This is an adaptation of the Book Review that I wrote of the Signature Books title “Lost Apostles: Forgotten Members of Mormonism’s Original Quorum of Twelve” for the Association for Mormon Letters Book Review Panel. I will be presenting portions of this review at the Fall 2014, Salt Lake Sunstone Symposium, on Friday August 1st in Panel Session 262. It is entitled “AUTHORS MEETS CRITICS: THE LOST APOSTLES: FORGOTTEN MEMBERS OF MORMONISM’S ORIGINAL QUORUM OF TWELVE”. At this point the panelists are both of the books’ authors and myself. Registration for the symposium is here and is cheaper if you register before July 30th. Both authors will also present on Thursday in Session 131 titled “WILLIAM SMITH AND THE NOTORIOUS HODGES BROTHERS’ CRIMINAL GANG AT NAUVOO.” This should be FASCINATING! They go in-depth to the Hodges Gang in the book and I cover it in some detail in my review.
Title: Lost Apostles: Forgotten Members of Mormonism’s Original Quorum of Twelve
Author: William Shepard and H. Michael Marquardt
Publisher: Signature Books
Genre: Historical Biography
Year Published: 2014
Number of Pages: 400
DISCLAIMER: I believe that “Lost Apostles” is one of the most important works of historical biography in the Joseph Smith Restorationist movement from the last 10 years. It approaches the lives and stories of the “Lost” members of the original members of the Twelve in a way that has never been done before and it either provides information not previously available or synthesizes and analyzes the previously available information in a way so as to provide new light and insight on these important early leaders of the Restorationist movement. Because of this I believe that this book will prove to be of much importance to all of those in the greater Restorationite family: Brighimites, Josephites, Strangites, Bickertonites, Hedrickites, etc. That being said, while I have studied many of these groups, and while I have been known to occasionally visit Community of Christ meetings, I am a lifelong member of the Utah based LDS Church, and much of what I discuss in this review reflects on and discusses what I learned about the “Lost Apostles” from my LDS upbringing verses what I learned from reading the book.
Growing up in Provo, Utah in the 1970’s and 80’s I learned a lot of LDS history, first in Junior Sunday School and Primary, and later in Seminary and Mutual. In this pre-historical time long before the internet and downloadable media, our lessons were often taught with flannel boards, film strips, and Church approved paintings. It was a time when LDS membership was exploding around the world, especially in South America, and being a “Mormon” was suddenly mainstream and cool. The Church Correlation and curriculum departments were at their unchallenged heights as they perfected the art of creating basic, standard lessons that were designed to take the stories of Church history and turn them into simple examples of “lessons learned” — of either “good” or “bad” — that could penetrate every continent, visit every clime, sweep country, and sound in every ear until the purposes of correlation should be accomplished and every Church member believed that “Church History” was always and unchallengingly faith promoting. Indeed the correlation and curriculum committees were working under the following apostolic charge that was originally delivered to seminary teachers who would be teaching LDS history:
“Church history can be so interesting and so inspiring as to be a very powerful tool indeed for building faith. If not properly written or properly taught, it may be a faith destroyer…“There is a temptation for the writer or the teacher of Church history to want to tell everything, whether it is worthy or faith promoting or not…“In an effort to be objective, impartial, and scholarly, a writer or a teacher may unwittingly be giving equal time to the adversary…“In the Church we are not neutral. We are one-sided. There is a war going on, and we are engaged in it. It is the war between good and evil, and we are belligerents defending the good…” (1)
“Before you joined this Church you stood on neutral ground. When the gospel was preached, good and evil were set before you. You could choose either or neither. There were two opposite masters inviting you to serve them. When you joined this Church you enlisted to serve God. When you did that you left the neutral ground, and you never can get back on to it. Should you forsake the Master you enlisted to serve it will be by the instigation of the evil one, and you will follow his dictation and be his servant.” (2)
“(Remember) The story of Symonds Ryder, who drops into apostasy because the prophet can’t spell his name correctly, we think, you IDIOT, where is your good sense? So our purpose is to help our students be those that are looked to with inspiration. That people read their journals and use them to teach future Church history classes…“The Question was asked, how was Brigham Young able to colonize a desert wilderness? And the answer came simply, by the time he said ‘this is the right place’, most of the physically weak had died and all of the spiritually weak had been left behind…
