TODAY IN CHURCH HISTORY: 27 May
1834 - Zion's Camp continued their march across Illinois. The Prophet Joseph recorded, "Notwithstanding our enemies were continually breathing threats of violence, we did not fear, neither did we hesitate to prosecute our journey, for God was with us, and His angels went before us, and the faith of our little band was unwavering. We know that angels were our companions, for we saw them" (History of the Church, 2:73). They crossed the Okaw branch of the Kaskaskia River, continuing west. Solomon Humphreys, "an aged brother of the camp, having become exceedingly weary, lay down on the prairie to rest himself and fell asleep. When he awoke he saw, coiled up within one foot of his head, a rattlesnake lying between him and his hat . . . The brethren gathered around him, saying, 'It is a rattlesnake, let us kill it;' but Brother Humphreys said, 'No, I'll protect him; you shan't hurt him, for he and I had a good nap together'." (History of the Church, 2:73-74).
1836 - The Prophet Joseph's ninety-three-year-old grandmother, Mary Smith, died after arriving in Kirtland, Ohio, just ten days previous. She "fell asleep without sickness, pain or regret." She is buried in the cemetery next to the Kirtland Temple. (History of the Church, 2:443)
1840 - Parley P. Pratt issues the first number of The Latter-day Saints' Millennial Star in England. It was issued from 1840-1970, making it the longest running publication in the history of the Church.
1842 - The Prophet Joseph Smith was ill with a bilious attack and stayed at home. (History of the Church, 5:21)
1844 - The Prophet Joseph, and several of the brethren, started early in the morning for Carthage, Illinois, to appear before the circuit court. Charles Foster joined them just before arriving in Carthage and appeared friendly towards the Prophet. Arriving in Carthage, several leaders of the apostates were there, including Joseph H. Jackson and Francis and Chauncey Higbee. Charles Foster then warned the Prophet that there was a conspiracy against his life and Robert Foster told several of the brethren who had accompanied the Prophet the same thing. Joseph had a short interview with Judge Thomas and then waited at the Hamilton House Hotel for word from the court to appear on his perjury charge. The case ended up being deferred and the Prophet was released to return home. They immediately left Carthage for Nauvoo, arriving safely about 9:00 p.m..
1849 - Crickets appear in the Salt Lake Valley and begin eating the crops of the Saints. Several days later, flocks of California Seagulls would appear and begin eating the crickets, saving the Saints from certain famine the next winter.
1850 - A tornado demolishes the north wall of the burned out Nauvoo Temple ruins and weakens the east and south walls. So weakened, they were torn down leaving only the west portico still standing.
1893 - First branch in American Samoa is organized in Pago Pago.
1911 - Life-size statues of Joseph and Hyrum Smith, The Prophet and The Patriarch, by Mahonri M. Young, are place on Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah.
1934 - The first branch in Saskatchewan, Canada, is organized.
1996 - President Gordon B. Hinckley visits Shenzhen, China, becoming the first President of the Church to visit mainland China.