Knight Family History
Joseph Knight Sr. Cane Presented to LDS Church

Jim Knight (left) is thanked by Elder Jensen of the Seventy (right)
A walking cane, given as a symbol of friendship from the Prophet Joseph Smith to Joseph Knight Sr., is now in the possession of the Church History Department, an historic donation from descendants of Joseph Knight Sr., one of the early faithful members of the LDS Church.

The donation was made in a May 29, 2009 presentation at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, at which Elder Marlin K. Jensen of the Seventy, Church Historian and Recorder, received the cane from Jim Knight of Arizona, a spokesman for the Knight family descendants gathered for the presentation. Nearly 100 Knight descendants were in attendance.

"This cane is a memorial of friendship, of mutual faith, that Joseph Smith and the Joseph Knight family share," Jim Knight said. "Our family often talks about what transpired when Joseph Smith presented the cane to Joseph Knight Sr. Joseph Smith spotted his dear friend, Joseph Knight, hobbling down a Nauvoo street. Father Knight, in his 70s, had been the Prophet's friend for almost 20 years. Joseph stepped up to him, put his arm around him, pressed his elderly friend's gnarled fingers onto the top of the cane and said, “Brother Knight, you need this cane more than I do.” The Prophet told Father Knight to keep the cane as long as he lived and to pass it on to Knight descendants with the first name of Joseph.

The cane has passed in turn to five succeeding generations of Joseph Knights. "Now, it's my generation's responsibility to ensure that the cane is safely preserved for the Knight family descendants and the Church members to enjoy," stressed Jim Knight, son of Joseph Adair Knight, who was the last “Joseph” Knight to hold the cane.

Pictured: Joseph Robert, Joseph Adair, Joseph Byron and Joseph Knight with cane.
Elder Jensen, in receiving the cane, said, "This speaks volumes about the history of our Church and is a direct link, if you will, between your Joseph Knight Sr., who I think can be called one of the ‘founding fathers’ of the Church, and you as descendants of that wonderful man and all of us as members of the Church today. We can feel this connection in a very tangible way because of your generosity in parting with this cane."

Click to See Church News Article on Cane Donation