(Newspapers of Pennsylvania)

Philadelphia Newspapers
1830-1839 Articles

Very early photo/art of Philadelphia, from the East  (c. 1838)

1800-29   |   1830-39   |   1840-45   |   1846-99

AQR Mar '30 |  USGz Apr 13 '30 |  CSI Apr 17 '30
MFP May 08 '30 |  Cas Jun '30 |  SEP Dec 11 '30 |  Alb Dec 18 '30 |  PInq Dec 29 '30 |  CSI Feb 19 '31 |  CSI Mar 19 '31
NGz Apr 27 '31 |  PInq Apr 30 '31 |  PInq May 10 '31 |  SEP May 14 '31 |  PInq May 26 '31 |  NGz Jun 09 '31 |  PInq Jun 10 '31
SEP Jul 23 '31 |  PInq Aug 09 '31 |  Sun Aug 18 '31 |  PInq Aug 25 '31 |  SEP Aug 27 '31 |  PInq Sep 13 '31 |  PDA Sep 21 '31
NGz Sep 22 '31 |  SEP Oct 15 '31 |  DChr Feb 02 '32 |  Alb Mar 31 '32 |  PDA Apr 05 '32 |  ARv Apr '32 |  NGz May 22 '32
USGz May 22 '32 |  USGz Sep 01 '32 |  USGz Sep 22 '32 |  SatC Apr ? '33 |  PDA Aug 31 '33 |  SatC Sep 14 '33 |  PInq Jan 27 '34
Alb Feb 01 '34 |  SatC Mar 29 '34 |  SatC Apr 19 '34 |  NGz Jun 04 '34 |  NGz Jun 05 '34 |  NGz Jul 05 '34 |  SEP Aug 23 '34

SEP Jan 24 '35 |  Penn Jun 26 '35 |  SEP Jul 04 '35 |  SEP Aug 08 '35 |  SEP Aug 22 '35
DemH Aug 26 '35 |  SEP Sep 12 '35 |  Penn Feb 19 '36 |  SEP May 21 '36 |  PDA Jun 27 '36
Penn Jul 29 '36 |  Mirr Aug ? '36 |  PInq Aug 04 '36 |  PLgr Apr 22 '37 |  SatC Jun 17 '37
PDA Jul 14 '37 |  PInq Jul 20 '37 |  SatC Jul 22 '37 |  PInq Aug 03 '37

PInq Feb 03 '38 |  PDA Feb 07 '38 |  PInq Feb 21 '38 |  PDA Jun 05 '38 |  Focus Aug ? '38
SEP Aug 04 '38 |  ASnt Aug 16 '38 |  PInq Aug 31 '38 |  PInq Sep 12 '38 |  ASnt Sep 13 '38
PDA Sep 13 '38 |  ASnt Sep 22 '38 |  NGz Sep 27 '38 |  Penn Sep 27 '38
SEP Sep 29 '38 |  PInq Sep 29 '38 |  ASnt Oct 03 '38 |  PInq Oct 10 '38 |  SEP Oct 13 '38
NGz Oct 13 '38 |  PInq Oct 17 '38 |  SEP Oct 20 '38 |  PInq Oct 22 '38 |  PInq Oct 24 '38
PInq Oct 26 '38 |  SEP Oct 27 '38 |  PInq Oct 31 '38 |  NGz Nov 03 '38 |  PInq Nov 13 '38
ASnt Nov 14 '38 |  PInq Nov 14 '38 |  SEP Nov 17 '38 |  PInq Nov 17 '38 |  ASnt Nov 19 '38
PInq Nov 19 '38 |  ASnt Nov 20 '38 |  ASnt Nov 22 '38 |  ASnt Nov 24 '38 |  SEP Nov 24 '38
ASnt Nov 26 '38 |  ASnt Nov 27 '38 |  ASnt Nov 29 '38 |  ASnt Nov 30 '38
SEP Dec 01 '38 |  ASnt Dec 04 '38 |  ASnt Dec 19 '38 |  ASnt Dec 21 '38 |  ASnt Dec 28 '38

Penn Jan 24 '39 |  SEP Mar 02 '39 |  SEP Mar 09 '39 |  NAm Mar 30 '39 |  Penn Apr 27 '39 |  NAm May 03 '39 |  SEP May 04 '39
SEP May 25 '39 |  SEP Jun 01 '39 |  ASnt Jun 04 '39 |  SEP Jun 28 '39 |  PInq Jul 09 '39 |  SEP Jul 20 '39 |  SEP Aug 03 '39
SEP Aug 17 '39 |  NAm Aug 26 '39 |  SEP Oct 05 '39 |  PLgr Nov 30 '39 |  PLgr Dec 05 '39 |  PLgr Dec 14 '39 |  PInq Dec 20 '39

Articles Index  |  misc PA papers  |  Adams Co. papers  |  early PA. magazines  |  PA Quaker papers


Vol. VII.                                     Philadelphia, Pa.,  March, 1830.                                     No. 13.

A Narrative of the Anti-Masonic Excitement in the
western part of the state of New-York, during the years
1826, 1827, 1828, and part of 1829.
By Henry Brown,
Counsellor at Law: Batavia, New-York. pp. 244: 1829.

..."David C. Miller established himself some years ago in the village of Batavia, as the printer of a public journal. A rival press being not long after introduced, in consequence of a feud between Miller and some of his political friends, his undertaking as printer and editor became unprofitable. This circumstance exasperated his mind, and caused him to regard himself as an object of persecution, he was possessed of cunning, and respectable talents, and said to be very irregular in his personal habits. His situation generally predisposed him to embark in any enterprise however desperate, from which wealth or power could be expected. He had been initiated many years before as an entered apprentice mason at Albany, but as soon as Morgan's intentions to publish the masonic secrets were proclaimed, he approved of the design, and, with the expectation of amassing thereby a fortune, agreed to become his partner.

"William Morgan, whose name, by reason of his unfortunate catastrophe, has recently become familiar to the American people, was a native of Virginia, and born in Culpepper county, in that state, in the year 1775 or 1776. Of his early history, little or nothing is known. It has been asserted, though probably more for efTect than for any thing else, that he was a captain in General Jackson's army, and fought and distinguished himself at the battle of New-Orleans. It has also been asserted, that he belonged to a band of pirates, and was sentenced to be hanged; but pardoned upon condition of his entering that army. These, however, are merely reports, got up and circulated since his abduction, and neither of them are probably entitled to any credit. In October, 1819, at the arje of 43 or 44, he married Lucinda Pendleton, of Richmond, Virginia, now Lucitula Morgan, of Genesee county, whose misfortunes have since been the subject of much commiseration, then in her 16th year. In 1821 they removed to Canada, where he commenced the business of a brewer, near York, in the Upper Province. The destruction of his brewery afterwards, by fire, reduced him, it is said, to poverty, and he removed to Rochester, in this state, where he worked at his trade, and received occasionally some assistance from the masonic fraternity. From thence, he removed to Batavia, in the county of Genesee, and worked also at his trade, which was that of a mason, till his unfortunate abduction in 1826. During the time of his residence in the latter place, he was very intemperate, and frequently neglected his family. Without the advantages of education in early life, he had subsequently acquired a competent knowledge of reading, writing, and arithmetic, and was a tolerably good accountant. Possessed of a good share of common sense, and considerable suavity of manner, he appeared respectable; and when uninfluenced by ardent spirits, was a pleasant social companion.

"He was made a royal arch mason in Le Roy, about four or five years ago; but when or where he received the previous degrees, is not certainly known; and we have no means at present of ascertaining. When it was proposed, in 1826, or perhaps as early as 1825, to establish a chapter in Batavia, a petition to the grand chapter of the state was drawn up, for the purpose of obtaining a charter. The individual to whom it was intrusted for procuring signatures, (without reflecting that all who signed the petition would become members of course,) inadvertently presented it to him, and he being at that time a zealous mason, signed it. Before, however, the petition was presented to the grand chapter, some individuals, unwilling that he should become a member, on account of his habits, thought it advisable to draw up a new petition, which was accordingly done -- the new one presented, and a charter obtained. When the charter subsequently arrived, and the chapter was about being organized, it was found, much to his surprise, that his name was not included among their number, and of course that he could not be admitted without a unanimous vote. Being unable, at that time, to procure such vote, he was excluded. At this, he took offence; but whether it influenced his subsequent conduct, is not, and can not certainly be known. At all events, however, from being the warm and zealous friend of the institution, as he had hitherto pretended to be, he became at once its determined foe. His habits being dissolute -- his principles hanging loosely about him, and the companions with whom he usually associated spurring him on to the undertaking; -- the immense wealth, which he, and probably they, supposed would reward his exertions, induced him, at every hazard, to attempt the revelation of masonic secrets. Soon after this determination was formed, his intentions were publicly announced. At first, it was regarded by all, masons as well as others, as a thing of little or no importance. It was soon perceived, however, that an apparent uneasiness was felt on the part of some inconsiderate masons. This, of course, stimulated M iller, Morgan, and their friends, to persevere in the work. Some unfortunate altercation took place in the village newspapers. This added fuel to the flame just beginning to burn. Efforts to suppress the work were talked of; and some, it is said, proposed doing it by force. The respectable part of the masonic fraternity, supposing that nothing of that kind would seriously be attempted, and, like a nine day wonder, that it would soon vanish and wholly disappear, took little or no interest in the question. While they were folding their arms, in expectation that the fire, kindled by folly, would soon be extinguished in its own ardour, an inconsiderate scheme, it seems, was concerted, by individual masons, for suppressing, by force, the contemplated work, which, in its execution afterwards, created an explosion which has been heard throughout the globe, and which some contend, has shaken to its centre an institution reared to virtue and cemented by time."...

"Giddins, whose statements, unless confirmed by other circumstances, are not entitled to any credit whatever -- who was himself an accomplice, and if to be believed, the most guilty one of the whole, as will by and by appear, informs us that Morgan arrived at his house, 'bound, hoodwinked, and under guard,' on the night of the 13th of September, 1826 -- that he (Giddins) arose, partly dressed himself -- went down to the river and assisted in rowing him and others across -- that they waited about two hours in expectation that the masons in Canada would take him off their hands -- 'that they were not yet ready' -- and therefore that Morgan was taken back and confined in the magazine -- that he (Giddins) had the key, and supplied him during the time of his imprisonment with food—that Morgan became uneasy, and made considerable disturbance -- that a black woman who went with the keeper's little girl to the river for water, heard a noise in the magazine, and communicated the tact to Giddins -- that he, (Giddins,) in order to deceive her, mentioned that ghosts and witches infested the fort, and went unperceived by her to the top of the mess-house and made a similar noise -- that a number of masons, on the evening of the 14th, took supper at his house, most of whom, however, went away soon thereafter -- that he, (Giddins,) and some others, after they had retired, held a long consultation about Morgan, and agreed that he ought to be executed -- that he had forfeited his life, and that they, as masons, were bound to execute him -- that they, with the exception of one or two others, went into the magazine -- that they afterwards returned, held a further consultation, and came to the same conclusion -- that it was then proposed to take Morgan into the river and sink him with a stone, 'and we,' says Giddins, 'did all consent to the same, and moved some distance towards the magazine for that purpose.' One, however, (not Giddins,) lagged behind, and said he could not sanction the deed. This gave another of the company courage to make a similar declaration, 'and the thing was abanloned for that time. Thus it will be seen, from Giddins's own statements, that he was himself the first and foremost in guilt. Giddins further states, that he afterwards desired the release of Morgan, and that a quarrel between him and others arose out of this circumstance -- that he, (Giddins,) however, at its close, gave the key of the magazine to his antagonist, whose views he knew were hostile to his release -- that he (Giddins) afterwards, on the 17th, went away upon business, and did not return till the 21st, at which time he found Morgan gone. The relations of Giddins in regard to what passed between the 17th and 21st, are therefore to be considered only as the hearsay declarations of an accomplice in guilt, whose testimony, on account of his disbelief in a God and a future state of rewards and punishments, is inadmissible in a court of justice. Giddins's statements, however, so far as they are confirmed by circumstantial evidence, are entitled to credit. The imprisonment of some person, for instance, in the magazine, is confirmed by other testimony, and it is probable that this person wis William Morgan. Giddins, by way of apology for assenting to Morgan's death, at first, states, that he considered himself bound by his masonic duty so to do. His sense of masonic duty was precisely such as it is reasonable to suppose a professed atheist would have, and his conduct on that occasion such as might have been anticipated from one who denied all future accountability. We therefore can readily believe him when he speaks of things in relation to himself, because the confessions of the most hardened wretches on earth in such cases are evidence, but when he undertakes to state the opinions or relate the acts of others, the same rule does not apply, and then his declarations require confirmation....

Note: Only the quotation from Henry Brown is reproduced above. The remainder of the article can be found on various internet sites.



Vol. XXVIII.                               Philadelphia, Tues., April 13, 1830.                               No. 3095.

A work has recently been published in the western part of the state of New York, entitled BOOK OF MORMON, or the Golden Bible. The author is Joseph Smith, Jr. The work contains about 600 pages, and is divided into the books of Mormon, of Ether and of Helaman. The Rochester Daily Advertiser contains the preface, and two letters, signed by eleven individuals, setting forth the excellence of the work and the existence of the original "plates" of gold, on which the contents of the volume were engraved, in a language which the translator was taught by inspiration. It seems one book, that of Lehi, was translated and stolen -- the translator was commanded never again to translate the same over. We subjoin, with some hesitancy, one of the certificates, which smacks pretty strongly of what would once have been called blasphemy.
The Testimony of Three Witnesses. -- Be it known to all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, unto whom this work shall come, that we, through the grace of God the Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, have seen the plates which contain this record, which is a record of the people of Nephi, and also of the Lamanites, his brethren, and also of the people of Jared, which came from the tower, of which hath been spoken; and we also know that they have been translated by the gift and power of God, for his voice hath declared it unto us; wherefore we know of a surety, that the work; is true. And we also testify that we have seen the engrayings which are upon the plates; and they have been shown unto us by the power of God, and not of man. And we declare with words of soberness that an Angel of God came down from heaven, and he brought and laid before our eyes, that we beheld and saw the plates, and the engravings thereon; and we know that it is by the grace of God the Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, that we beheld and bear record that these things are true; and it is marvellous in our eyes. Nevertheless, the voice of the Lord commanded us that we should bear record of it; -- wherefore, to be obedient unto the commandments of God, we bear testimony of these things. And we know that if we are faithful in Christ, we shall rid our garments of the blood of all men, and be found spotless before the judgment seat of Christ, and shall dwell with him eternally in the heavens. And the honor be to the Father, the Son and to the Holy Ghost, which is one God. Amen.
David Whitmer,            
Oliver Cowdery,            
Martin Harris.            
The other certificate declares that the plates, said to have been found in Manchester, Ontario, county, N. Y. had the appearance of gold, and bore the marks of ancient and curious workmanship.

Note: It is only natural that newspaper reporters writing at some distance away from Palmyra should announce publication of the book, by saying that "the author is Joseph Smith, Jr.," since the 1830 title page, copyright notice, eight witnesses' statement, and the "Preface" all made precisely that same claim. As time passed, and journalists were better able to investigate the matter, the authorship attribution presented in the public press evolved to include Oliver Cowdery and Sidney Rigdon. Finally, in 1834, the list of possible authors was expanded to include the name of "Solomon Spalding, Esq." See the Pittsburgh American Manufacturer of Jan. 18, 1834 for typical early speculation placing the blame on Sidney Rigdon.



Vol. II.                                     Philadelphia, Pa.,  April 17, 1830.                                     No. 16.

For the Columbian Star and Christian Index.


In order to destroy the effect of the report, unanimously adopted, by the Beaver Association last year, in reference to the sentiments and errors of Mr. A. Campbell, Mr. C. in the March number of the mis-called Christian Baptist, has judged it necessary to represent the whole as the result of malice and envy. For the accomplishment of his nefarious purposes he has found it necessary to drag Mr. Winter into the controversy -- a man who has not been at the Beaver Association since 1827, and who knew no more of the report of the Association than Mr. C. himself, till it was published in the Minutes. But it was necessary for him to blast reputation, in order to accomplish his purpose of deception and falsehood.

We, the First Baptist Church of the city of Pittsburgh, feel it incumbent upon us for the sake of truth and righteousness, to state to the public, That every particular published by Mr. C. in vol. 7, page 184, of the C. B. * respecting Mr. Winter, is unqualifiedly false, and without even the shadow of truth to sustain him in his slanders. That so far from Mr. W.'s coming to Pittsburgh in the midst of winter, it was in the midst of summer; and he was introduced by Sidney Rigdon to the Church as one whose papers he had examined, and who was worthy of their brotherly regard -- that instead of having a large family of seven or eight children, he had but one -- that instead of being in abject circumstances, he received the assistance or support of no one member of the church -- that he went to housekeeping in about six days after his arrival -- that we can attest he purchased furniture with his own money -- that Sidney Rigdon never became responsible for him for one cent, in any shape, at any time; nor can he produce the testimony of a being on earth to whom he became responsible -- that the said Rigdon never spoke to one of the church to awaken his sympathies in Mr. W.'s behalf -- that Mr. W. needed no sympathy, but was able to supply his own wants, and to preach free of charge to the destitute churches around. That Mr. W. had no hand in causing the division in the church at Pittsburgh, nor did he call the faction, the church; but a large and respectable council called it the church. Nor did Mr. C. labor to defeat it In the Association which sat in this city, for he and his adherents for him labored for two hours to obtain a seat in the Association, and was ultimately refused one. And in short, that every statement made by Mr. C. in reference to Mr. W. is unqualifiedly false.

That in reference to the alleged slanders which Mr. Williams was instigated to publish about him in the "Star," he published what he had received from his, Mr. C.'s father, and from his immediate disciples. What the faction, the dignified name, which Mr. C. has given the church at Pittsburgh, did, and the history connected with the difficulties in the Pittsburgh church, will soon be laid before the public in a pamphlet. In the mean time we remain the friends of truth and righteousness.

Done by order of the First Baptist Church in Pittsburgh, and signed by order of the Church this 27th day of March, 1830.   Wm. H. HART, Clerk.

* The following is the statement to which reference is made. "Some few yean ago a Mr. Winters (I am sorry that I am compelled to mention his name,) said to be a Regular Baptist preacher from England or Wales, was sent or came from Philadelphia to Pittsburg, in the depth of winter, with a large family, in the most abject circumstances. Brother Sidney Rigdon was then Bishop of the Baptist Church in Pittsburg: and, as a Christian Bishop ought to do, he took pity upon his brother Winters; took him into his house, with all his family, say seven or eight children, and sustained them for some weeks, I know not how many; and finally rented, upon his own responsibility, a house for his brother Winters, and stirred up the brethren to minister to his want*. He was also invited into the pulpit and occasionally proclaimed his tenets to the congregation. After he had got warmed and filled he began to make a faction in the church by insinuating that his brother Rigdon was not sound in the faith, (though he had been very sound in charity towards him.) He said that the church had departed from the faith once delivered to the Welsh saints, and was no longer built upon the foundation of John Gill and Andrew Fuller and the Philadelphia Confession.

"By creeping into houses, and leading captive silly women, and some two or three men, he made a faction, amounting, I think, to 12 out of from 80 to 100 members. These Mr. Winters called "the church; and at the next Association which met in this city an effort was made, which I labored to defeat, to make the twelve the church. Thus I became obnoxious to the wrath and resentment of Mr. Winters and his party. They were defeated at that time. Finally, Mr. Winters left the city and went into the bounds of the Beaver Association. Mr. Rigdon also, some two or three years afterwards, left the city, and went out into the countrv bordering on the Mahoning Association. Mr. Winters' party fell for a time under the episcopacy of the celebrated pedestrian Lawrence Greatrake; but he and they not being able long to hold on their way, a young man from Somerset, called Mr. Williams, took them under his episcopacy; and he also, instigated by the same faction, wrote, a letter to the "Columbian Star," setting forth various libels and slanders against me, for which I called him to an account. He I then, and his brother Winters, both joined the Beaver Auociation; and not unfrequenlly since have these gentlemen, especially Mr. Winters, endeavored to sow discord in the neighboring churches. Mr. Winters got into some two or three churches which once belonged to the Mahoning Association, and there played the same game which he played in Pittsburg. One or more of these churches were divided by his instrumentality; and since I left home I learned from the Minutes of the Beaver Association they had joined them. This narrative I know is substantially correct in all its prominent parts, though I write it from my own recollections only. And if pressed, I know I can make it out more fully and circumstantially. But enough is told to show how, and why, this anathema came out in the Minutes of the Beaver Association."

Note 1: The 1830 pamphlet referred to above was probably an updated version of an earlier 12-page booklet: A Brief Statement of the Articles of Faith, and Order of the First Regular Baptist Church, of the City of Pittsburgh: Constituted in A.D. 1812. Published by "The First Baptist Church of Pittsburgh" and printed by "Cramer & Spear, Franklin Head, Wood Street., 1828."

Note 2: Campbell's "Beaver Anathema" editorial appeared in his Christian Baptist of March 1, 1830.

Note 3: The reference to "Mr. Williams... in the 'Star,'" cites a letter by Elder Samuel Williams, published in an unidentified 1828 issue of the Washington, D.C. Columbian Star, ( the precursor of the Star and Index)

Note 4: John Winter apparently became presiding elder (or pastor) at the Bull Creek Baptist Church in late 1823 or early 1824. The congregation was located near the boundry between Buffalo twp. in Butler Co. and Fawn twp. in Allegheny Co., Pennsylvania (about 15 miles northeast of Pittsburgh). The Bull Creek congregation belonged to the Beaver Baptist Association. See Greatrake's 1836 account and Rev. Stanton's 1907 account for further information on Elder John Winter and his activities in the Pittsburgh area during the 1820s.

Note 5: For more early articles from the Philadelphia Columbian Star and Christian Index, consult this unedited text file.



Vol. III.                                     Philadelphia, Saturday,  May 8, 1830.                                     No. 122

From Freedom's Sentinel

Fanaticism and ignorance go hand in hand. -- But who would think of finding a believer in mysterious stories at the present day, especially in this land of letters? It certainly appears absurd, but it is nevertheless true, that many people are so credulous as to believe what is too dark to be understood, in preference to plain facts, which are established by common sense and daily observation. A marvelous feast for the credulous has recently appeared in the state of New York, in the shape of a "golden bible," &c. The Boston Bulletin takes the following notice of it.

"A work of 500 pages has recently been published at Rochester [sic], New York by "Joseph Smith, Jr. author and proprietor," "The Book of Mormon or the golden bible" which the Rochester Daily Advertiser pronounces "one of the vilest impositions ever practised -- an evidence of fraud, blasphemy and credulity, shocking to the christian and the moralist." The "author and proprietor," it is said, by some hocus pocus, acquired such an influence over a wealthy farmer of Wayne county, N. Y. that the latter mortgaged his farm for $3000, which he paid for printing and binding 5000 copies of the blasphemous work. The volume is divided into the books of Nephi, of Jacob, of Masiah, of Alma, of Mormon, of Ether and of Halaman.

Note: This article apparently appeared in the Boston Evening Bulletin near the end of April, 1830. Another, lengthier reprint appeared in the Manchester Horn of the Green Mountains on May 3, 1830. It is really quite remarkable that the April 2nd Rochester Daily Advertiser news report traveled so far, so quickly. By March 31st news of the forthcoming Mormon book had already reached New York City, though actual reviews of its contents were probably not published in major eastern cities for several weeks after.



Vol. I.                                     Philadelphia, Pa.,  June, 1830.                                     No. 6.


An opinion prevails among many persons, that immense sums of money were left buried in this country, by the arch-pirate, Captain Kidd. Every where, within fifty miles of the coast, from Maine to Florida, he is supposed to have buried gold and silver, in pots brim full, the smallest of which would render a man of moderate wants, independent for life. What a prodigiously rich fellow this Captain Kidd must have been, if a tenth part be true of what is believed of his hidden treasures! Why, they would fill the largest meetinghouse in the country, full to the very top. But alas! of all this buried wealth, how little have the firm believers in its existence ever set eyes on! Repealedly has the search been made, and acres of ground have been dug, three fathom deep, for its discovery. In various places may be seen large pits still yawning, as proof of the prevalent belief in this buried treasure, and as mementos of the credulity and the avarice of mankind.

But unluckily for all these enterprises, two circtimstances, very wayward in their nature, are believed to be opposed to any successful issue -- the one is the utter uncertainly nf the precise spots in which the money is concealed; and the other, that the devil, or some other evil spirit, like the dog in the manger, keeps watch over the buried treasure. The latter however is supposed to be the greater difficulty, for it is believed the spot may be detected by means of the hazel rod; but the sole chance of securing the money depends on catching the evil one asleep, or off his guard. On this account, therefore, the most perfect silence is believed to be requisite during the operation of digging; for if but a word be spoken, the evil spirit is alarmed, and in the twinkling of an eye, whisks away the precious treasure; or in common parlance, "the pot of money vanishes." And hence it is that many an hour of toil and watching have come to nought, and that, too, at the very instant when the fondest hopes were about to be realized. For such is the weakness nf human nature, such is the proneness to break out in exclamations at the sight of good fortune, that the requisite silence is seldom or never observed by the adventurers in search of buried money;

Among the believers in these buried treasure was a man rending in the Bay State, by the name of Christopher Colewort, commonly called Kit Colewort. This man was by occupation a farmer, and owned a hundred acres of hard, hilly and thankless soil. On this he had been toiling for about twenty years, and yet was as far from getting rich as when he began. It was not, however, altogether the fault of the land, but in some measure the effect of bad management. For Christopher Colewort was much like a man who should attempt to draw a hemlock tree, bristling with knots, little end foremost. He took hold of the wrong end of the work, and did a great deal of labour to no purpose. Besides, for want of a little care, the fruits of his labour were often destroyed by unruly cattle, by vagabond swine, or exposure to unfavourable weather.

Sick of the vain efforts he had made to mend his peciniary condition, it was very natural that Kit should cast about in his mind for some more successful mode of filling his coffers. He had often heard tell of the vast quantities of silver and gold buried up and down the country, and of the many potfuls, which, if not absolutely obtained, had at least been seen by the money-diggers, and only vanished in consequence of some informality in the operations, or some imprudence in the conduct of those concerned. It was possible there might be one of these pots of money on his own farm. Why not! The surface of the ground was sufficiently unproductive to warrant the conclusion that there might be something better beneath. At any rate, it was by no means a matter of impossibility, and Colewort Iay awake many a night, pondering upon the subject. He also had dreams, but they were rather of a vague future, and the particular location of the buried treasure was not very satisfactorily defined.

In this state of doubt and desire, Christopher Colewort had recourse to one of those men who profess to discover the hidden treasures, both of water and of metals, beneath the earth's surface, by means of the hazel rod -- and are denominated water-wizzards, or money finders. This man was a pettifogger by education, a strolling preacher by profession, and a jack of all tricks by practice. He was the oracle of well-diggers, and the guide of money searchers, and it was verily believed that he could see as far into a millstone as the man that picks it. Nevertheless, with all his abilities, and especially that of finding money, it does not appear that he grew any the richer; and no one, judging from his dress and appearance, would sespect him of being a peculiar favorite of fortune. But it did not occur to Christopher Colewort, that if the money-finders could actually discover where hidden treasure was buried, they might go and secure it for themselves, and no thanks to any body.

It was early in June, in the year '93, that Christopher Colewort, accompanied by Jeshuran Hook-the-gudgeons, the money-finder, set out to explore the golden prospects that had filled so large a space in his imagination. A hazel twig of a forked shape was procured, and the bark peeled off, as a certain pill-pedlar of our acquaintance says, "according to secundum artem." The rod was held in the hands of the wizzard with the forks downward, as it always must be to work to advantage. Various parts of the farm of Christopher Colewort were explored, but the hazel twig would not stir. Hill and dale, woodland and bog were traversed over, but still the obstinate hazel would not budge, and Christopher began to despair of ever mending his fortune. As last, however, as they approached an out-of-the-way corner of the farm, the knowing little twig began all at once to exert itself, and to change its position so as to point with its head or undivided part to the earth.

"Now it begins to move," said Jeshuran Hook-the-gudgeons.

"Are you aartain of it?" said the enraptured Colewort.

"Don't you see how it moves?" said the wizzard, "I can't keep it still to save my soul. Don't you see how I grip it with all my might? and the faster I hoist it, the more it moves!"

"So it does, by jingo! "said Chrisfipher, looking on with astonishment. "Strange it should do so in some folkses' hands, and not in others'. Now I'll lay any money it wouldn't stir a hair in my hands, if I should hold ever so tight."

"No, I'll be sworn it wouldn't," said Hook-the-gudgeons. "But look! look! friend Colewort: see it move -- here's the spot!" As he said this, the head of the rod pointed perpendicularly to the earth, close to the foot of a large granite rock. "Here's the spot!" repeated the wizzard. "Then I'm a made man!" exclaimed the farmer.

"You may well say that," rejoined the money-finder; "don't you see how perseveringly the rod points to this spot!"

"I were blind indeed not to see what is so perfectly plain," said the believing Christopher; and the devil fly away with me, if I ever put plough in the earth again. Hurra for the pot of money!"

