Ulrich is, on this point as on every other, indisputably correct.
At last month's Women and the LDS Church conference, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich's stimulating plenary address was a guided romp through the archives, sharing some of the best bits of the sources for her latest project on 19th-century Mormon women. Though her tone was upbeat and very funny, her theme was tragic: the appalling scarcity of surviving Mormon women's diaries. So scarce are women's diaries, which she carefully distinguishes from long-after-the-fact personal histories, that she has been forced to look further afield, to autograph books and handicrafts, for a window into that historical moment. Nevertheless, she emphasized the richness of the records that do exist, the power of their implicit witness and invitation.