Picturing history: Nauvoo House

Published: Wednesday, March 13 2013 5:00 a.m. MDT

In a January 1841 revelation to the Prophet Joseph Smith, there is a divine mandate to build a boarding house to be 'a delightful habitation for man, and a resting-place for the weary traveler’ (See Doctrine and Covenants 124:60). This facility was to be called ‘Nauvoo House,’ located on the south end of Main Street on the bank of the Mississippi River across the street from the Joseph Smith Homestead. The foundations were only up to about ground level when Joseph and Hyrum Smith were killed at Carthage. After Brigham Young began leading the church as President of the Twelve, the decision was made to focus on the completion of the Nauvoo Temple. As a result, work on the Nauvoo House was halted. This structure, built by the Prophet’s widow, Emma, and her second husband, Lewis Bidamon, is owned and maintained by the Community of Christ.

Kenneth Mays,

In a January 1841 revelation to the Prophet Joseph Smith, there is a divine mandate to build a boarding house to be "a delightful habitation for man, and a resting-place for the weary traveler" (See Doctrine and Covenants 124:60).

This facility was to be called "Nauvoo House," located on the south end of Main Street on the bank of the Mississippi River across the street from the Joseph Smith Homestead.

As a place of boarding, the Nauvoo House was never finished. The foundations were only up to about ground level when Joseph and Hyrum Smith were killed at Carthage. After Brigham Young began leading the church as President of the Twelve, the decision was made to focus on the completion of the Nauvoo Temple. As a result, work on the Nauvoo House was halted.

This structure, built by the Prophet's widow, Emma, and her second husband, Lewis Bidamon, was known as the Riverside Mansion but, today, many still refer to it as the Nauvoo House. The house is owned and maintained by the Community of Christ.

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