Missouri State Archives: Finding Aid 5.1

Mormon War Papers, 1837-1841

[ Full-text transcription of: Letter from General John B. Clark, 1st Division of Missouri Militia in Boonville, MO to Governor Boggs, Jefferson City, MO ]
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State [ ] of Adam

C. Wm for –

Oct 7th 1838

Belongs to letter S

Genl Clark


Govr enclosing memo

sent to citizens of How

ard cty

Oct 9, 1838


                                                Boonville 9th. Oct,r [sic] 1838.

His Excellency L. W. Boggs,

                                                            Sir, since I wrote to you

I have received the inclosed information in relation

to the Mormon difficulty.       The names subscribed

to the inclosed paper are worthy prudent & patriotic

citizens of Howard County , and I am pursuaded =

nothing but a case of absolute necessity to protect

their friend would induce them to engage as they

have done.

            I regret exceedingly that your Excellency

received information making it necessary to

discharge the troops you had on the march.

            Nothing but some such step in my

opinion will ever settle the affair. –

                        I hope your Excellency will write

to me on the receipt of this.

                                    I have the honor to be

                                                Your Obt. Serv,t

                                                John B. Clark.

                                                                                    Camp Near De Witt

                                                                                                7th Oct. 1838 .

   To the Citizens of Howard County .


                        This county is the theatre of a civil

war, and will soon be one of desolation, unless

the citizens of the adjoining counties lend immediate

assistance.  The infatuated Mormons have assembled

in large numbers in De Witt, prepared for war,

and are continually pouring in from all quarters

where these detestable fanatics reside.

            The war is commenced: blood has been shed

they shed it; they waylayed and fired upon a

body of the Citizens of Carroll County, & wounded

some.  They are the aggressors, they have been

guilty of high treason; they have violated the laws,

and shed the blood of our citizens, and we think

this one of the cases of emergency in which the

people ought to take the execution of justice in their

own hands.  Speedy action is necessary, the progress

of their imposition, insult and oppression [“opposition” crossed out] Ought to be-

checked in the beginning.  The people must act &

together, they must act energetically.

            It is now twelve O,Clock at night, the Mormons

are lurking round our camp, and making preparations

to attack us before day.  Our number is much

less than theirs, and we will have to act on the

defensive until we procure more assistance.

            About two hours ago the Mormons were re=inforced

by 62 mounted men well armed from Far West .

they are arriving every night; two nights ago it

is thought one hundred came to De wit, for the

purpose of making war upon the people of this

County.  Under such circumstances, you cannot

fail to come forward immediately, can you not

be here by Sunday or Monday at farthest?

Come by fives and tens, if you cannot come

in companies, bring all you can; this is no false

excitement, or idle rumor; it is the cold reality

too real.  We will anticipate you immediately,

and shall expect your co=operation & assistance

in expelling the fanatics, who are mostly aliens

by birth and aliens in principle from the

county we must be enemies to the common

enemies of our laws, religion & country.

                                                            Your friends & fellow Citizens,


            Our guard was just now fired upon

by the Mormons, they have became emboldened

by their recent re=inforcements, and we will

have to act on the defensive; until assistance


                                                Yr,s &c

Congrave Jackson,

Larkin K. Woods,

Thomas Jackson,

Rollo M. Davis,

James Jackson Junr,

Johnson Jackson,

John L. Tomlin,

Sidney S. Woods,

George [Crigler],

William L. Banks,

Whitfield Dickens.

 [          1838]

[Belongs to letter S]

I the undersigned Adam C. Woods a Citizen of

Howard County , do certify, that on the 6th . day

of October 1838.  In company with Captain Congrave

Jackson, and Others of Howard County, hearing of

the Mormon difficulty at De wit, concluded to

go up there, and did go to interpose our good

Officer and make peace between them and the

Citizens, when we reached there on last evening

we found under arms in a mile or thereabouts

of De wit,  about two hundred Citizens encamped

and Sentinels out, I did not go into De wit.  I

was advised not to go in, fearing that I would

be injured I was informed and believe the

information to be true, that the Mormons at

De wit, are between five and six hundred

well armed.  I remained on last night

in the Camp of the Citizens, intending on this

morning to go in Town, and indeavor to

make peace; but about midnight the Mormons

commenced fireing on the Sentinels placed out

by the Citizens, which was returned, there was

occasional fireing at a distance until day.

            From the above occurences we were detered

from making any attempt with the Mormons

for peace, and I left on this day about 10. O,clock

in the morning.

                                                A.C. Woods.

Octr 7th. 1838