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THE mission of the committee to Washington, so far as immediate and visible results were concerned, seemed to have been a failure. Yet they had been obedient to the commands of God, and what real effect it may have had or may yet have, no one can tell.
Elder Rigdon, of the committee who left Commerce on October 29,1839, was quite ill during the journey, which delayed them considerably.
On November 1, they met Dr. R. D. Foster, who accompanied them for the purpose of waiting upon Elder Rigdon.
A letter from Joseph explains the situation and is valuable as showing Joseph's feeling towards his family. 1
1 SPRINGFIELD, Illinois, November 9, 1839.
My Dear Wife.-
Perhaps you may think strange that we are not further on our journey at this date, but I will say that we have done all that we could for the safety of Elder Rigdon on account of his weak state of health, and this morning we are under the necessity of leaving him at Bro. Snyder's and pursuing our journey without him. We think he will soon recover his health, as he is not dangerously sick; We regret that he cannot go on with us very much, but cannot help ourselves, but must commit him to the hands of God, and go on, being filled with constant anxiety for our families and friends behind.
I shall be filled with constant anxiety about you and the children until I hear from you, and in a particular manner little Frederick. It was so painful to leave him sick. I hope you will watch over those tender offspring in a manner that is becoming a mother and a saint, and try to cultivate their minds and learn them to read and be sober. Do not let them be exposed to the weather to take cold, and try to get all the rest you can. It will be a long and lonesome time during my absence from you, and nothing but a sense of humanity could have urged me on to so great a sacrifice. But shall I see so many perish and not seek redress? No I will try this once in the name of the Lord; therefore be patient until I come, and do the best you can.
They had been so much delayed by the illness of Elder Rigdon, and the time was so near for the assembling of Congress, that it was concluded best for President Smith and Judge Higbee to proceed with more dispatch; accordingly, on November 18, when near Columbus, Ohio, they took stage, leaving Rigdon, Rockwell, and Foster to come at their leisure in the carriage.
On November 27, the day before reaching Washington, a little incident occurred, an account of which we will give in President Smith's own language:-
"While on the mountains some distance from Washington, our coachman stepped into a public house to take his grog, when the horses took fright and ran down the hill at full speed. I persuaded my fellow travelers to be quiet and retain their seats, but had to hold one woman to prevent her throwing her infant out of the coach. The passengers were exceedingly agitated, but I used every persuasion to calm their feelings; and opening the door, I secured my hold on the side of the coach the best way I could, and succeeded in placing myself in the coachman's seat and reining up the horses, after they had run some two or three miles, and neither coach, horses, or passengers received any injury. My course was spoken of in the highest terms of commendation, as being one of the most daring and heroic deeds, and no language could express the gratitude of the passengers when they found themselves safe and the horses quiet. There were some members of Congress with us, who proposed naming the incident to that body, believing they would reward such conduct by some public act; but on inquiring my name, to mention as the author of their safety, and finding it to be Joseph Smith the 'Mormon Prophet,' as they called it, I heard no more of their praise, gratitude, or reward.
"Thursday, 28th. I arrived at Washington City this morning, and put up at the corner of Missouri and Third Streets."-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 420, 421.
I cannot write what I want, but believe me, my feelings are of the best kind towards you all. My hand cramps so I must close. I am,
Your husband until death,
To Emma Smith. JOSEPH SMITH.
The following is a copy of the petition presented to Congress:-
"To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled:-
"Your petitioners, Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, and Elias Higbee, would most respectfully represent, that they have been delegated, by their brethren and fellow citizens, known as 'Latter Day Saints' (commonly called Mormons), to prepare and present to you a statement of their wrongs, and a prayer for their relief, which they now have the honor to submit to the consideration of your honorable body.
"In the summer of 1831 a portion of the society above-named commenced a settlement in the county of Jackson, in the State of Missouri. The individuals making that settlement had emigrated from almost every State in the Union to that lovely spot in the far West, with the hope of improving their condition, of building houses for themselves and posterity, and of erecting temples, where they and theirs might worship their Creator according to the dictates of their conscience. Though they had wandered far from the homes of their childhood, still they had been taught to believe that a citizen born in any one State in this great republic might remove to another and enjoy all the rights and immunities of citizens of the State of his adoption-that wherever waved the American flag, beneath its stars and stripes an American citizen might look for protection and justice, for liberty in person and in conscience.
"They bought farms, built houses, and erected churches. Some tilled the earth, others bought and sold merchandise, and others again toiled as mechanics. They were industrious and moral, and they prospered; and though often persecuted and vilified for their difference in religious opinion from their fellow citizens, they were happy; they saw their society increasing in numbers, their farms teemed with plenty, and they fondly looked forward to a future big with hope. That there was prejudice against them, they knew; that slanders were propagated against them, they deplored; yet they felt that these were unjust; and hoped that time and an uprightness of life, would enable them to outlive
them. While the summer of peace, happiness, and hope shone over the infant settlement of the saints, the cloud was gathering, unseen by them, that bore in its bosom the thunderbolt of destruction.
"On the 20th July, 1833, around their peaceful village a mob gathered, to the surprise and terror of the quiet 'Mormons'-why, they knew not; they had broken no law, they had harmed no man, in deed or thought. Why they were thus threatened, they knew not. Soon a committee from the mob called upon the leading 'Mormons' of the place; they announced that the store, the printing office, and the shops must be closed, and that forthwith every 'Mormon' must leave the county. The message was so terrible, so unexpected, that the 'Mormons' asked time for deliberation and consultation, which being refused, the brethren were severally asked, 'Are you willing to abandon your homes' The reply was, 'We will not go;' which determination being reported to the committee of the mob, one of them replied that he was sorry; for, said he, 'The work of destruction must now begin.' No sooner said than it was done. The printing office, a two-story brick building, was assailed by the mob and tore down, and, with its valuable appurtenances, destroyed. They next proceeded to the store with a like purpose. Its owner in part, Mr. Gilbert, agreed to close it, and they delayed their purpose.
"They then proceeded to the dwelling of Mr. Partridge, the beloved bishop of the church there, dragged him and his family to the public square, where, surrounded by hundreds, they partially stripped him of his clothing and tarred and feathered him from head to foot. A man by the name of Allen was at the same time treated in a similar manner. The mob then dispersed with an agreement to meet again on the next Tuesday, the above outrages having been committed on Saturday.
"Tuesday came, and with it came the mob, bearing a red flag, in token of blood. They proceeded to the houses of Isaac Morley and others of the leading men, and seized them, telling them to bid their families farewell, that they would never see them again. They were then driven, at the
point of the bayonet, to jail, and there, amid the jeers and insults of the crowd, they were thrust in prison, to be kept as hostages; in case any of the mob should be killed, they were to die to pay for it. Here some two or three of the 'Mormons' offered to surrender up their lives, if that would satisfy the fury of the mob, and purchase peace and security for their unoffending brethren, their helpless wives and children. The reply of the mob was, that the 'Mormons' must leave the county en masse, or that every man should be put to death.
"The 'Mormons,' terrified and defenseless, then entered into an agreement to leave the county-one half by the first of January, the other half by the first of April next ensuing. This treaty being made and ratified, the mob dispersed. Again, for a time, the persecuted 'Mormons' enjoyed a respite from their persecutions; but not long was the repose permitted them.
"Sometime in the month of October a meeting was held at Independence, at which it was determined to remove the 'Mormons' or die. Inflammatory speeches were made, and one of the speakers swore he would remove the 'Mormons' from the county if he had to wade up to his neck in blood.
"Be it remarked that up to this time the 'Mormons' had faithfully observed the treaty, and were guilty of no offense against the laws of the land or of society, but were peaceably following the routine of their daily duties.
"Shortly after the meeting above referred to, another persecution commenced; some of the 'Mormons' were shot at, others were whipped, their houses were assailed with brick-bats, broken open, and thrown down; their women and children were insulted; and thus for many weeks, without offense, without resistance, by night and by day, were they harassed, insulted, and oppressed.
"There is a point beyond which endurance ceases to be a virtue. The worm when trampled upon will turn upon its oppressor. A company of about thirty 'Mormons' fell in with twice that number of the mob engaged in the destruction of 'Mormon' property, when a battle ensued, in which one 'Mormon' was killed, and two or three of the mob; acting
in concert with the officer who commanded the mob, was Lilburn W. Boggs, Lieutenant Governor of the State of Missouri. When the noise of the battle was spread abroad, the public mind became much inflamed. The militia collected in arms from all quarters and in great numbers, and inflamed to fury. They demanded that the 'Mormons' should surrender up all their arms and immediately quit the county. Compelled by overpowering numbers, the 'Mormons' submitted. They surrendered up fifty-one guns, which have never been returned or paid for.
"The next day parties of the mob went from house to house threatening women and children with death if they did not immediately leave their homes. Imagination cannot paint the terror which now pervaded the 'Mormon' community. The weather was intensely cold, and women and children abandoned their homes and fled in every direction without sufficient clothing to protect them from the piercing cold. Women gave birth to children in the woods and on the prairies. One hundred and twenty women and children, for the space of ten days, with only three or four men in company, concealed themselves in the woods in hourly expectation and fear of massacre, until they finally escaped into Clay County. The society of 'Mormons,' after the above disturbances, removed to the county of Clay, where they were kindly received by the inhabitants and their wants administered to by their charity.
"In the meantime the houses of the 'Mormons' in the county of Jackson, amounting to about two hundred, were burned down or otherwise destroyed by the mob, as well as much of their crops, furniture, and stock.
