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VOL. III. NO. 22.] CITY OF NAUVOO, ILLINOIS, SEPT. 15, 1842. [WHOLE NO. 58.
From Stephen's "Incidents of Travel in Central America."
"As at Copan, it was my business to prepare the different objects for Mr. Catherwood to draw. Many of the stones had to be scrubbed and cleaned; and as it was our object to have the utmost possible accuracy in the drawings, in many places scaffolds were to be erected on which to set up the camera lucida. Pawling relieved me from a great part of the labour [labor]. That the reader may know the character of the objects we had to interest us, I proceed to give a description of the building in which we lived, called the palace.
A front view of this building is given in the engraving. It does not, however, purport to be given with the same accuracy as the other drawings, the front being in a more ruined condition. It stands on an artificial elevation of an oblong form, forty feet high, three hundred and ten feet in front and rear, and two hundred and sixty feet on each side. This elevation was formerly faced with stone, which has been thrown down by the growth of trees, and its form is hardly distinguishable.
The building stands with its face to the east, and measures two hundred and twenty eight feet front by one hundred and eighty feet deep. Its height is not more than twenty-five feet, and all around it had a broad projecting cornice of stone. The front contained fourteen doorways, about nine feet wide each, and the intervening piers are between six and seven feet wide. On the left (in approaching the palace) eight of the piers have fallen down, as has also the corner on the right, and the terrace underneath is cumbered with the ruins. But six piers remain entire, and the rest of the front is open.
The engraving opposite represents the ground-plan of the whole. The black lines represent walls still standing; the faint lines indicate remains only, but, in general, so clearly marked that there was no difficulty in connecting them together.
The building was constructed of stone with a mortar of lime and sand, and the whole front was covered with stucco and painted. The piers were ornamented with spirited figures in bas-relief, one of which is represented in the engraving opposite. On the top are three hieroglyphics sunk in the stucco. It is enclosed by a richly ornamented border, about ten feet high and six wide, of which only a part now remains. The principal personage stands in an upright position and in profile, exhibiting an extraordinary facial angle of about forty-five degrees. The upper part of the head seems to have been compressed and lengthened, perhaps by the same process employed upon the heads of the Choctaw and Flathead Indians of our own country. The head represents a different species from any now existing in that region of country; and supposing the statues to be images of living personages, or the creation of artists according to their ideas of perfect figures, they indicate a race of people now lost and unknown. The headdress is evidently a plume of feathers. Over the shoulders is a short covering decorated with studs, and a breastplate; part of the ornament of the girdle is broken; the tunic is probable a leopard's skin; and the whole dress no doubt exhibits the costume of this unknown people. He holds in his hand a staff or sceptre [scepter], and opposite his hands are the marks of three hieroglyphics, which have decayed or been broken off. At his feet are two naked figures seated cross-legged, and apparently suppliants. A fertile imagination might find many explanations for these strange figures, but no satisfactory interpretation presents itself to my mind. The hieroglyphics doubtless tell its history. The stucco is of admirable consistency, and hard as stone. It was painted, and in different places about it we discovered the remains of red, blue, yellow, black, and white.
The piers which are still standing contained other figures of the same general character, but which, unfortunately, are more mutilated, and from the declivity of the terrace it was difficult to set up the camera lucida in such a position as to draw them. The piers which are fallen were no doubt enriched with the same ornaments. Each one had some specific
meaning, and the whole probably presented some allegory or history; and when entire and painted, the effect in ascending the terrace must have been imposing and beautiful.
The principal doorway is not distinguished by its size or by any superior ornament, but is only indicated by a range of broad stone steps leading up to it on the terrace. The doorways have no doors, nor are there the remains of any. Within, on each side, are three niches in the wall, about eight or ten inches square, with a cylindrical stone about two inches in diameter fixed upright, by which perhaps a door was secured. Along the cornice outside, projecting about a foot beyond the front, holes were drilled at intervals through the stone; and our impression was, that an immense cotton cloth, running the whole length of the building, perhaps painted in a style corresponding with the ornaments, was attached to this cornice, and raised and lowered like a curtain, according to the exigencies of sun and rain. Such a curtain is used now in front of the piazzas of some haciendas in Yucatan.
The tops of the doorways were all broken. They had evidently been square, and over every one were large niches in the wall on each side, in which the lintels had been laid. These lintels had all fallen, and the stones above formed broken natural arches. Underneath were heaps of rubbish, but there were no remains of lintels. If they had been single slabs of stone, some of them must have been visible and prominent; and we made up our minds that these lintels were of wood. We had no authority for this. It is not suggested either by Del Rio or Captain Dupaix, and perhaps we should not have ventured the conclusion but for the wooden lintel which we had seen over the doorway at Ocosingo; and by what we saw afterward in Yucatan, we were confirmed, beyond all doubt, in our opinion I do not conceive, however, that this gives any conclusive data in regard to the age of the buildings. The wood, if such as we saw in the other places, would be very lasting: its decay must have been extremely slow, and centuries may have elapsed since it perished altogether.
The building has two parallel corridors running lengthwise on all four of its sides. In front these corridors are about nine feet wide, and extend the whole length of the building upward of two hundred feet. In the long wall that divides them there is but one door, which is opposite the principal door of entrance, and has a corresponding one on the other side, leading to a courtyard in the rear. The floors are of cement, as hard as the best seen in the remains of Roman baths and cisterns. The walls are about ten feet high, plastered, and on each side of the principal entrance ornamented with medallions, of which the borders only remain; these perhaps contained the busts of the royal family. The separating-wall had apertures of about a foot, probably intended for purposes of ventilation Some were of this form [symbol somewhat like a T], and some of this [symbol somewhat like a cross +], which has been called the Greek Cross and the Egyptian Tau, and made the subject of much learned speculation.
The ceiling of each corridor was in this form. [symbol somewhat like a ] The builders were evidently ignorant of the principles of the arch, and the support was made by stones lapping over as they rose, as at Ocosingo, and among the Cyclopean remains in Greece and Italy. Along the top was a layer of flat stone, and the sides, being plastered, presented a flat surface. The long, unbroken corridors in front of the palace were probably intended for lords and gentlemen in waiting; or perhaps, in the beautiful position, which, before the forest grew up, must have commanded an extended view of a cultivated and inhabited plain, the king himself sat in it to receive the reports of his officers and to administer justice. Under our dominion Juan occupied the front corridor as a kitchen, and the other was our sleeping apartment.
From the centre [center] door of this corridor a range of stone steps thirty feet long leads to a rectangular courtyard, eighty feet long by seventy broad. On each side of the steps are grim and gigantic figures, carved on stone in basso-relievo, nine or ten feet high, and in a position slightly inclined backward from the end of the steps to the floor of the corridor. The engraving opposite represents this side of the courtyard, and the one next following shows the figures alone, on a larger scale. They are adorned with rich headdresses and necklaces, but their attitude is that of pain and trouble. The design and anatomical proportions of the figures are faulty, but there is a force of expression about them which shows the
skill and conceptive power of the artist. When we first took possession of the palace this courtyard was encumbered with trees, so that we could hardly see across it, and it was so filled up with rubbish that we were obliged to make excavations of several feet before these figures could be drawn.
