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Vol. XXIX.                                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Thursday, September 25 ?, 1868.                                        No. ?


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

Salt Lake City, U. T.,          
September 11, 1868.          

(under construction)


Note: The exact date and content of this article have not yet been determined. It was John Hanson Beadle's initial letter to the Commercial, written from Salt Lake City. He arrived there by train from Ogden on September 10th, and shortly thereafter penned this, his first correspondence to the Cincinnati newspaper, saying something similar to sentiments that he later paraphrased in his Life in Utah: "I have been treated with considerable courtesy... and begin to conclude the Mormons have been maligned, and holding long arguments in favor of those whom I suspect to be a much misrepresented and persecuted people..."


Vol. XXIX.                                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Thursday, October 1, 1868.                                        No. ?


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

Salt Lake City, U. T.,          
September 15, 1868.          
...I am already half convinced that for the majority of these people Mormonism is just as good as any other religion would be. It serves to hold them together, to utilize and direct their energies, and just now I fail to see how such a mass of ignorance could be molded and managed by aught save a giant superstition.... They might, indeed, be induced to give up Mormonism, but they are not capable of coming up to Methodism or Presbyterianism. Perhaps God's grace might raise them to it, but I think it would take a double dose....

One rather intelligent Mormon told me he thought as the Gentiles slowly crowded to the South, "the brethren would sell out and move to the Southern settlements, and in time, the entire Church would remove from this region." For my part, I think I can already see the forces at work which are slowly tending to the destruction of Mormonism, though as yet they are more within than without the Church. During my stay I have become acquainted with a large number of young men, and I have [yet] the first one to see who understands his religion thoroughly or is at all devout in it. The old people, the original converts, are the most indoctrinated, so to speak, and earnest religionists I ever met. Other people "believe" they "now it is true, by the help and witness of God's spirit," but at least one-half of the young men are infidels. While such is the case with them, the young women are equally bent on turning out of the way. They manifest a most perverse tendency toward the Gentiles, and never fail to take one for a husband when the opportunity offers; and this seems natural enough. To my eye it is evident that polygamy tends to the degradation of women, of whom but three defended polygamy as a blessing in itself. Four others were non-committal, or spoke of it mildly as "a trial, a thing necessary for our salvation, only borne with the assisting grace of God," &c., while all the rest denounced it vehemently as a perfect curse, yet claiming to be "Mormons, all but that."

Once let this upper valley fill with Gentiles, that class of miners, merchants, freighters, and ranchmen, with whom, in a Western settlement, every woman is worth her weight in gold, and I am convinced the Mormons will have to keep their women as slaves and prisoners, or give up polygamy....

Note 1: The full text of this article has not yet been determined. It was John Hanson Beadle's second letter to the Commercial, written from Salt Lake City. He arrived there by train from Ogden on September 10th, and shortly thereafter penned his first correspondence (publication date unknown) to the Cincinnati newspaper, saying something similar to sentiments paraphrased later in his Life in Utah: "I have been treated with considerable courtesy... and begin to conclude the Mormons have been maligned, and holding long arguments in favor of those whom I suspect to be a much misrepresented and persecuted people..."

Note 2: Even though Beadle's initial reporting from Salt Lake City was largely positive, the editor of the Deseret News took exception to his characterization of Mormonism as being "a giant superstition" and responded to the Commercial's correspondence in a caustic editorial printed on October 14th: "We have an instance of this in a correspondence written from this city which we have recently noticed in a Cincinnati paper the writer calls 'Mormonism' a giant superstition and attributes the moulding and managing of the people to its being such. In other words, 'Mormonism' holds the people to together, and utilizes and directs their energies, and just now he says he fails 'to see how such a mass of ignorance can be moulded and managed by aught save a giant superstition.' This is an easy way for an ignorant, shallow-brained writer to dispose of a question, which is acknowledged by the leading minds who have paid attention to it, to be one of the most interesting and important of the day..."


Vol. XXIX.                                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Saturday, October 17, 1868.                                        No. ?


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

Union Pacific Railroad.

Salt Lake City, U. T.,          
The rapid approach of the Union Pacific Railroad toward Salt Lake Valley has awakened a lively intereat among those who purpose to make an early real estate investment in the "great central city of the future'' Where in it to be, now that the road is being built north of the Lake? Somewhere between the mouth of Weber Canyon and the northwest point of the Lake, at the most convenient spot for staging and freighting to Montana, Idaho, Oregon and Washington, is to be a city of permanent importance, and numerous speculators are watching the point with interest. But the location is still in doubt.... at no very distant day Salt Lake City will have a rapidly-growing rival here. It will be a Gentile city, and will make the first great trial between Mormon institutions and outsiders.... It will have its period of violence, disruption, and crime... before it becomes a permanent, well-governed city....

That part of the valley between Bear River and the Weber, though to a great extent unsettled, is fertile, and with little irrigation will produce all the fruits and grains of the temperate zone. Timber can be brought there by either stream. Ditching for water purposes can be done at a moderate expense, and both valley and mountain hollows abound in the finest pastures. Within a distance of ten miles there are as many favorable sites. Where will it be?

Note 1: The full text of this article has not yet been determined.


Vol. II.                                 Boscobel, Wisconsin, Saturday, December 26, 1868.                                  No. 51


An Interesting letter from A Gentile --
Trouble Brewing -- The Orders
of Brigham Young.


(Correspondence of Boscobel Appeal.)

SALT LAKE CITY, U. T., Dec. 18, '68.          
Affairs in Brigham's dominions are just now in a highly interesting condition. -- You have doubtless observed that all of the long list of writers on Utah affairs, for the last ten years have favored what might be called the moral contact idea of overcoming Mormonism. Bowles, Colfax, Richardson, Dickson and many others have demonstrated how the arrival of numbers of Gentiles would weaken the bonds of priestly tyranny. According to them the young women would never go into poligamy where enterprising young men were plenty; apostasy would be common when Mormons could leave the territory at will; a flood of light was to pour into these benighted vallies and "Civilization" destroy this Asiatic superstition. The Mormons smiled at these predictions, and professed themselves eager for the civil trial. I heard them talking on all sides when I first came here, as to how superior everybody would find them to what they had been described, and how they would soon convert the whole world. This was their way of talking, but about Conference time (October 6th-9th,) a change seemed to come over their spirits; non-intercourse with the Gentiles was agreed on: all the bitterness of the old Missouri and Illinois times was stirred up again, and by a unanimous vote of 20,000, a decree was passed that any Saint who dealt at a Gentile store or employed one of the "scurvy-race" should be "cut off from the church, disfellowshipped and delivered over to the buffetings of Satan for a thousand years!" This is the Mormon method of dealing with those who have committed mild offenses. If one commits adultery, violates a "sanctified, oath" (taken in their private mysteries), or attempts to create a schism against the "Lord's annointed," the penalty is death. After the decree passed they, at first, attempted to establish co-operative stores, in which every Mormon should take an interest, but I think that scheme failed, as I hear nothing of it now and it was soon found that many would not heed the decree, but would buy where they could buy the cheapest, which was always at a Gentile store. So Brigham called a special meeting two weeks ago, followed by ward meetings throughout the city, to begin the work of excision, as fast as the _Gentilish_ Saints can be found out. Several have already been "cut off" with all the solemnities of "bell book and candle," and spiritual tenrors are exhausted on the "faithful" to prevent the Gentiles from getting a foothold in "Zion." All the Saints who have leased property to the Gentiles are strictly commanded not to re­new when the leases run out, and as Brigham himself owns about one-third of the real estate in the city he can in this way do "considerable dirt." There is a religious (?) custom here which is certainly the greatest "Yankee trick" out. I mean the "consecration of property.'' Persons of wealth deed all their property to the church, still, of course, keeping it as their own but the actual legal ownership is in Brigham, as "Trustee-in-trust of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints." Brigham owns all the church property, which is immense -- one single item being 11,000 sheep -- by this convenient fiction, and I suspect it would take some one smarter than the noted "Philadelphia lawyer" to get an entering wedge between the legal and merely equitable title. Besides all this Brigham has a private fortune of between $2,000,000 and $3,000,000, of which $300,000 are on deposit in the bank of England, nearly as much more in real estate in foreign cities and all the rest here. He owns property on every block in town; and throughout the territory no mills are in such fine order or so well patronized, and no farms so finely improved and stocked as those of Brigham Young. With all this and the right to as many wives as he pleases, he has certainly a,''soft thing." But I digress; the point is will he be able to force this system among his people and freeze out the Gentiles? With about two-thirds of the Mormons I am sure he will, for though a good, honest, simple minded class of foreigners, they are the wildest fanatics I ever met. Thousands of them think Brigham will be the only God they will ever have anything to do with in the next world, and of course, consider it no assumption for him to claim all the offices of a God here. But the remaining third he will sooner or later lose with this new policy. These last consist of those who are weak in the faith, and would be in any other; those who joined from unworthy motives, and those who have really thought themselves out of the mists of Mormonism and begin to think for themselves in other matters. What then will be the result? Well, Brigham will be able to cramp the Gentile merchants here considerably but not enough to stop their business, and when the new railroad town is started up the valley, most of the trade will centre there, and the consequence of this short sighted and illiberal policy on the part of the saints will be that they will have another Carthage to their second Nauvoo. It is now settled among the railroad men that they will lay out a new town where Weber Canon opens into the valley, thirty miles north of here, and will have workshops for the entire centrol division of the road, employing 10,000 workmen, and so giving rise to a town of at least 20,000 inhabitants. What will they care for the laws of Utah? I wish I could see a peaceful settlement of the question as plainly as some do. But to my view the elements of serious trouble are all here, only awaiting a start, This oligarchy has held power so long they will not surrender without a struggle. When the new town is established all the roughs and villains in the country will flock to the vicinity at first. They will steal from the Gentiles and lay it to the Mormons, and steal from the Mormons and lay it to the Gentiles. The Mormons have few friends, or none. Half the Gentiles are prepared to believe the worst that can be said of them, while two-thirds of the Mormons believe nothing too bad for a Gentile to do, and that the whole of America, outside of Utah, is a seething mass of fraud, crime and violence, which it is their duty to fight whenever the Prophet gives the word. The best observers here, and particularly young men who have been brought up among the Mormons, gone to California, "apostatized" and returned, are manifestly of opinion that Mormon rule in Utah will end in bloodshed worse than any in their Illinois and Missouri history. A sort of conflict of authority has already arisen between the Territorial (Mormon) Marshal, and the authorities of the new railroad town at the mouth of Echo Canyon. But this will probably be quietly settled by the U. S. officials here. The trouble is, two-thirds of these people are so desperately devilishly fanatical that they would cut their own throats, or anybody-else's at the command of Brigham Young. It is hard to tell what a few months may bring forth. Meanwhile the number of Gentiles steadily increases, the Reporter continually extends its circulation and more are every day "cut off" from the church and made bitter enemies of Mormonism. So we will work and wait.

The weather is delightful, much milder than at this season in Indiana and so work on the railroad goes rapidly forward. The terminus is to-day only fifty-five miles from the valley. The Chinamen are coming too. They can be frequently seen in the streets, and one of the companies of San Francisco have established a tea house here, just opposite our office, where Hung Git, (no relation to git-up-and-git) deals in tea, white sugar, wicker-work, toys and other celestial articles. Some pretend to fear they will monopolize this region after the railroad is completed. I am sure white men could afford to give it up and set it apart as a reservation for Chinese, Negroes, Indians and other polygamous races (see F. P. Blair's Indianapolis speech). I will readily vacate for them.
                        Yours fraternally,

Note 1: Although ostensibly edited by William Henry Bennett (1839-1920), the Appeal also occasionally employed the journalistic services of an Indiana lawyer who had moved into town -- William Henry H. Beadle. By the end of October, 1868, Beadle was the de facto editor. In February of the following year the paper became the Boscobel Journal, with Beadle occupying the editor's chair. He gave up those duties in April of 1869, and moved to Dakota Territory as the U. S. Surveyor-General for that region. During the short period in which W. H. H. Beadle ran the newspaper, he received informative letters from his roving brother, John H. Beadle. John settled temporarily in Salt Lake City in September, 1868, and so he had only been in that new home four months when he wrote the Dec. 18th letter to his older brother in Wisconsin.

Note 2: In tone and subject matter the Dec. 18th letter resembles John H. Beadle's more "professional" contemporary report from Utah, as published in the Cincinnati Commercial under the title "The Despotism of Brigham Young." While he started out with the intention of writing occasional letters to the Commercial, as a source of funding for his journey westward, John decided to remain in Utah and there mimic his brother's transitory vocation. No doubt William was able to pass on some useful pointers about how to properly run a newspaper office.


Vol. XXIX.                                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Saturday, January 2, 1869.                                        No. 123.


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

The  Despotism  of  Brigham  Young.

Salt Lake City, U. T., December 23, 1868.          
The spiritual guillotine has got fairly to work in Brigham's dominions at last, and Bishops, Elders, Seventies, and Ward Teachers are on the sharp look-out, hunting up those who still deal with Gentiles. They are at once arraigned, and, if contumacious, are solemnly "cut off and delivered over to the buffetings of Satan for a thousand years. But few have been excommunicated as yet, and probably only as a scare. Most of the Gentiles have insisted from the start that they would not proceed to extremes, but merely cut off those they did not need, but it looks to me as if they were terribly in earnest in carrying ont their policy. As heretofore stated, there is a large number dissatisfied; probably one-third of the church will submit to be cut off rather than driven to extremes, and after once driven to the church they will prove the worst enemies Brigham will have. The question then is -- dare they go on with this policy? The Gentiles differ in opinion, but for my part I hardly see how they can abandon it.

Meanwhile the hostile action toward outsiders is increasing. The Gentiles have been refused the use of all the public halls owned by the Mormons; all Mormons renting houses to Gentiles have been notified not to renew after the expiration of the present leases; and a Gentile company of musicians have been refused license to play in the city, with a plain notification from Mayor Wells that if they tried to play without license "it would be a sorrowful undertaking for them," which means that the police would tear down their hall.

All these facts, and the attempts of Gentiles to rent property have drawn attention to the fact that Brigham owns nearly one-half the real estate in this city, and thereby possesses the power to do "considerable dirt."

The private aflairs of Brigham are talked over pretty freely, and several ugly facts are coming to light which stagger even the Saints. It must be borne in mind that, besides being Prophet, Priest, Seer, Revelator, Grand Archer and First President, he is also "Trustee-in-trust for the Churches of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints."

Of course a man who has to carry all those titles, and do the thinking for two-thirds of his people, must be paid for it. The legal title of all the church property is in his name, from temple and tabernacle down to the church herds and pastures; no small amount, when you consider that one item consists of eleven thousand sheep! I think, too, it would take the noted "Philadelphia lawyer" to get an entering wedge between the legal and the merely equitable title, which is supposed to be in the church. There is another mode by which he has a strong hold upon them, known as the "consecration of property." By this any devout Mormon, wishing to show his love for the church, simply deeds her all his real estate, and holds it thereafter merely as "steward of the Lord," though his rights are apparently the same as before. When this feature was introduced several years ago Brigham preached a sermon on it, in which he grew quite facetious and said among other things: "Now you must know that all this care about property is not for you. Why, l've known hundreds to apostatize on account of it, who would have made good saints. The first good chance they sold out and made off to California. And here are some roaring around about their property like a cow after her calf. Give it to the Lord and ease your minds. Tie up the calf and the cow won't want to run away." The deeds were, of course, made to Brigham as trustee, and, incredible as it may appear, hundreds of these people thus disposed of their homesteads, and many of them had even forgotten the fact till brought up by a notification from Brigham that if they attempted to sell or rent to a Gentile he would assert his rights in their property. These rights have only been asserted in a few cases heretofore, of which Dr. Sprague's is the most notable.

The Doctor became a son of Brigham by what is called the "Holy Adoption," by which any man can become a part of his chosen father's family in heaven, as they believe, and of course share in that father's glory. All the property of the adopted son is at the disposal of the father. Dr. Sprague had expended great labor on his homestead, and his garden and orchard were among the most beautiful in Salt Lake. The Doctor had lucrative positions in the Endowment House and Tithing Office. At length Emeline Free Young, who had long been the favorite wife of Brigham, became feeble in health, and it was thought advisable to remove her from the Lion House and give her change of air. Brigham coolly informed Dr. Sprague that he desired his house for her, and, meanwhile, the Doctor and family might move into a smaller house of his. In the first burst of astonishment, Mrs. Sprague said she "did not relish the idea of giving up her house to people who read novels every day." "Very well,'' said Brigham, "if you refuse obedience you know the consequence."

The Doctor was getting old, could not afford to lose position and had to comply. Emeline recovered her health and they were restored to their home; but the effect has been to make them "hickory Mormons." This case illustrates the manner in which Brigham's tyranny has caused many to apostatize and weakened the faith of thousands more. It is a comnon idea in the East that Brigham's death would hasten the downfall of Mormonism. I think his continued life at this time will hasten it more, for he has just got to that age when avarice is his ruling faculty and his love of tyranny stronger than his common sense. His greed for lucre has already opened the eyes of thousands. Every year he grows more severe on the poor who are dependent on him, and if he can live ten years longer many thousands will see what manner of man their prophet really is. Besides the above sources of power Brigham has a private fortune, variously estimated at from three to twenty million dollars. None of the Mormons represent it below three millions, but it is of course impossible to tell with any exactness. The English Mormons say he is the third heaviest depositor in the Bank of England. In this city he owns property on every square, and is in partnership with most of the wealthiest merchants, while throughout the territory no mills are so well run and patronized, and no farms so nicely improved and well stocked as those of Brigham Young. And he has them in every district that I have visited or heard from. With all this, he swore in his income this year at only $25,000; but the question naturally arises, how can a man support twenty-three wives and sixty-three children on that little sum?

It is a remarkable fact that, as trustee for the church, Brigham is subject to no supervision or accountability, Several years ago, during a time of great depression and doubt, he called for a committee to revise the books, and present at every General Conference balance sheet of receipts and expenditures. The committee was appointed, but after one attempt gave it up, as the Saints would not be thought to suspect their prophet. He made no secret of the fact that he built the Lion House out of the church tithing and paid for it when convenient with other property, and he often makes trades between himself as trustee and himself as Brigham! It is not to be supposed that he allows the fiduciary capacity to get the better of the individual.

Your readers will remember that while the Mormons were on the way from Nauvoo they raised a battalion of five hundred men for the Mexican war, for which their bounty, $20,000, was advanced to Brigham and the church, as was stated, for the benefit of the men's families. Some of these men stayed in California, and many more apostatized after coming here, and many of them testified that neither they nor their families received a cent of that bounty. What those might say who still remain in Brigham's dominions can only be conjectured. But the greatest source of his wealth in Utah is, probably, the many grants he has received trom the Territorial Legislature. Some of those read very oddly when you remember this was unsurveyed government land they were dealing in; for instance,

An act in relation to the City Creek Canyon, approved December 9, 1855.

This gives Brigham the sole and exclusive right to this canyon, and he has fenced up the road leading to it, and requires every person getting wood there to deliver him every third load. For this he pays into the Treasury $509 per annum, while the canyon nets him at least $10,000.

An act approved December 19, 1855.

This gives to Brigham Young exclusive right of the level ground known as "Kansas [sic Kamas?] Prairie."

Same date, an act granting to Brigham Young the whole Cache valley for a herd ground.

Much of this valley is cultivated, but the pastures granted are the richest in the Territory.

An act approved December 27, 1855.

This grants to Brigham Young the whole of Rush Valley, except the United States reserve, for a herd ground.

An act approved January 4, 1856.

This grants to Brigham Young exclusive right to establish a ferry over Bear river.

The legality of these grants, of which I have selected but a few, will not be the least of the questions leading to difficulty between the Mormons and Gentiles. "With this much capital to operate on, Brigham has made some first class speculations: for instance, such as buying the bacon left by Johnson's army at one cent per pound, and selling it to laborers and emigrants at twenty-five. Formerly Brigham "talked" to all visitors, but of late he seems to have become purse-proud, and boasts that he "can drop dollar for dollar with any monarch in Europe."

Thus he has it in his power, if but half of his church support him, to control the entire business of the Territory. But the result will be fatal at last. Gentile capital and energy will, of course, leave this place and center in the new railroad town, which will very probably be on the Weber river, some forty miles further up the valley. That will be a thoroughly Gentile town, and probably a second Carthage to their second Nauvoo. The more I investigate matters the less I can agree with those writers who think Mormon rule here will end peaceably, and the more elements of trouble I can see. There is too much ill-feeling, there are too many causes of dispute for a perfectly quiet ending. There may be very little trouble or bloodshed, but I am confident there will be some. There are at least 50,000 men in California, Idaho and Montana who would like nothing better than a fight with the Mormons. They are generally emigrants who have suffered in various ways while passing through here. And while at least two-thirds of the Mormons are honestly and peaceably disposed, they are as clay in the hands of a few leaders, who are taking the exact course to exasperate feeling and bring on trouble.

Note: This article was reprinted in the New York Evening Telegram of Jan. 9, 1869.


