VIEW THE MOBILE VERSION of www.mormonism.ca Informational Site Network Informational
Privacy
    Mormonism.ca - Story Of

In Illinois

A State Of Civil War
After Smith's Death - Rigdon's Last Days
After The War
Attitude Of The Mormons During The Southern Rebellion
Beginning Of Active Hostilities
Blood Atonement
Brigham Young
Brigham Young's Death - His Character
Brigham Young's Despotism
Colonel Kane's Mission
Early Political History
Eastern Visitors To Salt Lake City - Unpunished Murderers
Even More On The History Of Mormonism
Even More On The Religious Puzzle
Facility Of Human Belief
First Announcement Of The Golden Bible
From The Mississippi To The Missouri
From The Rockies To Salt Lake Valley
Fruitless Negotiations With The Jackson County People
Gentile Irruption And Mormon Schism
Gifts Of Tongues And Miracles
Growth Of The Church
History Of Mormonism
How Joseph Smith Became A Money-digger
In Clay Caldwell And Daviess Counties
Introductory Remarks
Last Days At Kirtland
More On Mormonism Social Puzzle
More On The History Of Mormonism
More On The Religious Puzzle
Mormon Treatment Of Federal Officers
Mormonism The Political Puzzle
Nauvoo After The Exodus
Notes On The History Of Mormonism
Organization Of The Church
Preparations For The Long March
Progress Of The Settlement
Public Announcement Of The Doctrine Of Polygamy
Radical Dissensions In The Church - Origin Of The Danites - Tithing
Renewed Trouble For The Mormons - The Burnings
Rivalries Over The Succession
Sidney Rigdon
Smith A Candidate For President Of The United States
Smith's Falling Out With Bennett And Higbee
Smith's First Visits To Missouri Founding The City And The Temple
Smith's Ohio Business Enterprises
Smith's Picture Of Himself As Autocrat
Social Aspects Of Polygamy
Social Conditions In Nauvoo
Some Church-inspired Murders
The Building Up Of The City - Foreign Proselyting
The Camps On The Missouri
The Different Accounts Of The Revelation Of The Bible
The Directions To The Saints About Their Zion
The Evacuation Of Nauvoo - The Last Mormon War
The Everlasting Gospel
The Expulsion From Jackson County The Army Of Zion
The Expulsion Of The Mormons
The Fight Against Polygamy - Statehood
The Final Expulsion From The State
The First Converts At Kirtland
The Following Companies - Last Days On The Missouri
The Foreign Immigration To Utah
The Founding Of Salt Lake City
The Hand-cart Tragedy
The Institution Of Polygamy
The Last Years Of Brigham Young
The Mormon Battalion
The Mormon Bible
The Mormon Purpose
The Mormon War
The Mormonism Of To-day
The Mormons In Politics - Missouri Requisitions For Smith
The Mormons' Beliefs And Doctrines Church Government
The Mountain Meadows Massacre
The Murder Of The Prophet - His Character
The Nauvoo City Government - Temple And Other Buildings
The Peace Commission
The Pioneer Trip Across The Plains
The Political Puzzle
The Political Puzzle Continued
The Reception Of The Mormons
The Reformation
The Religious Puzzle
The Religious Puzzle Notes
The Settlement Of Nauvoo
The Smith Family
The Social And Society Puzzle
The Social Puzzle
The Social Puzzle Notes
The Spaulding Manuscript
The Suppression Of The Expositor
The Territorial Government - Judge Brocchus's Experience
The Witnesses To The Plates
Translation And Publication Of The Bible
Uprising Of The Non-mormons Smith's Arrest
Wild Vagaries Of The Converts


