And the honor be to the Father, and to the Son, and the Holy Ghost, which is one God. Amen.

Oliver Cowdery, * David Whitmer,

Martin Harris.

A citizen of Caldwell county having made public a statement reflecting upon the character of David Whitmer, the latter secured a testimonial, signed by many of the leading citizens of Richmond, where Mr. Whitmer has resided since the year A. D. 1838, certifying, that from a long and intimate acquaintance with him, they knew him to be a man of the highest integrity, and of undoubted truthfulness.

In reply to the statement referred to above, and in order to set himself right before the world, Mr. Whitmer published the following:

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, Missouri, 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 as it 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 the 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 no man 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 the moral sense, and the more 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, or Latter-day Saints, which are in conflict with the gospel of our Lord and Saviour 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 bv 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 benefitted 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!

Richmond, Missouri, March 19, 1881. David Whitmer, Sr.

Relative to this testimonial, the Richmond Conservator, of March 25, 1881, contained the following editorial:

Elsewhere we publish a letter from David Whitmer, Sr., an old and well known citizen of Ray, as well as an endorsement of his standing as a man, signed by a number of the leading citizens of this community, in reply to some unwarranted aspertions made upon him.

There is no doubt that Mr. Whitmer, who was one of the three witnesses of the authenticity of the gold plates, from which he asserts that Joe Smith translated the Book of Mormon, (f(tc simile of the characters he now has in his possession, with the original records) is firmly convinced of its divine origin; and while he makes no effort to obtrude his views or beliefs, he simply wants the world to know that, so far as he is concerned, there is no "variableness or shadow of turning."

Having resided here for nearly half a century, it is with no little pride that he points to his past record, with the consciousness that he has done nothing derogatory to his character as a citizen and a believer in the Son of Mary, to warrant such an attack on him, come from what source it may; and now, with the lilies of seventy-five winters crowning him like an aureole, and his pilgrimage on earth well nigh ended, he reiterates his former statements, and will leave futurity to solve the problem that he was but a passing witness of its fulfillment.

It is not the part of these pages to comment upon the Book of Mormon, the "golden plates," or the witnesses, as such; we have simply given place to the foregoing as a matter of interest in connection with the history of Ray county.


RAY County coal? The Lexington coal-bed is occasionally opened at points along the Missouri bluffs, from the east county line to Camden. Above Camden the formations dip strongly west, and the Lexington coal is no longer seen, but it is replaced by higher rocks. Around Richmond, on the waters of Crooked river, the coal is worked at many places. The mines near the east county line are worked by horizontal driftings. * * *

*Iron ores and coal fields:

Geological survey of Missouri, Raphael Pumpelly, director. The section at Oberholtz, from the hill top down, was as follows:

Section 173.

No. 1—68 feet slope.

2— 2 feet, equivalent to No. 15 (4 feet limestome: irregularly bedded: gray and drab: sometimes quite nodular: generally coarse grained. Abounds in Chcptetes milleporaceous, contains cylindrica and Athyris subtilita), of Lexington section; color, light drab.

3— 31 feet slope.

4— 4 feet brown limestone, abounds in Chmtetes milleporaceous.

5— 9 feet, 2 inches alternations of thin beds of limestone and buff shales, abounding in fossils, including Chonetes mesoloba, Chonetes, Pr. Pratteniantis, Hcmipronites Crassus and spr. cameratus.

(l — 2 feet, 4 inches hard, blue limestone in irregular layers: Contains Athyris subtilita.

7— 6 inches shale.

8— li feet coal (Lexington seam) said to increase to 20 inches.

9— 2 feet clay.

10— 15 feet gentle slope to Missouri bottoms.

An analysis of Oberholtz coal by Mr. Chauvenet, gives:—

Water 11-02

Volatile 32.48

Fixed carbon 46.30

Ash 10.20

Color of ash gray.

Sp. gravity 1 • 277

Sulphur 4.609

Williams'* Bank is seventy-five yards farther west. At Howell's, three-quarters of a mile farther west, the coal is sixteen to twenty-two inches thick.

