Originating with the visions of Joseph Smith Jr. beginning in 1820, in the midst of the Second Great Awakening, Mormonism has a rich history comprised of over 200 years of records, studies, and histories. The Special Collections & Archives of the Merrill-Cazier Library houses more than 1000 manuscripts and photograph collections, and over 100,000 books. One of the largest repositories of Mormon materials outside of the LDS Church History Library and Brigham Young University, these holdings are an incredible resource for scholars and students of Mormonism. This guide highlights a number of collections in the Special Collections & Archives, though it is by no means an exhaustive list.
Special Collections & Archives houses a wide variety of primary source materials, many of which are firsthand accounts of early Mormon settlement in Utah, Idaho, Nevada, and Arizona. Some of Utah's most prominent historians are represented here - including Leonard J. Arrington, S. George Ellsworth, and Valeen T. Avery. Several collections deal with leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, including some in the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Special Collections & Archives also houses a number of missionary diaries and correspondence that document Mormon mission work on an international level. In addition, Special Collections & Archives also collects materials from groups that separated from Smith's Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (here referred to as "non-LDS groups") or are critical of the religion.
This guide is not an exhaustive list of Mormon materials available in the Special Collections & Archives. If you have a specific topic in mind or would like to search for resources that may not be represented here, use the catalog search bar below or contact a Special Collections Librarian.
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This guide was researched, organized and compiled by Department of History MA student Megan Fairbanks, under the direction of Special Collections Librarian and Curator Jennifer Duncan and Leonard J. Arrington Chair of Mormon History and Culture Patrick Mason.
The resources in this guide were identified as part of a collaborative project between Utah State University Special Collections and Archives, and the Utah State Religious Studies Program.