Tomorrow the Law School will host the unveiling of a painting of Oliver Cowdery, the first Mormon lawyer. The painting is being donated to the Law School and will be hung on the main floor of the Law Library. The unveiling, along with a program about the painting and Oliver Cowdery’s work, skills, and character as a lawyer, will begin at noon in room 205.
An open session from 1:10-2:20 in room 306 will follow, to discuss Cowdery’s life and practice of law. Joining in this discussion will be several lawyers, church historians, and guests.
In addition to his crucial roles as scribe for the translation of the Book of Mormon and as a counselor to Joseph Smith in the First Presidency, Oliver Cowdery is well understood as the first Mormon lawyer, having served as a justice of the peace in Kirtland and practicing law for nearly a decade in the 1840s in Ohio. Recently uncovered documents in Ohio of his law practice provide a unique opportunity to examine his personality, talents, and service as a lawyer, as well as a rare window into the practice of law in America in the early American Republic.