Saturday, January 13, 2018

Alfred Douglas Young - Part 5 Leaving Tennessee

[This is a continuation of the Autobiography of Alfred Douglas Young, quoted and summarized from his recollections in 1888.]

My brother William and myself returned to our homes in west Tennessee [Gibson county]. We continued to preach to some in that region and baptized quite a number of persons. Sometime in April my brother and myself arranged our affairs to gather to Nauvoo. In the midst of much persecution and annoyance which entailed on us some loss of property, we got started on our journey. On the way, we fell in company with a brother by the name of West with a family who were journeying to Nauvoo. He had a son 18 or 19 years of age who was afflicted by an evil spirit.

[It is possible he was writing about the family of Samuel Walker West, who left southwest Kentucky at about the same time, and would have been along the way. West's only son at the time was 12 years old John Anderson West. If this is the right person John would have had to pass for 18-19, much older than he was.]

He was continually making a noise and was very unpleasant company. The weather being showery, we camped one day near a school house to dry our wet clothes. While I was in the house by myself, someone made known to me that the mother of the lad wished me to lay hands on him for his recovery. When we attempted to do so, being strong, he contended with us and I simply rebuked the evil spirit. He came out of the lad and the latter lay at our feet, a natural, pleasant looking boy. But when the evil spirit went out of the boy, he entered into my oldest son, John William, who was standing near. He was at once seized upon with terrible contortions of body. This caused considerable excitement in camp. I took him up in my arms and started into the school house followed by my brother, William. We laid him down and prayed, asking the Lord to give us power to cast out the evil spirit. We then laid hands on him, rebuked the evil spirit in the name of the Lord Jesus, and bid it depart and trouble us no more. It departed and left us in peace.

Nothing of importance occurred during the remainder of the journey to Nauvoo where we arrived on the 9th of June 1842. There my brother, William, and myself, met the letter of John D. Lee, dated Putnam County, Tennessee, May 18th 1842, and published in the Times and Seasons of June 15th. About the same time, we were called to account.

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