EUGENE ENGLAND: A MAN FOR WHOM FAITH WON
By Kenneth W. Godfrey
The Beginnings of a True Friendship
My alarm clock rattled then rang, arousing me from what seemed like only a brief nap. It was 2:30 a.m., still dark and would be for at least three more hours. Only thirty minutes passed before I quietly closed the front door, started the car, and settled in for the two-and-a-half hour drive that lay ahead. Though my home was a mile or more from the freeway, no matter what time of the day or night there was always a steady blending of sounds made by the cars and trucks that filled eight lanes of highway, all traveling at high speeds. Soon I left Los Angeles County and, continuing north and east, reached for Victorville, California, and the early morning seminary class that would begin at 6:00. Serving as the Assistant Coordinator of Seminaries in the Southern California District, one of my duties was to visit and provide assistance as needed to the part-time seminary teachers in the Mojave Stake.
There were hints of dawn in the air as I made my way from the parking lot to the front door of the church. Walking down a well lighted hall, my attention was drawn to a classroom, a desk, and a man kneeling in prayer clad in the uniform of the United States Air Force. As I waited for him to finish his prayer I received a distinct impression that I was going to observe a very good class that day.
His amen said, Eugene England looked up, a bit startled to see me standing there. Then he smiled and welcomed me to Victorville and “the best seminary class (his words) in the Church.” A few minutes before six the students arrived, still groggy from too little sleep, grabbed their scriptures, and prepared for the devotional. Even though he was incredibly smart, Eugene easily related to high school students and, as Kathleen Petty has said of him, “had a deft way with questions” that caused them “to think harder and deeper” about gospel principles than they had ever done before. His teaching style engaged the students who, it appeared, all liked him. Even though the school year was young, he knew all their names, their backgrounds, and what questions and concerns they brought with them to class. There was, that morning, little to criticize and much to praise.
After the students had left, Gene and I began a conversation that lasted longer than either of us intended. We were both farm boys—he from a small community in southern Idaho, and me from an even smaller town in northern Utah. As boys under skies lighted only by never- ending stars, we each contemplated eternity, intelligence that never had a beginning, and why there was something in place of nothing. We wondered how God came to be God and found joy in discussing the gospel in Sunday School and in attending church. We both had fathers who in the face of disaster made covenants with God and were men who consecrated their lives to the Church. Our mothers loved unconditionally, were bright, valued education, and saw to it that we valued learning as well.
Eugene left the farm earlier than did I but carried a big chunk of his rural life with him to the big city. He never lost his love for the mountains, clear streams of water, and the solitude of the hills. We both attended universities—he the more prestigious University of Utah, and me at Utah State University. We found additional common ground in our institute experience. I knew and admired Lowell Bennion because of his textbook The Religion of the Latter-day Saints, as well as because of the insights I had gained from his 1959 publication Religion and the Pursuit of Truth which attempted to harmonize the science and philosophy of universities with the religious faith students had acquired at home and in church. Eugene knew “Brother Bennion” personally and believed his insights into religion and life and service were of the highest quality. Eugene would have agreed with Douglas D. Alder who wrote, “Lowell Bennion is indisputably one of the great minds and souls of modern Mormonism.” I was quick to observe that day that Gene hoped his own life would resemble that of his mentor.
As we left the church building, our talk turned to matters of the mind. Gene believed that the Latter-day Saints of his generation were not living up to the intellectual tradition of Parley P. Pratt, Orson Pratt, Lorenzo Snow, Orson Spencer, Emmeline B. Wells and Brigham Young. Though he thought highly of historians Brigham Henry Roberts and Juanita Brooks, who blended faith with scholarship, Gene believed that too many Mormon intellectuals remained unacquainted with what he later called “their own great intellectual traditions and the resources of [their] own true religion.” He thought the solution, at least in part, to creating a more thoughtful academic interest in Latter-day Saint history and doctrine, as well as in quality fiction and poetry, would be the creation of a journal whose contents would reflect peer-reviewed articles of substance and depth. Such a journal would provide a forum for Mormon intellectuals to publish the results of their research regarding all things Mormon.
This was not my first conversation, nor was it Eugene’s, regarding such a journal. I later learned that a group in Salt Lake City known as the “swearing elders,” whose membership included Lowell Bennion, T. Edgar Lyon, George T. Boyd, Bill Mulder, and Sterling McMurrin, had met from 1949–1955 “to hear addresses about important subjects being researched by other academics.” These men sometimes talked about founding a journal in which they could publish the results of their research. Mary Bradford wrote, “In retrospect it is clear that the ‘swearing elders’ played an integral part in the founding of a movement that stressed intellectual honesty, scholarly integrity, and reflective pondering,” Eugene was well acquainted with these scholars, and it is highly likely that they influenced his thinking about a publication devoted to “Mormon thought.”
As we said our goodbyes that morning and parted, I knew I had met a man of great faith whose teaching skills were extraordinary and whose intellectual interest seemed limitless. I also knew I had gained a friend. The bonds of true friendship, though rare, are often tied rather quickly and can appear in an almost serendipitous way. Smiling, I returned to Los Angeles where I gave a positive report of my visit to Victorville and Eugene England’s early-morning seminary class.
Throughout the academic year, Gene and I met at faculty meetings and district student activities, and I had the opportunity to discuss with him ideas to promote better teaching in early-morning seminary classes, and I often incorporated some of his suggestions into the teaching hints I sent to teachers monthly. His own teaching skills grew as the year wore on, as did his rapport with his students. I hoped, as did other administrators, that after his service to his country ended he might be found teaching seminary full time.
Adventures in Palo Alto
Following his military discharge, Gene worked in the Dean of Students Office at the University of Utah for a year and then won a Danforth Fellowship to study English Literature at Stanford University. Meanwhile, after serving as an Assistant Coordinator of Seminaries in Southern California for two years, I was asked to assume the position of coordinating seminaries and part-time Institutes of Religion in the San Francisco Bay Area. Thus fate threw Gene and I together again. I was asked to work closely with stake seminary coordinators and to develop part-time Institutes at more than a dozen colleges reaching from San Mateo in the south to Arcadia in the north. At the conclusion of my first year in the Bay Area, my assignment was changed and I worked the next year exclusively with part-time Institutes teaching several classes myself and hiring part-time teachers to instruct other classes. Eugene taught one of these classes, and once again we were able to discuss theology, history, war, peace, the Church, as well as Latter-day Saint scholars and scholarship in general.
