Notice: Dr. Richard Bennett on the Missouri Experience and Mormon Militias

Dr. Richard E. Bennett, Professor of Church History and Doctrine at Brigham Young University, will be the featured speaker at the Miller-Eccles Study Group tonight, February 24, and tomorrow night, February 25, at two locations in Southern California on the topic of 19th Century American militias and Mormon militias.

Citizen militias are foreign to Americans in the 21st Century. But not in the 18th and 19th Centuries. Latter-day Saints are often mystified by Zion’s Camp, by the militias in Missouri, by the Danites, by the Nauvoo Legion, and by militias in the early Utah period. Yet these aspects of Mormon history have their counterparts in American society at large. Dr. Bennett’s studies will shed light on these topics and perhaps provide a framework for a fuller understanding of Mountain Meadows. Dr. Bennett writes, “I am just finishing my part of a collaborative study soon to be submitted for publication on early American militias, Mormon military activities in Missouri, and the Nauvoo Legion in particular. We are carefully addressing the charge of Mormon militancy in the early days of the Church.�

Dr. Bennett will address the topic at this event in Orange County tonight, and in LA County tomorrow night. For locations and directions, or to be added to the group’s e-mailing list, please contact Russ Frandsen by email at

5 comments for “Notice: Dr. Richard Bennett on the Missouri Experience and Mormon Militias

  1. You California folks are lucky to have access to the M-E Study Group. And you’re lucky to get a speaker like Prof. Bennett. I remember attending the JWHA meetings when they were in Nauvoo and listening to Dr. Bennett on the Nauvoo Charter in an upper room of the Nauvoo House. He is a fine and careful scholar.

    Maybe someone could post a report after the meetings have taken place.

  2. Rats! I typically go to Miller-Eccles and take notes, but I’m not available either night.

    Does anyone else here attend?

  3. He used to be my stake president back before he moved to the US. He is one smart man and built a great reputation for the Church here. He is one person I think of when I think of salt of the earth.

  4. The disbanding of the Nauvoo Legion under duress was what I did my senior thesis on at BYU. It should give the lie to the idea that the Church in Utah were violent fanatics.

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