All Is Well

by Margaret C. Richards and Carol C. Madsen

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    This morning I composed a new song—“All Is Well.”

    With this brief statement on April 15, 1846, William Clayton recorded in his journal the writing of a hymn that has become a favorite of members of the Church everywhere. It is now called “Come, Come, Ye Saints.”

    William Clayton was in the first company of pioneers to leave Winter Quarters after the Saints were driven out of Nauvoo. His journal entry was made when his company was 300 miles and 48 days’ travel from Nauvoo. His wife had remained behind, and the night before Brother Clayton wrote these words, he received word that she had given birth to a baby boy. This good news was probably one of the reasons he felt inspired to write “All Is Well.”

    The words were written to fit an old melody that had been arranged by J. T. White and published in the songbook Original Sacred Harp.

    The hymn was often sung by members in his pioneer company. When someone started to sing “All Is Well,” everyone in the camp joined in. The song became so popular it was sung by other companies of pioneers who made the long trek across the plains.

    When you read or sing the words of this favorite hymn, can you see why it was such a great help to the weary and often discouraged pioneers? It is a song of faith and courage, and William Clayton will always be remembered for this great hymn.

    On page 21 you will find an easy arrangement of “Come, Come, Ye Saints” to play and sing. Perhaps some of your family could sing with you or play their instruments.