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The Autobiography of Parley P. Pratt

4.35  ·  Rating Details ·  1,808 Ratings  ·  202 Reviews

"Should the author be called to sacrifice his life for the cause of truth," Parley P. Pratt wrote, "Yet he will have the consolation that it will be said of him as it was said of Abel. . . 'He being dead yet speaketh.'"

From the pages of this revised and enhanced edition of the Autobiography of Parley P. Pratt, the author boldly, eloquently, and humbly speaks to us from th

Kindle Edition, 447 pages
Published (first published March 1938)
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Community Reviews

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Mar 10, 2009 Tamra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: any Mormon reader
Recommended to Tamra by: my mom
I love history, and I love journals and stuff, so I loved this book. Parley is a character, and his writing is fun. What's not to like?

Specifically there are some fun things about this book:

1 Parley likes to say grand comments about how members of the Church are happier than any one else could possibly be. How their sufferings were worse than anyone elses. He also makes bold statements that nowadays would be considered DEEPLY offensive to half the world. We just don't speak like that any more.
I enjoyed the first bit of this journal of my third great grandfather. He was passionate and poetic in describing his conversion to the Mormon faith. I even read about some of his missions, and was amazed. Then I got bored and moved on. (Sorry Great Grandfather!)
Nov 02, 2016 Kathryn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Truly an Apostle of Jesus Christ

Parsley P. Pratt was an original and amazing apostle whose life reflected his faith and belief in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He was diligent and steadfast. He worked tirelessly spreading the Word of the Lord enduring unspeakable persecutions and vile and evil acts committed against the Saints of God along the way. He brought many hundreds of souls to the knowledge of Christ and his teachings. He went many times without purse or script across vast distances to pre
Apr 29, 2016 Jake rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this one, the firsthand account of Parley P. Pratt's life, focusing primarily on his service in the kingdom. It was especially interesting to read the parts that took place after the saints relocated to Utah as we don't often cover those parts of church history in Sunday School.
Nate Bringhurst
May 09, 2009 Nate Bringhurst rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every LDS should read this book.
Del Talley
Mar 04, 2013 Del Talley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Truly inspirational.
Lee Anne
Nov 19, 2016 Lee Anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful life story told in his own words, which are quite impressive for a man with little formal education. A gripping account of the early days of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Tristen Pratt
Nov 10, 2016 Tristen Pratt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Parley P. Pratt, a name that belongs to such an interesting man. A man who was a leader, teacher, friend, and is known for being one of the original Twelve-Apostles of the Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter Day Saints. So how do we come to know more about such an interesting person as this? Well as Parley himself would say, "a book! a BOOK!" But not just any book. This is a special book written by Parley himself, this book is his autobiography!
In this amazing story you follow the life of Parley P
Jan 04, 2009 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fascinating look through the eyes of Parley Pratt himself into his own extraordinary life. Having grown up in the Parley's Stake in SLC I always have felt a certain connection with P. Pratt's life and ultimate work - having grown up in the foothills of the valley that bears his name as well. There are many valuable insights that can be gained from this book, two that I remember primarily were 1) Parley after joining the church wound up having to leave his hard established farms several times, ...more
The Thousander Club
Adam C. Zern opines . . .

"I love history. I especially love American history and the history surrounding the reformation. One area of history in which I have felt eager to learn more about but haven't done so is the history of the establishment and progress of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I, of course, knew all of the basics, the key players, the major events, but my specific knowledge was lacking. I wanted to learn more about individual personalities and events that can onl
Feb 28, 2008 Danny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: lds-religious
All that can be said about this book is 'Amazing!' The main thing I got from a reivew of this disciple's life is that from a very early age he had a desire to live so as to be able to heed the promptings of the Holy Ghost.
At the age of 21 he left his newly wedded wife on a canal boat, in obedience to a prompting, promising to join her in Albany. He walked into the country where he introduced himslef, intending to preach that evening,, when a baptist deacon named Hamblin told of s very strange bo
Jun 23, 2009 Leta rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One day during my scripture study, this title popped into my brain and I felt a strong impression to read it. The impression would not leave me for about two weeks. It was captivating to me from the get go because I was mostly so amazed at how similar Parley's story is to Joseph Smith's. It is faith promoting to say the least. It covers his life in a good detail but mainly his spiritual experiences. He has many visions and was lead in all his doings by God. I loved that. I was especially moved b ...more
Oct 28, 2007 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all Mormons
Shelves: churchy-stuff
This has to be one of my favorite Church history books. Parley Pratt is one of the most likable figures from the early days of the Church, and he also happens to be a pretty good writer.

