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The interviews in this volume tell the stories of remarkable men and women who have made careers out of researching, writing, and teaching about the past. Friends and colleagues conducted these conversations over a decade, and all were subsequently published in the Mormon Historical Studies journal of Religious Educator periodical. Now they are brought together as a single book of personal essays. As we review and reflect on the personal lives and remarkable careers featured in this volume, we sense that many of these historians feel they were prepared or given a definite sense of mission and professional calling that stretches well back in time.



About the Author

Reid L. Neilson

Reid L. Neilson was born and reared in Southern California. He received his BA degree in international relations from Brigham Young University in 1996. After graduation he worked for Arthur Andersen's Strategy, Finance, and Economics Division in Los Angeles and London, consulted for Walt Disney's Strategic Planning Division in Tokyo, and researched for the University of Michigan Business School's Asia-Pacific Human Resources Partnership in Hong Kong. He also took graduate degrees in American history and business administration at Brigham Young University in 2001 and 2002 respectively. In 2006 he completed his PhD in religious studies (American religious history emphasis) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was named an International Studies Scholar for Tomorrow Fellow.Dr. Neilson is the author of three books, including Strangers in a Strange Land: Early Mormon Missionary Explorations and Realities in East Asia (University of Utah Press, forthcoming), and the editor or coeditor of more than a dozen academic books, including Joseph Smith: Reappraisals after Two Centuries (Oxford University Press), The Rise of Mormonism (Columbia University Press), The Mormon History Association's Tanner Lectures: The First Twenty Years (University of Illinois Press), Believing History: Latter-day Saint Essays (Columbia University Press), and Taking the Gospel to the Japanese (Brigham Young University Press). He has also written many essays, book chapters, and introductions and presented dozens of papers on religion, history, and business at a variety of academic conferences. He is currently writing a history of the LDS Church participation at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair titled Exhibiting Mormonism to be published by Oxford University Press.After serving a full-time mission in the Japan Sapporo Mission, Dr. Neilson married Shelly Anderson. They are the parents of two children and enjoy snow skiing and international travel as a family. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Church History and Doctrine at Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah.



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