Mormon History, Aug 22, 1843

-- Aug 22, 1843
Mormons in New York City ask: "Is it right for a priest to be appointed to accompany a teacher to the house of each member." Brigham Young responds, "Yes, any officer from a high priest to a deacon may visit the Church or members, and be set apart for this purpose." This is the earliest instruction on what would become known in pioneer Utah as "block teaching" or "ward teaching." Now called "home teaching." (1)

Nauvoo, Illinois. Joseph Smith continued hearing rumors that people in Carthage, Illinois, were raising a mob to drive the Mormons out of the state. (2)

[Joseph Smith Diary] Tuesday, August 22nd 1843 Sent a letter to Carthage by Sheriff Backenstos for Governor. Enclosed J. Hall's and Esq[ui]r[e] Patrick's [letters].

Fined Stephen Wilkenson $3 on confession for selling spirits. (3)

[Polygamy] Emma Smith confronts Flora Ann Woodworth, one of Joseph's plural wives, demanding a gold watch given to her by him. (4)

-- Aug 23, 1843
[Apostle Wilford Woodruff Journal] 23 I took the parting hand with the Saints & in Company with Elders O. Pratt J. M Grant & J Sloan & wife took rail Road to New York. Arived in the evening. Called upon Br Mcclain 182 canal st then upon Elder Foster 145 Walker st. Br Burge No 1 McDudle st. Attended meeting at Columbian Hall & spent the night at Elder Fosters. Distance to NY 100 mil. (5)

Joseph Smith's personal secretary, William Calyton, writes: "President Joseph told me that he had difficulty with E[mma] yesterday. She rode up to Woodworths with him and called while he came to the Temple. When he returned she was demanding the gold watch of F[lora]. He reproved her for her evil treatment. On their return home she abused him much and also when he got home. He had to use harsh measures to put a stop to her abuse but finally succeeded-This evening I had some more conversation with Margaret [Clayton's plural wife] and find she is stubborn and disposed to abuse me. I feel resolved to break my feelings from her if I possibly can. (1)

[Joseph Smith Diary] Wednesday, 23rd [August] 1843 Gave order for G[eorge] J. Adams to pass ferry free to Iowa. Also order for G[eorge] J. Adams to get some things for the Temple at Augusta.

Fined Mary Huxlaw $3.00 on confession for selling spirits.

Held court 4 P.M. City vs Joel Bullard, Larceny. No cause of action. Mrs. Mallory vs Pilkinton $45, cost. (3)

[Polygamy] Flora Ann Woodworth marries non-Mormon Carlos Gove. (4)

-- Aug 24, 1843
[Apostle Wilford Woodruff Journal] 24th I called upon Br Ilus Carter. He gave me a bundle of papers from Nauvoo & also a letter from Mrs Woodruff informing me of the birth of a daughter 17 days after I left home the babe not 3 days old when I left home. Mother & child doing + well. I was truly glad to hear from home. I dined with Br Ilus Carter. I wrote a letter in answer to Mrs Woodruff & attended meeting with the saints & spent the night with Br Foster. (5)

William Clayton writes in his journal: "At night I asked mother [his mother in law] if M[argaret Moon-his plural wife] might sleep with Ruth [Moon-his legal wife and sister of Margaret] and me. She appeared very rebellious and would not consent but said we might do as we had a mind." (1)

[Joseph Smith Diary] August 24th Gave a letter into office from Esquire Patrick for court papers on Habeus Corpus near noon. (3)

-- Aug 25, 1843
[Apostle Wilford Woodruff Journal] 25th I attended Baptism in the morning & Bathed in the Sea. Spent the day visiting the Saints. Attended meeting in the evening at the Hall. Spent the night with Br Foster.

