Nauvoo, Nauvoo Temple, Joseph Smith, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, LDS, Mormons


If Joseph Smith had lived we should not have been here at this time. We should have been in some other country. We can't stay in this house but a little while. We have got to build another house. It will be a larger house than this, and a more glorious one. And we shall build a great many houses, we shall come back here and we shall go to Kirtland, and build houses all over the continent of North America. On 4 April 1999 Gordon B. Hinckley, President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, electrified millions of his faithful followers worldwide when he announced, quite unexpectedly, the decision to rebuild the Nauvoo Temple. His announcement amounted to a a statement on resurrection, to raise from the dead, as it were, the short-lived Mormon jewel that once so proudly overlooked the Mississippi River. Five years in the building, the Nauvoo Temple was the very symbol of their developing faith, a monument to the teachings of their revered prophet-leader, Joseph Smith, Jr. Unfortunately, the storied building was abandoned as the Mormons were forced to leave their City of Joseph at the point of gun and cannon and headed west in 1846. Soon afterward, the structure fell victim to fire and tornado. Today, with the new temple recently completed and dedicated, it may be timely and appropriate to review the temple's short-lived history.

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Peer-Reviewed Article

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Illinois State Historical Society




Religious Education


Church History and Doctrine