Style Guide for JMH


 Journal of Mormon History generally follows the Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition; articles use footnotes. There are some unique guidelines for LDS, Community of Christ, and other Restoration churches. Some general reminders and citation examples follow. For more information, refer to the Chicago Style.


We require citations for all direct quotations unless quotation #2 occurs in the same paragraph as #1 and the context makes it clear that the same speaker is continuing (e.g., “Elder Benson then added, …”). Run in quotations of fewer than 100 words. The “Sacred Quotation” rule always applies. If it’s a quotation, we reproduce it exactly, no matter how funny it looks or how incorrect it seems. Add [sic] if the misspelling could be easily mistaken for a typographical error, but otherwise, use sparingly and omit altogether for phonetic misspellings.


Use “Ibid.,” where appropriate. (Remember that it always refers to the source immediately above its own location, that this source must be identical to it except for the page number, and that it cannot refer to more than one source.) Do not use “idem.” or “op. cit.”

Give inclusive page numbers even for scattered references, rather than using “passim” or “ff.” It is desirable, but not required, to give a span of relevant numbers but to also identify the page of a specific actual quotation: e.g., I. Woodbridge Riley, The Founder of Mormonism: A Psychological Study of Joseph Smith, Jr. (New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1902), 185–282, quotation on 195.



Note: References to the online volume are acceptable. In that case, cite the URL and give the date of access.

Robin Scott Jensen, Richard E. Turley Jr., and Riley M. Lorimer, eds. Revelations and Translations, Volume 2: Published Revelations. Volume 2 of the Revelations and Translations series of The Joseph Smith Papers, Dean C. Jessee, Ronald K. Esplin, and Richard Lyman Bushman, general eds. (Salt Lake City: Church Historian’s Press, 2011).

Second reference: Jensen, Turley, and Lorimer, Revelations and Translations, 116. [Note, if the same article cites more than one volume in the same series, then a fuller title must be given along with the volume number preceding the page number.


Oliver Cowdery, Letter to “Dearly Beloved Brethren and Sisters” [Kirtland, Ohio], April 8, 1841, Kaw Township, Missouri, the Joseph Smith Papers Online, Documents, id:3878 (accessed October 31, 2010).

Second reference: Cowdery, Letter to “Dearly Beloved Brethren and Sisters,” April 8, 1841.

Mark Davies, comp., Corpus of General Conference Talks, Brigham Young University, (accessed April 3, 2011).


Report of the Semi‑Annual Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‑day Saints, October 6, 1916 (Salt Lake City: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‑day Saints, semi‑annual), 4‑5 (hereafter cited as Conference Report).

Brigham Young, April 14, 1867, Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. (London: LDS Booksellers Depot, 1854‑86), 18:161‑62. [Note that no space follows the colon after the volume in a book, but that a space follows the colon when a date appears between the volume and page number in a reference to a periodical.]

Second reference in the same article: Lorenzo Snow, April 12, 1866, Journal of Discourses 17:227. [Don’t abbreviate as JD.]

Joseph Smith, et al., History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‑day Saints, ed. B. H. Roberts, 7 vols., 2nd ed. rev. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1948 printing), 3:118‑22. [Note: since the History has remained continuously in print but has made numerous small corrections/changes over its printing history, it is important to identify the year in which the version you are using was printed. To the extent possible replace references to History of the Church with references to the appropriate volume in the Joseph Smith Papers.]

Second reference: History of the Church 3:120. [Do not abbreviate as HC.]


Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price are not italicized. All scriptural references (abbreviated) are cited parenthetically in the text unless accompanied by a commentary. For abbreviations of LDS scriptures, see the front matter in the triple combination. The same rules apply to citations to Community of Christ scriptures, including verse parts. Specify edition of Book of Mormon where relevant.


  1. W. Clayton, Letter to the Editor, St. Louis, April 3, 1838, Times and Seasons 3 (May 18, 1838): 151.

[This format also applies to Evening and Morning Star, Latter‑day Saint Messenger and Advocate, Millennial Star, Zions Harbinger and Baneemy’s Organ, Elders’ Journal, etc.]

Scott Taylor, “All 24 Million Words of LDS General Conference,” April 1, 2011, (accessed May 5, 2011).


Charles Raybold, “Presidential Warning Falls on Deaf Ears,” Deseret News, April 30, 1979, A‑1, A‑2.

Traveler (pseud.), “The Priesthood in San Pete,” Salt Lake Tribune, July 3, 1875, 4.

[Note: Because of the Deseret News’s complicated publication history, please double‑check all references for exact newspaper titles unless you got it out of the Journal History which usually refers to all versions simply as Deseret News. In that case, cite the article as: “in Journal History,” etc.

Deseret News, June 15, 1850‑December 26, 1888

Deseret Weekly, December 29, 1888‑December 10, 1898

Deseret News Semi‑Weekly, October 8, 1865‑January 1, 1889

Deseret Semi‑Weekly News, January 4, 1889‑June 14, 1920

Deseret Evening News, November 21, 1867‑June 14, 1920 (daily)

Deseret News, June 15, 1920‑August 31, 1952 (daily) + semi‑weekly edition 17 June 1920‑12 June 1922

            Deseret News‑Salt Lake Telegram, September 1, 1952‑August 6, 1964

            Deseret News, August 7, 1964‑June 20, 2003

            Deseret Morning News, June 20, 2003‑present



Typescript: Frances Brodilová McOmber, “Memories,” 1983, typescript, 2, Church History Library, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City. [Add a comment Hereafter cited as Church History Library]

Holograph auto/biography:  Edward Stevenson, Autobiography, 1904, 63, microfilm of holograph, reel 2, LDS Church History Library, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City. Note: Also LDS Family History Library, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City, and LDS Church History Museum, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City.

Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner, Autobiography, n.d. L. Tom Perry Special Collections and Manuscripts, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT (hereafter Perry Special Collections).

Holograph journal: J. Golden Kimball, Diaries, 1885‑1932, August 16, 1897, photocopy of holograph, Special Collections, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Salt Lake City.

Secondary citation.  Heber J. Grant, Diary, March 18, 1928, quoted in D. Michael Quinn, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power . . .

Holograph letter. Vilate M. Kimball, Letter to Heber C. Kimball, June 27, 1843, Winslow Whitney Smith Papers, Church History Library.

  1. C. Shelley, Letter to President F. M. Smith, July 24, 1919, P13, F1352, Community of Christ Library‑Archives, Independence, Mo.


Oral history. Thelma Martina Handley Smith Wilcox, Oral History, interviewed by [also telephone‑interviewed by] Susan N. Shumway, January 13, 1991, 13‑14, Folklore Oral History Project, Special Collections, Merrill Library, Utah State University, Logan. [Some oral history collections have their own citation guidelines. Please follow them. For example, interviews from the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies should include that information before listing L. Tom Perry Special Collections and Manuscripts, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT.

Second reference: Wilcox, Oral History, 15.

Journal History: Journal History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‑day Saints (chronological scrapbook of typed entries and newspaper clippings, 1830‑present), June 21, 1903, 3, Church History Library. [If it is the first citation from the Church History Library, include complete citation.]

Second reference: Journal History, June 21, 1903, 3.