Lowell Bennion, T. Edgar Lyon, George T. Boyd, Wendell Rich, Eugene Campbell, and other institute teachers seemed to stimulate a desire in many of their students to attend graduate school and deepen not only their knowledge of history, political science, literature, art, and philosophy, but of Mormonism, too. Brigham Young University offered a PhD in the History of Religion that attracted students who researched in depth the Latter-day Saint experience. William E. Berrett, who led the seminaries and institutes program, a serious scholar himself who loved studying the history and doctrines of the Church as much as he loved his own academic major, law, reinstated an every-other year summer school program for seminary and institute personnel that not only featured classes taught by the Church Educational Systems best teacher-scholars, but also members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and other General Authorities. Future Church presidents Joseph Fielding Smith and Harold B. Lee, among others, taught, answered students’ questions, and by example stimulated scriptural and historical study.
There was talk, too, among those interested in the study of Mormon history of creating some sort of organization that would provide a forum for scholars to present the fruits of their research and have their papers critiqued by peers before submitting their work for possible publication. Leonard Arrington, Juanita Brooks, Hyrum Andrus, Sidney B. Sperry, and Hugh Nibley were already publishing important books and articles, and T. Edgar Lyon’s work with Nauvoo Restoration Incorporated seemed to foreshadow important insights into the Latter-day Saint experience on the banks of the Mississippi River in Western Illinois.
At this same time, Gene noted stirrings in Mormon fiction. While we both knew that it was difficult, if not impossible, to attract publishers for novels devoted to Latter-day Saint themes or for high-quality poetry of substance and depth, there were authors still willing to try. Gene hoped that in some way he could be of help. As we renewed our friendship in the “city by the bay,” I found that his dream of a journal of Mormon thought had only grown brighter.
Though still in graduate school, Eugene was developing friendships with Latter-day Saint intellectuals from Harvard to Stanford. Some of his fellow students at the University of Utah, where he had edited the Pen magazine, encouraged and championed his cause to amass the means to publish a high-quality Mormon journal.
Eugene continued his studies at Stanford, and we often talked on the telephone, keeping each other abreast of developments in the Church and new research being done on Mormon topics. Then my family and I left the Bay Area and returned to Utah. I enrolled in graduate school at the University of Utah and took courses in political science and religious philosophy that would lead to a Ph.D. After six months of study and passing the Ph.D. French examination, my interest in Latter-day Saint history drew me to Brigham Young University to pursue a doctorate in the History of Religion. Our family moved to Orem, Utah, in December 1964.
One day early in the winter of 1965, I received a letter from Gene that began with the words, “Dear Ken we are really going to do it.” Then he informed me that he and Wesley Johnson, a Stanford graduate student majoring in history, were founding Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, and he asked if I would be willing to serve as a member of the initial board of editors. I was so excited to learn that a journal featuring peer-reviewed articles of substance and merit was actually becoming a reality that I immediately gave an affirmative reply. I must confess, too, that the thought of a farm boy serving on the board of editors of an academic journal seemed like a dream I never had coming true.
A month or more went by and I received a professionally designed flyer announcing the advent of Dialogue and also listing the editors, the board of editors, advisory editors, and the business staff. Eugene and Wes had recruited four future college presidents, a Bancroft Award winner, university deans, and a future apostle to serve on the board, along with other highly trained academicians. These men and women would play a significant role in Mormon letters for decades to come. My name was found among those academic luminaries.
The announcement of Dialogue was of such importance that a reporter for Time magazine wrote an article focused on the journal with a photograph of Eugene and three other male editors. In the published article, Gene was quoted as saying a man need not relinquish his faith to be intellectually respectable, nor his intellect to be faithful. The New York Times also did an in-depth interview with Gene and Wes Johnson, which led to other phone calls and interviews and even a congratulatory letter from Christian Century. Johnson, in writing about this period in Dialogue’s history, commented,
I was lucky to have a co-editor who became one of the most original LDS thinkers of the twentieth century. Gene was generous and hard working to a fault; he generated infectious enthusiasm everywhere he went. But he was also very sharp and shrewd– no pie in the sky intellectual. In my view, it would be hard to find a person who loved and believed in the Mormon Christian gospel more than Gene England. He was refreshingly original in his ideas and outlook.
One day I happened to meet Alma Burton, one of two supervisors of seminaries and institutes, in his office in the Smoot Building at Brigham Young University. After sharing with him the news of Dialogue’s imminent appearance and the intention of the editors to provide a forum for scholars to publish the results of their research and thinking on topics related to the Latter-day Saint experience, I observed that his own enthusiasm for such a journal did not match my own. In fact, his comments were almost entirely negative. That he was a published writer whose three-volume collection, Readings in Latter-day Saint History, compiled and editing with William E. Berrett, had received good reviews, I thought it strange that his attitude regarding Dialogue was hardly jubilant.
Only a few days passed before the telephone rang in my office in the Joseph Smith Building. William E. Berrett’s secretary asked if I could find time to come to his office and visit with him. An appointment was made. A few hours later I found myself speaking with the man all Church Educational System personnel called “President Berrett.” In a kind, almost fatherly way, he said he had just read a flyer announcing a new journal and learned that I was listed as a member of the editorial board. Something about his demeanor began to arouse some concern on my part as I told him that I had indeed accepted a position with Dialogue. “Perhaps it would have been good to have talked with me before giving your consent,” he said. “President Berrett,” I replied, “I had no idea that whether or not I served on the board of a new journal merited imposing on your time and winning your consent. I apologize and will resign immediately if such a decision represents your desires.” Before responding directly to what I had said, he told me of an experience early in his own career in the Church Educational System. He, Sterling McMurrin, and others, at the request of Commissioner Franklin L. West, had published a journal for seminary and institute teachers. Some of the articles were not received with approbation from the Board of Education, and the journal was quickly discontinued. “The Brethren,” he said, “sometimes not only worry about what is written about the Church, how it is written, and where it appears, but they are especially concerned that those whom they employ only research and publish things that build faith and increase testimony.” He thought it was highly probable that not every article that appeared in Dialogue would build faith. Once again I offered to resign. Then he told me to go ahead and serve on the board but be careful about what I published and make certain that my own writings were couched in a context of faith.
Still unsettled, I left his office and met the director of curriculum who told me that Alma Burton was not pleased that I had disregarded his advice and had accepted a position on the board of Dialogue. I was not aware that he had advised me not to serve on the board. I thought that he had only expressed his misgivings about a journal that focused on publishing articles written by Mormon scholars and thinkers. At the time Burton was serving as my stake president. I taught his daughter’s Sunday School class and was friends with one of his sons. Our family lived in a fourplex only a block from the Burton home.
Not wanting to be at odds with my stake president, I walked to his house that evening to clear the air. I told him that I had already accepted a position on the board before I spoke with him in his office, and I said that if he thought I had disregarded his counsel then I wanted to apologize. He then talked with me about research, writing, publishing and only authoring articles and books that promoted faith. He also said that if I was connected with Dialogue, I would never become a General Authority. I replied that I had always been taught that one should not aspire to high Church positions, and that I had never entertained such thoughts. I also said that I was confident that good scholarship and good writing devoted to finding the truth could and would build faith. The people I knew who were associated with Dialogue had faith and were devoted Church members, as well as being fine thinkers and scholars.
