1: What is your full name?
My name, my full name?
2: Yes sir?
My name if Willam B. Smith.
3: What is your age Mr. Smith?
4: Where were you born Mr. Smith?
I was born in Royal Town, Vermont.
5: How long did you live there?
I don’t recollect that I lived there more then four or five years, I came away from there when I was quite young.
6: About how old were you when you left there?
Probably not over four or five years.
7: Who was your father?
What is that?
8: What was your father’s name?
9: How many children was there in the family?
10: There was seven children in the family, in your father’s family?
Yes sir, that is if I have counted them all up right if I number them I would not make any mistake?
11: Do you belong to a church organization?
What organization do you mean sir?
12: I asked you if you belonged to a church organization?
13: What church do you belong to?
I belong to the reorganized church at the present time, in my present church locality.
14: What is the full designation of that church by name Mr. Smith?
The church of Jesus Christ, the reorganized church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
15: When was that church founded?
As near as I have any knowledge of its history, it was some time in 1861 or 1862, I couldn’t say positively when it was, but it was along about those years somewhere. I could not state positively when it was for I was not there at the time.
16: When was the church founded of which this was the reorganization?
It was founded in 1830.
17: Founded by whom?
Who was it’s founder?
18: Yes sir.
19: Who was Joseph Smith the founder of that church?
He was the son of my father Joseph Smith and a brother of mine.
20: Were you a member of the original church?
21: When did you first become identified with the original church?
22: Where did you first become identified with it?
In the state of New York, near a place called Fayette.
23: How long did the church remain at that place as a body?
They moved away from there in 1831.
24: To what place did you go from Fayette, New York?
To Kirtland, Ohio.
25: Was there a church organization at Kirtland, Ohio, at that time?
There was a considerable number of that class of people there.
26: At that time?
27: What year was that, if you remember?
That was in 1831.
28: How long did you remain at Kirtland?
At Kirtland, Ohio?
29: Yes sir?
From 1831 to near 1837 or 1838.
30: That is when you were at Kirtland?
31: To what place did you go from Kirtland, Ohio?
From Kirtland where did we go from there?
32: Yes sir?
We came into the state of Missouri.
33: Did all the people identified with the church at Kirtland, Ohio remove to Missouri at the same time?
No sir, but there was a pretty general movement.
34: There was a pretty general movement you say?
Yes sir, but there was probably a few who did not come but remained behind at Kirtland. The removal was pretty general through.
35: To what part of the state of Missouri did they come?
They came to Caldwell County to a place now called Far West.
36: What place did you hold in the church at that time?
I was recognized as one of the twelve apostles. Under that organization I was recognized as one of the twelve apostles.
37: That was your official position?
38: How long did you continue to hold that official position under that organization?
I occupied that official position up to the time of my brothers death.
39: Which brothers death?
Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith.
40: And what occurred then?
That occurred, they were murdered in 1844, on the 27th day of June 1844.
41: After the death of your brothers Joseph and Hyrum Smith, what position did you hold in the church, if any?
I considered that that I still held a right to my apostleship, and therefore continued to preach, and make known to my people the truth according to the doctrine that I had received.
42: That was after Joseph’s death?
43: In what part of the county did you hold forth?
During that time it was in the county of Lee in the state of Illinois at a place known as Rocky Ford of the inlet.
44: How far is that from Nauvoo?
Well I don’t know, but I should judge probably eighty miles.
45: How did it happen Mr. Smith that you went from that place to Nauvoo alone?
46: He did not say that he went from Nauvoo there alone or any other way
47: Well I traced him to Nauvoo, and asked him where he was next and he told me. But I will ask the question. Did you go to Rocky Ford of the inlet, this place you spoke of?
48: Well, that is what I thought. Now who of the church went with you?
There was no one but one particular man named Aaron Hook.
49: Who was Aaron Hook?
Well he was an elder in the church.
50: Was he an elder in the church at the time of the death of your brother?
51: From what time?
I don’t know how long he had held that position, but he was an elder in the church, we recognized him as being a fellow laborer in the church, under the supposition as I understood it that he was an elder in the church.
52: How did it happen that he was the only one that went with you Mr. Smith?
I suppose because about that time the separation had taken place between me and the balance of the quorum of twelve, for a certain opposition had sprung up between me and them because of certain practices they were guilt of.
53: You may state what was the cause of that separation Mr. Smith?
The occasion of it?
54: Yes sir.
I don’t know that I could answer that question properly.
55: Well state the cause of the separation or division as best you can. I don’t know that I could state it properly without giving a discourse on it, and I didn’t expect to have to preach a sermon on that matter at this time.
56: Well it is not necessary for you to preach a discourse on it, but simply to state the cause as briefly as you can?
Well it was because I thought the party that I had absolved myself from, had changed the doctrine of the church in a manner that the teachings of the church did not justify.
57: In what respect Mr. Smith?
Well in respect to several things and especially in respect to the marriage relation.
58: When did that trouble first arise?
The first time I noticed it was in 1845.
59: At what time?
60: And that was at Nauvoo?
Yes sir, in 1845 at Nauvoo.
61: You refer to the practice of polygamy?
62: Who were the principle participants in it?
Well there was Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball and John Taylor and Willard Richards, and I might add still further Orson Hyde and Parley P. Pratt.
63: These were the ones who were the principle participants in that doctrine?
Yes sir, and there were others.
64: Do you know whether or not the church had a bishop in 1832?
65: Had a bishop in 1832?
Whether the church had a Bishop in 1832? I am a little deaf and you will have to speak loud.
66: Yes sir, that was the question as to whether or not you know of your own knowledge that the church had a Bishop in 1832?
What you want to know is whether or not I know that the church had a Bishop in 1832?
67: Yes sir, whether or not of your own knowledge you know that the church had such an officer as a Bishop in 1832?
I know it.
68: Well did the church have such an officer as a Bishop at that time?
69: What was the name of that person who acted in the capacity of a Bishop of the church in 1832?
70: Did you know him personally?
71: Where did he then he live?
He lived in Kirtland, Ohio.
72: Where did he go from Kirtland, if you know?
From Kirtland he came to Jackson County, Missouri.
73: In what year did he come from Kirtland to Jackson County, Missouri?
Int was in 1832, probably some time between 1832 and 1833. I think though it was in 1832 if my memory serves me right.
74: What were the functions of the office which he held?
To hold the treasures of the church, and to have it at his command, and to dispose of it according to the directions of the Council of the church in Conference.
75: How long did he continue to hold that position?
I think he held that position up to the time of his death.
76: Do you know what the occasion of his coming to Missouri was?
77: You know that?
I think I do.
78: To go back, you say you think he held the position of Bishop
the church up to the time of his death, —that is Edward held held that position in the church up to the time of his death?
79: I will now ask you the time of his death?
I cannot tell you sir. I do not recollect and I cannot tell you, for I don’t know the time of his death. I do not recollect when it occured sir, for I lost the history of the man in relation to the time of his death sir.
80: Now you said you know the cause or the occasion of his coming to Jackson County Missouri?
81: Well please state it?
What caused him to come to Missouri?
82: Yes sir?
He was authorized by the church at Kirtland, Ohio, after collections of money had been made for the purpose of going here into Jackson County, Missouri, and purchasing land for the church, and especially to purchase a place for a temple lot.
83: What do you know, if anything, about any particular parties who contributed to that fund?
The parties concerned in relation to raising that fund. I don’t know that I understand your question sir.
84: Well sir your statement of the question is correct?
I call to mind while we enlisted an especial member of the church to attend to the purchase of the land for the church, that the other parties who were interested in relation to money matters in connection with that fund, were Sidney Gilbert, N. K. Whitney, F. G. Williams, John Carl, William Marks, Juno Carter, Reynolds Cahoon ( or Calhoun) and Titus Billings. These were the persons that were interested in raising the funds to be lodged with the Bishop, —that is with Bishop Partridge, for the purpose of coming up here to make the purchase of the lands in Jackson County Missouri. I was acquainted personally with these men who were some of the original first members of the church, or amongst the first members of the church.
85: Who was William Marks? What office, if any did he hold in the church at that time, and where did he hold it?
He was recorded as an high priest.
86: Did the other persons of whom you have spoken, hold positions of trust in the church, or did they have any office?
I could not say.
87: You do not remember now whether they did or did not?
I couldn’t say say whether all of them did or not, but they were the ones who were appointed or selected to gather together this money for the purpose of lodging it in the hands of Bishop Partridge, and he was to proceed to Jackson County Missouri and purchase this land, which he afterwards did. I know that they were all members of the church in good standing, and amongst the first members that the church had, and I think N. K. Whitney was an officer.
88: What officer was he?
I do not recollect, but I think he was an elder or an high priest or something like that. Jared Carter was also an elder, or minister or preacher, and Reynolds Cahoon was also an elder, and Titus Billings, I do not recollect that he was anything but a common lay member of the church, But I recollect that he had something considerable to do with the raising of the funds and fitting out Bishop Partridge for his mission in settling the church here in Missourii Jackson County.
89: Did you come to Missouri?
At that time?
90: Yes sir?
No sir, I did not.
91: Did you ever come at any other time?
92: When did you come to Missouri?
It was some time in ’37.
93: To what part of Missouri did you come?
Well that was in Caldwell County at a place known as “Far West”.
94: You did not visit this part of the country at that time did you?
No sir, I did not.
95: What became of William Marks, finally, if you know?
Yes sir I do know what became of him.
96: Well if you know, as you say you do, you may state what became of him?
William Marks moved away from Nauvoo and settled into a section of country known as well as I can remember it, – at a place called Shavona Grove. He exchanged some of his property at Nauvoo for property at Shovona Grove, and lived there.
97: Where was this place you call “Shavona Grove”?
It was in Illinois.
98: How long did he remain there?
I could not tell you that. I don’t know how long he was there, but the next of him I knew after that, was his uniting with the re-organized church.
99: At what place as that Mr. Smith that he united with the re-organize church? Why I am not particularly well posted on the history of that, but if I speak from what impression or knowledge I have on the subject, I think it must have been at Plano, Illinois.
100: It was at Plano Illinois that he united with the church?
I am not positive, but I said that if I spoke from what impression or knowledge I had on that subject that it was Plano, Illinois, – or at that place that he was united with the reorganization but as to that I would not be postive, although I think it was there.
101: About what time was that?
Well I cannot be postive as to that either, but I think it was about in 1862.
102: In 1862?
Yes sir, – in the neighborhood or 1862 or 1863, – some where along there.
103: You do not know how long he might have been connected with the church prior to your information about it, do you?
With the reorganized church?
104: Yes sir?
Oh I say it is my opinion that he was still retaining his connection with the reorganized church up to the time of his death. He was in the church at the time of his death.
105: Well I understand that Mr. Smith, but you evidently do not understand my question. What I mean to ask you is that he might have been identified with the re-organized church?
Is that your question?
106: Yes sir?
107: Then he might have been in the reorganization some little time before you knew it?
108: You first knew he was a member of the re-organized church I believe you ststed some where along about 1862 or 1863?
109: Now where were you residing at the time of the re-organization?
I was residing at Lee county Illinois, at this place called Rocky Ford of the Inlet.
110: How much of a following did you have at that place?
I had about thirty members, – that is that were just at that place. I think that the Conference statictics as a general thing numberd up some where between thirty and fourty memberd.
111: Well when did you become identified with it?
Well I could not tell you the day of the month, or even the month or years but it was something like sixteen years.
112: About sixteen years from now?
Yes sir. I think that is about it, as near as I can guess at it. I cannot say any closer than that for I never kept any particular account of the day of the month, or the year that I united with the reorganized church.
113: At what place did you untie with the reorganization?
At Plano, Illinois.
114: You united with the reorganized church at Plano, Illinois.
115: What became of your congregation?
Well sir I turned them all over as far as I was concerned into the hands of my nephew.
116: What was your reason for doing that?
Because I recognized him as the legal head of the church, the legal President of the church.
117: The legal President of what church?
The original church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
118: When you say your nephew whom do you mean?
I mean Joseph Smith. the man known by that name.
119: The Joseph Smith who has been testifying in this case?
120: Is there any portion of that organization now in existence as a separate body?
121: The ones that were identified with you?
122: There is not?
123: What has become of them?
They all united with the reorganization excepting two men, and they are both dead, a man by the name of Aaron Hook and Royal Tucker, they did not come into the reorganization but remained outside and they are both dead.
124: Do you understand Mr. Smith the church doctrines, as taught by the original church?
So far as what is recognized as the first principles of the gospel I do.
125: Are you familiar with the doctrines as taught by the reorganized Chruch of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?
I am partly so, only partially so.
126: Do you hold any position in the reorganized church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?
127: What position do you hold in that reorganization?
Yes sir. I hold the position of high priest. I am an high priest in the reorganized church.
128: I believe you stated you were an apostle in the old church?
129: Then holding these positions as you do, did you have a right to preach the gospel to the church?
Holding the position as an high priest, and as I had not understood that I had lost any right to my apostleship whatever, with all the means or through the means of the apostacy of any other portion of the church, for I had still retained my faith in the original doctrines of the church. I claim I had the right under that apostleship to continue to preach and to baptize and make administrations under the order that I had received originally from the original church.
130: Now you may explain what differences there are, if any, between the doctrine of the original church, and the doctrines as taught by the reorganized church?
131: Do you feel competent to answer that question Mr. Smith?
will you please repeat the question.
131: I asked you to explain what the differences are, if any, between the doctrine of the original church as it existed in the days of Joseph Smith your brother, and the doctrine as taught and practiced by the Re-organized Church to which you now belong? Now you can answer that question Mr. Smith if you feel competent to do so?
There are three or four propositions that were introduced into the church under the counsel of the remaining twelve,
132: Well hold on Mr. Smith, – that is not responsive to the question asked you,
133: Well go on and answer the question in your own way, and if I think it is not responsive to the question I will object to it, but if I submit that the witness should be permitted to answer the question in his own way without interruption. He knows what he is about for he is a smart man, and knows what he says. Go on and finish your answers?
134: Well go ahead Mr. Smith?
