History

Power from on High

Power From on High
Authority and priesthood were concepts that developed gradually in Mormon theology, not as thunderbolts but as ideas that acquired meaning and momentum over time. Acting initially on the basis of implied leadership, Joseph Smith moved toward explicit angelic authority and an increasingly defined structure drawn from biblical models.

San Bernardino

San Bernardino
From the beginning, Brigham Young had misgivings about the colony. Particularly perplexing was the mix of atypical Latter-day Saints who gravitated there. Among these were ex-slave holders; inter-racial polygamists; horse-race gamblers; distillery proprietors; former mountain men, prospectors, and mercenaries; disgruntled Polynesian immigrants; and finally Apostle Amasa M. Lyman, the colony's leader, who became involved in spiritualist seances.

Prophet Puzzle

Interpretive Essays on Joseph Smith
Interpretive Essays on Joseph Smith Essays on Mormonism Series No. 9 Bryan Waterman, editor Paperback / 300 pages / 1-56085-121-X / $18.95 Unraveling the complexities of Joseph Smith’s character and motives is difficult, but before the puzzle can be solved, all the pieces must be gathered and correctly interpreted. Parts of the picture are still

Mormon Hierarchy

Origins of Power
At Smith's martyrdom in 1844, the church had five leading quorums of authority. The most obvious successor to Smith, Illinois stake president William Marks, opposed the secret rites of polygamy, anointing, endowments, and the clandestine political activity that had characterized the church in Illinois. The secret Council of Fifty had recently ordained Smith as King on Earth and sent ambassadors abroad to form alliances against the United States.

Mormon Hierarchy

Extensions of Power
Extensions of Power by D. Michael Quinn Hardback / 960 pages / 1-56085-060-4 / $44.95 The Mormon church today is led by an elite group of older men, nearly three-quarters of whom are related to current or past general church authorities. This dynastic hierarchy meets in private; neither its minutes nor the church’s finances are

Early Mormonism and the Magic World View

Early Mormonism and the Magic World View
In this ground-breaking book, D. Michael Quinn masterfully reconstructs an earlier age, finding ample evidence for folk magic in nineteenth-century New England, as he does in Mormon founder Joseph Smith's upbringing. Quinn discovers that Smith's world was inhabited by supernatural creatures whose existence could be both symbolic and real.

The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship

The Mysteries of Godliness
A veil of secrecy surrounds Mormon temple worship. While officially intended to preserve the sacredness of the experience, the silence leaves many Latter-day Saints mystified. What are the derivation and development of the holy endowment, and if these were known, would the experience be more meaningful?

Salamander

The Story of the Mormon Forgery Murders
What was the "salamander letter" and why were so many people determined to possess—and to conceal—it? Why was this one of the most unusual cases in American forensic history? Come find out!

Utah’s Lawless Fringe

Utah's Lawless Fringe
I Utah, law and order developed organically rather than by legislation, in this anthology several aspects of the process are considered, including one of the worst manifestations of citizen action: vigilantism. Territorial Utah witnessed more lynchings than legal executions. Another citizen trait was an unexpected indifference to vice. In 1908 Salt Lake City had 148 registered prostitutes overseen by a madam who was recruited for the position by the...

“The Skeleton in Grandpa’s Barn”

The Skeleton in Grandpa's Barn
The loft of Grandpa's barn in Salt Lake City was "off limits," the trap door padlocked. For boys like Zack Lund, Grandpa might as well have hung out a large "welcome" sign inviting them to break in and see what was hidden there. In Parowan, young Nevada Driggs decided to discover for himself whether Captain Fremont had really slept in his grandma's bed. Example of early Utah childhood narratives.