Main content

Title: James Sloan, Illinois to Andrew McReynolds, Detroit.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileSloane, James/4
SenderSloane, James
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationbusinessman
Sender ReligionLatter Day Saints Church
OriginNauvoo, Illinois, USA
DestinationDetroit, Michigan, USA
RecipientMcReynolds, Andrew
Recipient Gendermale
SourceT 2304/1: Copy Presented by Illinois State Historical Society, Springfield, Illionis, USA.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.8850002
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by JM 18:10:1993.
Word Count2748
Transcript City of Nauvoo, Ills. [Illinois?] Mar. [March?] 27th. 1842

Andw. [Andrew?] T. McReynolds Esq.

Dear Cousin
Upon Monday last I recd. [received?] your affecte. [affectionate?]
letter, in reply to mine, and believe me I rejoice in both its substance
and Spirit although you have somewhat to contend with, as regards this Worlds Goods, all I shall say upon this Subject is, that you may have
lived in affluent Circumstances according to your standing in
Society, when Matters assumed a better prospect than they have of
late, not that I mean to say that you may have went beyond reasonable
Bounds, however it may be, but I find by experience that in
such Cases of change of Times for the worse, it is a prudent plan
to throw aside all equipage, and the like, that we can as well do
without, and be content with a comfortable living, neither do I
believe that because a Man acquires honorable Stations, that he
should aspire to retinue to excess, or to any unnecessary excesses,
because the like has to come down, perhaps in a short time, or the
Torments of Sheriff & Bailiffs attend it, but I hope no such is
the case with you, but you have, as well as me, seen such Things,
therefore tis well to guard agst. [against?] it. when I wrote my former to
you, it was to ascertain if any of you were alive, & to find your
address, & believe me I do not recollect what I said in it, by
reason of Writing to Brother George, Sister Sinclair, Uncle George,
Andw. [Andrew?] Sloan, & some of my Wifes relatives, & my Cousins Anderson
of Tullywiggan, & Cousins Atkinson Blackwatertown, long Letters,
about the same time, not having time to keep copies, or even extracts,
& if I repeat any of it, this is the reason, my gratification
is great, that you do not forget me, but feel such an Interest
in my Welfare, I am now full at Heart with recollection of numerous
past events, both joyful, & sorrowful, which causes my Eyes to fill
with Tears. I am deeply interested for the Welfare of you all, am
glad to find your Mother is to provided for, & I do not doubt, but
you are a good & Kind Husband, as well as a dutiful Son, for such
Things the Lord has made promises of Reward. You did not say any
thing of Brother John, or your Sisters, Cousins Geo. [George?] Watson, John
Brown, & Robt. [Robert?] Bolton, all of whom we wish to hear of, also any of our old acquaintances who may be near you. I shall give you as full
an a/c [account?] of my past Career, present situation, & religious pursuits, as time & Paper will admit, the latter of which I hope you have an Interest in, as regards the Salvation of youself, Family, relations
& even your fellow Men, in Eternity, for I feel as if you have
their temporal interest at Heart, as regards intoxicating Drinks.
You are to understand then, that I became temperate, (by resolution),
before I left Ireland, not having joined any Society for that purpose,
but from a conscientious conviction of my own Errors. I have
the honor of possessing two Testimonials of the respect in which I
was held by some of the first rank in Society, say Revd. R. N.