And one point was that had never taught previous to that time, and it was that Adam was God, and saying also in the different dispensations that Moses was also a man God, and another was the introduction of the doctrine of Blood atonement, and that if a man obeys the propositions, – or I mean to say if a man disobeyed the propositions of that council why he had to pay for it by the forfeiture of his life, and atone for the sin by the shedding of his own blood, or allowing to be shed by others. That was the doctrine of blood atonement and it had never been taught in the old church, nor had the Adam God doctrine ever been taught in the old church, and hence they, brought the matter down to the Adam God doctrine and the Moses God doctrine, and finally these men that they left or composed the twelve at that time brought in Joseph Smith as another God, – as one of their Gods under the Adam God doctrine and blood atonement doctrine, and another point was the marriage question in regard to the plurality of wives, which was never taught before, previous to the death of Joseph and Hyrum Smith, my brothers. These new doctrines that I speak of were what caused the seperation between me and that body of the people.
135: Were those doctrines taught prior to 1844?
Do you ask me if they were taught previous to that time?
136: Yes sir?
137: They were not taught previous to 1844?
No sir, they were not and it was the teachings of these doctrines that caused me and the people who went with me to seperate from that body of the people who held to these doctrines.
138: Did the Re-organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints ever preach that doctrine?
139: They never at any time preached that doctrine, or these doctrines?
No sir, not to my knowledge.
140: Then what branch, if any, of the Mormon church did preach it?
They are called the Utah Mormons.
141: Now Mr. Smith I am going to ask you the question that I asked you a little while ago, but which you did not seem to understand. I want to ask you what the difference is, or was, if any, between the teachings of the church subsequent that is after, 1832 or 1830 say, and the teachings of the Re-organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints as they are now taught?
142: Do you hear very well Mr. Smith?
No sir, I don’t hear very well. I am rather deaf, and you will have to speak plainly and loud for me to understand you.
143: Were you acquainted with the doctrine as taught in the original church from 1830 to 1844?
I think I was.
144: Well you will have to answer that question yes, or no?
Yes sir, I was well acquainted with the doctrine of the church from ’30 to 1844.
145: That is the doctrine as taught in the original church?
146: Are you acquainted with the church doctrine since 1844? I mean Mr. Smith by that question the doctrine as taught by the Re-organized church?
147: Well what is the difference if any, as between the doctrine taught in the original Church, and the doctrine as taught in the reorganized Church of which you are a member?
I understand that the doctrine of the Re-organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, is a perfect representation of the doctrine as taught by the original church founded in 1830. I have no knowledge sir of any difference in the relation to the doctrine being taught by the reorganized church from that taught by the original church from 1830 down to 1844.
148: I want to explain Mr. Smith before commencing your examination on the part of the defendant that I propose to treat you with all due respect,
I understand. Of course I don’t propose to be treated in any other way except that is gentlemanly. Of course I know that as far as education is concerned, mine may not be the equal of yours or quite as good as that of the counsel in the case, but still I have a little memory yet, and know a thing or two. I may not be competent to answer the questions that have been asked me, but still however that may be, or what your opinion may be on that subject I think I am.
149: Will you permit me to make an explanation?
Yes sir, I am sure I have no objection to your doing so.
150: Well then permit me to explain that you entirely and wholly misunderstand me. You entirely misapprehend my meaning in making these objections, for instead of saying you were not a competent witness, I said you were a very intelligent witness, a smart man, – and knew what you were saying and how to answer questions that were asked you, but I said that reference to the question that was asked you, and so which I objected, you had not shown by your previous examination that you knew enough on that subject to answer the question in a way that would render it admissable on the trial in this case. Now that is what I said, for I have nothing in the world to gain by imputing want of knowledge in you sir. I make this explaination to Mr. Smith merely because he is an aged gentleman and eighty years of age, for if he was a younger man, I would not make it. Now Mr. Smith I will proceed with my cross-examination. Mr. Smith will you please state what was the name of the church of which you became a member before you came to Kirtland, Ohio?
I have stated that.
151: Well what was the name of that church at that time?
It was called the Church of Christ.
152: Will you please state at what point you became a member of that church?
Well it was in 1830.
153: Well were you baptized?
Yes sir, I was baptized by Oliver Cowdery in Seneca Lake, and confirmed at old father Whitmer’s in 1830 as a member of the church. I could not state the date that this took place for my private journal is not here, and if I had it I could tell you exactly when it was. I could tell you when the day of the month and year.
154: That was in New York State?
155: Will you next state when and where you at first became an office bearer in the church?
I think it was in ’32. I was admitted then to what was known in the ordinance of the church as a teacher.
156: Simply as a teacher?
157: That is what the office to which you were admitted or called was known?
Yes sir, it was so denominated at that time?
158: And that was some time in 1832?
159: At that time you were admitted to an office in the church called “teacher”?
160: And that was in 1832?
Yes sir, that is what I have said three or four times.
161: How were you admitted or received into that office?
By being ordained and accepted into that office as a teacher in the church. That was done by the sanction of the church.
162: What church?
The church at that time was called “The Church of Christ”.
163: At what time in the history of the church do you refer to as the time when the church was so known?
164: At what point were you ordained and received as a teacher?
In Kirtland, Ohio.
165: Were you inducted into office at a general conference of the church?
166: How many members did the church contain about that time?
At Kirtland about that time I should think there was probably some where three or four hundred members.
167: And were they all members of the one organization?
168: And did they all worship at the one place?
They did so.
169: Was there at that time any other organization of the same faith and order?
No under the name of the Church of Christ. There were other denominations though living in that section of country known as the Diciples, Methodists, and Presbyterians, and people that were worshipers, but there were no other church or organization acknowledged as the church organized in 1830.
170: How long was it after that, that there was another organization?
What kind of an organization?
171: Another local organization?
There was a man by the name of Brewster who claimed to have been appointed to one thing and another, and to give revelations and one thing and another of that kind, but I don’t know that he had much of a following. That was a man by the name of Brewster, and a son of his and I suppose his family, and I learned afterwards in history that there was some two or three families associated with him.
172: What did they do?
They claimed that they were the appointed church. They claimed that they were a church organized by themselves. I do not recollect that they attempted to come in under the colors of the church of Christ.
173: Well did this Church of Christ at Kirtland in 1832, spread out and have other organizations or branches at Kirtland and at other points?
174: It did?
175: When did that begin?
That begun before ’32, -that begun early in the season of ’31.
176: That was the time that the church of Christ began to spread out and have other organizations in other places besides Kirtland?
Yes sir. It was during the season of ’31 and ’32. Elders that had received the faith were appointed to travel in different localities and different parts of the country, and visited even the city of New York, Philadelphia, and Boston in 1832.
177: Well from 1832 to 1834 what was accomplished in that way?
What was accomplished in that way?
187: Yes sir?
Well sir what was accomplished in that way was that there were hundreds of individuals you might say, who embraced the doctrine which was recognized under the name of the Church of Christ.
179: Do you know, or can you state, anything in the neighborhood of the number of the organizations that were formed prior to the year 1835?
Well I would think that it wouldn’t fall much short of one thousand. One thousand or fifteen hundred. There was a great number of them established in these years up to 1835.
180: That many members?
181: That was in 1835?
182: Where, and when was the first conference held?
The first conference was held, -do you mean the first conference that was held after the organization of the church?
183: Yes sir?
It was held at Father Whitmer’s in Fayette County in the state of New York.
184: At what time?
On the 6th of April.
185: In what year?
I think it was held in 1830. The first conference was held in 1830 on the 6th day of April I think. I wouldn’t be positive as to whether it was held on the 6th of April, but it was held at Father Whitmer’s in Fayette County in the state of New York. That is the first conference I have any recollection of.
186: When was the first conference held after the church came to Kirtland Ohio?
It had been the usual practice to hold conference on the 6th of April every year, but I do not know that I can remember as to the first conference that was held after we came to Kirtland.
187: You do not remember as to that?
188: Was there a conference held at Kirtland if you remember, in 1832?
189: Was it at that conference that you were inducted into the office of a teacher?
190: How were you elected to that office, or appointed to that office or how was that?
I was elected to that office.
191: How is that parties are elected to that office, -how are they chosen?
Where the members of the church become satisfied that the individual is worthy of holding the office in the church, it is most generally signified by some means or other and the name of the person is placed before the Conference to be ordained to that office upon a recommendation being had as to his being worthy of holding an office of that kind in the church.
192: My question was with reference to the means, or by what means they were called to the office?
I do not understand your question perhaps. I understood your question to be in respect to the ordination of those officers especially that they were signified out by and special revelation. The person mentioned to the Conference or whose name in that way comes before the Conference for action, is generally well know, as is his reputation, and the Conference passes upon the question as to whether or not such persons shall be ordained according to the rules and ordinances of the church to become an officers in said church, and not by any special revelation under such circumstances.
193: I was not inquiring as to how that was done now, but I was inquiring as to how it was done in your case in 1832?
Well I have explained it I think. It was done by the consent of the church through the means of the conference. It was done during the time the Conference was being held.
194: By whom were you ordained as teacher?
I was ordained as teacher by one of the first members of the quorom of twelve who afterwards left the quorom.
195: Who was it?
Luke Johnson and John Whitney.
196: How long did you hold and exercise that office, – the functions of that office of teach alone?
Well I guess I held it about a year.
197: What was the next office you held?
Then I was ordained a priest.
198: How was that done?
It was done upon the same principles I have stated in relation to the church signifying by their consent that I should be ordained.
199: And without any revelation I believe you stated?
Yes sir, without any special revelation.
200: Upon the church signifying its consent or approval in the manner you have indicated you wee ordained an high priest?
201: By whom were you ordained?
I was ordained by Oliver Cowdery and John Whitmer, if my memory serves me right.
202: At what Conference will you please state, – were you ordained?
At the regular conference.
203: I mean the conference of what year?
Well that was in 1833.
204: That was about 1833?
Yes sir, I think that was the year.
205: By whom at that time was the conference constituted?
By my brother Joseph Smith, and Sidney Rigdon and persons occupying conspicuous positions in the church.
206: Was there any lay representation?
207: Was there any delegates sent up to the Conference at that time by the different branches of the church?
Yes sir, – they were representatives there at the conference at Kirtland, Ohio from the different parts of the country.
208: Then the Conference was composed as you have stated of ministers the priests and elders, and by delegates not holding any official positions?
The conference was partially composed of delegates that were sent in from different sections of the country, and persons who were not only members, but persons who at the same time were holding offices that came to represent the different sections of the country of the conference where they resided.
209: They came to represent the different sections of the country where they variously lived?
210: Then was any part of the Conference composed of others other than those who held offices in the different churches?
The conference was occupied and composed of members of the church who came from different localities of the country to visit the conference. The conference was visited by lay members and also by persons holding official station, – not alone those who held official station, but delegates came in who were simply members of the body.
211: If as you have stated lay members attended these conferences, did those lay delegates take part in the proceedings of the Conference which they attended?
212: They took part of, – in the proceedings of the conference which they attended in that way?
Yes sir, – they were allowed to do so by vote of the conference.
213: What kind of a vote was that?
It was a vote of the Conference on that question.
214: Well how was it taken?
It was a vote of the Conference I say to the effect that all lay delegates should be permitted to take a part in the proceedings of the Conference, – the vote of the Conference was taken on that question.
215: It was necessary that the vote should be taken?
216: But if no such vote had been taken in any particular conference could they then in that case participate?
Well I don’t know. I don’t believe there there is any class of people to which I would belong or represent that would be so destitute of the Spirit of Christianity as to forget the idea of that kind of courtesy towards their own brethern. A member of the church might come to a conference to see it, and not to take part in it actively, but if he wanted to take part in it I don’t believer there is any conference would refuse to permit him to do so. I never knew of an instance of that kind where a conference refused this small act of courtesy to lay members or delegates to come in and participate in the proceedings of the Conference. It would have been a breach of Christian ettiquette that I don’t think I would have been guilty of myself, and I don’t think any conference that ever has been held would be guilty of it.
217: Then as a matter of fact the priveledge that they enjoyed of sitting in the Conference and taking part in its proceedings and deliberations was an, – was because of the fact that the conference was courteous enough of extend to them an invitation to do so?
218: Could these lay delegates make and second motions in the same manner as any other delegate?
219: They exercised the priveledge of making and seconding motions in the same manner as other delegates or members of the conference who were members of it by reason of their official position?
220: Could they have done that unless they had been invited by the other and official members of the conference?
No sir, they would not assume to take a position of that kind, without they were invited, and having been invited they claimed that they had that right.
221: Then it is a fact that they sat in the conference as a matter of courtesy, – or by virtue of an act of courtesy extended to them by the other members of the Conference who were members of it by reason of the official positions they held in the church?
Yes it was a matter of courtesy.
222: It was that and not by reason of an inherent right they had to take part in the deliberation of the Conference?
Yes sir it was merely a matter of courtesy and good fellowship.
223: Did the female members of the church attend these conferences?
224: Were they allowed to participate in the official consideration of matters before the conference?
Never to my knowledge sir.
225: They were permitted to be present but did not have a voice in the consideration of affairs?
Never to my knowledge. They had the great and good privilege of looking on, and sanctioning what they felt disposed to by their silent faith and recognition of the doctrine they had embraced.
226: And you consider that was a high privilege they had?
Yes sir and without doubt they could thank God for that too.
227: Well let that pass. Now when were you next appointed to office in the church?
At kirtland, Ohio.
229: To what office?
To the office of an high priest.
230: By what authority?
By what authority was I appointed or made an high priest?
231: Yes sir?
By the best of authority,-by the authority of a conference appointing and setting me apart as a person worthy of the office of an high priest.
232: Is that all the authority?
233: What else was there?
The conference then se me apart as a member of the quorum of twelve.
234: That was the way that was accomplished?
235: And you were duly ordained?
236: Were you ever raised or exalted to the office of apostleship?
I never was ordained to any office higher that that of an high priest.
237: You never was?
No sir, but I was appointed by the conference as an apostle. We hold in the articles of ordinances of our church that an elder is an apostle, and especially is this so if he is an high priest, for then the nature of his office and position make him an apostle.