Still, as I left the Burton home and slowly walked to my own, I began thinking about the scriptures and the admonition that Church members should heed the counsel of priesthood leaders. While I did not agree with the reasons President Burton had provided for not linking my name with Dialogue, there was still, I thought, something important about the totality of his words. If I were to remain in the Church Educational System, which I intended to do, then perhaps I should be willing to practice what I preached. After talking with my wife Audrey and praying about my experience with President Burton, I called Gene and told him to take my name off the list of the Board of Editors. Eugene responded by saying he was going to call President N. Eldon Tanner of the First Presidency and ask that he overrule the counsel of President Burton and give his approval for me to serve as a board member. It required some insistence on my part and assurances that my decision was just that, mine, before Eugene accepted my resignation and said he would not call President Tanner. We agreed that I would publish an article or two in Dialogue.
My association with Gene from 1965–1967 involved infrequent conversations on the telephone and submitting, as I had promised, an article on the great German theologian and activist, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, which Dialogue published in the spring 1967 issue under the title, “Christ Without the Church.” Gene, I learned, was teaching part-time at the LDS Institute adjacent to the Stanford University campus and still working toward a Ph.D in literature and writing.
Late in the winter of 1967, President Berrett requested that I again come to his office. After my arrival, he asked how my doctoral work was progressing, and when I told him I would be finished in the spring (this turned out not to be true, I graduated in August), he offered me a position in the Church Educational System as director of the institute adjacent to Stanford University. When Eugene learned of my appointment, he called, congratulated me, and extolled, as only he could, the many virtues of living and working in Palo Alto. He believed that much more could be done to attract students, build their faith, and draw them closer to the Church. Then he invited Audrey and me to be guests in his and Charlotte’s home when we came to Palo Alto to house hunt. His offer we gladly accepted.
When we arrived in the England home, we were greeted with more than a little warmth as Charlotte apologized for the mess caused by carpenters who were doing some remodeling work on the house. That evening we noted that their home was seldom quiet. Children, friends, students, and workman came and went. The Englands welcomed all. We talked far into the night about the Institute, Dialogue, Stanford professors, the war in Vietnam, the anti-war movement, and Latter-day Saint history. It was clear to me that Eugene held strong views on all these subjects. He was the first Latter-day Saint that I had met who believed the war was morally wrong and that national leaders should call United States troops home. His was a position that I was not then willing to embrace.
Audrey and I, after only a two-day search, found a home in Sunnyvale, and bidding the England gang farewell, returned to our Orem, Utah, home. Having finished my Ph.D., I received a summer fellowship to go through Mormon periodicals and extract articles of a historical nature that I would then make available to the CES Curriculum department. I was permitted to make copies for my own use of articles that were of particular interest to me. Thus, I arrived in Palo Alto with quite a stash of Mormon related articles.
In July 1967, Gene and his family came to Salt Lake City to visit family and friends. A visit to the Brigham Young University campus and my office was on his agenda. We finalized the institute class schedule, some materials intended to promote the institute, as well as a special class Eugene would teach to the dozen or so freshman students who would enroll at Stanford in the fall.
Freshmen students at Stanford were required to enroll in what Kathleen B. Petty has called “the great Stanford leveling experience, ‘The History of Western Civilization,’ taught for three quarters to all freshmen regardless of race, color, creed, or national origin.” Eugene believed that in an era of student sit-ins, protests about defense contracts, anti-draft riots, anti-war protests and the rigors of academic life it was important for new Latter-day Saint students to have an opportunity to talk, ask questions, express feelings, and vent frustrations in an atmosphere of love and acceptance. He won my approval to conduct this freshman seminar in his home even though there was a new Institute building sitting on the edge of the campus.
One of his students that year of 1967, Kathleen Barrett (who later added Petty to her name), wrote of her experience: “Gene’s seminar was loose enough, and the atmosphere relaxed enough and Eugene approachable enough, that any question arising from Western Civ. or anywhere else, could be entertained.” Eugene often asked questions of his own. He was, Kathleen wrote, “an adroit poser of questions one thinks have been answered and finds they have not.” Gene believed that both faith and reason were important ingredients in the recipe of life. His own testimony regarding Jesus Christ, Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, and the Church, allowed him to explore difficult issues while confident that faith would always triumph. He, moreover, chose to take what she called “the hard road,” as he attempted “to find a bridge between the faith of the fathers and the challenges of the . . . idealistic world of student life in the 60s.”
There were approximately three hundred Mormon students attending Stanford in 1967, half of whom were graduate students. These students attended two student wards, one for those who were married, and one for those who were single. Bishop Roland Donaldson presided over the married students, and Bishop Henry B. Eyring led the singles ward. Institute course offerings included a Doctrine and Covenants class for wives of students taught mid-morning two days a week with a babysitter provided. A seminar for graduate students, held late in the afternoon once a week for two hours, a night course focused on the history of the Church, and a class devoted to the Book of Mormon were also held. Some of these classes had more than one section.
Two events that involved Dialogue, the Church, and Eugene personally caught the attention of scholars, the press, and many Church members. The first was the presentation to Church leaders of eleven papyrus fragments by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City which were once in the possession of Joseph Smith. The second involved a manuscript written by the Reverend Wesley P. Walters challenging important aspects of Joseph Smith’s history as printed in the Pearl of Great Price.
For a Dialogue issue on the first of these, Eugene secured copies of the papyrus and asked John A. Wilson, Professor of Egyptology and Chairman of the Department of Egyptology at Brown University to author a preliminary report, dating the papyrus, translating one of the fragments, and explaining its meaning. Professor Wilson asserted that the fragments were Book of the Breathings genre. Grant S. Heward, a student of Egyptian, and Gerald Tanner, who headed Modern Microfilm Company, an anti-Mormon Press, identified the source of the Book of Abraham (incorrectly, it was later shown), and finally Hugh Nibley, Professor of Religious History at Brigham Young University, wrote a response to the authors referred to above. In his response, Nibley argued, correctly as it turned out, that “the investigation of the Book of Abraham has still far to go before we can start drawing significant conclusions.”
