Edward Stevenson records meeting with David Whitmer who recounts his experience as a BoM witness.

Feb 9, 1886
Personal Journal / Diary
Edward Stevenson

Edward Stevenson, Journal, February 9, 1886, MS 4806, Church History Library

Edward Stevenson
Edward Stevenson, Martin Harris, Mary Musselman Whitmer, Jacob Hicks, David Whitmer, Joseph Smith, Jr., David Whitmer, Jr., Philander Page, Oliver Cowdery, John Whitmer, Hiram Page

7:15 A. M. Call on David Whitmer 8 years ago I visited him & now again he is 81 & very feeble I had to stop him talking to rest as I see it was hurting him about 11 he had to lie down & rest. I then talked with David jr very seriously about 2 [hours Father Whitmer showed me the old manuscript in several diferent hand writeings also the 7 or 8 lines of charectors that Martin Harris took to Anthony of N. Y. he said that he suffered a Mr Jacob Hicks of Liberty Clay Co Mo. to photo it he has them or the Negative— David is Sanguine that the manuscript is the real one from which the Book of Mormon & it looks to me more like it as I examined it some of it is in takes for the printers use & it is sowed together in parts of foolscap with yarn— he holds it very sacred— meny Incidents he related over that he did on my last visit at 12 N. we were called to dinner David Sat at the head of the table— his Grand Daut at the other end I sat next David Jr next & oposite them his Great grand son & next to me one Philander Page son of Hyrum Page one of the 8 Witnesses I was called upon to ask a blessing & blessed the food & called upon the Lord to Bless David & enlighten him by his spirit & to bless & lead the Household to do his will &c I felt to thank God for this blessing to once more behold him in the flesh and I said to David now I have proved myself a Prophet, he wished to know how that was. Well I was at Logan doing Temple work when the Paper said that David Whitmer was dying & I spoke by the impulse of the spirit No David wont die he will live & I will behold him again in the flesh & now it is fulfilled

Now as 8 years ago he says as I live and stand upon this earth so Shure did I See the Angle who stood before us. While we were sitting upon a log that is Joseph & Oliver Cowdry we were talking when a bright light began to Shine around us it grew brighter & brighter untill an Angle stood before us. a table in front of him on which was the plates and other plates the Sword of Laben Ball or Compas &c. the plates were shown us leaves turned over a portion of them were sealed. We also herd a voice commanding us to bear testamony of these things to the World &c &c—

He also relates to me that previous to Joseph Coming to him only a short time while he was plowing in the field he herd a voice and saw a personage the voice said Blessed is the name of the Lord & they who keep his commandments Soon after which Joseph came along & said David you are chosen to be one of the witnesses of the Book of Mormon, he left his team tied up to the fence & they went through a clearing & into the edge of the Woods & sat upon the log as spoken of above

He also relates a little very interesting Incident that occured in June 1829, David, Oliver, & Joseph, were rideing from Harmony Pa.—the 2 former in front & Joseph back sitting in the bed on hay or straw David had bin down with his team over 100 miles to fetch Joseph up to his mothers to translate the Book of Mormon about 2 1/2 days drive, while thus rideing an aged looking old man came walking along putting his hand on the wagon bed, he had on his back a knapsack & the Strap crossed on his breast he took his handkerchief and wiped his face to remove the sweat as it seemed to them David who was driveing his team said to the man will you get up and ride No said he I am only going over to Comorah & Suddenly disapeared they stoped the team amazed at the Sudden disapearance of the fine looking stranger he says that they all felt so strangely—

that they asked the Prophet to enquire of the Lord who this stranger was. Soon David said they turned around & Joseph looked pale almost transparent & said that was one of the Nephites and he had the plates of the Book of Mormon in the knapsac—

After their arival home the[y] felt the influence of this same personage around them for he said thare was a Heavenly feeling with this Nephite.

Mother Whitmer said and told them that she had see[n] this same man the Nephite & he showed her the Plates and that a portion of them were Sealed together. This was a great privalige to her but She was good to Joseph the Prophet and here was her reward. David delighted to relate meny of those incidents. But as to Peter James & John comeing to Joseph & confering the Priesthood upon him he is ignorant of it he Says that the Lord commanded and that is all. But here he is in the dark. I found from him that the Reccords or History left by John Whitmer now dead are in the hands of John the Son of Jacob. I walked out to see him 11/2 miles, but he said that the Elders had decided that no one Should have access to the Reccords untill they had first looked them over all of them Said that thare was no reccord of Peter James & John comeing to Joseph & laying on hands on him I paid my Hotell Bill & was detained by the train being late to make connexion at Lexington Junction & took Hotell for the night 75 [cents] for Bed & breakfast—

BHR Staff Commentary

Transcript from Lyndon W. Cook, ed., David Whitmer Interviews: A Restoration Witness (Orem, UT: Grandin Book, 1991), 180–182.

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