"The damage done to the property of the 'Mormons' by the mob in the county of Jackson as above related, as near as they can ascertain, would amount to the sum of one hundred and seventy-five thousand dollars. The number of 'Mormons' thus driven from the county of Jackson amounted to about twelve hundred souls. For the property thus destroyed they have never been paid.
"After the expulsion of the 'Mormons' from the county of Jackson as above related, they removed to and settled in
the county of Clay. They there purchased out some of the former inhabitants, and entered at the land office wild lands offered for sale by the general government. The most of them became freeholders, owning each an eighty or more of land.
"The 'Mormons' lived peaceably in the county of Clay for about three years, and all that time increased rapidly in numbers, by immigration, and also in wealth by their industry. After they had resided in that county about three years, the citizens not connected with them began to look upon them with jealousy and alarm. Reports were again put in circulation against them; public meetings were held in the counties of Clay and Jackson, at which violent resolutions were passed against the 'Mormons,' and rumors of mobs began again to spread alarm among the 'Mormons.' At this juncture the 'Mormons,' desirous of avoiding all conflict with their fellow citizens, and anxious to preserve the peace and harmony of the society around them, as well as their own, deputized a committee of their leading men to make terms of peace with their fellow citizens of Clay. An interview took place between them and a committee of citizens, at which it was agreed that the 'Mormons' should leave the county of Clay, and that the citizens of Clay County should buy their lands.
"These terms were complied with. The 'Mormons' removed to and settled in the county of Caldwell, and the citizens never paid them value for their lands. Many received nothing at all for their land. The 'Mormons' by this removal sacrificed much both of money and feeling, but the sacrifice was made upon the altar of duty, for the peace of the community.
"Your memorialists would beg here to give what they believe a just explanation of the causes of the prejudice and persecution against the 'Mormons' related above, and which will follow. That there might have been some unworthy members among them cannot be denied; but many aver that as a community they were as moral, as upright, and as observant of the laws of the land as any body of people in the world. Why then this prejudice and persecution? An
answer they trust will be found in the fact that they were a body of people distinct from their fellow citizens, in religious opinions, in their habits, and in their associations. They were numerous enough to make the power of their numerical and moral force a matter of anxiety and dread to the political and religious parties by which they are surrounded; which arose not from what the 'Mormons' had done, but from the fear of what they might do.
"In addition, the 'Mormons' have purchased of the settlers, or of the government, or obtained by preëmption, the best lands in all those regions of the State; and at the times of speculation, the cupidity of many was aroused to possess those lands by driving off the 'Mormons,' and taking forcible possession, or constraining them to sell, through fear or coercion, at a price merely nominal.
"After the 'Mormons' removed from Clay they settled in the county of Caldwell as aforesaid.
"Your memorialists do not deem it necessary for their purpose to detail the history of the progress, the cares, and anxieties of the 'Mormons' from the time they settled in Caldwell in the year 1836 until the fall of 1838. They would, however, state, that during all that time they deported themselves as good citizens, obeying the laws of the land, and the moral and religious duties enjoined by their faith. That there might have been some faithless among the faithful, is possible. They would not deny that there might have been some who were a scandal to their brethren; and what society, they would ask, has not some unworthy members? Where is the sect, where the community, in which there cannot be found some who trample under foot the laws of God and man? They believe the 'Mormon' community to have as few such as any other association, religious or political. Within the above period the 'Mormons' continued to increase in wealth and numbers, until in the fall of the year 1838 they numbered about fifteen thousand souls.
"They purchased of the government, or of the citizen, or held by preëmption, almost all the lands in the county of Caldwell and a portion of the lands in Daviess and Carroll.
The county of Caldwell was settled almost entirely by 'Mormons,' and 'Mormons' were rapidly filling up the counties of Daviess and Caldwell. When they first commenced settling in those counties there were but few settlements made there; the lands were wild and uncultivated. In the fall of 1838 large farms had been made, well improved and stocked. Lands had risen in value and sold for from ten to twenty-five dollars. The improvement and settlement had been such that it was a common remark that the county of Caldwell would soon be the wealthiest in the State.
"Thus stood their affairs in the fall of 1838, when the storm of persecution again raged over the heads of the 'Mormons,' and the fierce demon of the mob drove them forth houseless and homeless and penniless upon the charities of the world, which to them, thank God! have been like angels' visits, but not few, or far between. This last persecution began at an election which was held in Daviess County on the first Monday of August, 1838. A 'Mormon' went to the polls to vote. One of the mob standing by opposed his voting, contending that a 'Mormon' had no more right to vote than a negro; one angry word brought on another, and blows followed. They are, however, happy to state that the 'Mormon' was not the aggressor, but was on the defensive; others interfered, not one alone, but many assailed the 'Mormon.' His brethren, seeing him thus assailed by numbers, rushed to the rescue; then came others of the mob, until finally a general row commenced. The 'Mormons' were victorious. The next day a rumor reached the 'Mormons' of Caldwell, that two of their brethren had been killed in this fight, and that a refusal had been made to surrender their bodies for burial. Not knowing at the time that this rumor was false, they became much excited, and several of them started for Daviess County with a view of giving the brethren, whom they supposed to have been killed, a decent interment; where they arrived next morning. Among the citizens this fight produced a great excitement. They held a public meeting and resolved to drive the 'Mormons' from the county. Individuals began also to
threaten the 'Mormons' as a body, and swear that they should leave the county in three days. When the 'Mormons' who had gone from Caldwell to Daviess, as aforesaid, arrived there, they found this state of excitement to exist. They also heard that a large mob was collecting against them, headed by Adam Black, one of the judges of the county court of Daviess County.
"Under these circumstances, and with a view to allay the excitement, they called on Mr. Black, and inquired of him whether the reports they had heard in relation to him were true. Upon his denying them to be true, they then requested him to give that denial in writing, which he freely did. This writing they published with a view of calming the public mind and allaying the excitement. Having done this, they rested in quiet for some time after, hoping that their efforts would produce the desired effect. Their surprise can, under these circumstances, be easily imagined, when a short time after they learned that said Black had gone before Judge King and made oath that he was forced to sign the instrument by armed 'Mormons,' and procured a warrant for the arrest of Joseph Smith, Jr., and Lyman Wight, which was placed in the hands of the sheriff. It was also reported that the said individuals had refused to surrender themselves, and that an armed force was collecting to come and take them.
"Your memorialists aver that the sheriff had never made any efforts to serve the writ, and that the said Smith and Wight, so far from making any resistance, did not know that such a writ had been issued until they learned it first by report as above related. In the meantime the rumor had run over the whole country that the 'Mormons' were compelling individuals to sign certain instruments in writing, and that they were resisting the process of the law. The public mind became much inflamed, and the mob began to collect from all quarters and in large numbers, with pretensions of assisting the sheriff to serve the process; and here let it be observed in passing that Adam Black had sold the improvement and preëmption claim on which he then resided, to the 'Mormons,' received his pay for the same, and that through
his instrumentality the 'Mormons' were driven off, and now retains both their money and the improvement.
"As soon as the above reports reached the ears of the said Smith and Wight, they determined immediately upon the course they ought to pursue, which was to submit to the laws. They both surrendered themselves up to Judge King, underwent a trial, and in the absence of all sufficient testimony they were discharged. They hoped that this voluntary submission of theirs to the law, and their triumphant vindication of the charge, would allay the excitement of the community. But not so-the long-desired opportunity had arrived when the oppression and extermination of the 'Mormons' might be made to assume the form of legal proceeding. The mob that had assembled for the pretended purpose of assisting the officers in the execution of process did not disperse upon the acquittal of Smith and Wight, but continued embodied with the encampments and forms of a military force, and committing depredations upon 'Mormon' property. The 'Mormons' in this extremity called upon the laws of the land and the officers of the law, for protection. After much delay, the militia under Generals Atchison, Doniphan, and Parks, were sent to their relief. They arrived on the 13th September, and encamped between the 'Mormons' and the mob.
"The above officers made no attempt to disperse the mob, excusing themselves by saying, 'that their own men had sympathies with the mob.' After remaining there for several days, those officers adopted the following expedient of settling the difficulties: they mustered the mob, and enrolled them with their own troops, and then disbanded the whole, with orders to seek their several homes. The officers went home, excepting Parks, who remained for their protection, with his men.
"The 'Mormons' made an agreement with the citizens of Daviess to buy out their lands and preëmption rights, and appointed a committee to make the purchase, and to go on buying till they had purchased to the amount of twenty-five thousand dollars. While these purchases were going on, the citizens were heard to say that as soon as they had sold
out to the 'Mormons' and received their pay, they would drive the 'Mormons' off and keep both their lands and the money.
"The mob, when disbanded in Daviess by the generals as aforesaid, instead of repairing to their homes as commanded, proceeded in a body to the adjoining county of Carroll and encamped around De Witt, a village built and inhabited by 'Mormons;' while thus encamped around De Witt they sent to the county of Jackson and procured a cannon. They invested the place so closely that no person could leave the town in safety; when they did so, they were fired upon by the mob. The horses of the 'Mormons' were stolen and their cattle killed. The citizens of De Witt, amounting to about seventy families, were in great extremity and worn out by want and sickness. In their extremity they made application to Governor Boggs for protection and relief; but no protection, no relief, was granted them. When reduced to the last extremity, no alternative was left them but to seek protection by flight and the abandonment of their homes. Accordingly on the evening of the 11th of October, 1838, they retreated from De Witt and made their way to the counties of Daviess and Caldwell, leaving many of their effects in the possession of the mob.
