First LDS Temple (Kirtland)
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Joseph Smith
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In Kirtland, Ohio, Joseph Smith continued to incorporate Hebraic models into his movement by building a temple, not a church, for his members. During the construction of the temple, Smith, along with associate Oliver Cowdery, witnessed Jesus and famous Jewish prophets in an event similar to the biblical account of the transfiguration. This legitimized the temple’s construction as a divinely ordained act. While there was a focus on continuity with the Jewish tradition, they also performed the Christian ritual of foot-washing at the temple’s dedication on March 27, 1836. The first Latter-day Saints temple had areas for worship and for education.
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Smith, Joseph

Kirtland Temple color- Internet Archive

Kirtland, Ohio- Internet Archive

Kirtland Temple interior- Library of Congress, HABS OHIO,43-KIRT,1--11

Kirtland Temple blueprints- Library of Congress, HABS OHIO,43-KIRT,1-

Joseph Smith with book- Internet Archive
Queen, Edward, Stephen Prothero and Gardiner Shattuck, 1996. The Encyclopedia of American Religious History. New York: Facts on File.
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Web Page Contributor
Benjamin T. Gurrentz
Affliated with: Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D. in Sociology

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