Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “1832-1839 (The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals, vol. 1)” as Want to Read:
1832-1839 (The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals, vol. 1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

1832-1839 (The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals #1)

4.45  ·  Rating Details ·  226 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews

“The Joseph Smith Papers project is the single most significant historical project of our generation.” — Elder Marlin K. Jensen, LDS Church Historian

The Joseph Smith Papers, Journals, Volume 1: 1832-1839 features Joseph Smith's first five journals. These documents give the reader an appreciation for Joseph Smith's character, his private piety, and his sense of mission. The

Hardcover, 506 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by The Church Historian's Press
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jeff Nielson
Nov 19, 2010 Jeff Nielson rated it it was amazing
If anyone truly believes that Joseph Smith merely wrote the Book Of Mormon-they should read this book and see what an unlearned fellow he really was-the man could barely write a legible sentence let alone a whole book. This book gives great insight into the Man Joseph Smith-a must read for every Mormon
Volume 1 is more of a historical diary and gives a lot of color to various historical settings, but includes very notable chronological gaps. The book was pretty easy reading with helpful footnotes.

I kind of felt like I was going back in time and tended to augment the reading with other online historical background information on various people, locations or stories.
Jun 22, 2011 Trevor rated it it was amazing
This is the first of a projected set of 30 books of documents associated in some way with the prophet Joseph Smith, and the first volume of the Journals series. It covers his journals dating from November 28, 1832 to October 15, 1839, along with introductions to the Joseph Smith Papers project and the Journals series.

The project claims as its roots the collection of Joseph's papers during his lifetime and then continuing after his death, and first published in book form as History of the Church
Sep 09, 2012 Ethan rated it really liked it
I really like the idea of this series of books, making the documents and history from Joseph Smith's life more accessible. However, like any daily journal, the majority of the entries are quotidian and rather boring, making it hard to read the book for more than 15-20 minutes in a sitting. The journal is also sporadic and at times lacks details because the scribes did not have access to Joseph for weeks or months at a time. I'm looking forward to the next two volumes from Nauvoo when the writing ...more
Jul 26, 2010 Aaron rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this more for the editorial summaries before and between the various journals included in this volume, as well as for all of the great information at the end of the book. Don't get me wrong. The journals themselves are great, and many of the entries are not only very interesting, but very inspiring as well. The entries leading up to, about, and written shortly after the Kirtland Temple Dedication were particularly edifying. But most of the journal entries are mundane and rather ...more
Mar 17, 2009 Jeff rated it it was amazing
This is the first in a series of volumes containing the papers of Joseph Smith, the founding prophet of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As a Latter-day Saint, I have a keen interest in Joseph Smith, whom I consider the Lord's prophet, on a par with Adam, Abraham, Moses, and the like.

The book is nicely bound, with high quality components. It is obviously meant to be preserved in public and private libraries to provide perpetual access to Joseph Smith's papers.

As a wannabe histori
Feb 23, 2009 Robert rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed some of the gems in reading these Papers. I especially liked the 1835-1836 Journal/Chapter. I find the Kirtland Temple era to be among the most inspirational of early events.

I was hoping to learn more about Section 132, which was published/revealed after 1839, so I'll have to wait for subsequent Papers, which I will buy.

When reading notes/journals in rough form, I gained a greater appreciation for those authors who compile all of this info and put it into a cohesive form/book.
Roo Phillips
Oct 12, 2016 Roo Phillips rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A must read for anyone seriously interested in the Mormon Prophet Joseph Smith or LDS church history. It reads like a textbook, but you don't have any interpretation or synthesis to muddy the water.
Dec 26, 2008 Matt rated it it was ok
A pathetic, overpriced, bucket of useless, fried froth.

Hmmmm. 1832-1839. Fanny Alger. Kirtland ANTI-Bank Fraud. (the "Anti" part is very important)

Do you think this volume contains any material facts about those revealing episodes in Joseph Smith's life? Hardly a shred. Look elsewhere if you want some truth.

There is one mildly interesting editorial note about the Kirtland Bank fraud, but it's the typical Mormon "historian" spin/obfuscation.

