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Coordinates: 40°33′1.216800″N 91°23′2.972399″W / 40.55033800000°N 91.38415899972°W / 40.55033800000; -91.38415899972

Nauvoo Illinois Temple
New Nauvoo Temple cropped.JPG
Number 113 edit data
Dedicated June 27, 2002 (June 27, 2002) by
Gordon B. Hinckley
Site 3.3 acres (1.3 hectares)
Floor area 54,000 sq ft (5,000 m2)
Height 162 ft (49 m)
Preceded by Asunción Paraguay Temple
Followed by The Hague Netherlands Temple
Official websiteNews & images

The Nauvoo Illinois Temple is the 113th dedicated temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). It is the third such temple that has been built in Illinois (the original Nauvoo Temple and Chicago Illinois Temple being the others).

Located in the town of Nauvoo, the temple's construction was announced on April 4, 1999, by church president Gordon B. Hinckley. Groundbreaking was conducted on October 24, 1999 and the cornerstones were laid November 5, 2000. The structure itself was built in the Greek Revival architectural style using limestone block quarried in Russellville, Alabama. It is built in the same location as the original structure that was dedicated in 1846.

The origins of the temple go back to 1937. In that year Wilford C. Wood purchased some of the land on behalf of the LDS Church and purchased another piece of land that he later sold to the Church. He also organized a group of Latter-day Saints from the Chicago Illinois Stake, co-led by Ariel S. Williams to clear and beautify the recently purchased land. At the time the Chicago Stake was one of only two east of the Mississippi River.[2]

Wood purchased land in 1951 that included a house which was made a visitors center for the temple site. In the late-1950s and then in 1962 agents for the LDS Church completed the purchase of the temple lot.[3]

The building measures 130 feet (40 m) long, 90 feet (27 m) wide, and 162 feet (49 m) tall to the top of the statue of Angel Moroni. It has an area of 54,000 square feet (5,000 m2). It is the only temple owned by the LDS Church today that has a bell tower, although the Kirtland Temple also has a bell tower.

Church leaders and architects carefully worked to replicate the original exterior design of the 19th-century temple, which was damaged by an arson fire in 1848 and by a tornado on May 27, 1850. It was consequently condemned and demolished by the Nauvoo City Council. Construction materials and furniture were derived from the original design as well. Its interior floor plan is noticeably different from that of the old Nauvoo Temple, as is the style of the golden angel at the top of the spire. The completion and official dedication took place on June 27, 2002, on the anniversary of the death of Joseph Smith, the church's founder.

Up to 1.5 million visitors a year have visited Nauvoo since the temple opened in 2002.[4]


Notable presidents of the temple include Richard W. Winder (2002–04) and Spencer J. Condie (2010–13).

Original Nauvoo TempleEdit

The Nauvoo Temple was the second temple constructed by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, commonly known as the Mormons. The church's first temple was completed in Kirtland, Ohio, United States in 1836. When the main body of the church was forced out of Nauvoo, Illinois in the winter of 1846, the church attempted to sell the building, finally succeeding in 1848.[citation needed] The building was damaged by fire and a tornado before being demolished.



  1. ^ "Nauvoo Illinois Temple", Church News
  2. ^ Don F. Colvin. Nauvoo Temple: A Story of Faith. BYU Religious Studies Center, Chapter 13
  3. ^ Colvin, Nauvoo Temple
  4. ^ Dennis, Jan (August 22, 2006). "Mormon temple a tourism draw for tiny Nauvoo". USA Today. AP.

External linksEdit