The Story Of The Mormons

A State Of Civil War
After The War
Attitude Of The Mormons During The Southern Rebellion
Beginning Of Active Hostilities
Blood Atonement
Brigham Young's Death - His Character
Brigham Young's Despotism
Colonel Kane's Mission
Early Political History
Eastern Visitors To Salt Lake City - Unpunished Murderers
Facility Of Human Belief
First Announcement Of The Golden Bible
From The Mississippi To The Missouri
From The Rockies To Salt Lake Valley
Fruitless Negotiations With The Jackson County People
Gentile Irruption And Mormon Schism
Gifts Of Tongues And Miracles
Growth Of The Church
How Joseph Smith Became A Money-digger
In Clay Caldwell And Daviess Counties
Last Days At Kirtland
Mormon Treatment Of Federal Officers
Nauvoo After The Exodus
Organization Of The Church
Preparations For The Long March
Progress Of The Settlement
Radical Dissensions In The Church - Origin Of The Danites - Tithing
Sidney Rigdon
Smith's First Visits To Missouri Founding The City And The Temple
Smith's Ohio Business Enterprises
Social Aspects Of Polygamy
Some Church-inspired Murders
The Camps On The Missouri
The Different Accounts Of The Revelation Of The Bible
The Directions To The Saints About Their Zion
The Everlasting Gospel
The Expulsion From Jackson County The Army Of Zion
The Fight Against Polygamy - Statehood
The First Converts At Kirtland
The Following Companies - Last Days On The Missouri
The Foreign Immigration To Utah
The Founding Of Salt Lake City
The Hand-cart Tragedy
The Last Years Of Brigham Young
The Mormon Battalion
The Mormon Bible
The Mormon Purpose
The Mormon War
The Mormonism Of To-day
The Mormons' Beliefs And Doctrines Church Government
The Mountain Meadows Massacre
The Peace Commission
The Pioneer Trip Across The Plains
The Reformation
The Smith Family
The Spaulding Manuscript
The Territorial Government - Judge Brocchus's Experience
The Witnesses To The Plates
Translation And Publication Of The Bible
Wild Vagaries Of The Converts



The Nauvoo City Government - Temple And Other Buildings








A tide of immigration having been turned toward the new
settlement, the next thing in order was to procure for the city a
legal organization. Several circumstances combined to place in
the hands of the Mormon leaders a scheme of municipal government,
along with an extensive plan for buildings, which gave them vast
power without incurring the kind of financial rocks on which they
were wrecked in Ohio.

Dr. Galland* should probably be considered the inventor of the
general scheme adopted at Nauvoo. He was at that time a resident
of Cincinnati, but his intercourse with the Mormons had
interested him in their beliefs, and some time in 1840 he
addressed a letter to Elder R. B. Thompson, which gave the church
leaders some important advice.** First warning them that to
promulgate new doctrinal tenets will require not only tact and
energy, but moral conduct and industry among their people, he
confessed that he had not been able to discover why their
religious views were not based on truth. "The project of
establishing extraordinary religious doctrines being magnificent
in its character," he went on to say, would require "preparations
commensurate with the plan." Nauvoo being a suitable
rallying-place, they would "want a temple that for size,
proportions and style shall attract, surprise and dazzle all
beholders"; something "unique externally, and in the interior
peculiar, imposing and grand." The "clergymen" must be of the
best as regards mental and vocal equipment, and there should be a
choir such as "was never before organized." A college, too, would
be of great value if funds for it could be collected.

* "In the year 1834 one Dr. Galland was a candidate for the
legislature in a district composed of Hancock, Adams, and Pike
Counties. He resided in the county of Hancock, and, as he had in
the early part of his life been a notorious horse thief and
counterfeiter, belonging to the Massac gang, and was then no
pretender to integrity, it was useless to deny the charge. In all
his speeches he freely admitted the fact."--FORD's" "History of
Illinois," p. 406.

** Times and Seasons, Vol. II, pp. 277-278. The letter is signed
with eight asterisks Galland's usual signature to such
communications.


These suggestions were accepted by Smith, with some important
additional details, and they found place in the longest of the
"revelations" given out by him in Illinois (Sec. I 24), the one,
previously quoted from, in which the Lord excused the failure to
set up a Zion in Missouri. There seemed to be some hesitation
about giving out this "revelation." It is dated after the meeting
of the General Conference at Nauvoo which ordered the building of
a church there, and it was not published in the Times and Seasons
until the following June, and then not entire. The "revelation"
shows how little effect adversity had had in modifying the
prophet's egotism, his arrogance, or his aggressiveness.

Starting out with, "Verily, thus with the Lord unto you, my
servant Joseph Smith, I am well pleased with your offerings and
acknowledgments," it calls on him to make proclamation to the
kings of the world, the President of the United States, and the
governors of the states concerning the Lord's will, "fearing them
not, for they are as grass," and warning them of "a day of
visitation if they reject my servants and my testimony." Various
direct commands to leading members of the church follow. Galland
here found himself in Smith's clutches, being directed to "put
stock" into the boardinghouse to be built.

The principal commands in this "revelation" directed the building
of another "holy house," or Temple, and a boardinghouse. With
regard to the Temple it was explained that the Lord would show
Smith everything about it, including its site. All the Saints
from afar were ordered to come to Nauvoo, "with all your gold,
and your silver, and your precious stones, and with all your
antiquities, . . . and bring the box tree, and the fir tree, and
the pine tree, together with all the precious trees of the earth,
and with iron, with copper, and with brass, and with zinc, and
with all your most precious things of the earth."

