Interim Content

Temple, Nauvoo, Illinois


Located in portion of Nauvoo known as the bluff. JS revelation dated Jan. 1841 commanded Saints to build temple and hotel (Nauvoo House). Cornerstone laid, 6 Apr. 1841. Saints volunteered labor, money, and other resources for temple construction. Construction directed by committee that included Reynolds Cahoon, Alpheus Cutler, Elias Higbee, and Hyrum Smith. Basement containing wooden baptismal font completed, fall 1841. Proxy baptisms for deceased persons, previously performed in Mississippi River, first performed in wooden font, Nov. 1841. Work to complete temple continued after death of JS in 1844. Wooden font taken down by Jan. 1845. By Dec. 1845, enough work in attic rooms was completed to initiate ordinances. New stone baptismal font completed, ca. Jan. 1846. About 5,500 people received endowments, Dec. 1845–Feb. 1846. Temple dedicated, 30 Apr. and 1 May 1846. Temple height measured at least 158 feet, and base measured 128 by 88 feet. First floor had offices and an assembly hall; second floor was similar; third floor (attic) had offices, dressing rooms, and endowment rooms. Temple also served as multipurpose meeting place for Sunday services and general conferences. Fire destroyed interior, roof, and tower, 9 Oct. 1848; tornado largely destroyed exterior walls, May 1850.


Hancock County
United States of America