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Eliza R. Snow is one of the most revered women in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We hear stories of her faith and strength, and we sing her beloved hymns. She was fondly known as "Zion's Poetess" and also as "Presidentess," because of her leadership of Relief Society and her role in forming and directing organizations for young women and ch Eliza R. Snow is one of the most revered women in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We hear stories of her faith and strength, and we sing her beloved hymns. She was fondly known as "Zion's Poetess" and also as "Presidentess," because of her leadership of Relief Society and her role in forming and directing organizations for young women and children. She has remained a legend for generations of Latter-day Saints, but we know less about her "variegated life," as she described it—the personal joys and sorrows brought about by unfolding events in the young Church of which she was a part. This intimate look at Eliza R. Snow, by authors Karen Lynn Davidson and Jill Mulvay Derr, reveals a more private side of this extraordinary woman. She emerges as a bright young poet in Ohio, a new convert to the restored Church, a seamstress, and a sharer in the persecutions and hardships of the early Saints. We see a member of the households of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, a dedicated temple worker, and a traveling Relief Society president with a zeal for teaching the gospel. Her delight in nature, her love for family and friends, and her outlook of hope for the cause of Zion are reflected here through selections from some of her best poems. Photographs, artifacts, and personal letters add visual beauty to this inspiring introduction to her fascinating life.


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Eliza R. Snow is one of the most revered women in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We hear stories of her faith and strength, and we sing her beloved hymns. She was fondly known as "Zion's Poetess" and also as "Presidentess," because of her leadership of Relief Society and her role in forming and directing organizations for young women and ch Eliza R. Snow is one of the most revered women in the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. We hear stories of her faith and strength, and we sing her beloved hymns. She was fondly known as "Zion's Poetess" and also as "Presidentess," because of her leadership of Relief Society and her role in forming and directing organizations for young women and children. She has remained a legend for generations of Latter-day Saints, but we know less about her "variegated life," as she described it—the personal joys and sorrows brought about by unfolding events in the young Church of which she was a part. This intimate look at Eliza R. Snow, by authors Karen Lynn Davidson and Jill Mulvay Derr, reveals a more private side of this extraordinary woman. She emerges as a bright young poet in Ohio, a new convert to the restored Church, a seamstress, and a sharer in the persecutions and hardships of the early Saints. We see a member of the households of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, a dedicated temple worker, and a traveling Relief Society president with a zeal for teaching the gospel. Her delight in nature, her love for family and friends, and her outlook of hope for the cause of Zion are reflected here through selections from some of her best poems. Photographs, artifacts, and personal letters add visual beauty to this inspiring introduction to her fascinating life.

30 review for Eliza R. Snow: Her Life and Legacy

  1. 5 out of 5

    Daisy Dandelion

    She must have been and amazing and very patient lady. Quite talented too!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Annette

    I've always wanted to learn more about Eliza R Snow. She is one of the women in church history that seems to stand the most. Now I know why. What an amazing woman! I really enjoyed this book, one of the things that stood out to me was how much the prophet Brigham Young trusted her. He appointed her to many positions of prominence at a time when it was not common practice to give women roles of leadership. She traveled all over the world, organizing the women, youth and primary children, speaking I've always wanted to learn more about Eliza R Snow. She is one of the women in church history that seems to stand the most. Now I know why. What an amazing woman! I really enjoyed this book, one of the things that stood out to me was how much the prophet Brigham Young trusted her. He appointed her to many positions of prominence at a time when it was not common practice to give women roles of leadership. She traveled all over the world, organizing the women, youth and primary children, speaking to bishops and congregations, tirelessly serving and testifying well into her eighties. She was not afraid to speak boldly on topics of religion and politics. She was a prominent woman not only in the church community but also in the general public. The only thing that I don't like about this book was the chapter about her time in Nauvoo. I had heard that Eliza dearly loved the prophet Joseph Smith and that she fell down the stairs while pregnant with his child. Some even believe that Emma pushed her, but there's no proof of that. I know that she wrote some very romantic poetry where she expressed her deep and abiding love for Joseph, but none of this is included in the book. Which is especially disappointing because they included a lot of her other poetry. The book is still worth reading, I just wish they would've included more info on her relationship with Joseph, at least her romantic poetry. This is why I gave it a 4 instead of a 5.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ellen

