John Taylor was an early English convert. The conversion of English members was very important to the huge influx of Mormons in to Nauvoo. This brick house, one of the earliest brick homes in Nauvoo, was occupied by Taylor and his family, in 1845, when he served in the attached Printing Office as editor for Church periodicals. The woodwork and...more
Upper level dissenting Mormon leaders broke with Joseph Smith Jr over his revelations concerning polygamy. Smith had kept the concept secret within the top ranks of the Mormon hierarchy. The dissenters printed a tell-all newspaper and their printing press was destroyed at Smith’s orders. This act inflamed Smith’s enemies – he had many – in and...more
Jonathan Browning bought this house in 1843, building on a gun and blacksmith shop. From these humble beginnings, Browning went on to for one of the larger firearm companies of the World. Period guns are on display within. He and his family left in 1846 with the Brigham Young led move to Utah, ending up in Ogden, Utah.For more on the gun company...more
Within the Mormon Church, the group of men responsible for the missionary effort of the Church, are the Seventies. Proselytizing has always been a major effort of the Church and remains so today. This building, built in 1844, served as their headquarters. It was also a lecture hall, place for worship services and a library.more
A regular multipurpose building used for both church and business meetings, drama, music and Masonic lodge meetings. Many feel Joseph Smith Jr ‘borrowed’ from Masonic rites with some of his ‘revealed’ temple rites.A musical drama, ‘ Rendezvous in Old Nauvoo’, is performed by volunteers nightly during the year. You can get tickets – free – from the...more
Wilford Woodruff finished this fine brick house in time to live within for about 100 days before joining the exodus to Utah. The house was continuously occupied afterwards until restoration began in 1962. Willford Woodruff, a main mover in the Mormon’s very successful mission in the Midlands of England, became the Church’s fourth President and...more
Built in 1843-44, this house served Brigham, his wife and seven children. After Joseph Smith’s murder, this house became a planning center for the Mormon exodus to Utah – in 1846. Brigham Young became the second President in the LDS Church and is probably as important a figure among the LDS as Smith because he provided leadership and stability...more
This is the Utah-LDS visitor’s center. A lot of information, artifacts and documents can be found within. Another audiovisual program presents Nauvoo’s history from their perspective. There are also horse cart rides that start from the north side of the parking lot and cover many of the sites within the old lower Nauvoo townsite.For people looking...more
Reconstructed in 1980 by the RLDS church – now Community of Christ – this general store was owned and operated by Joseph Smith Jr.. The first floor is a general store with goods representative of items that might have been for sale in 1842-44. The second floor housed Smith’s office and in front there was a large room, which served many church...more
Church members, in 1841, were told they needed to build both a ‘House of God’ – the temple - and a ‘House of Man’ – a hotel. Neither was completed in Joseph’s lifetime. Only the foundation and first floor bricks were completed on the Nauvoo House before the 1846 exodus. Joseph’s wife, Emma, was remarried later to Thomas Bidamon who finished a...more
Begun in 1842, the Mansion House served as the new Smith home and it was expanded with a hotel wing in 1843. The original house has been restored, but not the hotel section. After their murder, it was in this house that the Mormon Faithful filed through to pay their last tributes to the two Smith brothers as the lay in state. Following the exodus...more
This is the log cabin, which served as the first home for Joseph Smith Jr. and his family in Nauvoo – 1839. The original house was a simple blockhouse dating back to very early in the 19th century. One room, on the ground floor and another, above, in which to sleep. A dining area was added shortly after the family moved in to accommodate the many...more
It was common for pioneer families to set aside some ground near their houses to bury family members and so it was with Joseph Smith’s family. Gravestone markers were not always used – maybe a lilac bush or a tree. In the Smith family cemetery, 28 family members and friends have been interred. Joseph and his brother Hyrum were buried secretly...more
With the murder of Joseph Smith in June of 1844, the stage was set for a bottle royale over the leadership of the Mormon Church. Smith had not laid down a clear method of succession though evidence shows he may have favored his son, Joseph III, when he became older – he was only 12 at the time of his father’s death. Most in Nauvoo eventually came...more
In front of the Temple and next to the Temple Visitor Center is a statue depicting Joseph Smith, Jr. and his brother Hyrum as they are making their ride to Carthage to face charges of inciting riots in the destruction of the dissenter’s printing press in Nauvoo. They were not to return for on June 27, 1844 both were murdered.more
Great food that really made out stay in Nauvoo enjoyable. We had perfect chicken salad sandwhiches on whole grain bread. They even had really good fudge from the Nauvoo fudge factory. My husband had the pulled prok twice!! He liked it that much.
Favorite Dish: Chicken Salad & Pulled Pork
You will not be able to use this to cross the Mississippi, but you will find replicas at the end of the Trail of Hope, which will demonstrate how wagons did get across in earlier times. The river is dammed at Keokuk – several miles downstream – so it is hard to imagine exactly what sort of current had to be fought during a crossing.
Nearest bridges across the Mississppi River are 15 miles south at Keokuk and about 6 miles north at Fort Madison.
Signs for Joseph Smith Historic Center and Historic Nauvoo can be found in close proximity to one another. In this case, along Main Street in lower Nauvoo, they face off against each other across the street, a symbol of the 1846 schism still existing between those followers who went west with Brigham Young to Utah and those who remained behind,...more
In Nauvoo, if you look close, you will notice as many license plates from outside Illinois as from the State itself. Very prevalent is Utah, as you might expect. Some of the local people are uneasy about Nauvoo’s future, afraid the Mormon influx with the Temple’s restoration, will swamp them.more
Down on the riverbank at the end of Parley Street, next to the Monument commemorating the 1846 exodus is another outdoor stage where a summer program is put on called Sunset on the Mississippi.You don’t have to go to the pageant, however, to see the sunset ;-\ Quiet pervades except for the occasional cicada and flight of geese.more
Just north of the temple are the buildings of the former Nauvoo Blue Cheese factory. The industry began in 1937 utilizing old limestone wine cellars for curing the cheese. At the factory’s peak, it was the third largest producer of blue cheese in the US. In 2003, the mega food company Con-Agra – third largest food retailer in the World – bought...more
Built in 1846, this was the church that Emma Smith went to following the Mormon exodus left her behind. Emma never did accept her husband’s revelations concerning polygamy nor did she accept Brigham Young as the successor to her husband. She was later remarried to Thomas Bidamon in this church.United Methodist, PO Box 291, Nauvoo IL 62354more