The Mormon Pentecostal Revival

Many Evangelical, Fundamentalist and Pentecostals will be amazed and horrified as was I concerning published facts surrounding the birth of Mormonism and who the first followers of Joseph Smith were.  The Mormon Pentecostal Revival follows in the footsteps of Matthew 24. Mormonism stands as great spiritual deception for bible believing Christians, people that hunger and thirst for God, and people that hunger and thirst for great signs and wonders. The Mormon Pentecostal revival stands as the Mark and the Sign of what Jesus prophesied concerning that which is to befall in large part the End Time Church and the End Time people of God. The meditation of these events and things his horrific to this day.

Matthew 24:4-5 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; (Christ is actually an untranslated Greek word – many are familiar that Christ means “Anointed” or “Anointed One”) and SHALL deceive many.

A better translation of Matthew 24:5 is: For many shall come in My Name saying I am anointed of God and shall deceive many.

The notion that the anointing or presence of God in a church or fellowship means all is right with a preacher or ministry has caused great deception among believers in recent centuries. One seems to forget the lesson of the pool at Bethesda, where for the people sake that the Angel of God’s presence would on occasion light upon the pool and healing and deliverance would occur.


Whether we like it or not: The fact is that if a preacher, ministry, or church had to be perfect for the manifestation of God to occur in their midst – nothing and we mean nothing of the presence of God, miracles and people operating in gifts of the Spirit would never happen.

1 Samuel 1:9-19 So Hannah rose up after they had eaten in Shiloh, and after they had drunk. Now Eli the priest sat upon a seat by a post of the temple of the LORD.  (Consider here that Eli whose corruption was so great before the Lord that he and his household were marked to be blotted out forever) And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the LORD, and wept sore. -- Now Hannah, she spake in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard: therefore Eli thought she had been drunken. And Eli said unto her, How long wilt thou be drunken? put away thy wine from thee. And Hannah answered and said, No, my lord, I am a woman of a sorrowful spirit: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but have poured out my soul before the LORD. Count not thine handmaid for a daughter of Belial: for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief have I spoken hitherto. (We need to see here that when Hannah received of God, God used the corrupt hand of Eli to bless Hannah. Later God uses the corrupt high priest Eli once more in I Samuel 2: when he instructs the child Samuel how to respond and hear from God.)Then Eli answered and said, Go in peace: and the God of Israel grant thee thy petition that thou hast asked of him. -- And they rose up in the morning early, and worshipped before the LORD, and returned, and came to their house to Ramah: and Elkanah knew Hannah his wife; and the LORD remembered her.

John 11:49-52 And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all, Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not. And this spake he not of himself: (Consider that this man was a false high priest and greatly corrupt) but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;

Realize and Fear that all of those that would have become the disciples because of some gift or operation of God in the ministries of Eli or Caiaphas would have been led to eternal destruction. Yet God used them for the sake of his people. This explains much that we see and hear from the ministries of many false teachers, false evangelists, false prophets, false apostles, as God uses them from time to time as the pool of Bethesda, or as in the case of certain people like Hannah; who after she receives of God wisely departed from the ministry of Eli.


It has been suggested in some writings that I have recently read that Joseph Smith, Olivery Cowdery and Judge Solomon Spalding and those of early Mormonism had some connection with the French prophets – that tenuous connection was in large part to manifestations of prophesy, vision, people speaking in tongues, falling out, and even healings all of which has been recorded in era newspapers. 

Not to many years earlier John Wesley went to France out of genuine interest to meet some of the so-called “French Prophets” I have published Wesley observations of that meeting. I also remind our readers that at this same time period The American Methodists were known for having their Methodist fits, and Shouting Methodists that prophesied, saw visions, spoke in tongues, fell out, and had other manifestations of the Holy Spirit as well.  


We also need mention here that all of these things were concurrent with the Cainridge Revival that occurred between 1801–1860 with its marvelous manifestations of the Holy Spirit. Elsewhere this same time period was also called the second awaking.


As you will see in the selected articles of the time in upstate New York, there was a lot of religious revival talk in the years preceding Joseph Smith, Oliver Cowdery, and Solomon Spalding’s first religious inklings.


Though the author of the Mormon website where I gleaned these articles does not lay out a theory as to how Joseph Smith came to found Mormonism – what these articles demonstrate is that Joseph Smith a young thief and con artist who was arrested for using a seeing stone to falsely prophesy where treasures were located and thereby bilking a number of people out of thousands in cash and goods As a young thief Joseph Smith buried his plunder all over his father’s farm. His acts according to court records was to put the seeing stone in his hat and literally pull the wool over his eyes and then claim to see where treasures were buried. In court records his closest friend testified that Joseph Smith told him that in the stone he saw nothing but said what he said in order to earn a living.  The court found him guilty of a number of charges but because Joseph Smith was under aged I think 15 they decided that at his tender age to send him to prison would only make him a hardened criminal. (This not sending the young Joseph Smith to jail as what was required by law – allowed Smith not only to continue his false prophetic act, but under the careful guidance and training by the crooked Judge Solomon Spalding and the Corrupt newspaper publicist, and writer Oliver Cowdery – take his prophetic scam to heights never seen before in one of the worst American cases of religious fraud in history – now involving now tens of millions of people)


These articles also show that after the trial Joseph Smith continued to associate with a “Dangerous” treasure hunting gang, and other con men. One of Smith’s associates committed murder. One has to assume that after the court case his scam was locally known so no one would come to him to for treasure locations.

It is important to know that several of Joseph smith’s relatives were newspapermen and the newspapers of his youth that all came to his father’s farm free of charge were filled with articles on treasure hunters, their discoveries, and archeological Indian digs. In His own mother’s biography she tells that as a child Joseph Smith would spend hours at a time speaking of an imaginary Indian culture their clothes, how they lived, and all the technology they had. (All of which would later be incorporated into Mormonism and the rewritten novel that became the Book or Mormon.)


One of the big finds by  local treasure hunter that caught young smith’s attention was the discovery of a 500 page book under a rock that had secret writing that no one could read. (This later turned out to be written in Latin short hand that was originally created in the 11th century, resurfaced in the 1500-1600’s and was used by monks and Jesuits to transfer secret information they did not want known) Another purported find published in local newspaper was an article about Golden Books that had been dug up with ancient Indian hieroglyphics written on the solid gold pages. (This sensationalized find never happened)


So what we have is a young thief and con artist that is no longer able to openly ply his false prophetic trade, he also is on record before the advent of Mormonism to having a great interest in an imaginary white Indian civilization. This also was based upon newspaper articles of his day in his local papers -- that Indians were originally white, that they were the lost tribes of Israel, and that an unknown dark skinned race of Indians later showed up and killed them and left no trace of their civilization. (We now begin to see a clear roadmap from Smith’s criminal past to becoming the great prophet of Mormonism.)


We also have in recorded writings that Young Joseph Smith had some relations\relatives that were into not only the French prophets, and or with spoke in tongues and prophesied, (But were both Pentecostal Methodists and People from the Cainridge revival.)  We are stating here that all of these pre-Mormon Pentecostal acquaintances of Joseph Smith, and also of Publicist Oliver Cowdery and in particular a Pentecostal group that called themselves The Pilgrims that were led by an elderly prophet. This group became the focus of Judge Solomon Spalding and Oliver Cowdery’s religious scam. At the time the Judge and Publicist had not yet found their young charismatic prophet to work their scheme.


We also believe that somewhere during this 4-5 year out of work period Jospeh Smith  meets up with some tongue talking, prophesying believers and discovers that these people are incredibly gullibleor in more modern terms: a people moving in spiritual operations with no spiritual discernment (A statement that was frequently bandied about the charismatic revival when it began in the mid seventies.) that they believed at the drop of a hat (In this case Joseph Smith’s) That whatever is said in the name of the Lord has to be true.  Among other things that Oliver Cowdery and Judge Solomon Spalding discovered about these Pentecostals is that these hungry believers were yearning for a true prophet to arise in their midst,  they were yearning to see the new Jerusalem built, and the whole world brought back into that state of the garden of Eden.

Judge Spalding and Oliver Cowdery come to realize that they have discovered the con of cons, that they have been handed the opportunity of a lifetime. And this is where Joseph Smith entered the picture, as their young charismatic convincing con man Smith with his seeing stone routine in his hat would be the one to play the part of the prophet these Pentecostal people, in particular The Pilgrims needed after their prophet suddenly died with all the money from their sold houses and lands in hand.  


However there was one big problem to doing this Joseph Smith’s poor education – in particular Joseph Smith could not read well and could hardly write (We have seen samples of his writing skills, first it incredibly sloppy and uneven. And then these writing samples were filled with many spelling errors that a first or second grader would not make)   So that if this is scheme was to succeed Smith would have to be taught and memorize bible passages, and what to he was to say point by point, lest he be caught a lie again.


Judge Solomon Spalding and Cowdery we educated men who taught and prepped Smith for probably months before his public unveiling. (All of this took too long for them to cash in on The Pilgrims and all the money they had – by the time of Smith’s unveiling The Pilgrims had broken up and disbursed to each member what remained of their original money.) So Joseph Smith was placed into plan B speaking to Spiritual bible believing people with a hunger for spiritual things. The training Smith received and his preaching to their gullible  targeted audience succeeded beyond Spalding and Cowdery’s wildest expectations.

The next major hurdle that this new denomination had to cross was for Spaulding and Cowdery to make for their junior partner in the scam indisputable golden bible he had been speaking of as the source of much of his reveleation. (A book that no gullible believer of Smith’s day could not believe.) We have also read mentions that the origin of The Book of Mormon was a romantic novel – an adventure story written by a deceased preached that had somehow come into the hands of Judge Solomon Spalding and Publicist Oliver Cowdery’s hands.  While Smith created a desire for his faithful, and the newspapers to see this Golden Book he had found and supposedly translated using his seeing stones this novel was edited and rewritten until it fit the bill of The Book of Mormon that they needed.   


Once Joseph Smith got started as this grand a prophet and The Book of Mormon under his arm he named his confederates Spalding and Cowdery as co-equal prophets in his movement. (This arrangement lasted only a few years until Smith wiggled out of their control and as a junior partner of their money making scan.  To do this Smith needed only to prophesy that only Joseph Smith’s words could be written and that Spaulding and Cowdery could only speak. Thus limiting their ability to have any control over Joseph Smith and his faithful.) 


Smith then named his apostles and with his golden bible – (This is what he and his early followers called The Book of Mormon)  He began to go about moving his flock to Missouri and there building the New Jerusalem. Naturally he prophesied that he was have all the money sold from their houses and lands and he added to that that he was to have the  power over what women and however many he wanted and then granted this to his male followers as well. (Polygamy was started very early in Mormonism. We might say it was one of its foundational doctrines. This doctrine caused the cult of Mormonism arrests, fights, and legal proceedings – Which Judge Spalding was reading to deal with, while Smith decried this all as persecution, and Cowdery was able to ply his trade with newspapers to seek sympathy for Smith and his faithful followers)


Backing up a little we need to speak a bit more of the creation of The Book of Mormon newspapers show that Spalding and Cowdery tried to go about getting their nonexistent golden bible authenticated by the same man who authenticated the 500 page book written in Latin short hand.  Spaulding sends is a fragment of text from an crumbling antique book but when this man in New York goes to authenticate he immediately suspected fraud and refused to authenticate the book. They were then forced to declare that he had, and then they set off straightway to publish the book as the book of Mormon.


A few years later in court again we find one of Joseph Smith’s top confederates sues Joseph Smith for fraud and reveals in court that that core of the book of Mormon was an unpublished romance novel by late preacher, and that the names of the Indians and some locations in the book are local tribes and places located in upstate New York around the town in which Joseph Smith lived. It is in this same trial that Joseph Smith is shown letters from the Greek alphabet that he can not read or identify, thereby quashing all claims that Joseph Smith is able to read Greek and other biblical languages from which he was able to have translated the book of Mormon.


The shame of all of this is that Smith and his associates understood their audience too well. And what they put this together was better than any of their religious contemporaries of his day.


So what we are stating here is that Smith’s converts were not the duped and confused souls that were of a fundamentalist and Pentecostal background. Mormons say of theses early days in their books today that Joseph Smith’s early converts were people that were grounded and rooted in the word (We vigorously dispute this claim, these people were at best babes, and children in the flock of God). People that were hungrily seeking the return of the full gospel, the five fold ministry with its signs and wonders. (We sadly agree here) His converts were Presbyterians, Baptists and Methodists apparently some of the best and brightest of His day. And to emphasize that point he had a number of well known preachers of his day convert to Mormonism as well. (To us this is one of the most shocking points of the Mormon Revival) 


When I first read these articles I was stunned at what I saw and to be honest it scared me and I had to lay aside these writings for several weeks and pray. Part of me wanted to sweep this under the rug and ignore it because I saw a lot of bad ramifications specifically that this was a great revival, a very successful revival where many true believers that were babes and children were sucked in by a false prophet and complete reprobate. I was faced with how to reconcile what I had read about the manifestations of the Holy Spirit within the framework of something that was so evil and perverted and corrupt from its inception. 


As I read it seemed to me that this information about speaking in tongues, and the manifestation of the gifts of the Spirit with people being slain in the spirit and even being healed would have more than played into the hands of fundamentalists who declare that all gifts and operations of the Spirit ended at the death of the apostles, and that all Pentecostal revivals though-out church history are false and of the devil.  


We debated for a few weeks whether to write or not to write about this. Our sense here was that this was truth as in that these events really happened and that there were real Fundamentalists and Pentecostals, “Saved” “Baptized in Water” and “Filled With the Holy Ghost” taken from the Methodists, Pentecostals, and people from the Cainridge Revival that were all taken in by the con and act by Joseph Smith so much so that they sold their houses and lands to follow Smith to build the New Jerusalem. Regardless of what might be construed out of this entire event by Fundamentalists and Pentecostals it needed to be brought into the light and out on the open.


 The next problem that posed itself was in what form was this to be written. If I posted only the articles even with comments people would read only little pieces. In reality what is written above took weeks of reading in order to grasp the full level of what happened at the advent of Mormonism. So that left us with writing an article on Mormonism, and the understanding that Mormonism and other cults actually had and have to this day some true believers among them that need light, love and help.


