Joseph Smith, Robert Foster, and Chauncey and Francis Higbee
Religious Studies Center, BYU
As one of the key events leading to Joseph Smith's death, the destruction of the Expositor has received a significant amount of attention from historians over the years. At the same time, relatively little work has been done on the history of the seven men who published the paper, especially the history of their relationship with Joseph in Nauvoo and the reasons behind their defection from the Church. William Law has received the most attention in this regard... For the others, authors have generally been content to provide a brief description... In the cases of Charles Foster, Wilson Law, and Charles Ivins, such brief treatment has been unavoidable... More information, however, is available for Robert D. Foster, Francis M. Higbee, and Chauncey L. Higbee... This article, then, details Joseph's relationship with Foster and the two Higbees in Nauvoo up to that point in an effort to provide a more complete account of the events and issues leading to these men's united animosity toward Joseph Smith during the last few years of his life than has been available in the past."