Project Team

CHURCH HISTORY DEPARTMENT EXECUTIVES

Executive Director, Church History Department, and Church Historian and Recorder

Assistant Executive Director, Church History Department

Managing Director, Church History Department, and Assistant Church Historian and Recorder

NATIONAL ADVISORY BOARD

Gouverneur Morris Professor Emeritus of History, Columbia University, and former Howard W. Hunter Chair of Mormon Studies, Claremont Graduate University

James A. Bostwick Chair and Professor of Literature and Religion, University of Richmond

Founder and Former General Editor, Joseph Smith Papers

Distinguished Professor in the Humanities, Danforth Center on Religion and Politics, Washington University

Program Director, Documents Compass, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, University of Virginia

Chancellor’s Professor, Emeritus, of Religious Studies and Adjunct Professor of American History and American Studies, Indiana University, Bloomington

Jonathan Edwards Professor of American Religious History and Chair, Department of Religious Studies, Yale University

DIRECTOR OF PUBLICATIONS

Matthew J. Grow

 

BIOGRAPHIES OF CHURCH HISTORY DEPARTMENT EXECUTIVES

Elder Steven E. Snow Steven E. Snow

was sustained as a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in March 2001. He is currently serving as executive director of the Church History Department and as church historian and recorder. Elder Snow served as a member of the Presidency of the Seventy from 2007 to 2012. Before he was appointed to the Seventy, Elder Snow was a senior partner in the Utah law firm of Snow Nuffer. Elder Snow has been actively involved in the support of education, having served as a member and president of his local school board, chairman of the Utah State Board of Regents, and chairman of the Western States Commission of Higher Education. He was appointed a member of the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships in 2012. He earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Utah State University and a Juris Doctor from Brigham Young University. He chairs the Church History Department Editorial Board.

 J. Devn Cornish

was sustained as a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 2, 2011. At the time of his call, he had been serving as a member of the Sixth Quorum of the Seventy in the North America Southeast Area. He is currently serving as the Assistant Executive Director of the Church History Department. Elder Cornish received a BA in biology from Johns Hopkins University in 1975. In 1978, he received a doctor of medicine, also from Johns Hopkins University. He completed his pediatric residency at the Boston Children’s Hospital at Harvard University in 1981. In 1985, he completed a neonatology fellowship program at Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center. Subsequently, he was Professor and Chairman, and later a Vice Chairman in the Department of Pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine. He is a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board.

Reid L. Neilson

is assistant church historian and recorder for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and managing director of the Church History Department. He received his BA in international relations from Brigham Young University in 1996. After graduation he worked for Arthur Andersen’s Strategy, Finance, and Economics Division in Los Angeles and London, consulted for Walt Disney’s Strategic Planning Division in Tokyo, and researched for the University of Michigan Business School’s Asia-Pacific Human Resources Partnership in Hong Kong. He also took graduate degrees in American history and business administration at BYU in 2001 and 2002, respectively. In 2006 he completed his PhD in religious studies (American religious history emphasis) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was named an International Studies Scholar for Tomorrow Fellow. He began his academic career as an assistant professor of LDS church history and doctrine at BYU before joining the Church History Department in 2009. Dr. Neilson is the author of several books and the editor or coeditor of over a dozen volumes. He is a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board.

 

NATIONAL ADVISORY BOARD BIOGRAPHIES

Richard Lyman Bushman,

a member of the National Advisory Board of the Joseph Smith Papers, served as a general editor of the Papers from the project’s founding until 2013. He is Gouverneur Morris Professor Emeritus of History at Columbia University and former Howard W. Hunter Chair of Mormon Studies at Claremont Graduate University. He received his BA and PhD degrees from Harvard University. He taught at Brigham Young University, Boston University, and the University of Delaware before joining the Columbia faculty. His published works include From Puritan to Yankee: Character and the Social Order in Connecticut, 1690–1765 (1967), King and People in Provincial Massachusetts (1985), and The Refinement of America: Persons, Houses, Cities (1992). He has served as president of the Mormon History Association and the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic. His books on Mormon themes include Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling (2005), Joseph Smith and the Beginnings of Mormonism (1984), and Believing History (2004).