238: By whom were you ordained as an high priest?
By Sidney Rigdon and Martin Harris.
239: How were you called to that office?
I was called to that office was by being made by the first Presidency of the church then, that there should be a quorum of twelve apostles, a pattern of them which had existed inthe days of the old church eighteen hundred years ago, and men were appointed by that conference to fill that quorum,-of fill that office as members of the quorum of twelve. They constituted the apostles. 239 (#239 repeated)
239: if you will excuse me I will inquire,-although it may be repetition,-at what conference that was,- is at what conference it was that that action was taken?
That was in 1835.
240: Then you date the organization of the twelve from April 1835?
241: That was the time they were appointed?
242: in pursuance of what authority was the twelve organized and appointed by the Conference?
It was authorized, if I understand your question by the conference and the conference did appoint the persons who filled these positions. It was decided that the priesthood that was assembled there on that occasion,-The first President and the elders and the high priests, might by their consent appoint certain parties to fill to fill the offices of the apostles and that was done, and they made up the quorum of twelve,-so called.
243: Was there at that time any other quorum of twelve?
There was another quorum. There was a quorum of twelve then organized.
244: Why was there another quorom. If there was one quorom organized why was there another one organized?
I don’t know that there was one organized besides that. That is the only quorom I remember anything about, and that was the only way it was organized, with the exception of members that died or something like that and then there places would be filled.
245: When a member of the quorom would die how would the vacancy be filled?
It would be filled in the same way by the appointment of some one to fill the place. It was done by the appointment of the church.
246: Is there more than one quorom in the Re—organized church?
247: Yes sir?
248: There is a quorom of twelve, —now is there a quorom of anything else in the Re—organized church?
There is the quorom of high priests.
249: Is there a quorom of anything else?
There is a quorom of seventies.
250: Is there any other?
There is a quorom of the three first Presidency for the Church.
251: How many quoroms is there in the Re—organized church?
I could not tell you for I have not counted them lately.
252: Well about how many is there?
I couldn’t tell you for I haven’t counted them lately. There is a quorom of seventy’s.
253: Well now when did Bishop Partridge leave Kirtland?
Edward Partridge was his name.
254: Did you not say he was the Bishop of the church?
Yes sir, he was at that time.
255: Well when did he leave Kirtland?
He left there in the summer of ’32.
256: Then as a matter of fact at the time that Partridge left Kirtland the quorom of twelve had not ben organized?
257: Did Partridge ever return to Kirtland?
Well I think he did although I would not be postive, for I am not conversant with his history after he came out here to Missouri or Jackson County. I can’t say much about him after he came here and established the church here in Jackson County.
258: Is he dead or living?
He is dead I understand and I could not tell you where he died or anything about that. I am not acquainted with his history any further than I know he was a Bishop of the church and was appointed to come out here and buy that land. I remember these facts well enough, but that is about all I do know about him.
259: Did you ever see Partridge after he left Kirtland to come here?
260: Did he ever return to the church after that?
Well I think like enough he did, but at that time my mission was such that I was traveling most in the eastern countries, and he might have come back and visited Lamoni, —I mean Kirtland, —and I not have seen him.
261: Now Mr. Smith can you give me the name of any one who gave Partridge money for the use of the church before he came west to purchase that land? Tell me the name of some one who did give him money.
262: You know the name of some one who did give him money?
263: Well, will you be good enough to do so?
Well there was my father for one. He was one man.
264: What was your father?
265: And your father Joseph Smith gave him money?
266: How much did he give him?
267: Who else gave him any money?
268: How much did Whitney give him?
I could not say how much it was.
269: Was it as much as ten dollars?
Yes sir, I presume likly it was more than that.
270: Was it as much as twenty five dollars?
271: You say Whitney gave him as much as twenty five dollars?
yes sir, and there is not a particle of doubt but that it was more than that.
272: how do you know he gave him money?
I know from the general report in relation to the facts concerning he amount of money that was raise by these men who were engaged in the work of raising the money.
273: Did you see your father give him the money?
274: Did he tell him what to do with it?
To put it into the hands of Bishop Partridge.
275: Who did your father give the money to?
Who did he pay it to?
276: Yes sir?
He gave the money into the hands of Joseph Smith who was the President of the church, and the money was conveyed into the hands of Partridge.
277: How do you know it?
How do I know what?
278: How do you know that the money found its way into the hands of Partridge?
I know it from the fact that the general report in relation to the amount of money that it was supposed that Partridge took away with him.
279: Did you see Joseph Smith take away with him that amount of money with him to give to Partridge?
Well now there is no use asking me these questions for I know my father gave that amount of money to be given to Partridge, – and I know of it because of the talk it caused in the family on account of my father giving that amount of money.
280: You said that N.X. Whitney also gave money?
Yes sir, that was my understanding. 281 (Mistakenly listed as 261)
280: Did you see Whitney give him any money?
No sir, I did not see him give any money. 282 (Mistakenly listed as 262)
280: Who else did you see given Partridge money?
I did not see any of them give Partridge money, but it was generally understood that Partridge received a certain amount of money out of these named individuals here. 283 (Mistakenly listed as 263)
280: Who was another one?
There was Sidney Gilbert, (witness produces a slip of paper with certain names written threreon, and states) these were the persons who were mentioned in conference and the church as the men who were to see to them raising of this amount of money. They were the men who were to go off and raise the money, to be given for the purpose of buying a site for the church or a temple here in Jackson Missouri, and Edward Partridge the Bishop of the church was the man who was to do that. 284 (Mistakenly listed as 264)
280: As a matter of fact did you see any one give any money for that purpose excepting your father?
No sir. 285 (Mistakenly listed as 265)
280: Then of your own personal knowledge you do not know whether they paid in any money for that purpose or not?
No sir, I do not know of my own personal knowledge, but I haven’t the slightest doubt in the world but that, the money was raised, for Partridge did go off and buy the land.
266: Well that is mere supposition on your part?
No sir it is not for I know that Partridge came west for that purpose. The idea I have on the subject is corresponding to the proper answer to your question. As long as it was full asertained by the knowledge or satisfaction of the church that the amount necessary to be raised had been raised by the parties whose names had been given as the parties whose duty it was to raise the money, and that was what they were to do.
267: What was it they were to do?
They were to raise the amount of money necessary to to be raised in order to fit Mr. Partridge out with the means to come to Missouri and purchase the land.
268: Of your own personal knowledge do you know that these persons contributed any money?
I have the best knowledge to base my belief on in the world that they did.
269: Of your own knowledge do you know that they did?
I did not see one of them pay a dollar for that purpose but it was reported to the church by the men who had the matter in their hand that the money had been raised for Mr. Partridge started west and did buy the land so there can’t be any doubt but that the money was raise or contributed and paid over for that purpose and finally found its way into the hands of Mr. Partridge who used in the way and for the purpose for which it was given. As I said before I did not see him get a dollar of money, but at the same time I believe he had all the money that was called for.
270: Still you did not see them give him a dollar of the money that was called for?
No sir, I did not go around and see them pay the money over or go around and inquire of them if they had paid it. I did not notice the people individually who might have handed him over money, but as a general thing it was under stood by the church that he had received the amount of money that it was necessary he should have or that was called for, with the view to locating the church here in Jackson County.
271: Can you state the amount of money that was called for for that purpose?
Yes sir, I can state about what it was.
272: Well how much was it?
I think sir it was something like three thousand dollars.
273: Was that the amount called for?
Yes sir. 274 (Question and answer are missing)
275: And that was the amount that was collected and paid in?
That is my understanding sir.
276: At what time was that?
That was in 1832.
277: And I believe you have stated that in 1832 there was not mere than three hundred members in the church?
I said that was located at Kirtland.
278: Did ant one except the members of the church at Kirtland contribute?
What is the question?
279: I asked you if any one other than the members of the church at Kirtland contributed?
Not that I know of.
280: And you think the money was contributed by these men whose names you have read here?
281: Were they rich men?
They were men who were pretty well off generally.
282: Which amongst them was in the best circumstances financially?
Mr. Marks was a man who generally handled a good deal of money. He was quite wealthy, and I understood that from the amount of money he contributed for the benefit of the church for the purchase of the land here, that he afterwards got the deed to the temple in Kirtland, that was placed in his hands to secure him in addition, – or in relation to the money which he, Mr Marks, placed in the hands of Bishop Partridge to purchase lands in this country.
283: Was Mr. Marks a member of the church?
Yes sir he was a member of the church. He would not have been in this if he had not been.
284: Was he also an officer of the church?
Yes sir he was.
285: Well now you say that for the money that Mr. Marks advanced he got the temple at Kirtland in his own name?
286: How long did he have it in his own name?
I can’t say sir, —he had it for a season in his own name.
287: What was that for?
For the money he had advanced.
288: Then he had that on account of a debt which the church owed him?
289: Well now I would like you to state specifically what that money was advanced for?
It was for a part of the money that was sent out into Missouri for the purpose of purchasing this land for the temple, and for the purchase of the printing press for the printing office and material of that kind, for the printing establishment.
290: Well now am I to understand that you do not know all this by of your own personal knowledge, it is all hearsay?
I have heard them talk about it so much that I have concluded it was about as substantial a fact as anything could be. Why my dear sir there can be no doubt about it. Of course I did not see all of the money paid over, but then you know there is many a thing we know that we do not see, and yet we know it as well as any fact we have seen. Why if the Council of this city should, or if the people of the city of Independence should contribute five thousand dollars or fifty thousand dollars to send over to feed the Russian poor, and you had never seen one cent of the money that was contributed or one barrel of flour that was contributed or bought with that money, would it follow that you would conclude that Jackson County had not contributed that amount. No sir, on the contrary you would conclude from the general report, and believe it too, that something had been done. Now so it was in this case, —it was the general report that this money was raised for Partridge to come west with and purchase that land, and I know that my father gave the amount of money that I have stated, —I know that Partridge did go west, and I know that Marks had the deed for the temple there at Kirtland to secure him for the money that he had advanced for that purpose.
291: No sir, I would not necessarily believe the report in the newspapers, for I know very often there are things in news papers that are far from true?
Yes sir I know that too, but in the case I have used as an illustration where the money was subscribed to purchase the flour for the starving poor of Russia, if you saw those accounts in the news-papers, and saw the mayors report or whoever had charge of the charitable work and they corresponded, although you might not have seen a dollar of that money, or a barrel of that flour subscribed yet you would be bound to admit that the mayors report was authoritive.
292: No sir not necessarily would I be bound to that either, for thing look a great deal larger in news-papers than they really are?
In a case like this when a church or any organization undertakes a matter of this kind it is something that from its very nature cannot be limited in its scope and operation to one individual, and if one single individual is to know all about it of his own knowledge, —then I will venture to say that there never was a trans— action of that kind that was confined conclusively to the knowledge of one man, or one of which any one man had the sole knowledge, or knew personally from his own personal observation all the facts in connection with it.
293: Well now you have stated all you know about that?
Yes sir. I don’t think of anything else to say further than that I did not go around individually in this particular case and see every fifty cent piece paid out, but I do know that the general understanding was that the amount of money had been contributed.
294: How much was it the general understanding had been contributed?
Well I couldn’t say to a dollar how much it was, but at all events it was enough for Partridge to go west and purchase this land.
295: Did you not state a while ago how much it was?
I said if my memory served me right it was three thousand dollars, – and I say now if my memory serves me right it was three thousand dollars.
296: Did Partridge ever make any report back to the church at Kirtland as to his proceedings?
I don’t know that he did.
297: Do you know that he did not?
No sir, I don’t know anything about that. I presume he did but if he did I have forgotten it as a matter of memory.
298: Did he ever make any report to any body of the church as to his mission?
I don’t know that he did. I don’t know that he lived here long enough to make a report. By the time they got through destroying the printing press and the printing establishment and driving Partridge out of the country, – That is about all that I recollect of history saying about the matter, and I don’t just know what Partridges movements were aft that, and more than what was published in the general current papers at the time.
299: Did you ever see any report published in any of the newspapers as to how he disposed of his trust?
No sir, I do not know that I ever did, and as far as I am concerned it would not be necessary for Edward Partridge to make a report for I believed him to be an honorable man, and a man that would not abuse his trust.
300: So you do not know what he did with that money do you of your own knowledge?
Well I know something from the general report as I said of history, and I judged that in relation to that, that he paid out that money for the land here in Jackson County.
301: You think he did?
Yes sir, I am pretty sure he did.
302: You do not know absolutely of your own knowledge that he did though?
I do not, but I have every reason to believe that he did. Of course I was not here and did not see him pay it out, but he was an honorable man, and I think he did what he was authorized and instructed to do.
303: And he was sent out to purchase this land?
304: Well you state whether or not in the church as at first organized from 1830 to 1835 there was any district Presidency?
At that early time in the history of the church I do not think there was any appointments made, especially in regard to the districting of the country. I do not think that there was any arrangements made in regard to that, for the church was comparitively small and weak to what it was afterwards and it was not necessary to do so, – In other words the proper state in the groth of the church had not arrived which rendered it necessary to district the country, or divide the church off into districts.
305: Can you state when that first came in?
The proposition for districting the United States came in, and was brought up before the conference at Nauvoo in 1841 or 1842.
306: What was that proposition you refer to?
The proposition to district the United States,-that is placing it under the directions of presiding officers. That arrangement had not as yet been completed, or perfected at the time of the death of Joseph Smith.
307: It had not been finally consummated or perfected at the time of the death of Joseph Smith?
308: Well when was it completed Mr. Smith?
It was not completed at all.
309: It was not completed at all you say,-not before the death of Joseph Smith?
No sir, Joseph Smith died before that districting took place.
310: Well now I think you did not understand me?
Well ask your question again and I will see if I understand it?
311: When was that districting completed after the death of Joseph Smith?
I don’t know that it has ever been districted since the death of Joseph.
312: Do you know that it has not been districted since his death?
No sir, I say that I do not know that it has been districted since the death of Joseph, unless it has been districted under the reorganization or under the organization of the reorganized church.
