“Doctrine and Covenants Times at a Glance, Chart 1: Sections 1–64,” Ensign, Jan. 2005, 20–23
Some dates are approximate.
After the death of Jesus Christ, the Apostles led the New Testament Church.
The Great Apostasy. Priesthood authority was taken from the earth (see 1 Ne. 13:1–11).
Christianity spread to many parts of the world.
Gutenberg refined movable type, allowing books to be widely available.
The Spirit of God led Columbus to America (see 1 Ne. 13:12).
New translations of the Bible in English and other languages became available to large numbers of people (see 1 Ne. 13:20–23).
Martin Luther and other reformers in Europe began to rebel against Catholicism.
God led many European Protestants to North America in search of religious freedom (see 1 Ne. 13:13–16).
The Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution established a new nation dedicated to freedom and democracy (see 1 Ne. 13:17–19).
The Constitution of the United States established religious liberty as a fundamental right.
Joseph Smith Jr. was born in Sharon, Vermont, to Joseph Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith (see JS—H 1:3).
Palmyra/Manchester, New York
The Smith family moved from Vermont to the Palmyra, New York, area.
The First Vision. God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, conversed with 14-year-old Joseph Smith in a grove near his father’s farm (see JS—H 1:5–20).
Joseph Smith began working for Josiah Stowell (or Stoal). During his employment, he met Emma Hale (see JS—H 1:55–57).
Joseph Smith and Emma Hale married in South Bainbridge, New York (see JS—H 1:57).
Moroni entrusted the sacred plates and the Urim and Thummim to Joseph Smith (see JS—H 1:59).
Joseph and Emma Smith moved to Harmony, Pennsylvania, to excape persecution (see JS—H 1:60–62).
Joseph Smith, with Martin Harris as scribe, finished translating the first 116 manuscript pages of the Book of Mormon. After Martin lost the pages, Moroni took the plates from Joseph.
Peter, James, and John restored the Melchizedek Priesthood and the keys of the apostleship.
Fayette, New York
Church Headquarters—Fayette, New York
Joseph Smith completed the translation of the Book of Mormon.
The angel Moroni showed the plates to the Three Witnesses and commanded them to testify of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon (see D&C 17).
Palmyra, New York
Joseph Smith showed the plates to the Eight Witnesses. They wrote their testimony of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon.
Five thousand copies of the Book of Mormon were published in English in Palmyra, New York.
Fayette, New York
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was organized in Fayette, New York (see D&C 21).
Samuel H. Smith and others labored as missionaries—using the Book of Mormon—and baptized many people.
The Prophet Joseph Smith began to translate (make inspired changes to) the Bible (see Moses 1–5).
Missionaries visited the northeastern part of Ohio and baptized 127 people.
The Prophet Joseph Smith received by revelation part of the ancient book of Enoch (see Moses 6–7).
Church Headquarters—Kirtland, Ohio, First Period
The Prophet Joseph Smith and his family arrived in Kirtand, Ohio. Edward Partridge was called as the first bishop of the Church, and the Lord began to reveal the law of consecration (see D&C 41; D&C 42).
Saints from the various branches in New York made the journey to the Kirtland, Ohio, area. People from towns around Kirland joined the Church.
The Prophet Joseph Smith returned to Kirtland from Missouri. Opposition and apostasy continued.
The Prophet Joseph and Emma Smith moved to Hiram, Ohio.
See Doctrine and Covenants section headings for historical background and History of the Church references.
Section number (see also circled numbers above), date the section was given, and situation that brought forth the revelation:
1. Nov. 1, 1831 A committee was appointed to draft a preface for a collection of revelations to be published as the Book of Commandments. When they made their report to the elders who had gathered for a conference, they requested the Prophet Joseph Smith to inquire of the Lord about their work. The Prophet dictated the words of this revelation by the Spirit, and Sidney Rigdon recorded it. (This entry appears on chart 2.)
2. Sept. 21, 1823 Confident of obtaining a divine manifestation, young Joseph Smith prayed for forgiveness of his sins and a knowledge of his standing before God.
3. July 1828 Following the loss by Martin Harris of 116 pages of the Book of Mormon manuscript, Joseph Smith inquired through the Urim and Thummim to know his own standing with the Lord.
4. Feb. 1829 Joseph Smith Sr. asked his son to inquire of the Lord concerning how Joseph Sr. could help in the Lord’s work.
5. Mar. 1829 A repentant Martin Harris asked Joseph Smith if he was still in possession of the plates and wanted him to inquire of the Lord if Martin would be privileged to see them.