On each side of the courtyard the palace was divided into apartments, probably for sleeping. On the right the piers have all fallen down. On the left they are still standing, and ornamented with stucco figures. In the centre [center] apartment in one of the holes before referred to of the arch, are the remains of a wooden pole about a foot long, which once stretched across, but the rest had decayed. It was the only piece of wood we found at Palenque, and we did not discover this until some time after we had made up our minds in regard to the wooden lintels over the doors. It was much worm- eaten, and probably, in a few years, not a vestige of it will be left.
At the farther side of the courtyard was another flight of stone steps, corresponding with those in front, on each side of which are carved figures, and on the flat surface between are single cartouches of hieroglyphics. The plate opposite represents this side.
The whole courtyard was overgrown with trees, and it was encumbered with ruins several feet high, so that the exact architectural arrangements could not be seen. Having our beds in the corridor adjoining, when we woke in the morning, and when we had finished the work of the day, we had it under our eyes. Every time we descended the steps the grim and mysterious figures stared us in the face, and it became to us one of the most interesting parts of the ruins. We were exceedingly anxious to make excavations, clear out the mass of rubbish, and lay the whole platform bare; but his was impossible. It is probably paved with stone or cement; and from the profusion of ornament in other parts, there is reason to believe that many curious and interesting specimens may be brought to light. This agreeable work is left for the future traveller [traveler], who may go there better provided with men and materials, and with more knowledge of what he has to encounter; and, in my opinion, if he finds nothing new, the mere spectacle of the courtyard entire will repay him for the labour [labor] and expense of clearing it.
The part of the building which forms the rear of the courtyard, communicating with it by the steps, consists of two corridors, the same as the front, paved, plastered, and ornamented with stucco. The floor of the corridor fronting the courtyard sounded hollow, and a breach had been made in it which seemed to lead into a subterraneous chamber; but in descending, by means of a tree with notches cut in it, and with a candle, we found merely a hollow in the earth, not bounded by any wall.
In the farther corridor the wall was in some places broken, and had several separate coats of plaster and paint. In one place we counted six layers, each of which had the remains of colours [colors]. In another place there seemed a line of written characters in black ink. We made an effort to get at them; but, in endeavouring [endeavoring] to remove a thin upper stratum, they came off with it, and we desisted.
This corridor opened upon a second courtyard, eighty feet long and but thirty across. The floor of the corridor was ten feet above that of the courtyard, and on the wall underneath were square stones with hieroglyphics sculptured upon them. On the piers were stuccoed figures, but in a ruined condition.
On the other side of the courtyard were two ranges of corridors, which terminated the building in this direction. The first of them is divided into three apartments, with doors opening from the extremities upon the western corridor. All the piers are standing except that on the northwest corner. All are covered with stucco ornaments, and one with hieroglyphics. The rest contain figures in bas-relief, three of which, being those least ruined, are represented in the opposite plates.
The first was enclosed by a border, very wide at the bottom, part of which is destroyed. The subject consists of two figures with facial angles similar to that in the plate before given, plumes of feathers and other decorations for headdresses, necklaces, girdles, and sandals; each has hold of the same curious baton, part of which is destroyed, and opposite their hands are hieroglyphics, which probably give the history of these incomprehensible personages. The others are more ruined, and no attempt has been made to restore them. One is kneeling as if to
receive an honour [honor], and the other a blow.
So far the arrangements of the palace are simple and easily understood; but on the left are several distinct and independent buildings, as will be seen by the plan, the particulars of which, however, I do not consider it necessary to describe. The principal of these is the tower, on the south side of the second court. This tower is conspicuous by its height and proportions, but on examination in detail it is found unsatisfactory and uninteresting. The base is thirty feet square, and it has three stories. Entering over a heap of rubbish at the base, we found within another tower, distinct from the outer one, and a stone staircase, so narrow that a large man could not ascend it. The staircase terminates against a dead stone ceiling closing, all farther passage, the last step being only six or eight inches from it. For what purpose a staircase was carried up to such a bootless termination we could not conjecture. The whole tower was a substantial stone structure and in its arrangements and purposes about as incomprehensible as the sculptured tablets.
East of the tower is another building with two corridors, one richly decorated with pictures in stucco, and having in the centre [center] the elliptical tablet represented in the engraving opposite. It is four feet long and three wide, of hard stone set in the wall, and the sculpture is in bas-relief. Around it are the remains of a rich stucco border. The principal figure sits cross-legged on a couch ornamented with two leopards' heads; the attitude is easy, the physiognomy the same as that of the other personages, and the expression calm and benevolent. The figure wears around its neck a necklace of pearls, to which is suspended a small medallion containing a face; perhaps intended as an image of the sun. Like every other subject of sculpture we had seen in the country, the personage had earrings, bracelets on the wrists, and girdle round the loins. The headdress differs from most of the others at Palenque in that it wants the plumes of feathers. Near the head are three hieroglyphics.
The other figure, which seems that of a woman, is sitting cross-legged on the ground, richly dressed, and apparently in the act of making an offering. In this supposed offering is seen a plume of feathers, in which the headdress of the principal person is deficient. Over the head of the sitting personage are four hieroglyphics. This is the only piece of sculptured stone about the palace except those in the courtyard. Under it formerly stood a table, of which the impression against the wall is still visible, and which is given in the engraving in faint lines, after the model of other tables still existing in other places.
At the extremity of this corridor there is an aperture in the pavement, leading by a flight of steps to a platform; from this a door, with an ornament in stucco over it, opens by another flight of steps upon a narrow, dark passage, terminating in other corridors, which run transversely. These are called subterraneous apartments; but there are windows opening from them above the ground, and, in fact, they are merely a ground-floor below the pavement of the corridors. In most parts, however, they are so dark that it is necessary to visit them with candles. There are no bas-reliefs or stucco ornaments; and the only objects which our guide pointed out or which attracted our attention, were several stone tables, one crossing and blocking up the corridor, about eight feet long, four wide, and three high. One of these lower corridors had a door opening upon the back part of the terrace, and we generally passed through it with a candle to get to the other buildings. In two other places there were flights of steps leading to corridors above. Probable these were sleeping apartments.
(->) The foregoing extract has been made to assist the Latter-Day Saints, in establishing the Book of Mormon as a revelation from God. It affords great joy to have the world assist us to so much proof, that even the most credulous cannot doubt. We are sorry that we could not afford the expense to give the necessary cuts referred to in the original.
Let us turn our subject, however, to the Book of Mormon, where these wonderful ruins of Palenque are among the mighty works of the Nephites:-and the mystery is solved.
On the 72d page of the third and fourth edition of the Book of Mormon it reads as follows: And it came to pass that we began to prosper exceedingly, and to multiply in the land. And I, Nephi, did take the sword of Laban, and after the manner of it did make many swords, lest by any means the people who were now called Lamanites, should come upon us and destroy us: for I knew their hatred towards me
and my children, and those who were called my people. And I did teach my people, to build buildings: and to work in all manner of wood, and of iron, and of copper, and of brass, and of steel, and of gold, and of silver, and of precious ores, which were in great abundance. And I, Nephi, did build a temple; and I did construct it after the manner of the temple of Solomon, save it were not built of so many precious things: for they were not to be found upon the land; wherefore, it could not be built like unto Solomon's temple. But the manner of the construction was like unto the temple of Solomon; and the workmanship thereof was exceeding fine. And on page 280-1 is full description of the Isthmus.
Mr. Stephens' great developments of antiquities are made bare to the eyes of all the people by reading the history of the Nephites in the Book of Mormon. They lived about the narrow neck of land, which now embraces Central America, with all the cities that can be found. Read the destruction of cities at the crucifixion of Christ, pages 459-60. Who could have dreamed that twelve years would have developed such incontrovertible testimony to the Book of Mormon? surely the Lord worketh and none can hinder.
