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Picturing history: Michael Arthur farm, home site

Published: Wednesday, May 29 2013 5:00 a.m. MDT

Though not well-known, the site of the Michael Arthur farm in Clay County, Mo., is significant in Latter-day Saint history.  (Kenneth Mays,) Though not well-known, the site of the Michael Arthur farm in Clay County, Mo., is significant in Latter-day Saint history. (Kenneth Mays,)

Though not well-known, the site of the Michael Arthur farm in Clay County, Mo., is significant in Latter-day Saint history. Arthur was not a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but was friendly to Mormons during a period of great opposition and animosity. At that time, such an individual was referred to as a Jack Mormon. According to Max H. Parkin, it was on the Arthur farm that the following events occurred: Arthur assisted a number of the displaced Saints; he hired members of the church, including Lyman Wight and Wilford Woodruff, to build a two-story home for him; the Prophet Joseph Smith spent time and preached there; on July 3, 1834, the members of Zion's Camp were formally discharged there; the second stake of the church was organized there.

A cemetery adjacent to the farm property has been purchased and a monument to the Eight Witnesses of the Book of Mormon has been erected there. The farm site is located about four miles from Liberty Jail.

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