From Sacred Places: New York and Pennsylvania, A Comprehensive
Guide to Early LDS Historical Sites, Lamar C. Berrett, General
Editor, Deseret Book, 2000.
Freedom Township-(Isaac and Harriet Decker lived in
Freedom from 18-- to 18--)
Freedom Township is the corner township in NE Cattaraugus
County. It derives is name from the small village of Freedom,
which had its origins in 1811.
The farms of Warren A. Cowdery and Heman Hyde adjoined one another
in the township of Freedom. In 1830-31, Warren Cowdery received
some proof sheets of the Book of Mormon from his brother, Oliver
Cowdery, who was then supervising the printing of that manuscript
at the E.B. Grandin Bookstore in Palmyra, NY. Warren in turn
shared those sheets with his neighbor, Heman Hyde, and family.
Both families subsequently embraced the gospel. (Journal of Willilam
William Hyde stated that the Prophet visited Freedom while on
a recruiting mission for Zion's Camp. "Early in the year
1834 Joseph Smith and Parley P. Pratt came to my father's house,"
he said. "They preached two or three times in the neighborhood,
and conversed much in private. Before they left [,] my oldest
brother [Heman T. Hyde] was baptized [March 11, 1834] and went
the same year to Missouri with Joseph Smith and many others in
what was called the Zion's Camp." (Journal of William Hyde,
p6, History of the Church 2:42-43).
Of the above incident Parley P. Pratt explained: "We baptized
a young man named Heman Hyde; his parents were Presbyterians,
and his mother, on account of the strength of her traditions
thought we were wrong, and told me afterwards that she would
much rather have follwed him to and earthly grave than to have
seen him baptized. Soon afterwards, however, herself, her husband,
and the rest of the family , with some thirty or forty others,
were all baptized and organized into a branch of the Church-
called the Freedom branch- from which nucleus the light spread
and souls were gathered into the fold in all the regions round"
(Autobiography of Parley P. Pratt, p 109-110).
Warren A. Cowdery was called to preside in Freedom and vicinity
by the voice of the Lord through the Prophet Joseph Smith: "It
is my will that my servant Warren A. Cowdery should be appointed
and ordained a presiding high priest over my church, in the land
of Freedom and the regions round about" (D&C 106:1)
On April 3-4, 1835, a conference was held at Freedom with Sidney
Rigdon of the First Presidency of the Church presiding and Warren
A. Cowdery performing the secretarial duties. There were 15 branches
of the Church represented at the conference. As the respective
branches reported their numbers, Heman Hyde responded with a
count of 70 persons in the Freedom Branch (Messenger and Advocate
vol 1, p 101-102)
The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles assembled in Freedom on May
22-23, 1835, and held a conference for that district with Elder
David W. Patten presiding. The Apostles were on what has been
termed "the first mission of the Twelve" in this dispensation,
holding conferences in predesignated localities in New York,
Canada, and New England, from May to October 1835. The Freedom
Conference was the second on their itinerary (History of the
Church 2:222-25, Church Chronology p 11).
Wife number 4, Fanny Eliza Greene is the niece of Lorenzo
Dow Young. At the death of his mother in 1815, Lorenzo who was
then nine years old went to live with his sister, Rhoda and her
husband, John P. Greene.A
Fanny Eliza was much more than a niece, she was more like a sister,
having been raised in the same household as Lorenzo.
A Mothers of the Prophets
by Leonard J. Arrington, Susan
Arrington Madsen, and Emily Madsen Jones, [Bookcraft: Salt Lake
City, 2001] p. 38