Family History Missionaries Serve in Ancestor’s Home


When Raymond Clark and his family left their home and their livelihood—a mercantile store—in Nauvoo, Illinois, in 1846 and headed for Winter Quarters, they probably doubted that they would ever return to the place they had loved so much. Perhaps even more doubtful was the possibility of a member of their posterity returning to the home.

But 166 years later, Joy Price, Raymond Clark’s third-great-granddaughter, has returned to Nauvoo to embrace her family heritage. With her husband, Merlin Price, she hopes to help others embrace their heritage as well.

In April the Prices, family history missionaries from Shelley, Idaho, USA, began serving in the Iowa Des Moines Mission. They work at the Nauvoo Family History Center, which is housed in the Raymond Clark Store.

Raymond and Louisa Clark, who came to Nauvoo with early Latter-day Saints from Kirtland, Ohio, purchased the property across the street from the Nauvoo Temple in 1842, building a red-brick duplex that functioned both as a home for the family and as a mercantile store. While Raymond farmed and worked on the construction of the Nauvoo Temple, Louisa operated the store. This was also where Louisa coordinated the efforts of the sisters in LaHarpe and Macedonia, Illinois, to collect funds to erect a crane to help with the construction of the Nauvoo Temple.

Like all family history centers of the Church, the new Nauvoo Family History Center, set to open in May 2012, serves both Latter-day Saints and other members of the community. The center is equipped with 15 Internet-connected computers and film readers. Patrons will be able to identify their ancestors and Church pioneers, do research for their personal family histories, and prepare names for temple work.

The Prices hope the opening of the new center will help create interest in family history—a work that has been so meaningful to them personally.