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Fly to Rochester, New York. Take the complimentary shuttle to your hotel to rest and overnight prior to beginning your exciting and informative Church History tour.
Our tour will begin by climbing the Hill Cumorah and touring the Visitor Center there. Next we visit the Grandin Printing Press, where the first copies of the Book of Mormon were printed and the Martin Harris farm. We will spend the afternoon in Palmyra visiting the Smith Farm and the Sacred Grove as well as the Palmyra Temple. Overnight in Rochester.
In the morning we will travel through the Finger Lakes region to the Peter Whitmer farm, where the Church was organized on April 6, 1830. We will attend Sacrament Meeting at the chapel next door. From Whitmer Farm we will travel southeast, stopping for lunch at Taughannock Falls. We will have some time to reflect on the history of the church in New York as we continue our drive to Harmony, Pennsylvania where we will visit the new Visitor’s Center there. We will see replicas of the Hale Home and Joseph and Emma’s first home. We will take time to walk to the cemetery where Joseph and Emma’s baby is buried and explore the woods where the three witnesses would have seen the golden plates. All this as we review the miracle of the restoration of the Priesthood.
In the morning we will travel toward Kirtland stopping for lunch overlooking lake Erie. Once in Kirtland we will tour the historic Kirtland Temple, owned by the Community of Christ. We will also take time to visit the cemetery in Kirtland, reviewing the lives of some of the saints who are buried there. We will overnight near Kirtland.
Today we will visit the Isaac Morley farm before we tour the LDS Visitor Center where guides will take you to the Sawmill, the Johnson Historic Hotel, and the Newel K. Whitney store, where you will have the opportunity to sit in the actual room where the School of the Prophets took place. Then, we will continue our way south to the John Johnson Farm, where Joseph Smith was dragged from his bed and savagely tarred and feathered. In the evening, we will enjoy a lovely dinner with the Amish in Charm, Ohio. We will stay the night at an Amish Bed & Breakfast.
We will spend some time on our motor coach this day as we travel across Ohio and Indiana into Illinois. We will stay the night in Springfield, Illinois and have dinner in Abraham Lincoln’s hometown.
We drive this morning to Carthage, Illinois. We will visit the Visitors Center and jail where the life of Joseph and his faithful brother Hyrum were taken by assassins. We will then continue on our way to Joseph’s City, Nauvoo. In Nauvoo we’ll visit the LDS Visitor’s Center, take a horse drawn wagon tour through the streets of Nauvoo, experience the Nauvoo Fair and see the Nauvoo Pageant before spending the night at the Nauvoo In
We will begin our day at the Nauvool Temple*. Guests will be able to do baptism for the dead or a temple session for our group. After lunch we’ll go back in time to ‘Old Nauvoo’ and see the Browning gun shop, bakery and Family Living Center where all the old crafts are demonstrated. After dinner we’ll visit the cemetery, the Red Brick Store and Joseph Smith’s grave. We’ll also see the granite quarry where the stones for the temple were taken and walk the Trail of Hope as we appreciate the majestic Temple, high on a bluff, symbolically facing the west. We will have an opportunity to see the other pageant this night.
Today will drive to Missouri, stopping in Hannibal, Missouri, the home town of Mark Twain. We will stop at Far West to view the temple cornerstone and learn the significance of the Lord’s Promised Land. After lunch we’ll explore the ancient past and the foretold future, where they come together in the lush valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman. Next we’ll pass by the tragic site of Haun’s Mill, where a terrible massacre took place October 30th, 1838. Our day ends with a farewell dinner in Liberty where we stay the night.
We travel this morning to Liberty Jail. Here we will share in the despair and the exhilaration of the Prophet Joseph as he received some of our most hallowed revelations while he was incarcerated there. Independence is the place prophesied as the location of the New Jerusalem in the final days of this earth. You will stand on the ground where these events will occur. We will visit the Community of Christ temple and the empty lot, where one day a magnificent Temple will be built by the remnant of the House of Israel. Finally, we will tour the LDS Church Visitor’s Center in Independence before our motor coach will then convey us to the airport. Flights should leave after 5:00 pm.
**This tour is based on a minimum of 20 passengers and max of 50 passengers.
John Bytheway was born and raised in Salt Lake City, and he served his mission in the Philippines. He earned a Master’s Degree in Religious Education from BYU, and he currently teaches courses on the Book of Mormon and the New Testament at the BYU Salt Lake Center. He is the author of a few dozen books and audio programs which, he says, are effective non-prescription sleep-aids.
He loves to golf, write, read, and play the banjo and guitar. John is a founding member of the local chapter of the Andy Griffith Show Re-run Watchers Club, and does a “spot-on” impersonation of Deputy Sheriff Barney Fife.
John and his wife Kimberly have six children and a completely full SUV which doubles in value when it’s full of gasoline. John currently serves as a member of the Young Men’s Advisory Council (formerly known as the General Board). His oldest daughter Ashley served her mission in Lyon, France, and his oldest son Andrew, served in Iceland. His daughter Natalie is currently serving in Tahiti, after spending the first part of her mission in Tucson Arizona.
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Legacy Tours and Travel, LLC reserves the right to alter the itinerary and/or substitute sightseeing and/or other tour features if deemed necessary.