6. Apr. 1829 Joseph Smith’s new scribe, Oliver Cowdery, desired an additional witness that the translation work was true. The Prophet inquired through the Urim and Thummim.
7. Apr. 1829 While Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were translating the plates, a difference of opinion arose concerning what had happened to John the Beloved. They inquired through the Urim and Thummim.
8. Apr. 1829 Having been promised the gift to translate (see D&C 6:25), Oliver Cowdery desired to assist in translating.
9. Apr. 1829 When Oliver Cowdery failed in his attempt to translate, Joseph Smith inquired of the Lord on Oliver’s behalf to understand why.
10. Summer 1828 After Joseph Smith received section 3, Moroni took the plates and the Urim and Thummim. A short time later they were returned. The Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord how to proceed with translation.
11. May 1829 Hyrum Smith asked Joseph, his brother, to ask the Lord’s will for him. Joseph inquired through the Urim and Thummim.
12. May 1829 Joseph Knight Sr. was anxious to know his duty as to the work of the Restoration.
13. May 15, 1829 While translating the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery desired to know more about baptism for the remission of sins. They walked to a nearby river and prayed. John the Baptist appeared.
14, 15, 16. June 1829 David Whitmer, John Whitmer, and Peter Whitmer Jr. were anxious to know their duties concerning the work of the Lord. Joseph Smith inquired through the Urim and Thummim on their behalf.
17. June 1829 Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris wanted to know if they were to be the Three Witnesses spoken of in the Book of Mormon. Joseph Smith inquired through the Urim and Thummim.
18. June 1829 Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were anxious to know more about the priesthood and made it a matter of humble prayer.
19. Mar. 1830 Martin Harris had mortgaged his farm for the printing of the Book of Mormon. He asked Joseph Smith for reassurance and direction from the Lord.
20. Apr. 1830 The Lord revealed to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery instructions on Church government and organization, including the precise day upon which they should organize His Church once more upon the earth.
21. Apr. 6, 1830 The Prophet Joseph Smith dictated this revelation by the Spirit during the meeting to organize the Church.
22. Apr. 1830 People who had previously been baptized wanted to know if they needed to be rebaptized in order to join the Church.
23. Apr. 1830 Oliver Cowdery, Hyrum Smith, Samuel H. Smith, Joseph Smith Sr., and Joseph Knight Sr. were anxious to know their duties in the Lord’s newly organized Church.
24. July 1830 After ministering to the members in New York during a time of intense persecution, the Prophet Joseph and Oliver Cowdery arrived in Pennsylvania in need of encouragement and instruction.
25. July 1830 Emma Hale Smith—along with her husband, the Prophet Joseph—had suffered much persecution. The Prophet received this revelation for her.
26. July 1830 These instructions from the Lord encouraged and instructed the Prophet Joseph, Oliver Cowdery, and the Whitmers, teaching them the importance of doing all things in the Church by common consent.
27. Aug. 1830 The Prophet Joseph and Emma Smith and Newel and Sally Knight desired to partake of the sacrament. The Prophet went to procure wine for the service, and a heavenly messenger appeared to him.
28. Sept. 1830 The Prophet Joseph was concerned over Hiram Page’s use of a seer stone.
29. Sept. 1830 Given in the presence of six elders, this revelation came at a time when many were interested in the doctrine of Zion, or the New Jerusalem.
30. Sept. 1830 The Prophet Joseph received revelations for David Whitmer, Peter Whitmer Jr., and John Whitmer based on their actions during the Hiram Page incident.
31. Sept. 1830 Thomas B. Marsh desired to know the will of the Lord concerning himself.
32. Oct. 1830 Several elders, including Oliver Cowdery and Peter Whitmer Jr., wondered if the number of missionaries assigned to teach the gospel to the Lamanites could be increased.
33. Oct. 1830 Ezra Thayre and Northrop Sweet, newly ordained elders, desired to know the will of the Lord concerning them.
34. Nov. 4, 1830 Orson Pratt traveled 200 miles (320 km) to see the Prophet Joseph Smith and to learn the Lord’s will for himself.
35. Dec. 1830 Sidney Rigdon, who had recently been baptized, asked the Prophet Joseph to reveal the Lord’s will concerning him.
36. Dec. 1830 Edward Partridge asked the Prophet Joseph to inquire of the Lord on his behalf.
37. Dec. 1830 The Church in New York had been under constant harassment, and the lives of Church leaders were in danger. As the Prophet Joseph and Sidney Rigdon worked on an inspired translation of the Bible, the Lord gave this commandment to move to Ohio.
38. Jan. 2, 1831 Many Saints were poor and desired to know more about the move to Ohio.
39. Jan. 5, 1831 James Covill, a Baptist minister for about 40 years, promised to obey any command the Lord gave him through the Prophet Joseph Smith. The Prophet inquired of the Lord on his behalf.
40. Jan. 1831 When James Covill rejected the command of the Lord, the Lord gave this revelation to the Prophet Joseph and Sidney Rigdon.
41. Feb. 4, 1831 The Prophet Joseph found numerous problems among the Saints in Ohio. He inquired of the Lord to know how best to govern the Church.
43. Feb. 1831 A self-proclaimed prophetess named Mrs. Hubble deceived some Saints with her revelations. The Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord concerning the matter.
44. Feb. 1831 The Prophet Joseph and Sidney Rigdon received instructions from the Lord for the next conference of the Church.
45. Mar. 7, 1831 The Prophet Joseph received this revelation regarding the signs of the times during a period when many false reports were published.
46. Mar. 8, 1831 Following discussions of whether only Church members should be admitted to sacrament and confirmation meetings, the Prophet inquired of the Lord.
47. Mar. 8, 1831 John Whitmer was reluctant to accept the responsibility for a history of the Church but would do it if it was the will of the Lord. The Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord.
48. Mar. 1831 Church leaders were concerned about how to accommodate the New York Saints who were arriving in Ohio. The Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord.
49. Mar. 1831 Because Leman Copley, a former Shaker, had recently joined the Church, the Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord concerning some of the teachings of this religion.
50. May 1831 Several elders asked the Prophet Joseph to inquire of the Lord concerning strange spiritual manifestations among the Saints. After joining these elders in prayer, the Prophet dictated the Lord’s answer.
51. May 1831 Bishop Edward Partridge sought direction on implementing the law of consecration on behalf of Saints arriving in Ohio.
52. June 7, 1831 Following a general conference when the first high priests were ordained, the Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord what the brethren should do until the next conference.
53. June 1831 Sidney Gilbert asked the Prophet Joseph to inquire of the Lord concerning Sidney’s calling in the Church.
54. June 1831 When Leman Copley broke his agreement to consecrate his land in Thompson, Ohio, the Prophet Joseph inquired what to do.
55. June 1831 William W. Phelps, a newspaper editor, asked the Prophet Joseph to inquire of the Lord concerning him.
56. June 1831 When Ezra Thayre was not ready to go to Missouri, Thomas B. Marsh, his traveling companion, asked the Prophet what to do.
57. July 20, 1831 Upon his arrival in Independence, Missouri, the Prophet Joseph sought the Lord for answers concerning the establishment of Zion in the last days and the temple to be built there.
58. Aug. 1, 1831 Many of the Saints arriving in Jackson County, Missouri, were anxious to know the will of the Lord concerning them.
59. Aug. 7, 1831 Following the funeral of Polly Knight, the Prophet Joseph sought assurance from the Lord concerning the Saints in Missouri.
60. Aug. 8, 1831 As missionaries prepared to return home to Ohio, the Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord about the trip.
61. Aug. 12, 1831 A canoe accident on the Missouri River caused the Prophet Joseph and 10 elders to make camp. William W. Phelps saw the destroyer riding in power upon the waters. The Prophet sought the Lord in prayer.
62. Aug. 13, 1831 The Prophet Joseph met four missionaries who were belatedly headed to Missouri and reaffirmed that they should continue their journey.
63. Aug. 1831 The Saints in Ohio desired to know more about the land of Zion. The Prophet Joseph inquired of the Lord concerning the purchasing of land and other matters.
64. Sept. 11, 1831 After the Prophet Joseph was criticized by some associates and the press, the Lord warned against faultfinding.
Joseph Smith Sr. 1771–1840
Lucy Mack Smith 1775–1856
Joseph Smith Jr. 1805–44
Emma Hale Smith 1804–79
Martin Harris 1783–1875
Oliver Cowdery 1806–50
Hyrum Smith 1800–44
Joseph Knight Sr. 1772–1847
David Whitmer 1805–88
John Whitmer 1802–78
Peter Whitmer Jr. 1809–36
Samuel H. Smith 1808–44
Newel Knight 1800–47
Sidney Rigdon 1793–1876
Edward Partridge 1793–1840