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Vol. XXIX.                                   New York City, Thursday, November 11, 1869.                                   No. 8,922.




Mr. J . H. Beadle, editor of The Utah Reporter, who, while attending the Probate Court (Mormon) at Brigham City, about five miles from Corinne, was so badly beaten by the Mormons that his life is despaired of, first visited Utah about two years ago as correspondent of The Cincinnati Commercial. His early impressions of the Mormon institution were favorable, and he so expressed himself in his letters. Longer residence there, however, and a closer insight into Mormonism convinced him that the whole system was a mass of corruption, and he immediately changed the tone of his correspondence. At that time The Salt Lake Reporter, which had been reconstructed from the wreck of The Vidette, was in its infancy. Mr. Beadle was invited to become its editor. He accepted the position and took hold of the paper with an energy which showed his determination to make it a first-class "Gentile" paper. Last Spring The Reporter was removed to Corinne (a ''Gentile" town on the line of the Union Pacific Railroad) and its named changed to The Utah Reporter. Dr. Beadle's editorials, were free from all scurrilous abuse of the Mormons; terse and forcible; written in a clear, argumentative style, very damaging to Mormonism. For this offense he has been been added to the roll of Utah victims with Brassfleld, Dr. Robinson, the sufferers at the mountain Meadow massacre, and a host of others. Within the very portals of a Mormon court of justice the editor of The Reporter was battered and bruised. Mr. Beadle has no redress in case he should survive, for there is no known remedy which the courts can enforce against Mormons who have committed outrages against "Gentiles;" no grand jury can be impanneled that will indict the criminals. A military governor and martial law are the only means by which the perpetrators of these outrages can be brought to justice.

The  Chicago  Republican.

Vol. ?                                            Chicago, Illinois, Sunday, December 5, 1869.                                             No. ?

The Mormon Assault Upon an Editor.
His Story of His Unpleasant Experiences.


Mr. J. H. Beadle, editor of the Utah Reporter, published at Corinne, Utah, was in the city yesterday. Mr. Beadle is the man who received such a severe pounding at the hands of the "Saints" of Brigham City, four weeks ago, from the effects of which he has not yet fully recovered. He was formerly a resident of this city, and is a very shrewd and agreeable gentleman. From him we learn the following particulars of his trouble among the Mormons:

Some months ago Mr. Beadle went to Corinne, on the line of the Union Pacific Railroad, and engaged in the publication of the Utah Reporter. Corinne he describes to be a town of about 1,000 inhabitants, nine miles away from Brigham City, which is the county seat, and the consequent location of the courts. It is a Mormon town, while Corinne is almost exclusively settled by Gentiles. Between the two towns, or their inhabitants, rather, there has been considerable strife, which was not materially lessened by the articles at various times published in the Reporter, with particular reference to the Probate Court, of which Elder Smith is Judge. At its first settlement the people of Corinne refused to acknowledge the jurisdiction of the Mormon Courts, but subsequently they gained more confidence, and gradually threw their business in that direction.

On the occasion which resulted so disastrously to Mr. Beadle, that gentleman, with some half a dozen others, had gone to Brigham City on legal business. He remained there until the close of of the court, in the afternoon. Immediately thereafter, he left the Court room, and, having got separated from his friends, walked out of the building. On the steps stood a dozen or more overgrown "disciples," among whom was a son of this same Judge, or Elder Smith. As Mr. Beadle passed down the steps, this ruffian sprang at and knocked him down. As he fell, there was a general rush made, and he was kicked and beaten in the most terrible manner. His scalp was frightfully torn in several places, and his chest was terribly bruised. His left shoulder was broken and twisted in such a manner as to render his arm nearly useless. Having pounded and kicked him till their thirst for vengeance was satiated, they left him on the ground. His friends found him in that condition and took him home.

This rekindled the old feud between the two places. A mob at once gathered in Corinne, and for a while there were dire threats of the sacking of Brigham City. The few Mormon families who lived in the former place were waited upon, and they and their effects bundled out of town. There was great excitement for a while, as it was generally believed that the deed was instigated by the Secret Council, an institution among the "Saints" equaled only, by the Spanish Inquisition, or the Venetian "Council of Ten," which existed in the Middle ages. The leaders of the Mormons promptly denied this, however, and the affair quieted down.

