Autobiography 1857 Draft 1

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Autobiography 1857 Draft 1
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    History of Wilford Woodruff In traceing the history of my Fathers I find it difficult to obtain a satisfactory account of the Woodruff family (from whom I descended) for more than three generation. I learn from the English Book of Heraldry that Woodruff supposed to be one of my Ancestors was Lord Mayor of the City of London at the time of the great fire in AD 1649 My Great Grand Father Josiah Woodruff lived nearly one hundred years of age and possessed a strong Iron Constitution and performed a ...
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    Philo born Nov 29 th 1811. Died by poison administered by a physician Nov 25 1827 aged 16 years. Asahel Hart born April 11 th 1814. Died ^in Terrahaut In^ October 18th, 1838. Aged 24. Franklin born March 12 1816 died June 1st 1816 aged 2 months 19 days. Newton born June 19, 1818 drowned Sept 1820 aged 2 years & 3 months. Julius born April 22nd 1821 died in infancy Eunice born June 19th 1820 ...
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    watching my footsteps in order to find some opportunity to take my life from the Earth but I can ownly attribute the continuation of my life on Earth to the present time to a merciful God whose hand has been streched out & rescued me from death in the midst of the many dangers and hair breadths escapes which I have passed through in life some of which I will here mention When three years of age I fell into a caldron of boiling water was instantly caught out & so badly scalded that is was 9 months before ...
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    Became so chilled & overcome with cold I could not travel, I crawled into the hollow of a large tree to rest me. A man in the distance seeing me go into it hastened to my ^rescue^ realizeing more fully than I did the danger I was in when he arrived at the spot I had fallen asleep & was nearly insensible, he had much difficulty in arousing me to a sens of my situation. He procured means to convey me to my Fathers house and through a kind profidence my life was again preserved At 14 ...
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    wheel into about 3 feet of water and my weight drew my legs out of the wheel or I should have been drawn under a shaft & crushed to death. In 1831, while having charge of the Flouring Mill in Collinsv- ville Ct I was standing inside of a breast wheel 20 feet in diameter upon one of the arms near the top clearing out the ice when a full head of water was let onto it it immediately started. I dropped my ax and leaped through the wheel to the bottom of it by ...
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    see paper apart* & after one days rest was enabled to attend to my labors again (see paper apart) Thes I have occupied considerable space in refering to those peculiar circumstances which have attended me during life. And to sum the matter up it stands about those I have broaken both legs (one twice in two) both arms, & both ancles ^my breast bone & 3 ribs^ ^my breast bone & 3 ribs^ have been drowned froze & scalded, & bit with a mad dog, have been in two water wheels under a full head of water * ^have ...
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    ^Had authority^ to administer in the ordinances of the House of the Lord but believed that it was our privilege through faith, prayer, & fasting to heal the sick, & cast out devils by the laying on of hands which was the case under his administration as numbers could testify. I was living in this state of mind & in this faith & belief looking for the coming forth of the Church of Christ when I heard of what was called Mormonism. In 1832 I was loudly called upon by the spirit of the Lord ...
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    time I had ever seen him we appointed a meeting for him to speak to our little branch, ^He instructed all us the branch^ and we had a precious time, he spoke till near midnight. He was upon an important mission in connexion with Lyman Wight, it was to gather up from 100 to 5000 men ^a company^ to go up to redeem Zion. I accompanied Brother Pratt to Jefferson County, I told him my circumstances. He said it was my duty to try to prepare myself ...
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    case of cholera in the camp. The people ^brethren^ covenanted to do this & the plague was stayed & there was not another case in camp. Joseph held several meetings with the ^Saints^ Saint Set them in order, & ^President Joseph Smith^ returned home with many other of the brethren I remained with Lyman Wight laboring with my hands till the following winter. * ^(*see paper apart & page 9th)^ At a meeting of the High Council at Lyman Wights in Clay County Missouri I was ordained to the office ...
