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Historic

Sites

Smith Family Frame Home

Manchester, New York (near Palmyra)

Introduction

The Joseph Smith Sr. family moved into a new frame home in late 1825. Alvin Smith, Joseph's older brother, started construction on the house on the Smith farm in 1822. After Alvin's death in 1823, the family completed it.

Joseph brought his new wife, Emma, to live here in January 1827. Eight months later, he and Emma drove a carriage to the Hill Cumorah, where Joseph received the golden plates from the angel Moroni. The Prophet often kept the plates hidden inside and around the frame home. Persecution forced him to leave Manchester in late 1827, and Joseph and Emma went to live with her family in Harmony, Pennsylvania.

In this home, Joseph learned that his scribe Martin Harris had lost 116 pages of the Book of Mormon translation. Later that year, a schoolteacher named Oliver Cowdery came to board here with the Smith family. Oliver learned of Joseph's work, and in the spring of 1829 he went to Harmony and became the Prophet's new scribe.

Elder George Albert Smith purchased the frame home and farm in 1907 and later conveyed ownership to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The home was renovated and restored to its original condition in 2000.

Quotes

Joseph Smith Quotes 

At length the time arrived for obtaining the plates. . . . On the twenty-second day of September, one thousand eight hundred and twenty-seven, having gone as usual at the end of another year to the place where they were deposited, the same heavenly messenger [Moroni] delivered them up to me with this charge: that I should be responsible for them; that if I should let them go carelessly, or through any neglect of mine, I should be cut off; but that if I would use all my endeavors to preserve them, until he, the messenger, should call for them, they should be protected. (History of the Church, 1:18.)

Witnesses

Lucy Mack Smith, Mother of the Prophet Joseph Smith 

That night of September 22, 1827, Lucy Smith observed the Prophet and Emma leave to obtain the plates. "Joseph's wife passed through the room with her bonnet and riding dress; and in a few minutes they left together, taking Mr. Knight's horse and wagon. I spent the night in prayer and supplication to God." (Lucy Smith, History of the Prophet Joseph, rev. George A. Smith and Elias Smith (1902), 100.)

Key Events

Revelations Received

  • No revelations recorded in the Doctrine and Covenants were received at this site. — 

Readings

Online Resources at LDS.org

Online Resources at BYU