"Your memorialists will not detail the horrors and sufferings of such a flight, when shared with women and children. They might detail many. One lady who had given birth to a child just before the flight commenced, died on the road and was buried without a coffin. Many others, sick, worn-out, starved, deprived of medical aid, died upon the road. The remnant of 'Mormons' from De Witt arrived in Daviess and Caldwell, and found a short relief and supply of their wants from their friends and brethren there.
"After the abandonment of De Witt and the flight of the 'Mormons' from Carroll, one Sashiel Woods addressed the mob, advising them to take their cannon and march to the county of Daviess and drive the 'Mormons' from that county and seize upon their lands and other property, saying that the 'Mormons' could get no benefit of the law, as they had recently seen. They then commenced their march from
Carroll to Daviess, carrying with them the cannon which they had received from Jackson. On their way they captured two 'Mormons,' made them ride on the cannon, and taunted them as they went along, telling them that they were going to drive the 'Mormons' from Daviess to Caldwell, and from Caldwell to hell; and that they should find no quarter but at the cannon's mouth. The mob at this time was reported to number about four hundred strong.
"The 'Mormons,' in these distresses, in pursuance of the laws of Missouri, made application to Judge King, the circuit judge of that circuit, for protection, and for the aid of the officers of the law to protect them. Judge King, as they have been informed, and believe, gave an order to Major General D. B. Atchison to call out the militia to protect the 'Mormons' against the fury of the mob. General Atchison thereupon gave orders to Brigadiers Parks and Doniphan. In pursuance of these orders issued as aforesaid, on the 18th of October, 1838, General Doniphan arrived at Far West, a 'Mormon' village in the county of Caldwell, with a small company of militia. After he had been at Far West two days, General Doniphan disbanded his company, alleging to the 'Mormons' as his reason for so doing that his company had the same feelings as the mob, and that he could not rely upon them. In a short time General Parks arrived at Far West, and also disbanded his company. At this time the mob was marching from Carroll to Daviess. General Doniphan, while at Far West, directed the 'Mormons' to raise a company to protect themselves, telling them that one Cornelius Gillium was raising a mob to destroy their town, and also advising them to place out guards to watch the motions of the mob. He also directed them to raise a company and send them to Daviess to aid their brethren there against the mob which was marching down upon them from Carroll. This the 'Mormons' did; they mustered a company of about sixty men, who proceeded to Diahman. When General Parks arrived at Far West as aforesaid and learned that General Doniphan had disbanded his men, he expressed great dissatisfaction. The same evening on which General Parks disbanded his company as aforesaid he proceeded
to Diahman, in order to learn what the mob were doing there, and if possible to protect the 'Mormons.'
"When General Parks had arrived in Daviess he found that the mob had commenced its operations there, which was on the 20th October, 1838. They commenced by burning the house of a man who had gone to Tennessee on business and left his wife at home with two small children. When the house was burned down, the wife and two small children were left in the snow, and she had to walk three miles before she could find a shelter, carrying her two children all that distance, and had to wade Grand River, which was three feet deep. The mob on the same evening burned seven other houses, burning and destroying all the property that they thought proper. The next morning, Colonel Lyman Wight, an officer in the militia, inquired of General Parks what was to be done, as he now saw the course the mob was determined to pursue. General Parks replied that he (Wight) should take a company of men and give the mob battle, and that he would be responsible for the act, saying that they could have no peace with the mob until they had given them a scourging.
"On the next morning, in obedience to his order, David W. Patten was dispatched with one hundred men under his command to meet the mob as they were advancing from Carroll, with directions to protect the citizens and collect and bring into Far West such of the 'Mormons' as were scattered through the county, and unprotected, and if the mob interfered he must fight them. The company under the command of Patten was the same, in part, that had gone from Far West by the order of General Doniphan to protect the citizens of Daviess. As Patten went in the direction of the mob, they fled before him, leaving their cannon, which Patten took possession of. The mob dispersed. Patten with his men then returned to Daviess County. Patten in a few days after returned to Far West. It was now supposed that the difficulties were at an end. But contrary to expectation, on the evening of the 23d October messengers arrived at Far West and informed the citizens that a body of armed men had made their appearance in the south part of
the county, and that they were burning houses, destroying property, and threatening the 'Mormon' citizens with death unless they left the county the next morning by ten o'clock, or renounced their religion.
"About midnight another messenger arrived with news of the like tenor. Patten collected about sixty men and proceeded to the scene of the disturbance, to protect if possible the lives and property of the 'Mormon' citizens. On his arrival at the neighborhood where the first disturbance had commenced, he found that the mob had gone to another neighborhood to prosecute their acts of plunder and outrage. He marched a short distance and unexpectedly came upon the encampment of the mob. The guards of the mob fired upon him and killed one of his men. Patten then charged the mob, and after a few fires the mob dispersed and fled, but Patten was killed and another of his men. After the fight and the dispersion of the mob, Patten's company returned to Far West. The report of the proceedings created much excitement. The community were made to believe that the 'Mormons' were in rebellion against the law; whereas the above facts show they were an injured people, standing up in the defense of their persons and their property.
"At this time the Governor of the State issued an order to General Clark to raise several thousand men and march against the 'Mormons' and drive them from the State, or 'exterminate them.' Major-General Lucas and Brigadier-General Wilson collected three or four thousand men; and with this formidable force commenced their march and arrived at Far West. In their rear marched General Clark with another formidable force.
"In the meantime the 'Mormons' had not heard of these immense preparations, and so far from expecting an armed force under the orders of the State to war against them, were daily expecting a force from the Governor to protect their lives and their property from the mob.
"When this formidable array first made its appearance, intent upon peace the 'Mormons' sent a white flag several miles to meet them, to ascertain the reason why an armed
force was marching against them, and what we might expect at their hands. They gave us no satisfaction, but continued marching towards Far West. Immediately on their arrival a man came bearing a white flag from their camp. He was interrogated about his business; he answered the interrogations, saying they wanted three persons out of Far West before they massacred the rest. Those persons refused to go, and he returned back to the camp. He was closely followed by General Doniphan and his whole brigade marching to the city of Far West in line of battle. The citizens also of Far West formed a line of battle in full front of Doniphan's army; upon this Doniphan ordered a halt, and then a retreat. Night closed upon both parties without any collision.
"On the next day, towards evening, the 'Mormons' were officially informed that the Governor of the State had sent this immense force against them to massacre them or drive them from the State. As soon as the 'Mormons' learned that this order had the sanction of the Governor of the State, they determined to make no resistance; to submit themselves to the authorities of the State, however tyrannical and unjust soever the exercise of that authority might be.
"The commanders of the Missouri militia before Far West sent a messenger into the town, requesting an interview in their camp with five of the principal citizens among the 'Mormons,' pledging their faith for their safe return on the following morning at eight o'clock. Invited, as they supposed, to propose and receive terms of peace, and under the pledge of a safe conduct, Lyman Wight, George W. Robinson, Joseph Smith, Jr., P. P. Pratt, and Sidney Rigdon went towards the camp of the militia. Before they arrived at the camp, they were surrounded by the whole army; and by order of General Lucas put under guard, and marched to the camp, and were told that they were prisoners of war. A court-martial was held that night, and they, without being heard, and in the absence of all proof, condemned to be shot next morning.
"The execution of this bloody order was prevented by the manly protest of General Doniphan. He denounced the act
as cold-blooded murder, and withdrew his brigade. This noble stand taken by General Doniphan prevented the murder of the prisoners. It is here worthy of note that seventeen preachers of the gospel were on this court-martial, and were in favor of the sentence.
"The next morning the prisoners were marched under a strong guard to Independence, in Jackson County, and after being detained there for a week, they were marched to Richmond, where General Clark then was with his troops. Here a court of inquiry was held before Judge King; this continued from the 11th until the 28th of November; while the five prisoners were kept in chains, and about fifty other 'Mormons,' taken at Far West, were penned up in an open, unfinished courthouse. In this mock court of inquiry the defendants were prevented from giving any testimony on their part, by an armed force at the courthouse; they were advised by their lawyers not to bring any, as they would be in danger of their lives, or drove out of the county; so there was no testimony examined only against them.
"In this inquiry a great many questions were asked relative to religious opinions. The conclusion of the court of inquiry was to send the prisoners to jail upon a charge of treason.
"They do not deem it necessary to detail their sufferings while in prison; the horrors of a prison for four long months, in darkness, in want, alone, and during the cold of winter, can better be conceived than expressed. In the following April the prisoners were sent to the county of Daviess for trial; they were then indicted for treason, and a change of venue was taken to Boone County. The prisoners were sent to the county of Boone, and while on their way made their escape and fled to the State of Illinois.
"That they were suffered to escape, admits of no doubt. The truth is, the State of Missouri had become ashamed of their proceedings against the 'Mormons,' and as the best means of getting out of the scrape, gave the prisoners an opportunity to escape. In proof of this, the prisoners have ever since been living publicly in the State of Illinois, and the Executive of Missouri have made no demand upon the
Executive of Illinois. Can it be supposed that the people of Missouri would thus tamely submit to the commission of treason by a portion of their citizens, and make no effort to punish the guilty, when they were thus publicly living in an adjoining State? Is not this passiveness evidence [that] they knew the 'Mormons' were innocent and the citizens of Missouri wrong?