"Hush! hush!" said Jeshuran Hook-the-gudgeons, "the devil is always at one's elbow, and may baulk our hopes yet, unless we are particularly careful."

"I'm mum," said the farmer, and taking special note of the rock, and the precise spot to which the knowing little rod had pointed, they left the place.

Christopher Colewort would have engaged the mas, who had been so successful in detecting the spot where the money was hid, to help dig and secure it -- offering him a very, tempting share of the booty. But the honest man of hazel, not wishing to deprive his employer of so large a portion of his expected wealth, or possibly entertaining some lurking doubts of the certainty of the said treasure, very modestly declined the otter, assuring Mr. Colewort that wealth was not his object and that he would be satisfied with a very moderate compensation. Christopher had laid aside the sum of twenty dollars to pay his taxes and his doctor's bill, which on the present occasion he thought he could do no less than divert to the rewarding of his benefactor, as he considered the wizzard of the hazel rod. He accordingly gave him the money, and Jeshuran Hook-the-gudgeons went his way.

But ChristopherColewort could not think of undertaking to unearth the treasure all alone, inasmuch as the pot was supposed to be too large for the strength of one man; and, besides, as it was contemplated digging for it in the night, when it was supposed most likely the devil would be asleep, an assistant would be necessary to hold a light to enable the digger to work to due advantage. But if the truth must be told, there was a still stronger motive for desiring company, viz. the fear of evil spirits, which Christopher, much as he desired to be rich, would not have run the hazard of encountering alone for the wealth of the Indies. Roger Heel-tap, a shoemaker by trade, a man as full of faith in buried money as his neighbor, was easily drawn into the scheme.

Nothing now remained but to get possession of the treasure. Christopher Colewort had kept the project a profound secret from his wife, lest she should blab it to the neighbors, and the treasure should be stolen away. It was one night therefore, after every soul was in bed, that he stole silently from his dwelling, and arming himself with pickaxe and spade, was soon joined by his coadjutor, the trusty Heel-tap, bearing a lantern; and both proceeded with all commendable despatch to the place where their fortunes were to be made.

They commenced operations, and laboured alternately, each assuming the mattock and spade as often as the other began to be weary or out of breath. And in fact it was necessary to recruit their breathing facnllies pretty often, for, besides the eagerness with which the desire of sudden riches impelled them to labor, the fear of evil spirits almost deprived them of respiration. But hope urged them on -- unbounded wealth was beneath them, and happiness all before. They even now in imagination beheld the glittering treasure, and fancied themselves fingering the broad bits of shining dust. But while thus busily digging for the root of all evil, and tickling their fancies with the future enjoyment, they could not divest themselves of the idea that the devil stood at their elbow.

To add still more to their fears, an alarming noise was heard, issuing from behind the rock -- a sort of thick, husky breathing, and ever and anon, a low, hollow, half-suppressed groan. They trembled and looked at each other, but dared not utter a syllable, as they valued the success of their undertaking. The noise ceased, and the money diggers persuaded themselves that what they had heard was merely the wind, or that they had been deceived by the force of imagination. The digging was plied with renewed energy, and though the same noise was repeatedly heard, it did not deter them from their labors.

They had now arrived at a pretty good depth, and in striking the mattock deep into the earth, it was heard, or fancied, to ring on something which sounded much like a piece of cast iron, and which our adventurers flattered themselves was no other than the lid of the great pot itself. A mutual glance of satisfaction took place at this discovery; the heart of the enraptured farmer began to swell like a piece of boiling pork, which has been killed in the new of the moon; and that of the shoemakcr waxed exceedingly warm within him. But neither spoke a word; indeed, they almost held the little breath that fear and over-exertion had left them, lest it should betray them into the utterance of a syllable at so unseasonable a moment. They moreover set their teeth firmly together, like a child resisting a dose of ipecac, not however like the child, to keep a disagreeable matter out, but to shut an important one in.

The spade was not idle for a moment, and in a very short time, the adventurers beheld, or verily believed they beheld, the glorious object of their desires, the big pot itself. Now was the crisis of their fortune. Now was the lime when entire command over the "unruly member" was absolutely indispensable; now was the true time to keep guard on the lips, and fortify the avenues of speech. But who is equal to these things? Who can answer for his tongue at such a moment! Alas for our adventurers! as soon as they set eyes on the pot, they exclaimed, as it were with one breath, "The money is ours! the money is ours!"

"Not as you know on!" said a gruff voice, apparently from behind the rock.

The money-diggers dropt their instruments, as if they had been shot. Their first impulse was to run; but retaining sufficient presence of mind to know that an evii spirit could very easily outstrip them in a race, or being chained to the spot by fear -- we never could ascertain which -- they simultaneously fell upon their knees, and as if addressing the ghost of the executed pirate whose money they had been digging for, piteously began: "Oh, g-g-good Ca-Ca-Captain K-K-Kidd!" --

"Don't call me Kidd!" said the same gruff voice, "I'm the Old Goat himself:" and with that a horrible figure on all fours, with a large pair of horns, and all over as black as the ace of spades, came butt against Roger Heeltap, and in such a direction as to drive him headlong upon Christopher Colewort, who was kneeling in the pit. This attack was followed by an overwhelming flood of a strong smelling liquid poured upon the two adventurers, as they lay grovelling together, in the very ultimate scene of their late hopes. At the same time their light, from some cause or other, found it convenient to go out, and Christopher Colewort and Roger Heeltap were left in total darkness,

They were, nevertheless, found the next morning at their respective places of abode -- but, alas! how altered! They were as blue as an indigo bag, and everybody, who saw them, believed they had in very deed received the contents of some good lady's dyepot. And so indeed it proved; for the plain truth of the matter was, that Christopher Colewort's secret though concealed from his wife, was betrayed -- ay, most villainously betrayed -- and that, too, by the same man of hazel, to whom he had given his last twenty dollars. The wizzard had told the story to a couple of wicked wags in the neighbourhood, who, keeping watch of the motions of Kit Colewort, and having got the loan of Mrs. Blueberry's dye-pot, followed the money-diggers to the destined place; and while one, in the garb of his horned majesty, butted the kneeling shoemaker upon his equally kneeling companion in the pit, the other dashed the odoriferous contents of the dye-pot upon them both together.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. IX.                              Philadelphia, Sat., December 11, 1830.                             Whole 480.


The marriage of Mrs. Morgan is announced in the New York Courier thus: --

The question settled. -- Anti-masonry is no more -- it has since the election received a vital blow -- it is dead. Mrs. Lucinda Morgan, the afflicted widow of Capt. William Morgan, is married. This celebrated woman, who, like Niobe, was all tears and affliction -- whose hand was ever held to receive contributions from the sympathetic anti-masons -- who vowed eternal widowhood -- pains and penences, is married, and married -- 'tell it not in Gath' -- to a Mason!


In Batavia, on Tuesday last, by the Hon. Simeon Cummings, Mr. George W. Harris, to Mrs. Lucinda Morgan, widow of the late Captain Morgan.

Note: See also the Batavia Spirit of the Times of Dec. 28, 1830.


Vol. IV.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, December 18, 1830.                              No. 51.


The following history of a new religion, founded on a book said to have been found in the manner described below, is taken from the Auburn Free Press.

"Most of our readers have probably heard of the Golden Bible, which it is asserted was found not long since, in some part of Ontario county. Some of the circumstances attending the remarkable discovery of this truly remarkable work, may not be uninteresting to some of our readers, as they serve to show how easily ignorance and superstition are made to support whatever doctrines may be advanced -- no matter how revolting they may appear in the light of reason. An angel appeared to an ignorant man near Palmyra, and directed him to dig at a designated place, with a promise that he would there find a new revelation engraved on plates of metal. The man obeyed the messenger, and on digging, soon discovered an oblong box tightly cemented together. Upon opening this, he found enclosed a bundle of plates similar to gold, about 7 inches long, 6 broad, and all about 6 inches deep, each sheet being of about the thickness of tin. They were united at one edge with 3 silver wires, so that they opened in a manner similar to a book. 'They were engraven in a character unintelligible to the learned men of the United States, to many of whom it is said to have been presented. The same angel afterwards appeared to three individuals, who call themselves Oliver Cowdry, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris, and showed them the plates. To Smith was given the power to translate the character, which he was enabled to do by looking through two semi-transparent stones, but as he was ignorant of the art of writing, Cowdry and the others wrote as Smith, the person who was first directed to dig for the plates, interpreted. They say that part of the plates escaped from them in a supernatural manner and are to be again revealed when the events of time shall require them. The book which these men have pretended to translate from these sheets of gold has been printed, and they are now busily engaged in scattering copies of it throughout the country. They were recently in Painesville, Ohio, on their way to a land of promise, which is before them -- they do not know exactly where -- but somewhere beyond the Mississippi, where they intend establishing a New Jerusalem, into which will be gathered all the descendants of Mannassah.

These men assert that this book 'was written by the prophets of God during the period embracing the time for 600 years before and several hundred after the Christian era. It predicts, we understand, almost all events which have come to pass, such as the American Revolution, &c. and that there should be secret societies, and that men should be led on to destruction as by a rope of flax, said to mean Cable tow. All which they believe is proven by profane history -- thus supporting the authenticity of the new revelation. But why the Deity should predict events, the knowledge of which would be so useful to the human race, merely to hide them in the earth until after their completion, we are not informed. They also say that the world will shortly -- within fifteen years at most -- come to an end: But by this they only mean, that the incorrigible and perverse unbelievers will be destroyed, while the earth will become the abode only of the true believers.

In Painesville, the three persons named above as the translators of the Bible, (who are looked upon by their followers as prophets,) preached in the Methodist chapel, and then proceeded to Kirkland. At this place is a 'common stock family' under the charge of Elder Rigdon, a Campbellite leader, who, together with nearly one hundred of his followers, were immediately baptized according to the ordinances of the new religion!"

Note: See the Book of Mormon, 2nd Nephi (26:22 in modern editions): "And there are also secret combinations, even as in times of old, according to the combination of the devil... and he leadeth them by the neck with a flaxon cord, until he bindeth them with his strong cords forever." (cf. 15:38 in modern editions): "Wo unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as it were with a cart rope."



Vol. II.                              Philadelphia, Wednesday, December 29, 1830.                              No. 177.

CREDULITY. -- The Canandaigua Messenger states that on Thursday evening last, a preacher, who firmly believes in the divine origin of the book of Mormon or Golden Bible, appeared in that place and delivered a discourse in the Town House to an assembly of two or three hundred people. In the course of his remarks, he explicitly avowed his firm belief that the book of Mormon is a revelation from God; that he believed the golden plates on which it is said to have been inscribed in mysterious characters, had been discovered and deciphered by a very ignorant man, through the aid of divine assistance; and that he considered it as of equal authenticity with the Old and New Testaments.

Note 1: The above report in the Inquirer was reprinted the the New York City Working Man's Advocate  of Jan. 8, 1831. The date of the Canandaigua Ontario Messenger has been determined to have been Dec. 22, 1830. This report places "a preacher" of Mormonism in Canandaigua, Ontario Co., New York, six days before (that is, on Dec. 16, 1830). The Mormon preacher at Canandaigua was Elder Sidney Rigdon, newly arrived from Mentor, Ohio, on a tour of Palmyra, Manchester, Fayette, Colesville, and various other stopping points along the way. At about this same time (Jan. 1, 1831), the Palmyra Wayne Sentinel mentioned the recent presence in that place of "Rigdon dipt in many waters," who "Preaches Gold Bible to the loafers." This shows that Rigdon was preaching from the Book of Mormon in and around Palmyra during December, 1830. The Rochester Gem of Dec. 25th said that, "In Canandaigua... there is a book of Mormon preacher, who is attempting to push his way forward, in spite of all opposition."

Note 2: Probable Late 1830 / Early 1831 Chronology for Sidney Rigdon:

Nov 08 ---- S. Rigdon is baptized by Oliver Cowdery at Mentor, OH
late Nov -- S. Rigdon and Edward Partridge begin their trip from OH to NY
early Dec - S. Rigdon and Edward Partridge arrive at Manchester, NY
early Dec - S. Rigdon preaches equal authority of Bible & BoM at Palmyra
Dec 10 ---- S. Rigdon & Ed. Partridge arrive at "the Kingdom," near Senaca Falls, NY
Dec 11 ---- Ed. Partridge is baptized in the Seneca River by Joseph Smith Jr.
Dec 15 ---- Ed. Partridge is ordained an elder near the Smith home at "the Kingdom"
Dec 16 ---- Mormon preacher (Rigdon) professes "Golden Bible" at Canandaigua
Dec 22 ---- Canandaigua Ontario Messenger says preacher equates Bible & BoM
Dec 24 ---- Phelps (& Rigdon?) travels from Canandaigua to "the Kingdom"
late Dec -- Phelps returns to Canandaigua (probably with Rigdon & Smith)
late Dec -- Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith are at Canandiagua (LDS D&C 37)
Dec 29 ---- W. W. Phelps' Ontario Phoenix mentions BoM sales in Canandaigua
late Dec -- Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith are in Colesville, NY area
Dec 31 ---- letter list for Manchester NY, PO -- letter waiting for Rigdon
Jan 01 ---- Palmyra Wayne Sentinel says Sidney Rigdon "Preaches Gold Bible"
Jan 02 ---- Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith are at Fayette, NY for conference
Jan 06 ---- Lucy Mack Smith writes a letter to her brother, mentioning Ohio Mormons
Jan 15 ---- W. W. Phelps reports a "ten hours discourse" with Rigdon (at Canadaigua?)

Note 3: The Buffalo Patriot of Dec. 28, 1830 reproduced the original Messenger article thusly: "Book of Mormon. -- This book, other wise called the Golden Bible, has excited considerable curiosity, in some parts of the country; and we learn that preachers had appeared in the State of Ohio and elsewhere, who profess their belief that it is of divine origin. On Thursday evening last, a preacher of this character, delivered a discourse, at the Town House in this village, to an assembly of two or three hundred people. In the course of his remarks, he explicitly avowed his firm belief that the book of Mormon is a revelation from God; that he believed the golden plates on which it is said to have been inscribed in mysterious characters, had been discovered and decyphered by a very ignorant man, through the aid of divine assistance; and that he considered it as of equal authenticity with the Old and New Testaments. Whether these persons are really sincere in the profession of such belief, or whether their object is to promote the sale of the book, we will not undertake to determine."



Vol. IV.                                     Philadelphia, Pa.,  February 19, 1831.                                     No. 8.


FANATICISM. -- We noticed some time since, the progress of a new religious order in the western part of Ohio, it would seem that good materials are found in that district for such a work. The Painsville (Ohio) Gazette contains the following additional particulars:

The Golden Bible, or the Book of Mormon. The believers in the sacred authenticity of this miserable production, are known by the name of "Mormonites" and their book is commonly called "the book of Mormon." It is asserted by them that their number in this vicinity is four hundred. In a conversation a few days since with a gentleman from Kirtland, well informed, and every way concerned to give us the truth, we are assured, that their numbers in the families in that town were two hundred souls. We doubt not then that their whole number in this county and Cuyahoga is at least four hundred.

They have recently received an additional revelation from the prolific prophet, Smith, which is generally understood to say that Kirtland is within the precincts of the holy land; but by others is said to mean only, that in that town will be a great gathering of mighty multitudes, preparatory to their westward general migration. They are therefore admonished to sell no more of their possessions, but rather purchase, lest there shall not be room for the faithful. The admonition however arrived too late, as they have but fifty acrea left, and the land holders refuse to sell to them.

They profess to receive sensible demonstrations of the presence of the Deity. A few days since, a young man gave information to some of his brethren that he was about to receive a message from heaven. They repaired to the spot designated, and there, as they solemnly assert, a latter descended from the skies and fell into tho hands of the young man. -- The purport was to strengthen his faith and inform him that he would soon be called to the ministry. They declare their solemn belief that this letter was written in heaven by the finger of God. The style of writing was the round Italian, and the letters of gold. The favored youth immediately attempted to copy the communication, but as fast as he wrote, the letters of the original disappeared until it entirely vanished. It is alleged that some of them have received white stones promised in the 2d chapter of the Revelations. Such of them as have "the spirit" will declare that they see a white stone moveing about the upper part of the room, and will jump and spring for it, until one more fortunate than the others catches it, but he alone can see it. Others however profess to hear it roll across th» floor. These two stories, and others of a similar character, are told by them with solemn asseverations of their truth.

Among them is a man of color, a chief man, who is sometimes seized with strange vagaries and odd conceits. The other day he is said to have jumped twenty five feet down a wash bank into a tree top without injury. He sometimes fancies he can fly.

In Chardon, one man has torn away all the partitions of the lower part of a good two story dwelling house. Here a large number live together. The food consisting of meat and vegetables, it is said, is placed on the table in a large pan, which is the whole table furniture. From this every inmate takes a piece of meat and a potatoe in his hand and devours them as he walks about the room. As to matters of apparel, and indeed other things, where any one wants what he has not, he takes it any where in the family where he can find it unoccupied. All things are common.

Our readers will probably smile at the miserable delusion of these ignorant creatures, and we know, indeed, nothing better that can be done in that respect. Let it, however, teach us humility; let it check our disposition to condemn a whole age in other countries, because it produced such visionaries. Ignorance is the same in all ages, though it may not show itself in exactly the same forms; the unballasted and unpiloted boat veers always from a direct course, but its aberrations are in conformity to the currents in which it drifts.

Note: The above article was reprinted from February 11th issue of the Philadelphia U. S. Gazette. Essentially the same report appeared in the Philadelphia Album of Feb. 19th.



Vol. IV.                                     Philadelphia, Pa.,  March 19, 1831.                                     No. 12.


A clergyman of Painesville, Ohio, has given, in the Telegraph of that place, a history of the "Mormonites, or proselytes of the Golden Bible." He speaks of them as fanatics and impostors, and gives the following as a specimen of their power to work miracles: --

Another instance of a man in Painesville, who was in the last stage of consumption, was attempted to be healed by Cowdery, one of the leaders. A few days afterwards Mr. Rigdon was heard to say," that he would get well, if there was a God in Heaven!" he has since deceased. But these prophets had the policy to cover their retreat in these things, by saying that they would not recover immediately; the Lord would take his own time; and one of these people a few days ago, when put to the worst upon the subject said that he did not think Cowdery would have attempted to do any miracles, had he have known how things would turn out.

Note: Excerpted from the Feb. 15, 1831 ' issue of the Painesville Telegraph.


Vol. ?                                   Philadelphia, April 27, 1831.                                   No. ?


The Mormonites, -- Some unworthy and spotted members, according to the western papers, have crept in like grievous wolves among these silly sheep, in the new fold of Mormon, at Painesville, Ohio. The predominance of their preposterous tenets has already made considerable additions to the soceity. Their location is pleasant -- they have "all things in common" -- and it is not surprising that these inducements should bring together a community of vagrants, lovers of idleness, and haters of "the bitter dropping sweat and sweltry pain" of manual labor.

"Thither continual pilgrims crowded still
  From all the roads of earth that pass thereby;
For, as they chanced to breathe on neighboring hill,
  The freshness of the valley smote their eye,
And drew them ever and anon more nigh"
Recently, among the accessions to their numbers, they received a few individuals, who were not only poor in spirit, but in dress; and some men, to the shame-facedness of the sex be it spoken, who entered into the Mormonite communion nearly sans inespressibles, did, with malice aforethought, appropriate a considerable amount of corporeal drapery, and straightaway, like wolves in sheep's clothing, made off, leaving their places desolate and void, with the exception of the cast off garments which remained behind. If the precepts of the new golden Bible which the Mormonites have found do not possess more influence than these specimens of conduct would lead us to believe, we think the sect had better dissolve their encampments, melt up the yellow plates into bars, and sell them the first opportunity.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. III.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, April 30, 1831.                              No. 103.


The Painesville Telegraph, in noticing the death of Mr. Warner Doty, at Kirtland, traces that event to the effects of the Mormonite fanaticism, thus:

(see original article in Painesville paper)

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. III.                              Philadelphia, Tuesday, May 10, 1831.                              No. 110.


Last Thursday evening, for the first time, we heard a rigmarole called a Mormon sermon. It was delivered by a "teacher" of the name of Pratt, who has returned from the far west. His object was, of course, to establish the divine origin of his Book, by showing that he had as good evidences for it as we have for our scriptures. To make out the comparison, he made a lean and jejune attempt to weaken the evidence of the revealed religion, and insisted that they all depended on human testimony, and of no better authority than that by which the Mormon Bible is attempted to be established. In short, were it not that he professed to come "in the name of the Lord," we should have considered his discourse a miserable effort to promulgate infidelity. -- Painesville Gazette.

Note: Elder Parley P. Pratt evidently returned to the Kirtland area (the scene of his earlier preaching with Oliver Cowdery and the other "Missionaries to the Lamanites"), from Jackson Co., Missouri, about the end of April, 1831. The issue of the Geauga Gazette containing the above mention of Pratt must, then have been its number for May 3, 1831 -- which dates Pratt's Ohio sermon to Thursday, April 28, 1831.


Vol. X.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, May 14, 1831.                             Whole 511.


The Ithaca Journal mentions that a company of Mormonites (Gold Bible Pilgrims) passed through that place a few days since to their land of Promise, in Ohio. They numbered about a hundred, men, women and children.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. III.                              Philadelphia, Thursday, May 26, 1831.                              No. 124.


THE PROGRESS OF MORMONISM. -- The Painesville (Ohio) Gazette of Tuesday, records another case of fatal infatuation which has occurred among the Mormonites located in that vicinity. It will be remembered, says that print, that when these deluded creatures first made their appearance here, they declared themselves immortal. Death, however, has paid them no respect other than by frequent visits. In defiance of repeated instances of mortality, they still profess the power of healing -- refuse to call medical assistance and many fall the miserable victims of their faith. The latest reports are that a few days since the wife of a Mr. Murdock, daughter of Judge Clapp, of Mentor, and a believer in Mormonism, died among them in childbed, for want of professional assistance. The wife of the prophet Smith hardly escaped the same fate: she was in labour three days, during which time they tried their spells in vain, at last they called an accoucheur, and she was delivered of the dead bodies of two fine boys. The mother barely survived.

The same paper states that, within the week past there had arrived at that place from the state of New York, some by the lake and others by land, at least two hundred Mormonites. They brought with them their household furniture entire, log and luggage, and roots, and herbs and plants ready for the soil. They passed on to the "holy land," and are scattered about in the common stock families. We are told that the wife of the prophet Harris refused to be a Mormonite, and he has left her among "the Gentiles." She it was who purloined several pages of the first revelation, and which by the direction of the angel, have never been supplied. Another fellow had left his wife and children, and openly declared they never should live with him until they embrace the new faith. Every breeze wafts to us some new rumour from this prolific source of fantasies, some of which proved true and some false. Fame now whispers in sly and obscure hints, something about a miraculous conception, from which we conclude the Mormon public mind is being prepared for the nativity of some wonderful personage!

Note 1: It is highly unlikely that a Geauga Gazette of Tuesday, May 24th could have been received in Philadelphia in time for it to be published in a May 26th newspaper. For that reason, the Gazette articles are logically dated to May 17th.

Note 2: This article was reprinted in the Philadelphia Album of May 28th.


Vol. XII.                              Philadelphia, Thursday, June 9, 1831.                              No. 1603.

Latest from the Mormonites. -- The following is the the Western Courier of May 26, published at Ravenna, Portage county, Ohio.

"We understand that a new arrival of Mormonites has taken place -- some two hundred men, women and children having lately landed in Geauga county, their holy land, from New York. It is said, they are an active, intelligent and enterprising sect of people. They have commenced a new settlement, in the township of Thompson, near the line of Ashtabula County, thus extending the holy land farther east than the limits originally fixed. They have full faith in the Mormon doctrine, having, as they say, worked a miracle in clearing a passage through the ice at Buffalo, by which they sailed several days sooner than other vessels.

"In June they are all to meet, and hold a kind of Jubilee in this new 'land of promise,' where they are to work diverse miracles -- among others that of raising the dead. It is said there are soon to be several miraculous births among them, and the number, it is expected, will materially increase after the general meeting.

"Strange as it may appear, it is an unquestionable fact, that this singular sect have, within three or four weeks, made many proselytes in this county. The number of believers in the faith, in three or four of our Northern Townships, is said to exceed one hundred -- among whom are many intelligent and respectable individuals. -- The prospect of obtaining still greater numbers in this county, is daily increasing."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. III.                                   Philadelphia, Friday, June 10, 1831.                                   No. 137.


The Lockport (Niagara co. N. Y.) Balance of the 31st ult., after giving a history of what it terms the "Golden Bible Imposition," speaks of it as follows:

"It has no parallel in folly and stupidity from the days of Johanna Southcote, to those of Jemima Wilkeson. In its character, or practical operations, it has no redeeming feature. It is with regret, however, that we are obliged to add that it has not proved unsuccessful. There are now, probably, 1000 disciples of the Mormon creed! 'Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the streets of Askelon.' Their prophet Jo. has selected a spot in the state of Ohio, which he calls the promised land! It is in and about the town of Kirtland, Geauga county. Thither the deluded followers of the false prophet are repairing. It is but a few days since, that an entire boat load of them passed this village, principally from the counties of Ontario and Wayne. Such as have property, convert it to a common stock, and thus create an inducement which is not overlooked by the idle and vicious. Families, in some instances, have been divided; and in others, mothers have been obliged to follow their deluded husbands, or adopt the disagreeable alternative of parting with them and their children."

The Balance states that the founder of Mormonism is Jo. Smith, an ignorant and nearly unlettered man, living near the village of Palmyra, Wayne co.; the second, an itinerant pamphlet pedlar, and occasionally a journeyman printer, named Oliver Cowdry; the third, Martin Harris, a respectable farmer at Palmyra. The latter, as will be seen by the following paragraph, has recently departed for the land of promise:

Mormon Emigration. --Several families, numbering about fifty souls, took up their line of march from this town last week for the "promised land," among whom is Martin Harris, one of the original believers in the "Book of Mormon." Mr. Harris was among the early settlers of this town, and has ever borne the character of an honorable and upright man, and an obliging and benevolent neighbour. He had secured to himself by honest industry a respectable fortune -- and he has left a large circle of acquaintances and friends to pity his delusion. -- Palmyra Sentinel.

Note 1: The above article was paraphrased in the July 6, 1831 issue of the Steubenville, Ohio Western Herald, along with a special introduction. The same introduction printed in the June 18, 1831 issue of the Charleston City Gazette: "There is a kind of delirium -- a sort of mental hydrophobia prevailing in a portion of the union, which promises to have great inroads upon the quiet of society -- which bears with it, "not peace but the sword" -- separating families -- distracting communities, and urging its fatal influence into christian sects -- & yet, strange to say, not one solitary news paper devoted to the high interest of the last mentioned parties of any name, have ever touched on the subject. We allude to the existence and progress of Mormonism. Every western mail is prolific in records of their fantastic tricks, which they play with impunity before heaven and earth. From the deluded man, in an obscure town in the country, who has related the most preposterous story, as to his original reception of his miraculous faith, and the golden plates which contained the elements of his creed, the mania has already increased to one thousand, to which number continual and daily additions are making. Why is is that religious news papers, managed often by men of high gifts, and lovers of social order, are dumb in this matter? It has increased until its harmless aspect is altogether lost; and is now likely far to exceed the former sway of Southcote or Jemima Wilkeson."

Note 2: This Inquirer article was reprinted in the Philadelphia Album of June 18, 1831.


Vol. X.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, July 23, 1831.                             Whole 521.


MORMONISM. -- Most of our readers must recollect that certain knaves, pretending to have found some holy writings hidden under a stone in Ontario county, New York, started a new religion! The leaders make bold pretensions and assert a gift to wrok miracles. The members of the sect are now said to amount to 1,000 souls! -- some of whom, very honestly, no doubt, believe in all things that are told them, and yet have borne the character of worthy men. Their great prophet Jo, has selected a part of Geauga county, Ohio, and pronounced it to be "the promised land," and thither the deluded people are flocking, chiefly from New York. As a few men of property have been induced to cast their funds into a common stock, there is no want of recruits from among the lazy and worthless classes of society. They say that a miracle was worked in their behalf, by clearing a passage through the ice at Buffalo -- some of them affect a power even to raise the dead, and perchance, (such is the weakness of human nature,) really believe that they can do it! The chiefs of those people appear to exempt themselves from labor, and herein is, probably, the grand object for which they have established this new religion.

Note: The above report apparently first appeared in the July 16, 1831 issue of Niles Register. The account of a miraculous "clearing of a passage through the ice at Buffalo" was probably taken by Niles from the May 26, 1831 issue of the Ravenna, Ohio Western Courier. See also the Buffalo Bulletin of May 7, 1831 and the Buffalo Journal of May 11, 1831, for published items showing that Captain Blake's steamer, the Niagara (on which the emigrating Mormons had booked passage), was not the only vessel carrying passengers that made it out of Buffalo's partly frozen harbor on May 6, 1831.



Vol. III.                              Philadelphia, Tuesday, August 9, 1831.                              No. 187.

             From the Burlington Sentinel.