313: Has it been in fact re-districted rather districted I should say under the reorganized church, and have the districts so constituted Presidents?
What kind of Presidents?
314: District Presidents?
315: Does the reorganized church have district Presidents?
316: When did the plan of appointing seventies first come in force?
I couldn’t say when it first came in. It first came in under as mentioned, under the church established in ’30 do you mean?
317: Well any where at any time,-when did the plan first come in operation?
318: Yes sir that is what I said?
Well I think as far as my memory is concerned in regard to the districting of the United States into districts, it did not come in until some time in the forties. That is my memory now. It was some time in 1840 or 1841 or some where along there that the plan first came in so far as my memory goes, It might have been along about 1842 for all I know.
319: Was it in fact perfected before the death of Joseph Smith?
No sir it was not.
320: Was it perfected,
321: Let him answer your question before you ask him another. He had not finished his answer?
322: I thought you had answered the question. I will ask you again when the plan of appointing the seventies came in first?
Well that came in 1855. The subject was suggested at the time the organization of the twelve.
323: Well when was the plan of the organization of the seventies perfected?
It never was perfected in the days of my brother Joseph at all.
324: When was it perfected, if at all, after his death?
Well I think it was perfected in the re-organized church if I am not entirely mistaken concerning its history.
325: Mr. Smith did you remain at Nauvoo with the twelve any length of time after the death of your brother?
I remained there at Nauvoo until 1845.
326: How long did you remain in Nauvoo in 1845?
I remained there four months in 1845.
327: Did you prior to the death of your brother or after the death of your brother at any time either before or after his death, teach the doctrine of polygamy?
I did not.
328: You did not either before or after the death of your brother teach the doctrine of polygamy?
329: Did you at any time whatever or at any place preach the doctrine of polygamy?
No sir, I did not.
330: You never taught the doctrine of polygamy?
No sir, I never did.
331: Then any history which states you taught the doctrine of polygamy is false?
332: Well where did you go first after you left Nauvoo?
My first advent in relation to the ministry was at Rocky Ford of the Inlet. That was in Lee county Illinois.
333: Well now Mr. Smith will you state how long you remained at Nauvoo, Illinois, after death of Joseph Smith?
From about the 25th of May until the last of October 1845. I think that would cover about four months in 1845 that I was there in 1845 That is what I said yesterday that I was there about four months in 1845.
334: Was not Joseph killed in 1844?
Yes sir, I was not living at Nauvoo at the time of his death though.
335: You were not?
336: Where were you living at that time?
I was living in the city of New York.
337: After that you returned to Nauvoo?
338: Well what time did you return to Nauvoo after the death of your brother?
I returned in the month of May 1845.
339: And then how long did you remain?
I remained until the latter part of October.
340: Of the same year?
341: Then where did you go?
342: Yes sir?
At that time, – There is a question on that point that was answered yesterday. My mind was wrought up on the circumstanced connected with the closing of my work of preaching, and I answered it on that point that I commenced the work of preaching and organizing a body of the people by myself. That is what I answered, but there is another point other than that, and whether it can be a matter that would be of interest here I do not know. I could not see that it would be of any interest for your Honor to see but it is connected with my escape from Brigham Young and his party, and the efforts that were made to preserve my life, but I did escape to a place where I immediately made publication of the circum satnces connected with my withdrawal, and that was the first step I took after I withdrew from the church as it was organized and proceeding at Nauvoo, and the question upon my mind when the question was asked was in respect as to where I first after leaving Nauvoo commenced the work of a ministry in organizing a branch of the church, but having been notified (if I am permitted to make the statement) that my life was in danger if I remained in Nauvoo after that because of the doctrine of blood atonement, I then fled to a place called Voleny on Skunk River, here I had a cousin, a man whose name I am not familiar with now, except I would recall it upon reflection. He was a man who owned mills there on Skunk river and my cousin lived there him, and I went there and left my horse with my cousin, and then I went to Galena where I published an account of my seperation for the church and the causes that let up to it, – I think it occupied sixteen pages, and gave the cause of my seperation from the church, and continued a statement of the apostacy of the leaders in the church at Nauvoo, I had for or five hundred of these phamphlets struck off, which cost me some where in the neighborhood of forty dollars, and I sent these phamphlets to all these news-paper editors that I could think of. The original copy of that phamphlet or statement can be found now on the files of the St Louis Republican, and also on the files of the Warsaw Signal, but I myself have no phamphlets left of that publication.
343: That is as much s you want to state on that point now is it?
With the exception that I followed several months lecturing and giving expositions of the different principles of our of our faith at different places, and in the city of Cincinnati and also in St Louis and the City of Philadelphia and New York and Boston, and other places where I had ministered before the death of my brother. I followed that for several months in these places where I had been sucessful in making converts to the faith, – all these places I visited after the death of my brother and give lectures publicly in relation to the explanation I was making in reference to the cause of the seperation between the me and that party under the leadership of Brigham Young. It was after this that I immediately organized a branch of the church. That is the part that I desire to explain, for at first I did not notice the scope of your question, and this is the explaination I desire to make, and at the time I thought about the propriety of asking permission to make an explanation.
344: Is what you have said satisfactory on that point?
It is so indeed. It is to me and I hope it is equally so to you.
345: Very well, I am glad it is. now I will ask you what position you held in the church which you organized?
Well the church upon its organization at its conference, appointed me by a vote of its conference, appointed me as the President of its organization.
346: You were its President?
Yes sir, I was President of the organization.
347: Now what church do you speak of?
The Church of Christ as organized in 1830.
348: The appointment to which you refer is an appointment then that was prior to 1844?
No sir I did not mean that. I do not hear very well.
349: Now you said the church appointed you to do certain work?
350: Appointed you to a certain office?
351: And when I asked you what church it was that made that
ment, you answer that it was the church of Christ.
352: That is the fact?
Yes sir, but there evidently is a misaprehension between us, for I am speaking of the organization that I effected after the death of my brother, and from your question I would infre that you refer to the time before the death of my brother. That is what I refer to, – the church or body that I organized. and which elected me as its President.
353: That is the church you referred to when you said you were appointed president by a vote of its Conference?
Yes sir, the church that I organized after I left he part at Nauvoo.
354: Now then what was that church named?
The Church of Christ.
355: Who gave it that name?
That was the first name the church received in 1830, and I suppose it was sanctioned by my brother, who was the President of the church.
356: Then it is a fact I believe that you continued the name of the church that was in existance at the time of the death of your brother? Do you understand this question?
357: That is the fact is it not?
Yes sir. Now the name of the “Church of Christ” was occasionaly used, also the “church of Jesus Christ”, and again “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, but as a general thing I adopted the name of “the Church of Christ”, in so far as my connection was concerned.
358: What was the name of the church to which your brother belonged at the time he was killed?
Then it was called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”.
359: What was the name adopted by the church which you organized when you left that body?
Why invariably it was called the Church of Christ.
360: How many persons belonged to the church at the time you were made its President?
Weel I calculated that our statistics in that conference minutes would mount up frequently to forty or fifty, and sometimes sixty. That is there would be that many members represented in the conference meetings that I ahd charge of. 361 (Question and answer missing)
362: Would all the members of your church be present at these meetings of the conference?
363: Now Mr. Smith I believe you have stated that the title or the name of the church at the time of its organization in 1830 was the “Church of Christ”?
364: That was the first name designating the title of the church that was adopted?
365: Then about 1835 there was a change made in the title or designation of the church?
Yes sir. There was a slight change about that time made in the name of the church.
366: What was that change?
It was called the “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”.
367: Was that the name of the church at that time?
Yes sir, – after that change was made.
368: Now refresh your memory and answer me, if it is not a fact that the title or name of the “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”, – or that the term “Latter Day Saints”, was added on to the title later than 1835?
No sir. Now I think that by offering an explanation here, you would probably understand me so I could answer your question. My explanation is this, – that we as a class of people believed that we were living in what was called the last days, and the term “Latter Day Saints” seemed to be sort of a tribute to that in relation to the confession of our faith in the doctrine as we held it at that time, and as a natural consequence that addition to the names of the church did not come any later than that time. So far as that matter was concerned though, it was a matter of degree and simply a recognition of one of the articles of our faith or principles, believing as we did that we were living in that last days, and it was first suggested by that fact, and the idea that persons who obeyed the gospel became saints, and consequently they would be saints of these latter days, not being saints of former days. The term “Latter Day Saints”, was always associated or connected with the confession of faith. I know that was my experience, and that is the way that the term “Latter Day Saints” came to be added to the title of the church.
369: Mr. Smith here-to-fore I have not objected to these long answers.
No sir, I know you have not.
370: Well I would very much rather you would make them a little shorter if you can, in obedience to what you esteem the truth. I wish you would do that if you conscientiously can do so, but I don’t want any man, – you or any one else, – fall short in your sentiments or what you esteem or deem to be the truth the whole truth, and nothing but the literal truth. Feeling thus I am not objecting to the long answers, nor do I desire that you should curtail them in any respect if you feel that your obedience to what you deem to be your duty forbids you to do so?
Thank you for the explanation.
371: Now Mr. Smith was there in and about 1835 or 1838 any revelation given on the name of the church?
What was that?
372: Was there in and about 1835 or ’38 any revelation given in reference to the name of the church?
I think there was a revelation on that matter given about 1834, but I would not be positive for I haven’t been very conversant with the question of revelations lately, but it strikes me sir that there was a revelation given about 1834 fixing the term of the title of the church.
373: When did you say that was?
I say I wouldn’t be positive but it strikes me that it was in ’34.
374: Well what title was that?
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
375: I will ask you further if there was not a revelation given about that time on tithing?
A revelation on what?
376: On tithing?
Well there was a revelation given on tithing but I could not state when it was given.
377: You mean there was a revelation given in the old church?
378: Did you ever go to Far West?
I went there.
380: When did you go there?
I think it must have been some time in 1837.
381: In 1837?
Yes sir, I think that was the time. If I recollect right it must have been some where near that time.
382: For what purpose did you go there?
For the purpose of settling there.
383: You went there with the purpose or with the object of settling there?
Yes sir, and I purchased lands there accordingly.
384: Was there a body of your people there at that time?
385: About how many of your people were there at that time?
I should think there was about twelve hundred families.
386: Where were the from?
Well they were mostly, – many of them from the eastern and northern states.
387: Were any of them from Nauvoo?
388: They were from Nauvoo?
I am not aware that there were any of them from Nauvoo, for Nauvoo did not have any existence at that time.
389: Did you not say that there were some of them from Nauvoo?
If I did I did not understand the question. Nauvoo was not in existence at that time.
390: Do you say that there was no such a place as Nauvoo in 1837?
Weel so far as there being such a place as Nauvoo under the influence of any Mormon dispensation it did not have any existence.
391: AT what time was that?
That was in 1837 I think. If I am allowed to make one remark further I will say that Nauvoo under the Mormon dispensation did not have any existence as such, until after the church was removed from Far West.
392: Well that is all right. Now I will ask you if you remember whether or not that revelation regarding tithing was made while you were at Far West?
No sir. I do not remember.
393: Do you not remember whether it was made at that time or not?
No sir. I do not remember when it was made. I could not say.
394: But you remember that such a revelation was had?
Yes sir. I know that there was such a revelation.
395: Was that the law of the old church?
396: Did the old church practice it?
They made a commencement at it but they did not practice it very extensively. It was a law at that time that the practice of which was beginning to be put in operation. It seemed to be a matter that sprung up all at one, and did not become very generally known.
397: Did you adopt it in your church?
No sir, – do you mean the body that I organized and was the President of?
398: Yes sir?
No sir I did not adopt it for I had not organized myself in any position of that kind to make any demand in relation to tithing.
399: Well is that a law which is recognized practically in the Re-organized church?
400: They carry it out do they?
Yes sir, they have it in operation in the re-organized church.
401: Was or was not that revelation generally accepted by the old church, – the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, – generally accepted by the church after the date of the revelation, or after the date of its proclamation to the church?
402: Were you at Nauvoo in 1841?
403: Do you know whether or not in that year your brother Joseph had a revelation in relation to building a temple, and in regard to the church of officers?
I think he did.
404: Do you know whether he did or did not have such a revelation?
I think he had a revelation in regard to building of the temple there at Nauvoo.
405: I will ask you to read paragraph forty of Exhibit J, page three hundred and thirteen, in the book entitled “Doctrine and Covenants”?
“I give unto you my servant Brigham Young, to be a president over the twelve travelling counsel, which twelve hold the keys to open up the authority of my kingdom upon the four corners of the earth, and after that to send my word to every creature; they are, Heber C. Kimball, Parley P. Pratt, Orson Pratt, Orson Hyde, William Smith, John Taylor, John E. Page, Wilfurd Woodruf, Williard Richards, George A. Smith, David Patten. I have taken unto myself; behold his priesthood no man taketh from him; but verily I say unto you and others may be appointed unto the same calling”.
406: Is that the paragraph?
Yes sir. I recognize that as the revelation delivered at about that time. I don’t know why I should not recognize it as a revelation given at that time.
407: In what book do you find it?
In the book of Doctrine and Covenants.
408: That is the book marked Exhibit J, that you hold in your hand?
I do not know when it was marked, or how it is marked.
409: Well it is exhibit J. By whom was that revelation given?
By my brother.
410: Which brother?
My brother Joseph Smith.
411: Was it or was it not by the authority in that revelation that you became on of the twelve?
Yes sir. I do not understand that from the authority of that revelation I became a member of the quorom of twelve, by means of that revelation. Is that the proper answer to the question?
412: I can’t say. You are to be the judge of the proper answer.
I think you are a pretty good judge.
413: Well I may be in some cases, but as it happens I do not determine in this instance?
Well I understand that but if I have not answered the question I would like for you to tell me so.
414: Now what effect did that revelation have upon your work in the church?
The effect that it has upon my work was the acknowledgement by that revelation that my administration as a member of that quorom was generally sanctioned by the church by means of that revelation. That was the evidence that my administration had been acceptable to the church.
415: For what length of time then, did you consider your appointment as one of the twelve to extend?
I considered it to extend during my whole life time sir.
