Dream of Mary Lightner

I thought I found myself in a skiff, without an oar, or anything to propel it along with - out at sea. The water appeared very smooth. I sat in the center of the boat, with my elbows on my knees, and my face on my hands, which was concealed by a long Swiss bonnet - I raised by eyes, and saw a wave that reached almost to the sky, coming towards me; I seemed to be in a state of despair. I spoke aloud and said - I may as well go to the bottom as anywhere else. Immediately, a hand was laid upon my left shoulder, and in looking down, I saw the limbs of a man incased [sic] in linen, and the skirt of a coat of the same material. I did not look up to see who it was, nor did I care to know; He spoke, his voice was low and sweet; he said, "what are you doing here?" I replied, "I don't know," He asked, "Where did you come from?" I replied, "Over there,'.' nodding my head to the left. He then asked, "Where were you going?" I replied, "I do not know. I have got nobody to steer my boat." He then said, "What 3 cities are there on your left?" I replied, "Don't you know?  They are the Josephites Harbor, the Godbeite Harbor, and the Brighamite Harbor." They seemed to be cities built on a half circle and the inside of the circle was water. He asked, "Which is the best?" Said I, "They all say theirs is the best. Which do you think is the best? I don't know!" "Well," said he, "Let us go and see immediately." The boat turned of its own accord and went into the Josephites Harbor. Said my guide, "What do you think of this city?" I replied it looked well enough. "And this sheet of water." I answered, "it is a beautiful sheet of water." He then put his two large fingers under my bonnet and touched my eyes saying, "Look deeper." I did so and exclaimed, "Oh, they said the largest ships in the world could be anchor [sic] here but the smallest fishing craft would get fast in the mire, for it is all slime and mud under the surface." I felt that he smiled. "Now," said he, "Let us look at the other Harbor." The boat turned of its own accord and moved into the Godbeite Circle. "What do you think of this sheet of water." I replied, "It is not as good looking as the other." "What do you think of the city built on the half circle?" "Oh, it looks well enough." He touched my eyes again saying, "Look deeper." I did so exclaiming, "They say that the largest ships in the world could anchor here, but if they once get in, they can never get out for it is boiling with quick sand, and will drag them to the bottom." I thought he smiled. "Now," said he, "Let us take a look at the Brighamite Harbor." The boat moved as before. "How do you like the looks of the city, and water?" Said I, "It is the uglyest [sic] sheet of water I ever saw." He pointed to the water and said, "I want you to look at the wall that city is built on." He again touched my eyes with his two large fingers. When I could see in the water as well as on land, he pointed to a large white rock, which was very beautiful. He said, "look on up," When I [did] [I] saw above the white rock a layer of sand, gravel, and forest leaves, looking as though fallen from the trees in the fall of the year; above that, a grey and speckled rock, but not like any grey rock I ever saw (I cannot describe the colour). Then a layer of sand and coarse gravel, then a layer of black earth a foot thick; so black and greasy looking that I thought if I were to take it in my hand, I could squeeze ink out of it. Above this appeared a dazzling white rock, purer than anything I ever saw. I saw it growing larger and larger. "Now," said I, "What is the meaning of all this?" He replied, "The first white rock stands for Joseph the Prophet, the sand and gravel of a dark colour, the trouble that came on the church after Joseph was taken away. The speckled rock stands for Brigham's rule. The gravel, sand and black earth, oh that is the trouble that is to come on the church after Brigham is taken away. And the pure white rock, the next spiritual leader." Said I, "What makes Brigham's rocks grow toward the top?" He said, "Because he is of the earth. Earthly you know; that the kingdom of God is firstly spiritual, secondly temporal, thirdly spiritual. Joseph Smith was a spiritual dispensation, to usher in the gospel in its fulness. Brigham was called to build up a temporal kingdom." I said, "Who is to stand for the pure white rock?" He said, "You look deeper." he again touched my eyes, and I saw clear down to the days of Adam; a large white rock standing for him, one for Enoch and for Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Christ. After Christ, grey rocks. My guide said, "The black rocks represented the time when the priesthood was taken from the earth." I again asked him concerning the pure white, that was on top. He did not answer. Then I looked up for the first time to see him and he was gone, leaving me in the boat, close to the white rock. I never looked up to see who the personage was and I did not seem to care about him. I awoke and lo it was a dream but a vivid one. The wall of rocks from Adam was as straight as the side of a house. I forgot to state that I said to the guide before he left me, that truly all the navies in the world could ride at anchor here in perfect safety.

[ The small 68 page booklet included this account of Mary Elizabeth's dream, was included at the end on page 66-68.  There was not any citation refrences that would indicate the origin or authenticity of this account.  The "Life History" and BYU "Testimony" included in the pamphlet is appears to be the same as the versions of these stories published in Our Pioneer Heritage and Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine (1926).  It would appear that this account of the dream is as authentic account as these other sanitized accounts. A holographic account of Mary Elizabeth's Autobiography, is located in the Utah Hisorical Society. Lightner, Mary Elizabeth. Autobiography, holograph, USHS. There are different typescript versions, some fuller than the holograph. See also the version whose author is given as Elsie Barrett, Huntington Library.  The British variant of "grey" and "colour" in here included without the indicating 'sic'.]

Correspondence regarding this page should be sent to pc@ldshistory.us

Or if browser access only, try this web base mail form.

All opinions on Mormon Church History and Mormonism in general are mine and mine alone, and represent my thinking at this point in time, (subject to change based on better information).

All original writings of mine are just that, to reproduce, forward or use, parts or whole, you need to get permission from me first.

Spellings constructed for effect and to confound the ridged. ;)

©1996 by Perry L. Porter. All copyrights are maintained by any parties (individual or corporate) which may have originally created any of the information or artwork contained herein. If you see your work, and I've mistakenly not given you or your company credit, please E-mail me, I'll gladly add the appropriate credit, if you feel it is necessary.


   Visitors (hits), since I started re-hosted this site April 1st 2000.