Liberty Hall and Spurrier School in Lamoni
Members of the church founded Lamoni, Iowa, in 1870 as a Zionic community. In 1881 Joseph Smith III and his family moved here and the town became the church's headquarters. Their home, named Liberty Hall, became a center of social and religious life for the community.
Liberty Hall
Liberty Hall was built in 1881 and until 1905 was home to Joseph Smith III, president of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints from 1860-1914. The church was headquartered in Lamoni, and Liberty Hall was a center of social and religious life for the community. According to Joseph III, 'Liberty Hall throbbed with life, teeming with the bustling activities of a large and growing family. Birth, death, and marriage occurred within its walls . . . joys and sorrows succeeded each other as days the nights.'
After the departure of the Smith family, Liberty Hall served as a home for the aged, a farmhouse, Civilian Conservation Corps headquarters, and a private residence. Now restored to its 1900-1905 Victorian style, the home reflects the culture of the large, middle class Smith family living in a small mid western town. Liberty Hall is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Spurrier School
Spurrier School, once called Black School, dates to the 1870s. It is likely that some of the children of Joseph Smith III attended this school after the family moved to Lamoni in 1881. Originally located two blocks west and one-half block south of Liberty Hall, the school was moved to the grounds of Liberty Hall in 1979.