Mr. Beadle has not been able to attend to business since, and will not be, probably, for some months. He is now on his way to visit relatives in Indiana, where he will remain until after the holidays. He will then go to Washington, and endeavor to get some law enacted for the greater protection of those "Gentiles" who reside in Mormondom.

The climate of Utah Mr. Beadle pronounces the most beautiful that could be imagined -- the only fault being that it is apt to produce ophthalmia, or other diseases of the eyes. The soil is not extremely productive on account of the scarcity of water, all fields requiring to be irrigated. At present, he thinks, it is not advisable to emigrate in that direction.

It is a singular fact that polygamy among the Mormons is not extensively practiced, being almost exclusively confined to the leaders. There are more men than women in the church, so that celibacy has to be practiced to a quite extensive degree. The poorer classes cannot afford to maintain a plurality of wives.

The Mormon women Mr. Beadle describes as anything but handsome. They are characterized as of a frigid disposition, and possessed of huge feet, No. 7 being about the average shoe worn by them. They take to the "Gentiles" in a very natural way, and are, as a general thing, a very innocent and virtuous class.

Note: Although the altitude atop some Utah peaks might be sufficient to expose the climber to enough ultraviolet radiation to damage his eyes, the "ophthalmia" Mr. Beadle was hinting at was the actinic conjunctivitis he himself suffered as a result of the Brigham City attack. He lost the use of one eye and later had its accumulated scar tissue dyed, so as to resemble its lost pupil. Evidently Beadle recovered the use of his left arm in the months following the assault. For more on this incident see the Daily Utah Reporter of Nov. 2, 1869 and issues following.

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Washington, February 9, 1870.            
J. H. Beadles [sic] examined.
    By the Chairman:

Question. Mr. Beadles, please state your residence.
-- Answer. My present residence is Corinne, Utah; I was editor of the Reporter, the Gentile paper published at Corinne; I have lived there since the middle of last April: before that I lived for eight months in Salt Lake City.

Q. The Committee on the Territories have now under consideration a bill in relation to Utah; they are desirous of learning all they can of the condition of affairs in that Territory; they would be glad to have you state anything you may know upon that point, or pertinent to the general subject of the bill, which, I believe, you have read. -- A. Yes sir; I examined the bill when it was first printed, and again last evening and this morning very carefully. I regard the bill as comprehending all that is within the

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power of the legislative department in connection with the subject. If anything more is necessary, it is the action of the executive branch of the government. The portions of the bill which struck me as being particularly appropriate, and indeed necessary, are, first, that which limits the power of the probate courts; second, that which nullifies their present system of voting; third, that which gives additional power to the United States marshal. These are the features which I have particularly dwelt upon in my correspondence and editorial management as editor of a Gentile paper in Utah

Q. I think some one said you were a lawyer. -- A. Yes, sir; before going west I practiced law in Evansville, Indiana.

Q. Will you state to the committee the sentiments of the people of Utah toward the United States government and its citizens, so far as you have observed during your stay in Utah. -- A. The sentiments of a large proportion of them are those of either active or passive hostility to the government. With most of them it is a passive hostility; not the vindictive hate of the rebels, but something of that passive sort of hostility which we ascribe to the High Church party in England. There are three principal causes for this hostility. First, the nationality of the people -- seven-eighths of them being foreign. At a rough estimate, I should say that the population of Utah might be classified, as regards nationality, about as follows: From Great Britain, England, Scotland, and Wales -- one-half; from Scandinavia, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark -- one-third; ten or fifteen each from France, Italy, and other countries in southern Europe; a few Orientals; twenty or thirty Sandwich Islanders; and a few Americans. The Americans, again, may be divided into two classes: The oldest converts, original Mormons, converted by Joe Smith and his co-laborers, and who are mostly from New England, New York, and Pennsylvania; and the later converts, mostly from the South -- Mississippi and the Carolinas -- poor whites, "far-downers," "sand-hillers," "mud-sills," as they were formerly called. The foreigners could not be expected to have any love for our institutions as the result of Mormon teachings and influences, and those are the only ones that are permitted to reach them. They were formed into groups before leaving the Old World, and put under the control of a Mormon elder before they start. This same organization is kept up across the ocean, and after reaching our shores, across the country; so that they do not come in contact with the American people. So all their impressions of American character and institutions are necessarily only those received from the Mormon leaders; and these are, I may say, I think, without a single exception those of bitter hostility to the United States. It is true they boast loudly of their "loyalty," but let the government send out there a judge who refuses to be a tool of Brigham Young, and you can soon see what it all amounts to. There is another fact, which creates a more active hostility. The Mormon church started out as a church of Millenarians. Joe Smith and Sidney Rigdon at first preached Millenarian doctrines -- that is, that "the last days are at hand;" in fact, they at first adopted the name of "Last-day" Saints -- afterwards changed to "Latter-day" Saints. They now teach that shortly -- in a very few years, at the farthest -- there will be a complete destruction, not of the world, but of this government. And the great prophecy, to which all others are subordinate, is that delivered by Joseph Smith, on the 25th of December, 1832, and first published in the Seer -- a Mormon periodical at Washington -- in April, 1854:

