Discourse, 4 July 1843, as Reported by Wilford Woodruff

  • Source Note
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have Been a peaceable Citizen but their has been a great hugh & cry about Jo Smith being shot, No crime can be done but what it is laid to Jo Smith Here I was again dragged to the Court, & was cleared & now it comes again, But as often as God sees fit for me to suffer I am ready But I am as innocent of these crimes as the Angels in heaven. I am not an enemy to mankind I am a friend to Mankind. I <​am​> not an enemy to nor any any governors or people As to the military station I hold & the cause of my holding it is as follows. When we came here the required us to bear arms & do military duty according to law, & as the Church had just been driven from the State of & rob[b]ed of all their property & arms they were poor & destitute of armes: they were liable to be fined for not doing duty when they had not arms to do it with, they came to me for advice I advised them to organize themselves into independant companies, & demand arms of the , this they did, Again their were many Elders having licence to preach which by law exhonorated them from Military duty but the officers would not release them on this ground I then told the Saints that though I was clear from Military duty by law in consequence of lameness in one of my legs, yet I would set them the example & would do duty myself, they then said they were willing to do duty if they could be formed into an independant company & I could be at their head & upon this ground came the Nauvoo Legion & I [p. [67]]
have Been a peaceable Citizen but their has been a great hugh & cry about being shot, No crime can be done but what it is laid to Jo Smith Here I was again dragged to the Court, & was cleared & now it comes again, But as often as God sees fit for me to suffer I am ready But I am as innocent of these crimes as the Angels in heaven. I am not an enemy to mankind I am a friend to Mankind. I am not an enemy to nor any any governors or people As to the military station I hold & the cause of my holding it is as follows. When we came here the required us to bear arms & do military duty according to law, & as the Church had just been driven from the State of & robbed of all their property & arms they were poor & destitute of armes: they were liable to be fined for not doing duty when they had not arms to do it with, they came to me for advice I advised them to organize themselves into independant companies, & demand arms of the , this they did, Again their were many Elders having licence to preach which by law exhonorated them from Military duty but the officers would not release them on this ground I then told the Saints that though I was clear from Military duty by law in consequence of lameness in one of my legs, yet I would set them the example & would do duty myself, they then said they were willing to do duty if they could be formed into an independant company & I could be at their head & upon this ground came the Nauvoo Legion & I [p. [67]]
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