We see that essentially no believers today are willing to give this light love and help as Mormons and those in other similar cults are so hated and loathed by believers  


At the start we made a few attempts to write this but was unable to write more than a few sentences so we put it aside, I wasn’t until my Pharisee of Pharisee called seeking what God had been speaking to me that all at once a things about this subject poured out of my mouth, things about it and reasoning that I had no idea. – My friend then excitedly chattered of how this had suddenly flipped his thoughts on what he had been studying about the great commission, the klesia and who we are called to preach to     


I then ran my finds concerning Mormonism past my Fundamentalist Pharisee of Pharisees who is currently in his second year of a Baptist bible collage and he told me that Baptists are not fond of speaking of their failures but that the southern Baptist convention and the independent Baptist convention are terrified of Mormonism because still today 80% of Mormonism’s converts are church going bible reading Baptists and they have no idea why or how to combat the problem so he said their attitude is not to speak of it hoping that it will go away.


We have now posted for your reading and inspection a number of articles that attest to some of the things we have written above – and we would earnestly desire your patience and prayerful reading of the rest that has been posted in this article.



Otsego  Herald:  Western  Advertiser

Vol. I.                            Cooperstown, N. Y., June 12, 1795.                             No. 11.


From the TIMES, a London Paper.

We have already published several notices of a Mr. Brothers,
who is called in the London Papers a Prophet --
the following is a more particular account of him.


The GREAT PROPHET of Paddington Street:

Great political convulsions have always been either preceded or accompanied by moral revolutions, of which the factions of all countries avail themselves, to ingratiate their revolutionary systems with those classes of society, that lay most open to seduction and imposture.

Thus the French Revolution was preceded by a number of sects more or less absurd, but all equally extravagant, which prepared the public mind for all sorts of changes. -- Such were the Constitutionists, who played off their tricks with great adroitness; the Martinists, who pretended to penetrate into most hidden mysteries of the Divinity; the Mesmerists, who invited all France to their banquets; the Somnambulists, &c. &c. When the French Revolution was begun, the Prophet of Don Gerle, a Carthusian Monk, and a Member of the Constituent Assembly, made her appearance; and under Robespierre, there sprang up at Paris a number of other visionary dreamers. It seems that there are men in this country, who propote to employ the same means to attain their end. As a man of the name of
BROTHERS, appears to be selected to act a prominent part in these scenes, we have been induced to communicate to our readers the following account of his printed prophecies, and the public conferences held at his house, No. 27 Paddington street.

Mr. Brothers introduces himself as a prophet, the friend of God, his own nephew, the chosen Chief of the Jews, and the Sovereign of the Universe. His daily and nightly apparitions amount to about 600, and in all and in every one of them, God reveals to him. that within a fixed time, which is to begin on the 1st of June 1795 and to end in 1798, all Sovereigns shall be struck down and destroyed forever.

Mr. Brothers, born at Newfoundland, is sent from the new, to overthrow the ancient world. At first he was an officer in the navy. "Considering that voluntary swearing which he was obliged to comply with, as a qualification to receive his pay, was unjust, he requested permission to receive it without it. The Earl of Chatham was so good, as to erase in his favor, the word Voluntary from the form of swearing. But soon after Mr. Brothers requested from the Admiralty, a dispensing order, that he might receive his pay but without taking any oath; but they would not grant it. As it was evident that Brothers was put of his senses, he was some time after taken to a workhouse," -- The very next night, God informed him in an apparition, "That he will shake the English Admiralty, as a man would do bread in a basket."

Brothers having heard that a friend of his had his ship seized in the West Indies, by an undersigned infringement of the navigation act, wrote to the Earl of Chatham to procure an indemnification for the poor man but was refused. Therefore the Lord God told him at night, that he would truly enable him to indemnify his friend, for he should be President of the Council and Chancellor of the Exchequer."

Brothers having for some time been confined in Newgate, complains "that a small penny loaf of bread was allowed him for the whole day to live upon," and states that therefore God revealed to him that, since prisoners were so very uncomfortably situated in Newgate, London must be a Sodom and Babylon, and would be destroyed by fire and sword."

All the extravagant visions were anterior to the present. Brothers mind being revolutionary exalted, he found himself, of course, in 1792, at the height of the French Revolution. For this reason he wrote several letters to the King, the Queen and Mr. Pitt, with a view of dissuading them from war against France, because this war would be carried on against righteous people, chosen to execute the plan which God had revealed to him. Since the beginnings of hostilities, Brothers has written several other letters to the King and the Ministers, to induce them to make peace, but his advice has been slighted, and therefore, the King, the Queen, the Royal Family, the Ministers of Parliament, the town of London, and every kingdom of Europe, are to be devoted to unavoidable ruin. This destruction would have been delayed from a regard to his prayers; but as he has been treated like a madman, and moreover Government persists in its perverse intention of continuing the war, that universal destruction is to begin on the 1st of next June. At that period Mr. Brothers will be recognized as the Sovereign of the Universe, the nephew of God, and the Chief and King of the Jews. All the worldly powers are to bow before him, &c. &c. -- "Yet Isabella Wake, who brought him a three penny loaf every Monday, when he was in Newgate, shall always have an apartment in his palace, and a seat at his table."

Mr. Brothers enjoys the greatest variety of visions and apparitions. In 1792, he was transferred, to Stockholm, where he held several conferences with the ghost of the famous Swedenborg, the chief of the Somnambulists. He there saw through a window, a man walking round an empty elbow chair; and God told him, that this man should murder the king. He would have informed that Monarch of his impending assassination; but knowing that the king of Sweden was to take upon himself the command of the armies destined to act against France, and that it was his intention to penetrate thro' Normandy, and to burn the French fleet at Brest, he abandoned him to his fate.

At the same time the Empress of Russia would have been assassinated, but for the Prophet having been allowed by God to acquaint her with it. Her death is however only delayed; and Mr. Brothers relates all the circumstances under which it is to happen, which no doubt will afford much pleasure to the Conductor of one of our Jacobin prints, who lately assured the Public, that the death of that Princess would be a most fortunate event for humanity.

We forbear to enlarge any further on the visions of the Prophet BROTHERS, and beg only leave to add, that he is daily visited by ladies and gentlemen, who want him to have their fortunes told; by indignant French Emigrants, to whom he professes his protection through his interest with God; and by different descriptions of people, who delight in hearing, even from the mouth of a madman, invectives against the present administration.

Solomon Spalding was married to Matilda Sabin on February 21, 1795, probably in New England. At about the same time the couple moved to Cherry Valley, NY to take up residence near Solomon's brother Josiah, who operated a retail store in that village. Solomon and his bride probably arrived in Cherry Valley a few weeks before Elihu Phinney began publication of his Otsego Herald in the county seat of Cooperstown (boyhood home of James Fenimore Cooper). The literate and curious Spalding would have doubtless read the new little weekly paper with great interest. What he may have thought of accounts of the Canadian "Israelite Prophet," Richard Brothers is any body's guess, but a few dryly humorous pastiches of prophetic impostors may be found in Spalding's Oberlin manuscript -- Brothers' public image may have served as a caricature for those fraudulent oracles of Spalding's imagination.



Vol. I.                        Palmyra, N. Y., January 30, 1822.                         No. 46.



A most extraordinary change within two or three weeks past, has taken place in regard to the religious state of this village... [Lyons, east of Palmyra] This change from one extreme to another, has been so powerful, and universal as scarcely to admit of a precedent in all this western region. Such hath been and is still the manifest power of God, through the overwhelming influence of the Divine Spirit, that the whole place exhibits the aspect of a house of mourning. Large collections assemble every evening in the week at the house of God for worship and various religious exercises. These meetings are solemn beyond description. Persons who had formerly opposed awakenings, and persons of every other character are struck with amazement -- and excalim, this must be the work of God. A large number of [hopeful] converts are now rejoicing in the Saviour, and scarcely an individual can now be found in the place whose mind is not, in a considerable degree, solemnized."

Note: Dale Morgan, who first transcribed the above excerpt, says that the Western Farmer "Reprints from the Lyons Republican of December 7 an account of a Revival of Religion at Lyons... Although the Register and Western Farmer from 1818 had chronicled revivals in Mass., Vermont, and N. Y., this is the first one recorded near Palmyra



No. 1.                            Canandaigua, Friday, March 8, 1822.                             Vol. I.


"Let the best course of life your choice invite,
  For custom soon will turn it to delight."

In presenting the first number of PLAIN TRUTH to the public, we will remark, that the work is undertaken merely to expose the many errors now existing in the Christian world which are passed off on the undiscerning, for "pure and undefiled religion."

No man, conversant with the under handed manaeuvres used by many of the most zealous professors, can candidly discountenance so desirable a work. We shall not presume to point out those impositions which are placed to the credit of the Christian Religion, but our columns shall be ever open to plain truth, let it hit whom it may. No Christian can deny that the Gospel of our blessed Saviour, since the Apostolic days, has been clouded by Popish superstition, even to the present time. In what manner are the clouds to be dispersed, that we may behold the brightness of the "Son of Righteousness" -- that we may behold the transcedent purity of the "Gospel of peace?" --

There is no way to do this but by a public and fair investigation of what is supposed to be anti-Christian. We are fully aware that we shall be eyed with suspicion by the craftsmen, but trusting to the purity of our motives, we shall not be awed into silence by this party or that,

We would, however, particularly caution the public against the hue and cry too often raised in opposition to similar works. The practice of hanging a man and then trying him is frequently resorted to, to prejudice public opinion. Therefore, if those against whom we testify should brand us with the name of Atheist, Deist, Arian, Socinian, &c. &c. we believe them not, for we are not the least hampered by the chains of sectarian bigotry.

Note: The above introductory remarks provides a fair specimen of the anti-clerical tone of the bi-weekly religious journal, "Plain Truth," edited and published by Lyman A. Spalding and Thomas B. Barnum of Canandiagua, Ontario Co., New York. For more comments on this unusual publication, see the notes accompanying the Feb. 12, 1823 issue of the Wayne Sentinel.



By D. C. Miller.                        Batavia, N. Y., July 5, 1822.                         Vol. 11, No. 543.



A very extraordinary discovery was a few years since made in Guatemala, (Mexican Isthmus) of the ruins of an extensive city, which had for ages been covered with herbage and underwood. It has been accurately surveyed by a learned Spaniard, & drawings made of curiosities. The originals of them have arrived in London, and will soon be presented to the world.

Note 1: The "extraordinary discovery" alluded to above, was not so much any contemporary uncovering "of the ruins of an extensive city," as it was the propitious recovery of Captain Del Rio's 1787 report on the Mayan ruins located near Palenque, in what is now Mexico. A copy of this manuscript report, accompanied by illustrations, was sent from Guatamala to London for publication by Henry Berthoud in 1822. The publication of this and of subsequent reports of interesting ancient ruins in the jungles of Central America prompted The Geographical Society of Paris in 1825 to offer substantial cash prizes for the best accounts of various subjects pertaining to American antiquities, written and submitted to the Society for study and publication. The next twenty years would see a great expansion in European and American interest in pre-Conquest Latin American civilizations, culminating with the publication of John L. Stephens' Incidents of Travel in Central America in 1842 and William H. Prescott's History of the Conquest of Mexico in 1843.

Note 2: This same news item appeared in various American newspapers during the summer of 1822, and was eventually picked up and reprinted by The Times of London, on Sept. 7, 1822. As already mentioned, the 1822 discovery made a noticeable impact among European "antiquarians;" the publication of the old Del Rio report also had some effect upon certain American historians, as can be seen in John V. Yates and Joseph W. Moulton's 1824 publication of their first volume of the History of the State of New York, in which the writers devote several pages to PreColumbian civilizations and make prominent mention of the 1822 Del Rio booklet on pp. 73-77. The Yates and Moulton history was sold in New York book shops during the mid 1820s and would have been readily available in places like Palmyra. The frequent assertions made in some quarters, that persons like the young Joseph Smith, Jr., during the 1820s, had no possible access to descriptions and illustrations of advanced American Indian societies and their respective "civilizations" are absurd. An illustrated example of what was then available, in regard to ancient Meso-American civilizations, may also be seen on pp. 46-60 of Josiah Priest's 1825 book. The Wonders of Nature... Yates and Moulton speculated, in their 1824 volume, that the ancient civilizations of Latin America extended, in somewhat diminished form, all the way to the southern shores of the Great Lakes, and thus accounted for the old mounds and earthen fortifications of that region.

Note 3: While it is unlikely that copies of the 1822 Del Rio publication, with its fascinating engravings of the Palenque ruins and ancient Mayan inscriptions, circulated in such out of the way corners of civilization as Manchester New York and the "Great Bend" region of the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania, copies of the widely distributed Philadelphia Saturday Evening Post no doubt occasionally turned up in such places. During the last half of the 1820s, probably the only description of the Palenque "glyphs" published in the United States, was in Prof. C. S. Rafinesque's letter of Jan. 1, 1827, which appeared in the Post on Jan. 13, 1827. In his letter Rafinesque describes in some detail the "curvilinear elements" of what he called "the Otolum characters" of the Palenque ruins -- explaining how they corresponded with "the Old Lybian, or primitive Alphabet of North Africa." The 1827 Post report was updated and expanded to form the basis for an article on "Philology," published in the second issue of Prof. Rafinesque's Atlantic Journal, issued in the middle of 1832. That article was accompanied by an engraving of Rafinesque's fanciful tabulation of ancient Lybian characters and Mayan glyphs.

This article and its engraved table were partly reprinted in Josiah Priest's 1833-4 book, American Antiquities, and from there frequently quoted or cited by Mormon writers as a demonstration that Book of Mormon "characters" matched the form of native American glyphs.



Vol. II.                         New York City, November 20, 1824.                         No. 39.


From the Christian Secretary.


Extract from a letter from Mr. Israel Douglass, of Leyden,
Lewis county, New-York, to Rev. Asahel Morse,
of Suffield, Conn. containing a short account
of a gracious Work of the Lord in that vicinity.

"In the month of February last [1824]. the Church generally arose, and made public confession of their stupidity and coldness. From that time an unusual zeal and engagedness was manifest in some of our brethren. Soon solemnity was depicted on the countenances of some of our youth.

Preachers and brethren began their labours, after the Apostolick order, from house to house.

On the first of May, the revival was powerful. On the 5th of May, six were baptized in the likeness of Christ's death. Meetings were frequent. Two or three at the same time in different parts of the town. Since May commenced, to Sept. 15th, one hundred and thwelve have been added to this church by baptism, and ten or twelve by letter....

In this part of the country there is a very genral and lamentable coldness which prevails, with few exceptions, if we mistake not, in all our churches. This is a circumstance that cannot be too deeply regretted; nor can the causes that have led to it, be too speedily investigated, or the means of its removal be too soon, to earnestly, or too prayerfully applied.

Palmyra, is one of the exceptions, and there are, we believe, a very few others of an encouraging nature, not many miles distant from this place. From these, however, we have not as yet received any very definite accounts... -- West. Recorder.

Note: By consulting various subsequent reports (in the NY Rel. Chrn. of Apr. 9, 1825 and various issues of the 1824-25 Western Recorder) the location of the "Palmyra" with religious developments of "an encouraging nature," is definitely identified as Palmyra, Wayne Co., New York. In 1824 the degree of religious activity demonstrated by that towns residents was "encouraging," but it had not reached the proportions of a full-blown revival. The editor of the Feb. 1825 issue of the Western New-York Baptist Magazine was probably reporting news from Dec. 1824 and Jan. 1825, when he said: "The town of Palmyra, N. Y. is graciously visited. It is hoped that about 100 [Baptist converts] have experienced pardoning mercy." Thid revival chronology agrees with the 1883 recollections of William Smith, the brother of Joseph Smith, Jr. He says: "In 1822 and 1823, the people in our neighborhood were very much stirred up with regard to religious matters by the preaching of a Mr. Lane, an Elder of the Methodist Church, and celebrated throughout the country as a "great revival preacher. My mother, who was a very pious woman and much interested in the welfare of her children, both here and hereafter, made use of every means which her parental love could suggest, to get us engaged in seeking for our souls' salvation, or (as the term then was) 'in getting religion.' She prevailed on us to attend the meetings, and almost the whole family became interested in the matter, and seekers after truth." All evidence indicates that the 1822-1823 "regard to religious matters" by people in the Palmyra area did not develop into a remarkable revival until late in 1824. That revival carried over into the first months of 1825, bring with it a flood of new converts and revitalized old members into the local congregations. It was in the midst of this 1824-25 religious excitement that Lucy Smith and her children (Hyrum, Sophronia, and Samuel) joined the Presbyterian church in Palmyra. Their conversions to Presbyterianism evidently did not occur until after the death of Lucy's son Alvin -- who passed away in Nov. of 1823.


Baptist Magazine.

Vol. IV.                         Morrisville, Madison Co., New York, Feb. 1825.                          No. 9.



... Considerable additions have been made to one of the Baptist churches in Cincinnati, Ohio. October 9, 16 were baptized.

The town of Palmyra, N. Y. is graciously visited. It is hoped that about 100 have experienced pardoning mercy...

In the vicinity of Woodville, N. Y. there has been a season of grace. -- Since May last, 106 have been baptized in one church, and 11 in Richmond...

Note: See the Mar. 2, 1825 issue of the Palmyra Wayne Sentinel, for more on the 1824-25 religious revival in Ontario Co., New York, which seems to have been centered at Palmyra.



Vol. II No. 23.                 Palmyra, N. Y., Friday, March 2, 1825.                 Whole No. 75.


Religious. -- An article in the Religious Advocate gives the pleasing fact that a revival of religion had taken place in the towns of Palmyra, Macedon, Manchester, Phelps, Lyons and Ontario, and that more than 200 souls had become hopeful subjects of Divine Grace, &c. It may be added, that in Palmyra and Macedon, including Methodist, Presbyterian and Baptist Churches, more than 400 have already testified that the Lord is good. The work is still progressing. In the neighboring towns, the number is great and fast increasing. Glory be to God on high, and on earth, peace and good will to all men. Communicated.

More than two hundred souls have become the hopeful subjects of divine grace in Palmyra, Macedon, Manchester, Phelps, Lyons and Ontario, since the late revival commenced. -- This is a powerful work; it is among old and young, but mostly among young people. Many are ready to exclaim, "what God hath wrought!" "It is the Lord's doing, and is marvellous in our eyes." The cry is yet from various parts. "come over and help us." There are large and attentive congregations in every part, who hear as for their lives. Such intelligence must be pleasing to every child of God, who rightly estimate the value of immortal souls, and wishes well to the cause of Zion. -- Religious Advocate,

Note 1: This is apparently a further development the 1823-4 religious revival spoken of by William Smith in his recollections of 1883. Smith says:
"In 1822 and 1823, the people in our neighborhood were very much stirred up with regard to religious matters by the preaching of a Mr. Lane, an Elder of the Methodist Church, and celebrated throughout the country as a "great revival preacher. My mother, who was a very pious woman and much interested in the welfare of her children, both here and hereafter, made use of every means which her parental love could suggest, to get us engaged in seeking for our souls' salvation, or (as the term then was) 'in getting religion.' She prevailed on us to attend the meetings, and almost the whole family became interested in the matter, and seekers after truth." All evidence indicates that Lucy Smith and her children (Hyrum, Sophronia, and Samuel) did not join the Presbyterian church in Palmyra until after the death of her son Alvin -- who passed away in Nov. of 1823.

Note 2: The revival spoken of in the Feb. 1825 Rochester Religious Advocate seems have made its greatest gains during the summer and fall of 1824, when the Baptists and Presbyterians of Palmyra each added nearly 100 new members to their congregations, while the Methodist gained 200. The Religious Advocate began publication in Rochester during the fall of 1824, so the revival of that year was still "news" when the paper reported that "more than 400 have already testified" of their newly found faith. The article helps demonstrate that the flame of revival was not extinquished by the snows of winter -- that it was still making new converts as late as February and March of 1825.

Note 3: Mormon historical writer Willard Bean disagreed with the 1825 date for the Palmyra area revival, however. In his 1938 book, A.B.C. History of Palmyra and the Beginning of "Mormonism," Elder Bean states:
"In the year 1819 a sort of religious awakening... spread... After reaching New York it spread to the rural districts upstate, reaching Palmyra and vicinity in the Spring of 1820.... The revival started the latter part of April [1820]... which gave the farmers a chance to attend the meetings... By the first of May, the revival was well under way with scores of people confessing religion... The revival had been even more successful than the ministers had anticipated. I quote from the 'Religious Advocate' of Rochester: 'More than 200 souls have become hopeful subjects of divine grace in Palmyra, Macedon, Manchester, Lyons and Ontario since the late revival commenced. This is a powerful work. It is among young as well as old people.... A week later [also from the'Religious Advocate' of Rochester]... 'It may be added that in Palmyra and Macedon, including Methodist, Presbyterian and Baptist churches, more than 400 have already confessed that the Lord is good. The work is still progressing. In neighboring towns, the number is great and still increasing. Glory be to God on high; and on earth peace and good will to all men.'"

Note 4: The fact that the Rochester paper published its revival report in 1825, and not in 1820, is further substantiated by a reprint appearing in the March, 1825 issue of the Providence Hopkinsian Magazine. For additional confirmation of the Feb. 1825 date on the Rochester Religious Advocate item, see also the report of Rev. George Lane, in the April, 1825 issue of the New York Methodist Magazine, and the March 9, 1825 letter of the Rev. Solomon Goodale, as published in the April, 1825 issue of the Boston American Baptist Magazine.



No. ? Vol. ?                          Wednesday, April 20, 1825.                           Whole No. ?



[From the U. States Literary Gazette.]


Mountains of Israel! rear on high
Your summits crowned with verdure new,
And spread your branches to the sky,
Refulgent with celestial dew,
O'er Jordan's stream of gentle flow;
And Judah's peaceful vallies smile,
And far reflect the lovely glow
Where ocean's waves incessant toil.

See where the scattered tribes return ;
There slavery is burst at length,
And purer flames to Jesus burn,
And Zion girds on her new strength;
New cities bloom
along the plain,
New temples to Jehovah rise,
The kindling voice of praise again
Pours its sweet anthems to the skies.

The fruitful fields again are blest,
And yellow harvests smile around:
Sweet scenes of heavenly joy and rest,
Where peace and innocence are found!
The bloody sacrifice no more
Shall smoke upon the alters high, --
But ardent hearts, from hill to shore
Send grateful incense to the sky!

The jubilee of man is near,
Where earth, as heaven, shall own His reign;
He comes, to wipe the mourner's tear,
And cleanse the heart from sin and pain.
Praise him, ye tribes of Israel! praise
The King that ransomed you from wo;
Nations! the hymn of triumph raise,
And bid the song of rapture flow!

Note: This poem typifies the Christian Zionism then current among many American Evangelicals. See Elias Boudinot's 1815 book The Second Advent and Ethan Smith's 1823 book View of the Hebrews. The poem was written after the American Society for Meliorating the Condition of the Jews failed to establish its intended refuge for Christianized Jews in western New York in 1823, but before that society's even more dismal attempts to plant such a colony in the eastern part of the state, beginning in 1827. See the Dec. 2, 1825 issue of the Buffalo Gospel Advocate for another reprint of this poem, and some additional notes on the subject.


"We  Love  Him  Because  He  First  Loved  Us."

Vol. III.                       Buffalo, New York, September 9, 1825.                       No. 35.



The following article we copy from the Religious Inquirer of the 27th of August last. -- This paper is printed at Hartford, Con.; and in reply to the Editor's remark that he shall be happy to publish Mr. Fillmore's retraction of the slander, we can assure him that as yet, he shows no disposition to make any; although we have never ceased to importune him and his Methodist brethren on the subject.


In the early ages of the christian era, many deceptions were practiced on pagans and christians by preachers of the gospel, either to convert unbelievers to the right faith, or to silence their antagonists in any controversy that was agitated. Fictitious miracles were performed, the testimony of demoniacs produced, and the most artful stratagems employed to settle disputes concerning the trinity, and to establish the orthodox faith on a permanent foundation. For it was maintained that a doctrine must be true, which God and demons had confirmed by visible interposition, and that those must be heretics, who refused to assent to the combined attestations of heaven and hell. Artifices of this kind were used on all pressing occasions for many centuries, and no great accession to the christian cause was made without prodigies in the air, the earth, or the ocean. Constantine must see a cross in the heavens before he abandons polytheism; Ambrose must produce the testimony of demoniacs to establish the doctrine of the Nicene fathers concerning the trinity, and when Clovis, King of the Franks, is baptized, a phial of oil must be brought from heaven by a milk white dove. So completely were ecclesiastics convinced that holy deception was necessary, that in the fourth century the maxim was adopted, that it is an act of virtue to deceive and lie, when by that means the interest of the church may be promoted. These artifices and impositions, however, were not confined to that age, but were practised by Charlemagne and Boniface in the conversion of the Saxons, and have come down to our own times with various modifications and improvements. -- Scarcely any thing can now be achieved in the religious world without some holy legerdemain to give it credence and eclat, and when any sect or doctrine is destitute of this support, it must of consequence be heretical, or false... That most certainly is a pure and heavenly faith, which encourages people to deceive and lie... Such a faith will elevate the morals of the community beyond all precedent, and most unquestionably hasten the millennial day on this dark and sinful world. For should all the earth be proselyted to the belief that falsehood, when intended to promote the cause of religion, or of a sect, is not only useful, but commendable, we might expect to see all engaged in the service of virtue and holiness, and religion, pure and undefiled, investing our globe with a flood of light...

The above article is of little value but the notes below have important insights

Note 1: The main point of the above communication (the alleged lies of of the Methodist advocate, Mr. Fillmore, to promote his brand of religion) has been excised from the text, so that the writer's pointed and occasionally sarcastic remarks on pious frauds might stand alone, as an example of some people's feelings in western New York during the 1820s. While numerous towns and rural areas saw revivals in religion and spurts of growth in the established denominations of Christendom, during the 1820s, non-conformist and unorthodox observers on the sidelines of the "Second Great Awakening" viewed the phenomenon with mixed emotions. Quakers, Unitarians, Universalists and other members of the smaller religious societies tended towards anti-clerical reaction and suspicion of organized efforts to evangelize Americans who were not members of the major religious denominations of the day. While most Protestants were pleased to believe that pious frauds were only the devious creations of pre-Reformation Catholics and fanatical sects, other religionists, deists and agnostics professed that even the mainline denominations were guilty of such patent priestcraft -- and that the corruption of the Christian Church had progressed to the point that none of its several denominations might lay claim to any major participation in the expected millennial rule of Christ -- which many people anticipated to be close at hand. See the letter of "Philotheos" (possibly a pen-name of Sidney Rigdon) as reprinted in the Nov. 15, 1826 issue of the New York Telescope.

Note 2: In the case of those believers who contemplated joining the Mormons, four or five years after the above opinions were published in the Gospel Advocate, many of them were quick to believe that the priests and ministers of the established denominations were little more than Satan's minions, in clerical collars -- ready to lie, cheat and steal, in order to promote the gain-getting objectives of the "Great and Abominable Church." To readers holding such opinions, as far back as 1825, the 1829-30 Mormon claims to a "restored priesthood" of divine light and truth, must have come as a seeming answer to their heartfelt prayers.

Note 3: The modern student of American religious history can only wonder what a maverick theologian like the Rev. Sidney Rigdon would have made of the above remarks, prior to his 1830 conversion to Mormonism. Certainly he felt that his religious superior during the late 1820s (the Rev. Alexander Campbell) was less than a fully honest and honorable promoter of "Christian unity" and of "the restoration of the ancient order of things." It seems reasonable to suspect, that by 1827, at the latest, Sidney Rigdon had come to believe that nearly all promoters of organized religion were swindlers of one sort or another. Given such an anti-clerical frame of mind, Rigdon's thoughts may have turned to possible pious frauds of his own making

I firmly disagree. Sidney Rigdon walked into this with his eyes fully open. No sooner had ne spoke a few words with the kid then he would have known the kid was an utter fake. Not knowing God or the Word of God. In full knowledge Rigdon sold out the Baptist denomination for 30 pieces of silver. He sold out their weaknesses to Smith, Spaulding, and Cowdery, as Balaam sold out Israel and Moses to the king of Moab and the Canaanites that they might be destroyed before God as a people.

