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.
<August 16> succeeded Brother as Editor of the Times and Seasons with Elder .
“At a Special Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, held in the City of — August 16. 1841. Elder was unanimously appointed to preside over the Conference, and and were appointed Clerks. singing by the Choir, conference opened by prayer by the . The object of the Conference was then presented by the , who stated that President Joseph Smith (who was then absent on account of the death of his child) had called a special conference to transact certain items of business necessary to be done previous to the October Conference, such as to select men of experience to send forth into the vineyard, take measures to assist Emigrants who may arrive at the places of gathering, and prevent impositions being practised upon them by unprincipled speculators, &c, and he hoped that no one could view him and his brethren, as aspiring because they had come forward [HC 4:402] to take part in the proceedings before them; for he could assure the brethren, that nothing could be further from his wishes and <those> of his Quorum, than to interfere with Church affairs at and her stakes, for he had been in the vineyard so long, he had become attached to foreign missions, and nothing could induce him to retire therefrom, and attend the affairs of the Church at home but a sense of duty, the requirements of heaven or the revelations of God, to which he would always submit, be the consequence what it might; and the brethren of his Quorum responded. Amen. A list of names of the Elders, and cities were read by the , and a few were selected by nomination and designated as follows: voted that Elders go to . A[braham] O. Smoot to Charleston, South Carolina; <, and> to Salem, Massachusetts. — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — to Baltimore, Maryland; <&> to ¶ on motion of , seconded by . Resolved that the Quorum of the Twelve select the individuals to go and preach in such places as they may judge expedient, and present the same to the Conference; with a view of expediting the business of the day.
The situation of the poor of City, was then presented — — — — — — — — by Bishops and , and a collection taken for their benefit. After singing, conference adjourned until 2 o’clock P. M. <All of the Twelve present at the Conference, went and visited Prest. Joseph Smith to comfort him in his affliction.> Conference assembled at 2 P. M. and was addressed by Elders and , concerning the spread of the gospel and the building up of the Kingdom of God. in these last days. President Joseph Smith now arriving, proceeded to state to the Conference at considerable length, the object of their present meeting, and in addition to what had stated in the morning, said that the time had come when the Twelve should be called upon to stand in their place next to the first Presidency, and attend to the settling of emigrants and the business of the Church at the stakes, and assist to bear off the kingdom victorious to the nations; and as they had been faithful and had borne the burden in the heat of the day, that it was right that they should have an opportunity of providing something for themselves and families, and at the [p. 1221]