“(After telling a story about how flawed and broken steel is useless for horseshoes and must be “thrown into the fire”) Let me read
you who’s not (at the Far West temple site meeting preparing to start the Apostolic mission to England), but should have been,because they were at one time members of the quorum of the twelve. Thomas B. Marsh, William McLellin, Luke Johnson, William Smith, John Boynton, Lyman Johnson, when the hammer struck (them), the metal shattered, out of the forge comes the steel and that’s one of the great lessons to learn for us.” (3)
As I learned these important lessons from Church History in my youth about who was “weak” and who was “strong” I learned that even the early leaders of the Church were not immune from “shattering” or being “idiots”. I still remember a Boy Scout camping trip from the mid 1980’s where our Young Men’s President helped us to memorize the names of the original Quorum of Twelve Apostles of the Restoration. As we memorized their names he also taught us the roles that each of them played in Church history, and the life lessons that we could learn from each of them. The “White Hat Heroes” were: David W Patten (he asked the Lord to kill him because he had experienced some doubts), Brigham Young (he kept the faithful members of the Church together and got the ones who obeyed him safely to Utah), Heber C. Kimball (was the grandfather of our prophet, took Satan on personally in England and won), Orson Hyde (dedicated Jerusalem for the return of the Jews, wavered a little, took his lumps, and was faithful to the end), Parley P. Pratt (wrote a cool autobiography and lots of Church books and tracts), and Orson Pratt (super smart, helped invent the
odometer, did cool astronomy stuff). The “Black Hat Heels” were: Thomas B. Marsh (there wouldhave been an “M” on our mountain in Provo if it hadn’t been for that darn pint of cream!), William E. McLellin (the one who thought that he was smarter than the Prophet and wanted to beat him up), Luke S. Johnson (was weak, thought that money was more important than God, but managed to sort of come back), William B. Smith (the “bad” Smith Brother), John F. Boynton (weak, proud, not willing to keep serving, threatened the faithful), and Lyman E. Johnson (weak, loved Money more than God, killed himself because his life out of the Church was so miserable and he was too proud to come back).
For many years, this was my view and understanding of the original Latter-day Quorum of the Twelve. Then I began to expand my reading and studies. As I read more diverse sources about Church history I slowly started to see that it was far more complicated than the black and white stories that I had learned in my youth and was still hearing in General Conference, Sacrament meeting talks, Institute lessons, and in the Adult
Sunday School “Church History” curriculum. I began to realize that my youthful understanding that the people that I had learned about could be divided up into Mary Poppinsesque (practically perfect in every way) heroes, and one dimensional, apostate, “tool of Satan” villains, whosesole purpose in life was to serve as a warning/lesson to me, was NOT correct. As I began to understand this viewpoint I realized that I too was not “practically perfect” in my faith, nor was I likely to be. This made me want to learn about the people from Church history in a real, human way. I wanted to know more about their struggles; especially the struggles and lives of the early leaders who at first sacrificed so much and then seemingly turned their backs on it all. I wanted to learn what these early Apostles were really like, what really caused them to “stumble” and to question, and I wanted to know what really happened to them after they did.
In the introduction to “Lost Apostles” Shepard and Marquardt, after writing that the “lost” nature of the men that they are writing about it all a matter of perspective (they and their families would not consider them “lost”), state that besides reporting their research, their main reason for writing this book is to “correct the injustice we feel has been done to the memory of these men” (p. 4) through the telling of just such stories as the ones that I was taught as a youth. They then affirm that my experience has definitely been the norm, stating that around theglobe, these “Lost Apostles” are only mentioned or taught about “in the service of cautionary tales about what happens to you if you disobey the prophet, exhibit pride, or fail to follow the commandments” (p. 4). They also discuss that the accomplishments of these men are rarely mentioned and that when they are discussed in LDS Sunday School manuals they are “openly ridiculed” (p. 5).
