Kingdom of Nauvoo: The Rise and Fall of a Religious Empire on the American Frontier (Paperback)
Best Book Award • Mormon History Association
A brilliant young historian excavates the brief life of a lost Mormon city, uncovering a “grand, underappreciated saga in American history” (Wall Street Journal).
In Kingdom of Nauvoo, Benjamin E. Park draws on newly available sources to re-create the founding and destruction of the Mormon city of Nauvoo. On the banks of the Mississippi in Illinois, the early Mormons built a religious utopia, establishing their own army and writing their own constitution. For those offenses and others—including the introduction of polygamy, which was bitterly opposed by Emma Smith, the iron-willed first wife of Joseph Smith—the surrounding population violently ejected the Mormons, sending them on their flight to Utah. Throughout his absorbing chronicle, Park shows how the Mormons of Nauvoo were representative of their era, and in doing so elevates Mormon history into the American mainstream.
About the Author
Benjamin E. Park is associate professor of history at Sam Houston State University. The author of American Nationalisms and Kingdom of Nauvoo, he has written for the Washington Post, Newsweek, and Houston Chronicle. He lives in Conroe, Texas.