by Margaret Wilson Gibson
This book is more than the biography of a great soul. It is a historical novel of exciting drama enacted during the nineteenth century in which Emma Smith played a leading role. While there is reasonable fidelity to the known incidents and facts of the times, it does not claim to be entirely historical.
This important part played by the “Elect Lady" in the development of the Restoration has never before been adequately presented. Not only did she share in the hardships of pioneering made by her husband, Joseph Smith, Junior, but she also participated in many important decisions and influenced him in shaping and molding family and Church destiny. When he became a martyr to his religion, she cradled and nurtured the leaders who were instrumental in guiding "scattered Israel" in its return to build up the waste places in the Center Place at Independence, Jackson County, Missouri.
Most of the action occurred over a century ago. The task of gathering and evaluating the data for this book has been difficult but rewarding. As you read these pages the consciousness of her problem to be fair, accurate, and readable will assist you in making a better appraisal of their contents.
Situations and personalities of a controversial character have been discussed with vigor and frankness. If the author’s bias seems to protrude at spots, charge it to the paucity of historical data rather than intolerance or lack of charity.