, Letter, , Hamilton Co., OH, to JS and others, [, Hancock Co., IL], 23 Sept. 1840. Featured version copied [ca. Oct. 1840] in JS Letterbook 2, pp. 181–182; handwriting of ; JS Collection, CHL. For more complete source information, see the source note for JS Letterbook 2.
On 23 September 1840, wrote from to JS and the Latter-day Saints in , Illinois. Page was appointed by an April 1840 general of the in Nauvoo to accompany fellow apostle on a mission to Europe and the Holy Land. The principal objective of their mission was to gather information about the Jews and the restoring of the house of Israel. Though Page and Hyde left the Nauvoo area within a week of the conference, they made their way east slowly—and frequently separated from each other—proselytizing and procuring donations for their passage to Europe along the way. Page had been in Cincinnati since at least the end of August and reported that he had thirteen people since his arrival.
In this letter, which he wished to have read at a general conference of the church, described the enthusiasm and support that both church members and friendly non-Mormons expressed to him and Hyde on their journey. He also referred to ’s efforts to have a third edition of the Book of Mormon stereotyped and printed. Page ended the letter by requesting that the conference appoint an to take his place in to continue strengthening the church there.
’s original letter is apparently not extant. It was probably carried to by , who on his return journey there apparently took a letter from elders and , also written on 23 September in . Clerk read both letters at the general conference in Nauvoo on 3 October. subsequently copied the letter into JS Letterbook 2.
Orson Hyde and John E. Page, Quincy, IL, 28 Apr. 1840, Letter to the Editor, Times and Seasons, June 1840, 1:116–117. Because Page eventually returned to Illinois and Hyde crossed the Atlantic to fulfill the mission alone, Hyde and Page’s separation later became the focal point of church leaders’ criticism of the mission. (“Conference Minutes,” Times and Seasons, 15 Apr. 1842, 3:761–763.)
Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.
The & of the , & also to all the saints assembled in general .
Your humble servant embraces with pleasur this opportunity of to pin [pen] for your edification a few lines. I congratulate you with the stedy march and advancement of the cause of Christ, as has fallen under my observation. and have been treated with respect, and had the greatest attention paid us by the brethren and sisters; and, alsothe by gentlemen & ladies of the first class in society, we have been made welcome very hartily to their dwellings and comforts of life. When we separate with them, they grip our hands with tears standing full in their eyes, bidding us farewell and often leave something noble with us to help us on our mission; and a firm promise that they will duly reflect on the great things which we have told them. They ardently request us to send them some competent to preach to them; yes, dear bretheren the cause of truth is marching onward with unparalleled rapidity, and victory! victory! will soon be the shout of all the faithful in Christ, and thank the Lord, thank the Lord is the language of unworthy me, that I have lived to see 1840 with all its attendent evidences of truth of the Book of Mormon, and the book of Doctrine and Covenants. I must save a place in this communication to make some remarks concerning Bro. . I can say in truth & soberness that he merits the esteem and confidence of the saints and all good men for his diligence and economy while getting the Book of Mormon stereotyped &c here. The honest and frank course he has pursued towards the Gent. whith whom he has been concerned in business (viz. Mr. Shepherd Stearns & others) has conciliated their everlasting respect and esteem, from their own manifestations to me. Dear bretheren and Sisters your humble servants and [p. 181]
In their letter of the same date, Bent and Harris gave a similarly positive, but more detailed, account of Robinson’s efforts to produce a stereotyped edition of the Book of Mormon. Robinson contracted with Edwin Shepard and George Stearns to stereotype and print a new edition of the book. Shepard also helped Robinson engage the services of a paper vendor and a bookbinder. (Letter from Samuel Bent and George W. Harris, 23 Sept. 1840; Ebenezer Robinson, “Items of Personal History of the Editor,” Return, May 1890, 260–262; see also Crawley, Descriptive Bibliography, 1:129–132.)
The Return. Davis City, IA, 1889–1891; Richmond, MO, 1892–1893; Davis City, 1895–1896; Denver, 1898; Independence, MO, 1899–1900.
Crawley, Peter. A Descriptive Bibliography of the Mormon Church. 3 vols. Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 1997–2012.