(Newspapers of New England)

Misc. Maine Newspapers
1845-1890 Articles

1800-1844   |   1845-1890   |   1891-1999

CMir Jan 02 '45  |  BDW Feb 19 '45  |  CMir Feb 20 '45  |  CMir Apr 17 '45
MCul Apr 26 '45  |  CMir May 01 '45  |  PTrp May 10 '45  |  PTrp Jul 05 '45
CMir Jul 10 '45  |  CMir Jul 17 '45  |  CMir Oct 02 '45  |  Union Oct 08 '45
CMir Oct 09 '45  |  CMir Oct 16 '45  |  CMir Oct 30 '45  |  PTrp Nov 01 '45
CMir Nov 20 '45  |  MCul Nov 22 '45  |  MCul Dec 20 '45  |  PTrp Dec 27 '45
MCul Jan 03 '46  |  CMir Jan 08 '46  |  CMir Feb 05 '46  |  CMir Feb 12 '46
CMir Feb 19 '46  |  CMir Mar 12 '46  |  CMir May 07 '46  |  CMir Jul 02 '46
CMir Jul 09 '46  |  MFrm Jul 23 '46  |  MDem Sep 15 '46  |  CMir Nov 12 '46
MFrm Dec 28 '48  |  GBnr Nov 10 '49  |  PTrp Dec 01 '49  |  PAdv Dec 28 '49
BDW Mar 22 '50  |  PTrp Nov 02 '50  |  Eclec Apr 02 '53  |  Eclec Jul 30 '53
PTrp Feb 06 '54  |  PTrp May 27 '54  |  PTrp Jun 03 '54  |  PTrp Jul 15 '54
PTrp Feb 03 '55  |  PTrp Nov 03 '55  |  BDW Dec 31 '55  |  PTrp Aug 29 '57
BDU Nov 09 '57  |  BDU Nov 18 '57  |  BDW Nov 02 '59  |  PAdv Jan 17 '60
PTrp Jul 04 '68  |  Echo Nov 04 '71  |  BDW Jan 23 '72  |  PTrp Mar 13 '77

Index  |  New England Newspapers  |  Eastern New York Newspapers

Vol. XXIII.                              Portland, Me.,  Thurs., January 2, 1845.                               No. 23.

MORMON AND INDIAN OUTRAGE. -- The Warsaw Signal of the 4th [ult]. confirms a rumor put forth the week previous, in relation to the fate of Lyman Wight and his band of Mormons, in a fight at a trading station, about ninety miles from Prairie du Chein. It appears that Wight's band were suffering for the want of provisions, but he would not let them disperse over the country to find employment. In order to relieve them, he went to the traders and finding that they had flour, he tried to get some on credit; but was refused. He then took thirty men, and told the traders that if they did not let him have the flour he would take it. He was defied, and made the attack on the store. The French and Indians fired on his men and killed four on the spot, and it is supposed that nearly all fell in the retreat.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                            Bangor, Maine, Wednesday, February 19, 1845.                            No. ?

Latter Day Saints Messenger and Advocate.

This is a new-comer upon our table, and probably came to us by some misdirection. It is published by Sidney Rigdon. This number contains a long editorial article, giving an account of the divisions and troubles in the Mormon churches, on account of the spiritual wife system which had been introduced. It appears that the Mormon church, through the country is being re-organized without reference to any commands from the Nauvoo Head Quarters.

Note 1: In contrast with other notable LDS figures (such as Brigham Young, William Smith, J. J. Strang, etc.), Sidney Rigdon's activities were infrequently mentioned in the New England press. Perhaps that was because he himself had only preached there a few times and was not recognized as a major player in the mid-1840s "divisions and troubles" of Mormonism.

Note 2: In his issue for Jan. 15, 1845 "President" Rigdon mentioned his recent eastern evangelizing tour in these words: "Among the churches we visited, there was a great deal of excitement; many of the principle members had either withdrawn from the church or had been cut off, and of this number were the presiding elders of the church of Philadelphia, New York, Boston, New Egypt, N. J. and Woodstown, N. J. On inquiring into the cause of the difficulties, in every instance, it was the spiritual wife system which had caused the separation, and exclusion. The course pursued by the advocates of this system, which were the traveling elders, were, that as soon as a man became dissatisfied with the teachings of these believers in polygamy... he or she was... threatened with immediate expulsion from the church by these tyrants, and thus intimidated, and compelled to obey the mandate of their masters." Prominent members in the Boston and New Jersey LDS branches had publicly protested against these seductive, licentious "traveling elders," with unhappy results in both instances. Rigdon attempted to reclaim some of these defenders of saintly monogamy. In his issue for Dec. 16, 1844 Rigdon expressly condemned William Smith as an "inveterate despiser of all good, [who] has already exposed his 'corruption to the world.'" Hinting at William's spiritual-wifery schemes, Rigdon blasted "all his phrenzied attempts to extricate himself, [which] will inevitably result in a thorough exposition and in a more wide spread diffusion of the enormity of his crimes." See also the Messenger and Advocate for Mar. 1, 1845 and Mar. 15, 1845 for similar condemnations of William Smith, etc.

Vol. XXIII.                              Portland, Me.,  Thurs., Feb. 20, 1845.                               No. 30.

ONE HUNDRED MORMONS SHOT. -- The western Illinois and Iowa papers of the 14th of Jan. bring reports that the party of Mormons who recently left Nauvoo, for the purpose of settling in the "Pinery" (high up the Mississippi River) have all been murdered! Having got into a dispute at a French trading establishment, about the price of some provisions, which they thought exorbitant, they unceremoniously helped themselves to whatever they wanted; which so exasperated the Frenchmen that they called in the aid of the Indians and massacred 100 of the Mormon party, amounting in all to 300 or 400. The Green Bay Republican gives the same report.

Notes: (forthcoming)

Vol. XXIII.                              Portland, Me.,  Thurs., Apr. 17, 1845.                               No. 38.

THE MORMONS. -- The Saint Louis Reporter says: -- We learn from the Warsaw Signal, that "most of the friends of Rigdon, who still remain in Nauvoo, have been despoiled of their property, and live in constant fear of their lives. One of these, Elder Marks, a man of wealth, fled from that city last week, in the night. Others are are anxious to go, but are afraid to avow it. A young man -- a printer, by the name of Peck, well known in Quincy -- was knocked down not long since, in the streets of Nauvoo, and after being shamefully abused, a bucket of filth was poured over him. His offence was, in having said that he wished it were in his power to prick the veins of the 'twelve.'" -- J. Com.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VI.                         Hallowell, Maine, Saturday,  April 26, 1845.                         No. ?

The Millerites. -- The Bangor Whig says: --

There is an impression, deeply seated in the public mind that social crimes are perpetrated at some of these adventist meetings and that more or less of what is indecent conduct is enacted there, and that something analogous to the spiritual wife system of Cochran and some of the Mormons, is encouraged.
(That impression is very strongly felt here, in regard to one section of the Millerites, in this city.) -- Portland Advertiser.

Note 1: Some attendees of 1845 "adventist meetings" in Maine must have believed the current Millerite doctrine -- that members who had joined prior to Oct. 22, 1844 were happily "saved." It would not be surprising to discover various manifestations antinomianism (such as sexual licentiousness) among religious fanatics who believed themselves spared from possible future damnation. But the more probable cause for mid-1840s "indecent conduct" at some of Maine's religious gatherings was that many leaderless Cochranites were still expecting to live and worship as the late "Prophet" Jacob Cochran had taught -- and his doctrines included a sharing of sexual partners (see "Jacob Cochran, Reminisces" in the July 7, 1839 Dover, NH Morning Star).

Note 2: The reporter's juxtapositioning of "the spiritual wife system of Cochran and some of the Mormons," is interesting, given the fact that Mormon polygamy was still generally an unknown, secret phenomenon at that time. No doubt the seductions of traveling LDS elders like William Smith and G. J. Adams were beginning to creep into the public's awareness at this time. Maine's former Cochranite strongholds provided at least a few converts to William Smith's short-lived polygamous church, including Aaron Hook, one of the latter sect's top-ranking founders.

Vol. XXIII.                            Portland, Me.,  Thurs., May 1, 1845.                             No. 40.

The friends of Rigdon, who still remain in Nauvoo, have been despoiled of their property and have a constant fear for their lives. Abuses, barbarous and shameful, have been perpetrated upon them. Rigdon has exposed some of the iniquitous tricks of the prophet and his "twelve apostles."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. IX.                                 Portland, Maine, Saturday  May 10, 1845.                                 No. ?

(letter from Hancock Co., IL -- under construction)

Note: The letter is dated April 7, 1845. It tells about anti-Mormon activities, Col. Backenstoss, etc. -- mentions Mr. Elliott's escape recent from jail.


Vol. IX.                              Portland, Maine, Saturday,  July 5, 1845.                              No. 12.

Written for the Portland Transcript.

June 6th, 1845.               
Dear Sir: -- The weather for a few days past has been extremely warm, although through the month of May it was quite cool, with an occasional frost, until the last of the month. Yet the crops sustained but very little damage.

The crops generally through the State, and in fact through the West, are very promising, -- more particularly Wheat, which has not for years looked so favorable for a large crop at this season of the year. Wheat harvest will commence in about two weeks.

Our Mormon and Anti-Mormon difficulties seem at present to bear a more quiet aspect than affairs have for the last year. The Circuit Court for this county closed its session a few days ago. Nine persons were tried on an indictment by the Grand Jury for the murder of Joseph Smith.

The main agitators of the Anti-Mormons were determined to intimidate the Court, and accordingly ordered out all the military under their control, to rendezvous at Carthage the Saturday before Court, for a general muster. But the course was illegal and they could not "make a raise;" besides it was reported that the Governor was making ready to regulate them. -- They therefore issued counter orders.

The court was occupied some three days in forming a jury, as the prisoners rejected almost to the extent of the law. -- The Prosecuting Attorney boldly charged the defendants with endeavoring to get a jury of the murderers themselves to sit on their trial. General Lamborn of Springfield acted on the part of the prosecution. He has the reputation of being an eminent lawyer and sound jurist.

He certainly deserves the encomiums of all honorable men, in his zealous endeavors to sustain the plighted honor and faith of the State, and the supremacy of the law. His closing plea was one of much interest, and chained the audience to their seats.

The prisoners were all set at liberty. -- The jury were all, without exception, members of the Anti-Mormon party.

The Mormons supposed they had conclusive evidence of the guilt of the persons charged. Several persons testified of having been with the murderers to the jail, they saw the murder committed and knew the persons concerned.

Among the number indicted was Thos. C. Sharp, editor of the Warsaw Signal, who has publicly lauded the act of killing the Smiths, and in every way has justified the act and the actors; which, by the by, is nothing new for him, as he has for several years (for political reasons) been striving to embitter the minds of the two parties against each other -- and to the treasonable career of his murderous and filthy sheet, may be ascribed the cause of the difficulty and murders in this County. The same individuals are to undergo a trial for the murder of Hyram Smith in July next, at a special term of the Circuit Court. There were six lawyers on the defence and one on the prosecution. All parties were surprised and disappointed at the discharge of the prisoners.

The Mormons at Nauvoo have about 300 hands employed on the Temple. They intend finishing it by fall. They really progress rapidly. They are building extensively this season. One of the Twelve, viz: Brigham Young, is acknowledged as the successor of Smith.

The Mormons express the determination to defend themselves against any mob-force in future, eren at the expense of their lives; they appear to be uncommonly well armed and prepared.

                          Respectfully yours, &c.,

Notes: (forthcoming)

Vol. XXIII.                              Portland, Me.,  Thurs., July 10, 1845.                               No. 50.

Though Sidney Rigdon has left the congregation at Nauvoo, and even made an exposure of their tricks, he has by no means, eschewed Mormonism, but on the contrary was 'set up for himself' at Pittsburgh. Here he has established a newspaper which he calls 'The Messenger and Advocate.' In this journal he pretends to all sorts of revelations from heaven -- to the ability to work miracles -- and to other supernatural powers. He says that he stopped the great fire at Pittsburgh by prayer, he saw heavenly messengers appear in, and then leave the room, after which the course of the wind was changed. He also put forth the following story.

"During the time of prayer, there appeared over our heads, a ray of light forming a hollow square inside of which stood a company of heavenly messengers, each with a banner in his hand, with their eyes looking downward upon us, their countenances expressive of the deep interest they felt in what was then passing on the earth; there also appeared heavenly messengers on horseback with crowns upon their heads, and plumes floating in the air, dressed in glorious attire until, like Elisha, we cried in our hearts, 'The chariots of Israel, and the horsemen thereof;' even my little son of fourteen years, saw the vision and gazed with great astonishment -- saying that he thought his imagination was running away with him; after which we arose and lifted our hands to heaven in holy convocation to God, at which time, it was shown an angel in heaven, registering the acceptance of our work, and the decrees of the Great God, that the kingdom is ours and we shall prevail -- my anxieties therefore, in relation to our work in organizing the kingdom, and the acceptance of that organization, by our heavenly Father, is now forever at rest.'

He is gathering around him a number of deluded wretches, who fully credit all he says, and seem to strive with each other who will be the greatest dupe. -- Neal's Gazette.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIII                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  July 17, 1845.                      No. 51.


A Mormon Elder Caught. -- Charles Chrisman, a Mormon Elder, was caught in Hancock County, Illinois, a few days ago, in the act of carrying off railroad iron which he had stolen from the Railroad between Jacksonville and Meredosia. He had taken thrrr loads before, amounting to more than two tons.

Trouble in the Holy City. -- It is rumored that Bill Smith is making trouble for the Twelve, in Nauvoo and will either compel them quietly to surrender their power and submit to him, or else he will throw himself in open rebellion. in consequence of the sickness and death of his wife, Smith has been comparatively quiet since his arrival in the city; but there are many points in which he has disagreed with the leaders of the church, which has led to coldness if not hostility.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Oct. 2, 1845.                      No. 10.


MORMON WAR. It is a time of riot, and destruction of property, and, by this time, probably, of human life, in Hancock Co., Ill., in which Nauvoo is situate, and where the Mormons live. The citizens opposed to them seem determined to burn them out and drive them off. They are doubtless troublesome and dangerous neighbors; but this cannot justify lawless violence and cruelty. The Sheriff of the County has issued his proclamation, commanding the rioters to desist. He thus describes their conduct.