    Eliza R. Snow is a name that is well-known in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but I, personally, have often wanted to know more about her. I know she wrote many of they hymns in the hymnbook, but who was she really? I know she is the sister of Lorenzo R. Snow, and I had heard that she had married the Prophet Joseph Smith, but I never knew why she kept her maiden name. And I knew that she was the second president of the Relief Society, but what did that really mean? These are jus Eliza R. Snow is a name that is well-known in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but I, personally, have often wanted to know more about her. I know she wrote many of they hymns in the hymnbook, but who was she really? I know she is the sister of Lorenzo R. Snow, and I had heard that she had married the Prophet Joseph Smith, but I never knew why she kept her maiden name. And I knew that she was the second president of the Relief Society, but what did that really mean? These are just a few of the things that I have occasionally wondered about. These questions and more are answered for me in this book. The authors of this book must have spent years reading letters and diaries of Eliza and her family members and friends, and then drawn on the understandings gleaned to put together this remarkable biography of this remarkable woman. The fact that Eliza remained faithful to the church, to her God, to the prophet, to herself and to her friends is a testament to her conviction of truth and her great faith. I am thankful for the women who researched and wrote this book. Reading it helped me appreciate, not only Eliza R. Snow, but also my own great-great-grandmothers, whose faith and conviction must have surely been similar to hers.

  4. 4 out of 5

    April Fear

    This isn't the title of the book I read, but the ISBN numbers are the same. 'Eliza: The Life and Faith of Eliza R. Snow' is a beautiful book. The layout of the book is much like 'Daughters of My Kingdom', every page is a work of art. No matter what this woman went through, she always kept a positive attitude. She was married and sealed to Joseph Smith. After Joseph's death she was married for time to Brigham Young (mainly for protection and support, she never lived as a 'wife' to either of her h This isn't the title of the book I read, but the ISBN numbers are the same. 'Eliza: The Life and Faith of Eliza R. Snow' is a beautiful book. The layout of the book is much like 'Daughters of My Kingdom', every page is a work of art. No matter what this woman went through, she always kept a positive attitude. She was married and sealed to Joseph Smith. After Joseph's death she was married for time to Brigham Young (mainly for protection and support, she never lived as a 'wife' to either of her husbands). Eliza wrote 500 poems and many hymns, crossed the plains in near poverty, helped re-establish ward Relief Society's, helped organize the Young Ladies Retrenchment Society and the Primary Association, worked in the Endowment House and St. George Temple, traveled to Europe and Palestine, and served as general president of the Relief Society at age 76. She was a patriot, supporter of plural marriage and a supporter of women's suffrage. In her almost 84 years she accomplished so much. A very remarkable woman!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Josephine

    "Oh Lord my God I pray for health that I may be useful." Was a prayer recorded in Eliza R. Snow's diary and boy was her prayer answered! Before reading this book all I could tell you about Eliza was that she was a poet who wrote one of my favorite hymns, "Oh My Father" and that she had something to do with relief society early on. Now I know so much more and I am amazed by her life. She was quite the lady. The book was laid out nicely. It was short and sweet with a lot of pictures and scanned ima "Oh Lord my God I pray for health that I may be useful." Was a prayer recorded in Eliza R. Snow's diary and boy was her prayer answered! Before reading this book all I could tell you about Eliza was that she was a poet who wrote one of my favorite hymns, "Oh My Father" and that she had something to do with relief society early on. Now I know so much more and I am amazed by her life. She was quite the lady. The book was laid out nicely. It was short and sweet with a lot of pictures and scanned images of her poetry and other documents. On page 99-100 there is a poem about the sad state of our congress and I got a kick out of it because if I didn't know better I could have thought it was written this year! I really enjoyed that poem. However, much of the book showed how much things have changed since her time. During the woman's suffrage movement Eliza invited woman to come to Utah where there are, "noble men Whom they'll be proud t' acknowledge to be far Their own superiors." Yikes! I hope she didn't really mean that the way it sounds... Overall it was a good book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Valerie Campbell Ackroyd

