Title

Joseph Smith's Dog, Old Major

Keywords

Joseph Smith, Dog, Man's best friend, Mormon Studies, Early Church History

Abstract

During the march of Zion's Camp in 1834, Samuel Baker presented Joseph Smith with a dog named Major. This dog became very attached to and protective of Joseph. The dog was probably an English mastiff, a breed known for loyalty. Joseph reportedly told Aaron W. Harlan, an Iowa resident, that when Joseph had been a prisoner in Missouri (probably in Liberty Jail in 1838-1839), that this dog could not be separated from him and kept watch over him while he slept. Joseph reciprocated this fidelity by tending him with affection.

Original Publication Citation

“Joseph Smith’s Dog, Old Major,” BYU Studies Quarterly 56, no. 4 (2017): 53–67.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date

2017

Publisher

BYU Studies

Language

English

College

Religious Education

Department

Church History and Doctrine

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor

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