Mr. John Stewart, of Bakersfield, put an end to his existence, May 19th by hanging himself on a tree. The cause of this dreadful deed was the following:

(view the text of this article)

We have placed in a subsequent column a curious article, giving details of the progress of Mormonism, or fanaticism, as it should more properly be designated. It is very remarkable, that, in this enlightened age, there should be fiund human beings sufficiently weak, to be operated upon by such preposterous fables as are embraced in the creed of this new society.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Thursday, August 18, 1831.                             No. ?

From the A. M. Intelligencer.


We have always laid it down as a maxim, "Let superstition alone, and it will do no harm." Keeping this saying in view, we have heretofore foreborne to mention a sect of religious fanatics known by the name of Mormonites. But, as this new sect has been introduced to the attention of the public, through the medium of the contemporary press; and as we are personally acquainted with its history from the commencement, we have concluded to give our readers a brief account of Mormonism.

In the year 1828, one Joseph Smith, of Palmyra, Wayne county, New York, pretended to have found a number of gold plates, from which, by assistance of a pair of spectacles found with the plates, he said he could read certain revelations from God. He said these plates contained what he termed the Book of Mormon; which consisted of several unpublished books of the Holy Scriptures, such as the Book of Mormon; the Book of Nephi; &c &c.

This Jo Smith was a young man, so illiterate that he could not read his own name in print. But, being a person of some natural talents, he could, with his spectacles on read so fluently from his plates, by placing them in his hat and his hat over his eyes, that he succeeded in gulling an honest wealthy farmer of Palmyra, by the name of Martin Harris, into the belief, that these plates contained a revelation from heaven; and Jo Smith was, at least, a prophet, who only was "worthy to open the Book" -- Jo once showed one of the plates, (or said he did, but no one ever pretended to have seen them,) and the result was, that he was deprived, for six months, of the power of reading them.

Finally, after frequent and fervent prayer, Jo's spectacles were restored to sight, and he again permitted to open the book. -- Jo had, during his spiritual blindness, by the assistance of some one, commited several chapters of the New Testament to memory; and, the better to carry on his deception with the deluded Harris, had inquired, and found out the words inserted by the translators; (which are distinguished by Italics, both in the New Testament and the Old.) So, in order to convince Harris that he could read from the plates, Jo deposits them in his hat, applies spectacles, and refers Harris to a chapter in the Bible which he had learned by rote; and which he read from the plates, with surprising accuracy; and what astonished Harris most, was, that Jo should omit all the words in the Bible that were printed in Italic. And, if Harris attempted to correct Jo, he persisted that the plates were right, and the Bible was wrong.

Jo possessed a remarkably retentive memory; and having convinced Harris beyond the shadow of doubt, that he was commissioned by the Almighty, to reveal some hidden mysteries, he commenced translating, and Harris commenced transcribing, as Jo dictated; and; to avoid mistakes, Jo required his amanuensis to read what he had written; and nothing was allowed to pass, until Jo pronounced it correct. It must go as Jo said, -- sense or nonsense.

But before a translation was completed, the Lord informed Jo, (or, at least, so Jo said,) that the work must be published. As Jo was possessed of no funds, the expense, of course, must fall upon Harris; who accordingly made application to the printers in Palmyra. One of them refused to have any thing to do with the concern. The other made a charge, which Harris unfledged zeal could not, at first, encompass with his purse, without too hard a stretch of the strings. But, as he grew in faith his purse-strings became more elastic; and, in 1830, the Book of Mormon was published.*

As is usually the case with new systems, however, absurd, Mormanism found quite a number of deluded followers. -- Jo and Martin, of course, were the principal leaders. Jo, by some relevation from above, as he pretended, was informed that there was a "Promised Land" for him and his disciples [sic], in the West. This information was communicated to the deluded Mormonites, who immediately took up a line of march for New Connecticut, or the Western Reserve, in the State of Ohio. There they found a tract of land which they deemed the "Land of Promise." But some of the wicked owners refused to sell it; and thus the Mormonites were deprived of their "inheritance." They however, occupied what part of it they were able to obtain, living, and sharing all their goods in common.

Many miracles were pretended to be wrought among them. They professed to receive direct communications from Deity. At one time, a young man gave information to his brethren, that he was about to receive a message from heaven; and specified the time and place. At the appointed time, they repaired to the spot designated: and there, they solemnly assert, a letter descended from the skies, and fell into the hands of the young man who was expecting to receive the message; -- the purport of which was, to inform him that he was about to be called to preach Mormonism, and to exhort him to increase his faith. The deluded Mormonites declare their most solemn belief that this letter was written in heaven, by the finger of the Almighty; and the youth who pretends to have received it, says the writing was in a round Italian hand, and the letters were in gold; -- he attempted to copy it: but, as fast as he wrote, the letters disappeared from the original, until it entirely vanished. -- Some of them pretended to have received a "white stone, on which is written a new name, which no man knoweth save him that receiveth it." -- Revelations, ii, 17. Some of them pretend to see stones moving about in the air, and others to hear them rolling about the floor; at such times, they spring and jump about, trying to catch them, -- till some one, more fortunate than the rest, succeeds. But, when one of these stones is caught, no man can see it, "save him that receiveth it."

The Mormonites have among them an African, (or, as Garrison would say, an Africo American,) who fancies he can fly. Caesar, at one time, took it into his head to try his wings: He acco[r]dingly chose the elevated bank of Lake Erie as a starting-place, and, spreading his pinions, he lit on a tree-top, some fifty below, sustaining no other damage than the demolition of his faith in wings without feathers.

The Land of Promise in Ohio, not exactly suiting Martin Harris and Jo Smith, they have lately discovered another Promised Land in the Valley of the Mississippi; whence they, together with most of their followers, some fifty or sixty in number, have departed.

As to their Creed, it is similar to that of the Mahometans: "God is great, and Jo Smith is his Prophet." They pretend to believe the Bible, both the Old Testament and the New; and say the Book of Mormon is but a continuation of God's word. They believe that they are visited by the Holy Ghost; that they are commissioned to cast out devils, and work miracles, -- and report such stories as those above related of them, with the most solemn asseverations of truth.

As most of the Mormonites have immigrated to their new "Land of Promise," in the "far west," it is hoped that we shall hear from them but very seldom; and, as the wilderness [t]o which they are bound, is an ample field for meditation and reflection, our earnest desire is that they may be restored to right reason.

*The Editor of the Hartford Times, last week, classed the Mormonites with the Anti-masons. We therefore mention the fact, that the Antimasonic printer in Palmyra, refused to print the Mormon Bible; and it was printed by the publisher of the Wayne Sentinel, a masonic paper. --- The reader is here referred to the Mark Master's degree in Freemasonry. -- We are of the opinion that even Gideon will confess the striking resemblance between Mormonism and Masonry. What say you, Brother Jachin[?]

Note: Parts of the above article appear to have been derived from a report that appeared in the Painesville, Ohio Geauga Gazette, on Feb. 1, 1831. It is likely that the A. M. Intelligencer's article was also reprinted by Thurlow Weed in his Rochester Anti-Masonic Enquirer and in other Anti-Masonic papers, at about the same time -- however, no other reprints have yet been located.



Vol. III.                              Philadelphia, Thursday, August 25, 1831.                              No. 201.


It is certainly strange, yet nevertheless true, that true, that this infatuated people, if we may place confidence in the reports of the newspapers, are becoming more numerous, and assuming a more formidable appearance. We had hoped, that ere this the believers in the Book of Mormon would have been entirely extinct, and that no individual, however credulous, could be found so blind to reason and common judgment, as to permit himself to be carried away by the absurdities of the Mormon doctrine. The frailties incident to human nature have in all ages invariably shown themselves, either in remarkable lethargy, or an enthusiastic excitement, unsanctioned by reason or common sense. But the followers of the book of Mormon, if the accounts received be not inconceivably exaggerated, are amongst the most blind and deluded people we have upon record. They believe that their leader is the real Jesus Christ, and that both he and his disciples have infinite powers to work miracles, raise the dead, cleanse lepers -- and they testify that he has cast out many devils -- that the millennium is nigh, and that Philadelphia is the place where Jesus Christ will meet his disciples and followers. They are now removing to the promised land -- some indefinite spot on the Mississippi -- some have gone and others are disposing of their property, often at an immense pecuniary sacrifice, that they may join their companions gone before. To such an enthusiastic pitch have they raised their imaginations, that the entreaties and persuasive arguments of friends have no weight whatever. Their religious ceremonies and observances are forms of obsceneness and blasphemy, and are conducted in a manner shocking to the sense of rational creatures. In their excesses, unrestrained by the presence of the opposite sex, and in one assembly, they roll naked on the floor, and exhibit a variety of grotesque and unseemly forms, that humanity would blush to name, It is truly lamentable that such a state of things exists -- yet nevertheless these fanatics are daily receiving new accessions from New-York, Indiana, &c. -- Buck's Co. Int'l.

Note: This garbled report, reprinted from the Bucks County Intelligencer, was extracted from an article originally appearing in the Palmyra, New York Wayne Sentinel of Aug. 23, 1831. The careless extraction of text resulted in the prophecies and "unseemly forms" of the followers of Joseph C. Dylkes (the "Leatherwood God") being interspersed indiscriminately with the activities of the Mormons, resulting in a complete jumble of fact and fiction.


Vol. X.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, August 27, 1831.                             Whole 526.

                         From the Burlington Sentinel

Mormonism in Vermont

Mr. John Stewart, of Bakersfield, put an end to his existence, May 19th by hanging himself on a tree. The cause of this dreadful deed was the following:

About two years ago, a man by the name of Davidson came into this vicinity, pretending to be endowed with the Holy Spirit, and to be inspired of God to prophesy of things to come. He is a disciple, he tells us, of Dilks, who has figured in the State of Ohio for three or four years past. Davidson pretends that Dilks has Almighty power, and is God himself. He has gained quite a number of proselytes in the towns of Bakersfield, Fairfax and Fairfield. He wears his hair long, and pretends a great deal of piety. He preaches that Jesus Christ is a woman & quite inferior to Dilks -- that the millennium will take place in 1832. -- Philadelphia is the place designated where Dilks is to assemble his followers, and then the rest of mankind are to be swept from the face of the earth, and Dilks and his followers are to inherit their possessions.

This Davidson has got about thirty disciples in the east part of Fairfield & in the west part of Bakersfield. They meet together every Sabbath and carry on in a manner most shocking to human feelings. They roll naked on the floor, both men and women. and commit other sins too revolting to be mentioned. But this is but a faint picture of their shameful conduct. Modesty forbids that I should utter the whole. A few days since they pretended to crucify a woman and put her in a box and began to pray over her in order to raise her from the dead; but being wearied with lying shut up in a close box, she finally came forth with her own accord before they intended.

They have a woman among them by the name of Thompson, who pretends now, that she is Jesus Christ, and baptises Davidson's followers. She sprinkles [them, in the first place, with flour.] The rest of the ceremony I will omit, for modesty's sake. She performs her baptism, however, in the name of the holy trinity. A man who once represented the town of Fairfax in our general assembly, I understood, was baptised by this woman at the house of a man by the name of Gardner, in Fairfield: Gardener's house is the place of their resort.

The man who hanged himself was threatened by Mrs. Thompson that unless he immediately obeyed her commands he should be sent forthwith to hell-fire! -- She had made him swear by the living God, on his knees, that he would be true to the prophet Davidson and his people, and do whatever he was required to do by him or herself. She then required of him things too horrid and indecent to be named. The poor, simple man, went to his home and put a period to his life.

It is thought by many judicious persons that Randall, of Franklin, who murdered his family a short time since, was deluded into that atrocious act by believing Davidson's doctrine. He was one of his disciples, in part, at least.

There is another man among them that is beginning to be crazy. I believe the whole of it is the work of the evil one, and that Davidson goes about and preaches only for the sake of doing all the harm he can to religion.

Immediately after Stewart hanged himself, several men agreed to tar and feather Davidson. One of the men, with several lads went to Gardner's with their apparatus for tarring, and found Davidson delivering a lecture. -- They waited a while for others to help them. But no one came; the man entered the room and dragged out Davidson, and the boys applied the tar. The others undertook to rescue Davidson, but shared the same fate. The tar was faithfully applied to all their pates, in turn. A man from Colchester, fled to the chamber, but was pursued to his retreat, and was spared by being very penitent, and proclaiming that he would not be seen in Fairfield again.

I have just been conversing with a gentleman of undoubted veracity, who informs me that he has been present and saw with his own eyes a man get down and kiss the floor at the command of Mrs. Thompson -- and says that this is but a faint picture, that I have given above, of the base conduct of Davidson and his followers.
Fairfield, June 3, 1831.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. III.                              Philadelphia, Tuesday, September 13, 1831.                              No. 217.

From the New York Courier.


(view original article from NY paper)

Note 1: The link given above leads to a two-part article, that was researched and written by Courier and Enquirer journalist, James Gordon Bennett, as part of an 1831 series of reports of western New York, which he filed with the paper's editor, Major Noah. Bennett later parted with Noah, eventually becoming the noted head of his own influential publication, the New York Herald.

Note 2: Bennett's report on the recently departed Mormons of Wayne and Ontario counties was a potentially important piece of historical documentation -- however, the writer's imprecise quotation of unsure sources diminished the articles' future usefulness. For example, Bennett conveys the impression that Martin Harris first took the alleged Nephite writing samples to Charles Anthon, "of Columbia College," and from there went to visit Dr. Samuel Mitchill, to get his advice regarding the same text -- this account reverses the order in which Harris approached the two Gotham savants. Probably there is a good deal of factual information embedded in Bennett's reporting, but his account contains little information of unique significance that can be independently verified today. A new discovery of some near contemporary, confirming source might render Bennett's interesting story of Sidney Rigdon's earliest involvement with the New York Mormons more useful and valuable to historians, however.

Note 3: Bennett's account of Mormon origins was widely reprinted at the time, in excerpts and also in a paraphrased version. The report was soon forgotten, however, and is not known to have provided any raw material for the historians of Mormonism until years after it was initially uncovered by Dale Morgan during the 1940s. See also Leonard J. Arrington's 1970 article on this early account: "James Gordon Bennett's 1831 Report on the Mormonites," in BYU Studies X:3 and Wade Englund's more recent on-line comments.


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia,  Wed., September 21, 1831.                             No. ?


St. Louis, Missouri, Sept. 6.    
The Mormonites. -- We learn from the Painesville Gazette, that this infatuated people are again in motion. In their own cant phrase, "they are going to inherit the promise of God to Abraham and his seed." Their destination is some indefinite spot on the Missouri river, they say about 1500 miles distant. About eighty of them have recently been ordained, and some have gone; others are about going, two and two, part by the western rivers and part by land, to their distant retreat, far away from the cheering voice of civilized man. Those who have disposed of their property go now, and such as have property, are making market for it so eagerly as often to disregard pecuniary interests, and all are to follow with all convenient dispatch. They still persist in their power to work miracles. They say they have often seen them done; the sick are healed, the lame walk, devils are cast out; and these assertions are made by men heretofore considered rational men, and men of truth. The Gazette expresses the opinion, that although the leaders of this sect are great impostors, a great portion of its members are sincere and honest.

Some of the leaders of this sect, we are told, passed through this place two or three weeks since, on their return to Ohio. We understand, that they have determined to migrate to Jackson county, on the extreme edge of this state; for which purpose they have purchased a sufficiency of land whereupon to locate the whole of the believers of Mormonism. We have some hope that the latter part of the paragraph may be true; as, in any other event, we should not rejoice much in the acquisition of so many deluded, insane enthusiasts. -- Republican.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XII.                              Philadelphia, Thursday, September 22, 1831.                              No. 1645.

The Mormonites. -- Some of the leaders of this sect, we are told, passed through this place two or three days since, on their return to Ohio. We understand, that they have determined to migrate to Jackson county, on the extreme edge of this state; for which purpose they have purchased a sufficiency of land whereupon to locate the whole of the believers in Mormonism.

Note: The above notice was copied from the Sept. 6, 1831 issue of the St. Louis Daily Missouri Republican. The grand (?) first LDS Conference held in "Zion" took place on Aug. 4th, with Elders Joseph Smith, jr., Sidney Rigdon, and other prominent Saints in attendance. The events of that period are related in considerable detail in the published letters of Ezra Booth, beginning in the Oct. 13, 1831 issue of the Ohio Star. According to his report and other historical sources, Smith, and Rigdon passed through St. Louis, on their way back to Kirtland, in mid August of 1831.


Vol. X.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, October 15, 1831.                             Whole 533.

(From the Illinois Patriot, Sept. 16.)


A preacher of this sect visited us last Saturday. We heard a part of his lecture, which occupied more than two hours. From account this sect came into existence a little more than a year since, in the following manner. A young man about 23 years of age, some where in Ontario county, N. Y., was visited by an angel! (here the preacher looked around him apparently to see if the credulity of the people in this enlightened age could be thus imposed on,) who informed him three times in one night that by visiting a certain place in that town he would have revealed to him something of importance. The young man was disturbed, but did not obey the summons until the following day, when the angel again visited him. At the place appointed he found in the earth a box which contained a set of thin plates resembling gold, with Arabic characters inscribed on them. The plates were minutely described as being connected with rings in the shape of the letter D, which facilitated the opening and shutting of the book. The preacher said he found in the same place two stones, with which he was enabled, by placing them over his eyes and putting his head in a dark corner, to decypher the hieroglyphics on the plates! -- This we were told was performed to admiration, and now, as the result, we have a book which the speaker informed us was the Mormon Bible -- a book second to no other -- without which the holy bible, he seemed to think, would be of little use.

It appears from his statement, that three of the offspring of Joseph, by his youngest son Ephraim, whose names were Laman, Nephi and Lehigh, as near as we could understand, were the persons from whom sprang Mormon. -- Laman and Nephi rather declined from walking in the right way, but Lehigh was firm in the faith -- Mormon, who was a prophet, led them eastward until they came to the sea, as we suppose, where they built a ship and came to this western world. To prove this, the preacher referred us to Genesis, 49th chapter and 22d verse, and said the branches running over the wall was neither more or less than the progeny of Joseph, leaving their own and coming to this country! He went into a detail of the reasons which induced him to join himself to this people -- that on account of so many sects being in the world, and the discrepancies in their opinions, he became sceptical -- that hearing of these people in July last, he joined himself to them, believing them to constitute the true church -- and that he came this way to meet a convocation of elders in Jackson county, Missouri, which is to be their New Jerusalem, but was disappointed in not seeing them there. He insisted on the bible being joined with his book, by quoting the 16th and 17th verses of the 37th chapter of Ezekiel, and comparing the bible and Mormon's book to the two sticks there spoken of. We thought this part of his subject too ludicrous to be refuted by any man in his right mind. We cannot now enter into the merits of his discourse, nor should we have given this hastily written sketch, had we not been requested to say something on the subject. Some of these men may be sincere; but does this prove they are in the right? The worshippers of Juggernaut are sincere, or they would not sacrifice their lives by throwing themselves under the wheel of its life-destroying car.

Note: This article came from the Jacksonville Sept. 16, 1831 issue of the Illinois Patriot. The Post reprint left out the final line of the report: "As far as we are acquainted with the Bible we now have, we are satisfied that the Mormonites are a deluded sect of men, whose doctrines are not only dangerous -- but, notwithstanding all their professions, they are calling down the curse of God on their own heads."


The Daily Chronicle.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Thursday, February 2, 1832.                             No. ?


MORMONISM. -- So little has been said of late respecting this infatuated and silly class of impostors and their followers, that we had concluded their race had nearly run -- they had gone the way of all former doctrine builders, whose tenets were founded in fancy and proclaimed by the spirit of imposition, it seems, however, by the following article from the Fredonia ( N. Y.) Censor of the 11th [ult.], that they are not yet entirely extinct: --

MORMONISM IN CHAUTAUQE COUNTY. -- Some of the followers of Jo. Smith have recently commenced operations in this town; and in fact they deserve credit for their sagacity in selecting a suitable field for operation; for where anti-masonry takes a rank hold nothing else is too absurd to gain credence. They had gained a few proselytes, and had the prospect of doing a fair business, when one of the principal of them was arrested in his career by the tyrant death on Saturday last.

But it would seem that even in the grave he was not to rest undisturbed. The night Following his interment, some of the Mormon folks on going to the grave yard, found two or three chaps busily engaged in digging up the grave, and had nearly reached the coffin when discovered. They all ran on being discovered, but one of them being somewhat lame, was overtaken and arrested -- brought before a magistrate -- and, after undergoing an examination, was bound over to take liis trial for the statute offence of violating the grave. There appears to be different opinions in regard to this last transaction; some asserting that the Mormonites intended to play off a trick by way of pretending to raise the dead, which led to the belief that it was only a sham burial, and that the object of those found digging at the grave was merely to ascertain that fact; but the Mormonites gave it a different character, in which they were sustained by the magistrate. The subject will, of course, be fully investigated when it comes to trial.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, March 31, 1832.                              No. 13.


We have received the prospectus of a new paper about to be published at Independence, Jackson County, Missouri, under the title of "the Evening and the Morning Star." The following is the first paragraph of the prospectus: --

As the forerunnner of the night of the end, and the messenger of the day of redemption, the Star will borrow its light from sacred sources, and be devoted to the Revelations of God as made known to his servants by the Holy Ghost, at sundry times since the creation of man, but more especially in these last days, for the restoration of the house of Israel. We rejoice much because God hath been so mindful of his Promise as again to send into this world the Holy Ghost, whereby we are enabled to know the right way to holiness; and, furthermore, to prove all doctrines, whether they be of God or of man: For there can be but one, as Christ and the Father are one. All of us know, or ought to, that our Heavenly Father, out of all the peoples which he planted on the earth, chose but one people to whom he gave his Laws, his Revelations, and his Commandments, and this was Jacob his chosen and Israel his elect. All know, too, or might, that for disobedience or not keeping his commandments to do them, God had this people carried away captive into all countries, and scattered among all nations, but promised that he would gather them and bring them again unto their own lands: Then the land should yield its increase, and at that time he would take away the stony heart and give them a heart of flesh, and write his law in it, that all might know him from the least of them to the greatest of them: -- So that the knowledge of him might fill the whole earth, as the waters cover the sea. At which time it shall no more be said, The Lord liveth that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; but, The Lord liveth that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the North, and from all the lands whither he had driven them. And it shall come to pass in the last days, the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. And it shall come to pass in that day, the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath and from the islands of the sea. And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.

W. W. Phelps proposes to issue this new journal at one dollar a year. At the close of the prospectus we observe this postscript: --

*** From this press, may be expected as soon as wisdom directs, many sacred records which have slept for ages."

These Mormonite sages are about to pour a flood of light upon the world.

Note: It is important to mention here that "Zion" was the Mormon designation for Independence, Missouri and the region thereabouts. So, when Elder Phelps spoke of "Heavenly Father... his Laws, his Revelations, and his Commandments" and additional "sacred records," he was attempting to fulfill biblical prophecy, by announcing the issuance of modern Divine "Law" from the Missouri "Zion." For a few months the Mormon printing press in that place was put to work in publishing these latter day commandments -- but that work came to a sudden and permanent halt in the latter part of 1833. Thereafter the "law" would go forth out of such places as Kirtland, Ohio, Nauvoo, Illinois, and Salt Lake City, Utah. Eventually the Reorganized LDS managed to re-establish a printing press in Independence and to publish Divine (?) revelations to the world from that center stake of Zion -- just as Elder Phelps had envisioned.


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Thursday, April 5, 1832.                             No. ?


DIED, on the 9th day of March, 1832, at. St. Mary's, Georgia, of a pulmonary affection, George Greatrake, of the Brandywine Paper Mills, in the 38th year of his age. In the impressive remembrance of the conduct and merit of the deceased, a tribute seems to be alike due to the feelings of the living, and the character of the dead. In the several relations of the filial and social duties, he was led to support an even tenor of conduct, and to perform the part alloted him with affection, perseverance, and fidelity.

Under a full sense of his accountability for the actions of this life, to which he constantly referred, he endeavored to discharge the tender and kind obligations of an affectionate son, a brother, and a friend.

In his last moments, distant from his home, and the tender offices of those connected to him by the most endearing ties, he evinced that he
    "Could, sustained and soothed
By an unfaltering trust, approach the grave
Like one -- who wraps the mantle of his couch
About him -- and lies down in peaceful rest."

Note: George was the younger brother of Elder Lawrence Greatrake, Jr., who replaced Sidney Rigdon as the pastor of the Pittsburgh First Baptist Church in the summer of 1824. George suffered serious injury in 1822, during a flood which destroyed part of the Gilpin paper mill. He developed a lung ailment and left Delaware to seek treatment in the South. Newspaper notices indicate that he left unclaimed business goods (perhaps a consignment of paper or paper-making equipment) in Pennsylvania in 1824. George Greatrake's residence at St. Mary's, as well as his deteriorating illness, his burial at Oak Grove Cemetery, etc., was noticed by Adiel Sherwood, in his 1837 A Gazetteer of the State of Georgia, p. 228.





Professor of Historical and Natural Sciences, &c.

Vol. I.                                     Philadelphia, Pa.,  Spring, 1832.                                     No. 1.

Knowledge is the mental food of man.


First Letter to Mr. Champollion, on the Graphic systems of America,
and the Glyphs of Otolum or Palenque, in Central America.

(article moved to here)

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XII.                                   Philadelphia, Tuesday, May 22, 1832.                                   No. 1748.

Outrage. -- On the night of the 24th ult. twenty-five or thirty persons in disguise, entered the apartments of Smith and Rigdon, leaders of Mormonism in Cayuga [sic - Portage?] county, Ohio, carried them from their beds, and tarred and feathered them. -- Newark (Ohio) Gazette.

Note 1: This details of this incident were first reported in the Hudson Observer & Telegraph of April 5, 1832.

Note 2: For background information on the Rigdon-Smith tar and feathering incident, see notes attached to articles published in the Cleveland Daily Plain Dealer of Nov. 22, 1854 and the Portage County Democrat of Feb. 15, 1860.



Vol. XXXII.                             Philadelphia, Tuesday, May 22, 1832.                             No. 1861.

Mormonism. -- The Fredonia Censor of Wednesday says: --

"The Mormonites are doing a pretty fair business in this part of the town. Seven or eight were baptised to that faith by immersion last week. Fit materials for a fit delusion."

The famous leader of this deluded sect, Joe Smith, passed through this place a few days since. He made no stop here, but we learn that he did a few miles below this, where he expressed his firm belief of the entire conversion of the world to his faith in less than 2 years. He is a zealot in the cause, and there is not much doubt of his sincerity in the creed he professes. But a great derangement of his mental faculties is said to be very visible.

Note: It would have been helpful to the historian if the Gazette copy-writer had specified just where "this place" was located. Presumably it was not in or near Philadelphia, and the Joseph Smith incident mentioned happened in some distant place. The report does not appear to have originated in the Fredonia Censor. Joseph Smith, Jr. is not known to have been visiting the Fredonia area in the Spring of 1832. He did, however, visit western New York in Oct. of 1833 and again in March of 1834. According to his generally accepted chronology, Smith was returning home from Missouri in April of 1832 and tarried in "Mr. Porter's public house," in Greenville, Indiana for most of May that year. -- During the last days of March and the first few days of April, 1832, Elder Samuel H. Smith (brother of Joseph) was preaching in the Fredonia-Pomfret area; so -- if the Smith incident did occur somewhere in western New York, perhaps it was Samuel who was seen there as "a zealot in the cause" of Mormonism.



Vol. XXXII.                               Philadelphia, Tues., September 1, 1832.                               No. 1889.


It is stated in the Boston Christian Register, that two Mormonite preachers have recently visited that city, and made about 15 converts to their strange doctrines, who have been baptised and joined the Mormon church. Some of them are said to be respectable persons. All contemplate going to the west, and some have already started for "the promised land, the place of refuge for the house of Israel and for all the Gentile world who will flee thither for safety" in Jackson county, Missouri. Two females who have gone, had acquired by industry, one 1500 and the other 800 dollars, which they have given up to go into the general stock. The others possess between 3000 or 4000 dollars, which they are going to put into the general fund, and which they can never draw out again. "Thus (says the Register) are people swindled out of their property, and drawn from their comfortable homes, by ignorant fanatics." One of the preachers has been at Lynn, where four or five persons have embraced Mormonism and been immersed. The preachers intend visiting the cities and principal towns of New England.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XXXII.                               Philadelphia, Tues., September 22, 1832.                               No. 1895.

MORMONISM. -- We are in the receipt of the second number of a Mormonite newspaper, published at Independence, Missouri, the settlement of that most absurd and singular sect. It is called the 'Evening and the Morning Star' -- and is handsomely printed in the form and style of our largest bibles. The first page is devoted to the revelations from the Prophet Mormon, and Extracts from the laws for the Government of the church. The second and third contain the pompous vision of 'Joseph and Sidney,' who, 'being in the spirit on the 16th of February,' saw the glories of the Celestial, Terrestrial, and also the Telestial worlds. This view, the editor says, 'is the greatest news that ever was published to man -- showing the economy of God in preparing mansions for man.' An address 'to the elders who preach good tidings,' cautions them to reason from the bible, illustrated by the book of Mormon. Upwards of four hundred have joined the faith, 'since the work of the gathering commenced.' Fifteen converts were recently made to this strange delusion in Boston. The money of the members goes into a general fund. The editor advises brethren not to come to 'the land of Zion,' too fast -- as provisions are scarce, in consequence of the Indians -- 'the remnants of Joseph' -- being sent to the west, by the government, where 'they must be fed in these last days.' -- Prov. Journal.

