On the Mend: The Conservation Lab at BYU Repairs Curated Treasures

If there were such things as book doctors, Christina Thomas would be a geriatrician. As a conservator at the BYU Harold B. Lee Library, Christina’s patients are rare books, manuscripts, photos and other historic items brought to the conservation lab by special collection curators. Armed with expertise in history, bookbinding and chemistry, Christina, along with […]

What I learned when the Spirit took me on a detour

As a writer, I’ve learned that some stories must be told. I’ve also learned that some stories are maddeningly difficult to tell. The story of Katherine Love Paxman was, for me, both. I’d spent the better part of a day in the Church History Library reading room shuffling through archives in an effort to root […]

The problem that canceled general conference twice

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from around the world are looking forward to general conference. The semiannual event will be held this weekend, just as it has every six months since 1848. That is, every six months with two exceptions. Both times, the delay or cancellation was caused by the same thing. […]

5 ways seminary has changed in the last 10 years

It’s back to school time, which means it’s also time to start a brand new year of seminary. But if you have a child in seminary this year, you might have noticed things have changed since you were in high school. Here are five changes The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has made to […]

A century and counting: How girls camp has (and hasn’t) changed since 1912

The first Young Women camp was held during the summer of 1912 when the Liberty Stake in Salt Lake City took the girls in the Young Ladies Mutual Improvement Association (the forerunner to today’s Young Women organization) to the mountains beyond Murray for a weeklong camping excursion. Today, young women all around the world participate in a […]

Experience Utah’s natural wonders during the National Parks Centennial

Happy birthday, National Parks Service! The federal bureau dedicated to protecting America’s national parks and monuments will mark its 100-year anniversary on Aug. 25. Utah is home to five national parks — more than any state except California and Alaska — with outdoor wonderlands showcasing hoodoos, hanging gardens and other geological marvels. If you’ve never […]

5 notable Church history journals you can read online

Like family history records, Church history records of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were once found mostly in large libraries and were difficult to locate. But also like family history records, the internet has made accessing these important records simple for all Church members. Several valuable Church history records are available online, but […]

10 ways general conference has changed in 40 years

The April 2016 general conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints officially began March 26 with the women’s session, the first of general conference. But 40 years ago, there was no such meeting — in fact, the general conferences of decades past are drastically different from today’s in many ways. Here are 10 ways […]

20 crazy church history facts that seem impossible but aren’t

When President Monson was born in Salt Lake City in 1927, some of the original Mormon pioneers were still living there. In fact, when Gary E. Stevenson — the youngest member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles — was born in Utah in 1955, at least one was still living. Hilda Erickson, who came to Utah […]

Their first talks as apostles: Wise words from 15 great men

Newly called apostles Elder Ronald A. Rasband, Elder Gary E. Stevenson and Elder Dale G. Renlund gave their first talks as apostles Sunday morning in at the 185th Semiannual General Conference. This marked the first time each of them addressed the Church as apostles (though all have given general conference addresses previously). In recognition of those iconic […]

7 fun facts about the Female Relief Society of Nauvoo

Relief Society, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ organization for women, began in Nauvoo after the women sought Joseph Smith’s approval to organize themselves into a women’s organization similar to others of the day. Joseph Smith said God had something better in mind. Today, more than 5.5 million women in 170 countries claim membership in […]

For the Strength of Youth: 1965 to today

The 1965 edition of For the Strength of Youth has become the stuff of legends for its dated, prescriptive guidelines, especially concerning dress and grooming. The widely accepted American view in 1965 that women should never wear pants in public made its way onto those pages — the pages that were the forerunner of today’s important reference for youth […]

A peculiar parlance: Origins of 13 unique Church terms

Unlike other Christians, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints call the ordinance of eating bread and water in remembrance of Christ the “sacrament,” not “communion.” We also call our local congregations “wards,” our young men “priests” and even sometimes call ourselves “Mormons.” When converts join the Church, the new vocabulary takes some time to […]

1994-2014: 20 ways missions have changed in 20 years

In the grand scheme of LDS Church history, 20 years isn’t much. But when it comes to missionary work, 20 years is a significant amount of time. While a missionary’s purpose is the same today as it has always been, the logistics of LDS missionary service are strikingly different today from what they were in 1994. Here are 20 changes […]

5 unique Joseph Smith documents you can view online

To the joy of Church historians everywhere, The Joseph Smith Papers Project is now available online. But if sifting through archives isn’t your thing, don’t worry. We’ve done the sifting for you. The Joseph Smith Papers Project is an effort to collect and publish all of the documents created by Joseph Smith or his scribe […]

16 pieces of our past

By Greg Bennett and Dave Blackhurst The first faces to love living in Utah Valley pitched tepees near Utah Lake and enjoyed the same views of Mount Timpanogos we do today as they made arrowheads and fished for dinner. New faces began sprinkling down through the canyons and from Salt Lake Valley with pioneering ideas […]