Red Brick Store, Nauvoo, Illinois
Many important events occurred at the Red Brick Store while The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was first established in Nauvoo. The Relief Society was organized on March 17, 18421; the first endowments were administered in the third level of the store on May 4, 18432; the Prophet Joseph Smith instructed the twelve to investigate the possibilities of going West in a meeting held in the store3; and Joseph Smith completed the translation of the Book of Abraham here.
Additionally, the store served as a social, economic, and educational center of Nauvoo. The dry goods store along with Bishop Newel K. Whitney’s office was located on the first floor. The second floor was a large assembly hall that served as Church headquarters and held community events and classes for the University of Nauvoo, political conventions, and Masonic meetings.
Without any banks existing in Nauvoo, the Red Brick Store also made loans, city lots were sold through the Prophet, and the collections for the building of the Nauvoo Temple took place here.4
The original Red Brick Store was demolished in the late 1890s and the Community of Christ rebuilt the store in 1978-79.5 On March 17, 1992, sisters from the Nauvoo Ward, Nauvoo Illinois Stake obtained permission to have a special commemorative meeting there to celebrate 150 years since the organization of the Relief Society.6
Map & Directions
Hours of Operation:
Monday Through Saturday – 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Sunday 1:00 AM – 5:00 PM.
The rebuilt Red Brick Store in Nauvoo is owned and maintained by Community of Christ. It is open to the public during the hours listed above. There is no charge for admission. Photographs are allowed inside.
Articles & Resources
1 Joseph Smith, History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 vols., introduction and notes by B. H. Roberts (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1932-1951), 4: 552 – 553.
2 Ibid, 5: 1-2.
3 Ibid, 6: 222.
4 George W. Givens, In Old Nauvoo: Everyday Life in the City of Joseph (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1990), 82.
5 “Sign Adorned Office Door of the Prophet,” LDS Church News, (February 24, 1990).
6 “Relief Society Birthday Noted at Site of Origin,” LDS Church News, (March 28, 1992).
Joseph Smith, Jr.’s Account of the Administration of the First Endowments in this Dispensation
Author(s): Joseph Smith
Type: First-person account
Source(s): Joseph Smith, History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 vols., introduction and notes by B. H. Roberts (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1932-1951), 5: 1-2.
I spent the day in the upper part of the store, that is in my private office (so called because in that room I keep my sacred writings, translate ancient records, and receive revelations) and in my…
Red Brick Store, at JosephSmith.net
Joseph Smith Jr. Red Brick Store, at Doctrine & Covenants Revelvation Sites Website
Roger D. Launius and Mark F. McKiernan, Joseph Smith, Jr.’s Red Brick Store, 1985.
Mark F. McKiernan, “The Red Brick Store – Hub of Activity in Early Nauvoo,” Restoration Trail Forum, 1977.
Paul Thomas Smith, “Joseph’s Red Brick Store,” New Era, December 1983, 18.