Months before the four articles appeared in Dialogue, Gene’s intentions to publish them reached the ears of his stake president Richard B. Sonne. Every month, President Sonne and I met and discussed matters pertaining to the Institute. I quickly learned of his lack of enthusiasm for Dialogue. His concerns were exacerbated by the fact that it was being published within the boundaries of the stake over which he presided, and by members of “his” stake. In the meetings we had, he often asked about Gene, what he was teaching in his institute class, and Dialogue. In one of our early meetings, when he inquired about Eugene and the journal he founded, I told him that several Egyptologists were going to publish articles in Dialogue in which they would explain that the papyrus fragments recently given to the Church were important sensen (meaning breathings) texts that probably dated to the last century before the first century of the Christian era and represented a funerary text of the late Egyptian period, and that they probably had nothing to do with father Abraham. President Sonne became quite agitated as I was speaking, and when I had finished talking, he declared that he intended to call and warn President N. Eldon Tanner of Gene’s intentions. I told him that I had believed our meetings were confidential and that a more honorable course would be to ask Eugene himself speak with President Tanner. President Sonne agreed, and later that evening I talked with Eugene who he said he would be more than happy to talk with President McKay’s counselor. Less than a day passed before Gene came into my office and told me that President Tanner approved of having respectable Egyptologists translate the fragments and expressed his own faith that in the long run faith would trump doubt. Abraham and Joseph Smith, he was certain would be vindicated. The articles regarding the papyrus that appeared in the summer 1968 issue of Dialogue played a role in sparking new interest in the Book of Abraham, the origins of its content, and the precise role Joseph Smith played in adding to our knowledge of father Abraham and his life and teachings. Now more than forty years later, John Gee, in quoting Hugh Nibley, declared; “The Book of Breathings is not the Book of Abraham? And it is a howling absurdity [to insist] that the book [of Abraham] was produced in such a manner in which . . . no book could possibly be produced, ever!’ Instead the Book of Breathings has something ‘to offer in its own right’ and deserves to be studied against an Egyptian background.”
Eugene was confident in 1967 that competent scholars working with an authentic ancient text would over time come to some consensus that would only enlarge the pool of human knowledge. The Church, the spirit twice affirmed to him when only a boy, was, to use his own words, “as true as the gospel.” Good scholarship and civil dialogue, accompanied by faith, though at times revealing painful facts, tended to assist the Church in bringing souls to Jesus Christ, Eugene believed. President Sonne, even after learning that President Tanner had no objections to Dialogue publishing “translations” of the papyrus, still harbored misgivings and felt more certain that nothing good would come from the added attention being focused on Abraham, the papyrus, and the facsimiles.
The same 1967 fall that the papyri were given back to the Church, the Reverend Wesley P. Walters finished writing a manuscript which he titled “New Light on Mormon Origins from the Palmyra Revival.” One afternoon, Gene came into my institute office and told me that Dialogue had just received an article from a Presbyterian minister who had been doing research in the libraries of western New York and seemed to have discovered new and unsettling information regarding Joseph Smith’s First Vision, the absence of revivals in Palmyra before 1824, and that it also appeared that there was no Reverend George Lane in that area before 1824. The information in Walters’s article seemed incongruent, in many ways, with the story Joseph Smith told in his own history found in the Pearl of Great Price.
Eugene asked me to critically read and evaluate the article. He also wanted my opinion as to whether or not it should seriously be considered for publication in Dialogue. The following day we met again and discussed the challenges Walters’s research raised regarding what is perhaps the most pivotal event in Latter-day Saint history, the First Vision. Eugene did not want to publish Walter’s article by itself, thinking it would be better if it appeared in the company of articles on the same subject written by competent historians anchored in the Mormon faith. I suggested that he send the article to Paul R. Cheesman, who had just completed a master’s thesis titled “An Analysis of the Accounts Relating Joseph Smith’s Early Visions.” In part because of his strong friendship with Harold B. Lee, Paul had been given access to accounts of the First Vision that had not been previously published, even though they were not entirely unknown to some historians. Historian James B. Allen, among others, served on Paul’s thesis committee, and Paul was then preparing an article that he published in 1970 called, “Eight Contemporary Accounts of Joseph Smith’s First Vision, What Do We Learn from Them?”
In a cover letter, I asked Paul, a good friend, to read the article and proffer his opinion as to how best to answer some of the arguments Walters raised. Eugene and I learned later that our letter and the article created more than a little discussion among the BYU religion faculty. For too long Latter-day Saint historians had ignored libraries in the east, preferring to do their research using the holdings found in the archives of the Church. With the approval of general Church officers, a committee was formed and several professors and graduate students were sent to New York and other states to scour libraries and other depositories looking for documents that had some association with the beginnings of Mormonism.
Two years later, in its spring 1969 issue, Dialogue published a roundtable titled “The Question of the Palmyra Revival,” which featured Reverend Walters’s article, “New Light on Mormon Origins from the Palmyra Revival,” and another article by Richard L. Bushman, “The First Vision Story Revived,” which was followed by Walters rejoinder, “A Reply to Dr. Bushman.” These articles were among the first that focused readers’ attention on what could be learned when historians used primary sources long neglected or newly discovered.
This episode reveals Gene’s cautious approach to matters Latter-day Saints considered fundamental. He was unwilling to remove the scaffold of faith before the construction of one newer and more solid was in place. Those Brigham Young University professors and their students who gleaned America’s libraries created a virtual wave of faith-filled articles, monographs, and books over the next four decades, which in 2008 culminated in the publication of the first volume of the Joseph Smith Papers. With the appearance of the final volume, the whole world will have access to the primary source material that has a bearing on Joseph Smith—his life, his revelations, his teachings, and the church he founded. In a real sense, the roots of the Joseph Smith Papers project go as deep as those first issues raised by Walters. To its credit, Dialogue was willing to publish his controversial article.
As winter reached toward the spring of 1968, opposition to the war in Vietnam increased. More than a few students in the San Francisco Bay Area, including a few attending Stanford, protested the involvement of the United States in an Asian land war they considered immoral and unjust. Eugene, very early, came to the conclusion that the U.S. engagement in this war was wrong. At a time when it was like spitting against the wind for an active Latter-day Saint to speak out against the nation’s participation and leading role in the war in Southeast Asia, Eugene did so. He organized a round table that was featured in the Winter 1967 issue of Dialogue, and he wrote one of the articles, which he titled “The Tragedy of Vietnam and the Responsibility of Mormons.” In this article, he related, though briefly, his own voluntary service in the Air Force and his patriotism, and he then wrote,
Now, six years later, I find myself, despite (or actually because of) an enduring and growing love for America and her traditional values and contribution to the world, deeply alienated from the policies and practices of my government, unwilling to fight in its war in Vietnam and convinced that the military establishment, which helped educate me and to which I belonged, is the chief danger to American freedoms and moral values—and perhaps those of the world.
On the essay’s first page, he made it very clear that his writing “in no way implies criticism on my part of the ability, or courage, or good intentions of U.S. soldiers in Vietnam or approval of various violent or sensationalist forms of opposition to the war in this country.” Then he argued that the United States was involved in an unjust war. The only wars approved by God, he insisted, “were those waged in defense of basic liberties, families and homes.” John L. Sorenson, a Brigham Young University professor, in commenting on Gene’s paper, wrote that he had overstated, oversimplified, and made “plain errors” as to what “has happened in Vietnam.” Still Professor Sorenson found much to ponder in what England had written. Gene’s early opposition to the war concerned some Church leaders, including his stake president and at least one general authority, Marion D. Hanks.
