William Clayton


Clerk and Scribe for Joseph Smith

Testimony of Joseph Smith

“We have had the privilege of conversing with Joseph Smith Jr., and we are delighted with his company. We have had a privilege of ascertaining in a great measure from whence all the evil reports have arisen and hitherto have every reason to believe him innocent. He is not an idiot but a man of sound judgment and possessed of abundance of intelligence, and whilst you listen to his conversation, you receive intelligence which expands your mind and causes your heart to rejoice. He is very familiar and delights to instruct the poor saints. I can converse with him just as easy as I can with you, and with regard to being willing to communicate instruction he says, ‘I receive it freely and I will give it freely.’ He is willing to answer any question I have put to him and is pleased when we ask him questions” (Letter from William Clayton to Church members in Manchester, England, Dec. 10, 1840, Nauvoo, Illinois, Church History Library, Salt Lake City; spelling and punctuation modernized).