Sustaining the Law : Joseph Smith's Legal Encounters
My survey of Ohio county court records revealed only one denial of a request for a license to perform marriages. In March 1835, Sidney Rigdon made a motion for a license before the judge of his county court, Presiding Judge Matthew Birchard of the Geauga County Court of Common Pleas, which had jurisdiction over the Kirtland area. [From the text]
A longer version of this article was originally published as "Joseph Smith's Performance of Marriages in Ohio," BYU Studies 39, no. 4 (2000): 23-69.