Early in the winter of 1968, Elder Hanks came to Palo Alto on church business. Gene knew him well enough to call him “Duff,” a nickname used only by his closest friends. When he learned of Elder Hanks’ pending visit, he requested and received an almost private audience with his mentor. Eugene asked, and Elder Hanks agreed, that I attend this “interview.” Together they discussed the war and Eugene’s open opposition. Elder Hanks was very much a “hawk” and disclosed that he had requested but been turned down to enter the service as a chaplain just as B.H. Roberts had done during World War I. He and Gene freely expressed their opposing points of view, and then Elder Hanks said that so long as he broke no laws, Gene should feel free to articulate both vocally and in print his opposition to the conflict. With the advantage of historical hindsight, a good argument could be made that Gene was more right regarding the war than were his critics or Elder Hanks. Still the fact that his opposition to the war did not harmonize with the views of many Church leaders was enough of a concern that he, a few months later when with Elder Hanks again, requested a priesthood blessing from him. This tells us something about Gene and his faith in the Church and its leaders. He articulated his views on this subject in a book published two decades later that he titled Why The Church Is As True As The Gospel.
Some local leaders held the view that the young people who opposed the war, participated in anti-Vietnam protests, refused to serve in the military, publicly burned their draft cards, and considered going to Canada to escape the draft, should be subject to some sort of church disciplinary action. A few Latter-day Saint students attending Stanford were among this group. Eugene knew them to be honest in their opposition to the war and believed that some sort of ecclesiastical action against them might drive them further away from the Church, and would also be unjust. With the approval of President William E. Berrett, the administrator of the seminaries and institutes of the Church, I wrote a letter to President N. Eldon Tanner explaining the dilemma we faced as institute teachers in encouraging every LDS Stanford student to enroll in Institute classes, while at the same time they were encountering a not insignificant number of church members who believed their anti-war activities should bring about some sort of church court action against them. President Tanner promptly replied to my missive stating that those who were conscientious objectors to war, which was a legal course of action, could not use the Church and its teachings to justify the decision they were making. However, if they received official “conscientious objector” status they had not displeased God or His church. We should, he said, encourage students to hold themselves in readiness to respond to the call of their government to serve in the armed forces. But he also wrote that ecclesiastical leaders would be wise not to convene church courts to discipline those who chose not to follow this counsel. Instead, these leaders should use the same love and gentle persuasion to these individuals that they embodied with all members of their flock.
Also in early 1968, the Bay Area was experiencing a great deal of unrest, violence and protests for other reasons. The Church’s denial of priesthood authority to those worthy church members of black African descent also greatly concerned many students attending the university. Eugene himself believed this denial was a “policy,” not a “doctrine,” and should be changed. His approach to this troublesome policy was somewhat unique. He believed that it was the prejudices of the Latter-day Saints that prevented priesthood power from being bestowed on all worthy males. Only when church members were ready to accept black Africans and their descendants fully into the circle of their love would the policy change. In a 1973 article he wrote for Dialogue, he called the priesthood denial policy “The Mormon Cross.”
I had written a graduate paper at the request of my teacher, Gustive O. Larsen, focusing on the history of those Latter-day Saints of African descent who became members of the Church in the nineteenth century. Gene and I often discussed this history and the fact that one or two black men in Joseph Smith’s lifetime had received priesthood authority. As Lester E. Bush, Jr., later wrote, “There was a time, albeit brief, when a ‘Negro problem’ did not exist for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Eugene was convinced that someday this problem would again disappear.
Following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. there were a few telephone calls from both blacks and whites, who, in their anger and grief, declared that the Church and its “racist doctrines” shared some responsibility for King’s murder. Students found it difficult to defend to their friends as well as against challengers the Church’s position with respect to priesthood denial. There also existed among some students a mistrust of leaders—even university administrators, as well as some priesthood leaders. At the same time, many young people wanted to help all who suffered in poverty, ignorance, and hunger. These youth, at times, were frustrated as to what to do and felt that they were not being heard and that too few church members seemed to care about their ultimate concerns.
In an effort to give those students who wanted to vent their feelings and frustrations a platform from which to express their concerns, the Institute hosted what Jerry Snow in the Palo Alto Stake Courier called “a day of examination.” Church leaders sent Neal A. Maxwell, a recently called regional representative and University of Utah Executive Vice President, to both observe and participate in this symposium. The day’s discussions tackled such issues as white racism, economic discrimination, poverty, and political involvement. Eugene, who played a pivotal role in organizing this gathering, led a panel discussion made up of students who sought to describe challenges they faced in which their religious commitment was relevant.
In his presentation, Bishop Henry B. Eyring, a well-respected Stanford University professor, spoke of working within the structure of the Church as an effective way to bring about change. He told of a group of Stanford students, who, with the approval of Bishop Henry Taylor (who had presided over the student ward before Bishop Eyring) had gone into a low-income area of east Palo Alto and recruited children of every race, none of whom were Mormons, to participate in Primary. Single Stanford Latter-day Saint students were called to teach these young people, and the experience not only changed the children’s lives but the lives of their teachers as well. This, Bishop Eyring pointed out, was a good example of using the existing structure of the Church to be of service to others. Bishop Eyring acknowledged that there were risks associated with social action saying, “When you shake a tree, people are going to be irritated.” But if the shaking is done in the right way, the risks of irritating some are more than compensated by the rewards.
In his talk as the symposium’s final speaker, Neal A. Maxwell called “on the activist generation to demonstrate to older generations that it knows the difference between irresponsible and responsible dissent and can be counted on to exercise the latter.” Otherwise, “hunger for order would rise up in reaction to irresponsible use of liberty, possibly to destroy all freedom.” Students participated freely as the day progressed. Some topics, such as political involvement as means of solving problems and perceived Latter-day Saint racism, drew more emotion-filled comments than did other issues. Not every student who attended was found in church on Sunday or attending an institute class during the week, yet even those who were less active spoke the truth, as they saw it, in love. We did have what I called in my diary, “two conservative spies,” who attended every session to make certain that “our day was not a Communist plot to undermine the youth. But they were courteous and caused no trouble.”
Just being able to come together and verbalize their challenges and concerns in the presence of church leaders seemed to have a calming effect on the young people. Gene, a firm believer in the power of dialogue, felt that the symposium had been a success. At least it made a difference in the lives of the forty or so students who participated. An activist himself, Gene, it seemed, was always involved in one cause or another.