Vol. XXIX.                                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Monday, January 18, 1869.                                        No. 139.


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

The  Origin  and  Progress  of  Polygamy
Among  the  Mormons.

Salt Lake City, U. T.,          
New Year's Day, 1869.          
Thus far in these articles I have made occasional references to the "peculiar institution" of Utah, but on this, the beginning of a year which will witness its great trial, it seems appropriate to go somewhat into the history and theology of the system.

The Mormons are particular to declare that they never would have practiced polygamy except in accordance with an express revelation from God; and though they occasionally defend it on various physiological and scriptural grounds, they always fall back upon the express command. This revelation is said to have been given at Nauvoo, Illinois, July 12, 1843. It was first published in the Deseret News Extra, of September 14, 1852, and next in the April number, 1853, of the Millennial Star, Liverpool, England, of which last a copy lies before me. The revelation is entirely too long and discursive to quote entire, so I sectionalize it for reference.

Section 1 opens with this remarkable statement, the Lord represented as speaking: "Verily, thus saith the Lord unto you, my servant Joseph, that inasmuch as you have inquired at my hands to know wherein I, the Lord, justified my servants Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; as also Moses, David, and Solomon, my servants, as touching the principle and doctrine of their having many wives and concubines; behold, and lo, I am the Lord and will answer thee as touching this matter," &c.

It will not escape your notice that, as here stated, Joseph had asked the Lord about the matter. We cannot but wonder whether it would have been revealed at all, without this preliminary questioning. Many good Mormons think it would not, and Mormon ladies have frequently expressed a pious regret that the Prophet ever asked about it! The section concludes by denouncing damnation upon all who reject the new gospel.

Section 2 sets forth that, "All covenants, contracts, bonds, obligations, oaths, vows, performances, connections, associations, or expectations that are not made and entered into, and sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise of him who is anointed," are void in eternity, and only good for this world. It sets forth also with great verbosity of language, that "God's house is a house of order."

Section 3 applies this principle is applied to the marriage covenant, stating that all who are not married, "and sealed according to the new and everlasting covenant," are married for this world only, and shall not be entitled to their respective partners in eternity, but shall continue "angels only, and not gods, kept as ministers to those who are worthy of a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory."

Section 4 describes the future glory of those who keep the new covenant: "Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; there they shall be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them. Then shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them."

Section 5 forgives all manner of crimes, except murder, "wherein they shed innocent blood," and blasphemy against the Holy Ghost. Apostasy, be it noted, is the worst form of the latter sin.

Section 6 explains the cases of Abraham and other ancient polygamists at great length, concluding by citing David as an example of how men lose their "exaltation" by abusing their privileges: "In none of these things did he sin against me, save in the case of Uriah and his wife, and, therefore, he hath fallen from his exaltation and received his position; and he shall not inherit them out of the world, for I gave them unto another, saith the Lord."

Section 7 confers great power upon Joseph Smith to regulate all such celestial marriages, punish for adultery, and take away the wives of the guilty and give them to good men.

Section 8 gives very full and explicit instructions to Emma Smith, wife of Joseph, how to conduct herself under the new dispensation; that she "receive all those that have been given unto my servant Joseph, who are virtuous and pure before me," and threatening her with destruction if she do not.

Section 9 breaks short off, and gives Joseph Smith full directions how to manage his property; particulary "let not my servant Joseph put his property out of his hands, lest an enemy come and destroy him," and threatening severely all who injure him.

Section 10 comes, at last, to the gist of the matter, and grants plurality of wives in these words:
"And again, as pertaining to the law of'the priesthood. If any man espouse a virgin and desires to espouse another, and the first give her consent, and if he espouse the second, and they are virgins, and have vowed to no other man, then is he justified; he cannot commit adultery, for they are given unto him, for he cannot commit adultery with that that belongeth unto him and to none else; and if he have ten virgins given unto him by this law, he cannot commit adultery, for they belong to him and are given unto him, therefore is he justified. They are given unto him to multiply and replenish the earth according to my commandment, and to fulfil the promise which was given by my Father before the foundation of the world, and for their exaltation in the eternal worlds, that they may bear the souls of men, for herein is the work of my Father continued, that he may be glorified."
Section 11 denounces heavy punishment on all women who refuse, without good cause, to give their husbands second wives; concluding as follows: "And now, as pertaining unto this law, verily, verily, I say unto you, I will reveal more unto you hereafter; therefore, let this suffice for the present. Behold, I am Alpha and Omega. Amen."   Such is the revelation. Space fails me to note all its contradictions and absurdities. One, however, is worthy of special note. In the eighth section Emma Smith is commanded to receive lovingly "all those that have been given unto my servant Joseph." The past tense is used. Thus the first revelation authorizing polygamy implies that Joseph had already practised it. Stranger still, polygamy is expressly forbidden by the "Book of Mormon."

In the third book and second chapter of that work, the angel messenger is represented as saying to the Nephites (Jews who settled America): "But the word of God burdens me because of your grosser crimes. For this people begin to wax in iniquity; they understand not the scriptures, for they seek to excuse themselves in committing whoredoms, because of the things that were written concerning David and Solomon, his son. They, truly, had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord, wherefore, hearken unto the word of the Lord, for there shall not any man among you have save it be one wife, and concubines he shall have none, for I, the Lord God, delighteth in the chastity of women."

It has exhausted all the ingenuity of Mormon writers to reconcile this passage with the new revelation, but they succeed in doing so sufficiently to satisfy their consciences. The Mormon history relates that when the full force of the new covenant was perceived the Prophet was filled with astonishment and dread. All the traditions of his early education were overthrown, and yet he felt that it was the work of the Lord. In vain he sought to be released from the burden of communicating the new doctrine to the world, and at length obtained permission to keep it secret,as yet, from all but the Twelve Apostles and a few other leading men. As the hour approached when he was to meet them in council, horror and fear of what might be the result overcame him, and he hastily mounted his horse he fled from the city. But a mighty angel met him on the road, stood in the way with a drawn sword, and with awful voice and offended mein bade him return.

These pretended forebodings were fully justified by the event, for, in spite of the secrecy maintained, the matter was soon bruited abroad, and there was fearful commotion in "Zion." Old Mormons have told me that when they first heard it they were horror stricken at the thought, and for years after could not believe the report. As might be expected, the men were the first converts. Joseph and a few others began soon to act upon their new privileges. Joseph seems to have been pretty successful, and soon had half a dozen spiritual wives, though all was still kept secret. While soliciting ladies to become "sealed" to him, he made several unsuccessful attempts, which caused great scandal. In particular, his doings were published by Miss Martha H. Brotherton, who immediately withdrew from the Church; also by Miss Eliza [sic - Nancy?] Rigdon, daughter of Sidney Rigdon, Mrs. Foster, Mrs. Higbee, and a lady now resident in this city, whose name I am not at liberty to publish.

Great was the fury among the saints at these revelations, and every epithet a vile fancy could suggest, was heaped upon these ladies, for what were styled "their perjured lies to injure the prophet." One of them was forced to sign a written retraction; another, discarded and denounced by her Mormon parents, died of a broken heart. Sidney Rigdon soon after left the community and took his daughter with him; Miss Brotherton escaped and returned to Boston, while Foster, Higbee, and a few others, whose families had been insulted, apostatized. For awhile the dissolution of the church seemed imminent, but the mingled boldness and hypocrisy of the prophet restored something like order, and polygamy was indignantly denounced and denied.

At length Foster, Higbee and some other apostates commenced preaching openly against the Prophet, and established at Nauvoo a paper called the Expositor, devoted to making war upon the new system. Among the first contents was a batch of sixteen affidavits, mostly from ladies, setting forth the licentious actions of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young. Joseph was at that time not only Prophet, Priest, and Revelator, but also Mayor of the City and Major-General of the Nauvoo Legion. Such a daring publication in the stronghold of his power was not to be tolerated. So he hastily convened the City Council, who, at his suggestion, declared the Expositor a "public nuisance," and ordered that it be "at once abated." Josephl and his partisans forthwith attacked the office and abated it in the Mormon fashion, by leveling it to the ground. Foster & Law, the publishers fled for their lives, and, proceeding to Carthage, the county seat of Hancock County, procured warrants against several Mormons, under the State law of Illinois, determined to test the legality of such extensive jurisdiction by the Council.

The officer who attempted to serve the warrant was contemptuously expelled from Nauvoo, where Joseph reigned supreme. Meanwhile, a thousand causes of quarrel had arisen between the surrounding people and the Saints. The entire region was overrun ny reckless and blood-stained men, who often concealed themselves in Nauvoo, and it soon became common for the people to charge all crimes upon the Mormons. This last attempt to set the county and State authorities at defiance seemed to condemn at once all the charges that Joseph Smith intended to erect an independent empire. A call was at once made upon the militia of the county, which was answered by them and many neighboring counties. The Mormons hastily fortified the city, the Nauvoo Legion, numbering four thousand men, was put under arms, and all of central Western Illinois seemed divided into two great camps, Mormon and anti-Mormon. The circumstances were so threatening that Governor Thomas L. Ford hastened to the scene and took command of the militia. Finding, as he said, that if the fight once began, nothing but the destruction of the city would satisfy the troops, and anxious to spare the effusion of blood, he entered the city and prevailed upon the two Smiths, Joseph and Hiram, to surrender. They were imprisoned in Carthage jail, accompanied by elders Willard Richards and John Taylor, as friends, but not under arrest. The Governor pledged his word for their protection, and placed what was considered a sufficient guard over the jail. But on the evening of June 27, 1844, a mob of several hundred men, with blackened faces, overpowered the guard, forced the jail, killed both the Smiths and dangerously wounded John Taylor, who, however, recovered and is now a leading man among the Mormons. The news soon reached Nauvoo and created the wildest grief and indignation. The Legion prepared to march and destroy Carthage, but were restrained by their leaders. The bodies of Joseph and Hiram were received with great ceremony, and honored with a magnificent funeral. All jealousy or doubt of the Prophet vanished at his death, and he was canonized in Mormon hearts as a Saint and Martyr.

His death, too, seemed to satisfy the bitter anti-Mormons, and for some months there was comparative quiet, but in 1846 persecution again blazed forth and drove the Mormons from the State. These tragic events were not without a lesson, and for many years polygamy was as much as possible kept secret, though being rapidly extended among the initiated. Brigham Young soon became head of the Church, and took for his second wife Lucy Decker Seely, who had previously been divorced from Doctor Seely. Not long after, at their winter quarters near Council Bluffs, Iowa, he married Harriet Cook, whose son, Oscar Young, is the first child in polygamy. He is now a young man of twenty-two or three, bright, active and intelligent, and a great favorite with his Gentile friends, though a little to be dreaded sometimes on account of his savage temper when angry.