Who gets the royalties for this faux-scholarship? Oh, t
May 17, 2011 Andrew rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the insight into the life of Joseph Smith that could be seen through his journals. It's too bad that a more complete record wasn't kept for all of those years. Many of the entries aren't too interesting, but it's important to have it all for the sake of completeness. Joseph Smith's passion for his work and mission came across very clear. But, it was fun to read about random things that got him excited, like meteor showers and sleighing.

The Joseph Smith Papers is a comprehensive project
Stephen Cranney
It's difficult to rate a collection of historical documents, so the five stars goes to the editorial team. I rate books according to how well they accomplish their purpose, and can't think of how they could have presented and annotated the documents in a better way (thus the perfect five star rating).

On another note, I thought that I really go to know Joseph Smith a lot more through his diaries. Second-hand treatments of controversial characters like Joseph Smith are undoubtedly colored by the
Feb 09, 2009 Russell rated it it was amazing
This is a very thorough and detailed examination of the first several journals of Joseph Smith. I very much enjoyed the extensive footnotes and citations, background information and other historical content. I was astounded at the level of detail included in this scholarly work. For me this book opened my eyes to the realities and challenges of the restoration of the gospel and. I have new found respect for the tremendous effort of Joseph Smith and the many others that contributed to the early ...more
Feb 17, 2013 Garrett rated it it was amazing

Very informative and deep book. I enjoyed reading the many footnotes and appendices too. It made this time of Joseph Smith's life really come alive for me. I can understand some of his decisions and the pressures that were facing him much better now, after having read through these Journals.

Part of me wanted even more analysis and explanation than was here. However, I realize that this was not the purpose of the volume. There are other books I can go to for that kind of information.

