A Divided Mormon Zion : Northeastern Ohio or Western Missouri?
"A DIVIDED MORMON ZION: NORTHEASTERN OHIO OR WESTERN MISSOURI? This is Volume III of an epic, multi-volume work entitled The Quest for the New Jerusalem: A Mormon Generation Saga, which combines family, Mormon, and American history, focusing upon how the author’s ancestors were affected by their conversion to the Mormon religion. ... Volume III begins with a detailed look at the life of Sidney Rigdon, who played a significant role in the development of the Campbellite, Reformed Baptist, Disciples of Christ Church. When he became a Mormon in late 1830, he helped bring about the conversion of hundreds of his friends in the Campbellite movement, which caused Joseph Smith Jr. in early 1831 to change the headquarters of his fledgling Mormon Church from western New York to northeastern Ohio. A remarkable fusion then took place between Mormonism, as it had been formulated initially by Smith, and the new Campbellite doctrines, practices, and organization. In the summer of 1831 Smith and Rigdon visited Jackson County, Missouri, and numerous Smith revelations formally designated it as the site for the New Jerusalem/Zion, where, immediately after the city was built, Christ’s Second Coming was to occur. The sites for the city and a temple were dedicated at Independence, but Smith returned to Ohio, continued to live at Kirtland, and made the decision to build the first temple there, much to the chagrin of the Mormons who had obeyed his revelations and were “gathering” to Missouri. This led to a serious rift between Ohio and Missouri leaders, many of the latter Smith’s earliest disciples from New York."