Orson Hyde uses premortal explanation to give an opinion on origins of Black people.

Apr 27, 1845
Speech / Court Transcript
Orson Hyde
Scribed Verbatim

Orson Hyde, Speech of Elder Orson Hyde Delivered Before the High Priests Quorum in Nauvoo, April 27th, 1845 (City of Joseph, Ill.: Printed by John Taylor, 1845), 30, accessed January 26, 2022

John Taylor
Sidney Rigdon, Noah, Canaan, John Taylor, Shem, Orson Hyde, Ham, Japheth
Nauvoo High Priests Quorum

At the time the devil was cast out of heaven, there were some spirits that did not know who had the authority, whether God or the devil. They consequently did not take a very active part on either side, but rather thought the devil had been abused, and considered he had rather the best claim to the government. These spirits were not considered bad enough to be cast down in hell, and never have bodies; neither were they considered worthy of an honorable body on this earth; but it came to pass that Ham, the son of Noah, saw the nakedness of his father while he lay drunk in his tent, and he with "wicked joy," ran like Rigdon, and made the wonderful disclosure to his brethren: while Shem and Japheth took a garment, with pity and compassion, laid it upon their shoulders—went backwards and covered their father, and saw not his nakedness. The joy of the first was to expose; that of the second was to cover the unseemliness of their father. The conduct of the former brought the curse of slavery upon him, while that of the latter secured blessings, jurisdiction, power and dominion. Here was the beginning of blessing and cursing in the family of Noah, and here also is the cause of both. Canaan, the son of Ham, received the curse: for Noah wished to place the curse as remote from himself as possible. He therefore placed it upon his Grandson instead of his son. Now, it would seem cruel to force pure celestial spirits into the world through the lineage of Canaan that had been cursed. This would be ill appropriate, putting the precious and the vile together. But those spirits in heaven that rather lent an influence to the devil, thinking he had a little the best right to govern, but did not take a very active part any way were required to come into the world and take bodies in the accursed lineage of Canaan; and hence the negro or African race. Now, therefore, all those who are halting concerning who has the right to govern had better look at the face of their brethren that have gone before them, and take warning in time lest they learn obedience by the things which they suffer. "Choose ye this day whom you will serve." These things are among the mysteries of the kingdom, and I have told them, not by constraint or by commandment, but by permission. 

BHR Staff Commentary

Citations in Mormonr Qnas
Copyright © B. H. Roberts Foundation
The B. H. Roberts Foundation is not owned by, operated by, or affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.