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James W. Woods memoirs

 File — Folder: 1
Identifier: MSS SC 1060

Scope and Contents

Photocopied typescript of an autobiography. In 1882 when Woods was "upwards of eighty years of age" he was interviewed for several weeks probably by Edgar R. Harlan with a stenographer present who wrote down the conversations. These materials were later condensed and pertinent portions were woven into a narrative. As a lawyer in Iowa, Woods was involved in many legal actions of that state. Woods was hired by Joseph Smith (1805-1844) to serve as his counselor when he and his brother Hyrum (1800-1844) were arrested in June of 1844. He tried to negotiate bail for Joseph and Hyrum for their safety. Joseph told Woods "I will never live to see another sun" on the day he and Hyrum were murdered. Woods spoke to the people of Nauvoo, Illinois, to keep them from retaliating, brought the bodies of the two men back to Nauvoo, and delivered the personal effects of Joseph to his widow.


  • 1882


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from James W. Woods memoirs must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.

Biographical History

Lawyer of Iowa and Illinois.


1 folder (0.03 linear ft.) : 38 p.

Language of Materials


Custodial History


Immediate Source of Acquisition



19th Century Mormon and Western Manuscripts.

Register of James W. Woods memoirs
Elisa Visick
2010 July 28
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States