Terryl L. Givens,

a member of the Joseph Smith Papers National Advisory Board, is James A. Bostwick Chair and Professor of Literature and Religion at the University of Richmond. He received a BA in comparative literature from Brigham Young University and an MA and PhD in comparative literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Among his religious studies work are several titles with Oxford University Press. His works include The Viper on the Hearth: Mormons, Myths and the Construction of Heresy; By the Hand of the Mormon: The American Scripture That Launched a New World Religion; and When Souls Had Wings: Pre-Mortal Existence in Western Thought. His latest book, the first volume of Wrestling the Angel: The Foundations of Mormon Thought, is titled Cosmos, God, Humanity. He has also published essays in Romanticism, literary theory, and cultural studies.

Dean C. Jessee

is a founder of the Joseph Smith Papers and a member of the National Advisory Board. He served as a general editor of the Papers from the project’s founding until 2013. He received an MA degree in LDS church history from Brigham Young University. His career includes working for the Archives and the History Division of the Historical Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from 1964 to 1981, followed by nineteen years’ service at the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Latter-day Saint History at Brigham Young University. His years of gathering and publishing Joseph Smith documents laid the groundwork for the current Joseph Smith Papers. His publications include Personal Writings of Joseph Smith (1984, 2001); Papers of Joseph Smith, vols. 1 and 2 (1989, 1991); Brigham Young’s Letters to His Sons (1974); and numerous articles dealing with aspects of nineteenth-century Mormon history. He is a past president of the Mormon History Association.

Laurie Maffly-Kipp,

a member of the National Advisory Board of the Joseph Smith Papers, is a distinguished professor in the humanities at the Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University in St. Louis. She received her BA from Amherst College in English and religion and completed a PhD in American history at Yale University. She taught previously at Amherst College, Yale University, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she chaired the Religious Studies Department for five years. Her research and teaching focus on Mormonism, African American religions, religion on the Pacific borderlands of the Americas, and issues of intercultural contact. The recipient of numerous fellowships and grants and the editor or author of many books and articles, she has most recently published Setting Down the Sacred Past: African-American Race Histories (Harvard University Press, 2010); American Scriptures, a Penguin Classics anthology of sacred texts (2010); and Women’s Work, a coedited collection of writings by African American women historians (Oxford University Press, 2010).

Susan Holbrook Perdue,

a member of the Joseph Smith Papers National Advisory Board, is program director of Documents Compass, a newly created service that provides digital tools and methods to documentary editors. She is the current president of the Association for Documentary Editing. She was senior associate editor of The Papers of Thomas Jefferson: Retirement Series, associate editor of The Papers of John Marshall, and research and editorial assistant for The Papers of James Madison. She is the coeditor with Mary-Jo Kline of the third edition of A Guide to Documentary Editing.

Stephen J. Stein,

a member of the National Advisory Board of the Joseph Smith Papers, is Chancellor’s Professor, Emeritus, of Religious Studies and Adjunct Professor of American History and American Studies at Indiana University, Bloomington. He holds a PhD degree from Yale University. He joined the faculty of Indiana University in 1970. Among his extensive writings are books dealing with Jonathan Edwards, alternative religions, and apocalypticism. He is the editor of three volumes in the Yale University Press edition of The Works of Jonathan Edwards, The Cambridge Companion to Jonathan Edwards, and the third volume of The Encyclopedia of Apocalypticism. He is the author of The Shaker Experience in America: A History of the United Society of Believers and Communities of Dissent: A History of Alternative Religions in America. He is currently serving as the general editor of the projected three-volume The Cambridge History of Religions in America.