The rioters spare not the widow nor the orphan, and while I am writing this proclamation, the smoke is rising to the clouds, and the flames are devouring four buildings which have just been set on fire by the rioters. -- Thousands of dollars worth of property has already been consumed, an entire settlement of about sixty or seventy families laid waste, the inhabitants thereof are fired upon, narrowly escaping with their lives, and forced to flee begore the ravages of the mob.

THE MORMON TEMPLE. This monster work in the far West is progressing and excites the wonder of all who look at it. Is it intended as a place of worship? It is said not. The people are to assemble without to worship; the saints alone are to enter within the "holy of holies." The Warsaw Signal insists upon it that the Temple has another object. -- Mail.

It says: "The Temple, in reality, however, is designed, in our opinion, for fortification. It has regular port holes, in the shape of round windows, in the second story, and is in every respect well situated for a fortification. The wall enclosing five or six acres around the building, is about four feet thick, which can be intended for no other purpose than defence. The idea of its being intended merely as the foundation of an ornamental railing, as pretended by the Saints, is preposterous."

Note: The original article from which the above "Mormon Temple" excerpt was taken, evidently appeared in the Warsaw Signal during September of 1845.


THE  [  ^  ]  UNION.
Vol. I.                             Saco, Maine, Wednesday, Oct. 8, 1845.                             No. 36.


THE MORMON WAR. -- An Extra from the Illinois State Register, dated Sunday, Sept. 21st, states that the rout of the Anti-Mormons, by Sheriff Backenstos and his party, was complete, and that the recontre of the 17th, described in the Sheriff's proclamation, struck such terror to the hearts of the mob supporters, in all the surrounding country, that the people all fled from Carthage, Augusta, and other Anti-Mormon towns, and carried their families into the counties of Adams, Marquette, Schuyler, and McDonough, and were beating up for volunteers, in those counties, to recruit their forces, with which to renew the war. It was believed that, having so disgraced themselves by the incendiary mode in which they carried on the war, their success would not be very great. Before this news reached Springfield, Governor Ford had issued a call for five hundred men, to quell the disturbances. No letters have been received at Springfield from any of the Mormon party, since the commencement of the troubles, except one from a very obscure man in Nauvoo, and another from McDonough county, and no newspapers. It was rumored that the mails were stopped, and there was a story afloat that one mail-carrier had been murdered. No messenger had arrived at the Capital, from all that section of the country, until the 21st, when a committee arrived from Mt. Sterling   [Boston Atlas.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Oct. 9, 1845.                      No. 11.


THE MORMON WAR. The latest accounts from the seat of the war, give reason to believe that the worst is over. The St. Louis papers of the 23d and 24th, speak in decided terms against the Anti-Mormon movement and in terms of commendation of the general course of the Mormons in this contest. -- Backenstos, the Mormon Sheriff, with an armed posse of some five hundred men, seems to have had, at the latest dates, the field to himself; his enemies having fled the country. His conduct is represented as forbearing and praiseworthy, considering the provocations the Mormons have had. Some accounts, to be sure, charge them with having commenced depredations in the vicinity of Carthage. It is charged upon them that they have pillaged several houses in Carthage, and have driven off the cattle and horses from the neighboring farms. But other accounts say, that they entered Carthage and Warsaw, deserted by their enemies, and left again without the slightest acts of violence.

The account published from the Illinois State Register, of a great battle between Backenstos and the Anties, seems to have been quite an exaggeration of the truth. Indeed, no battle of the kind has taken place. -- Traveller.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Oct. 16, 1845.                      No. 12.


MORMON WAR. We copy from the St. Louis Gazette, of the first inst., the latest intelligence from the seat of war, which has reached us.

Information has been received by the Laclede, that Gen. Hardin, with two hundred men, marched on Carthage, Saturday last, and took the town. The Mormons, on the approach of the beseiging force, took refuge in the Court House, which they fortified and prepared to defend. Gen. H at once surrounded their citadel, and ordered them to surrender, giving them fifteen minutes to deliberate. At the end of that time they had laid down their arms, and were prisoners of war! This accomplished, they were permitted to depart on their parole of honor!

We learn by the Quincy Courier of the 29th, that the citizens of Lee county, Iowa, have determined to drive the Mormons from amongst them. -- Boston Trav.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Oct. 30, 1845.                      No. 14.


MORMON TROUBLES. The St. Louis Republican of the 14th inst., contains a long article on the Mormon affairs; from which we infer, that the disgraceful conflicts between the Mormons and their belligerent neighbors may not yet be ended. The community are said to be in an excited state; and the Governor os reported to have notified the Mormons "that if a fresh outbreak occurs, it is questionable whether the power of the State can be so exerted as to protect them from being driven from their homes in the winter." And therefore advises to the speedy removal of all such as do not own real estate. -- Boston Trav.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. IX.                           Portland, Maine, Saturday, November 1, 1845.                          No. 29.


THE MORMONS. -- The Mormons have expressed a determination to remove, next spring, to the Oregon Territory. These in tentions are officially announced in the following document: --

NAUVOO, Oct. 1,1845.       
To Gen. John J. Hardin, W. B. Warren, &, A. Douglass, and J. A. McDougal.

MESSRS. -- In reply to your letter of this date, requesting us "to submit the facts and I intentions stated by us to writing, in order that you may lay them before the Governor and the people of the State," we would refer you to our communication of the 24th ult., to the "Quincy Committee," &c., a copy of which is herewith enclosed.

In addition to this, we would say that we had commenced making arrangements to re-move from this county previous to the recent disturbances; that we now have four companies organized, of one hundred families each, and 6 more companies now organizing, of the same number each, preparatory to a removal.

Thus one thousand families, including the Twelve, the High Council, the Trustees and general authorities of the church, are fully determined to remove in the spring, independent of the contingency of selling our property; and that this company will comprise from five to six thousand souls.

That the church, as a body, desire to remove with us, and will, if sales can be effected, so as to raise the necessary means.

That the organization of the church we represent, is such, that there never can exist but one head or presidency, at any one time, and all good members wish to be with the organization; and all are determined to remove to some distant point where we shall neither infringe nor be infringed upon so soon as time and means will permit.

That we have some hundreds of farms and some two thousand or more houses for sale in this city and county, and we request all good citizens to assist us in the disposal of our property.

That we do not expect to find purchasers for our Temple and other public buildings; but we are willing to rent them to a respectable community who may inhabit the city.

That we wish it distinctly understood that although we may not find purchasers for our property, we will not sacrifice or give it away, or suffer it illegally to be wrested from us.

That we do not intend to sow any wheat this fall, and should we all sell, we shall not put in any more crops of any description.

That as soon as practicable we will appoint committees for this city, La Harpe, Macedonia, Bear Creek, and all necessary places in the county to give information to purchasers.

That if all these testimonies are not sufficient to satisfy any people that we are in earnest, we will soon give them a sign that cannot be mistaken, -- we will leave them!

   In behalf of the Council.
            Respectfully yours, &c.,
                                                BRIGHAM YOUNG, Pres't.

Note: The above letter was composed at the beginning of the LDS fall conference, the first one held in the Nauvoo Temple. President Young tells about the Mormons' plans to move to Oregon, etc. Young wrote more than one letter on the subject -- see also his Dec. 17, 1845 communication, which says: "We expect to emigrate West of the mountains next season. If we should eventually settle on Vancouver's Island, according to our calculation we shall greatly desire to have a mail route... if Oregon should be annexed to the United States,... and Vancouver's Island incorporated in the same by our promptly paying national revenue, and taxes, we can live in peace with all men..."


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Nov. 20, 1845.                      No. 16.


MORMONISM. William Smith, the Mormon Patriarch, has addressed a long letter to his brethren, in which he dissuades them from listening to the counsel of Brigham Young, and his associates at Nauvoo. The Patriarch expresses the opinion that Young and those acting with him, have been privy to all of the crimes which have been perpetrated at Nauvoo, and that their object in collecting at that place this winter all of the Mormons in the United States, for the purpose of moving to California in the Spring, is merely to enrich themselves and perpetuate their power. When the Mormons gather at Nauvoo, they will be required to surrender all their property into the hands of the Twelve, and, if their expedition to California should prove dangerous, the Twelve will desert their followers; if, however, they should reach their destined home, West of the Rocky Mountains, the power of the leaders, through their secret organizations, will be made despotic, and be exercised for the benefit of the few, to the degradation and ruin of their followers.

The Patriarch's plan is for most of the Mormons to abandon Nauvoo, and to cease to settle together in distinct communities and large bodies. He farther urges that they should renounce the immoral doctrines and practices recently introduced into the Mormon church by Brigham Young, conduct themselves as all other religious sects do in this country, and trust to the same means of propagating their views, In that way he thinks farther evils may be avoided, and the honest saved from destruction which awaits them if they attempt to follow the Twelve to California. According to his statements, Brigham Young and his ten associates should be held responsible for the outrages which have been committed in Nauvoo for the last six months. The Mormons in Nauvoo are kept in ignorance of the secret rites of the Twelve and their agents, and should not be made to suffer for the offences of a few. -- Missouri Reporter, Oct.27

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. VII.                         Hallowell, Maine, Saturday,  November 22, 1845.                         No. ?

Flight of the Mormon Prophet from Nauvoo -- Wm. Smith of the patriarch's family, has fled from Nauvoo. The St. Louis papers publish his "faithful warning to the Latter Day Saints," against the unrighteousness of the [orders] who have usurped the patriarchal chair, of which he is the only legal occupant. He counsels peace, love to all men, and a restoration of confidence between the Mormons and their neighbors; opposes emigration to Oregon, and promises further exposures of the unrighteousness of the "wicked elders." He is now in St. Louis, under the protection of some friends. His address is dated 25 October.

Note: This report was also published as "Flight of the Prophet" in the Amherst, NH, Farmers' Cabinet of Nov. 20, 1845. That version gives the date for William Smith's "faithful warning" as "15th Oct."



Vol. VII.                         Hallowell, Maine, Saturday,  December 20, 1845.                         No. 14.

Origin  of  Mormonism.

The Albany Evening Journal, after publishing the letter from Mrs. Emma Smith, wife of the late "Prophet Jo Smith," indulges in the following remarks:

Mormonism and Millerism have, like [kindred] delusions, had their day. While such mental diseases rage, all remedies are unavailing. But in passing away, they leave a moral which assists in bracing up and steadying Society, for a season, against "thick coming" hallucinations.

"Joe Smith," previous to his becoming a prophet, was a "Loafer." He resided near the village of Palmyra, spent most of his time in bar-rooms, and seemed only anxious to live along "from hand to mouth," without work. He was then remarkable for nothing in particular, but indolence, and scheming on a small scale. In 1824 or '5, he went a vagabondizing off into Western Pennsylvania, where, nobody knows how, he got possession of the manuscript of a half-deranged Clergyman, with which he returned to Palmyra, where he pretended that he was directed in a dream to a particular spot in the woods, to possess himself of an oracular "slate," or, as he called it, a "Golden Bible." From this inspired "slate," which he used to place in his hat, he read to the "gaping few" new and strange revelations; and finally, he produced the "Book of Mormon," as the creed and faith of a people of whom he was designed by Providence to be the Prophet and Ruler. -- The "Book of Mormon" is a copy of the manuscript which Smith obtained near Pittsburg.

A wealthy Farmer, by the name of Harris, was his first believing convert. Harris mortgaged his Farm to raise the money required for the temporal support of the Prophet, and the printing of the "Book of Mormon." The Prophet and his Convert (Smith and Harris) came to Rochester and offered us the honor of being their printer. But as we were only in the newspaper line, we contented ourselves with reading a chapter of what seemed such wretched and incoherent stupidity, that we wondered how "Joe" had contrived to make the first fool with it. But he went on, making not only fools, but knaves, in America and Europe, for more than twenty years, and until his career was abruptly cut short by men who became themselves violators of the laws they were called to vindicate.

Note 1: The above Albany Evening Journal editor's recollection has not been referenced by Vogel or other compilers of early articles on Joseph Smith and the Mormons. Editor Thurlow Weed had been publishing the Anti-Masonic Enquirer in Rochester, NY, when Joseph Smith, and Martin Harris approached him to the publish the Book of Mormon. Mr. Weed printed essentially the same information in the Albany Evening Journal on July 31, 1854 and again on May 19, 1858. An amalgam of these accounts appeared in Weed's 1883 Autobiography of Thurlow Weed and in an 1880 statement he prepared for Ellen E. Dickinson.

Note 2: Weed's account of Joseph Smith, Jr.'s "vagabonding off into western Pennsylvania" in "1824 or 1825" is superficially confirmed by an 1877 report attributed to Smith's own early testimony: "He [Joseph Smith, Jr.] said when he was a lad... he... was permitted to look in the glass [seer crystal]... He was greatly surprised to see... a small stone, a great way off... He said that the stone was... situated... on the South side of Lake Erie, not far from the New York and Pennsylvania line.... This singular circumstance occupied his mind for some years, when he left his father's house, and with his youthful zeal traveled west in search of this luminous stone.... After traveling some one hundred and fifty miles [from a stopping point west of his home] he found himself at... its exact location.... he found the stone... [and then returned to] his long deserted home."

Note 3: In another late recollection, published in 1877, the Genesee Co., NY inn-keeper, Samuel D. Greene stated: "During the time I resided and kept tavern in the large brick house in the north part of Pembroke, Genesee county, New York (twenty-eight miles east of Buffalo and thirteen miles west of Batavia, on the great thoroughfare from Albany to Buffalo), came Joseph Smith to my house... He seemed to be thoroughly acquainted with the route from Canandaigua to Buffalo.... He carried with him three small black stones, with which, placed in the crown of his hat, and his hat placed before his eyes, he pretended to tell the fortunes of individuals; where lost or stolen property could be found; where early settlers had deposited their money."