The book is hopelessly biased and very selective. Pratt glosses over his own falling out with the Prophet, making it sound like they had only a brief gentlemanly disagreement. I think he only mentions it in one sentence. Come to find out, he was completely against Joseph for a considerable period. The selection b
Feb 18, 2012 Scott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Strange as it may sound, this book was a clandestine read that I picked up somewhere along the way during my Mormon mission. Per the letter of the law, we were only supposed to read scriptures and four church-published books from an approved list. Dying for something new to read, I gobbled this one up and found it quite enjoyable. Pratt was a colorful character who was one of the more bombastic and successful missionaries of the early Mormon church.

While the book was certainly faith promoting fo
Apr 28, 2016 Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A hybrid patchwork: juxtaposes one of the most thrilling passages I’ve read in either fiction or biography (Pratt’s escape from jail and subsequent flight across hostile country) with a stultifying series of diary entries about visits Pratt makes to his neighbors. Pratt shines when he knows he’s writing something for public consumption, so I blame the editor who selected which of his writings to include in his “autobiography” where none was intended.

It’s quite jarring to read a moving passage of
Oct 24, 2008 Elizabeth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Elizabeth by: James Carroll
This was a great spiritual read to help tide me over until the November Ensign arrives. I love Parley P. Pratt for his hymns, and was pleased to find his prose just as accessible and uplifting. Most of the best parts of the book were not new to me, having been passed out through the years in Sunday School lesson handouts, but there was enough that was new to keep my interest. The revisions and enhancements were very distracting, as they provided extra glimpses into the history and I never wanted ...more
Oct 26, 2008 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is an interesting look into the life of one of the first apostles of this dispensation, Parley P. Pratt. I enjoyed learning a bit more about the beginnings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as I read. One powerful section of the book that I found particularly interesting described Pratt's calling to be an apostle and the charge given him to go forth and preach the gospel. I also enjoyed reading about the various escapes that Pratt made from enemies of the Church. Pratt ...more
Feb 02, 2011 Mario rated it it was amazing
I loved this book - I reserve my 5s for books I think everyone should read.

I usually get tired of biographies before finishing them. This is probably the first autobiography I've read. Was never interested in reading them before. In an autobiography I was afraid that I would get too much of how the person saw himself and not enough of how everyone else saw him. That is exactly what I got from this book - and I loved it! I have to admit my own bias though. As a member of the Church of Jesus Chri
Oct 29, 2014 Italy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved the first part of the book when it talked about the beginnings of the church. Toward the end it just rambled on and here and there I skipped. I also skipped through several pages of Parley's poetry. I know he was poetic and wrote many songs, but some of them I could do without. I suppose that's why a lot of his songs are no longer in the hymnbook. He said 50 of his songs were in the original hymnbook.

I loved hearing about his exploring the canyons--Parley's Canyon. I guess I knew it was
Shawnee Sorensen
Loved it! I'm a hugh fan of Parley and I enjoyed reading about his life from his point of view. Some of the stories were really amazing. My favorite must be the one about 'stu boy". Very funny! It's sad his life was shortened and he only lived to 50yrs old. He was such an active person, he would have accomplished so much more had he lived longer. His was truly an exciting life although I can see how he could have been very lonely since he was always leaving his wife(s) and children to preach to ...more
May 15, 2011 Aaron rated it really liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, although I got the sense that there was a lot left out. For example, Parley went from being remarried (after his first wife died) to suddenly having multiple wives and many children. The first part of his book reads like a true autobiography, but part way through, we get more and more journal entries and letters, until at the end of the book, every chapter is composed of pages from his journal, letters he wrote home while on his numerous missionary travels, or art ...more
Parley is an amazing man who lived during an amazing time in the Church's history. He was led by the Spirit to get off a boat before his scheduled spot and was guided to the Book of Mormon. He was baptized, sought out the prophet, became an apostle, went on mission after mission both stateside and internationally to Europe and South America, was driven with the Saints from Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri, was imprisoned with Joseph Smith without a trial, lived through Joseph's martyrdom and went wi ...more
Joshua Sears
Sep 03, 2016 Joshua Sears rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: church-history
My grandfather gifted me this autobiography in high school and it forever changed how I understand early LDS Church history. What I had read before were modern summaries or short quotations from original sources; this was the first time I dove into an extended text composed by a nineteenth-century figure. Being able to hear his voice and live in his head provided a whole new way of understanding how people back then saw the world.