Harry S. Stout,

a member of the Joseph Smith Papers National Advisory Board, is Jonathan Edwards Professor of American Religious History at Yale University and Chair, Department of Religious Studies. He received a BA degree from Calvin College, after which he studied at Princeton Theological Seminary and University. He holds MA and PhD degrees from Kent State University. He taught at the University of Connecticut before joining the faculty at Yale in 1986. From 1991 until the present, he has served as the general editor, The Works of Jonathan Edwards, and general editor, Religion in America, a series with more than 30 books published to date. Among his published works, which include books, articles, review essays, and book reviews, are Jonathan Edwards at 300: Essays on the Tercentenary of His Birth (coedited with Kenneth Minkema and Caleb Maskell), the award-winning Upon the Altar of the Nation: A Moral History of the Civil War, and Stories of Faith, Stories of America: Religion in United States History (with Randall Balmer and Grant Wacker).

 

GENERAL EDITOR BIOGRAPHIES

is a general editor, along with Matthew J. Grow and Matthew C. Godfrey, of the Joseph Smith Papers. He served as the project’s managing editor until 2012. He received history degrees from the University of Utah, the University of Virginia, and Brigham Young University. From 1972 until 1980, he was part of the History Division of the Historical Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with assignments both as a researcher and writer and as an archivist. He moved to Brigham Young University in 1980 when the History Division was transferred there to become the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Latter-day Saint History. From 1986 through 2002, he served as managing director of that research institute and as a professor of church history and doctrine. From 1988 to 1991, he served as one of the editors for Macmillan’s Encyclopedia of Mormonism. Most of his publications have involved Brigham Young and early Utah or pre-Utah Mormon history, including Men with a Mission: The Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in the British Isles, 1837–1841. Many of them also concern Joseph Smith and early Latter-day Saint leadership. He served as president of the Mormon History Association from 2006 to 2007.

 Matthew J. Grow

is director of publications at the Church History Department and a general editor of the Joseph Smith Papers. He has co-edited two recent volumes from the Church Historian’s Press: The First Fifty Years of Relief Society and The Council of Fifty, Minutes, March 1844–January 1846. He has also authored or co-authored books with Oxford University Press and Yale University Press, including award-winning biographies of Parley P. Pratt and Thomas L. Kane. Grow has published in various scholarly journals, including Journal of the Early Republic, Church History, American Nineteenth-Century History, and Journal of Mormon History. He was previously an assistant professor of history and director of the Center for Communal Studies at the University of Southern Indiana. He received his PhD in American history from the University of Notre Dame.

 Matthew C. Godfrey

is a general editor and the managing historian of the Joseph Smith Papers. He is also a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. Matthew holds a PhD in American and public history from Washington State University. Before joining the project, he was president of Historical Research Associates, a historical and archeological consulting firm headquartered in Missoula, Montana. He is the author of Religion, Politics, and Sugar: The Mormon Church, the Federal Government, and the Utah-Idaho Sugar Company, 1907–1921 (2007), which was a co-winner of the Mormon History Association’s Smith-Petit Award for Best First Book. He has also published articles in Agricultural History, The Public Historian, Pacific Northwest Quarterly, BYU Studies Quarterly, Mormon Historical Studies, and various collections of essays. He has presented papers at conferences of the Mormon History Association, the National Council on Public History, the American Society for Environmental History, and the Western History Association, among other organizations.

 

CONTRIBUTOR BIOGRAPHIES

Mason K. Allred

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He earned a BA in history from Brigham Young University–Hawaii and an MA and PhD in German studies from the University of California, Berkeley. He is a cultural historian of media, historiography, and historical experience. As a Fulbright Scholar, he spent a year in the archives of Germany for his book, Weimar Cinema, Embodiment, and Historicity (Routledge, 2017), on the relationship between film and modern historicity. He was a contributor to the documentary sourcebook The Promise of Cinema: German Film Theory 1907–1933 (University of California Press, 2016). His interdisciplinary work has been published in peer-reviewed journals such as the Journal of the American Academy of Religion, Jewish Studies Quarterly, and The Journal of Popular Culture. He has also contributed chapters to Film and History (Bertz + Fischer, 2015) and Dorian: A Peculiar Edition (Peculiar Pages, 2015).

 Mark Ashurst-McGee

is a senior historian in the Church History Department and the senior research and review editor for the Joseph Smith Papers, where he also serves as a specialist in document analysis and documentary editing methodology. He holds a PhD in history from Arizona State University and has trained at the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents. He has coedited several volumes of The Joseph Smith Papers and is the author of several articles on Joseph Smith and early Mormon history published in peer-reviewed journals and other scholarly venues.

