Chronology of Church History
1805, December 23
Joseph Smith (1805-44) born to Joseph Smith Sr. and Lucy Mack Smith, Sharon, Vermont (see JS-H 1:3).
1820, Early Spring
The Prophet Joseph Smith received First Vision in a grove of trees in Palmyra and Manchester Townships, New York, near his home (see JS-H 1:15-17).
1823, September 21-22
Joseph Smith visited by angel Moroni and told of the Book of Mormon record. Joseph viewed the gold plates buried in a nearby hill (Cumorah) (see JS-H 1:27-54).
1827, September 22
Joseph Smith obtained the gold plates from Moroni at the Hill Cumorah (see JS-H 1:59).
1829, May 15
John the Baptist conferred the Aaronic Priesthood on Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in Harmony, Pennsylvania (see D&C 13; JS-H 1:71-72).
Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery received the Melchizedek Priesthood from Peter, James, and John near the Susquehanna River between Harmony, Pennsylvania, and Colesville, New York (see D&C 128:20).
Translation of the Book of Mormon completed. The Three Witnesses and the Eight Witnesses shown the gold plates (see 2 Ne. 11:3; 27:12-13; D&C 17).
1830, March 26
First printed copies of the Book of Mormon available, Palmyra, New York.
1830, April 6
The Church organized in Fayette Township, New York.
First missionaries called to preach to the Lamanites (Native Americans) (see D&C 28, 30, 32).
1830, December-January 1831
The Saints were commanded to gather to Ohio (see D&C 37; 38:31-32).
1831, July 20
Site for the city of Zion (the New Jerusalem) in Independence, Missouri, revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith (see D&C 57; A of F 1:10).
1833, March 18
Sidney Rigdon and Frederick G. Williams set apart as Counselors in Presidency of the Church (see D&C 81 heading) and given the keys of this last kingdom (see D&C 90 heading; verse 6).
1833, November 7
Saints began fleeing from mobs in Jackson County, Missouri across the Missouri River and into Clay County.
1834, May 5
President Joseph Smith left Kirtland, Ohio, for Missouri as leader of Zion's Camp to bring relief to Saints expelled from Jackson County.
1835, February 14
The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles organized, Kirtland, Ohio (see D&C 107:23-24).
1835, February 28
The organization of the First Quorum of the Seventy commenced, Kirtland, Ohio (see HC 2:201-2).
1835, August 17
The Doctrine and Covenants accepted as a standard work of the Church, Kirtland, Ohio.
1836, March 27
The Kirtland Temple dedicated (see D&C 109).
1836, April 3
Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in the Kirtland Temple. Moses, Elias, and Elijah appeared and conveyed priesthood keys (see D&C 110).
1837, July 19
Heber C. Kimball and six others arrived in Liverpool, England, on first overseas mission.
1838, April 26
Name of the Church specified by revelation (see D&C 115:4).
1838, December 1
The Prophet Joseph Smith and others imprisoned in Liberty Jail, Liberty, Clay County, Missouri (see D&C 121-23).
1840, August 15
Baptism for the dead publicly announced by the Prophet Joseph Smith.
1841, October 24
Elder Orson Hyde dedicated Palestine for return of the children of Abraham (see D&C 68:1-3; 124:128-29).
1842, March 17
Female Relief Society organized, Nauvoo, Illinois.
1842, May 4
First full temple endowments given.
1843, May 28
Joseph and Emma Smith sealed for time and eternity.
1844, June 27
Joseph Smith and Hyrum Smith martyred in Carthage Jail (see D&C 135).
1846, February 4
Nauvoo Saints began crossing Mississippi River to move west. Some eastern Saints sailed from New York City for California on ship Brooklyn.
1846, July 16
Mormon Battalion mustered into U.S. service in Iowa.
President Brigham Young's pioneer company left Winter Quarters on the journey west (see D&C 136).
1847, July 24
President Brigham Young entered Salt Lake Valley.
