The Mormon History Association (MHA) will gather the first weekend of June 2013, June 6-9, at the Davis Conference Center in Layton, Utah, for its 48th annual conference. For nearly fifty years MHA has provided the premier forum for distribution of the latest research and scholarship in Mormon history studies for scholars, graduate and undergraduate students, and other history enthusiasts. With the theme of “The Crowded Landscapes of the Mormon West(s): Agency and Action from the Wasatch Front to the Pacific Rim” nearly 150 presenters will address the conference theme and other topics pertaining to the Mormon past.
Layton Conference Highlights
An opening welcome session and reception (the public is invited at no charge) will inaugurate the conference on Thursday evening, June 6th, beginning at 7:00 p.m. The following two days of conference sessions, which require registration, held at the beautiful and accommodating Davis Conference Center will be filled with intellectually stimulating and provocative papers and panels. Session topics span a wide range of interest including explication of Mormons in the Pacific; early Mormon history; Mormon women’s history; settlement in Davis County, Utah; ethnicity within Mormonism; and environmental connections to the faith.
Besides presentation of the latest studies from, among others, the LDS Church History Department and Brigham Young University scholars, increasingly non-Mormon scholars have entered the conversation regarding the study and impact of Mormon history. This year’s conference will be highlighted by the annual Tanner lecture delivered by Leigh Eric Schmidt of Washington University in St. Louis, who will speak on “Mormons, Freethinkers, and the Limits of Toleration.” Others offering fresh views of Latter-day Saint history and culture are professors John G. Turner, Sarah Barringer Gordon, Ann Taves, Richard V. Francaviglia, and Edward J. Blum.
Always highlights of the conference are the pre- and post-conference tours. This year’s pre-conference tours include exploration of Antelope Island (including a pontoon boat ride); an excursion to the Golden Spike National Historic Site and Hill Aerospace Museum; and visits to historic buildings and nineteenth-century polygamist homes in Davis County. The post-conference tour is a venture that includes stops at Martin Harris’s gravesite and the Logan cemetery, the Bear River Massacre site, the Oneida Stake Academy, and the Logan and Paris, Idaho, tabernacles.
The Mormon History Association
This weekend event is sponsored by MHA, which was founded in 1965 by scholars interested in promoting the study of Mormon history. Today, the MHA includes over one thousand members with diverse interests and backgrounds, from university professors and independent scholars to museum curators, undergraduate students and history buffs. The MHA membership gathers each year for a conference at a location of significance in Mormon history. Sandwiched between conferences last year in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, and next year in San Antonio, Texas, the conference in Layton is MHA’s first conference venture into Davis County, Utah.
The MHA is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to the scholarly study of all aspects of the Mormon past. The MHA actively pursues its mission and vision by hosting annual conferences, publishing a quarterly journal (the Journal of Mormon History), presenting awards for scholarly excellence, and providing a variety of membership services. For nearly 40 years, the Journal has published groundbreaking research that makes a significant contribution to knowledge of the Mormon past and its relationship to surrounding cultures.
Registration for the 48th Annual Mormon History Association Conference and Pre- and Post-Conference tours is ongoing to May 22, 2013. Go to the MHA website to register and for additional details, including information on the topics to be addressed by guest speakers and all other presenters: www.mormonhistoryassociation.org
Thursday, June 6, 2013, through Sunday, June 9, 2013. Pre-conference tours on Thursday and post-conference tour Sunday through Monday, June 10, 2013.
Conference Location Lodging Host
Davis Conference Center Hilton Garden Inn
1651 North 700 West 762 Heritage Park Blvd.
Layton, Utah 84041 Layton, Utah 84041
(801) 416-8888 (801) 416-8899