Cordelia Calista Cox

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Cordelia Calista Cox (Morley)

Also Known As: "Cordelia Smith"
Birthdate: (91)
Birthplace: Kirtland, Geauga, Ohio, USA, Kirtland, Lake County, Ohio, United States
Death: June 9, 1915 (91)
Manti, Sanpete, Utah, USA, Manti, Sanpete County, Utah, United States
Place of Burial: Manti, Sanpete County, Utah, United States
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Isaac Morley, Sr and Lucy Morley
Wife of Frederick Walter Cox, Sr
Mother of Lovina Emeline Cox; Therissa Emerett Clark; Sarah Ann Anderson; Francis Morley Cox, Sr.; Isaac Cox and 4 others
Sister of Philena Morley; Lucy Diantha Morley; Editha Ann Whiting; Calista Morley; Theresa Arathusa Morley and 3 others
Half sister of Luther Terry Tuttle; Joseph Lamoni Morley; Simeon Thomas Morley and Mary Lenora Hansen

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Cordelia Calista Cox


"...After a sojourn of nearly a century on this mundane sphere, Mrs. Cordelia Morley Cox departed this life Wednesday night at the home of her daughter, Mrs. F. P. Tuttle.

Her career has been one, which is allotted to but few on this earth. She was born in Kirtland, Ohio, in November 1823, seven years before the organization of the Church, which was to exert such an influence over the affairs of her life. She lived to see that church grow to an organization of some 600,000 people. She was one of the number called upon to endure the persecutions of the early life of the church, and the hardships of transferring her church from civilization to the wilderness of the savage to wrest that wilderness from the savage and transform it into civilization. Her husband, Frederick Walter Cox, was born in New York in 1812, and after a life but 3 years less than the span of three score and ten allotted man, he left her side, even thirty six years ago.

She came to Utah and direct to Manti with her husband in 1852. Her mother had died during those troublesome times when they were being driven from place to place, with no place to call home. Her father, Isaac Morley, was ordained a Patriarch by the Prophet Joseph Smith.

Mrs. Cox left one son and six daughters, all of whom reside in this city, except Mrs. Van Buren of Orangeville and Mrs. John Moffitt of Bonets. The children in Manti are Francis Morley Cox and Mesdames J.H. Clark, Fred Anderson, G.W. Crawford, and Frank P. Tuttle.

The funeral will be held at the Tabernacle tomorrow at 2 o' clock. She died 9 June 1915..."

SOURCE: Unknown. Retrieved from

Posthumous Marriage to Joseph Smith.

She was sealed posthumously to Joseph Smith Jr. as indicated in her autobiography but after Joseph Smith's death.

"...In the spring of 1844, plural marriage was introduced to me by my parents from Joseph Smith, asking their consent and a request to me to be his wife. Imagine, if you can, my feeling, to be a plural wife. Something I never thought I could ever be. I knew nothing of such religion and could not accept it, neither did I then. I told Joseph I had a sweetheart; his name was Whiting, and I expected to marry him. He, however, was left by the wayside. He could not endure the persecutions and hardships. I told the Prophet I thought him a wonderful man and leader, but I wanted to marry my sweetheart.

After Joseph Smith's death, I was visited by some of his most intimate friends who knew of his request and explained to me this religion, counseling me to accept his wishes, for he now was gone and could do no more for himself. I accepted Joseph Smith's desire, and 27 January 1846, I was married to your father in the Nauvoo Temple. While still kneeling at the alter, my hand clasped in his and ready to become his third plural wife, Heber C. Kimball tapped me on the shoulder and said, "Cordelia, are you going to deprive the Prophet of his desire that you be his wife?" At that, Walter Cox said, "You may be sealed to the Prophet for eternity and I'll marry you for time." Walter was proxy for Joseph Smith, and I was sealed to him for eternity and to Walter for time. (One time when Cordelia told this story to her granddaughter, Mary Verona Cox, she said, "Verona, in eternity I want the man that was the father of my children and was a good husband and father. I lived with him and loved him.")

I want to bear my testimony, no matter by whom it is denied. The Prophet Joseph Smith taught and practiced polygamy, having five wives with whom I was acquainted. It was just as much a trial to us in those days as it would be to this people today..."

SOURCE: Autobiography of Cordelia Morley Cox. Retrieved from

  • Residence: Pottawattamie, Iowa, United States - 1850
  • Residence: Manti, Sanpete, Utah Territory, United States - 1860
  • Residence: Manti, Sanpete, Utah Territory, United States - 1870
  • Residence: Manti, Sanpete, Utah Territory, United States - 1880
  • Residence: Manti, Sanpete, Utah, United States - 1900
  • Residence: Manti, Sanpete, Utah, United States - 1910
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Cordelia Calista Cox's Timeline

November 28, 1823
Kirtland, Lake County, Ohio, United States
November 15, 1839
Age 15
November 15, 1839
Age 15
December 25, 1845
Age 22
December 25, 1845
Age 22
September 27, 1846
Age 22
Thayer, Union County, Iowa, United States
March 24, 1849
Age 25
Silver Creek, Pottawattamie County, Iowa, United States
April 10, 1851
Age 27
Silver Creek Township, Pottawattamie County, Iowa, United States