Note 1: This report evidently came from a mid-September issue of the Rhode Island Providence Journal.

Note 2: The Evening and the Morning Star of July, 1832 (the second issue) says: "It is about one year since the work of the gathering commenced, in which time between three & four hundred have arrived here and are mostly located upon their inheritances... The prospect for crops, in this region of country, is, at present, tolerable good, but calls for provisions will undoubtedly be considerable, for besides the emigration of the whites, the government of the United States is settling the Indians, (or remnants of Joseph) immediately to the west, and they must be fed." The same notion (of Isrealite Indians) is repeated in the Star of June, 1833, which says: "Arrangements have been made by the General Government, to settle all the remnants of our northern Indians, near lake Winnebago, west of the Michigan... And it affords us great joy to see the work of the gathering go on so rapidly. In fact, thus far the gathering of the remnants of Joseph, have far exceeded our expectations."


Vol. ?                             Philadelphia, Saturday, April ?, 1833.                             No. ?


The Mormonites, though occupying now less of the public attention then they excited in the earlier stages of their establishment, are still objects of considerable interest. The gross absurdity of their doctrines, and the tenacity with which they cling to them, make it [a] matter of curious speculation, whether knavery or folly is the predominant feeling of their teachers; and the numbers, who have joined their societies furnish conclusive proof that superstition and fanaticism are even yet powerful agents in influencing human affairs. As this sect is still increasing, it is gratifying to know that their habits and customs are peaceable and orderly, and that though bad christians, they are in some places at least good citizens.

The following extracts from a letter, written by an intelligent correspondent, at Liberty, Missouri, will repay perusal: --

This singular people own a large portion of the land in the adjacent county, (Jackson), and have made thereon some neat and comfortable improvements. Their conduct, as citizens, appears to be as unexpectionable as that of any class of our community. They are peaceable, unoffending, industrious, frugal, and honest: always giving a fair price for what they buy, and asking only a similar price for that which they may have to sell. Their little buildings and farms exhibit the most systematic neatness and order, and they appear to be accumulating wealth faster than their neighbors in similar circumstances.

The information I am about to communicate, in relation to the particular tenets which distinguish this singular sect from others, was derived from two discourses, which I heard delivered in this place, during the last winter, by two of their most influential members. They were both possessed of a considerable degree of science and historical information, and advocated their peculiar doctrines with as much zeal and [------uity], as are common in preachers of other denominations. They commenced by saying that they yielded the most implicit ascent to the Old and New Testament, and said that their Book of Mormon was, in fact, but a part of those Scriptures.

To sustain this important position they asserted that, at the confusion of tongues, which occurred at the Tower of Babel, the Deity, by his irresistible [will], dispersed the different nations into [all the] different habitable parts of the [globe?], and that, after they were so dispersed, they remained ignorant of each other, as the art of navigation was not then sufficiently known to afford them the means of intercourse. They contended that in this way alone they could we rationally account for the fact that the New World and all the South Sea Islands were inhabited by human beings when first discovered by Columbus, Cook, and other navigators. They further urged that different revelations of the will of God were necessary for different ages; that the revelation made to Moses on Mount Sinai was sufficient for the generation then existing, but that subsequent revelations were necessary, in the nature of things, for succeeding generations of men; that the revelations which were made after the dispersion of the human race were made concurrently to the people of every continent; that, for instance, when the Angel revealed the birth of Our Saviour to the shepherds in Asia, the same fact was communicated to the people then inhabiting America. -- They referred to the relics of ancient structures which are to be found in many parts of our country to prove the fact that this continent was long since inhabited by a race of men acquainted with many of the arts of civilized life. They said that the pious men of those by-gone days had made records of the revelations of Jehovah as they occurred, some of which were engraved upon gold plates and deposited in the earth, and found by Joseph Smith in 1827, who was favoured with a special inspiration for the purpose of translating the same.

To prove that many of the Books of the Old Testament have been lost, they made quotations from passages referring to books that could not be found in our present translation; and said that their Book of Mormon was one of those books which had been lost in the Old World, but preserved in the New. In their mode of using prophecy, they profess to follow the example of the Apostles, as recorded somewhere in Acts, where they had all things in common, and appointed some individuals to administer in temporal things. During the delivery of their sermons, they frequently came over the phrase, "in these last days." If I understood them correctly, they profess to know more in relation to the particular time, when that date of political and religious amelioration, called the Millennium, shall arrive, than can be learned from the Old and New Testament.

I have merely given you the principal outlines of the creed of this strange people, as the limits of a letter would not contain any thing more. Since their settlement in Jackson county, several of our own citizens have joined them but have subsequently backed out. A suit was, not long since, instituted by an individual to recover the sum of fifty dollars, which he had paid for the purpose of procuring an interest "in Zion in these last days," and the Court, thinking that the recipient of the cash had no interest in Zion of a disposable kind, adjudged the original contract void, for want of consideration, and consequently the plaintiff recovered. It is said, that others intend instituting similar sects. -- As yet, however, they get along better than could be anticipated, from the absurdity of their doctrine.
                           P. H. B.

Note: The exact date of this Courier clipping and the identity of Mr. "P. H. B." of Liberty, Missouri remain unknown.


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Saturday, August 31, 1833.                             No. ?


Jackson County, Missouri -- The number of Mormonites is increasing and there is fear they will control all of the offices in the county and the lives and property of the others will be unsafe... meeting of 4-500 citizens... [resolution] that no more Mormons be allowed to settle and the Mormons currently settled will be given time to leave... a committee was formed to meet with the Mormonites... amicable meeting... they are under a delusion but is that a justification for such left-handed proceedings?

Note: Partial clipping with fragmentary text.


Vol. III.                             Philadelphia, Saturday, Sept. 14, 1833.                             No. 129.

Regulating  The  Mormonites.

(see the Aug. 9, 1833 Missouri Republican for subject matter)

It must be confessed that the proceedings on the part of the worthy citizens of Jackson city [sic]. Missouri, display a great deal more decision and determination, than regard for the laws or constitrution, or the duties of hospitality. If they were powerful enough to use such effectual means with those who were too weak to make any resistance whatever, they were powerful enough to keep them in order by peaceable and lawful measures.

Note: The Courier's reprint from the Missouri Republican is mainly a paraphrase of the original article.



Vol. X.                             Philadelphia,  Monday, January 27, 1834.                             No. 23.


The Editor of the Pittsburg Manufacturer, has had a sight of that famous modern humbug, the Book of Mormon. He describes it as a medium octavo of nearly six hundred pages, and the language throughout is in imitation of the old and new testament. The Manufacturer says: --

"Although Joseph Smith signs himself author and proprietor of the work, a man who a few years ago lived in this city, and was known to many of our citizens under the appellation of Elder Rigdon, is suspected of being the author. Be this, however, as it may, the following affords a curious specimen of the means that may be successfully used to gull the credulous and the superstitious.

(title page of 1830 Book of Mormon follows)

Note: The Pittsburgh American Manufacturer issue featuring this report has not yet been located -- probably it was published on Jan. 18, 1834, or possibly even Jan. 25th. Its report began with these words: "A few days since a friend presented us with the far-famed Book of Mormon, and as many of our readers have not yet seen it, we thought it would not be uninteresting to extract the matter on the title page; which explains the ground on which it claims divine origin." No indication was given, of just who this particular "friend" may have been. D. P. Hurlbut reportedly visited Pittsburgh during the fall of 1833 -- probably with the hope of locating old-time residents who knew something about Elder Sidney Rigdon and his supposed connection with Book of Mormon origins. It is not unreasonable to imagine that Hurlbut left a copy of the book in that town. On Feb. 1st the Philadelphia Album reprinted the Manufacturer's suspicion of a Rigdon authorship -- and coupled that editorial sentiment with a contemporary account that (copied from the Inquirer of Jan. 31st) mentioned both D. P. Hurlbut and the recently voiced claim, that the book's "pretended religious character" was "superadded by some more modern hand -- believed to be the notorious Rigdon."


Vol. VIII.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, February 1, 1834.                              No. 5.


We rejoice that the humbug of the Mormon bible is about to be fully exposed. A late number of the Wayne, (Pa.) Sentinel informs us that Dr. P. Hulbert, of Kirtland, O., has been engaged for some time in different parts of the state, in pursuit of facts and information relative to the origin and history of the Book of Mormon. The Sentinel says: -- "Dr. H. has succeeded in accomplishing the object of his mission and an authentic history of the whole affair will shortly be given to the public. The original manuscript of the Book was written some thirty years since by a respectible clergyman, now deceased, whose name we are not permitted to give. It was designed to be published as a romance, but the author died soon after it was written, and hence the plan failed. The pretended religious character of that work has been superadded by some more modern hand -- believed to be the notorious Rigdon. These particulars have been derived by Dr. Hulbert from the widow of the author of the original manuscript."


The Editor of the Pittsburgh Manufacturer, has had a sight of that famous modern humbug, the Book of Mormon. He describes it as a medium octavo of nearly six hundred pages, and the language throughout is in imitation of the old and new testament. The Manufacturer says: -- "Although Joseph Smith signs himself author and proprietor of the work, a man who a few years since lived in this city, and was known to many of our citizens under the appellation of Elder Rigdon, is suspected of being the author. Be this, however, as it may, the following affords a curious specimen of the means that may be successfully used to gull the credulous and the superstitious:


"An account written by the hand of Mormon upon plates taken from the plates of Nephi.

Wherefore, it is an abridgment of the Record of the People of Nephi, and also of the Lamanites-; written to the Lamanites, who are a remnant of the House of Israel; and also to Jew and Gentile, written by way of commandment, and also by the spirit of Prophecy and of revelation. Written and sealed up, and hid up unto the Lord, that they might not be destroyed; to come forth by the gift and power of God, unto the interpretation thereof; sealed by the hand of Moroni, and hid up unto the Lord, to come forth in due time by way of the Gentile; the interpretation thereof by the gift of God; an abridgment taken from the Book of Ether.

Also, which is a record of the people of Jared, who were scattered at the time the Lord confounded the language of the people, when they were building a tower to get to Heaven: which is to shew unto the remnant of the House of Israel what great things the Lord hath done for their fathers; and that they may know the covenants of the Lord, that they are not cast off forever; and also to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations. And now, if there be fault, it be the mistake of men; wherefore, condemn not the things of God, that ye may be found spotless at the judgment seat of Christ. By Joseph Smith, Jr., Author and Proprietor."

Note: Although there may have been a "Sentinel" published in Wayne, Pennsylvania, the writer of the first report apparantly mistook it for the NY Wayne Sentinel in the case of the "Mormon Mystery" claims. This news item was first published in the Dec. 20, 1833 issue of the latter paper. The Album reproduced it word-for-word from a reprint featured in the Inquirer of Jan. 31st. -- see also the note appended to the Inquirer article of Jan 27th.


Vol. IV.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, March 29, 1834.                             No. 157.

From the St. Louis Republican, March 10.

THE MORMON DIFFICULTIES. --A lale number of the Enquirer, -- a paper just started at Liberty, Mo., -- contains a military order from Governor Dunklin to the Captain of the "Liberty Blues" commanding him to hold himself and his men in "readiness to assist the civil authorities in apprehending and bringing to trial the persons offending against the laws, in November last, in Jackson county, in conflicts between the Mormons and a portion of the other citizens of that county." He is commanded to attend the court in that county, during the trial of the causes, and execute such orders as may be given him by the Judge or Circuit Attorney. Under these orders, and at the request of Judge Ryland, who stated that a number of Mormons wished to testify before the Grand Jury, Capt. Atchison marched his company into Independence, on the day appointed for holding Court, having a number of Mormons under his protection. After a stay of about three hours it was concluded by Judge Ryland, the Circuit Attorney, and Attorney General Wells, that "it was entirely unnecessary to investigate the subject on the part of the State, as the jury were equally concerned in the outrages committed, and it was therefore not likely that any bills would be found." The Captain was therefore directed to return to Liberty and to discharge his men. "To see a civil court (the Governor says) surrounded by a military force, is well calculated to awaken the sensibilities of any community;" and the Governor charges his subordinate officer to perform his duties in the mildest manner possible. It is certainly a new thing in this country, to see the military called in to protect the civil authorities in the exercise of their just powers; and goes far to prove how much we have relaxed in virtue and a regard for the laws which ought to govern us. Every patriot must hope, that the occasion may seldom arise when it shall be necessary to surround a judicial tribunal with such guards. It is a pernicious example, but rendered, perhaps, necessary in the present case by the extraordinary circumstances attending the conflict.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Saturday, April 19, 1834.                              No. ?


The following tragical story of a Mormon preacher is given by the editor of the Independent Messenger on the authority of a gentleman from the western part of the state of New York. We shall expect to see it authenticated by the western papers if it be true.

In a town where the delusion had made numerous converts the disciples were summoned to assemble in a wild place, circumjacent to a pond, on the water of which, a gifted elder announced that he should walk and preach. The believers notified their doubting friends, and great things were anticipated. But it seems there were a few wicked Lamanites, who secretly set themselves to make mischief. Choosing their opportunity, just before the appointed day of miracles, they ascertained, by means of a raft, that the pond to be traversed was extremely shallow; a thin sheet of water covering a common swamp mire.-This mire was found to be of a consistency nearly strong enough, except within a small central space, to sustain the weight of a man. They soon discovered a line of plank laid in a particular direction completely across the pond, sunk about four inches under the surface of the water. These were so fastened down, and locked together, and so daubed with mud, as to be quite imperceptible from the neighboring declivities. They resolved on preventing the miracle by sawing the concealed bridge in pieces, just where it crossed the deepest and most dangerous part of the pond. This was done, and left seemingly as they found it.

The expected day arrived, the congregation placed themselves as in an amphitheatre on the surrounding slopes and the preacher appeared at the edge of the water. Presently he raised his stentorian voice and as he paced his invisible bridge with a step apparent unearthly taught and warned the people. All ears were open, and every eye strained from its socket with astonishment. But alas! just as the miracle-worker seemed to have wrought conviction of his divine power in the wondering hearts of the multitude, lo! he stepped upon one of the detached pieces of plank sallied side-ways, and instantly plunged, floundering and sinking in the deep water mire: mingling shrieks, screams and shouts of the spectators, all in a rush of commotion were appalling. The scene was indescribable. Even those who had spoiled the miracle, were filled with horror when they actually saw the unfortunate impostor disappear. They had not dreamed that their trick would cost him more than the fright, discomfort and disgrace of being submersed and afterwards struggling a shore; all along taking it for granted that his plank would enable him to swim, however it might treacherously fail him to walk. But the tale closes with the close of his life and the consequent close of Mormonism in that vicinity. -- He sunk, and long before the confounded assembly were in a condition to afford him relief, perished, a victim to his imposture.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                            Philadelphia, Wednesday, June 4, 1834.                           No. ?


                                         Richmond, (Wayne Co. Indiana,) May 24.

MORMONITES. -- On Monday morning last, a caravan of about two hundred Mormonites, with a long train of wagons, passed through this place, on their way to the "far west." There were but few women among them, and the men were generally, if not all, supplied with fire-arms. A stout, hardy set of looking fellows they were too, and many of them quite intelligent. From their equipments, it has been suspected that they intend joining and defending their brethren in Jackson county, Missouri. They professed to be in search of new lands, whereon to form a settlement, either in Illinois or farther west. We understand they were from the States of Vermont, New York, and Pennsylvania, and had assembled at some point on their route hither. -- Palladium

Note: Essentially the same article was reprinted in the Gazette of June 5th.


Vol. XIV.                            Philadelphia, Thursday, June 5, 1834.                           No. ?


Richmond (Wayne co. Indiana), May 14.    
MORMONITES. -- On Monday morning last, a caravan of about two hundred Mormonites, with a long train of wagons, passed through this place, on their way to the "far west." There were but few women among them, and the men were generally, if not all, supplied with fire-arms. A stout, hardy set of looking fellows they were too, and many of them quite intelligent. From their equipment, it has been suspected that they intend joining and defending their brethren in Jackson county, Missouri. They professed to be in search of new lands, whereon to form a settlement, either in Illinois or farther west. We understand they were from the States of Vermont, New York, and Pennsylvania, and had assembled at some point on their route hither. -- Palladium.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                            Philadelphia, Saturday, July 5, 1834.                           No. ?


We learn by the following article, and others in other papers corroborating it, that violence and bloodshed may be expected in Missouri between those fanatics, the Mormonites, and those almost equally fanatic, who seek to put down their superstitions and delusions by force of arms:

                                         Liberty, (Mo.) June 11
The Mormons. -- Our friends at a distance may feel desirous to hear something respecting the "Mormons," so called, and knowing that the larger portion of them are in this county, may look to us to give them the wanted information.

We have heretofore been almost silent on this subject, hoping that the difficulties which occurred in Jackson co., between the citizens and the Mormons, would be soon settled in an amicable way, at least without the shedding of blood; and, in fact, we have felt very little interest in the matter, farther than it affected the general good of the country. But as this thing has arrived at a crisis which is really appealing to the feelings of good men, we feel it a duty to inform our readers of the movements of this people, at the same time we do not wish to be understood as trying to exasperate the minds of the people against this deluded & unfortunate sect.

For the last six or eight weeks, the Mormons have been actively engaged in making preparations to return to Jackson county, "the land of promise," by providing themselves with implements of war, such as guns, pistols, swords, &c. &c. They expect a reinforcement from the State of Ohio, and we are informed that small parties are arriving almost every day. So soon as they all arrive, they intend to call upon the Governor to reinstate them upon their lands in Jackson, and then, if molested, they are determined to protect themselves, sword in hand. We are told they will be able to muster 700 strong.

A gentleman from Jackson informs us that the citizens of that county are no less engaged in making preparation for their reception. On Monday last they held a meeting, for the purpose of electing officers, and Samuel C. Owens, a gentleman known to many citizens of the state, was unanimously elected commander-in-chief of all their forces. Our informant states that they have received a letter from the Governor, advising them to effect a compromise, if possible by purchasing the land of the Mormons, and paying them for injuries which they have sustained. For this purpose ten persons were appointed, invested with full power to settle the whole matter, and will meet the Mormons in this place, on Monday next, for that purpose. Should the Mormons refuse to accede to an honorable and fair adjustment of these difficulties, the Governor will not restore any to that county, but such as hold lands. The following gentlemen compose the above named Committee: Thomas Stayton, sen., Samuel Erwin, Smallwood V. Noland, Smallwood Noland, Robert Rickman, James Campbell, Richard Fristoe, Thomas Jeffries, and John Davis.

We have our fears as to the final issue of this matter, but hope for the best.
-- Enquirer.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                          Philadelphia, Pa., August 23, 1834.                          Whole No. ?


Gen. Joe Smith, the Mormon Chief, with his followers, have returned to their old quarters, Geauga co, Ohio. After having dragged his men nearly 800 miles, he now declares, it is said, the only cause of his marching his army to the Missouri, was for the purpose of carrying supplies and money to his brethren in that state.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                          Philadelphia, Sat., January 24, 1835.                          Whole 704.


The Mormonites have petitioned the legislature of Missouri, for the passage of an act to restore to them their property, lands, rights, immunities, &c.

Notes: (forthcoming)


For the Country.

Vol. III.                          Philadelphia, Friday, June 26, 1835.                          No. 911.

From the N. Y. Cour. & Enq.


A Western paper has a curious account of a new adventure with the Mormons. Jo Smith, the High Priest and Prophet of these fanatic vagabonds, was not long since upon his proselyting expedition in Ohio, and to give more solemnity and eclat to his administration of his baptism, he gave notice that an Angel would appear on the opposite side of the river in which the ceremony was performed, as often as the rite should be repeated. Accordingly, whenever the baptism took place, a figure in white sure enough appeared upon the bank of the Grand River, and continued there as long as the ceremony lasted. Some of the unbelievers, however, secreted themselves near the spot, and the next time it showed itself, his Ghostship, after several unghostlike attempts to escape, and after a ducking in the river to which it was driven, was taken bodily possession of, when it was found upon examination to be nothing more nor less than the Prophet himself.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                          Philadelphia, Sat., July 4, 1835.                          Whole 727.

From the New York Courier and Enquirer.

A western paper has a curious account of a new adventure with the Mormons. Jo Smith, the High Priest and Prophet of these fanatic vagabonds, was not long since upon his proselyting expedition in Ohio, and to give more solemnity and eclat to his administration of his baptism, he gave notice that an angel would appear on the opposite side of the river in which the ceremony was performed, as often as the rite should be repeated. Accordingly, whenever the baptism took place, a figure in white sure enough appeared upon the bank of the Grand River, and continued there as long as the ceremony lasted. Some of the unbelievers, however, secreted themselves near the spot, and the next time it showed itself, his Ghostship, after several unghostlike attempts to escape, and after a ducking in the river to which it was driven, was taken bodily possession of, when it was found upon examining to be nothing more or less than the Prophet himself.

Note: Major M. M. Noah copied the above article into a late July issue of his New York Courier and Enquirer, from which it was reprinted in numerous papers. The original report of the "angel" story appeared in the Utica Evangelical Magazine and Gospel Advocate of  June 6, 1835.


Vol. XIV.                          Philadelphia, Sat., August 8, 1835.                          Whole 732.


The papers of the West complain that Mormonism spreads in the valley of the Mississippi. Very true it does. Leave it alone -- do not persecute it and it will soon expire. Oppose it and you lend it hand of culture.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XIV.                          Philadelphia, Sat., August 22, 1835.                          Whole 734.


The Mormonites are lecturing in Julian Hall, Boston, and at their last assemblage mustered about two hundred hearers of both sexes. They style themselves the "latter day saints."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Democratic  Herald
and Champion of the People.

Vol. ?                             Philadelphia, Wednesday, August 26, 1835.                             No. ?

Mormonism in New England.

From the Greenfield Gazette and Herald.

St. Johnsbury, Vt. July 20, 1835.         
I left the White Mountains on the 17th, for Montreal, via Stanhead, L. C. Before arriving at this place, (St. Johnsbury,) we passed through the towns of Bethlehem and Littleton. The first mentioned is eleven miles distant from Dennison's Hotel, and is a small uninteresting town. Littleton is a pleasant and flourishing village, located on the east bank of the Connecticut, five miles from Bethlehem. Tourists to the White Mountains usually pass through this place. Leaving Littleton, we crossed the Connecticut to Waterford, a small agricultural town, five miles from Littleton. From there we came to this place, where we have stopped a short time, for the purpose of attending a Mormon meeting now being held here. The Mormon Society here is probably more numerous than in any other village in New England; between thirty and forty persons are included in the church. -- An old barn, standing by the road side, has been fitted up as a temporary place of assemblage, and on entering it we found quite a numerous audience collected, the majority of which were females. On the scaffold of the barn were seated the twelve Mormon Apostles, so-called by believers from Ohio. They looked fresh from the back woods. A brother of Joe Smith, the chief prophet, composed one of the number. We had been seated but a short time before the service commenced. After singing two or three hymns, one of the apostles arose and, commenced murdering the king's English, in an address on the abuse of gifts. He said that God in his mercy has vouchsafed "to the church of the latter-day saints" i. e. the Mormons, "certain peculiar gifts" and among these were "the gift of tongues" and "the gift of healing." It was concerning the abuse of these two gifts especially, that he wished to address the audience at the present time; inasmuch as that through the abuse of them by the saints, great harm had resulted to the church. For instance, "if a saint had the gift of tongues come upon him, he would at once speak out, without regarding the time or place; sometimes half a dozen saints would be moved by the gift at one time, and all would speak out together. This, said the apostle, is wrong; it creates confusion, and affords the ungodly an opportunity to taunt the church with speaking unmeaning gibberish.' No saint, he continued, however strongly moved by the gift of tongues, should speak out unless the occasion warranted it, and not even then, if an interpreter were not present." After having lectured the church sufficiently on the abuse of the gift of tongues, the apostle proceeded to speak concerning the gift of healing, which, he said, had been abused by the church to as great an extent as the first mentioned gift, even some of the apostles were deserving of reprehension for their abuse of this gift. They had attempted to exercise it on "adulterous people" -- on persons devoid of faith, and therefore had failed -- thus bringing disgrace upon themselves, and subjecting the whole church to the derision of the unrighteous. The saints, he continued, should be cautious how they exercised this gift; if they were applied to by any one, they should first inquire if he were full of faith, and firmly believed the latter-day saints competent to do all which they professed. If he were a believer, it was proper to attempt a cure; but if he were an unbeliever, the saints should never attempt to heal him, as a want of faith on the part of the applicant unfitted him for the reception of the gift. In conclusion, the apostle observed, that he hoped the saints would take heed how they abused the two gifts concerning which he had spoken. In travelling through Ohio and Missouri, he had found the abuse of these two gifts prevalent to a degree which threatened the prosperity of the church, and it was necessary that the saints should be warned of their danger. The apostle occupied about half an hour in the delivery of his homily. At times we thought that he was about being moved by the gift of tongues, as his discourse, from the looseness of its construction, bordered so closely on "unmeaning gibberish" that we were much puzzled to comprehend the meaning. The above, however, is the substance of it.

After this apostle had taken his seat, a second arose, who spoke more intelligibly. For the benefit of those of the audience who were unacquainted with the Mormon faith, he entered into an exposition of it, and then attempted to defend the system. Without going into detail, we give below a brief outline of his remarks. He said , the latter-day saints believed the bible to be a divine revelation, and that so far as its precepts extended, it was sufficient and worthy of all observance. But the old revelations were not suited to the present condition of mankind. The state of society had altered -- manners and customs had changed -- mankind had become more enlightened, and had new wants. To meet the wants engendered by a more civilized state of society, said the speaker, fresh revelations were needed, and these in mercy to man had been graciously supplied. In doing this, continued the speaker, the ALMIGHTY had but granted us the same which he had bestowed on mankind in former ages. Every successive generation, said he, from the creation of the world to the time of CHRIST, has had its prophet, its revealer, to make revelations suited to the condition of mankind at those periods. He would urge this fact as an argument against those who said that the old revelations were sufficient, and that it was contrary to the design of PROVIDENCE to give new revelations for the instruction of the people. The speaker then proceeded to read from the Book of Mormon various passages, the purport of all which was, that the ALMIGHTY had set apart a tract of country in the "western bounds of Missouri" for the inheritance of the latter-day saints; that it was to be called "The New Jerusalem;" that although it belonged to the saints by right, yet they were to obtain the lands from the unbelievers by purchase, in order that they might rest in quiet. Here, said he, the latter-day saints are to be gathered from all quarters, and thej are commanded to dispose of their flocks and herds, purchase land, and take up their abode in the New Jerusalem. These revelations, said the speaker, were made in the year 1831, and I am witness that they were made.

It is evidently the intention of the twelve Mormon apostles to prevail upon the members of the church in this place to dispose of their property, and proceed with them to the west, and from the profound respect with which their nonsense was listened to, I have no doubt but that they will prevail upon many of the believers to pursue this course. We were both amused and disgusted in listening to their absurdities. -- It was really humiliating to observe the fallibility of human reason displayed in the almost crouching reverence with which their discourse was received by the believing portion of the audience. We had not thought it possible to find in one small town in New England, the boasted land of intelligence, so large a number of persons who could be led astray by doctrines which at the first glance appear so very absurd and ridiculous; but it has been truly remarked that no system of religious faith, however absurd or ridiculous, can be devised, which will not find some staunch believers and supporters among men. Among the audience we noticed several aged men. One of them told us that he had come 150 miles from Maine for the purpose of attending this meeting.

Note: See also the Pennsylvanian of Feb. 19, 1836.


Vol. XIV.                          Philadelphia, Sat., September 12, 1835.                          Whole 737.


The age of false prophets appears to be revived, if we may form an opinion from the number of "Lo heres and Lo theres," which are scattered over our country. The Mormonites are flourishing in a number of places, and the pretensions of the impostor Matthias, as preposterous and wicked as they are, are not exceeded by those of a fellow named Cochran, who is now flourishing in the east. The Springfield Republican says he pretends the power of working miracles. In that town he made some proselytes and founded a small sect of religionists; but his name and character were soon ascertained, and he made off to Stratham, N. H. taking with him some of his deluded followers, a number of whom were young females. It is said he has since more than once visited South Hadley in disguise. In 1819, this arch villain was tried in Maine, on three indictments for adultery, and sentenced to the Massachusetts State Prison for three years. He deserves a residence there during his natural life.

Note: For another contemporary article linking the religious careers of Cochran, Matthias and the Mormon leader, Joseph Smith, see the Nov. 1, 1834 issue of the St. Louis Western Messenger. A short account of Cochran's 1819 escape from justice in New Hampshire, which preceeded his trial in Maine, may be found in the July, 1819 issue of the Portsmouth Christian Herald.


For the Country.

Vol. IV.                          Philadelphia, Wednesday, February 19, 1836.                          No. 1112.