Or at least they would be no worse than what he believed other ministers were then doing to gain converts and establish comfortable situations for themselves. And these pervisions of religion were exactly the sort of charges leveled at Rigdon himself, during his 1844 trail and excommunication (as conducted by the LDS Church leaders in Nauvoo, Illinois).

And we see here that Rigdon was excommunicated some 14 years later. And so Rigdon ultimately earned nothing.

Extra -                              Buffalo, NY, September 15, 1825.                             - Extra



Appointment of a Judge of Israel -- Foundation of a City of Refuge.

It was known at the sale of that beautiful and valuable tract called Grand Island, a few miles below this port, in the Niagara River, that it was purchased in part by the friends of Major Noah, of New-York, avowedly to offer it as an asylum for his brethren of the Jewish persuasion, who in the other parts of the world are much oppressed; and it was likewise known that it was intended to erect upon the Island a City called Ararat. We are gratified to perceive, by the documents in this day's Extra, that coupled with that colonization is a declaration of Independence, and the revival of the Jewish government under the protection of the United States, after the dispersion of that ancient and wealthy people for nearly 2000 years -- and the appointment of Mr. Noah as first Judge. It was intended, pursuant to public notice, to celebrate the event on the Island, and a flag staff was erected for the Grand Standard of Israel, and other arrangements made; but it was discovered that a sufficient number of boats could not be procured in time to convey all those to the Island who were desirous of witnessing the ceremony, and the celebration took place this day in the village, which was both interesting and impressive. At dawn of day, a salute was fired in front of the Court House, and from the terrace facing the Lake. At 10 o'clock, the masonic and military companies assembled in front of the Lodge, and at 11 the line of procession was formed as follows: 

Order of Celebration. -- Music, military, citizens, civil officers, state officers in uniforms, U. S. officers. president and trustees of the corporation, tyler, stewards, entered apprentices, fellow crafts, master masons, senior and junior deacons, secretary and treasurer, senior and junior wardens, masters of lodges, past masters, rev. clergy, stewards with corn, wine and oil.

Principal Architect Globe  ||  with square, level  ||  Globe and plumb,

Bible, square and compass, borne by a master mason, the Judge of Israel in black, wearing the judicial robes of crimson silk, trimmed with ermine and a richly embossed golden medal suspended from the neck; a master mason, royal arch mason, knight templars.

On arriving at the church door, the troops opened to the right and left, and the procession entered the aisles, the band playing the grand march from Judas Maccabeus. The full toned organ commenced its swelling notes, performing the Jubilate. On the communion table lay the Corner Stone, with the following inscription, in Hebrew.

"Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God. -- The Lord is ONE." Ararat, the Hebrew refuge, founded by Mordecai Manuel Noah, in the month of Tisri. 5585, corresponding with September, 1825 and in the 50th year of American Independence.

On the stone lay the silver cups with wine, corn and oil.

The ceremonies commenced by the morning service, read emphatically by the Rev. Mr. Searl of the Episcopal Church. "Before Jehovah's awful Throne," was sung by the choir to the tune of Old hundred. Morning prayer. -- First lesson from Jeremiah, 31st. -- Second lesson, Zeph. iii, 3th verse, Psalms for the occasion, 97, 98, 99, 100, 127th psalm in verse. Ante Communion Service -- Psalm in Hebrew -- Benediction.

Mr. Noah then rose and pronounced a discourse or rather delivered a speech, announcing the reorganization of the Jewish government, and going through a detail of many points of intense interest, to which a crowded auditory listened with profound attention. On the conclusion of the ceremonies, the procession returned to the Lodge, and the masonic brethren and the military repaired to the Eagle Tavern and partook of refreshments. The church was filled with ladies, and the whole ceremony was impressive and unique. A grand salute of 24 guns was fired by the artillery, and the band played a number of patriotic airs.

We learn that a vast concourse assembled at Tunawanda, expecting the ceremonies would be at Grand Isle. Many of them came up in carriages to hear the speech. The following is the proclamation.




WHEREAS it has pleased Almighty God, to manifest to his chosen people, the approach of that period, when in the fulfillment of the promises made to the race of Jacob, and as a reward for their pious constancy and triumphant fidelity, they are to be gathered from the four corners of the Globe, and to resume their rank and character among the governments of the Earth. And whereas, the peace which now prevails among civilized nations; -- the progress of learning throughout the world, and the general spirit of liberality and toleration which exists, together with other changes, favourable to light and to liberty, mark in an especial manner, the approach of that time, when "peace on earth and good will to man," are to prevail with a benign and extended influence, and the ancient people of God, the first to proclaim his unity and omnipotence, are to be restored to their inheritance and enjoy the rights of a sovereign independent people. Therefore I, Mordecai Manuel Noah, Citizen of the United States of America, late Consul of said States for the city and kingdom of Tunis, High Sheriff of New-York, Counsellor at Law, and by the grace of God, Governor and Judge of Israel, have issued this my proclamation, announcing to the Jews throughout the world that an asylum is prepared and hereby offered to them, where they can enjoy that peace, comfort and happiness, which have been denied them, through the intolerance and misgovernment of former ages. An asylum in a free and powerful country, where ample protection is secured to their persons, their property and religious rights; an asylum in a country, remarkable fir its vast resources, the richness of its soil, and the salubrity of its climate; where industry is encouraged, education promoted, and good faith rewarded. "A land of milk and honey," where Israel may repose in peace under his "vine and fig tree," and where our people may so familiarize themselves, with the science of government, and the lights of learning and civilization, as may qualify them for that great and final restoration to their ancient heritage, which the times so powerfully indicate.

The asylum referred to, is in the state of New York, the greatest state in the American confederacy. New York contains 43,214 square miles, divided into fifty-five counties and having six hundred and eighty-seven Post towns and cities, containing one million five hundred thousand inhabitants, together with six million acres of cultivated land, improvements in agriculture and manufactures, in trade and commerce, which include a valuation of Three Hundred Millions of dollars of Taxable property. One hundred and fifty thousand militia, armed and equipped, a constitution founded upon an equality of rights; having no test oaths, and recognizing no religious distinctions, and seven thousand free schools and colleges affording the blessings of education to Four Hundred Thousand children. Such is the great and increasing State to which the emigration of the Jews is directed.

The desired spot in the state of New York to which I hereby invite my beloved people throughout the world, in common with those of every religious denomination, is called Grand Island, and on which I shall lay the foundation of a City of Refuge to be called Ararat.

Grand Island in the Niagara River, is bounded by Ontario on the North, and Erie on the South, and within a few miles of each of those great commercial Lakes. The Island is nearly twelve miles in length and varying from three to seven miles in breadth, and contains upwards of seventeen thousand acres of remarkably rich and fertile land. Lake Erie is about two hundred and seventy miles in length and borders on the States of New York, Pennsylvania and Ohio; and westwardly by the possessions of our friends and neighbors, the British subjects of Upper Canada. This splendid Lake unites itself by means of navigatable rivers with Lakes St. Clair, Huron, Michigan and Superior, embracing a lake shore of nearly three thousand miles; and by short canals those vast sheets of water, will be connected with the Illinois and Mississippi rivers, thereby establishing a great and valuable trade to New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. Lake Ontario on the North, is one hundred and ninety miles in length, and empties into the St. Lawrence, which passing through the Province of Lower Canada carries the commerce of Quebec and Montreal to the Atlantic Ocean.

Thus fortified to the right and left by the extensive commercial resources of the Great Lakes, and their tributary streams -- within four miles of the sublime Falls of Niagara, affording the greatest water power in the world for manufacturing purposes, -- directly opposite the mouth of the Grand Canal of Three Hundred and sixty miles inland navigation, to the Hudson River, and City of New York, having the fur trade of Upper Canada to the west, and also of the great territories towards the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Ocean; likewise the trade of the western states of America; Grand Island may be considered as surrounded by every commercial, manufacturing and agricultural advantage, and from its location is pre-eminently calculated to become in time the greatest trading and commercial depot in the new and better world. To men of worth and industry it has every substantial attraction, the capitalist will be enabled to employ his resources with undoubted profit, and the merchant cannot fail to reap the reward of enterprise in a great and growing republic, but to the industrious mechanic, manufacturer and agriculturist, it holds forth great and improving advantages.

Deprived as our people have been for centuries of a right in the soil, they will learn with peculiar satisfaction, that here they can till the land, reap the harvest, and raise the flocks which are unquestionable their own; and in the full and unmolested enjoyment of their religious rights, and of every civil immunity, together with peace and plenty, they can lift up their voice in gratitude to Him who sustained our fathers in the wilderness and brought us in triumph out of the land of Egypt; who assigned to us the safe keeping of his oracles, who proclaimed us his people, and who has ever walked before us like a "cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night."

In his name do I revive, renew and re-establish the Government of the Jewish Nation, under the auspices and protection of the constitution and laws of the United States of America, confirming and perpetuating all our rights and privileges, our name, our rank, and our power among the nations of the earth as they existed and were recognized under the government of the JUDGES, -- And I hereby enjoin it upon all our pious and venerable Rabbis, our Presidents and Elders of Synagogues, Chiefs of Colleges, and Brethren in authority throughout the world to circulate and make known this my proclamation, and give it full publicity, credence, and effect.

It is my will that a census of the Jews throughout the world be taken, and returns of persons, together with their age and occupation, be registered in the archives of the Synagogues where they are accustomed to worship, designating such in particular, who have been and are distinguished in the useful arts, in science, or in knowledge.

Those of our people who from age, local attachment, or from any other cause prefer remaining in the several parts of the world which they now respectfully inhabit, and who are treated with a liberality by the public authorities, are permitted to do so, and are specially recommended to be faithful to the governments which protect them. It is however expected, that they will aid and encourage the emigration of the young and enterprising, and endeavor to send to this country such, who will add to our national strength and character, by their industry, honor and patriotism.

Those Jews who are in the military employment of the different sovereigns of Europe are enjoined to keep in their ranks until further orders, and conduct themselves with bravery and fidelity.

I command that a strict neutrality, be observed in the pending wars between the Greeks and the Turks, enjoined by considerations of safety towards a numerous population of Jews now under the oppressive dominion of the Ottoman Porte.

The annual gifts which for many centuries have been afforded to our pious brethren in our Holy City of Jerusalem, to which may God speedily restore us, are to continue with unabated liberality; our seminaries of learning and institutions of charity in every part of the world, are to be increased, in order that wisdom and virtue, may permanently prevail among the chosen people.

I abolish forever Polygamy among the Jews, which without religious warrant still exists in Asia and Africa. I prohibit marriages, or giving Keduchim without both parties are of a suitable age, and can read and write the language of the country which they respectfully inhabit, and which I trust will ensure to their offspring, the blessings of education and probably the lights of science.

Prayers shall forever be said in the Hebrew Language, but it is recommended that occasional discourses on the principles of the Jewish faith, and the doctrines of morality generally, be delivered in the language of the country, together with such reforms which without departing from the ancient faith, may add greater solemnity to our worship.

The Caraite and Samaritan Jews, together with the black Jews of India and Africa, and likewise those of Cochrin China, and the sect on the coast of Malabar, are entitled to an equality of rights and religious privileges, as are all who may partake of the great covenant, and obey and respect the Mosaical Laws.

The Indians of the American continent in their admitted Asiatic origin, in their worship of one God, in their dialect and language, in their sacrifices, marriages, divorces, burials, fastings, purifications, punishments, cities of refuge, division of tribes, in their High Priests, and in their wars and in their victories, being in all probability the descendants of the lost tribes of Israel, which were carried captive by the King of Assyria, measures will be adopted to make them sensible of their origin, to cultivate their minds, soften their condition and finally re-unite them with their brethren the chosen people.

A capitation tax of three shekels in silver per annum, or one Spanish dollar, is hereby levied upon each Jew throughout the world, to be collected by the Treasurers of the different congregations, for the purpose of defraying the various expenses or re-organizing the government, of aiding emigrants in the purchase of agricultural implements, providing for their immediate wants, and comforts, and assisting their families in making their first settlements, together with such free-will offerings as may be generously made in the furtherance of the laudaible objects connected with the restoration of the people, and the glory of the Jewish nation. A Judge of Israel shall be chosen once in every four years by the Consistory at Paris, at which time Proxies from every congregation shall be received.

I do hereby name as Commissioners the most learned and pious Abraham de Cologna, Knight of the Iron Cross of Lombardy, Grand Rabbi of the Jews, and President of the Consistory at Paris, and likewise the Grand Rabbi Andrade of Bordeaux, and also our learned and estimable Grand Rabbis of the German and Portugal Jews, in London, Rabbis Herschell, and Mendola, together with the Honorable Aaron Nunez Cardoza, of Gibraltar, Abraham Busnac, of Leghorn, Benjamin Bradis, of Bordeaux, Dr. E. Gans, and Professor Zunts, of Berlin, and Dr. Leo Woolf of Hamburgh, to aid and assist in carrying into effect the provisions of this my proclamation, with powers to appoint the necessary agents in the several parts of the world and to establish emigration societies in order that the Jews may be concentrated and capacitated to act as a distinct body, having at the head of each Kingdom or Republic such presiding officers as I shall upon their recommendation appoint. Instructions to these commissioners shall be forthwith transmitted. And a more enlarged and general view of plan, motives and objects will be detailed in the address to the nation. The Consistory at Paris is hereby authorized and empowered to name three discreet persons of competent abilities to visit the United States, and make such report to the nation, as the actual condition of this country shall warrant.

I do appoint Roshodes Adar, Feb. 7, 1826, to be observed with suitable demonstrations, as a day of Thanksgiving to the Lord God of Israel, for the manifold blessings and signed protection which he has deigned to extend to his people, and in order that on that great occasion our prayers may be offered for the continuance of his divine mercy, and the fulfilment of all the promises and pledges made to the race of Jacob.

I recommend peace and union among us, charity and good will to all, toleration and liberality to our brethren of every religious denomination, enjoined by the mild and just precepts of our holy religion. Honor and good faith in the fulfilment of all our contracts, together with temperance, economy and industry in our habits.