    I found this a rather "old style" biography. It is full of facts, lists of accomplishments and Eliza's poetry. But it leaves me longing to know more about the woman behind the public face. What did she long for in her heart of hearts? How did she summon so much strength in the face of all of the hard times? Some of her poems are so beautiful--and her hint that "I've a mother there"--make me feel there was so much more to Eliza that we, as modern women would have benefited from learning about. But I found this a rather "old style" biography. It is full of facts, lists of accomplishments and Eliza's poetry. But it leaves me longing to know more about the woman behind the public face. What did she long for in her heart of hearts? How did she summon so much strength in the face of all of the hard times? Some of her poems are so beautiful--and her hint that "I've a mother there"--make me feel there was so much more to Eliza that we, as modern women would have benefited from learning about. But she would probably say "Tosh, you know enough now go and make your own lives." She sounds a woman of her age who didn't welcome personal intrusions into her psyche. Nevertheless she was remarkable; so remarkable that who she is rises above the rather dry biographical style of this book.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Caity McPhe

    I'm normally not one for biography or non-fiction in general because often times they come across as dry, stuffy, and full of simply lists and dates and are presented one right after another in paragraph after paragraph. But this biography of Eliza R. Snow was well done. Eliza was born in 1804 in Massachusetts and became a prominent member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. She was a force to be reckoned with. Later known as "Zion's Poetess" because of her amazing ability to use I'm normally not one for biography or non-fiction in general because often times they come across as dry, stuffy, and full of simply lists and dates and are presented one right after another in paragraph after paragraph. But this biography of Eliza R. Snow was well done. Eliza was born in 1804 in Massachusetts and became a prominent member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. She was a force to be reckoned with. Later known as "Zion's Poetess" because of her amazing ability to use words. Her poetry is beautiful. I try, but I have the hardest time with any type of meter. So I commend her wholeheartedly for her ability. It is a small book and I know there are a few major points in her life, that were horrendous that the authors didn't include. I'm assuming because Eliza didn't write about it herself, as I'm sure it was hard to relive through words. But there was a lot of things about her that I didn't know. I hadn't done much research on her previously and this was my first step into understanding the woman who became that 2nd General Relief Society President. She wrote thousands of poems on the circumstances and people around her. They were amazing too. She was also someone who wouldn't step down from what she believed. Being a plural wife to Joseph Smith and Brigham Young after Joseph died. She was an advocate for women's rights and plural marriage as God directed it. The most well known poem that she wrote "O My Father," which is given and is in the LDS hymnal. But they also give the circumstances behind why she wrote it. (You should check it out.) While I learned a lot about her and I'd love to talk to her, the most inspiring part to me was her dedication to the church and her writing. She promised God that if she could have the truth confirmed to her she would use her writing to further God's work. She got that confirmation and changed from using pen names for the work she got published to using her own name. She used her talents to further do what she could for her God. And that is what we should all be doing. And we did it so well, so very well! I would definitely suggest reading this book. I want to get her whole collection of poems and written works. The bits of her poetry that were in this book were beautiful and I would love to read more.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Amberly

    First, this book is aesthetically very beautiful. It’s full color with many photos, paintings, and pictures of artifacts. The background and details of the pages are lovely. Now, more importantly, the writing. This book is very well done. The authors do a great job telling the story of Eliza’s life, the impact of church and world events on her life, and setting the stage to help reader’s understand the context of each of Eliza’s poems and songs they share. This work was very well researched. Eli First, this book is aesthetically very beautiful. It’s full color with many photos, paintings, and pictures of artifacts. The background and details of the pages are lovely. Now, more importantly, the writing. This book is very well done. The authors do a great job telling the story of Eliza’s life, the impact of church and world events on her life, and setting the stage to help reader’s understand the context of each of Eliza’s poems and songs they share. This work was very well researched. Eliza was beyond remarkable. Her poetry, songs, and prose were incredible. She was very introspective. She was also a woman of great strength. Her service to others and to the church in particular was extensive. She was a vital force in the creation of all of the church organizations for women, young women, and children that still exist today. She travelled and taught and provided decades of leadership in a time when women were not generally given such responsibilities. She was a pioneer, an advocate for equal rights, an ardent supporter of education, and a woman of great faith. Eliza’s poetry is extensive and so beautiful. After reading so many highlights of her work in this book, I want to read more of her poetry. Until reading this book, I really had no idea how much Eliza shaped much of the church. She was an incredibly talented, tireless, and hardworking woman. Her story is inspiring and this book is excellent.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    I concur with a lot of the other reviews: I've always loved learning about Eliza R Snow, especially given her life's path that was quite different from the typical Mormon housewife - childless, plural wife, etc. Yet she contributed so much. This book was pretty superficial and mostly just contained the historical sketches that I already knew (I wanted to know how she dealt with her struggles, how she felt about her husbands, etc.). It was a bit disappointing. However, this may be due the limited I concur with a lot of the other reviews: I've always loved learning about Eliza R Snow, especially given her life's path that was quite different from the typical Mormon housewife - childless, plural wife, etc. Yet she contributed so much. This book was pretty superficial and mostly just contained the historical sketches that I already knew (I wanted to know how she dealt with her struggles, how she felt about her husbands, etc.). It was a bit disappointing. However, this may be due the limited information available on her true feelings and daily life. What I did like about the book (the latest edition) was the beautiful format and printing. The graphics are lovely - reminded me of the Daughters in My Kingdom book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    Eliza R. Snow is an amazing and strong woman in every way. I knew a little about her and always wanted to know more. This biography taught me a lot but doesn’t seem like the deepest biography, it emphasized her poetry a lot. Despite many attempts, I’m not into poetry and even her poetry was hard for me to get into, except for the last few poems in the book. I would like to read another biography on Eliza that focuses more deeply on her life events. I would still highly recommend this book though Eliza R. Snow is an amazing and strong woman in every way. I knew a little about her and always wanted to know more. This biography taught me a lot but doesn’t seem like the deepest biography, it emphasized her poetry a lot. Despite many attempts, I’m not into poetry and even her poetry was hard for me to get into, except for the last few poems in the book. I would like to read another biography on Eliza that focuses more deeply on her life events. I would still highly recommend this book though; it was informative, touching, sad at times and very inspiring.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Natalie