Alexander L. Baugh

serves as a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. A professor of LDS church history and doctrine at Brigham Young University, he received a BS from Utah State University and holds MA and PhD degrees from BYU. His career has included work as an instructor and director for the LDS Church Educational System. He is the author or editor of five books on early Mormon history. His published articles have appeared in BYU Studies, the John Whitmer Historical Association Journal, Mormon Historical Studies, the Ensign, The Religious Educator: Perspectives of the Restored Gospel, and BYU Religious Education Review. The recipient of awards from the Mormon History Association for his scholarly works, he is completing a book manuscript on the Hawn’s Mill massacre that occurred in northern Missouri in 1838.

 Suzy Bills

is an editor for the Church Historian’s Press. She earned a BA in history and a minor in editing from Brigham Young University, followed by an MBA from the University of Phoenix. After working as senior editor at the Institute for Professional Development for several years, she started her own editing and writing business, working with companies and individuals on a wide range of projects, from peer-reviewed journal articles to novels, video scripts, technical manuals, and website content. Suzy has also taught editing courses at Brigham Young University, and she is on the board of directors for the Latter-day Saint Publishing Professionals Association.

Christopher James Blythe

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He completed a PhD in American religious history from Florida State University, an MA in history from Utah State University, and BA degrees in religious studies and anthropology from Utah State University and Texas A&M University, respectively. He is currently revising his dissertation, “Vernacular Mormonism: The Development of Christian Apocalyptic among Latter-day Saints,” into a book manuscript. His published work has appeared in several journals, including the Journal of Mormon History, Communal Societies, Nova Religio, and the John Whitmer Historical Association Journal. Before coming to the Joseph Smith Papers Project, Blythe was a predoctoral teaching fellow at Utah State University.

 Carolyn Call

is an associate editor for the Joseph Smith Papers. She typesets print volumes and assists in preparing document transcripts for publication on the Joseph Smith Papers website. She graduated from the University of Utah with a BA in mass communication and a certificate in interdisciplinary health communication. She has worked as an assistant metadata cataloger for the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah and as a web content intern for the LDS Church News.

Lee Ann Clanton

has worked as a full-time volunteer for the Church History Department since 2005. She serves as a transcription specialist for the Joseph Smith Papers, and in her ten years of service, she has transcribed more than 10,000 manuscript pages. She is an expert in deciphering nineteenth-century handwriting and is proficient in XML encoding. She is the mother of four, grandmother of sixteen, and great-grandmother of six. In her spare time, she enjoys cross-stitching.

Joseph F. Darowski,

with the Joseph Smith Papers since 2002, is a historian and web editor. He holds a BS from Cornell and an MA in history from Brigham Young University and has done additional graduate work at the College of William and Mary. He earned a diploma from the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Previously, he was a developmental editor for college textbooks.

Kay Darowski

is an associate web editor for the Joseph Smith Papers. She has a BA in history, coursework completed for an MA in history at Brigham Young University, and a diploma from the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She has worked at Petersburg National Battlefield in Petersburg, Virginia, and the Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia. She has been a developmental editor and copy editor for college history textbooks, as well as for other books and articles. Previous to her current responsibilities, she supervised a team of student research assistants for the project at Brigham Young University.

Gerrit J. Dirkmaat

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He received his PhD from the University of Colorado, Boulder, in 2010 where he studied nineteenth-century American expansionism and foreign relations. His dissertation was titled “Enemies Foreign and Domestic: US Relations with Mormons in the US Empire in North America, 1844–1854.” He served as the senior assistant editor of Diplomatic History from 2003 to 2009.

 Brett D. Dowdle

is a research assistant for the Joseph Smith Papers. His work will appear in the Documents and Revelations and Translations series. He received a BA and an MA in history from Brigham Young University and is currently a PhD candidate in American history at Texas Christian University, where he is working to complete his dissertation entitled “‘Beyond the Pale of Human Sympathy’: Utah and the Reconstruction of the American West, 1848–1890.” His previous projects include assisting with research for numerous publications and Brigham Young University’s Education in Zion exhibition. 

