Times and Seasons (, Hancock Co., IL), 15 Aug. 1842, vol. 3, no. 20, pp. 879–894; edited by JS. For more complete source information, see the source note for Letter to Isaac Galland, 22 Mar. 1839.
The 15 August 1842 issue of the Times and Seasons was the twelfth JS oversaw as editor. The issue reprinted a letter from the Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star detailing the Saints’ “first Foreign Mission” to Great Britain, which lasted from 1837 to 1838. The issue also continued the serialized “History of Joseph Smith” and reprinted the conclusion of an account from the Bostonian of a “Great Discussion on Mormonism” that had recently taken place in between Latter-day Saint missionary and Methodist minister George Montgomery West.
In addition, the issue included editorial content created by the staff of the paper. These items included an account of the history of persecution endured by the ; a short treatise on the spiritual power of knowledge; a note about unwelcome “loafers” in , Illinois; and an obituary for , a in the church. The issue concluded with a notice asking those indebted to JS’s deceased brother to pay their debts to his widow, . The extent of JS’s involvement in the creation and oversight of the issue’s content is difficult to ascertain, especially since he spent early August preoccupied with attempts to extradite him to and had gone into hiding by 10 August to avoid arrest and possible extradition. Regardless, as editor of the paper, JS assumed responsibility for all published content.
Note that only the editorial content created specifically for this issue of the Times and Seasons is annotated here. Articles reprinted from other papers, letters, conference minutes, and notices, are reproduced here but not annotated. Items that are stand-alone JS documents are annotated elsewhere; links are provided to these stand-alone documents.
and not take cheese; and the man, who seemed to be worked up to a pitch of great excitement, then seized hold of a four pound loaf, relinquishing his hold of the cheese. He said to the man, ‘Why are you in such excitement, and look so angry? what have I done to offend you?’
The man then repeated that he and his family were starving. He, (Mr. Hampson,) though he had an opportunity of preventing his escape, could not bring himself to it, but said, ‘Well, then, we’ll not call this stealing; the bread is yours’—and he went off with it. Nor was this a solitary case of levying provisions in this way. Within the last week, ten or a dozen men in a party had come to his shop and demanded relief, his wife gladly availing herself of the opportunity to put her own hand in the till to relieve them. Contributions on his neighbors through the street were levied at the same time and in the same manner. Now, these were small beginners—God knew where they would end! He added that the poor were dying around him in all directions.
A Mr. Groom, linen draper, said the shopkeepers had not one fourth, nor even one sixth of the business they used to have. No fewer than five shops in his immediate neighborhood had been obliged to close.
Various other tradesmen told the same melancholy tale, and it was finally agreed to call a public meeting of shop keepers on Tuesday evening next, in the town hall.
Society seems on the point of dissolution in the manufacturing districts of Lancashire.— This state of things cannot possibly exist much longer.
Extraordinary Whirlwind—A letter in the Rhone gives the following particulars of a whirlwind at Chauffailes, and its neighborhood on the 24 ult. Thirty houses were actually carried away. Six persons of the same family were killed, others mutilated, children were smothered in their cradles, carriages were carried entire over the roofs of houses, plantations were torn up, and the largest trees were carried to an immense distance. A manufactory for spinning thread had just been constructed within half a league of Chauffailes. All the mason-work was finished, and the carpenters were butting on the roof. Not one stone was left upon another; nor can it be discovered what has become of them. The roofs of houses were carried off to great heights, and left on eminences. The church has been injured to the extent of 3,000f. The crops which were not taken off by the whirlwind were cut to pieces by the hail, which was of extraodinary size, as large as hen’s eggs in general, but at Chateauneuf of great bulk. The cere of that place took up hailstone which as three inches across. No less than twenty persons have been killed.
Great Fire in Russia.—A letter from Peru, in the German papers, state that a dreadful fire burst out lately in the salt-works of Nowa Ussal, in Russia, the ancient property of the Strongonoff family. The flames first apppeared in the house of one of the workman, and communicated almost immediately to some hay—gained such a head, that it was impossible to master them. The conflagration lasted three days, and reduced to ashes every thing within a range of 2 1-2 versts (nearly two miles.) A great number of salt pits in wood and stone, all the manufactories, fifteen stores filled with salt, 30,000 cords of wood, and the ancient and majestic cathedral, the stone dwellings and offices of the various employers, between 500 and 600 houses, and all they contained, fell a prey to the flames.—-[Gallignani’s Messenger.
Gen. . This person who has held such a conspicuous place among the Mormons has been excommunicated from the for seducing an innocent female at . The Wasp of June 25th gives a long account of that and other transactions of , which prove him to be a consummate scoundrel. The Mormons ought to be heartily glad they have rid themselves of him, as his influence might poisen a large community. Joseph Smith or any of his followers need not be in fear of any statements which can be made by , as the charcter of him is too infamous for his stories to be believed by any one.—Bostonian.
This issue of the Times and Seasons also printed a notice to its readers, including both local authorities and general citizens of , urging them to be extra vigilant in light of a perceived increase in danger. During the summer of 1842, rumors spread that was under threat of retaliatory attack for his alleged involvement in the attempt on ’s life. Additionally, the summer months saw a rise in opposition to Latter-day Saints and increased the political fervor of the Anti-Mormon Party, especially leading up to the state elections in August. In response to these threats, a new night watch was established in May 1842 to further secure the city. JS wrote to governor in June 1842 informing him of rumors that several individuals planned to capture JS in Nauvoo and seeking Carlin’s counsel on how best to protect the city “in case of a mob.”
Since the excitement relative to Joseph Smith hes been got up, we have noticed in and about our , a good many strangers, many of whom we judge to be loafers. Some few depredations have been committed, and unless prompt measures are taken to detect the rogues we fear the matter will not end here. We would recommend to our city authorities to be vigilent, and to the citizens generally, to be on the look out. [p. 893]