Horner, Robt. [Robert?] Evans Esq, Joseph Greer, Jackson Lloyd Esqrs, &c &c, presented of their own free Will, a large & elegant Silver Snuff
Box, lined with Gold, & a large & elegant Sugar Bowl, with the
following inscription upon each, written by Mr. Horner, & procured,
& engraved, in Belfast, through Wood C. Heazleton, sent a Special
Messenger, Value then, & there, abt. [about?] $100.00. - To James Sloan,
Esq. Solr. [Solicitor?], who never abandoned the rightful Cause for want of a Fee, nor advocated the wrongful Cause for sake of a Fee, this
token of respect is presented by his numerous Friends, Dungannon
1834. - I have continued temperate up to this Time, & am firmly
resolved with Gods assisting Grace to do so during Life. I do
not at present intend to practice in my Profession, am now in my
49th. Year, & have not had any time or opportunity to become acquainted
with the Practice in this Country, & I must change my
Mind most materially before I could think of leaving this place,
that is, the Church to which I belong. the reason why I think
George might have treated me better, was, because he alledged there
was no use in my having Property after I joined this Church, yet
his affection towards me has not abated, he has written me lately,
that if he had known of a Person who was at his House coming off
here so soon, he would have sent me a Trunk with so Dry Goods
in it, all I had was in his power, & when I was coming away he
limited me pretty much, & he cut off the making of a black Coat
for me in his Store, as I had no such Cloth in my own, but finding
I had left a coarse one to be made in Town to use on the road
for Waggoning in wet or cold Weather, he made that a pretext for
withholding it, he sent me Money to Phila. [Philadelphia?] to bring us out
West, which he charged me with, & Int. [Interest?] thereon, he gave me a House as he said, Rent free, but afterwards charged me full Value, if not more, so that he did not lose any thing by me, he assisted me by procuring
Credit &c, but not to lose Money by it, he wishes us back, & made
me kind proposals, but I cd. [could?] not accept of them for the reasons
afd. [aforementioned?]. I was Storekeeping 3 yrs near Geo. [George?], & made some Money, but fitted up a large Waggon [Wagon?] & dearbourne [dearborn?], having 7 Horses, & inexperience Travelling in that way, started for Missouri, with $100.00 Cash, Beds, Bedding & Clothing, & but little else, (no Furniture,) unless the Waggoner [Wagoner?] & family, & I was some Dollars in Debt before I got there, built a House, & paid for a piece of Land with 5 Horses & large Waggon [Wagon?], & the Church being then persecuted because of our religion we were driven out of that State, unless those who were Slaughtered for the cause of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, this driving & Mobbing business you must have got some
knowledge of through the public Papers, if not otherwise.
we are now on the Banks of the Mississippi 200M above St. Louis,
50M above Quincy City, in this State, & came here destitute,
being obliged to leave a part of our Goods for want of
Waggon [Wagon?], or means to bring them, but as Geo. [George?] writes friendly, & may yet assist me, I dont wish you to Write to him on the
Subject, but if you do, don't give him to understand that I

complained to you, lest it might disgust him. when I arrived
in quincy had not means to pay the Ferry, nor to procure
Victuals, got to Saw Firewood in the Streets, moved here 2
years past, had got some Credit there, & procured $300.00 worth
of Goods through good Conduct, built a log House here, which
with all of us having the Ague for 9 Mos. [months?], left us with little,
but an unfinished House, I then got to work with a Shovel &
Wheelbarrow, at 75 cts [cents?] p [per?] day & find myself, I cd. [could?]
not chop, & writing I cd. [could?] not get to do, nor any thing else easier, & although I am now in the following Situations, yet I seldom
have means to pay the Postage of a Letter, yet anxious to receive
them, besides, may lose what little Furniture I have scraped
together, unless some of my Relations can feel to lend me so
much, or even part, which I would hope to soon faithfully repay,
if I had it in Goods, it cd. [could?] soon be turned, in a new Country,
amongst a distressed People these Situations are not profitable,
although so much to do, I must write my Letters on Sunday. The
Church in this City & vicinity amount to between 8 & 10 Thousand
Souls, I was appointed general Church Clerk, by the unanimous
voice of the Conference in Oct. [October?] last, my business is, to keep
a Record of the Names of the Members, give Licenses to the Elders
Ordained to Preach, & the like, not to say Amen while the Preacher
reads the Service of the Day, as in other Churches, the Members
of this Church may be baptized for their relatives & Friends who are
Dead, of all these Baptisms I keep a Record, the Church is erecting
a Temple to the Lord, of Stone, perhaps 140F [feet?] or 150F [feet?] long by 80F [feet?] wide, of Carved, hewn, & hammered Rock, to be 3 or 4 Stories high, elegantly finished inside, Copper or lead roof, now is up to the
height of the Cellar rooms, (10 or 12 ft [feet?]) 4F [feet?] thick, it will
Contain several Things such as were in Solomons, we expect to
receive great Blessings in it, immediately from the Lord, when
finished, we have Members here, from many parts of the Globe.
There is a Nauvoo House now Erecting, for the reception of Strangers
it is Cellar high of Stone, the remg. [remaining?] 3 or 4 Stories will be
Brick, roofed as the Temple, will be, elegantly finished, & splendidly
furnished, about 125F [feet?] long on each front, on a Corner, it is built
by an association, under a Charter from the State. I am Secy. [Secretary?] to the Committee since July last, of course keep the Stock Certfs [Certificates?], Stock Book, Acct. [Account?] Books &c. There was a Charter granted incorporating this City in feby. [February?] 1841. I was then put in City Recorder, to continue 2 years, there is a Patriarch in the Church who pronounces Blessings upon Members, he appointed me his Clerk, & at that I have attended writing the Blessings (Verbatim,) as he pronounced them, three Days in the Week, since 6th. of Sept. last. There is a Military Body authorized here by Charter, (The Nauvoo Legion,) the Mayor
of the City, (to whom I am Clerk of the Municipal Court,) who
is Major General, a few days past, offered me the situation of
War Secy [Secretary?], it belongs to his Staff, with the Rank of Col.
[Colonel?] I accepted of it, altho [although?] without a Horse, or means of