416: Do you hold the position as one of the twelve in the Re-organized church?
I do not.
417: I believe you stated Mr. Smith that you were acquainted with the doctrine of the church prior to 1844 or 1845, – the doctrines of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, prior to 1844 and 1845?
418: And they held to and practiced the doctrines of baptism for the dead?
They did at one time.
419: At one time they did you say?
420: I would like you to explain more specifically what you mean by that?
I mean it did not continue a very long while, but there was a time when it, – when there was a doctrine of that kind taught and practiced.
421: You say they did at one time, – now what time was that?
Well I will have to refresh my memory a little for I cannot remember it right now.
422: Well that is all right, – take a little time. Now to refresh your memory Mr. Smith was that not in a revelation given in 1844?
(Witness does not answer the questions).
423: Can you answer the question as to about what time that doctrine for the baptism for the dead prevailed?
I think it must have been some where in the neighborhood of ’39 or 1841, as near as I can remember. As near as I can possibly recollect and remember now it was about that time.
424: Was it abandoned before the death of Joseph Smith?
Certainly it was practiced before his death.
425: I asked you if the practice of administering the right of baptism for the dead was abandoned before the death of Joseph Smith?
Yes sir that is what I say it was practiced.
426: Was it abandoned?
427: Then it was abandoned before the death of your brother Joseph?
428: How long before his death was it abandoned?
I could not say.
429: By what authority was it abandoned?
I think it was abandoned because of a revelation which was given specifically mentioning it, and it was not to be resumed until after the building of the temple I think. Is there not something in there about that.
430: If it was abandoned for that reason, how long was it abandoned?
Till that temple could be completed.
431: Where was that temple to be built?
432: That temple was to be buily at Nauvoo?
433: Has the doctrine of baptism for the dead ever been practiced in the Re-organized church to which you belong now?
No sir, not that I know of sir.
434: Is it taught?
Not to my knowledge.
435: Did you ever hear of the doctrine of the plurality of the Gods ever taught in the church prior to the death of Joseph Smith?
I don’t think I ever did.
436: Were you there when Joseph was killed?
No sir, I was not.
437: Where were you?
I was in New York City.
438: How long had you been gone prior to that time?
From Nauvoo do you mean?
439: Yes sir?
I left there in 1841 and did not return until 1845.
440: Now you answer positive that you were not there between 1841 and 1845? You are positive about that are you not?
I was there once on a visit between 1841 and 1845.
442: You were there once?
Yes sir, – I would not state that I was there once on a visit. I was there a couple of weeks before my brother death attending a council that was being held in the first part of June.
443: What year was it you were there attending this council that you say was held there?
It was in the first part of June 1844.
444: What council was that?
The council of the twelve so called.
445: What was the subject of inquiry
446: You may state what that council was called for, – that is what was the subject of the inquiry?
The subject of iniquity was in relation to property of so arranging and dividing United States into different districts, and for the twelve to receive instructions on that subject from the first President of the church. That was what that council was called for and that was the matter that was considered according to the best of my memory now.
446: Was the subject matter under consideration in that council also inclusive of the question appointing Presidents for those districts?
on the ground and for the reason that it is incompetent and immeterial and is not proper cross-examination.
I don’t know but I believe that is a proper question to ask in regard to that, and I am perfectly willing to answer it.
447: Well answer it then?
The question was counseled over in regard to the propriety of appointing certain men, or certain Presidents to the districts respectively.
448: Well did they do it?
No sir, they did not do it.
449: They did not do it at that time?
450: Well as a matter of fact did they ever do it in the old church?
451: Was there anything in reference to the reception of endowments by the twelve at that time? Was there anything done in reference to that at that time?
Was there no special instructions given at that time to the council of the twelve about the endowment, – about the endowment, that was to be had at the completion of the temple. That was a matter that had become of common conversation in the public discourses. So far as the question of endowment was concerned it was talked of at that time by the public ministry of the church, urging the necessity of finishing the temple and completing it for the express purpose of receiving that endowment.
452: Was there anything done at that time with reference to the confering the apostleship upon any of the twelve?
Is the question objected to?
453: Yes sir, but you are to answer it?
There was nothing done at that time that I speak being there on the first of June in regard in regard to any endowment being had with reference to the twelve, – any person of the twelve.
454: Was there anything done with reference to the apostleship?
Nothing. Nothing that I remember of, more than simply acknowledging the apostles as being official officers of the church.
455: Where were the apostles at that time?
Who were what?
456: Who were the apostles at the time? Who were the twelve?
457: Were they all of them appointed.
458: Was any one at that time, – any one of those twelve apostles at that time ever endowed as an apostle, or given any special keys of apostleship?
Not to my knowledge. There was a large vacancy at that time.
459: Well I so understand it, – Now Mr. Smith will you state whether you received ordaination there at that time of that visit to Nauvoo in the month of June 1844?
460: You did not?
461: Did you ever receive ordination as a sucessor of your brother?
No sir, I did not.
462: Have you ever claimed that you did?
No sir. I don’t recollect that I have made such a claim directly.
463: Have you ever made such a claim indirectly?
To answer that question will require an explaination.
464: Well I have no objection to your making an explanation in reference to that?
I held the view that in case a legal sucessor who I seen as such never came forward himself to occupy that place that I held a sufficient claim under the apostleship to be properly the legal sucessor to my brother Joseph, in case that that position we never held at that time, – by persons who at that time were legaly entitled to that position.
465: Had you ever be clothed legaly, with the funtions of that position? Counsel for plaintiff objects to the question asked the witness on the ground and for the reason that it is incompetent, irrelevant and immeterial, and now proper cross-examination, and calls for an opinion of the witness on a matter of law, which is a question the witness is not competent to answer. 466 (Written as 446)
465: You may answer the question?
467: Had your brother ever undertaken to confer upon you that authority? Counsel for plaintiff objects to the question on the ground and for the reasons as set forth in the objection to the last question on to which objection was taken.
Never any further than the ordination conferring upon me the office of an apostle.
468: He never did?
Never any further than the ordination and confirmation as an apostle.
469: Did you by reason of that, or any other reason have any priority over the other apostles? The other twelve?
No sir. I have not.
470: You did not have any right of priority over the other twelve?
No sir I did not. Now on the term “priority” if I am allowed to do so I would like to make a remark, but perhaps it is properly in place here,
Well I will bring it out by questions.
472: You can go on Mr. Smith and make the remark you intended to make.
Well what I wanted to say is that so far as the term “Priority” is concerned. A vote was taken in the council of twelve, that the oldest man in that quorom should have the right of presiding over the quorom, and act as the chairman in all business transaction. That was a priveledge that was accorded to the oldest man amongst us out of respect to his age. Now that is all there is to priority for there was no priority in the quorom that I know any thing of except that.
473: Was there any ordination made to that position?
Not that I know of. It was not necessary.
474: Did you ever make any publication in any paper representing or purporting to represent the church, in which you put forth the claim, – your claim was the sucessor to your brother?
I think so.
475: Well was there?
Yes sir I think so, but it is all right when properly explained in connection with the surrounding circumstances.
476: Do you recognize this paper or phamphlet that I am now offering you as a publication with which you were ever acquainted?
I recognize it as an action on my part of consenting to the statements therein made sir.
477: Was it published and circulated?
478: Amongst whom?
479: Amongst whom was it circulated?
480: Amongst whom was it circulated?
Amongst the class of people that I had organized into the capacity of a church.
481: Have you your glasses with you?
Yes sir. No sir. I guess I must have left them where I stopped for dinner as I don’t seem to have them with me.
482: If you haven’t your glasses with you, will you, or can you read it without glasses?
Partly so. I don’t know but what I can read that without glasses, – at any rate I am willing to try sir.
483: Read what I have marked there sir, – read the topics and the matter down to there?
484: Read the topics, – the heading?
“President William Smith was ordained by his brother Joseph Smith, previous to President William Smiths leaving Nauvoo, on his mission to the east for the last time during the earthly existence of his brothers President Joseph Smith ordained him a prophet, seer revelator and translator, and then informed that he had all the necessary ordinations to lead the church, (in his time) then leaped, smote his feet together, and observed that it was done; in a few days brother William started on his mission and saw his brothers no more. He returned to Nauvoo in about a year about they were murdered”.
485: Are you the author of what you have just read?
Yes sir, but did not receive the ordination mentioned at the time I spoke of being present in June.
486: Have you exercised the authority conferred upon you as you have stated in the re-organized church? Counsel for plaintiff objects to the question asked the witness on the ground that it is incompetent, irrelevant and immeterial, and calls for an opinion of the witness, and is not proper cross examination.
No sir, I have not.
487: You have not exercised that authority?
488: Did you at any time organize a quorom of twelve of your own?
I never accomplished it but I under took it.
489: In that quorom of twelve as you purpose to raised it, or to constitute it, was the name of Jason W. Briggs mentioned?
Yes sir. court to strike out the answer of the witness for the reason that it is incompetent and immaterial to any of the issues in this case, and is not cross-examination.
490: Where was Jason W. Briggs at that time?
He was living some place in Illinois. I don’t know that I could tell you just where he was living at that time but it was some place in Illinois. I believe he was living near the place called Waukesha, Illinois. My memory is not very distinct as to his place of residence at that time.
491: Was Jason W. Briggs a member at that time of the church that you had constituted? Counsel for plaintiff objects to the question asked the witness on the ground and for the reason that the same is irrelevant and immaterial and is not proper cross examination.
Yes sir he acknowledged the organization that I had effected I did it with his consent.
492: Then what subsequently became of him with reference to the church?
Well he became a member of an organization effected at first, well it was first in the getting up of what was called the reorganized church, and he was working in that object in connection with a man by the name of Gurley and others that started in an worked a reformation in the reorganization of the church.
493: Were they endeavoring to reform your organization?
Yes sir, they got dissatisfied with my organization for the reason that they considered there was a legal succession some where else.
494: They thought that the legal succession was not in your then?
Yes sir, they thought that I did not exactly hit it.
495: And so the fact is they went back on your succession?
496: And assumed another succession?
497: In what way did Briggs separate himself from your church, or become separated from your church?
He claimed that the legal succession did not exactly come in me, from the fact that I had presented the subject in regard to what was called my claim under that ordination. There was another right that was shown to be more authoritative in regard to the succession that the right which was supposed to be conferred on me, and that was the right of heirship, the right of inheritance, for in the succession of the priesthood there was a law that the priesthood was confirmed to be handed down from father to sin, and I did not stand exactly in that position.
498: In consequence of that claim of his did you take any action into your church?
499: What action did you take?
I took action to withdraw the hand of fellowship.
500: You cut him off?
501: You did that because he denied your authority?
502: Was there any other reasons as to why you did that?
I could not say as to whether there was or not.
503: Why cannot you say as to that?
Why just because there are a great many things that are picked up with a view of justifying a persons actions, – that is have a slanderous meaning and improper application, and I do not like to say as to all my reasons for they have nothing to do with this case that I can see.
504: Very well we will let it go at that. Now was William Blair one of your apostles?
Yes sir he was.
505: Is he the same William Blair who is now an official in the Re-organized church?
Yes sir. He is.
506: Did Blair have anything to do with your excluding Briggs from the church?
From what church.
507: From your church, – The church that you had organized. Plaintiff objects to the question on the ground and for the same reason as are raised against the last question to which objection had been had.
Well I couldn’t say that he had or had not. I couldn’t say as to that sir.
508: Did he endorse exclusion?
I could not say that he endorsed it.
509: Do you recognize the phamphlet I now hand you?
This was written in defence probably for the frail charges that were preferred against me, and gotten up by way of conspiracy in regard to the organization, and if I am here to be examined as in the criminal court I shall refuse to give any further answers on that subject.
510: Well you could not please me better than to do so, but I would not consider it as the best thing for you to do?
I consider that to be a vile and malicious slander against my reputation which I endeavor to defend in that phamphlet.
511: Are you the author of this work that I have in my hand, – this phamphlet.
Yes sir, by my dictation that is so. It was written in defense of my character from a vile and malicious slander and conspiracy against the organization of which I was the head, and to the injury of my personal character, and it is not a matter that properly belongs here at least not in this investigation.
512: Well now here is just four lines I want you to read from this phamphlet? Will your read them?
513: Will you read it?
Yes sir, – “Official notice is hereby given that Jason W. Briggs, Alva Smith, Sr. and Albert White are cut off from the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints for conduct to bad to write or to put in print”.
514: Are you the author of that?
Yes sir. Counsel for plaintiff moves the court to exclude from the record the answer of the witness for the reason that it is irrelevant and immeterial and improper cross examination.
There was a clique or conspiracy set a foot with a view to try and injure, or ruin my character if possible. It was a deep laid conspiracy that was laid by the individuals concerned in it that afterwards have fallen away from the church and I consider it a mean piece of business sir for these parties to bring it into this court for examination and it has nothing whatever to do with this case.
515: Well the statements that were made in that pamphlet were true?
Yes sir I do so consider them. They were made in refutation of a vile malicious slander, and falsehoods that was brough up and operated under the influence of a deep laid conspiracy against me.
516: Now after having examined this pamphlet and refreshed your memory are you able and willing to say whether William Blair joined with you in the excommunication of Jason W. Briggs?
I could not say.
517: You cannot say to that?
518: Look at the section I now show you on page seventeen of the pamphlet and read it if you please? Refresh your memory from it?
How much of it do you want me to read?
519: Read it down to the signatures, for it has some signatures to it?
