JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. D-1, created 4 July 1845–4 Feb. 1846 and 1 July 1854–2 May 1855; handwriting of , Robert L. Campbell, and ; 275 pages, plus 6 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the fourth volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This fourth volume covers the period from 1 Aug. 1842 to 1 July 1843; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, C-1, E-1 and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
History, 1838–1856, volume D-1, constitutes the fourth of six volumes documenting the life of Joseph Smith and the early years of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The series is also known as the Manuscript History of the Church and was originally published serially from 1842 to 1846 and 1851 to 1858 as the “History of Joseph Smith” in the Times and Seasons and Deseret News. This volume contains JS’s history from 1 August 1842 to 1 July 1843, and it was compiled after JS’s death.
The material recorded in volume D-1 was initially compiled under the direction of church historian , with the assistance of . After Richards’s death in 1854, continued work on the volume as the new church historian with Bullock’s continued help. The process adopted by Richards and Bullock involved Richards creating a set of rough draft notes and Bullock transcribing the notes into the volume along with the text of designated documents (such as letters and meeting minutes). George A. Smith followed a similar pattern, though he dictated the draft notes to Bullock and other scribes.
According to the Church Historian’s Office journal, finished the third volume of the series, volume C-1, on Thursday, 3 July 1845, in , Illinois. He began work on the fourth volume, D-1, the next day, beginning on page 1362 with the entry for 1 August 1842. (The pages in volumes A-1–E-1 were numbered consecutively.) Bullock continued work on the record, drawing upon ’s draft notes, until 3 February 1846—the day before D-1 and the other volumes were packed up in preparation for the Latter-day Saints’ exodus from Nauvoo. At that point he had reached page 1485 with the entry for 28 February 1843. Subsequently, apparently after the collection had arrived in Utah, Bullock added a brief comment beneath that entry: “end of W. Richard’s compiling[.] the books packed Feby. 4— 1846 in Nauvoo[.] Miles Romney— present. The records carried by T Bullock from Winter Quarters to G S L [Great Salt Lake] City in 1848.”
A notation at the top of page 1486 reports that “the books were unpacked in G. S. L. City by and . June 7. 1853. J[onathan] Grimshaw & Miles Romney present.” Vertically, in the margin, is a poignant epitaph: “Decr. 1 1853 Dr. Willard Richards wrote one line of History—being sick at the time—and was never able to do any more.” With Richards’s death on 11 March 1854, JS’s cousin was called to the office of church historian. The notation on the top of page 1486 acknowledges this change in officers, noting, “commencement of George A. Smith’s compiling as Historian. April 13. 1854[.] [C]ommenced copying July 1. 1854.” From mid-April to the end of June 1854, George A. Smith, in collaboration with Thomas Bullock, worked on the draft notes for the history before a new scribe, , resumed writing in D-1 on 1 July 1854, beginning with the entry for 1 March 1843.
continued transcribing intermittently into the late fall of 1854, when he was assigned other duties in the Historian’s Office. He had reached page 1546 with the entry for 5 May 1843. Work resumed in February 1855 in the hand of Robert L. Campbell, recently returned from a mission. He concluded volume D-1 on the morning of 2 May 1855 and began writing in E-1 that afternoon.
The 274 pages of volume D-1 contain a record of much that is significant in the life of JS and the development of the church he founded. Among these events are
• JS’s 6 August 1842 prophecy that the Saints would become a mighty people in the midst of the Rocky Mountains.
•JS’s 8 August 1842 arrest on a warrant for being “an accessory before the fact” to an attack on former governor .
• ’s 17 August 1842 letter to governor , pleading for the humane treatment of her husband and family.
•JS’s 1 and 6 September 1842 instructions regarding the proper procedures for performing baptisms for the dead.
• JS’s 15 November 1842 “Valedictory” as he stepped down as editor of the Times and Seasons.
• The 26 December 1842 arrest of JS on a “proclamation” by former governor , and subsequent hearing in , Illinois.
• The 7 February 1843 recovery of a volume of patriarchal blessings given by , which had been stolen in , Missouri.
• JS’s 21 February 1843 remarks regarding the and .
• JS’s 2 April 1843 instruction at , Illinois, on the nature of God and other subjects.
• JS’s 16 May 1843 remarks at , Illinois, on the everlasting covenant and eternal marriage.
• The account of JS’s 23 June 1843 arrest and his hearing the following week at .
<February 9> one of Baals prophets, your God does not hear you, jump up and cut yourself; and he—— commanded fire from heaven to consume my house. When I was preaching in , a Quaker called out for a sign, I told him to be still. After Sermon he again asked for a sign. I told the Congregation the man was an Adulterer, that a wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign, and that the Lord had said to me in a Revelation that any man who wanted a sign was an Adulterous person “it is true” cried one “for I caught him in the very act”. which the man afterwards confessed when he was baptized.
A Conference was held at Boylston Hall, , when Fourteen branches of the Church in and the vicinity were represented, comprising 793 members, 33 Elders, 43 lesser officers, most of whom had been raised up in about fifteen months. Elders , , , and others took active parts in the Conference.
<10.> Friday 10 After conversation with Mr. and others, I reviewed the history of the mob in <Portage Co. Ohio. on the 25 March 1832> and my first journey to . At 3 o clock afternoon attended a Council of the Twelve <apostles> at my house, viz: , , , , , , , , and — I requested that all business be presented briefly and without comments, and told the Council that I had an interview with this morning, that he was delegated by the Inhabitants of Shokoquon (which is twenty miles above this, on the ) to come to , and petition that “a talented Mormon Preacher take up his residence with them, and they would find him a good house, and give him support, [HC 5:268] with liberty for him to invite as many Mormons to settle in that place as my please so to do”. Council decided that Brother <John> Bair go and preach to them— I suggested that a general meeting be called in the in relation to the Post Office and other things, and instructed the Council to call Elder to with his family, and to say that he is ordered to come by the First Presidency, and that he preach no more till he comes. at 5 o’clock I opened a Mayor’s Court at my house, when Deputy Sheriff presented before the Court for stealing goods from the Store of Moses Smith on the 23rd. of January, when declared before the Court that he had been visited many times by the ancient of days— that he sat with him on the 9th. 10th. and 11th. of last June, and should sit in Council again with him on Tuesday next— that he had had a mission from him to the four quarters of the world; that he had been and established the twelve stakes of Zion, and had visited them all, except one in the South, that he had suffered much for two or three years for want of clothing, that he despised a thief except to clothe himself, that he opened the Store of Moses Smith on the 23rd. of January, and took out the goods then present (several hundred pieces) hid them in the Corn field, and carried them home from time to time, under the same roof with Mr. Smith and that no one knew any thing about the Robbery but himself. Olney was once a Member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, but had been cut off a considerable time previous, he declared that the Church never taught him to steal; and I have written his voluntary—— Confession here, that others may take warning, and behave themselves in such a manner that they shall not be cut off from the Church; for if they are, the Spirit of the living God will depart from them, and they may be left to a [HC 5:269] worse Spirit of delusion and wickedness than even , who never saw the Ancient of Days, < n>or any thing like him. but on the testimony presented I bound him over to the next Circuit Court for trial in the sum of five thousand dollars— <and for want of bail, he was committed to Jail.> [p. 1466]