"Verily, thus saith the Lord concerning the wars that will shortly come to pass, beginning at the rebellion of South Carolina, which will eventually terminate in the death and misery of many souls. The days will come that wars will be poured, out upon all nations, beginning at that place; for behold the southern States shall be divided against the northern States; and the southern States will call upon other nations -- even the nation of Great Britain, as it is called; and they shall also call upon other nations to defend them against other nations: and thus war shall be poured out upon all nations. And it shall come to pass, after many days, slaves shall rise up against their masters, who shall be marshaled and disciplined for war. And it will come to pass, also, that the remnant which are left of the land (the Indians) shall marshal themselves and shall become exceeding angry, and shall vex the Gentiles with a sore vexation. And thus, with the sword and by bloodshed, the inhabitants of the earth shall mourn: and with famine and plague and earthquakes, and the thunder of heaven, and the fierce and vivid lightning, also, shall the inhabitants of the earth be made to feel the wrath and indignation and chastening hand of our Almighty God; until the consummation decreed hath made an end of all nations; that the cry of the saints and of the blood of the saints shall cease to come up into the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth from the earth to be avenged of their enemies. Wherefore stand ye in holy places, and be not moved until the day of the Lord come; for behold it cometh quickly, saith the Lord. Amen."
Mormon theology teaches that, in accordance with this great prophecy, the United States government is very soon to be destroyed. There have been, I suppose, ten

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thousand commentaries made upon that revelation. When the rebellion broke out, the Mormons supposed the appointed time had come; but as that ended suddenly, they now contend that it must soon break out again and desolate the country until there shall be seven women to one man: and then the new kingdom shall be set up, and the saints, i. e. of course the Mormons, take possession of the whole country. It will be readily understood how constantly preaching that these things were soon to occur would make them constantly long for that time to come. The leaders never weary of portraying and denouncing the United States government and people. It is all nonsense to pretend loyalty to institutions and to a government that they prophesy, and desire, and expect, to see shortly done away with.

Another reason, more effective than all else in promoting active hostility among the Mormons toward the United States government and people, is found in the history of the church as they understand it, as laid down in their books, and as taught by their leaders. They are taught that, from the very beginning of the church's existence the saints have been persecuted, and murdered, and cruelly treated, and all redress and justice denied them, and all for no other reason except their religion. I have heard George A. Smith rehearse the history of the church not less than a dozen times; I have seen the tabernacle crowded with ten thousand people, all wrought up to such a furor of excitement at the recital of the outrages that the saints had suffered, that it would seem positively dangerous for a Gentile to be there. It is a part of the policy of the leaders to keep the people in a state of constant hostility to the government and people of the United States.

