Author: Ardis E. Parshall

Tickled by the Fringes

For more than 200 years, my father’s family has lived in western New York, centered between Canandaigua and Palmyra. Whenever anyone publishes a description of Joseph Smith’s neighborhood and the neighbors who knew him or hired him or harassed him, I scour the writing for familiar names.

Ronald Davis Bitton, 1930-2007 (Updated)

“He had dedicated his life – his time, his energy, his talents – to the greatest cause of all, the work of God on earth.” The evaluation with which Davis Bitton closed his award-winning biography of George Q. Cannon tells us what Davis considered to be the highest and best use of a lifetime, and it serves equally well as Davis’s own epitaph.

A Ward Family

How comfortable would you be if someone important – your prospective father-in-law, or that trophy client you’ve been courting – showed up at your door and asked to go to church with you?

Forget polygamists, Mitt descends from a DESERTER!!!!

With all the recent attention to Mitt Romney’s polygamous ancestors, I’m surprised no one has yet commented on the really colorful and interesting ancestor, a decorated Prussian soldier who emigrated to the U.S., marched with the Utah Expedition against the Mormons in 1857, then deserted the army and sought asylum in Salt Lake City, eloping with his Iron Cross.

Julie’s Papers (2 of 2)

After transcribing Julie’s papers, which surprisingly took only a few weeks since they were so interesting that I became fanatical about transcribing during the day and polishing a translation at night, I gave a presentation to the Archives staff about their newest collection.

Will They Remember Me?

I ordinarily don’t post or even link to my Salt Lake Tribune column here on T&S. This one is a little different, though, because it’s about an extraordinary young Mormon man, and the Tribune being the Tribune, I couldn’t include all the Mormon elements I might have liked to.