Articles by

J Stuart

Review: Joseph Smith Papers Documents, Volume 8: February-November 1841

By May 13, 2019


The Joseph Smith Papers Documents, Documents 8: February-November 1841 reveal Joseph Smith’s life as he endeavored to build a city and expand the faith that he led. These documents also reveal the interstices between these two projects. Through correspondence, revelations, sermons, financial documents, meeting minutes and other significant documents, Volume 8’s editorial team helps readers to understand the multifaceted growth of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints after its first large-scale transatlantic push and before the introduction of temple liturgy.

In the documents created over ten short months, readers begin to see how Joseph Smith’s life was complicated by the many forms of government that he oversaw. Most notably, to me, Joseph Smith and his followers strove to build a city that offered a liberal view of religious tolerance to any who would live in it. The Nauvoo City Council Book records, “Catholics, Presbyterians, Methodists, Baptists, Latter-Day-Saints, Quakers, Episcopalians Universali[s]ts Unitarians, Mahommedans, and all other religious sects and denominations whatever, shall have free toleration and equal Privilieges in this City.” Joseph Smith himself promised to hear any case wherein any person “guilty of ridiculing abusing,  or otherwise depreciating another in consequence of his religion or of disturbing, or interrupting any religious meeting, within the Limits of this City,” could be fined up to $500 and receive six months imprisonment.[1]

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MWHIT Lecture: Quincy Newell to discuss her new book on Jane Manning James on June 4, 2019

By May 9, 2019



Articles from the Journal of Mormon History 45, no. 2 (April 2019)

By April 23, 2019


The latest issue of the Journal of Mormon History arrived in mailboxes this weekend. Here’s a preview of what you’ll find inside:

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10 Questions with Ignacio Garcia

By April 16, 2019


Kurt Manwaring has published an interview with historian Ignacio Garcia over on his site, From the Desk. Garcia earned his Ph.D. in History from the University of Arizona and is Lemuel Hardison Redd, Jr. Professor of Western & Latino History at Brigham Young University and is President Elect of the Mormon History Association. An excerpt from Manwaring’s site is posted below; click over to From the Desk to read the rest!

What are the most important changes MHA has made in the past decade and where do you hope to see the organization 10 years from now? What factors most influence the organization’s ability to realize the progress you envision?

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Editor Search: Journal of Mormon History

By April 9, 2019


The Mormon History Association is conducting a search for editor of the Journal of Mormon History. The editor of the journal determines the content, solicits submissions, oversees peer review, works with submitting authors in performing substantive and stylistic content editing, and coordinates with a JMH production staff and the University of Illinois Press to ensure that issues of the journal are published according to deadline and within budget. The editor has full editorial control of the journal but reports to the MHA board of directors in maintaining a high-quality product that serves as the flagship publication for the organization. The Mormon History Association is particularly interested in candidates with an academic institutional affiliation but will consider submissions by all qualified applicants.

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The person chosen to be the editor will be appointed to a four-year term beginning in January 2020, renewable at the discretion of the MHA board of directors.

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CFP: Book of Mormon Studies Association Conference

By April 4, 2019


The Third Annual Meeting of The Book of Mormon Studies Association
October 11–12, 2019
Utah State University

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The Book of Mormon Studies Association (BoMSA) is pleased to announce its third annual meeting, to be held October 11–12, 2019, at Utah State University. The event is sponsored by USU’s Department of Religious Studies and with thanks to both Philip Barlow and Patrick Mason, successive occupiers of the Leonard J. Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture.

This annual event gathers a variety of scholars invested in serious academic study of the Book of Mormon. It has no particular theme but instead invites papers on any subject related to the Book of Mormon from any viable academic angle. This year’s two keynote speakers will be Paul Gutjahr (Indiana University) and Amy Easton-Flake (Brigham Young University). We will also hold a special book interview session with Community of Christ scholar Dale E. Luffman.

We therefore invite the submission of papers and proposals for inclusion in the 2019 conference program. Note that newcomers to the organization are required to submit a full paper for consideration, while those who have presented at either of the previous two conferences are free to submit a proposal or a paper. Papers submitted should be no longer than 4000 words, while proposals should be between 500 and 750 words.

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Q&A with Sara Georgini

By March 19, 2019


Kurt Manwaring has published an interview with historian Sara Georgini over on his site, From the Desk. Georgini earned her Ph.D. in American History at Boston University and is a Series Editor for The Papers of John Adams at the Massachusetts Historical Society. Her most recent book, Household Gods: The Religious Lives of the Adams Family, examines the religious lives of the Adams Family across several generations. An excerpt from Manwaring’s site (including a question about the Adams Family and Joseph Smith is posted below; click over to From the Desk to read the rest!

How was religion used to frame the successes and failures of John Adams’ political endeavors?

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Call for Applicants: Mormon Studies Publication Workshop

By March 18, 2019


On Thursday, June 6, 2019 the Fourth Annual Mormon Studies Publication Workshop will be held at the University of Utah.

The workshop helped to create a sense of community among young scholars from a variety of places and disciplines while providing helpful feedback for developing projects. Over the past three years, we have received dozens of excellent submissions on race, gender, sexuality, and other historiographical fields. Last year, at Boise State University, we hosted scholars from across the United States California to Massachussetts. You can read more about the 2017 meeting at the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University in St. Louis here.

Workshopped papers from the past three years have become parts of books published by (or under contract with) Oxford University Press, University of Nebraska Press, and Routledge University Press; the Journal of Religion, the Journal of Mormon History, Church History: Studies in Christianity and Culture, completed dissertations, and other distinguished venues.

The workshop, “Writing: Strategies on How and When to Write,” will be held Thursday, June 6 from 10:00 AM AM-3:30 PM. There will be no cost for the workshop beyond punctual arrival and rigorous intellectual engagement.

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New Articles on Mormon History and Mormon Studies

By March 12, 2019


Several articles on Mormon history or Mormon Studies have been published in non-Mormon specific venues in the past few months. While the Journal of Mormon History, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, Sunstone, and BYU Studies continue to be sources of groundbreaking and award-winning scholarship, they are not the only journals interested in the academic study of Mormonism.

I’ve included the abstract and link to each article. Let me know if I missed any from the past few months in the comments!

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Applications Now Open for MWHIT Research Grants

By March 10, 2019


From our friends at the Mormon Women’s History Initiative Team:

We are beyond thrilled to be able to offer two research grants to support work in Mormon women’s history–one student award and one independent scholar award. Deadline to apply is April 1, so don’t delay. Click here for details on the Student Grant and here for details on the Independent Scholar grant.

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