Joseph Smith Jr.
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Joseph Smith Jr. (1805 - 1844)

Joseph Smith Jr.
Born in Sharon, Windsor, Vermont, United Statesmap
Ancestors ancestors
Husband of — married 18 Jan 1827 (to 27 Jun 1844) in South Bainbridge (Afton), Chenango County, New York, United Statesmap
Husband of — married about 1836 [location unknown]
Husband of — married about 5 Apr 1841 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, United Statesmap
Husband of — married 11 Dec 1841 in Smith's Store, Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinoismap
Husband of — married 1842 (to 1844) [location unknown]
Husband of — married 1842 in Nauvoo, Illinoismap
Husband of — married 29 Jun 1842 (to 27 Jun 1844) in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, USAmap
Husband of — married Aug 1842 in Smith's Store, Nauvoo, Hancock, ILmap
Husband of — married 27 Oct 1842 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, USAmap
Husband of — married 1843 in illinoismap
Husband of — married Feb 1843 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, USAmap
Husband of — married 8 Mar 1843 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, USAmap
Husband of — married about May 1843 [location unknown]
Husband of — married May 1843 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, USAmap
Husband of — married 4 May 1843 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, USAmap
Husband of — married about Jun 1843 [location unknown]
Husband of — married 12 Jun 1843 [location unknown]
Husband of — married 20 Sep 1843 in Nauvoo, ILmap
Husband of — married 2 Nov 1843 [location unknown]
Husband of — married before 26 Jun 1844 [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in Carthage, Hancock, Illinois, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 22 Feb 2010
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Joseph Smith Jr. has a connection to the LDS Church.
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Preceded by
Prophet of LDS Church
Succeeded by
Brigham Young



Mormon prophet.[1]

Joseph Smith, Jr. was born on December 23, 1805, in Sharon, Vermont, to Lucy Mack Smith and her husband Joseph Smith, a merchant and farmer.

Joseph Smith Junior's father, Joseph Smith, Sr., was born on July 12, 1771 in Topsfield, Massachusetts to Asael Smith and Mary Duty. He married Lucy Mack in Tunbridge, Vermont on January 26, 1796, and had eleven children with her.

While boarding at the Hale house in Harmony, Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, Joseph Smith Jr. met Emma Hale and began courting her. When Smith asked for Emma's hand, her father, Isaac Hale, objected because Smith was "a stranger" and had no means of supporting his daughter other than money digging. On January 18, 1827, Smith and Emma "eloped to marry" and the couple began boarding with Smith's parents in Manchester.

Smith wed Emma Hale in January 1827. She gave birth to nine children, five of whom died before the age of two. The first three children (a boy Alvin in 1828 and twins Thaddeus and Louisa on April 30, 1831) died shortly after birth. When the twins died, the Smiths adopted twins, Julia and Joseph, whose mother had recently died in childbirth. (Joseph died of measles in 1832.) Joseph and Emma Smith had four sons who lived to maturity: Joseph Smith III (November 6, 1832), Frederick Granger Williams Smith (June 29, 1836), Alexander Hale Smith (June 2, 1838), and David Hyrum Smith (November 17, 1844, born after Joseph's death). As of 2011[update], DNA testing had provided no evidence that Smith had fathered any children by women other than Emma.

After Smith's death, Emma Smith quickly became alienated from Brigham Young and the church leadership. Young, whom Emma feared and despised, was suspicious of her desire to preserve the family's assets from inclusion with those of the church, and thought she would be even more troublesome because she openly opposed plural marriage. When most Latter Day Saints moved west, she stayed in Nauvoo, married a non-Mormon, Major Lewis C. Bidamon, and withdrew from religion until 1860, when she affiliated with what became the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (now the Community of Christ), first headed by her son, Joseph Smith III. Emma never denied Joseph Smith's prophetic gift or repudiated her belief in the authenticity of the Book of Mormon.

