The next day the camp moved five miles out on the prairie. While here, some of the leading men of Ray county called on the brethren to learn what their intentions were. Joseph told them how the Saints had been persecuted in Jackson county; and that they had come one thousand miles with clothing and provisions for their brethren; that they had no intentions of harming any one, but their mission was to do good, and if possible help their brethren to get their lands back again. At the close of their talk, the visitors promised to do what they could to prevent the mobs from disturbing them, which promise they kept.
The next day, June 22nd, Sheriff Gillium of Clay county came into camp. He also wanted to know what the camp was going to do. Joseph explained to him. In order to get back their lands and live in peace, the Saints proposed to buy the lands from those who could not live with them in Jackson county, but nothing came of this and other offers that were made to settle the trouble.
This same day an important revelation was given through the prophet. The brethren were told that the Lord did not want them to fight, and that they must wait for a time before Zion should be redeemed.
During the march of the camp, some of the brethren had found fault and had not listened to the counsels of the prophet. Joseph had told them that if they did not repent, sickness would come into the camp and many would die. This was now fulfilled. On June 22nd, that dread disease called the cholera appeared in the camp. When you are told that during the next four or five days sixty-eight of the brethren took the disease and thirteen died, you may perhaps imagine what a terrible time they had.
On June 23rd they marched into Clay county and camped on Rush creek, where two days later the camp was disbanded. For two weeks Joseph labored among the Saints and then he returned to Kirtland. Most of the others also went back to their homes in the east about the same time.
Topics.—1. Organizing Zion’s camp. 2. March of Zion’s camp. 3. The camp on Fishing river. 4. The scourge.
Questions and Review.—1. What was Parley P. Pratt and Lyman Wight’s mission to Kirtland? 2. What instruction did the Lord give them? (See Doc. and Cov., sec. 103.) 3. How was Zion’s camp organized? 4. What was its object? 5. Through what states did it march? 6. What were Joseph’s teachings about kindness to animals? 7. What was the fate of James Campbell? 8. How were the brethren saved from their enemies on Fishing river? 9. What did the brethren propose to the citizens of Jackson? 10. Why did the scourge come upon the camp? 11. What revelation was given on Fishing river? 12. Where and when was Zion’s camp disbanded?
The church at Kirtland.
During the time that the Saints were having such a hard time in Missouri, the Church in and around Kirtland was growing in numbers and strength. Joseph with many of the elders went on missionary trips to various parts of the United States and Canada, and many new branches of the Church were organized.