The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a deep-rooted and remarkable history in St. Louis, Missouri. From its humble beginnings in the early 1800s to its current status as a flourishing religious community, the Mormon Church has been an essential part of the city's history. In the 1830s, Joseph Smith and the Church of Christ, which later became the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, rapidly gained adherents throughout the Northeastern United States. Believers were referred to as “Mormons” due to their adherence to the “Book of Mormon”, a scripture that accompanied the Bible and documented the appearance of Jesus to the ancestors of Native Americans. In 1831, Joseph Smith declared that Independence, in Jackson County, Missouri, would be the gathering place of the Church.
This sparked a wave of migration and settlement of Latter-day Saints on the Missouri border, which eventually led to violence and unrest between Mormons and non-Mormons in Missouri. In 1838, an extermination order was issued by Governor Lilburn Boggs, forcing thousands of Mormons to flee Missouri for Illinois. Despite this tumultuous start, the Church continued to expand in Missouri throughout the 20th century. In 1926 and 1927, five new chapels were consecrated in Missouri and in 1956, the state's first stake was organized in Kansas City. The construction of the St.
Louis Temple in 1997 was a significant milestone for Latter-day Saints in Missouri and provided a place for members to worship and find solace. At present, there are 16 stakes located throughout Missouri, including Cape Girardeau (Columbia), Far West, Hazelwood, Independence, Joplin, Kansas City, Lake St Louis, Liberty, Monett, Platte City, St Louis (), St Robert, Springfield (), Warrensburg and West Plains. The Missouri Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints remains an important part of the state's history and culture.