Official proceedings, and excommunication of Jason W. Briggs. Palestine, Stake of Zion, January the 6th 1852. Mr. Jason W. Briggs,-Sir,-Your long letter, or communication of five pages and what you call a revelation we, and all the others here who desired, have read and properly considered, we will not pretend to answer in order all that you have written, as we have not time to devote to such purposes, but will answer enough to let you know our position and the position of the saints here and in the surrounding branches of the church; for your apostasy, and the reasons you assign for it are generally known all around, and your allegations against the President and spokesman of the church. Your notions on that we did not know what we were doing when we cut you off from the church and that certain steps should have been taken etc., shows that you are laboring under ignorance, are perhaps mental aberration. We understand the law, and know of our selves when and where is is to be applied without being dictated by one whom we deem an apostate. Apostasy is denying the ruling and legal President and spokesmen of the church (who are William Smith and Joseph Wood), holding all the keys, power and authority that ever God gave to any men on earth; and he that rejects them rejects the Father and the Son whom they represent and such men deny the faith, and we therefore not to be heard by us. You say considerable, about William, Brigham, Strang, etc., and your apparent ignorance on these matters shows us that there are some of us who know as much or more about them than you do; so you labor is vain in this respect. You deny slandering the Prophet and spokesman; do you think we are so void of understanding as to believe that? Your letter contains little else, but you say you believe you can prove; suppose you do believe that does that make you do believe true, and should you prove what you say you can, that neither would make it true. Your beliefs are but illy founded and your proofs come from a bad source; we deem it unsafe to trust the testimony of apostates,-You are aware that even Christ was defamed by such testimony. Joseph Smith was proven the worst of men, and Mormonism was proven a delusion and a humbug. We have the testimony of God; this testimony, and this alone, can satisfy us. We cannot and will not receive a testimony of mankind in contradiction to it; let the testimony of God prevail. As to your revelation we consider it false as it proves itself to be. As to what others make think of your production it is nothing to us our motto is to take care of ourselves, and now allow ourselves to be led away by designing men. How came you by the keys of revelation to write for the church? The matters contained in your revelation are absurd and more, they are false. We do not say how, or from whence it came, but this much we are satisfied of, – that it never came from the God of Heaven. You certainly are not the order of God’s communication. We believe God holds in his hands the right and prerogative of punishing and governing his prophets without any human assistance; and as to fallen prophets it is all nonesense, – it is unreasonable to suppose such a case, and as to God’s giving testimony of the truth of your revelation, we do not believe it. Your prophecy that the testimony should not follow William and Woods administration as has already proven itself false; so you see you are laboring under a mistake or error, whether intentionally or not, you best know. As to Ballam and sergalios it shows that you have got the cart before the horse, and know but little either of Baalam or his doctrine. William Smith is the heir to the Presidency or the church and your talk on that subject is useless and we fear that ere long you will learn that you are being instrumental in your own degradation all your reasoning with respect to the church is vain, and without a shadow of proof to your assertions all that the saints at Waukesha have told, we care nothing for; it is evident they manifest a bad spirit. We understand and so do the brethern here, the views of the President and spokesmen relative to marriage; so no foreign communication, contrary though it be, can disturb us on that score. Had you gone about the work that was given you to do and had not spent you time gossiping with apostates, and had not apostised, to be plain upon the subject, we might not have been called to a task that is of such an unpleasant nature as you must know this is. We hold no personal enmity to you ward, but would be happy to learn that you had repented of all your errors, and turned to God (if indeed there is yet repentance for you), you are also notified that you are excommunicated from the priest lodge as a dishonorable man.”
(continued). Not having called the subject to mind I could not say whether William Blair took a part in that proceeding but upon reading that over I see that he did have some connection with the action of excommunicating these men.
520: What office does W.W. Blair now hold with references to the Re-organized church?
Why is he now holding the office of one of the high counselors, – as one of the counselors in the first Presidency.
521: What was he at the beginning of the organization of the Re-organized church?
What was he?
522: Yes sir?
I could not say sir as to what he was. I could not tell you sir for the reason that I have lost the history, and my memory is not right on the history of W.W. Blair, for a season prior to his coming into the re-orgainized church. All I know of his history is that he went into merchandising.
523: Was he President of the Re-organized church after he became connected with it?
So far as I know he had been accepted as first Counselor to the President, or as Counselor to the first Presidency, but so far as I am personally concerned I could not say when he first became a member of the Re-organized church.
524: Was he ever President of the Re-organized church?
He is not so acknowledged in connection with the first Presidency of the Re-organized church. That is the position he now holds in connection with the Re-organized church.
525: State at what time, if you can recollect it, did your church become dis-organized?
Well it was some time I think. I don’t remember the dates but maybe they are noted in there.
526: Well do you know what time that was? I don’t know myself so I ask you if you know?
It became disorganized a short time previous to the organization of the Re-organized church that took place at Amboy.
527: It was you say just prior to the Amboy conference or the reorganization of the church at that time that your branch or organization of the church became disorganized?
528: That was at, – that was in 1860 was it not that that re-organization as you term it took place?
Yes sir that re-organization took place in 1860 or 1861 I think at Amboy.. A short time previous to that reorganization the body of saints that I had organized and kept together occupied their position in that place until it was known that I, that my nephew Joseph Smith had come forward and had taken his place at the head of the reorganization, and as it was understood that as he was the legal sucessor of his father to the office that his father held in his lifetime, I never made any attempt after that to try and re-organize. I did not I may say make any attempt to organize my church any further after the operation of that conspiracy against myself and the organization I was with, for the reason that I had taught the doctrine as I conceived it my duty to do. If I am allowed to go on with my story I can tell about that. I had taught the doctrine that the legal sucession to the Presidents laid in the family of Joseph Smith in sucession, and that I held the authority that I was exercising under my ordination as an apostle under the consideration that in case my nephew never came forward to take that place that I considered I would have a right by virtue of the law of inheritance and the right to keep the sucession in that family to exercise supremacy over the priesthood, and still endeavor to retain the organization of the church as it was established in 1830, and as soon as my nephew came forward and took his place, as I had previously understood the doctrine to be that it was his right to be the sucessor of his father I gave up all my claim to the right that I would other wise, had he not come forward have insisted upon holding. That is the way it was, and it stands right there, and has ever since in that organization.
529: Is it not your right then or does it not follow that you are entitled to be first patriarch in the re-organized church?
530: Do you understand the question?
531: Well what is your answer?
I so understand it at first. At first that was my impression, but upon mature reflection I decided differently. At first I understood that the office of the patriarch followed up the organization of the church as it was at the time that that particular office ought to have been established in the Re-organized church, but no more regard to hereditary rights, the office of patriarch I found would naturally follow my brother Hyrum and his family down from father to son, and my brother being a patriarch, accordingly the office patriarch would have the right to fall on one of his sons, who is now in Utah.
532: He is in Utah you say?
There is one of Hyrum’s sons holds the office in Utah, and that is the reason why I gave up my ideas in connection with it. That is one of the reasons why I gave up my ideas that the office of patriarch aught to be established in the Re-organized church, and knowing that the priesthood aught to be handed down from father to son, therefore my nephew who is the President of the Re-organized church holds a leagal claim to the office which he holds by inheritance of the office from his father.
534: Do you apply the same rule to your other nephew who belongs to the Salt Lake church?
Yes sir. I claim that that rule applies to one man just as well as it does to another, and that there are no exceptions to it.
535: And hence you gave up your claims?
Yes sir, for I did not claim to be the son of Hyrum Smith. That was the reason I did it.
536: Did what?
That is the reason I gave up my claim to the offfice of patriarch, because when I came to study the law in relation to the law of inheritance and descent, I found that the eldest son of the family becomes the inheitor or the crown, and especially in this so in all kingly families and I understood that is the principle that was handed down from all the prophets, and is exemplified in all of the books and authority amongst us. I understand that is the principle that all the prophets taught even down to Christ.
537: Was the old church that was established or organized under Joseph Smith’s auspices, or under his authority, was that a kingly government?
538: Was it such a government as taught that successor ship would follow or descend to his oldest son or to all eldest sons of the office that the father held to the son?
No sir, no furt than that the doctrine of sucession was generally taught and understood as applying to all offices of that nature.
539: By whom was that doctrine taught?
The doctrine of sucessorship was generally taught by the ministry of the church. They were the only authorized teachers, and it was generally understood in the church as taught by them. I think that the doctrine that they taught can be found exemplified in the book of Covenants, it says, “This priesthood was confirmed to be handed down from father to son”, and the law says in the book we are goverened by “”ye are lawful heirs according to the flesh”. That is what the law says, and consequently that is why I surrendered all the claims which I had assumed, or professed to have received, as soon as my nephew came forward to assume a position which I had previously acknowledged to be his according to his natural rights as a legal sucessor of his father, my brother Joseph Smith.
540: Well that is your explanation of this matter?
Yes sir I have tried to explain it as best I could. Of course there is a great many of these things that have to be explained, and I don’t know how I have suceeded, but I have done the best I could. Now I wish to say this in connection with my answer to these questions, that in answering questions such as these, when the surrounding circumstances are generally explained, of course it has a bearing of these causes, because it is more generally understood that where the right exists or where the wrong exists it is pointed out and discovered, or place in such a light that any one can see the right from the wrong.
541: Did your church before it was disorganized make any claim to the temple lot here?
I have never done so.
542: Did your church before it was disorganized make any claim to the temple lot in controversy in this suit? This was the question?
I have never made any personal claim to the temple lot.
543: The question is did your church before its dissolution or disorganization make any claim to the temple lot?
544: Did you as the respective representitive of your church make any claims to it?
545: Your church before it was disorganized did not make any claim to this temple lot? Is that your testimony?
Yes sir it did not make any claims that I am aware of. If it ever did I did not know anything about it, and I don’t think it could have done it very well without my know of it.
546: You have no claim against that lot then?
Individualy I have not, any further than the interest I have in it as a member of the church which I think is rightfully and lawfully entitled to it. That is the only claim I have to it, and I hold that in general with the church to which I belong. Of course as a member of that church I claim to have a right to the lot in common with the rest of the church, and we claim that because of the fact that the fact that the lot was purchased with the property or money that was collected in the church for the very purpose, during the time that I was a member of the church.
547: Do you know of your own personal knowledge that it was so purshased?
and immeterial and not cross-examination and a repetition of matter already gone into.
I know a man was appointed for that purpose and the money was collected and placed or depositied into his hands, and he was sent out in this country here to purchase the land, and he did purchase it. Now these are the facts that I know about as well as I know anything, yet it is a fact that I didn’t see the money paid over to him, or was not with him, when the land was purchased, but it is here to show for itself that he purchased it.
548: The question is do you know he did it?
I could not testify that he laid out the money to purchase that land but it was understood as a general thing by the church that the money was devoted to that object and applied in that way.
549: Was applied towards the purchasing of this land?
550: That was a mere rumor was it not?
No sir it was a matter of general conversation and knowledge. It was bough with money that was contributed to when I was a member of the church.
551: I believe you stated you did not pay any of that money your self?
I did not personally, – no sir.
552: Did you know Austin Cole?
553: Yes sir?
Well I couldn’t say as to that. The name sounds a little familiar with me. I think there was such a man existed at one time. Per the name sounds or seems familiar to me in some way, but my memory does not bring him personally before me at this time.
554: Did you know Austin Cole, William Marks and Leonard Soby?
Yes sir, I believe there were such men.
555: If so where did you know them?
I have a distant recollection in some way that there were men of that names that belonged to the church, but my memory does not bring them all back to me now.
556: If there were such men and you knew them, where did you know the men, – that is where did you know them at?
I think I became personally acquainted with Austin Coles in Kirtland. I have a kind of an indistinct recollection or memory of knowing a man by that name there.
557: Did you know him at Nauvoo?
558: You did not?
No sir, I do not think I knew him at Nauvoo. I may have known him there, but I rather think it was at Kirtland.
559: What did you know, if anything, as to his character?
I have no memory at all as regards the character of the man.
560: I mean in reference as to whether or not he was a truthful man?
I have no knowledge as to that. I have no knowledge that he was anything else but a good man, for I don’t remember anything about it one way or the other. He was a good man for all I know.
561: How about William Marks?
What about him?
562: Yes sir?
How about him in reference to the nature of his character?
William Marks was a good man.
563: And Sobey?
to the last question to which objection is had.
He was a good man for all I know to the contrary. So far as I have any knowledge he was a good man.
564: Did you know any of these men intimately?
William Marks I knew him intimately, but the others I did not know so intimately.
565: You know Marks intimately?
Yes sir, but the others I was not so well acquainted with.
566: Now with reference to the doctrine of the church during the life time of Joseph Smith your brother, that were recognized in the church but which they were commanded not to publish?
I have no recollection of any item of that kind. I have no recollection or knowledge of that kind of any item that they were commanded not to publish.
567: I will put the question in this form Mr. Smith, – were there any revelations ever given which they were commanded at the time not to publish?
568: I asked you if you knew or had any knowledge of any commandment that was received by the church, which the church was commanded not to publish?
Not that I know anything of. I have no idea that there ever was, for I have nothing on my mind now that makes me think there ever was anything of that kind given that was accompanied by a command not to be published. I never heard of anything of the kind and it was never suggested to me before that there was anything of the kind either.
569: To refresh your recollection I will read two and a half lines from the book of doctrine and Covenants, exhibit J, on page one hundred and one, and you look while I read will you?
570: Well here it is, – “And I command you that you preach naught but repentance, and show not these things unto the world until it is wisdom in me”. Are you acquainted with the command?
Well I have read that thing and see it a thousand times before but this is the first time that I ever heard it insinuated that there was anything secret about it before, or that there was anything secret arising from that.
571: Then Mr. Smith in pursuance of the request of the counsel for plaintiff I will ask you to read the whole of that paragraph in which is found the quotation I have just called your attention. Read from the top of page one hundred and on the rest of the paragraph?
572: Then I will withdraw my request, or rather my question, and with the consent of the counsel for the plaintiff agree that section two beginning at the top of page one hundred and running over on page one-hundred and one may be copied into the record by the reporter, and waive the reading of same at this time?
