Letter to Sally Waterman Phelps, 20 July 1835

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

, as has given me an opertunity in his paper letter, I gladly improve it, how far it may be to your edifycation I know not, but trust you will reciev[e] it in a maner that shall answer my intention in so doing— for my intention is to give you a word of consolation to streng[th]en you in the absence of your most worthy Companion; and— husband whose Merits and experiance and acquirements, but few can compete with in this generation and fewer I fear will ever appretiate the worth of such men; men upon whom God, in his wi[s]dom hath bestowed gifts, that duly qualify them to lead men in the way of life and salvation. I consider in some degree how great a trial you must have in this seperation, but I think I may safely say, that you may rest with a firm reliance that God will so order it that you may not be seperated only but for a short season, and then <​your joy will be full,​> and if faithful <​he will​> return and teach you things that have been hid from the wise and prudent, hiden things of old times, as Moses said in Deut. 33d <​chap​> 19th verse for they shall suck of the abundance of [the] [se]as and of the treasures hid in the sand. Some of the[se] things have begun [to] come forth therefore Lift up your heart and be glad; be comforted be faithful: pray in faith; and in fine say to all the saints in as the Lord God liveth the redemtion of Zion is nigh at hand, and we shall live to see it
J. Sm[i]th Jr. [p. [1]]
[Text recovered from digital manipulation of the photograph of the recto.]
Paid 25
July 21
[&] W.W. Phe.lps
Liberty
Clay Co
Mo.

Footnotes

  1. 1

    Phelps had received a letter from Sally the day before. According to Phelps, when JS read Sally’s letter, he “remarked that it was as easy to shed tears while reading that letter as it was when reading the History of Joseph in Egypt.” (Phelps, “Letters of Faith from Kirtland,” 529.)  

    Phelps, Leah Y. “Letters of Faith from Kirtland.” Improvement Era 45, no. 8 (Aug. 1942): 529.

  2. 2

    TEXT: Possibly “fewer”.  

  3. 3

    In an 1832 letter to Phelps, JS told him that he had “the most implicit confidence in [him] as a man of God having obtained this confidence by a vision of heavn.” In August 1835, Oliver Cowdery informed Sally that her husband was “humble and faithful.” (Letter to William W. Phelps, 27 Nov. 1832; “Some Early Letters of William W. Phelps,” Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine, Jan. 1940, 29.)  

    Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine. Salt Lake City. 1910–1940.

  4. 4

    Oliver Cowdery told Sally Phelps in August 1835 that she could expect her husband’s return in the spring of 1836 “if all be well.” Phelps actually returned to Missouri by June 1836. (“Some Early Letters of William W. Phelps,” Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine, Jan. 1940, 29; “2d Series—Letter No. I,” LDS Messenger and Advocate, July 1836, 2:340.)  

    Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine. Salt Lake City. 1910–1940.

    Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate. Kirtland, OH. Oct. 1834–Sept. 1837.

  5. 5

    TEXT: “[hole in paper]as”. Missing text supplied from Deuteronomy 33:19.  

  6. 6

    TEXT: “[hole in paper]”.  

  7. 7

    In his portion of the letter to Sally, William related that JS had obtained four Egyptian mummies and two papyrus rolls at the end of June. According to William, JS stated that the papyri “contained the sacred record kept of Joseph in Pharaoh’s Court in Egypt, and the teachings of Father Abraham.” William continued, “There is nothing secret or hidden that shall not be revealed.” In a May 1835 letter, William also explained to Sally “a new idea” that “if you and I continue faithful to the end, we are certain of being one in the Lord throughout eternity.” (Phelps, “Letters of Faith from Kirtland,” 529; William W. Phelps, Kirtland, OH, to Sally Waterman Phelps, Liberty, MO, 26 May 1835, William W. Phelps, Papers, BYU.)  

    Phelps, Leah Y. “Letters of Faith from Kirtland.” Improvement Era 45, no. 8 (Aug. 1942): 529.

    Phelps, William W. Papers, 1835–1865. BYU.

  8. 8

    See Old Testament Revision 1, p. 18 [Moses 7:44]; Revelation, Sept. 1830–A [D&C 29:5]; and Revelation, 7 Dec. 1830 [D&C 35:26].  

  9. 9

    In an August 1834 letter to Missouri church leaders, JS stated that 11 September 1836 was “the appointed time for the redemption of Zion.” (Letter to Lyman Wight et al., 16 Aug. 1834.)  

  10. 10

    TEXT: “Sm[page torn]th”.  

  11. new scribe logo

    Postage and postmark in unidentified handwriting.  

  12. new scribe logo

    Address in handwriting of William W. Phelps.