“I Will Yet Make Him a Polished Shaft in My Quiver”: Joseph Smith’s Model for Managing Conflict, 1835–36

By C. Brooklyn Derr

C. Brooklyn Derr, “‘I Will Yet Make Him a Polished Shaft in My Quiver’: Joseph Smith’s Model for Managing Conflict, 1835-36,” in Joseph and Hyrum—Leading as One, ed. Mark E. Mendenhall, Hal B Gregersen, Jeffrey S. O’Driscoll, Heidi S. Swinton, and Breck England, (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University; Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2010), 43–60.

“I Will Yet Make Him a Polished Shaft in My Quiver”: Joseph Smith’s Model for Managing Conflict, 1835–36

C. Brooklyn Derr

On the evening of October 29, 1835, in Kirtland, Ohio, Joseph Smith and his wife Emma sat down to supper with guests Bishop Newel K. Whitney, Bishop Edward Partridge, and others. Happily, Emma told these beloved friends that she hoped “the company present might be seated around her table in the land of promise.” [1] Unfortunately, the harmonious spirit of the evening did not last.

After supper, Joseph and Emma attended a high council meeting to hear charges of misconduct against some Church members. Joseph presided at the meeting while his younger brother William brought the charges and mother Lucy Mack Smith was called to testify. In her testimony, Lucy gave information about the charges that the high council had already heard and settled in earlier meetings. On these grounds, Joseph objected to his mother’s testimony. William, in turn, accused Joseph of being disrespectful toward his mother by “invalidating or doubting” her testimony. Joseph declared that this was not his intent and, as presiding authority over the meeting, called William out of order and told him to sit down. William angrily refused. In his journal, Joseph wrote, “I finally ordered him to set down he said he would not unless I knocked him down.” Dismayed and probably also mortified at this public outburst, Joseph wanted to leave the meeting and stayed only when father Joseph Smith intervened. [2]

The next day, William sent Joseph a letter requesting a meeting to resolve what William felt was unjust criticism and injury to his reputation. According to Joseph’s journal, kept for him by scribe Warren Parrish, Joseph expressed his willingness to”< talk with> him in the spirit of meekness and give him all the satisfaction I could. When William arrived at Joseph’s store the next day, Joseph insisted that their brother Hyrum be present to act as a mediator. To resolve the dispute, Joseph “proposed to relate the occurrences of the council before named and wherein I had been out of the way I would confess it and ask his forgivness, and then he should relate his story and make confession wherein he had done wrong . . . and then leave it to br. Hyrum Smith & br. Par[r]ish to decide the matter between us and I would agree to the decission & be satisfyed there with.” [3]

Joseph and William each told his side of the story, but William, perhaps feeling that Hyrum and Joseph were joining against him, was not satisfied. In the end, he declared “that he wanted no more to do with them us or the church,” offered to forfeit his elder’s license, and stormed out of the store. Joseph lamented, “Where the matter will end I know not, . . . the feelings of my heart I cannot express on this occasion.” Joseph later heard that William was complaining about him in the streets, something Joseph wryly observed, “no doubt our enemys rejoice at.” [4]

Joseph’s journal says nothing more about the conflict with William until two days later. On November 3, Joseph dictated a revelation instructing the brethren to humble themselves and wait patiently for William to return to the fold. As for William, the revelation proclaims, “I will yet make him a polished shaft in my quiver.” [5] Though contention is certainly against the Lord’s will, and although William later left the Church, the Lord here seems to be saying that the proper handling of can have a refining or polishing effect on our character.

The Prophet Joseph Smith often faced disharmony and disagreement in the founding days of the Church, not only from outsiders but also from his close associates. We can learn important lessons for dealing with conflict from his experiences and his revealed insights. In this chapter, we will explore how the lives of Joseph and Hyrum Smith illustrate a gospel-based approach to conflict resolution. That approach involves airing differences honestly and humbly, confessing errors, and making effective use of mediators. By learning—as Joseph and Hyrum did—how to turn conflict into constructive problem solving, we become disciples of Christ, “polished shafts” for the Lord’s work.

Sources of Conflict in the Restoration

As founder of an organization that has risen from humble beginnings with six members in 1830 to more than thirteen million members today, Joseph Smith not only started a great religious movement but also introduced his followers to far-reaching new ideas. Revolutionary insights often bring controversy, and conflicts inevitably arose as Joseph sought to implement the revelations given him. In building up the unique organization of the Church, Joseph sought ways to integrate thousands of converts with diverse backgrounds, opinions, and even cultures into a community of Saints. In grappling with unavoidable tensions, Joseph gained revelatory and innovative insights that can help leaders today.