"But to return to the operations of General Lucas before Far West; we need only say that the exterminating order of Governor Boggs was carried into full effect. After the above-named individuals were taken prisoners, all the 'Mormons' in Far West, about five hundred in number, surrendered up their arms to the militia without any resistance. The 'Mormons' now fled in every direction-women and children, through the dead of winter, marked their footsteps with blood as they fled from the State of Missouri.
"The orders of the Governor were that they should be driven from the State or destroyed. About fifteen thousand souls, between the sacking of Far West and spring, abandoned their homes, their property, their all, hurried by the terrors of their armed pursuers, in want of every necessary of life, with bleeding hearts sought refuge in the State of Illinois, where they now reside.
"We cannot trespass upon your time by the relation of cases of individual suffering; they would fill a volume. We forbear for our regard to humanity, to detail the particulars of the conduct of the Missouri militia. We could relate instances of house burnings, destruction of property, robbings, rapes, and murder, that would shame humanity. One instance as a sample of many which they enacted: Two hundred of the militia came suddenly upon some 'Mormon' families emigrating to the State, and then encamped at Haun's mill in Caldwell County. The 'Mormon' men and children took refuge in an old log house which had been used as a blacksmith's shop. On seeing the militia approach, the 'Mormons' cried for quarter, but in vain; they were instantly fired upon; eighteen fell dead; and their murderers, putting the muzzles of their guns between the logs, fired indiscriminately upon children, upon the dead and
dying. One little boy, whose father (Warren Smith) had just been shot dead, cried piteously to the militia to spare his life. The reply was, 'Kill him, kill him [with an oath], he is the son of a damned Mormon.' At this they shot his head all open and left him dead by the side of his father. About the same time an old man by the name of McBride, a soldier of the Revolution, came up to them and begged his life; but they hewed him to pieces with an old corn cutter. They then loaded themselves with plunder and departed.
"Your petitioners have thus given a brief outline of the history of the 'Mormon' persecutions in Missouri-all which they can prove to be true, if an opportunity be given them. It will be seen from this their brief statement, that neither the 'Mormons' as a body nor individuals of that body have been guilty of any offense against the laws of Missouri, or of the United States; but their only offense has been their religious opinion.
"The above statement will also show that the 'Mormons' on all occasions submitted to the laws of the land, and yielded to its authority in every extremity, and at every hazard, at the risk of life and property. The above statement will illustrate another truth: that wherever the 'Mormons' made any resistance to the mob, it was in self-defense; and for these acts of self-defense they always had the authority and sanction of the officers of the law for so doing. Yet they, to the number of about fifteen thousand souls, have been driven from their homes in Missouri. Their property, to the amount of two millions of dollars, has been taken from them, or destroyed. Some of them have been murdered, beaten, bruised, or lamed, and have all been driven forth, wandering over the world without homes, without property.
"But the loss of property does not comprise half their sufferings. They were human beings, possessed of human feelings and human sympathies. Their agony of soul was the bitterest drop in the cup of their sorrows.
"For these wrongs the 'Mormons' ought to have some redress; yet how and where shall they seek and obtain it? Your Constitution guarantees to every citizen, even the
humblest, the enjoyment of life, liberty, and property. It promises to all, religious freedom, the right to all to worship God beneath their own vine and fig tree, according to the dictates of their conscience. It guarantees to all the citizens of the several States the right to become citizens of any one of the States, and to enjoy all the rights and immunities of the citizens of the State of his adoption. Yet of all these rights have the 'Mormons' been deprived. They have, without a cause, without a trial, been deprived of life, liberty, and property. They have been persecuted for their religious opinions. They have been driven from the State of Missouri, at the point of the bayonet, and prevented from enjoying and exercising the rights of citizens of the State of Missouri. It is the theory of our laws that for the protection of every legal right there is provided a legal remedy. What, then, we would respectfully ask, is the remedy of the 'Mormons?' Shall they apply to the legislature of the State of Missouri for redress? They have done so. They have petitioned, and these petitions have been treated with silence and contempt. Shall they apply to the federal courts? They were, at the time of the injury, citizens of the State of Missouri. Shall they apply to the court of the State of Missouri? Whom shall they sue? The order for their destruction, their extermination, was granted by the Executive of the State of Missouri. Is not this a plea of justification for the loss of individuals, done in pursuance of that order? If not, before whom shall the 'Mormons' institute a trial? Shall they summon a jury of the individuals who composed the mob? An appeal to them were in vain. They dare not go to Missouri to institute a suit; their lives would be in danger.
"For ourselves, we see no redress, unless it is awarded by the Congress of the United States. And here we make our appeal as American Citizens, as Christians, and as men-believing that the high sense of justice which exists in your honorable bodies will not allow such oppression to be practiced upon any portion of the citizens of this vast republic with impunity; but that some measures which your wisdom may dictate may be taken, so that the great body of people who
have been thus abused may have redress for the wrongs which they have suffered. And to your decision they look with confidence; hoping it may be such as shall tend to dry up the tear of the widow and orphan, and again place in situations of peace those who have been driven from their homes and have had to wade through scenes of sorrow and distress.
"And your memorialists, as in duty bound, will ever pray, etc."-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 433-441.
The following letter and postscript give some interesting information concerning the movements and experiences of the committee:-
"WASHINGTON CITY, Corner of Missouri and
Third Streets, December 5, 1839.
"Dear Brother Hyrum, President, and to the Honorable High Council of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints-to whom be fellowship, love, and the peace of Almighty God extended, and the prayer of faith forever and ever. Amen.
"Your fellow laborers, Joseph Smith, Jr., Elias Higbee, and agents as well as the servants that are sent by you to perform one of the most arduous and responsible duties, and also to labor in the most honorable cause that ever graced the pages of human existence, respectfully show by these lines that we have taken up our cross thus far, and that we arrived in this city on the morning of the 28th November, and spent the most of that day in looking up a boarding house, which we succeeded in finding. We found as cheap boarding as can be had in this city.
"On Friday morning, 29th, we proceeded to the house of the President. We found a very large and splendid palace, surrounded with a splendid inclosure [enclosure], decorated with all the fineries and elegancies of this world. We went to the door and requested to see the President, when we were immediately introduced into an upper appartment [apartment], where we met the President, and were introduced into his parlor, where we presented him with our letters of introduction. As soon as he had read one of them he looked upon us with a kind of half frown, and said, 'What can I do? I can do nothing for
you! If I do anything I shall come in contact with the whole State of Missouri.'
"But we were not to be intimidated; and demanded a hearing, and constitutional rights. Before we left him he promised to reconsider what he had said, and observed that he felt to sympathize with us on account of our sufferings.
"Now we shall endeavor to express our feelings and views concerning the President, as we have been eyewitnesses of his majesty. He is a small man, sandy complexion, and ordinary features; with frowning brow, and considerable body, but not well proportioned as to his arms and legs; and to use his own words, is 'quite fat.' On the whole we think he is without body or parts, as no one part seems to be proportioned to another; therefore instead of saying body and parts, we say body and part, or partyism if you please to call it. And in fine, to come directly to the point, he is so much a fop or a fool (for he judged our cause before he knew it) we could find no place to put truth into him.
"We do not say the saints shall not vote for him, but we do say boldly, (though it need not be published in the streets of Nauvoo, neither among the daughters of the Gentiles,) that we do not intend he shall have our votes.
"We have spent the remainder of our time in hunting up the representatives, in order to get our case before the House; in giving them letters of introduction, etc., and in getting acquainted. A meeting of the delegation of the State of Illinois was appointed to-day, to consult for bringing our case before Congress. The gentlemen from Illinois are worthy men, and have treated us with the greatest kindness, and are ready to do all that is in their power; but you are aware, brethren, that they with us have all the prejudices, superstition, and bigotry of an ignorant generation to contend with; nevertheless we believe our case will be brought before the House, and we will leave the event with God; he is our Judge, and the avenger of our wrongs.
"For a general thing there is but little solidity and honorable deportment among those who are sent here to represent the people; but a great deal of pomposity and show.
"We left President Rigdon and others on the road, and received a letter from them this day. They were, at the date of the letter, on the 29th of November, near Washington, in Pennsylvania, expecting to stop a day or two at his brother's on account of his ill health. He has occasionally a chill yet, but is not dangerous. We expect him here soon.
"We have already commenced forming some very honorable acquaintances, and have thus far been prospered as much as we had anticipated, if not more. We have had a pleasing interview with Judge Young, who proposed to furnish us with expense money. We can draw on him for funds to publish our book, and we want you to raise some more money for us, and deposit it in the Branch Bank in Quincy, to be drawn to the order of Judge Young. Send us the amount of your deposit, taking a receipt of the same. You need not be afraid to do this. We think from the proceeds of the sale of books we can make it all straight. Do therefore be punctual, as much depends upon it. We cannot accomplish the things for which we were sent without some funds. You very well know, brethren, we were contented to start, trusting in God, with little or nothing. We have met with but one accident since we started. The lock of our trunk was broken off, and Brother Lyman Wight's petition is missing; but we trust there is a copy of it preserved; if there is, you will please forward it immediately, with the name and affidavit affixed to it.
"For God's sake, brethren, be wide-awake, and arm us with all the power possible, for now is the time or never. We want you should get all the influential men you can of that section of country, of Iowa, and of every other quarter, to write letters to the members of Congress, using their influence in our behalf, and to keep their minds constantly upon the subject.
"Please to forward this to our wives.
