Sep 28, 2023 - Sale 2646

Sale 2646 - Lot 215

Price Realized: $ 13,750
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 1,000 - $ 1,500
(MORMONS.) Edward B. and James H. Wingate. Letters by two early Boston converts, describing travel to Nauvoo and arguing theology. 4 Autograph Letters Signed to brother John F. Wingate of Brunswick, ME. Each about 10 x 7 1/2 inches, one to 3 pages; each with postmarked address panels on final blanks. Various places, 1844-1846

Additional Details

The brothers James Henry Wingate (1813-1857) and Edward Bradley Wingate (1820-1887) were raised in Maine, and became early Boston converts to the LDS faith. This lot contains 4 letters written by the brothers to their brother John Foster Wingate (born 1823) of North Yarmouth, ME.

The first letter is written by Edward from Boston on 17 April 1844, two months before Joseph Smith's death. He describes his plans to leave Boston soon for Nauvoo: "I want to get away the last of this month . . . hit or miss, for I known I am engaged in a great & glorious cause, in a cause that will make a man's heart rejoyce and not cause him to mourne. . . . The time will come when you will know as I know, after I arrive there."

James H. Wingate writes from Boston on 30 September 1844, regarding funds from their father's estate: "I rec'd the money and forward it to Br Edward at Nauvoo. I expected then to leave for Nauvoo, but was detained on account of not receiving all of the claim. . . . I have not heard from Edward lately. He was well last time I did hear."

On 12 September 1845, James wrote from Augusta, Iowa, describing life on the frontier: "I have been traveling through Wisconsin Territory. It is a fine country for farming and mining. It is covered with lead mines, and some parts of it very healthy. Money is plenty with those that works for it. I went down in some of the mines that was worth 50,000$. It is an uncertain business. Some will dig for years and only make a living, and I have seen others that have dug one week and strike a lead worth 20,000$." He ends with a long discourse on religion: "I am very sorry that you have been drawn into one of the prevailing errors of religion (or no religion, I should have said). Oh how much mischief sectarianism has done and is still a doing. . . . Beware of false doctrine and sheep in wolves' cloathing crying Lo here is Christ. . . . You must acknowledge that they have it from the Roman church, or they must have it received it by revelation as Smith says he rec'd it. If it comes through the Pr church it is good for nothing, for they say it is a corrupt fountain. . . . Hope you will be cautious who you follow. Keep your mind open to conviction."

Last is a letter from Edward dated 4 July 1846 in Boston, expressing concern for John's health, and closing with a wish that "Heaven's choisest blessings rest upon you all." Edward "Big Ned" Wingate later became a member of the Danite police force, and married the daughter of controversial Mormon leader Sidney Rigdon.

With--two letters from brother-in-law Silas Moury of Dover, NH, 1844 and 1846.