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Church History Vol. 2 Chapter 31 Page 708


708 CHAPTER 31.


THE church had so often appealed in vain for redress and so often been repulsed or neglected, that they thought to enter upon a correspondence with some of the leading aspirants for the office of President of the United States, before the presidential election of 1844, and learn their views on the question of redressing the wrongs of the saints; also to learn their attitude on the mooted doctrine of State sovereignty, upon which their case largely depended.

Joseph Smith wrote to Martin Van Buren and Lewis Cass, among others; but if they ever replied their replies were not made public. We suppose that the letters written them were similar to those written to John C. Calhoun and Henry Clay, which will be noticed in these pages.

Near the close of the year Joseph Smith wrote to John C. Calhoun, then an aspirant for the office of President of the United States, relative to his attitude towards the rights of the saints who had been robbed and driven from Missouri. The correspondence is valuable as expressing the situation, the views of the men on the issues, and for the remarkable prediction contained in the letter of Joseph Smith, to which we invite careful attention, and comparison with subsequent events. Because of the peculiar importance of this correspondence we reproduce Joseph Smith's letter of inquiry, Calhoun's reply, and extracts from Joseph Smith's rejoinder:-

(page 708)

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