, 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.
sincerely solicit your special prayers sealed with a harty Amen. is truly a humble servant of the Lord & very agreeable companion in the ministry; our hearts are one our faith is one, and the Strong holds of Satan quake before us. We desire to have grace to perform our mission that we may return to our families & bretheren with triumph & joy. I anticipate that is in & I am waiting to obtain a few copies of the third Edition of the Book of Mormon. To raise means is hard, yet we trust in the Lord. I shall go to as soon as possible.
I have thirteen in this , many are believing, and some halting between two opinions, and have baptized in all since I star[te]d Eighty four. I have had a vision from the Lord, which manifested the present state of the world respecting the Jews, , the remnant of Israel, and also, the world— as hasty summer fruit so is this nation— as a vineyard of grapes fully ripe, ready to be gathered for the Press so are all the nations of the earth.
I want the to send some faithful and competent to this place to nurse the seed or word that has sown here, and shall leave this matter <with> to lay before the conference. Elders & are here and are using all their energies of both mind and body to fill their calling; I them deem them amply qualified to discharge the functions of their office, provided they keep humble.
Dear bretheren remember me to my family, and pray for them— remember me to and also all of the wives of the Elders in particular whose husbands are in the field. Tell them to pray for us. I hope the authorities of the church will see that they are provided for, for food and raiment that they may enjoy life with you. Yours in the bonds of the
The 1840 stereotyped edition of the Book of Mormon was the third American edition. The Book of Mormon was printed first in Palmyra, New York, by E. B. Grandin in 1830, and then again in Kirtland, Ohio, by O. Cowdery & Co. in 1837. It is unclear precisely when the first copies of the new edition of the Book of Mormon were ready for sale or whether Page was still in Cincinnati when they became available. At a session of the general conference in Nauvoo on 4 October 1840, Robinson reported that the printing was “nearly completed.” He might have been referring, however, to the conclusion of the print run. Decades later, his reminiscence in the Return implied that he brought some copies with him when he returned to Nauvoo and had already distributed other copies to people who had paid for advance subscriptions. (Minutes and Discourse, 3–5 Oct. 1840; Ebenezer Robinson, “Items of Personal History of the Editor,” Return, May 1890, 261–262.)
The Return. Davis City, IA, 1889–1891; Richmond, MO, 1892–1893; Davis City, 1895–1896; Denver, 1898; Independence, MO, 1899–1900.