David Whitmer refutes public claims that he recanted his published testimony of the Book of Mormon.

David Whitmer

David Whitmer, "A Proclamation," March 1881, An Address to All Believers in Christ (Richmond, MO: David Whitmer, 1887), 8–10

David Whitmer
W. R. Holman, James Hughes, Martin Harris, W. W. Mosby, George I. Wasson, Alexander W. Doniphan, C. J. Hughes, H. C. Garner, W. A. Holman, George W. Trigg, James W. Black, Thomas McGinnis, A. K. Reyburn, J. P. Quesenberry, Thomas D. Woodson, D. P. Whitmer, David Whitmer, Joseph Smith, Jr., Oliver Cowdery, J. T. Child, J. S. Hughes, James A. Davis, Lewis Slaughter, George W. Buchanan, L. C. Cantwell, George W. Dunn
Reading Public

It is recorded in the American Cyclopædia and the Encyclopædia Britannica, that I, David Whitmer, have denied my testimony as one of the three witnesses to the divinity of the Book of Mormon; and that the other two witnesses, Oliver Cowdery and Martin Harris, denied their testimony to that Book. I will say once more to all mankind, that I have never at any time denied that testimony or any part thereof. I also testify to the world, that neither Oliver Cowdery or Martin Harris ever at any time denied their testimony. They both died reaffirming the truth of the divine authenticity of the Book of Mormon. I was present at the death bed of Oliver Cowdery, and his last words were, “Brother David, be true to your testimony to the Book of Mormon.” He died here in Richmond, Mo., on March 3d, 1850. Many witnesses yet live in Richmond, who will testify to the truth of these facts, as well as to the good character of Oliver Cowdery. The very powers of darkness have combined against the Book of Mormon, to prove that it is not the word of God , and this should go to prove to men of spiritual understanding, that the Book is true. To show the reader what I have had to contend with, I give you below a copy of a leaflet which I had printed and dis tributed in March, 1881.


“Unto all Nations, Kindred Tongues and People, unto whom these presents shall come:

“It having been represented by one John Murphy, of Polo , Caldwell County, Mo., that I, in a conversation with him last summer, denied my testimony as one of the three witnesses to the 'BOOK OF MORMON.'

“To the end, therefore, that he may understand me now, if he did not then; and that the world may know the truth, I wish now, standing were, in the very sunset of life, and in the fear of God, once for all to make this public statement:

“That I have never at any time denied that testimony or any part thereof, which has so long since been published with that Book, as one of the three witnesses. Those who know me best, well know that I have always adhered to that testimony. And that noman may be misled or doubt my present views in regard to the same, I do again affirm the truth of all of my statements, as then made and published.

He that hath an ear to hear, let him hear; 'it was no delusion! What is written is written, and he that readeth let him understand.

“And that no one may be deceived or misled by this statement, I wish here to state: that I do not indorse polygamy or spiritual wifeism. It is a great evil , shocking to themoral sense, and themore so, because practiced in the name of religion. It is of man and not of God, and is especially forbidden in the Book of Mormon itself.

“I do not indorse the change of the name of the church, for as the wife takes the name of her husband so should the Church of the Lamb of God, take the name of its head, even Christ himself. It is the Church of Christ.

“As to the High Priesthood, Jesus Christ himself is the last Great High Priest, this too after the order of Melchisedec, as I understand the Holy Scriptures.

“ Finally, I do not indorse any of the teachings of the so-called Mormons, of Latter Day Saints, which are in conflict with the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, as taught in the Bible and Book of Mormon; for the same gospel is plainly taught in both of these books as I understand the word of God.

“And if any man doubt should he not carefully and honestly read and understand the same, before presuming to sit in judgment and condemning the light, which shineth in darkness, and showeth the way of eternal life as pointed out by the unerring hand of God.

“In the spirit of Christ who hath said: 'Follow thou me, for I am the life, the light and the way,' I submit this statement to the world. God in whom I trust being my judge as to the sincerity of my motives and the faith and hope that is in me of eternal life.

“My sincere desire is that the world may be benefited by this plain and simple statement of the truth.

“And all the honor be to the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, which is one God. Amen. DAVID WHITMER. ”

“RICHMOND, Mo., March 19, 1881."

“We, the undersigned citizens of Richmond, Ray County, Mo., where David Whitmer, has resided since the year A. D. 1838, certify that we have been long and intimately acquainted with him and know him to be a man of the highest integrity, and of undoubted truth and veracity. "Given at Richmond, Mo., this March 19, A. D. 1881.

Gen. Alexander W. Doniphan. L. C. Cantwell, Postmaster, Richmond.

Hon. Geo. W. Dunn, Judge of the Fifth Judicial Circuit. Geo. I. Wasson, Mayor.

Thos. D. Woodson, President of Ray Co. Savings Bank. Jas. A. Davis, County Collector.

C. J. Hughes, Probate Judge and Presiding Justice of Ray County Court. J. T. Child, editor of Conservator.

H. C. Garner, Cashier of Ray Co. Savings Bank. Geo. W. Trigg, County Clerk.

W. W. Mosby, M. D.

W. A. Holman, County Treasurer Thos. McGinnis, ex-Sheriff Ray County.

J. S. Hughes, Banker, Richmond. J. P. Quesenberry, Merchant.

W. R. Holman, Furniture Merchant. James Hughes, Banker, Richmond.

Lewis Slaughter, Recorder of Deeds. D. P. Whitmer, Attorney-at-Law.

Geo. W. Buchanan, M. D.

Hon. Jas. W. Black, Attorney-at-Law. A. K. Reyburn."

Citations in Mormonr Qnas
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