Wednesday, September 14, 2016

They Were Seen Touring the Temple

Image result for lds temple open house
Gilbert, Arizona Temple Open House
December 10, 1845 was an important day in Church history. It was on this day that the first endowments were given in the Nauvoo Temple. Prior to the first endowment session, who was seen touring the temple?
a.                  Catholic officials
b.                  Joseph and Hyrum
c.                   The Savior
d.                  Nauvoo town officials
Yesterday’s answer:
(D)   During the trek west to the California gold fields
The following is from the journal of Thomas Steed
     On the 1st of May, 1850, we said goodbye to the old Keokuk. Our outfit consisted of four wagons, heavily loaded, nine yoke of oxen, five cows, two mules and one horse. Richard Cook drove the wagon of Caroline; with his family our contingent was augmented to fifteen. It was a late and cold spring; the ground was very wet. We had much trouble to pull our wagons through the muddy roads. The wheels sometimes would sink down to the hub; and occasionally we had to double the teams to get through the swamps toward Council Bluffs, Iowa. At length we reached the Missouri River and crossed it the 1st of June, 1850, landing at the south side of the Platte. There our company was organized with Milo Andrus for Captain. Our train of emigrants consisted of 56 wagons and five captains of ten. President Orson Hyde organized us and his closing words were: “If you will strictly observe your prayers morning and evening, keep the Sabbath Day holy, faithfully hold the name of God sacred, and be kind to each other and to your animals, you shall all go safely to the Valleys.” We arrived all well and happy to our destination the 28th of August, 1850, having had one death and one birth. The gold fever prompted many to go to California that summer, by way of the north side of the Platte, so that the feed for animals was all used up. For that reason President Hyde advised us to go along the south side. Some of the gold seekers did take the same route. The cholera broke out among them; they were all around us, before and behind us, although we tried to keep away from them, and many of them died, but our company escaped.
     One afternoon our camp stopped earlier than usual. I stole away about two miles to the Bluffs, to see where those people came from who were swept out to such an alarming extent. Such a horrible scene as I beheld I hope never to see again. The graves of the cholera victims were there, with head-boards bearing their names, who were from Missouri; but the hyenas had dug open the graves, dragged the cadavers out and devoured the flesh from their bones; the ravens had plucked out their eyes, and their bloody long skeletons lay stretched out on the ground. That awful sight shocked my feelings beyond expression. I did not take note of their names, unfortunately, but I remembered many were of the mobbers of Missouri, who has so cruelly treated our people. Then I recalled the prophecy of Joseph Smith: “You shall not die a natural death: the judgments of the Almighty shall overtake you: the wolves shall eat the flesh from your bones and the ravens shall pluck out your eyes.” And I saw it literally fulfilled; but our captain had forbidden us to go to their camps and I dared not mention what I had seen to anyone.  I am perhaps the only witness who saw that prophecy fulfilled. This was between Fort Kearny and the crossing of the South Platte.

N.B. Lundwall, The Fate of the Persecutors of the Prophet Joseph Smith (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1952), 332-33.

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