Times and Seasons (, Hancock Co., IL), 15 Sept. 1842, vol. 3, no. 22, pp. 911–926; edited by JS. For more complete source information, see the source note for Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 Mar. 1839.
JS served as editor for the 15 September 1842 issue, the twenty-second issue in the third volume, of the Times and Seasons, a newspaper published in , Illinois. He was assisted in his editorial responsibilities by and . Together, these three men produced the semimonthly newspaper, including composing its editorial material. While the extent to which JS was involved in the creation and publication of this issue is unclear, as the newspaper’s editor he was responsible for its content.
The 15 September 1842 issue contained both non-editorial and editorial material. Non-editorial content in the issue included an installment of the “History of Joseph Smith,” a description of Mount Sinai from an English clergyman, an extract of a letter from on the desire of many converts in to immigrate to , and a letter from the “to all the Saints in Nauvoo.” In addition, the issue contained a notice that a concordance of scripture and writings about the church’s ecclesiastical history published by in was available; a reprinting of a letter from church member William Rowley reporting on his missionary efforts in , England; a reprinting of an article in the Antigua Herald on an earthquake on the Caribbean island of Antigua; a brief letter to the editor from and ; and a notice that copies of hymnbooks and of the Book of Mormon were available for purchase.
The issue’s editorial content, featured here with introductions to each passage of text for which JS was ultimately responsible, included commentary on the Book of Mormon in light of recent archaeological discoveries, reflections on the risks of philosophizing about religious matters, a condemnation of the way government officials condoned the expulsion of church members from in 1838, and a report of a recent discourse delivered by to church members in . The issue also included editorials encouraging church members living outside the city to send donations to facilitate the construction of the Nauvoo temple, urging traveling elders to arrange for the free delivery of the Times and Seasons and the Wasp through the postal service, and insisting that JS was consistent in condemning vice and promoting virtue.
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.
type, and, if we should judge, from a hasty perusal, will be a useful prompter to the travelling elders. Its small form renders it convenient. The present agents are—
, , Pa.
, , Mass.
Price, (portable form) 75 cents.
" Morocco bound, 62 1-2 cents.
The usual deduction to wholesale purchasers. Orders received at the corner of Sixth and Buttonwood Streets, —post paid.
The seventh editorial selection in this issue was a brief note explaining that the newspaper would not publish the minutes of a 29 August 1842 meeting held in a of trees near the construction site. At the meeting, spoke on the need for serving missions throughout the to preach in such a way that countered ’s criticism of JS and the . The elders also needed to raise money for the construction of the and the temple. JS then spoke on a variety of topics, including the recent dissension of several church members and the ongoing efforts of officials to extradite him.
We promised the minutes of a Special , which was held in this , in August last. As little business, more than to send forth laborers in the vineyard, was done, it has not been considered of sufficient importance to occupy a space in this number.
LETTER FROM WILLIAM ROWLEY.
20, Upper Pittt Street, ,)
My Dear ,—It is with no small degree of pleasure that I take up my pen to scribble a few lines in reply to your very kind, affectionate, welcome and intelligent letter; and I feel truly, that I am writing as unto a father, because through your instrumentality I was begotten again to a lively hope through the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ—and I ever wish to cherish a grateful remembrance of this, in thus being rescued from the vain traditions of men, in which I had been so long entrameled and bound up. I can, I think, enter in som degree into those high and holy emotions which have pervaded in your bosom, in the contemplation and retrospection of the time when you were thus diffusing the light and truth of heaven, which had been for so long a period lost in the midst of an overwise and priest ridden people; and I know and am certain that had you not been sent of God—cal[l]ed of him, as was Aaron, to that Apostolic office, you would not, you could not have endured what you and your dear brethren did for the truth’s sake. But thus sent—thus qualified—thus sustained—you endured all things as good soldiers; and I do pray that our Heavenly Father will still bless you—yea, doubly bless you, so that when he may again send you forth you may sow and reap an over abundant harvest, in bringing many souls into the .
As you will have by the same conveyance, a letter from brother Harrison containing, I suppose, more information relative to the progress and welfare of the than I can give, since you left, I shall not go into particulars, but just state that the cause of truth has progressed wonderfully, notwithstanding this sect is every where spoken against; but how true is that remark of yours: “the gospel must be received in its native simplicity—its humble, unassuming garb—we must be little children—divest ourselves of preconceived opinions, and enter in by the gate.” Yes, dear , here is the grand turning point. Every day convinces me more and more, it is these himiliating principles that causes the heart of man to rebel and reject them, nowithstanding they were so clearly set down and practically illustrated by the Saviour himself. You say “it would do your heart good to be in our midst in .” The daily contemplation and idea of one day being in your midst, always does my heart good. I seem to take fresh courage and look up and onward to that time when I shall indeed be with you, surrounded by the brethren—by those, and by him, that were thus the gifted men sent to gather us out of mystery and tradition, even Babylon. I do thank you for thus giving me that personal assurance of the prosperity of the cause—as I relied fully upon your testimony when here, so can I now place the same implicit confidence in what you have now stated; and from that I do wish myself “in your midst.” In reply to your kind enquiries after the health of myself, my dear children, mother and sister. I am thankful to say that hitherto the God of heaven hath been very gracious unto us in giving us health, with every other needful blessing. It would have given me great pleasure had I had to have communicated that any of my friends were any nearer in embracing the everlasting gospel—but there seems to be a more determined resistence of the truth—closing their eyes and ears by prejudice from every argument that can be brought and refusing to listen to those principles which when received in simplicity and sincerity bring life, joy and peace to the soul. How long they will thus shut their eyes I know not, but I fear until it is too late—or until they are awakened from their priest ridden sleep by those judgments that shall come upon all those that reject this gospel. You may now have heard before this, from our brother Edwin Mitchell, and his partner, that just as they were leaving I was on the point of taking to myself another helpmate in a neighbor of theirs, in whom I found those excellencies and characteristics for making a good and affectionate wife, together with a heart already prepared, in some degree, through your instrumentality, for an obedience to the gospel. That has been consnmmated, and though at present she seems terrified at the [p. 924]