I humbly intreat to be remembered in your prayers, and lastly and most earnestly, I do enjoin you to "Keep the charge of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes and his commandments and his judgments and his testimonies as it is written in the Law of Moses, that thou mayest prosper in all thou doest, and whithersoever thou turnest thyself."

Given at Buffalo, in the State of New-York, this second day of Tisri, in the year of the world, 5586, corresponding with the 15th day of September, 1825, and the fiftieth year of American Independence.

By the Judge,
A. B. Siexas, Sec'y Pro Tem.


S P E E C H.

Brothers, Countrymen and Friends,

Having made known by proclamation the re-establishment of the Hebrew government, having laid the foundation of a city of refuge, an asylum for the oppressed in this free and happy republic, I avail myself of that portion of my beloved brethren here assembled, together with this concourse of my fellow citizens, to unfold the principles, explain the views, and detail the objects contemplated in the great work of regeneration and independence to which it has pleased the Almighty to direct my attention. Truth and justice demand that I should candidly state the motives which have induced me to aim at higher objects than mere colonization. The world has a right to know what inducements have led to this declaration of Independence, and what measures are contemplated to carry the design into successful execution. The peace of mankind -- the security of persons and property -- the changes incidental to the revival of the Jewish government -- the progress and effect of emigration, and all those vicissitudes arising from change of climate -- new laws and new society, admonish me to be explicit in my declarations and candid in my statements. I shall not deceive the expectations of the world.

Two thousand years have nearly elapsed since the dissolution of the Jewish government, and no period has presented itself more auspiciously than the present for its reorganization. Peace exists among civilized powers, the march of learning and science has been rapid and successful, and mankind are at this day better qualified to estimate the blessings of toleration and liberal views, and better disposed and capacitated to encourage and enforce them, than at any former time. Religion generally, though divided and sub-divided into various sects, assumes a milder aspect, and feelings of universal love and charity have superceded the darkness and bigotry of former ages. The nations of the old and new world including the children of Africa, have had their rights acknowledged, and their governments recognised. The oldest of nations, powerful in numbers and great in resources, remains isolated, without a home, a country or a government.

The Jews have been destined by Providence to remain a distinct people. Though scattered over the face of the globe they still retain their homogeneousness of character -- the peculiarity of their tenet, the identity of their faith. In their prosperity and adversity they have uniformly been the chosen people -- proud of their God, proud of their distinction, and even proud of their sufferings. Bending before the tribunals of power, yielding to persecution and torture, tranquil in misfortune, and resigned to fate, they patiently endured, not meanly surrendered, they bravely defended their rights and the rights of their country, and have never despaired of divine protection or given up hopes of human justice.

Looking forward to a period of regeneration and to the fulfillment of the prophecies, the Jews have preserved within themselves the elements of government in having carefully preserved the oracles of God assigned to their safe keeping, and the time has arrived when their rights as a nation can be recognized, when, in the enjoyment of independence, the lights of learning and civilization, and the obligation of industry and mortality, they can cultivate a friendly and affectionate understanding with the whole family of mankind and have no longer enemies on earth.

In calling the Jews together under the American Constitution and laws, and governed by our happy and salutary institutions, it is proper for me to state that this asylum is temporary and provisionary. The Jews never should and never will relinquish the just hope of regaining possession of their ancient heritage, and events in the neighborhood of Palestine indicate an extraordinary change of affairs.

The Greeks are almost independent of the Ottoman Porte. The Turkish sceptre becomes weaker daily. Russia will march upon Constantinople. The Egyptians are cultivating the useful arts, and are encouraging commerce and agriculture. The Turks, driven beyond the Bosphorus may leave the land of Canaan free for the occupancy of its rightful owners, and the wealth and enterprize of the Jews may make it desirable for them to reclaim their former possession by and with the consent of the christian powers, who more enlightened, and consequently more tolerant, may be duly impressed with a sense of justice due to an injured and oppressed people.

Called together to the Holy Land by the slow but unerring finger of Providence, the Jews, coming from every quarter of the Globe, would bring with them the language, habits and prejudices of each country. Assimilating only in religious doctrines, and divided on temporal affairs, they would present innumerable difficulties in organizing under any form of government, and the diversity of opinions and views would create factions as dangerous and difficult to allay as those fatal ones which existed in the time of the first and second Temples. It is in this country that the government of the Jews must be organized. Here under the influence of perfect freedom, they may study Laws -- cultivate their minds, acquire liberal principles as to men and measures, and qualify themselves to direct the energies of a just and honorable government in the land of the Patriarchs.

Conforming therefore to the constitution and Laws of the United States, there is no difficulty in organizing and concentrating the Jewish nation. Originally we were a race of shepherds; each man governed his own family, and to the enjoyment of domestic happiness they added the blessings of pure religion. Israel accumulating in strength was led to Egypt, delivered from bondage and conducted to the promised land, by the illustrious legislator of the Jews and the great benefactor of mankind. Moral, political and ecclesiastical code of laws which the Almighty through Moses, presented to the children of Israel, forms, even at this day the basis of every civil and religious institution. The victorious Joshua settled the Israelites in the land of Canaan, and divided it according to tribes. -- After a short interregnum on his death, the government of the Judges commenced, which existed 500 years until it was merged in the kingdom which commenced with Saul and terminated after a brilliant epoch in the captivity. The government of the High Priests succeeded and continued 428 years, followed by the Maccabean Kings of Judah, and the nation became finally dispersed under Herod the Idumean.

In selecting from the primitive, the judicial, the regal and sacerdotal governments a form best adapted to the times, and also to the condition of the Jewish people, I have deemed it expedient to re-organize the nation under the direction of the judges.

The authority of the Judges extended to all religious, military and civil concerns -- they were absolute and independent like the Kings of Israel and Judah, with out the ensigns of Sovereignty. The Judges were immediately from the people, mingling in their deliberations, directing their energies, commanding their armies, and executing their Laws. The office, which was not hereditary, conforms in some respect to that of Chief Magistrate, and is in accordance with the genius and disposition of the people of this country.

It is difficult at this period to decide with certainty on the manner and forms adopted in choosing the Judges of Israel. Most of the distinguished men who had filled that station were "raised up" by divine influence. Their skill in war, and wisdom in peace, their valour and experience, their capacity to govern, and incidental and necessary qualifications calculated to excite public confidence, were passports to office.

Dispersed as the nation now is, and no possibility of concentrating the general voice, there can be no just power to grant -- no right to withold -- the office must be assumed by divine permission, and the power exercised by general consent and approbation. He who assumes this power, who takes the lead in the great work of regeneration and judges righteously, will always be sustained by public opinion. By this test I wish to be judged.

Born in a free country, and educated with liberal principles, familiar with all the duties of government, having enjoyed the confidence of my fellow-citizens in various public trusts -- ardently attached to the principles of our holy faith, and having devoted years of labor and study to ameliorate the condition of the Jews, with an unsullied conscience and a firm reliance on Almighty God, I offer myself as an humble instrument of his divine will and solicit the confidence and protection of our beloved brethren throughout the world. If there be any person possessing greater facilities and a more ardent zeal in attempting to restore the Jews to their rights as a sovereign and independent people, to such will I cheerfully surrender the trust.

I cannot be insensible to the many difficulties which may present themselves in the successful progress of the great work of regeneration. The attempt may be pronounced visionary and impracticable -- the reluctance of some to countenance the effort -- the timidity of others, and the apprehensions of all may be arrayed against an enterprize extraordinary and interesting, but always feasible. -- I indulge in no chimerical views, I know this country, its soil, climate and resources, and confidently embark in the undertaking. Firm of purpose, when the object is public good, I allow no difficulties to check my progress. Urged to its consideration by strong and irresistible impulse, the project has always presented itself to me in the most cheering light, in the most alluring colors; and if the attempt shall result in ameliorating the condition of the Jews, and shall create a generous and liberal feeling towards them and open to them the avenues of science, learning, fame, honor and happiness, who shall say that I have failed? I ask the trial -- and will abide the result.

The Hebrew nation, with its sublime Theocracy, its moral laws, its warlike character and powerful government, originated in a family of shepherds. From an ancestry not more illustrious, arose the heroes and sages of Greece, and to the neglected children of the forest was Rome, once mistress of the world, indebted for existence. From origins the most humble, and from projects the most doubtful, the world has been indebted for signal benefits and blessings. A few pilgrims, driven to our continent by European persecution, have laid the foundations of a splendid empire. We have less difficulties to encounter, because we are surrounded by civilization; and a few Jews in this happy land admonished by the past, and stimulated by anticipations of the future, may increase rapidly and prosperously, and under good government and wholesome laws, may fall back in time towards the Pacific Ocean, and possess a country the most fertile as it is capacious and valuable. We have long been captives in a land of strangers; we have long submitted patiently to oppression; we have long anxiously expected a temporal deliverance; but throughout the most terrible periods of calamity, we have done nothing for ourselves. The Almighty, who has covered us with the shield of his personal love, has given us moral agents, by which with his divine aid, we are to affect our own deliverance. We have senses, judgements, powers of self-government, energy, capacity and wealth. If, with all these great requisites we still "hang our harps upon the willow," we still cover ourselves with sackcloth and ashes and do not make one effort for independence, how can we reasonably continue to supplicate God for our restoration, who made man in his own image and proclaimed him free? -- Why should the parent of nations, the oldest of people, the founders of religion, wander among the governments of the earth, intreating succor and protection, when we are capable of protecting ourselves?

The time has emphatically arrived to do something calculated to benefit our own condition, and excite the admiration of the world, and we must commence the work in a country free from ignoble prejudices and legal disqualifications -- a country, in which liberty can be ensured to the Jews without the loss of one drop of blood.

The present condition of our people throughout the world is not without interest and instruction. The rightful possessors of Palestine are slaves in their own territory, and the pious attachment of the resident Jews of the Holy Land, gives them the highest claims on our charity and protection. There are several hundred families in Jerusalem, Hebron, and Tiberius, three of the most ancient congregations in the world, and the number in the Holy Land may be computed at 100,000. Those on the borders of the Mediteranean, are engaged in trade and manufactures; those in the interior, and particularly in Jerusalem, are poor and dreadfully oppressed. They are the great sentinels and guardians of the law and religion, and amidst the severest privations and the most intense sufferings, they have for centuries kept their eye upon the ruined site of the temple and said, "the time will come -- the day will be accomplished." The Samaritan Jews, which formerly were numerous and scattered over Egypt, Damascus, Ascalon and Caesarea, are now reduced to a few hundred poor inoffensive persons, principally residents of Jaffa and Naplouse. As there is no essential difference between their doctrines and the rest of our brethren, the distinction between them should cease. The Caraite Jews, who are numerous, are principally residents of the Crimea and the Ukraine, and are a respectable body of men. They reject the Talmud and rabbinical doctrines, adhering closely to the precepts of our divine law. On the borders of Cochin China, we have a large colony of black and white Jews. Their numbers are computed at 10,000. -- The white Jews reside on the sea coast and the blacks in the interior. The blacks, who call themselves Beni Israel, must have existed at the time of the first temple. The researches in the interior of Africa may, at some future period, give us immense colonies of Jews, which emigrated at an early period from Egypt. They are on the coast of Malabar and Coromandel, and in the interior of India, a considerable number of wealthy and enterprising Israelites. Measures will be adopted to ascertain their force and condition. Upwards of a million and a half Jews reside in the dominions of the Ottoman Porte, including the Barbary States. In Constantinople and Salonichi, there cannot be less than one hundred thousand. They suffer much from the oppression of the Turks -- are severely taxed, and treated with undisguised severity; but their skill in trade and their general quickness and intelligence as bankers, brokers and merchants, give them the entire control of commerce and the command of important confidential stations in the empire. The same character and condition may be likewise attributed to those numerous Jews residing in Egypt and in Persia; they have many wealthy men in Alexandria, Cairo, Ispahan, and the numerous cities beyond the Euphrates.

From countries yet uncivilized, we turn to those, which still withholding the rights of man from the descendants of the Patriarchs, are nevertheless more mild and tolerant in their measures, more liberal and generous to an afflicted people.

The settlement of the Jews in England was coeval with Julius Caesar; the inroads of the Saxons and Danes have obliterated much of the chronicles and traditions relative to their early existence in that country. William the Conqueror brought with him a large colony from Normandy, and for a stipulated sum of money conferred upon them certain commercial privileges, and assigned them places to inhabit. It was in the feudal ages that the Jews of Britain were the most enlightened, tolerant, and polished. Opulent in circumstances and enterprising in the development of resources, they gave an early impetus and direction to that trade and commerce, which has since successfully extended itself to every quarter of the globe. -- During the reign of William Rufus and Henry II, the Jews were favored and protected, though always considered vassals of the crown, to be tolerated or pillaged according to the caprice of government. The cruelty practised towards them during the misguided periods of the crusade, caused many of the most respectable to abandon the country. Several families however, returned under an invitation from King John, to be again pillaged, proscribed and murdered; and for five hundred years their condition underwent no material change. Occasionally protected, but too frequently oppressed, deprived of the natural rights of subjects and citizens, it was not surprising if the Jews of England, during those periods, acquired wealth without consideration, and power without respect. -- During the reign of King George II a bill was introduced in Parliament for the naturalization of the Jews, It was supported by the ministry, though opposed with warmth by the people, and produced great excitement in the public mind. It nevertheless became a law; but such was the strenuous opposition manifested on the occasion, that it was considered prudent to repeal it at the ensuing session. The same legal disqualifications still exist in Great Britain; but it is gratifying to know, that the government affords to Jews certain rights, immunities and protection, and our people in that country in addition to wealth and influence, are rapidly advancing in the career of learning and civilization, of charity and liberal feelings.

The miseries inflicted upon our nation in England, during the Crusade, extended their unhappy consequences to France. The Jews were among the earliest settlers of Gaul, and by their superior talent and advantages, endeavored to encourage and extend civilization among a rude and barbarous people. Their sufferings, banishments and massacres during the reigns of Philip Augustus, Lewis the ninth, Philip the Fair, Philip the Tall, Charles the sixth and several successive kings, fill the sanguinary pages of history, and present a list of enormities that makes humanity shudder. In 1566, they were all banished the kingdom, and in the succeeding year, only four families were permitted to return. In the 17th & 18th centuries, they were gradually permitted to re-occupy their former places of residence, though still exposed to the scorn of the ignorant and the insults of the barbarians, and such feelings were encouraged and perpetuated by an edict of the government compelling them to wear a distinctive dress.

