Plenty of people think there's something special about Independence, Missouri. Religious leader Joseph Smith was one of them. In 1831, he declared Independence to be the site of "Zion," where the righteous would gather to greet the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. And gather they did. Thousands of converted Mormons moved from New York and Ohio to claim their New Jerusalem. Unfortunately for them, an even greater number of previous settlers, who also thought Independence was a pretty special place, had already staked their claim. By 1833, the Mormons had been run out of Independence, leaving their sacred religious sites behind.
Explore the significant history of this religious movement and how it shaped the future of Independence. We highly recommend a visit to the world headquarters of Community of Christ (formerly the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints) and its magnificent dome and spire buildings that shape the iconic skyline of Independence. You might even be treated to a private pipe organ recital by a world-renowned organist on one of the largest pipe organs in the Midwest.