Note 4: Dr, John Stafford, a neighbor of the Smith family in Manchester, NY, recalled in 1904 that Joseph's older brother, Alvin, "went out West in search of wealth, but was unsuccessful and in a short time returned." Before 1830 a significant number of Ontario Co. residents had moved west and settled on newly cleared farms in Auburn twp., Geauga Co., Ohio, including George Antisdale, Roger Antisdale and Isaac Butts, who settled there in 1817-18. The Antisdales had occupied the next farm west of the Joseph Smith, Sr. family, in northeastern corner of Farmington township, and some members of the family continued to reside there until late in the 19th century. It is possible that either Alvin, or Joseph (or both) made a trip to Ohio during the 1820s, in cooperation with some of these transplanted former neighbors.

Note 5: Life-long Bainbridge, Ohio resident Charles E. Henry, wrote in 1886 that a local school-teacher, who knew Sidney Rigdon, and who taught school in Bainbridge during the winter of 1826-27, within sight of Rigdon's home, had seen Joseph Smith, Jr. and Sidney Rigdon together the following spring -- "and he [Smith] and Rigdon went off together and were gone some months. It was reported that they had gone to Pittsburgh, but whether true or not no one could say. It was generally believed, however, that Smith at least visited Western New York before either returned to Ohio." The teacher's mention of Joseph Smith, Jr. having visited "Pittsburgh" at an early date is complementary to Thurlow Weed's assertion that "the Book of Mormon is a copy of the manuscript which Smith obtained near Pittsburgh." one explanation of the events hazily recounted in these reminiscenses, would be that Smith first encountered Rigdon in Bainbridge, Ohio, and that the two of them traveled to Sidney's old home at Library, Pennsylvania (near Pittsburgh) to accomplish some errand or retrieve some object necessary in their supposed production of the "Golden Bible."

Note 6: On the subject of Joseph Smith, Jr. having visited with Rigdon, in Ohio, prior to the publication of the Book of Mormon, here is what James Jeffery had to say in 1884: "Forty years ago I was in business in St. Louis.... Sidney Rigdon I knew very well.... Rigdon, in hours of conversation told me a number of times there was in the printing office with which he was connected in Ohio, a manuscript of Rev. Spaulding, tracing the origin of the Indian race from the lost tribes of Israel; that this manuscript was in the office for several years; that he was familiar with it... that he (Rigdon) and Joe Smith used to look over the manuscript and read it over Sundays." Although Rigdon is not known to have been "connected" with a printing office in "Ohio," he did have connections with printers and publishers in Pittsburgh, c. 1823-25, when he worked there as a lether finisher and supplied book-bindings to people like the printer Silas Engles... From Pittsburgh, Rigdon went to Ohio, at the end of 1825. Here then, is the period when Smith and Rigdon could have been in the same place, and especially on "Sundays," when Rigdon would have had a good excuse to travel the short distance from Bainbridge to neighboring Auburn, to preach to the Baptist congregation there (Rigdon then being a Grand River Baptist Assoc. pastor and the church at Auburn, Ohio being a Grand River congregation). Auburn township, Ohio was a place largely settled by pioneers who came from the area around Palmyra, NY, and among whom Joseph Smith, Jr. might have logically found some reason to go "a vagabonding" during the mid-1820s.


Vol. IX.                             Portland, Maine, December 27, 1845.                             No. 37.


THE MORMONS. -- Mrs. Smith, the widow of the Mormon prophet, has addressed a letter to the New York Sun, declaring that it is not her intention to go to California, or any other remote place, with the Mormons. She says:

"The laws of the United States are quite good enough for me and my children, and my settled intention is to remain where I am, take care of my property, and if I cannot educate my children here, send them to New York or New England for that purpose. -- Many of the Mormons will, no doubt, remove in the spring, and many more will remain here; and nothing would give me greater pleasure than to have a mixed society in Nauvoo, as in other cities, and all exclusive religious distinctions abolished.

"I must now say, that I never, for a moment, believed in what my husband called his apparitions and revelations, as I thought him laboring under a diseased mind; yet, they may all be true, as a prophet is seldom without credence or honor, excepting in his own family or country; but as my conviction is to the contrary, I shall educate my children in a different faith, and teach them to obey and reverence the laws and institutions of their country."

She also says:

"I am left here, sir, with a family of children to attend to, without any means of giving them an education, for there is not a school in the city, nor is it intended there shall be any here, or at any other place, where the men, who now govern this infatuated, simple-minded people, have sway. I have not the least objection that these petty tyrants remove to California, or any other remote place, out of the world if they wish; for they will never be of any service to the Mormons, or the human family, no  matter where they go. Their object is to keep the people over whom they rule in the greatest ignorance, and most abject religous bondage, and if these poor, confiding creatures remove with them, they will die in the wilderness."

Note 1: The Nauvoo Times & Seasons published in its issue for Jan. 15, 1846 the following note of response and refutation to the letter printed by the Sun: Nauvoo, Dec. 30th 1845. -- To the Editor of the New York Sun; Sir: I wish to inform you, and the Public through your paper, that the letter published Tuesday morning, December 9th, is a forgery, the whole of it, and I hope that this notice will put a stop to all such communications. -- EMMA SMITH.

Note 2: While the letter published by the Sun of Dec. 9, 1845, subscribed by "Emma Smith," was probably not sent to that paper by her directly, its still remains arguable that one of her close associates penned the communication and that she secretly allowed the act -- perhaps in carrying out some defensive "blackmail" against her Brighamite opponents in Nauvoo. It is, for example, not inconceivable that a confidant of Mrs. Smith (such as her brother-in-law William) might have taken her words from some other, private communication, added to them, and submitted the results for publication, hoping all the while to thus induce her to admit in public things she had thus far been saying only in private. As things turned out Emma did not follow Brigham Young west; did not raise her children to be Mormons; and did not have any respect for the motives and intentions of "The Twelve" in their subsequent leadership of the Saints.

Note 3: Oddly enough there was very little journalistic reaction to the purported Emma Smith letter. A few papers (like the Quincy Whig & Warsaw Signal) noticed the letter in passing; Sidney Rigdon's Pittsburgh Messenger & Advocate paid it some attention; but, for the most part, the strange communication went unmentioned, outside of the columns of the New York Sun, after its initial appearance there. Its partial reprinting in the Portland Transcript marks a rare exception to this tendency among the papers of the time.



Vol. VII.                         Hallowell, Maine, Saturday,  January 3, 1846.                         No. 16.


DESTINATION OF THE MORMONS. -- William Smith, brother of the late prophet, was some time ago driven out of Nauvoo, or rather he left through fear of his life, as he said, and took refuge in Iowa. From this retiracy, he issued a manifesto to all the faithful in the United States, wherein he speaks of his own grievances, and the plans of the Mormon leaders, who have usurped the government of that Church. He claims that the mantle of his brother has fallen upon him, and that the true Presidency rests with a son of the prophet Joe, who is yet a child, and that those who now hold the government, by the style of the "Twelve Patriarchs," disregard the claims. -- Young is the master spirit, design to set up a spiritual and civil despotism -- that their plan is to remove to California, and organise a government for themselves. They will carry with them several pieces of cannon, the same which excited the fears of the Anties so recently, and they will be fully armed and equipped to drive out the heathen, if necessary, and possess the land for themselves. This plan has been long in maturing, and preparations have been secretly making for the removal for a long time.

Note: For the text of William Smith's 1845 "manifesto" see the Warsaw Signal of Oct. 29, 1845. Although William's "Proclamation" made no mention of any Brighamite "cannon," the Warsaw Signal of Dec. 3, 1845 published a James Arlington Bennett letter, containing these words: "The Mormons are armed to the teeth... They have ten pieces of brass cannon handsomely equipped and abundance of ammunition."


Vol. XXIV.                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Jan. 8, 1846.                      No. 24.


THE MORMONS. -- There is intelligence from Illinois, that the Grand Jury of the United States District Court, sitting at Springfield, has been investigating the state of affairs at Nauvoo. The result is, they have found twelve indictments, (mostly against the head men of the Mormon Church,) for counterfieting the coin of the United States. Among the number indicted are Brigham Young, President of "The Twelve," and Orson Pratt, a prominent leader.

MURDER IN NOUVOO. -- There was a woman murdered in Nauvoo on Sunday last. -- All we could learn in relation to the matter, was, that the murderer fled across the Mississippi on the ice, pursued by five or six men, one of whom fired at him. The woman's name was Walker. The cause of the murder our informant did not learn, but we suspect it has grown out of Spiritual Wifery. -- Warsaw Signal.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Feb. 5, 1846.                      No. 29.

Fanaticism  and  Wickedness.

The Editors of the Home Missionary say -- "It is no longer questionable that villany equally with fanaticism, has had a share in the events, which have given notoriety yo the community of Nauvoo. -- There is no such monstrous result as Mormonism to be found in any other portion of the great Valley. The enormous wickedness is not indigenous to the West; it did not originate there, nor has it gathered many converts there. It is an importation of elements of evil gathered from both the old world and the new; the virus of which when diffused, was comparatively harmless and unnoticed, but when concentrated in one vicinity, has become a noisome and notorious pestilence."

A missionary in Hancock County gives some very affecting details of the sufferings brought on that cimmunity by these dreadfully deluded and wicked men. He had been himself called to attend the funeral obsequies of three individuals, at different times, who had fallen by Mormon violence. Two of them were highly respected citizens of Carthage; and were basely assassinated, without having given any provocation. Of the third the account thus proceeds: --
"At about 10 o'clock P.M., the lifeless and mangled body of one of our own townsmen, a young man, was found at a distance of eight or nine miles from home, stretched upon the ground where he had fallen, ten hours before, a victim to the ferocity of a party of Mormons, and suffered the most cruel death. He had received two flesh wounds from leaden balls, three deep wounds upon the head with a heavy cutlass, a stab in the throat, and, finally, his bosom having been deliberately bared, two well directed thrusts at the heart. This violence was inflicted, not in hot haste, but, as we are informed by the Mormons themselves, after consultation, and in contempt of his prayers for life, and was a protracted process of slaughter.

"You will better imagine, than, than I can describe, my feelings on the following morning, when the intelligence of this event was brought to me, and I was requested to do funeral honors for one of my own congregation thus destroyed -- one with whom I was familiar -- one whom I had regarded as possessing a peculiarly inoffensive and amiable disposition -- one whom I had daily observed during the preceeding week, quietly pursuing his honorable calling with his team, while multitudes around him were running to and fro, perfectly crazed with excitement -- one by whose bed-side I had repeatedly sat, wjen he was recovering from a fever, and administered to both his bodily and spiritual wants; and who had said to me, but a few days before, as the tears trickled down his cheeks, 'I know I need religion, I wish I had it, and I hope I shall have it before I die.' I had hoped strongly for his conversion. I had prayed for it. O, how poor a time for repentance, when he saw his dissolution approaching! What hearts must those have been, that would not grant a moment to his agonizing spirit, in which to avoid eternal death!"

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Feb. 12, 1846.                      No. 30.

Emigration  of  Mormons.

We thank Rev. Mr. Bingham for his attention, in sketching for us the scene described below. It has a painful aspect to be sure. The mind cannot follow these emigrants without a measure of solicitude, on account of possible, and even probable sufferings -- going in such numbers without any certain dwelling place selected. And as they go from New England, New York and New Jersey, it cannot be supposed that they flee from persecution. at least, we never heard of their being disturbed in their erroneous faith in any of these States,

MR. CUMMINGS -- Dear Sir: -- Carrying communications for the Sandwich Islands, to-day on board the ship Brooklyn in the East River, I found her, to my surprize, crowded with passengers and their effects, bound to Port St. Francisco. There were on board about 40 families, collected from New England, New York and New Jersey. The passengers amounted to about 170, of every age, from the infant in the young mother's arms, to the faded matron and old man of grey hairs, unwilling to be separated from his children and grand-children. The ship was loosing from the dock, and the passengers were taking leave of their kindred and homes.

They are said to be mostly Mormons and those who are friendly to their strange system. I was introduced to the leader of this company, Mr. Samuel Brannan, who appears to be a man of some energy, in the prime of life. He did not, moreover, profess to know where they would settle, though they were to land at Port St. Francisco and expected to find a place for establishing themselves in California or Oregon.

A large portion of the men who had promptly paid two thirds of their passage money, appeared like plain, hardy pioneers, confident of finding or making room for themselves on the other side of our great continent. There were nearly 60 women reckoning some as such who are unmarried, but above childhood. It is natural to infer a good deal of resolution on their part.

The company have furnished themselves with implements for their various occupations, embracing that of Farmer, House-builder, Stair-builder, Cabinet-maker, Upholsterer, Mill-wright, Blacksmith, Oarfinisher, and Tanner.

Captain Richardson, the Master of the Brooklyn, is a serious and respectable Baptist, belonging to Dr. Williams's Church, in New York City. He has a crew, chiefly American, well selected by his brother, from the "Sailor's Home," whom he expects, according to his custom, to call together daily for social worship, under his own direction, as the Master of a family.

Several of his friends and a large number of the friends of the passengers, accompanied them as they went out, nearly to the "narrows," as the large ship was taken down by a steamer. As the ship and steamer, locked together side by side, were for nearly an hour passing down, and after leaving the pier, the companies, interchanging their farewells, separated gradually, till they were entirely distinct. At the signal, the ringing of the steamer's bell, she disengaged herself, when each company gave three cheers. That, with many, was doubtless, a final parting for this world; but I perceived that numbers were expected to meet soon on the shores of the Pacific,

The steamer returned to New York, leaving the ship and her crowd of passengers to pursue their long track of 20,000 miles to the port of her destination. To reach Port St. Francisco from the Northern States, it is thought to be most convenient, expeditious and economical, for emigrants to go by ship via Cape Horn and the Sandwitch Islands. Others are expected to follow in a few months by the same route, and others to cross the continent with some three or four thousand wagons, to join them, from Nauvoo, and other places, in the interior of our goodly land,

They are said to be seeking a place of freedom, to carry out their principles, where they can enjoy their rights together.

When shall we see such a readiness to embark for China, India and Africa to give the Bible to the heathen, and to honor the God of the Bible?   As ever, yours.
Brooklyn, Feb. 4, 1846.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Feb. 19, 1846.                      No. 31.

MORMONS. -- The first expedition of "the saints" for the Rocky mountains, is about taking up its line of march.

Dr. White has left Washington on his return to Oregon, and is to be escorted from our Western frontier, through the Indian territories, by companies of U.S, Dragoons.