“The steamer Sarah Ann passed up the river, Doctor Foster and Lyman E. Johnson were on board. When the boat landed Jackson Redden was standing by and L. E. Johnson stepped up to him to counsel concerning his father and brother’s case. Dr. R. D. Foster got a number of men from the boat and undertook to haul Redden on board and take him off with them. Redden knocked the first man down that undertook to lay hands on him; a few of the brethren who were not far off ran to Redden’s assistance and with sticks and stones soon drove the whole crew on board; the captain started immediately, without unloading; the clerk left the bills of lading with a man who handed them to Albert P. Rockwood, but appeared not to know what he did. After the boat started Doctor Foster shot his pistol at the brethren but hurt no one. One of the brethren was cut on the back of the neck with a stone.” (HC 7:486-487, qtd in “Lost Apostles”, pp 259-260)
Before I get any farther, let me provide a brief description of the book. “Lost Apostles” is cloth bound and was produced according to the high quality standards that one normally expects from Signature Books. “Lost” is made up of eleven chapters. The first three, “Discovering Mormonism”, “Missionaries”, and “School of the Prophets,” give the backgrounds of the men who would be called as the first quorum of Apostles in the Restoration. It tells of their learning about the Church, of their service, valor, loyalty, sacrifice, dedication and zealous service as missionaries, and of the various deeds that they did that brought them to the forefront of early Mormonism and caused them to be considered as apostle candidates. The next two chapters, “A Quorum of Twelve Apostles” and “Jostling for Position,” cover the circumstances surrounding the calling of the Twelve, what happened when they were called, their early apostolic missionary journeys, and the conflicts they experienced with each other and other Church leaders as they, Joseph Smith, and other Church leaders tried to establish the order of the Church hierarchy, tried to define the lines of authority, and determine just who presided over whom. The chapters “Collapse of Kirtland” and “The End of Zion” discuss the “Apostasies”/conflicts that occurred in the Church in Ohio and Missouri in 1837 and 1838. They discuss the origins/causes of those conflicts, the involvements, reactions, and roles that the “Lost Apostles” are traditionally assumed to have had and their actual reactions, roles, and deeds during those times. “The New Twelve Minus One” covers the Nauvoo era for the “Lost Apostles” meaning that it largely focuses on William Smith since he was the only one of them still in the quorum at that time. The final three chapters, “From Heights to Greater Heights,” “From Prairie to Desert,” and “An Endless Search,” discuss each of the six “Lost Apostles” in pairs from the time that they lost their standing in the quorum through their deaths.
The first such example is in an account of a sermon by William McLellin. It reports that he said that the Church was founded by a young, 23 year old man, after he “was visited by an angel (Moroni)”. The report then goes on to give details about the multiple visits by Moroni to Joseph Smith directing him to go to Cumorah and to obtain and translate the gold plates, the translation process, and a brief description of the Book of Mormon story and its relation to the Bible vis–à–vis Ezekiel 37:16-17. No mention is made of the “First Vision” (see page 377). Next is an 1832 account of a meeting held by Lyman Johnson and Orson Pratt. It states that:
In 1827 a young man called Joseph Smith…inquired of the Lord what he should do to be saved – he went to bed without a reply, but in the night was awakened by an angel…who gave information where the (Book of Mormon) Plates were deposited (p. 379).
I could write so much of what I liked about “Lost Apostles” and praise so much about what I learned from it that this review could grow to book length itself. But, I do not want to spoil all of the surprises and I do not want this review to become too cumbersome, so I will focus on how Shepard and Marquardt treat two of the “Lost Apostles”: Lyman Johnson and Thomas B Marsh. I choose to focus on these two in part because there is an online available CES video that features the “official” perspective on these two “Lost Apostles” (6) thus allowing for an easy comparison between the LDS “official”/”institutional” perspective on these two men and the one provided by Shepard and Marquardt. I also chose Marsh because the idea that he left the Church after being “offended” in the “Milk Strippings incident” may be one of the top five most well-known and referred to church history stories of all time. An entire LDS Adult Sunday School lesson is built around it (7) and it has been quoted or referred to in at least three fairly recent LDS General Conference talks. In 1984 Gordon B. Hinckley, then a counselor in the First Presidency, built the entire final talk of the April General Conference around the “Milk Strippings incident” taking twelve minutes to retell the story in the traditional manner (8). In October 2006, David A. Bednar spoke on the theme of “And Nothing Shall Offend Them”. To provide an example of someone who “chose” to be “offended” versus someone who “chose” to be “faithful” he spent about a minute in the middle of his talk telling the “Milk Strippings” story and comparing Marsh’s “electing to take offense” to Young’s “acting in accordance with correct principles” (9). And most recently, Thomas S. Monson spent about one third of his October 2009 Priesthood session talk entitled, “School Thy Feelings, O My Brother” retelling the “Milk Strippings incident” (10) using the Marsh story as an example of someone who failed to “school his feelings” and suffered and caused the whole church to suffer for it.