Mormonism in New England. -- The Mormons have congregated in some force congregated in some force at a place called St. Johnsburg [sic - Johnsbury], in Vermont. Their house of worship is an old barn, which they have fitted up. The elect from the land of faith and promise in the West have despatched twelve apostles to the East for the purpose of making proselytes. An eastern paper furnishes and account of their mode of worship and the articles of their faith. A brother of Joe Smith, the chief prophet of the western tribe of Mormon saints, is the principle apostle now on a pilgrimage of faith to the East. He claims, as do his brethren, the gift of tongues, and the gift of healing -- and he recommends, very justly, that these gifts be not abused. The saints to whom they have vouchsafed, have trifled with both these gifts. Their gift of tongues has induced them to talk a great deal of nonsense, and their gift of healing has failed in its efficacy, probably because those on whom it was exercised, were deficient in faith. By the book of Mormon it appears, that a large tract of country has been set by Providence, with proper metes and bounds, for the abiding place of the latter day saints, to which, although they have a right, yet they consider it prudent to obtain an earthly title by purchase. The object of the Mormon apostles is to induce certain ignorant fanatics in the East to dispose of their property, and proceed to the West. There is every reason to believe, says an eastern paper, that they will succeed in making proselytes in Vermont. -- New York Times.

Note: According to the RLDS History of the Church, (Vol. 1, pp. 569-570): "The Twelve met in conference, agreeably to previous appointment, at Saint Johnsbury, Vermont... Six of the council adressed the conference on principles of faith and action." The "brother of Joe Smith" mentioned in the text was William Smith. See the Democratic Herald of Aug. 26, 1835 for a much lengthier, personal correspondence version of this same news report.


Vol. XV.                          Philadelphia, Sat., May 21, 1836.                          Whole 773.


THE MORMONS. -- A gentleman living in Loraine county, Ohio, writes that a more extraordinary sect has not sprung up since the days of Mohamet.In the town of Kirtland they have erected a stone temple at an expense of $10,000. It is 60 by 80 feet broad, and 50 feet high. It has two rows of Gothic windows. -- The first floor is the place of worship, with four rows of pulpits at each end, having three pulpits in a row. These twelve pulpits rise behind and above one another, and are designed, the uppermost row for the bishop and his counsellors, the second for the priest and his counsellors, the third for the teachers, and the fourth or lowest for the deacons. Over the division between each of the rows of pulpits, is a painted canvass, rolled up to the ceiling; and to be let down at pleasure, so as to conceal the dignitaries from the audience. The area can be divided into four apartments at pleasure, so as to carry on the objects of imposture. The second and attic stories are for a theological and literary seminary, which is expected to have the manual labor system attached to it. The Mormons are very eager to acquire an education. Men, women and children are studying Hebrew. Some of the men in the middle age pursue their Hebrew till 12 o'clock at night, and attend nothing else. They pretend to have remarkable revelations, work miracles, heal the sick, &c. &c.

Note: Probably this report was copied from the May 7th issue of the Public Ledger. See also thr May 20, 1836 issue of the Washington, D. C. National Intelligencer.


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Monday, June 27, 1836.                             No. ?


ANOTHER WAR BREWING. -- The Far West, published at Independence, Missouri, says information has been received from Kirtland, Ohio, through various channels, of another movement among the Mormons to obtain possession of the "promised land" and to establish Zion in Jackson County, the scene of their former disasterous defeat. They are said to be arming to the number of 1500 to 2000, and to be making their way, in detached parties, to the "debatable ground." The Far West also states that the people of Jackson and their friends in the surrounding counties are taking effective measures for resistance, and will teach Joe Smith, the 'modern hero of revelation and rags, that the world is not rolling backward either in knowledge or chivalry.' -- Louisville Advertiser.

Notes: (forthcoming)


For the Country.

Vol. V.                              Philadelphia, Friday, July 29, 1836.                              No. 1249.

SALT RIVER, July 7.         
THE MORMONS. -- Scarcely a day passes that we do not see our roads strewed with these deluded people, marching like Pilgrims to their promised rest, under the influence of their leader, Joe Smith, who we learn promises to be with them this fall. The real object of their concentrating their force in the neighborhood of Jackson county, cannot be learned from them, so well are they instructed, -- But few of the families seem to have much property to retard their march onward, unless women and children may be styled property; each wagon seems to be well filled with these latter articles.

Some of those people pretend, that at or before next fall, the citizens of Jackson county will be glad to sell out their lands and go off; others of them, we are told, say that they will he permitted to occupy Jackson county by the special interposition of Providence, and that those who now oppose them strongest will be converted to the religion of Joe Smith, -- Journal.

Notes: (forthcoming)


THE  [ ~ ]  MIRROR.

Vol. ?                                          Philadelphia, August ?, 1836.                                           No. ?


A very very interesting article has lately come from the pen of a correspondent of Col. Stone; by which it appears that the origin of Mormonism was from an indivdual named Solomon Spalding, who wrote what is called the Mormon Bible. Spalding was a native of Ashford, (Conn.) and was early distinguished above his school fellows. He received a liberal education, was educated for the ministry, ordained and preached for three years, but for some cause unknown, abandoned the ministry, and finally settled at Cherry Valley, N. York. Failing in trade, he removed to Conneaut, Ohio, built a forge, again failed, was reduced to great poverty, and finally endeavored to turn his education to account, by writing a historical novel, which is the "Manuscript Found," and upon which Mormonism has built its established faith in a new revelation.

The history of the marvellous work commenced with one Lehi, who lived in the reign of Zedekiah, King of Judea, six hundred years before the Christian era. Lehi, being warned by God of the dreadful calamities that were impending over Jerusalem, abandoned his possessions and fled with his family to the wilderness; after wandering about the desert for a considerable time, they arrived upon the border of the Red Sea and embarked on board a vessel. In this they floated about a long time on the ocean, but at last reached America and landed upon the shores of Darien. From the different branches of this family were made to spring the various aboriginal nations of this continent. From time to time they rose to high degrees of civilization; but desolating [wars] arose in turn, by which nations were over-thrown and reduced again to barbarism. In this way the condition of the Indians, at the time of Columbus's discovery, was accounted for; and the ancient mounds, fortifications, temples, and other vestiges of former civilization, found in North and South America, were explained. The government[s] of these nations were represented to be theocratic, like that of the Jews from whom they descended, and their national transactions were consequently regulated by their prophets -- priests, who received their recommands directly from the deity. In order, therefore, that the style of the romance might be suited to the subject, and to the popular notions of the people, the author of The Manuscript Found, adopted that of the Bible -- the old English style of James the First.

When Spalding got this work was ready for the press, his pecuniary matters would not allow him to publish it. -- After his death it fell into the hands of one Sidney Rigdon, who was the first preacher of the Mormon faith. It is believed that Rigdon made Joseph Smith, the present high priest of Mormonism, acquainted with these manuscripts, and he published it in 1830, containing [600] pages, appending thereto the testimony of four witnesses to prove it was of divine origin. It was pretended that Smith had a revelation from the heavens, which told him where the golden plates were deposited, and that he went to the spot and made the great discovery. Certain individuals had been prepared for this great humbug by the marvellous stories of Smith, and the unaccountable fact that an ignoramus like him, who could neither read nor write, should have produced so connected a work as the pretended Mormon Bible -- Thus commenced this great and astonishing humbug.

Note: This article is a paraphrase of the Spalding claims piece published in July by the New York Commercial Advertiser. For a reprint of this 1836 "History of Mormonism" article, see the Aug. 17, 1836 issue of the Pennsylvania Wyoming Republican, and other papers. The information set forth by the "correspondent of Col. Stone" generally follows the 1833 testimony of Solomon's brother, John Spalding. However, the mention of "Sidney Rigdon, who was the first preacher of the Mormon faith" adds information beyond that supplied by John Spalding. The "correspondent" probably consulted various pages of E. D. Howe's 1834 book, in order to derive information for his article.



Vol. ?                             Philadelphia,  Thursday, August 4, 1836.                             No. ?


It appears to us that no civilized portion of the globe is given to quackery and humbug as the United States. We allude as well to quackery in religion as in medicine... We have quacks in religion. It seems to us that no matter how absurd the theory -- no matter how profligate or ignorant those with whom the design originates, if it is persisted in and adhered to, with any degree of pertinacity, it is sure to obtain believers, and its apostles, followers. Witness the Mormon imposture. A more fallacious absurdity was never started -- more illiterate or worthless leaders never took upon themselves the character of prophets. And yet strange as it may seem, Mormonism is on the increase. The following account of the origin of this imposture, which we copy from a late number of the Commercial Advertiser, possesses interest, and is calculated to impart instruction. -- Bicknell's Reporter


(see original article in N.Y. newspaper)

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. III. - No. 24.]                          Philadelphia, Saturday, April 22, 1837.                        [price 1 ˘

Libels. -- A prosecution for libel was assigned for trial in the Mayor's Court of this city, on the 20th instant, in which the State of Pennsylvania, on complaint of Lawrence Greatrake, of Pittsburg, was prosecutor, and Thomas Morrison, of this city was respondent. The alleged libel was published by Alexander Campbell, in the "Millenial Harbinger" for February, 1836," which was sold by the respondent as Campbell's agent. The complainant, Greatrake, not finding the principal in Philadelphia, complained of the agent in December last. The complainant having waved all technical objections, by inviting the respondent to prove his charges of drunkenness, renunciation of Jesus Christ as an impostor, and profession of Atheism, the case was in order for trial. The respondent tendered, by his counsel, the following acknowledgment, which being accepted, he was released.

MAYOR'S COURT. -- Dec. 1836. No. 51.
                         PHILADELPHIA, April 20, 1837.
Commonwealth vs. Thomas Morrison. -- I hereby state that I have not any evidence to prove the truth of the matter alledged to be libellous in the "Millenial Harbinger," for February, 1836, nor is any such evidence in my power; and it is not my intention in case the indictment be tried, to undertake to prove the truth of the matter charged to be libellous in the indictment, as I do not participate in the support of these charges, Mr. Greatrake having been entirely unknown to me until the present prosecution; that I have not been the agent for the sale of said "Millenial Harbinger," for said month, having been appointed agent since the same was printed and distributed; and that I had no malicious motive in selling the number referred to, to John Morton, who applied for the same to me under the direction of L. Greatrake, the prosecutor; and having none for sale, he was supplied with one at his urgent request from my own set or file; and that I have not, to my knowledge, sold any other of the said "Millenial Harbinger" for said month to any other person.   THOMAS MORRISON.
Witnesses -- James M. Broome, Jes. S. Brewster, Defendant's Counsel.

Note 1: This is one of the last public notices of Elder Lawrence Greatrake, Sidney Rigdon's successfor in the pastorate of the First Baptist Church at Pittsburgh. It is interesting to see that he was still claiming Pittsburgh as his residence this late in his itinerant career. The following year he was in Murfreesborough, Tennessee, where he published a religious tract on "the Commission in Mark 16, 15." He is believed to have passed away shortly thereafter,

Note 2: The Campbellite "libel" that so upset Elder Greatrake, was comprised in these words: "...after offering much incense at the shrine ot Bacchus, this militant preacher of the popular doctrine has openly renounced Jesus Christ as an impostor; and, as recently and credibly reported here, has put on the profession of Atheism." -- While Greatrake did now and then attempt to defend the right of a Christian to take a nip of "the hard stuff," it is doubtful that he would have professed atheism, even in his most inebriated rantings. Probably Campbell confused Greatrake's opposition to evangelical missionary work as an opposition to the Gospel itself. Greatrake believed that "the elect" were already chosen to be saved, and that preaching to the infidels was a waste of time.


Vol. VII.                              Philadelphia, Saturday, June 17, 1837.                             No. 325.

PROPHET IN THE LIMBO. -- That scandalous impostor, Joe Smith, the discoverer and illustrater of the Mormon Bible, has got into prison, where he ought to have been years ago. The difficulty originated in this way: A member of Joe's church had got so far advanced in the mystery of humbug, that he had the audacity to doubt the divinity of the prophet; whereupon the prophet became highly incensed, and, to display his power, he connived with a couple of rascals, like himself, to shoot the doubter, as "dead men tell no tales." But the refractory member wouldn't stay shot, and kicked up a mighty row about pistols, gunpowder, duck shot and bullets not being the proper weapons for a prophet to reveal unto his followers. The instigated followers, finding that their windpipes stood a good chance ef tightening, gave up Joe, the prophet, as at the bottom of the diabolical shooting scheme; and thereupon the said Joe was regularly served up, and is now holding forth in the stone jug of Geauga county, Ohio, with a little more than common prospect that he will feel the rope "tightening round the wisend" for the villainous impositions and rascalities of which he has been guilty. What a pickle for a Prophet of the Golden Bible!

Note: If Smith was ever imprisoned for instigating the attempted assassination of Grandison Newell, then that confinement could not have lasted for very long. He was evidently free from all police restraint when his trial was conducted in June of 1837. The report is mistaken, where it gives the impression that Newell himself was once a Mormon.


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Friday, July 14, 1837.                             No. ?


MATTHIAS THE PROPHET. -- Recently passed through Tuscarawas County, Ohio. He claimed he had a vision telling him to regulate the Mormonites at Kirtland, Ohio and to spread his doctrines through the West.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XVII.                             Philadelphia,  Thursday, July 20, 1837.                             No. 16.


MONEY OF THE MORMONS. -- The Painesville (Ohio) Telegraph states that the "Mormon Banking Company," are about putting forth a new emission of the Kirtland concern, "using old paper, signed by [Dr.] Williams and one Parish, and by the redemption of a few dollars of which they expect to get the old emission as well as the new again in circulation."

Note: See also the Cleveland Herald of July 8, 1837.


Vol. VII.                             Philadelphia, Saturday, July 22, 1837.                             No. 330.

The Home of Mormonism.

Those crazy fanatics have their grand tabernacle at a place they call Kirtland, 5 miles from the shore of Lake Erie, and 20 miles from Cleveland, and count no less than 4000 persons under their leader Joe Smith. They have been lately joined by a shrewd literary person named Sydney Rigdon, formerly a preacher of the doctrine of Campbell. He is the Grand Vizier, to Smith; and under their decision a banking house has been established, of which, Smith is president and Rigdon cashier. The issues have been about $150,000. The Bank failed They have several mills on their property. The houses are small including the Prophet Joe's. The temple is a beautiful building of rough stone, three stories high, and 70 to 75 feet square. Each of the two principal apartments holds 1200 persons. The joists of the interior are supported by six fluted columns. Each apartment contains six pulpits, arranged gradatim, 3 at each end of the "Aaronic Priesthood" and 3 at the other end of the "priesthood of Melchisidec." The slips are so constructed, that the audience can face either pulpit, as may be required.

In the highest seat of the "Aaronic priesthood" sits the reverend father of the prophet; the next below is occupied by 'Joe,' and his prime minister Rigdon. The attic story is occupied as school rooms, five in number, whore the various branches of English, Latin, Greek and Hebrew languages, are taught to a large number of students. -- The actual cost of the temple is not known, but it is estimated to have cost not less than $60,000.

Smith, from the account of a late visit in the Miami of the Lake newspaper, is represented as a placid looking knave, with passionless features, and perfectly composed in the midst of the heterogeneous multitude who have become the victimized dupes of his imposture. Rigdon is described as the reverse, with a full face of fire, a tenor voice and of eloquent speech. The subject of his sermon was the pressure: his discourse mild and persuasive. Rigdon is the wirepuller or screen of Joe's inspirations. The followers are, many of them, upright men and tolerant towards other sects.

Note:The substance of the article quoted above originally appeared in the Perrysburg, Ohio Miami on the Lake newspaper near the end of June, 1837. It was reprinted in the Washington National Intelligencer of July 4, 1837 and in the New York City Evening Star at about the same time. See also the Essex Register of July 10, 1837.



Vol. XVII.                             Philadelphia,  Thursday, August 3, 1837.                             No. 28.


Look out for Fraud. -- The spurious notes issued west by the Mormon Gang, who have deserted their golden-leaved bible for shin plaster rags, are from Joe's own coining -- counterfeits in fact on himself, and signed with a variety of different names, because the first batch was "no go."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XVIII.                             Philadelphia,  Thursday, February 3, 1838.                             No. 29.

Trouble  Among  the  Mormons.

The Cleveland Gazette of the 25th ult. says:

"We learn from a source to be relied on, that the Mormon Society at Kirtland is breaking up. Smith and Rigdon, after prophesying the destruction of the town, left with their families in the night, and others of the faithful are following. The 'Reformers' are in possession of the Temple, and have excluded the Smith and Rigdon party. An exposure of the proceedings of the Society is in course of preparation by one Parish, the former confidential secretary of the prophet Smith. He has the records, &c. in his possession."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Wednesday, Feb. 7, 1838.                             No. ?


MORMON SCHISM. -- The Mormon society in Kirtland, Ohio is breaking up! Smith and Rigdon left after prophesying about the fate of the town... the Reformers are in possession of the temple... fate of the group’s records...

Note: Incomplete clipping -- fragmentary text.



Vol. XVIII.                           Philadelphia,  Wednesday, February 21, 1838.                          No. 44.


The Mormons. -- The Sicoto Gazette states that the Mormons have dissolved their body, which had collected at Kirtland, in the state of Ohio, under Joe Smith and Sidney Rigdon. These leaders recently decamped, with their families, in the night.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                              Philadelphia, Tuesday, June 5, 1838.                             No. ?


MORMON LYNCHING. -- Benjamin Sweat who has been preaching Mormon doctrine in the vicinity of the [Seneca] reservation, Erie County last winter was taken from the house of Mr. Harris in the south part of Alden and he was tarred and feathered by about 15 disguised perpetrators

Notes: (forthcoming)


THE  [ ~ ]  FOCUS.

Vol. ?                                   Philadelphia, August ?, 1838.                                   No. ?


A few days since I witnessed the emigration of 95 families consisting of near 600 souls, gathered from different parts, going to the extreme west of Missouri. They call themselves "Latter Day Saints," commonly called Mormons. This latter name they do not acknowledge, but say it is only a "nick name." The[y] travel in wagons, and make about 18 miles a day, and expect to be 12 weeks upon their journey; they encamp at night and pitch their tents in the form of a hollow square, in which they perform their cooking and other necessary duties, their wagons and horses being ranged on the outside; they also place sentinels at different posts around the camp, as in military encampments.

I made some enquiries of one of their numbers respecting their leader, whether he was an educated man, a man of superior talents. He said that he was of like passions with ourselves, and out of his place no more than any other ordinary man. I asked if he pretended to more sanctity than others of their denomination; he replied no, not so much. And yet he believed that the mantle had fallen on Joe, and that he was gifted with the spirit of prophecy, and could reveal things hidden in the womb of futurity. He informed us that two of their prophets had visited England about a year since, and that they have about 2000 converts there now. If they go on in this way, I think Joe bids fair to rival Mahomat.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., August 4, 1838.                          Whole 888.


Five hundred Mormons with their wagons filled with furnature have left Geauga county Ohio, for Mississippi [sic - Missouri?].

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXII.                      Philadelphia, Thurs, Aug. 16, 1838.                     No. 6,420.



{PUBLIC -- No. 56}

An Act to establish vertain post routes and to discontinue others.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the following be established as post roads:...


From Bailey's landing, on the Mississippi, in Lincoln county, by Troy, Thomas Glover's, Duston's, and Anderson's to Danville.

From Columbia to Mexico.

From Carrolltown to Far West...

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                           Philadelphia,  Friday, August 31, 1838.                          No. 52.

The Mormons.

The St. Louis Missouri Gazette of the 17th contains the following, under date of Buffalo City, Missouri, August 11th:

"A disturbance has broken out in Caldwell county, between the Mormons and other citizens. I have not heard what was the commencement, but it is stated here that Smith is going round with a company of from 100 to 150 armed men, headed by Lyman White [sic], for the purpose of getting those persons who do not belong to their Church to sign a paper primising not to molest them. I am told that they compel those to sign who are not willing. A deputation has left Richmond to request Smith and White to surrender to the civil authority. If they do not do so, it is the intention of the Militia of this county to go and bring them in. So say persons that attended at Richmond. -- More of it by the next mail.   L. B. F."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                           Philadelphia,  Wednesday, September 12, 1838.                          No. 62.

From the Missouri River.

The St. Louis Bulletin of the 30th ult. says: --

... It was reported at Richmond Landing that Joe Smith, the Mormon, had surrendered himself to the civil authorities of the State...

Note 1: "Richmond Landing" was a docking site on the north shore of the Missouri River, a little upstream from Lexington, on the southern edge of Ray County. The actual village of Richmond was located a few miles to the north. On July 23, 1838 William Swartzell got off a steamboat at the landing. In his 1840 book, Mormonism Exposed, he wrote: "24th May 1838. Stayed at Richmond Landing this evening. This is the place where the Mormons land their goods for transportation across the country. I saw here Joseph Smith's box of mummys -- Forty miles to the City of Far West."

Note 2: At this time Smith and Rigdon briefly came to an understanding with the local authorities, via their attorneys -- this accomodation did not last for very long, and the 1838 "Mormon War" soon began in earnest.


Vol. XXIII.                      Philadelphia, Thurs., Sep. 13, 1838.                     No. 7,444.

The Mormons.

We learn from the Columbia (Boone county) Patriot, that a gentleman of that town has received a letter from Livingston county, stating that some cutting [sic] Daviess county, on the day of election, and, that some companies had been raised in Livingston with a view of going over and assisting in drubbing the Mormons; but that, before they got quite ready to march, they learned the strength of the Mormons, which suggested to their produce and the propriety of remaining at home till they could be assured that reinforcements would join them from other counties, sufficiently great to cope with the combined force of the Mormons.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Poulson's American [ - ] Daily Advertiser.
Vol. ?                          Philadelphia, Pa., Sept. 13, 1838.                          Whole No. ?


Eaton, Ohio, September 6.    
MORMONS. -- About 500 of these deluded people passed through our town on Thursday evening last, on their way to Missouri. They had a number of moving wagons, that appeared to be well stored with live stock (children) if nothing else. They also drove a great number of fine looking milch cows. We see it stated, and have no doubt of its truth, that at the late election in Missouri, Caldwell County that is filled with Mormons, gave the Van Buren candidates for Congress a unanimous vote. Just before the election, Joe Smith, their great leader told them it had been revealed to him from Heaven that they must go the "whole hog" for the V. B. Ticket. -- Register.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII.                      Philadelphia, Sat., Sep. 22, 1838.                     No. 7,451.

The Mormons.

Notices have appeared from time to time in the newspapers, which indicate that Missouri is likely to become the theatre of violence produced by the sect of fanatics denominated Mormons, under the command of their leader and supposed prophet, Jo Smith. In Daviess and Ray counties these people have assembled to the number of five hundred, fully armed and equipped, who set all law at defiance, and threaten with punishment all who may dare to oppose them in their course. The house of a Mr. Black has been surrounded by a party, consisting of about 120 ruffians, who required of him to sign an instrument of writing, of the contents to which he was not aware, under pain of death in case of refusal. So confident are these outlaws of their strength, that they openly declare that they owe no allegiance to the laws, which, as they assert, have failed to protect them, and that it will require, in the words of Wight, one of their number, "the whole State of Missouri to take him." It is only surprising that the constituted authorities of Missouri should suffer the peace of the community to be interrupted with impunity by men of this abandoned character. From the time of the institution of this sect, which is described as being composed, for the most part, of low bred persons, their conduct has been marked with insubordination and violence, and it is not wonderful that the quiet citizens of Missouri should feel a disinclination to have such unruly spirits among them. The whole force which the Mormons can muster, of men thoroughly armed, is said to be from 1000 to 1500, a number that under the command of their leader, whose will is regarded as supreme, will require no small effort to put them down. The report that Jo Smith has agreed to submit himself for trial wants confirmation. --Balt. American.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                            Philadelphia, Thursday, Sept. 27, 1838.                           No. ?


Eaton, Ohio, September 6.    
MORMONS. -- About 500 of these deluded people passed through our town on Thursday evening last, on their way to Missouri. They had a number of moving wagons that appeared to be well stored with live stock (children) if nothing else. They also drove a great number of fine looking Milch Cows. We see it stated, and have no doubt of its truth, that at the late election in Missouri, Caldwell County that is filled with Mormons, gave the Van Buren candidates for Congress a unanimous vote. Just before the election, Joe Smith, their great leader told them it had been revealed to him from Heaven that they must go to the "whole hog" for the V. B. ticket. -- Register.

Notes: (forthcoming)


For the Country.

Vol. ?                          Philadelphia, Thursday, September 27, 1838.                          No. ?

MORMONISM IN BROOKLYN. -- A few deluded followers of Joe Smith have at length dared to hold forth in our city, and at a private house in Main street are nightly dealing out damnation m large doses to those of its peaceful inhabitants who will not give heed to the revelations of Nephi Mormon and the testimony of Smith, Rigdell [sic] & Co. and we are the more surprised to learn that some few of our citizens have already become enamored with this abominable delusion. -- L. I. Star.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., September 29, 1838.                          Whole 806.

Extracts of a letter to the Editor, dated, Buffalo City, Mo. Sept. 4, 1838.

"Our country is much more unhealthy this season than usual, the excessive heat of the dog days has produced fluxes that have in many cases proved fatal, particularly among the children. Our crops, this season, are better, perhaps, than ever grew before in Missouri.

"Upper Missouri is in complete commotion at present. We are just on the eve of another Mormon War. It appears that on the 6th of August, (our General Election day) a difficulty took place at the Polls, in Davis county, (west [sic - north?] of Caldwell, the Mormon Co.) between some of the old settlers and some of the Mormons; a general fight ensued, and quite a number of persons on each side were seriously injured, and I believe one of the old settlers mortally wounded. The news went to Far West (the Mormon City.) A Mormon Company headed by their Colonel "Lyman Wite" ws raised immediately to the assistance of their brethren, but when they got on the ground the riot was ended. Wight or Wite, and a certain M. D. among them. then drew up an instrument of writing, binding the signers to assist in keeping the peace, and particularly stating that they (the signers) should never molest the Mormons in any way whatever. The paper was presented to Esq. Black and he was compelled to sign it, he being surrounded at the same time by one hundred and fifty armed Mormons. Our Circuit Judge has issued a warrant for the apprehension of Joe Smith, Lyman Wite and the Doctor. Smith is willing to be arrested, but Wight or Wite and the Doctor say they will lose the last drop of their blood before they will be arrested; they have about six hundred followers. I know not what the issue will be, but I fear that there will be some serious difficulties, and perhaps considerable blood shed. Many of the citizens of Missouri are much prejudiced against the Mormons. To-morrow is the day appointed for driving them from [Carroll] the County east of us. The old inhabitants are going to try to drive them by the force of arms. I do not think they will succeed. I am told on good authority, that the Mormons are well prepared for their reception. We are threatened with another Indian War too. Putting all together we are in rather a difficult or unpleasant situation."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Saturday, September 29, 1838.                             No. 77.

A Mormon Victory.

A number of citizens of Missouri, not long ago, raised a considerable force for the purpose of driving the Morminites out of the State. They marched with "all the pomp and circumstance of glorious war" towards the Mormon settlement, but, happening to learn on the way that their opponents, well armed with swords, pistols, guns and blunderbusses, were prepared to give them a hot reception, they wheeled to the right about and fled like sheep in a panic.

Note: The above accountmay have been first reported by LDS Apostle Lyman Wight, in a letter to the Louisville Journal.


Vol. XXIII.                      Philadelphia, Wed., Oct. 3, 1838.                     No. 7,460.

The Mormons.

We had hoped, remarks the St. Louis Republican of the 19th ult., that this difficulty was at an end; but more recent intelligence leaves no doubt of the quarrel being of a more serious character than was at first anticipated. Below we give an extract from a letter written by a respectable gentleman of Lexington, and addressed to a citizen of this city. This account of the state of affairs is truly alarming. -- The writer says: "Great excitement prevails the other side of the river against the Mormons -- they are all up in arms and have, we understand this morning, had some fighting, which resulted in the killing of a few of both parties. The citizens of Ray county sent a wagon load of arms and ammunition, to the citizens of Daviess for the purpose of defending themselves. On their way out they were captured by a company of Mormons, and taken to Far West. A committee has this morning arrived from the other side asking for men to assist them in the protection of their property." We learn from the clerk of the steam boat Howard, which came down yesterday, that a report was circulating along the Missouri river that the Mormons had fortified their town (Far West) and were determined to hold out. They were stated to be about one thousand strong and well supplied with arms and ammunition. The following statements from the Boonville Emigrant of the 13th are confirmatory of this report:


We have just conversed with General Wilson, of Howard county, who states that on last Saturday he saw a letter dated on the 7th instant. from a committee of gentlemen in Daviess county, calling on them to raise a force and come to their assistance, and aid them in expelling the Mormons from the county: -- That the citizens of Daviess had removed their families, and were making preparations for warlike operation; that the Mormons were in a state of open rebellion against the laws, and war between them and the citizens was inevitable; that the people of Daviess had come to the fixed determination of commencing the attack on Saturday last.

From the best information we can obtain, the Mormons are from 1500 to 2000 fighting men; and it is stated upon good authority, that a large emigrating party of Mormons are now on their way from Canada to join their friends in Missouri, which will increase their force, so as to make them very formidable: if this war should break out, it must become a war of extermination, as the Mormons are desperate, and rendered more so by the fanatical spirit infused into them by that arch-deceiver, Jo Smith, under whose banner they act, and by whose malign influence they are misguided, and ready for any act of desperation. Their disorderly conduct for months past, has so exasperated the people that they can no longer tolerate or permit them to remain among them..

P. S. Since writing the above, we have understood that a gentleman from Ray county has just arrived at Boonville, who brings information, that the inhabitants of Daviess county have postponed warlike operations against the Mormons until Monday; the probable reason for this change of day is on account of the Sabbath day coming next after the first fixed upon. They consider it better that Monday instead of Saturday, as a day more appropriate, expecting to be able to prevail against them better by having the whole week before them.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Wednesday, October 10, 1838.                             No. 86.

The Mormon Difficulties.
From the St. Louis Republican.

We have nothing later from Daviess county than the 14th. At that time the militia from Clay, Saline, Jackson and some other counties were collecting in Daviess and Carroll, but no decisive steps had been taken on either side. -- We copy below an article from the Western Star, (published at Liberty, in Clay county,) of the 14th, which shows the origin and progress of the difficulty. We have heard a number of verbal reports, but nothing that can be relied on, so we prefer waiting for more positive intelligence. The remarks of the Star are as follows:

"We desire in the statement we are about to make to give a true narrative of the causes which have produced the difficulty between the Mormons and the citizens of Daviess county, as well as to give all that has occurred respecting the movements of both parties since the first difficulty took place.

At the election in Daviess county, a citizen objected to a Mormon's voting, which brought about angry words. -- The Mormon was struck with a club, and in return used the same weapon himself, and before the affair terminated, several on both sides were engaged, and knives freely used. No person was killed, but some cut and bruised.

The excitement did not terminate with the fight. Shortly afterwards, Joe Smith, Lyman Wight, and other Mormon leaders, collected a large force in Caldwell, and went into Daviess county to protect the Mormons residing there. They went armed and equipped for war, but they say their intentions were peace; and if what we hear be true, respecting the paper which they presented to Adam Black, a justice of the peace, for his signature, a very different face has been placed upon the transaction to what B. has sworn to. The paper Smith presenetd to Black was to the effect that, inasmuch as it was anticipated that difficulties would grow out of the fight at the election, between the Mormons and the citizens of Daviess, he (Black) as a Justice of the Peace pledged himself that he would take lawful notice of any unlawful proceedings of either party -- Smith representing to Black, that if he would sign such a paper, he would show it to his own people and to others, and that it would have an effect to prevent difficulties.

We understand that the facts elicited at the trial of Smith and Wight (who gave themselves up, and were heard before the Judge of our Circuit Court last week) completely stamped the certificate of Black, Comstock, and others with falsehood. After the trial of Smith and Wight, it was believed that difficulties had ceased, but not so. The people of Daviess county had sent letters and messengers to other counties in order to raise men to drive all the Mormons out of Daviess, and many from other counties had gone to their aid. The Mormons seeing this, made preparations also. When, seeing the crisis at which things were arriving, the Judge of our Circuit, Hon. Austin A. King, directed General D. R. Atchison to raise 1000 men in his Division, and forthwith march them into Daviess, to keep the peace, and prevent bloodshed.

Two hundred men from Clay, under the command of Brig. Gen. Doniphen, Major Lightburne, and Capt's Moss, Whittington, and Price, marched out on yesterday and the day before.

We are not apprehensive that any thing serious will take place, though both parties have become much excited. Both sides are to blame, but our opinion is that the Mormons are the aggressors. Until the 4th of July, we heard of no threat being made against them, in any quarters. The people had all become reconciled to let them remain where they are, and indeed were disposed to lend them a helping hand. But one Sidney Rigdon, in order to show himself off as a great man, collected them all together in the town of Far West, on the 4th July, and there delivered a speech containing the essence of, if not treason itself. This speech was not only published in the newspapers, but handbills were struck for distribution in Caldwell and Daviess counties. We have not the speech now before us, but we recollect amongst other threats, that the author said: -- "We will not suffer any vexatious law-suits with our people, nor will we suffer any person to come into our streets and abuse them." -- Now, if this is not a manifestation of a disposition to prevent the force of law, we do not know what is. It is also true, that when the Mormons left this county, they agreed to settle in, and confine themselves to a district of country, which has since been formed into the county of Caldwell; but they have violated that agreement, and are spreading over Daviess, Clinton, Livingston and Carroll. Such a number had settled in Daviess, that the old inhabitants were apprehensive they would be governed soon, by the Revelations of the great Prophet, Joe Smith, and hence their anxiety to rid themselves of such an incubus.

So many reports are in circulation relative to battles fought, and men on both sides being killed and captured, that it is hard to get at the truth. We are certain, however, that up to yesterday, no person had been killed. Three men from Ray county were captured by the Mormons, and some 50 guns taken. The men are in confinement, (or rather, are guarded and kept,) in the town of Far West; and it is said the people of Daviess have captured one Mormon.

General Doniphan, in some remarks made to the company which went out from this county said, that the men and arms captured by the Mormons would be demanded, as also the Mormon captive in Daviess. Should the Mormons refuse to give up the men and arms, the worst consequences must follow.

We hope and believe they will not be so blinded as to refuse; but if they should, we can tell them, that "war to the knife" will be waged against them, and they will no longer be suffered to remain in the State. We rely greatly upon the standing and influence of Generals Atchison and Doniphan, as well as the other gentlemen who have gone out, to bring this matter to a peaceable termination.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., October 13, 1838.                          Whole 898.


The St. Louis Republican of the 19th ult. states that there had been a conflict with the Mormons, which resulted in the loss of some lives; the people of Ray county were in arms, and the Mormons, in number about fifteen hundred, determined on a severe fight. It is thought a superior force will be required to quell these disturbances and restore tranquility.

Note: The Inquirer of Oct. 12th carried essentially the same report from Missouri.


Vol. ?                            Philadelphia, Saturday, Oct. 13, 1838.                           No. ?


THE MORMONS. -- ...insurrection on foot in Caldwell and Davies Counties Missouri... General Atchinson with 250 men will proceed there... he has ordered out 400 more men... General Grant of Boone has 300 men, Clark of Howard has 500, Lucas of Jackson 400, Crowther of Cooper 400, General Bolton will also proceed to the insurrection scene...

MORMONS. -- ... "We hereby certify that we have learned that a Mr. Nathan Marsh has certified that the people some times called Mormons have ingratiated themselves with the Indians, for the purpose of getting the Indians to commit depredations upon the people of this state, which certificate of Marsh (as represented to us) is utterly false. We have never had any communication with the Indians on any subject; and we, and all the Mormon church, as we believe, entertain the same feelings and fears towards the Indians that are entertained by other citizens of this state, We are friendly to the constitution and laws of this state and of the United States, and wish to see them enforced. JOSEPH SMITH, jr.

Sworn to and subscribed before me this 8th day of September, A. D. 1838.
ELIAS HIGBEE. One of the justices of the county court within and for Caldwell county.

...the real reason for the excitement against the Mormons is to keep them from settling the fertile lands of Caldwell, Carroll and Davies...

Note: Incomplete clipping -- fragmentary texts.



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Wednesday, October 17, 1838.                             No. 92.

The Mormons.

A gentleman who arrived in St. Louis on the 28th ult., direct from Columbia, states that all the volunteer companies were disbanded by the Governor, and had returned to their respective homes. Peace and quietness reigned among the Mormons.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., October 20, 1838.                          Whole 899.


The difficulties which have existed between the Mormons and the citizens of some of the Western States, it appears probable will soon cease. Our opinion has always been that these deluded individuals are rather the injured party, and much of their opposition to the authorities of the neighborhood in which they resided, may be traced to the intolerant spirit of their opponents. Persecution is the worst mode of repressing error, and never fails to increase the evil it was intended to remedy. The pious people of Davies county, Miss. [sic] became, and with reason, alarmed at the settlement of the Mormons among them, and in their zeal to prevent Joe Smith from making proselytes, adopted measures having for the object the restriction of this fanatic individual, and his followers to a particular portion of the country. This was the fundamental error, and from it sprung all the subsequent tumult and violence.

Note: It is a singular fact, that the greater the distance between themselves and the "Missouri troubles," the greater was the professed sympathy of newspaper editors for the "poor, persecuted Mormons." This reaction was especially the case in large northeastern cities, where the newspapermen were used to seeing people of various backgrounds more or less cooperate together on a daily basis. Their same wellspring of sympathy may be seen in the editorial-writing of many of these eastern editors when publicizing the condition of the western Indians and the southern slaves. Reporters and editors who operated closer to the LDS "gathering" in western Missouri were generally less disposed to see the Mormons as "the injured party," although the Whig papers in St. Louis and along the Mississippi often published reports favorable to the Saints. The Philadelphia editor, in marking the creation of Caldwell county (as the agreed upon gathering place for the Mormons), was perhaps correct, however, in his opining that such a solution to religious/political strife in Missouri would never work. His implied solution -- that the whole of the land should have been open to an ever increasing influx of LDS migrants -- was equally unworkable. So long as the Mormons continued to congregate in western Missouri, by the hundreds and by the thousands, they were destined to overwhelm and overthrow Gentile society and Gentile political establishments. The editors who wrote about all of this from a distance were simply unable the comprehend the magnitude and effects of the Mormon "gathering," whether it was carried on according to agreement in Caldwell county, or proceded contrary to all previous agreements, in the adjoining counties of western Missouri.



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Monday, October 22, 1838.                             No. 96.

The Mormons Again.

It seems that the Mormon difficulties have not yet terminated. The St. Louis Republican of a late date says:

"We learn by a gentleman who came passenger in the steamboat Kansas, on Saturday, that when at the Mormon town above the mouth of Grand River, he saw about two hundred of the Mormons armed and prepared for conflict. About eighty wagons, containing a number of families, had just arrived at the village. This passenger states that some of the citizens of the adjoining county, had given notice to the Mormons to leave the country, and that if they did not go by Saturday, they would be driven off. The Mormons had refused to go, and were expecting every day an attack from their opponents, whom they represented as about equally strong with themselves. It, however, was the opinion of our informant, that both parties dreaded a conflict, and he thought it most likely that nothing serious would grow out of the excitement."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Wednesday, October 24, 1838.                             No. 98.

The Mormon Troubles.

The following is a postscript from the Columbia Patriot, received by last night's Mail:

"It is rumored that there has been a considerable fight, in Carroll, between the citizens and Mormons, occasioned by the former attempting to drive the latter from the County. The Mormons had the better of the day, greatly."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Friday, October 26, 1838.                             No. 100.

The Mormons.

The St. Louis Bulletin of the 13th instant says. --

"The steamer Pirate arrived yesterday from Independence, which place she left early on Wednesday morning. Considerable excitement prevailed, and various rumours were afloat concerning the Mormons. It is said they have thrown up breast works around De Witte, and are determined to defend themselves to the last. An attack by the citizens was planned for Wednesday, the day the boat left."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., October 27, 1838.                          Whole 900.


The difficulties with the Mormons does not appear to be yet terminated, as a letter under the date of the 7th inst. published in the Missouri Republican sattes that the guards were fired on by the Mormons, and that near one hundred families were encamped near the mouth of the Grand river. Offers had been made them, to remove on condition of receiving the amount paid for their property, with ten per cent, interest, and their expenses in coming and going out of the country. Thay replied that having been driven from one place to another from the time they became a people, a determination was now adopted to die on the ground to the last man, rather than submit to this dictation. The whole of these proceedings reflect much disgrace on all the parties concerned, and the sooner they are terminated the better.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Wednesday, October 31, 1838.                             No. 104.

The Mormons.

The Louisville Journal says that the difficulties between the Mormons in Carroll county, (Mo.,) and the other citizens of that county, have been terminated. The Mormons, to prevent the effusion of blood, have abandoned their lands in Carroll and joined their brethren in Caldwell; the citizens of Carroll agreeing to pay them for their property and such damages as shall be assessed by two men, chosen by each side, from the counties of Howard and Chariton.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                            Philadelphia, Saturday, Nov. 3, 1838.                           No. ?


MORMONS IN CARROLL COUNTY, MISSOURI... to prevent the effusion of blood, have abandoned their lands in Carroll and joined their brethren in Caldwell; the citizens of Carroll agreeing to pay them for their property and such damages as shall be assessed by two men, chosen by each side, from the counties of Howard and Chariton....

Note: Incomplete clipping -- fragmentary text.



Vol. XIX.                             Philadelphia,  Tuesday, November 13, 1838.                             No. 115.

Alarming News from the Mormons Country.

We have highly exciting news from Missouri. The Mormonites and their opponents were in the field, and already a number of lives have been sacrificed. The following details come from a late number of the Missourian.

The simultaneous tolling of the bells aroused us from our pillow last night to hear the rehearsal of the most barbarous atrocities. The following letters, which were read before the meeting, which speedily assembled in the Court House, embody the principal facts, as succinctly perhaps, as any language which we could substitute -- and we hence submit them without further comment than that the authors are gentlemen of the first respectability. The meeting last night adjourned to meet again at 9 this morning, for the purpose of organizing and marching this evening or to-morrow.

SNOWDEN'S, Oct. 25, 1838.        
Col. Jones, Sir: -- News has just reached us here, that the Mormons have attacked, and cut to pieces Capt. Bogard's company of 50 men, except 3 or 4 who have escaped. They say the Mormon force is 300 or 400. Richmond is threatened to night. If you can spare, I wish you to detail two or three companies of troops, and repair to Richmond will all speed.
Yours in haste,                    
                Aid to General Parks.

CARROLTON, Oct. 25, 1838.        

Gentlemen: News of an appalling nature has just reached us. Capt. Bogard, who was ordered with his company to guard the frontier of Ray county, was attacked and cut to pieces by immense numbers. They were overpowered by 300 or 400 Mormons, while they were guarding their own frontier. But 5 minutes ago, three reports of a cannon were heard in the direction of Richmond. Firing has been heard in various directions, and there is no doubt but that these infatuated villains have attacked Richmond.

The news of their burning and pillage has already reached you. They have indubitably captured the cannon, and taken many prisoners, probably killed many. Davies county is a scene of desolation. Ray is probably so, ere this time; and their next movement will be at this place. It is already threatened.

Be up and doing. Bring all the men you can, and let us check them in their course of destruction and devastation. They are moving on with giant strides to the climax of anarchy, civil war, and desolation. Wolf and Barker will explain all. I have just received orders by express, from Brig. General Parks, to raise 150 mounted men. Fifty have volunteered, and the remainder I will obtain in a day or two.

Stir the people up in Howard and Chariton. Send all the braves you can with Wolf, and we can meet and check them in their mad career.
                      Yours in haste,
                          WM. CLAUDE JONES.

      To Congrave Jackson and others.

Immense Amount of Property Destroyed.

The following is published in the St. Louis Bulletin, as the copy of a letter from Davies County, Missouri.

Sir: I deem it my duty, made so not only from the law, as an officer, but also as an individual, to report and make known to your excellency the unheard of, unprecedented conduct and high handed proceedings of the Mormons of this and Caldwell counties, towards the people of the county, being myself one of the sufferers.

On Monday the 15th inst., we learned that the Mormons were collecting in Far West, for the purpose of driving what they termed the mob from Davies; by which we understood the citizens who were not Mormons; and accordingly they have come, and their worst apprehensions have been already fulfilled.

They have plundered, robbed and burned every house in Gallatin, (our county seat,) among the rest our post office. They have driven almost every individual in the county, who are now flying before them with their families -- many of whom have been forced out without their ordinary clothing -- their wives and their children wading in many instances through the snow, even without their shoes. When the miserable families are thus forced from their homes, they plunder and burn their houses. This, they are making universal throughout the county. They have burned for me, two houses. Think this not an exaggeration -- for all is not told, and for the truth of all and every statement here made, I pledge the honor of an officer and a gentleman.

These facts are made known to you, sir, hoping that your authority will be used to stop the career of this banditti of Canadian Refugees, and restore us to our lost homes.

I neglected to state, that among the rest, our County Treasury office has been also burned. I will only ask, in conclusion, can such proceedings be submitted to in a government of laws? I think not, and I must therefore answer my interrogatory by saying no -- notwithstanding the political juggling of such men as David R. Atchison, and some others, whose reports and circulations setting the conduct and character of the Mormons favorably before the community, are believed by the people of this county to be prompted by the hope of interest or emolument.

P. S. -- The amount of property of various kinds stolen or destroyed at this time, is not less than $20,000, and the work is still going on.

Note: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,887                      Philadelphia, Wed., Nov. 14, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

From the St. Louis Republican, November 1.

Alarming State of Affairs.

The following letter, from a highly respectable individual, has been politely furnushed us by a friend, for publication. The statements are confirmed by many verbal reports in the city. We have lately conversed with several intelligent individuals from the vicinity of the Mormon disturbance, and, whilst we have found it difficult to arrive with any certainty at the truth concerning many things, we are well assured that the hostility is more deeply seated than has generally been supposed, and we feel assured that bloodshed and devastation only will terminate the struggle, unless the Mormons remove from the country. Every account from that quarter shows an existing state of agitation in the public mind truly alarming. Every stranger is watched with jealousy, and every man compelled to take sides for or against the Mormons. In truth, there appears to be but little division, on the part of the citizens, in their opposition. We are told that the two men who laid out the town of De Witt, and, as a matter of speculation, invited the Mormons to buy lots in it, have been given leave to pass through the county three times, after which they are informed that a return there will be dangerous. They have already removed their goods into another county.

So deep and all-pervading is the opposition to the Mormons, and so many respectable men have engaged in the attempt to expel them, that we feel satisfied the public are not truly informed of the objections which exist against the Mormons or the circumstances which render them so obnoxious. We hope shortly to be able to develope something more of the causes of this unhappy state of affairs than have yet come to the knowledge of the public.

On board the Steamer Astoria, |   
Below Jefferson City, 28th Oct. |   

Dear Major, -- I hasten to communicate intelligence which I have received a few minutes since (from an unquestionable source) at Jefferson City, viz: -- Colonel Reese of Richmond, Ray county, had arrived with an express to the Governor, to call out the militia to march in defence of Ray and Richmond. The Mormons had devastated Daviess county, burning the county seat, and most of the houses in the county, and were then marching on Richmond to burn and destroy it. Rencontres had taken place, with loss of lives. Colonel Reese had, but a few hours before we landed, returned, and orders were promptly issued by Governor Boggs for 800 mounted men to repair to the scene of war. The troops below arw to rendezvous at Fayette, and march immediately.

The Mormons have been for many days hauling in corn and other supplies to their great depot, Far West. They have been reinforced by many hundreds lately from Ohio and the Canadas, -- refugees and Mormons. Do not believe that these disturbances are "humbugs." There are serious and dangerous difficulties now pending. The writer of this has every opportunity to know these facts, as he was an eye witness in Caldwell, having been out with the troops. Mormonism, emancipation and ablitionism must be driven from our State.

We, the exposed frontier men, have enough to contend with to protect our shamefully exposed frontier, without having to combat the serfs of the eastern degraded and fanatical rabble thrown with the 'poor Indians,' on our border. Forbearance no longer can be exercised. If the Government will not ptotect us, we will do it ourselves.

YET MORE. -- The Missourian of the 27th, printed at Fayette, gives the following additional information. A company was to be organized in Fayette on the morning of the 27th.

Snowden's, Oct. 25, 1838.   

Col. Jones: Sir. -- News has just reached us here that the Mormons have attacked and cut to pieces Capt. Bogard's company of 50 men, except three or four who have escaped. They say the Mormon force is 300 or 400. Richmond is threatened to-night. If you can spare, I wish you to detail two or three companies of troops, and repair to Richmond with all speed.

                Yours in haste,
                GEO. WOODWARD,
                Aid to Gen. Parks.

Carrolton, Oct. 25, 1838.        

Gentlemen: News of an appalling nature has just reached us. Capt. Bogard, who was ordered with his company to guard the frontier of Ray county, was attacked and cut to pieces by immense numbers. The were overpowered by 300 or 400 Mormons, while they were guarding their own families. But five minutes ago, three reports of a cannon were heard in the direction of Richmond. Firing has been heard in various directions, and there is no doubt but that these infatuated villians have attacked Richmond.

The news of their burning and pillafe has already reached you. They have indubitably captured the cannon, and taken many prisoners -- probably killed many. Daviess county is a scene of desolation. Ray is probably so ere this time; and their next movement will be at this place. It is already threatened.

Be up and doing. Bring all the men you can, and let us check them in their course of destruction and devastation. They are moving on with great strides to the climax of anarchy, civil war, and desolation. Wolf and Baker will explain all. I have just received orders, by express, from Gen. Brig. Parks, to raise 150 mounted men. Fifty have volunteered, and the remainder I will obtain in a day or two.

Stir the people up in Howard and Chariton. -- Send all the braves you can with Wolf, and we can meet and check them in their mad career.
                      Yours in haste,
                          WM. CLAUDE JONES.

      To Congrave Jackson and others.
We have concersed with a gentleman who says that he had held a conversation, in person, with Jo Smith, a few days ago, and that Smith stated that his people were prepared to die in the defence of what they thought to be their rights, that although the Governor might raise and send against them the power of the state; yet, he, nor all the men he could bring, would not drive them from their present homes.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                           Philadelphia,  Wednesday, November 14, 1838.                          No. 116.

More of the Mormons.
Marching of the Troops.

The editor of the Missourian, published at Fayette, has favored us with a second edition of his paper, issued on the 29th ultimo, by which it will be seen that active measures were in progress, to check the mad career of the fanatical Mormons. We subjoin the following:


A portion of our edition of Saturday having laid over until this morning, (Monday,) we throw out some paragraphs in order to make room for the following synopsis of the progress of affairs since the meeting of Friday night. -- At the adjourned meeting of Saturday, Gen. Clark read a despatch which he was on the eve of starting to the Governor by express, in which he informed the Commander in Chief that, under the exigencies of the occasion, he had so far anticipated his orders as to direct the raising of 600 mounted gunmen from his division, to be organized on yesterday, and to march this morning. This number was increased by a vote of the meeting, to one thousand. Too much credit cannot be awarded to Mr. P. Wilson, who bore this despatch as far as Marion, where meeting the Governor's express, he returned with the official orders of the Governor in less than 18 hours, 12 hours of which were night work, besides the unusual delays in crossing the Missouri. The distance (going and coming) is about one hundred miles.

The orders of the Governor confer the most plenary authority on General Clark to close this wild and fearful strife -- even by execution [sic - extermination?] if necessary. Between two and three thousand men from the divisions of General Wilcock, Grant, and Atchison are to rendezvous at Richmond with all possible celerity, and report themselves to Gen. Clark, who is directed to assume the command. Rumors of still more barbarous atrocity -- butchering and hanging -- burning and destroying, continue to multiply with hours -- but as they are not official, we forbear their repetition. Enough is known to justify all that has been done; and the Howard regiments, composed exclusively of volunteers, are on the march with as chivalrous a christian leader as ever warred against a Moslem.

Still Later from the Mormon country.
More Outrages -- Measures of Defence.

We have received part of a sheet of the St. Louis Commercial Bulletin, of November 3d, hastily and obligingly forwarded by the editor of that print, the moment the mail was leaving. We cull the most important details out of nearly two columns of matter, in relation to the Mormons.

MORMON WAR, -- FURTHER OUTRAGES. -- The people of the North Western part of Missouri are now in the midst of a civil war, and we believe it will never end, until every Mormon is exterminated or driven from the land. We have the following alarming intelligence by a slip from the office of the Missouri Watchman of last Monday, Oct. 29th.

From the Missouri Watchman -- Extra.
City of Jefferson, Monday morning Oct. 29.
      We have been requested by the Governor to publish an extra of our paper, giving the public the intelligence which he, on yesterday, received in relation to our Mormon difficulties. We are also informed that a force of three thousand men have been ordered to be raised and to march immediately to the aid of the suffering inhabitants. The outrages of the Mormons are of a character never before witnessed in a civilized country. They have now placed themselves in an attitude of open defiance to the laws of the land. The contents of the letters published, show that they have driven the inhabitants of Daviess country from their homes, pillaged and burnt their dwellings, driven off their cattle, and have taken the lives of our people. They will now be dealt with as enemies and as traitors to the country.

The citizens of Ray county held a numerous meeting on the 24th. A series of resolutions having been adopted, the following deeply interesting report was read:


The undersigned having, on Monday morning last, learned that the Mormons had burned Millport in Daviess county, (in addition to the burning of Stolling's store in Gallatin, in said county,) and of their having threatened to burn the store in Buncombe Settlement in this county, and feeling an anxiety to know the truth in relation to said reports, left this place, Richmond, on that (Monday) morning and proceeded to Millport; they, however, previously called at Judge Morin's, who lives about one-fourth of a mile from Millport, who informed them that all they had learned was substantially true, and that much more had been done by the Mormons than the people of this county had been informed of. He went with us to Millport, where we found all the houses in ashes, except a grocery store house belonging to a Mr. Slade, and a house in which Mr. Wilson McKinney had resided. We also found the house of Mr. Robert Peniston, near Millport burned. The horse-mill belonging to him (Peniston,) was taken down -- the stones, bolting chest, &c. lying out some distance from the shed, and the shed yet standing. Mr. Morin informed us that the burning was done on Saturday night last, that on the next day he saw Mormons there, and saw them taking off beds and other things belonging to Wilson McKinney. We also saw some furniture, which we understood from Mr. Morin, belonged to Mr. McKinney, standing out in the commons, and which seemed to have been rifled of its contents. Mr. Morin expected, on the day we were there, that the Mormons would be there (at Millport) to move off the remaining property and to burn the balance of the houses. He stated to us that he considered his situation a precarious one. That he had been permitted to stay thus long owing to his having no wagon to move with; but that he expected to get wagons that day and intended moving into Richmond immediately.

He said that the county was entirely deserted by the inhabitants, except himself and a few others, besides the Mormons, and expressed it as his belief that the corn from his house to Diamon would all be gathered and hauled into Diamon by the Mormons, in 48 hours from that time. He also stated to us that he was at Diamon a few days previously, and saw a company of the men (Mormons,) come into camp with a drove of cattle amounting to about 100 head, which he supposed to be other citizens. He also saw a negro man in the possession of a Mormon, which he was very certain belonged to William Morgan, a citizen of Davies county. Mr. Morin looked upon those Mormons who were then at Diamon, (amounting, he supposed, to about 600 men,) as a band of robbers and desperadoes. He advised us very strongly to go no further; Not to attempt to go to Diamon or Far West; that we would gather nothing by doing so in addition to what we there learned. That the country on the north side of Grand River and west of him was certainly deserted, except by the Mormons, and had been for several days; and that the houses were all burned -- or -- to use his own words, that it was "a complete waste." Mr. Morin also informed us that the Mormons had ordered the other citizens out of the county, and that he too had his orders to leave. He appeared very anxious that we should not be seen at his house by any Mormon, and that it should not be known that he had given any information or expressed any thing unfavorable toward them, until he got away. We did not visit Gallatin, but understood from Mr. Morin and others, whom we met moving into this county, that all the houses in that place were burned, except a shoe-maker's shop belonging to Mr. Runville. C. R. MOREHEAD,
A letter from Judge King says: --

"Between 80 and 100 men went to Gallatin, pillaged houses and the store of Mr. Stolling's and the post office, and then burnt the houses. They carried off the spoils on horseback and in wagons, and now have them, I understand, in a store house, near their camp. Houses have been robbed of their contents-- beds, clothing, furniture, &c. and all deposited, as they term it, "a consecration to the Lord." At this time there is not a citizen in Daviess, except Mormons. Many have been driven without warning, others have been allowed a few hours to start. The stock of citizens have been seized upon, killed up and salted by hundreds, from 50 to 100 wagons are now employed in hauling in the corn from the surrounding country. They look for a force against them, and are consequently preparing for a seige -- building block-houses, &c. They have lately organized themselves into a band of what they call "Danites," and sworn to support their leading men in all they say or do, right or wrong; and further -- to put to instant death those who will betray them. There is another band of twelve, called the "Destructives," whose duty it is to watch the movements of men and of communities, and to avenge themselves for supposed wrongful movements against them, by privately burning houses, property, and even laying in ashes towns, &c."

Note: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., November 17, 1838.                          Whole 903.

From the St. Louis Gazette, Nov. 1.


Violence, Burning, Bloodshed, &c. -- From the Missourian and Republican, as well as our own private advices, we are satisfied that the very worst anticipations in regard to the Mormon difficulties, have been realised. A letter to the Governor, from an officer in Daviess county, makes the following statements:

"On the 15th inst. the Mormons were collecting in the Far West, for the purpose of driving what they termed the mob from Daviess. * * * They have plundered, robbed and burned every house in Gallatin, (our county seat,) among the rest our post-office. They have driven almost every individual from the county, who are now flying before them with their families, many of whom have been forced out without their ordinary clothing -- their wives and their children wading in many instances through the snow, even without their shoes. When the miserable families are thus forced from their homes, they plunder and burn their houses. This they are making this universal throughout the county. They have burned for me two houses. Think not this exaggeration, for all is not told; and for the truth of all and every statement here made, I pledge the honor of an officer and a gentleman.

