(This article is about the founder of the Latter Day Saint movement. For other persons, see Joseph Smith (disambiguation).) Joseph Smith, Jr. (December 23, 1805 – June 27, 1844) was an American religious leader and founder of Mormonism and the Latter Day Saint movement. When he was twenty-four, Smith published the Book of Mormon. By the time of his death fourteen years later, he had attracted tens of thousands of followers and founded a religious culture that continues to the present. Smith was born in Sharon, Vermont, but by 1817, he had moved with his family to the burned-over district of western New York, an area of intense religious revivalism during the Second Great Awakening. According to Smith, he experienced a series of visions, including one in which he saw "two personages" (presumably God the Father and Jesus Christ) and others in which an angel named Moroni directed him to a buried book of golden plates inscribed with a Judeo-Christian history of an ancient American civilization. In 1830, Smith published what he said was an English translation of these plates, the Book of Mormon... CLICK TO READ MORE
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