It Really Happened!


1. It was two days before Christmas in Sharon, Vermont. The sharp features of houses, trees, and fences were softened and rounded by a heavy blanket of snow.

2. Near midnight the scattered farm homes were dark—except for the Smith’s, where a single lamp shining through a bedroom window made a checkered pattern on the snow outside. Although it was Christmastime, a light that late at night was unusual.

3. Something wonderful had happened on that twenty-third night of December 1805; a baby who would become a prophet had been born.

4. The next morning when Alvin and Hyrum, oldest of the children, saw a neighbor coming to visit, they plowed through the drifts to meet him and shouted …

5. “We have a new baby!”

“It’s a boy!”

6. Trudging back to the house, the trio waved at little sister Sophronia who was watching them.

7. Father Smith came to the door and let them in …

8. Inside, the baby was sleeping peacefully in his mother’s arms.

9. “Well what do you know … a baby boy!”

“We’re so pleased! He’ll be named Joseph after his father.”

10. There were no telephones, just neighbors to pass the word along.

“Another boy for the Smiths.”

“They can always use another hand on the farm.”

11. Mother Lucy stroked the soft baby hair and even though he looked now like any other baby, she dreamed that someday he would be a leader, a mighty man.

12. But she could not have guessed that this tiny Joseph would restore the Church of Jesus Christ and that millions would follow his teachings.

[illustrations] Illustrated by Don Seegmiller