Kirtland Temple
A National Historic Landmark

Emma's Funeral

In the spring of 1879 Emma had a dream that "the prophet came and took her to a beautiful mansion. In one of the rooms was a baby. . .her child Don Carlos [who died as an infant]. She dreamed she caught the child up in her arms and wept. When she regained her composure, she asked Joseph where the rest of the children were. He assured her that if she would be patient, she would have them all." [1]

In her old age Emma continued to grow weaker. By April all of Emma's children found their way to the Mansion House in Nauvoo. Joseph III kept a "day-by-day account" of Emma's declining health. During the night of April 29 Joseph III saw "his mother rise herself up and extend her left arm. 'Joseph!' [he] heard her say. 'Yes, yes, I'm coming.'" Emma died at 4:20 a.m. on April 30, 1879. [2]

Her memorial service was held on Friday 2 May 1879 in Nauvoo, Illinois. Asleep in Jesus! Blessed Sleep! was amoung the hymns sung by the choir that day. Today Emma lies in Nauvoo, next to Joseph and Hyrum.


[1] Quoted from Linda King Newell and Valeen Tippetts Avery, Mormon Enigma: Emma Hale Smith (New York: Doubleday, 1984), 303. Based on account of dream retold by Alexander Smith in an article in Zion’s Ensign (31 December 1903).

[2] Zion’s Ensign (31 December 1903).




Kirtland Temple Mission Statement:
Engaging visitors in the legacy of the Kirtland Temple, embracing the sacred and secular significance of the historic site, and promoting religious tolerance and open dialogue among all people.

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