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Emma Hale Smith, Nauvoo, Illinois, circa 1841
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Oil on canvas portrait of a woman wearing a dark dress, with lace top, and a shawl around her shoulders.

Credit: Courtesy of LDS Church Archives, Brigham Young University

In 1827 Joseph Smith married Emma Hale (1804-1879) of Harmony, PA. The next year Smith began translation of The Book of Mormon while living on the Susquehanna County farm of his wife’s family. At her husband’s prompting, Emma compiled the first Mormon hymnal in 1832. (She would later compile two more Mormon hymnals, in 1841, and 1861). After Smith’s murder in 1844, Emma remained in Nauvoo Illinois, where she married Lewis Bidamon, a non-Mormon, in 1847.

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