Minutes, , OH, 13–14 Jan. 1833. Featured version copied [ca. 14 Jan. 1833] in Minute Book 1, pp. 5–6; handwriting of ; CHL. For more complete source information, see the source note for Minute Book 1.
On 13 January 1833, a of twelve and three convened in , Ohio, to address “the subject of Rebelion in .” The conference discussed two concerns in particular: First, the conference considered how to fulfill a given in a 22–23 September 1832 revelation that the revelation’s addressees chastise elders in for rebelling against JS. Second, the conference discussed two letters written by and in December 1832 that, according to and , continued a pattern of “low, dark, & blind insinuations” in communications from Missouri leaders. Ultimately, the conference assigned Hyde and Hyrum Smith to compose a letter to “the brethren in Zion” that would address these issues. Hyde and Smith’s letter was intended to support a letter JS had already written to Phelps, castigating him and Gilbert for their missives.
The 22–23 September revelation condemned the “brethren in for there rebellion” and charged “all those to whom the kingdom has been given” to upbraid the rebellious elders. convened and conducted the 13 January “Conference of High Priests” to fulfill that instruction. According to the letter written by and , the twelve high priests participating in the conference were those who “were present at the time” JS dictated the 22–23 September revelation, and therefore those who had specifically been given the charge regarding the Missouri elders. Explaining the rationale for their letter, Hyde and Smith wrote to the Missouri Saints, “You have never been apprised of these things by the united voice of a conference of those high priests.”
Even though the had authority to “preside with the assistence of his councellers over all the Concerns of the church,” a November 1831 revelation specifically authorized the president of the high priesthood to convene a president’s court—consisting of the president and twelve high priests as counselors—when dealing with “the most important business of the church & the most difficult cases of the church.” The minutes of this meeting do not designate this conference as a president’s court, but the fact that this conference consisted of twelve high priests and that and emphasized the composition of the council in their letter suggests that it may have functioned as such or at least been inspired by that November 1831 direction.
As clerk of the conference, inscribed the original minutes, which he then copied into Minute Book 1.
This day a of assembled by request of Bro , Present , J Smith Jr — & , , & John Reed
arose and stated his object in calling the meeting & opened by prayer,
The first Itim that came before the conference for their consideration, was on the subject of the Revelation given 22 & 23d Sept 1832 relative to the saints in — It was resolved that Bro & be a committe to write an Epistle to them <on that subject> and also on the subject of Letters wr[it]ten by Bros & in the name of the conference This conference sanctioned a letter writen to of on the 11 inst. by Bro Joseph Smith J It was also resolved that the should see to the conducting of the meetings on the sabbath days when present, & the in his abscence
Resolved also that prayer be offered up by all the members of the conference that the epistle written [p. 5]