Images of an Era: Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ
July 1999

“Images of an Era: Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ,” Ensign, July 1999, 40

A Great and Marvelous Work—
Part Two: 1805–1844

Images of an Era:

Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ

23 Dec. 1805: Joseph Smith Jr. born to Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith, Sharon, Vermont.

1816: Crops failed throughout New England in this “year without a summer.” Joseph Smith Sr. left Vermont and settled his family in Palmyra, New York.

Early spring 1820: Joseph Smith received First Vision in a grove near his home, which was located at the Palmyra/Manchester border.

21–22 Sept. 1823: Joseph Smith visited by angel Moroni and told of the Book of Mormon record. Joseph viewed gold plates hidden in a stone box in the Hill Cumorah. Annual visits to the site for instruction by Moroni followed.

18 Jan. 1827: Joseph Smith married Emma Hale (below) in South Bainbridge, New York.

22 Sept. 1827: Joseph Smith obtained gold plates from Moroni at the Hill Cumorah.

Dec. 1827: Joseph and Emma Smith moved to Harmony, Pennsylvania, where the gold plates could be translated safely.

June–July 1828: The 116 manuscript pages were lost.

7 Apr. 1829: Joseph Smith resumed translation of the record with Oliver Cowdery as scribe.

15 May 1829: John the Baptist conferred Aaronic Priesthood on Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery near Harmony, Pennsylvania.

Sometime in late May 1829: Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery received Melchizedek Priesthood from Peter, James, and John, near the Susquehanna River between Harmony, Pennsylvania, and Colesville, New York.

June 1829: Translation of Book of Mormon completed and copyright applied for (June 11). The Three Witnesses shown the plates and other Nephite artifacts by Moroni in Fayette, New York. The Eight Witnesses shown the gold plates by Joseph Smith in Manchester, New York.

26 Mar. 1830: First copies of Book of Mormon available in Palmyra, New York.

6 Apr. 1830: The “Church of Christ” organized, Fayette, New York, first elders ordained, and “Articles and Covenants of the Church” revealed (D&C 20, 22).

June 1830: “Visions of Moses” received as part of Bible translation (now chapter 1 of the book of Moses, Pearl of Great Price).

9 June 1830: First conference of the Church, Fayette, New York.

Dec. 1830: Sidney Rigdon (above) called to assist Joseph Smith as scribe in Bible translation (D&C 35:20). First revelation on gathering given; command for Church to move to Ohio (D&C 37).

1 Feb. 1831: Joseph Smith arrived in Kirtland, Ohio, and commenced ministry there.

4 Feb. 1831: Edward Partridge (right) ordained as first bishop of Church.

9 Feb. 1831: Revelation on Church government and law of consecration (D&C 42).

3–6 June 1831: First high priests ordained at general conference of Church, Kirtland township.

3 Aug. 1831: Temple site dedicated, Independence, Missouri.

16 Feb. 1832: Revelation on degrees of glory (D&C 76) received.

27 Dec. 1832: “The Olive Leaf” (D&C 88) received calling for construction of temple in Kirtland and establishment of School of the Prophets.

27 Feb. 1833: The Word of Wisdom (D&C 89) received.

2 July 1833: Joseph Smith concluded first draft of Bible translation (JST).

20 July 1833: Mob at Independence demanded removal of Saints from Jackson County. Printing office destroyed, halting printing of Book of Commandments.

23 July 1833: Saints at Independence made treaty with mob to leave Jackson County. Kirtland Temple cornerstones laid.

7 Nov. 1833: Saints fled from Jackson County mobs across Missouri River into Clay County.

18 Dec. 1833: Joseph Smith Sr. ordained as first Church Patriarch.

17 Feb. 1834: First high council of Church organized, Kirtland, Ohio.

5 May 1834: Joseph Smith left Kirtland for Missouri as leader of Zion’s Camp to bring relief to Saints expelled from Jackson County.

14 Feb. 1835: Quorum of the Twelve Apostles organized, Kirtland, Ohio.

28 Feb. 1835: First Quorum of the Seventy organized, Kirtland, Ohio.

28 Mar. 1835: Revelation on priesthood (D&C 107) given.

July 1835: Egyptian mummies and papyrus exhibited in Kirtland, Ohio; mummies and papyrus purchased. Joseph Smith began receiving revelation that is known as the book of Abraham.

17 Aug. 1835: Doctrine and Covenants adopted as official canon of Church; issued from press in Kirtland in September.

14 Sept. 1835: Emma Smith appointed to select hymns according to previous revelation (D&C 25).

21 Jan. 1836: Vision of celestial kingdom and revelation concerning salvation of the dead (D&C 137).

27 Mar. 1836: Kirtland Temple dedicated.

3 Apr. 1836: Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery, Kirtland Temple; Moses, Elias, and Elijah appeared conveying priesthood keys (D&C 110).

19 July 1837: Heber C. Kimball (right) and others arrived in Liverpool, England, on first overseas mission.

14 Mar. 1838: Headquarters of Church established in Far West, Missouri.

26 Apr. 1838: Revelation specifies name of the Church—The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (D&C 115).

4 July 1838: Temple cornerstones laid in Far West, Missouri.

8 July 1838: Revelation on tithing received (D&C 119).

25 Oct. 1838: Battle of Crooked River. Missouri Governor Lilburn W. Boggs issued Extermination Order against Saints two days later. (Rescinded 25 June 1976.)

30 Oct. 1838: Haun’s Mill Massacre, Caldwell County, Missouri.

1 Dec. 1838: Joseph Smith and others imprisoned, Liberty Jail, Liberty, Missouri.

20–25 Mar. 1839: While still imprisoned in Liberty Jail, Joseph Smith wrote epistle to Saints containing revelations that would become D&C 121, 122, 123.

April 1839: Joseph Smith and others escape from unjust imprisonment in Missouri and take their journey to Illinois, where the Prophet goes first to Quincy, then to the Saints’ new place of settlement in Commerce, later renamed Nauvoo.

Nov. 1839: First issue of Times and Seasons published, Commerce, Illinois.

May 1840: First issue of Millennial Star published, Manchester, England.

15 Aug. 1840: Baptism for the dead announced by Joseph Smith.

19 Jan. 1841: Saints commanded to build Nauvoo Temple, Nauvoo House (D&C 124).

24 Oct. 1841: Palestine dedicated by Elder Orson Hyde for return of children of Abraham.

1 Mar. 1842: Publication of book of Abraham commenced in Times and Seasons, Church newspaper, Nauvoo, Illinois.

1 Mar. 1842: Wentworth Letter, containing the Articles of Faith, published in Times and Seasons.

17 Mar. 1842: Female Relief Society organized, Nauvoo, Illinois; Emma Hale Smith as president.

4 May 1842: First endowment ordinances given, Red Brick Store, Nauvoo.

6 Aug. 1842: Joseph Smith prophesied Saints would be driven to Rocky Mountains.

12 July 1843: Revelation on celestial marriage recorded (D&C 132).

6 April 1844: Approximately 30 percent of Church membership was found in British Isles. British members contributed to continuous inflow of immigrants to Nauvoo.

7–10 June 1844: Nauvoo Expositor, anti-Mormon newspaper, published. Immediately declared a public nuisance and destroyed.

27 June 1844: Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith (both at left) martyred in Carthage Jail.

[illustration] Emma Hale Smith, by Lee Greene Richards

[illustrations] Above: In the Sacred Grove, young Joseph Smith saw God the Father and Jesus Christ. (Sacred Grove, by Al Rounds.) Left: Given authority through John the Baptist, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery baptized each other. (Joseph Smith Baptizes Oliver Cowdery, by Del Parson.) Right: The Book of Mormon was translated by the gift and power of God. (Joseph Smith Translating the Book of Mormon, by Del Parson.) Far right: Moroni showed the plates to David Whitmer, Joseph Smith, and Oliver Cowdery. Martin Harris later received the same experience. (Painting by William Maughan.)

[illustration] Left and below left: The Book of Mormon was published by E. B. Grandin at Palmyra in 1830. (Painting by Gary E. Smith.)

[illustration] Right: On 6 April 1830 in Fayette, New York, the Church was organized by divine direction through the Prophet Joseph Smith. He received a revelation on Church organization and government that day. (Joseph Smith Presides Over the Organization of the Church, by William Whitaker.)

[illustrations] The 1830s were marked by persecution in Missouri (above), the organization of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (right), and the revelation of the book of Abraham (top). (First LDS Settlement in Missouri, by C. C. A. Christensen, © courtesy of Museum of Art, Brigham Young University, all rights reserved; Joseph Smith Instructs Apostles in Kirtland Temple, by John Falter.)

[photos] Above: In the mid-1830s, the Doctrine and Covenants and the Church’s first hymnbook were published. Elder Heber C. Kimball of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles led the first overseas mission. Right: The first temple of this dispensation was dedicated at Kirtland, Ohio.

[illustration] Revelations came also to the Prophet Joseph Smith while in Missouri’s Liberty Jail. (Joseph Smith in Liberty Jail, by Greg K. Olsen, courtesy of Mill Pond Press Inc.)

[illustrations] Above: In 1841 Palestine was dedicated for the return of Judah’s scattered remnants by Elder Orson Hyde of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. (Orson Hyde Dedicates Palestine for the Return of the Jews, by Clark Kelley Price.) Right: The Relief Society was organized in 1842. (Organization of Relief Society, 17 March 1842, by Dale Kilbourn.)

[illustration] Left: Members from the British Isles embark in Liverpool for the voyage to America, then Nauvoo, to gather with the Saints. (Embarkation of the Saints at Liverpool in 1851, by Ken Baxter.)

[illustration] Detail from painting by Theodore Gorka