Joseph's Last Visions
June 25, 1844
"In June 1844 when Joseph Smith went to Carthage and delivered himself up to Governor Ford I accompanied him and while on the way thither he related to me and his brother Hyrum the following dream: He said:
"While I was at Jordan's in Iowa, the other night I dreamed that myself and my brother Hyrum went on board of a large steamboat lying in a small bay, near the great ocean. Shortly after we went on board there was an 'alarm of fire,' and I discovered that the boat had been anchored some distance from the shore, out in the bay, and that an escape from the fire, in the confusion, appeared hazardous; but as delay was folly, I and Hyrum jumped overboard, and tried our faith at walking upon the water.
"At first we sank in the water nearly to our knees, but as we proceeded we increased in faith, and were soon able to walk upon the water. On looking towards the burning boat in the east we saw that it was drifting towards the wharf and the town, with a great flame and clouds of smoke; and as if by whirlwind the town was taking fire too, so that the scene of destruction and horror of the frightened inhabitants was terrible.
"We proceeded on the bosom of the mighty deep, and were soon out of sight of the land. The ocean was still; the rays of the sun were bright, and we forgot all the troubles of our Mother Earth. Just at that moment I heard the sound of a human voice, and turning round saw my brother Samuel H. approaching towards us from the east. We stopped, and he came up. After a moment's conversation he informed me that he had been lonesome back, and had made up his mind to go with me across the mighty deep.
"We all started again, and in a short time were blest with the first sight of a city, whose gold and silver steeples and towers were more beautiful than any I had ever seen or heard of on earth. It stood, as it were, upon the western shore of the mighty deep we were walking on, and its order and glory seemed far beyond the wisdom of man. While we were gazing upon the perfection of the city, a small boat launched off from the port and almost as quick as thought came to us. In an instant they took us on board and saluted us with a welcome and with music such as is not on earth. The next scene, on landing, was more than I can describe; the greeting of old friends, the music from a thousand towers, and the light of God himself, at the return of three of his sons, soothed my soul into a quiet and a joy that I felt as if I was truly in heaven. I gazed upon the splendor; I greeted my friends. I awoke and lo, it was a dream!
"While I meditated upon such a marvelous scene I fell asleep again, and behold I stood near the shore of the burning boat, and there was a great consternation among the officers, crew and passengers of the flaming craft, as there seemed to be much ammunition or powder on board. The alarm was given that the fire was near the magazine and in a moment, suddenly it blew up with a great noise, and sank in deep water with all on board. I turned to the country east among the bushy openings and saw William and Wilson Law endeavoring to escape from the wild beasts of the forest, but two lions rushed out of a thicket and devoured them.
"I awoke again."
"I will say that Joseph never told this dream again as he was martyred about two days after I relate from recollection as nearly as I can." (W. W. Phelps, Millennial Star, Volume 39, p. 837)
June 26, 1844
"I was back in Kirtland, Ohio, and thought I would take a walk out by myself, and view my old farm, which I found grown up with weeds and brambles, and altogether bearing evidence of neglect and want of culture. I went into the barn, which I found without floor or doors, with the weather-boarding off, and was altogether in keeping with the farm.
"While I viewed the desolation around me, and was contemplating how it might be recovered from the curse upon it, there came rushing into the barn a company of furious men, who commenced to pick a quarrel with me.
"The leader of the party ordered me to leave the barn and farm, stating it was none of mine, and that I must give up all hope of ever possessing it.
"I told him the farm was given me by the Church, and although I had not had any use of it for some time back, still I had not sold it, and according to righteous principles it belonged to me or the Church.
"He then grew furious and began to rail upon me, and threaten me, and said it never did belong to me nor to the Church.
"I then told him that I did not think it worth contending about, that I had no desire to live upon it in its present state, and if he thought he had a better right I would not quarrel with him about it but leave; but my assurance that I would not trouble him at present did not seem to satisfy him, as he seemed determined to quarrel with me, and threatened me with the destruction of my body.
"While he was thus engaged, pouring out his bitter words upon me, a rabble rushed in and nearly filled the barn, drew out their knives, and began to quarrel among themselves for the premises, and for a moment forgot me, at which time I took the opportunity to walk out of the barn about up to my ankles in mud.
"When I was a little distance from the barn, I heard them screeching and screaming in a very distressed manner, as it appeared they had engaged in a general fight with their knives. While they were thus engaged, the dream or vision ended." (Joseph Smith, HC 6:33)