A reminder that Carol Cornwall Madsen, author of Emmeline B. Wells: An Intimate History (published by the University of Utah Press), will be here TOMORROW, Wednesday, July 19 to speak about and sign copies of her book. She will be here from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. and will speak at 6:00 and will answer questions and sign books before and after that time. We hope you will be able to make it that night but, if not, we can mail a signed copy or hold one here at the store for pick-up. To RSVP on Facebook, click here.

Emmeline B. Wells was the most noted Utah Mormon woman of her time. Lauded nationally for her energetic support of the women’s rights movement of the nineteenth century, she was a self-made woman who channeled her lifelong sense of destiny into ambitious altruism. Her public acclaim and activism belied the introspective, self-appraising, and emotional persona she expressed in the pages of her forty-seven extant diaries. Yet she wrote, “I have risen triumphant,” after reconciling herself to the heartaches of plural marriage, and she pursued a self-directed life in earnest.

This new biography tells the story of the private Emmeline. The unusual circumstances of her marriages, the complicated lives of her five daughters, losses and disappointments interspersed with bright moments and achievements, all engendered the idea that her life was a romance, with all the mysterious, tragic, and sentimental elements of that genre. Her responses to that perception made it so. This volume, drawing heavily on Emmeline Wells’s own words, tells the complicated story of a woman of ambition, strength, tenderness, and faith.

“Carol Madsen, having previously dealt with Emmeline Wells’ public life, now ably explores her interior landscape, tracing the contrast between her public triumph and her private pain, from her ‘wild and fanciful’ youth to her unexpected humiliations. Wells’ excellent record-keeping habit enables the rich detail of her story. This extended and sympathetic inner biography of the best known Mormon woman of her time is told largely in her own words, linked by Madsen’s steady and judicious narrative.”
—Claudia L. Bushman, author of Contemporary Mormonism

Carol Cornwall Madsen is professor emeritus of history at Brigham Young University, a past president of the Mormon History Association, and former vice-chair of the Board of Utah State History. She is an award-winning author and her books include The First Fifty Years of Relief Society: Key Documents in Latter-day Saint Women’s History and A Woman’s Advocate, The Public Life of Emmeline B. Wells, 1870–1920, which won three best book awards.


Emmeline B. Wells: An Intimate History. University of Utah Press, 2017. 548pp. Hardback. $49.95


Other titles by Carol Cornwall Madsen

The First Fifty Years of Relief Society: Key Documents in Latter-day Saint Women’s History. Church Historian’s Press, 2016. Hardback. $49.95 

A Woman’s Advocate, The Public Life of Emmeline B. Wells, 1870–1920. BYU Press & Deseret Book, 2006. Hardback. $29.95

Journey to Zion: Voices from the Mormon Trail. Deseret Book, 2007. Hardback. Reg. $25.95, SALE $9.99 (used copies–limited quantity)


Shipping: $4.50 for the first book, $1 for each additional (USPS)–Priority/FedEx/UPS options available–inquire for details.

Utah residents–add 7.05% sales tax

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SLC UT 84115

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