During the French Revolution the Jews claimed from the constituent Assembly, the rights of citizens; many enlightened statesmen espoused their cause, and the decree of 1790 gave them a legal existence. Among the philanthropists of the age who raised his voice successfully in their behalf, was my venerable and pious friends, the Bishop Gregoire, to whom the Jews owe an incalculable debt of gratitude. The civil revolution in the condition of our brethren in France, gave rise to the moral one, which resulted from the proceedings of the Sanhedrin, convened at Paris, by the decree of 1806, and which presented to the world a galaxy of talent and learning which would do honor to any age or country. The Jews in France are citizens, and the charter granted by the good king, Louis the 18th, confirmed all their rights. They are manufacturers, agriculturalists, merchants and bankers, and many of them possess distinguished talents.

The history of our people in Spain is of peculiar interest. Spain was a country dear to the Jews, and after their dispersion, the seat of learning and the birth place of our greatest scholars.

The Jews first appeared in Spain, during the reign of Emperor Adrian, and in his time were numerous and wealthy, but like our brethren in Britain and France, their lives and property were held by a frail tenure, and the Goths exercised a lucrative oppression over this proscribed and unhappy people.

After the expulsion of the Jews from Syria and Egypt, they joined the Saracens and aided them in the conquest of Spain. Favored by the Caliphs and united by a reciprocal hospitality towards the christians, the Jews found asylum and protection from the Saracen Monarchs, and the most brilliant epoch in our history from the destruction of the temple, may be traced to this period. In the early ages the Jews were enlightened and learned in the Law, they were the foes of paganism, the enemies of idolators; but it was under the Caliphs of Bagdad, and the Saracens of Spain that they cultivated the sciences, and established Seminaries of learning, and schools of literature and philosophy.

The revolutions in that country commencing in the eleventh century, eventuated unfortunately for the Jews, and the war declared by Ferdinand against the Saracens, was the commencement of their troubles and calamities. -- During the eleventh and twelfth centuries many learned Rabbis appeared, which did honor to the age and country. They were not only deeply versed in cabalistical, allegorical and mystical interpretations of the laws, but distinguished mathematicians, astronomers, masters of the dead and living languages, and natural philosophers. In Toledo and Andalusia they had colleges in the most flourishing condition, and the piety and illustrious talents of Abraham Ben Esdra, Maimonides, Kimchi, Jarchi Haleri, Abravenel, and others, attested the brilliancy of that epoch in Jewish history. The fury of the Crusades was perhaps more severely felt by the Jews in Spain than in any other part of the world, and more of our people abandoned that country than were brought out of the land of Egypt by Moses. Under the enlightened and liberal Moorish Kings, the Jews lived prosperously in Spain, but the destruction of the Moors caused their ruin, and to this day they have been banished from the country. Upwards of a million of Jews speak the Spanish language, and will never cease to regret the barbarous edicts which prohibit their residence in that beautiful but neglected part of the globe.

Spain is a miraculous and providential instance of the impolity and impiety of religious persecutions. She is weaker in resources, in character, in the means of sustaining independence and national rights, in arts and in arms, than when under the dominion of the Caliphs.

Portugal in ancient and modern times was not more liberal, tolerant, and humane towards the Jews than Spain; they banished, tortured, and burnt them, and Portugal from this proscriptive and cruel system is not more happily conditioned than her neighbor.

The Jews have resided in Rome since they were brought captive to that Capital, by Titus Vespasianous, yet, while subjected to the persecution of the Christian monarchs throughout Europe, it is pleasing to recollect and grateful to acknowledge the kindness and protection afforded them by several of the Roman Pontiffs, particularly Gregory the Great, Alexander 2d, Gregory the 9th, Clement the 5th, Clement 6th, Boniface 9th, Nicholas 2d. Alexander 6th, Paul 3d, &c. Men who practiced the precepts which they preached. In modern times the Jews have been tranquil residents of that ancient City, yet at this day they are compelled to wear a distinctive badge, to reside in a separate part of the town, and at periods to attend mass under a certain penalty. In most of the cities in Italy, the Jews enjoy protection and privileges; they are a cultivated people, far advanced in science and polite literature, and I have long esteemed them as a learned and distinguished branch of the nation.

Many of the emigrants from Spain and Portugal, took refuge in Holland, which together with those from Germany, formed a considerable congregation, and in the 17th century they were wealthy and flourishing. The Jews in Amsterdam established colleges and academies, over which some of the greatest men of our nation have presided. It is supposed that there are nearly 100,000 Jews in Holland, mostly residents of Amsterdam. -- In comparison with the cruelties inflicted upon our nation by other powers on the continent, the Jews in Holland may have been considered happy and protected, yet they were neither free by law, nor by public opinion, and in many instances they were shut out from honorable and lucrative employment.

Notwithstanding these prohibitory decrees and unfortunate internal divisions existing among the nation, Holland has produced many eminent physicians, counsellors and literary men, particularly since the adoption of the constitution by the States in 1796, and the Jews are now held in estimation by the government.

In the Austrian and Russian dominions, in Prussia, Sweden, Denmark and the Hanseatic towns, and throughout Germany, there must be nearly two millions and a half of Jews. Nearly a million of which were in Poland previous to the partition in 1772. In all those countries their condition has been ameliorated, yet they do not in all enjoy political rights, though their personal deportment acquires consideration and respect, if merited. Of late some strong edicts have been passed relative to the Polish & Russian Jews, & it is to be lamented that they still labor under strong personal and religious prejudices.

It will thus be perceived that with all the toleration of the times, with all the favorable condition of the Jews, they suffer much, and are deprived of many valuable rights.

Our religion imbraces all that is pure and upright, and all that is just and generous. In temperance, in industry, in patience and in all the duties of husband, father, friend and citizen, the Jews may claim an equal rank with those of any other religious denomination. If there are some who occasionally wander from the paths of rectitude, let it be remembered that they are men, and subject to human frailties. If in the narrow and crooked channels of traffic, in which persecution has driven some of them, they have at times disregarded the high injunctions of purity and good faith, let us call to mind that their virtues have never been accredited, while their faults have been magnified. Shut out from more noble pursuits, they have been left without that incentive to good actions, that encouragement to upright conduct, that reward of merit which has been afforded to others.

Why should Christians persecute Jews? Sprung from a common stock, and connected by human ties which should be binding; if those ties are empty and evanescent, where is the warrant for this intolerance? not in the religion which they profess; that teaches mildness, charity and good will to all. I judge religion from its effects, and when I look round and see the seminaries of learning and institutions of charity; when I see temperance united to industry; virtue and wisdom, benevolence and good faith, existing among Christians; if this be the result of their religion, God forbid that it should be destroyed. Let it flourish, I will sustain that faith in its purity; but let us be equally charitable to all. The Jews and Christians are only known by their hostility towards each other. This hostility neither religion recognizes. We should no more censure the Christians at this day for the cruelties practiced towards the Jews in the early ages, than the Jews should now be made answerable for the facious policy of our ancestors 500 years ago. Times have undergone an important change; we all begin to feel that we are formed of the same materials, subject to the same frailties, destined to the same death, and hoping for the same immortality. Here, then, in this free and happy country, distinctions in religion, are unknown; here we enjoy liberty without licentiousness, and land without oppression.

Among the many advantages which an asylum in this country promises, the pursuits of agriculture are the most prominent, and of all pursuits the most noble.

The Jews were an agricultural people before they were a nation, the fruitful vallies of Canaan, the plains of Nineva, Greece, Persia, Egypt, and in modern times, Lithuania, the Ukraine, and Moldavia, exhibited their devotion and attachment to this pursuit. In no country on earth can they enjoy in this respect, equal advantages to those which we hold forth. Land of a fertile quality, well wooded and watered, may be purchased on the most reasonable terms; taxes are equalized and moderate; and by a recent act of the Legislature of this state, aliens can hold any quantity, upon declaring their intention of becoming citizens. -- This great privilege, which in other countries is denied to the Jews, is here afforded, together with every personal security. The lands they cultivate are their own; no sovereign or feudal lord, or magistrate can wrest their property from them, no tithes, no exactions, no persecutions await them; they will be called upon to contribute that moderate support to the government, which is cheerfully yielded by every good citizen. They will be themselves lords of the soil, and sovereigns in their own right, eligible to office and honor, and acquiring that consideration and respect which unavoidably await correct deportment, talents and reputation.

The state of New-York is far advanced in improvements of every kind. There are upwards of six millions of acres of cultivated land, producing grain in abundance, and every variety of fruit, and rich grazing meadows. A farm of one hundred acres well cultivated, will, with industry, afford an ample livelihood and corresponding happiness to a family, I again repeat, agriculture is the natural and noble pursuit of man. Between the handles of the plough, in felling the oak of the forest, in the harvest and in the season of fruits, the farmer is still the same free and happy citizen, and has all the resources of life within himself. His cattle are raised in his pastures, his grain produce him bread, his sheep afford him wood, his trees sugar, his fields flax, he is his own brewer and distiller, his forest affords him fuel, he has all the comforts and frequently luxuries which wealth can give. He sees the sun rise in glory and set in majesty. He who wishes to be truly religious and surrounded with admonitions of piety, should be an agriculturalist. To the man of capitol, the advantages held forth in this state, are numerous and acknowledged. To the land proprietor there is plenty and happiness; to the merchant and trader the most profitable facilities, and unceasing encouragement as the manufacturer and mechanic.

The laws and customs in Europe, present many obstacles to the Jews becoming mechanics. -- To be perfectly independent, they should learn some branches of the mechanic art. In this country, our mechanics are numerous, opulent and influential. Masons, carpenters, blacksmiths, tailors, hatters, shoemakers, curriers, and the more light branches of labor are always amply encouraged, and with the acquirement of a trade in this country, no industrious man can possibly want.

The rising importance and value of our manufactories, should attract the attention of Jewish capitalists. The Congress of the United States, has, by a judicious revision of the Tariff, so regulated the duties on foreign fabrics, as to give permanent encouragement to our own. The market value of articles annually manufactured in this state alone, is computed at several hundred millions of dollars, and the investments are principally in grist- mills, saw-mills, oil-mills, fulling-mills, iron foundries, trip hammers, distilleries, tanneries, asheries, breweries, &c.

Grand Island is surrounded by water power, and is admitted to be an eligible spot for the erection of manufactories.

The organization of a system of Finance for the promotion of emigration, affording aid to settlers, erecting and supporting institutions of charity, establishing seminaries of learning, and for all the purposes of an efficient and economical government, is not without some difficulty. Our means are ample, but they are defused, spread over the globe, and not readily concentrated.

A suitable person will be appointed to direct the finance department, and likewise such other officers as are usually named in all well organized governments. The Jewish capital throughout the world, may be estimated at a vast amount. Since the termination of the wars on the Continent, a great portion of the capital has returned to the coffers of its proprietors. A few millions of dollars judiciously invested and thrown into the western district of this state, would realize a reasonable profit, and be of immense benefit to this thriving and populous section of our country.

During the European wars, many Jews joined the different armies, and I learn have distinguished themselves in sundry campaigns; several have been honored with important commissions, and given proof of valor and fidelity. Such, who prefer a military life, and who at the present period have arms in their hands, may continue in their ranks; their arms must never be turned against the country they serve; but we have lost our ancient military character, and the discipline, courage and constancy, of those who have in modern times seen service, may be necessary to constitute the materials from which future armies may be organized.

Wars are necessary in defense of national rights, when unjustly assailed. So God has thought, and fought with us. So man now thinks. We may not have again such generals as Joshua, David and Maccabees; but in blending our people with the great American family, I wish to see them able and willing to sustain its honor with their lives and fortunes. Time which matures and brings forth many surprising events, may give to us a territory beyond the lakes, great in extent and resources; we may occupy a position of importance on the Pacific, and wherever providence may lead the nations, I wish to have its rights manifestly sustained.

I have enjoined a strict neutrality between the Greeks and Ottoman Porte. While it would afford me great happiness to aid any oppressed nation in a contest for liberty, we must not jeopardize the safety of millions living under the Mussulman Government, and who would be instantly sacrificed by their relentless rulers, upon the least succour being afforded to the revolutionists. While prudence, and a due regard to the safety of innocent people enjoin us not to mingle in this contest, it is due to the cause of freedom, not to throw obstacles in the way of its advancement.

The discovery of the lost tribes of Israel, has never ceased to be a subject of deep interest to the Jews. The divine protection which has been bestowed upon the chosen people, from the infancy of nature to the present period, has, without doubt, been equally extended to the missing tribes, and, if as I have reason to believe, our lost brethren were the ancestors of the Indians of the American Continent, the inscrutable decrees of the Almighty have been fulfilled in spreading unity and omnipotence in every quarter of the globe. Upwards of three thousand years have elapsed, since the nine and a half tribes were carried captive by Palamanazer, King of Assyria. It is supposed they were spread over the various countries of the East, and by their international marriages, have lost their identity of character. It is, however, probable that from the previous sufferings of the tribes in the Egyptian bondage, that they bent their course in a northwest [sic] direction, which brought them within a few leagues of the American Continent. and which they finally reached.

Those who are most conversant with the public and private economy of the Indians, are strongly of opinion that they are the lineal descendants of the Israelites, and my own researches go far to confirm me in the same belief.

