The History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is also the history of the opening and progress of the Dispensation of the fullness of Times; and as that dispensation bears an important relation to all dispensations which have preceded it, let us here ascertain in what that relation consists. By doing so we shall have a better appreciation of the full import of those events which make up the history of the Church.
In publishing the History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, it is felt that a solemn duty is being performed to the Saints and to the world. The events which make up the history of the Church in this age are the most important that history can chronicle. It is due therefore both to the Saints themselves and to the world that a faithful and complete history of the facts in which the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints had its origin, together with the events through which it was subsequently developed, and all the circumstances, experiences and trials through which it passed be made known to mankind.
Elder B. H. Roberts consulted diaries, printed sources, and remembrances of Church members to prepare a history of the Church that centered mainly on the life of Joseph Smith. Before it was published, Elder Anthon H. Lund and President Joseph F. Smith read and approved the work. The resulting seven volumes, over forty-five hundred pages, known as the History of the Church has since become a great resource to Church members and historians alike.