License for Joseph Smith Sr., 9 June 1830
“A License Liberty Power & Authority,” License, , Seneca Co., NY, for , 9 June 1830; handwriting of ; signatures of JS and ; one page; JS Collection, CHL.Single leaf measuring 10¼ × 7¾ inches (26 × 20 cm). The verso has a notation in the handwriting of Joseph F. Smith, who became president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1901: “Rec’d from Cousin | Elias A. Smith | Oct. 8. 1902 | J. F. Smith”. It is unknown when the document was transferred from Joseph F. Smith’s custody to the custody of the Church Historian’s Office.
The following document is a “signifying & proveing” that , one of the six founding members of the church and one of the Eight Witnesses who saw and handled the , was a of the . He was ordained at the church’s first and was among those who received ministerial licenses at this gathering. The duties of a priest, which had been outlined previously, were “to preach, teach, expound, and exhort, and , and administer the , and visit the house of each member, and exhort them to pray vocally and in secret, and also to attend to all family duties, to ordain priests, , and , and to take the lead in meetings; but none of these offices is he to do when there is an present, but in all cases is to assist the elder, &c.” The church’s foundational document, “Articles and Covenants,” gave priests more authority than teachers and deacons but less than elders.
|Signed by||(Joseph Smith Jr first Elder|
|( Second Elder|
Laws of the State of New-York, Revised and Passed at the Thirty-Sixth Session of the Legislature, With Marginal Notes and References. 2 Vols. Albany: H. C. Southwick and Company, 1813.
Morris, Rob. The Masonic Martyr. The Biography of Eli Bruce, Sheriff of Niagara County, New York, Who, for His Attachment to the Principles of Masonry, and His Fidelity to His Trust, Was Imprisoned Twenty-Eight Months in the Canandaigua Jail. Louisville, KY: Morris and Monsarrat, 1861.