Joseph did not shrink from asking the Saints to change their lives and their thinking in dramatic ways. Prophets often bring revolutionary changes: Wilford Woodruff’s Manifesto, Joseph F. Smith’s requirement that the practice of polygamy cease, Heber J. Grant’s call for obedience to the Word of Wisdom in order to get a temple recommend, Spencer W. Kimball’s extension of the priesthood to every worthy male member, and Gordon B. Hinckley’s surge of temple building. Each of these revelations required major shifts in thinking, which disoriented many people. And in every case there was some disagreement within the Church.

Unmanaged disagreements can prove destructive and can promote disunity. Joseph keenly felt the dangers that hardening, contentious hearts among the Saints presented to the kingdom. His feelings are especially clear in his journals of 1835–36, when he was trying to prepare the Saints for the dedication of the Kirtland Temple and to receive an “endowment of power,” even as all kinds of conflicts were breaking out among them. In April 1835 he recorded a revelation which warned that contention could prevent the Saints from receiving the promised endowment: “The powers of Earth & hell seem combined to overthrow us and the church . . . to prevent the Saints from being endowed, by causing division . . . and bickerings and jealousies . . . , and so the leaven of iniquity foments and spreads among the members of the church.” [6] He later recorded another warning from God: “They must all humble themselves before me, before they will be accounted worthy to receive an endowment. . . . Let them repent speedily, and prepare their hearts for the solemn assembly.” [7] Joseph worked tirelessly to resolve such contentions. Throughout his ministry he showed us how conflict-resolution skills can repair relationships and enable us to become more unified and worthy to enter the temple.

In the weeks after their first quarrel, the conflict between William and Joseph Smith worsened. In December 1835, William hosted a debating-society meeting at his home. At the meeting, Joseph criticized William for becoming contentious as he debated fellow Apostle William McLellin. Then, when Hyrum suggested ending the debate because of the bad feelings, William lost his temper with Hyrum. Joseph chastised William, who loudly defended his right to hold a meeting in his own home without his brothers’ interference. Despite the efforts of Father Smith to calm things down, the conflict came to spiteful name-calling and even to blows. Joseph was left humiliated and bruised. [8] Some report that Joseph was beaten so badly that he could not sit or stand for two days without assistance and that the wounds from his 1832 tarring and feathering were aggravated. [9]

Though Joseph and Hyrum loved their associates deeply, yearned for harmony, and quickly forgave even the rashest offenders, they were no strangers to interpersonal conflict. For example, on one Sabbath day in November 1835, Joseph quarreled with Emma and drove her to tears, objected to the way Sidney Rigdon and his uncle John Smith “dealt with a transgression during a Church meeting,” and had an argument with John Corrill. At about the same time, he squabbled with Orson Pratt “over the pronunciation of a Hebrew letter.” [10]

To some, Joseph seemed contentious during this period. Some attribute his behavior to an overdeveloped sense of “Yankee honor.” Kyle Walker points out that the use of physical force by males during this historical period was common and even considered a normal way to resolve disputes. All of the Smith boys were strong and muscular, and there are recorded instances where each of them, even Hyrum, resorted to threatening or using physical fighting. [11] William Smith, however, was especially quick to anger and to use such force. Joseph also was involved in numerous altercations as a young man, but by 1840 he had gained control of this part of his character and admonished the Saints in Nauvoo to “quall all disturbances in the street at the first onset.” [12]

Conflict management theory suggests that this kind of strife is normal, natural, and even necessary for leaders at such stressful times. [13] Aside from a tendency to lose his temper, Joseph was certainly under incredible stress in 1835, given the amount of work he had undertaken, the needs of the fast-changing Church organization, and tensions from those outside the Church. From its founding in 1830 to the end of 1836, when the Saints began to leave Kirtland, the Church grew dramatically to 13,293 members. [14] About two thousand Latter-day Saints lived around Kirtland in 1835–36. With their rapid growth in numbers came an equally dramatic increase in tensions with their neighbors: Saints were distrusted in Ohio and were simultaneously under attack in new settlements in Missouri eight hundred miles to the west. Any leader would be stressed under these conditions, and stressed people get into conflicts more easily.

