LDS Church History in Pictures: Zion's Camp, Indianapolis

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 29 2012 5:00 a.m. MDT

The members of Zion's Camp passed through the city quietly without causing any commotion. The National Road led them to the White River, where they crossed at the site marked by the bridge.

Kenneth Mays,

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On May 21, 1834, Zion's Camp approached Indianapolis. Rumors had surfaced that it was "an armed force with a suspicious appearance." The camp was clearly not official military, but it did not appear to be a wagon train of families, either.

As they were about to enter the city, Joseph Smith made a remarkable prophesy: "As the Lord lives we will go through the place and the people shall not know it."

The Prophet then ordered most of the men into the wagons and the wagons were to drive 10 rods apart (about 160 feet). Others were told to walk through different streets, while a dozen men were selected to "mingle with the people and hear what they said."

As the Prophet had foretold, the members of Zion's Camp passed through the city quietly, without causing any commotion. Some of the locals had strange looks on their faces, but nothing came of the camp passing by.

Before leaving Indianapolis, the National Road led them to the White River, where they crossed at the site marked by the bridge.

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