equipping myself at present, but being over age to be compelled, yet in
good bodily Health, & eight Months for equipment, I ventured in
hope, it, & the situation (I am told,) of Surgeon, are the only
ones from which there will be any Emoluments, though this with
other Things I am not in doubt of being able to pay, if I could
but procure them on a Credit, & this I believe you could do for me,
if you feel to depend on my Honor and Security, for puntuality in
payment. I do hope to be in better Circumstances in life ere [before?] many years, perhaps Months, for I am a Slave to business to procure payt. [payment?] of the Debt I mentd.[mentioned?], which when done I will be content. I wish you to reply to this with little delay, & inform me what the plan is you have in contemplation respecting me, Geo. [George?] said in his Letter if I would not accept of any of his proposals to go to Ohio he would come here when he could find time and Enter some Land for my use,
for Life, but that is uncertain both as to time & Life, the time
for one to be a Friend is when their assistance is required, not a
long hereafter, before which they may be Dead. let me know if you are
a professor of Religion, and what Church, - I belong to the Church
of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints and We believe in faith in the
Lord Jesus Christ, repentance for our Sins, Baptism for the remission
of them, by immersion, not Sprinkling, The laying on of Hands for the
Gift of the Holy Ghost, the resurrection of the dead, and Eternal
Judgment, which is the Doctrine that was practised and taught by
Christ and his Apostles, as appears clear from every Book in the New
Testament, also in the Prophets in the Old Testament, in which, Christ
said to the People if they would believe, they would believe in him.
This Church is gathering here, which is called Zion, or the New
Jerusalem, we have a Prophet, raised by the Lord for to lead his Church
here upon the Earth, to receive Revelations for that purpose, that his
People may be prepared for his coming at the ushering in of the Millenial
Reign, to Reign with him a Thousand Years, of this Doctrine People in the
present age are generally ignorant, although there is no part of Scripture
more plain, than where it is spoken of, and the Situation of the Saints
during that Time, you will find much said upon it in Isaiah, Ezekiel,
Malachi, Zechariah, Joel, Daniel, Jeremiah, Michai, in short in all the
Prophets, - and through all the Testament you will find the Doctrine of
Immersion in Water to be the mode of Baptism used by John; and which form
was the one adopted by Jesus himself upon which Occasion God was for the
first time heard to say - thou art my beloved Son in Whom I am well
pleased. Jesus declared himself that he that believeth and is baptized
shall be saved, and he that believeth not shall be damned and told the
Signs that should follow the believer, & in the second Chapter of Acts
shows what the declarations of Peter were upon the Day of Pentecost,
he told the People what the Signs were and to whom they should extend,
to your Sons and your Daughters to all that are afar off even as many as
the Lord our God shall call, upon this Subject I wish you would even take
a little recreation between your Studies although if all your time was
thus spent in the service of God it would be much more advantageous in
Eternity, that the practice of Common Law, I am an Elder, and High

Priest in this Church which Office is high, and one that is of
responsibility, & I have always been in good standing amongst
my Brethren. I know of a Surety that this Church and Work is of
God, and that by myself & not of Man alone, therefore I testify it
unto you in the Name of that same Jesus whose Name and Crucifixion
& second coming I hope to Preach ere [before?] long in our Native Land to the Salvation of many who have been and [are?] such Sinners as I have been,
I know the Gifts of the Gospel to be with it in this Church which is
the same Gospel the Apotles Preached, who said if any Man Preach any
other Gospel than that which we have preached unto you let him be
accursed, or if we or an Angel from Heaven preach any other Gospel
unto you let him be accursed. He that lacketh Wisdom let him ask of
God who bestoweth liberally and upbraideth not. I have put in good
part of the Day at this, and feel fatigued, if you will say somewhat
to me upon Religion I will esteem it a particular favour, if you hear of
any of Our Elders, go & talk to them hear them Preach, dont despise them
altho [although?] they may be poor, bring them under your roof, howbeit you
might entertain Angels unawares, Paul said Faith comes by hearing, & exhorts to prove all things and hold fast to that which is good. I must now conclude by telling you we all send our love to you all, & count it a
Blessing to have this oppy. [opportunity?] of holding some commn.
[communication?], while yet on the Land of the Living. - forgive the
length & disconnections, arising from haste.
Yr. Eve Affecte. [your ever affectionate?] Cousin.
James Sloan.