Letter from Robert Peirce, 20 August 1841

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

Chester Co August 20th. 1841
Esteemed Brother in the Gosple
As Brothers [William] Gheen and leaves here to morrow morning for your place, I embrace this opportunity to drop a line, As Brother Gheen has not sold his property yet, I wish you to supply him with some property there on my account; and Brother Whitesides has written to me for money; as money is scarce with me at this time, having my stock on hand yet, and meeting with difficulties a little as he did I am under the painful necesity of sending him your note, if you can answer it, it will oblidge <​me​> verry much, and him too I expect, If you cant do it, I hope ere long to be there and attend to it myself, my heart sickens within me to see the conduct in this place at this time. We are all well at present and hope this will find you & Family enjoying the blessings of health and peace we wish to be remembered to all enquiring friends, With sentiments of respect I subscribe myself yours as ever
Joseph Smith [p. [1]]
[page [2] blank] [p. [2]]
[page [3] blank] [p. [3]]
Joseph Smith
Politeness of Wm. A Gheen [p. [4]]


  1. 1

    William Gheen was born in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, in 1798 and joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1840. (Ann Gheen Kimball, Journal, 1–3; Snow, Journal, 1838–1841, 90, 98–99.)  

    Kimball, Ann Alice Gheen. Journal, ca. 1869–1879. Heber C. Kimball Family Collection, 1840–1890. CHL.

    Snow, Erastus. Journals, 1835–1851; 1856–1857. CHL. MS 1329, box 1, fds. 1–3.

  2. 2

    Likely James Whitesides, a member of the church from Brandywine, Pennsylvania, who relocated to Montrose, Iowa Territory, by 1841. (Minutes, Times and Seasons, 1 Nov. 1840, 2:[206]; Edward Hunter, Nauvoo, IL, to Edward Hunter [Uncle], Brandywine Manor, PA, 11 Dec. 1841, typescript, Edward Hunter Correspondence, BYU.)  

    Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.

    Hunter, Edward. Correspondence, 1725–1965. BYU.

  3. 3

    Peirce probably purchased stock in the Nauvoo House from Hyrum Smith or Isaac Galland—both were selling stock as agents for JS and had recently been in Pennsylvania. (Authorization for Hyrum Smith and Isaac Galland, 15 Feb. 1841; Letter from William Smith, 5 Aug. 1841.)  

  4. 4

    Peirce’s Brandywine congregation met with Philadelphia members at a special conference in March 1841, suggesting he would have been aware of disharmony the church in Philadelphia experienced throughout 1841. The March special conference was called to settle disputes between local leader Benjamin Winchester and traveling elder Almon Babbitt. Their disagreements were “the cause of much sorrow to the saints.” Discord continued after John E. Page arrived in June 1841. After preaching to the Philadelphia Saints for some time, Page wrote to JS to complain of Benjamin Winchester’s leadership and to encourage JS to send an elder to gain the confidence of the branch. (Minutes, Times and Seasons, 15 Nov. 1840, 2:217; Philadelphia Branch Record Book, 15 Mar. 1841; Letter from John E. Page, 1 Sept. 1841.)  

    Times and Seasons. Commerce/Nauvoo, IL. Nov. 1839–Feb. 1846.

    Philadelphia Branch, Record Book, 1840–1854. CCLA.