The boarding-house ordered built was to be called Nauvoo House,
and was to be "a house that strangers may come from afar to lodge
therein. . . a resting place for the weary traveler, that he may
contemplate the glory of Zion." It was explained that a company
must be formed, the members of which should pay not less than $50
a share for the stock, no subscriber to be allotted more than
$1500 worth.

This "revelation" further announced once more that Joseph was to
be "a presiding elder over all my church, to be a translator, a
revelator, a seer and a prophet," with Sidney Rigdon and William
Law his counsellors, to constitute with him the First Presidency,
and Brigham Young to be president over the twelve travelling
council.

Legislation was, of course, necessary to carry out the large
schemes that the Mormon leaders had in mind; but this was secured
at the state capital with a liberality that now seems amazing.
This was due to the desire of the politicians of all parties to
conciliate the Mormon vote, and to the good fortune of the
Mormons in finding at the capital a very practical lobbyist to
engineer their cause. This was a Dr. John C. Bennett, a man who
seems to have been without any moral character, but who had
filled positions of importance. Born in Massachusetts in 1804, he
practised as a physician in Ohio, and later in Illinois, holding
a professorship in Willoughby University, Ohio, and taking with
him to Illinois testimonials as to his professional skill. In the
latter state he showed a taste for military affairs, and after
being elected brigadier general of the Invincible Dragoons, he
was appointed quartermaster general of the state in 1840, and
held that position at the state capital when the Mormons applied
to the legislature for a charter for Nauvoo.

With his assistance there was secured from the legislature an act
incorporating the city of Nauvoo, the Nauvoo Legion, and the
University of the City of Nauvoo. The powers granted to the city
government thus established were extraordinary. A City Council
was authorized, consisting of the mayor, four aldermen, and nine
councillors, which was empowered to pass any ordinances, not in
conflict with the federal and state constitutions, which it
deemed necessary for the peace and order of the city. The mayor
and aldermen were given all the power of justices of the peace,
and they were to constitute the Municipal Court. The charter gave
the mayor sole jurisdiction in all cases arising under the city
ordinances, with a right of appeal to the Municipal Court.
Further than this, the charter granted to the Municipal Court the
right to issue writs of habeas corpus in all cases arising under
the city ordinances. Thirty-six sections were required to define
the legislative powers of the City Council.

A more remarkable scheme of independent local government could
not have been devised even by the leaders of this Mormon church,
and the shortsightedness of the law makers in consenting to it
seems nothing short of marvellous. Under it the mayor, who helped
to make the local laws (as a member of the City Council), was
intrusted with their enforcement, and he could, as the head of
the Municipal Court, give them legal interpretation. Governor
Ford afterward defined the system as "a government within a
government; a legislature to pass ordinances at war with the laws
of the state; courts to execute them with but little dependence
upon the constitutional judiciary, and a military force at their
own command." *

* A bill repealing this charter was passed by the Illinois House
on February 3, 1843, by a vote of fifty-eight to thirty-three,
but failed in the Senate by a vote of sixteen ayes to seventeen
nays.


This military force, called the Nauvoo Legion, the City Council
was authorized to organize from the inhabitants of the city who
were subject to military duty. It was to be at the disposal of
the mayor in executing city laws and ordinances, and of the
governor of the state for the public defence. When organized, it
embraced three classes of troops--flying artillery, lancers, and
riflemen. Its independence of state control was provided for by a
provision of law which allowed it to be governed by a court
martial of its own officers. The view of its independence taken
by,the Mormons may be seen in the following general order signed
by Smith and Bennett in May, 1841, founded on an opinion by judge
Stephen A. Douglas:-- "The officers and privates belonging to the
Legion are exempt from all military duty not required by the
legally constituted authorities thereof; they are therefore
expressly inhibited from performing any military service not
ordered by the general officers, or directed by the court
martial."*

* Times and Seasons, Vol. II, p. 417. Governor Ford commissioned
Brigham Young to succeed Smith as lieutenant general of the
Legion from August 31, 1844. To show the Mormon idea of
authority, the following is quoted from Tullidge's "Life of
Brigham Young," p. 30: "It is a singular fact that, after
Washington, Joseph Smith was the first man in America who held
the rank of lieutenant general, and that Brigham Young was the
next. In reply to a comment by the author upon this fact Brigham
Young said: 'I was never much of a military man. The commission
has since been abrogated by the state of Illinois; but if Joseph
had lived when the (Mexican] war broke out he would have become
commander-in chief of the United States Armies.'"