An analysis of Howell's coal by Mr Chauvenet, gives:—

Water {.06

Volatile *J-J*

Fixed carbon

Color of ask.'.'.'.'.'.'

ISipST*:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: 1:3

A half mile farther west the above rocks are found lower in the bluffs, with the upper beds exposed, thus:— Section 174. No. 1—Slope.

2—15 feet drab, sandy shales.

*If local names of coal banks, mentioned in this chapter, have been changed, the intelligent reader will, no doubt, remember their locality from the names here used; and will understand, at all events, that only Ray county coal is referred to.

3— 5 feet mostly smooth, red shales, a part sometimes green.

4— 6 inches nodular limestone; fossils.

5— 3 feet green shales.

6— Limestone equivalent to No. 15, of Lexington section.

7— 25 feet to Missouri bottoms.

One mile west of this, the limestone equivalent to section 173, No. 4, (21 of Lexington section), was observed ten feet above the bottoms, indicating the position of the Lexington coal just two feet below the line of. their surface.

At Smith's mill, three miles northeast of Richmond, the Lexington coal is reached in a shaft forty feet in depth. Its place is near the level of water in Crooked river, at Searcy's and Harberson's.

Limestone No. 25-, which forms the roof of the coal, is seen at many places on Crooked river, northeast of Richmond, and along the stream to two miles northwest of Richmond. The following (section 176), illustrating the rocks above the coal, was observed two miles north of Richmond, on Crooked river.

No. I. —3 feet limestone, containing Fusulina, Producti, Crinoid stems, and chatctcs milleporaceous.

2. —7 feet of limestone and shales, divided thus:

a. —4 inches shales. In upper part hemipronites andchonetcs abound.

b. —4 inches limestone.

c. —2 inches shales.

d. —t inches limestone.

e. —9 inches shales and nodules of limestone.

f. 1$ feet shales.

g. —8 inches shales and lenticular forms of limestone.

h. —3 feet blue shales; in upper part are found S-pr. comera/us, P. functalus and Athyris.

3. —4 feet blue limestone; upper 9 inches shaly.

4. —6 inches black shales.

5. —Coal.

J. S. Hughes' coal mines are located one mile south of Richmond, on south-west quarter of section thirty-one, township fifty-two, range twentyseven, on line of St. Joseph branch of Wabash, St. Louis & Pacific railway. Their shaft is ninety-five feet deep from the surface. From the bot

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torn, entries extend east and west for over five hundred feet, the coal varying from twenty-two to twenty-eight inches in thickness, including the top five or six inches of good coal, then one to two and a half inches dark clay resting on good coal. The overlying bituminous shale is generally two to four inches thick; only at one place on the river was it observed one foot thick. It contains calcareous matter, with some fossil remains. The underlying clay is one foot to eighteen inches thick, thus giving a clear space between the cap-rock and bed-rock of four feet three inches to four feet six inches, or enough room for small mules to work.

The following is a section of his shaft, which is located on the southwest quarter of section thirty-one, township fifty-two, range twentyseven west:

No. 1. Soil 2 feet.

2. Clay: 12"

3. Soft sandstone 4"

4. Blue soapstone 9"

5. Red shale 16"

6. Flint (?) and limestone 5"

7. Soapstone and slate 2 " 6 in.

8. White sandstone 6"

9. Lime and sandstone 5"

10. Soapstone 8"

11. Slate .- 2"

12. Fireclay 2"

13. Flint rock (is limestone) 5 " 6 in.

14. Shale 3"

15. Slate 4"

16. Limestone, dark gray 5"

17. Slate 3 in.

18. Coal (generally, two feet) 2 " 3"

19. Fire clay (six to eight inches) 1 foot, 6"

Total depth 95 feet.

An analysis of this coal by Mr. Chauvenet, gives:—

Water 8.15

Volatile 37.60

Fixed carbon 46.35

Ash 7.90

Color of ash light brown

Specific gravity 1 • 328

Sulphur 4.17

* ** * # * * * *

At the Lawson * * * mines, on the railroad, two and a half miles south of Richmond, * * * the coal is taken out from drifts run in horizontally for several hundred feet. The coal is two feet thick, with a two inch clay seam five inches from the top. The over

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