The paragraph above referred to is as follows, – “Again it is written eternal damnation; wherefore it is more express than other scriptures that it might work upon the hearts of the children of men, altogether for my glory; wherefore I will explain unto you this mistry, for it is meet unto you to know, even as my apostles. I speak unto you that are chosen in this thing, even as one, that you may enter into my rest; for, behold, the mistry of godliness, how great is it? For, behold, I am endless, and the punishment which is given from my hand is endless punishment, for endless is my name; wherefore, – eternal punishment is Gods punishment. Endless punishment is Gods punishment, wherefore, I command you to repent, and keep the commandments which you have received by the hand of my servant Joseph Smith, Jr. – in my name and it is by my Almighty power that you have received him, therefor I command you to repent, repent, least I smite you by the rod of my mouth, and by my wrath, and by my anger, and your sufferings be sore, – how sore you know not, how exquisite you know not, yea how hard to bear you know not for behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might suffer if they would repent; but if they would not repent they must suffer even as I; which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore and to suffer both body and spirit, and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink; nevertheless glory be to the Farther and I partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men; wherefore I command you again to repent, lest I humble you with Almighty power, and that you confess your sins lest you suffer these punishments, of which I have spoken, of which in the smallest, yea, even in the least degree, you have tasted at the time I withdrew my spirit. And I command you that you preach naught but repentence, and show not these things unto the world until it is wisdom in me; for they cannot bear meat not, but milk they must receive; wherefore they must not know these things lest they perish”. Learn of me and listen to my words; walk in the meekness of my spirit, and you shall have peace in me. I am Jesus Christ; I came by the will of the Father and I do his will”.
572: As the counsel for the plaintiff has objected to this paragraph, I will ask you if that was the law of the church upon the subject treated of in that paragraph?
573: Yes sir?
I do not know any reason why that should not be excepted as the law of the church.
574: Mr Smith have you any personal interest in this case which is now pending and upon or in which you have been testifying?
575: You have no personal interest in?
None whatever personally the only interest I have in it is the interest that a member of the church would naturally be expected to feel in the recovery of property to where it justly and rightfully belongs. That is all the interest I have in this case sir.
576: That is the only interest you have in it then?
I may sir, that I haven’t the least interest in it in the world. As I am somewhat insolated and considerably advanced in life sir, as regards my history at the present time. My position is such that as a rule I am not much occupied with the Re-organized church, and so I may say that personally I have not the least interest in the world personally as to what the result of this suit may be either temporal or spiritual.
577: Do you know whether or not the Re-organixed church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has any interest in this property here in Independence, Missouri, for the recovery of which tis suit has been brought?
Anything I could or would say sir in answer to that question would be simply my opinion, and I do not know how much that would be worth. In some places and at some times it might be worth a good deal more than others, and just what it will be worth in a court of law I cannot tell you sir, but if you want my opinion sir for what it is worth, I can tell you sir that in my opinion that so far as my nephew Joseph Smith is concerned he is the legal sucessor of his father my brother Joseph Smith, by the right of descent or inheritance to the sucession of the offices that his father held, and as such sucessor he holds and weilds all the gifts and powers that his father possessed, and is entitled to hold and possess all the right and priveledges whether spiritual or temporal that his father possessed. That is my opinion sir that he had control in that way over the church as organized under his Presidency. That is just simply my opinion sir.
578: Well that is all, – Take the witness?
579: I will ask you what you meant Mr. Smith when you used the language that the church “was looking forward to an endowment in the temple”?
I meant what I said, that that was what it was looking forward to.
580: I know that, but I want you to explain what you meant by the use of the word “endowment”?
Now I understand the question, and I will answer it. There is two phases to be had according to my idea and opinion on the subject as regards the matter of an endowment, – there was an endowment that was promised on the condition that we build that temple. If I am most mistaken in the reading there is something that is printed in the book of Covenants in reference to it, – in the way of the finishing of a temple and after it was finished the church was to receive and endowment on account of it, or something like that. Now I wish to explain what that endowment was, – it was suppose to mean an additional outpouring of the spiritual gifts and blessings of the church through the means of their industry and sacrifice incurred and undergone on account of its building. That was recognized as an endowment, – and outpouring of the spirit that would show that the work was blessed by the Spirit, as a reward for the industry and sacrifice that marked its erection that was recognized as an endowment, an additional blessing and bestowal of spiritual gifts and spiritual influences and power and its corresponding effect upon the ministry of the church.
581: Then if I understand you correctly Mr. Smith the endowment was simply a greater outpouring of the spirit with reference to the same as on the Day of Pentecost?
Something similar. Something of that nature was generally expected and talked of that such would probably be the application of what was meant by the endowment. That was generally supposed to be what the obligation meant.
582: In your examination yesterday Mr. Smith, and to-day you stated that you still held the office of an apostle?
583: And you do still continue to hold that office?
584: That is the office of an apostle continued with you from the time of your ordination in 1835 in the old church until now, and will continue on?
585: Now please state to the reporter what you mean by that continuing apostleship?
One the ground that any priesthood so held in our church is an everlasting principle that has been handed down through vast periods of time or ages, – from Adam down to the days of Moses through Noah and Abraham, and from Moses to Christ. The ordained authority of the priesthood is everlasting, or lasts through life, and I held that as I had been lawfully ordained in the old church in the days of Joseph as an apostle, and my ordination in relation to that I held conferred upon me that priesthood which is represented by Paul and Hebrew as being “without father, and without mother without descent”. It is an eternal principle handed down by God through his apostles and disciples and who are ordained thereby and I consider that I still hold under the influence of an ordination, that apostleship.
585: You say that you still consider that you hold your apostleship to which you are ordained in the old church under the dispensation of your brother Joseph Smith?
I do sir, I consider that I still hold it with al its honor and power, for I do not think that it has been taken away from me by either God or man, nor will it be taken away from me. No sir, it has not been taken away from and by in either God or man or by any other authority. It is for this reason sir that I claim I have the right to preach the gospel right here in this city of Independence, or in any other part of the world I see fit so to do, or in the islands of the sea, under that authority. I claim the right to do this by virtue of the authority vested in me by reason of the ordination, and with the power of God which is ever present with his priesthood who speak his work with a singleness of purpose and with the object of winning souls to his standard, or to a knowledge of his truth as it stands revealed to us.
586: I want to ask you if you claim to hold the office of one of the twelve apostles in the re-organized church, or do you recognize the right of the church to place any one in the office?
I do not hold any office of apostle in that respect under the re-organized church in that respect, for I have never been invitied by the re-organized church to that position, neither have I ever asked them to accept me in that position.
587: I will ask you Mr. Smith if you concede it to be a right of the re-organized church, and also of the old church to name the parties who shall fill the several offices in the church?
I understand that in the reorganization of the church, that in re-organizing a church, that the idea of re-organizing a church in relation to this organization, it was simply not with the idea of the introduction of any new doctrines to be organized into the church as a part thereof or as a part of its doctrine, but simply a transmission of the old doctrine that was taught in the old church in 1830 and keeping it in the re-organization. I understand that the idea of the re-organization was simply to collect together that kind of doctrine or matter, and the scattered elements of the old church, and bring them back again into the fold and restore the old church again through the meeting of this organization to nearly the same condition it was in before the disruption, in other words to simply fill the break up that was caused by the death of Joseph Smith and the disruption of the church that followed that event, and the reunion of the scattered fragments of the church that still adhere to the old church as taught in 1830 and 1835. That is the way I understood it that the reorganization was effected by the gathering again together into one church organization that element that had become scattered or broken up through the means of the death of Joseph Smith, and by the collection of the elements together again they became organized together again according to the idea of the re-organization, and no new doctrine was to be introduced into the church, but simply a collection of the scattered elements and uniting them together under one organization with the same doctrine that was taught in the days of Joseph Smith.
588: It was a simply collecting together again of the members who had belonged to the old church?
Yes sir. And they were organized into the capacity of a new church government.
589: Yesterday Mr. Smith or this morning, I forgot which, your attention was called to paragraph forty, page 313 of Exhibit J, you read a part of that paragraph commencing at the first of the paragraph, and reading up to the word “myself”, on page two hundred and fourteen. You may now read the balance of the paragraph to the reporter., -those three lines at the head of the page, after the word “myself”?
Behold his priesthood no man taketh from him but verily I say unto you, another may be appointed unto the same calling”? Is that all you want I should read?
590: Yes sir, if that is the balance of the paragraph that is all I want you to read?
Well that it is it, -that is all of it. Now that lays down the rule that the priesthood can never be taken from me, but it states that another can be appointed to the same place. As I have never asked for an apostleship, I don’t know that it would be granted to me if I did ask for it, -so far as that is concerned I do not know.
591: Now you stated in your cross-examination Mr. Smith that the right of the priesthood descended from father to son?
592: That is what you stated?
Yes sir, and that is my understanding of the law of the church.
593: To what son does it descend?
the eldest son.
594: It descends to the oldest son?
Yes sir, that is my understanding of the rule.
595: Is that true without reference to the fitness of the oldest son?
I could not say as to that.
596: Or would it follow if the oldest son should apostatize from from the faith and church, that no other person could hold the office?
597: State the facts about that as you understand them?
Shall I answer the question?
598: Yes sir, answer the question?
If the legal hair in sucession had no fitness to fill that office, I would consider that the highest authority in the church at that time at the death of the first Presidency, would have the right to take control in the management of the church. If the legitimate heir would be an idiot, I would not consider that he had a right, or that he had a very good chance to be a fit subject to govern or preside over a church, but there is generally a President that has power, and if in that Presidency one of them steps out or dies, the next one in office holds the power of goverment that the other one held in the control of the goverment. Now that is as I understand it.
599: I will ask you this question, In the event of the patriarch in the church or in case the eldest son has not any fitness for the office his father held, or by reason of anything departs from the faith of the church, then as you understand the law, where does the right to act as patriarch go?
I would consider of course that the apostacy of the father, would of course destroy the right of the son to the office, or to the sucession.
600: Suppose it was the son apostized and not the father, what then would be the effect?
In answering that question allow me to explain what I mean in regard to that. If that man had the same kind of power and authority over an organization than is simply held over a cattle ranch or something like that, I would not consider that if he apostised there would not be anything left for him to do, —the matter of his apostacy would not cut any figure, for in that case all the son would have to do would be to step in his fathers tracks, as in that case the power that would descend to him would refer only to the temporal affairs of this world, and all he would have to do would be to step in and take charge of that cattle ranche, but in the case of a patriarch in the church who wields a spiritual function the matter of his apostacy would cut him off from the sucession to the office his father held, for it would be a spiritual function and not a temporal function, that he would suceed to
601: Suppose that the oldest son of the patriarch in the old original
faith abandoned the doctrine of monogamy, and adopted the faith of polygamy, then in that case, as you understand the law of the original church would he suceed to the office of patriarch in that church that taught the doctrine of monogamy only?
602: You may answer the question?
As far as my knowledge goes, or my answer in concerned, I think I have answered that question already. My answer is that a belief in the doctrine of polygamy, or its practice, would of course disfranchise the man from his right to his sucession to the office his father held and from all and every right he held by reason of his being a member of the church of Christ as it was originally constituted.
603: Why would it have that effect?
It would have the effect of disfranchisement, because of the fact that it is at varience with the doctrine as taught by the church, – because it is not in accordance with the doctrine as taught by the original church, and the doctrine as taught by the re-organized church.
604: You stated also in your cross examination that these parties that were connected with the church that you under took to organized left you because they under stood that there was another link in the sucession that was more entitled to be the head of the church than were you yourself? No you may state what that link of sucession was?
605: That is in effect what you stated is it not?
I stated that the reason for the break-up of my organization was that these parties who had forsaken my organization had found that there was another claim that was entirely superior to my claim.
606: That is what they stated?
607: That some one else had a claim superior to your claim to be the leader of the church?
608: Now who was it possessed that claim?
That claim was as they publicly stated the claim of he who at that time use to be “called” young Joseph Smith”.
609: On what basis was the claim of young Joseph Smith based?
On the ground that as he was the eldest son of my brother Joseph Smith the first President of the original church, he was entitled to the first Presidency of the church, and I recognized that claim as soon as he asserted it publicly.
610: Is that the present President of the re-organized church?
611: Do you know Mr. Smith whether or not the temple at Nauvoo was ever finally completed?
I do not know any further than I heard, – I have been told by others who have said,
612: Well you need not state what others told you. My question is do you know of your own knowledge whether or not it was ever completed?
Well that is all that I know about it, and that is what I have been told by others who were there. I was not there when the temple was completed if it was ever built, but I was there when the foundation was laid in 1841 but after that I was not there, and had nothing to do in regard to the building of the temple; neither did I ever receive any endowments in regard to what was promised on its completion. There was some endowments promised on the completion of the temple, I never received any of them, but whether the temple was ever completed or not I do not know, but I understand it was not.
613: On your cross-examination Mr. Smith you stated that the church when it was first organized was called the “Church of Christ?”
614: Now I will ask, if you recollect about the time when there was a specific name given to the church, and give the circumstances surrounding the giving of the name?
When the name was changed?
615: Yes sir, if it ever was changed?
I think that the name was changed from the church of Christ, and the church was denominated “The church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints” in 1834 and that the circumstances surrounding that change of name were, that the temple had been built, – the walls of a temple had been put up in Kirtland, Ohio, and the matter was talked over in regards to the change of the name, or as to what the inscription should be that was to be placed on that temple, and of course when this subject was being talked over in regard to the inscription that was to be placed on that temple. I think it was said it was given in a revelation that the name was to be called “The church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”, and that inscription was place on that temple in 1834. That, so far as my knowledge is concerned, was the first knowledge I had of that matter in relation to the title of the church. It was after that entitled the Church of Jesus of Christ of Latter Day Saints, and that was the inscription that was put on that temple. There has been conversations frequently as to the term or word “Jesus”, and it was said that it was not courteous to call anybody by his right name, and when it came to be talked over in relation to the name of the church, and Christ, it was contended by some that Christ was not his full name that Jesus was his first name, and when we come to put the given name and the surname together it made it “Jesus Christ”, and as a consequence the church was called the “Church of Jesus Christ”. That was right I think, for there is nothing improper in calling any one by their given name, or by their right name, and as his given name was “Jesus”, of course we call him “Jesus Christ”.
616: I will ask you now if the church organized in 1830 if it was known as the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from 1834 down to the time of your brothers death?
617: Then I understand you to say that from 1834 up to the time of your brothers death the church organized in 1830 was known by the name and title of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints?
Yes sir. It was known by that title up to the time of Joseph Smith’s death.
