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Evening and Morning Star

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The Evening and the Morning Star was an early publication sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the first periodical printed by the Church. The periodical was published monthly in Independence, Missouri, from June 1832 to July 1833, and then in Kirtland, Ohio, from December 1833 to September 1834. It was first published in fourteen eight-paged, double-columned monthly issues.

The periodical was published in the printing office operated by William Wines Phelps in Independence, Missouri, until the office was destroyed by a mob on 20 July 1833. The mob also destroyed numerous uncompleted copies of the Book of Commandments, which was later renamed the Doctrine and Covenants. After the Latter-day Saints were expelled from Missouri in late 1833, the publication was printed in Kirtland, Ohio, in a shop owned by Frederick G. Williams. Because the circulation of the Missouri-printed Star was small and localized, Oliver Cowdery reprinted all the original twenty-four issues in Kirtland between January 1835 and October 1836, in a new sixteen-page format, with numerous grammatical improvements, and a few articles deleted. The Evening and the Morning Star was succeeded by the Latter Day Saints' Messenger and Advocate in October 1834 (HC 2:167).

Printed in it was a brief History of the Church, a number of LDS hymns, instructions to members of the Church, letters reporting its progress throughout the country, and many of the revelations received by the Prophet Joseph Smith. Oliver Cowdery, its editor in Ohio, printed reports and commentaries about the Saints' difficulties in Missouri and some of the doctrinal writings of Sidney Rigdon, a counselor in the First Presidency.

The Community of Christ (Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) holds archives of the complete run, accessible here.

The Ramage Printing Press

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The ramage printing press was purchased in Boston by W. W. Phelps for the LDS print shop in Missouri. It was thrown out of the upstairs window when the mob attacked the print shop, along with type, furniture and printed sheets of the Book of Commandments.

The first five signatures (a 32 page sheet) had been printed when the mob broke into the printing office on July 20, 1833. Mary Rollins, 14, and her sister Caroline, then 12, watched the mob's action. Realizing what the scattered pages were, she and her sister gathered up as many pages as they could and ran into the corn field. A few saved portions were individually bound into a 160 page book called the "Book of Commandments."

The printing equipment was urgently needed in Salt Lake Valley. The leaders gave the assignment of guiding the valuable press, type, ink, stationary and carding machine to Howard Egan, a stouthearted irishman who had already proved himslef under great difficulties. The much needed press finally arrived in the valley on August 7, 1849, and was the first printing press in the valley.

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