"Yours in the bonds of the everlasting covenant,
"JOSEPH SMITH, JR.,
"P. S. Congress has been in session four days, and the House of Representatives is not yet organized, in consequence of some seats being contested in the New Jersey delegation. They have this day succeeded in electing John Q. Adams to the chair pro tem.; but whether they will get their speaker and clerk chosen, is yet unknown, as there is a great deal of wind blown off on the occasion on each day. There is such an itching disposition to display their oratory on the most trivial occasions, and so much etiquette, bowing and scraping, twisting and turning, to make a display of their witticism, that it seems to us rather a display of folly and show, more than substance and gravity, such as becomes a great nation like ours. However, there are some exceptions.
"A warm feeling has been manifested in the discussion of the House to day, and it seems as much confusion as though the nation had already began to be vexed. We came with one of the Missouri members from Wheeling to this place, who was drunk but once, and that however was most of the time; there was but one day but what he could navigate, and that day he was keeled over, so he could eat no dinner. The horses ran away with the stage; they ran about three miles; Brother Joseph climbed out of the stage, got the lines, and stopped the horses, and also saved the life of a lady and child. He was highly commended by the whole company for his great exertions and presence of mind through the whole affair. Elias Higbee jumped out of the stage at a favorable moment, just before they stopped, with a view to assist in stopping them, and was but slightly injured. We were not known to the stage company until after our arrival.
"In our interview with the President, he interrogated us wherein we differed in our religion from the other religions of the day. Brother Joseph said we differed in mode of baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands. We considered that all other considerations were contained in the gift of the Holy Ghost, and we deemed it unnecessary to make many words in preaching the gospel to him. Suffice it to say he has got our testimony. We watch
the post office, but have received no letters from our sections of the country. Write instantly.
"Yours with respect,
"J. S. Jr.
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 452-454.
Further information is chronicled in the following letter:-
"WASHINGTON, CITY, Corner of Missouri
and Third Streets, December 7,1839.
"To Seymour Brunson and the Honorable High Council of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints:-
"Your humble servants, Joseph Smith, Jr., and Elias Higbee, again address you for the purpose of informing you of our proceedings here in relation to our business and prospects of success. We deem it unimportant to say anything in relation to our journey, arrival, and interview with his Excellency, the President of these United States; as they were mentioned in a letter lately addressed to President Hyrum Smith and the High Council. We mentioned in that letter the appointment of a meeting to be held by the Illinois delegation, to consult upon the best measures of getting our business brought before Congress. They met yesterday in one of the committee rooms of the Capitol. All the delegation except the ex-Governor Reynolds were present-who is now one of the representatives in Congress, and on account of whose absence the meeting was adjourned until to-day at eleven o'clock; however, the subject was partially introduced, and Mr. Robinson took a stand against us, so far as concerned our presenting claims to be liquidated by the United States.
"We took a stand against him, asserting our constitutional rights. Brother Joseph maintained the ground in argument against him firmly and respectfully, setting forth the injuries that we have received, and the appeals that we have made to the judiciary of Missouri, and also the Governor; their refusals from time to time to do us justice, also the impracticability of doing anything in the judiciary courts of Missouri, which tribunal Mr. Robinson thought was the only proper place for our claims; but he finally said
it was his first impression on the subject, not having considered the matter, but would take it into further consideration.
"Judge Young of the Senate made some remarks in our favor, saying he would get the opinion of some of the prominent members of the Senate, who were also lawyers, and would report to us the next meeting. We met this day according to appointment, and very friendly feelings were manifested on the occasion. Our business was taken up, and Judge Young stated that he had asked the opinion of Judge White, of Tennessee, of Mr. Wright and several other members whose names we do not recollect, but were prominent members of the Senate. They all declined giving an opinion at present, as it was a matter that they had not considered sufficiently to decide upon at this time. The meeting then, after some deliberations, decided in our favor, which decision was that a memorial and petition be drawn up in a concise manner, (our representatives promising so to do,) and Judge Young present them to the Senate, that they might thereby refer it to the proper committee, with all the accompanying documents, and order the same to be printed.
"We want you to assist us now, and also to forward us your certificates that you hold for lands in Missouri; your claims to preëmption rights, and affidavits to prove that soldiers were quartered on us and in our houses without our consent or any special act of law for that purpose, contrary to the Constitution of the United States. We think Brother Ripley and others will recollect the circumstances and facts relative to this matter. You will also recollect the circumstances of Brother Joseph and others being refused the privilege of habeas corpus by the authorities of Missouri.
"These facts must be authenticated by affidavits. Let any particular transaction of the outrages in Missouri that can be sworn to by the sufferers or those who were eyewitnesses to the facts, be sent, specifying the particulars. Have the evidence bona fide to the point.
"The House of Representatives is not yet organized. Much feeling and confusion have prevailed in the House for a few days past. The House succeeded in electing John Q. Adams
chairman pro tem. on the 5th instant. They have not yet elected their speaker or clerk. The Senate can do nothing of consequence until the House is organized; neither can the President's Message until then be received. We design taking a paper and forwarding it to you.
"Your brethren in the bonds of the everlasting covenant,
"Joseph Smith, Jr.,
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 471, 472.
During the latter part of December President Smith made a visit to Philadelphia, and Elders Higbee and Rockwell followed him by carriage, leaving Elder Rigdon in Washington, sick, attended by Doctor Foster.
The 14th of January, 1840, Elder Rigdon and Doctor Foster arrived at Philadelphia. Until about the last of the month they visited and preached in different places, when Joseph Smith, Elias Higbee, Doctor Foster, and O. P. Rockwell returned to Washington, leaving Elder Rigdon sick in Philadelphia.
President Smith had interviews with President Van Buren, also with John C. Calhoun, of which he writes as follows:-
"During my stay I had an interview with Martin Van Buren, the President, who treated me very insolently, and it was with great reluctance he listened to our message, which when he had heard, he said, 'Gentlemen, YOUR CAUSE IS JUST, BUT I CAN DO NOTHING FOR YOU;' and, 'If I take up for you, I shall lose the vote of Missouri.' His whole course went to show that he was an officeseeker, that self-aggrandizement was his ruling passion, and that justice and righteousness were no part of his composition. I found him such a man as I could not conscientiously support at the head of our noble republic. I also had an interview with Mr. John C. Calhoun, whose conduct towards me very ill became his station. I became satisfied there was little use for me to tarry to press the just claims of the saints on the protection of the President or Congress, and staid [stayed] but a few days, taking passage in company with Rockwell and Foster on the railroad
and stages back to Dayton, Ohio."-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 584, 585.
Judge Higbee, who remained in Washington to look after the interests of the petition, wrote under date of February 20, 1840, as follows:-
"WASHINGTON CITY, February 20, 1840.
"Dear Brother:-I have just returned from the committee room, wherein I spoke about one hour and a half. There were but three of the committee present, for which I am very sorry. I think they will be obliged to acknowledge the justice of our cause. They paid good attention, and I think my remarks were well received. It was a special meeting appointed to hear me by my request. The Missouri senators and representatives were invited to attend. Dr. Linn and Mr. Jamieson attended, and God gave me courage, so that I was not intimidated by them. Dr. Linn, I thought, felt a little uneasy at times; but manifested a much better spirit afterwards than Mr. Jamieson.
"I told them firstly that I represented a suffering people, who had been deprived, together with myself, of their rights in Missouri; who numbered something like fifteen thousand souls; and not only they, but many others were deprived of the rights guaranteed to them by the Constitution of the United States. At least the amount of one hundred and fifty thousand freeborn citizens are deprived of the enjoyment of citizenship in each or every State; that we had no ingress in the State of Missouri; nor could any of us have, only at the expense of our lives; and this by the order of the Executive.
"I then took their own declaration of the cause of our expulsion; referred them to P. P. Pratt's pamphlet, which I held in my hand; then showed that the first accusation therein contained was on account of our religious tenets; furthermore, that the others were utterly groundless. I went on to prove that the whole persecution from beginning to end was grounded on our religious faith. For evidence of this I referred them to Porter Rockwell's testimony and P. Powell's. I stated that there was abundant testimony to prove this to be a fact, among the documents.
"I then gave a brief history of the persections [persecutions] from the first settlement in the State to our final expulsion. I also stated that the society were industrious, inoffensive, and innocent of crime; had the Times and Seasons, from which I read Governor Lucas' letter to Alanson Ripley. I also referred to Judge Young's letter from Pike County, the clerk's, and others, respecting our character in their section of country. I gave them some hints of the Haun's mill massacre, and the murder of the two little boys, but referred them more particularly to the documents for information concerning those things; and furthermore that I had not come here to instruct them in what they were to do in the case, but to present them with the facts, having all confidence in this honorable body (the Congress), believing them to be honorable men.
"I demanded from them a restitution of all our rights and privileges as citizens of the United States, and damages for all the losses we had sustained in consequence of our persecutions and expulsion from the State; and told them we could have recourse nowhere else on earth that I knew of; that we could not sue an army of soldiers, neither could we go into the State to sue anyone else. I told them that I knew not how far Congress had jurisdiction in this case, or how far they had not; but as far as they had, we claimed the exercise of it for our relief; for we were an injured people.
"These and some others were the principal subjects of my speech, after which Mr. Jamieson said he was once in the "Mormons" favor; but afterwards learned that it was impossible to live among them, for they stole their neighbors' hogs; and there being so much testimony, he believed it, etc., etc. I replied something like this: making statements was one thing, and proving them was another. Mr. Linn then said he wished me to answer one thing; viz.: If the legislature of Missouri did not refuse to investigate the subject of our difficulties solely on account of the trials then pending. In reply I assured him that I knew they had refused us an investigation; but as to that being the cause, I did not know, but told him they might have done it
when those trials were discharged. He seemed to think it injustice for Congress to take it up before the legislature had acted on it.
