Cumorah Smith Burns was born on September 22, 1877 to Samuel Harrison Bailey Smith and Mary Catherine Smith. Her name was the result of a dream that her mother had in which the name Cumorah was written in gold letters. Interestingly, Cumorah was born on the 50th anniversary of the day on which her father's uncle, the Prophet Joseph Smith, had received the gold plates on the Hill Cumorah. Cumorah developed her musical talents while young and began playing the piano in public at age six. At age fifteen, Cumorah publicly played a mandolin solo with a quintet accompaniment of guitars and mandolins. She was later a member of a mandolin trio. At age seventeen, Cumorah appeared as a soloist with a symphony orchestra in the Salt Lake Theatre. On December 23, 1895 at the age of eighteen, Cumorah married George Burns. In 1898 she bore her first son Creswell. She eventually gave birth to four more children: Melton, Jeannette, Behle, and Herchel, but Jeannette died shortly after birth. Cumorah instilled a love of music into her children and helped organize the Burns Dance Orchestra, which included Melton on the saxophone, Behle on the drums, and Herchel on either the xylophone or banjo. When Cumorah was widowed by George's death on October 17, 1931, she worked as a seamstress in order to help pay for her three sons' medical schooling. Cumorah died on March 1, 1967.
This four-page typewritten biography of Cumorah Smith Burns was written by Ruby Kate Smith for the Samuel H. Smith Family Association in 1957 as a tribute on her eightieth birthday and is found in the bound book entitled 'Family Biographies' (Box 6, Folder 1).