08 – Robert Weston

1: Mr. Weston state your full name please?
Robert Weston.

2: Where to you live Mr. Weston?
At Independence Missouri.

3: How long have you lived at Independence, Missouri?
I can’t tell certainly, but I think about sixty two or sixty three years.

4: How old were you when you first came here?
I was about twelve years old I think. I am not sure about that, but I don’t think I was more than twelve years (handwritten: old) at that time.

5: Then you came here in 1828 or 1829?
In ’28,-’27, I think it was.

6: And you have lived in this county, and (handwritten: this) town ever since?
Ever since we moved to town we have. We lived at Rock Creek out there about a year, and then we came to town, and I think it has been sixty one or sixty tow years,-sixty two or sixty three years since we came to town, but I was a boy at the time I don;t remember the dates of these things very well.

7: How far is it from here to Rock Creek?
I don’t know the exact distance but it is two and a half or three miles,-maybe more for I will not say for certain how far it is. I know I came from there here to school for quite a while, but I can’t tell you the distance exactly.

8: I will ask you if you knew a man in 1832 and from then on up to 1838 by the name of Edward Partridge?

9: Edward Partridge?
I believe they called him “Bishop”, – I knew a man they called Bishop Partridge. It is the same man I expect but the date that I knew him I don’t just remember exactly for I was a boy and boys don’t remember or pay much attention to the matter of dates, but I remember that I saw a crowd of fellows that were treating him pretty rough up in the Coutr House Square one time. I remember that very well but I don’t remember the time.

10: Did you understand he was a bishop?
Yes sir.

11: Of what church did you understand he was the bishop?
Well the Mormon, – we always called them Mormons then, – I suppose it is the same as the Latter Day Saints.

12: Did you know Joseph Smith the President of the old original church?
I would not know him again, but I know I have seen him, for I was in the crowd where he was. That is the only time and I saw him then, but I don’t think I would now him again if I was to see him even if he was living, and I understand he is dead.

13: You saw him you say?
Yes sir, and of course know he is dead, – at least I have heard he is dead.

14: You did then know Edward Partridge, who is or was sometimes called Bishop Partridge, who is or was sometimes called Bishop Partridge, some where along in the thirties?
Yes sir, I have seen him.

15: And you knew Joseph Smith about the same time?
Yes sir I saw him as I said one time, – I can’t say when it was, but it was the time he and Sidney Rigdon and some others of them were here. I knew them when they were here.

16: Do you know this piece of property out here in Independence, Missouri, commonly called the temple property?
Yes sir.

17: And you know where it is located?
Yes sir.

18: How long have you known it?
Well I can’t tell you exactly but it has been a long time, – a great many years. I expect it was probably in ’33, – I think it was in ’33 or some where along there I got acquainted with it, and from that on down to the present time I have know it.

19: You have known the temple lot since that time?
Yes sir I have know it very well since say – ’33 or along about that time, – Perhaps it was a little before or a little after that time I first knew it, but at any rate I got acquainted with it about that time and I have know it very well since that time.

20: I will ask you Mr Weston what the people generally call that property in speaking about it?
Well I never heard it spoken of in any other way than the temple lot. I don’t know that I have hard it spoke of much at all, but that is what we always called it, everybody that I knew anything about.

21: Called it what?
The temple lot, – that is what people always called it that I know anything about.

22: From 1833 up to what time?
Well for a long time and plenty of people yet call it that. They call it that still although other people claim it now.

23: Well I am not asking you about who claimed it or claims it?
Well that was the way it was, – It was called the temple lot, but other people claimed it.

24: Mr Weston I did not intend to ask you any questions, but I have changed my mind and will ask you a question or two?
All right sir.

25: Can you state distinctly and definitely whether those people of whom you spoke a while ago were called Mormons, or more called Latter Day Saints?
I can’t say what their name was for certain.

26: I do not ask you to state what their true appelation was, but simply to state whether they were called “Mormons”, or called “Latter Day Saints”
Well I know outsiders like myself called them Mormons altogether.

27: Now Mr Weston are you right sure that you had ever heard then them then term “Latter Day Saints”, at that time?
I would not say for certain because I do not know, – I don’t remember, I would not say that I had or that I had not.

28: You have heard that term, however?
How is that?

29: You are sure I say, that you have heard that term, – “Latter Day Saints” used?
Oh yes sir, often.

30: Have you not heard that more patricularly of recent years?
Yes sir.

31: And you don’t know that you ever head the term “Latter Day Saints” used during the time that Partridge was here or not?
No sir. Well now, –

32: And you don’t know whether you ever heard the term “Latter Dy Saints” applied to these people whom you have designated as Mormons during the time that Partridge was here or not?
Well we always called them Mormons, but I can’t say posisitively what other names they might have called them, and I don’t know whether they called them Latter Day Saints at that time or not, – I know I often heard that way of calling them but I can’t say just when it was I first heard it.

33: You know that they were called Mormons at that time?
I know that is what the outside people always called them that, – that is what the outsiders called them, but what they called themselves I don’t know.

34: When you refer to other people claiming that property out there, – the property in controversy in this suit, you refer to the property you have indicated here as the temple lot?
Yes sir.

35: Now whom do you maen as the other people?

36: What do you mean by other people claiming it, – whom do you mean claimed it?
Well the reason I say that is because Sam H. Woodson, John Maxwell and another man that lived down here by the river, they had a law suit about it, and they called on John Parker and old man Seagall, and some other fellow, – I don’t know who it was just now, but I was to meet with them and the three of them wanted us to view the property and value it, and we went down there and looked around, and finally we decided what we thought it was worth, and they seemed to be having a law suit about it, or had a law suit about it and compromised it in some way, for I don’t know just how it was, for one took one piece of it and the other took another piece. Now that is my recollection about it for I don’t know just what the trouble was abut it, and never did know how it was.

37: Were they in possession of the property at that time, one or
It was open ground there and I don’t know who had possession of it for certain.

38: Now when was that?
That was in, —what do you want to know.

39: When was it that this occurence took place that you have detailed?
I couldn’t tell you when it was, but old Steele lived here at the time, I can’t tell you when it was. It was away back a long time before the war any way.