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Leon R. Hartshorn was a religion professor at Brigham Young University (BYU) and an author of many books. Most of his books were the collections of stories about leaders or members of the LDS Church.
Prior to joining the faculty of BYU Hartshorn was a seminary and institute instructor.
In the LDS Church Hartshorn served as a bishop and as a mission president.
Among books by Hartshorn are Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration, Put on the Armor of God, Memorable Christmas Stories, Remarkable Stories from the Lives of Latter-day Saint Women and a collection of stories of Presidents of the Church, Apostles and General Authorites. The Oustanding Stories by General Authorities eventually came to three volumes. Most of Hartshorn's collections of stories about Church leaders were published in the 1970s, although some have been republished in the 21st century often under slightly revised titles to mae it evident they do not encompass the lives of apostles or general autrities called since the 1970s.
Prior to joining the BYU faculty Hartshorn had also taught at the Church College of Hawai'i which has since been renamed BYU-Hawaii.
Hartshorn was a contributor of such articles as "Gift of Discernment" to the Encyclopedia of Mormonism and in 1996 was an editor of a book on the doctrine and covenants along with Dennis A. Wright and Craig J. Ostler.
Hartshorn received his Ed.D. degree from Stanford, with his dissertation entitled Mormon Education in the Bold Years.