|Dimensions||6 × .28 × 9 in|
Although Mark Staker and Don Enders’ book Joseph and Lucy Smith’s Tunbridge Farm is a thin volume, it is thick with new information on Mormon founder Joseph Smith’s parents’ first home in the mountains of Vermont. The home is best known as the birthplace of his older brother Hyrum Smith. The subtitle, An Archaeology and Landscape Study, identifies the source of much of this information. But the book also includes new documentary evidence of the Smith family’s time in Tunbridge, Vermont. The authors carried out an archaeological dig at the home that the prophet’s father Joseph Smith Sr. and uncle Jesse built for their family in 1791. When Joseph Sr. married Lucy, the newlyweds moved into the house with the rest of the Smith family until Joseph’s parents Asael and Mary Smith moved with the rest of their children to a nearby lot. The excavation recovered high-society ceramics but suggested the rural setting in which the Smith family lived. The book details the size and nature of their home. In addition, the landscape study suggests details about how their farm was used, including the type of cows Mary had in her dairy, the layout of the property, the probable location of a buttery on the Smith farm, and possible crops that Joseph and Lucy cultivated. The authors explore the collapse of Smith Settlement as the family experienced financial trouble and sold off their land. Finally, the details of the farm suggest a location for the site where Lucy went to pray shortly before leaving her farm and the setting featured in her first prophetic dream, which concerned her husband and his brother.
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