On 17 March 1842, twenty-two women of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gathered in Nauvoo, Illinois, under the direction of their prophet, Joseph Smith, to organize a female counterpart to priesthood and patriarchal leadership. The women elected lady leaders and established a purpose: to save souls and provide relief to the poor. "We are going to do something extraordinary," said Emma Smith, first Relief Society president. "We expect pressing calls and extraordinary occasions." The Relief Society engaged in religious, charitable, economic, political, and cultural activity and initiated a new emphasis on recording, remembering, and retaining the authority of the past.
This dissertation examines the way Mormon women remembered and commemorated the Nauvoo Relief Society for the next fifty years through the lens of material culture. Hair wreaths, quilts, buildings, posters, and hand-painted poetry books illustrate the transition of Mormonism through isolation in Utah to acceptance by mainstream America, based on the way the women presented their identity and their heritage. They selected the pieces of the past that would appeal to their audience, always maintaining a memory of their Nauvoo roots.
|Commitee:||Bushman, Claudia L., Landsberg, Alison, Leon, Sharon|
|School:||George Mason University|
|School Location:||United States -- Virginia|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Religious history, American history, Womens studies|
|Keywords:||American Victorian, Hair art, Material culture, Memory, Mormon, Nauvoo Relief Society, Quilt|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be