My Dear Husband, … Elders Marsh and Patten were about to set of[f] for Missouri, they all had the plearure of hearing the letter read and rejoiced with us for your speedy and safe ariveal upon the shores of Europe. … I have filled a good part of my sheet with a Revelation which I thought would be more interesting to you than any thing I could write. I copyed it from Elder Marsh’s book as he wrote it from Josephs mouth he told me there was one thing made known to Joseph while he was receiving it which he told him not to write; it was this, that the dor of proclamation could not be affectually opened till elder Marsh should go or send some one whom he should ordain … [spelling from original maintained]
My Dear Heber, could you have been in the house of the Lord here yesterday, surely your heart would have lept for joy, as did mine….Br Mclelin will soon have the priviledg of seeing Br Marsh and Patten who are filled with light and truth, and will be able to strengthen their brethren. I look forward with pleasure to the time when you will receive this letter (if you ever do), for I think it will cheer your heart. I well remember with what feelings you left Kirkland while your brethren (whom you loved) set themselves in battles aray, as it were, against you. But you can now fondly anticipate meeting them with glad hearts and cheerful countenances (this letter is quoted on page 152 of “Lost Apostles”).
 Verily I say unto my servant Thomas, thou art the man [whom] I have chosen to hold the keys of my Kingdom (as pertaining to the Twelve [Apostles]) abroad among all nations that thou mayest be [struck out in the original] my servant to unlock the door of the Kingdom in all places where my servant Joseph, and my servant Sidney, and my servant Hyrum cannot come for on them have I laid the burden of all the Churches for a little season. Wherefore whithersoever they shall send you, go ye, and I will be with you.[p.208] And in whatsoever place ye shall proclaim my name an effectual door shall be opened unto you that they may receive my word. Whosoever receiveth my word receiveth me and whosoever receiveth me receiveth those (the First Presidency) whom I have sent, whom I have made counsellors for my name’s sake unto you./8/ And again I say unto you that whosoever ye shall send in my name by the voice of your brethren the Twelve [Apostles] duly recommended and authorized by you shall have power to open the door of my Kingdom unto any nation whithersoever ye shall send them inasmuch as they shall humble themselves before me and abide in my word and hearken to the voice of my spirit. (14)
If something like this occurred it quickly faded as Thomas Marsh lived at Joseph Smith’s home (at the time) and worked on editing the Elders’ Journal.
The Lyman Johnson that I learned about in official histories, scouts, Sunday school, seminary, and institute was just as he is depicted in the video: greedy, selfish, rebellious, confrontational with other Church leaders, and after his exit from the Restoration Church sad, miserable, and depressed to the point of being suicidal. The Lyman Johnson that I learned about from “Lost Apostles” was a completely different man. This Lyman Johnson was a zealous and a valiant missionary who brought many into the fold (see pages 45-50 for one mission report as an example). He was righteous enough and spiritually in tune enough to receive an angelic visitation from the Angel Moroni who showed him the Gold Plates in much the same fashion that the Three Witnesses saw them (see pp. 43, 46, 91). This visitation to Lyman Johnson is something that I had never heard or read about until I read “Lost Apostles.” As an interesting side note, during the time that I was reading “Lost Apostles” and working on this review, my priesthood quorum had a lesson called “Witnesses of the Book of Mormon” (17). During the lesson I raised my hand and tried to share what I had learned about Johnson’s visitation with Moroni and his having been shown the Gold Plates. The teacher cut me off and said that what I was saying was impossible because “The Church” only taught about the “Three and Eight Witnesses” and since Lyman Johnson became an “Apostate” he must have been lying about the experience.
He ate and drank damnation to himself. He did not go and hang himself, but he did go and drown himself, and the river went over his body while his spirit was cast into the pit where he ceased to have the power to curse either God or His Prophet in time or in eternity (in Millennial Star 57:339-340, Quoted on page 152 of “Lost Apostles”).
Just as it was with Lyman Johnson, the Thomas B. Marsh that I learned about in “Lost Apostles” was *NOT* the Thomas B. Marsh that I
learned about as a youth or that is portrayed in the CES video. That Thomas B Marsh was always vain, proud, and weak-willed. He seemed so unfaithful you wondered how he got called in the first place, and really seemed to have few if any redeeming qualities. The main thing that he was known for, besides his pride in general, was that he left the Church over a pint of cream, thus missing out on becoming president of the Church (and having a BYU named after him — that one ALWAYS came up when I was growing up in Provo, Utah), and thus he was the perfect example of how if we were not careful we would let our pride lead us right out of the Church as it had with Thomas B Marsh.