    By Mr. Moore:
Q. From your statement, there would seem to be a studied effort on the part of the Mormon leaders to prevent their people from coming in contact with our people?
-- A. Certainly there is. A man who had long been a Mormon, but afterward apostatized, told me that in coming from England by the old route, from Liverpool to New Orleans, and from there to Hannibal City, that on reaching the railroad they were put in separate cars -- cattle cars -- and told to have no communication whatever with the people along their route; that they were in a country where persons known to be "saints" were murdered: and consequently they must not even let the people know they were Mormons. Of course, under such circumstances, they could have no opportunity of learning the truth regarding our institutions and our people. It would be almost impossible for an eastern man to understand how a foreigner could get to the center of our country and know so little about it. I have asked not less than fifty intelligent Mormons what route they came to reach Salt Lake City; and I do not recollect more than two among them all that could give me the name of a single town along the route. A party came over from England in 1863, one of whom drove a team with me across the Plains: he could recollect the name of one place in New York State; he remembered it particularly, because there the cars broke down, and the passengers were without food for a day or two, and were furnished with provisions by the people. It was, and is even to this late day, a subject of amazement to him that 'Gentiles' would give a starving man anything to eat. As I remarked, the wrongs, and murders, and religions persecutions which they say have been inflicted upon them by the people of the United States, furnish the staple of sermons and teachings by the leaders of the church. And unfortunately, upon this one point there is more harmony of feeling among the Mormons than on any other. The Recusants. the Josephites, and others who have abandoned Brigham Young, and repudiated many of his teachings, scarcely seem to have attained to any better knowledge of the Gentiles.

    By the Chairman:
Q. To return to this matter of the probate judges. Who are they, and by whom are they appointed?
-- A. The organic act of Utah is very loosely worded to start with. The powers conferred by its provisions are expressed in language at once indefinite and ambiguous, as if on purpose to allow of a mischievous latitude of construction. It provides for both district and probate courts, and says that the probate courts may have "such jurisdiction as may be prescribed by law." And the legislature has given to the probate courts complete jurisdiction of all matters, civil and criminal; it has concurrent jurisdiction with the courts of the United States, and in matters relating to divorce and alimony, exclusive jurisdiction. And thus the laws are made subservient to the demands of that perverted sexualism which is the basis of Mormonism: and the result is that, claiming to hold the marriage relation so remarkably sacred, there are more divorces in Utah than in any other community of the same number of people any where else in the United States. The causes of divorce are so numerous and so trivial that it is no wonder they do not wish them to come before the United States courts. Here it is that the civil jurisdiction interlocks, as it were, with the ecclesiastical jurisdiction. When a divorce is procured, the sealing marriage, which takes place in the "endowment house," is first dissolved; then a divorce is obtained, according to law, in the probate courts. For many years, Brigham divorced whomsoever he pleased, on his own motion, without any law at all, on payment of a ten-dollar fee. He boasted to his

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congregation, in one of his sermons, that he "made enough by their damned foolishness in such matters to keep him in spending money."

Q. He would not swear that way, in his sermon, would he! -- A. O, yes; that isn't considered swearing among the Mormons; nothing is regarded as swearing by them unless the name of God is used. But, as I was about to say, of late years it has been considered best to pay some attention to the forms of law; and now, although parties must first be divorced in this ecclesiastical way, they are afterward divorced according to law in the probate courts. Of course, these probate courts never oppose Brigham's wishes. And thus is presented a most remarkable anomaly in legislation -- a community with no marriage act, but with an act providing for divorce; with no provision for the recording of marriages, but with records for the dissolution of marriages.

Q. But is there no record kept of these ecclesiastical marriages? -- A. If there is, it is not known to Gentiles. It is hinted that there is such a record: and at one time, three or four years ago, the Mormons, or some of them, said they would produce that record; but it has never yet been produced, as any officer knows of. Whenever parties desire to be "sealed" for time and eternity, it is done in the endowment house, if the parties can reach Salt Lake City. What transpires in that endowment house very few women know until they are married; it is very rarely that a woman ever enters it until the occasion of her marriage; one of these was Mrs. Sarah A. Carmichael.

