, Letter, , to JS, [, Hancock Co., IL?], 20 Feb. 1840. Featured version copied [between Apr. and June 1840] in JS Letterbook 2, pp. 96–97; handwriting of ; JS Collection, CHL. For more complete source information, see the source note for JS Letterbook 2.
On 20 February 1840, wrote two letters to JS from . In the first letter, Higbee discussed testimony he had presented before the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, which was considering the ’s memorial to Congress. The letter featured here refers to that account of Higbee’s remarks, indicating that this was the second letter he wrote that day. In this letter, Higbee addressed matters associated with the travel expenses of the church’s delegation to the federal government. He also requested that certain documents—including affidavits and newspaper articles that supported statements he had made before the judiciary committee—be sent to him so that he could present them to the committee.
presumably sent this letter by post to , Illinois, where JS would have received it after he returned from on or before 29 February 1840. The original letter is not extant. copied the version featured here into JS Letterbook 2 sometime between April and June 1840.
I received a letter this morning from ; who writes that he missed having the chills one week but that it had returned again— I forwarded him a letter from . Mr’s Richey has just received a letter from Baltimore in answer to one that she lately sent, stating that none of our are there preaching; which gives me reason to think that is not there. I have recd. the letter you gave me, mailed at . has gone home, Mr. Richards has forsaken use, and And also has not paid me the money which we lent him.
says he has not recd. any funds yet. I was obliged I was obliged to let have money to go home, and likewis[e] to pay his board here; which will take about all the borrowed money we owed him. Consequently it will not be many weeks before I shall send for more
made no objections to honoring the order from . I wish you would comfort my . If you have an opportunity I should be very glad to receive a word of comfort by letter or by the Boys. writes for me not to think of publishing the documents now as we have not the means of so doing. I shall write again soon. Be assured as ever of the best feelings of my heart. Give my love to all enquiring friends
Jos. Smith Jr.}
P.S. I do not preach publickly just now for I have not time: but am preaching privately. Some of them have got so much self righteousness that I have not been able [to] do much with them yet. yet [p. 96]
It is unclear where Babbitt was at the time Higbee wrote this letter. According to Benjamin Johnson, Babbitt and his wife, Julia Johnson Babbitt, had left to serve a mission to the eastern United States in late 1839. Benjamin Winchester reported that Babbitt was preaching in Philadelphia by April 1840. (Johnson, “A Life Review,” 58, 62; “Important Church News,” Times and Seasons, May 1840, 1:109.)
Johnson, Benjamin Franklin. “A Life Review,” after 1893. Benjamin Franklin Johnson, Papers, 1852–1911. CHL. MS 1289 box 1, fd. 1.
Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.
Parley P. Pratt had been in Washington DC for a few weeks to help JS and Higbee muster popular support for the church’s efforts to petition the federal government for redress and reparations. Pratt then returned to New York City, where he and his family were living, for several months before he traveled with the other apostles to England. (Higbee and Pratt, Address by Judge Higbee and Parley P. Pratt, 4; Letter from Elias Higbee, 9 Mar. 1840; [Parley P. Pratt], “Sketches of Travels in America, and Voyage to England,” LDS Millennial Star, July 1840, 1:50–51.)
Pratt, Parley P., and Elias Higbee. An Address by Judge Higbee and Parley P. Pratt, Ministers of the Gospel, of the Church of Jesus Christ of “Latter-day Saints,” to the Citizens of Washington, and to the Public in General. N.p., 1840.