EXCLUSIVE! The Contributions of Joseph Smith’s Political Missionaries

Storming the Nation: the unknown contributions of Joseph Smith’s political missionaries is the most important and interesting yet untold missionary experience in Latter-day Saint history. It answers two important questions. Why did run for president in 1844 and who were the cadre of over 600 missionaries who preached and politicked for him?

Over 600 strong and scattered from Maine to Louisiana and from Nauvoo to New York City, they were the largest missionary force Joseph Smith ever dispatched. These men, and one woman, were storming the nation as advocating the restored gospel and the presidential campaign of the Prophet. Facing stiff resistance, but also finding surprising success, these electioneers offered their fellow Americans religious and political salvation. But when enemies assassinated Joseph, their campaign collapsed.

From its wreckage, Brigham Young and this cadre of believers transferred Joseph’s religious and political goals into leadership roles of their own in the American West. Storming the Nation illuminates and memorializes the loyalty, sacrifice, and extraordinary lives and contributions of a heroic host who have been overlooked and forgotten—an unknown pioneer legacy now told for the first time.

Length:  54:21

(sainsburydr@churchofjesuschrist.org) has taught in the Church Education System of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for 26 years. He currently teaches in the Ancient Scripture department at Brigham Young University. He holds a Ph.D. in American History and is the author of Storming the Nation and other scholarly articles dealing with Church history.  He regularly presents at conferences, is interviewed for podcasts, and gives lectures. He is a proud pioneer descendant who lives in Bountiful, Utah with his wife, Meredith, and their three sons.

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