The advance party of the Mormon expedition, embracing a thousand riflemen, are to be placed at the service of the U.S. Government. There will be some hazard in the experiment, unless they should have a resolute commander not of their own party, some young General Jackson to control them, otherwise they will be likely to "set up for themselves."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  March 12, 1846.                      No. 33.


A new and perhaps improved edition of this delusion has begun to make its appearance. It has changed its leaders, or at least has one new one, whose vileness, if he is vile, has not become so widely notorious; and he has more learning and talents to carry out his purposes, whether they be for good or for evil. His head-quarters are in Wisconsin, and he has already begun to send out his orders, and assert his claims, with the confidence and decision of an absolute monarch. The Cincinnati Commercial says --

"On Friday week, M. Searles, a messenger from the new Mormon prophet, James Strang, at Voree, Wisconsin, arrived at Cincinnati, and on Sunday both branches of the Mormons at Cincinnati, the Rigdonites and the Twelveites, disbanded and all but three individuals acknowledged the power and glory of the new Prophet. The messenger brought the news that Emma Smith, wife of Joseph, and her son, Joseph the second, acknowledged Strang as the Lord's anointed. One of the Smiths came from Voree, a few days since, to Nauvoo, and proclaimed Strang the head of the Church, in the Temple, at that place, without molestation. The Saints are flocking to Voree in great numbers; it is to be the gathering place of all this strange people, except the Twelve and their adherents, now on their way to California, over the Rocky Mountains, or to some other country."

The Commercial adds --

"James Strang is a lawyer of considerable emmence in the west, and owns an immense tract of land, the capital of which is Voree. We believe he is the person who came out of Missouri with the Mormons at the time of their disturbances, planned the Temple at Nauvoo, and wrote the bulletins of Joe the Prophet. He will doubtless establish the Mormon dominion at Voree, and, by his intelligence and spirit of enterprise, regenerate this people, casting off the corrupt Twelve and all their followers.

"We have before us the first number of the Voree Herald, W. T., near Burlington, containing a letter from Joseph Smith, written before his murder, and dated Nauvoo, June 18th, 1844, which bears the post mark Nauvoo and Chicago, as it passed on to the said prophet at Voree -- fully recognizing the claims of Strang to succeed him. It distinctly says that Almighty God spoke to him to write, and to order him to form a gathering, and to call it Voree, and that all his people should gather there.

"Strang now announces himself as the prophet of the Most High, and ready to act as his mouthpiece. He gives the Saints a revelation, in the said paper, which was communicated to him by an angel of the Lord! Of course every body will believe what the angel of the Lord shall see fit to communicate.

"We presume that William Smith, who has been lecturing here, will join with the new prophet, and Voree will become a second Nauvoo, in all except the wickedness of that place. They declare themselves determined to behave with more respect for the laws of the country."

Note 1: This news item was obviously written as a "teaser" for the possibility of the Nauvoo Smith family joining Strang's ranks. It was written by John C. Bennett and first appeared in the Feb. 24, 1846 issue of the Cincinnati Daily Commercial.

Note 2: Although the above reprint is more complete than the excerpt Strang chose to publish in his own newspaper, it leaves out the final lines of the original news report: "indeed it would seem that those who left the corrupt Twelve and spiritual wife business, as well as the practising of other enormities did it out of principle. However, we must await and see what this new move will amount to. If the Mormons in establishing Voree fully discard all their offensive acts which have heretofore caused them to be outcast and killed, they can get along, but if Strang be not wise and pure, and use judgment in his new position, he will fix himself in a terrible fix, before long. Let him be wise and not take revelations from bad angels, and he may succeed."


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  May 7, 1846.                      No. 41.

THE TEMPLE AT NAUVOO. We are gratified to learn that there is a prospect of converting the Temple, recently erected at Nauvoo by the Mormons, to a useful and most charitable purpose. A wealthy gentleman from the south arrived here a few days since, en route to purchase the Temple, if it can be bought for a reasonable price. His object, we understand, is to convert the Temple into an asylum for destitute widows and females, and to purchase lands and town lots, and endow it out of the rents of them. The author of this liberal proposition, we understand, is a bachelor, far advanced in life. -- St. Louis Republican, April 16

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  July 2, 1846.                      No. 49.

MORMONS. On the 14th ult., the Mormons and their antagonists of the neighborhood of Nauvoo, were armed and in hostile array towards each other. The city was in a perfect uproar, and a bloody collision seemed inevitable. The determination seemed to be, not only to enforce the removal of the Mormons, but to destroy the temple at Nauvoo. The assailants mumber 400 strong; the Mormons have a force of 600.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  July 9, 1846.                      No. 50.

THE MORMONS.  Poor, deluded, persecuted Mormons! What fate awaits them, none can tell. Not improbably the curse of heaven will follow them as it has hitherto. Their principles, their ignorance and their vices have uniformly made them unwelcome neighbors. Their first encampment was pitched at Kirtland and Jiram, Ohio. Here they became so odious that they made a virtue of necessity, and left in a body for a revealed promised land in the West, and professed to have found it where Joe Smith stuck a stake in the wilderness, in Missouri. A short residence here occasioned mob violence, and serious talk of civil and military power, to drive them from the State. Their passions had in the mean time been highly roused ny ill treatment, and they committed depredations if not crimes, which made them glad to escape from the jurisdiction which could restrain them. -- Thence coming -- nay welcomed into Illinois, they for a time flourished. The pity of the civilized world flowed forth in sympathy for them, and they became rapidly numerous, powerful, dangerous and injurious. Their fellow citizens stood in fear of them. Mutual jealousy, crimes and recriminations became frequent. At last the military array of the State was called into requisition, and they were humbled only by the sacrifice of their leader ny a violent death. They then, almost unanimously resolved, once more to abandon civilization and seek a new home beyond the reach of any power or law besides their own. The shore of the Pacific was the nearest limit, where they hoped to find a haven of peace. -- Their advance division is probably now mid-way in its flight, and the rear has lately left the city of superstition, folly and crime. All may reach their destination, but strange to say, probably they will find the "stripes and stars" planted there before them, and they will have to submit to the same civil authority they have so long fought against in Missouri and Illinois. Without doubt their principles will be modified ny the strange discipline to which divine providence has subjected them, and it may be that, like some other religious communities they may accept of such protection of law, and yield such submission to it, as to procure for a time their integrity as a sect; but unless they greatly change, they will find no peaceful resting place within the United States -- nor indeed within the domains of civilization on the globe. -- Rel. Rec.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                         Winthrop, Maine, Thursday, July 23, 1846.                        No. ?


Going to Take California: -- The President has determined to sent a regiment of Volunteers around Cape Horn to California. We suppose it will be annexed by force and arms. He can't wait for the Mormons to settle it and then petition Congress to be annexed. Gunpowder is quicker in its operation, and it will blow it right on to us.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Maine Democrat.
Vol. ?                             Saco, Maine, Tuesday, September 15, 1846.                             No. ?

A Mormon Letter.

It seems to us that the Mormon difficulties and disputes are permitted to occupy altogether too great a space in the public eye. The last phase in their affairs finds its representative in the following "letter from Bill Smith to the Voree Herald":

I have, since I returned to Nauvoo, for the first time been apprised of an appointment made by Joseph Smith to James J. Strang. On hearing this I took pains to gather all the evidence that could be adduced, to see if there was any foundation at all for the claims of Mr. Strang. I called to see sister Emma, to inquire concerning the appointment. Sister Emma says that Joseph received a letter from Mr. Strang -- Hyrum was present, and he called in brother J. P. Green; at first Joseph thought all was not right, but Hyrum thought otherwise. They talked over matters awhile and came to the conclusion that Joseph would write a letter; so Joseph and Brother Green went out for that purpose.

Emma also states that her son Joseph saw a woman come into a room in Far West, Mo., and told him that this church would go to Voree; the boy was only eight years old; Joseph, his father, was in jail at the time; the boy remembers the vision, &c. Joseph, before he was martyred, when on his way from the temple hill home, saw a vision, and his mother recollects that when he came home, he put his hands upon his eyes and prayed that the vision might pass, and he stated that he heard as it were music in the Heavens, but the notes were low and sad, as though they sounded the requiem of martyred prophets.

I remember myself that Joseph said: "My work is almost done. I feel that I shall rule a mighty host, but not in this world; the wolves are on the scent, &c. Joseph bid his wife and mother farewell, saying, I am going as a lamb to the slaughter. This was his impression.

And I further state that Joseph did not appoint the twelve as his successor, and I was in the last council with him, and had an opportunity of knowing and hearing his sentiments in regard to these things.

I also heard Joseph say that should the time ever come that Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball would lead this church, they would lead it to hell. This was said in the hearing of Sister Emma Smith. The whole Smith family of the Joseph stock join in sustaining J. J. Strang.

                                           WILLIAM SMITH.

This is to certify that the Smith family do believe in the appointment of J. J. Strang.
LUCY SMITH, Mother in Israel.
Nauvoo, March 1st, 1846.

Note 1: William Smith's letter was first published in the Voree Herald of July, 1846. Emma Hale Smith's name is conspicuously missing from William's 1846 Smith family list of Strang supporters.

Note 2: In later years Katherine Smith Salisbury denied her reported association with the Strangites -- see her letter in the RLDS Saints' Herald of Apr. 26, 1899. However, that published statement overlooks the fact that Katherine's mother had written a letter in May of 1846, saying "The Twelve (Brighamites) have abused my son William, and trampled upon my children... I am satisfied that Joseph appointed J. J. Strang. It is verily so." Lucy's avowal was co-signed by Katherine Salisbury and her husband. Her subsequent denial of the family's 1846 support for Strang parallels Katherine's earlier statement, denying any knowledge of Mormon polygamy during the Nauvoo period -- see Saints' Herald of May 6, 1893. See also the "Sister Katherine's Testimony" web-page.


Vol. XXV                       Portland, Maine, Thursday,  Nov. 12, 1846.                      No. 16.

NAUVOO.  Gov. Ford heads the expedition which has been started at Springfield, Ill., against the Anti-Mormons at Nauvoo. The Volunteer force from Springfield, numbered one hundred and eleven men, and they had with them two brass six-pounders well appointed, and manned by skillful artillerists. It was expected they would receive large accessions of volunteers on the route. It is the determination of the Governor to put an end, at all hazards, to the violence and outrages that have brought disgrace upon the State. -- St. Louis Republican, 26th ult.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                         Winthrop, Maine, Thurs., Dec. 28, 1848.                        No. ?


The Mormons in California have laid claim to a large portion of the gold territory, and demand thirty per cent. of the ore taken therefrom. An express has been sent to the Salt Lake settlement, where about 10,000 Mormons are located. There is a rumor that equally rich mines have been discovered in that region. The thirty per cent. demand of the Mormons is expected to lead to trouble.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                             Augusta, Maine, November 10, 1849.                             No. ?

THE NEW CITY OF DESERET, (capital, we presume of the new State of Deseret,) is laid out in blocks, containing 10 acres each, and each block is subdivided into eight lots. There are already 224 blocks, being 16 in one direction, and 14 in the other. The streets are eight rods wide, Nearly 1000 adobe houses have been built, and the whole city, nearly two miles square, has the appearance of a garden. A public building of stone, 50 feet square, is going up to serve for a Council House, Church, and other purposes. Any person wishing to live here, can take an unoccupied lot, without price, but can only sell the improvements. The city is governed by a President and Council; Taxes are laid according to property. Tithes are voluntary. Schools are kept all the year, and are free to all.

Notes: (forthcoming)


No. ?                             Portland, Maine, Saturday, December 1, 1849.                             No. ?

                    From the Rochester American.


We received yesterday a visit from Martin Harris, formerly of Palmyra, who was concerned with Joe Smith, in originally proclaiming the Mormon faith. He wrote the book of Mormon from Joe Smith's dictation, the latter reading the text from the golden plates by putting his face in a hat. When the volume was written, Harris raised funds for its publication by mortgaging his farm. But he no longer goes with the Mormons, saying they "have got [sic, gone to?] the devil just like other people." He abandoned them fifteen years ago, when they assumed the appellation of "Latter Day Saints," and bore his testimony against them by declaring that "Latter Day Devils" would be a more appropriate designation.

Mr. Harris visited England some three years ago. At present he professes to have a mission from God, in fulfilment of which he wanders about preaching to "all who will feed him." When this essential condition is not performed by his hearers he shakes off the dust from his feet, and leaves for more hospitable quarters. Mr. H. is exceedingly familiar with the Scriptures, and discusses [sic, discourses?] theology, in his peculiar way, with the fluency and zeal of a devotee.

Note 1: The above article originally appeared in the Rochester Daily American of Nov. 16, 1849.

Note 2: Although the article says that Martin Harris "abandoned" the "Latter Day Saints" some "fifteen years" prior to 1849, it does not make it clear whether Harris then also abandoned his testimony of the divinity of the Book of Mormon. H. Michael Marquardt, in his 2002 Dialogue article, "Martin Harris: The Kirtland Years," documents the activities of Harris during the time he spent away from the Latter Day Saints, showing that he associated briefly with the Mormon Gladdenites during 1851-52, and thereafter occasionally demonstrated his allegiance to at least some of the tenets of Mormonism, in a variety of situations. If Harris ever did go through a period in his life where he placed no faith in the Book of Mormon, he evidently did not publicize that infidelity.


Portland  Advertiser.

Vol. XIX.                           Portland, Maine, Friday, December 28, 1849.                           No. 301.

THE STATE OF DESERET. -- The delegate now in Washington with the memorial to Congress for the admission of this new State, informs the Globe that the word deseret is ancient Egyptian one, and signifies honey bee, which we have heard before. The bee is everywhere, we believe, an emblem of industry, and has been selected for that reason by the the deseretarians (if so they may be entitled) for their national device. Napoleon chose it for the same reason; and when the Bourbons came back one of the consequences of the Restoration was the obliteration of the imperial bees, and the substitution of the royal fluer de lis.
     Philadelphia News.

Note 1: The communal beehive symbol had closer ties to the Americas than can be claimed for Napoleon's "imperial bees." This device was long a favorite of the Freemasons, and can be found coupled with the motto "Holiness to the Lord" in some New York State Grand Chapter Masonic illustrations. Robert Owens' famous commune (which was transplanted to the USA early in the 19th century) adopted the beehive emblem and even engraved it on the community's labor exchange "hours" monetary notes.

