Minutes, circa 3–4 June 1831

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

Minutes of a general held in Ohio June 3. 1831.
Present.Elders Present.
Joseph Smith jr.William Carter (denied the faith)
(denied the faith)
(was cast out)
Ebenezer Abbott (denied the faith)
John Woodard (Denied the faith)
(Died on a mission to preach)
(denied the faith)William Mitchell
Ebenezer Page
Alpheus Gifford
(denied the faith)
Solomon Chamberlain
Lorin Page
Jacob Sherman (cut off)
Jacob Scott (denied the faith) Benjamin Bragg (denied the faith)
[p. 3]
[Priests cont.][Teachers cont.]
(cut off rec’d back & a Priest)
Isaac Bebee [Beebe]
Benjamin Johnson
Samuel Day
Thoret Parsons
Jacob Chamberlain
opened by br. Joseph Smith jr. in exhortation & prayer, Prayer by br. & exhortation by the same. Exhortation by most of the present.
Brs. & were to the under the hand <​of​> br. Joseph Smith jr.
Exhortation by brs. &
Brs. , (denied the faith) Jacob Scott, (denied the faith) Joseph Smith jr. & were ordained to the High Priesthood under the hand of br. ; The , () then blessed those who were ordained in the name of Christ according to br. & were ordained under the hand of .
Exhortation by br. & Joseph Smith jr. Closed by prayer by br. .
Clerk [p. 4]


  1. 1

    In 1887, David Whitmer wrote that he was not at the conference. In his description of the proceedings, which he said was based on others’ reports, he argued that the ordaining of high priests was a “grievous error” introduced at the instigation of Sidney Rigdon. Besides contradicting the minutes on the matter of his attendance, Whitmer’s account of the conference and the introduction of the office of high priest is also problematic because his opposition to the existence of the office apparently did not arise until after 1847, when as the leader of his own church he instructed multiple members that they should be ordained to the office of high priest. (Whitmer, Address to All Believers in Christ, 35, 64–65; [William E. McLellin], “Our Tour West in 1847,” Ensign of Liberty, Aug. 1849, 104.)  

    Whitmer, David. An Address to All Believers in Christ. Richmond, MO: By the author, 1887.

    Ensign of Liberty. Kirtland, OH. Mar. 1847–Aug. 1849.

  2. 2

    Northrop Sweet, along with Wycom (or Wycam) Clark and others, founded the first recorded Mormon schismatic church, the Pure Church of Christ, in 1831. (George A. Smith, in Journal of Discourses, 15 Nov. 1864, 11:4.)  

    Journal of Discourses. 26 vols. Liverpool: F. D. Richards, 1855–1886.

  3. 3

    John Murdock reported his ordination in his journal, saying, “A conferance was held in Kirtland & some ordained to be high Priests myself one with the rest under the hand of Joseph Smith the Prophet.” (Murdock, Journal, 6 June 1831.)  

    Murdock, John. Journal, ca. 1830–1859. John Murdock, Journal and Autobiography, ca. 1830–1867. CHL. MS 1194, fd. 2.

  4. 4

    In his later history of the meeting, John Whitmer related Lyman Wight’s exhortation by explaining that “he prophecied, concerning the coming of Christ, he said that there were some in this congregation that should live until the Savior shoud decend from heaven, with a Shout, with all the holy angels with him. He said the coming of the Savior should be, like, the Sun rising in the east, and will cover the whole earth, so will the coming of the Son of man be. Yea, he will appear in his brightness, and consume all before him. And the hills will be laid low; and valies be exalted; and the crooked be made straight; and the rough smooth. And some of my brethren shall suffer marterdom, for the sake of the religion of Jesus Christ. and seal the testimony of Jesus with their blood. He saw the hevans opened, and the Son of man sitting on the right hand of the Father. Making intercession for his brethren. the Saints. He said that God would work a work in these Last days that tongue cannot express, and the mind of is not capable to conceive. The glory of the Lord shone around.” (Whitmer, History, 28.)  

  5. 5

    A May 1831 revelation directed to Ezra Thayer linked a future ordination and promised spiritual power, explaining that Thayer would “be ordained unto power from on high & he shall go from thence . . . & proclaim my Gospel.” (Revelation, 15 May 1831.)  

  6. 6

    Partridge was designated the church’s first bishop on 4 February 1831. Another February revelation informed him that two elders would be appointed to assist him. Though likely selected to fill these positions prior to this conference, Corrill and Morley received their ordinations on this occasion. Corrill later wrote, “Isaac Uorley [Morley] and myself were chosen counsellors to the Bishop, to assist him in his business, which was to receive consecrations of property, and attend to the temporal concerns of the Church.” (Revelation, 4 Feb. 1831 [D&C 41:9]; Revelation, 9 Feb. 1831 [D&C 42:31]; Revelation, 20 May 1831 [D&C 51:3]; Corrill, Brief History, 18.)