Blog Archives

The Dennis Wendt Jr. Post*: Undercover for the Lord

April 26, 2008 | 23 comments

2 August 1888: Elder Alma P. Richards, ten months into his missionary service and working without a companion, stopped at a hotel in Meridian, Mississippi and made arrangements with a porter to keep some books and clothing until the elder’s return, expected to be a few days later. Richards, on foot, left Meridian to visit friends just over the state line in Jasper County, Alabama. He was never heard from again. Read more »

One Hundred Thousand – WINNER DECLARED

April 19, 2008 | 68 comments

Within the next few hours, T&S’s spam filter is going to announce that it has spared us from 100,000 offers of recreational pharmaceuticals, links to images of anatomically correct models in morally incorrect situations, promises of guaranteed wealth, solemn pleas from 12,394 persons of good moral character who need your help kindly Christian sir to transfer funds out of war-torn countries for to do the good Lord’s most benificent charitableness, and warnings that we will surely be cast down to the uttermost depths of hell unless we renounce our false Jesus and transfer allegiance to the god of the... Read more »

Thank you, Raymond

April 19, 2008 | 6 comments

Thanks to Raymond Takashi Swenson for his slate of intriguing and challenging posts over the past couple of weeks. Read more »

The Case of the Missing Pioneer

April 16, 2008 | 30 comments
The Case of the Missing Pioneer

Most people with even a general sense of the Mormon pioneers are familiar with their “roadometer,” a set of cog wheels fastened to a wagon wheel, which measured and recorded distance traveled without the need for a human observer to count the revolutions of the wheel. Read more »

To see ourselves as others see us

April 13, 2008 | 29 comments

A sister in Relief Society told us this morning of having toured Salt Lake’s then-newly renovated Cathedral of the Madeleine Read more »

“Well Known Facts”

April 10, 2008 | 69 comments

This week while we’re hearing lurid tales from Tom Green County, Texas, it is worthwhile to remember exactly how ugly were the lies once printed about our own people, some of them told unashamedly by federal appointees and officers of the 19th century court. Read more »

Introducing Raymond Takashi Swenson

April 8, 2008 | 9 comments

To help us compensate for the shortage of lawyers at T&S, Raymond Takashi Swenson has agreed to guest blog for a week or two. Read more »

Martin Luther King in Deseret

April 4, 2008 | 17 comments

On this 40th anniversary of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, and in the pre-Conference blogging lull, perhaps there is room in your day to remember Dr. King’s visit to Salt Lake City. Read more »

And Yet Another Joseph Smith Photograph

April 1, 2008 | 62 comments
And Yet Another Joseph Smith Photograph

The April 1st posting of this article may tempt you to think this is an April Fool’s prank. I wish it were. It is not. Read more »

The CSI Effect and Mormon History

March 20, 2008 | 26 comments

Television police dramas are so popular that they have come to influence the American legal system — or so say believers in the “CSI Effect.” Read more »

Rumor-Mongering: Joseph Smith Daguerreotype

March 17, 2008 | 110 comments

The Church History Library/Archives staff have been hit with a wave of telephone calls today from Church members looking for confirmation of the latest rumor to hit the LDS fan rumor mill. Read more »

Substituting One Speculation for Another

March 16, 2008 | 55 comments

Our Sunday School class opened this morning with a discussion of the “generals in the war in heaven” nonsense that the Church is trying so hard to quash. Read more »

The Missionary at Mass

March 12, 2008 | 49 comments

My father used to point to the ceiling in our living room and claim he could still see a dent made by my head as I jumped up in excitement over discovering that my call was to the Switzerland Geneva Mission. Read more »

Forging a Life

March 11, 2008 | 20 comments

Although she had immigrated to Boston, the story of Misha Defonseca didn’t get nearly as much press last week in the U.S. as it did in Europe, when she joined a long line of self-confessed fakes Read more »

Living with Another’s Agency

February 20, 2008 | 16 comments

How often do you want to “fix things” for someone you love because you (think you) see so much more clearly than he does? Read more »

The Childless Ones

February 11, 2008 | 76 comments

We are reminded again of the importance of families to God’s eternal plan. We are reminded again that the Church teaches to the ideal, to the pattern, to the eternal. Those of us (men as well as women) whose lives do not — will not, cannot, in mortality — reflect the divine pattern are reminded again to turn to God for answers in our personal circumstances. Sometimes it helps to know that the saints, as well as a Heavenly Father, understand what is missing, and that we would mirror the divine pattern if only we could. Read more »

The Old Written Order of Things

February 8, 2008 | 41 comments

The Presiding Bishopric’s Office used to publish a monthly magazine called Progress of the Church, filled with news and statistics and directives to Church leaders at the local level. Read more »

Mistrust and Verify

January 15, 2008 | 29 comments

A reader asks me to expand on a recent comment regarding historians and histories of Mormonism. I do so realizing that it may wrongly be interpreted as personal; my purpose is to illustrate the causes for my earlier evaluation and to demonstrate the value of questioning claims that don’t quite “feel” right. Read more »

Joseph Smith, Again for the First Time

January 12, 2008 | 29 comments

Sometimes I have suffered from convert envy. Read more »

Utah Historical Quarterly: Utah War Issue

January 10, 2008 | 23 comments

“One hundred and fifty years ago a federal army of nearly two thousand soldiers under the command of Col. Albert Sidney Johnston huddled in their makeshift quarters at Camp Scott near the ruins of Fort Bridger in southwestern Wyoming to wait out the bitter winter and prepare to march into the Salt Lake Valley later in the spring of 1858.” Read more »

Primary Was Intended for Boys

December 19, 2007 | 71 comments

(and always has been). Read more »

In Which Jules Verne Meets Clarissa

December 10, 2007 | 17 comments
In Which Jules Verne Meets Clarissa

Clarissa, the daughter of commenter East Coast, is a seventh-grader, the only Latter-day Saint in a student body of more than 600. Read more »

La Ville des Mormons

December 6, 2007 | 25 comments

Read more »

Tracing Emily (updated)

November 27, 2007 | 22 comments

This story begins at the bitter end, with suicide in a Butte brothel. Read more »