JS, History, 1838–1856, vol. E-1, created 20 Aug. 1855–5 Apr. 1856; handwriting of Robert L. Campbell, , and Jonathan Grimshaw; 392 pages, plus 11 pages of addenda; CHL. This is the fifth volume of a six-volume manuscript history of the church. This fifth volume covers the period from 1 July 1843 to 30 Apr. 1844; the remaining five volumes, labeled A-1, B-1, C-1, D-1, and F-1, continue through 8 Aug. 1844.
History, 1838–1856, volume E-1, constitutes the fifth of six volumes documenting the life of Joseph Smith and the early years of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The series is also known as the Manuscript History of the Church and was originally published serially from 1842 to 1846 and 1851 to 1858 as the “History of Joseph Smith” in the Times and Seasons and Deseret News. This volume contains JS’s history from 1 July 1843 to 30 April 1844, and it was compiled in Utah Territory in the mid-1850s.
The material recorded in volume E-1 was initially compiled under the direction of church historian , who was JS’s cousin. Smith collaborated with in collecting material for the history and creating a set of draft notes that Smith dictated to Bullock and other clerks.
Robert L. Campbell, a recently returned missionary and member of the Historian’s Office staff, transcribed ’s notes into the volume along with the text of designated documents (such as letters and meeting minutes). The Church Historian’s Office journal entry for 2 May 1855 pinpoints the beginning of his work: “R. L. C. on Book D forenoon, afternoon began book E.” Campbell’s work on the volume apparently concluded on 5 April 1856; entries in the Historian’s Office journal indicate that he then moved on to other assignments while another clerk, Jonathan Grimshaw, began work on volume F-1, the last manuscript in the series. (Historian’s Office, Journal, 2 May 1855; 5 and 9 Apr. 1856.)
Volume E-1 contains 391 pages of primary text and 11 pages of addenda. The initial entry on page 1637 is a continuation of the 1 July 1843 entry that closed volume D-1. The final entry in volume E-1 is for 30 April 1844.
The 391 pages of volume E-1 document a crucial period of JS’s life and the history of the church. Important events recorded here include
• An account of JS’s 2 July 1843 meeting with several Pottawatamie chiefs.
• JS’s 4 July 1843 address regarding his recent arrest, the Legion, and Mormon voting practices.
• JS’s 12 July 1843 dictation of a revelation regarding eternal marriage, including the plurality of wives, in the presence of and .
• Dispatch of the first missionaries to the Pacific Islands on 20 September 1843, led by .
• JS’s 1 October 1843 announcement of ’s appointment to a mission to Russia.
• Minutes of a 6–9 October 1843 general conference inserted under the date of 9 October at which pled his case in regard to his 13 August 1843 disfellowshipment and was permitted to continue as counselor in the First Presidency.
• Text of JS’s appeal to the Green Mountain Boys of , inserted under the date of 29 November 1843.
• A 20 January 1844 entry that includes a poem by commemorating the presentation of two copies of the Book of Mormon to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert by .
• JS’s nomination on 29 January 1844 as an independent candidate for the presidency of the .
<July 1> consumption, had been brutally violated by a gang of them, and died in their hands, leaving three little children, in whose presence the scene of brutality took place.
After I got out of prison, and had arrived in Illinois, I met a strange man in the street, who was inquiring and inquired of me respecting a circumstance of this kind— saying he had heard of it, and was on his way going to to get the children if he could find them. He said the woman thus murdered was his Sister, or his wife’s sister. I am not positive which. The man was in great agitation. What success he had I know not.
The trial at last ended, and Joseph Smith Senior, , , , and were sent to in the village of , Clay county Missouri.
We were kept there from three to four months; after which time we were brought out on , before one of the county judges. During the hearing under the habeas corpus I had, for the first time, an opportunity of hearing the evidence, as it was all written and read before the court.
It appeared from the evidence, that they attempted to prove us guilty of treason in consequence of the militia of being under arms at the time that ’ army came to . This [HC 3:464] calling out of the Militia, was what they founded the charge of treason upon— an account of which I have given above. The charge of murder was founded on the fact, that a man of their number, they said, had been killed in the battle.
The other charges were founded on things which took place in . As I was not in at that time, I cannot testify anything about them.
A few words about this written testimony.
I do not now recollect of one single point, about which testimony was given, with which I was acquainted, but was misrepresented, nor one solitary witness whose testimony was there written, that did not swear falsely; and in many instances I cannot see how it could avoid being intentional on the part of those who testified— for all of them did swear things that I am satisfied they knew to be false at the time— and it would be hard to persuade me to the contrary.
There were things there said, so utterly without foundation in truth— so much so— that the persons swearing, must, at the time of swearing, have know it. The best construction I can ever put on it, is, that they swore things to be true which they did not know to be so, and this, to me, is wilful perjury.
This trial lasted for a long time, the result of which was, that I was ordered to be discharged from prison, and the rest remanded back: but I was told by those who professed to be my friends, that it would not do for me to go out of jail at that time, as the mob were watching, and would most certainly take my life— and when I got out, that I must leave the , for the mob availing themselves of the exterminating order of , would, if I were found in the , surely take my life— that I had no way to escape them but to flee with all speed from the . It was some ten days after this before I dare leave the . At last the evening came in which I was to leave the . Every preparation was made that could be made for my escape. There was a carriage ready to take me in and carry me off with all speed. A pilot was ready— one who was well acquainted with the country— to pilot me through the country so that I might not go on any of the public roads. My wife came to the to accompany me, [p. 1650]