175 years ago today - Jun 12, 1844

Thomas Sharp begins publishing in the Warsaw Signal violent calls for anti-Mormon action: "DIABOLICAL OUTRAGE—EXPOSITOR FFAIR . . . war and extermination is inevitable. Citizens, Arise, One and All! ! Can you stand by and suffer such Infernal Devils! to rob men of their property and rights, without avenging them? We have no time to comment: every man will make his own. Let it be made with powder and ball! ! !"

Joseph and seventeen brethren are arrested by Constable Bettisworth and charged with committing "a riot" by breaking and destroying the Nauvoo Expositor press. Joseph notices that the writ of arrest contains the words "before me or some other justice of the peace of said county." He therefore refuses to go to Carthage, but volunteers to go to the Nauvoo justice of the peace. Constable Bettisworth becomes furious. Joseph takes out a writ of habeas corpus, appearing before Aaron Johnson. The court decides that he "acted under proper authority in destroyingthe establishment of the Nauvoo Expositor," and he is released. At this time William Law is claiming that his store was completely gutted, with losses of $30,000. When Bettisworth returns to Governor Ford without Joseph as prisoner, most people in the surrounding area become infuriated.

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

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