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.
<March 5 ’ Letter> , , and went to see , week before last, brn , , and myself are of opinion that it is not wisdom to make a trade with the at present, possibly it may be wisdom to effect a trade hereafter—
The people <here> receive us — — kindly — — — they have contributed near $100. Cash, besides other property for the relief of the suffering among our people. Brother Joseph’s lives at ’s, I have not seen her, but I sent her word of this opportunity to send to you. ’s lives not far from me, I have been to see her a number of times, her health was very poor when she arrived but she has been getting better, she knows of this opportunity to send. I saw Sister Wright [Harriet Benton Wight] soon after her arrival here, all were well. I understand that she has moved out about two miles with Father & John Higbee who are fishing this Spring— Sister [Eunice Fitzgerald] Mc.Rae is here, living with Br. Henderson and is well I believe she knows of this opportunity to send. ’s family I have not seen, and do not know that she has got here as yet, She however may be upon the other side of the , the ice has run these three days past so that there has been no crossing, the weather is now moderating and the crossing will soon commence again. This place is full of our people, yet they are scattering off nearly all the while. I expect to start tomorrow for Pittsfield, Pike Co. Ill. about 45 miles S. E. from this place. Br. told me this morning that he expected that his , , and himself would go on a farm about 20 miles N. E. from this place— Some of the leading men have given us, [HC 3:272] (that is our people) an invitation to settle in and about this place, many no doubt will stay here—
Brn I hope that you will bear patiently the privations that you are called to endure— the Lord will deliver in his own due time— Your letter respecting the trade with was not received here until after our return from his residence at the head of the shoals or rapids. If were not here we might (after receiving your letter) come to a different conclusion respecting that trade. There are some here that are sanguine that we ought to trade with the . and are not here, and have not been, as I know of. and have settled some 20 or 25 miles N. of this place for the present. A Br. Lee who lived near died on the opposite side of the a few days since, preached his funeral Sermon in the Court House. It is a general time of health here, We greatly desire to see you, and to have you enjoy your freedom. The Citizens here are willing, that we should enjoy the privileges guaranteed to all civil people without molestation— I remain your Brother in the Lord. —” -[directed]- “To Joseph Smith Jr. and others confined in Mo.”
<6. to Joseph> “, Illinois March 6th. 1839. Brethren and Joseph— Having an opportunity to send a line to you, I do not feel disposed to let it slip unnoticed, ’s family have all arrived in this , except you two, and could I but see your faces, this side of the , and know and realize that you had been delivered from your enemies, it would certainly light up a new gleam of hope in our bosoms nothing could be more satisfactory, nothing could give us more joy. and Children are well, they live three miles from here, and have a tolerable good place [p. 892]