Parley's story itself was fascinating. He wasn't as well known to
Jun 24, 2008 Janice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Janice by: people who want to know about early LDS Church members and leade
Shelves: inspirational
I ditto this review by Mr. Stancliffe.

This is a first-hand account of the growth and history of the Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints, as seen through the eyes of one of its highest-ranking insiders (and Apostle), Parley P. Pratt.
Pratt, a traveling preacher, first heard of the Book of Mormon in late August, 1830, and was baptized on about Sept 1, 1830. From then on, his life was one of total committment and devotion to God's work on Earth.

Pratt served several missions for the Church an
Dec 19, 2012 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A wonderful insight into the life of an apostle. His personal accounts of his trials and experiences give early church history a personal touch.
The following line rings very true: . . . the term "Christianity?" If you mean the system taught by Christ and His Apostles, as recorded in the "New Testament".> There are a lot of definitions of Christianity today. If one reads the New Testament and establishes the definition based on what is found there-in, one must admit that members of the Church
Ann Marie
Apr 21, 2015 Ann Marie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, biography
I did not read the enhanced version which I really want to now that I know it exists. This book was eye opening for me. I had not realized how involved Parley P Pratt was in the organizing of the church. He was part of almost all of the "events" of the early church. He must have walked a bajillion miles serving missions. At first he described his personal life and his marriage but as I was reading along I kind of figured out he was practicing polygamy as he did not ever mention any other marriag ...more
Parley P. Pratt thirsted for spiritual truth from the time he was a boy. His life is filled with dedication to the Savior, to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to honor and courage. There are few books I've read in my life that have changed who I am and how I see my world. This is one of those books. My great-great grandfather was David Evans, who was the bishop at Haun's Mill when it was attacked by marauding mobsters holding deep hatred for Mormons. Many of the Saints residing t ...more
Feb 12, 2009 Laura rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone searching for a greater understand of the restoration of the gospel
Recommended to Laura by: Carol Jenson, my mother
Shelves: biography
I listened to this book on CD and really enjoyed it but I have to say if I'd tried to read it I may have gotten bogged down a couple of times; other times were laugh out loud. I learned so much from this book about church history and gained a new perspective for events like the unjust imprisonment in Liberty Jail, the saints being driven from their homes in Missouri and Illinois, the conversion of John Taylor, Parley's own conversion and preparation to receive the gospel, the holy calling of the ...more
Feb 01, 2016 Clint rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: religion, biography
3.0 - Parley's work is a well written account of his extraordinary life. He was clearly a man of great faith who sacrificed enormously for the cause of truth. This account repeatedly displays his keen mind in defending the truth through various documented discussions and debates that he had with many religious leaders of his day. He provides very interesting insight to what life was like in America during the early part of the nineteenth century. He also provides interesting insights into the li ...more
This is the second time I've read this, and there are very few books I have read more than once. I think I last read it about 10 or 11 years ago. This time I listened to the audio version. It was a pretty good narration, with some good frontier accents in parts. In all truth, though, I did speed it up to 1.5x for most of it, and to 2x for the last several chapters.

I find Pratt's account of his life very inspiring. It goes into great detail about the Mormons' experience in Missouri in the 1830s.
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Parley Parker Pratt, Sr. (April 12, 1807 – May 13, 1857) was an early leader of the Latter Day Saint movement whose writings became a significant early nineteenth-century exposition of the Latter Day Saint faith.
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