Interim Content

Rigdon, Smith & Cowdery


A mercantile partnership composed of Sidney Rigdon, JS, and Oliver Cowdery, likely formed in June 1836. The partnership purchased wholesale goods on credit, using promissory notes, from merchants in Buffalo, New York, in June 1836. In September 1836, the firm—or possibly an associated firm under the name of Rigdon, Smith & Co.—opened a store in Chester, Ohio, about six miles south of Kirtland. In October 1836, the firm purchased additional wholesale goods on credit from merchants in New York City. As payments for the goods they had purchased became overdue in 1837, JS, Rigdon, and Cowdery faced litigation from the New York merchants. In some instances, they were able to renegotiate unpaid promissory notes to avoid or at least postpone litigation. The store in Chester closed in May 1837, and JS appears to have withdrawn as a partner at the same time, likely dissolving the firm. Oliver Granger, an agent for JS and the church, undertook efforts to repay outstanding debts, often with land donated by Latter-day Saints in the eastern United States, from 1839 until his death in 1841. Although records indicate JS had a storehouse in Kirtland, Ohio, it is unclear if it was owned by JS individually or by Rigdon, Smith & Cowdery, or if it functioned as a Rigdon, Smith & Co. storehouse for extra goods in Kirtland or as a storehouse for some other entity.