In other words, this city military company was entirely
independent of even the governor of the state. Little wonder that
the Presidency, writing about the new law to the Saints abroad,
said, "'Tis all we ever claimed." In view of the experience of
the Missourians with the Mormons as directed by Smith and Rigdon,
it would be rash to say that they would have been tolerated as
neighbors in Illinois under any circumstances, after their actual
acquaintance had been made; but if the state of Illinois had
deliberately intended to incite the Mormons to a reckless
assertion of independence, nothing could have been planned that
would have accomplished this more effectively than the passage of
the charter of Nauvoo.

What next followed remains an unexplained incident in Joseph
Smith's career. Instead of taking the mayoralty himself, he
allowed that office to be bestowed upon Bennett, Smith and Rigdon
accepting places among the councillors, Bennett having taken up
his residence in Nauvoo in September, 1840. His election as mayor
took place in February, 1841. Bennet was also chosen major
general of the Legion when that force was organized, was selected
as the first chancellor of the new university, and was elected to
the First Presidency of the church in the following April, to
take the place of Sidney Rigdon during the incapacity of the
latter from illness. Judge Stephen A. Douglas also appointed him
a master in chancery.

Bennett was introduced to the Mormon church at large in a letter
signed by Smith, Rigdon, and brother Hyrum, dated January 15,
1841, as the first of the new acquisitions of influence. They
stated that his sympathies with the Saints were aroused while
they were still in Missouri, and that he then addressed them a
letter offering them his assistance, and the church was assured
that "he is a man of enterprise, extensive acquirements, and of
independent mind, and is calculated to be a great blessing to our
community." When his appointment as a master in chancery was
criticised by some Illinois newspapers, the Mormons defended him
earnestly, Sidney Rigdon (then attorney-at-law and postmaster at
Nauvoo), in a letter dated April 23, 1842, said, "He is a
physician of great celebrity, of great versatility of talent, of
refined education and accomplished manners; discharges the duties
of his respective offices with honor to himself and credit to the
people." All this becomes of interest in the light of the abuse
which the Mormons soon after poured out upon this man when he
"betrayed" them.

Bennett's inaugural address as mayor was radical in tone. He
advised the Council to prohibit all dram shops, allowing no
liquor to be sold in a quantity less than a quart. This
suggestion was carried out in a city ordinance. He condemned the
existing system of education, which gave children merely a
smattering of everything, and made "every boarding school miss a
Plato in petticoats, without an ounce of genuine knowledge,"
pleading for education "of a purely practical character." The
Legion he considered a matter of immediate necessity, and he
added, "The winged warrior of the air perches upon the pole of
American liberty, and the beast that has the temerity to ruffle
her feathers should be made to feel the power of her talons."

Smith was commissioned lieutenant general of this Legion by
Governor Carlin on February 3, 1841, and he and Bennett blossomed
out at once as gorgeous commanders. An order was issued requiring
all persons in the city, of military obligation, between the ages
of eighteen and forty-five, to join the Legion, and on the
occasion of the laying of the corner-stone of the Temple, on
April 6, 1841, it comprised fourteen companies. An army officer
passing through Nauvoo in September, 1842, expressed the opinion
that the evolutions of the Legion would do honor to any militia
in the United States, but he queried: "Why this exact discipline
of the Mormon corps? Do they intend to conquer Missouri,
Illinois, Mexico? Before many years this Legion will be twenty,
perhaps fifty, thousand strong and still augmenting. A fearful
host, filled with religious enthusiasm, and led on by ambitious
and talented officers, what may not be effected by them? Perhaps
the subversion of the constitution of the United States." *

* Mackay's "The Mormons," p. 121.


Contemporary accounts of the appearance of the Legion on the
occasion of the laying of the Temple corner-stone indicate that
the display was a big one for a frontier settlement. Smith says
in his autobiography, "The appearance, order, and movements of
the Legion were chaste, grand, imposing." The Times and Seasons,
in its report of the day's doings, says that General Smith had a
staff of four aides-de-camp and twelve guards, "nearly all in
splendid uniforms. The several companies presented a beautiful
and interesting spectacle, several of them being uniformed and
equipped, while the rich and costly dresses of the officers would
have become a Bonaparte or a Washington." Ladies on horseback
were an added feature of the procession. The ceremonies attending
the cornerstone laying attracted the people from all the outlying
districts, and marked an epoch in the church's history in
Illinois.

