Joseph Smith Journal (1835)

About the Account “A Pillar of Fire”

In the fall of 1835, Joseph Smith recounted his First Vision to Robert Matthews, a visitor to Kirtland, Ohio. The retelling, recorded in Joseph’s journal by his scribe Warren Parrish, emphasizes Joseph’s attempt to discover which church was right, the opposition he felt as he prayed, and the appearance of one divine personage who was followed shortly by another. This account also notes the appearance of angels in the vision.

Joseph began to keep a journal in November 1832. After some interruptions, he eventually produced 10 journals comprising over 1,500 manuscript pages, of which about 80 percent were prepared by scribes.