Authors looking at the development of the field of Mormon history have often evaluated it in terms of historiography—as its progression from the domain of amateurs to the output of academics. However, studies of the composition and development of the larger history profession have focused on the discipline's fragmentation and the formation of an "archival divide" between those that write history and those collecting and preserving its sources. This latter approach provides a useful framework for understanding the evolution of the Church Historian's Office of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, from its origins in 1831 to its current home in the Church History Library. In exploring this theme, this paper will discuss the movement toward professionalization in the Church Historian's Office from its founding until the 1980s.
Cory L. Nimer is the University Archivist at Brigham Young University. He received a master's degree in History from Sonoma State University, and a master's of Library and Information Science from San Jose State University.
Nimer, Cory L.
""To Keep the Church Record and History": The Evolution of the Church Historian's Office,"
Journal of Western Archives: Vol. 13:
1, Article 13.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/westernarchives/vol13/iss1/13