The Temple at Nauvoo measured 83 by 128 feet on the ground, and
was nearly 60 feet high, surmounted by a steeple which was
planned to be more than 100 feet in height. The material was
white limestone, which was found underlying the site of the city.
The work of construction continued throughout the occupation of
Nauvoo by the Mormons, the laying of the capstone not being
accomplished until May 24, 1845, and the dedication taking place
on May 1, 1846. The cost of the completed structure was estimated
by the Mormons at $1,000,000.* Among the costly features were
thirty stone pilasters, which cost $3000 each.

* "The Temple is said to have cost, in labor and money, a million
dollars. It may be possible, and it is very probable, that
contributions to that amount were made to it, but that it cost
that much to build it few will believe. Half that sum would be
ample to build a much more costly edifice to-day, and in the
three or four years in which it was being erected, labor was
cheap and all the necessaries of life remarkably low."--GREGG'S
"History of Hancock County," p. 367.


The portico of the Temple was surrounded by these pilasters of
polished stone, on the base of which was carved a new moon, the
capital of each being a representation of the rising sun coming
from under a cloud, supported by two hands holding a trumpet.
Under the tower were the words, in golden letters: "The House of
the Lord, built by the Church of Latter-Day Saints. Commenced
April 6, 1841. Holiness to the Lord." The baptismal font measured
twelve by sixteen feet, with a basin four feet deep. It was
supported by twelve oxen "carved out of fine plank glued
together," says Smith, "and copied after the most beautiful
five-year-old steer that could be found." From the basement two
stairways led to the main floor, around the sides of which were
small rooms designed for various uses. In the large room on this
floor were three pulpits and a place for the choir. The upper
floor contained a large hall, and around this were twelve smaller
rooms.

The erection of this Temple was carried on without incurring such
debts or entering upon such money-making schemes as caused
disaster at Kirtland. Labor and material were secured by
successful appeals to the Saints on the ground and throughout the
world. Here the tithing system inaugurated in Missouri played an
efficient part. A man from the neighboring country who took
produce to Nauvoo for sale or barter said, "In the committee
rooms they had almost every conceivable thing, from all kinds of
implements and men and women's clothing, down to baby clothes and
trinkets, which had been deposited by the owners as tithing or
for the benefit of the Temple." *

* Gregg's "History of Hancock County," p. 374


Nauvoo House, as planned, was to have a frontage of two hundred
feet and a depth of forty feet, and to be three stories in
height, with a basement. Its estimated cost was $100,000.* A
detailed explanation of the uses of this house was thus given in
a letter from the Twelve to the Saints abroad, dated November 15,
1841:--

* Times and Seasons, Vol. II, p. 369.


"The time set to favor the Stakes of Zion is at hand, and soon
the kings and the queens, the princes and the nobles, the rich
and the honorable of the earth, will come up hither to visit the
Temple of our God, and to inquire concerning this strange work;
and as kings are to become nursing fathers, and queens nursing
mothers in the habitation of the righteous, it is right to render
honor to whom honor is due; and therefore expedient that such, as
well as the Saints, should have a comfortable house for boarding
and lodging when they come hither, and it is according to the
revelations that such a house should be built. . . All are under
equal obligations to do all in their power to complete the
buildings by their faith and their prayers; with their thousands
and their mites, their gold and their silver, their copper and
their zinc, their goods and their labors."

Nauvoo House was not finished during the Prophet's life, the
appeals in its behalf failing to secure liberal contributions. It
was completed in later years, and used as a hotel.

Smith's residence in Nauvoo was a frame building called the
Mansion House, not far from the river side. It was opened as a
hotel on October 3, 1843, with considerable ceremony, one of the
toasts responded to being as follows, "Resolved, that General
Joseph Smith, whether we view him as a prophet at the head of the
church, a general at the head of the Legion, a mayor at the head
of the City Council, or a landlord at the head of the table, has
few equals and no superiors."

Another church building was the Hall of the Seventies, the upper
story of which was used for the priesthood and the Council of
Fifty. Galland's suggestion about a college received practical
shape in the incorporation of a university, in whose board of
regents the leading men of the church, including Galland himself,
found places. The faculty consisted of James Keeley, a graduate
of Trinity College, Dublin, as president; Orson Pratt as
professor of mathematics and English literature; Orson Spencer, a
graduate of Union College and the Baptist Theological Seminary in
New York, as professor of languages; and Sidney Rigdon as
professor of church history. The tuition fee was $5 per quarter.





Next: The Mormons In Politics - Missouri Requisitions For Smith

Previous: The Building Up Of The City - Foreign Proselyting



Add to del.icio.us Add to Reddit Add to Digg Add to Del.icio.us Add to Google Add to Twitter Add to Stumble Upon
Add to Informational Site Network
Report
Privacy
SHAREADD TO EBOOK


Viewed 1234