Note 2: The Mormon representative spearheading the drive to admit the State of Deseret into the Union was Elder Almon Whiting Babbitt, a brother-in-law of Elder Isaac Sheen, who joined with Mormon "President" William Smith in opposing statehood for Utah.



Vol. XVI.                             Bangor, Maine, Friday, March 22, 1850.                             No. 224.

THE MORMONS. -- On the 14th inst. Mr. Underwood presented to the Senate of the United States a petition from Isaac Sheen, who represents himself as 'First Counsellor to Prophet Wm. Smith and President of the Aaronic Priesthood of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,' together with two apostles and some twelve high priests, setting forth that --

Council Bluffs is principally settled by Salt Lake Mormons, who are governed in political as well as spiritual affairs by the secret lodge of fifty men, that also rules the Salt Lake territory, and by Brigham Young, their governor, president, prophet, seer, revelator, and inquisitorial chief. They assert that these people obstruct the receipt of the religious newspaper called the 'Melchisedek and Aaronic Herald,' and letters to their friends and relations in that quarter, and implore the protection of Congress from the tyranny, injustice, and political intrigues of the Salt Lake banditti, and insist that the treasonable acts and designs of the Salt Lake combination are sufficient not only to show the impropriety of admitting Deseret into the Union, but also to convince government that no Salt Lake Mormon should be allowed to hold any office either at Salt Lake Valley or Council Bluffs. They charge them also with having commenced a warfare against the liberty of speech and of the press, and against the religious rights of American citizens who do not acknowledge their supremacy.

The memorial was referred to the Committee on the Post Office and Post Roads.

Note 1: The above mentioned "petition from Isaac Sheen" should not be confused with William Smith's earlier Remonstrance, which which Senator Joseph R. Underwood presented to the U. S. Senate on Dec. 31, 1849. The latter document was "referred" to the Senate's Committee on Territories, and effectively disposed of; however the same complaints were also raised in the House of Representatives by Congressman John Wentworth of Illinois and the House eventually decided to publish the text, giving William's complaints against the Brighamites some limited circulation in Washington, D.C. William Smith had himself been a member of Nauvoo's "secret lodge of fifty men," and so he could rightly claim special knowledge of the "combination's" purpose and plans. William was very likely the source of one of the first leaks from the membership of the Council of Fifty, exposing its existence to the public through the New Bedford Bulletin in October of 1844.

Note 2: Elder Isaac Sheen's claimes to the office of "First Counsellor to Prophet Wm. Smith and President of the Aaronic Priesthood" would prove short-lived. Within two months Sheen would be announcing in the public press: "Wm. Smith has not cut me off from his church. I have cut myself off, and intend to remain cut off eternally from such a hypocritical libertine. He has professed the greatest hostility to the plurality wife doctrine, but on the 18th ult. [April 18, 1850], he told me that he had a right to raise up posterity from other men's wives. He said it would be an honor conferred upon them and their husbands, to allow him that privilege, and that they would thereby be exalted to a high degree of glory in eternity. He said that the Salt Lake Mormons had no authority to do such things, but that the authority belonged to him, and that I might have the same privilege. He offered me his wife on the same terms that he claimed a partnership in other men's wives." On May 4, 1850 Elder Sheen withdrew his support for William Smith's Remonstrance, saying: "I have become satisfied that there are many false statements in that memorial, and also in the memorial of Wm. Smith and others from Illinois. It was my firm belief at the time that the representations of William Smith, on which those false statements were based, could be relied on; but I have ascertained that I have been greatly deceived in regard to his veracity. His complaints against the Deseret Mormons are unworthy of any attention." Exactly which "false statements" are thus referred to remains unclear -- certainly Sheen continued to realize that the Council of Fifty was a real political entity; that the Mormon endowment oaths were treasonable; that the Mormons were conspiring with the Indians; and that the mail going through Great Salt Lake City was often tampered with by order of the LDS leaders there.


Vol. XIV.                             Portland, Maine, Saturday, November 2, 1850.                             No. 29.

HOW MANY WIVES MAY A MORMAN HAVE? -- This question has often been debated, and it has been asserted that a Mormon was restricted to one wife, like all good Christians. But a correspondent of the Philadelphia Inquirer, who writes from the Great Salt Lake, puts a different face upon the matter. He says --

An impression exists abroad respecting the number of wives which each Mormon is allowed, and which it may not be amiss to make a few remarks upon. I have made inquiry of those who know, and I find that each member as well as the head of the church, is privileged, to have as many wives as he can decently support -- that is, if all parties concerned are agreed -- and to each he has to be formally married in accordance with the law, in such casa made and provided. I have not a word to say in defence of this odious and demoralizing feature -- but merely state the facts.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Portland Eclectic.
And Northern Home.

Vol. III.                                Portland, Maine, Saturday, April 2, 1853.                                No. 27.


A problem of singular difficulty, and every day growing more and more portentous, -- than which, if we except African Slavery, none is more difficult of solution, -- is rising in the distant West, before the American Government and people. Ere long they will have to grapple with it. Whether it can be peacefully solved, the future alone will tell.

A new Territory, carved out of the recent conquests from Mexico, stretches from the summit of the Rocky Mountains on the East, through thirteen degrees of longitude, to the land of gold. A branch of the Indian family, -- the Paw-Utahs, -- roamed its prairies and claimed it as their own. But a new tribe and sect, -- driven from State to State, fleeing, before an indignant people, from Ohio, from Missouri and Illinois, struggling with cold and hunger, and encountering the most fearful hardships and privations, daring the ferocious savages that dwelt along their route, and dragging slowly along their children, goods and domestic implements, at length make their tedious way to the home of the Utahs; and having, as they no doubt supposed, reached an isolated spot, so far from all organized society that they would be free from disturbance for many, many years, they set themselves down in the valley of the Jordan, -- in the "land of the Honey Bee" -- plant their absurd faith and begin a new nation. Some six years have since elapsed, and the census of the Great Salt Lake City probably enumerates, at this day, some forty or fifty thousand people, -- while in other parts of the world, two hundred and fifty thousand more embrace the Mormon faith. In that far-off wilderness, so recently known only to the moccasin, the arts are flourishing in a high degree. Woolen factories, to be supplied by fleeces from the Jordan valley, -- sugar manufactories, to be fed with beets, -- potteries and cutlery establishments, send their hum through the astonished land. No such noise did it expect to hear for half a century to come. On a mountain terrace, overhanging the city, the site of a contemplated university is already laid out and enclosed. School-houses are springing up, and are supplied with competent teachers from a central Normal School. Gigantic preparations are in progress to build a Temple, which is intended to surpass every existing or historic structure in splendor and magnitude. The city is laid out on a scale of magnificent proportions, to which, hitherto, the world has been a stranger, -- a scale corresponding with the breadth of territory on whose bosom they dwell, -- corresponding with their expectations of growth, and compared with which the narrow avenues of modern and ancient cities, are but mere mathematical lines, -- already, three miles in breadth and four in length, its streets are regularly diagramed, each eight rods wide, with sidewalks of twenty feet, -- every block forty rods square, containing eight lots of an acre and a quarter each, and every tenement obliged by law to retreat twenty feet from the front line, to make room for a delightful margin of shrubbery and trees. A perennial stream flows through the city, and pours its pure waters down oth sides of every street, and carries irrigation to their bounteous gardens. A warm spring bubbles from the mountains, and following the pipes, reaches a public bathing-house. A soil of exuberant productiveness stretches around them. Comparatively little solicitation is necessary from the hand of man to bring its grains and fruits to perfection and maturity. Twenty miles to the northwest slumber the heavy waters of the great Salt Lake. This vast body of the purest brine, -- so densely impregnated that men cannot sink in it, if they try, -- fills a basin of thirty by seventy miles, and will, doubtless, be the scene of the exhaustless salt manufacture for those future generations that will inhabit the immense domain between the Rocky Mountains and the sea. Already a United States mail route reaches from this city to San Diego on the Pacific coast, near which the Salt Lake Mormons have, thus early, established a colony. Other and outpost settlements are planting around them, on the Weber and the Timpanagos.

Mormon missionaries are proselyting the world, and converging their converts to the new City of Utah. The unconquerable mountains of Wales are sending their hardy sons to preach and practice the Mormon creed in the Western World. And here, between the Rocky Mountains and the Sierra Nevada, over eleven hundred miles from San Francisco, and about two thousand four hundred miles from the city of New York, rapidly grows this incipient community, -- bound together by a burning enthusiasm and a common faith, compacted by persecutions, welded by the necessity of self-support and self-defence, -- its founder a sot, and its Bible a theft, -- one of the strangest phenomena to which the present, or any age, has given birth. How far was it from the thoughts of the minister, Solomon Spalding, when, at Cherry Valley, in this State, he composed his imaginary history called the "Manuscript Found" that it would be seized by an ignorant and truthless drunkard, proclaimed to have been engraven on golden plates, become the Scripture of a new and numerous sect, -- in thirty years trial 300,000 zealots in its wake, -- count its worshippers in England, Germany, Sweden, in the mountain fastnesses of Wales, in Normandy, the East Indies and the Sandwich Isles, -- and found a great City and State in that territory, which, at the time he wrote, the foot of white man had never trod.

But grave questions are arising, and will hereaf- ter arise, between the Mormons and us. How shall we tolerate their too defiant bearing and the introduction of those items of the social creed which are in hostility to our laws, and repugnant to our sentiments of morality and social order? Who shall yield, they or we? Will persuasion conquer their stubborn doctrine, and gentle words exterminate polygamy, or must that principle become engrafted upon American Institutions? Can Federal laws reach them, and if not, is it not quite clear that the laws of the State of Utah, will be moulded by the Mormon will? The outside population can never overtake them. There they are, in the path to our Pacific possession, perchance in the very line of the Atlantic and Pacific Railway, -- soon to be brought into intimate communion with our Eastern population, -- a fixture, a permanence, a perpetuity, -- spreading with unexampled rapidity, drawing enthusiasts from distant countries, and ready to uphold every tenet of their strange faith with argument and blood. To reconcile and harmonize this incongruous creed with freedom of conscience and American institutions, to prevent such a stain as polygamy from darkening our national escutcheon, and at the same time to avoid the sanguinary results of civil war, are desirable achievements, the way and mode of which are yet concealed from the wisest speculators in future events. -- N. Y. Times.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The Eclectic.

Vol. ?                                Portland, Maine, Saturday, July 30, 1853.                                No. ?


A correspondent of the N. Y. Times gives a detailed account of the dissensions which now divide the Saints at Salt Lake city. It would appear that the sect of Gladdenites has rapidly increased, and that the bitterest animosity prevails between them and the adherents of Brigham Young. In a recent sermon Brigham Young said that "rather than the apostates should flourish in their midst, he would unsheath his bowie knife and conquer or die," and he plainly told his audience that whoever should be the executioners of divine justice in this case, and slay the Gladdenites, their wives and children from the fate of the earth, would receive a bright crown of glory. The injunction to assassinate the Gladdenites was open and undisguised, and repeated in a variety of forms, and, what is more to be lamented, was plainly responded to by the audience. It was, says the writer in the Times, "a sphere of murder -- plain, palpable, frightful and sickening. The picture was one which once seen can never be effaced from the mind. A preacher, in the pulpit, ferociously enjoining the murder of men, women and children, for a difference of opinion, and 2,000 faces intently gazing upon him with fanatical approbation; -- the regions of the damned could scarcely present a scene more truly diabolical. The Mormons have ever been a bubbling and seething cauldron of pollijtion; and can no more be tolerated in the bosom of civilized society than gangs of counterfeiters and thieves. You may ask if all Mormons are to come under this severe condemnation. I do not mean to be so understood. There are a great, many weak and simple-minded people, who have no very definite and fixed belief, and glide along with the current, without any positive harm; there are others who are fanatical, and of course, dangerous instruments in the hands of the rascals who control them; there are others again, who are totally sick of Mormonism, but remain quiet until an opportunity occurs to escape."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                                 Portland, Maine, February 6, 1854.                                 No. ?


The Mormons: -- [Brigham Young and Orson Hyde say:] "Remember, that God our heavenly Father was perhaps once a child and mortal like we ourselves, and rose step by step in the scale of progress, in the school of advancement; has moved forward aond overcome until he has arrived at the point where he now is. 'Is this really possible?' Why, my dear friends, how would you like to be governed by a ruler who had not been through all the vicissitudes of life that is common to mortals? ..."

Note: Apostle Orson Hyde promoted this teaching in his Discourse, delivered before the LDS General Conference at Great Salt Lake City in 1853. The above quote was taken from a published report of the proceedings of that conference, most likely the Deseret News of Oct. 27, 1853.


Vol. ?                                 Portland, Maine, Saturday, May 27, 1854.                                 No. ?


Great Salt Lake City, Jan. 12, 1854.    
Dear Sister: -- Your letter of Oct. 2nd was received on yesterday. My joy on its reception was more than I can express. I had waited so long for your answer to our last, that I had almost concluded my friends were offended, and would write to me no more. Judge then of my joy when I read the sentiments of friendship and of sisterly affection expressed in your letter.

We are all well here, and are prosperous and happy in our family circle. My children (four in number,) are healthy and cheerful, and fast expanding their physical and intellectual faculties. Health, peace, and prosperity have attended us all the day long.

It seems my dear sister, that we are no nearer together in our religious views than formerly.

Why is this? Are we not all bound to leave this world, with all we possess therein, and reap the reward of our doings here in a never ending hereafter?

It so, do we not desire to be undeceived, and to know and to do the truth?

Do we not all wish in our very hearts to be sincere with ourselves and to be honest and frank with each other?

If so, you will bear with me patiently, while I give a few of my reasons for embracing, and holding sacred that particular point in the doctrine of the Church of the Saints, to which you, my dear sister, together with a large majority of Christendom so decidedly object.

I mean, a "plurality of wives."

I have a bible which I have been taught from my infancy, to hold sacred.

In this bible, I read of a Holy man named Abraham, who is represented as the friend of God,--a faithful man in all things, -- a man who kept the commandments of God; and who is called in the New Testament, the "Father of the faithful" (See James 2nd, 23. -- Rom. 4th:16th, Gal. 3rd: 8th, 9th, 16th, 29th.)

I find this man had a plurality of wives, some of which were called concubines. (see book of Genesis; and for his concubines, see 25th chap. 6th verse.)

I also find his grandson Jacob possessed of four wives, twelve sons and a daughter. These wives are spoken very highly of by the sacred writers as honorable and virtuous women. "These," say the scriptures, "did build the House of Israel."

Jacob himself was also a man of God, and the Lord blessed him and his house, and commanded him to be fruitful and multiply. (See Genesis 30th chap. to 35, and particularly 35 chap., 10th and 11th verses.)

I find also that the twelve sons of Jacob by these four wives became princes, heads of tribes, patriarchs, whose names are had in everlasting remembrance to all generations.

Now God talked with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob frequently; and his angels also visited and talked with them, and blessed them and their wives and children. He also reproved the sins of some of the sons of Jacob, for hating and selling their brother, and for Adultery. But in all his communications with them, he never condemned their family organization; but on the contrary, always approved of it, and blessed them in this respect.

He even told Abraham, that he would make him the father of many nations, and that in him and his seed, all the nations and kindreds of the earth should be blessed. (See Genesis, 18th chap. 17th, 18th and 19th verses; also 12th chap., 1, 2, and 3 verses.) In later years I find the plurality of wives perpetuated, sanctioned, and provided for in the law of Moses.

David the Psalmist not only had a plurality of wives, but the Lord himself spoke by the mouth of Nathan the prophet, and told David, that He (the Lord,) had given his masterís wives into his bosom; but because he had committed adultery with the wife of Uriah, and had caused his murder, He would take his wives and give them to a neighbor of his, etc. (See 2nd Samuel, 12th chap., 7th to 11th verses.)

Here then we have the word of the Lord, not only sanctioning polygamy, but actually giving to King David the wives of his master, (Saul,) and afterward taking the wives of David from him, and giving them to another man. Here we have a sample of severe reproof and punishment for adultery and murder; while polygamy is authorized and approved by the word of God.

But, to come to the New Testament, I find Jesus Christ speaks very highly of Abraham and his family; He says, "Many shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, in the kingdom of God." (Luke, 13 chap., verses 28 and 29.)

Again he said, "If ye were Abrahamís seed, ye would do the works of Abraham."

Paul the apostle, wrote to the saints of his day, and informed them as follows: "As many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ; and if ye are Christís, then are ye Abrahamís seed, and heirs according to the promise."

He also sets forth Abraham and Sarah as patterns of faith and good works, and as the father and mother of faithful Christians, who should, by faith and good works, aspire to be counted the sons of Abraham and daughters of Sarah.

Now let us look at some of the works of Sarah, for which she is so highly commended by the Apostles, and by them held up as a pattern for Christian ladies to imitate.

"Now Sarah, Abramís wife, bare him no children; and she had a handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar. And Sarah said unto Abram, behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing; I pray thee go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened unto the voice of Sarah. And Sarah, Abramís wife, took Hagar her maid, the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, an d gave her to her husband, Abram, to be his wife." (See Genesis, 16th chap., verses 1, 2, and 3.)

According to Jesus Christ and the Apostles then, the only way to be saved, is to be adopted into the great family of polygamists, by the gospel, and then strictly follow their examples.

Again, John the Revelator describes the Holy City of the Heavenly Jerusalem, with the names of the twelve sons of Jacob inscribed on the gates. (Rev. 21:12.)

To sum up the whole then, I find that polygamists were the friends of God, -- that the family and lineage of a polygamist was selected, in which all nations should be blessed,--that a polygamist is named in the New Testament as the father of the faithful christians of all ages, and cited as a pattern for all generations. That the wife of a polygamist, who encouraged her husband in the practice of the same, and even urged him into it, and officiated in giving him another wife, is named as an honorable and virtuous woman, a pattern for Christian ladies, and the very mother of all holy women in the Christian Church, whose aspiration it should be, to be called her daughters.

That Jesus Christ has declared, that the great fathers of the polygamic family stand at the head in the kingdom of God; in short, that all the saved of after generations should be saved by becoming members of a polygamic family; that all those who do not become members of it, are strangers and aliens in the covenant of promise, the commonwealth of Israel, and not heirs according to the promise made to Abraham.

That all people from the east, west, north or south, who enter into the kingdom, enter into the society of polygamists, and under their Patriarchal rule and government.

Indeed no one can even approach the gates of heaven without beholding the names of twelve polygamists, (the sons of four different women by one man,) engraven in everlasting glory upon the pearly gates.

My dear sister, with the scriptures before me, I could never find it in my heart to reject the Heavenly vision which has restored to man the fulness of the gospel, or the Latter-day Prophets and Apostles, merely because in this restoration is included the ancient law of matrimony and of family organization, and government, preparatory to the restoration of all Israel.

But, leaving all scripture, history, or precedent out of the question, let us come to natureís law.

What then appears to be the great object of the marriage relations? I answer: the multiplying of our species -- the rearing and training of children.

To accomplish this object, natural law would dictate, that a husband should remain apart from his wife at certain seasons, which, in the very constitution of the female are untimely. Or in other words, indulgence should not be merely for pleasure, or wanton desires, but mainly for the purpose of procreation.

The morality of nature would teach a mother, that, during natureís process in the formation and growth of embryo man, her heart should be pure, her thoughts and affections chaste, her mind calm, her passions without excitement; while her body should be invigorated with every exercise conducive to health and vigor; but by no means subjected to anything calculated to disturb, irritate, weary, or exhaust any of its functions.

And while a kind husband should nourish, sustain, and comfort the wife of his bosom by every kindness and attention consistent with her situation, and with his most tender affection; still he should refrain from all those untimely associations which are forbidden in the great constitutional laws of female nature; which laws we see carried out in almost the entire animal economy. Human animals excepted.

Polygamy then, as practiced under the Patriarchal law of God, leads directly to the chastity of women, and to sound health and morals in the constitutions of their offspring.

You can read, in the law of God, in your Bible, the times and circumstances under which a woman should remain apart from her husband, during which times she is considered unclean; and should her husband come to her bed under such circumstances, he would commit a gross sin both against the laws of nature, and the wise provisions of Godís law, as revealed in his word. In short, he would commit an abomination; he would sin both against his own body -- against the body of his wife, and against the laws of procreation, in which the health and morals of his offspring are directly concerned.

The polygamic law of God opens to all vigorous, healthy and virtuous females, a door by which they may become honorable wives of virtuous men, and mothers of faithful, virtuous, healthy, and vigorous children.

And here let me ask you, my dear sister, what female in all New Hampshire would marry a drunkard, a man of hereditary disease, a debauchee, an idler, or a spendthrift; or what woman would become a prostitute; or on the other hand, live and die single; or without forming those inexpressibly dear relationships of wife and mother, if the Abrahamic covenant, or Patriarchal laws of God were extended over your State, and held sacred and honorable by all.

Dear sister, in your thoughtfulness, you inquire, "Why not a plurality of husbands as well as a plurality of wives?"

To which I reply:

1st, God has never commanded or sanctioned a plurality of husbands.

2nd, "Man is the head of the woman," and no woman can serve two lords.

3rd, Such an order of things would work death and not life -- or, in plainer language, it would multiply disease instead of children.

In fact, the experiment of a plurality of husbands, or rather of one woman for many men, is in active operation, and has been, for centuries in all the principal towns and cities of "Christendom!"

It is the genius of "Christian institutions," falsely so called. It is the result of "Mystery Babylon, the great whore of all the earth." Or in other words, it is the result of making void the holy ordinances of God in relation to matrimony, and introducing the laws of Rome, in which the clergy and nuns are forbidden to marry, and other members only permitted to have one wife.

This law leaves females expressed to a life of single "blessedness," without husband, child, or friend to provide for and comfort them. Or to a life of poverty and loneliness, exposed to temptation; to perverted affections; to unlawful means to gratify them; or to the necessity of selling themselves for lucre. While the man who has abundance of means is tempted to spend it on a mistress in secret, and in a lawless way, while the law of God would have given her to him as an honorable wife. These circumstances give rise to murder, infanticide, suicide, disease, remorse, despair, wretchedness, poverty, untimely death, with all the attendant train of jealousies, heartrending miseries, want of confidence in families, contaminating disease, etc. And finally, to the horrible license system, in which governments, called Christian, license their fair daughters, I will not say to play the beast, but to a degradation far beneath them; for every species of the animal creation, except man, refrain from such abominable excesses, and observe in a great measure the laws of nature in procreation.

I again repeat, that nature has constituted the female differently from the male; and for a different purpose.

The strength of the female constitution is designed to flow in a stream of life, to nourish and sustain the embryo, to bring it forth, and to nurse it on her bosom.

When nature is not in operation within her in these particulars, and for these heavenly ends, it has wisely provided relief at regular periods, in order that her system may be kept pure, and healthy, without exhausting the fountain of life on the one hand, or drying up its river of life on the other; till mature age, and an approaching change of worlds would render it necessary for her to cease to be fruitful, and give her to rest awhile, and enjoy a tranquil life in the midst of that family circle, endeared to her by so many ties,--which may be supposed at this period of her life to be approaching the vigor of manhood, and therefore able to comfort and sustain her.

Not so with man. He has no such draw back upon his strength. It is his to move in a wider sphere. If God shall count him worthy of an hundred fold in this life, of wives and children, and houses and lands and kindreds, he may even aspire to Patriarchal sovereignty, to empire; to be the prince or head of a tribe, or tribes; and like Abraham of old, be able to send forth for the defense of his country, hundreds and thousands of his own warriors, born in his own house.

A nobleóman of God, who is full of the spirit of the Most High, and is counted worthy to converse with Jehovah, or with the Son of God; and to associate with angels, and the spirits of just men made perfect; one who will teach his children, and bring them up in the light of unadulterated and eternal truth, is more worthy of a hundred wives and children, than the ignorant slave of passion, or of vice and folly is to have one wife and one child.

Indeed the God of Abraham is so much better pleased with one than with the other, that he would even take away the one talent, which is habitually abused, neglected, or put to an improper use, and give it to him who has ten talents.

In the Patriarchal order of family government, the wife is bound to the law of her husband. She honors hi, "calls him lord," even as Sarah obeyed and honored Abraham. She lives for him, and to increase his glory, his greatness, his kingdom, or family. Her affections are centered in her God, her husband, and her children.

The children are also under his government worlds without end. "While life or thought, or being lasts, or immortality endures," they are bound to obey him as their father and king.

He also has a head to whom he is responsible. He must keep the commandments of God, and observe his laws. He must not take a wife unless she is given to him by the law and authority of God. He must not commit adultery, nor take liberties with any women except his own, who are secured to him by the holy ordinances of matrimony.

Hence a nation organized under the law of the gospel, or in other words, the law of Abraham, and the patriarchs, would have no institutions tending to licentiousness; no adulteries, fornications, etc., would be tolerated. No houses, or institutions would exist for traffic in shame, or in the life blood of our fair daughters. Wealthy men would have no inducement to keep a mistress in secret, or unlawfully. Females would have no grounds for temptation in any such lawless life.

Neither money nor pleasure could tempt them, nor poverty drive them to any such excess; because the door would be open for every virtuous female to form the honorable and endearing relationships of wife and mother, in some virtuous family, where love, and peace, and plenty, would crown her days, and truth and the practice of virtue qualify her to be transplanted with her family circle in that eternal soil, where they may multiply their children, without pain, or sorrow, or death; and go on increasing in numbers, in wealth, in greatness, in glory, might, majesty, power and dominion, in worlds without end.

O my dear sister! could the dark veil of tradition be rent from your mind! Could you gave for a moment on the resurrection of the just! could you behold Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and their wives and children, clad in the bloom, freshness and beauty of immortal flesh and bones, clothed in robes of fine, white linen, bedecked with precious stones and gold; and surrounded with an offspring of immortals as countless as the starts of the firmament, or as the grains of sand upon the sea shore; over which they reign as kings and queens for ever and ever!óyou would then know something of the weight of those words of the sacred writer which are recorded in relation to the four wives of Jacob, the mothers of the twelve patriarchs, namely: "These did build the house of Israel."

O that my dear kindred could but realize that they have need to repent of the sins, ignorances and traditions of those perverted systems which are misnamed "Christianity," and be baptized,--buried in the water, in the likeness of the death and burial of Jesus Christ, and rise to newness of life in the likeness of his resurrection; receive his spirit by the laying on of the hands of an apostle, according to promise, and forsake the world and the pride thereof.

Thus they would be adopted into the family of Abraham,--become his sons and daughters,--see and enjoy for themselves the visions of the spirit of eternal truth, which bear witness of the family order of heaven; and the beauties and glories of eternal kindred ties: for my pen can never describe them.

Dear, dear kindred: Remember, according to the New Testament, and the testimony of an ancient apostle, if you are ever saved in the kingdom of God, it must be by being adopted into the family of polygamistsóthe family, of the great Patriarch Abraham; for in his seed, or family, and not out of it, "shall all the nations and kindreds of the earth be blessed."

You say you believe polygamy is "licentiousness:" that it is "abominable," "beastly," etc.; "the practice only of the most barbarous nations, or of the dark ages; or of some great or good men, who were left to commit gross sins."

Yet you say you are anxious for me to be converted to your faith; and that we may see each other in this life, and be associated in one great family, in that life which has no end.

Now in order to comply with your wishes I must renounce the Old and New Testaments;--must count Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and their families as licentious, wicked, beastly, abominable characters; Moses, Nathan, David and the prophets no better. I must look upon the God of Israel as partaker in all these abominations, by holding them in fellowship; and even as a minister of such iniquity, by giving king Saulís wives into king Davidís bosom; and afterwards by taking Davidís wives from him, and giving them to his neighbor.

I must consider Jesus Christ, and Paul, and John, as either living in a dark age; as full of the darkness and ignorance of barbarous climes, or else willfully abominable and wicked, in fellowshipping polygamists, and representing them as fathers of the faithful, and rules in heaven.

I must doom them all to hell with adulterers, fornicators, etc.; or else, at least, assign to them some nook or corner in heaven, as ignorant persons, who, knowing but little were beaten with few stripes.

