Today on the Talk Mormonism podcast I am joined by Dr. James Simeone, professor of political science at Illinois Wesleyan University and author of The Saints and The State: The Mormon Troubles in Illinois. It feels like we’ve been well supplied with scholarship around the events of Nauvoo recently, following the work done by the Joseph Smith papers project, books by Benjamin Park, Spencer McBride and others have helped shed more light on this era of Mormon history.
The Saints and the State is an important addition, it’s not just a straightforward telling of historical events, it’s more of an analysis of the political and social system that created the Nauvoo situation. In the book, Dr. Simeone paints a vivid picture of Antebellum America, with its developing democracies, frontier justice, and rising religious pluralism. It was circumstances like these, and other factors that combined to create the tension between Illinois settlers and the Mormon refugees.
You can find The Saints and the State at the following links: