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Nauvoo News

Nauvoo News & Events features stories shared from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around the world.  This includes official Church news releases and contributed articles by Latter-day Saint authors - as well as events & stories from YOU.

Latter-day Saint History Dates - From Palmyra to SLC

Nauvoo News

NAUVOO NEWS - From the early days of the Church in Palmyra, New York to the global headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City, Utah here are the pivotal historic dates of church history.

23 December 1805

Birth of Joseph Smith 

Joseph Smith (1805–44) born to Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith, Sharon, Vermont (see 

Spring 1820

Joseph Smith's First Vision 

The Prophet Joseph Smith received the First Vision in a grove of trees in Palmyra and Manchester Townships, New York, near his home (see 

21-22 September 1823

Moroni Visits Joseph Smith 

Joseph Smith visited by angel Moroni and told of the Book of Mormon record. Joseph viewed the gold plates buried in a nearby hill (Cumorah) (see 

18 January 1827

Joseph Smith Marries Emma Hale 

Joseph Smith and Emma Hale are married in South Bainbridge, New York. 

22 September 1827

Joseph Smith Obtains Plates 

Joseph Smith obtained the gold plates from Moroni at the Hill Cumorah (see 

15 May 1829

Aaronic Priesthood Restored 

John the Baptist conferred the Aaronic Priesthood on Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in Harmony, Pennsylvania (see 

June 1829-April 1830

Melchizedek Priesthood Restored 

Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery received the Melchizedek Priesthood from Peter, James, and John near the Susquehanna River between Harmony, Pennsylvania, and Colesville, New York (see 

June 1829

Book of Mormon Translation Completed 

Translation of the Book of Mormon completed. The Three Witnesses and the Eight Witnesses shown the gold plates (see 

26 March 1830

Book of Mormon Published 

First printed copies of the Book of Mormon available, Palmyra, New York. 

06 April 1830

Church Organized 

The Church organized in Fayette Township, New York. 

September-October 1830

Lamanite Mission 

First missionaries called to preach to the Lamanites (American Indians) (see 

December 1830-January 1831

Saints Commanded to Gather to Ohio 

(See 

20 July 1831

Site for Zion Revealed 

Site for the city of Zion (the New Jerusalem) in Independence, Missouri, revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith (see 

1-2 November 1831

Resolution to Publish Revelations 

Conference of elders decided to print 10,000 copies of what was to be the Book of Commandments, a compilation of revelations received by the Prophet Joseph Smith. 

25 January 1832

Joseph Smith Sustained as President 

A conference in Amherst, Ohio, sustained Joseph Smith as President of the High Priesthood. 

08 March 1832

Joseph Smith’s Counselors Ordained 

Jesse Gause and Sidney Rigdon were ordained as counselors to Joseph Smith. 

18 March 1833

Joseph Smith’s Counselors Given Keys 

Sidney Rigdon and Frederick G. Williams were given the keys of the kingdom along with Joseph Smith. 

20 July 1833

Press in Independence Destroyed 

A mob destroyed the printing office in Independence, Missouri, stopping the publication of the Book of Commandments. 

07 November 1833

Saints Leave Jackson County 

Saints began fleeing from mobs in Jackson County, Missouri, across the Missouri River and into Clay County. 

05 May 1834

Zion’s Camp Departs 

President Joseph Smith left Kirtland, Ohio, for Missouri as leader of Zion’s Camp to bring relief to Saints expelled from Jackson County. 

14-15 February 1835

Quorum of the Twelve Organized 

The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles organized, Kirtland, Ohio (see 

28 February 1835

First Quorum of Seventy Organized 

The organization of the First Quorum of the Seventy commenced, Kirtland, Ohio. 

17 August 1835

Doctrine and Covenants Canonized 

The Doctrine and Covenants accepted as a standard work of the Church, Kirtland, Ohio. 

27 March 1836

Kirtland Temple Dedicated 

The Kirtland Temple dedicated (see 

03 April 1836

Sealing Keys Restored 

Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in the Kirtland Temple. Moses, Elias, and Elijah appeared and conveyed priesthood keys (see 

19 July 1837

First Mission to Britain 

Heber C. Kimball and six others arrived in Liverpool, England, on the Church’s first mission outside of the United States and Canada. 

26 April 1838

Name of Church Established 

The name of the Church was established by revelation as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (see 

December 1838

Joseph Smith and Imprisoned in Liberty Jail 

The Prophet Joseph Smith and others imprisoned in Liberty Jail, Liberty, Clay County, Missouri (see 

1840-1841

Twelve Serve Mission in England 

Most of the Twelve Apostles serve a mission together in England. 

May 1840

Millennial Star First Published 

First issue of the 

15 August 1840

Baptisms for the Dead Announced 

Joseph Smith publicly announced the doctrine of baptism for the dead, Nauvoo, Illinois. 

24 October 1841

Holy Land Dedicated 

Elder Orson Hyde dedicated the Holy Land for the return of the children of Abraham (see 

17 March 1842

Relief Society Organized 

Female Relief Society organized, Nauvoo, Illinois. 

04 May 1842

First Endowments 

First full temple endowments given, Nauvoo, Illinois. 

1844

Joseph Smith Gives Last Charge 

(ca. March)  

01 May 1844

First Mission to South Pacific 

Addison Pratt arrived in Tubuai as one of the first missionaries in the South Pacific. 

27 June 1844

Joseph Smith Martyred 

Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith martyred in Carthage Jail (see 

08 August 1844

Brigham Young Sustained 

Church conference sustained Brigham Young and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles as leaders of the Church, Nauvoo, Illinois. 

December 1845-February 1846

Temple Ordinances Administered 

More than 5,000 Latter-day Saints receive sacred ordinances in the Nauvoo Temple. 

04 February 1846

Ship Brooklyn Departs 

Ship 

06 February 1846

Saints Begin to Leave Nauvoo 

The first wagons crossed the Mississippi River from Nauvoo on their way west to the Great Basin. 

16 July 1846

Mormon Battalion Mustered 

Mormon Battalion mustered into U.S. military service in Council Bluffs, Iowa, during the Mexican War. 

09 April 1847

First Pioneer Company Leaves Winter Quarters 

President Brigham Young’s pioneer company left Winter Quarters on the journey west (see 

24 July 1847

Brigham Young Arrives in Salt Lake Valley 

President Brigham Young entered Salt Lake Valley. 

27 December 1847

First Presidency Sustained 

Church conference in Kanesville, Iowa sustained President Brigham Young, Elder Heber C. Kimball, and Elder Willard Richards as First Presidency, Kanesville (now Council Bluffs), Iowa. 

24 January 1848

Gold Discovered in California 

Several discharged Mormon Battalion soldiers were present when James Marshall discovered gold at John Sutter’s mill in California, which started the American Gold Rush.  

May-June 1848

Crickets Devastate Crops 

Crickets in the Salt Lake Valley devastated the crops. The fields were saved from complete destruction as flocks of seagulls consumed the crickets. 

06 October 1849

Perpetual Emigrating Fund 

Perpetual Emigrating Fund established to assist poor Saints in gathering to Utah. 

09 December 1849

Sunday School Organized 

Sunday School organized by Richard Ballantyne, Salt Lake City. 

1850-1853

Missionary Work Expands 

International missionary work expanded as elders preached in British India, China, South Africa, Switzerland, Denmark, France, Italy, and Chile. 

15 June 1850

Deseret News Published 

Deseret News 

12 December 1850

Missionaries Arrive in Hawaii 

Missionaries arrived in Hawaii, then known as the Sandwich Islands. 

May 1851

First non-English Book of Mormon 

The Book of Mormon is published in Danish, becoming the first non-English edition. 

29 August 1852

Plural Marriage Announced 

Plural marriage officially announced as a Church practice, though many members had been practicing plural marriage since the 1840s in Nauvoo, Illinois.  

05 May 1855

Endowment House Dedicated 

The Endowment House dedicated in Salt Lake City as a place for the Saints to receive temple ordinances.  

October 1856

Handcart Companies Rescued 

Pioneer wagon and handcart companies devastated by early snowstorms in present-day Wyoming. Found by rescue party from Salt Lake Valley. 

1857-1858

Federal Army Sent to Utah 

A federal army dispatched to Utah Territory to suppress a reported rebellion among the Latter-day Saints.  

11 September 1857

Mountain Meadows Massacre 

Latter-day Saint men in southern Utah Territory killed most members of a company of Arkansas immigrants traveling to California in a crime known as the Mountain Meadows Massacre. 

06 October 1867

Salt Lake Tabernacle Completed 

First conference in the New Tabernacle held on Temple Square in Salt Lake City.  

08 December 1867

Relief Society Reorganized 

Relief Society reorganized under the direction of President Brigham Young.  

10 February 1870

Retrenchment Society Organized 

Latter-day Saint women form the Ladies’ Cooperative Retrenchment Society to promote reform in eating, housekeeping, and habits of dress.  

27 May 1870

Young Ladies’ Retrenchment Society Organized 

First official meeting held for the Young Ladies’ Department of the Ladies’ Cooperative Retrenchment Association, forerunner of the Young Women organization.  

10 June 1875

Young Men’s MIA Organized 

Young Men’s Mutual Improvement Association organized, forerunner of Young Men program.  

16 October 1875

Brigham Young Academy Founded 

Brigham Young Academy, forerunner of Brigham Young University, founded in Provo, Utah Territory. 

07 January 1876

First Missionaries Arrive in Mexico 

06 April 1877

St. George Temple Dedicated 

06 April 1877

Priesthood Reorganization 

President Brigham Young received revelation to set in order the priesthood organization and stakes of Zion. 

25 August 1878

First Primary Meeting 

Aurelia Spencer Rogers held the first Primary meeting in Farmington, Utah Territory.  

19 June 1880

Eliza R. Snow Appointed Relief Society President 

John Taylor appointed Eliza R. Snow as president of all Relief Societies in the Church; since 1868, she had exercised leadership over Relief Society throughout the Church.  

10 October 1880

The Pearl of Great Price Accepted as a Standard Work 

10 October 1880

John Taylor Sustained as President of the Church 

17 July 1882

Deseret Hospital Opened 

Relief Society opened the Deseret Hospital, the first Church hospital, in Salt Lake City. 

14 April 1883

Revelation on the Seventies 

Revelation to President John Taylor on the organization of the Seventies. 

19 February 1887

Edmunds-Tucker Act 

United States congress passed the Edmunds-Tucker Act, which disincorporated the Church, dissolved the Perpetual Emigrating Fund Company, abolished female suffrage in Utah Territory, and threatened to confiscate most of the Church’s property. 

26 April 1887

First Settlement in Alberta 

Latter-day Saints began to settle in Alberta, Canada. 

06 April 1889

First General Relief Society Meeting 

First general Relief Society meeting held in Salt Lake City. 

07 April 1889

Wilford Woodruff Sustained as President of the Church 

06 October 1890

Manifesto Accepted 

“Manifesto” accepted by general conference, beginning the termination of the practice of plural marriage in the Church ( 

06 April 1893

Salt Lake Temple Dedicated 

President Wilford Woodruff dedicated Salt Lake Temple. 

Summer 1893

Chicago World’s Fair 

Salt Lake Tabernacle Choir and Church leaders participated in the World’s Fair at Chicago, Illinois.   

13 November 1894

Genealogical Society of Utah Founded 

The Genealogical Society of Utah was incorporated with Church Historian Franklin D. Richards as president. 

09 June 1895

First Stake Outside United States 

In Canada, the Cardston Alberta Stake was organized as the first stake outside of the United States.  

13 September 1898

Lorenzo Snow Becomes President of the Church 

May 1899

Lorenzo Snow Emphasizes Tithing 

President Lorenzo Snow received revelation in St. George prompting him to emphasize tithing. 

01 September 1901

Japan Dedicated 

Elder Heber J. Grant dedicated Japan for the preaching of the gospel and opened a mission there.  

17 October 1901

Joseph F. Smith Becomes President of the Church 

January 1905

Friend First Published 

The 

23 December 1905

Joseph Smith Birthplace Monument Dedicated 

President Joseph F. Smith dedicated the Joseph Smith Memorial Cottage and Monument in Royalton Township, Vermont.  

14 December 1907

Saints Advised to Remain in Home Countries 

In a letter addressed to Saints in the Netherlands, the First Presidency advised European Saints to not gather to Utah, but to build up the Church in their home countries.  

September 1912

First Seminary 

First seminary opened at Granite High School in Salt Lake City for religious weekday instruction.  

16 May 1913

Church Affiliates with Boy Scouts of America 

The Church announces the affiliation of its program for young men with the Boy Scouts of America.  

January 1915

Relief Society Magazine First Published 

27 April 1915

Home Evening Announced 

The First Presidency announced the beginning of a practice known as Home Evening, encouraging families to gather together weekly to study the gospel.  

