Historian shares Joseph Smith insights


Jimmy Stewart isn’t the only Mr. Smith that went to Washington. The Church History Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is presenting a free lecture on Joseph Smith’s 1839 trip to Washington, D.C. The lecture, which will be given by historian Dr. Spencer W. McBride, will be held April 19 at 7 p.m. in the Assembly Hall at Temple Square. In late 1839, Smith traveled from Nauvoo to Washington, D.C. to petition the U.S. government for the redress of lost property during persecution church members suffered throughout the 1830s. Smith sought the support of both president Martin Van Buren and the U.S. Congress while there, and met with Van Buren. The church, as well as the persecutions they faced, were also the focus of a Senate Judiciary Committee. Though nothing came of the hearing, evidence shows that the experience helped Smith shape the Nauvoo charter and lead the city. McBride, who is currently writing a book about Smith’s presidential campaign is also documentary editor at the Joseph Smith Papers Project. For the current lecture, McBride will draw from “Joseph Smith Papers: Documents, Vol. 7.” jwardell@davisclipper.com

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