This marriage was followed by those of Clara Decker, Clara Chase, Lucy Bigelow, Harriet Bowker and Harriet Barney. Mary Ann Angell Young, the original wife of Brigham, still lives in a house of her own, just back of the Lion House. She had five children -- Brigham, Joseph, John, Alice and Luna; all are married and living here. Brigham was at first a widower and the two daughters of his first wife, now middle-aged ladies, are both married and living in this city.. A few years after leaving Nauvoo, Brigham married Emmeline Free, who was for many years his favorite wife, and often styled among Gentiles, "The Light of the Harem." She was finally discarded, some five years ago, for Amelia Folsom, his youngest wife and present favorite. It is, of course, impossible to tell with exactness the number of his wives, but those best informed place them at twenty-three actual wives, and fifty-one spiritual. Miss Eliza Roxy Snow, the Salt Lake Poetess, is one of his spiritual wives, or "proxy" women, and is married to him by proxy for Joseph Smith, of whom she claims to have been the first spiritual wife.

The Mormons believe in baptism for the dead by proxy, also marriage for the dead. Some additional ceremonies are necessary to reduce a spiritual marriage to an actual one, with "the rights, privileges and appurtences thereunto belonging," and even when done, the wife and children are all to belong to the other husband in eternity, the earthly husband merely "raises up seed" unto his dead brother. Only nine of Brigham's wives have children, so his family is not so large as is generally supposed. None have had children within five years. Amelia, the youngest, has no children, which would render her position very unhappy among the Mormons, were it not that the cause is well known.

Consequent on the furore and scandal which followed the revelation at Nauvoo, a policy of concealment was adopted and for nine years the Mormon missionaries in every part of the world repudiated polygamy. In February, 1844, some seven months after the revelation is said to have been given, Joseph and Hiram Smith published, over their own signature, in the Times and Seasons, Mormon paper at Nauvoo, an indignant denial that such was the doctrine of the Church, and a month later an elder was "silenced" from preaching for advocating polygamy.

The foreign Mormons were thus kept in perfect ignorance of the matter, and were highly indignant when the charge was made. Still, as it was practiced, reports of it were constantly made and generally believed throughout the United States. The Mormons explain this long continued deceit on the ground of pious policy. "It would not do," they say, 'to give strong meat to little children. They must be first fed with milk, and when they get stronger, they can have meat. So with the truth, they must be taught a little at a time." Polygamy was, indeed, too strong a dose for the new converts, and when it was finally proclaimed to the world in 1852-53, it seemed that, even then, it would destroy the foreign church.

In England, especially, the demoralization was fearful; hundreds after hundreds apostatized, whole churches and conferences dissolved; talented knaves in many instances, finding in this the excuse for going off without surrendering the money-bags which they held. The missions entirely disappeared in many parts of Europe, and even in America, thousands of new converts who had not gone to "Zion," turned away and joined the Josephites, Gladdenites, Strangites, and other sects of recusant Mormons. The Millennial Star remained silent on the subject for weeks after publishing the revelation, coming out at length with a feeble defense of the system, from the pen of J. Jaques, a leading Mormon polemic. The fact was the people did not understand the new idea, they did not see the "spiritual necessities" for it; they had so far believed that Mormonism was simply an advance in Christianity, and could not feel that in "this, the fullness of time, the ancient covenant was restored with all its privileges."

But earnest preaching and religious fanaticism finally triumphed, and to-day polygamy is so thoroughly grafted into and interwoven with the religion of Mormonism, that at no point can one be touched without attacking the other. "Sexual ressurection." "Marriage for the Dead." "Progress in Eternity." "Pre-existence of the Soul, and all other peculiarities of their theology depend by a thousand combinations and inter-relations on the plurality system. Their theology teaches that there are three heavens -- the celestial, the terrestrial and the telestial. The first is for the faithful saints, the other two for those who have neither kept nor disobeyed the Gospel, some because they did not hear it, and others because they could not obey it. Woman in and of herself can never enter the celestial and secure her exaltation. "As Eve led Adam out of the garden he must lead her back; she can not have her glory without a crown; she can not come into the presence of God without a husband to lead her."

They believe, too, that the expression "Father of our spirits," is literal, that the gods in the eternal world have many wives, and become by divine generation the fathers of the souls of men. But in this primal spirit world there could be no advance, because they have been subject to no law; hence they must take on earthly tabernacles and enter upon their probationary state. The "spirits in prison" are waiting by countless millions to be clothed upon with bodies, that they may enter upon their earthly probation, and have free course to run their race and receive their exaltation. Hence to remain childless is a sin and calamity, and such can have no kingdom in the eternal world. The more children for a woman the higher her glory, and the larger family for a man the greater his kingdom there, where he shall rule over his descendants and be their God. There are "Lords many and Gods many," but to us there is but one God, the Creator of the world and the Father of our spirits. It is now generally received doctrine that Adam is the God of this world, and that with 144,000 wives he is in the spirit planet nearest to this, furnishing new souls to inhabit earthly tabernacles.

All faithful saints are to become gods in eternity, and the most faithful to have worlds furnished them for their spiritual progeny. Joseph Smith is now a God of high rank, next to Christ, who in turn stands next to Adam. Above Adam is Jehovah, and above Jehovah is Eloheim. His residence is in the planet Kolob, near the center of our system. Besides Eloheim there is also "God the Eternal Father," who is in some mysterious way connected with, perhaps controlled by, the Grand Council of the Gods, or High Archee. All these gods have many wives, and furnish millions of spirits, which in time inhabit earthly bodies, and if faithful, rise to their exaltation. So when you see a Mormon, remember that you see a spirit that was, a saint that is, and a god that is to be. Those who do not rise to their privileges in this world, are to be angels merely -- that is, servants to those more worthy. Christ is to rule this world next, with a vast number of wives, among whom Martha and Mary, his wives on earth, will be most prominent.

Such is the theory of polygamy in this gross compound of Buddhism, Brahminism, Manichaism, Judaism, and Christianity, which is called Mormonism. Nowhere through the long detail of their tenets is purity taught or hinted at. It is all pure selfishness, mere grossness, sexualism deified, and the domain of the senses made the empire of the universe. That Being in whose sight 'the heavens are not clean," who "put no trust in his servants and his angels he charged with folly," who is far above all thought of earthiness, has no place in such a system. They have degraded the human conception of Deity till he has become in their minds "altogether such a one as themselves." The heathen philosophers of ancient Greece were in purity of conception infinitely their superiors. Plato's Deity was as far in advance of Brigham's as the loftiest conceptions of a refined and virtuous philosopher are above the filthy imaginations of a sensual impostor. So much for theoretical polygamy, the beauties of the practical system must be reserved for another article.

Note: The contents of this letter were largely reproduced in chapter 15 of J. H. Beadle's 1870 Life in Utah. Evidently, in the space of a few short months, Beadle obtained permission to there include the name of "Mrs. Sarah Pratt, first wife of Orson Pratt," in place of his previous cryptic mention of "a lady now resident in this city, whose name I am not at liberty to publish." Beadle's 1870 revision of the text was not always more correct or informative than his initial letter to the Commercial. He retained the "Thomas L. Ford" name (and in the process influenced later LDS writers to include the odd middle initial), mistakenly blamed a version of Nauvoo polygamy upon Sidney Rigdon, etc. Mr. Beadle might have been influenced by the writings of Mrs. C. V. Waite in some of his conclusions regarding Mormonism. For example, her 1868 book, The Mormon Prophet, contains the term "Grand Archee," which Beadle parallels in speaking of the Mormon "Grand Council of the Gods, or High Archee."


Vol. XXIX.                                        Cincinnati, Ohio, Tuesday,  February 23, 1869.                                        No. 175.


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

The  Mormon  Question.

Salt Lake City, U. T., January 29, 1869.          
Just four weeks, to-day, have elapsed since my last communication, but the events of that period have not been such as to admit of cool philosophizing on the "Mormon question;" in fact, that "question" threatened for a time to become a little more personal to myself than was at all pleasant. On the afternoon of the 7th instant, I was seated in my sanctum, busily preparing mental aliment for the readers of the Daily Reporter, when an official-looking personage entered and read a subpoena for "J. H. B[eadle], Editor Reporter" to appear before the grand jury "to-morrow morning at 9 o'clock, there to give evidence." Great was the wonderment among my friends and the Gentile public generally, as to what this new move meant, and I confess I was at first a little nervous myself. True, I was only summoned "to give evidence" but there was no telling what new scheme against the Gentile paper this might be the beginning of, and it would be exceedingly easy for a Mormon grand jury to ask me questions as to my sources of information, which I would not be at liberty to answer, and might consequently find myself "committed for contempt" and engaged in "playing checkers with my nose" from which there would be no remedy but by habeas corpus from the United States Courts.

It is my fixed opinion, as formerly stated, that these Probate or County Courts have no right to criminal jurisdiction, no right to a grand jury, and, consequently, no more right to call or question me than has Tom Brown, the blacksmith. Nevertheless, not to appear contumacious, I attended, and in due time was ushered before a Mormon grand jury. I have always had a horror of grand juries since the time, ten years ago, when I was forced to help a friend to a $20 fine for "giving liquor to minors" and the particular features of this case were not calculated to reassure me. The "head center" produced and read in excellent style, one of my locals, in which mention was made of a dead man having been found, out on the "bench" near the penitentiary buildings, and asked me if I had any personal knowledge of the matter. This being answered in the negative, a few similar questions followed, and he finally asked what I meant by the phrases "Brighamite civilization" and "the power that rules here by deeds of darkness and blood." I saw by the general pricking up of ears, that the real object of my being called was to find out what was the prevailing Gentile sentiment, and so, in the course of an hour's conversation, I set forth various facts within my knowledge, going to show that there was a feverish state of the public mind, and a general impression that trouble of some sort was impending. The matter took a very informal turn, and resulted in a pretty free interchange of sentiment, by which I learned the fact, important to me, that the Mormons are apprehensive that any hostile act on their part would probably lead to an outbreak and serious consequences.

This has been my own opinion for some time, but if the Mormon authorities can see the true state of the case, the danger will be greatly lessened. But the trouble with them is they have held absolute power so long that rather than give it up they will use violence. One thing is certain, there is a "feverish state of the public mind" and the death of one prominent Gentile at their hands would precipitate a civil war. Meanwhile everything seems to go on quietly, and no violence is just nbw attempted or threatened. But a series of petty persecutions is kept up some of which are annoying and others ludicrous. Some two weeks ago, Rev. Henry Foote, the Episcopal Minister here, in riding to church, allowed his horse to go at a gentle canter down Main street. He had readied the church and donned his vestments for service, when he was surprised by the entrance of a policeman, who forthwith read a warrant for his arrest, for "fast riding on Sunday." He was lot off with a light fine; still this is a specimen of the present state of warfare.

A worse thing however is a sort of general order for all Mormon girls doing housework for Gentiles to leave them at once. This creates as much dissatisfaction with the girls as with the Gentiles, as the former consider the houses of the latter generally as the best places. Many of these women are second wives of Saints, and several cases of real hardship have come to my notice. In two of them policemen visited the house and made the girls believe they had writs to take them away. Once out of the house and surrounded by their Mormon friends there was no getting back. In one case the policemen and husband forced their way into the house while the Gentile family were at church, after the young wife had refused a dozen times to go with them, and partly by threats and partly by persuasion, took her away. In all these petty annoyances they manage, to keep within the law; still much bad blood and bitterness of feeling is thereby engendered. But on the 13th a now sensation was provided by a telegram from Washington to the effect that Congressman Ashley had introduced a bill for the division of Utah among the neighboring Territories. All the bile in the Mormon community was stirred at once, and the two morning papers, the Telegraph and Deseret News, came out with furious articles denouncing Mr. Ashley in the most unmeasured terms, and stignatizing the whole movement as another act of "cowardly persecution." Bear in mind that it is a cardinal principle of faith with the Mormons that every politician who makes any move unfriendly to them is cursed from the hour and a blight is upon all his plans.

They proudly point to Henry Clay, Stephen A. Douglas and Frank P. Blair, as statesmen who declined rapidly from the day they refused to befriend the Mormons. Like all fanatics, they think that they and their acts are the pivot upon which all things temporal turn, and in the future history of America theirs will be the central line of interest, to which all else is subsidiary. There is in Mormon history, a very curious correspondence between Joseph Smith, on behalf of the Mormons, and Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun. Smith first wrote to these gentlemen in the opening of the campaign of 1844, making the inquiry: "What would be their rule of action toward the Latter-day-Saints, in case they were chosen to the high office" &c. Both of them wrote very guarded replies, in which they expressed generally the opinion that "these people, like all other religious sects, were entitled to the protection guaranteed by the Constitution and laws." After waiting a few months, Smith wrote each of them a long letter, a farrago of filthy nonsense, black-guardism and attempted learning, which is both amusing and disgusting. I have read, and heard it read among the Saints, many times, and they universally regard it as the highest possible exposition of governmental knowledge and a powerful rebuke of corrupt politicians.

They regard Andrew Johnson as the "noblest American since Washington's day" "a godlike statesman, a true gentleman and Christian." Knowing that Andrew was not, just now, the most popular man in the States, I was curious to find the reason of this excessive veneration, and found it to be, as expressed by one of their preachers, that "Johnson had not sent here a furious, sectarian Governor, a man who would try to eat them up, but had sent Governor Durkee, a mild-mannered man, who did not interfere with the people." This act alone, they think, will entitle him to the highest niche in the temple of fame. So Andrew may congratulate himself that the Saints are his friends. Fortunately for their peace of mind, there was no one to dispute witn them about the division of the Territory. The Gentiles here are unanimously opposed to it for many reasons. One is that they consider it a virtual backing down on the part of the Government, a cowardly move, an attempt to shirk a responsibility which justly belongs to the nation, and to throw the filthy carcass of Mormonism to the Territories to be settled with by them. My private opinion is that it would be advisable to give the upper portion of the Territory, through which the railroad runs, to Wyoming, and thus avoid the irritating causes of difference which are even now springing up between the Mormon Territorial authorities and the new railroad towns.

Two of these towns, to-wit, Promontory City, situated at the north end of the lake, and Wasatch, on the run of the Great Basin, eighty-five miles from here, have virtually declared their independence, chosen city officers, and given notice that they will heed no Mormon laws, regard no Mormon officer, and fight, if necessary, "on that line."

Echo City, a new railroad town, at the mouth of Echo Canyon, fifty-five miles from this city, was without any government whatever for several weeks. At length a Mormon policeman of this city was commissioned as Justice of the Peace and sent to Echo, with half a dozen policemen, to take charge of affairs. He ran the city on a fair basis for a short time, arrested and fined several gamblers, and forced the dancing women to leave town. At length a slight disturbance occurred; the roughs overawed his police, and things fell into their original chaotic condition. The citizens at length drew up a charter, and a few days ago presented a petition to the Territorial Legislature, now in session, to grant them the charter. The Legislature referred the petition, which will be the last of it, and the Echo citizens now declare their intention to "run the town on the charter any how." I think the Mormons will finally control Echo, but I apprehend more trouble at Wasatch. This town, the present passenger terminus of the Union Pacific Railroad, has sprung up like magic on the very summit of the Utah Mountains, 7,000 feet above sea level, and just at the head of Echo Canon. It has already a resident population of a thousand; and two or three thousand laborers at work on the rock-cut and tunnel, within a few miles. All the business men and saloon-keepers have refused to pay territorial license, or obey the process of any territorial oourt. They have a city government in successful operation, with Mayor and Council complete. The Marshal, Mr. Thomas Smith, told me when I was there some days ago, to "give full notice in this city that no Mormon officer need come there to exercise any authority whatever; that they would fight the whole Territory if necessary, and he could turn out fifteen hundred men at half a day's notice." So far this challenge has not been accepted; but if the Mormons attempt to govern Wasatch there will probably be a fight. Between the Mormons and the railroad roughs, the Gentiles of this city have nothing to choose; so we shall remain "invariably neutral" unless the Mormons force us into the matter, in which case we will have no choice but to join with the roughs. From these and other facts, I think it will be well to give the "railroad strip" to Wyoming, but such is not the opinion of other Gentiles.

I think I am in a position to know that opinion thoroughly, and the expressions which come to me on every side may be summed up thus: Give us firm Government officers, who will not hesitate to accept a responsibility when it comes, who will act with vigor and decision, backed by one or two regiments of soldiers to protect Gentiles in all their rights, and sustain the United States Courts in their action, and all else we will soon settle ourselves. For Governor, we want a man who will declare his right to oommand the territorial militia, and exercise it, instead of walking in the ranks behind Brigham Young, as has been done on several disgraceful occasions. We want a man of military firmness, who knows his rights and is not to be wheedled by Mormon flattery, frightened by their threats or trapped by their allurements. And a man, too, who understands the question and its necessities, and is not too old or too weak to act on that knowledge -- who is, at the same time, sufficiently popular to unite the Gentile sentiment, and well known by the Mormons. Permit me to say there is one man, and probably but one, who will fill this demand, and be universally acceptable to the Gentiles. That man is General P. E. Connor, and I believe there are not six Gentiles in this Territory but would prefer him for Governor to all others. I have received advices from every part of the Territory, and have talked with hundreds of people, and so far have not heard a dissenting voice.

General Connor is a native of Ireland, and now a resident of Stockton, California, though he spends nearly half his time here, where he has some property, particularly a steamer on Salt Lake. He commanded the California volunteers here from 1862 to 1865, a trying period, and won universal commendation. He was commissioned General by President Lincoln for a great victory gained over the Bannuck Indians. As Governor, with fifteen hundred soldiers, he would be able to preserve order through all the troublous times that are pretty certain to come next spring and summer. At any rate, we Gentiles would rather risk him than any other man we know of. The time has come when the Mormon question can no longer be evaded. The clashing elements are fast pouring into this valley. The new railroad town, to be laid out near Ogden, will undoubtedly be the great city of the basin, and will for some time be the favored resort of all the roughs in the country. They will steal from the Gentiles and lay it to the Mormons, and vice versa. Nine-tenths of the Mormons are so bigoted and fanatical that they persist in considering all the Gentiles alike, and regard the crime of one as the crime of all. Hundreds of Gentiles are no more reasonable in regard to the Mormons, and fail to see any distinction between the guilty few and the innocent, but deluded, many; and without a powerful corrective it takes no prophet to see that the scenes of Missouri and Illinois will be re-enacted. A firm hand and a clear head are needed to repress disorder and do justice to all parties. Give us these and no division of Utah will be necessary; with Gentile settlement, with social and moral forces, we will settle every thing else.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. XXIX.                                     Cincinnati, Ohio, Tuesday, April 6, 1869.                                      No. 207.


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

An  Account  of  the  Mormon Relic
of  Barbarism.

Salt Lake City, February 10, 1869.          
In a former communication I gave the history and theology of polygamy among the Mormons and promised a sketch of its practical workings. At the outset I meet with a difficulty in describing its greatest evils. As formerly stated, the virtues of Mormonism are all easily seen, while its evils seem to be hidden, and this is peculiarly the case with polygamy. We can see its evils in a political point of view, in their laws, to some extent in their society, in the mixture of population and the blood of near kindred; but who can enter into the penetralia of the affections, weigh and estimate woman's anguish, count the heart drops of sorrow, and say, here is so much misery, or there is so much resignation. This last is by far the greatest evil of polygamy, and though it may be felt, and to some extent seen, it can never be described. Miss Sarah E. Carmichael, now Mrs. Williamson, who was reared at Salt Lake, says: "If I were a man, as I am a woman, I would stand in the halls of Congress, and cry aloud for the miserable women of Utah, till the world should hear and know the wrongs and miseries of polygamy."

The Mormons argue that the laws of nature, physical nature, point out polygamy as the natural condition. There may be some argument in its favor in the physical organization, but when we come to the soul and mind, the mentality of woman points unerringly to monogamy as her only possible state for domestic happiness. That this indication is to be followed rather than the other, is abundantly shown by a comparative view of polygamous and monogamous nations. The Indian and native African knows nothing of the softer sentiments which make life amiable and agreeable; to them woman is merely a superior beast of burden; they can purchase as many wives as their means command, and are, by nature, habit and religion, thorough going polygamists. Coming a little higher, to the partially civilized races, we find a great improvement, but nothing like Christian ideas. The Hindoo considers this such a poor world for women, that it is thought no particular harm to drown a female infant, though a heinous offence to thus dispose of a boy. The same is true, to some extent, of the Persians, Turks and Mohammedan races generally. Home, as understood by us, is an unknown institution; the harem takes its place, and polygamous customs have destroyed, to a great extent, the valor and energy of the men and the attractive graces of woman. In the march of progress these nations are fast falling behind and sinking beneath the hardy vigor of Western Christians. History scarcely records an instance where an organized nation of monogamists has fallen before polygamists

The monogamic Greeks, with a little army of 40,000 men, overran all the proud empires of Southern Asia; the effeminate Persians and Hindoos could not stand before the hardy valor of that people, who held, as a fixed principle that the dignity of woman is the strength of the State. Monogamic Rome completed what Greece had begun, in destroying the power of the Western Asiatics. For six hundred years the honor and dignity of the Roman matron were the subjects of unwearied praise, till Rome herself was corrupted by the nations she had conquered. The reign of the first Asiatic, who wore the Imperial purple, marks the beginning of a great decline; and Rome, in turn, fell before the hardy monogamists of Northern Europe. The Mohammedans easily overran Asia and Northern Africa, but in Europe their course was soon checked. The hosts of Abderahman melted like snow before the stout arms of the German nations, who left the plains of Poitiers covered with the corpses of 300,000 polygamists. But it may be said these comparisons are unfair, as setting civilized nations against semi-barbarians. But this fact makes a better comparison impossible, that the lowest nation of monogamists is far above the highest of polygamists. The white inhabitants of Utah are the only branch of the Caucasian race that have adopted polygamy within many hundred years. Of course we would look for certain results there, and if not seen at once many would conclude that Utah was an exception to the general rule. But it is to be remembered that polygamy has been practiced among them but twenty years.

But already its evils are beginning to show themselves plainly. The first result is seen in the universal jealousy that prevails, both among men and women. I have the testimony of dozens, brought up in the midst of the system, and several of them children of second wives, that such a thing as a harmonious family of many wives is unknown in their acquaintance. Others say there are such, but all admit they are rare. I am speaking now of the women's testimony; the men will often claim the contrary, even when their own families disprove it. Only last evening I attended a Gentile ball with a young lady, who is the daughter of a second wife, whose history illustrates this matter very forcibly. Her mother had lived in polygamy for fifteen years, and finally became convinced that it was as sinful as she had found it miserable. The troubles of her mind brought on a mortal sickness, when she called her daughter to her side, and told her that she had lived in misery, and was dying without hope; that she was now convinced of her sin, and only desired her daughter to escape from it. The daughter as required, took a solemn oath never to enter polygamy. The mother told her to be firm, and her mother's spirit would protect her. Soon after she died, and the daughter left her father's house, at the age of fourteen, to reside with a relative who had apostatized, and though twice taken back, is now permitted to live there unmolested. The father stands high in the Mormon Church, and still has four wives. One of them left him last summer and went to work in a hotel. After a short stay there she took her child and started to Montana, when the husband took out a writ of habeas corpus for the child; the Sheriff overtook her thirty miles north, when, seeing him coming, she ran for the mountains, distant half a mile. She was overtaken and the child torn away from her, and brought to the city, which, of course, induced the mother to return. She was going with some emigrants who dared not assist her, for fear of Mormon vengeance.

Across the street from where I am writing lives a man named Suter, who came here with the Mormon emigration last summer. He is a Mormon, but his wife is not. Three months after coming here he married again, a woman more than suspected of being a bad character. His first wife left him at once and went to washing for a living. A few days ago I was startled by hearing a series of shrieks in front of the house, and running over found quite a crowd collected and the police dragging the first wife out of the house. It seems her little boy had come back to his father's and been kept there, and when the mother came after him a quarrel arose between her and the second wife, which soon came to blows.

The first wife was taken to jail by the police for creating a public disturbance, while her screams and those of her child were enough to chill the blood. Such a crowd of Gentiles collected and so much indignation was expressed that I thought for awhile a riot was imminent.

A case of a more amusing character occurred to the the Bishop of the Nineteenth Ward last week. During his absence his wife No. 1 took occasion to chastise the two sons of wife No. 2, aged respectively eleven and thirteen. This was directly against the rules, for no wife is allowed to punish another's child, and if disputes arise between the children of different mothers, they are referred to the common father. The children complained to their mother, who being a very large stout woman, seized wife No. 1 and held her while the two boys gave here a severe switching. When the Bishop returned and heard the matter, it is said that like Nasby he "wept profoosely." The Ward teachers, to whom all such matters are referred for settlement, decided that the two boys should receive a light chastisement and ask pardon of the first wife.

The older readily complied, but the younger, an unusually bright little fellow, refused, stoutly adverting that "the one who got the worst licked was the one to ask pardon." And thus stood the matter at last accounts. The Mormons claim that they are the most virtuous people in the world, and perhaps they are virtuous within their laws. Certainly prostitution is almost unknown here. But with polygamy, and the facility for obtaining divorces, we can hardly consider much virtue of value. I know one woman who has been divorced and remarried five times. It is possible to get a divorce from Brigham on almost any plea, and formerly applications became so numerous that he imposed a heavy fee upon applicants, of which he afterward boasted in a sermon that their "d___d foolishness kept him in spending money." Hence it is a common remark among Mormons, "if a woman is dissatisfied, let her get a divorce and go to the Gentiles." When we think of the position that would naturally be assigned such a woman, the remark seems like a cruel sarcasm. To the honor of the Gentiles be it said, they are quite liberal in their treatment of the victims of polygamy who come to them, and give them a chance to redeem their standing. The young lady mentioned above is universally respected and courteously treated among us, and is a great favorite at Gentile balls and parties.

But jealousy is far from being confined to the women; it is just as marked among the older children. It is impossible for a man whose affections are divided between three or four women, of varying charms and tempers, to regard equally the children of all. If he has common affection, the most affectionate child will become his favorite and engross his attentions. This is seen and noticed in almost every family, and the story of Jacob's partiality, and his children's jealousy, is repeated every day in the year. Among my personal friends is a grandson of Heber C. Kimball, who considers himself as separate and apart from his family, and though but seventeen years old, it is plain to be seen that his position is one of wearisome discontent. He is the son of a second wife, and such cases are numerous even within my limited acquaintance. As a natural sequence of this, it is quite common among the Mormon leaders to speak of family affection, or the endearment of home, as something to be indulged in sparingly, and rather to be regarded as a weakness.

Brigham Young himself is personally one of the coldest of men. According to one who knows his habits, he usually sleeps alone, in a small room behind his office, and a woman who lived many years in his family, tells me she never saw him caress or pet but one of his children. In speaking to one of my Mormon acquaintances, Brigham gave the following as his idea of fatherly duty:

"I pay no attention to the children, but leave that to their mothers, according to the law of nature. The bull pays no attention to his calves."

This, however, is an extreme view, and the Mormons generally claim that they exercise as much affection toward every one of a large family as if they had but two or three.

The second and most easily noticed result of polygamy is a general lack of respect for women. This is so marked that it is a common subject of talk, even among themselves. Said a young Mormon woman, who had just married a Gentile, to me: "I don't know half a dozen men here who really respect their wives. It is a constant wonder to us, the way the Gentiles treat their women."

I have often been amused at the appearance of their young women who were attending Gentile balls for the first time. That a gentleman should bow so reverently to his partner, that he should offer a lady his arm just to cross the room, that he should esteem it a pleasure rather than a favor, to bring a glass of water or the like, seems to excite their amazement.

Social lines were closely drawn the winter of my stay in Salt Lake, and no young woman could venture to associate with the Gentiles, without losing her standing among Mormons entirely.

Still, there are many who find their way into Gentile society, though if they persist in it they are usually "cut off and disfellowshiped" by the church authorities. The fanaticism of the Mormons is so great that they consider a woman "lost" if she associates with Gentile men; it is concluded at once that she can have no pure motive in so doing, and among their own people they possess the power to ruin a woman's character entirely. An old Mormon, at whose house I visited occasionally, seldom failed to give me his views of the absurdity of our common ideas of woman. His favorite style was to give me a burlesque representation of our mode of addressing ladies, and when he got warmed up on the subject, it was highly amusing to see him skip about the room, hat in hand, bowing and grimacing to the chairs, and imitating the dandified address of an exquisite. Most of the polygamists habitually speak of their wives as "my women," and in his jocular moments, while preaching, the late Heber C. Kimball often spoke of his facetiously as "my cows." I must say, however, that all of this is not due to polygamy, but much of it to the women themselves. Nearly all of them are of foreign birth, English, Welsh, Scotch and Scandinavian, and of that class, too, among whom men have never been accustomed to respect women very highly.

I am sure polygamy could not have been established in a purely American community, and the Mormons themselves say that all the trouble and opposition comes from the American or Irish wives, though there are but few of the latter,

The jealousy of the men is even greater than that of the women. Nine-tenths of them take it for granted that a Gentile can have no good purpose in addressing a Mormon girl, and it is quite common to hear a Mormon say, "I will shoot any Gentile I see walking with my daughter." It must be confessed they have some foundation for the harsh judgment, as in former years hundreds of Gentiles merely came here to winter, and often left their wives in the spring; and it is a sad fact that of all of the women who have left the Mormons, the majority have turned out badly. When the California volunteers left here they took off a great many with them, of whom the majority were not married. The Mormons, of course, attributed this to the immoral character of the Gentiles, but I think it attributable to their system of forced virtue, by means of contraint and constant watching. "The virtue that must be guarded is not worth the sentinel," and those girls who have been brought up in such strictness and seclusion, with the idea that none of their Mormon companions would dare attempt their virtue, are but poorly prepared to encounter the seductive arts we know to be too common in the Gentile world. By the laws of Utah, seduction and adultery are punished with death; or rather any man is at liberty to kill the seducer of wife or daughter, and on trial, proof of the deceased's guilt makes it "justifiable homocide." So far, this is well enough, and only what our jury system in such cases practically amounts to in the East, but there is no doubt this is often made a pretext, or that hasty and jealous men commit murder which even this law would not justify. It is carefully impressed upon the Mormon young men that death is their portion if they seduce a woman, and this law the Mormons boast as the perfection of human reason. Whether it is the best policy or not, I am not prepared to say.

Another evil beginning to show itself is the mixing of kindred blood. The marriage ofcousins is too common, and I am told that several cases have occurred were uncle and niece were married, but I know personally of no such case.

There are several cases of a man marrying both mother and daughter, and the marriage of two or three sisters by one man is quite common. Robert Sharkey, a merchant of this city, married three sisters, one of whom was divorced from her first husband to marry him. They all lived in one house, and quite happily, it is said, for several years, when in some strange manner they all became convinced that polygamy was wrong. One of the sisters started East, but soon returned and endeavored to make some arrangement for him to put away the other two. There were difficulties in the way, and Sharkey's trouble was so great on the subject that his mind became disordered, and last August he committed suicide by shooting himself through the head. The widowed sisters still live together, and are determined opponents of polygamy. Two of Brigham Young's favorite wives, Clara Decker and Lucy Decker Seely, are sisters, the second having been the widow of Dr. Isaac Seely, of Nauvoo, Illinois. The Mormon leaders advise a man to marry sisters whenever it can be done, as they usually agree better than others. One family within my knowledge consists of two men and four women, the men's first wives being sisters, and their second wives each a sister of the other man, all living in one house. Or to state it mathematically. A and B first marry sisters, then A marries B's sister and B, A's sister. Here is no marriage of blood relations, and yet it looks like a terrible mixture somewhere. The question arises for lawyers: suppose each of the women to have children, what kin are they respectively? And which of them could lawfully marry according to Leviticus and Chancellor Kent? If polygamy continues, these mixtures are nothing to what must take place in the next generation, for without a chemical analysis no "Heraldry Harvey" could ever succeed in finding the consanguineous circulation, to say nothing of the collateral. "As it now is, it seems like half the children in the city are related in some way or another to the Kimballs, the Pratts, or the Youngs, and many of them to all three." Among my acquaintances is a middle aged lady, living just over the Jordan River, who was the widow of an apostate who died in California, but is now the third wife of a Mormon. The brother of her first husband, now living here, is also an apostate, and a personal friend of mine. The lady has a handsome daughter, now seventeen years old, the offspring of her first husband and the niece of my friend.

The lady is kind-hearted and hospitable, and, in company with my friend, I enjoy a visit at her house very much, as long as we can avoid the subject of Mormonism. Lately this lady's husband has proposed in form for her daughter to marry him, and I can see that it is the strongest trial the mother's faith has had, but such is her devotion to the doctrine that she has given her consent, "if Brother Brigham says it is the will of the Lord." The daughter, however, assures her uncle that she "will die before she will marry him or any other Mormon." For the sake of peace she says nothing at home, but declares her intention to run away rather than submit. The mother, like many others, says she ''would rather see her daughter in the coffin than married to a Gentile, for that would be her eternal ruin for both worlds." All, however, are not so zealous on this subject, and there is quite a number of Mormon women who think that a mistake has been made somehow, that polygamy is not of the Lord, that lt is not true Mormonism, &c. Those who believe in it speak of it as "a great cross, laid upon them in this world for their exaltation in the next," &c.

The following story seems too horrible for belief, and yet I have heard it from many reliable persons who consider it true. Some fourteen years ago, a young Scotchman came to this city, in company with his half sister, who commenced keeping house for him. After a time he went to Brigham and professed a desire to marry the girl, citing the example of Abraham and his half-sister Sarah. Brigham owned there was something in it -- Abraham was an example in favor of polygamy, and why not in this. He finally sent for the girl, and finding her handsome and lively, solved the problem by marrying her himself; the half brother yielded to the Prophet's superior claim, and all was well. But in a few short weeks the lady's delicate constitution showed too plainly that the amorous half brother had anticipated marital rights, and Brigham found himself in a fair way to have an heir de jure that was not de sanquine. Here was a problem. It would never do for the Prophet to acknowledge himself sold, so he sent for the brother, told him he had reconsidered the matter, divorced the woman from himself, and delivered her to the brother, who dutifully received her from the arms of the Prophet! She lived with her half brother a few years, as his wife, but finally saw the degradation of her position, and left for the States. I heard this man lecture a short time ago in the ward meeting, and he seemed a man of average intelligence, so I would fain believe there is some mistake in the matter.

Many persons here have told me that they often heard Brigham Young say, in a public sermon, that "the day would come when brothers would marry their sisters, in order to raise up a pure priesthood." One man, an apostate, offered to make an affidavit to that statement, if I desired it.

Time would fail me to tell of the cases of misery brought to my notice, resulting from the neglect with which the first wife is too often treated. The Mormons claim that an equal love is shown to all the wives, and that the women are satisfied with this divided affection. But that this is not and never can be the case, I need to say to no one who has the slightest knowledge of the female heart. That polygamy sanctifies the affections or that it improves the physical standing of the race is the wildest notion that ever entered the brain of a fanatic.

This city already shows its bad effect of the offspring. The site is 4,400 feet above the level of the sea, in a dry and bracing climate, equally free from extremes of heat and cold, and consequently it should be one of the healthiest cities in the world. Exactly the reverse is the fact. The death rate, of all ages, is a little more than twice that of the State of Oregon, and greater than that of New York or New Orleans. When we come to children, the disparity is still more frightful. By actual statistics it is shown that the mortality among the children is greater in Salt Lake City than any other in America, except New Orleans, and the death rate of Utah is only exceeded by that of Louisiana. The Mormons have greatly exaggerated the population of this place, which really contains a little less than 18,000 souls,and in this small number ths sexton's report for October last, the healthiest month in the year, gives the interments at sixty, of which forty-four were children. Last year was unusually healthy, and yet the death rate exceeds that of any other State or Territory west ot the Mississippi. The Mormons explain this by saying that their people are generally poor and exposed to hardships, but much of that poverty is directly traceable to their religion. Another sad fact is the general neglect of medical care, or rather a general tendency to run to wild and absurd schemes of doctoring. They claim that "laying on of hands and the prayer of faith" will heal the sick, and yet no people within my knowledge are so given to "Thomsonianiam," "steam doctoring, "yarb medicine," and every other irregular mode ot treating the sick. But a few days ago three young children died in the Seventeenth Ward, of scarlet fever. In neither case was a physician called; the bishop came, and laid on hands, with the holy anointing," and an old woman treated two of them with a mild palliative such as is used for a sore throat.

If the patients live, after such treatment, it is a miracle; and if they die, it is "the will of the Lord." Two-thirds of the polygamists do not and cannot attend properly to their children. Heber C. Kimball had sixty-three sons, of whom only forty-eight are now living. The bishop of our ward, the Fourteenth, has thirty children living, and nearly twenty dead. Joseph Smith had half a dozen spiritual wives: but two [sic - three?] sons survived him -- both of his l egal wife.

There are five men in this city who have, together, seventy wives; they have, all told, less than a hundred and fifty children.

A Mormon graveyard in the most melancholy sight on earth. One bishop here has seventeen children buried in one row, and the longest grave is not over four feet. If these men have but the common feelings of humanity, how fearfully are they punished for the crime of polygamy. Brigham's children are generally healthy, except that the girls mostly have weak eyes, and two of them are nearly blind; but they are well fed, housed and clothed. But such is the exception, and I could mention a dozen men whose houses are full of women, but their children are in the grave.

The Asiatic institution was never meant to flourish on Ameriean soil, and has resulted here in a "slaughter of tho innocents" which is saddening to contemplate.   BEADLE.

Note: This article was partly reprinted in Chapter 15 of J. H. Beadle's 1870 Life in Utah, which did not include the report about the fight in the home of the 19th Ward Bishop. That incident was published in Beadle's Salt Lake Reporter at the beginning of February.


Vol. I.                                      Salt Lake City, U. T., Saturday, April 10, 1869.                                      No. 128.

With this issue we take leave of Salt Lake City, and shall in a few days address our patrons from Corinne, Utah. The Salt Lake Daily Reporter was established in the interests of the Gentiles of Utah, and of enlightened liberty, on the 11th of May, 1868, and during the year we have been sustained beyond our most sanguine anticipations. The motive principle of our policy has been unceasing war upon the Hierarchy now dominating Utah, and a defence of the rights and interests of all people. We shall still make this contest a leading feature of our future management. Let not our friends of Salt Lake City fear, our enemies hope, that we will forget or leave them alone. With an enlarged sheet and better facilities for information we shall continue the good work; though our local news be mostly of Corinne, as to the Salt Lakers we shall have "a child among them takin' notes," and their affairs will still claim a large space in our columns.

The politico-religious character of the Reporter will remain exactly the same; we go to Corinne simply because the citizens of that place make it our interest to do so; because we can have more advertising, more job work and better facilities there than here. Also, because we believe in the future of Corinne and do not in that of Salt Lake City. To our patrons in Salt Lake City we return our most hearty thanks. They have given us a most generous support, even at a time when priestly influence had succeeded in destroying much of their prosperity. To our enemies we merely say: You shall hear from us again, and that often, with continuance and vigor.

Note: John Hanson Beadle began offering submissions to S. S. Saul's Salt Lake Reporter in mid-October, 1868 and later that month he was asked to fill in as the sheet's acting editor (while Mr. Saul was temporarily out of town). By November Beadle had found two interested partners (Adam Aulbach and John Barrett) and had purchased the newspaper outright, making himself the Reporter's official editor. Five months later Beadle decided to vacate his Salt Lake City office and move the paper to Corinne, in Box Elder county. As he says in his valedictory, the issue for April 10, 1869 was the last one published in Utah's capital city. The paper resumed publication in Corinne, with the first number of its new volume being printed there on April 20th, under the title "The Utah Daily Reporter." -- About this same time Beadle also suspended his reporting correspondence for the Cincinnati Commercial (see his letter in that paper's issue for April 29th).


Vol. XXIX.                                     Cincinnati, Ohio, Thursday,  April 29, 1869.                                      No. 230.


Correspondence Cincinnati Commercial.

The Mormon  Despotism.

Salt Lake City, April 14, 1869.          
After all that has been said and written on the "Mormon question" some people in the East are still asking: Why can not the residents reform matters? If there is dissatisfaction or opposition to the hierarchy, can it not make itself felt in the elections? To such inquirers let me commend the following sections of "an act regulating elections" approved January, 1853:
"Sec. 5. Every voter shall supply himself with a ballot bearing the names of the persons he wishes to fill the various offices, and present it neatly folded to the judge of elections, who shall number it "and deposit it in the ballot-box. The clerk shall then write the name of the voter, and opposite to it the number of his vote.

"Sec. 6. At the close of the election the judge shall seal up the ballot-box, and transmit it, with the poll list, to the County Clerk."
Isn't that a beautiful method of "protecting the purity and freedom of the ballot?" See how artistically they abolish the free ballot while they retain the vote. "Thus" says an apologist, "they retain the privilege (?) of voting while they avoid the evils of universal suffrage; subjecting, as it always should be, the ignorant many to the supervision of the intelligent few."

Under this system, Brigham Young's emissary can go into any precinct in the Territory and find out just how any man has voted at any election for the last fifteen years! And with this ignorant people, alive to spiritual terrors and knowing too well what temporal trouble may be brought upon them, it is plain that the opposition must be in a majority before it can venture to make itself known. The opposition can not make a start to consolidate.

