Letter to Vilate Murray Kimball, 2 March 1841

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

City of March 2, 1841
Dear .
I can in some measure enter into your feelings respecting the occurrence which has lately taken place in the , which is indeed painful to every lover of Truth and Holiness, and probably to none more so than myself. I am indeed sorry that any thing should have transpired which should have caused such a stir in the Church, and bro’t [brought] disgrace upon persons who are otherwise respectable. The course I have taken in the matter was such as I felt warranted to take from the testimony which was adduced. Whether they were guilty of crime or not I do not say, but this I must say that their imprudence was carried to an unwarrantable extent.
I do not desire that you should turn the young woman out of doors, far be it from me to advise any such course I think it would be well for her to remain with you at least until comes home, because I think that your advise to her, may be a blessi[n]g to her, and your council and advise such as will tend to her future welfare and happiness. I have no doubt but you will act in wisdom in this matter & remain very Yours in the Gospel
Joseph Smith [p. [1]]
[page [2] blank] [p. [2]]


  1. 1

    As a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, Heber C. Kimball had been serving a mission in the British Isles since 1840. He returned to his home in Nauvoo on 1 July 1841. (Kimball, Journal, 18 Feb.–9 Mar. 1840; Heber C. Kimball, Nauvoo, IL, 4 Aug. 1841, Letter to the Editors, Times and Seasons, 16 Aug. 1841, 2:507–511.)  

    Kimball, Heber C. Journal, June 1837–Feb. 1838; Feb.–Mar. 1840; May 1846–Feb. 1847. Heber C. Kimball, Papers, 1837–1866. CHL. MS 627, box 3, fd. 2.

    Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.

  2. 2

    If this indeed refers to Elizabeth Ravenscroft, it appears that Vilate’s influence and counsel helped the young Briton in her faith and activity in the church. Alfred Cordon, a church member in England, remarked in his journal that he received a letter from Ravenscroft on 16 September 1841. Ravenscroft’s letter, according to Cordon, stated that she was “well and enjoying herself” in Nauvoo. Ravenscroft also “wrote concerning the glorious priveledges she had of hearing the word of life, and the Eternal principals of the Gospel of the Son of God, and that she had, had, the priveledge of being baptized for several that are dead.” (Cordon, Reminiscences and Journal, 1841–1844, 9–10.)  

    Cordon, Alfred. Reminiscences and Journals, 1839–1850, 1868. CHL.