While by analogy, I must learn to consider the Roman Popes, clergy, and nuns who do not marry at all, as foremost in the ranks of glory; and those Catholics and Protestants who have but one wife as next in order of salvation, glory, immortality and eternal life.

Now dear friends, much as I long to see you, and dear as you are to me, I can never come to these terms. I feel as though the gospel had introduced me into the right family, into the right marriage, and into good company. And besides all these considerations, should I ever become so beclouded with unbelief of the scriptures and heavenly institutions, as to agree with my kindred in New Hampshire, in theory, still my practical circumstances are different, and would I fear continue to separate us by a wide and almost impassable gulf.

For instance, I have, (as you see, in all good conscience, founded on the word of God,) formed family and kindred ties, which are inexpressibly dear to me; and which I can never bring my feelings to consent to dissolve.

I have a good and virtuous husband whom I love. We have four little children which are mutually and inexpressibly dear to us. And besides this, my husband has seven other living wives, and one who has departed to a better world He has in all upwards of twenty-five children. All these mothers and children are endeared to me by kindred ties,--by mutual affectionóby acquaintance and association; and the mothers in particular by mutual and long continued exercises of toil, patience, long-suffering and sisterly kindness. We all have our imperfections in this life; but I know that these are good and worthy women, and that my husband is a good and worthy man; one who keeps the commandments of Jesus Christ, and presides in his family like an Abraham. He seeks to provide for them with all diligence; he loves them all, and seeks to comfort them and make them happy. He teaches them the commandments of Jesus Christ, and gathers them about him in the family circle to call upon his God, both morning and evening.

He and his family have the confidence, esteem, good will, and fellowship of this entire Territory, and of a wide circle of acquaintances in Europe and America.

He is a practical teacher of morals and religion; a promoter of general education, and at present occupies an honorable seat in the Legislative Council of this Territory.

Now, as to visiting my kindred in New Hampshire, I would be pleased to do so, were it the will of God. But first, the laws of that State must be so modified by enlightened legislation, and the customs and consciences of its inhabitants, and of my kindred, so altered, that my husband can accompany me with all his wives and children, and he as much respected and honored in his family organization, and in his holy calling as he is at home; or in the same manner as the patriarch Jacob would have been respected had he, with his wives and children, paid a visit to his kindred.

As my husband is yet in his youth, as well as myself, I fondly hope we shall live to see that day.

For already the star of Jacob is in the ascendancy; the House of Israel is about to be restored; while "Mystery Babylon," with all her institutions await her own overthrow.

Till this is the case in New Hampshire, my kindred will be under the necessity of coming here to see us, or on the other hand, we will be mutually compelled to forego the pleasure of each others company.

You mention in your letter, that Paul, the apostle, recommended that bishops be the husband of one wife. Why this was the case I do not know, unless it was as he says, that while he was among Romans he did as Romans did. Rome, at that time governed the world as it were; and although gross idolators, they held to the one wife system. Under these circumstances no doubt, the apostle Paul, seeing a great many polygamists in the Church, recommended that they had better choose for this particular temporal office, men of small families, who would not be in disrepute with the government. This is precisely our course in those countries where Roman institutions still bear sway. Our elders there have but one wife, in order to conform to the laws of men.

You enquire why Elder W., when at your house, denied that the Church of this age held to the doctrine of plurality. I answer, that he might have been ignorant of the fact, as our belief on this point was not published till 1852. And had he known it he had no right to reveal the same until the full time had arrived.

God kindly withheld this doctrine for a time, because of the ignorance and prejudice of the nations of Mystic Babylon, that peradventure he might save some of them.

Now, dear sister, I must close; I wish all my kindred and old acquaintance to see this letter, or a copy thereof; and that they will consider it as if written to themselves. I love them dearly and greatly desire and pray for their salvation, and that we may all meet with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of God.

Dear sister, do not let your prejudices and traditions keep you from believing the Bible; nor the pride, shame, or love of the world keep you from your seat in the kingdom of heaven, among the royal family of polygamists. Write often and freely.

With sentiments of the deepest affection and kindred feeling, I remain, dear sister, your affectionate sister,
Belinda Marden Pratt.    
Mrs. Lydia Kimball, Nashua, N.H.

P.S. My kind love to your husband, and all enquiring friends.

Note: Exact content uncertain -- the above text was derived from a later reprint, published in the LDS Millennial Star of July 29, 1854, under the heading: "Defence of Polygamy, By a Lady of Utah, In a Letter to Her Sister in New Hampshire."


Vol. XVIII.                                 Portland, Maine, June 3, 1854.                                 No. 8.


The rise and progress of Mormonism will form a curious chapter in the religious history of our country. Impostors in religion are by no means rare in the world's history, but few have ever attained to so sudden and complete a success as Joseph Smith.

The history of Mormonism is pretty well known in this country, but we apprehend that its doctrines of belief, some of which are of recent announcement, are but little understood among us. The last number of the Edinburgh Review has an able exposition of these, from which some curious facts may be learned.

It is a peculiarity of Mormonism that ot has one set of doctrines for the initiated, and another for the Gentiles. It keeps its obnoxious features in reserve -- hidden beneath a mask -- and only gradually to be revealed as they can be tolerated by the disciple. Thus among its converts in other lands it appears only as a form of ordinary Protestantism, having some peculiarities of practice, while in reality it has a much nearer resemblance to Judaism than to Christianity -- a Judaism strangely jumbled with Popery and Polytheism.

Its policy in regard to polygamy is in point. In the Book of Mormon a plurality of wives is forbidden and denounced. It was not until he was living in power and comparative luxury at Nauvoo, that Joe Smith bethought him how comfortable it would be to indulge in a plurality of wives. He accordingly set about achieving the desired object with all his wonted shrewdness. Only a few of the initiated were made acquainted with the new revelation, while the mass were kept in ignorance of the practices of their leaders, and missionaries abroad were instructed to deny that polygamy was a practice of the Mormons. But the fact could not be kept wholly hidden, and when a partial knowledge of it leaked out, it caused an opposition among the believers which untimately led to the murder of Joe Smith. It was only after their settlement in Utah, when the practice had become more general, and could no longer be denied, that it was boldly announced and advocated.

As a proof how far the Mormons have retrograded towards Judaism, it is announced that as soon as the new temple is finished, "animal sacrifices for the daily sins of the people" will be offered therein by the Priesthood.

But the most degrading feature of Mormonism is its materialism. In its worship there is no devotional element They indulge in no exhortations to prayer, self-examination, or repentance. In their writings are no aspirations after communion with God, spirituality of mind, or purification of the affections. The first duty of a Mormon is to pay his tithes, the second to increase the number of the saints by raising up a family. Their sermons are mere political or business harangues, and the service begins with instrumental music, the band performing "marches and waltzes" which, as a writer says, eulogistically, "drives away all somber feelings."

But their materialistic ideas are ever more seen in their doctrines than their practices. Every spiritual truth of Scripture is degraded by them into a material fiction. Thus they hold that houses will be as much needed in the future world as in this. And all who have here been robbed of houses and lands will there have an hundred fold! -- A calculating saint has estimated that in the future world, every saint will possess over one hundred and fifty acres "which would be quite enough to raise manna and build some spendid mansions!" They even go so far as to contradict the words of the Saviour, by affirming that in the resurrection men both marry and are given in marriage. A man's wife on earth will be his wife in heaven and will there raise up children to his name! Another point of their belief is that God is a "material personage, possessing both body and parts. He eats, he drinks, he loves, he hates, and he cannot occupy two distinct places at once." He has a local residence "in the planet Kolob." He is not the Creator, but literally the Father of mankind. He was himself once a man, and has attained his present superiority by continual progression. Man may thus also progress, until he becomes what God now is. who will than be still further advanced in power and glory. In proof that man will ultimately posess the power of God, Parley Pratt says --

"What will man do when this world is filled up? Why, he will make more worlds. and swarm out like bees from the old world. And when a farmer has cultivated his farm and raised numerous children, so that the space is beginning to be too strait for them, he will say, My sons, yonder is plenty of matter, go and organize a world and people it."

This doctrine of indefinite development naturally passes into Polytheism. Accordingly the Mormon theology teaches that these Gods are innumerable, with different degrees of dignity and power. Joe Smith declared that he had received a heavenly commission to revise and correct the Bible, which had become grossly corrupted. He says the first verse of Genesis originally stood as follows -- "The Head God brought forth the gods, with the heavens and the earth." It has been lately revealed by President Brigham Young that the God of our earth is Adam, who is only another form of the Archangel Michael. And to prove that polygamy has a heavenly sanction, Brigham Young shrewdly says, "when our father Adam came into the garden, he bro't Eve, one of his wives, with him!" Joe Smith's corrected Bible, the additions in which are so numerous as to double the text, and which he did not at first dare to print, is still in existence, and will be published as soon as the world is ripe to receive it.

It is not possible that these absurd and degrading doctrines will long continue to delude even the most ignorant, There will be a reaction. Those who have resided in Utah tell us that the younger citizens do not inherit the faith of their fathers. A race is growing up which laughs at the plates and prophecies of Joseph. These will naturally grow up in complete scepticism, opening a new field for Christian missionaries. Mormonism may itself, shorn of its absurdities, gradually subside into a Christian sect, or become peaceably metamorphosed into a form of civil government.

See the 1850, July 15 and July 22 issues of Littell's Living Age, for material similar to that quoted in the Transcript editor.


Vol. XVIII.                               Portland, Maine, July 15, 1854.                               No. 14.



Mr. Ferris, who has lived in Utah, has recently published a book upon the Mormons and their institutions. He thus speaks of the effects of polygamy upon their


"Polygamy is introducing a new style of building at Salt Lake City. A man with half a dozen wives builds, it he can, a long, low dwelling, having six entrances from the outside; and when he takes in a new wife, if able to do so, adds another apartment. -- The object is to keep the women and babies, as much as possible, apart, and prevent those terrible cat-fights which sometimes occur, with all the accompaniments of Billingsgate, torn caps, and broken broom-sticks. As the 'divine institution' extends, these buildings increase, and in a few years the city will look like a collection of barracks for the accommodation of soldiers. -- Some have separate buildings in parts of the city remote from each other, and others have farm-houses, and the wives are thus kept separate, the husband dividing his time between them all."


"The effect upon population is decidedly deleterious. The prophet Joseph had over forty wives at Nauvoo, and the rest of the priesthood had various numbers, corresponding to their standing and inclinations; and nearly all the children of these polygamous marriages died at that place; indeed, it is alleged by Mormons that not one was taken to Utah. Brigham Young has thirty children, of whom eight are by his first and second lawful wives; the remaining twenty-two are by his _spirituals._ He has about fifty wives, some of whom were widows of Joseph Smith.

The children are subject to a frightful degree of sickness and mortality. This is the combined result of the gross sensuality of the parents, and want of care toward their offspring. As a general rule, these saintly pretenders take as little care of their wives as of their children; and of both, less than a careful farmer in the States would of his cattle: and nowhere out of the 'Five Points' in New York City can a more filthy, miserable, neglected-looking, and disorderly rabble of children be found than in the streets of Great Salt Lake City. The Governor, again, whose attention to his multifarious family we are bound to suppose greater than the average, affords a fair illustration. -- He was twice lawfully married, and has had eight legitimate children, who are all living. He has had a large number of children by his concubines -- no one knows how many -- it is only known that there are only twenty-two surviving. These females do not reside in the 'Governor's house,' so called, but in different establishments, from one up to a dozen in a place."


"Their system of plurality has obliterated nearly all sense of decency, and would seem to be fast leading to an intercourse open and promiscuous as the cattle in the fields A man living in common with a dozent dirty Arabs, whether he calls them wives or concubines, cannot have a very nice sense of propriety. It is difficult, to give a true account of the effects which have resulted from this cause, and at the same time, preserve decency of language. The Saints are progressive. Last year (1852) they seriously discussed the subject of introducing a new order into the Church, by which the wives of absent missionaries might be sealed to Saints left at home. There are a number of cases in which a man has taken a widow and her daughter for wives at the same time. One has a widow and her two daughters. There are also instances of the _niece_ being sealed to the _uncle,_ and they excite no more attention than any ordinary case. How far the plague-spot is to spread in this direction remains to be seen. Brigham Young stated in the pulpit, in 1852, that the time might come when, for the sake of keeping the lineage of the priesthood unbroken, marriages would be confined to the same families; as, for instance, the son of one mother would marry the daughter of another by the _same father._ -- There has been some talk of going even beyond this, and allowing the father to seal his own daughter to himself."

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. ?                               Portland, Maine, February 3, 1855.                               No. ?

A Mormon ball. -- The Arrow, printed at Omaha, the capital of Nebraska Territory, gives a glowing account of "a Mormon Party" given at Council Bluff. The amusements opened with prayer, by Rev. Mr. Folsom, after which dancing followed! Choice viands and wine were served. The editor seems to have been captivated by the ladies, who, he declares, "presented the greatest array of beauty we have ever seen." We are not surprised, after this, that he adds, "There is a great revival, and many are joining the Mormons."

Note: This was in the days before the Mormon "Word of Wisdom" was strictly enforced by the church leaders.


Vol. XIX.                             Portland, Maine, Saturday, November 3, 1855.                             No.30.

WHAT SHALL BE DONE WITH THE MORMONS? -- Our government seems to be afraid to meet this question. The Governorship of Utah remains in Brigham Young's hands and the President pockets his insulting declaration that he will be Governor until the Almighty tells him to resign the office. Another Governor should be immediately appointed, and backed up with a strong military force, if need be.

It seems that in addition to polygamy both Negro and Indian slavery exist in the territory. It is also estimated that the population numbers from sixty to one hundred thousand persons -- enough to entitle the territory to admission into the Union as a State. So we may expect to see the Saints, with all their delectable "institutions" soon knocking at the doors of Congress. We suppose, according to the doctrine of Squatter Sovereignty, they are entitled to come in with all their pollution! Things have come to a pretty pass when the Sovereign States of this Union cannot choose who they will admit to their company, but are bound to take into fellowship every vile institution that may seek refuge in their wilds. We believe Congress has power to declare that polygamy shall not exist upon the national territory. -- If it is said that this institution is a part of the Mormon's religion, and therefore not to be meddled with, we reply that toleration of religion and toleration of immorality are two different things. The Mormons can hare no right to smuggle their licentiousness into our national system under the cover of religion.