In any case,
Apr 13, 2009 John rated it really liked it
Not a page's a journal so I couldn't expect more in that regard. Book is well referenced with plenty of footnotes and references. There are some funny/random gems that are interesting to read. Few notables are some insight behind conflicts between Joseph and his brother William, when Joseph vented about having to pay for everyone's letters that were sent to him as COD (cash on delivery), and when he mentioned teaching grammar on several occasions which I found peculiar given the ...more
Nov 15, 2009 Cary rated it it was amazing
I have been reading this book for quite a long time now! I have to say that with all I thought I knew about the prophet Joseph Smith, this book of journal entries made a lot more human. I was flabbergasted at how much time he actually spent working on church duties vs. home/family duties. It was not a quick light read but for someone who is truly interested, I would highly recommend it. Although it's price tag is not very cheap.
Mar 09, 2009 Chandler rated it it was amazing
Truly remarkable book. It gives great insight into the Prophet and his personaility. It is amazing to see the misspellings phonetics. For anyone to think that he wrote the Book of Mormon all by himself after reading this is crazy. It takes a long time, and it more the study than for the pleasure, but I think this is a must have in the library of all Latter-day Saints. Can't wait for the second volume!
Mayor McCheese
Jan 16, 2015 Mayor McCheese rated it it was amazing
This is a tour-de-force of history and editing to compile and describe the original texts related to J.S. I'm sure that the organizers of this project have quantified the cost in dollars and hours to assemble this effort but it is nonetheless a mind-boggling task to consider for someone outside of the industry. It is valuable to scholars to have such access to original documents for the rest of time.
Nov 05, 2014 Tom rated it liked it
This has some great caveats and stories in it and I appreciate the work and effort that was put into it. However, I gave it 3 stars because of the extremely high price of the book. Even the electronic version was $39.99. Ridiculous price for the book. While I enjoyed some of the stories, it was somewhat of a challenge reading all of the mundane entries. I won't be buying anymore until the price drops.
Alan Marchant
Sep 16, 2014 Alan Marchant rated it it was amazing
The contributing scholars deserve five stars specifically for accomplishing exactly what they set out: a complete, objective, and fully documented presentation of the pre-Nauvoo Joseph Smith journals. If you're interested in his life (from whatever perspective) this is an irreplaceable, accessible, and reliable resource. It once and for all puts the lie to Faun Brodie.
Feb 02, 2013 John rated it it was amazing
Part of an ambitious project by the Church to publish all documents related to Joseph Smith created during his lifetime. Additional volumes come out yearly. Documents are gathered for publication by type such as journals, revelations, letters and so forth. Each book published is made available online by the Church at no charge.
Aug 03, 2011 Katie rated it really liked it
it was fascinating to read the personal journals of Joseph Smith. He remained to positive through so much suffering. There was a lot of commentary from the editors that I felt was unnecessary, especially the nearly 70 pages of introduction. That being said, the journals themselves were fascinating. It gave me a greater appreciation for this magnificent prophet.
Mar 03, 2009 Brett rated it it was amazing
I know they are expensive, but if you can afford the Joseph Smith Papers volumes, you will not be disappointed. This is as spiritual a history book as anything I have ever seen. I can't wait for Revelations and Translations Volume 1 to come out later this year.
Jan 04, 2012 Reedblackburn rated it liked it
This is some heavy stuff. You have to "plow" through a lot of it, but it is great in that we get to know the everyday character of Joseph better. I especially enjoyed learning more about his family.
Krisette Spangler
Feb 14, 2010 Krisette Spangler rated it it was amazing
I'm not sure how you give a rating to someone's journal, but I did find this interesting. I will say that the introduction to the Joseph Smith Papers at the start of the book was amazing. I did enjoy getting a little glimpse into the mind of the prophet and how he spent his time.
Don Tate
Mar 06, 2010 Don Tate rated it it was amazing
Exceptionally well written and thoroughly researched for detail not previously seen. A "must-read" for those interested in the life of Joseph Smith! Much more personalized for family life and his own personal struggles with family and friends,as well as foes all of his life.
Rhonda Wall
Oct 19, 2012 Rhonda Wall rated it really liked it
Reading this with Dion. It fills in some blanks in Joseph Smith's history. Very interesting. People used to write him insulting letters and he would have to pay the postage of up to $1.00. He put the word out that he would not accept unpaid postage letters anymore.
Apr 02, 2010 Mark rated it really liked it
At times fascinating, at times trivial, depending primarily on the abilities of the scribe. I never found it boring, however. It was a wonderful glimpse into the daily workings of the early church. Well worth the effort.
Jan 06, 2010 Kymalisa rated it it was amazing
I gave this to Mark for Christmas (yes, it was really for me)...I keep hoping he will read it first.
Diana Petersen
Dec 28, 2008 Diana Petersen is currently reading it
My brother and sister in law gave us this book for Christmas. It has personal significance for me as a direct desendent of Hyrum Smith I can't wait to read it.
Jun 19, 2010 Darci rated it really liked it
Just released. Fascinating! There's going to be several volumes in this set, which amazes me! Click on the book to read the description about it!
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • By the Hand of Mormon: The American Scripture That Launched a New World Religion
  • Approaching Zion (The Collected Works of Hugh Nibley, Volume 9)
  • If Thou Endure It Well
  • Discourses of Brigham Young: Second President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
  • The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power
  • Joseph Smith and the Beginnings of Mormonism
  • Counseling With Our Councils: Learning To Minister Together In The Church And In The Family
  • In Sacred Loneliness: The Plural Wives of Joseph Smith
  • Brigham Young: American Moses
  • A Disciple's Life: The Biography of Neal A. Maxwell
  • Carthage Conspiracy: The Trial of the Accused Assassins of Joseph Smith
  • David O. McKay and the Rise of Modern Mormonism
  • Joseph Smith the Prophet
  • Lengthen Your Stride: The Presidency of Spencer W. Kimball
  • Remembering Joseph: Personal Recollections Of Those Who Knew The Prophet Joseph Smith
  • Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith
  • A New Witness for the Articles of Faith
  • Understanding the Book of Mormon: A Reader's Guide
Dean C. Jessee is a general editor of The Joseph Smith Papers. He earned an MA in LDS Church history from Brigham Young University. He worked 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 of service at the Joseph Fielding Smith Institute for Latter-day Saint History at Brigham ...more
More about Dean C. Jessee...

Other Books in the Series

The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals (3 books)
  • December 1841-April 1843 (The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals, vol. 2)
  • May 1843-June 1844 (The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals, vol. 3)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »