Memorial to the United States President, 30 March 1844

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To his Excellency, the of the .
Your memorialist a free born citizen of these , respectfully sheweth, that from his infancy, his soul has been filled with the most intense intent and philanthropic interest for the welfare of his native , and being fired with an ardor, which floods cannot quench, crowns cannot conquer, nor diplomatic intrigue corrupt, to see those principles, which emanated from the bosoms of the fathers of seventy six, and which cost the noblest talents and richest blood of the , maintained inviolate, and perpetrated to future generations; and the Proud Eagle of American freedom soar triumphant over every party prejudice, and local sinistry; and spread her golden pinions over every member of the human family, who shall stretch forth their hands for succor from the Lion’s paw, or the oppressor’s grasp; and firmly trusting in the God of Liberty, that he has designed Universal peace, and good will, Union and brotherly love to all the great family of Man. ———— Your Memorialist asks your , to secure to your Memorialist, the following privilege, to wit the privilege of protecting the Citizens of these , and others, who have emigrated, or may hereafter emigrate, to the adjoining Terroritories, and of extending the Priniciples of Universal Liberty. as
Whereas many of the Citizens of these , have migrated, and are migrating to , , and other Lands contiguous to this ; And whereas has declared herself free and independent without the necessary power to protect her rights and liberties: And whereas is without any organized government, and those who emigrate thither, are exposed to foreign invasion, and domestic feuds: And whereas the by geographic location, and discovery, more rightfully belongs to these than to any other General Government: And whereas it is necessary that the emigrants of that newly setters settling territory should receive protection: And whereas the Texian government has petitioned the to be received into our , but yet retains her national existence: And whereas the remember with gratitude, the seasonable support they received in a like situation from a La Fayette: And whereas the desire to see the principles of her free institutions extended to all men; especially where it can be done without the loss of blood, and treasure to the : And whereas there is an almost boundless extent of Territory, on the West and South, of these , where exists little or no organization of protective government: And whereas the lands thus unknown, unowned, or unoccupied are among some of the richest and most fertile of the Continent: And whereas many of the Inhabitants of the , would gladly embrace the opportunity of extending their researches and acquirements, so soon as they can receive protection in their enterprize, thereby adding strength, durability and wealth to the ; And whereas the red man, the robber, and the desperado have frequently interrupted such research and acquistion without justifiable cause: And whereas Joseph Smith has offered, and does hereby offer, these , through your ; To shew his loyalty to our Confederate , and the Constitution of our ; To prevent quarrel and bloodshed on our frontier; To extend the arm of deliverance to ; To protect the Inhabitants of from foreign aggression, and domestic broils: To prevent the crowned nations from encircling us, as a on our Western and Southern borders, and save the Eagle’s talon from the Lion’s paw: [p. [1]]To still the tongue of Slander, and shew the world that a Republic can be and not be ungrateful: To open the vast regions of the unpeopled West and South to our enlightened and enterprising yeomanry: To protect them in their researches; To secure them in their locations, and thus strengthen the Government and enlarge her borders: To extend her influence: To inspire the nations with the Spirit of Freedom, and win them to her standard: To promote intelligence: To cultivate and establish peace among all, with whom we may have intercourse as neighbors: To settle all existing difficulties, among those not organized into an acknowledged government bordering upon the and territories: To save the national revenue in the ’s coffers: To supersede the necessity of a standing army, on our western and southern frontier: To create and maintain the principles of peace, and suppress Mobs, insurrections, and oppression in , and all lands bordering upon the , and not incorporated into any acknowledged national government: To explore the unexplored regions of our Continent: To open new feildsfields for enterprize to our Citizens, and protect them therein: To search out the antiquities of the Land, and thereby promote the arts, and sciences and general information: To amalgamate the feelings of all with whom he may have intercourse, on the principles of Equity, liberty, justice, humanity and benevelonce: To break down tyranny and oppression, and exalt the Standard of Universal peace: Provided he shall have the privilege, and be protected in those fights and privileges, which constitutionally belong to every citizen of this :— Therefore, that the said Memorialist may have the privilige; and that no citizen of these shall obstruct, or attempt to obstruct or hinder so good,, so great, so noble an enterprize, to carry out those plans and principles, as set forth in this preamble, and be shielded from every opposition by evil and designing men.
Be it known that I, , President of the , have granted, and by these letters do grant, unto Joseph Smith of the city of in the State of , all the privileges called for in the foregoing Preamble, and the said Joseph Smith is hereby authorised and empowered to raise a company of one hundred thousand men, otherwise called armed volunteers, in these and Territories, at such times and places and in such numbers as he shall find necessary and convenient, for the purposes specified in the Preamble to this proclamation, and to execute the same. And further:
Be it known, that to prevent any person or persons from hindering, or attempting to hinder, or molest, the said Smith in executing his design, in enlisting and organizing said volunteers, and marching or transporting the same to the borders of the and Territories, I have constituted, and by these letters do constitute the said Joseph Smith, a member of the Army of the and <​the said Smith​> is authorised to act as such in the and Territories, and upon all lands bordering upon the and Territories, for the purposes specified in the foregoing preamble: Provided said lands shall not be within the acknowledged jurisdicition of any acknowledged national government; And further;
Be it known that nothing in these letters shall be so construed by any individual or nation, as to consider the Volunteers aforesaid, or any part or parcel thereof as constituting any portion of the Army of the United States; Neither shall the said Joseph Smith as a member of the United States Army, disturb the peace [p. [2]]of any nation or government, acknowledged as such, break the faith of Treaties between the , and any other nation, or violate any known law of nations, thereby endangering the peace of these . And further;
Be it known; that, the said “Joseph Smith shall confine his operations to those principles of action specified in the Preamble to these Letters;” And further;
Be it known; that, the more fully to encourage the said Smith in his laudable and magnanimous undertaking to ameliorate the conditions of the opprest, and encourage him in the same, it is the good will and pleasure, of the that the privileges therein granted to the memorialist, shall be as perpetual as the circumstances and specifications which have originated the same, as set forth in the preamble to these letters, and the same is hereby confirmed unto the said Smith, so far as the power thereof is vested in the Executive.
In testimony whereof I have caused these letters to be made patent, and the great Seal of State to be affixed
Done at the City of .
Joseph Smith
City of Illinois March 30th. 1844 [p. [3]]
March 30th 1844
Memorial of Joseph Smith to the of the .
March 30th 1844
fair copied per [p. [4]]


  1. new scribe logo

    Signature in unidentified handwriting.  

  2. new scribe logo

    Docket in handwriting of Thomas Bullock.  

  3. new scribe logo

    Notation in handwriting of Thomas Bullock.