Nicole Christensen Fernley

is an editor for the Church Historian’s Press. She earned a BA in humanities with an emphasis in English and an MA in English at Brigham Young University. She began her editing career working as a technical writer and editor at a nuclear engineering laboratory. After working for nine years in the Publishing Services Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, she spent several more years as a freelance editor. She has taught courses in English and business communication at Brigham Young University, Eastern Idaho Technical College, and LDS Business College.

 Melissa Garrison

is an editorial assistant for the Joseph Smith Papers. Her primary responsibility is preparing content for the project’s website. She earned a BA in American studies and a minor in sociology from Brigham Young University. While at the university, she worked as a writer for the BYU Alumni Association, a research assistant in the Social Sciences department in the Harold B. Lee Library, and a legal assistant at a law firm.

Ben Godfrey

is the product manager for the Joseph Smith Papers. He is responsible for coordinating the development and content releases of the josephsmithpapers.org site. Prior to joining the Church History Department, he spent twenty years as a product manager and executive vice president of product development at several firms in the high-tech industry, including Apple. He spent several years managing international teams and development relationships in Europe and Asia. As a public speaker, he has spoken across the United States and internationally on topics such as how technology can improve education, government, and public safety. He holds a bachelor’s degree in communication, with an emphasis on new technology, from Utah State University.

David W. Grua

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He holds a PhD in American history from Texas Christian University and a BA and an MA in American history from Brigham Young University. He has published scholarly articles on Mormon and Native American history in the Western Historical Quarterly, the Journal of Mormon History, Federal History, and other peer reviewed journals and edited volumes. In addition, he has presented papers at the annual conferences of the Western History Association, Mormon History Association, and other professional venues. Before joining the Papers, he worked as a historian for the Church History Museum. As a student at BYU, he was a research assistant for the Papers, where he contributed to the first and second volumes of the Journals series.

Steven C. Harper

is a historian for the Church History Department who serves as a volume editor for the Joseph Smith Papers. He taught LDS church history and doctrine at BYU from 2002 to 2012 and history and religion at BYU–Hawaii from 2000 to 2001. He earned his PhD in early American history from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. He received research fellowships from the Quaker Collection at Haverford College, the Lawrence Henry Gipson Institute for Eighteenth-Century Studies, and the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Latter-day Saint History. He is the author of Joseph Smith’s First Vision: A Guide to the Historical Accounts (2012), Making Sense of the Doctrine and Covenants (2008), and Promised Land: Penn’s Holy Experiment, the Walking Purchase, and the Dispossession of Delawares 1600–1763 (2006), and has published articles in Religion and American Culture, Journal of the Early Republic, the Journal of Mormon History, and Mormon Historical Studies. Two of these were awarded the T. Edgar Lyon and Juanita Brooks awards by the Mormon History Association.

 Christian Heimburger

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He holds a BA in American studies from Brigham Young University and a PhD in modern American history from the University of Colorado, Boulder. His dissertation, titled “Beyond Barbed Wire: The Significance of Japanese American Labor in the Mountain West, 1942–1944,” explores the experiences of Japanese American laborers who temporarily left World War II incarceration camps to work in communities around the Mountain West. He previously worked as an adjunct professor at Utah Valley University, as a visiting scholar at Brigham Young University, and as an author and consultant for the Colorado History Education Initiative. He has presented research at conferences of the American Historical Association, Western History Association, and Association for Asian American Studies.

 Sharalyn D. Howcroft

has been employed by the Church History Department since 2000 as an archivist and document specialist for the Joseph Smith Papers. She received a BA in English with a minor in Hebrew language from Brigham Young University. After finishing an intensive Hebrew program in the Middle East, she completed an intensive Arabic program that was part of a Middle Eastern languages consortium at the University of Utah. She received an MA in library and information science with an archival studies concentration from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee and is a member of the Academy of Certified Archivists.