HISTORY OF JOSEPH SMITH.
Meantime we continued to translate, at intervals, when not necessitated to attend to the numerous enquirers [inquirers], that now began to visit us; some for the sake of finding the truth, others for the purpose of putting hard questions, and trying to confound us. Among the latter class were several learned priests who generally came for the purpose of disputation: however the Lord continued to pour out upon us his Holy Spirit, and as often as we had need, he gave us in that moment what to say; so that although unlearned, and inexperienced in religious controversies, yet were we able to confound those learned Rabbis of the day, whilst at the same time, we were enabled to convince the honest in heart, that we had obtained (through the mercy of God) to the true and everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ, so that almost daily we administered the ordinance of baptism for the remission of sins, to such as believed. We now became anxious to have that promise realized to us, which the angel that conferred upon us the Aaronic Priesthood had given us, viz: that provided we continued faithful; we should also have the Melchizedec Priesthood, which holds the authority of the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. We had for some time made this matter a subject of humble prayer, and at length we got together in the chamber of Mr. Whitmer's house in order more particularly to seek of the Lord what we now so earnestly desired: and here to our unspeakable satisfaction did we realize the truth of the Saviour's [Savior's] promise; "Ask, and you shall receive, seek, and you shall find, knock and it shall be opened unto you" for we had not long been engaged in solemn and fervent prayer, when the word of the Lord, came unto us in the chamber, commanding us; that I should ordain Oliver Cowdery to be an elder in the church of Jesus Christ, and that he also should ordain others as it should be made known unto us, from time to time: we were however commanded to defer this our ordination until, such times, as it should be practicable to have our brethren, who had been and who should be baptized, assembled together, when we must have their sanction to our thus proceeding to ordain each other, and have them decide by vote whether they were willing to accept us as spiritual teachers, or not, when also we were commanded to bless bread and break it with them, and to take wine, bless it, and drink it with them, afterward proceed to ordain each other according to commandment, then call out such men as the spirit should dictate, and ordain them, and then attend to the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, upon all those whom we had previously baptized; doing all things in the name of the Lord.
The following commandment will further illustrate the nature of our calling to this Priesthood as well as that of others who were yet to be sought after.
Revelation to Joseph Smith, jr. Oliver Cowdery and David Whitmer, making known the calling twelve apostles in these last days, and also, instructions relative to building up the church of Christ, according to the fulness [fullness] of the gospel: Given in Fayette, New York, June, 1829.
Now behold, because of the thing which you, my servant Oliver Cowdery, have desired to know of me, I give unto you these words: behold I have manifested unto you, by my Spirit in many instances,
that the things which you have written are true: wherefore you know that they are true; and if you know that they are true, behold I give unto you a commandment, that you rely upon the things which are written; for in them are all things written concerning the foundation of my church, my gospel and my rock; wherefore, if you shall build up my church upon the foundation of my gospel and my rock, the gates of hell shall not prevail against you.
Behold the world is ripening in iniquity, and it must needs be, that the children of men are stirred up unto repentance, both the Gentiles, and also the house of Israel: wherefore as thou hast been baptized by the hand of my servant, Joseph Smith, jr. according to that which I have commanded him, he hath fulfilled the thing which I commanded him. And now marvel not that I have called him unto mine own purpose, which purpose is known in me: wherefore if he shall be diligent in keeping my commandments, he shall be blessed unto eternal life, and his name is Joseph.
And now Oliver Cowdery, I speak unto you, and also unto David Whitmer, by the way of commandment: for behold I command all men every where to repent, and I speak unto you even as unto Paul mine apostle, for you are called even with that same calling with which he was called. Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God: for behold the Lord your Redeemer suffered death in the flesh: wherefore he suffered the pain of all men, that all men might repent and come unto him. And he hath risen again from the dead, that he might bring all men unto him on conditions of repentance. And how great is his joy in the soul that repenteth. Wherefore you are called to cry repentance unto this people. And if it so be that you should labor all your days, in crying repentance unto this people, and bring save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father?
And now if your joy will be great with one soul, that you have brought unto me in the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy, if you should bring many souls unto me? Behold you have my gospel before you, and my rock, and my salvation: ask the Father in my name in faith believing that you shall receive, and you shall have the Holy Ghost which manifesteth all things, which is expedient unto the children of men. And if you have not faith, hope and charity, you can do nothing. Contend against no church, save it be the church of the devil. Take upon you the name of Christ, and speak the truth in soberness, and as many as repent, and are baptized in my name, which is Jesus Christ, and endure to the end, the same shall be saved. Behold Jesus Christ is the name which is given of the Father, and there is none other name given whereby man can be saved: wherefore all men must take upon them the name which is given of the Father, for in that name shall they be called at the last day: wherefore if they know not the name by which they are called, they cannot have place in the kingdom of my Father.
And now behold, there are others who are called to declare my gospel, both unto Gentile and unto Jew: yea, even twelve, and the twelve shall be my disciples, and they shall take upon them my name: and the twelve are they who shall desire to take upon them my name, with full purpose of heart: and if they desire to take upon them my name, with full purpose of heart, they are called to go into all the world to preach my gospel unto every creature, and they are they who are ordained of me to baptize in my name, according to that which is written; and you have that which is written before you: wherefore you must perform it according to the words which are written. And now I speak unto the twelve: Behold my grace is sufficient for you: you must walk uprightly before me and sin not.-And behold you are they who are ordained of me to ordain priests and teachers to declare my gospel, according to the power of the Holy Ghost which is in you, and according to the callings and gifts of God unto men: and I Jesus Christ, your Lord and your God, have spoken it.-These words are not of men, nor of man, but of me: wherefore you shall testify they are of me, and not of man; for it is my voice which speaketh them unto you: for they are given by my Spirit unto you: and by my power you can read them one to another; and save it were by my power, you could not have them: wherefore you can testify that you have heard my voice, and know my words.
And now behold I give unto you, Oliver Cowdery, and also unto David Whitmer,
that you shall search out the twelve who shall have the desires of which I have spoken; and by their desires and their works, you shall know them: and when you have found them you shall show these things unto them. And you shall fall down and worship the Father in my name: and you must preach unto the world, saying, you must repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ: for all men must repent and be baptized; and not only men, but women and children, who have arriven to the years of accountability.
And now, after that you have received this, you must keep my commandments in all things: and by your hands I will work a marvelous work among the children of men, unto the convincing of many of their sins, that they may come unto the kingdom of my Father: wherefore the blessings which I give unto you, are above all things. And after you have received this, if you keep not my commandments, you cannot be saved in the kingdom of my Father. Behold I Jesus Cerist [Christ], your Lord and your God, and your Redeemer, by the power of my Spirit, have spoken it. Amen.
ASCENT OF MOUNT SINAI.
"In the afternoon of March 23d, they commenced the slow and toilsome ascent along the narrow defile, between blackened, shattered, cliffs of granite, some eight hundred feet high, and not more than two hundred and fifty yards apart, which seemed ready at any moment to fall upon their heads. The whole pass was filled with large stones and rocks, the debris of those cliffs. As they advanced the sand was occasionally moist, and on digging into it with the hand, the whole was soon filled with fine sweet water.