    I chose to read this book because I had an interest in learning more about the early women pioneers. Eliza’s identity as a writer and poetess was particularly inspiring to me. This book conveyed facts about her life well, but did not make her come alive to me in the way I had hoped. I did learn interesting things about her, but I did not feel a strong connection to her as I had hoped for. I hope reading her words directly in the recently published Eliza R. Snow discourses will be more enlighteni I chose to read this book because I had an interest in learning more about the early women pioneers. Eliza’s identity as a writer and poetess was particularly inspiring to me. This book conveyed facts about her life well, but did not make her come alive to me in the way I had hoped. I did learn interesting things about her, but I did not feel a strong connection to her as I had hoped for. I hope reading her words directly in the recently published Eliza R. Snow discourses will be more enlightening.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Corinne Drollette

    It would be hard to give less than five stars to any book about Eliza R. Snow! The biographical style is not remarkable, perhaps because it doesn’t do what some biographies do and make stuff up! I appreciate that it includes primary sources and so much of her own writing. It’s brevity was perfect. I feel inspired to be more faithful, selfless, and courageous, and in my small way help to carry on her work.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    Oh how I wanted to like this book! Eliza R Snow was a strong woman and I wanted to learn about her life. I just did not like the way this was written. It seemed more like a timeline to me, than a book where I felt I knew who she was. I know that she was known as Zion’s Poet, but I don’t enjoy poetry, and there was a lot included. This book was just not my favorite and it made me want to seek out another biography on this great woman.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    This book gave a good glimpse into the life of Eliza R. Snow. Not knowing much at all about her, it was an interesting read for me. Though as I read, I wished that the authors had included more details about her life in addition to her writings; however, in looking at the sources they used and trying to find other books about her to read, it would appear that those details may not be available.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    I loved many of Eliza’s poems which I had never seen before and how the authors wove this into the narrative. I also was impressed to see how involved she was with the early church and how her views were valued and utilized. I feel like this is missing a lot of history and facts but I love the book layout and it made me want to read more of her poetry.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lisa-Michele

