Journal 48:1 | BYU Studies

Journal 48:1

Volume 48:1 (2009)
BYU Studies is now offering the entire journal as a PDF download. In BYU Studies issue 48.1, Morris Thurston writes about Joseph Smith's most famous legal case: he was tried as an accessory to the attempted murder of former Missouri Governor Lilburn W. Boggs. Joseph's trial caused quite a sensation in Springfield, Illinois, and newspapers far and wide gave the case headline status. Another...Read more

The Boggs Shooting and Attempted Extradition: Joseph Smith's Most Famous Case

When Missouri governor Lilburn Boggs accused Joseph Smith (founder of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) of being the mastermind behind his attempted assassination in 1842, Joseph Smith's enemies tried to extradite him to Missouri for trial three times. Each time, Joseph successfully appealed to the laws of the land and exerted self-preserving political influence through the Nauvoo... Read more

Singing the Word of God: Five Hymns by President Frederick G. Williams

Frederick G. Williams (1787–1842) was a member of the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints under Joseph Smith and served as his personal scribe. His descendant of the same name now examines evidence proving that the Church leader, historian, doctor, editor, and Kirtland landowner also composed hymns. The article discusses the subject matter of Williams's hymns,... Read more

Thomas Farrar Whitley's Mission Photos of Tonga, 1935–1938

Thomas Farrar Whitley served an LDS Church mission to Tonga in the late 1930s and documented his experiences there through journaling, correspondence, and photography. The author shares photographs and quotes from Whitley's journal, capturing the Tongan way of life in the 1930s. The article documents the small group of faithful Latter-day Saints and missionaries who established a foothold for the... Read more


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The Patterns of Missionary Work and Emigration in Early Victorian Buckinghamshire, England, 1849–1878

Latter-day Saint missionaries from America began proselyting in Buckinhamshire, England, in the 1840s and established the first branches of the Church here in 1849, but they did not experience the same dramatic successes their colleagues encountered in other regions of the British Isles. Read more

Mormon Cinema on the Web

Mormon cinema on the Internet is a moving target. Because change in this medium occurs so rapidly, the information presented in this review will necessarily become dated in a few months and much more so in the years to come. What I hope to provide, therefore, is a snapshot of online resources related to LDS or Mormon cinema near the beginning of their evolution. I believe that the Internet will... Read more

American Religions and the Family: How Faith Traditions Cope with Modernization and Democracy

This fifteen-chapter volume addresses two key questions: (a) How do various American religions negotiate the pressures of modernization, such as technology, the speed of life, and consumerism? and (b) How do various American religions wrestle with challenging aspects of democracy, such as heightened individualism, the social reconstruction of morality, and the waning acceptance of traditional... Read more

The Thirteenth Apostle: What the Gospel of Judas Really Says

Among the various apocryphal titles mentioned by the early Church fathers is the Gospel of Judas, a Coptic version of which was recently found in Egypt, purportedly taken from a limestone box together with several other texts during an illegal raid of a burial cave in 1978. Before its first publication by the National Geographic Society in 2006, it was apparently sold, stolen, recovered, sold... Read more

Voting about God in Early Church Councils

In his latest monograph, Ramsay MacMullen, emeritus professor of history at Yale University, takes a wonderfully fresh look at the early Christian councils. At the beginning of his study, MacMullen recognizes the primacy of the Council of Nicaea (AD 325) whose definition of the Supreme Being forms the basis of the majority Christian view on the nature of God. The Nicene Creed was "made formal and... Read more