Nauvoo: Mormon City on the Mississippi River

Nauvoo: Mormon City on the Mississippi River

by Raymond Bial
     
 

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In 1839, persecuted Mormons fled Missouri, across the Mississippi River, seeking freedom from violence. They hoped to find a safe haven on the banks of the river in an Illinois city that they called Nauvoo, “the city beautiful.”

The Mormons did not flourish for long in Nauvoo. In neighboring cities some grew resentful of the prosperity that Joseph

Overview


In 1839, persecuted Mormons fled Missouri, across the Mississippi River, seeking freedom from violence. They hoped to find a safe haven on the banks of the river in an Illinois city that they called Nauvoo, “the city beautiful.”

The Mormons did not flourish for long in Nauvoo. In neighboring cities some grew resentful of the prosperity that Joseph Smith and his people were enjoying. Religious misconceptions further fueled hostility toward the Mormons. Would the oft-persecuted Mormons have to flee their city beautiful?

Through poignant writing and photographs of Nauvoo today, Raymond Bial tells the story of the city that many Mormons consider to be the wellspring of their religion.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Greg M. Romaneck
Tucked away in a western corner of Illinois, the city of Nauvoo sits beside the mighty Mississippi River. Nauvoo is now a sleepy town that appears very similar to many other rural settings in the Midwest. However, one hundred and sixty years ago, Nauvoo was the site of one of the largest forced migrations in American history. In the dead of winter, in February 1846, over 14,000 American citizens were forced from their homes in Nauvoo and sent on a deadly migration that eventually took them to Utah. Those people were the Mormons, and their story represents one of the most saddening but ultimately uplifting tales in the course of American history. Under the tutelage of Joseph Smith, the original Mormon settlers in Nauvoo helped make that city the tenth largest in the nation. Then, following the murder of Smith and his brother by a hostile mob in nearby Carthage, the Nauvoo Mormons were set upon and driven west by their neighbors who could no longer tolerate their religious beliefs. In Nauvoo, writer Raymond Bial capably recounts the story of the founding of the Church of Latter Day Saints and their experiences in Nauvoo. This is a thoughtful and informative book that also includes beautiful illustrations of the Mormon past and present. Readers interested in learning more about both Nauvoo and the Mormon faith will do well to pick up this book.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-9-With the same sensitivity and respect that he demonstrated in Amish Home (Houghton, 1993), Bial introduces readers to a city that was established by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in 1839. It became the central city in which the Mormons settled. By 1846, the community was the 10th largest in the United Sates. The author paints a picture of life in Nauvoo, from the artisan's shops to the craftsmen who worked and sold their products there to the Mormons' devotion to their religion, and of the climate that led to its abandonment. This effectively written account provides a sympathetic but balanced introduction to Mormon beliefs and the reasons that compelled thousands of people to leave their homes during the winter of 1846. Excellent color photographs grace almost every page, helping readers to acquire an even deeper sense of place. One illustration is mislabeled. (Identified as the graves of church leader Joseph Smith, his brother Hyrum, and his wife Emma, the picture actually shows the graves of Joseph's parents and some of his grandchildren.) However, this is a small distraction in a well-done work.-Deanna Romriell, Salt Lake City Library, UT Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher

Among the many serene illustrations are a few period portraits and many clear, well-composed photographs depicting the serene exteriors and interiors of restored and reconstructed building in present-day Nauvoo...Spotlighting the town and early Mormon history, this well written account also sheds on nineteenth-century American religious intorlerance.
Booklist, ALA

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780547561950
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
10/30/2006
Sold by:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
9 MB
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author


Raymond Bial is an acclaimed photoessayist for children. Four of his books were chosen as Notable Books in the Field of Social Studies by the NCSS. He lives in Urbana, Illinois, with his wife and children.

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