    I needed a book about a tough woman who knew how to use her voice and be heard. This was it. Eliza is a personal hero of mine – a strong pioneer Mormon woman alone on the plains -- and this was a book that taught me new things about her. There are so many contradictions in her life – a lonely woman in a religion that taught plural marriage, a childless woman starting one of the largest children’s organizations in the world, a poet in the rough and tumble Utah frontier of the 1800s. There is much I needed a book about a tough woman who knew how to use her voice and be heard. This was it. Eliza is a personal hero of mine – a strong pioneer Mormon woman alone on the plains -- and this was a book that taught me new things about her. There are so many contradictions in her life – a lonely woman in a religion that taught plural marriage, a childless woman starting one of the largest children’s organizations in the world, a poet in the rough and tumble Utah frontier of the 1800s. There is much to admire here. The book is not a deep biographical piece, but more of a scrapbook of her life, including poems, photos, narrative and ephemera. Thoroughly enjoyable. Thank goodness Eliza was there to write about the pioneers’ journey across the plains: “It is a growling, grumbling, devilish, sickly time with us now – I hope never to see another week like the past one…Have been a little at loss how to do, but conclude to see the game thro’ and enjoy the scenery.” Really? How did she go on? This educated, refined, poetic woman, in the muck and mud of the lonely Iowa winter, found a way to keep going. Her tremendous faith is inspiring. I discovered some new Eliza poems that delighted me, and I especially loved reading about her connection with Utah’s Dixie. Eliza was a community organizer like no other, traveling throughout the west to organize both the LDS Relief Society and the LDS Primary before she was through. Wherever she went, she made the world a better place.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kathy Bradley

    Life of Eliza R. Snow I should have known this book would be full of poetry—and I’ve never been a fan of poetry. But I did learn some things I had not known before, so I’m glad I read it. It was a struggle to get through, but I did it. Love Sister Snow.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Marianne Groninger

    A devoted advocate and facilitator for women and children I chose 5 stars because this biography it is well written and well referenced. Eliza was tireless, talented, scrappy and dedicated.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Natalie

    A beautiful book about a most excellent woman. Photographs, illustrations, some of Eliza's poems, and a very good overview of her life make this a lovely read. But if your like me, you will be left wanting more. 😊 Maybe if I get to meet her in the next life I will be satisfied. A beautiful book about a most excellent woman. Photographs, illustrations, some of Eliza's poems, and a very good overview of her life make this a lovely read. But if your like me, you will be left wanting more. 😊 Maybe if I get to meet her in the next life I will be satisfied.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Facts, no conjecture ... and lots of poetry. She did write beautifully.

  21. 4 out of 5

    June

    I have often admired Eliza R. Snow, but have not had much information about her. This was a great biography that filled in a lot of questions for me. It makes me admire her even more.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kiyoko

    A lovely read. I looked over other reviews and I wanted to know more as well. Delve more deeply into who Eliza Snow really was. I think the problem is that Eliza didn't give us much to go on. She only kept a diary for a few short years following her sealing to Joseph Smith. How I wish there was so much more! I enjoyed the book, not only from the way it was written and included some of her poetry, but photos of her possessions were an added bonus. What I didn't like was the lace print on every si A lovely read. I looked over other reviews and I wanted to know more as well. Delve more deeply into who Eliza Snow really was. I think the problem is that Eliza didn't give us much to go on. She only kept a diary for a few short years following her sealing to Joseph Smith. How I wish there was so much more! I enjoyed the book, not only from the way it was written and included some of her poetry, but photos of her possessions were an added bonus. What I didn't like was the lace print on every single page - it made the book feel less like a piece of literature and more like a doily visual aid in a Relief Society lesson. I've been on an LDS history kick lately, and this has been my favorite so far. I didn't expect to like it much, and I did. There was an attempt to discover who Eliza really was from the clues she left behind.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    Full review at http://fireandicephoto.blogspot.com/2... As a lifetime member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints I confess I did not know much about Eliza R. Snow before picking up this book. I had heard her name and seen her portrait but the innermost thoughts of her heart were a mystery to me. After reading Eliza I feel I have grown to love her and revere her as an example of strength, fortitude and faith. Eliza R. Snow was born to a New England family with strong revolutionary Wa Full review at http://fireandicephoto.blogspot.com/2... As a lifetime member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints I confess I did not know much about Eliza R. Snow before picking up this book. I had heard her name and seen her portrait but the innermost thoughts of her heart were a mystery to me. After reading Eliza I feel I have grown to love her and revere her as an example of strength, fortitude and faith. Eliza R. Snow was born to a New England family with strong revolutionary War roots. Her father was respected in his civic and business spheres and he often took Eliza with him to work alongside him in his duties. From a young age she was exposed to a world many women of her time never saw. Through the encouragement of her parents, she sought an education and developed a love of writing poetry which later flourished until she came to be known as "Zion's poetess." She left behind so much of what she loved in her childhood home of Mantua, Ohio to follow the prophet Joseph Smith- later to become his wife before the martyrdom. Then, once again she picked up her things and traveled West with the Saints making her way to Utah with Brigham Young as one of his wives. Eliza was instrumental is organizing and leading the women, youth and children of the church as well as devoting much of her time in the endowment house doing Temple work. She was stalwart, encouraging and uplifting-- often penning personal letters and verse to those she loved. This book is a multi-media, gift quality collection of handwritten poems, antique cabinet card photos and historical documents. It gives the reader a taste of what it was like to step into each period of Eliza's long life. Many of the pages are filled with the hymns and poems that we have come to love including one of my favorites "Oh My Father." I even found one of my ancestors, German Ellsworth listed in a musical program copy tying my family roots to Eliza's story. I would whole heartedly recommend this book and it is a treasure I will keep on my shelves and share with my children. Thanks so much to Deseret Book for allowing us to be a part of the blog tour