Elder Marsh is a most excellent Man. He seems to be a Man of great faith. He says that he believes that the difficult[ie]s between the Presidency & the twelve will very shortly be settled (p. 114).
It was during this time period that something changed for Thomas B. Marsh that caused him to go from being one of Joseph Smith’s strongest defenders to turning “states evidence” against him. The traditional story for why Marsh left the Church is the well-known “Milk Stripping’s” incident. Shepard and Marquardt document that there are four sources for this story, none of which are contemporary and three of which are tied to George Albert Smith. The earliest source is also the briefest. In 1845 George Albert Smith, speaking in the Nauvoo Temple to a select group and as recorded in William Clayton’s diary, said that, “The apostacy of Thomas B. Marsh was caused by so small a thing as a pint of strippings” (quoted on p. 182). The most famous and oft-quoted account was also by George Albert Smith and was given ten years later on April 6, 1856. The third account was by Henry Bigler, a nephew of George Albert Smith, and was not recorded until the 1890’s. The final account is by Wandle Mace and was also apparently recorded in the 1890’s (pp 181-182). While admitting that there could have been a disagreement over milk and cream between the two women, Shepard and Marquardt demonstrate pretty well that this “incident” and long standing “pride problems” were not the reasons that Marsh left and testified against the Saints. During the 1838 “Mormon War” Marsh preached pacifism, caution, and humility to his fellow Saints (p. 123, 185) at a time when they were organizing the “Danites” to seek revenge on the Missourians and even discussing killing critics of the church (p. 176). He objected to Danite activities, including driving excommunicated members out of Far West p. 176-177). He was opposed to the atrocities being committed by Mormons (p. 183). Up through this time of violence, Marsh was one of the few top leaders to consistently defend Joseph Smith (pp 193-194). He had walked hundreds of miles without purse or scrip laboring for the church, endured persecution, and “took seriously his role as quorum leader” and his responsibility for “spreading the gospel around the world” (p. 292). It was when Sidney Rigdon denounced “pacifists” in a public speech and when the Mormons attacked Gallatin and Millport when something broke in Marsh and he made the decision to leave Far West and to testify against Joseph Smith. After demonstrating Marsh’s true reasons for leaving Mormonism Shepard and Marquardt conclude that:
The strippings story reduces (Marsh) a man of proven judgment and leadership, into a petty and vindictive caricature…that may be the very reason why the story became so popular…it alleviated the dissonance people experienced when trying to make sense of the mass apostasy of the 1830’s (p. 183).
Also, while the last CES video clip accurately quotes the transcription of Marsh’s speech, it very inaccurately represents how Brigham Young treated him that day. In the video Brigham Young gently guides an ailing Marsh to the pulpit and then looks at him with looks that convey support, kindness, and sadness. In reality, once Marsh concluded his discourse, Young stood up and mocked the aging former apostle. Young made fun of his health, how he looked, and joked about how he could get any woman he wanted while Marsh was so feeble no woman would want him (pp 298-299). Once again, the story as presented by Shepard and Marquardt is far more detailed and accurate than anything previously available. *PLEASE NOTE* I am *NOT* accusing President Gordon B. Hinckley, President Thomas S. Monson, Elder David A. Bednar, or CES of lying about or willfully misrepresenting the story or history of Thomas B. Marsh or Lyman Johnson. They are simply telling the traditional story that has been passed down to them. I believe that they were sincere in their desires as they told the stories as they knew them. But now, Shepard and Marquardt have, through their meticulous and detailed research, given us the most accurate versions of these stories and they have provided for all of the Restoration family the version of history on these men that should become the new standard (18).
The enthusiasm these men showed and their ability to work independently were winning traits in the mission field but led to their lack of success at church headquarters… they were promoters outside a revival tent beckoning people inside, and not the main event (pp. 58-59).
For the apostles, the fire of adversity was not Zion’s Camp, but rather the privations and persecution of the mission field. Selecting these seasoned missionaries also reinforced the importance to the church of proselyting and the purpose of the Quorum of the Twelve in spreading the gospel message (57-58).
