The Murder of the Mormon Prophet.
The following account of Smtih's death, publish-ed at Nauvoo by one of his followers, who was present at the bloody tragedy, may interest some of our readers. The narative commends itself by its simplicity and straightforwardness, and the absence of all violent and reproachful lan-guage towards the assailants. In truth we have set down the writer as a rare partisan of the prophet—Eve. Mirror.
Two MINUTES IN JAIL.—Possibly the following events occupied near three minutes, but I think about two, and I have penned them for the grat-ification of my friends.
CARTHAGE, JUNE 27, 1844.
A shower of musket balls were thrown up the Stairway against the door of the prison in the se-cond sto y, followed by many rapid footsteps.—While Generals Joseph and Hyrum Smith, Mr. Taylor, and myself, who were in the front cham-ber, closed the door of our room a ainst the entry at the head of the stairs, and placed ourselves against it, there being no lock on the door, and no ketch that is unsealable. The door is a common panel, and as soon as we heard the feel at the stairs head, a ball was sent through the door, which passed between us, and showed that our enemies were desperadoes, and we must change ou position. Gen. Joseph Smith, Mr. Taylor, and myself, sprung back to the front part of the room, and Gen. Hyrum Smi h retreat d two-thirds across the chamber directly in front and facing the d or. A ball was sent throu h the door which his Hyrum on the side of his nose, when he fell back wards extended at length with-out moving his feet. From the holes in his vest, (the d y being warm and no one having their coats on out myself,) pantaloons, drawers and shirt, it appears evident that a ball must have been thrown fr m without, through the wind-ow, which entered his back on the right side, and passing through lodged against his watch, which was in the tight vest pocket, completely pulverising the chrystal and face, tearing off the hands, and smashing the whole body of the watch, at the same instant the ball from the door entered his nose. As he struck the floor he ex-claimed emphatically, "I am a dead man." Jo-seph looked towards him and responded, "O ! dear brother Hyrum !" and opening the door two or three inches with his left hand, discharg-ed one barrel of a sixteen saunter (pistol) at ran-dom into the entry, from whence a ball grazed Hyrum's breast and entered his throat, passed into his bead, while other muskets were aimed at him, and some balls hit him. Joseph co tinued snapping his revolver round the casing of the door into the space as before, three barrels of which missed fire, while Mr. Taylor, with a walking stick, stood by his side and knocked down the bayonets and muskets, which were constant-ly discharging through the doorway, while I s ood by him, ready to lend my assistance with another stick, but could not come within striking distance, without going directly before the muzzle of the guns. When the revolver failed, we had no more fire-arms, and expected an immedi te rush of the mob, and the door was full of mus-kets—and no hope but inst nt death within.
Mr. Taylor rushed into the window, which is some fifteen or twenty feet from the ground. When his body was nearly on a balance, a ball from the door within entered his leg, and a bull from without struck his watch, a patent lever, in vest pocket, near the left breast, and smashed it in "pi," leaving the hands standing at 5 o'clock, 16 minutes, and 26 seconds—the force of which bull threw him back on the floor, and he rolled under the bed which stood by his side, where he lay motionless, the mob from the door continuing to fire upon him, cutting away a piece of flesh from his left hip as large as a man's hand, and were hindred only by my knocking down their muzzles with a stick; while they continued to reach their guns into the room, probably left-handed, and aimed their discharges so far around as almost to reach us in the corner of the room to where we repeated and dogged, and then re-commenced the attack with my slick again. Jo-seph attempted, as the last resort, to leap the same window from whence Taylor fell, when two balls pierced him from the door, and one entered his right breast from without and he fell outward, exclaiming, “O Lord, my God !"' as his feet went out of the window my head went in, the balls whistling all around. He fell on his left side a dead man. At this instant the cry was raised, “He's leaped the window,” and the mob on the stairs and in the entry ran out. I withdrew from the window, thinking it of no use to leap out on a hundred bayonets, then around General Smith's body. Not satisfied with this, I again reached my head out of the window and watched some sec-onds, to see if there were any signs of life, regard less of my own" determined to see the end of him I loved; being fully satisfied that he was dead, with a hundred men near the body, and more coming round the corner of the jail, and expecting a return to our room, I rushed towards the pris-on door at the head of the stairs, and through the entry from whence the fi ing had procee ed, to learn if the doors into the prison were open. When near the entry, Mr. Taylor called out, "Take me," I pressed my way, till I found all the doors unbarred; returning instantly, I caught Mr. Taylor under my arm, and rushed up stairs into the dungeon, or inner prison, laid him on the floor, cove ing him with a bed in such a man-ner as not likely to be perceived, expecting an immediate return of the mob. I said to Mr. Taylor, this is a hard case to lay you on the floor, but if your wounds are not fatal, I want you to live and tell the story. I expected to be shot the next moment, and stood before the door awaiting the onset. WM. RICHARDS.
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