Some of the most puzzling documents left in the wake of Joseph Smith’s prophetic career pertain to the Book of Abraham—from the ancient papyrus to the nineteenth-century notebooks. For over a century these documents were specially housed away from public view. In 2018 The Joseph Smith Papers Project team at last made them eminently accessible in volume 4 of the “Revelations and Translations” series.
Robin Scott Jensen and Brian M. Hauglid co-edited the landmark volume, and in the process they learned more about the origins and uses of the cryptic Egyptian papers which Joseph Smith and his associates worked on in beginning in the mid-1830s.
About the Speakers
Robin Scott Jensen is an associate managing historian and the project archivist for the Joseph Smith Papers. He coedited the first three volumes in the Revelations and Translations series. He specializes in document and transcription analysis, and is also a member of the Church History Department Editorial Board. He earned an MA degree in American history from Brigham Young University, and a second MA in library and information science from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee. He is now pursuing a PhD in history at the University of Utah.
Brian M. Hauglid is an associate professor and visiting fellow at the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship at Brigham Young University. He earned a PhD in Arabic and Islamic Studies from the University of Utah. He has worked in Book of Abraham studies for over twenty years. As an editor for the Maxwell Institute’s “Studies in the Book of Abraham” series, Hauglid assisted in compiling and editing Traditions about the Early Life of Abraham and Astronomy, Papyrus, and Covenant. He also published A Textual History of the Book of Abraham.
The views expressed here and in Maxwell Institute publications are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Maxwell Institute, Brigham Young University, or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“Seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith.” (D&C 88:118)