John H. Gilbert, a typesetter for E. B. Grandin, publisher of the Book of Mormon, stated that the first manuscript pages of the new book were brought into the printing office ï¿½about the middle of Augustï¿½ 1829. The completed edition was offered for sale on 26 March 1830. It is noteworthy that during this interim period, before the copies of the Book of Mormon were bound and available to the general public, interested parties were taking extracts from the volume and carrying them hundreds of miles from their place of origin to share the contents with others.
Among the earliest contributors to this proselyting venture was Solomon Chamberlain. The publication was not completed nor the Church yet organized when he performed one of the first missionary labors of the restoration period. Taking sixty-four pages from the Grandin press, he traveled across Western New York and into upper Canada, preaching the Book of Mormon as he went. When the finished edition was issued from the Palmyra Printing Office, he was again on hand; he procured copies and immediately began to distribute them.