NORWICH – On Friday, the Chenango County Historical Society will unveil its newest exhibit to spotlight Chenango’s roots and the influence of Mormonism, a religion that has thrived since its founding in the 19th century to include more than 14 million members worldwide.
Organizers will host a special reception and dedication of the new exhibit, titled “The History of the Mormons in Chenango County,” Friday evening at the Chenango County Historical Society, located at 45 Rexford Street in Norwich. Museum doors open at 6 p.m., followed by the dedication at 7 p.m.
Although the exhibit covers only a fleeting moment of the intricate history of the Mormon religion - roughly 1825-1830 - it features a number of displays to highlight the events that helped shape the belief and the present-day Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Areas of interest include the time in which the religion’s founder, Joseph Smith, spent in Afton (then known as South Bainbridge), the childhood history of Brigham Young - succeeding president of the church - in the Town of Sherburne, and Smith’s marriage to Emma Hale Smith in South Bainbridge, near what is now the Afton Fairgrounds.