At half past three o'clock they reached the top of the defile, from which the Convent was two hours distant. The interior and loftier peaks of the great circle of Sinai soon began to open upon them,-black, rugged, and desolate summits; and as they advanced, the dark and frowning front of Sinai itself (the Horeb of the Monks) began to appear. They were still gradually ascending, and the valley was gradually opening; but as yet all was a naked desert. Afterwards, a few shrubs were sprinkled round, and a small encampment of black tents was seen on their right, with camels and goats browsing. The scenery was uncommonly wild and desolate, strikingly resembling the mountains around the Merde Glace, in Switzerland.
As they advance, the valley still opened wider and wider, with a gentle ascent, and became full of shrubs and tufts of herbs, shut in on each side by lofty granite ridges, with rugged shattered peaks a thousand feet high, while the face of Horeb rose directly before them, when they involuntarily exclaimed, 'Here is room enough for a large encampment.' Reaching the top of the ascent, a fine broad plain lay before them, sloping down gently towards the south-southeast, enclosed by rugged and venerable mountains of dark granite, stern, naked, splintered peaks and ridges of indescribable grandeur; and terminated at the distance of more that a mile, by the bold and awful front of Horeb, rising perpendicularly in frowning majesty, from twelve to fifteen hundred feet in height. It was a scene of solemn grandeur, wholly unexpected, and of overwhelming interest. On the left of Horeb, a deep and narrow valley runs up South-Southeast, between lofty walls of rocks, as if in continuation of the southeast corner of the plain. In this valley, at the distance of near a mile from the plain, stands the convent. The deep verdure of its fruittrees [fruit trees] and cypresses is seen as the traveller [traveler] approaches, an oasis of beauty amid scenes of the sternest desolation. The whole plain is called Wady er-Rahah; and the valley of the convent is known to the Arabs as Wady Shu'eib, that is the 'Vale of Jethro.'
Still advancing, the front of Horeb rose like a wall before the travellers [travelers]. One can approach quite to the foot and touch the mount. As they crossed the plain, their feelings were deeply affected, finding here, so unexpectedly, a spot perfectly adapted to the Scriptural account of the giving of the Law. No one has hitherto described this plain, nor even mentioned it, except in a slight and general manner; probably because most travellers [travelers] have reached the convent by a different route, without passing over it. Another reason may be the fact, that neither the highest point of Sinai, (now called Jebet Musa,) nor the loftiest summit of St. Catharine, is visible from any part of it. The breadth of the plain, at a particular point, was
found to be nine hundred yards; though in some parts it is wider. The length, in another direction, was two thousand three hundred and thirty three yards.-The northern slope of the plain was estimated to be somewhat less than a mile in length, by one third of a mile in breadth. The whole surface, including one or two recesses or wadys, amounts to nearly two square miles. It is obvious, that here was room enough to satisfy all the requisitions of the narrative in Exodus, so far as it relates to the assembling of the congregation to receive the law.-Here, also, one may see the fitness of the injunction, to set bounds around the Mount, that neither man nor beast might approach too near.
The northern brow of Horeb, which overlooks the plain er-Rahah, rises perhaps 500 feet above the basin. The distance to the summit is more than half a mile. The extreme difficulty, and even danger of the ascent is well rewarded, by the prospect which is spread out from the top.
'Our conviction,' continues Dr. Robinson, 'was strengthened, that here, or on some one of the adjacent cliffs, was the spot where 'the Lord descended in fire,' and proclaimed the Law. Here lay the plain where the whole congregation might be assembled; here was the mount which one could approach and touch, if not forbidden; and here the mountain brow, where alone the lightnings, and the thick clouds would be visible, and the thunders and the voice of the trumpet be heard, when 'the Lord came down in the sight of all the people upon Mount Sinai." We gave ourselves up to the impression of the awful scene."'-Rev. Dr. Robinson.
36 Chapel Street, Liverpool.
EXTRACT OF A LETTER.
You may expect after September, a great ingathering of the Saints from this land-things are in a dreadful condition here, and the desire of the Saints to escape is quite unexampled. I rejoice to say that many excellent and respectable individuals have been added to the church of late, and many are enquiring [inquiring].
Br. Pratt and family talk of leaving England in January, and of being in Nauvoo by the first of March.
We are very short of news from Nauvoo; we have received nothing save the "Times and Seasons" dated Feb. 15.
From Jahn's Biblical Archaeology.
Respecting the Knowledge of God before the time of Christ, as developed by Philosophy.
Not a single philosopher had any idea of a God of such an exalted character, as to be the agent in the construction of the Universe, till ANAXAGORAS, the disciple of Hermotimus. This philosopher came to Athens in the year 456 before Christ, and first taught, that the world was organized or constructed by some MIND or mental being, out of matter, which this philosopher supposed, had always existed. Socrates, Plato, and others adopted, illustrated, and adorned this opinion.
Aristotle, on the contrary, supposed the world to have existed in its organized form eternally, and that the SUPREME BEING, who was coexistent, merely put in motion.
The Epicureans believed a fortuitous concurrence of atoms to have been the origin of all things. Many were atheists; many were skeptics, who doubted and assailed every system of opinions.
Those, who maintained the existence of a framer of architect of the world, (for no one believed in a creator of it,) held also to an animating principle in matter, which originated from the supreme architect, and which animated, and regulated the material system.
Things of minor consequence, especially those, which touched the destiny of man, were referred by all classes, to the government of the gods, who were accordingly the objects of worship, and not the SUPREME ARCHITECT. Paul gives a sufficiently favorable representation of this defective knowledge of God, Rom. 1:19-24. After all, it may be made an inquiry, whether Anaxagoras or Hermotimus had not learnt [learned] some things respecting the God of the Jews from the Jews, who were sold as slaves by the Phoenicians into Greece, Joel 3:6, or from the Phoenicians themselves, who traded in Ionia and Greece, and whether these philosophers did not thus acquire that knowledge, which was thought to have originated with themselves. Perhaps they derived their notions of an eternal architect from the doctrines of the Persians respecting Hazaruam or the endless succession of time, and Ormuz. However this may be, we observe on this topic,
I. That the Hebrews remained firm to their religion before their acquaintance
with Grecian philosophy, although many receded from it, after forming such an acquaintance.
II. The philosophic doctrine respecting the architect of the world, rested on arguments of so subtle a kind, that they could not have been estimated by the Jewish populace, and could not have been applied by them, to confirm their minds in religious truth. For, according to Cicero, de Nat. Deorum, Lib. 1. 6. such was the contention, even among the learned, in respect to the doctrine of the gods, that those who had the most strength and confidence on their side were compelled to doubt.
We do not make the above extract so much for the intrinsic value of the article, as to show the danger of philosophising [philosophizing] upon religion:-Paul was well aware of this course when he exclaimed, "beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the traditions of men; after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ." The whole doctrine of salvation, as revealed by God at sundry time, has been diametrically opposed to philosophy. The world by wisdom know not God. Before the flood, and after, men, although they had been created upright, sought out many inventions, which, when viewed closely, all go to put God a great way off,-or to make him out a complete-nothing, showing that without the spirit you cannot know the living God.
TIMES AND SEASONS.
CITY OF NAUVOO,
THURSDAY, SEPT. 15, 1842.
The following letter was read to the Saints in Nauvoo, last Sunday week, and a copy forwarded to us for publication:-and cordially we give it a hearty welcome, and a happy spread among those who love the truth for the truth's sake.
September 1st, 1842.
