Minutes, 5–6 September 1840

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

September 5th 1840 met in council at the of Joseph Smith jr
Resolved. That be appointed a member of this High Council, to fill the vacancy occasioned by the death of .
Joseph Smith jr against .
The charge was predicated upon the authority of two letters, one from , the other from and accusing him () with the following charges.
1st For stating that Joseph jr had extravagantly purchased three suits of cloths, while he was at and that had [p. 76] purchased four suits at the same place, besides dresses and cloths for their families in profusion.
2nd For having stated that Joseph Smith jr, and had stated that they were worth $100.000 each while they were at & that Joseph Smith jr had reported <​repeated​> the same thing statement while at and for stating that had stated that he also, was worth as much as they (iE) 100,000
3nd For holding secret Council in the , in , and for locking the doors of the , for the purpose of prohibiting certain brethren, in good standing, in the , from being in the Council. thereby depriving them the use of the .
Two were appointed to speak on the case, namely (7) (8) .
adjourned till the 6th of Sept at 2’ o’clock
Sept. 6th 1840. Council met according to adjournment. When the evidences were all heard on the case pending and the council closed on both sides the parties spoke at length after which J. Smith jr withdrew the [p. 77] the charge and both parties were reconciled together things being adjusted to the satisfaction of both parties.
Clerk pro tem. [p. 78]


  1. 1

    Brunson died on 10 August 1840. (“Obituary,” Times and Seasons, Sept. 1840, 1:176.)  

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

  2. 2

    Because JS and the delegation to Washington DC had limited funds, it seems unlikely that JS and Rigdon had purchased clothing “in profusion.” For example, JS informed the Nauvoo high council in December 1839 that he and Elias Higbee had taken “as cheap boarding as can be had” in Washington. (Letter to Hyrum Smith and Nauvoo High Council, 5 Dec. 1839.)  

  3. 3

    TEXT: Double underlined.  

  4. 4

    Babbitt, who was sent on a mission to the eastern United States in fall 1839, may have been in Washington DC at the same time as JS and was likely in Philadelphia when JS was there in January 1840. (Johnson, “A Life Review,” 58, 62; “Important Church News,” Times and Seasons, May 1840, 1:109.)  

    Johnson, Benjamin Franklin. “A Life Review,” after 1893. Benjamin Franklin Johnson, Papers, 1852–1911. CHL. MS 1289 box 1, fd. 1.

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

  5. 5

    JS informed Granger in July 1840 that “it was something new to me when I heard there had been secret meetings held in the Lords house” in Kirtland. JS was also unaware “that some of my friends—faithful brethren, men enjoying the confidence of the church should be locked out.” (Letter to Oliver Granger, between ca. 22 and ca. 28 July 1840.)  

  6. 6

    The numbers before Grover’s and Cowles’s names likely refer to the way that the high council had been ordered. Members of the high council were directed “to cast lots” to order themselves before considering cases. When two counselors were appointed to speak, one was assigned to speak on behalf of the accused. (Revised Minutes, 18–19 Feb. 1834 [D&C 102:12, 17].)