Mormon History

Sidney Rigdon's Trip to Heaven - 1841

Western World April 21, 1841

We clip the following from the St. Louis Republican.

A number of Mormons, from England, on their way to the town of Nauvoo, to join the society, arrived on Wednesday from New Orleans, and left yesterday, in the Goddess of Liberty, for their place of destination. The New Era says:

A report was in circulation to-day, that the Prophet Smith, and S. Rigdon lately took a ride together from the city of Nauvoo, that Smith returned without Rigdon; and that, when asked what had become of him, replied that he had been translated to heaven.


The steamer Goddess of Liberty, with the above Mormons (250 in number) arrived at this place on Friday evening last, and passed on to the City of Nauvoo. We have heard nothing of the report alluded to in the latter paragraph, and are of opinion that the translation has not yet taken place.


Note 1: According to the New Orleans Picayune of Apr. 30, 1841 "The Saint Louis New Era of late date says: 'A report was in circulation to-day that the Prophet Smith and S. Rigdon lately took a ride together from the city of Nauvoo; that Smith returned without Rigdon, and that, when asked what had become of him, he replied that he had been translated to heaven.'" The New Era report must have been printed about the middle of April, and from the columns of that paper was reprinted in the Warsaw Western World of either April 21st or 28th (exact date uncertain).

Note 2: The Nauvoo paper, The Wasp reprinted a similar news item, concerning Smith and Rigdon outside of the city, and Rigdon's purported "translation," in its issue of July 30, 1842: "Joe and his friend Rigdon, recently rode out of Nauvoo into the country, and Joe returned solitary and alone -- Where is Sidney? The prophet informed them, that as they were journeying, it came to pass that two angels met them and took Sidney up to heaven, and that on a certain day he would return again to the promised city." The Wasp'sKendall's Weekly Expositor for June 9, 1842. reprint, in turn, evidently came from a spring, 1842 issue of the Connecticut Norwalk Gazette; cf. Washington, D. C.

 

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