff, Journal, 19 Feb. 1842; Historical Introduction to Times and Seasons, 1 Mar. 1842.)
Woodruff, Wilford. Journals, 1833–1898. Wilford Woodruff, Journals and Papers, 1828–1898. CHL. MS 1352.
Vol. III. No. 11.]- CITY OF , ILL. April 1, 1842. -[Whole No. 47
AN EPISTLE OF THE ,
To the , in its various and in Europe, Greeting:
Beloved Brethren, We feel it our privilege, and a duty we owe to the great and glorious cause in which we have enlisted, to communicate to you, at this time some principles, which, if carried into effect, will greatly facilitate the of the Saints, and tend to ameliorate the condition of those who are strugling with poverty, and distress, in this day when the usual means of support seem to be cut short, to the laboring classes, through the depression that every where prevails in the general business mart of the civilized world.
Our situation is such in these last days; our salvation, spiritually, is so connected with our salvation, temporally, that if one fail, the other necessarily must be seriously affected, if not wholly destroyed. God has made us social beings: he has endowed us with capacities for enjoying each others society and it is our duty to bring those powers and privileges into exercise, so far as we can obtain, and for this, it is our duty to strive by all lawful and expedient measures within our reach. While we remain in this state of existence, we need food and raiment; habitations and society; and without these, our enjoyments must be greatly limited, and the real object of our existence diminished, if not wholly destroyed. Though the saints should possess all the common gifts of the spirit of God, and yet remain destitute of those comforts so much needed for the sustenance of their bodies, they would be comparatively miserable; but when they arrive at that state of perfection, and are clothed upon with the more special gifts and power of increasing the widow’s oil and meal, or of receiving their food from the Ravens, like Elijah, they will not need to bestow so much attention on every trifle of the passing moment, as they now do: and until that period arrives, they will recollect that to be in the exercise of the fulness of spiritual blessings, they must be watchful and careful to provide things honest in the sight of all men, for the sustenance and comfort of these frail perishable bodies.
That we may be instruments in the hands of God of thus promoting your present and future, temporal and spiritual welfare, we write you at the present time. Many of you are desirous of emigrating to this , and many have not the means to accomplish their wishes, and if we can assist you by our prayers and our councils to accomplish the desires of your hearts in this thing, so far we will rejoice and be satisfied. You not only want to emigrate to this section of the earth, but you desire also to have some laudable means of comfortable subsistance after you arrive here, and this also is important. How then shall these things be accomplished, and your souls be satisfied? We answer, by united understanding, and concert of action. You all, or most of you, have trades or different kinds of business to which you have long been familiarized, and in which you would like to continue for the purpose of procuring a subsistance; and a great proportion of your occupation is such, that no employment can be had in this , or vicinity; for instance, there are no cotton manufacturies established here, and many of you know no other business. You want to come here, and, when here, want to continue your labors in your accustomed branches of business; but you have no means to get here, and when here there are no factories; and yet factories are needed here, and there would be ready market for all the fabrics which could be manufactured.
Now comes the concert of action; if the church will arise unitedly; if the brethren will individually feel that the great work of the Lord is depending on themselves as instruments, to assist in carrying it forward; and will unite all their means, faith and energy, in one grand mass, all that you desire can speedily be accomplished. A short time only will elapse before you yourselves will be astonished at the result, and you will feel that your desires are more than realized. While the saints are united, no power on the earth, or under the earth can prevail against them; but while each one acts for himself, ma [p. ]