And yet these solemn, funny fellows in Congress, go on talking and acting as if we had a republican government and a free ballot in Utah; and lately one bigger empiric than common wants to add to the joke and heighten the humor of the burlesque, by giving this privilege (?) of the ballot to women. And he thinks such action would tend to destroy polygamy. It is impossible to convey to any one, not a resident of Utah, any idea of the utter absurdity of such a proposition. Consider that at least five-sixths of these women are from countries where tho ballot is unknown, that one-third of them can not speak, nor half of them read, the English language; that they belong, originally, to those foreign classes where the wife is to the husband "a little dearer than his dog" "a little nobler than his horse" and that, superadded to this is the powerful sanction of a religion whereof the prime principle is that the wife must, in every word and act, be obedient to the husband, and the futility of the Julian-Pomeroy bill will faintly appear. To one who has lived here, and knows what "voting" means in Utah, the idea is so ridiculous that nothing but my intense respect (?) for Congress keeps me from ha-ha-ing right out. Practically, one man in each settlement might just as well do all the voting. The Church puts her ticket in the field, and the bishop directs the people to vote it, and they do it.

On one memorable occasion, it is said, a sort of spiritual rebellion occurred in the Utah Lake District, where many American converts reside, and the opposition candidate to the Legislature was elected. On reaching this city the successful candidate was simply "counseled" to resign, did so quietly, and the regular nominee was declared entitled to the seat. Two years ago the Jews, Gentiles, apostates and recusant Mormons of the Thirteenth Ward in this city, found they had a majority, as nearly all of these classes in the city lived in that ward. They elected Bishop Woolley, a good Mormon, however, for Councilman, against the regular nominee. The Bishop was at once cited before Brigham, promptly resigned according to "counsel" and the other candidate was admitted to the seat.

When the celebrated and somewhat amusing Hooper-McGroarty race for Congress took place, hundreds who would have voted for a decent Gentile nominee, but regarded McGroarty as either a fool or a knave, did not vote at all; consequently that gentleman received less than two hundred votes, while as the Mormons did their best -- Hooper received some 14,000! It is still a standing joke here to repeat portions of McGroarty's speech, prepared to be delivered before Congress; he employed a lawyer to write it for him, and while committing it to memory he could never talk ten minutes with a friend without running into his speech, assuming an oratorical manner and the plural number, as if addressing Congress!

From the best data in my possession I can say there are now not less than 2,500 bona fide Gentile voters in Utah. By the Autumn elections we will probably have over 4,000, which will be concentrated almost entirely in Box Elder, Weber and Morgan Counties, through which the railroad passes. It is quite possible our vote will be much larger than I have stated, for the disaffected Mormons are already beginning to gather about the Gentile settlements, and their number is larger than is generally supposed. The Gentile residents of this city, of all ages and sexes, number about eight hundred, Certainly not more than a thousand, of whom a little more than half are voters.

I make up this census from several sources; the subscription list of the Daily Reporter, the roll of membership of the Gentile Church (Episcopal), the roll of the Hebrew Benevolent Society, including every Jew in the city, and the membership of the Masonic and Odd Fellows Lodges, besides being personally acquainted with almost, every one of them. Beside these there are, one day with another, a thousand more transients In the city, consisting of visitors, railroad men temporarily out of employment, teamsters, miners, and travelers, stopping from one day to six weeks.

The legal Mormon vote of the Territory I think very near 9,000, certainly not more, probably much less. During the Hooper-McGroarty contest it is notorious that thousands of illegal votes were polled -- many voting who had come in that summer's immigration, while in the distant southern settlements the Bishops even took lists of a hundred names to tho polls and had them checked off, many of these persons having been absent for years on foreign missions, others in California, and some dead. In this city I am acquainted with several boys of sixteen years, who voted, considering it merely a good joke.

The evils of this system of voting are numerous, but one is particularly to be noted, the number and variety of ofiices hold by the same man. In the town of Fillmore, the old capital, one man holds the offices of County Clerk and Recorder, Town Clerk and Justice of the Peace, Assessor and Collector of Internal Revenue, and ex officio overseer of the poor. Besides all this he is a bishop in the church and an officer in the Nauvoo Legion. In this city, one Captain Robert I. Burton is Collector of Internal Revenue for the Territory, Sheriff of Salt Lake County, Assessor and Collector of State and county taxes, and a General in the Nauvoo Legion, besides being a prominent elder in the church, the husband of three wives, and one of the chiefs of the secret police.

This is the Burton who led the Brighamite army to capture the Morrisites, and, according to his own account, shot three of those people after their surrender. He is in manner and appearance,
"The mildest mannered man
That ever scuttled ship or cut a throat."

But if there is truth in one-fourth of the private memoirs of apostates, he is a most blood-thirsty bigot. All these civil officers are at the same time leading dignitaries in the Mormon Church, chosen solely because they are such; they consider their civil offices far inferior, and, in fact, subordinate to their ecclesiastical dignities, and knowing little or no law, they are guided by ecclesiastical policy and "counsel."

Travel where you will through the outer settlements, and you never hear the people speak of the Probate Judges as Judges; it is always "the Bishop decided so and so." With them, he is acting always in his character as Bishop, never as Judge. Nor need we be surprised at this; it is the natural conflict under such a system between the theocratic, the spiritual, and the popular, the democratic and laical. The American idea is that power is derived from the people, is merely delegated to the officer, and rests upon the just consent of the governed. The Mormon idea is exactly the reverse; power and authority come from above, and operate downward through all the grades; the official is responsible not to those below him -- to them he is the voice of God; but to those above him -- from them he derives his authority, and to them he must render an account.

In the words of a Mormon polemic, "It is not consistent that the people of God should organize or be subject to man-made governments. If it were so, they could never be perfected. There can be but one perfect government -- that organized by God; a government by apostles, prophets, priests, teachers, and evangelists; the order of the original church, of all churches acknowledged by God." I am thus minute in my statements, because so many people in the East have an idea that polygamy is the only great evil of Mormonism. There are a dozen evils we feel more than that; in fact, polygamy in itself is but a slight annoyance to the Gentile residents of Utah.

Mormonism was an unmitigated evil before they had polygamy; the priests ruled the ignorant people with spiritual terrors, and that made them dangerous neighbors and troublesome citizens. Probably some of these other evils grow out of polygamy, but that of itself troubles us very little. It is that the Territory is ruled by a church, that civil and legal measures are carried by ecclesiastical policy rather than law, that we are subjected to all the annoyances of petty tyranny, that in our business and social life we are constantly subjected to the espionage of church spies, that we are hampered in business by church hostility and the imposition of excessive taxes, that our friends and fellow-countrymen have been secretly murdered and the church prevents our obtaining justice; in short we are exposed to the tyranny of an unopposed majority, and that majority controlled by a small and compact hierarchy, working out its Star-chamber decrees by secret and, to the people, irresponsible agents.

It is this that grinds the feelings of American citizens; not polygamy, though that is a great moral evil. The Mormon people as a mass are naturally disposed to deal justly, but, unfortunately, the people are ciphers, and it seems to be the policy of their leaders to keep them in a constant state of irritation and hostile feeling to all outsiders, and to the Government of the United States. All those who imagine there is the faintest trace of loyalty or decent patriotism about Brigham Young should have heard his closing speech at the April Conference, last Thursday. With many other Gentiles, I sat and listened to a harangue, which would have startled the Committee on Territories if they had heard it. Remember that it was delivered to an audience who accept his every word as equal to the Gospel, embracing at least five thousand females, and you will appreciate this extract:
"Who does the Government send here for officers? The d__dest scalawags that could be raked out of hell! There was old Judge Drake, the d__d old scoundrel, that said he 'loved to damn the Mormons;' he'd 'get up at midnight and walk ten miles over thistles to damn them,' and he'd 'damn any man that wouldn't damn them;' and I say, G_d d__n him, and God will damn him, and all such scalawags as they send here. And these men are the representatives of Congress! And of the President! Who goes into the White House now-adays? A drunkard and a gambler! And the Vice President is the same; and you may hunt clear through both houses of Congress, and if you can find any men that are not liars, thieves, whoremongers, adulterers, gamblers and drunkards, I tell you they are mighty scarce, for no other kind can get in there. They will deny their own children; and I say, G_d d__n such men, and God will damn them. Yes; and he'll damn the nation that permits them. Now, if these d___d Gentiles give us any more trouble we'll drive them right out of the. Territory. We won't have such scalawags among us, and we ask no odds of the Government."
An apology is due for presenting such stuff, and yet the country should know the feelings which animate the leaders here. Let it be understood that Americanism, as we understand it, is a foreign element to Mormonism. The last move of the Administration was in the right direction; removing Captain Burton, and appointing in his place, as Revenue Collector, Mr. O. J. Hollister, a loyal man and honest gentleman, who will reform the revenue service here, which is now in a condition disgraceful to the Government. Much more remains to be done in the appointment of an efficient Governor, the revision and correction of the voting system, the restoration of United States Courts to their true dignity, and other measures for the protection of all who differ from the hierarchy.

Under this better system we would soon build up a liberal party here, and in time bring at least the northern portion of Utah under a republican government. I have thus endeavored briefly to portray the political situation in Utah, and have been careful to state only such facts as can be verified by abundant evidence. The evil is great, but not without remedy if fully understood by Congress; the redeeming forces are quietly at work; let them be seconded by the Government.

With this letter closes my series of sketches from Salt Lake City, and for some time at least my connection with the readers of the Commercial. To-morrow I leave for the new railroad town at the north end of the Lake, ending a seven months' residence in the "City of the Saints."

I came among the Mormons with but few ideas of them, and my first impressions of them were in the highest degree favorable. My first friends here were all Mormons, for in a Mormon train I crossed four hundred miles of the Plains, in the humble character of a "mulewhacker" -- a teamster for pay. Those persons are still my friends; they have often extended me courtesies, for which I am grateful; I have "eaten their salt, and warmed at their fires." But not all their kindness or personal friendship could blind me to the monstrous defects of their social system, or the odious features of a church tyranny. During my work here, whether as editor of the only Gentile paper in Utah or as correspondent, it has been my constant aim to
"Nothing extenuate,
 Nor set down aught in malice."
I have constantly endeavored to distinguish between the virtues of the people and the crimes of their rulers, being as to the former,
"To their faults a little blind,
 To their virtues very kind."
As for the Hierarchy, if my feelings soon changed toward them, it was from the best of evidence. That evidence has constantly accumulated, until language fails me to describe my utter detestation of their system. That the people are frugal, industrious and honest, will avail but little while they are fanatically devoted to such a power. If these desultory sketches have assisted any to a better understanding of the "Mormon question;" if they have contributed in any degree to make the duty of Government and people more plain, or to lead to more earnest inquiry on this painfully interesting problem; it they have roused the sympathies of American women for their unhappy sisters crushed beneath the double weight of religious fanaticism and man's debasing lust, or have called the notice of the press to the true wants of Utah, they have accomplished the dearest wish of their author.

Notes: (forthcoming)

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last updated: Feb. 8, 2014