1847, December 27
Church conference sustained President Brigham Young, Elder Heber C. Kimball, and Elder Willard Richards as First Presidency.
Crickets in the Salt Lake Valley devastated the crops. The fields were saved from complete destruction as flocks of seagulls consumed the crickets.
1849, December 9
Sunday School organized by Richard Ballantyne.
1850, June 15
Deseret News began publication in Salt Lake City.
Willie and Martin handcart companies detained by early snowstorms. Found by rescue party from Salt Lake Valley.
1867, December 8
Relief Society reorganized under the direction of President Brigham Young.
1869, November 28
Young Ladies' Retrenchment Association organized, forerunner of Young Women program.
1875, June 10
Young Men's Mutual Improvement Association organized, forerunner of Young Men program.
1877, April 6
St. George Temple dedicated. President Brigham Young received revelation to set in order the priesthood organization and stakes of Zion.
1878, August 25
Aurelia Spencer Rogers held the first Primary meeting in Farmington, Utah.
1880, October 10
John Taylor sustained as President of the Church. The Pearl of Great Price accepted as a standard work.
1883, April 14
Revelation to President John Taylor on the organization of the Seventies.
1889, April 7
Wilford Woodruff sustained as President of the Church.
1890, October 6
'Manifesto' sustained in general conference, ending the practice of plural marriage (see OD-1).
1893, April 6
President Wilford Woodruff dedicated Salt Lake Temple, 40 years in construction.
1898, September 13
Lorenzo Snow became President of the Church.
1899, May 17
President Lorenzo Snow received revelation in St. George prompting him to emphasize tithing (see D&C 119).
1901, October 17
Joseph F. Smith became President of the Church.
1918, October 3
President Joseph F. Smith received the vision of the redemption of the dead (see D&C 138).
1918, November 23
Heber J. Grant became President of the Church.
Church Security Program instituted to assist poor during Great Depression; became Church welfare program. This program grew out of a revelation received previously by President Heber J. Grant.
1941, April 6
Assistants to the Twelve first called.
1945, May 21
George Albert Smith became President of the Church.
1951, April 9
David O. McKay sustained as President of the Church.
1961, September 30
Elder Harold B. Lee, under the direction of the First Presidency, announced that all Church programs were to be correlated through the priesthood to strengthen the family and the individual.
Observance of family home evening reemphasized.
1970, January 23
Joseph Fielding Smith became President of the Church.
New Church magazinesEnsign, New Era, and Friendcommenced publication.
1972, July 7
Harold B. Lee became President of the Church.
1973, December 30
Spencer W. Kimball became President of the Church.
1975, October 3
President Spencer W. Kimball announced reorganization of First Quorum of the Seventy.
1976, April 3
Two revelations added to Pearl of Great Price. In 1981, they were moved to become D&C 137 and 138.
1978, September 30
Revelation granting the priesthood to every worthy male member without regard to race or color sustained by Church (see OD-2).
LDS edition of King James Bible with study aids published.
New editions of Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price published.
Area Presidencies inaugurated, with members called from the Seventies.
1985, November 10
Ezra Taft Benson became President of the Church.
1989, April 1
Second Quorum of the Seventy reorganized.
1994, June 5
Howard W. Hunter became President of the Church.
1995, March 12
Gordon B. Hinckley became President of the Church.
1995, April 1
Position of regional representative discontinued. Announcement of a new leadership position to be known as an Area Authority.
1995, September 23
'The Family: A Proclamation to the World' from the First Presidency and Council of the Twelve Apostles was published.
1997, April 5
Area Authorities to be ordained Seventies. Third, Fourth, and Fifth Quorums of the Seventy announced.
1997, October 4
President Hinckley announced the building of smaller temples.
Church membership reached 10 million.
President Hinckley announced goal of having 100 temples in service by the year 2000.
Perpetual Education Fund instituted.
2008, February 3
Thomas S. Monson became President of the Church.
2012, October 6
Missionary age changed to 18 for young men, 19 for young women.