Death in Carthage



Joseph Smith is reputed to have died as a result of jumping out of the near window on the upper floor of this building. He must have landed very awkwardly because this is not a great height. They whole story is very dodgy.

Joseph Smith died by jumping from the window of the Carthage Illinois Jail while attempting to escape a murderous mob. The mob shot Smith’s brother Hyrum dead. Fellow Mormon John Taylor may have died if his pocket watch had not stopped a bullet.

Interestingly, though Smith had been arraigned for treason, not only was the jail window open but Smith had a fully-loaded pepper pot pistol in his possession. He shot some of his assailants before leaping to his death.

The pictured watch has achieved iconic status and is on permanent exhibit at the Mormon Museum in Salt Lake City.

The circumstances of Smith’s charge of treason against the State of Illinois are too complicated to attempt description. Suffice to say a 5000-strong Mormon Militia and the seduced wives of some prominent non-Mormons play some part in this military-boudoir thriller.



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