Edward Partridge

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Edward Partridge
Edward Partridge Sr.gif
Bishop of the Church
February 4, 1831 (1831-02-04) – May 27, 1840 (1840-05-27)
Called byJoseph Smith
Personal details
Born(1793-08-27)August 27, 1793
Pittsfield, Massachusetts, United States
DiedMay 27, 1840(1840-05-27) (aged 46)
Nauvoo, Illinois, United States
Resting placeOld Nauvoo Burial Grounds
40°32′13″N 91°21′03″W / 40.5369°N 91.3507°W / 40.5369; -91.3507 (Old Nauvoo Burial Grounds)
Spouse(s)Lydia Clisbee

Edward Partridge Sr. (August 27, 1793 – May 27, 1840) was one of the earliest converts to the Latter Day Saint movement and served as the first Bishop of the Church.

Early life[edit]

Edward Partridge was born on August 27, 1793 to William and Jemima Partridge in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.[1] He was the grandson of Massachusetts congressman Oliver Partridge.

Partridge was raised in Massachusetts but moved to Painesville, Ohio while in his early 20s. There, he married Lydia Clisbee on August 22, 1819,[2] just before his twenty-sixth birthday. Their family grew to include seven children: two sons and five daughters. Partridge was a hatter, and owned his own store in upstate New York. Early on, Partridge was part of the Universal Restorationist movement but he later became a reformed Baptist (also known as the Disciples of Christ or the Cambellites), a religious group led by Sidney Rigdon.[1]

Partridge was sent to New York in 1830 by a group of Painesville citizens affiliated with the reformer baptist movement to investigate the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, traveling with Sidney Rigdon.[2] He was baptized a member of the Church of Christ (later renamed The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)[3][4] in or near Seneca Lake, New York, on December 11, 1830, and upon his return to Painesville discovered that his wife had also become a convert.[5]

Church service[edit]

After his baptism, Partridge traveled to the Latter Day Saint settlement of Kirtland, Ohio with Sidney Rigdon and Emma Smith. He then became the first to hold the position of bishop in the Church of Christ.[1] He is often considered to have been the first presiding bishop in the church, although the differentiation of the two distinct levels of bishop did not really occur until after Partridge's death. In this position he helped lead the Mormon settlement in Jackson County, Missouri, and managed land distribution under the law of consecration.[citation needed] Partridge was present at the New Jerusalem Temple Lot dedication.[1]

He was tarred and feathered by an anti-Mormon mob on July 20, 1833, in front of the courthouse in Independence, Missouri, where he had been assigned to preside as bishop.[1] then forced to move to Clay County, Missouri, followed by Caldwell County in 1836. During 1835, he served a mission in Illinois, Iowa, Ohio, and Indiana, then entered into another mission in New York and New England. Following the 1838 Mormon War, Partridge was jailed in Richmond, Missouri[2] for three or four weeks.[1] In 1839, he was expelled from the state.[2]

Partridge served as bishop everywhere he lived in Missouri, holding the title even when he was away on a mission. In 1839, when the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints established a settlement at Nauvoo, Illinois, Partidge was appointed as bishop of the Upper Ward of Nauvoo. He was also seen as the senior among the bishops of the church, who at that time numbered three.[2]

Death and legacy[edit]

July 2010 photo shows marker for Edward Partridge home/church/school with Community of Christ Temple in background, Independence, Missouri. The intersection of Lexington and Union Streets is north across the street from the marker.
Closeup of marker describing location of Edward Partridge home/church/school on Temple Lot property 1831-1833. The building was destroyed by arson on November 5, 1833.

Partridge died on May 27, 1840 in Nauvoo, Illinois at the age of 46.[1] Partridge expended much of his wealth in support of the movement before he died. Joseph Smith suggested that Partridge's death could be attributed to the stress and persecution which he and other Mormon settlers in western Missouri were subjected to in the 1830s.[6]

After Partridge died, his widow Lydia married William Huntington, father of Zina D. H. Young. Partridge's daughter Eliza Maria Partridge married Amasa Lyman, and through this line he became a direct ancestor of James E. Faust, who was a 20th- and 21st-century apostle of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.[7] His daughter Emily Partridge was a wife of Brigham Young. His son Edward Partridge Jr. was a religious and political leader in Utah during the territorial period.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g McCune, George M. (1991). Personalities in the Doctrine and Covenants and Joseph Smith–History. Salt Lake City, Utah: Hawkes Publishing. pp. 84–85. ISBN 9780890365182.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Edward Partridge – Biography". www.josephsmithpapers.org. Retrieved 2021-07-01.
  3. ^ Manuscript History of the Church, LDS Church Archives, book A-1, p. 37; reproduced in Dean C. Jessee (comp.) (1989). The Papers of Joseph Smith: Autobiographical and Historical Writings (Salt Lake City, Utah: Deseret Book) 1:302–03.
  4. ^ H. Michael Marquardt and Wesley P. Walters (1994). Inventing Mormonism: Tradition and the Historical Record (Salt Lake City, Utah: Signature Books) p. 160.
  5. ^ Harper, Steven C. (Summer 2006), "Dictated by Christ", Journal of the Early Republic, University of Pennsylvania Press, 26 (2): 285–286, doi:10.1353/jer.2006.0026, JSTOR 30043410, S2CID 144432177
  6. ^ Smith, Joseph (December 15, 1855), "May 1840 (reprint)", History of Joseph Smith, Millennial Star, vol. 17, Salt Lake City, Utah: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, p. 789
  7. ^ [Bell, James P. (1999). In the Strength of the Lord: The Life and Teachings of James E. Faust. Deseret Book Company. ISBN 1-57345-580-6.]

Further reading[edit]

External resources[edit]

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints titles
New title Bishop of the Church
February 4, 1831 – May 27, 1840
Position Vacant
May 27, 1840 – October 7, 1844

Succeeded by:
Newel K. Whitney
as Bishop of the Church of
 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints