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Danny L. Jorgensen

Danny L. Jorgensen, Ph.D.—A Short Biography

Danny L. Jorgensen (Ph.D., Ohio State, sociology 1979) is professor of Religious Studies at the University of South Florida, where he has been employed since 1978. Over the past 30-some years Dr. Jorgensen’s research and writing has focused on new religions in the United States, especially Occultism, Witchcraft, and Neopaganism; Mormonism (Latter Day Saints); and Scientology; as well as participant observation and other qualitative methodologies of research. He is the author of several books and many scholarly essays, most of them on new religions and qualitative research methods. Jorgensen’s most recent research is concerned with American Anabaptists, particularly conservative and old order Amish and Mennonites. He currently is working on an ethnographic history of the old order Stauffer Mennonite community at Leadmine, Missouri.



The Leadmine Produce Auction: Old Order Mennonite Sustainability in Missouri

In the spring of 2011 the small old order Stauffer Mennonite community at Leadmine (Tunis), Missouri, opened a new whole sale produce auction modeled after highly successful enterprises operated by Anabaptists across the American Midwest. In spite of the greatly depressed American economy and the Stauffer Mennonites’ disinclination to using electricity, tractors, and many other forms of industrial technology, the Leadmine Produce Auction grossed nearly one-half million dollars the first year. The initiation and operation of this new economic enterprise is described and analyzed based on participant observation of the Leadmine Mennonites. This commercial activity, particularly under these circumstances and constraints, provide intriguing suggestions for the creation of other productive and sustainable human undertakings in the world today.