 Robin Scott Jensen

is an associate managing historian and the project archivist for the Joseph Smith Papers and coedited the first three volumes in the Revelations and Translations series (published 2009, 2011, and 2015, respectively). He specializes in document and transcription analysis. He is also a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. In 2005 he earned an MA degree in American history from Brigham Young University, and in 2009 he earned a second MA in library and information science with an archival concentration from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. He is now pursuing a PhD in history at the University of Utah. He completed training at the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents in 2007. He has published several articles and edited documents and has presented papers at various scholarly conferences.

Shannon Kelly

is an associate editor for the Church Historian’s Press. She previously worked as an editorial assistant for the Joseph Smith Papers. She received a BA in humanities with a minor in editing from Brigham Young University, where she wrote and edited for Stowaway magazine and served as an editorial assistant for BYU Studies.

Elizabeth A. Kuehn

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. She earned a BA with honors in history and a classical language certificate from Arizona State University, and an MA in European and women’s history from Purdue University. She is currently a PhD candidate in early modern European history at the University of California, Irvine. Before joining the project, she was an instructor in the history department and religious studies program at the University of California, Irvine. In 2016, she completed training at the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents in New Orleans.

Caroline Larsen

is an assistant editor for the Church Historian’s Press. She earned a BA in English language with minors in editing and English literature from Brigham Young University. While there she worked for BYU Magazine, the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship, and several academic journals. Before joining the Joseph Smith Papers, she worked in the editing section of the Publishing Services Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In addition to her work at the Papers, she takes occasional freelance editing projects and is the operations manager for the Latter-Day Saint Publishing Professionals Association.

 Riley M. Lorimer

is an associate editorial manager for the Joseph Smith Papers. She is also a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. She coedited the second volume in the Revelations and Translations series (published 2011). She received a BA in English with a minor in editing from Brigham Young University and an MA in English, with an emphasis in British literature, from the University of Utah. She has written and edited for the New Era, BYU Magazine, and other publications. Her research has focused on the literature and history of the Renaissance in Britain; she has served as secretary of the Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association (RMMRA) and has presented papers at conferences of the RMMRA and the Society for Reformation Studies, among others. In 2011, she completed training at the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents in Boston.

Gordon A. Madsen

serves the Joseph Smith Papers as a volume editor of the Legal and Business Records series. He received BS and JD degrees from the University of Utah. He served as Utah deputy district attorney from 1957 to 1959 and as assistant attorney general, 1959–1964. He has been in private practice since 1964. His civic and professional contributions include being a member, Constitutional Revision Commission; member, Judicial Qualifications Commission; member, Judicial Nominating Commission (Third Judicial District); chairman, Eminent Domain Section and Legislative Section of Utah State Bar; and member, Utah House of Representatives, 1969–1971. He has published articles in Personal Finance Law Quarterly and BYU Studies.

Jeffrey David Mahas

is a research assistant for the Joseph Smith Papers whose work will appear in the Documents and Administrative Records series. He received a BA in history from Brigham Young University and worked for two years as collections manager of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections at BYU. He is currently pursuing a master’s degree in history from the University of Utah.

Spencer W. McBride

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He earned a PhD in history from Louisiana State University. His research interests include the intersections of religion and politics in early America, and his book, Pulpit and Nation: Clergymen and the Politics of Revolutionary America (University of Virginia Press, 2017), examines the political activism of Protestant clergymen during the American Revolution and in the early American republic. 

Sharon E. Nielsen

is the editorial lead for the Joseph Smith Papers website. Her primary assignment is preparing content for the project’s website. She received a BA in Near Eastern studies from Brigham Young University and an MA in ancient civilizations and biblical studies from the University of Michigan. Previously she worked as a manager of data collection for a Civil War research project directed by the Center for Population Economics, Chicago, and as an assistant editor for the Occasional Papers series at the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship, at Brigham Young University. She has also worked as an independent genealogist.

Rachel M. Osborne

is an associate editor and source checker for the Church Historian’s Press, training and overseeing a team of source checkers. The recipient of a BA in English from Brigham Young University, she is currently pursuing an MA degree in history from the University of Utah. She formerly worked as an editorial assistant for BYU Studies.