In the next chapter of the book they cover Zion’s Camp and discuss that nine of the twelve men selected were in Zion’s Camp, two were waiting in Missouri, and only one, John Boynton, missed it all together. The authors then state:
The issue is not whether they did their part, but whether, as the later explanation went, the march on Missouri was divinely designed as a boot camp for future apostles, testing their perseverance and faith. It does not seem to have been so (p. 74).
Joseph was personally impressed by the Zion’s camp participants who had remained loyal to him through adversity. Yet despite the pressure to succumb to Joseph’s influence, the three witnesses disregarded this display of military zeal and drew instead upon missionary veterans, *some* of whom had not been in the militia. They gravitated toward men who were strong willed and had independent spirits, who were forceful speakers (pp. 80-81, emphasis mine).
George A. Smith, an eyewitness to the conflicts of 1837, told an audience *thirty years* later that the dissenters were guilty of ‘adultery or covetousness’ and had ‘gone to hell’.
As John Smith informed his son George A. Smith, though without a complete grasp of the church structure, ‘John E. Page and John Taylor are appointed to fill [vacancies in the] Bishoprick in the place [of] Luke Johnson & John Boynton.’
For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take. (Acts 1:20)
The term bishopric was also used in the 1830s to describe priesthood positions generally, as in, for example, the idea that one could have his “bishoprick” taken from him (19).
Inasmuch as there are those among you who deny my name, others shall be planted in their stead and receive their bishoprick Amen (20).
On October 10, after holding out for two months, the starving, outnumbered, and highly stressed (Mormon) residents (of DeWitt) bowed to the inevitable and surrendered…
The more certain end of Marsh’s career as resident of the Twelve came on October 24 when he agreed to testify to the mayhem he had observed. He did so in Richmond before Justice of the Peace Henry Jacobs, a Mormon who would later marry Zina Huntington. According to her statement, she later became a plural wife of Joseph Smith and then Brigham Young…
The loss of so many prominent leaders in Kirtland and Far West left a troublesome void that Joseph Smith could not fill during his incarceration at Liberty jail. By the time he escaped custody in April 1839 and arrived in Commerce…, Illinois, the high council had approved ordination of John E. Page and John Taylor to the Quorum…which occurred in Far West on December 19, 1838 (p. 197).
This makes it sound like Page and Taylor were called in Smith’s absence and without his knowledge or approval (at least, that is how I read it) because he had been unable to fill the vacancies in the Twelve before his incarceration. But Page and Taylor (along with Willard Richards and Wilford Woodruff) had been issued their calls by Joseph Smith in July of 1838 through a document now canonized as LDS D&C 118. This was previously acknowledged by the authors on pages 155 and 180. I do not think that the authors were purposefully being deceptive; this paragraph was, to me, worded in a way that was unclear. Continuing from there, the next page (198) mentions the call in 1841 of Lyman Wight to the twelve, the mission of the Twelve to England, their return to Nauvoo, the introduction of polygamy, and the introduction of “the endowment” to the Twelve and other key members. The authors then state: “The new Quorum of the Twelve remained intact throughout the remainder of Joseph’s life…” (p. 201). This is not quite accurate; at this point the authors had not mentioned the short term ejection of Orson Pratt from the Quorum, the call of Amasa Lyman to take his place, and Orson Pratt’s return to the Twelve with Amasa Lyman being moved to the First Presidency to open up a spot for him. I also want to be a little nit-picky about something in this chapter. At the bottom of page 202 it is stated that Sidney Rigdon “was most likely manic depressive”. “Manic depressive” is really more of a lay term. It is not in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders of the American Psychiatric Association. The official diagnosis (assuming one could be made on a person long dead) would be “Bipolar Disorder.”
Boynton’s sister Olive Boynton Hale and her husband, Jonathan, remained in the Church, both eventually dying in September 1846 in Council Bluffs.
Even William Smith wrote in the Sangamo Journal that Ervine Hodges was “running at large in Nauvoo” under the protection of Brigham Young (p. 261, cited letter printed November, 1845)
William Clayton wrote that ‘Lyman Johnson, one of the old Twelve, headed a party of the mob from Keokuk’ that plundered the city, although Clayton was on the western side of Iowa by September 25, 1846, and could not have known this himself (p. 261).