But the doctrine that a horde of ignorant foreigners, as most of the Mormons are, can appropriate a portion of our territory, and apply it to every vile use, without Congress having the power to prevent it, is manifestly absurd.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                             Bangor, Maine, Monday, December 31, 1855.                             No. 155.

CIRCUMPOLAR HEAT ACCOUNTED FOR. -- A scientific correspondent of the N. Y. Tribune writes as follows:

Sir: Seeing an article in the Philadelphia Saturday Evening Post, by Mr. Isaac Sheen....

(under construction)

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXI.                             Portland, Maine, Saturday, August 29, 1857.                             No. 21.

MORMON DEVILTRY. -- There are startling reports from Utah. The "Destroying Angels" were murdering apostates, many of whom were fleeing from the accursed land. Brigham Young was preparing to resist government, and had relapsed into the grossest infidelity and atheism. These reports may be exaggerated, but there is evidently great need of an efficient force in Utah, and it is to be hoped a sufficient number of troops will be sent there to keep the polygamists in order.

One view of Mormonism has not been sufficiently dwelt upon by the public press. It is the degradation to which it subjects woman, making her the mere creature of man's lusts and laziness. This is keenly felt by thousands of noble women throughout the land, who tremble with disgust and apprehension when they hear of the doings in Utah. Mormonism reverses the whole teaching of Christianity, whose influence operates to elevate woman to an equality with man. The history of the world shows that the elevation of man depends upon the elevation of woman, and that where she is a slave, man is a savage.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. ?                                   Bangor, Maine, Nov. 9, 1857.                                   No. ?

From the Los Angeles Star.

...I take this opportunity of informing you of the murder of an entire train of emigrants, on their way from Missouri and Arkansas to this State, via Great Salt Lake City; which took place at the Mountain Meadows, which are at or near the Rim of Great Basin... about 130 or 135 men, women and children... attacked about daylight in the morning, by the combined forces of all the various tribes immediately in that section of the country. The majority of them were slain at the first onset... They... sent out a flag of truce, by a little girl, and gave themselves up to the mercy of the savages, who immediately rushed in and slaughtered all of them, with the exception of fifteen infant children, that have since been purchased with much difficulty, by the Mormon interpreters....

Note: The above is from is the important Oct. 4, 1857 letter of Mr. J. Ward Christian to Mr. G. N. Whitman, as published in the Los Angeles Star of Oct. 10th.



Vol. ?                               Bangor, Maine, November 18, 1857.                               No. ?


The Mormons are destroying the supply wagons for Johnston's Army, and Brigham Young has issued a proclamation defying the troops and the United States Government. "He says that if they desire to remain until spring they may do so, provided they give up arms and ammunition. -- Col Alexander in reply stated to Young that the troops were there by order of the President, and would be disposed of as the Commanding General saw proper.

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XXVI.                               Bangor, Maine, November 2, 1859.                               No. 104.

Republicanism  in  Missouri --

Speech of Frank P. Blair, Jr.

...After declaring that Douglas is playing the part of a decoy duck, for the purpose of betraying the North into the hands of the Southern owners of the party, Mr. B. says.... I am not one of those, however, who deny the existence of Judge Douglas's "great principle." I have known for a long time that there was one of our Territories in which popular sovereignty flourished in all its glory... I refer to the Territory of Utah, where the saints reside, and where they have "formed and regulated their own domestic institutions in their own way," where Brigham Young has enjoyed not only his domestic institutions, but his "peculiar institution," "with none to molest or make him afraid." It is true that the President sent Governors and Judges there as elsewhere in the Territories, but Brigham Young desired to give Douglas's great principle a fair shake, and so he dismissed the Governors and Judges, telling them he would "send them to hell cross lots" if they interfered with popular sovereignty in Utah. He caused Gunnison and his men to be murdered. He destroyed a hundred American citizens at the Mountain Meadow Spring, only sparing children under seven years, who were not supposed at their tender age to have imbibed any prejudice against the domestic institutions of the saints. The perpetrators of these outrages are well known, but under the system of popular savereignty which prevails there, they defy punishment, and hold justice at arm's length...

Notes: (forthcoming)


Portland  Advertiser.

Vol. LX.                           Portland, Maine, Tuesday, January 17, 1860.                           No. 3.

THE MORMON PROBLEM. -- Judge Cradlebaugh who is on his way home from Utah, by way of California, has a plan for getting the upper hand of the Mormons, which he will lay before the administration. He will urge the extension of the pre-emption laws over the territory, so as to secure a large gentile emigration at once, sufficient within a year to out-vote the Mormons. A gentile legislature would take from Young the power of marriage and divorce and secure the supremacy of law. The gentile population in the territory is already large, and five or six thousand more voters would be sufficient to carry Judge Cradlebaugh's plan into effect. It is believed that the Mormous will retire into Mexico, or to some island in the Pacific ocean, as soon as their supremacy in Utah is broken. They are now engaged in a movement of importance, the object of which they keep to themselves. By orders from Young all the Mormon settlements are organizing military companies, which are supplied with arms and ammunition from Salt Lake City. It is not believed that they intend to renew the war with the United States, but the more general supposition is that they foresee that they must eventually leave Utah, and are preparing to take possession of some part of northern Mexico. The annual message of Gov. Cumming to the Mormon legislature, treats the Mormon outrages in a very mild and gingerly manner, to the great disgust of the gentiles. -- Springfield Republican.

Notes: (forthcoming)


No. XXXII.                           Portland, Maine, Saturday, July 4, 1868.                           No. 14.

The Mormons are in mourning for the death of Heber C. Kimball one of the leading Saints. They consider his death the greatest loss since the death of Joe Smith. /he leaves a crowd of widows.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Riverside  Echo.

Vol. VI.                         Bucksport, Maine, Saturday, November 4, 1871.                        No. 44.

The  Mormons.

The history of Mormonism seems to teach the unbounded capacity and willingness of poor human nature, for being humbugged. It arose over forty years ago. Its founder and apostle, Joseph Smith, was not only ignorant, but immoral; the whole family was known for idleness, intemperance, immorality and dishonesty, and Joseph was the worst. This fact was publicly certified in an affidavit of 60 of the most respectable citizens of his county in 1833, and is not denied by the Mormons. Brigham Young, since so eminent, thus expressed himself, "The doctrine he teaches is all I know about the matter; bring anything against that if you can. As to anything else, I do not care if he acts like a devil."

Smith professed to have visions at the age of 15 years. At 22, in 1827 he professed to have received from an angel the wonderful plates from which he read off the revelations printed in 1830 as the "Book of Mormon."

Investigations showed that this Mormon Bible was a romance written by Solomon Spaulding a native of Ashford, Conn., a graduate of Dartmouth College, who, after preaching awhile, returned to mercantile pursuits. This man had an unconquerable taste for writing fiction; but, like some others of us, had neither money to publish them himself, nor genius to make them acceptable to publishers, and used to read them to his friends. A copy of this particular romance fell into the hands of Joseph Smith, and became the basis of the Mormon Bible.

These facts were clearly proved on the evidence of Spaulding's wife and other relatives. The manuscript was publicly compared with the "Book of Mormon." Smith's friends and witnesses quarrelled and showed up the hollowness of the pretense, one of them under oath. Polygamy was not then invented to tempt the lusts of men. Yet such is the determination of human nature to be victimized that this transparent and thoroughly contemptible deceit has developed into an institution strong enough at one time to defy the power of the United States.

The first Mormon Church was organized in Manchester, N. Y., April 6, 1830. In June the first conference met at Fayette, N. Y., with 30 believers. In Jan. 1831 they moved to Kirtland, Ohio, and established themselves in business. After some troubles, their bank failing, in 1838 they took refuge in Missouri. In spite of desperate internal dissentions, they so multiplied as to commit many crimes against the public, to announce the intention of conquering the United States and the world, and toward the close of 1838 to inaugurate a civil war. Brought face to face with the State militia they were compelled to capitulate on condition of quitting Missouri.

They next moved to Illinois, where they were received with kindness and established themselves at Nauvoo in Carthage [sic - Hancock?] Co. By a strange infatuation the legislature of the State gave a charter to this city embracing unusual privilege and conferring a most undemocratic degree of power on the Mormon leaders. The State authorities were almost excluded from the city. The foundations of the temple were laid in 1841. Polygamy was at first no part of their creed and was denounced in the "Book of Mormon." In 1838 Smith enticed a number of women to live with him as "spiritual wives" soothing the jealousy of his lawful wife by a pretended revelation. At the same time the fact was denied with great zeal in public. But the seeking of spiritual wives when once begun, could not be either restrained or concealed; and the tumult it produced resulted in the shooting of the two Smiths by a mob, and the driving out of the Mormons at the bayonet's point.

In 1847 Brigham Young, who succeeded Smith in command, arrived in Utah. The great body of his followers reached the place in the fall of 1848. A state government was organized and application made for admission into the union, Congress refused and organized a territorial government instead. Presidents Fillmore and Buchanan both tried to bring the territory under control of the civil authorities, and with some success; but the time was not yet come. A close organization was able to exclude the light of the outside world, and a fanatical population of from fifty to one hundred thousand was able to maintain itself against a power which was obliged to transport its forces to such a distance, and maintain them in the midst of a country and people alike inhospitable.

But what our military power could hardly do, the Pacific R. R. has done at last. Its iron band has grasped the recreant territory and brought it by force within reach of the nineteeth century. Knowledge and trade are chasing away its Egyptian darkness; and the undisputed monarch and high priest of a bigoted populace has lived to see himself obliged to submit, not to an infuriated mob but to the slower but more effectual power of law. A few years ago, a political platform pronounced Slavery and Polygamy "twin relics of barbarism;" but no one then could reasonably have expected that so short a time would bring us in sight of the end of both. Not without blood and fire has the work been wrought; but truly "the world moves."

Notes: (forthcoming)



Vol. XXXIX.                           Bangor, Maine, Tuesday, January 23, 1872.                           No. 20.

ORIGIN OF THE MORMON BIBLE. The Presbyterian banner says: "A project is on foot to erect a monument over the grave of the Rev. Mr. Spaulding, in Amity churchyard, Washington County, Pennsylvania, who wrote for his own amusement, and that of his friends, the romance which afterwards became the 'Book of Mormon.' Mr. Spaulding placed the manuscript in the hands of the late Rev. Robert Patterson, father of one of the editors of this paper, who was then engaged in the publishing business, and while it was in this establishment, it was copied by Sidney Rigdon, then in his employ, by whom it was afterwards conveyed to Joseph Smith.

Note: The above notice evidently appeared in the Pittsburgh Presbyterian Banner of Jan. 17, 1872.


No. XL.                               Portland, Maine, Tuesday, March 13, 1877.                               No. 53.


At last retribution has fallen upon the leader in one of the most atrocious crimes ever committed in any land. After the lapse of nearly twenty years JohnD. Lee has been executed on the scene of the infamous butchery at Mountain Meadow. His confession gives particulars of the crime which until now have not been fully known, and implicates the Mormon leaders, including Brigham Young. It is clear that the massacre was authorized by those high in authority, and under the guise of religious fanaticism, was the result of a deliberate purpose to prevent the intrusion of outsiders into the Mormon dominions.

It was in [1857] that a company of emigrants with their wives and children, set out on the great journey across the plains to California. After a long and toilsome march they reached the summit of the Great Divide and began the descent into the valley of the Great Salt Lake. Here the Mormons had established themselves with a religion and a code of morals of their own, which rendered them outlaws to all civilized society. In their isolation they deemed themselves supreme in authority, and jealous of all intrusion upon their domain, they looked with evil eyes on the advancing tide of emigration flowing through their valley to the land of gold. They accordingly organized a plan for the destruction of this party of emigrants; the Indians were put upon their trail, and a body of Mormon militia, under command of John D. Lee, a leading officer of the Mormon Church, was sent to cooperate with the savages.

On a green meadow in a secluded nook among the mountains the emigrants encamped for a short period of rest. Here they were attacked by the Indians employed by the Mormons, but were enabled to defend themselves for a week. Towards the close the Mormon troops under Lee appeared, and a treacherous plan was contrived for the destruction of the party. A parley was held, and under promise of protection they were induced to surrender their arms, and put themselves in charge of Lee and his troops. Lee says that some of them wept at the surrender, fearing treachery, as well they might. The women and children were then separated from the men, and as they started upon their journey, all were deliberately shot down by the Indians in ambush, while the Mormons butchered the sick and wounded, only seventeen children, too young to comprehend the scene, being saved. The bodies were then stripped and buried a few inches under the soil. The wolves soon scented their prey, and the bones were left to bleach on the ground until discovered by passing emigrants and afterwards buried by order of an officer of the United States army. For a long time the crime was concealed; when it gradually leaked out it was attributed by the Mormons to the Indians. Meantime Lee had fallen into disfavor with the Mormon authorities, and fearing detection had taken refuge in an obscure corner of the territory where he lived in hiding with his numerous wives and children. At last his whereabouts was discovered, he was captured by a government force, and after long delay was tried and condemned to be shot.

In some of its features this terrible deed recalls the massacre of Glencoe, the one dark stain on the reign of William III. The Glencoe massacre, like that of the Mountain Meadow, was committed in an isolated region and was long unbeard of by the civilized world. In both cases there was damnable treachery, the troops quartered on the doomed clan professing friendship until the fatal night planned for the murderous attack. But the Mormon iniquity had some features of atrocity which that planned by the Master of Stair did not possess. The victims in the latter case were not innocent travellers, but a marauding clan of semi-savages, whose deeds of robbery and defiance of the government had made them outlaws. The crime in Scotland was not committed in the name of religion, but as a retributive stroke of state policy, barbarous but not blasphemous. In both instances the perpetrators long escaped punishment, and when it fell on the murderers of Glencoe it touched only the subordinate agents and left the planner of the deed unscathed. Lee, though a leader in the work, was but the agent of higher authorities. He met his well-deserved fate, but are those who employed him to escape? His confession implicates leading Mormons who ought to be put upon their trial, all the facts of this great crime brought out, and the guilty punished.

Notes: (forthcoming)

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