Meanwhile, the government of the Church was evolving from a tightly knit kinship group of close associates to a more formal and complex structure. Where before a loosely organized conference of elders governed the Church, now Joseph added the priesthood office of high priest, geographical division into stakes, and the new offices of bishop, high council, president, patriarch, the Twelve Apostles, and the Seventy—all organized in Kirtland between 1832 and 1835.

It is normal to see people vying for influence and position in organizations, and in young organizations, relatives and close friends tend to play important roles. However, as the Church grew beyond such intimate circles, Joseph asserted more and more authority in order to keep the Church in order. The Whitmers, Oliver Cowdery, and Sidney Rigdon, who all had close kin or peer relationships with the Smith family early on and who all held prominent Church roles at one time, eventually left the Church over issues relating to Joseph’s authority. Beyond this time into the twentieth century, conflicts among Church presidents, councils, and other officers were commonplace until these roles became more clearly defined. In fact, the Lord helped resolve some of these 1832–35 issues through revelations on priesthood and Church government (see D&C 88, 107).

Joseph’s authority was a primary issue before a high council in September 1835, when a dispute between Joseph and Henry Green was brought up. Brother Green had come to the defense of an elderly Brother Aldridge, who had accused Joseph of charging too much for a patriarchal blessing book. Joseph, in turn, had “lashed back.” [15] The council found Green in the wrong for inappropriately and publicly challenging the character of the President of the Church.

Similarly, when Joseph delivered a revelation in 1835 on the order of the priesthood and the hierarchy of Church government (D&C 107), he alienated some members who preferred a more democratic approach. John Corrill, who had shared heavenly manifestations with the Prophet, left the Church over what seemed to him to be a lack of checks and balances on Joseph’s authority. [16]

Finding Unity in Diversity

When people with varied styles, orientations, and worldviews work in the same enterprise, their diversity naturally makes decision making more complicated. And when they have to collaborate closely to achieve the organization’s mission, their differences can get sharp and serious. The fast-growing Latter-day Saint communities of the 1830s were made up of established settlers, frontiersman, farmers, merchants, and tradesman, all with diverse personalities and perspectives. Imagine these former Campbellites, Presbyterians, Anglicans, and evangelicals coming at church-building with their different traditions—not to mention Americans, Canadians, and Englishmen all living in the same place. Imagine asking these dissimilar people to build the Kirtland Temple together, to travel with Zion’s Camp, to go on missions in pairs, to build cities, to go to the elders school for theology and the Kirtland School for temporal education, and to feed and house new converts who arrived destitute every day. The Latter-day Saint enterprise involved intense integration of throngs of diverse people under staggering pressures. And when they were asked to consecrate their property, even more cooperation was required.

Joseph Smith was at the center of all this tension. He must have been exhausted trying to manage these issues while tending to his family and doing the intensely spiritual work of translating scripture and seeking revelation. How did he successfully deal with these pressures and still avoid the kind of contention that might inhibit the Spirit and hold back the work?

Joseph’s journal entry for New Year’s Day 1836 provides a glimpse into his feelings. He expressed his gratitude for the blessings of the past year but then confessed, “My heart is pained within me” over conflicts in the Church and within his family, specifically over his clash with William. He worried that these conflicts were due to an attempt of the adversary “to prevent the Saints from being endowed.” “But,” he resolved, “I am determined that nothing on my part shall be lacking to adjust and amicably dispose of and settle all family difficulties, on this day.” [17]

A family council of sorts convened at Joseph’s home later that day. Father Smith, along with his brother John Smith, his sons William and Hyrum, and family friend Martin Harris joined with Joseph to resolve the brotherly dispute. Father Smith opened the meeting with prayer and described his deeply wounded feelings over the brothers’ antagonism. As he spoke, said Joseph, “The spirit of God rested down upon us in mighty power, and our hearts were melted.” William then “made an humble confession and asked our my forgiveness,” and Joseph in turn asked for forgiveness. The brothers then covenanted with each other to change their behavior, pledging to “go to each other, with our grievances in the spirit of meekness, and be reconciled.” Joseph’s journal for that day concludes, “I was then requested to close our interview which I did with prayer, and it was truly a jubilee and time of rejoiceing.” [18]

In resolving this matter with his brother, Joseph modeled several useful conflict-resolution strategies, including the use of third parties, open discussion and counseling together, frank confession, and full forgiveness. Joseph went beyond the typical recommendations of conflict-management theory such as searching for win-win solutions. He came to this difficult situation in a spirit of repentance. He also invited wise counselors to speak honestly, and was humbly willing to listen to their counsel and learn.

