JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. C-1, created 24 Feb. 1845–3 July 1845; handwriting of , , Jonathan Grimshaw, and ; 512 pages, plus 24 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the third volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This third volume covers the period from 2 Nov. 1838 to 31 July 1842; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, D-1, E-1 and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
This document, “History, 1838–1856, volume C-1 [2 November 1838–31 July 1842],” is the third of six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church” (in The Joseph Smith Papers the “Manuscript History” bears the editorial title “History, 1838–1856”). The completed six-volume collection covers the period from 23 December 1805 to 8 August 1844. The narrative in this volume commences on 2 November 1838 with JS and other church leaders being held prisoner by the “’s forces” at , Missouri, and concludes with the death of Bishop at , Illinois, on 31 July 1842. For a more complete discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to this history.
Volume C-1 was created beginning on or just after 24 February 1845 and its narrative was completed by 3 May 1845, although some additional work continued on the volume through 3 July of that year (Richards, Journal, 24 and 28 Feb. 1845; Historian’s Office, Journal, 3 May 1845; 3 and 4 July 1845). It is in the handwriting of and contains 512 pages of primary text, plus 24 pages of addenda. Additional addenda for this volume were created at a later date as a supplementary document and appear in this collection as “History, 1838-1856, volume C-1 Addenda.” Compilers and Thomas Bullock drew heavily from JS’s letters, discourses, and diary entries; meeting minutes; church and other periodicals and journals; and reminiscences, recollections, and letters of church members and other contacts. At JS’s behest, Richards maintained the first-person, chronological-narrative format established in previous volumes, as if JS were the author. , , , and others reviewed and modified the manuscript prior to its eventual publication in the Salt Lake City newspaper Deseret News.
The historical narrative recorded in volume C-1 continued the account of JS’s life as prophet and president of the church. Critical events occurring within the forty-five-month period covered by this text include the Mormon War; subsequent legal trials of church leaders; expulsion of the Saints from Missouri; missionary efforts in by the and others; attempts by JS to obtain federal redress for the Missouri depredations; publication of the LDS Millennial Star in England; the migration of English converts to ; missionary efforts in other nations; the death of church patriarch ; the establishment of the city charter; the commencement of construction of the Nauvoo ; the expedition that facilitated temple construction; the introduction of the doctrine of proxy baptism for deceased persons; the dedicatory prayer by on the Mount of Olives in Palestine; publication of the “Book of Abraham” in the Nauvoo Times and Seasons; publication of the JS history often referred to as the “Wentworth letter;” the organization of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo; and the inception of Nauvoo-era temple endowment ceremonies.
<March 17> made affidavit at , that the officers of the Militia under the exterminating order of in in 1838 took possession carried off and destroyed a store of goods, of several hundred dollars value, belonging to the people called Mormons, in , that his life was threatened, his property taken, and he was obliged to flee the with <No. 21> his family, greatly to his disadvantage—
“, Illinois, Adams County March 18. 1840 I do certify that I went back to the State of about the first of October last, with the calculation to live with my family, but finding it impossible as the Mob surrounded my house and threatened me with my life, Say to the amount of twenty or thirty of them, and whilst they were quarreling about me what they should do, and in what way they should dispose of me, I crept out of the back window and made my escape, and leaving my family to their most scandalous abuses; my Wife and oldest daughter barely escaping from their unholy designs— I was thus a second time obliged to leave the , or remain at the risk of my life; The former alternative I chose, My loss sustained by the above mentioned abuses was not less than three hundred dollars. A lot of land containing forty acres, for which I paid four dollars per acre, situated in , was unjustly and unlawfully taken [HC 4:69] from, and is still retained by some person or persons to me unknown— I hereby certify that the above is a true statement— ”— Sworn to before C. M. Woods
“I a resident of , Adams County Illinois, Practitioner of Medicine, certify that in the year one thousand eight hundred and thirty eight, I was a Citizen of , Caldwell County, Missouri, and that in the fall of said year, I saw the invaded by a numerous armed soldiery, who compelled its Inhabitants to surrender, give up their fire arms and submit to their dictation— They then set a strong guard round the , thereby preventing egress or ingress, without special permission. Then they collected the Citizens together upon the public square— formed round them a strong guard of soldiers, and then at the mouths of their rifles, compelled them to sign what was termed A Deed of Trust, thereby depriving them of all their property and civil rights— This occupied several days of most inclement weather, when they were brought to the same order by , and I Judge some forty or fifty were made special prisoners by him. At this time he delivered his speech to the Mormons which has been published, and which is substantially correct. I was compelled by a company of men armed with Rifles to leave my house, and go to ’s camp (he commanded as I understood a part of the Guard which surrounded the ) upon an indirect charge or insinuation. was detained a prisoner two days, examined and then liberated— I then asked the Clerk of the Company, who had been my keeper the following questions— which he readily answered— Were those men who massacred the Mormons [p. 1035]