"I occupied all but a few minutes of the time when the Senate were to go into session, so they adjourned until the morrow at ten o'clock, when the Missourians are to reply. Mr. Linn observed that there was a gentleman whom he would have before the committee on the morrow who lived in the upper part of Missouri, that knew everything relative to the affair. I presume he is to put in his gab. I suppose I must attend the committee, as I am solicited by the chairman; but I would rather take a flogging, because I must sit still and hear a volubility of lies concerning myself and brethren. Lies I say, for they have nothing but lies to tell, that will in the least degree justify their conduct in Missouri. Mr. Linn said he had written to Missouri to get all the evidence taken before Judge King, so that if the thing must come up he would be prepared to have a full investigation of the matter, and that the committee should have power to send for persons, papers, etc., etc.
"In my remarks I stated that an article of the Constitution was violated in not granting compulsory process for witnesses in behalf of the prisoners; and that the main evidence adduced, upon which they were committed, (as I understood,) was from Dr. Avard, who once belonged to our society, and was compelled to swear as suited them best, in order to save his life; that I knew him to be a man whose character was the worst I ever knew in all my associations or intercourse with mankind; and that I had evidence by affidavits before them, of five or six respectable men, to prove that all he swore to was false.
"Brethren and sisters, I want your especial prayers that God may give me wisdom to manage this case according to his will, and that he will protect me from our foes, both publicly and privately.
"Yours in the bonds of love,
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 598, 599.
The next day he wrote as follows:-
"WASHINGTON CITY, February 21,1840.
"Dear Brethren:-I have just returned again from the committee room. Mr. Linn and Mr. Jamieson made some remarks, to which I replied. Mr. Linn is much more mild and reasonable (mostly perhaps from policy) than Mr. Jamieson, who related a long lingo of stuff, which he said was proven before the legislature, which amounted to about this: that Joseph Smith gave the 'Mormons' liberty to trespass on their neighbors' property; also told them that it all belonged to them, as they were Israelites. Upon the strength of this they became the aggressors. I replied that the Jackson County people in their declaration of causes that induced them to unite in order to drive the 'Mormons,' the crime of stealing or trespassing was not mentioned; and there was no docket, either clerk's or justice's, that could show it, in Jackson, Clay, Caldwell, or in Daviess Counties; and that no man ever heard such teaching or doctrine from Joseph Smith or any other 'Mormon;' that we held to no such doctrine, neither believed in any such thing.
"I mentioned some things contained in our Book of Doctrine and Covenants; Government and Laws in General. I told them we had published long ago our belief on that subject. Some things I recollected, which were that all persons should obey the laws of the government under which they lived, and that ecclesiastical power should not be exercised to control our civil rights in any way; particularly that ecclesiastical power should only be used in the church, and then no further than fellowship was concerned. I think they injured their cause to-day. There is another appointment for them on the morrow at ten o'clock. Their friend they said was sick, consequently could not attend to-day. Mr. Linn said he thought it would be time enough to take it up in Congress when they could not get justice from the State, and that he was confident there was a disposition in the State of Missouri to do us justice, should we apply; that the reason of their refusing to investigate before was, the trials of the prisoners were pending; and further said (when speaking of the trials before Judge King) that he understood
from gentlemen that the prisoners commended the Judge for his clemency and fair dealing towards them and acknowledged they were guilty in part of the charge preferred against them. Mr. Linn said he presumed I was not present when said men were tried. I replied in the negative, that I was not there, neither anybody else that could be a witness in their favor. The lawyers advised them to keep away if they desired the salvation of their lives. I observed that I had read the proceedings of the legislature, but did not now recollect them; but since yesterday I have been reflecting on the subject, and recollect a conversation I had with Mr. Harvey Redfield, who was the bearer of the petition to Jefferson City, and he informed me that the reasons why they refused an investigation was on account of the upper Missouri members being so violently opposed to it that they used their utmost exertions, and finally succeeded in getting a majority against it; and the reason of their taking this course was in consequence of one of their members being in the massacre at Haun's mill; viz., Mr. Ashley; and Cornelius Gillium was a leader of the first mob in Daviess County, which the militia were called out to suppress.
"Mr. Linn said if it must come out in Congress it should be fully investigated, and they, the committee, should have power to send for persons and papers; for if we have a right to claim damages of the United States, so had they, if all were true concerning the acts alleged against the Mormons;' that they had a right to ask the government to pay the war against the 'Mormons;' but finally seemed to disapprove of the exterminating order, which was admitted to have existed by Mr. Jamieson, or was issued by their legislature, but that no one ever thought of carrying it into effect. He said that General Clark merely advised the 'Mormons' to leave the State. To which I replied, General Clark's speech was before them; that I had stated some of its contents yesterday, and if it were necessary I could prove it by four or five hundred affidavits.
"Then Mr. Jamieson stated something about the prisoners making their escape, and that he had no doubt but that they could have a fair trial in Missouri, for the Legislature, to
his certain knowledge, passed a law whereby they had right to choose any county in the State to be tried in; to which I replied that I understood such a law was passed, but notwithstanding, they could not get their trials in the county wherein they desired; for they were forced to go to Boone, whereas they desired to have their trials in Palmyra, where they could get their witnesses, as that was only sixteen miles from the river, and the other was a great distance. He said that Judge King certainly would not go contrary to law. I told him there were some affidavits in those documents that would tell him some things very strange concerning Judge King. Mr. Linn then wished to know if the affidavits were from anybody else save 'Mormons.' I replied that there were some others, but how many I knew not. He then wanted to know how they were certified, whether any clerk's name was attached in the business. I told him they were well authenticated by the courts of record, with the clerk's name attached thereto.
"After these things and some others were said, the committee refused to consult on the subject. Only the same three attended that were in yesterday. The chairman observed that they had not expressed any opinion relative to the subject, but observed his mind was made up in relation to the matter. I think, from all I have discovered, Mr. Smith, of Indiana, will be on the side of justice; but how the thing will terminate I cannot tell. Mr. Crittenden and Mr. Strange are the two absent members of the committee.
"Yours in the bond of love,
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 599, 600.
On the 22d Mr. Higbee again wrote:-
"WASHINGTON, FEBRUARY 22,1840
"Dear Brother:-I have just returned from the committee room. The committee being present to-day, a Mr. Corwin, of St. Louis, formerly a Democratic editor, emptied his budget; which was as great a bundle of nonsense and stuff as could be thought of; I suppose not what he knew, but what gentlemen had told him; for instance, the religious General Clark and others. I confess I had hard work to restrain my
feelings some of the time, but I did succeed in keeping silence tolerably well. Himself, Mr. Jamieson, and Mr. Linn summoned all the energies of their minds to impress upon the assembly that Joe Smith, as he called him, led the people altogether by revelation, in their temporal, civil, and political matters, and by this means caused all the 'Mormons' to vote the whole hog ticket on one side, except two persons. But when I got an opportunity of speaking I observed that Joseph Smith never led any of the church in these matters, as we considered him to have no authority, neither did he presume to exercise any of that nature; that revelations were only concerning spiritual things in the church; and the Bible being our standard, we received no revelations contrary to it. I also observed that we were not such ignoramuses, perhaps, as he fain would have people believe us to be; and some other things on this subject. I then told him that every man exercised the right of suffrage according to his better judgment, or without any ecclesiastical restraint being put upon him; that it was all false about a revelation on voting; and the reason of our voting that ticket was in consequence of the democratic principles having been taught us from our infancy that they ever believed and extended equal rights to all; and that we had been much persecuted previous to that time, many threatenings being made from the counties round about, as well as among us, who took the lead in political affairs. It was true we advised our brethren to vote this ticket, telling them we thought that party would protect our rights, and not suffer us to be driven from our lands as we had hitherto been, believing it to be by far the most liberal party; but in that we were mistaken, because when it came to the test there were as many Democrats turned against us as Whigs; and indeed less liberality and political freedom was manifested by them; for one Whig paper came out decidedly in our favor.
"I made these remarks partly from motives which I may at another time explain to you. He laid great stress on the trials at Richmond, and a constitution, that he said Avard and others (who were in good standing in the 'Mormon' Church at this time) swore to; then went on to relate what
it contained, and that it was written by Sidney Rigdon.
"I flatly denied it, and I could bring all the 'Mormons,' both men, women, and children, besides myself, that would swear before all the world that no such thing ever existed nor was thought of among the 'Mormons.'
"He then related some things which he said John Corrill had told him at the legislature, in Missouri; which were to the effect that the 'Mormons' had burnt a number of houses in Daviess County, and that for himself, if he could not get to heaven by being an honest man, he would never go there. Then, I, speaking of some of the dissenters, told him Corrill was anxious to get into the church again, and that it was the fact in regard to damages having been done, after we had been driven from Jackson and Clay, relating the De Witt scrape, and calling of the militia, and the mob's marching to Daviess, and saying they would drive the 'Mormons' from there to Caldwell, and then to hell; there burning our houses; that small parties on both sides were on the alert, and probably did some damages; though I was not personally knowing to, as I was not there. I told him Joseph Smith held no office in the country, neither was he a military man, and did not take gun in hand in the affair to my knowledge. I then stated that John Corrill's affidavit, which contained some important facts, was before them,-which facts I forgot to mention yesterday,-importing that he (J. Corrill) was convinced he would get no redress in Missouri (he being a member of the legislature, ought to know). I saw the chairman of the committee not long since, who informed me that the committee had not come to a final conclusion on this matter as yet.