Alison Palmer

is an editor for the Church Historian’s Press and is the Joseph Smith Papers editorial team lead. She earned a BA degree in English with a minor in editing from Brigham Young University, where she worked as a writing tutor and as the producer of a university podcast. She also contributed research to BYU’s Victorian Short Fiction Project. She received an MA in rhetoric and composition from the University of Utah, and she has completed training at the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents. She completed an editorial internship with Covenant Communications and an editing internship in the Curriculum Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. After working as a writer for a marketing company, she joined the team of the Joseph Smith Papers in May 2010. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in rhetoric and composition from the University of Utah.

Max H Parkin

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He received a BS degree in business from the University of Utah, an MA from Brigham Young University in history and philosophy of religion, and a PhD from BYU in LDS church history and doctrine. Some of his writings include Conflict at Kirtland (1967), Sacred Places—Missouri, and a chapter in Restoration Movement. He has published articles in the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Historical Atlas of Mormonism, the Encyclopedia of LDS History, and Regional Studies in Church History—Missouri, as well as in LDS church magazines and professional journals. He served as a volunteer researcher in the Museum of Church History and Art, was a lecturer on Sea Trek 2001, and taught for the Church Educational System for fifty years, principally at the Institute of Religion at the University of Utah.

Keaton Reed

is an editorial assistant for the Church Historian’s Press. He helps research and source check reference material for the geographical and biographical directories. He received a BA in technical communication from Utah State University and is pursuing an MA in English at the University of Utah.

 Tyson Reeder

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He earned a BA in history from Utah State University, an MA in history from George Mason University, and a PhD in history from the University of California, Davis. Before coming to the Joseph Smith Papers, he taught history at the University of California, Davis. His publications explore early America in a transnational and global context and have appeared in the Journal of American History and the Journal of the Early Republic. His current book manuscript examines the correlation between independence, republicanism, and free trade in early America as it related to commerce with revolutionary regions of Brazil.

Brenden W. Rensink

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He is the Assistant Director of the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies and an assistant professor of history at Brigham Young University. He holds a BA in history from BYU (2003) and an MA and PhD in history from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln (2006, 2010). A scholar of the North American West, transnational borderlands, indigenous North American history, and comparative genocide studies, he has published a number of articles, book chapters, and reviews in those fields. He is the coauthor of the Historical Dictionary of the American Frontier (Rowman Littlefield, 2015) and author of the forthcoming Native but Foreign: Transnational Cree, Chippewa, and Yaqui Refugees and Immigrants in the U.S.-Canadian and U.S.-Mexican Borderlands, 1880–Present (Texas A&M Press).

 Brent M. Rogers

is an associate managing historian for The Joseph Smith Papers and a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. He received a BA with honors in history from San Diego State University, an MA in public history from California State University, Sacramento, and a PhD in nineteenth-century United States history from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. He previously served as a digital editor and research fellow for the Papers of William F. Cody and as an instructor in the history department at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. He has produced scholarship on digital history, history of the American West, and Mormon history.

 Leslie Sherman

is an assistant editor and source checker for the Church Historian’s Press. She earned a BA degree in English with a minor in editing from Brigham Young University, where she worked as an editorial staff member on a student journal and spent time as a research assistant. After graduating, she interned for the Daily Caller, a news website based in Washington DC. She is pursuing a master’s degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University.

Royal Skousen

is a volume editor of the Revelations and Translations series of The Joseph Smith Papers. A professor of linguistics and English language at Brigham Young University, he has been the editor of the Book of Mormon Critical Text Project since 1988. In 2009, Skousen published with Yale University Press the culmination of his critical text work, The Book of Mormon: The Earliest Text. Skousen received his PhD in linguistics from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana in 1972. He has also taught at the University of Illinois, the University of Texas, the University of California, San Diego, and, as a Fulbright lecturer, at the University of Tampere in Finland. In 2001, he was a research fellow at the Max Planck Institute in the Netherlands. Other publications include Analogical Modeling of Language (1989), Analogy and Structure (1992), and Analogical Modeling: An Exemplar-Based Approach to Language (2002).