The Indians worship one Supreme Being as the fountain of life, and the author of all creation. -- Like the Israelites of old, they are divided into tribes having their Chief, and distinctive Symbol to each. Some of their tribes it is said are named after the Cherubinical figures that were carried on the four principal standards of Israel. They consider themselves as the distinct people of God, and have all the religious pride which our ancestors are known to have possessed. Their words are sonorous and bold, and their language and dialect are evidently of the Hebrew origin. They compute time after the manner of the Israelites, by dividing the year into four seasons, and their subdivisions are the lunar months, our new moons commencing according to the ecclesiastical year of Moses, the first moon after the vernal equinox. They have their prophets, high priests, and their sanctum sanctorum, in which all their consecrated vessels are deposited, and which are only to be approached by their archimagas or high priest. They have towns and cities of refuge -- they have sacrifices and fastings -- they abstain from unclean things, in short, in their marriages, divorces, punishment of adultery -- burial of the dead, mourning, they bear a striking analogy to our people. How came they on this continent, and if indigenous, when did they acquire the principles of the Jews? The Indians are not savages, they are wild and savage in their habits, but possess great vigor of interest and native talent, they are brave and eloquent people, with Asiatic complexion, Jewish features. Should we be right in our conjectures, what new scenes are opened to the nation -- the first of people on the old world, and the rightful inheritors of the new? Spread from the confines of the northwest coast to Cape Horn, and from the Atlantic to the Pacific.

If the tribes could be brought together, could be made sensible of their origin, could be civilized, and restored to their long lost brethren, what joy to our people, what glory to our God; how certain our dispersion, how miraculous our preservation, how providential our deliverance.

It shall be my duty to pursue the subject by every means in my power.

I recommend the establishment of emigration societies throughout all Europe, in order that proper aid may be afforded to those who are disposed to visit this country, and also to ascertain the character and occupation of each emigrant, and supplying them with passports and information. Passage in all cases should be taken for New-York. It should be distinctly understood by emigrants of limited means, that it will be necessary to have at least, sufficient to support their families for six months, as in that time they may be enabled to realize the fruits of enterprize and industry, and a sufficient sum may at that period be paid into the general Coffers, to aid them in their purchase of land. No mistaken impression should exist, that the Jews must not labor in the country; we are all compelled to work. but with the same portion of industry exercised in other parts of the world, we realize a greater portion of happiness, tranquillity, and personal rights. We shall not be prepared to receive emigrants on Grand Island, until the ensuing summer, and this notice is given to prevent an indiscriminate and hasty emigration which may defeat many good objects.

Our law prohibited the Kings of Israel from "multiplying to themselves silver and gold." This prohibition was intended to preserve the people from ruinous and oppressive taxation, and therefore limited the Sovereign to the moderate exigencies of his Court: but it appears from our prophet Samuel, and indeed from the ancient laws of Babylon, also in force among the Greeks and Romans, that the jus regeum was computed at one tenth. The tithes afforded to the High priest were of similar value in cattle, first fruits, the harvest even to "Mint, Cummin and Anise." A considerable portion was also secured to the Levites. It is, however, obvious that these exactions were exorbitant, and while they gave splendour to the governments, they tended to impoverish the people.

Taxes should be equalized and always levied in correspondence with the wants of the nation. In organizing the Jewish Government, the poorest should be enabled to participate in the great and glorious act; and with this view I have imposed a capitation tax of three Shekels of silver, which is equal to one Spanish dollar, to be paid annually, a sum within the means of the poorest, and if paid and collected will be amply sufficient to defray the expenses of the government in its incipient organization. This small tax, however, does not prevent free will offerings in our Synagogues, which the liberal and wealthy may make in the furtherance of the great objects in view.

It is very desirable that education should be more generally diffused among the Jews, it is the staff of their existence -- the star of their future happiness. -- There is no part of our religion which should be altered, nothing should be taken from the law, for if the power of innovation existed, there would be no end to the pruning knife. Our religious demands from us many temporal sacrifices, which should be cheerfully yielded, as a slight acknowledgment for the protecting favors of the Almighty.

Although no law permits polygamy among the Jews, there is no religious statute which prohibits it, and from this omission, an indulgence is claimed in the eastern countries incompatible with morality. Having personally witnessed the observance of this custom among the Jews in Africa, I have deemed it important as one among the first acts of the government, to protest against the practice, and abolish it forever. The duties of Husband and Father can never be safely or honourably fulfilled, when those duties are subjected to the caprices which sensuality produce. Neither can a wife thus circumstanced ever receive that consideration, affection and respect, to which virtuous and good wives, are always entitled. Another and a serious evil is to be apprehended from the prevalence of this custom, in the promiscuous, and probably incestuous marriages, which accidental circumstances may produce among children of one father, and several living mothers. In civilized communities, the laws which are paramount, admit of no such privileges. Our religious divorces are too loosely exercised, and demand the strong arm of authority; marriage is a sacred tie, and such alliances should not be lightly dissolved.

I have made it imperative on parties contracting matrimony, to read, write and comprehend the language of the country, which they respectively inhabit. Early marriages among our people are enjoined by the strongest principles of religion, and many of those important alliances are formed even in infancy, and before the responsibility of the obligations can be duly estimated. It is thus, that ignorance may become hereditary, and a just policy calls for the adoption of measures, which may secure to children at least that portion of intelligence and education, which the times demand, and a future generation will by such means be progressively improved and enlightened.

There are many subjects of great interest, which I reserve for future communications.

Thus commences auspiciously, I hope, the attempt to revive the Government of the oldest of nations, and lead them, if not to the promised, still to the happy land.

The effort may be successful, but otherwise never can be injurious. It directs public attention to the claims of an oppressed people -- it will admonish Sovereigns to be just and generous to them -- it may produce a better state of toleration and religious feelings -- it may place our people in the road to honor and fame -- it opens to them the avenues of industry and competence, in short it makes men and citizens of them, gives them a name, a rank, an interest and a voice among the nations of the earth -- thus, in fact, fulfilling the promises made to the descendants of the Patriarchs -- that the Lord God, may say to an admiring and astonished world, "Behold my people Israel -- here is the nation, that I have sworn to protect -- I was their Shepherd -- their Sun -- their Shade -- their Light and their right hand. In the days of prosperity, they forgot me not, and in the hour of tribulation I have not forgotten them." "In a little wrath I hid my face from thee, but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the Lord thy Redeemer."

To Him who shelters and protects the whole family of mankind, the great omnipotent God, do I commit the destinies of Israel, & pray that he may have you all in his sage and holy keeping.

Note 1: Major Mordecai M. Noah's Sept. 15, 1825 "Proclamation to the Jews" was first published that same day as an "Extra" of the Buffalo Patriot. The Buffalo paper also featured the proclamation in its Sept. 20th issue, and from those two sources it was widely reprinted in New York and national newspapers. See the Oct. 1, 1825 issue of Niles' National Register for one editor's reaction. The Buffalo Patriot's text was recently reprinted on pages 105-111 of Schuldiner & Kleinfeld's 1999 book, The Selected Writings of Mordecai Noah. Since no Sept. 1825 issues of the Patriot have been located, the text has been reconstructed above from various reprints.

Note 2: It is significant that Noah begins his proclamation with this remark: "the approach of that period, when in the fulfillment of the promises made to the race of Jacob... they are to be gathered from the four corners of the Globe." His announcement was made at the very time that the American Society for Meliorating the Condition of the Jews was initiating its efforts to establish a colony in New York state for the benefit of Jews who had converted to Christianity. The first president of that society was Elias Boudinot, a prominent voice for the "restoration of Israel" among American Evangelicals. See his 1815 book The Second Advent for more on the need to gather and convert the Jews prior to the commencement of the expected Christian millennium. Noah's remarks concerning the American Indians being the lost ten tribes of Israel also reflects the opinions of Elias Boudinot -- see his 1816 book A Star in the West as well as the Rev. Ethan Smith's 1823 book View of the Hebrews.



Vol. III No. 1.                 Palmyra, N. Y., Tuesday, September 27, 1825.                 Whole No. 105.



(We gather from the Buffalo papers, the following sketches relative to founding the new city of Ararat, on Grand Island, intended as an asylum for the persecuted Jews.)

same text as in Sep. 15, 1825 Buffalo Patriot.

(==> We shall endeavor to lay before our readers next week, Mr. Noah's Speech, which occupies nearly neven columns in small type in the Buffalo papers. -- EDTS. SENT.)

Notes: (forthcoming)



No. 26 Vol. XXIII.                        Wed., September 28, 1825.                         Whole No. 1170.


(From the Buffalo Patriot, Extra, Sept. 15, 1825.)

Revival of Jewish Government -- appointment of a Judge of Israel -- foundation of a city of Refuge. --

same text as in Sep. 15, 1825 Buffalo Patriot.

Notes: (forthcoming)

Vol. XVII.                             Geneva, N. Y., September 28, 1825.                              No. 18.


From the Buffalo Patriot, September 15, 1825.


same text as in Sep. 15, 1825 Buffalo Patriot.

Notes: (forthcoming)



No. 29 Vol. XXIII.                        Wednesday, October 19, 1825.                         Whole No. 1173.


Extract of a letter from a correspondent of the New-York Spectator, dated "Lower Canada, Sept. 1825."

After visiting the Falls, I made an excursion to the head of lake Ontario, passing Burlington Heights, and proceeded to York, via Dundas, Nelson, St. Anns, Trafalgar and Etaboco. The capital of the Upper Province, like the towns on our side is imposing, but not in the same proportion. From the number of stores in York; an opinion might be formed that a large business is done. The Parliament house, which was destroyed by fire, some months since, has not been rebuilt; it is expected that provisions will be made at the next session of Parliament, for its erection, provided there be no prospect of the union of the provinces. About thirty-six miles from York there is a singular sect of people called, "Davidites," or the "Children of Peace." -- Their founder and present leader, is David Wilson. He was formerly a member of the society of Friends, as were many of his followers. They emigrated from the state of Pennsylvania about 25 years ago, and they have now a society of from 180 to 200. They reside in families close to each other, forming a community something like the Shakers. Although called the Children of Peace, David has fifty of them completely armed, and I understand that a part of their worship consists of military display. They have recently commenced the building of a temple, which, like that of Solomon is to be seven years in building. The frame is 60 feet square, and was prepared at a distance and brought, and put together without "the sound of an hammer or an axe being heard." It is to be ornamented within and without, and although it will be costly, yet the treasury of David will not admit of the splendor which was displayed by Solomon. The building is to be three stories high, with a steeple. From the base to the top of the first story is 70 feet, and when that was completed twenty four females ascended and sung an evening anthem just as the sun was sinking in the west. They have a small place of worship, in which there is a good organ. They go in procession to their place of worship, the females taking the lead, being preceded by banners, and two of their number playing on the lute. They have two nunneries for females; one for those of the age of 8 and under 18, and the other for those above 18. These singular people occupy a rich tract of country, above five miles in length by two in breadth. -- They use the plain language, but I have not been able to ascertain what are their peculiar doctrines; they do not object to take the ordinary oath in courts of justice. On the sabbath that spent at York, they were to hold a "Love Feast," and many went out to be present. It is not like the Love Feast of the Moravians and Methodists, where bread and water are only made use of, but they partake of the best which the country affords....

Note: According to newspaper editors James St. James and Orsamus Turner, 1824-25 was approximately the time period during which the "journeyman printer," Oliver Cowdery, worked as a "pedestrian peddler," carrying various printed materials into Ontario, Canada and adjacent regions. At the time the Book of Mormon was being printed, according to David Whitmer, Oliver Cowdery and Hiram Page made a special trip to York (Later Toronto) for the purpose of raising money for the book's publication. Cowdery may have been selected for this lengthy hike because he was familiar with the roads and inexpensive accommodations between western New York and the Canadian city. Whether Oliver Cowdery or other early Mormons interacted with David Wilson's temple-building sect in Ontario remains unknown.




Vol. III No. 35.]                 Palmyra, (N. Y.) Friday, May 26, 1826.                 [Whole No. 139.



printed and published every Friday

From the Western Balance.


Modern Pilgrims. -- In the Summer of 1818, a company of people, calling themselves Pilgrims, appeared descending the Mississippi, in flat boats. By their own account, they started from Lower Canada, in a company consisting of eight or ten. In Vermont they recruited twenty or thirty; in the state of New-York several more -- and when they reached Cincinnati, their numbers amounted to about sixty.

Their leader, a Canadian, by the name of Bullard, (called also by his followers, the Prophet Elijah,) was of a diminutive stature, with a club foot. Before he began his mission, he had a severe spell of sickness, when he fasted 40 days, (as he said, and his disciples believed;) after which he recovered very suddenly, by the special interposition of the Divine Spirit, and being filled with enthusiasm, he declared that he was commanded to plant the church of the Redeemer in the wilderness, and among the heathen. -- From these notions, thus imbibed, and which he instilled into his followers, they believed themselves capable of fasting 40 days; accordingly when they committed themselves to the current, the Prophet enjoined a 40 days' fast. The people becoming sick and in great distress from hunger, this severe commander found it necessary to remit, in some degree, the rigor of his injunction, and he permitted the taking of flour broth through a quill, because he received his food in this way after his long sickness and fast, when he could not open his jaws; and which had the vivifying effect taken by him for supernatural power or inspiration. But as the gruel allowed was very meagre, being simply flour and cold water, debility, misery, and death attended the experiment. Yet with faith and hope they persisted.

In this wretched situation, they arrived at Pilgrim's island; which derives its name from this fact; at which place they were fallen in with by a barge belonging to Nashville, whose crew, detesting the conduct of the prophet and his seconds, who watched and governed the timorous multitude, gave two or three of the leaders a sound drubbing with the pliant cotton wood switch.

They next landed at the Little Prairie. The prophet's staff, which by the direction of its fall had hitherto pointed out the way, now stood still; and he declared that here he was commanded to settle and build a church; but Mr. Walker, who owned the soil, and resided in this solitary spot, forbid the undertaking. This was accounted persecution -- yet they continued seven days, during which, several died, among whom were children, which were placed on the beach by their parents, at the command of Elijah, when, exposed to the scorching sun, they wallowed holes in the sand while they struggled away the agonies of death. While here laboring under sickness and persecution, it seems they began to suspect that they were forsaken by the divine spirit, and that no more miracles could be wrought for them. Hence they commenced the cry of "Oh, my God, why hast thou forsaken me!" when, by assisting each other, the vociferating cry was not intermitted for three days and nights.

They stopped further down at a desert place, when six or eight more died, whose bones still lie on the shore uncovered; and all who remained, when they arrived at Helana, were objects of terror and compassion. The hospitable inhabitants furnished them a plentiful supply of milk and more nourishing gruel, for taking which every one was provided with a piece of reed cane.

