Documentary History

Mormon Democrat

The Religious and Political Memoirs of James Henry Moyle
James Henry Moyle was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury under U.S. president Woodrow Wilson, Commissioner of Customs under President Theodore Roosevelt, and special assistant to treasury secretary Henry Morgenthau. He was also president of the LDS Eastern States Mission.

An American Prophet’s Record

The Diaries and Journals of Joseph Smith
Published for the first time in their entirety, the personal diaries of Mormon founder Joseph Smith (1805-44) provide an unequaled view of this controversial American religious leader. Previous compilations of carefully selected and sometimes rewritten passages of Smith's diaries and journals do not capture the intensity of the present, unexpurgated edition.

Waiting for World’s End

The Diaries of Wilford Woodruff
Woodruff became president of the Mormon church while hiding from federal marshals. Convinced that non-Mormons, or "gentiles," would be smitten by the calamities promised in the Bible, he bided his time in exile until Mormonism prevailed. However, as the Parousia was delayed, he eventually decided to compromise with the United States.

History’s Apprentice

The Diaries of B. H. Roberts
These diaries cover a decade, 1880-1898, in which Roberts was active in Utah as a young church leader. They are his apprenticeship years when he developed the skills that would characterize the rest of his career. Besides illuminating the character of the man himself, they also add much to our knowledge of this pivotal time in history.

Danish Apostle

Danish Apostle
Lund converted to Mormonism, immigrated to the United States, and became an apostle and later counselor to the LDS church president—also Salt Lake temple president and Church Historian. His diaries cover the tensions between Apostle Moses Thatcher and his colleagues; the rejection by the U.S. House of Representatives of Utah's Congressman, B. H. Roberts; the stormy hearings over whether to seat LDS apostle Reed Smoot in the U.S. Senate;...

In the World

The Diaries of Reed Smoot
It was because of Smoot's political clout that Mormon immigrants were allowed to leave Ellis Island; that LDS colonists in Chihuahua were provided safe passage out of Mexico; and that missionaries were allowed back into Australia, Europe, New Zealand, and South Africa after World War I. On the other hand, his protection of Mormon sugar interests in Idaho and Hawaii caused instability in Cuba, his insistence on punitive reparations...

Early Mormon Documents: Volume Two

Early Mormon Documents 2
Who else, besides Joseph Smith, saw the gold plates from which the Book of Mormon was translated? Martin Harris, one of the Three Witnesses, said that he saw the holy record with his "spiritual eyes," that the plates were otherwise kept concealed in a wooden box, wrapped in a cloth, and that nobody saw them. The Eight Witnesses, according to Harris, hesitated to sign a written testimonial for the...

Early Mormon Documents: Volume Three

Early Mormon Documents 3
In this collection of primary sources, editor Dan Vogel offers readers the pleasures and frustrations that greet professional historians. Raw and uncensored, all the documents upon which a history of Mormon origins could be based are here, with strengths and weaknesses inherent in any eyewitness account. They are colorful and detailed, opinionated and inconsistent. In tone they range from ultra-devotional to antagonistic. Yet each also contributes an important piece...

Early Mormon Documents: Volume Four

Early Mormon Documents 4
Today when we think of Joseph Smith as a young man, we tend to picture him in a Palmyra, New York, setting. He also spent three years in Harmony, Pennsylvania. When he first arrived there, he boarded with Isaac Hale and worked for Josiah Stowell. Later, after he married Hale's daughter Emma, he became a permanent resident and property owner. He also spent about six months across the border...

Early Mormon Documents: Volume Five

Early Mormon Documents 5
Unlike Oliver Cowdery's grandiloquence and Martin Harris's mercurial temperament, David Whitmer—third of Three Witnesses to the Book of Mormon—was plain-spoken, reliable, and straight-forward, as one might expect from his Mennonite upbringing. Readers will notice the care he took to avoid exaggeration. "We did not touch nor handle the plates," he affirmed repeatedly. If he felt a reporter erred in detail or in conveying the overall spirit of the Three...