Here's an interesting
story from William Clayton's journal
Like Smith, William Clayton was secretly practicing polygamy.
He had already married two girls from the same family and
now wanted to marry the third beautiful teenage sister named
Lydia. Clayton, who was Smith's personal secretary, told
Joseph Smith of his intentions to marry the fine young girl.
Here's what happened, according to Clayton's diary:
"15 September 1843, Friday
Prest.J. told me he had lately had a new item of law revealed
to him in relation to myself. He said the Lord had revealed
to him that a man could only take 2 of a family except by
express revelation and as I had said I intended to take
Lydia he made this known for my benefit. to have more than
two in a family was apt to cause wrangles and trouble. He
finally asked if I would not give L(ydia) to him I said
I would so far as I had any thing to do in it. He requested
me to talk to her."
So Smith tells Clayton he can't have the teen, but tells
Clayton to talk to her about marrying Smith!
So Clayton goes to Lydia for Smith:
"17 September 1843, Sunday
Sunday 17. At home all day with M. I had some talk with
Lydia. she seems to receive it kindly but says she has promised
her mother not to marry while her mother lives & she
thinks she wont"
Then Smith tries coercing Lydia directly...
"21 September 1843, Thursday
Thursday 21. This A.M. he (Smith) came to talk with Lydia
but she wont yet consent she wants to tarry with her sisters"
Lydia tells Smith she wants to marry Clayton, not Smith,
so she can "tarry with her sisters," whom Clayton has already
secretly married. But Smith wants the young Lydia for himself.
There's no further mention of Lydia in Clayton's diary until
three years later, and after Smith's death.
"23 January 1846, Friday
My sister in law Lydia is in the way of apostacy. She went
to Burlington last year but previous to her going she agreed
to be sealed to me for time and eternity. She refused
to be sealed to Joseph.
While at Burlington she wrote pledging herself to her contract.
When she came home she faultered [sic] and went out to fathers
where she got entangled with my brother James and has resolved
to marry him. She has lost her faith in the Church as is
on the road to ruin, but so determined that no argument
is of any use. The family feel sorry but cannot change her
feelings. Her mother frets much about it."
So in the end, Lydia didn't marry Smith or Clayton, but
Clayton's brother James.