To all the Saints in Nauvoo:-
Forasmuch as the Lord has revealed unto me that my enemies, both of Missouri and this State, were again on the pursuit of me; and inasmuch as they pursue me without cause, and have not the least shadow, or coloring of justice or right on their side, in the getting up of their prosecutions against me: and inasmuch as their pretensions are all founded in falsehood, of the blackest die, I have thought it expedient, and wisdom in me to leave the place for a short season, for my own safety and the safety of this people. I would say to all those with whom I have business, that I have left my affairs with agents and clerks, who will transact all business in a prompt and proper manner: and will see that all my debts are cancelled [canceled] in due time, by turning out property, or otherwise as the case may require, or as the circumstances may admit of. When I learn that the storm is fully blown over, then I will return to you again.
And as for the perils which I am called to pass through, they seem but a small thing to me, as the envy and wrath of man have been my common lot all the days of my life; and for what cause it seems mysterious, unless I was ordained from before the foundation of the world, for some good end, or bad as you may choose to call it. Judge ye for yourselves.-God knoweth all these things, whether it be good or bad. But nevertheless, deep water is what I am wont to swim in: it all has become a second nature to me. And I feel like Paul, to glory in tribulation, for to this day has the God of my Fathers delivered me out of them all, and will deliver me from henceforth; for behold, and lo, I shall triumph over all my enemies, for the Lord God hath spoken it.
Let all the Saints rejoice, therefore, and be exceeding glad, for Israel's God is their God: and he will mete out a just recompense of reward upon the heads of all your oppressors.
And again, verily thus saith the Lord, let the work of my Temple, and all the works which I have appointed unto you, be continued on and not cease: and let your diligence, and your perseverance, and patience, and your works be redoubled; and you shall in no wise lose your reward saith the Lord of Hosts. And if they persecute you, so persecuted they the prophets, and righteous men that were before you. For all this there is a reward in heaven.
And again, I give unto you a word in relation to the baptism for your dead. Verily, thus saith the Lord unto you concerning your dead:-When any of you are baptised [baptized] for your dead, let there be a Recorder; and let him be eye witness of your baptisms; let him hear with his ears, that he may testify of a truth, saith the Lord; that in all your recordings, it may be recorded in heaven; that whatsoever you bind on earth, may be bound in heaven: whatsoever you loose on earth, may be loosed in heaven; for I am about to restore many things to the earth, pertaining to the priesthood, saith the Lord of Hosts.
And again let all the records be had in order,
that they may be put in the archives of my Holy Temple, to be held in remembrance from generation to generation, saith the Lord of Hosts.
I will say to all the saints, that I desired with exceeding great desire, to have addressed them from the stand, on the subject of baptism for the dead, on the following sabbath. But inasmuch as it is out of my power to do so, I will write the word of the Lord from time to time, on that subject, and send it you by mail, as well as many other things.
I now close my letter for the present, for the want of more time: for the enemy is on the alert, and as the Savior said, the prince of this world cometh, but he hath nothing in me.
Behold my prayer to God is, that you all may be saved. And I subscribe myself your servant in the Lord, prophet and seer of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
In order to give the community a fair understanding of the treatment which the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, has received from the government where it has been located, we shall revert to scenes gone by, and documents already published:-And in the first place, in union with the Declaration of Independence, "we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" and that the constitution of the United States and of the several states, save Louisiana, have ample provisions made for the enjoyment of religious liberty.
It can not have been forgotten so soon, that oppression, and want of the liberty of conscience, were among the first grievances that caused our government to usher into existence; nor should it be less a matter of surprise, that the sons of the fathers of our freedom, should have become so soon tainted with that tyranny, cruelty, oppression, and inhumanity which has overwhelmed and ruined kingdom after kingdom, and nation after nation-but so it is-and in 1838, without cause, the inhabitants of Jackson county, Missouri, signed the first specimen of mob law, from which we make the following extracts:-
"We, the undersigned, citizens of Jackson county, believing that an important crisis is at hand, as regards our civil society, in consequence of a pretended religious sect of people, that have settled and are still settling in our county, styling themselves Mormons: and intending as we do to rid our society, peaceably if we can, forcibly if we must: and believing as we do that the arm of the civil law does not afford us a guarantee, or at least a sufficient one, against the evils which are now inflicted upon us, and seem to be increasing by the said religious sect; deem it expedient and of the highest importance, to form ourselves into a company for the better and easier accomplishment of our purpose; a purpose which we deem it almost superfluous to say, is justified as well by the law of nature as by the law of self-preservation."
"They openly blaspheme the most High God and cast contempt upon His Holy Religion, by pretending to receive Revelations direct from Heaven-by pretending to speak in unknown tongues by direct inspiration."
"We therefore agree, that after timely warning, and upon receiving an adequate compensation for what little property they cannot take with them, they refuse to leave us in peace as they found us, we agree to use such means as may be sufficient to remove them. And to that end, we severally pledge to each other, our lives, our bodily powers, fortunes, and sacred honors!"
According to the above combination the church was driven from Jackson county, and Gov. Boggs, then acting as Lieutenant Governor; and living in this said county, sanctioned this first regular mob edict, that ever disgraced the asylum of liberty: Gov. Dunklin kept himself in with both parties, and performed a solemn nothing. After the trial of Col. Pitcher, for driving us off and taking away our arms, he gave an order for our arms to be returned, but never enforced it, and we never got them. Our losses, for lands, wheat fields, about two hundred houses burnt to the ground, cattle, farming utensils, and plunder of all descriptions, could not be less than one hundred thousand dollars! which have never been remunerated! Our armistice from the Jackson county persecution and tribulation, was performed in the surrounding counties, but mainly in Clay, where, to a certain extent, we shared and reciprocated hospitality enough to live, till another excitement caused another move. The arguments used against us this time, were as follows:-
"It is apparent to every reflecting mind, that a crisis has arrived in this county, that requires the deep, cool, dispassionate consideration, and immediate action of every lover of peace, harmony and good order. We cannot conceal from ourselves the fact, that at this moment the clouds of civil war are rolling up their fearful
masses and hanging over our devoted county, solemn, dark and terrible."
"We do not contend that we have the least right, under the constitution and laws of the country, to expel them by force. But we would indeed be blind, if we did not foresee that the first blow, that is struck at this moment of deep excitement, must and will speedlly [speedily] involve every individual in a war, bearing ruin, woe, and desolation in its course. It matters but little how, where, or by whom the war may begin, when the work of destruction commences, we must all be borne onward by the storm, or crushed beneath its fury. In a civil war when our home is the theatre [theater], on which it is fought, there can be no neutrals; let our opinions be what they may, we must fight in self-defence [defense]."
To save this horrible bloodshed and show our respect for the constitution and laws of our beloved country, we removed by compromise, and soon after had the joy and honor to occupy a new county, which was made expressly for our people, and called Caldwell. Here was began to spread and beautify the country more in two years than the whole State of Missouri had done in ten, notwithstanding the expense of our removal could not have been less than twenty five thousand dollars. But alas, as we began to enjoy our rights in common with other citizens, that same wild, ferocious, jealous disposition which had dictated, and consummated our expulsion from the counties of Jackson and Clay, agreeably to the before quoted edicts of blind infatuation, now assumed the character of official dignity and "authority," and after struggling some months, against such fearful odds, the whole church of twelve to fifteen thousand souls, yielded to the third specimen of mobocracy, viz:-
"Head Quarters of the Militia, City of Jefferson, Oct. 27th 1838.
