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 .
<1844 April 6> -[ stopped to refresh himself]- The choir sung hymn 104:
Elder being called upon to address the congregation, said,
It gives me pleasure to meet and associate with so large an assembly of the saints. I always feel at home among the brethren. I consider them the honorable of the earth; and if I can do anything to conduce to their happiness, or that will in any wise lend to their edification, I am satisfied. I therefore address this congregation with cheerfulness and pleasure; and if by unfolding any of the principles of truth that I am in possession of, or laying before you anything pertaining to the Kingdom; If my ideas will enlarge your minds or produce beneficial results to any, I shall consider myself on this, as on all other occasions amply repaid. Many things have been spoken by concerning the early history of this church. There is no individual who has searched the oracles of eternal truth, but his mind will be touched with the remarks made by our venerable friend which unfold the dispensation of Jehovah, and have a tendency to produce the most thrilling feelings in the bosoms of many who are this day present, and to promote our general edification; he traces with pleasure on the historic page the rise of Nations, Kingdoms, and empires. Historians dwell with great minuteness on the heroic deeds, the chivalrous acts, the dangers and deliverances, the tact, bravery, and heroism of their chieftains, generals and governments. We as republicans, look back to the time when this nation was under the iron rule of Great Britain, and groaned under the power, tyranny and oppression of that powerful nation. We trace with delight, the name of a [George] Washington, a [Thomas] Jefferson, a LaFayette, and an [John] Adams, in whose bosoms burnt the spark of liberty. These themes are dwelt upon with delight by our own legislators, our governors and presidents; they are subjects which fire our souls with patriotic ardor. But if these things animate them so much, how much more great, noble and exalted are the things laid before us. They were engaged in founding kingdoms and empires that were destined to dissolution and decay; and although many of them were great, formidable, and powerful, they now exist only in name. Their “cloud-capped towers, their solemn temples, are dissolved”, and nothing now remains of their former magnificence, or ancient grandeur, but a few dilapidated buildings and broken columns; a few shattered fragments remain to tell to this and to other generations, the perishable nature of earthly pomp and worldly glory.— They were engaged in founding empires and establishing Kingdoms, and power and had in them<selves> the seeds of destruction, and were destined to decay. We are laying the foundation of a Kingdom that shall last forever— that shall bloom in time and blossom in eternity. We are engaged in a greater work than ever occupied the attention of mortals; we live in a day that prophets and Kings desired to see, but died without the sight. When we hear the history of the rise of this Kingdom from one who has been with it from its infancy— from the lips of our venerable friend who has taken an active part in all the history of the church, can we be surprised if he should feel animated, and that his soul should burn with heavenly zeal? We see in him a man of God who can contemplate the glories of heaven— the visions of eternity, and who yet looks forward to the opening glories which the great Eloheim has manifested to him pertaining to righteousness and peace; a man who now beholds the things roll on which he has long since beheld in prophetic vision. Most men have established themselves in authority by laying desolate other Kingdoms, and the destruction of other powers. Their Kingdoms have been founded in blood, and supported by tyranny and oppression. The greatest chieftains of the earth have obtained their glory— if glory it can be called— by blood, carnage, and ruin. One nation [p. 1 [addenda]]