JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. C-1, created 24 Feb. 1845–3 July 1845; handwriting of , , Jonathan Grimshaw, and ; 512 pages, plus 24 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the third volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This third volume covers the period from 2 Nov. 1838 to 31 July 1842; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, D-1, E-1 and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
This document, “History, 1838–1856, volume C-1 [2 November 1838–31 July 1842],” is the third of six volumes of the “Manuscript History of the Church” (in The Joseph Smith Papers the “Manuscript History” bears the editorial title “History, 1838–1856”). The completed six-volume collection covers the period from 23 December 1805 to 8 August 1844. The narrative in this volume commences on 2 November 1838 with JS and other church leaders being held prisoner by the “’s forces” at , Missouri, and concludes with the death of Bishop at , Illinois, on 31 July 1842. For a more complete discussion of the entire six-volume work, see the general introduction to this history.
Volume C-1 was created beginning on or just after 24 February 1845 and its narrative was completed by 3 May 1845, although some additional work continued on the volume through 3 July of that year (Richards, Journal, 24 and 28 Feb. 1845; Historian’s Office, Journal, 3 May 1845; 3 and 4 July 1845). It is in the handwriting of and contains 512 pages of primary text, plus 24 pages of addenda. Additional addenda for this volume were created at a later date as a supplementary document and appear in this collection as “History, 1838-1856, volume C-1 Addenda.” Compilers and Thomas Bullock drew heavily from JS’s letters, discourses, and diary entries; meeting minutes; church and other periodicals and journals; and reminiscences, recollections, and letters of church members and other contacts. At JS’s behest, Richards maintained the first-person, chronological-narrative format established in previous volumes, as if JS were the author. , , , and others reviewed and modified the manuscript prior to its eventual publication in the Salt Lake City newspaper Deseret News.
The historical narrative recorded in volume C-1 continued the account of JS’s life as prophet and president of the church. Critical events occurring within the forty-five-month period covered by this text include the Mormon War; subsequent legal trials of church leaders; expulsion of the Saints from Missouri; missionary efforts in by the and others; attempts by JS to obtain federal redress for the Missouri depredations; publication of the LDS Millennial Star in England; the migration of English converts to ; missionary efforts in other nations; the death of church patriarch ; the establishment of the city charter; the commencement of construction of the Nauvoo ; the expedition that facilitated temple construction; the introduction of the doctrine of proxy baptism for deceased persons; the dedicatory prayer by on the Mount of Olives in Palestine; publication of the “Book of Abraham” in the Nauvoo Times and Seasons; publication of the JS history often referred to as the “Wentworth letter;” the organization of the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo; and the inception of Nauvoo-era temple endowment ceremonies.
<July 7 Farewell of the 12.> testimony of the truth of the Book of Mormon &c— s address went chiefly to exhortation to the Saints, after which he bore his testimony also. Elder next came forward and having alluded to his own late fall exhorted all to perseverance in the things of God, expressed himself, one with his brethren, and bore testimony to his knowledge of the truth, and the misery of falling from it. Elder made some very appropriate remarks, and also bore testimony to the truth of these things, and gave an invitation to come forward and be baptized, when three manifested their determination to renounce the world, and take upon themselves the name of Jesus Christ— One brother was then confirmed, after which President , addressed the meeting in a very feeling manner, showing that it must be no small matter, which could induce men to leave their families, and their homes to travel over all the Earth, amidst persecutions and trials, such as always followed the preaching of this Gospel; he then addressed himself to [HC 4:2] the Twelve and gave them some Counsel and Consolation as far as in his power. after which I requested their prayers, and promised to pray for them— &c— The meeting was large and respectable, a large number were present who did not belong to the Church— The most perfect order prevailed throughout— The meeting was dismissed about half past five when we repaired to the Water, and the three Candidates were baptized and confirmed.
<8 Selecting Hymns > Monday. Tuesday, and Wednesday, 8. 9. and 10. I was with the Twelve selecting hymns, for the purpose of compiling a hymn book.—
<Sickness commenced> About this time, sickness began to manifest itself, much amongst the brethren, as well as among the inhabitants of the place, so that this week and the following was generally spent in visiting the sick, and ministering unto them, some had faith enough, and were healed, others had not.
<21> Sunday 21. There was no meeting on account of much rain, and much sickness, however, many of the sick were this day raised up by the power of God. through the instrumentality of the Elders of Israel ministering unto them in the name of Jesus Christ
<28.> Sunday 28. Meeting was held as usual, Elder preached on the gathering of Israel, and in the afternoon addressed the Church, on the necessity of keeping the commandments of God after which I spoke and admonished the church individually to set their houses in order, to make clean the inside of the platter, and to [HC 4:4] meet on the next sabbath to partake of <the> Sacrament in order that by our obedience to the ordinances, we might be enabled to prevail with God against the destroyer, and that the sick may might be healed. All this week chiefly spent among the sick, who in general are gaining strength, and recovering health
<August 4> Sunday August 4. The Church came together for prayer meeting and Sacrament I exhorted the Church at length, concerning the necessity of being righteous, and clean at heart before the Lord, many others also spoke, especially some of the Twelve who were present, professed their willingness to proceed on their Mission [p. 964]