 Alex D. Smith

is a volume editor of volume two (published 2011) and volume three (published 2015) in the Journals series and volumes four (published 2016), seven, and nine in the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He received MA and BA degrees in history from Brigham Young University and is currently pursuing a PhD in history from the University of Utah. He was a research historian and document editor with the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Latter-day Saint History, where he began working for the Joseph Smith Papers. His research interests focus on the history of the church in Nauvoo.

 R. Eric Smith

is editorial manager of the Joseph Smith Papers Project and of the Publications Division of the Church History Department, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He is also a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. He has significant editing experience in early Mormon history and is the editor of numerous documents and other materials published in print or electronically. Before joining the Church History Department, he was an editor for the Curriculum Department for ten years. He formerly practiced law for a Salt Lake City firm. He received a BA degree in English from Brigham Young University and a JD from the University of Utah.

Stephanie Steed

is an editorial assistant for the Church Historian’s Press. She helps source check and research reference material, stylize documents for the web, and proofread content. She graduated from Brigham Young University with a BA in English language and a minor in editing. She has been on the editorial staff of various university journals, and she worked as an acquisitions intern for literary agent Amy Jameson. During her free time, she works as a freelance editor and writer.

Nathan N. Waite

is an associate editorial manager for the Joseph Smith Papers and a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. He received a BA in English from Brigham Young University and an MA in American studies from the University of Utah; he also received a graduate certificate in digital humanities from the University of Victoria and completed training at the Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents. He is coeditor of A Zion Canyon Reader (University of Utah Press, 2014) and Settling the Valley, Proclaiming the Gospel: The General Epistles of the Mormon First Presidency (Oxford University Press, 2017), and he has edited for BYU Magazine, the Liahona, and David R. Godine, Publisher.

Jeffrey N. Walker

is the series manager and a volume editor of the Legal and Business Records series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He served as associate managing editor of the Papers until 2012 and a member of the editorial board until 2015. He completed a BS from Western Michigan University and a JD from the J. Reuben Clark Law School, where he was a note and comment editor for the BYU Law Review. He currently serves as adjunct professor at the J. Reuben Clark Law School and previously taught in the Church History and Doctrine Department at BYU. He has written and spoken widely on Joseph Smith’s legal affairs and is currently preparing a multivolume work on Oliver Cowdery’s legal practice. He is a trustee and treasurer for the Mormon Historic Sites Foundation and the managing editor of Mormon Historical Studies.

 Jordan T. Watkins

is a volume editor of the Documents series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He received a PhD in American history from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. He also has a BA in history from Brigham Young University and an MA in history from Claremont Graduate University. His current book manuscript examines the ways in which antebellum biblical and constitutional debates over slavery brought awareness to the historical distance separating Americans from their hallowed biblical and Revolutionary past. His interest in American history stems from a lifelong fascination with Mormon history, and his work in that field has appeared in the Journal of Mormon History and in the edited volume Parley P. Pratt and the Making of Mormonism (Arthur H. Clark, 2011). He has presented at conferences of the Society for Historians of the Early American Republic, the Society for U.S. Intellectual History, the African American Intellectual History Society, and the Western History Association. He taught U.S. history courses at Utah Valley University before joining the project. 

John W. Welch

is a consulting scholar for the Legal and Business Records series of The Joseph Smith Papers. He is the Robert K. Thomas Professor of Law at the J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University, where he teaches nineteenth-century American legal history, biblical law, and various tax courses. He attended BYU (BA in history; MA in Latin and Greek), studied Greek philosophy at Oxford University, and received his law degree from Duke University. He practiced law in Los Angeles, where he organized the Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies (FARMS). From 1988 to 1991 he was an editor for the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, and since 1991 he has served as the editor-in-chief of BYU Studies. His publications include “Bible in American Law” in Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties (2006), The Worlds of Joseph Smith: A Bicentennial Conference at the Library of Congress (2006), and many other books and articles.