  24. 5 out of 5

    Meggen

    I enjoyed this book about the life of Eliza R. Snow. She is a woman whose life, faith, dedication, creativity, wisdom, and strength have always intrigued me. I loved reading her poetry and being inspired by the way it expanded my horizons and vision. I loved reading about her life and faithful years of service and dedication to the cause of Zion--her zeal and dedication never wavered, even in old age. I loved seeing how the programs she set in place and the vision she had about building the king I enjoyed this book about the life of Eliza R. Snow. She is a woman whose life, faith, dedication, creativity, wisdom, and strength have always intrigued me. I loved reading her poetry and being inspired by the way it expanded my horizons and vision. I loved reading about her life and faithful years of service and dedication to the cause of Zion--her zeal and dedication never wavered, even in old age. I loved seeing how the programs she set in place and the vision she had about building the kingdom of God still impact my life today...as well as the lives of every man, woman, and child in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since. I was also impressed with how much she accomplished, set in motion, and made decisions about in a day and age when the voice and counsel of women was not as highly valued or sought after as it is today. The layout of the book is beautiful, which added to the overall feeling of the book. The two downsides to this book, for me, were: 1) the writing is a little choppy and abrupt in places which disrupted the overall flow, and 2)I felt like this work only scratched the surface about this fascinating woman, which left me wanting more. But, overall, this is an inspiring read.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne Hudson

    I try to read everything written by these two authors for clarity and discernment when it comes the life and writings of Eliza R Snow. Jill Mulvay Derr and Karen Lynn Davidson have done a masterful job of weaving the poetry and hymns of ERS into her life story. It does not come off as a scholarly type book even though it is filled with little known or appreciated facts about ERS. It tells the story of Eliza's young life and follows her through her conversion to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latte I try to read everything written by these two authors for clarity and discernment when it comes the life and writings of Eliza R Snow. Jill Mulvay Derr and Karen Lynn Davidson have done a masterful job of weaving the poetry and hymns of ERS into her life story. It does not come off as a scholarly type book even though it is filled with little known or appreciated facts about ERS. It tells the story of Eliza's young life and follows her through her conversion to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and how it defined her life. I really appreciate that the book shows the personal side of ERS as well as her more public life. The photographs and illustrations add to the sensory beauty of the book. For example page 69 contains a color drawing for Eliza's friend Sarah Kimball that was contained in one of Eliza's journals. Page 116 shows Eliza's lace bonnet, gloves and blue silk purse. It also has a picture of the gold watch given to her by Joseph Smith. From cover to cover its beautifully written and illustrated!!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Cathy

    Eliza Roxcy Snow is one of the best known LDS woman pioneers. She's known as Zion's Poetess because of her beautiful poetry. One of the most amazing things about her is that she was well educated in a time when women really weren't educated, it was just something that was important to her and to her parents for her to be educated. That allowed her to work as a teacher first in Kirtland, later in Nauvoo and Salt Lake City. This allowed her to be a surrogate mother to many children when she was un Eliza Roxcy Snow is one of the best known LDS woman pioneers. She's known as Zion's Poetess because of her beautiful poetry. One of the most amazing things about her is that she was well educated in a time when women really weren't educated, it was just something that was important to her and to her parents for her to be educated. That allowed her to work as a teacher first in Kirtland, later in Nauvoo and Salt Lake City. This allowed her to be a surrogate mother to many children when she was unable to have children of her own. I'm sure it was a great comfort to her in her childless years to be able to be around and influencing so many youngsters. I have always had a special place in my heart for Eliza, but never more so than after our trip to Nauvoo last summer. Eliza was depicted in the pageant that the LDS Church puts on in Nauvoo very prominently. I love that she's one of the main characters. The young lady who played her last year was just amazing too! She brought me a whole new appreciation of this wonderful woman, as did reading this book about her!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Cami

