Lease to Willard Richards, 4 January 1842
JS, Lease, , Hancock Co., IL, to , , Hancock Co., IL, 4 Jan. 1842; handwriting of ; one page; JS Collection, CHL. Included seal (not extant); includes dockets.Single leaf of ledger paper measuring 15⅜ × 6⅜ inches (39 × 16 cm). Embossed in the upper left corner of the recto is a rectangle enclosing a decorative star and “D & J. Ames Springfield”, the insignia of a Springfield, Massachusetts, paper mill firm established by brothers David and John Ames in 1828. The lease was inscribed on one side of the paper. In the lower right corner of the recto, there is residue from two red adhesive wafers used to adhere a paper seal (not extant) to the page. The document was trifolded and then folded in half, forming six panels.The document’s verso was docketed by , who served as JS’s scribe from December 1841 until JS’s death in June 1844 and served as church historian from December 1842 until his own death in March 1854. The document contains another docket, possibly inscribed by , who served as JS’s scribe from 1843 to 1844 and as clerk to the church historian and recorder from 1845 to 1865. By 1973 the document had been included in the JS Collection at the Church Historical Department (now CHL). The document’s early dockets and inclusion in the JS Collection by 1973 suggest continuous institutional custody.
Whiting, William. “Paper-Making in New England.” In The New England States: Their Constitutional, Judicial, Educational, Commercial, Professional and Industrial History, edited by William T. Davis, vol. 1, pp. 303–333. Boston: D. H. Hurd, 1897.
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Deseret News. Salt Lake City. 1850–.
Jessee, Dean C. “The Writing of Joseph Smith’s History.” BYU Studies 11 (Summer 1971): 439–473.
Woodruff, Wilford. Journals, 1833–1898. Wilford Woodruff, Journals and Papers, 1828–1898. CHL. MS 1352.
On 4 January 1842 JS leased to a newly constructed built for JS by member . The brick building was in the southwest part of the , Illinois, peninsula, on the southeast corner of Water and Granger streets. It consisted of two floors and a cellar. The primary retail area was on the first floor; dry goods and storage were on the second floor. Both floors also contained office space.According to the terms of the agreement, would lease the and the “appurtenances thereunto belonging” except one room on the second floor that was reserved as an office for JS. Richards was to pay JS $500, due at the conclusion of the one-year lease. At that time, Richards would have the option to lease the property for an additional four years, at $500 per year plus 15 percent interest annually.In a 13 December 1841 entry in JS’s journal, noted his appointment to serve as “scribe for the private office of the President. Just opened in the upper story of the New .” The following day Richards noted that JS began unpacking and arranging the goods to be displayed in the large room on the second floor, while joiners and masons continued their work on the first floor. By the time the lease was executed on 4 January 1842, Richards apparently had a first-floor office, in which he carried out the responsibilities of another newly appointed position—that of recorder for the , a role that involved receiving donations for the temple’s construction. The day after the lease was created, the store opened for business, with JS clerking.The manuscript contains numerous emendations and lacks signatures, suggesting that it is a first draft. It is possible that a later draft of the lease was written and signed. Alternatively, it is possible that another version was never made and that the transfer of the business was not concluded as outlined in this indenture.