Willard and Rebecca Bean

Welcome to WillardBean.com.  This site is dedicated to the life and mission of Willard and Rebecca Bean and their family.      Here is where we collect and share photos, stories and recordings of their lives and keep their legacy of missionary work alive.

Willard and Rebecca’s wedding photo

Willard and Rebecca spent most of their lives as Missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.   In February of 1915, they were asked to leave their home in Utah, and move back to Palmyra New York to care for the Joseph Smith Farm and be Missionaries and emissaries for the LDS Church in that area.   What was initially a 5 year mission grew into a life.   The Beans lived in  Palymra for over 24 years before finally returning back to Utah.



The Beans

Willard was also an accomplished boxer, athlete, gymnast and scriptorian.   Due to his fierce competitive nature, unwavering defense of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and never failing love for his fellow man, he became widely know as “The fighting Parson”.

Rebecca, while generally not preferring the attention, was as dedicated and steadfast in her testimony of The Gospel as was Willard.  She would stand beside him and take all manner of abuse, never backing down from what she knew to be true and bearing open testimony of the truth.  She was a beautiful singer and willingly opened her home weekly to people of all faiths, beliefs and creeds.  She was well known for her cooking throughout the Eastern United States and it was not uncommon for her kitchen to feed several hundreds of visitors in the course of a week.



In 1907 the LDS Church purchased the farmhouse and much of the surrounding farm land that was originally owned by Joseph Smith Sr.   in Palmyra New York.   Known as the Smith Family Farm.

In 1915, the Beans were asked to move back to Palmyra to care for the farm and to befriend the people of Palmyra.   In  the early years, there was still quite a bit of antagonism towards members of the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints.   Life wasn’t easy for the Beans those years.

However, through perseverance, dedication and love the Beans came to love their town of Palmyra and earned the love and respect of people of Palmyra.



We are so excited to have this site up and running and we’d love to hear your thoughts and comments.  Be sure to check back frequently and be sure to let us know if you have any suggestions or would like to help contribute.