    After reading "Daughters in My Kingdom" recently, I had a strong desire to learn more about Eliza R. Snow. This book was a fantastic overview of her life through her associations with others and through her poetry. I knew she wrote the words to several LDS hymns and was the second general president of the Relief Society but now I know many more things about her life and feel she deserves great reverence. She had her hand in the organization of not only Relief Society but also Young Women and Pri After reading "Daughters in My Kingdom" recently, I had a strong desire to learn more about Eliza R. Snow. This book was a fantastic overview of her life through her associations with others and through her poetry. I knew she wrote the words to several LDS hymns and was the second general president of the Relief Society but now I know many more things about her life and feel she deserves great reverence. She had her hand in the organization of not only Relief Society but also Young Women and Primary. And she didn't just come up with ideas and sit idly by--she was the one implementing curricula and meetings up until she died. She not only had an amazing gift with the written word (some of her poems were over my head but others were truly inspired and touched my heart), but she also was a powerful speaker and leader and woman of God. She was a plural wife to both Joseph Smith and Brigham Young and consecrated her time and talents to the building up of Zion. I would love to meet her in heaven some day.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    5 stars for the target audience. In recent years, I've noticed a rise in LDS women's history materials for the lay reader, and I love that trend. I appreciated that the authors' research was solid and thorough, and the tone was accessible. You could pick this up with only a barebones understanding of early church history without being lost, and the authors accomplish this seamlessly - no lengthy digressions, no apologetics, just the relevant information as the need arose. I think Snow would have 5 stars for the target audience. In recent years, I've noticed a rise in LDS women's history materials for the lay reader, and I love that trend. I appreciated that the authors' research was solid and thorough, and the tone was accessible. You could pick this up with only a barebones understanding of early church history without being lost, and the authors accomplish this seamlessly - no lengthy digressions, no apologetics, just the relevant information as the need arose. I think Snow would have loved this biography, and I think it does a good job of capturing her values, areas of work, poetic range, and how her contemporaries viewed her and were impacted by her (hint: quite a bit). She was highly influential in the shape LDS worship took, and I'm glad she's getting the full biographic treatment here.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Courtney Hatch

    I am a little bit obsessed with Eliza R Snow. I don't think I could name a woman that has accomplished more in her life than she did. The story of her life is so dang impressive and inspiring, and this was a joy to read. The level of faith and optimism that she maintained throughout her life (a life that was anything but easy) is something to inspire any Christian or even believing religious person. I especially loved reading about the power and influence she had during a time in history when wo I am a little bit obsessed with Eliza R Snow. I don't think I could name a woman that has accomplished more in her life than she did. The story of her life is so dang impressive and inspiring, and this was a joy to read. The level of faith and optimism that she maintained throughout her life (a life that was anything but easy) is something to inspire any Christian or even believing religious person. I especially loved reading about the power and influence she had during a time in history when women didn't seem to have as much power and influence. I'll be honest--I laughed, and I cried. And I felt inspired to work my buns off to serve and teach even when I'm 80 years old. 4 stars only because I wish it had been a little more in-depth/longer. And the glossy pages ARE beautiful but kind of annoying.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    I feel bad only giving this book two stars, but was just okay. It felt more like a report than a book: just lots of facts mingled with her poetry. It didn't delve deeply into her life story at all. For example, it resolved her reaction to polygamy ("very repugnant to my feelings") in a single sentence. I wanted her feelings, her experiences -- that wasn't there at all for me. And I grew tired of the poetry and found myself skipping it; her hymns were her best work. (sidenote: I also realized I d I feel bad only giving this book two stars, but was just okay. It felt more like a report than a book: just lots of facts mingled with her poetry. It didn't delve deeply into her life story at all. For example, it resolved her reaction to polygamy ("very repugnant to my feelings") in a single sentence. I wanted her feelings, her experiences -- that wasn't there at all for me. And I grew tired of the poetry and found myself skipping it; her hymns were her best work. (sidenote: I also realized I don't like the word "poetess". No real reason except that it was just used a lot in this book and it bugged me.) Overall, I was disappointed with this book and I hope that a more in-depth one will someday be written about Eliza R. Snow.

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