"I saw Mr. Jamieson on the walk, who said the first thing the committee would do was to decide whether they would take it up and consider it or not; and if they do take it up according to request, the Senate will grant the committee power to send for persons and papers. The committee made some inquiries respecting our religion, and I answered them as a matter of course, as well as I was able. They inquired very particularly concerning how much land we had entered there, and how much of it yet remained unsold; when Mr. Corwin
observed that we had never entered much land there, but were squatters. I then described the size of Caldwell and Daviess Counties, giving an explanation on these matters.
"I suppose perhaps on Monday or Tuesday we shall know something relative to this matter. Whether power be given them to send for persons and papers, you may see where they depend to rally their forces; viz., by endeavoring to make us treasonable characters, by the Constitution, said to govern us, and that everything both civil and political among us is done by revelation. These points I desire to blow to the four winds, and that you will select a number of firm brethren, possessing good understanding, who will tell the truth and willingly send me their names when they know they are wanted. Send plenty of them. They will get two dollars per day, and ten cents a mile to and from, expense money. Do not send them until their subpnas get there, for they will not draw expense money only for going home.
"I will suggest a few names: Alanson Ripley, King Follet, Amasa Lyman, Francis M. Higbee, as they know concerning the De Witt scrape; also send Charles C. Rich, Seymour Brunson, and others. You will know whom to send better than myself.
"If the Missourians should send for you, I would say consult God about going.
"P. S.--Mr. Jamieson stated to me this evening, if the 'Mormons' could make it appear that they had been wronged, they would use their influence in having them redressed, so the shame should not fall on the whole State, but on those which had been guilty. I then observed that there was a minority in the legislature much in our favor, which seemed to please him, as they attended several times to it. The cause of my being so particular is to show you the whole ground I have taken in this matter; that there may be no inconsistency. If I have erred in this matter, it is my head and not my heart.
-Millennial Star vol. 17, pp. 611, 612.
Again he wrote:-
"Washington, February 26, 1840.
"Dear Brother:-I am just informed by General Wall (the chairman of the committee), before whom or to whom our business is referred, that the decision is against us, or in other words unfavorable; that they believe redress can only be had in Missouri, the courts, and legislature. He says they will report this week. I desire to get a copy of it, and also the papers. I feel a conscience void of offense towards God and man in this matter; that I have discharged my duty here; and as I wish not to be on expense, as soon as I can write to President Rigdon, get my papers, and draw some money to bear my expenses, I shall bid adieu to this city, to return to my family and friends. I feel now that we have made our last appeal to all earthly tribunals; that we should now put our whole trust in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. We have a right now which we could not heretofore so fully claim-that is, of asking God for redress and redemption, as they have been refused us by man.
"To Joseph Smith, Jr."
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, p. 613.
The committee reported as follows:-
"Twenty-sixth Congress-First Session.-In Senate of the United States, March 4, 1840. Submitted, laid on the table, and ordered to be printed, the following report, made by Mr. Wall.
"The committee on the judiciary to whom was referred the memorial of a delegation of the Latter Day Saints, report:-
"The petition of the memorialists set forth in substance that a portion of their sect commenced a settlement in the county of Jackson, in the State of Missouri, in the summer of 1831; that they bought lands, built houses, erected churches, and established their homes, and engaged in all the various occupations of life; that they were expelled from that county in 1833 by a mob, under circumstances of great outrage, cruelty, and oppression, and against all law, and without any offense committed on their part, and to the destruction of property to the amount of $120,000; that the
society thus expelled amounted to about 12,000 souls; that no compensation was ever made for the destruction of their property in Jackson; that after their expulsion from Jackson County they settled in Clay County, on the opposite side of the Missouri River, where they purchased lands, and entered others at the land office; where they resided peaceably for three years, engaged in cultivation and other useful and active employments, when the mob again threatened their peace, lives, and property; and they became alarmed, and finally made a treaty with the citizens of Clay County, that they should purchase their lands, and the saints should remove; which was complied with on their part, and the saints removed to the county of Caldwell, where they took up their abode and reëstablished their settlement, not without heavy pecuniary losses and other inconveniences; that the citizens of Clay County never paid them for their lands, except for a small part; they remained in Caldwell from 1836 until the fall of 1838, and during that time had acquired, by purchase from the government, the settlers, and preëmptioners almost all the lands in the county of Caldwell and a portion of the lands in Daviess and Carroll Counties-the former county being almost entirely settled by the saints, and they were rapidly filling up the two latter counties.
"Those counties, when the saints first commenced their settlement, were for the most part wild and uncultivated, and they had converted them into large and well-improved farms, well stocked. Land had risen in value to ten or even twenty-five dollars per acre, and these counties were rapidly advancing in cultivation and wealth.
"That in August, 1838, a riot commenced, growing out of an attempt of a saint to vote, which resulted in creating great excitement and the perpetration of many scenes of lawless outrage, which are set forth in the petition. That they were finally compelled to fly from those counties, and on the 11th October, 1838, they sought safety by that means, with their families, leaving many of their effects behind. That they had previously applied to the constituted authorities of Missouri for protection, but in vain. They allege that they were pursued by the mob; that conflicts
ensued; deaths occurred on each side; and finally a force was organized under the authority of the Governor of the State of Missouri, with orders to drive the saints from the State, or exterminate them. The saints thereupon determined to make no further resistance, but to submit themselves to the authorities of the State.
"Several of the saints were arrested and imprisoned on a charge of treason against the State, and the rest, amounting to about 15,000 souls, fled into other States, principally in Illinois, where they now reside.
"The petition is drawn up at great length, and sets forth with feeling and eloquence the wrongs of which they complain; justifies their own conduct, and aggravates that of those whom they call their persecutors, and concludes by saying they see no redress, unless it be obtained of the Congress of the United States, to whom they make their solemn, last appeal, as American citizens, as Christians, and as men; to which decision they say they will submit.
"The committee have examined the case presented by the petition, and heard the views urged by their agent, with care and attention; and after full examination and consideration, unanimously concur in the opinion-
"That the case presented for their investigation is not such a one as will justify or authorize any interposition by this government.
"The wrongs complained of are not alleged to be committed by any of the officers of the United States, or under the authority of its government in any manner whatever. The allegations in the petition relate to the acts of its citizens, and inhabitants and authorities of the State of Missouri, of which State the petitioners were at the time citizens or inhabitants.
"The grievances complained of in the petition are alleged to have been done within the territory of the State of Missouri. The committee under these circumstances have not considered themselves justified in inquiring into the truth or falsehood of the facts charged in the petition. If they are true, the petitioners must seek relief in the courts of judicature of the State of Missouri, or of the United States, which
has the appropriate jurisdiction to administer full and adequate redress for the wrongs complained of, and doubtless will do so fairly and impartially; or the petitioners may, if they see proper, apply to the justice and magnanimity of the State of Missouri-an appeal which the committee feel justified in believing will never be made in vain by the injured or oppressed.
"It can never be presumed that a State either wants the power or lacks the disposition to redress the wrongs of its own citizens, committed within her own territory, whether they proceed from the lawless acts of her officers or any other persons. The committee therefore report that they recommend the passage of the following resolution:-
"Resolved, That the committee on the judiciary be discharged from the further consideration of the memorial in this case; and that the memorialists have leave to withdraw the papers which accompany their memorial.'"-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 613, 614.
On March 9 Elder Higbee again wrote:-
"Washington, March 9,1840.
"Dear Brother:-I expected by this time that we would be through with our business, but the chairman of the committee gave notice last week he should call it up to-day in the Senate; though Mr. Young's having gone to Philadelphia, it will not be called up until his return, which will be on next Thursday, according to the information that I have obtained relative to this matter. If the resolution is passed, as annexed to the report, I shall get my papers and leave the city.
"I have written some letters to Brother Rigdon, which it seems he did not get. Brother Samuel Bennett writes that Bro. Rigdon left Philadelphia for the Jerseys on the 5th instant. He stated that he expects me to come there to go with him home, and that he would write me soon on the subject. I shall write for him to make the necessary arrangements. He says, Dr. Ells' 2 family left about a week ago for Commerce. Also that the church there numbers about one
2Josiah Ells, afterwards well known as one of the Twelve Apostles of the Reorganized Church
hundred; and P. P. Pratt, Orson Pratt, Brother Kimball, Brother Young, G. A. Smith, and Brother Hedlock were to sail from New York to England on the 7th instant.
"As I have lately written several letters to you, I shall bid adieu, not to write again until after the Senate acts upon our business. Mr. Robinson says he has sent you a report; notwithstanding, I shall inclose another for you.
"I have changed my place of boarding in consequence of Mrs. Richey's breaking up housekeeping, and gone to Baltimore. I am busy here at chimney corner preaching.
"Yours as ever in the bonds of everlasting love,
"To President J. Smith, Jr., Commerce, Illinois
"P. S.-Lest my previous letters should not come to hand, I merely say that I have been before the committee three days, and done all in my power to effect the object of our mission; have spoken my mind freely on the subject; and feel to have a conscience void of offense towards God in this matter. The submission of which the report makes mention was on condition they could not lawfully do anything for us; after examination we were to submit and wait until the Great Disposer of human events shall adjust these things, in that place where the wicked cease from troubling and the weary are at rest (this I think is nearly the sentiment, though perhaps not the very words); and I for one hope and pray the time will soon come when they will not trouble us in the West, as they have hitherto done.
"There is a man here who owns two printing presses and much type, reading our books, (on whom I occasionally call,) I will with the assistance of God, get to come to the West as soon as possible with his press, that you may set him to printing the truth. He told me if we had any printing to do, he would do it cheap, and even go to the West if necessary.
"Give my respects to P. Rockwell, Dr. Foster, and also all the household of faith.
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 615, 616.
On March 24 Elder Higbee reported as follows:-
"WASHINGTON CITY, March 24, 1840.
"Dear Brother:-Our business is at last ended here. Yesterday a resolution passed the Senate that the committee should be discharged, and that we might withdraw the accompanying papers, which I have done. I have also taken a copy of the memorial, and want to be off for the West immediately. I have not gotten a letter from President Rigdon, although I have frequently written to him. I have received a letter from Brother Bennett, stating that he was in the Jerseys, and that he was calculating to have me come that way and go home with him; and also that he had business which he wanted me to attend to at the office here. When he last wrote he stated that as yet he had no money to get home with, and I hardly know what course to take in regard to the matter. If I do not receive a letter in two or three days, I design leaving for Philadelphia or the West.
"There is one honest Quaker-looking sort of a man here, by the name of William Green, (instead of John Green, as I stated in a letter to Brother Robinson,) who has two iron printing presses, with other things necessary, that would come to Commerce, provided you could find work for him and inform him of the same. How much work there is to do I know not, therefore merely write that if such a man and establishment are wanted, you could easily obtain them, or would know where they could be obtained. He believes as much in our religion as any other, but not much in any.
"Yours in the Lord,
"P S.-I would just observe that information has reached this place, through some of the newspapers, that you have come out for Harrison. It is said that the information came by some gentlemen who obtained it from you whilst in your company in passing through the State of Indiana. Another paper states that one thousand houses are to be built in Commerce this season, which I hope is the truth.
"I would just observe (on the subject of our business) I am sorry Judge Young had not insisted on the motion to print our papers, as it would have been opposed; then a
speech from Clay and Mr. Preston would have been brought forth, as I have since learned; but I think it was a trick of the Missouri Senators to slide it along without making a noise, by its going to the committee as it did. Judge Young says he was anxious to have it brought before the committee, but seemed disposed to let it slide along easily, rather than run the risk of its being refused.
"If he had let those speeches been made, almost every one would have read them; which would have shamed Missouri, (if there is any shame in her,) and waked up the whole country, so that by another year Congress would do something for us. But there is no need of crying for spilt milk. I have done all I could in this matter, depending on the good judgment of Judge Young to legislate for us to the best advantage. I am inclined, however, to think if it was an error, it was one of the head, and not of the heart.
"Mr. Hotchkiss, of Fair Haven, Connecticut, has addressed a letter to yourself, Brother Rigdon and myself, which seems to be written with much good feeling. He desires to know concerning our business here, inviting us to make his house our home, should we travel in that region. He writes that his health is very bad. I have been talking with Mr. Steward concerning a memorial, requesting him to bring it before the House; who has promised to do so if he can. He says he will talk with some of the members respecting it. I have answered Mr. Hotchkiss' letter this day, and sent him the report of the committee.
-Millennial Star, vol. 17, pp. 663, 664.
Joseph Smith gives an account of his return to Commerce, then frequently called Nauvoo, as follows:-
"When I had returned as far as Dayton, I found the horses which we left on our journey out, and from thence I pursued my journey through Indiana on horseback, in company with Dr. Foster, leaving Brother Rockwell at Dayton. The traveling being exceedingly bad, my progress was slow and wearisome.
"My clerk, James Mulholland, died on November 8,1839, while I was absent, aged thirty-five years. He was a man
of fine education, and a faithful scribe and elder in the church.
"Wednesday, March 4,1840. I arrived safely at Nauvoo, after a wearisome journey, through alternate snows and mud, having witnessed many vexatious movements in government officers, whose sole object should be the peace and prosperity and happiness of the whole people; but instead of this, I discovered that popular clamor and personal aggrandizement were the ruling principles of those in authority; and my heart faints within me when I see, by the visions of the Almighty, the end of this nation, if she continues to disregard the cries and petitions of her virtuous citizens, as she has done, and is now doing.
"I have also enjoyed many precious moments with the saints during my journey.
"On my way home I did not fail to proclaim the iniquity and insolence of Martin Van Buren towards myself and an injured people, which will have its effect upon the public mind; and may he never be elected again to any office of trust or power by which he may abuse the innocent and let the guilty go free.
"I depended on Dr. Foster to keep my daily journal during this journey, but he has failed me."-Millennial Star, vol. 17, p. 613.
Thus ended what would appear to have been a fruitless effort to obtain redress. We have, to save space, omitted numerous affidavits and statements concerning the Missouri outrages; but we think most of the general facts, as well as some of the details, are now before the reader; and we leave it with a candid public to judge who were the aggressors, and whether justice was done to the oppressed or not.
The General Conference on April 8, 1840, passed the following:-
"He 3 then gave some account of his mission to Washington City, in company with President Rigdon and Judge Higbee, the treatment they received, and the action of the Senate on the memorial which we presented to them.
"The meeting then called for the reading of the memorial, and the report of the committee on judiciary, to whom the same had been referred.-Which were read.
"It was then resolved that a committee of five be appointed to draft resolutions expressive of the sentiments of this conference in reference to the report.
"Resolved, that Robert D. Foster, Orson Hyde, John E. Page, Joseph Wood, and Robert B. Thompson compose said committee, and report to this conference.
"Resolved that this meeting adjourn until to-morrow morning at nine o'clock.
"A hymn was then sung and the meeting was dismissed by Elder John Smith.
"Wednesday morning [8th], conference met pursuant to adjournment.
"A number were confirmed who had been baptized the previous evening.
"The meeting was then opened with prayer by Elder Marks.
"The committee appointed to draft resolutions on the report which was read yesterday, were then called upon to make their report.
"Robert B. Thompson of the committee then read the resolutions, as follows:-
"Whereas, we learn with deep sorrow, regret, and disappointment that the committee on judiciary, to whom was referred the memorial of the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (commonly called Mormons) complaining of the grievances suffered by them in the State of Missouri, have reported unfavorably to our cause, to justice and humanity,
"Resolved, 1st. That we consider the report of the committee on judiciary unconstitutional and subversive of the rights of a free people; and justly calls for the disapprobation of all the supporters and lovers of good government and republican principles.
"Resolved, 2d. That the committee state in their report that our memorial aggravated the case of our oppressors,
and at the same time say that they have not examined into the truth or falsehoods of the facts mentioned in said memorial.
"Resolved, 3d. That the memorial does not aggravate the conduct of our oppressors, as every statement set forth in said memorial was substantiated by indubitable testimony, therefore, we consider the statement of the committee in regard to that part as false and ungenerous.
"Resolved, 4th. That that part of the report referring us to the justice and magnanimity of the State of Missouri for redress, we deem it a great insult to our good sense, better judgment, and intelligence, when from numerous affidavits which were laid before the committee proved that we could only go into the State of Missouri contrary to the exterminating order of the Governor, and consequently at the risk of our lives.
"Resolved, 5th. That after repeated appeals to the constituted authorities of the State of Missouri for redress, which were in vain, we fondly hoped that in the Congress of the United States ample justice would have been rendered us; and upon that consideration alone, we pledged ourselves to abide their decision.
"Resolved, 6th. That the exterminating order of Governor Boggs is a direct infraction of the Constitution of the United States, and of the State of Missouri; and the committee in refusing to investigate the proceedings of [the] Executive and others of the State of Missouri, and turning a deaf ear to the cries of widows, orphans, and innocent blood, we deem no less than seconding the proceedings of that murderous mob, whose deeds are recorded in heaven, and justly calls down upon their heads the righteous judgments of an offended God.
"Resolved, 7th. That the thanks of this meeting be tendered to the citizens of the State of Illinois for their kind, liberal, and generous conduct towards us; and that we call upon them, as well as every patriot in this vast republic, to aid us in all lawful endeavors to obtain redress for the injuries we have sustained.
"Resolved, 8th. That the thanks of this meeting be
tendered to the delegation of Illinois, for their bold, manly, noble, and independent course they have taken in presenting our case before the authorities of the nation, amid misrepresentation, contumely, and abuse which characterized us in our suffering condition.
"Resolved, 9th. That the thanks of this meeting be tendered to Governor Carlin, of Illinois, Governor Lucas, of Iowa, for their sympathy, aid, and protection; and to all other honorable gentlemen who have assisted us in our endeavors to obtain redress.
"Resolved, 10th. That Joseph Smith, Jr., Sidney Rigdon, and Elias Higbee, the delegates appointed by this church to visit the city of Washington to present our sufferings before the authorities of the nation, accept of the thanks of this meeting for the prompt and efficient manner in which they have discharged their duty; and that they be requested in the behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints throughout the world to continue to use their endeavors to obtain redress for a suffering people; and if all hopes of obtaining satisfaction (for the injuries done us) be entirely blasted, that they then appeal our case to the court of heaven, believing that the great Jehovah, who rules over the destiny of nations and who notices the falling sparrow, will undoubtedly redress our wrongs and ere long avenge us of our adversaries.
"It was then resolved that the report of the committee on judiciary, as well as the foregoing preamble and resolutions, be published in the Quincy papers."-Times and Seasons, vol. 1, pp. 93, 94.
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