Sir,-Since the order of the morning to you, directing you to come with four hundred mounted men, to be raised within your division, I have received, by Amos Rees, Esq. and Wiley C. Williams, Esq., one of my aids, information of the most appalling character, which changes entirely the face of things, and places the Mormons in the attitude of an avowed defiance of the Laws, and of having made war upon the people of this State. Your orders are therefore, to hasten your operations and endeavor to reach Richmond, in Ray county, with all possible speed. The Mormons must be treated as enemies and must be exterminated, or driven from the State, it necessary for the public peace.
Their outrages are beyond all description. If you can increase your force, you are authorized to do so, to any extent you may deem necessary. I have just issued orders to Major General Wollock of Marion county, to raise five hundred men, and to march them to the northern part of Daviess county and there to unite with Gen. Doniphan of Clay-who has been ordered with five hundred men, to proceed to the same point for the purpose of intercepting the retreat of the Mormons to the north. They have been directed to communicate with you by express. You can also communicate with them if you find it necessary. Instead therefore, of proceeding as at first directed to reinstate the citizens of Daviess in their houses, you will proceed immediately to Richmond and there operate against the Mormons. Brigadier General Parks, of Ray, has been ordered to have four hundred of his Brigade in readiness to join you at Richmond. The whole force will be placed under your command.
(Signed) L. W. BOGGS.
Governor and Commander in-Chief."
Let it be remembered that this self same Lilburn W. Boggs, is now swearing out affidavits constantly for the purpose of transporting Joseph Smith to Missouri, to obtain justice!-Friends of humanity, if there are any, what think ye, can Missouri do unto others as she would that others should do unto her? Is she justified, as a member of our great Republican family, professing to be governed by constitutional privileges, and equal laws, while as one man, her citizens rise up and put at defiance the civil law, acknowledged as the only rule of right between man and man, for the damning and forever disgracing mob laws, by which she has disfranchised and expelled from her blood stained soil, the church of Christ of Latter Day Saints? The blood of our fathers; the blood of our martyrs who have stained her soil; the voice of suffering humanity; the whispering of honest consciences: and the spirits waiting for redemption, aside from the heavenly hosts, exclaim, NO! Every honest patriot says NO!-And sooner or later, in awful judgment, God, in his anger, will thunder-No! Then, and not till then will weak humanity and weak authirity [authority] learn and know how much better it is to follow after righteousness, than to sport with innocence! Then will wicked men, bearing rule, ascertain that vengeance belongs to the Lord and he will repay! and the calamity shall cover the mocker.
"FACTS ARE STUBBORN THINGS."
From an extract from "Stephens' Incidents of Travel in Central America," it will be seen that the proof of the Nephites and Lamanites
dwelling on this continent, according to the account in the Book of Mormon, is developing itself in a more satisfactory way than the most sanguine believer in that revelation, could have anticipated. It certainly affords us a gratification that the world of mankind does not enjoy, to give publicity to such important developments of the remains and ruins of those might people.
When we read in the Book of Mormon that Jared and his brother came on to this continent from the confusion and scattering at the Tower, and lived here more than a thousand years, and covered the whole continent from sea to sea, with towns and cities; and that Lehi went down by the Red Sea to the great Southern Ocean, and crossed over to this land and landed a little south of the Isthmus of Darien, and improved the country according to the word of the Lord, as a branch of the house of Israel, and then read such a goodly traditionary account, as the one below, we can not but think the Lord has a hand in bringing to pass his strange act, and proving the Book of Mormon true in the eyes of all the people. The extract below, comes as near the real fact, as the four Evangelists do to the crucifixion of Jesus.-Surely "facts are stubborn things." It will be as it ever has been the world will prove Joseph Smith a true prophet by circumstantial evidence, in experiments, as they did Moses and Elijah. Now read Stephen's story:
"According to Fuentes, the chronicler of the kingdom of Guatimala [Guatemala], the kings of Quinche and Cachiquel were descended from the Toltecan Indians, who, when they came into this country, found it already inhabited by people of different nations. According to the manuscripts of Don Juan Torres, the grandson of the last king of the Quiches, which was in the possession of the lieutenant general appointed by Pedro de Alvarado, and which Fuentes says he obtained by means of Father Francis Vasques, the historian of the order of San Francis, the Toltecas themselves descended from the house of Israel, who were released by Moses from the tyranny of Pharaoh, and after crossing the Red Sea, fell into Idolatry. To avoid the reproofs of Moses, or from fear of his inflicting upon them some chastisement, they separated from him and his brethren, and under the guidance of Tanub, their chief, passed from one continent to the other, to a place which they called the seven caverns, a part of the kingdom of Mexico, where they founded the celebrated city of Tula."
ELDER RIGDON, &C.
On one of the last Sabbath's in August, Elder Rigdon made his appearance on the stand, and though he was somewhat emaciated from ill health, brought upon him by the malignant persecutions of Missouri, yet to behold an old veteran in the cause of our Redeemer, rise to address a congregation of the saints, was at once animating. That face, from whence eloquence once flowed copiously, made a welcome appearance, in its place among the heads of Israel,-He was not upon the stand to renounce his faith in Mormonism, as had been variously stated by enemies and licentious presses, but appeared to bear his testimony of its truth, and add another to the many miraculous evidences of the power of God. Neither did he rise to deliver any regular discourse, but to unfold unto the audience a scene of deep interest, which had occurred in his own family. He had witnessed many instances of the power of God, in this church, but never before had he seen the dead raised: yet, this was a thing that had actually taken place in his own family: his daughter Eliza was dead;-the doctor told him that she was gone, when, after a certain length of time she rose up in the bed and spoke in a very powerful tone to the following effect, in a supernatural manner:-and said to the family that she was going to leave them, being impressed with the idea herself, that she had only come back to deliver her message, and then depart again:-saying the Lord had said to her the very words she should relate,-and so particular was she in her relation, that she would not suffer any person to leave out a word, or add one. She called the family around her and bade them all farewell, with a composure and calmness that defies all description:-still impressed with the idea that she was to go back. Up to the time of her death, she expressed a great unwillingness to die, but after her return, she expressed equally as strong a desire to go back. She said to her elder sister, Nancy, it is in your heart to deny this work, and if you do, the Lord says it will be the damnation of your soul. In speaking to her sister Sarah, she said, Sarah, we have but once to die, and I would rather die now than wait for another time. She said to her sisters, that the Lord had great blessings in store for them, if they continued in the faith; and after delivering her message she swooned but recovered again. During this time she was cold as when laid in the grave, and all the appearance of life, was the power of speech. She thus continued till the following evening, for the space of thirty six hours:-at which she called her father unto her bed and said to him, that the Lord had said to her, if he would cease weeping for his sick daughter, and
dry up his tears, that he should have all the desires of his heart; and that if he would go to bed and rest, he should be comforted over his sick daughter, for in the morning she should be getting better, and should get well. That the Lord had said unto her, because that her father had dedicated her to God, and prayed to him for her, that he would give her back again. This ceremony of dedicating and praying, took place when she was struggling in death, and continued to the very moment of her departure; and she says the Lord told her, that it was because of this that she must go back again, though she herself desired to stay.
She said concerning Geo. W. Robinson, as he had denied the faith, the Lord had taken away one of his eye-teeth, and unless he repented, he would take away another. And concerning Dr. Bennett, that he was a wicked man, and that the Lord would tread him under his feet. Such is a small portion of what she related.
