A new photograph of Joseph Smith seems to pop up every few years. However, all of the candidates have been ruled out—until now. While not the slam dunk some media outlets would have you believe, the Smith/Larsen daguerreotype makes a stronger case than we’ve seen before. In this interview, Lachlan Mackay walks through some of the historical details.
Brigham Young is one of the most well-known figures in the history of the American West. But there are scores of lesser-known facts from his life that range from coining the term “pony express” to getting a bad rap in the Journal of Discourses. Similarly, many popular stories about Brigham Young fall into the realm of myth. For example, you won’t find his hearse at Disneyland—and he didn’t miraculously leave room in the Salt Lake Temple for elevators.
The Come, Follow Me 2023 lessons are drawn from the New Testament. The Sunday School curriculum complements the Book of Mormon as a witness of Jesus Christ, and the title is taken from the Savior’s invitation in Matthew and Luke: “Come, follow me.” This article contains highlights of research findings by faithful Latter-day Saints and notable secular scholars, along with the 2023 Come, Follow Me schedule.
Most biblical scholars say that Jesus Christ was born between 6 and 4 BC. However, there’s not much consensus beyond that. BYU scholar Jeffrey R. Chadwick believes he can pinpoint the birth of Christ to December of 5 BC. In this interview, he explains how he uses Latter-day Saint scriptures like the Book of Mormon to estimate when Jesus was born.
Nineteenth century Latter-day Saint missionaries preached to many different cultures, including Europeans, Native Americans, and Pacific Islanders. At the same time, their home lives were complicated by the practice of polygamy and the long absences of the men as they served missions abroad. In this interview, Imperial Zions author Amanda Hendrix-Komoto discusses the complicated intersections of race, family, respectability, and settlement that Latter-day Saints experienced in Utah and abroad in service of their religion.
After attending a Relief Society meeting in 1857, Wilford Woodruff recorded in his journal that “the house was full of females.” As someone who practiced plural marriage instituted by the Prophet Joseph Smith, the comment could have applied to Woodruff’s home life. In this interview, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich discusses how early Latter-day Saint sources shed light on female authority and plural marriage.
Susa Young Gates was one of the first members of the church to learn about the vision of the redemption of the dead. Joseph F. Smith told her about his revelatory experience before it was publicly known. In this interview, historian Lisa Olsen Tait tralks about the relationship between Susa Young Gates and the prophet—and what happened the night she learned about the vision.
Truman Madsen is perhaps best known for his Joseph Smith lectures. The BYU professor thought of the Prophet as a window through which he could see Jesus Christ. But his contributions extend far beyond lectures given at Brigham Young University. Those who knew him best, like his wife, Ann Madsen, say there was much more to Truman G. Madsen than meets the eye.