Apostle Matthias Cowley, speaking at the October 1901 general conference, reported, ‘I remember hearing President Snow say on more than one occasion how determined Lyman E. Johnson was to see an angel from the Lord. He pled with and teased the Lord to send an angel to him, until he saw an angel; but President Snow said that the trouble with him was that he saw an angel one day and saw the devil the next day, and finally the devil got away with him.’ (22, See page 265 of Lost”)
What is touching about his story is the bond he felt with the other apostles, especially Amasa Lyman, Heber Kimball, Orson Pratt, and Brigham Young (p. 266).
One can imagine that since William was in the audience in Kirtland when Elijah appeared to his brother Joseph behind the curtain, the meaning was probably that William was more like the ancient Hebrew prophet than a literal reincarnation knowing that the Brighamites had begun taking oaths against the United States to ‘avenge the blood of Joseph Smith on this nation,’ Smith and Sheen protested in a petition to the Federal Committee on Territories in Late 1849, adding that those in Utah were guilty of ‘blasphemy’ (p. 335-336).
…Sound judgment and moral consistency. They had remained loyal to Joseph through thick and thin, when most other people would have long since abandoned him. When some of them decided to break off their association with the church, it was not a decision they took lightly (p. 136).
These men had signed up for a Church and had inherited a military camp. They had not expected to be required to follow orders, and their consciences, after leading them to the church, led them away from it (p. 161).
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Due From Signature in September 2014, “The Council of Fifty: A Documentary History” (YTFIF to the initiated) from Jedediah S. Rogers, editor of “In the Presidents Office: The Diaries of L. John Nuttall, 1879-1892” Significant Mormon Diaries Series No. 11
1) Boyd K Packer, “The Mantle is Far, Far, Greater Than the Intellect” in “Charge to Religious Educators,” 3rd ed. pp. 64-67.
2) Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith , 324.
3) Lund, Gerald, “A Stone Out” CES tape DCS89A-08, 1989 CES Doctrine and Covenants Symposium, tape copy and digital copy in my possession, emphasis in his delivery).
4) See for example, Shipps, Jan (1985), Mormonism: The Story of a New Religious Tradition, Urbana, Illinois: University of Illinois Press, page 30 where she says that the First Vision was “practically unknown” among early members; Bushman, Richard Lyman (2005), Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling, New York: Knopf, page 39 which states, “At first, Joseph was reluctant to talk about his vision. Most early converts probably never heard about the 1820 vision;” and James B. Allen, “The Significance of Joseph Smith’s ’First Vision’ in Mormon Thought.” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Vol. 1 No. 3 (1966): 29–46)
5) For more on why this pronunciation/spelling may be important see for example: “Retelling the Greatest Story Ever Told: Popular Literature as Scripture in Antebellum America,” Clyde R. Forsberg, Jr., “Dialogue” 29:04 pp. 69-86; “The Roots of Early Mormonism: An Exegetical Inquiry” MA Thesis Clyde R. Forsberg, Jr., University of Calgary 1990; “The Quest for the Historical Nephi”, Clyde R. Forsberg, Jr., Ph. D. Dissertation Queen’s University, 1994; blog posts by Michael G Reed at http://culturalmormoncafeteria.blogspot.com/2011/07/captain-kidds-golden-bible.html and http://culturalmormoncafeteria.blogspot.com/2010/10/comore-meroni.html and also, “Joseph Smith, Captain Kidd Lore, and Treasure-Seeking in New York and New England during the Early Republic” by Noel A. Carmack, “Dialogue” 46:3 pp 78-159.
6) “If They Harden Not Their Hearts” CES, “Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Media”, 1998, available to stream or download at https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2010-07-096-if-they-harden-not-their-hearts?lang=eng .
7) Lesson 24: “Be Not Deceived, but Continue in Steadfastness” – Doctrine and Covenants and Church History: Gospel Doctrine Teacher’s Manual, (1999), 134– 39 https://www.lds.org/manual/doctrine-and-covenants-and-church-history-gospel-doctrine-teachers-manual/lesson-24-be-not-deceived-but-continue-in-steadfastness?lang=eng
8) “Small Acts Lead to Great Consequences”, Gordon B. Hinckley, April 1984 General Conference. Excerpt on YouTube here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcQ9cCuV_Bk , The link to the full video and transcript at the lds.org general conference website was not working when I was finishing this review, nor was the transcript in the May Ensign for that year accessible.
