Thursday, October 28, 2010

Wilford Woodruff's 1847 reflections

Excerpts of Wilford Woodruff's 1847 year end reflections -- from his personal journal:
...In 1889, Wilford Woodruff became the fourth prophet and president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  Throughout his life he kept an extensive journal, and sometimes summarized his religious views at the end of a year.  Below are his reflections at the end of the year 1847 (to read his thoughts at other times, see here).
 Important events affecting Wilford Woodruff in 1847:
  • 1847 to 1850 -- Fulfills several assignments to help the Saints migrate to Salt Lake City from Winter Quarters and the eastern United States.
  • 1847 April 7 -- Leaves Winter Quarters with the first company of pioneers bound for the Salt Lake Valley.
  • 1847 July 24 -- Enters Great Salt Lake Valley
  • 1847 August 6 -- Rebaptized with members of the Twelve
  • 1847 August 22 -- Great Salt Lake City government organized
  • 1847 August 26 -- Begins return to Winter Quarters, Iowa
  • 1847 October 31  -- Arrives Winter Quarters
  • 1847 December 5 -- First Presidency reorganized with Brigham Young, Heber C. Kimball, and Willard Richards
At the end of 1847, Wilford Woodruff recorded the following reflections in his personal journal:

Thus end annother Year which has been interesting and important year to the Saints. The Twelve Apostles with their brethren, one hundred and fourty three souls As pioneers have made A journey more than one thousands miles to the Rocky mountains And sought out A place for A city, A stake of Zion, And A Temple of the Lord that the saints may have A place to flee to while the indignation of the Lord passeth over the nation that hath driven them out.
Our Journey to the mountain, & back again to winters Quarters with Horse mule, and Ox teams has been over 2,000 miles. More than half of the Journey we have had to make new roads & with all of our exposures, sickness, & dangers[.  N]ot A Human life has been lost but all returned in safety. And what is more singular still, not A Horse mule ox, cow, or calf was lost either going or returning except 2 Horses shot by disobeying council.
The blessing of the Lord has been great upon us as A people during the past Year in all the various portions of the camp of Israel.
We have now found A place to build A Stake of Zion whare the people can gather toagether & build up Zion.
The past year has shown forth the fulfillment of Prophecy in the wars, rumours of wars, famins, Pestilence, distress of nations with perplexity And in many of the signs of the times. The United States in their wars with the feble Nation of Mexico have involved themselve in a debt of one hundred and fifty millions of dollars besides the loss of twenty five thousand men & twice that number to Mexico And their own expenses in the war.
The famine has raged in Ireland, the cholera through Europe. The breaking of Banks & merchants has distressed the people in England. The Baron Rothchilds the rich Jew has become A member in the British Parliament which is A new eary [era?] in the History of the Jews, & they the Jews are gathering home to Jerrusalem by thousands.
What 1848 will bring to pass in the History of the Church and Kingdom of God time must determin And also in the History of the Nations of the Earth. May the LORD hasten the gathering of Israel & the Building up of Zion for Jesus Christ Sake Amen.
Source: Wilford Woodruff's Journal: 1833-1898 Typescript, edited by Scott Kenney, Signature Books, available here.
  • To read Wilford Woodruff's reflections at other times,see here

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