Joseph Smith, the Mormon prophet, was one of the most colorful and controversial American figures of the nineteenth century—so controversial, in fact, that to this day it is nearly impossible to find an unbiased account of his career.
Adherents to the church that he founded, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, naturally accentuate the man's virtues and gloss over his faults. Detractors selectively present facts that are calculated to cast the man's character in the most unfavorable light. And many academics, operating from the assumption that all religions is but a figment of man's imagination, simply don't know what to make of this seemingly inexplicable man.
This book is an honest attempt to give a full picture of the man behind all the controversy; to acquaint the reader with the man who was—and continues to be—hailed as a prophet or dismissed out of hand. [Cover summary]