Managing conflict well requires catching it early enough to transform it into effective problem solving. Effective leaders don’t settle for a complacent status quo, nor do they allow conflicts to fester into crises. In fact, organizations that harness the energy of people who differ strongly with one another solve problems in more innovative ways. But Joseph Smith went further—he came to the conflict in a spirit of humility, seeking the Lord’s counsel as well as the counsel of trusted associates.

Principles of Unity and Open Communication

When the Savior came to the Book of Mormon peoples, one of the first doctrines he preached was against “disputations among you.” He taught, “He that hath the spirit of contention is not of me” (3 Nephi 11:28–29). Similarly, before the dedication of the Kirtland Temple, Joseph Smith explained that preparation for the endowment would require developing genuine brotherly love among the Saints.

Joseph and Hyrum modeled this unity of heart. On June 17, 1835, when at Zion’s Camp, they both sensed impending danger on the west bank of the Grand River. Joseph suggested that the camp move away from the nearby cover of trees. Some, including Zion’s Camp general Lyman Wight, disagreed; but Hyrum stepped forward, took the flag, and gave the word to move forward. All but twenty men followed, and the party was safe. [19]

In 1831 Joseph taught, “If thy brother or sister offend thee, thou shalt take him or her between him or her and thee alone; and if he or she confess thou shalt be reconciled” (D&C 42:88). Elder Orson Hyde followed this principle in a dispute with the Prophet in December 1835. Upset that he had been denied credit at the Church-owned store while William Smith had seven hundred dollars in debt to the store, Hyde met with Joseph alone and gave him a letter of complaint: “While we were abroad this last season we strain[e]d every nerve to obtain a little something for our familys and regularly divided the monies equally for ought that I know, not knowing that William had such a fountain at home from whence he drew his support.” [20] After reading the letter, the Prophet responded to Orson’s concerns and “satisfied his mind upon every point.” [21] By approaching the Prophet directly, Elder Hyde allowed for conflict resolution and resulting peace.

In the previously mentioned case, brought by Henry Green against Joseph, the council not only sought to defend Joseph’s dignity, but also suggested to Green that he should have gone to Joseph personally to resolve the conflict. He should not have aired it in public.

Conflict theorists believe that unity is not the result of a lack of differences; rather, unity arises from airing differences one-on-one in an atmosphere of problem solving, civility, caring, and good communication. Such a process leads to greater understanding, increased trust, and more creative solutions to sticky problems. Ignoring issues, being legalistic, using force to win at any cost, or acting in underhanded and manipulative ways—all these approaches simply lead to more serious contention and disunity. In the New Year’s Day meeting, Joseph and William came to an understanding as they spoke freely of their feelings and their errors.

But Joseph did more than the conflict theorists suggest. He and Hyrum called on the Spirit for help. The humble prayers offered at the meeting invited the Spirit, as did the heartfelt plea of their father. In the experience with Zion’s Camp, Hyrum felt the Spirit in Joseph’s admonition to move away from the trees. By following the revealed pattern of conflict resolution, Orson Hyde solved his problem with Joseph.

Using Third Parties

When parties in conflict cannot manage their own misunderstanding because communication has broken down, the parties are too emotional, or the problem is unclear, it may be useful to seek the help of a wise and inspired party outside of the dispute. Common third parties in the Church are bishops, priesthood and Relief Society leaders, family members, Church councils, and Church-designated marriage and family counselors. In secular settings, lawyers, judges, arbitrators, mediators, marriage counselors, consultants, and human resource specialists all play this role. Skillful third-party conflict managers can help those in conflict clarify differences, identify common interests, find the right time and place to work on the problem, set an agenda, analyze their own viewpoints, communicate effectively, do creative problem solving, and plan subsequent steps.

In resolving their quarrel, William and Joseph Smith relied on beloved friends and family members as third parties. Father Smith’s plea for the brothers to reconcile helped soften their hearts. Reflecting on Hyrum’s help in the dispute with William, Joseph lauded Hyrum for his talents as a peacemaker: “I could pray in my heart that all my brethren were like unto my beloved brother Hyrum, who possesses the mildness of a lamb, and the integrity of a Job and in short the meekness and humility of Christ, and I love him with that love that is stronger than death; for I never had occasion to rebuke him, and nor he me.” [22]

Joseph also turned to Church councils as third parties in resolving disputes. On October 3, 1835, John and Dean Gould were brought before the high council on charges of slandering and threatening Sidney Rigdon. “After due deliberation, the[y] both confessed and wer[e] acquited.” [23] On September 28, 1835, the high council met to try a Brother Bishop; “he was reproved, repented and was reordained.” [24] Appealing to trusted parties that were not involved in the conflict was part of Joseph’s pattern of conflict resolution.

The Principle of Forgiveness

Joseph emphasized the importance of forgiveness as the brethren prepared to be washed and anointed before the dedication of the Kirtland Temple in the spring of 1836. Perhaps the Lord whispered to Joseph of the value of forgiveness in dealing with his own stress.

From early on, Joseph was quick to forgive and forget. The Lord had instructed him: “Forgive one another; for he that forgiveth not his brother his trespasses standeth condemned before the Lord; for there remaineth in him the greater sin” (D&C 64:9). For example, Joseph had a number of harsh confrontations with Sylvester Smith during Zion’s Camp in the early autumn of 1834. On one occasion, according to Sylvester, Joseph blew up after Sylvester refused to give food to Parley P. Pratt because he was a member of another company. Another time, Joseph said he would whip Sylvester for threatening to kill Joseph’s dog. Sylvester was also among those who sided with Lyman Wight in opposition to Joseph’s instruction to move the campsite; Sylvester claimed that Joseph threw a camp bugle at him in anger over this incident. [25]

As a result of these accusations, Joseph was brought before a high council on charges of abusing Sylvester. Long discussions, testimonies of witnesses, and emotional sharing of feelings occurred in several sessions of the council, with one session lasting until 3:00 a.m. The council concluded by reprimanding Sylvester Smith for slander and false charges against the Prophet. Sylvester eventually published a confession, and Joseph declared the matter settled. [26] As testament to the Prophet’s capacity for true forgiveness, Sylvester served for years as Joseph Smith’s secretary—in fact, he was the scribe in Joseph’s confrontation with Henry Green (described above). [27]

After Joseph and Orson Pratt argued over the pronunciation of the Hebrew letter, the two met to settle the matter. Joseph had been teacher of the Hebrew class that day and, as such, insisted his version should prevail. A long one-on-one conference ended peacefully. Pratt then asked “forgiveness of the whol[e] school [the School of the Elders] and was cheerfully forgiven by all.” [28]

Throughout his life, Joseph Smith was repeatedly slandered and betrayed by beloved associates, yet he never withheld forgiveness from anyone who asked for it. Though Joseph believed himself in the right in his conflict with William, he was willing to admit to those instances “wherein I had been out of the way.” Further, he was quick to forgive William and to resolve to be more charitable in the future. At the end of the meeting, according to Joseph’s journal, “Gratitude swelled our bosoms, tears flowed from our ey[e]s.” [29]

Perhaps the most poignant example of Joseph’s forgiving nature comes from an 1840 letter to William W. Phelps. A close friend of Joseph’s who had converted to Mormonism in 1831, Phelps abandoned the Church during the 1837 Missouri conflict and gave damaging testimony in a hearing that led to Joseph’s imprisonment. Yet when Phelps later wrote to Joseph to ask for forgiveness, Joseph replied with characteristic generosity: “Believing your confession to be real and your repentance genuine, I shall be happy once again to give you the right hand of fellowship, and rejoice over the returning prodigal.” Joseph ended his letter with this couplet: “Come on dear Brother since the war is past, / For friends at first are friends again at last.” [30] Quick and sincere forgiveness was central to Joseph Smith’s leadership philosophy.

Conclusion

As Joseph and Hyrum learned, conflicts openly acknowledged can become opportunities for creative problem solving. In a spirit of repentance, forgiveness, and respect for divine authority, we can move through conflict to unity of effort and charity of feeling. In one particularly stressful meeting of the First Presidency and the Twelve in January 1836, the Brethren faced several divisive issues in such a spirit. All parties openly expressed themselves. Issues were resolved and a higher degree of unity and closeness was achieved. Joseph’s journal says, “We then took each other by the hand in confirmation of our covenant and their was a perfect unison of feeling on this occasion, and our hearts over flowed with blessings.” [31] Within a week of that meeting, Church leaders entered the temple to perform washings and anointings in preparation for the endowment. The Twelve—including Elder William Smith—attended both the temple dedication and solemn assembly. [32]

Open acknowledgment of conflict is, ironically, important to achieving unity among the Saints, as Lee Perry has pointed out. While the Saints know about the warnings in Doctrine and Covenants 121 against “unrighteous dominion” or the abuse of priesthood power, few are as aware of what Perry calls “unrighteous neglect.” [33] Because many of us view conflict as being inherently bad, we often shy away from calling upon others and ourselves to stand for righteousness, even when some interpersonal situations may call for such a course of action—“reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost” (D&C 121:43). As Joseph Smith said, “I frequently rebuke and admonish my brethren, and that because I love them, not because I want to incur their displeasure, or mar their happiness.” [34]

Joseph recognized that tensions will arise naturally in the Church, so he provided us a pattern for turning conflict into creative decision making—and for preventing contention from driving away the Spirit.

Following Joseph’s pattern during times of conflict, we should come together in a repentant and humble manner with willingness to learn from the experience, as Joseph did in his difficulties with his brother William. Next, we should seek the guidance of the Holy Ghost to help us resolve the problem. When we are still stuck, we should call on constructive third parties—counselors, trusted friends or family members, home and visiting teachers, or the councils of the Church—to give us spiritual guidance and sound advice. Joseph modeled candid, open discussion one-on-one or with trusted third parties, following the admonition of James to confess our faults to one another (see James 5:16). Finally, we should be ready to forgive quickly and sincerely.

In summary, Joseph encouraged the Saints to acknowledge conflicts, repent, seek the Spirit, forgive, and turn to Church councils if necessary to resolve their problems and become one with one another and with the Lord. If we follow this pattern, we will benefit from the promise the Lord made in the Sermon on the Mount: “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God” (Matthew 5:9).

Table 1: Joseph Smith’s Model of Conflict Management

Need area

Dysfunctional behavior

Conflict management theory

Joseph Smith model

1. How to approach a conflict

Act defensively or aggressively. Ignore the problem. Be self-righteous. Stand on authority.

 

Come at it with openness, honesty, and caring, ready to compromise or innovate.

Come humbly and repentantly with Christlike love, willing to confess and learn from the experience.

2. How to deal with conflict

Avoid conflict because it is inappropriate. Use authority or force to get your way. Do only what is legal or prescribed.

Air differences with civility, caring, and good communication. Seek out win-win solutions to problems. Use the energy of the conflict to produce an innovative solution.

Appeal to the Spirit for discernment and then follow the promptings you receive. Strive to turn contention into effective problem solving and unity of effort.

 

3. How to use third parties

When at an impasse, use a lawyer or force a standoff. Try to be the most powerful and skillful and win at any cost. No third-parties are needed.

Employ skillful third-parties (consultants, HR specialists, or mediators) to help break through an impasse to an acceptable resolution.

Turn to family members, friends, bishops, home teachers, and Church councils for counsel and encouragement.

 

4. How to cope with a bad outcome

Seethe and hate. Become a martyr. Sabotage. Tell your story to all who will listen.

Get to some level of compromise or acceptance where you can honestly live with the outcome.

Be willing to repent and forgive quickly and sincerely. Move on and lift the burden of contention.

Notes

[1] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, comp. and ed. Dean C. Jessee, rev. ed. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2002), 96.

[2] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 96–97.

[3] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 96–97.

[4] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 98.

[5] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 100.

[6] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 149.

[7] Joseph Smith, History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, ed. B. H. Roberts, 2nd ed. rev. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1957), 300–301.

[8] Richard L. Bushman, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2005), 300–301.

[9] Kyle R. Walker, “The Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith Family: A Family Process Analysis of a Nineteenth Century Household” (PhD diss., Brigham Young University, 2001), 168.

[10] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 299.

[11] Walker, “Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith Family,” 150–70.

[12] Walker, “Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith Family,” 159.

[13] For further discussion of this theory, see M. Afzalur Rahum, ed., Theory and Research in Conflict Management (New York: Praeger, 1990).

[14] 2006 Church Almanac, (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 2006), 652.

[15] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 296.

[16] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 266–67.

[17] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 149.

[18] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 150.

[19] Jeffrey S. O’Driscoll, Hyrum Smith: A Life of Integrity (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2003), 100.

[20] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 136.

[21] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 137.

[22] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 138.

[23] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 87.

[24] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 85.

[25] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 247–48.

[26] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 248.

[27] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 296.

[28] Bushman, Rough Stone Rolling, 299.

[29] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 150.

[30] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 509–510.

[31] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 168.

[32] Personal Writings of Joseph Smith, 205, 214, 216.

[33] Lee Tom Perry, Righteous Influence: What Every Leader Should Know about Drawing on the Powers of Heaven (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2004), 8–9.

[34] Smith, History of the Church, 2:478.