JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. E-1, created 20 Aug. 1855–5 Apr. 1856; handwriting of Robert L. Campbell, , and Jonathan Grimshaw; 392 pages, plus 11 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the fifth volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This fifth volume covers the period from 1 July 1843 to 30 Apr. 1844; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, C-1, D-1, and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
History, 1838–1856, volume E-1, constitutes the fifth 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 July 1843 to 30 April 1844, and it was compiled in Utah Territory in the mid-1850s.
The material recorded in volume E-1 was initially compiled under the direction of church historian , who was JS’s cousin. Smith collaborated with in collecting material for the history and creating a set of draft notes that Smith dictated to Bullock and other clerks.
Robert L. Campbell, a recently returned missionary and member of the Historian’s Office staff, transcribed ’s notes into the volume along with the text of designated documents (such as letters and meeting minutes). The Church Historian’s Office journal entry for 2 May 1855 pinpoints the beginning of his work: “R. L. C. on Book D forenoon, afternoon began book E.” Campbell’s work on the volume apparently concluded on 5 April 1856; entries in the Historian’s Office journal indicate that he then moved on to other assignments while another clerk, Jonathan Grimshaw, began work on volume F-1, the last manuscript in the series. (Historian’s Office, Journal, 2 May 1855; 5 and 9 Apr. 1856.)
Volume E-1 contains 391 pages of primary text and 11 pages of addenda. The initial entry on page 1637 is a continuation of the 1 July 1843 entry that closed volume D-1. The final entry in volume E-1 is for 30 April 1844.
The 391 pages of volume E-1 document a crucial period of JS’s life and the history of the church. Important events recorded here include
• An account of JS’s 2 July 1843 meeting with several Pottawatamie chiefs.
• JS’s 4 July 1843 address regarding his recent arrest, the Legion, and Mormon voting practices.
• JS’s 12 July 1843 dictation of a revelation regarding eternal marriage, including the plurality of wives, in the presence of and .
• Dispatch of the first missionaries to the Pacific Islands on 20 September 1843, led by .
• JS’s 1 October 1843 announcement of ’s appointment to a mission to Russia.
• Minutes of a 6–9 October 1843 general conference inserted under the date of 9 October at which pled his case in regard to his 13 August 1843 disfellowshipment and was permitted to continue as counselor in the First Presidency.
• Text of JS’s appeal to the Green Mountain Boys of , inserted under the date of 29 November 1843.
• A 20 January 1844 entry that includes a poem by commemorating the presentation of two copies of the Book of Mormon to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert by .
• JS’s nomination on 29 January 1844 as an independent candidate for the presidency of the .
<15.> Friday 15. Dull cloudy day, N. Wind— frosty night.
Spent the day in Council.
Being in a strait—— to raise money to assist the hands in the . I sent Elders and to borrow some money from Mr. Orme who, it is believed had a large sum of money lying idle— but did not get any.
I copy from the law of the Lord.
“This day President Joseph Smith rode over to brother John Wilkie’s at his special request to give him some instructions relative to his duty in regard to tithing and consecration. Brother Wilkie has for a long time back been strugling with his feelings, designing to do right but laboring under many fears and prejudices in consequence of having in some degree given way to believe the base reports circulated by individuals for the purpose of injuring the authorities of the church, and also from various other causes. His faithful companion has persevered diligently, and with fervent prayer has called upon God in his behalf until she has realized her utmost wishes. [HC 6:264] Brother Wilkie now feels anxious to do right in all things, and especially to pay his tithing to the full. President Joseph showed him the principles of consecration and the means whereby he might realize the fulness of the blessings of the celestial kingdom, and as an evidence that he desired to do right, he paid over to the Trustee in trust the sum of Three hundred dollars in Gold and Silver for the benefit of the and which is now recorded on consecration $300.
He also signified his intention of paying more as soon as he could get matters properly arranged. The President then pronounced a blessing upon him and his companion, that they should have the blessing of God to attend them in their basket and in their store; that they should have the blessing of health and salvation and long life, inasmuch as they would continue to walk in obedience to the commandments of God. May the Lord grant his spirit and peace to abide upon brother Wilkie and his companion through the remainder of their days, May their hearts expand and become enlarged to receive the fulness of the blessings of the kingdom of heaven; May they have the light of eternal truth continually springing up in them like a well of living water, may they be shielded from the powers of Satan, and the influence of designing men, and their faith increase from day to day until they shall have power to lay hold on the blessings of God and the gifts of the spirit until they are satisfied, and finally may they live to a good old age and when they have lived while they desire life may they die in peace and be received into the mansions of eternal [p. 1930]