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    kept by a Mr Jerrew, we asked the minister to direct us there. He gave us directi ^directions^ the Spirit said to me that he was decieving us, directeing us wrong, I asked the question 3 times over & he declaired he was telling us the truth we followed his direction & it led us into the Osage River swamp where we were lost in the darkness of the night ^we undertook to follow the river but it being about the crookedest one in earth America we made but ...
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    as he could each jump. I told him not to be frightened as we were travellers & friends & did not wish to hurt him but wished to stop with him him over night, when he came to his senses we as he gave us permission to stop with him till morning if we would take the bare floor as he did then we excepted, we asked for something to eat as we had walked 60 miles with[out] eating a morsel of food. He said he had nothing for us said that hed had ...
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    this created a great wailing & mourning with his famil, Brother Brown & myself assisted the family in laying him out & burying him. He died on the 14th day of Feb 1835 & we buried him on the 16. This clo singular dispensation of providence brought solemnity upon the people & they began to reflect & wished to hear preaching, we held several meetings & preached to the people we baptized a Mr Hubbel & his wife aged people who had opened their ...
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    nearest house on the road. He went out of sight in great haste I then knelt down in the water & prayed the Lord to heal me up & the spirit of the Lord rested upon me & I was healed the pain left me I arose & went my way ^*^ whenever I met with one or more families I preached to them & bore my testimony as I went alone to the people I arrived at the Missippi River & crossed it in the evening of the
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    swimming our horses & several of the company were females & could not consistently cross the stream he and we undertook to head the stream so that we could cross sufficient to ford it, but in in the attemp in the midst of the darkness of the night & the raging of the wind & rain we became lost in the thick woods we had neither fire, light, or road, but was in the darkness, rain, wind, mud, creeks, & treetops we crossed the stream near twenty times & setting aside our females & horses we made more ...
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    in the last days & when we were opposed by a mob he would rebuke them in great plainness we were not injured or molested ownly threatened, the sick were freequently healed under our administration. On the 27th of May 1836 we were again joined by Elder Warren Parrish direct from Kirtland Ohio who also laboured with us. We held a conference on the 28th day of May at Brother Seth Utley ^in Benton County Tennessee^ where there was 7 Branches represented ...
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    at the same time began to talk about the mormons & told several lies which I corrected before the people, this still enraged him worse and I was forbidden to preach in the house I told the people as I had been invited to preach to them & had come 10 miles to fulfill the appointment I would like to preach to them, I was willing to stand on a fence, wood pile, on a cart or anyplace they would appoint a man rose & said he owned the land in front of the meeting house I might ...
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    His house also on Sunday the 31st we were threatened with a mob we I baptized Mr Crider amid the scoffs & jeers of the rablle they did not mob us but went in the night & poisoned both of our horses the one which I rode belonging to Brother Samuel West died in [t◊◊◊◊] two days afterwards Brother Smoots recovered the hogs that eat of the horse flesh also died. August 11th I rode to Mr Gainers in Henry county ...
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    I gathered this small camp together in Brother Albert Petty tent and we appointed Elder ^Benjamin^ Boydston as their leaded to Colwell County Mo. I then addressed ^taught them^ upon the subject of their journey the importance of their being united, following the council of their leader, remembering their prayers night & morning, before the Lord. I was followed by Elders Boydston Clapp & Cathcart and the rain poured down in torents during the whole time untill we were thoroughly wet ...
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    I attended this school through the winter I attended ^the evening^ meetings with the ^Seventies^ 70s during and other Quorums as I had an opportunity during the winter of 1836 & 7 and received much valuable instruction. On the evening of the 20th Dec 1836 I was present at the organization of the third Quorum ^of seventies^ & their was 27 ordained ^among them A. O. Smoot^ into that Quorum during this meeting among the number ^of seventies^ was A. O. Smoot who had accompanied me to
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    B Nobles M Holmes and myself when he was ^and^ immediately healed. 17th I met with the Quorums of the Seventies and heard a lecture delivered by David Whitmore He warned the Elders to humble themselves before the Lord lest his hand be laid upon us in anger for the sins and pride which the Elders and Saints were running into in our days of prosperity as did the Ancient Nephites. 24th I met in the evening with the Seventies several were ordained into the