03 October 1918

Vision of the Redemption of the Dead 

President Joseph F. Smith received the vision of the redemption of the dead (see 

23 November 1918

Heber J. Grant Becomes President of the Church 

27 November 1919

Hawaiian Temple Dedicated 

First temple outside of the continental United States dedicated in Laie, Hawaii.  

1920-1921

David O. McKay's Worldwide Travels 

Elder David O. McKay visited various countries in Asia, the Pacific, the Middle East, and Europe. 

26 August 1923

Cardston Temple Dedicated 

Cardston Alberta Temple dedicated as the first temple outside of the United States.  

03 February 1925

Mission Home Dedicated 

President Heber J. Grant dedicated a home in Salt Lake City for the training of missionaries.  

25 December 1925

South America Dedicated 

Elder Melvin J. Ballard dedicated South America for the preaching of the gospel in Buenos Aires, Argentina.  

15 July 1929

First Tabernacle Choir Broadcast 

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir started a weekly network radio broadcast on NBC, later known as “Music and the Spoken Word,” that became the longest continuing network radio broadcast in history.  

06 April 1930

Centennial of Church Organization 

General Conference celebrated the centennial of the Church’s organization. 

21 June 1935

Hill Cumorah Monument Dedicated 

President Heber J. Grant dedicated the Hill Cumorah Monument near Palmyra, New York.  

April 1936

Church Security Program Founded 

Instituted to assist poor during Great Depression; became Church welfare program.  

24 August 1939

Missionaries Leave Europe 

First Presidency directed all missionaries to leave Europe because of the threat of war. 

14 October 1940

Missionaries Return from Pacific Islands 

First Presidency sent telegrams to mission presidents in the Pacific Islands instructing that all elders should return home as soon as possible because of the threat of war. 

06 April 1941

Assistants to the Twelve First Called 

21 May 1945

George Albert Smith Becomes President of the Church 

01 January 1946

Relief Sent to Post-War Europe 

In the aftermath of World War II, the Church began sending relief supplies to the Saints in Europe. 

01 January 1947

Church Membership Reaches One Million 

24 July 1947

Pioneer Centennial 

President George Albert Smith dedicated the “This is the Place” monument in Salt Lake City to commemorate the centennial of the pioneers’ arrival.  

01 September 1950

Early-Morning Seminary 

The early-morning seminary program began in southern California. 

09 April 1951

David O. McKay Becomes President of the Church 

02 March 1952

Primary Children’s Hospital Opens 

Half of the funds for the new hospital in Salt Lake City had been raised by the children of the Church through the Primary penny drive. 

01 July 1954

Indian Placement Program Announced 

The new Church program placed American Indian children in foster homes while they attended school. 

11-15 September 1955

Swiss Temple Dedicated 

First temple in Europe. 

20 April 1958

New Zealand Temple Dedicated 

First temple in the South Pacific.  

17 December 1958

Church College of Hawaii Dedicated 

President David O. McKay dedicated the school in Laie. 

30 September 1961

Correlation Announced 

Elder Harold B. Lee, under the direction of the First Presidency, announced that all Church programs were to be correlated through the priesthood to strengthen the family and the individual.  

01 November 1961

Language Training Institute Created 

The institute was established at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, for missionaries called to serve in non-English speaking missions.  

03 December 1961

First Spanish-Speaking Stake Established 

The landmark stake of the Church was organized in Mexico City. 

01 January 1964

Home Teaching Begins 

The Church instituted a new program of home teaching, replacing ward teaching.  

22 April 1964

Pavilion at New York World’s Fair 

The Mormon Pavilion opened at the New York World’s Fair. 

03 October 1964

Family Home Evening Emphasized 

Observance of family home evening was reemphasized. 

01 May 1966

São Paulo Brazil Stake Established 

First stake in South America.  

29 September 1967

First Regional Representatives of the Twelve Called 

23 January 1970

Joseph Fielding Smith Becomes President of the Church 

15 March 1970

Tokyo Japan Stake Established 

First stake in Asia. 

22 March 1970

Transvaal South Africa Stake Established 

First stake in Africa.   

01 January 1971

Ensign, New Era, Friend First Published 

New Church magazines— 

01 September 1971

All Latter-day Saint Women Become Members of the Relief Society 

Automatic enrollment of all Latter-day Saint women into Relief Society was instituted and dues were eliminated. 

07 July 1972

Harold B. Lee Becomes President of the Church 

30 December 1973

Spencer W. Kimball Becomes President of the Church 

06 September 1974

Church Divests Hospitals 

The Church announced it was divesting itself of its system of hospitals. 

03 October 1975

Seventy Reorganized 

President Spencer W. Kimball announced the reorganization of the First Quorum of the Seventy. 

03 April 1976

New Scripture Canonized 

Two revelations were added to the Pearl of Great Price. In 1981, they were moved to become 

08 June 1978

Priesthood Restriction Ends 

The First Presidency announced that all worthy males, without regard to race, could henceforth hold the priesthood  (see 

30 October 1978

São Paulo Brazil Temple Dedicated 

First temple in Latin America.  

September 1979

LDS Edition of Bible Published 

The LDS edition of the King James Bible included study aids.  

02 March 1980

Consolidated Meeting Schedule Instituted 

Church members in the United States and Canada began meeting on Sundays in a consolidated meeting schedule, with sacrament meeting, Sunday School, and auxiliary meetings all held in a three-hour block.  

3 April 1981

Three-Fold Mission of Church 

President Spencer W. Kimball outlined the three major elements of the mission of the Church: proclaim the gospel, perfect the Saints, and redeem the dead.  

1 September 1981

New Editions of LDS Scripture Published 

New editions of the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price were published in English.  

June 1984

Area Presidencies Organized 

Members of the presidencies called from the Seventies.  

August 1985

Johannesburg South Africa Temple Dedicated 

First temple in Africa.  

10 November 1985

Ezra Taft Benson Becomes President of the Church 

1 April 1989

Second Quorum of the Seventy Reorganized 

5 June 1994

Howard W. Hunter Becomes President of the Church 

12 March 1995

Gordon B. Hinckley Becomes President of the Church 

April 1995

Liahona First Published 

Liahona 

1 April 1995

Area Authorities 

The position of Regional Representative was discontinued and a new leadership position to be known as Area Authority was announced.  

23 September 1995

Family Proclamation Introduced 

“The Family: A Proclamation to the World” from the First Presidency and Council of the Twelve Apostles was announced at the General Relief Society Meeting.  

5 April 1997

New Seventies 

Area Authorities would now be ordained Seventies. Third, Fourth, and Fifth Quorums of the Seventy were also announced.  

4 October 1997

Plan for Small Temples 

President Gordon B. Hinckley announced the building of smaller temples.  

November 1997

Church Membership Reaches Ten Million 

1 January 2000

The Living Christ 

The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve issued the document “The Living Christ.” 

Late February 2000

A Hundred Million Books of Mormon 

The 100-millionth copy of the Book of Mormon was published.   

1-2 April 2000

Conference Center Opens 

The first General Conference in the new Conference Center was held in Salt Lake City.  

1 October 2000

Boston Massachusetts Temple Dedicated 

President Gordon B. Hinckley dedicated the temple, meeting a goal announced in April 1998 to have 100 operating temples by the end of 2000.  

31 March 2001

Perpetual Education Fund 

President Gordon B. Hinckley announced the creation of the Perpetual Education Fund, designed to provide young adults in the Church with support and resources to receive education and gain better employment.  

8 February 2002

Tabernacle Choir Sings at Olympics 

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang at the opening ceremonies of the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City to a worldwide audience of 3.5 billion people.  

27 June 2002

Nauvoo Illinois Temple Dedicated 

President Gordon B. Hinckley dedicated the rebuilt temple in Nauvoo.  

21 April 2004

Sixth Quorum of the Seventy Organized 

1 August 2004

A Million Saints in Mexico 

Mexico became the first country outside the United States to reach 1 million members of the Church.  

November 2004

Preach My Gospel Published 

The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve introduced the new missionary training manual 

19 April 2005

Seventh and Eighth Quorums of the Seventy Organized 

23 December 2005

Celebration of Joseph Smith’s Life 

The Church commemorated the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Prophet Joseph Smith.  

3 February 2008

Thomas S. Monson Becomes President of the Church 

29 August 2010

Kyiv Ukraine Temple Dedicated 

First temple built in a nation of the former Soviet Union. 

6 October 2012

Change in Missionary Age 

President Thomas S. Monson announced a change in the age of eligibility for missionary service: 18 years for young men, 19 years for young women.