His open opposition to the war in southeast Asia concerned leaders in the Church Educational System. Institute instructors, even those who taught part-time, were morally obligated to teach sound doctrine, pay a full tithing, support church leaders, and bear testimony that Jesus was the Christ, Joseph Smith was a prophet called of God, that the Book of Mormon was true, and that the Church was led by prophets. Eugene was fully committed to these core doctrines and principles of the Church. He also believed that Latter-day Saint scripture, including the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants, supported the stand he had taken against the Vietnam War.
However, one stake president in the San Francisco Bay Area who worked for the Associated Press expressed some concerns regarding Gene’s teaching Institute. Those who were troubled by Eugene’s beliefs really did not know the man’s heart, nor did they know the scriptures as well as did he. When he was able to meet personally with his critics, he most often was able to achieve, if not complete peace then at least an armistice. But there were times, even when he tried to downplay his brilliance, that he was just too smart for his critics. I told him more than once that when dealing with ecclesiastical leaders, he should let them win every now and then. But his logic, scriptural prowess, and knowledge of Church history, and the quickness of his mind caused him to come out of every discussion victorious. However, at times those over whom he had triumphed, still left him carrying the same opinions, including their concerns regarding his “liberal” teachings and activities.
On 5 May 1968, the Latter-day Saint Student Association in the Bay Area sponsored an event held in the Oakland LDS auditorium in honor of President Hugh B. Brown. Twenty-five hundred young people were in attendance. Elder Paul H. Dunn spoke first, and then President Brown talked for more than an hour. He bore a powerful testimony and then bestowed an apostolic blessing on the audience. “He was,” I wrote, “so powerful in his old age that there was scarcely a dry eye in the house.” This event was a great spiritual boost to the young people who attended universities in the area. Two nights later, in the same auditorium, a solemn assembly was held for young women ages 18–26. Eighteen hundred came. The Presiding Bishopric blessed the bread and water, and the stake presidencies in the region passed the sacrament. Then the young women listened to talks by Elders Robert B. Simpson, Marion D. Hanks, and LeGrand Richards. President Brown was the final speaker, and again his talk was as powerful as any I had ever heard. These two meetings seemed to energize and build the faith of the young people who faced the challenges and perplexities of a world that seemed bent on turmoil, hatred, and unrighteousness. Gene supported these efforts on the part of general Church officers to let young people know that they cared about them, and cared, too, about the challenges they faced.
On May 7th, still basking in the spiritual uplift of the solemn assembly, I met with President Richard B. Sonne and discussed with him Gene’s future as an institute teacher. My own supervisor did not want to renew Gene’s contract, and so I went into the meeting fasting and after much prayer, hoping that I could properly convey to President Sonne the good that Gene was doing, and the growth in faith and testimony made by the students who took his classes. The president, after a long discussion, agreed to personally meet with Gene and confront him with his concerns. In that meeting President Sonne was less than candid, but he did say that he would not oppose education officials if they hired him again. On 2 July 1968 I wrote in my diary, “Eugene England, through making concession has been re-hired, a decision that made me very happy.” A few days before I made that happy diary entry, Eugene met with President Berrett and said that he would not teach or preach in opposition to government policy regarding the war in Vietnam, nor would he teach his own ideas with respect to priesthood denial to those blacks whose ancestors came from Africa.
Joseph C. Muren, who became the Stanford Institute Director in August 1968, found Gene in compliance with department of Education policies and there were no more incidents involving ecclesiastical leaders as Gene completed his university studies and his institute teaching.
Gene loved to discuss not only writing, literature, and poetry, but also Latter-day Saint history, Mormon doctrine, and gospel principles. My own interests were in many ways congruent with his. In fact, in our banter with each other he would say that my sermons were peppered with stories and examples taken from literature; I, in turn, would claim that his were filled with examples from history. Perhaps we should have switched majors, we sometimes said. Over the course of his life, Gene retained his interest in Latter-day Saint history, though it was overshadowed by his love of literature and his attachment to the personal essay. He published at least a dozen articles on themes rooted in the Church’s history. His book on young Brigham Young, titled Brother Brigham, focused on the “springs of feeling and motivation for a man such as Brother Brigham.” Relying on primary source material unused by other authors, he brought into “the open the real man, who for years,” Gene thought had remained hidden even “from Mormons who accepted him as a prophet of God.” The volume’s first chapter titled “Young Brigham” plowed new ground regarding his boyhood in New York’s Finger Lake Country. Perhaps the books greatest value is to be found in the research which catalyzed Eugene’s “own rediscovery of Brigham Young,” one that made him able “to move emotionally and to change my life for good.” Unlike other biographers, Gene found in Brigham Young “a warm, fallible, humorous, loving father, husband and friend—that is, as a man, as well as a Prophet of God.”
Late in the winter of 1968, I accepted a position in the Church Education System as the Division Coordinator of Seminaries and Institutes in Arizona and New Mexico, and that August moved to Tempe, Arizona. This ended Gene’s and my everyday association. For the most part, Gene’s teaching and writing had not raised as many eyebrows as they had the previous year. One storm in an otherwise calm weather pattern involved Eugene’s institute course titled “Sex without Marriage.” The class in Palo Alto “was very well received,” as Eugene emphasized developing “an affectional relationship appropriate to the whole nature of commitment as the relationship develops.” However, when he sent a description of the course to the Provo office of the Church Educational System, “someone there got all upset that we could talk for a whole quarter about sex—or even at all for that matter—so a lot of time and energy was wasted on explanations and demonstrations of our faith in chastity, etc.” While Gene’s belief in moral purity both before and after marriage was no different than the position espoused in the scriptures and in the doctrines of the Church, he, like some other teachers, used catchy phrases for his course titles in an effort to attract more students. He did not stand alone in having the title of his class questioned by those in charge of the curriculum. In time, decisions were made that standardized both course content and titles. Class schedules after that time featured generic titles such as Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, New Testament, Old Testament, Pearl of Great Price, Church History, and Courtship and Marriage. Gene, in a 12 December 1969 letter, wrote, “Things are going very well this year,” and we (meaning Gene and Joseph Muren) have “been left fairly free to educate for a change at both the local level and in relations with Provo.”
We continued to correspond with each other from time to time as Gene pushed forward to complete his doctoral program. He sometimes asked for the names of students that he and co-Dialogue editor Wesley Johnson could consider for positions on the Board of Editors. Knowing that I had some supervisory responsibilities for the seminary and institute program among the Apache, Navajo, Pima, and Hopi tribes, he also asked for the names of potential authors for an issue of Dialogue dealing with minority groups and the Church. We sometimes exchanged missives in which we discussed what constituted good teaching and good scholarship, as well as exchanging information on who was researching and writing what with regard to topics that had a bearing on the Church and its history.