Elder Rigdon observed, that there had been many idle tales and reports abroad concerning him, stating that he had denied the faith, but he would take the opportunity to state that his faith was and had been denied unshaken in the truth. It has also been rumored that I believe that Joseph Smith is a fallen prophet:-In regard to this, I unequivocally state, that I never thought so-but declare that I know he is a prophet of the Lord, called and chosen in this last dispensation, to roll on the kingdom of God for the last time.
He closed by saying, as it regards his religion, he had no controversy with the world, having an incontrovertible evidence, that through the obedience to the ordinances of the religion he now believes, the Lord had actually given back his daughter from the dead.-No person need therefore come to reason with him, to convince him of error, or make him believe another religion, unless those who profess it, can show that through obedience to its laws, the dead has been and can be raised;-if it has no such power, it would be insulting his feelings to ask him to reason about it. And if it had it would be no better than the one he had, and so he had done with controversy-wherefore, he dealt in facts, and not in theory.
TO THE SAINTS ABROAD.
"And this stone, which I have set a pillar, shall be God's house: and of all that thou givest me, I will surely give the tenth unto the." Gen. 28: 22.
We have placed this text at the head of this article, to stir up the minds of the Saints abroad, by way of remembrance, that the Temple of God at Nauvoo is still in progress, for the salvation of the living and the dead; that winter, in its ordinary coldness is approaching; and that the laborers upon the Temple will need clothes to continue the work, wherefore, we, whose hearts are warmed by the spirit of God, feel to call upon the saints abroad, in humility and meekness, to show their faith by their works, and if they believe in the God of Jacob, to be sure and give as much for "God's house" as did that pilgrim of the former days.
Many brethren here, instead of a "tenth," labor almost continually upon the house of the Lord, and where is the charity of the churches abroad if they neglect to furnish clothing, against the chilly winds of winter? Do ye not know that Paul said to Timothy:-Now the end of the commandment is charity, out of a pure heart, and good conscience, and faith unfeigned. What a joy a gratification it must be to the saints, who possess such principles as Paul, and have this world's goods, to have a chance to manifest their love of the commandments and brethren, by sending cloth, clothes, or means that will bring them. Remember, brethren, that beautiful expression, "the laborer is worthy of his hire."
When abroad among the churches, the elders tell us, that many say that "they would gladly labor their tenth, if they were here" Now, how much like lively members in the church of our blessed Redeemer, it will be, to send a tenth of your labors from home, as a reasonable portion, dedicated to the great work of the Lord in the last days. We do not wish to be always calling upon the brethren abroad to help us, it looks so much more virtuous, charitable, and God-like, for them to do of their own free will and accord. The reward of the faithful is great: the generation to come will rise up and call them blessed,-even so, blessed is the name of the Lord, and he that keepeth his commandments.
We would also say a word in favor of the Nauvoo House; for that building is going on by revelation, and we desire that those who are able should help in this as well as the Temple. Brethren, come over from Macedonia and help us. The kingdom is the Lord's and for every good deed you do you shall in no wise lose your reward.
A manual synopsis of the holy scriptures, in the order of a concordance, and an appendix of ecclesiastical history, for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, has recently been published by Elder B. Winchester, in the city of Philadelphia. It contains 256 pages in small
type, and, if we should judge, from a hasty perusal, will be a useful prompter to the travelling [traveling] elders. Its small form renders it convenient. The present agents are
Wm. Small, Pittsburgh, Pa.
L. R. Foster, New York City.
Erastus Snow, Salem, Mass.
Price, (Portable form) 75 cents.
" Morocco bound, 62 1-2 cents.
The usual deduction to wholesale purchasers. Orders received at the corner of Sixth and Buttonwood Streets, Philadelphia-post paid.
We promised the minutes of a Special Conference, which was held in the city, in August last. As little business, more than to send forth laborers in the vineyard, was done, it has not been considered of sufficient importance to occupy a space in this number.
LETTER FROM WILLIAM ROWLEY.
20, Upper Pitt Street, Liverpool, }
June, 1842. }
My Dear Father, Brother, and Friend,-It is with no small degree of pleasure that I take up my pen to scribble a few lines in reply to your very kind, affectionate, welcome and intelligent letter; and I feel truly, that I am writing as unto a father, because through your instrumentality I was begotten again to a lively hope through the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ-and I ever wish to cherish a grateful remembrance of this, in thus being rescued from the vain traditions of men, in which I had been so long entrameled and bound up. I can, I think, enter in some degree into those high and holy emotions which have pervaded in your bosom, in the contemplation and retrospection of the time when you were thus diffusing the light and truth of heaven, which had been for so long a period lost in the midst of an overwise and priest ridden people; and I know and am certain that had you not been sent of God-called of him, as was Aaron, to that Apostolic office, you would not, you could not have endured what you and your dear brethren did for the truth's sake. But thus sent-thus qualified-thus sustained-you endured all things as good soldiers; and I do pray that our Heavenly Father will still bless you-yea, doubly bless you, so that when he may again send you forth you may sow and reap an overabundant harvest, in bringing many souls into the new and everlasting covenant.
As you will have by the same conveyance, a letter from brother Harrison containing, I suppose, more information relative to the progress and welfare of the church than I can give, since you left, I shall not go into particulars, but just state that the cause of truth has progressed wonderfully, notwithstanding this sect is every where spoken against; but how true is that remark of yours: "the gospel must be received in its native simplicity--its humble, unassuming garb-we must be little children-divest ourselves of preconceived opinions, and enter in by the gate." Yes, dear sir, here is the grand turning point. Every day convinces me more and more, it is these humiliating principles that causes the heart of man to rebel and reject them, notwithstanding they were so clearly set down and practically illustrated by the Saviour [Savior] himself. You say "it would do your heart good to be in our midst in Nauvoo." The daily contemplation and idea of one day being in you midst, always does my heart good. I seem to take fresh courage and look up and onward to that time when I shall indeed be with you, surrounded by the brethren-by those, and by him, that were thus the gifted men sent to gather us out of mystery and tradition, even Babylon. I do thank you for thus giving me that personal assurance of the prosperity of the cause-as I relied fully upon your testimony when here, so can I now place the same implicit confidence in what you have now stated; and from that I do wish myself "in your midst." In reply to your kind enquiries [inquiries] after the health of myself, my dear children, mother and sister, I am thankful to say that hitherto the God of heaven hath been very gracious unto us in giving us health, with every other needful blessing. It would have given me great pleasure had I had to have communicated that any of my friends were any nearer in embracing the everlasting gospel-but there seems to be a more determined resistence [resistance] of the truth-closing their eyes and ears by prejudice from every argument that can be brought and refusing to listen to those principles which when received in simplicity and sincerity bring life, joy and peace to the soul. How long they will thus shut their eyes I know not, but I fear until it is too late-or until they are awakened from their priest ridden sleep by those judgments that shall come upon all those that reject this gospel. You may now have heard before this, from our brother Edwin Mitchell, and his partner, that just as they were leaving I was on the point of taking to myself another helpmate in a neighbor of theirs, in whom I found those excellencies and characteristics for making a good and affectionate wife, together with a heart already prepared, in some degree, through your instrumentality, for an obedience to the gospel. That has been consnmmated [consummated], and though at present she seems terrified at the
idea of leaving her native land-and having also an aged mother, and she too somewhat dependant [dependent] upon her, being sightless, are powerful drawbacks, I find, but I doubt not the way will be made clear and open for us, and we shall ere long be "in your midst." If I have had any fear in coming myself, it has arisen from these considerations: that being so physically unfitted for an agricultural life, that I should not be able to sustain myself and others with me-and to begin in a commercial line, my means at the present are so very limited that I have feared to venture on that account; but still I think when I am there, something or other will be open for me, according to my means, and wish myself again and again in your midst. I am exceedingly obliged for the trouble you took in writing to Cockson for me; he wrote to me soon after and said I should have it soon, but it is not come yet. I will write to him again and request him to transmit the same to you, and should he do so you can place that in the Temple fund, as you think best. I wish it were double the sum. I was exceedingly interested in the perusal of the extracts from the Book of Abraham. The discovery and translation are arguments sufficient to convince any that are candid, that the God of heaven must be in our midst; and yet, strange to say, they even reject this with every other evidence.-Many thanks for the number of the Times and Seasons.