In April 1841, Joseph Smith Jr. wed Louisa Beaman, and during the next two-and-a-half years he may have married or been sealed to 30 additional women, ten of them already married to other men, though this was generally done with the knowledge and consent of their husbands. Ten of Smith's wives were under the age of twenty, while others were widows over fifty. The practice of plural marriage was kept secret.[2]

Origin Story

Joseph Smith, Jr. (December 23, 1805 – June 27, 1844) was an American religious leader and founder of Mormonism. He was born on December 23, 1805, in Sharon, Vermont to Lucy Mack Smith and her husband Joseph, a merchant and farmer. In 1820 he had received a vision from God the Father and the Son that resolved his religious confusion. While praying in a wooded area near his home, he said that God, in a vision, had told him his sins were forgiven and that all contemporary churches had "turned aside from the gospel."

Smith said that in 1823 while praying one night for forgiveness from his sins, he was visited by an angel named Moroni, who revealed the location of a buried book made of golden plates.

Image:Smith-72765-2.jpg Later in 1827 he retrieved the previously mentioned golden plates and put them in a locked chest. He said the angel commanded him not to show the plates to anyone else but to publish their translation, reputed to be the religious record of indigenous Americans. In February 1828, Martin Harris arrived to assist Smith by transcribing his dictation. Although Smith had previously refused to show the plates to anyone, he told Martin Harris, Oliver Cowdery, and David Whitmer that they would be allowed to see them. According to Smith, the angel Moroni took back the plates once Smith finished using them.

The translated plates became the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon brought Smith regional notoriety and opposition from those who remembered his money-digging and the 1826 Chenango County trial.

Throughout his life Smith had been sharply criticized by newspaper editors, and after his death newspapers were almost unanimous in portraying Smith as a religious fanatic, ignoring his mark on history. Conversely, within Mormonism, Smith was memorialized first and foremost as a prophet, martyred to seal the testimony of his faith. Smith attracted thousands of devoted followers before his death in 1844 and millions in the century that followed. Among Mormons, he is regarded as a prophet on par with Moses and Elijah.


Name: Joseph /SMITH/[3]


December 23, 1805, in Sharon, Vermont


Joseph married most of his plural wives in the period 1843-1844. The first 36 of these wives have known dates in the records.
In addition, there were another dozen or so mostly unmarried women whom he married during the spring and summer of 1843, and possibly up until his death. The precise chronology of the marriages for this final group is not known.
Joseph died in June 1844. In January 1846, thirty women were posthumously sealed to him "for eternity" in the temple at Nauvoo, Hancock County, Illinois. Other records prove that more than two thirds of them had already been married to Joseph during his lifetime. So presumably that 1846 posthumous sealing ceremony was merely a second solemnization of the earlier marriages, and so those women are previously included in the wives list in the order of their earlier documented marriage to Joseph.
Posthumously, scores of later women were sealed to Joseph Smith in Utah. In the absence of evidence of any lifetime marriage to Joseph, they are not included in the list of his contemporaneous plural wives.
See The sourced full chronological list of the contemporaneous plural wives of LDS prophet and founder Joseph Smith Jr. This list contains the biographical details of the known first 36 wives, and thirteen remaining wives for whom evidence shows that they were married to him during Joseph's lifetime, but for whom the chronological date is not known.[4]

Marriage Emma Hale

Husband: Joseph Smith
Wife: Emma Hale
BT. 1825[5]

Marriage Louisa Beaman

April 1841

Marriage Martha (McBride) Kimball

Husband of Martha (McBride) Kimball — married August 1842 in Smith's Store, Nauvoo, Hancock, IL

Marriage Rhoda Richards

June 12, 1843
Rhoda Richards[6]


Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum Smith were killed by a mob in Carthage, Illinois, on June 27, 1844. The brothers had been in jail awaiting trial when an armed mob of about 200 men stormed the facility, their faces painted black with wet gunpowder. Hyrum was killed first, having been shot in the face. As he fell, Hyrum shouted, "I'm a dead man, Joseph!" After emptying the pistol with which he tried to defend himself, Joseph was then shot several times while trying to escape from a second-story window and fell from that window as he died.

Physical Description

Descendant of Robert Smith (c1625-1693 MA) m Mary French, group NE53 on SmithConnections Northeastern DNA Project.[7]


  • LDS - The Partiridge Nest
  • Our Pioneer Heritage Vol 1, Brigham Young His Wives and Family


  1. Dictionary of American biography by American Council of Learned Societies, Published 1943. Vol 17 page 310
  2. Joseph Smith Wikipedia
  3. Source: #S125
  4. Brodie, Fawn M. No Man Knows My History: The Life of Joseph Smith, the Mormon Prophet. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1963
  5. Source: #S125
  6. Rhoda Richards Wife of Joseph In the fall of 1842, Rhoda moved to Nauvoo and soon met Joseph Smith. Her brother, Apostle Willard Richards, was a close associate of Joseph Smith and perhaps introduced Rhoda to Joseph. In the spring of 1843, Rhoda made her home in “the Prophets store.” The following month, on June 12, Rhoda married Joseph Smith. Her brother Willard performed the marriage.
  7. 7.0 7.1 SmithConnections Northeastern DNA Project, group R1b-NE53 Robert Smith.


  • WikiTree profile Smith-20097 was created through the import of familysearch export.ged on Aug 31, 2011 by Jeff Thomas. See the Changes page for the details of edits by Jeff and others.

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It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Joseph by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share some percentage of DNA with Joseph:

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Comments: 12

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I have noticed that there is a Wikitree space page that lists the numerous wives of Joseph Smith Jr. I have also noticed that not all of his wives are connected to his profile. Presumably, this is because Joseph did not have children with these other wives. Whether Joseph had children with all his wives or not, they should be attached to his profile as wives; otherwise, the impression is that these relationships were merely Church-sanctioned affairs.

I have an ancestor who was not a Mormon, but who contemporaneously with Joseph Smith Jr. had children by his wife and also had children with his live-in school teacher at the same time (and the school teacher later became his wife). It is just a record of a fact.

What would be the reason for not connecting all of Joseph Smith Jr. wives to his profile? Is it inconvenient for some reason?

posted by David Thomson III
I've recently been researching into Joseph Smith's wives at the request of some descendants of JS.

The project needs to come up with some guidelines for what exactly counts as a polygamous wife on WikiTree. The current guideline for attaching two people as spouses is that the people considered themselves married.

Just because there is evidence of a sealing, doesn't mean that either of the people involved in the sealing considered themselves spouses in this lifetime. I'm leaning toward there needing to be some sort of statement from the supposed wife saying that she was Joseph Smith's wife (since I don't believe Joseph ever admitted to having any other spouses), or evidence they lived together as man and wife. I'm not sure we should count the statements from third parties saying "oh yeah, I heard from Bob that Sally got sealed to Joseph", although those should be mentioned in the biography. And we definitely shouldn't count sealings that happened after Joseph Smith was deceased.

posted by Jamie Nelson
I think coming up with guidelines is a great idea! I would love to help work on that if possible. My primary research interest right now is Mormon plural marriage before it was publicly acknowledged by the church in 1852, and especially plural marriage in the Nauvoo period.

The question of who does and does not count as a wife of Joseph Smith is especially complicated and contentious, and there was a great deal of secrecy during this period that makes it extremely difficult to find records of women directly stating that they were married to Joseph Smith, especially if they died before or not long after Joseph's death. There are a handful of great books by historians who have done a lot of research and lay out their specific methodology for determining who "counts" as a wife of Joseph Smith. One easy option for setting a standard when it comes for the wives of Joseph Smith would be to stick to a list compiled by one historian whose methodology we agree with (allowing for possible additions in the case that new primary sources come out to strongly support a marriage during Joseph's lifetime). I want to put in plug for the list of wives in Todd Compton's In Sacred Loneliness, as his research was very rigorous and I think his methodology aligns well with Wikitree standards.

Again, I'd love to work more on this! Feel free to email me to discuss more (also happy to keep this in the comments).

posted by Tuli Bennett-Bose
According to LDS records, Joseph also married Lucinda (Pendleton) Morgan Harris. Ancestry Record 5333 #70217 She should be connected as one of his wives.
posted by David Thomson III
I feel Delcena Diadamia Johnson should be added as a wife of Joseph Smith (married around July 1842). See Delcena's profile for sources. Also see Space:Plural_Wives_of_LDS_Prophet_Joseph_Smith_Jr.
posted by Tuli Bennett-Bose
edited by Tuli Bennett-Bose