Tag Archives: Joseph Smith

What Were the Origins of Mormon/Non-Mormon Conflict in 1840s Nauvoo?


The non-Mormons of Hancock County, Illinois, in the early 1840s probably disliked the Mormons from the first, in the same way that most Americans have generally disliked what they have viewed as religious fanaticism, but they were initially disposed toward toleration … Continue reading

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The Latter-day Saint Movement and the Concept of a “Chosen People”


Perhaps the single most important tenet of Joseph Smith Jr.’s (1805-1844) theology in founding the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons)  was the identification of his followers as a “latter-day Israel.” This identification drove much of the rest of … Continue reading

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Mormon Nauvoo in the Context of Post-Colonial Studies


To an extent underappreciated by historians, the Mormon experience in Nauvoo between 1839 and 1846 represents an expression of colonialism and its antithesis. The field of post-colonial studies has been gaining prominence since the 1970s. While historians and others debate the … Continue reading

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The Esoteric Mormon Doctrine of Baptism for the Dead


Many have all wondered about it in Washington, D.C., at one time or another while driving around the Beltway and see the Mormon Temple rising before us like the Emerald City out of Oz. What do the Mormons do in there? … Continue reading

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Is There a New Mormon History?


Is there a “New Mormon History?” D. Michael Quinn, one of the foremost practitioners of the type of work distinguished as the “New Mormon History,” certainly thinks so. He assembled more than two decades ago The New Mormon History: Revisionist Essays … Continue reading

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Fawn Brodie and Interpretations of the Origins of Mormon Polyamy?


The place of plural marriage in the early history of the Mormon church has been an important topic of analysis for historians since it first appeared in Nauvoo, Illinois, in the 1840s. It has also been one of the most contentious … Continue reading

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Wednesay’s Book Review: “The Nauvoo Legion in Illinois”


The Nauvoo Legion in Illinois: A History of the Mormon Militia, 1841-1846. By Richard E. Bennett, Susan Easton Black, and Donald Q. Cannon. Norman, OK: The Arthur H. Clark Company, An imprint of the University of Oklahoma Press, 2010. 436 … Continue reading

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The Conspiracy Theme and the Late Twentieth Century RLDS Church


The conspiracy theme is still present in the modern Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS), which was renamed the Community of Christ (CofC)in 2000. This time it can be seen most frequently among some RLDS fundamentalists … Continue reading

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The Conspiracy Motif and the Nineteenth Century RLDS Church


While the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS) emerged from elements in the early Mormon movement that accepted more mainstream American religious and social ideals its membership also spun its own formidable conspiracy theory. An early and … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “The Journey of a People, 1820-1844”


The Journey of a People: The Era of Restoration, 1820 to 1844. By Mark A. Scherer. Independence, MO: Community of Christ Seminary Press, 2013. vii + 535. Acknowledgments, illustrations, footnotes, bibliographic essay, selected bibliography, index. ISBN: 978-0-8309-1381-7. Hardcover with dustjacket. … Continue reading

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