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Did Joseph Smith have sexual relationships with his young wives?

While Joseph Smith was alive, his practice of Joseph Smith’s polygamy was not widely discussed. However, in Salt Lake City, during a court case known as the “Temple Lot Case,” many women testified of their marriages to Smith. In this case, various women confirmed that they had a sexual relationship with Smith, but Smith never had children with these women. Despite these women’s testimonies, some still claim that Smith fathered children with his plural wives. However, DNA analysis has not produced evidence to support these claims. It appears that the only children that Smith had were with his first wife, Emma. They had nine biological children and two adopted children. 

New evidence suggests that when Joseph Smith first started marrying plural wives in Nauvoo he intended those marriages to be nonsexual. In Nauvoo, Smith initially was only sealed for eternity to women who were legally married to other men. He also chose to marry women who were pregnant with children by their legal husbands. It was a common belief among nineteenth-century Christians that husbands and wives should not have sexual relations when the wife was pregnant. If this common belief was held by Joseph Smith, it suggests that Smith chose to marry pregnant women so that he and others would understand that he was not engaged in a sexual relationship with them.