Every thing around and about us in the commercial and political world is looking dark and portentious [portentous], as if something was about to transpire that would astonish and affright the nation. Men's hearts are beginning to quake and to fear. There is nothing but distress, perplexity, wretchedness, crime, and poverty stalking throughout the length and breadth of the land: and it seems quite impossible for matters to go on much longer in the way they are. Please present my very best remembrances to elders Richards, Young and Kimball-the former especially, having been more in his company-also, to brethren Mitchels, Melling, and others, whom you think I might know. I shall be exceedingly obliged if you will write to me again at your earliest convenience, as a letter from you will at all times be most cheering and instructive; and as I have made known to you some of my feelings and circumstances your counsel will be valuable. I think I told you that at the death of my mother I should then come into a share of property, but as this event is quite uncertain, I seem to think it is useless waiting for dead men's shoes, but to come at once; but then, having so little without, would it not be better to wait a few years longer; and possible by coming I might lose that, and more from another quarter, altogether. If I studied my own inclinations I should come at once, but when I look at those around me, it behooves me to consider which is the best path to pursue and adopt.
A great many of the Saints intend coming in the fall; Harrison, Greehow, Boyd, Hall, Dumville, and others, and especially your own friends, brother Cannon will come, I expect, the very first ship that sails in September. I think there seems to be a liberal spirit prevailing throughout the church in reference to the Temple, but all feel the pressure of the times. I am sure they will do what they can. I find my paper drawing rapidly to a close-need I say in conclusion accept my warmest heartfelt thanks for all you have done-still pray for me, that I may be kept faithful-and may the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ bless you abundantly in all things. My best remembrances to you and yours, and to all the brethren and sisters, and believe me to remain yours, very sincerely in the new and everlasting covenant.
TO JOHN TAYLOR.
The travelling [traveling] Elders, by obtaining subscriptions for the Times and Seasons, and Wasp, and calling upon Post Masters to frank the same according to the Post Office regulation, will confer a favor and be entitled be the gratuity proffered in the Terms.
The charge preferred against Elder Andrew L. Lamoreuux [Lamoreaux], in this paper, July 1st, has been withdrawn, and he restored to fellowship.
From the Antiqua Herald, June 24
EARTHQUAKE AT ANTIGUA.
This island has been visited by two severe shocks of an earthquake. The first shock commensed [commenced] at about five minutes after ten o'clock this forenoon, and continued for about the space of one minute. It was succeeded by another shock about one minute after the vibration of the first shock and subsided. With a vivid recollection of the horrors recently occasioned by this phenomenon at St. Domingo, eur [our] apprehensions were most awfully aroused by the first shock, which was the most severe of any similar occurrence in the island for many years; but the effects of the second shock, following so soon on its; predecessor, gave rise to feelings that bid defiance to expression; and apprehensions that no power but that of the all-wise
Disposer of events could have rendered supportable. Thus has it come to our turn, like the Jamaicians [Jamaicans], to humble ourselves before Almighty God, and in the most devout and solemn manner to return thanks for this great mercy vouchsafed us in preserving us from the ruin and devastation with which it has been His divine will recently to visit the Haytiens [Haitians]. It is with a deep sense of gratitude to the giver of all good gifts, that we say we are happy to report that no life has been lost on this most alarming occasion. The principal injury that has been occasioned by this terrific occurrence is to be seen at the Jail and House of correction, the walls of which have been severely rent. To this may be added the fall of a pair of stairs, and the partial overthrow of the ruins of the calamitous fire of April, last year. How grateful ought we to be for that portion of Divine mercy by which our lives have been spared!
A VISIT TO JOE SMITH.-We present the following extract from a letter received some days ago, from a clergyman now in Illinois:-Exchange Paper.
"I spent the night in the city of the 'Latter Day Saints.' In the morning I visited the lions of the place.
Nauvoo contains a population variously estimated at from five to ten thousand. Probably there are six to seven thousand people there. It is a beautiful location. The city is laid out in acre lots, each lot having a house, generally of one story; it extends from 3 to 4 miles along the river, and runs back about the same distance, and this space is all built on. I called to see the prophet, and had a short but pleasant interview with him. I asked him about the gold plates which he professes to have dug up an translated into the Book of Mormon. He said: 'Those plates are not now in this country; they were exhibited to a few at first, for the sake of obtaining their testimony-no others have ever seen them, and they will never be exhibited again.' He next asked me-
'What is the fundamental doctrine of your faith?' 'The unity of God-one God in one person.' 'We don't agree with you. We believe in three Gods. There are three personages in Heaven-all equal in power and glory, but they are not one God.' I suppose, from what I heard, that Smith makes it a point not to agree with any one in regard to his religious opinions, and adapts himself to the person with whom he happens to be talking for the time being."
(->) Tolerable fair: Though the idea that Joseph Smith adapts his conversation to the company, is an error. Joseph Smith opposes vice and error, and supports his positions from revelation: no odds whether there be two, three, or "Gods many." The Father, and the Son are persons of Tabernacle; and the Holy Ghost a spirit, besides the sons of God: for the scriptures say: "Ye are Gods."
To the Editor of the Times and Seasons.
DEAR BROTHER:-Having commenced our mission to the east, yesterday we held our first conference at Br. I. Morley's; we had a good time-the brethren here are in good spirits. We ordained 19 elders and baptized 12. We expect next Saturday and Sunday to hold a two days meeting in Quincy, being the 17, 18th inst., on the 24, 25th at Payson, the 1, 2d of Oct. at Pleasant Vale. the 8, 9th of Oct. Pittsfield, the 15, 16th Oct. at Apple Creek in Green co. From thence we shall proceed to Jacksonville, and Springfield.
If you please notice the above in your paper for the benefit of those friends scattered abroad.
Yours in the everlasting covenant
H. C. KIMBALL.
Morley Settlement, Sept. 12, 1842.
To those who covenant to keep the commandments of the Lord, we recommend a perusal of the 35th chapter of Jeremiah.
BOOKS OF MORMON, &C.
Just published and for sale, Books of Mormon, and Hymn Books, together with some other publications in defence [defense] of the faith of the saints.
Nauvoo. Aug. 20, 1842.
The Times and Seasons, Is edited, printed and published about the first fifteenth of every month, on the corner of Water and Bain Streets, Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois, by JOSEPH SMITH.
TERMS.-Two Dollars per annum, payable in all cases in advance. Any person procuring five new subscribers, and forwarding us Ten dollars current money, shall receive one volume gratis. All letters must be addressed to Joseph Smith, publishers, POST PAID, or they will not receive attention.
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