Note to Newel K. Whitney, circa October 1833–Early 1834

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction

Document Transcript

I write this because I forgot to tell you of some things that you <​ought to​> know w◊◊ is commenccing an unjust suit against to git the prope[r]ty of this farm which belongs to the <​or​> not has <​not got​> any property here but one cow a peace each I have a <​bill​> for all the rest made over to me more than one year ago for Books and what they owed me and it will involve me in or the firm if we let them take this property which you <​may​> rest asured belongs to us a word to the wise is sufficient
Joseph Smith Jr [p. [1]]


  1. 1

    The United Firm.  

  2. 2

    According to Geauga County records, Hyrum Smith did not personally own any land in Kirtland until 1836. Joseph Smith Sr. did not own any land until 1837. (See Geauga Co., OH, Deed Records, 1795–1921, vol. 24, p. 124, 4 Nov. 1836; vol. 24, p. 410, 1 Apr. 1837, microfilm 20,240, U.S. and Canada Record Collection, FHL.)  

    U.S. and Canada Record Collection. FHL.

  3. 3

    Here, the note indicates that JS was holding all other property owned by his brother Hyrum and his father as collateral for copies of the Book of Mormon. Members of the Smith family occasionally used copies of the Book of Mormon as a medium of exchange. In his journal, for instance, Hyrum Smith wrote, “March the 3d 1832 Sold to a pedler Six Books of mormon and receivied pay as follows Six yards of Calico thirteen yards of Cotton Cloth four yards of Calico four tin pans and one Square tin one Cheese Weighing Six lb 5. oz. one paper of pins.” (Hyrum Smith, Diary and Account Book, 3 Mar. 1832.)  

    Smith, Hyrum. Diary and Account Book, Nov. 1831–Feb. 1835. Hyrum Smith, Papers, ca. 1832–1844. BYU.