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LDS Books, David W. Patten
TITLE: David W. Patten: Apostle and Martyr
AUTHOR: Linda Shelley Whiting
PRICE: $12.71 (Reg $14.95)

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ISBN: 1-55517-682-8, SIZE: 202 pages, 6 x 9", Paperback
CATEGORY: Biography

Key Features:

  • This touching biography shares the life of David W. Patten, the first apostle to be martyred in the Last Days, and gives a glimpse into the early LDS Church.
  • Readers will love and appreciate David W. Patten’s fierce loyalty to the Prophet Joseph Smith and to the gospel.
  • Linda Shelley Whiting has masterfully collaborated many sources to write this powerful book on an amazing man.

David W. Patten was one of the most influential and dearly-loved leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in its formative years of 1832 -1838.

Patten joined the Church in 1832 and was immediately sent on a mission. He soon performed his first priesthood healing, and word quickly spread about his ability to heal the sick. People approached him daily to be healed. Over the next six years he served eight missions, where he blessed thousands of people and baptized hundreds into the Church.

His spirituality and personality propelled him to leadership positions, and he participated in many major events, including:

  • Marching in Zion’s Camp
  • Being called as one of the Twelve Apostles
  • Speaking in tongues during the dedication of the Kirtland Temple
  • Valiantly standing by Joseph Smith during the dark days of apostasy in 1837-38.

Patten was the Captain of the Cavalry of the Mormon Militia at Far West. He led his men in assisting families driven from their homes during the Missouri persecutions, earning the nickname of "Captain Fearnot" among his people.

On October 25, 1838, he commanded the Mormon Militia against anti-Mormon forces at the Battle of Crooked River. Patten was mortally wounded during the battle, but his legacy of faith in Jesus Christ lives on.


Until the writing of this book, little has been available to read of the magnificent showing of faith and devotion by this remarkable man. As an Elder and member of the Church for over 25 years, I had heard bits and pieces of information about David W. Patten here and there, but those mainly related to his death in the battle at Crooked River. I very much enjoyed learning more about this early leader of the Church and some of his companions and travels.

-Richard Dale Tomshack Jr, LDSReview.com
Click here to read the entire review

I very much appreciated the author's thorough scholarship. Everything is well documented and there are extensive footnotes that by themselves are extremely interesting. The flow of the writing never pulled me along smoothly, but it was clear, very readable, and packed with information.

-Catherine Smart, LDSReview.com
Click here to read the entire review

An admirable biography.

—Claudia L. Bushman, Columbia University

Linda Shelley Whiting's David W. Patten is the most thoroughly researched biography of the Apostle's life that has ever been written. Using many primary resources, some never before made public, Whiting has revealed Patten the man, the missionary, the healer, the leader, and the martyr while disproving century-old myths that have been attached to the Apostle's name. A must-have for serious students of LDS history.

—Terry Bohle Montague, author of Mine Angels Round About



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