Their boat next struck upon a sand-bar near the mouth of the Arkansas. The prophet, his brother, and other leaders being dead, the remnant dispersed into the settlements, and down the river in the passing boards.

From the time the party entered the Mississippi, their numbers decreased daily by death or desertion. And when they made their final landing, only about 15 remained. One disciple eloped at the Little Prairie, with all the cash belonging to the company. One child was rescued and here raised. Several individuals who were dispersed in various directions, are now comfortably settled, but it is supposed that more than half their number died on the pilgrimage.

This fete of folly and delusion, is perhaps worthy of notice, as furnishing a striking instance of the blindness of credulity -- the wilderness of fanaticism, and the miserable propensity of the mind, to believe itself possessed of powers which do not belong to humanity.

Note 1: The above article must have originally appeared in the Western Balance (of Franklin, TN?), in about late April of 1826. See the New York City Telescope of May, 6, 1826 for another reprint.
For more on Isaac Bullard and his "Pilgrims" in retrospective accounts, see the articles, "The Pilgrims" in the Oct. 5, 1822 issue of the Saturday Evening Post, "The Mormon Delusion" in the June 24, 1831 issue of the Vermont Chronicle, and Zadock Thompson's "Fanatical Sects," in his 1842 History of Vermont, (summarized in the notes attached to an 1817 article.)

Note 2: For contemporary accounts about Isaac Bullard's "Pilgrims," see the Salem Register of Sept. 15, 1817, the Boston American Baptist Magazine of May 17, 1818, and the Chillicothe Weekly Recorder of Nov. 5, Nov. 12, and Nov 26, 1817. None of these reports came late enough to relate Bullard's purported 1818 murder of the Pilgrims' children on the shore at Little Prairie (now Caruthersville, Pemiscot Co.), Missouri -- however, in an 1817 report, Bullard was said to have fled from Quebec province, after having poisoned the child of one of his followers, "by command of the Lord," rather like his other followers' children were put in a dire situation, "at the command of Elijah."


This is a second article about the pilgrims though it predates the first – it has important information and comments about the relation of this Cult with the Cult of Joseph Smith, Solomon Spaulding and Oliver Cowdery . And demonstrates here Means Motive and Opportunity. I suspect from the later comments of the semblance between the Mormons and Pilgrims that Joseph Smith did not only have his Indian act but he has   

Vol. I.                               Philadelphia, October 5, 1822.                               No. 62.


For the Saturday Evening Post.

In 1817, a group of singular people, called Pilgrims, passed through Pennsylvania to the westward. They were composed of men, women and children, clad like a second company of Giveonites, and looked like the fag end of a hurricane. -- Their leader, who was styled a Prophet, it is said was formerly an inhabitant of Lower Canada. Having been afflicted with a long spell of sickness, he betook himself to the practice of frequent prayer; and finding by this exercise his inner man much strengthened, and his health also improved, he began to have, as he thought, very extraordinary illuminations, which he communicated to his neighbours who visited him. Some of them were converted to his persuasion; and when his health was restored, he set out with his followers, to travel in quest of a land flowing with milk and honey, where he assured them, every thing that was necessary for their sustenance and convenience, would be amply provided, without the agency of labour and toil. As they travelled through the country they availed themselves of the charity of the benevolent, and made use of such opportunities as were afforded for the promulgation of their doctrines. Some were converted, joined in the procession, and went with them. At Mount Pleasant [Liberty twp., Clinton Co.?] in the state of Ohio, they tarried several days; a person who had an interview with them there, enquired why they did not wash themselves and their clothing, and make a more decent appearance. Their answer was, that they had been as decent in these respects as other people, but that they were commanded to appear in their present character, for an outward sign of the inward condition of Christian professors. One article of their creed was, a literal acception of that passage in the New Testament which says, "Except ye be as little children, ye cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven." -- In order to fulfil this doctrine, we are told that they harmonized with each other, and some of the men in imitation of little boys, were seen riding corn stalks or sticks for horses; and other childish amusements. The story of the Prophet having borrowed the wife of one of his followers is not so well authenticated as to be mentioned as a fact.

The following extract of a letter written by a friend at Waynesville, dated 3d mo. 9, 1818, furnishes some interesting particulars, concerning these curious mortals.

"A company of strange people called Pilgrims, came into Waynesville [Wayne twp., Warren Co.] on Second-day, the 23d of last month -- got into an empty house, and in the evening had a meeting in a wheelwright's shop. Several of them preached; and mnay who went to hear them, seemed to think well of their doctrine. On Third-day, the town was all in a stir; almost every body going to see them. Fourth day was our monthly meeting, and after business was gone through, a request was opened for the Pilgrims to have liberty to hold a meeting in our meeting house: -- Some were very much opposed to it; finally a committee was appointed to visit them, and invested with power to grant or deny, as they should think best, after fathoming their mission. The request was granted by the committee, and a meeting was accordingly appointed at 3 o'clock next day. There were about twenty of them altogether, men, women and children. The men had long beards, and the women short hair. The greater part of both sexes were intollerably ragged, dirty and greasy, and some had their coats on wrong side out. They wore wollen caps on their heads, a strip of coarse linen on the back, reaching from the shoulder to the wrist, and round the waist a belt of sheepskin, or some other sort of raw hide with the hair on. In this kind of rigging, five men and two women marched to the meeting house, and up into the high gallery. Three of the men, and both of the women preached. While one was preaching, another made a long humming sound, beginning with wo-- and ending in the sound of a double o, nearly resembling the cry of a great number of locusts at a distance. They declared themselves to be the forerunners of a second coming of Christ; that the greater part of professors had fallen, and they were sent to gather the elect. One of the men, we are told, had been a methodist minister; he preached loud and fast, and hammered it in with both hand and foot. I appregended its equal seldom, if ever, graced a Quaker gallery before. On Seventh-day morning, they left the town, and a Friend accompanied them to Lebanon. He tells us, they were joined there, by another company of the same sect, and that that they had a meeting next day, the greatest he was ever at."

A gentleman who saw the Pilgrims at Cincinnati, informed the writer of this sketch, that their number amounted to 70 or 80 persons. He says they were not deranged in their intellects -- they preached well and appeared to be a harmless people. One peculiarity he observed among them, they always took their drink through a quill; but he could not ascertain their reasons for it, only that it was their order. Some rude people abused the Prophet, by taking him on the river Ohio, and setting him adrift in an old boat; but he was brought on shore again by others who were more humane. The same gentleman informs, that the whole company pursued their journey down the Ohio, in search of the good country which the Prophet had taught them to believe, they should certainly find: -- he said that Providence directed their steps, and he should infallibly know the place when they arrived at it. At length their pilgrimage came to an end; for the Prophet took sick and died some distance below Cincinnati; and his followers dispersed; some of them returned to Lebanon and joined the Society of Shakers, and others went elsewhere. The story of the Prophet getting possession of all the money belonging to the company, and making his escape with it, appears to have been a fabrication.

This system of religion, as far as we are acquainetd with it, exhibits various traits of singularity, and yet perhaps not more than might be found in some other eccentricities of the human mind on the same subject. He dates his revelation, like some other founders of religious sects, to a spell of bodily indisposition. And how often do we see that fevers and other disorders produce a partial delirium in the mind, and it appears probable that from such a disorganization, may arise many strange ideas, which being mixed and blended by a considerable share of rational understanding yet remaining, result in practices different from those of mankind in general. These people, like Nebuchadnezzar's image are partly sound and partly broken -- where the former quality seems to have the preponderance, it exhibits many excellent and incontestible truths, how liable are weak minds to be dazzled with these, and instead of making a discrimination between the truth at one time and error at another, the whole is swallowed without hestitation. Hence it is, that every system of religion, however strange, has its followers, and when we consider that many strange doctrines and tenets, are the result of minds that are partially deranged, and of ignorance in those who become converts to such doctrines and tenets, we think ourselves justified in extending over them the mantle of charity, so long as they behave with civility and do not encroach upon the harmony pf civil society and the good of the commonwealth.   LUCAS.

Note 1: See the New Jerusalem Repository of Oct., 1817 for an earlier telling of a part of the above story.

Note 2: By October 5, 1822, the Rev. Sidney Rigdon was well ensconced in the First Baptist Church of Pittsburgh, as its new pastor -- a position he moved from Ohio to accept at the beginning of that same year. Since the major Philadelphia papers circulated as far west as Pittsburgh, there is good reason to think that Rigdon read the above account of the Prophet Isaac Bullard's "Pilgrims," either in its original source or as a reprint in a local newspaper.
As the Woodstock, Vermont Chronicle of June 24, 1831 said, when Mormonism was yet making its initial appearance: "From the resemblance between the Pilgrims and the Mormonites in manners and pretensions, we should think Old Isaac had re-appeared in the person of Joe Smith, and was intending to make another speculation." What, if any, role the Rev. Sidney Rigdon playd in getting up that "speculation" remains an unanswered question.

Note 3: It was obviously not by sheer accident, that two or more of Bullard's Pilgrim bands met at Lebanon, Warren Co., Ohio, in March of 1818.
That place had already been the scene of a spin-off of the Great Kentucky Revival, the establishment of the Stoneite "New Light" movement, the founding of the earliest and largest Shaker community in the west, a gathering place for Swedenborgians, and a point of attraction for a remnant of the Rev. Able M. Sargent's millenarian "Halcyon Church." Just as Bullard had previously found likely converts on the fringes of the Prophet John Taylor's "Johnites" near Ithaca,New York, in 1817, so also, he must have hoped to convert cast-offs from among the followers of the Prophetess Ann Lee and the Prophet Sargent, in Warren Co., Ohio. As events turned out, however, it was the church of Ann Lee that eventually recruited Bullard's starving cast-offs.

This is the connection with Joseph Smith – these are the people he was acquainted with and these followers scattered all over the countryside were his ready made audience – but what happened after that was something that he never would have dreamed – that Baptists, Methodists and Presbyterians came to his movement by the droves


Note 3: The story of Bullard and his followers' 1817 stop-over at Woodstock, Vermont is summarized in David M. Ludlum's 1939 book, Social Ferment in Vermont, pp. 242-244. Although the Joseph Smith, Sr. family had departed Vermont by the time the Bullard Pilgrims arrived on the scene,
Oliver Cowdery's Grandfather, (William Cowdery, Sr.) then lived in Woodstock and Oliver himself lived in an adjoining county (see area map). It is not unlikely that members of the Cowdery family had some first-hand knowledge of Bullard's cult.

Note 4: In a 1997 article entitled "Joseph Smith's Testimony: The First Vision and Book of Mormon Evidence," Mark Stepherson has this to say about the cult and its possible influence on early Mormonism: "Isaac Bullard was noticed and had the public mind excited against him. He wore nothing but a bearskin girdle and a beard.
He gathered his "pilgrims" into a community near the Smith's old home in Vermont. When the community moved west, they likely followed the same road the Smith family used when moving to New York. Isaac Bullard taught free love, but I wonder how many members were women willing to practice free love with their leader, a man who regarded washing as a sin and bragged that he had not changed clothes in seven years?"



These are some notes after an article about captain Morgan’s abduction  we see here that Oliver Cowdery was Morgan’s scribe for a novel

In 1881 William Bryant, a former neighbor of Oliver Cowdery, told two high-ranking RLDS officials that Cowdery had once served as William Morgan's scribe -- or, that Cowdery had at least "helped to write Morgan's book."

Note 2: Support for Mr. Bryant's vague assertion -- that Cowdery worked with Morgan -- is to be had only in a few insubstantial bits and pieces of evidence. Oliver Cowdery's brother Warren had lived near Batavia during the early 1820s and Oliver himself may have frequented the Le Roy-Batavia area, c.1825-26. Lucinda Morgan
(Captain Morgan’s wife)  later became one of Joseph Smith, Jr.'s secret concubines or "spiritual wives" and her second husband, George W. Harris, seems to have personally known Oliver Cowdery (who was a visitor in Mr. and Mrs. Harris' house at Far West in 1838).

Harris was the high level Mormon official who shepherded Cowdery's Oct. 1848 application for re-admission to the LDS Church at Council Bluffs, Iowa. Louisa Beaman, the daughter of "Father Beaman," the "rodsman," reportedly was acquainted with her fellow "plural," Lucinda Morgan, well before either of the two girls was betrothed to Joseph Smith, Jr. However, firm evidence is lacking in the documentation of how far back in time (and in western New York geography) the two first became friends. Finally, Rob Morris, a Masonic historian, in 1883, quoted John Whitney, as having confessed that William Morgan "had been a half way convert of Joe Smith, the Mormon, and had learned from him to see visions and dream dreams." If William Morgan, Lucinda Morgan, or George W. Harris knew either Oliver Cowdery or Joseph Smith, Jr. during the 1820s, then they probably knew both of these future Mormon leaders at that early date.


Vol. II.                            N. Y. C., September 14, 1827.                             No. 2.



A society auxiliary to the Tract Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church has recently been organized in Kirtland, Geauga co., Ohio -- Isaac Lee president; William C. [Stannard] vice president, A. S. Gilbert corresponding secretary; N. K. Whitney, treasurer; and ten managers... A friend from Kirtland, Ohio, informs us that a good revival of religion of religion has been experienced in that place. It commenced at a camp meeting which was held in the vicinity. Between thirty and forty new-born souls have joined the Methodist Episcopal Church, and a few have united with the Baptists.

Note: Soon after this, Kirtland merchants Gilbert and Whitney left the Methodists to join the local Baptists -- who were, of course, Alexander Campbell's "reformed Baptists." Gilbert and Whitney's new pastor (and prominent promoter of the 1827 "revival") was none other than the Rev. Sidney Rigdon. Such religious revivals were a frequent occurance in those days, and especially so among the displaced Yankees living in western New York and in the "Western Reserve" of northern Ohio. Rev. Badger's Christian Advocate & Journal of Feb. 8, 1828 notices similar revivals "scattered over nearly the whole extent of Wayne county, north and west of the town of Palmyra" in western New York. Ministers who participated in these interdenominational religious revivals often traveled from one camp meeting to the next, preaching and baptizing as they went along their way. History has not recorded whether the Rev. Sidney Rigdon left Geauga Co., Ohio to participate in the 1828 revivals in Wayne Co., New York.