Provo resident Christopher Bigelow, co-author of Mormonism for Dummies, said via e-mail that he finds the photo "much more interesting and human" than the "Disneyfied" Smith most often depicted in paintings and films and would be pleased if it's authentic: "This photo really speaks to my imagination."
On the other hand, Bigelow has his doubts. "If I had to place a bet," he said, "I would wager that it is not an actual photo of Joseph Smith, but I hope to be pleasantly surprised." [. . .]
Bigelow referred to an article printed in the LDS Church's New Era magazine in December 2005 titled, "What Did Joseph Smith Really Look Like?" (The article can be read online at lds.org.) "I'm not sure this photo resembles Joseph enough to remove all doubt," Bigelow said. "The man in the photo seems a bit more thin-chested, large-handed and darker-haired than descriptions of Joseph Smith, although the large, intense eyes could possibly fit Joseph's description."
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