For some months late in 1968, Gene worked on an essay regarding the Mormon intellectual. After explaining that he was aware that the label “intellectual isn’t always a complimentary term” among Latter-day Saints, he wrote that he used the
term in an essentially neutral way as descriptive of . . . [a] gift from the Lord that makes [a person] delight in ideas, alive to the life that goes on in . . . [the] mind as well as outside it, that makes [a person] question set forms and conventional wisdom to see if they are really truth or only habit, whether they endure because right or merely because of fear or sloth. I use the term intellectual to refer to the gift from the Lord that makes you curious about why as well as how, anxious to serve by being creative as well as obedient.
In his definition of an intellectual, Gene was certainly describing himself. Concluding his essay, he called for Mormon scholars to be more loyal to their own intellectual tradition, and to “true revealed principles and practices” and to use the “gift of intelligence as the Lord would want us to.”
Gene, full of what seemed to be a great reservoir of energy and confidence, knew that his intellectual prowess was of the highest quality. Quickly grasping the essence of the most complex concepts, including difficult theological issues, he, using his writing and verbal skills, created a significant body of essays, books, poetry, and literary criticism. Early in the year 1966, while serving as a member of the Stanford Ward bishopric, Gene delivered a sermon “to introduce Mormonism to friends of the LDS students at Stanford University.” He titled his talk, “That They Might Not Suffer: The Gift of the Atonement.” His insights into this, the greatest of all acts of love, reflect his vast knowledge of Christian history, theology, and scripture, as well as uniquely Mormon sources. He explained and explicated the Substitution, Satisfaction, Ransom and Moral theories of the atonement and then wrote,
We do not repent in order that God will forgive us and atone for our sins, but rather God atones for our sins and begins the process of forgiveness by extending unconditional love to us, in order that we might repent and thus bring to conclusion the process of forgiveness. At the center of the experience somehow is Christ’s ability to break through the barriers of justice, in those . . . . Who can somehow freely respond with the shock of eternal love expressed in Gethsemane.
As intellectually gifted as he was, Eugene England was fully aware that all explanations of the atonement were less than satisfactory, yet he also believed that faith, study, prayer, and deep thought would bring humankind closer to the core of truth than giving up and branding the doctrine as a forever “mystery.”
Thinking, study, writing, and participation in good causes would, he knew, bring enemies, anxiety, disappointment, and despair, but somehow being fully alive also had its own compensations. Gene truly believed that knowledge laced to integrity wielded great power. One of his most influential mentors, the great Stanford poet Yvor Winters, seemed to exemplify for Gene the essence of the true scholar. In a 1998 interview, Gene told David Barber that Winters converted him “to be very suspicious of the Romantic view of things that relies on the heart alone, intuition, and a nominalistic view of the world as being essentially a product of will, God’s will or our will.” This led Gene to sometimes question other things which some took for granted.
In an essay he titled “The Quest for Authentic Faculty Power,” Gene wrote that “titles, hierarchies, rules, regulations, and administrators did not represent the authentic power of university faculties, it was instead the professors possessing great knowledge and a commitment to teaching as well as willingly involving themselves in public causes.” Winters, in Gene’s mind, represented the epitome of the power of which he wrote. It was just the sort of influence that Gene wanted to wield in the world.
Gene secured a position teaching English at California State College in Hayward, where he worked until he completed his Ph.D. in 1974. He was unaware at first that his published essay regarding faculty power had caught the attention of the President of St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, who was so impressed that he offered Gene the position of Dean of Academic Affairs. Eugene, Charlotte, and their six children moved to the Midwest in 1970.
While he was an employee of St. Olaf’s, Gene served as a branch president, won the hearts of branch members, and maintained his interests in both writing and Mormon Studies. We exchanged a few letters, talked on the telephone infrequently and tried to keep up on each other’s activities. As he left the Midwest in 1975, my family departed for Pennsylvania, where I had been called to serve as a mission president. Gene was unemployed for a time and asked that I assist him in securing at least a part-time institute teaching position at the Salt Lake or Ogden Institute. Even though his involvement with Dialogue and the controversies of the past were at first barriers to winning approval for his request, CES leaders did allow him to teach part-time at both institutes. We were both disappointed that he did not secure a full-time position. However, good fortune smiled on him, and Church Historian, Leonard J. Arrington, offered him a position in the Church Historian’s Office, where he worked for two years.
Gene also sought a teaching position at the University of Utah but was told that his writings and lectures about and commitment to Mormonism stood in his way of becoming a member of the English faculty. When he contacted Brigham Young University officials for a position at that school, the Church Board of Education turned him down, even though some officials favored hiring him. His quest for and rejection as a tenure-tracked professor at a university was one of the low points in his life. Then in 1977, with the help of Church Commissioner of Education Jeffrey R. Holland and Neal A. Maxwell, he received an appointment in the English department at Brigham Young University. Gene felt good about being at BYU where he had the freedom to be positive and personal about his religion, “which, if not forbidden in other places, was certainly socially constrained.” He felt “a lot freer to be completely open about his religious feelings, without violating unwritten or written rules.”
Gene took his teaching assignment at BYU very seriously and sought to implement the words of Brigham Young as he instructed his students. While working on his book about Brigham Young, he found what he called a very troubling teaching often repeated by the Church’s second president. Brigham Young had declared:
It is actually necessary for opposite principles to be placed before [the people], or this state of being would be no probation. . . . We cannot obtain eternal life unless we actually know and comprehend by our experience the principle of good and the principle of evil, the light and the darkness, truth, virtue, and holiness– also vice, wickedness and corruption.
What Brigham Young meant, Eugene insisted, was that “we must learn through experience to know good and evil, but it doesn’t have to be personal experience. It can be vicarious experience—the kind that allowed Jesus Christ, through the great power of his divine, unconditional love, to ‘descend below all things,’ to take all our sins upon himself, without himself sinning, and thus save us.” Gene believed that through literature students could vicariously experience “the necessary opposite principles” of which Brigham Young spoke. Using Shakespeare as an example, Eugene wrote, “Shakespeare was trying to cure his audience’s sinfulness by creating dramas of actual experience that could change them, especially through new understanding and experience, with the workings of the atonement of Christ.”
Even at BYU his life was not always smooth. William A. “Bert” Wilson, who had first met Eugene when they were young boys growing up in Downey, Idaho, and who remained a close friend, became head of the English department. He wrote that it “has been a great joy to teach in the same department as my grade school buddy—though during the six years [I] served as department chair [I] began to understand a little better miss Gilbert’s [their elementary school teacher] concerns over Eugene. Miss Gilbert,” Wilson wrote, “admired Eugene’s mind but not always his exuberant behavior.”