618: I will ask if you were at any time a representative of the people of Hancock County, Illinois, and for Nauvoo?
619: In what capacity?
As a member of the legislature of Illinois.
620: What were you doing from 1861 up to 1865?
621: In 1861 I mean?
In regard to what? What do you refer to?
622: What were you doing in 1861?
In regards to that history I was preaching during 1861, – what period of time did you mention?
623: I said from 1861 down to 1865?
I was preaching during that time.
I was preaching in Southern Pennsylvania.
625: What were you doing during the war of the rebellion?
I was serving in the army as a soldier.
626: From what state?
From what state?
627: Yes sir?
628: When did you enlist?
At Rock Island.
I enlisted on the 25th day of February 1865, and served in the army, – not it was on the 25th day of February 1864 and I served in the army in the war of the rebellion nearly two years until the war closed, when I was no longer needed in the service of the goverment and was discharged.
630: I will ask you whether or not it was after you returned from the army that you united with the re-organized church?
Yes sir it was after I returned from the army. Re-cross-examination by Mr. Southern,
631: Mr. Smith will you state whether or not it is a fact that the Salt Lake church has the same name precisely, as that which you say was adopted in 1834?
632: Do you understand the question?
633: Well what is your answer?
They make the same claim to the title of their church. They make the claim that that is the title of their church.
634: That is the title of their church?
Yes sir. That is the title they claim.
635: I will ask you if it is not a fact that nine of the twelve apostles at Nauvoo after the death of your brother did not go to Salt Lake with the church?
636: What is your answer?
What is the question?
637: I ask you if it is not a fact that nine of the twelve apostles that were in the church at the time of the death of your brother did not go west with the church when it moved to Salt Lake?
There was nine of the apostles that were named there in the book of Covenants, that were identified with this Utah church under the Presidency of Brigham Young.
638: I will ask you now if any of those nine elders are in the Re-organized church, or ever were?
I do not understand the question sir?
639: I asked you now if any of the twelve elders that were in the church at the time of the death of your brother Joseph Smith are now members of the re-organized church, or have ever been members of it?
No sir, not that I know if.
640: Are any of their sons in the re-organized church?
641: Are any of the sons of the nine apostles in the re-organized church?
I do not know that there is.
642: Were you present at the endowment of which you speak at Kirtland, Ohio?
What is that?
643: Were you present at the endowment at Kirtland of which you spoke.
643: Well there is a difference of opinion there, – that is all to that there is. I will ask the question anyway, – were you present when the endowment was made?
644: Yes sir?
645: Do you know what the endowment was at that time Mr. Smith?
646: Well what was?
It consisted of prayer meeting, – prayers testimonies given, and individual experiences, and the attention of washing the feet and ceremonies of that kind.
647: Was there any annointing connected with it?
I don’t recollect sir. I don’t know that there was any annointing had there at that time. If there was I don’t recollect about it. I do not recollect of any annointing administration occuring there, and I do not think there was, for I was there, and if there had been I would have participated in it, and I do not remember of having done so.
648: Why should you have participated in it?
As an officer of the church I being personally present I would have participated in it, but I do not recollect of any thing of the kind occuring there was no annointing took place at the endowment, if there was I have forgotten all about it.
649: Do they practice the ordinance of washing the feet in the re-organized church?
I have not learned that they practice an ordinance of that kind or have adopted it?
I do not understand what the re-organized church has adopted that ordinance, but if I have the right to say something on that point I would like to do so if I am allowed.
650: Well go ahead and state what you want to on that subject?
I have understood that the subject is under consideration and that is to be adopted some time in the future when that ordinance will be assumed.
651: Well never mind that, – it is sufficient for you to say that they do not practice it now, and that is what I understand you to say?
652: Now will you read on page three hundred and fourteen of the book of Doctrine and Covenants, exhibit J, these few words, – “Behold his priesthood no man taketh from him, but verily I say unto you another may be appointed to the same calling”. Now who did that refer to?
I cannot say.
653: Did it, or did it not refer to David Patten?
654: Did it or did it not refer to David Patten?
Thee is a mystery connected with that that I am incapable of explaining just now. Probably I could explain it if I had time to reflect. You will notice from the surroundings why that statement was made.
655: Well do you know or do you not know whether it referred to David Patten?
No sir, I do not know to whom it referred to particularly for I am not familiar with the surroundings in connections with that paragraph.
656: Well read that paragraph over, and read the close of it on the next page. Read it for your own information so that you can aaertain if you can answer the question I have asked you. You need not necessarily read it aloud?
Why of course from the statements that are made here it refers of course to David Patten.
657: The reference there is to David Patten?
658: Was he not dead at that time?
Yes sir. He was dead at that time this revelation was given.
659: You state in your re-cross examination that the priesthood descended to the oldest son?
660: Was young Joseph Smith, – now the President of the re-organized church, – the oldest son of Joseph Smith, his father?
I so understand it.
661: Was he the first born?
I cannot answer that question, because I am not familiar enough with the family association to answer that question. What I know is that he is the oldest son now living so far as my personal acquaintance is concerned.
662: Was Joseph Smith your brother, the oldest son of your father?
663: He was not the oldest son of your father?
No sir he was not.
664: You were older than he was?
No sir he was five years older than what I am.
665: Was Hyrum the oldest?
He was older than what Joseph was.
666: What is that?
I say that he was older than Joseph.
667: Hyrum was older than Joseph Smith?
668: Was he the oldest male member of the family?
He was not the oldest male member of the family for the oldest male member of the family died before that time.
669: You stated that the temple was built at Kirtland in 1834, and the name of the church was inscribed on the corner stone I believe?
No sir I did not state that.
670: Well what did you state about that?
I said it was inscribed on the frontispiece. Not the corner stone, but the frontispiece near the apex of the building.
671: Well now will you answer this question?
I will if I can.
672: Whether you may not be mistaken about the year?
About the year?
673: Yes sir, whether you may not be mistaken about the year that the temple was built, or that inscription was place on it?
I am under the impression, – I am of the opinion that the time the inscription was put on there the temple was not quite finished. I do not think that it was quite finished, but it was measurably and quite extensively approaching completion. The walls had been laid up, but it was not quite finished. It was not entirely finished until after 1835.
674: What I want to know is if you are sure that the inscription was put on there in 1834?
675: Or was it not in 1835?
No sir I do not think it was in 1835. Now I would not like to swear postively it was put there in 1834 I know however that it was put there for I have seen it myself a great many time, and I remember seeing it there before the temple was completed, and I think it was in the year 1834, that the title of “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”, was officially taken for the title of the church, and the inscription was placed on that temple in accordance with the change that was made in the title of the church. I know these to be facts, and I know that it was put on the church, and I think it was in 1834 that this was done.
676: Is this not the fact, that the title of the church was “The church of Latter Day Saints”?
No sir. The name “Latter Day Saints” came in afterwards.
677: Was the church ever known by that name?
678: The name of “The church of Latter Day Saints”?
Nominally, – sir, – but in speaking of the church we would very often amongst ourselves speak of it, or of ourselves, as members of the “Latter Day Saints,” but this was only in common conversation among ourselves, but when any person asked us what the title of the church was we would tell him that it was “The church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.”
679: Now the church you say was never known officially as the “Church of Latter Day Saints”?
Only in that way. I do not understand it that way, that that was the especial identity of the church or, that it was known by that name officially. The especial and acknowledged title of the church at that time, was the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
680: How was that title obtained?
Well I am rather of the opinion if I have not lost any memory entirely that it was settled by the principles of revelation.
681: Then if it was, – if that title was settled by revelation what right had any man, or body of men, or conference of men, to change the title, and call it “Re-organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”?
682: Now answer that question if you can?
What is the question you asked me?
683: I aske you what right had any man or body of men, officially or otherwise to change that name?
684: Will you answer the question Mr. Smith?
Well after some reflections probably I will.
685: Well I would like you to do so. Do you give it up? Can’t you answer it? If you can’t I do not insist upon your doing so, – I do not insist upon a man doing that which is impossible, but if you cannot answer the question I would like for you to say so.
I understand the question sir, I understand the question all right and I will answer it. I presume that at first I could not give a proper answer to that question for the reason that it is a matter that requires some though, – probably a good deal of though to be given to the solving of a very small problem in history. What a church is re-organized, the church it self under the re-organization I would hold we have the right to adopt its title under the re-organization that had been effected, and as we claim to be a re-organization of the old church itself, the church so organized would have a right to adopt the title that belonged to the original church with the prefix “re-organized” which would show that it was a re-organization of the old church. This is what has been done in this instance.
686: That is your answer to the question?
687: And the only answer you have to make to the question?
Yes sir I do not know of any other answer that I can make.
688: Well now I will ask you from what authority does a church derive the right to change a name that was given by revelation?
I don’t conceive that the prefix “re-organization” to the title of the church constitutes a change in the name. I do not see it in that light sir.
689: Will you answer that question?
690: I asked you by what right the re-organized church saw fir, or where it derived the right to change the name of a church that was given by revelation?
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, in the re-organization holds all the powers belonging to the former organization, and under that poter assumes the right of course to take the name of the old church without any interference of course with the revelation establishing the title. The addition of the word “re-organized” as I understand it was merely adopted to indicate that the church as it now exists was a re-organization of the old church, and the adcition of that word does not in my opinion interfere, – it neither adds nor takes away from any of the powers that were given or bestowed by reasons of the revelation establishing the title of the church. It is merely as I understand it an acknowledhement, – the re-organization is simply an acknowledgement of the right to the title, and does not make any change in it whatever.
691: From what authority did they get the right of re-organization?
Why the right to re-organize certainly rises out of an especial principle of law in all governments, or in the government of all matters that through any cause or from any reason becomes dissolved by the influence of destructive elements, whether temporarily or other wise, and as a natural consequence there should be ressurection or gathering together again of these dissevered and scattered elements into the body. In that case it seems to me to be eminently proper that the title of the re-organized body should state the fact that it is a reorganization. Have I to make a speech to enable you to understand it. If it is necessary I can go on and preach a discourse and if I was well enough I would preach a discourse on the question to-morrow to inform you of these matters, but I am not able to do it. Now upon the principle of the authority to organize, or re-organize, if I was to answer that question fully, I might probably have to illustrate in order to show the existence really of the principles that naturally exist for the re-institution of that which through un-toward causes has been dissolved and scattered, but which aught to be preserved, and that it is an obligation that rests upon the shoulder of ever one who professed to be a member of that organization, whether it be a church, or any other organization, – to resurrect and perpetuate the doctrine that they themselves have embraced.
692: Is there any organization of that old church, excepting that which is known as “The Re-organized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”?
693: There is not?
No sir, – none that I know of.
694: Was there when you had a church?
Yes sir, there was.
695: Was it the true successor of the old church?
No sir, it was not.
696: Your church was not?
No sir it was not.
697: What did you organize it for then, if it was not the true successor of the old church?
I organized it to save the doctrine of the church from disruption, and to save many of the people from apostacy, and everything of that kind that led to heresies.
698: Did you not pick up some of the fragments of the old church?
699: Was not your church just as much entitled to be called the true church as the re-organized church is?
Yes sir, as long as it existed it had that right. I started in to save as many as I could like brands from the burning, and we have been picking up fragments ever since.
700: Well that will do on that subject. Now will you please read from Exhibit E, the book of Doctrine and Covenants of the old church the preface to that book?
701: I mean just the heading of the preface?
Do you wish me to read it aloud?
702: Yes sir?
I will do so if I can.
You want me to read the whole of the preface?
703: Yes sir if you desire to do so?
“To the members of the Church of Latter Day Saints, Dear Brethern; – We deem it unnecessary to entertain you with a lengthly preface to the following volume, but merely to say that it contains in short the leading items in the religion which we have professed to believe. The first part of the book will be found to contain a series of lectures, as delivered before a Theological class in this place, and in consequence of their embracing the important doctrine of salvation, we have arranged them in the following work. The second part contains items, or principles, for the regulation of the church, as taken from the revelations which have been given since its organization, as well as from former ones. There may be an aversion in some of the minds against receiving anything purporting to be articles of religious faith, in consequence of there being so many now extent; but if men believe a system, and profess that it was given by inspiration, certainly, the more intelligibly they can present it, the better. It does not make a principle untrue to print it, neither does it make it true not to print it. The church viewing this subject to be of importance, appointed through their servants and delegates, the High Council your servants to select and compile this work. They knew that the church was evil spoken of in many places, – its faith and belief mis-represented, and the way of truth thus subverted. By some it was represented as disbelieving the bible, by others as being an enemy to all good an uprightness, and by others as being infamous to the peace of all governments, civil and political. We have, therefore, endeavored to present, though in a few words, our belief, and when we say this, humbly trust, the faith and principles of the society as a body. We do not present this little volume with any other expectation than that we are to be called to answer for every principle advanced in that day when the secrets of all hears will be revealed, the reward of every man’s labor be given him. With sentiments of esteem and sincere respect, we subscribe ourselves your brethern in the bonds of the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ”.
704: You may also read the names that are subscribed to that?
Joseph Smith, Jr, Oliver Cowdery, Sidney Rigdon, F.G. Williams, Kirtland, Ohio, February 17th, 1835.”
I do not conceive that there is anything improper in the reading of these names. This is simply the acknowledgement of the fact that the doctrine of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ was taught at that time in this church, and this is simply a full acknowledgement of that fact. As far as I am concerned I will tell you that I am a believer in the doctrine of the Latter Day Saints.
705: Well sir there is no one disputing that fact that I am aware of. Now will you please read the lines preceding section one in the same exhibit (E)?
“Theology. Lecture first. One the doctrine of the Church of Latter Day Saints”. This is nothing but a system of lectures on theology as taught by the church, and I have given a good many of them myself at one time and another.
706: Is this book of Doctrine and Covenants regarded as an authority in the church?
I do not know what book it is.
707: It is the first edition of the book of Doctrine and Covenants?
Well I could not answer that for I am not familiar with that edition. I know there was lectures delivered on the faith for I have heard some delivered and delivered others myself.
708: Well that is all?
I am glad of it sir. Thank you.