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Mary began to feel that she was homeless, but the feeling did not remain, for she at once became personally acquainted with the Prophet Joseph Smith, and became a member of the household of Patriarch Hyrum Smith. She also became acquainted with many other noble men of Israel, and learned to love them for their goodness and integrity. In the Patriarch’s home she assisted in the household tasks, doing whatever there was to be done and caring for the children. In later years she often related little incidents connected with her life there. She remembered Joseph F. Smith, son of the Patriarch Hyrum Smith, and later a president of the church, as being a mischievous boy. Like some other boys he enjoyed pulling other children’s hair. One day when he had been playing his pranks she was forced to lock him inside the pantry. But he was not to be conquered in this manner, as his screaming and kicking on the door convinced her, so he was released and punished in another way.
October 9, 2014
“My Dear Sister”: Joseph F. Smith’s Letters to His Sister, Martha Ann Smith Harris, 1854–1916
by Richard Neitzel Holzapfel
As a 15-year-old missionary on an island in the Pacific, thousands of miles away from his home in Utah, Joseph F. Smith began writing letters to his sister, Martha Ann Smith Harris. During the next six decades, he wrote to her often, sharing insights into his life, dreams, struggles, and work as a missionary, father, and Church leader.
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