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 .
<10> Tuesday 10. At 8½ A.M. we started for , and stopping only to water at the—— Public Well in , arrived at my house at 2½ P.M. found my family well, [HC 5:247] who, with many friends assembled to greet us on our safe return and my freedom. My aged came in and got hold of my arm before I saw her, which produced a very agreeable surprize on my part, and the was over joyed to behold her Son free once more.
<11> Wednesday 11. I rode out with this morning, designing to go to brother Isaac <should be > s, and apologize for breaking his Carriage on our return from , but broke a sleigh shoe, and returned home, where I received a visit from a company of—— Gentlemen and Ladies from on the Des Moines River who left 2½ P.M. I directed letters of invitation to be written from myself and for a dinner party at my house on Wednesday next at 10 A.M. to be directed to Brothers , , , , , , , , , , H. Tate, , , , , , , , , , , , and Ladies: also Mr. , and and Ladies, my Mother , and Sisters , and — On hearing of my—— invitation for dinner, The Twelve <Apostles> issued the following
“Proclamation to the Saints in . Feeling a deep sense of gratitude to our Heavenly Father, for the great blessings which he has conferred on us, in the deliverance of our beloved President Joseph Smith, from the oppression with which he has so long been bound, the travelling High Council invite the brethren in , to unite with them in dedicating Tuesday the 17th. day of January inst: as a day of humiliation, fasting, praise prayer and thanksgiving, before the great Eloheim, that he will continue the outpouring of his holy spirit upon this people— that they may <ever> walk [HC 5:248] humbly before him— seek out and follow the Councils given through his servant, and ever be united, heart and hand, in building up this Stake of Zion and the , where God will reveal himself to this people; that no strife or confusion may ever be found in our midst, but peace and righteousness may be our companions— and as he has hitherto sustained his Prophet in all the difficulties he has had to encounter, so he will continue to do, until he has finished the great work committed to his charge, and that all those who have been called to his assistance in the holy ministry may be diligent and faithful in all things, that his hands may be staid on high, like unto Moses— that our enemies, if such we have, may repent, and turning away from their enmity, get forgiveness and salvation and that they may have no dominion over the servants of God or his saints; but that Zion may flourish upon the mountains and be exalted on the hills, and that all nations shall flow into it and be saved, we will humble ourselves with fasting and supplication, and sing praises unto our God with the voice of melody and thanksgiving, for the deliverance he has wrought out for his servant Joseph, through the legally constituted authorities of our Government. The Bishops of the several Wards are requested to see that meetings are appointed sufficient for the accommodation of the brethren and make a report to us immediately of the same— and it may be expected that some one of the brethren who visited , will be present at the different meetings, and give a history of their proceedings. In our fastings, humiliations and thanksgivings let us not forget the poor and destitute, to minister to their necessities, and respectfully would we suggest [p. 1453]