9) “And Nothing Shall Offend Them”, David A. Bednar, October 2006 General Conference. Excerpt here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOv_sI3s1qg full talk and transcript here https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2006/10/and-nothing-shall-offend-them?lang=eng
10) “School Thy Feelings, O My Brother”, Thomas S. Monson, October 2009 General Conference. Excerpt here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozx9m_aZFDU , Full talk and transcript here, https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2009/10/school-thy-feelings-o-my-brother?lang=eng
11) This segment can be watched here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y0PjduRhEYY I do realize that this video is meant to be brief and it could be argued that there was no time to show any of Lyman Johnson’s faithful actions in it. This segment also contains an anachronistic error. When the new convert meets Lyman Johnson, Brigham Young, and Orson Hyde he exclaims, “I didn’t reckon on meeting so many apostles my first day in Kirtland” to which Johnson replies, “Here in Kirtland you can’t hardly take a step without meeting an apostle or two.” In the time frame depicted in the video the Apostles did not yet have “General Authority” status. They were still considered a “travelling high council” whose main function was to direct missionary work and in theory they only had authority outside of the organized “stakes of Zion”. They were not seen as the Church’s top level file leaders and were not addressing Church wide conferences every six months. A new convert back then would not have been as near as impressed to meet an apostle (assuming that they even knew their names) as one would be now.
12) Clip is here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ITC-aen1tQ&feature=youtu.be
13) Essay/talk available in “Sperry Symposium Classics, the Doctrine and Covenants, pp.275-294 or at https://rsc.byu.edu/archived/selected-articles/exalt-not-yourselves-revelations-and-thomas-b-marsh-object-lesson-our-day
14) A Revelation given [in] Kirtland, July 23rd 1837, Scott H. Faulring, An American Prophet’s Record, p.207–208 – THANK YOU Joe Geisner and Johnny Stephenson
15) Clip here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dKrIjDuVVB0
16) Clip at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sjES2W8xiM
17) In Teachings of the Presidents of the Church, Joseph Fielding Smith, https://www.lds.org/manual/teachings-of-presidents-of-the-church-joseph-fielding-smith/chapter-9-witnesses-of-the-book-of-mormon?lang=eng
18) Both President Hinckley and President Monson include a major anachronism in their talks. They each state that when the disagreement came up between Sister Marsh and Sister Harris that the first thing that they did was to appeal “the matter was … to the home teachers to settle.” This is impossible. “Home Teachers” did not exist in the 1830’s. Their predecessors, “Ward Teachers” did not exist in the 1830’s. Even the predecessors to “Ward Teachers” called “Block Teachers” came about in the Nauvoo time period. George A Smith, in his account that has become the basis for all retellings, said that after the two women quarreled, “it became a matter to be settled by the Teachers” (JD 3:293 http://contentdm.lib.byu.edu/cdm/ref/collection/JournalOfDiscourses3/id/91 ) Smith would have been referring to the “Teachers Quorum” then filled by adults and *NOT* by 14 year old boys. According to the Doctrine and Covenants the Teachers Quorum has the responsibility to “The teacher’s duty is to watch over the church always, and be with and strengthen them; And see that there is no iniquity in the church, neither hardness with each other, neither lying, backbiting, nor evil speaking” (DC 20:53-54).
21) For more on the complicate marriage life of Zina Huntington Jacobs Smith Young see the Signature Books title “4 Zinas” http://signaturebookslibrary.org/?p=23433
22) Matthias Cowley, General Conference, October 1901 p. 18, for a transcript of the full speech see https://archive.org/details/conferencereport1901sa
23) See, “A House Divided: The John Johnson Family,” by Keith Perkins, Ensign, February 1979, https://www.lds.org/ensign/1979/02/a-house-divided-the-john-johnson-family?lang=eng
24) “Apostasy in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”, Calvin Stephens, CES Doctrine and Covenants Conference, 1989, tape DCS89A-04, copy and digital file in my possession.
25) William Smith’s sins were perhaps the most serious and did include adultery and sexual assault, but you will have to read “Lost Apostles” for yourself to learn more about that!
26) See, http://mormon-chronicles.blogspot.com/2012/01/rescue-plan-to-address-difficulties-of.html for more information, mp3 recording of the meeting is in my possession.
27) “Come, Join with Us”, By President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, October 2013. This was the talk where he said, “One might ask, ‘If the gospel is so wonderful, why would anyone leave?’Sometimes we assume it is because they have been offended or lazy or sinful. Actually, it is not that simple. In fact, there is not just one reason that applies to the variety of situations”. https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2013/10/come-join-with-us?lang=eng