When in Provo, I usually dropped by Gene’s office, and we picked up conversations as if we had seen each other only yesterday. I attended lectures he delivered in Logan, Utah, and he sometimes attended talks I gave at Brigham Young University’s Education Week. The last time I saw Gene and Charlotte was on 25 October 2000. Audrey and I were serving a mission in Nauvoo, Illinois, but had returned to Logan where I was scheduled to deliver the well-publicized Leonard J. Arrington Lecture. As I arose to speak, I looked to my left and there sat my dear friends Eugene and Charlotte England. After the lecture, we talked and Gene invited me to submit my lecture, “The Importance of the Temple in Understanding the Latter-day Saint Nauvoo Experience, Then and Now,” to Dialogue for publication, stating that the journal needed more positive, faith-filled articles. We expressed our affection for each other; then he and Charlotte were gone. Audrey and I returned to Nauvoo, and early in 2001 were told of Eugene’s brain tumor. With John Harris, former head of the English Department at BYU, we followed by email his rapid slide toward death. When I learned of his passing, I reflected on the experiences we had shared together. Fine friendships only rarely appear and are gone too quickly. Still I believed that Eugene England was a man for whom faith had won. We would, I was sure, meet again and enjoy the same sociality we had so much enjoyed on earth. It seemed certain to me that even in heaven Eugene would find some cause to engage his interests. Is it possible, too, that even among those who we say have “all knowledge,” he has found something more to study, challenge, discuss, and seek to change? I wouldn’t bet against it.
 I think I remember Gene dressed in his uniform, but my memory is possibly betraying me.
 Kathleen B. Petty, “Eugene England, Inquiry in a Context of Faith,” Teachers who Touch Lives, Philip L. Barlow, compiler (Bountiful: Horizon Publishers, 1988), 46.
 Douglas D. Alder, “Lowell L. Bennion, The Things That Matter Most,” Teachers Who Touch Lives,13.
 Eugene England, “Great Books or True Religion? Defining The Mormon Scholar,” Eugene England, Dialogues With Myself (Midvale: Orion Books, 1984), 58.
 Ibid., 73.
 Mary Lythgoe Bradford, “In Memory of Dr. Bill,” Dialogue 41, no. 3 (Fall 2008): 190–91.
 Bradford, 191.
 It should also be noted that G. Wesley Johnson wrote in his history of Dialogue that “The idea and need for an independent, serious LDS publication had been in the air for many years. At the Manhattan Ward in the late 1950s, some friends and I discussed the need to discuss in print what we thought were the two key issues the Church was facing: the black exclusion question and the status of women.” G. Wesley Johnson, “The Founding and the Fortieth: Reflections on the Challenge of Editing and the Promise of Dialogue,” Dialogue 39, no. 3 (Fall 2006): 67–68. Eugene and I were not aware that Wes Johnson and others were discussing some of the same things as were we.
 Time, 26 August 1966, 59.
 G. Wesley Johnson, “The Founding and the Fortieth: Reflections on the Challenge of Editing and the Promise of Dialogue,”Dialogue 39, no. 3 (Fall 2006): 84.
 Petty, “Eugene England, Inquiry in a Context of Faith,” 45.
 Ibid., 46.
 Ibid., 48.
 Dialogue 3, no. 2 (Summer 1968): 67–106.
 Now, more than forty years later, a bibliography of articles about the Papyri and its translation fills more than thirty-five pages of single-spaced, eight-point font. “Since 1967,” John Gee wrote, “there have been twelve purportedly Egyptological editions of the Joseph Smith Papyri X and XI, a number that surely far exceeds the Papyri’s Egyptological importance. The ninth edition, put together by Michael Rhodes and distributed by the University of Chicago Press, has been the best. The tenth and eleventh, both by Professor Robert Ritner, are a step backward in understanding the Papyri since it has been shown that, on average, one out of every four lines of his edition does not match what is actually on the Papyrus.” John Gee, “New Light on the Joseph Smith Papyri,” The Farms Review 19, no. 2 (2007): 245–59.
 Ibid., 258.
 James B. Allen, “Eight Contemporary Accounts of Joseph Smith’s First Vision, What Do We Learn from Them?” Improvement Era, April 1970, 4–13.
 See, for one example of what emerged from trips like this, Richard L. Bushman, Joseph Smith and the Beginnings of Mormonism, (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1984). This exodus of Latter-day Saint scholars to the east has, over the last four decades, led to a plethora of books and articles on early Mormon history. I was asked to become a part of this research team and spend the summer of 1968 in combing New York’s libraries, but because my family and I were moving to Arizona I was unable to make the time commitment such a research project would entail.
 Ronald S. Esplin, a prime mover and general editor of this Papers project, suggests that it will require thirty or more volumes before all of Smith’s papers are published for public study and perusal.
 Eugene England, “The Tragedy of Vietnam and the Responsibility of Mormons,” Dialogue 2, no.4 (Winter 1967): 71–90.
 Ibid., 71.
 Ibid., 74.
 John L. Sorenson, “Vietnam; Just a War, or a Just War?” Dialogue 2, no. 4 (Winter 1967): 91–100.
 Eugene England, Why The Church Is As True As The Gospel (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1986).
 Eugene England, “The Mormon Cross,” Dialogue 8, no. 1 (Spring 1973): 78–86.
 Lester E. Bush, Jr., “Mormonism’s Negro Doctrine: An Historical Overview,” Dialogue 8, no. 1 (Spring 1973):11–68.
 Neal A. Maxwell, “Lauds but Cautious,” Palo Alto Stake Courier, June 1968, 3.
 Kenneth W. Godfrey, Diary, 1 May 1968.
 Ibid., 24 April 1968.
 Ibid., 6 May 1968.
 Joseph C. Muren, telephone conversation with Kenneth W. Godfrey, 25 August 2008.
 Eugene England, Brother Brigham (Salt Lake City, Bookcraft, 1988), vii.
 Ibid., viii.
 Eugene England, 12 December 1969 letter to Kenneth W. Godfrey.
 Kenneth W. Godfrey, 28 January 1969 letter to Eugene England.
 Kenneth W. Godfrey, 2 February 1969 letter to Eugene England.
 Eugene England, Dialogues With Myself, 57.
 Ibid., 75–76.
 Eugene England, “That They Might Not Suffer: The Gift of Atonement,” Dialogue 1, no. 3 (Autumn 1966): 150–53.
 Yvor Winters (1900–1968) taught at Stanford for forty years. He wrote controversial criticism that emphasized the moral content of art. His major critical work was In Defense of Reason (1947). His poetry ranged from austere to lyrical. For more information, see The Concise Columbia Encyclopedia (New York: Avon Publishers, 1983), 925.
 David Barber, “An Interview with Eugene England,” Student Review, 10 April 1998, 10.
 Eugene England, “Teaching Literature with the Spirit of God,” speech given at the English Honors Banquet, Brigham Young University, 8 April 1998 (italics in the original).
 William A. “Bert” Wilson, “Grade School Buddy, and Friend,” Student Review, 10 April 1998, 14.