SMITH, Mary - I35005

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Mary SMITH

by Don Lee

Mary Smith Headstone
Mary Smith was born June 27, 1829, in Manchester, New York, into a house-hold that consisted not only of Hyrum, Jerusha, and her sister Lovina, but also Father and Mother Smith (her grandparents) and various aunts and uncles, all living together in the Smith log cabin. This was the time of the completion of the Book of Mormon and its preparation for printing.

In April 1830, those who were to become members of the Church of Christ gathered together at the Whitmer farm in Fayette to officially organize the Church. Mary, now nine months old, was there with her parents. Aunt Emma, who had no children at the time, was delighted to hold Mary on her lap during the meeting and to get to know her new niece.

By the time her family arrived in Kirtland, Mary was a very active two-year-old and delighted in following her sister, Lovina, everywhere. The two could be seen playing together around the log cabin that was their first home. Lovina, almost four, would run somewhere with Mary trying valiantly to keep up. Lovina would wait for her and the two would continue on hand in hand.

In May 1832, the world looked rosy, Kirtland was becoming stable as the gathering place for the Saints, Hyrum and Jerusha's two girls were growing well, and Jerusha as expecting their third child then one morning Mary awoke with a fever. At first Jerusha was not concerned, but Mary's fever persisted and it was obvious that the child was in distress. The doctor could only shake his head and suggest rest and cold compresses to try to control the fever. Hyrum gave her a blessing, but to no avail. Jerusha picked her daughter up and held her close as she paced the floor. When she tired, Hyrum took his turn. Mary put her thin arms around his neck as he walked around the room, but soon those arms went limp and she passed away. Hyrum wrote in his journal that night: "Today my daughter, Mary, died in my arms."

    SOURCE:  Jerry C. Roundy, Jerusha Barden, 1st Wife of Patriarch Hyrum Smith (Provo, UT: E.H. Peirce, 1999), 16.