and JS, Notice, , Hancock Co., IL, [ca. 19 May 1842]; handwriting of and ; one page; JS Collection (Supplement), CHL.
Single leaf measuring 6¼ × 8 inches (16 × 20 cm). The top and right edges have the square cut of manufactured paper. The bottom and left edges are uneven, suggesting they were cut by hand. The leaf was trifolded and then folded in half, presumably for filing. The portion of the document written by is in blue ink. Sloan served as the city recorder from February 1841 to July 1843.
The document was apparently retained by JS and may have been filed with other city records. In 1845, the city of Nauvoo was disincorporated. Many if not most of the city records were listed in an inventory that was produced by the Church Historian’s Office in 1846, when they were packed up with church records that were taken to the Salt Lake Valley. Sometime between 1973 and 1984 it was added to the JS Collection (Supplement) at the Church Historical Department (now CHL). It has presumably remained in institutional custody.
“An Act to Repeal the Nauvoo Charter,” 14th General Assembly, 1844–1845, Senate Bill no. 35 (House Bill no. 42), Illinois General Assembly, Enrolled Acts of the General Assembly, 1818–2012, Illinois State Archives, Springfield.
Illinois Office of Secretary of State. Enrolled Acts of the General Assembly, 1818–1993. Illinois State Archives, Springfield.
See the full bibliographic entry for JS Collection (Supplement), 1833–1844, in the CHL catalog.
Sometime around 19 May 1842, and , city recorder of , Illinois, inscribed a document giving notice that Bennett had resigned as mayor of Nauvoo and been replaced by JS. Bennett had been accused of seducing women in Nauvoo and telling them that JS sanctioned such practices. In the fallout from these accusations, Bennett, who had been elected mayor on 1 February 1841, resigned from office on 17 May 1842. On that same day, his name was removed from the records of the . Despite the accusations against him, Bennett proclaimed at the 19 May meeting of the Nauvoo City Council that he had “no difficulty with the heads of the church,” that JS never gave him “authority to hold illicit intercourse with women,” and that JS was “strictly virtuous” both in “public and in private.” Bennett later claimed that he made such statements only because JS had threatened to kill him if he did not, but members of the city council swore in an affidavit that Bennett had never been “threatened menaced or intimidated” to make his statements. During the 19 May meeting, the city council voted to accept Bennett’s resignation. The city council then elected JS (who had been vice mayor) as the new mayor, city councilor as vice mayor, and as city councilor, filling the vacancy left by JS.
composed the notice featured here about the election of JS and to their respective offices. , possibly acting under the direction of the new mayor, completed the document by adding a copy of the city council’s resolution of thanks to Bennett for his service. Sloan then signed JS’s name to the document “by his direction.” The notice was published in the 21 May 1842 issue of the Wasp.
John C. Bennett, Carthage, IL, 2 July 1842, Letter to the Editor, Sangamo Journal (Springfield, IL), 15 July 1842, ; Bennett, History of the Saints, 287–288; “Affidavit of the City Council,” Wasp, Extra, 27 July 1842, .
Sangamo Journal. Springfield, IL. 1831–1847.
Bennett, John C. The History of the Saints; or, an Exposé of Joe Smith and Mormonism. Boston: Leland and Whiting, 1842.
New election of Mayor, and vice Mayor, of the City of , on the resignation of .
On the 17th Inst. General resigned the office of Mayor of the City of , and on the 19th General Joseph Smith, the former vice-Mayor, was duly elected to fill the vacancy: and on the same day General was elected vice Mayor in place of General Joseph Smith elected Mayor.
The following vote of thanks was then unanimously voted to General Benn the Ex-Mayor, , by the City Council; to wit:
Moved <Resolved by the City Council of the City of > that this Council tender a vote of Thanks to Genl. , for his great Zeal in having good and wholesome Laws adopted for the Government of this , and for the faithful discharge of his Duty while Mayor of the same.—
Joseph Smith Mayor.
Passed May 19th. 1842.
I copied this, & signed the Mayors Name to it by his direction.— [p. ]
The act incorporating the city of Nauvoo mandated that elections for city offices be held every two years on the first Monday in February. However, the act also allowed the city council to “fill all vacancies that may happen by death, resignation, or removal.” (Act to Incorporate the City of Nauvoo, 16 Dec. 1840.)