I wrote a letter to Elder J Taylor. Sent for papers. (5)

[Joseph Smith Diary] Friday, August 25th 1843 Hyrum in the office. Spoke of a new revelation.1

Rain in gentle showers through the day, the first water of much amount that has fallen since 1st June in Nauvoo. The Earth has been exceedingly dry, and the early potato [crop] nearly destroyed. Corn has been checked in its growth and even vines much injured by drouth [drought].

Saw the President at tea 5 P.M. (3)

-- Aug 26, 1843
[Apostle Wilford Woodruff Journal] 26th Aug 1843 The quroum of the Twelve met with the Saints in New York in Conference. Meeting opened by prayer. President Young arose & addressed the meeting in an interesting manner upon the subject of the gathering, the Building of the Nauvoo House & Temple. He spoke of the Priesthood & said that it was a perfect system of goverment and made many useful remarks.

In the afternoon the conference again met. Prayr By Elder Page. The meeting was addressed by Elder Kimball. Spoke in parables. Gather in the wheat and tares thrash the wheat & the mill will blow away the chaff &c. He said an Elder would get a people together & could get the priest & people to receive the work if they did not whip the sect so like a shepherd who would call up a buck & a flock of sheep & hand them a little salt & Just as they begin to eat hit him with a Club across the head & the sheep will run away.

Elder G. A. Smith followed & bore testimony of the work. Told several anecdotes. One from Lyman Wight. Said that a man told of a story so big about his Cheese house that a woman did not believ it & asked a servant if it was true. He said that his master did not let him go into the Cheese house but one thing he new that his master had a tremendous great Cheese house & a great mill of four run of stone that was carryed by the whay that runs from the Cheese house. So let the Elders tel about the whey but not about what is in the Cheese house as long as they have not seen it. Let the misteries alone & speak of things that you understand. He spoke of his collegiate education he received from President Joseph Smith which was to preach short sermans & make short prayers which had done him much good in life.

Elder B Young next spoke & made some useful remarks. Said the scriptures had been mistifyed to that degree that the greatest divine of the day is as ignorant as the dumm ass concerning the things of God. They dont know their right hand from their left & we are trying to revere it to make it so simple that the people can understand it. Place a man in this room that is ignorant of science & take evry thing out that we can see & then ask him if their is any thing in the room. He says no nothing but we two. I tel him that there is millions of live animals in the room even we breath them & I will show him by the aid of glasses that their is live animals in one drop of water eight feet long. But he dont believe it untill he sees it through glasses. So with the unbeliever. He does not believe in God, in Angels, in spirits because he cannot see them. But let him have spiritual glasses or obey the commandments of God & get the spirit of God & then he can see & many other usful remark
s he made.

A Hymn was then sung. Then several questions were asked. 1st Can any member officer in any branch of the Church say their word is law & should be obeyed? (NO.) Is it right for a priest to be joined to a Teacher to go & visit the houses of each member when their duty is set forth in the covenants? (Yes any members that are officers from High Priest to Deacon may visit the Church or members & be set apart for this purpose if the Church will receive it.)

[2] Instruction. If Elders or High Priest are on an Island & cannot get word from the Prophet or the Twelve may [they] get a revelation concerning themselves? The Twelve may get a revelation in any part of the world Concerning the building up the kingdom as they have to esstablish the kingdom in all parts of the world. So any person can ask the Lord for a witness concerning himself. He can get an answer to himself but not to lead the Church. That Belongs to the head of the church. (5)

1 - On This Day in Mormon History,
2 - BYU Studies Journal, volume 46, no. 4: A Chronology of the Life of Joseph Smith
3 - Faulring, Scott (ed.), An American Prophet's Record: The Diaries and Journals of Joseph Smith: Joseph Smith Diary, 1843-44
4 - Hales, Brian C., Joseph Smith's Polygamy: History and Theology, 2 vols., Salt Lake City: Greg Kofford Books, 2011 (
5 - Wilford Woodruff's Journal: 1833-1898 Typescript, Volumes 1-9, Edited by Scott G. Kenney, Signature Books 1993

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