These facts are made known to you, sir, hoping that your authority will be used to stop the career of this banditti of Canadian refugees, and restore us to our lost homes.

I neglected to state that among the rest, our county treasury office has been also burned. I will only ask in conclusion, can such proceedings be submitted to in a government of laws? I think not; and I must therefore answer my interrogatory by saying no, notwithstanding the political juggling of such men as David R. Atchison -- and some others, whose reports and circulations setting the conduct and character of the Mormons favorably before the community, are believed by the peoples of this county to be prompted by the hope of interest or emolument.

The amount of property of various kinds stolen or destroyed at this time is not less than $20,000, and the work is still going on.

The following is from the Missourian, printed at Fayette, under date of the 27th ult.


(read original report from Missouri paper)

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                           Philadelphia,  Saturday, November 17, 1838.                          No. 119.

Further from the Mormon Country.

It is said that these fanatics have 800 efficient men under arms, and that their numbers are daily increasing. The Governor of Missouri was raising a force of 2500 men, which, under the command of General John B. Clarke, had already marched for the field of battle.

The plan of operation is thus described in a Missouri paper:

General Clarke will repair to Richmond and make that place his head quarters. General Donophon, with a force of 500 men will reconnoitre on the South side of Missouri River, and another Gen. with a like force will range on the northern border of the State, from the Des Moines to the Missouri River, and thus move on and concentrate their forces in the Mormon settlement in Caldwell County. We are not advised as to the number of men called out on the present occasion, but suppose it will not be less than 5,000. It is stated upon good authority, that the instructions from the Governor to Gen. Clarke, are to extirpate the whole fraternity of Mormons or drive them beyond the State; it is probable there may be some little misapprehension in this, but there is no doubt that very strong measures must and will be adopted to put an end to the wretched state of things growing out of the disorganizing conduct of these deluded people.

The St. Louis Bulletin of the 5th says:

"The Mormons believe they are the chosen people of God; that their leader, Joe Smith, has continual revelations from heaven; and they look upon him as the mouth piece of the Deity. When he issues his orders to his tribe, he always says, 'The Lord sayeth so and so,' and we understand that his power is so absolute over this deluded people, as is the Emperor's of Russia over his lowest serfs. They denominate us as heathens, and say that the time will come when their power will spread over the Kingdoms of the earth. At their meetings, some of their men or women always pretend to be inspired, and go on jabbering something unintelligible to us, but some of their chief men pretend to understand it by means of inspiration, and translate it to the people. By such means they work upon the superstition of ignorant men, and as Joe makes them believe that they will immediately go to heaven if they fall in battle, it is probable that they will make pretty good soldiers."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,891.                      Philadelphia, Mon., Nov. 19, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

The Mormon War.

From the St. Louis Republican, Nov. 5.

Just as our paper was ready for the press, yesterday, we received the following letter from Mr. Ryland. To those abroad who may not know Mr. R. we can say that he is the Register of the Land office at Lexington, and a gentleman of the first standing and respectability. The picture which he here gives of the prevailing excitement may be relied upon as strictly accurate. We are glad to find that the account of Capt. Bogard's defeat is not as bad as was represented in former accounts. The letter is post marked the 30th, up to which time, we presume, nothing of importance had occurred.

RICHMOND, Ray County, Mo.           
Oct.29th, 1838.          
To the Editors of the Mo. Republican.
    Gentlemen: I write you from the town of Richmond, in Ray county, in order to give you some information relative to the unprecedented excitement now existing in the Upper Missouri, against this most deluded, wretched, and misguided people, the Mormons.

This band of fanatics commenced, on the 18th instant to burn and ravage the plantations, houses, &c. of the people of Davies county. They have laid waste the whole county, burning store houses, farm houses; destroying the property of the citizens; driving off the hogs and cattle of the inhabitants of that county, taking the plunder to the Mormon hold, Far West, leaving the county of Davies one wide, extended ruin. To-day, I saw and conversed with Major Morin, the senator-elect from Ray, Caldwell, and Davies, and he informed me that the people of Davies were literally ruined. Bands of the Mormons would go out, followed by wagons, and would take live stock and property, sweeping every thing before them, and haul the spoils into Far West. They (the Mormons) have burnt the town of Gallatin, the county seat of Davies. On last Wednesday night, a body of some hundred and fifty or two hundred Mormons attacked a small body of the militia of Ray county, some fifteen miles north of Richmond, under Capt. Bogard; some two or three of Bogard's men were killed, and several wounded. Some four or five Mormons were killed, and many wounded. The Ray men retreated. The alarm has spread through the whole upper counties, and the militia have been called out forthwith.

Last night I was in the camp of the militia from Lafayette, Jackson, and Ray. There was about the number of seven hundred men, and as the people were flooding in from all quarters, I suppose this morning the number exceeded eight hundred. Majors Generals Atchison and Lucas, and Brig. Generals Graham and Nelson were present. The encampment was about one and a half miles from Richmond, on the road leading to Far West.

This morning, at eight o'clock, the army moved off for that point, and will to-night encamp in a short distance of Far West. Brig. Gen. Donephan, with some three hundred men, was to encamp last night near Bogard's battle-ground. Col. Cornelius Gilliam, with the forces from Clinton county, some three hundred strong, or maybe more, was encamped near Far West, say about eight miles off.

From the exasperated feeling manifested plainly by the forces last night, I apprehended the most serious consequences. Every body is excited; the public mind is resolutely bent on putting it beyond the power of the Mormons to again disturb the peace of the citizens, and more especially, their plunderings and burnings. It was rumored that the Mormons were to burm Richmond on last Tuesday night, and the women and children all fled across the river to Lexington. I saw on the bank of the river, in the night, a large number of women and children, without a shelter or food, who had fled, early on Thursday morning, to Lafayette county for safety. It was after sun set on Thursday before I heard of the alarm of the women of Ray, and I immediately hastened to Lexington, and then to the river, to offer shelter, protection, and food to these suffering people. No man, without seeing the objects, can properly estimate my feelings on that night.

You may expect to hear, in three or four days, more news of the most fatal character.
I am your most obed't servant,
                JOHN S. RYLAND.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XIX.                           Philadelphia,  Monday, November 19, 1838.                          No. 120.

Further from the Mormon Country.

The steamer Dart arrived at St. louis from the seat of the war, on the 5th inst. The Anti-Mormon party had collected 2500 men in Ray County, and were awaiting the arrival of from 1500 to 2,000 more, who were on their way from Howard, Chariton, Boone and Audrian counties, after which it was intended that a general battle should be fought.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,892.                      Philadelphia, Tues., Nov. 20, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

From the Missouri Daily Argus of Nov. 8.

The Mormons.

Extract from a letter to the editors, dated

"ELKHORN, Oct. 30, 1838.      

'On Thursday, the 25th instant, about the dawn of day, a party of Mormons, about 200 strong, attacked Capt. Bogart's company, consisting of about 40 men, on the line dividing Ray and Caldwell counties. On the approach of the Mormons, the sentry fired and gave the alarm. The former advanced within 35 paces, formed a line, and received orders 'in the name of Lazarus, the Apostles, and Jesus Christ our Lord, to fire;' which was followed by a simultaneous charge, accompanied by demoniac and hideous yells of 'Fight for liberty! -- charge, boys! -- charge! -- Kill the d--d rascals,' &c. Bogart, at the head of his gallant band, levelled his gun and echoed the command, -- 'Boys, let them have it!' The struggle was short and desperate. The Mormons were armed with one gun, two long pistols, a butcher's knife, and rushed to the charge, in which many of the men came in collision with them and parried their swords, &c., with their guns, and knocked them down. They pursued the charge about 600 yards. Our loss was one killed and three wounded; two of the latter were left for dead on the ground. The loss of the Mormons was 19 or 20 killed and wounded; five or six of the latter are yet living. They took one prisoner, carried him to within three miles of Far West, where they had him put to death.

'The country is in the highest state of excitement; there are about 2500 troops within a day's march of Far West. They are pouring in from all quarters, and we expect, in a day or two, that that town will be laid waste. We are looking for the Governor with more troops. I have this moment been informed that the Mormons are making every preparation for a general battle. In the engagement on the 25th they took about $4,500 worth of horses, &c.'

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,894.                      Philadelphia, Thurs., Nov. 22, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

Mormon War Ended.

The St. Louis papers of the 8th instant, state that the Mormon war had ended, by the surrender of the leaders of the Mormons. On the 28th ult. about three thousand men. commanded by Gen. Atchison, of Clay County, made their appearance before the town of Far West, the county seat of Caldwell county, where the Mormons were entrenched. Upon their approach the Mormons hoisted a white flag, which was shot down by Capt. Bogard, but was immediately replaced. -- Gen. Atchison then sent in a message, with a view to learn their wishes and intentions, when six of the leaders avowed their willingness to surrender, in the expectation that the Mormons should be unharmed. The surrender was accepted, and the individuals put under guard. Their names are Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, George Hinkle, Lyman Wight, Parley P. Pratt, and M[r]. Knight. The Mormons assembled at Far West, comprised 700 men under arms. Of this number, a small body of 150, retreated and pushed their way to the northern frontier.

On the day after, the order of Gov. Boggs, directing the expulsion or extermination of the Mormons, was received by Gen. Atchison, disgusted with such a command, he immediately resigned his office and retired. Subsequent to this, it is reported that a number of the Mormons were set upon and murdered.

From the accounts which are now received, it appears to us that the poor deluded Mormons are more sinned against than sinning in the matter of this war, and that their great error was in settling down on some of the richest lands of the State, and that in the defence of their right to them, against the avarice of others, they were forced to take up arms.

Note: Lengthier versions of this St. Louis Evening Gazette article were published in the May 1, 1838 issue of the Quincy Whig and in the May 1, 1838 issue of the Sangamo Journal. The final sentences of the article were apparently added by a liberal St. Louis editor, quoting a resident from western Missouri; these words were variously paraphrased in a number of different 1838 news reports; see, for example the Oct. 19, 1838 issue of the Illinois State Journal.


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,896.                      Philadelphia, Sat., Nov. 24, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

Further from the Mormons.

The account of a bloody butchery of thirty two Mormons, on Splawns Creek, is fully confirmed. -- Two children were killed, we presume, by accident. Considerable plunder -- such as beds, hats, &c. were taken from the slaughtered. Not one of the assailants was killed or hurt.

About the time of the surrender, several Mormon houses were burnt in Chariton; and one Mormon who refused to leave, killed.

At Far West, after the surrender, a Mormon had his brains dashed out, by a man who accused the Mormons of burning his house in Davies.

We copy the above paragraphs, says the St. Louis Republican of the 12th inst., from the Gazette of Saturday evening. We are sorry to say, that our own information corroborates the details. For the honor of the state, we could have wished, that such savage enormities had not attended a controversy in itself disgraceful enough. We understand, that the company engaged in the attack at Splawn's creek, was not attached to any division of the army, but was fighting on its own hook. The men were principally from Chariton county, and amongst the number was at least one member of the Legislature. The enemy had approached within eighty yards of the Mormons before they were apprized of their approach. The Mormons had their families with them, and to preserve their lives, the men separated from them and took refuge in a blacksmith's shop. Here they were murdered! It is said, that the Mormons had arms, but it is a little singular that they should have used them so ineffectually as not to have touched one of the assailants. The latter, in some instances, placed their guns between the logs of the house and deliberately fired on the victims within. These reports are founded upon statements of persons engaged in the attack; and bad as they are, not likely to be overcharged.

Note: Essentially the same report was also published in the Philadelphia Pennsylvanian on this date. That paper's editor added this postcript: "Will the actors in the tragedy be suffered, by the Court of that District, to go unpunished? There is so much wild exaggeration about domestic news, more particularly of late, that notwithstanding the circumstantial style of the above, we are somewhat inclined to doubt its correctness. If true, however, it is idle for the St. Louis Republican to ask whether the perpetrators of the massacre will be suffered to go unpunished? Of course they will. In the first place, the deed is murder, and the Republican must be aware that murder is very rarely punished, and seems to be scarcely regarded as a crime, in certain sections of our country -- Secondly, it was perpetrated by a number of persons, and the decision was virtually made once somewhere in the neighborhood that we refer to, when a mob burnt a negro alive, that numbers give impunity; and thirdly it has been ruled almost everywhere in th's country that a crime committed upon those who are obnoxious, is not a crime -- it is merely an expression of public opinion. No definite offence -- nothing in fact approaching to such a charge, has been yet alleged against the Mormons; but as their neighbors do not like them from some cause as yet unknown, what right have they to safety any more than the inhabitants of the Ursuline Convent at Mount Benedict."


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., November 24, 1838.                          Whole 904.


The latest Missouri papers, announce the marching of Gen. Clarke, with the volunteers for Richmond, which place he intends to make his head quarters

General Doniphon with a force of 500 men, will reconnoitre on the south side of the Missouri river, and thus move on and concentrate their forces in the Mormon settlement, in Caldwell county. It is stated upon good authority, that the instructions from the Governor to General Clark, are to extirpate the whole fraternity of Mormons, or drive them beyond the state; it is probable there may be some little misapprehension in this, but there is no doubt that very strong measures must, and will be adopted to put an end to the wretched state of things, growing out of the disorganizing conduct of these deluded people.

The St. Louis Bulletin of the 5th says: -- The Mormons believe they are the chosen people of God: that their leader, Joe Smith, has continual revelations from heaven; and they look upon him as the mouthpiece of the Deity. When he issues his orders to his tribe, he always says, "The Lord sayeth so and so," and we understand that his power is so absolute over this deluded people as is the Emperor's of Russia over his lowest serfs. They denominate us as heathens, and say that the time will come when their power will spread over the kingdoms of the earth. At their meetings, some of their men or women always pretend to be inspired, and go on jabbering something unintelligible to us, but some of their chief men pretend to understand it by means of inspiration, and translate it to the people. By such means they work upon the superstition of ignorant men, and as Joe makes them believe that they will immediately go to heaven if they fall in battle, it is probable that they will make pretty good soldiers.

From the Boonville Emigrant.

With the great ignorance prevailing among the mass of Mormons, the art and cunning practised on their credulity by their leaders, the fanatical spirit which their religious sentiments have a tendency to produce on ignorant minds, renders them, under the guidance of skillful commanders, the most dangerous and formidable set of disorganizers that ever set up the standard of revolt in any country; and no time should be lost in taking effectual measures to defeat their nefarious schemes. It is stated that they now number in Missouri 2000; that they have 800 effective men under arms, with artillery and other munitions of war, and among them are several skilful artillery officers from Canada; that their number has been increased the present year, 600 or 800 by emigration from Canada and elsewhere. With their present numbers, and the acquisitions adding to it continually, with the disposition for mischief manifested in the late outrages committed in Daviess county, it would appear that they are fit instruments in the hands of their leaders for the perpetration of any act of desperation, no matter how enormous. How they are to be disposed of, or what the issue of the present contest with them will be, cannot be foreseen; the militia from several counties are now on their march to the scene of action, and others are preparing to march; several expresses have passed Boonville on their way to Jefferson City within the last week; the Governor has issued orders for raising troops. Captain Childs, with about 50 men, left here on last Monday, and the rest of the troops from this county will march to-day. It is stated that Gen. Clarke, of Fayette, has ordered out 1000 men from his division, and in a few days there will probably be 3000 or 4000 men under march to quell the Mormons.

From the Bulletin of Nov. 6.

Mormons. -- By the steamer Dart, which arrived late last evening, we have the following intelligence from the "Seat of War." The Anti-Mormon party had collected 2500 men in Ray County, and were awaiting the arrival of from 1500 to 2000 more, who are on their way from Howard, Chariton, Boone and Audrian Counties, after which it was intended that a general battle should be fought.

From the same of November 7.

The Mormons. -- We have nothing very late from the scene of war. We learn however, from the Jeffersonian Republican, that the troops from Cole, Gasconado and Franklin counties, amounting to about four hundred in number, are on their march to join the army under Gen. Clark.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,897                      Philadelphia, Mon., Nov. 26, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.


We perceive by the London papers, that a number of Missionaries from the Mormons went to England lately, in one of the packets, and that they are preaching their doctrines with some considerable success. We copy a notice of this new religion.

"In the village of Palmyra, in the western part of the state of New York, an idiot, said to have been dumb from his birth, suddenly gave out a few years ago, that 'one night' he had a visit from an angel, who told him to arise from his bed and follow him. He did so, and was conducted by his visitor to a remote and retired spot, where lay a large flat stone, having a ring in the middle of it. This stone was about five feet long, three broad and eight or nine inches thick. On arriving at the place in question the angel commanded the idiot whose name was Joe Smith, to take up the stone by the ring. Smith, as well he might, hesitated to comply with such an order, when his companion told him to take it up boldly, for, if he only had 'faith,' God would instantly give him strength to perform the herculean task. Having prayed inwardly for some minutes, Joe took off his coat, and was making preparations for the performance; but the angel reproved him for his want of faith, made him replace his coat upon his shoulders, and said that even 'if the stone weighed ten thousand tons, divine assistance, through saving faith, would enable him to lift it.' Joe became passive in the hands of the Angel, grasped the ring and found to his astonishment, that the stone weighed as nothing in his hands! On removing it, the idiot discovered that it had served as a covering to a box or chest of the same material, under which were deposited 'twelve golden plates or tables' engraven all over with mystical characters. Upon the upper plate lay a pair of spectacles, made of freestone (save the mark,) which the angel commanded Smith to place astride of his nose. On doing so, Joe's 'tongue was loosened,' as he himself states and his intellect instantly became like those of other men. He saw though the freestone, and the engraving on the golden plates became perfectly intelligible to him. The angel then commanded him to associate with himself 'twelve other men,' whom he named as 'Scribes,' and to interpret to them the writing on the plates. When the work was completely written out, they took it to a printer who demanded $500 in advance for his share in the business. Hereupon the conclave, by dint of pawning, borrowing, selling, and 'finding,' raised the stipulated sum. The book was left with the printer, and the authors were desired to call at the end of the month, when the work would be completed. They now went and 'voluntarily made oath before a justice of the peace that they had written from the dictation of Smith, who, until the time of the angel's visit, had been dumb and an idiot from his birth, and that they had seen the twelve golden tables and the stone spectacles,' adding, that 'no one except Smith could see through them.'

At he expiration of the month they returned to the man of types and demanded their books. The disciple of Caxton met them with a long face, and told them that the whole of the first sheet (16 pages) had been thrown down: and that the manuscripts not having been preserved, he had not been able to fulfil his agreements by the stipulated time: but that if they would write it over again, he would of course print it at his own expense. The Prophets were astounded at this intelligence, and as they had kept no copy of their work, despaired of replacing the inspired writings -- hereupon the printer, by way of removing the difficulty, advised them to 'take another look at the golden plates '

The despairing Mormonites took the hint, and returned with sixteen pages of fresh matter, which the printer immediately composed.

On the publication of the book, the printer worked off and published the sixteen original pages, which he pretended to have lost, and which were altogether different from those they had brought him the second time. This created a terrible sensation among the scribes, who were now called upon by the perfidious printer to produce the plates.

Twelve golden tablets, each of the size of a large tea tray, are not very easy to be procured -- but the angel was good enough to step in once more to their aid. The conclave made oath that the angel had taken the tablets to heaven, on the completion of the work; -- the stone spectacles, however, and the stone chest were produced in evidence, and multitudes of persons were found to be noodles enough to believe the absurd story.

The writer of this, travelling in 1830 through the State of New York, fell into company with a drover, whose uncle had been choused out of $8000 by these fellows. Multitudes had joined them, selling all their property and throwing the proceeds into the common stock and they have several establishments, one of which is in the State of Ohio, where they herd together after a most edifying fashion. Of course, chastity is not among the number of their cardinal virtues. They profess a hearty contempt for all 'unbelievers' and are noted for the promptitude with which they consign to 'everlasting fire and brimstone' all not of their own persuasion.

The poor drover above alluded to, not being himself a Mormonite and having anticipated coming in as heir to the 'old feller,' could in nowise keep his temper when speaking of the 'new revelation.' He consigned Mormon, Joe Smith, and all their followers, to perdition after a most unseemly fashion; libelled the angel who had thrown Joe the box and observed that 'the angel was sharp enough however, for he took good care to carry off the gold; he didn't leave that behind him.' 'Now,' continued he, 'that old Succubus of an uncle of mine might have remembered that he had ten years of my labor and that no man is called upon to throw away his life for nothing; but then the old chap hadn't got no more gumption than a backwoodsman's bull, nor no more steadiness than a monkey upon a water cock, so that when they came to him he got clean frightened out of the little wits that he had. The first time I went to New York he took the opportunity to sell his farm and his stock and every thing and didn't leave himself more clothes nor plunder than what you might ram into a pedlar's wallet; so when I returned, I found myself master of the outside of the house, and a ready furnished lodging in the forest, where I might pick and choose among the trees and live squirrel fashion, that is, if so be as I could have climbed and made up my mind to dine every day on hazel nuts and raw corn. I only wish I could have knowed what was a going on; I'd have found a way to return home time enough to clear 'em all out with my cudgel and that in a fashion that would have made them tremble all the days of their lives at sight of a hickory tree.'

The doctrinal book of the Mormonites, by them called 'The Bible,' has with them entirely superseded the Old and New Testaments. A copy of this book arrived lately in London and is now in the possession of a gentleman residing at Brompton. It is a tolerable thick and closely printed octavo volume, and is divided into a number of books, called after the names of their supposed authors; of these the first in the Book Of Mormon, which has given its name to the whole volume. It is a singular fact that in the Greek language, the word Mormon signifies a mischievous fool or idiot. -- The style and language of this new Bible are an awkward imitation of those of the Old Testament. The book abounds in grammatical blunders and Yankeeisms, and is by no means sparing in marvellous relation of cruelty, murder and rapine. -- There is hardly a glimpse of meaning in many passages of it and the whole is put together in a rambling, unconnected manner, which plainly evinces it to the work of a person or persons wholly unaccustomed to literary composition. It is too absurd for criticism and too brutishly depraved and ignorant to allow if its giving amusement to the reader by it's folly.

Notes: See the Boston Columbian Centinel of November 24, 1838 for the same story, published just two days before the American Sentinel printed its copy of the article. The same story was printed in several newspapers of the period -- in the eastern USA and also in southeastern Canada. The original article apparently came from a London newspaper published during the fall of 1838. The story is filled with peculiar mistakes and misrepresentations, bearing all the marks of a "twice-told tale."


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,898                      Philadelphia, Tue., Nov. 27, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

Sketch of the Mormons, and their Creed

The Editor of the Boonville (Mo.) Emigrant, gives the following sketches of the Mormons, which we extract from a long article on the subject for the information of our readers.

From all we can learn of the religious sentiments of the Mormons, it appears that they are deluded into belief that they are a chosen people selected by Heaven for the especial purpose of establishing and building up what they called the New Jerusalem or Celestial City; that they are favorites of Heaven, who, in process of time, are to prevail over and subjugate all the kingdoms of the earth; that their religion will be universally adopted to the entire subversion of all other systems; in short, that they are the Alpha and Omega, the first and last, and that all other people must yield to their universal dominion; that their establishment in Missouri is the beginning, the mere nucleus around which thousands are to flock, and from the universal Mormon empire to spread over every part of the world, conquering and to conquer, until all the role, dominion, and power are under their government.

Now, if these be the sentiments of the Mormons, and there is a design on the part of their leaders to carry them out, they cannot be regarded in any other light than a dangerous people, entertaining principles and sentiments subversive to all governments, and at variance with our free institutions.

With the great ignorance prevailing among the mass of the Mormons, the art and cunning practised on their credulity by their leaders, the fanatical spirit which their religious sentiments have a tendency to produce on ignorant minds, under them, under the guidance of skilful commanders the most dangerous and formidable set of disorganizers that ever set up the standard of revolt in any country, and no time should be lost in taking effectual measures to defeat their nefarious schemes. It is now stated that they now number in Missouri 2.000; they have 800 effective men under arms; [with artillery and other munitions of war], and among them are skilful artillery officers from Canada, that their numbers have been increased the present year, 500 or 800, by emigration from Canada and elsewhere. With their present numbers and the acquisitions adding to it continually, with the disposition for mischief manifested in the late outrages committed in Daviess county, it would appear that they are free instruments in the hands of their leaders for the preparation of any act of desperation no matter how enormous. How they are to be disposed of, or what the issue of the present contest with them will be, cannot be foreseen; the militia from several counties are now on their march to the scene of action, and others are preparing to march, several expresses have passed Boonville, on their way to Jefferson City within the last week; the Governor has issued orders for raising troops. Capt. Childs, with about 50 men left here on last Monday, and the rest of the troops from this county will march to-day. It is stated that Gen'l. Clark, of Fayette, has ordered out 1000 men from his division, and in a few days there will probably be 3 or 4000 men, under march to quell the Mormons. It is greatly to be feared that the men who have been so much harassed by the repeated calls made on them, and forced to leave their homes and business a second time, will be so exasperated with the Mormons as to forget that circumspection which should govern soldiers and which is so important and necessary in a manner like the present -- A heavy responsibility will rest on the commanding officers, whose duty it will be to prevent, by all proper means, any outrages on the part of citizen soldiers, or any departure from the rules of civilized warfare, towards a people whose conduct, it is true, does not entitle them to much favor. -- Still we hope never to hear of the reputation of our militia, the safeguard of our liberties, being tarnished by any act not sanctified by the rules of civilized warfare, or repugnant to the dictates of humanity.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,900.                      Philadelphia, Thurs., Nov. 29, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

The Mormonites.

The following is an extract of a letter just received in New York, dated Ray co. Missouri, Nov. 7th:

'Your letter of October 10th arrived at ten o'clock at night, just as we were running bullets, &c. in order to start next morning for Far West, the hot bed of Mormonism. The first day we encamped about twenty-two miles from here and sixteen from Far West. The next morning W____, his ferryman, and myself, joined ourselves to the advanced guard, and continued with them for three or four miles, when the great Major General Lucas stopped to parade the troops and fire big guns.

'Not being anxious to witness this display of military tactics, we pushed on and joined the spies, in order to assist them in taking prisoners, that the Mormons might not know of our approach. After capturing a few, we left the spies, pushed on alone, and captured a few others, most of them at a distance of two miles and a few at six, from our advanced guard.

'We camped that night within a mile of the Great City, and W____ and myself went up to the town on an errand of mercy, viz. to have some of the women and children sent out before an attack was made. While at their breast works, talking with the commander, a division of our troops, about three hundred in number, came running on to make the attack. A young man who was with us galloped back to stop them. We cried out to him not to be in a hurry, and followed on at a slow pace, by which means we probably saved our lives, as we found, after the surrender, that they supposed us spies, and had we followed the haste of our companions we should inevitably have been shot down; as it was, our being there saved a general battle; for the Mormons, supposing the troops to be a mob, would have fought till death. In fact they formed coolly, and took off hats and coats and bound handkerchiefs round their heads like men who had nothing else to do but fight. We counted their troops while at the entrenchments, and made out five hundred men. At the surrender they gave up four hundred and ninety-six guns. Their leaders are all in custody, and will probably be shot; as for the rabble, they are unquestionably more sinned against than sinners, but will have to leave the state.'

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,901.                      Philadelphia, Thurs., Nov. 30, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

Latest and Important from
the Mormon War.

Treaty Concluded -- By the St. Louis Bulletin of the 17th instant, we have accounts, from the Far West up to the 8th. Gen Clark had arrived here with 1300 men, to guard the Mormon prisoners confined in that town, and had sent a despatch to Gen. Lucas, in Jackson county, to return Joe Smith the prophet, and Hiram his brother, also the ringleaders Rigdon, Wright [sic]. Robison and Hunt. Many of the Mormons have escaped from Caldwell county. The rest will not probably be driven out this winter. A Doct. Avord, of the sect, has made some important disclosures.

Among many other things, they had associated themselves into three different societies, called Danites, Gideonites and the Destroying Angels -- composed of about 150 men altogether. The object of the bands was to carry on a regular and systematic course of robbery and murder, and swear out suits against all disclosures from the church, and others under false pretences of debts and claims against them, the proceeds of which were to be placed in a general fund for the use and benefit of the church.

The rumor of the engagement of Oct. 30, in which 30 Mormons were killed, is confirmed. The following is the Treaty concluded with the Mormons by General Lucas:

The following are the stipulations between the parties:

1st. To give up their leaders to be tried and punished.

2d. To make an appropriation of the property of all who had taken up arms, for the payment of the debts, and as indemnity for damage done by them.

3d. That the Mormons should all leave the state and be protected out by the militia; but to remain under protection, until further orders from the commander in chief.

4th. To give up all arms of every discription, to be receipted for.

For the purpose of arranging every thing in a proper and legal way, Gen. Lucas left Col. Williams, aid-de-camp to the Commander in Chief, Col. Burch and Maj. A. Rees of Ray Co., to attend to drawing, writing, &c. with a company of men to execute all orders consistent with the stipulations.

Judge Cameron of Clay county, William Collins, of Jackson, George Woodward of Ray, John Carroll and W. W. Phelps, of Far West, were appointed by General Lucas and Col. Hinkle, the commander of the Mormons, to attend to the adjusting [of] all claims, &c.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., December 1, 1838.                          Whole 905.


The "Far West," a paper published at Liberty, Mo., sates that General Lucas had concluded a treaty with the Mormons, in which it was stipulated, they should deliver up their leaders to be tried and punished, they to make an appropriation of the property of those, who had taken up arms, for the payment of debts, and as an indemnity for damages; that they should leave the state, under the protection of the militia, and give up their arms,

Extract of a letter to the Editor, dated

Carrollton, Mo. Nov. 10, 1838.      
"We have had considerable Mormon difficulties here, the Governor was compelled to order out the militia of the state, and arrest the head men of the Mormons, to wit: -- Joe Smith, Sidney Rigdon, Lyman Wight, Doct. Everett [sic - Avord?] and others; our other citizens have got possession of the words and proceedings of the Mormons, by which, we can easily prove treason against those mentioned, and all the plans, which they had adopted for robbing, &c. are discovered; they prove to be a more henious band of people than those, when under Murrill, some years since. Such another band of thieves and robbers, never were in the United States, or I presume in any other country. The statements above made, are substantially true -- they, some months since, commenced settling in this country, and the citizens arose to a man, and drove them off with powder and lead, and I have the honor of saying, I took an active part.
"Yours, &c."      

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,904.                      Philadelphia, Thurs., Dec. 4, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

The Mormons.

The Boonsville Emigrant of the 15th instant observes, 'Just as our paper was going to press, a portion of the Guards returned from the Mormon war, from whom we gathered a few particulars. Our informant states that Joe Smith and other leaders are to be put on trial at Richmond, Ray county, and that forty-seven Mormons are also to be tried at the same place. It is not true that the Mormons are to be sent out of the State forthwith, but are allowed to remain at present, with the distinct understanding that they are not to make another crop in Missouri, but to leave it between this and next summer. The forces are all disbanded and sent home, except one troop of cavalry from Cole county, which will be retained until the Mormon trials are over.

The Circuit Court for Ray county commenced its session on Monday the 11th instant, at which term it is expected the trial of Joe Smith and the other Mormons will come on. These facts may be relied on as true, as we have them [from] persons immediately from the spot on whose statements reliance may be placed.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,917.                      Philadelphia, Wed., Dec. 19, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.


We perceive, from the proceedings of the Missouri Legislature, that a memorial asking pecuniary aid for the Mormon women and children of Caldwell county, was laid before that body on the 3d inst. 'It appears,' observes the Louisville Journal. 'that the houses of many of the Mormons in that country have been burned down; that about 60 Mormon men, all of them married, have been arrested and imprisioned, 40 killed, and 100 compelled to fly to escape the vengeance of the citizens, and, that 200 women, most of whom have small children, are thus left destitute, with no food to keep them from starvation and no shelter to protect them from the winter storms. We trust that the State, through her Legislature, will promptly do what she can to repair the foul and cruel wrongs perpetrated by her citizens."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,919.                      Philadelphia, Fri., Dec. 21, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

The Mormon Prisoners.

We learn from the Western Star, of Nov. 20, that the examining trial of the Mormons before judge King, closed at Richmond on the Wednesday previous. That paper says, 'Some twenty five or thirty were discharged, and about thirty five are retained for indictment and trial -- some for treason against the State, some for murder, some as accessories to murder, and some for arson, burglary, robbery and larceny. We are informed the testimony discloses many facts which have not yet been published to the world, but not deeming it proper to make them the subject of newspaper comment before the trials of the accused, we forbear their disclosure. We are not apprized with certainty what steps will be taken for the safe custody of the prisoners, but think it most probable they will be divided and sent to the jails of the most convenient counties having jails. They are at present under the guard of a part of Capt. Bogard's company of militia, Gen. Clark having disbanded all his troops by order of the Governor.

The indictments will be preferred in the counties of Ray and Daviess, but it is thought the venue will be changed from these counties at the instance of the prisoners.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 4,924.                      Philadelphia, Fri., Dec. 28, 1838.                     [$8 per annum.

Correspondence of the Journal of Commerce.

                           MISSOURI, Nov. 30.
Our Mormon war from beginning to end has been so disgraceful to our citizens, that I am ashamed to speak of it. There were three Yankees, part of whom you know, who offered their services as spies and took fourteen prisoners, which was more than were taken by the whole army besides on their march out. One of these prisoners was killed after he was brought into camp before our eyes. The Yankee who brought him in reported the matter to the General, but nothing was done about it. Joe Smith and all the leaders will probably be sacrificed.

Notes: (forthcoming)


For the Country.

Vol. ?                          Philadelphia, Thursday, January 24, 1839.                          No. ?

From the N. Y. Star.

"Letters from Palmyra." -- Modern Palmyra, in this State, has found a historian, after the manner of old Palmyra, in the Knickerbocker, which attracted so much attention here and in England. A writer in the January number has the first of a series from "Giovanni Smithini" (anglice John Smith!) of Palmyra, to "Betsey Bakerio" of modern Rome, in Oneida co. The style is well preserved. Take, for example, the following picture of the modern metropolis of Wayne county:

"To enumerate the curious wonders of this capital, would indeed surpass the blazon of human pen. You know how often we have admired the verdure which springs amid the ruins of the Colosseum; the towering Basilica de Santa Pietro, and the fragments of time-hanored fabrics, which decay has neglected to gnaw upon, and the mould refused to stain; but you can have no conception of what I am about to relate to you. Imagine to yourself, my Betsey, a long, wide street, with houses on either side, and now and then a citizen wending along the thoroughfare, intent as it were upon traffic, and forgetful of the gorgeous splendors by which he is surrounded. Fancy the expanse of that renowned work of art, the Erie canal; the placid waters greeting the eye, now turbid with the passage of a 'liner's kee!,' fragrant with the steams from an errant kitchen; now green with solemn stagnation, or its quietude broken by the plunge of some ancient bull frog, bathing at the evening tide. Behold the flouring mills, where the spirit rises into sublime speculations upon the prices of meal per barrel, or sinks into melancholy reflections upon the mutability of wheat. These subjects, my Betsey, are those which come home to the business and bowels of men; and as I have mused upon them, 'taking umbrage' of some shadowy elm, I have thought that our own Virgil was right, when he peopled its foliage with images, and endowed every branch with a shadowy vision."

The Mormon religion is to be traced upward from its very dawn, in the succeeding epistles. Mr. Smithini observes:

"I have found that the sect is likely to flourish in this union, since its foundation-precepts are written, not, as was the case with those hard old stone laws of Moses, upon a comparatively worthless medium, but are said to be engraved upon plates of gold -- an article highly valued in this western world, and worshipped with a devotion which reminds me of the enthusiasm mentioned by our fathers, as prevalent among the devotees of Syria, when they worshipped a deity, a reverence of whom has been pronounced impossible with the true in heart."

THE MORMON AFFAIR. -- We learn from the St. Louis Republican that the Senate passed on the 3d upon the joint resolutions of Mo. Legislature. "The first resolution" says the Republican, "declares that it is inexpedient, at this time, to prosecute the investigation into the cause of the Mormon disturbances and the conduct of the military in suppressing them. The second, that none of the documents, or evidence accompanying the Governor's Message ought to be published, with the sanction of the Legislature. -- The third, that a committee should be appointed, to consist of members of both branches, to be vested with power to investigate the whole matter and report to the Governor. This resolution was amended in the House, so as to require the Governor to convene the Legislature when the committee reported. The first and second resolutions were passed and the third rejected. Judge King lately presided at an anti-Mormon Meeting in Ray county. He is the Judge of that Circuit, and the Mormon prisoners, now in jail are to be tried before him. Truly, they have an excellent chance for a fair and impartial trial.

Note: The above excerpted postscript, in the original Jan., 1839 Knickerbocker article, begins with these words: "I salute you... to advise, that a new sect has elaborated or is elaborating itself into notice here, which I fear will make a dismal inroad into the belief which we so long have loved and reverenced. This sect denominates itself the Mormon tribe or party. Deeply anxious to know the principles of its founder, (whose name is that of the Smith family, with the antecedent prefix of Jo,) I asked a person, who was vending esculents at a grocery, concerning them. He said 'he didn't know forsartin, but he believed he went ag'in the United States' Bank, although he did not approve of General Jackson.'"


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., March 2, 1839.                          Whole 918.


The Mormons. -- A western paper states, that there are 44 Mormonites now imprisoned in Missouri. Six of them charged with treason, five with murder, four with being accessaries before and after the fact of the murder, and twenty-nine with crimes of arson, burglary, robbery, and larceny.

Sidney Rigdon and Jo Smith were recently brought before a Justice of the County Court, under a writ of habeas corpus. After a hearing, Smith was re-committed, and Rigdon admitted to bail. He has since left the State. Rigdon, it is said, made an able defence before the court.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., March 9, 1839.                          Whole 919.


The Missouri Legislature has appropriated 150,000 dollars to pay the expenses of the militia of that State incurred by their Mormon Expedition....

The paymaster in Missouri, engaged in making out the pay rolls of the forces employed in suppressing the Mormon War, estimates the number of men at not less than 12,000, and the pay and expenses of each man at $20 -- making $240,000 for private expenses alone, and the whole expense not less than half a million of dollars.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  North  American.
Vol. I.                          Philadelphia, Tues., March 30, 1839.                          No. 5.


The Mormons are emigrating from Missouri to Illinois, and settling on the Mississippi, near Quincy. Sidney Rigdon is delivering addresses and locating his disciples there. They appear to be well received by the people. Rigdon's eloquent account of the murder, by the Missouri mob, of Mormon men and children, the violation of females, the destroying of property, the burning of houses, &c., is awakening much commiseration. -- Newark Daily. Adv.

Notes: (forthcoming)


For the Country.

Vol. ?                                Philadelphia, Saturday, April 27, 1839.                               No. ?

Extract of a letter, dated

WESTERN MISSOURI, Feb. 24th.          
The Mormons, who lately excited such interest, have left for the State of Illinois in great numbers, arid the remainder will follow in the Spring. Some of them are such fools as to think that at some future day, and that not very far off, they will return and repossess the New Jerusalem. They are selling their lands for a mere song, and have been continually doing so since the fracas. A great many places with good improvements have been sold at a mere trifle over Congress price, and some for even less. There was an attempt made a short time since by six of the tribe to rescue their leader Geo. [sic] Smith. They failed, however, and five of the number are now in prison. Sydney Rigdon has been bailed in the sum of $4000, and both he and his bail have left the State. It is said that all the Mormons upon whose testimony the leaders were committed, have gone away. If so, I do not see but Joe is pretty safe from everything but mob law.

We are enjoying the most beautiful weather that ever was known. For nearly three weeks in January, it did not freeze night or day, and for a week back it has been so warm that we sit in the evening with the doors open and little or no fire. Two years ago I got through the winter with keeping my cattle up only four weeks. -- N. Y. Journal of Commerce.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  North  American.
Vol. I.                              Philadelphia, Friday, May 3, 1839.                              No. 34.


Extract of a Letter from our correspondent, dated Pittsfield, Pike Co., Illinois.

"Business is looking up a little, emigration has been very great within 6 months into Illinois -- a great many emigrants of the better class; and along the Mississippi river, we have many of the unfortunate and much abused Mormons; several hundred, I suppose, have removed from their homes in Missouri to this county, and those adjacent hereto. It is said Quincy, Adams county, is alive with them; they appear here harmless and entirely quiet. Their great financier, their Nic Biddle, Sidney Rigdon, is at Quincy; Joe Smith is in Missouri, I understand. The day of retribution will come for these more sinned against than sinning people. Missouri disgraced herself, and the age we live in, by the inhuman deeds perpetrated in the 'Mormon fuss.'"

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., May 4, 1839.                          Whole 927.


The Mormons. -- The Peoria (Illinois) Register says: -- "Great numbers of this unfortunate sect, men, women, and children, are encamped near Quincy, Illinois, in a state of destitution of the necessaries of life. The sufferings they endured in Missouri are heart-rending. A public meeting has been held in Quincy to devise means for their relief. The audience was deeply affected at the relation given by the Mormons, and effective measures were adopted for their relief."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., May 25, 1839.                          Whole 930.

From the New York Observer.


The Book of Mormon, or the "Golden Bible," it would seem, is the production of the Rev. Solomon Spaulding, a graduate of Dartmouth College, and formerly pastor of a Presbyterian church on the Western Reserve in Ohio. While suffering under disease, to please himself and his friends, he wrote an imaginary history of the mysterious race of men who built the ancient mounds and other works of art, which are scattered so profusely over the valley of the Mississippi. His manuscript, falling into the hands of wicked and designing men, has been perverted into the means of building up the new sect of fanatics who are making so much noise in the West. The Rev. John Storrs, of Hollistown, Mass., learning that the widow of Mr. Spaulding (now Mrs. Davison, having, since Mr. S.'s death, married a second husband), was still living at Monson, Mass. and could testify to this fact, addressed her a letter, and obtained the following narrative, which we copy from the Boston Recorder of last week....

(view original article from Boston paper)

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., June 1, 1839.                          Whole 931.


The Mormon prisoners that remained in jail in Ray county, Mo. are to be tried in Boone in July.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII. - No. 7, 058                      Philadelphia, Fri., June 4, 1839.                     [$8 per annum.

The  Mormons.

We have from time to time seen various and contradictory accounts of the conflicts between the Mormons and other portions of the population of Missouri, in which other and worse cruelties than mere shedding of blood are known to have been perpetrated and on both sides. During the late session of the Legislature of Missouri, testimony was taken on the subject, and some debates took place, of which enough was reported in the newspapers to satisfy us that the Mormons, though not guiltless of all offence against public peace and private rights were yet "more sinned against than sinned." The people of this sect are now transferring themselves in considerable numbers into the state of Illinois. In reference to this fact we find the subjoined article in the Peoria Register of May 18.

We unwillingly give currency to any publication which is calculated to detract from the reputation of a considerable portion of the population of any State. But, at the same time, the truth ought to be told -- the wound ought to be probed -- that Public Opinion the only remedy for such popular disorders as the war between the Mormons and the authorities and people of Missouri, may receive a proper direction. We must add, moreover, that the editor of the Peoria Register is personally known to s, and that we should place undoubting confidence in any statement which he would make from his own knowledge. -- National Intel.

From the Peoria Register, May 18.

THE MORMONS -- Our reader will have seen, by accounts we have published from time to time, that numbers of this much-wronged, deeply-injured people have sought Illinois as an asylum from the worse than savage barbarities of the Missourians. We hope their reception here will be such as American citizens owe to American citizens who have been hunted like wild beasts, their lives taken, property pillaged and destroyed, and the survivors compelled to flee by the light of their own burning dwellings.

A dark and bloody page has been recorded in the annals of Missouri, which her citizens, ages hence, will look upon with shame and horror; and the perpetrators of these atrocities, if not divested of all the attributes of men, will be haunted to their dying day by remorse more terrible than the tearing of the vulture at the heart of the fabled Prometheus.

The Mormons were, from all accounts, an orderly, industrious class of citizens -- had large possessions and valuable improvements. Some difficulties existed between them and their neighbors, who made their obnoxious faith a pretext for the gratification of their cupidity and their fiendish passions at the same time. No one can believe the Mormons to have been entirely blameless; and doubtless there was just ground for strong prejudices against them. But from the very first they have been "more sinned against than sinning." We hold no fellowship with their absurd doctrines, and believe Mormonism as arrant an imposture as ever was palmed upon the credulity of men; yet this furnished no excuse for the commission of violence against them, much less the diabolical deeds of which their persecutors have been guilty.

The press should speak out upon this subject in tones of thunder, and hold up the perpetrators of these atrocities to the execration of all good men. This is but another act in the black tragedies which have been carried on for years -- but the climax of guilt to which they have all tended -- by a set of reckless ruffians, who set all law at defiance, and make their own malignant passions the arbiters of justice. This contempt for the constituted authorities of the land is getting alarmingly common, and where these things will end no one can tell, but every thinking person must fear. -- Each new exhibition of the mob spirit is more aggravated than that which preceded it; almost every State in the Union has been disgraced by turbulent and lawless scenes; but Missouri, though not "alone in her shame," has attained a "bad eminence" of crime which time will "point his slow, unmoving finger at."

Note: The Peoria editor, living far from the scenes of the recent "Mormon War," could easily pontificate upon the situation from the comfort of his distant easy chair. Few outsiders who were not actual eye witnesses of the problematic Mormon "gathering" in Caldwell Co., Missouri could fathom what went on there, why and how the Mormons antagonized their Gentile neighbors, or why mobs of local citizens rose up against this ever-increasing sect of emigrants. While the mob spirit of the "border ruffians" is inexcusable, it is understandable. What is less understandable is what goal the top Mormon leaders had in mind, in their not defusing the problem before it reached the stage of widespread violence.


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., June 28, 1839.                          Whole 935.


It has been more than once suggested that the Mormons, who, however deluded they may be, are entitled to their rights the same as any other class of individuals in the community, have been most unjustly dealt with during their sojourn in Missouri. At a late meeting held in Cincinnatti, Mr. Greene gave a statement of the early settlement of the Mormons in Missouri, and a history of their persecution, which has hardly a parallel even in the persecution of the primitive Christians. They were ruthlessly driven from their homes, their property destroyed, the women and children forced into the woods, without any shelter from the inclemency of the weather, (it being in the month of January,) where they roamed about till their feet became so sore that their enemies tracked them by foot-prints of blood. The men were, in many instances, cruelly murdered. On one occassion the mob attacked a smith shop, into which nine of the Mormons and two boys had taken refuge; it being a log house, the mob fired between the logs and killed every individual of the nine men; they then entered and dragged the two boys from under the bellows, who begged for mercy in the most piteous tones; one of the miscreants applying his rifle to the ear of the youngest, (who was but nine years old,) said, "My lad, we have not time to quarter you, but we will halve you," and immediately shot away the whole upper part of his head. The other boy was severely wounded in the hip, but had the presence of mind to fall and remain quiet, and so escaped; he is still living, and is at Quincy, Illinois.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XXI.                             Philadelphia,  Tuesday, July 9, 1839.                             No. 7.

The Mormonites and the People of Missouri.

We have once or twice alluded to the disreputable scenes in Missouri, between a portion of the people of that State and the infatuated Mormonites. Some facts have recently been promulgated, calculated to make a still more unfavorable impression with regard to the former, and to excite feelings of more than ordinary indignation in the bosom of every philanthropist and patriot. Two meetings upon the subject have recently been held at Cincinnati. At both, a Mr. J. P. Greene, a Mormonite, said to be kild, moderate and intelligent, was in attendance, and gave a recapitulation of the wrongs and outrages that, as he alleged, had been inflicted upon his people. Senator Morris also attended one meeting, and in some measure confirmed the statement of Greene. At the second meeting, a committee appointed upon the subject, submitted a Report, which deserves more than a passing notice. The preamble is to the following effect:

Whereas, it is our duty as men and christians to befriend the oppressed every where -- a duty which becomes more urgent, when the injured have equal claims with ourselves to the protection of institutions, by which our own rights are guarded; and whereas, freedom of conscience is a sacred trust, which all men should solemnly respect; and this freedom is infringed whenever prejudice, bigotry, intolerance or popular caprice are allowed to persecute men for opinions, which the few or the many may judge absurd or noxious; and whereas, civil liberty is an inheritance, won by long struggle, and bequeathed to us, which we are in gratitude and in honor bound to transmit unimpaired; and this liberty is violated whenever the rights of any individual, however humble or hated, are trampled upon with impunity, and whenever mobs are permitted to attack the object of their dislike, under any pretext whatever of defending the property, reputation or morals of communities; and whereas the people called Mormons are our fellow citizens, and have a just title to all civil and religious privileges, till proved guilty [and] sre subjected to penalty before legal tribunals; and whereas, Missouri mobs have cruelly persecuted these people, plundered their stores, stolen their cattle, wasted their fields, burned their houses, driven them from their homes, abused their women, murdered their men, and a Missouri executive has unconstitutionally, and against all law, exiled them under threats of extermination, thus authorizing outrage and robbery, and a Missouri legislature has slighted the appeal for justice, and refused restitution for the wrongs of 10,000 injured citizens; [Therefore...]

The resolutions express indignation at this precedent for religious persecution, lawless violence and mob rule; commend the conduct of the citizens of Quincy, Illinois, in their generous defence and aid of the Mormons; and approve of the attempt of John P. Greene, to make known the history of his people's wrongs to the whole nation, through addresses and publications.

An animated debate took place, but both the preamble and the resolutions were finally adopted.

These proceedings are certainly creditable to those who participated in them, to the philanthropy and sense of justice of the country; while they reflect with due severity on the conduct of the mobs alluded to. Surely the State of Missouri owes it to herself to investigate this business thoroughly, and to wipe away the reproach that now rests upon her name. We invite the attention of our contemporaries in St. Louis, to the subject, and ask for an explanation. If correctly informed, the Mormons, although fanatic and mistaken in a religious point of view, are, nevertheless, peaceable and inoffensive, honest and upright in their dealings, and anxious to cultivate amity and good will in their intercourse with their fellow men. The only pretence for excitement, if such it can be called, was their peculiar religious belief, which, however absurd, should not be, in this free country, a cause of persecution, assault, robbery and bloodshed. If, therefore, any portion of the citizens of Missouri have, under the pretext of religious feeling, been engaged in an effort to rob the Mormons of their lands, their homes and their property, and these are the allegations broadly preferred, the enlightened and upright people of this country, from Maine to Florida, should rise up as one man, and speak in detestation of such proceedings. The example of Cincinnati is creditable indeed, and we point to it with pleasure. If any mitigating circumstances can be substantiated, they should be made known with as little delay as possible, and thus some portion of the infamy which now involves the transaction, will be removed. Until the formal and deliberate proceedings of Cincinnati reached us, we believed there was some mistake, and yet, if we remember aright, the editor of the Louisville Journal, from the first, denounced the proceedings as outrageous and disgraceful to the citizens of Missouri who were engaged in them, to an immeasureable extent. Will that editor be kind enough to say, whether or not, the statement of the matter as here detailed, corresponds with his understanding of it -- for it is with exceeding reluctance that we imbibe an opinion so unfavorable to any portion of the citizens of our country -- so inimical to law, order, freedom and good morals.

Note: The Louisville Journal reportedly received communications from the LDS Apostle Lyman Wight during the summer and fall of 1838. In a late December issue, the editor of the Journal reported: "...the homes of many of the Mormons in that county have been burned down; that about 60 Mormon men, all of them married, have been arrested and imprisoned, 40 killed, and 100 compelled to fly to escape the vengeance of the citizens, and that 200 women, most of whom had small children, are thus left destitute, with no food to keep them from starvation, and no shelter to protect them from the winter storms. We trust that the State, through her Legislature will promptly do what she can to repair the foul and cruel wrongs perpetrated by her citizens."


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., July 20, 1839.                          Whole 938.


A Mormon Work. -- The Mormons have a work in the press at Commerce, Illinois, called "Times and Seasons," being a history of the scenes in Missouri; it will also contain the doctrines of the sect, revelations of their prophets, &c. &c.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., August 3, 1839.                          Whole 940.


We published some weeks since an article in reference to the Mormons, and the treatment which they were said by the good people of Cincinnati, in a twon meeting assembled, to have received in Missouri. We have received the following explicit denial which we readily lay before our readers.

Extract of a Letter to the Editor, dated.

Carrollton, Mo., July 15th, 1839.      
"In your paper of the 29th July, you gave some account of the treatment which the Mormons received in this State, and say that the statements were made by Mr. Green at a public meeting, in Cincinnati. Now, sir, I have been in Missouri previous to the Mormons, and it has been my lot to live in the same section of County in which the Mormons located themselves, and do pronounce the article above alluded to, base slander, and can prove it if necessary.

The Mormons are in the habit of making such statements, for the sole purpose of converting unsuspecting persons to their faith; therefore it will not answer to take their version of the difficulties we have had with them in Missouri. The Mormons have robbed and swindled the Missourians out of many thousands of dollars, and burned a great many dwelling houses, and drove the inhabitants to the woods without mercy; and in one case drove a poor woman out of her house, not exceeding one hour after she gave birth to a child, which treatment, of course, caused her death. -- If you reverse the article above alluded to, and say the Mormons treated the citizens of Missouri in that manner, you will then be right; and that they continued to do so until the Governor called out the militia to protect the citizens of Missouri. There was a battle between the Mormons and the citizens of Missouri, at a blacksmith shop; but the Mormons were the transgressors, though they got the worst of the fight; and as to the treatment of the biys at said shop, it is false. It is entirely out of my power to give you a statement of the course pursued by the Mormons in this State in a letter; but, sir, were you acquaintd with their damnable cause as we are here, I have no doubt you would be surprised to think that there was one of them left alive."   J. D.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., August 17, 1839.                          Whole 942.


Joe Smith, the Mormon Prophet. -- It is stated in the Jeffersonian, that Gov. Boggs has called on the proper officers for the necessary papers, with a view of making a demand from the Governors of Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin, for the persons of Joseph Smith, jr., Sidney Rigdon, Lyman Wight and others of the Mormons who are now fugitives from justice. -- St. Louis Bulletin.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  North  American.

Vol. I.                              Philadelphia, Monday, August 26, 1839.                              No. 131.

From the Trenton Gazette.

THE MORMONS AGAIN. -- The annexed notice which has been handed to us for publication, shows that the Mormons have gained quite a foothold in our State. So prone are men, in these latter days, to fanaticism and superstition. The severe persecutions which this sect has suffered in Missouri, have probably gained for it many converts.

WOODS MEETING. -- The Church of Latter Day Saints, (commonly called Mormons,) will hold a meeting in the woods, on the farm belonging to Mr. Charles Hopkins, on the Monmouth road, near Horner's Town, to commence on Wednesday, August 28th, and to continue several days, at least through the following Sabbath. Several of the first Elders of the Church from the West are expected to be there; and a gentleman, delegated by the Church and recommended to the public by the Governor and others of the State of Illinois, will give a general statement of the facts relative to the persecution and sufferings of the Church, in the State of Missouri.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII. - No. 143.]                      Philadelphia, Thursday, September 12, 1839.                     [price 1 ¢

==> NOTICE -- MR. WINCHESTER, of the Latter Day Saints, (Mormons) will preach again at the Commissioners' Hall, Northern Liberties, THIS Evening at 7:30 o'clock.

N. B. -- Mr. W. intends this evening to give some of the reasons that the Latter Day Saints have for believing the Book of Mormon, by bringing testimony from the Scriptures to prove that the Lord has or is to bring forth a work of this kind, previous to the gathering of his people Israel, as saith the Scriptures.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XVIII.                          Philadelphia, Sat., October 5, 1839.                          Whole 949.


Gov. Boggs, of Missouri, is about to demand of the Governors of Illinois State, and Iowa and Wisconsin territories, two Mormon prisoners, who had excaped.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VIII. - No. 55.]                          Philadelphia, Sat., Nov. 30, 1839.                        [price 1 ¢

==> NOTICE -- MR. WINCHESTER, of the Latter Day Saints, (Mormons) will preach TOMORROW (Sunday) in a Room in the Second Story of a Building at the corner of Seventh and Callowhill sts., at 10:30 o'clock in the morning; again at 2:30 in the afternoon, and 6:30 in the evening. Mr. O. PRATT will attend to-morrow, and it is expected he will address the meeting once or twice during the day.

N. B. -- There will be preaching at the above place every Sabbath, at the above mentioned hour.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VIII. - No. 59.]                          Philadelphia, Thr., Dec. 5, 1839.                        [price 1 ¢

==> NOTICE -- There will be a public address THIS Evening, (Thursday) at the Commissioners' Hall, Southwark, at 7 o'clock, by Mr. WINCHESTER, of the Latter Day Saints (Mormons.)

N. B. -- "Despite not prophesying," -- "Prove all things: Hold fast to that which is good." -- St. Paul.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VIII. - No. 66.]                          Philadelphia, Fri., Dec. 14, 1839.                        [price 1 ¢

==> NOTICE -- MR. WINCHESTER, of the Latter Day Saints, (Mormons) will Preach TOMORROW (Sunday) in a Room in the second story of a building at the corner of Seventh and Callowhill sts., at 10:30 o'clock in the morning; again at 2:30 in the afternoon, and 6:30 in the evening.

There will be preaching at the above place, every Sabbath at the above mentioned hours

Also there will be preaching every TUESDAY and FRIDAY Evening, at the same place at 7 o'clock.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  North  American.
Vol. I.                          Philadelphia, Friday, December 20, 1839.                          No. 231


The Mormons have purchased a tract of 20,000 acres at the head of the Des Moines rapids of the Mississippi, on both sides of the river, including the town of Commerce. This name is changed to Nauvoo, from the Hebrew. The whole purchase money amounts to $70,000, a large portion of it on long payments.

Joseph Smith, jr., Sidney Rigdon, and Judge Higbee, have started for Washington to petition Congress for relief growing out of the Missouri persecutions.

Notes: (forthcoming)

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