Q. What is the endowment house? -- A. The endowment house is a large adobe building, near the northwest corner of Temple block, into which no ''profane Gentile" can ever enter; it is sacred and secret. As to what occurs therein, there are three written accounts: One by Elder John Hyde, jr., who preached Mormonism for six years in England; on returning to Utah, and observing the practical workings of the institution at home which he had been promulgating abroad it was more than he could endure. He was sent on a mission, and apostatized as soon as he was safely out of the Territory. Another account is by Mrs. Marietta V. Smith, daughter of Silas Corey of Hornellsville, New York. The third is by a lady whose name I do not now recollect. These written accounts differ a little as regards the details of the ceremony. The principal portion of it consists of a grand drama, representing the creation of the world, and of Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden; the temptation of the serpent; the fall, and man's condition after the fall; the contest among the different sects in the world, and the errors of the sects; and here comes in the holy priesthood: Peter and James and John descend, and anoint Joe Smith and others to be their successors; then the candidates are initiated into the four orders of the priesthood. In reference to the ceremony of initiation there is some difference in the accounts, probably the ceremonies have varied in different cases; but as to the penalties for violation of the oaths of the orders there is no disagreement. For the violation of the oath of one order, the penalty is to have the throat cut from ear to ear; of a second, to have the bowels slit across; of a third, to have the blood spilt upon the ground; of the fourth, to have the heart torn out, &c. These secret oaths seem to exercise a fearful power over all Mormons; even apostate Mormons, when far out of the reach of the church, and where its penalties certainly need not be feared, seem to hesitate to speak of them.

Q. Have you stated to the committee who these probate judges were, and how they were chosen? -- A. I stated in part what the judiciary act provided; it also provides that the probate judges shall be appointed by the territorial legislature, instead of being elected by the people: this means, practically, an appointment by Brigham Young; the most prominent elder or bishop in each county is generally selected; in our county the probate is Elias Smith, a Mormon elder, an old Englishman, with six wives; two of them his nieces, his brother's daughters.

    By Mr. Bickley:
Q. Is it common among the Mormons for marriages to take place between persons so near of kin?
-- A. Well, not common: but sufficiently frequent to establish it as a lawful custom: I know one case where a man married his half-sister; the marriage of cousins is very common: but these, what we would call incestuous marriages, occur mostly in the southern settlements, where the people are more benighted: Brigham says that this is a part of the question of incest upon which no clear light has as yet been given; but that his prejudices prevent him from practicing it; Stenhouse says, "The prejudices of the old world cling about us yet; but when the children of the third generation of polygamists have reached maturity then you will have in these valleys the true feeling of patriarchal life."

By Mr. Cullom:

Q. About these judges who are Mormon bishops; in what estimation are they held by the Mormons; are they looked upon mainly as judges, or as bishops?
-- A. As bishops rather than as judges; for instance, suppose a difficulty to arise between two Mormons; they go before one of these judges, but they call it going before the bishop, and such it practically is, for the question is decided by him in his ecclesiastical capacity, and if an appeal is taken, it is not to any superior court known to our laws but to the Mormon high council: and the final appeal is from the high council to the

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first presidency; in hundreds of miles of travel through the Territory you will nowhere hear of a judge making a decision, it is always the bishop; but in cases between Gentiles, or between a Gentile and a Mormon, then this officer acts in the capacity of judge.

Q. In such a case, where a Gentile and a Mormon are concerned, do these judges generally render an impartial decision, or do they decide in favor of their own people? -- A. Well, I will do our bishop -- we call him "our bishop" in accordance with the universal custom -- the credit to say that, where no special interests of his religion are involved, he generally does substantial justice. He knows nothing of law; but in ordinary cases, when not instructed by the "council," he will use his best judgment, and generally do nearly right.

By Mr. Buckley:

Q. Then they are regarded as Mormon ecclesiastical officers, rather than as officers of the civil law?
-- A. Always so regarded. By the church they are considered and addressed exclusively as bishops; and we Gentiles, when in court before them, while we address the presiding officer as "judge," we feel that he is a bishop. In conversation with a prominent minister recently, I illustrated the condition of affairs in Utah in this way: Suppose that in the State of Indiana the Methodists, (I referred to the Methodists because my friend was a preacher of that denomination, and to Indiana because that was his residence, and formerly mine; suppose that in the State of Indiana the Methodists were more numerous than all other denominations, so numerous as to outnumber the membership of all other denominations together, by thirty to one, (that is about the proportion of Mormons to Gentiles in Utah:) suppose that instead of being as enlightened and intelligent as they are they were as benighted and ignorant at the masses of the Mormons are, and, like the Mormons, followed blindly the dictation of their bishop; suppose they should elect the bishop of their church to be governor of the State; and for lieutenant governor the officer in the church nearest the bishop in rank; for the upper house of the legislature, should elect prominent presiding elders; for the lower house, other presiding elders of less prominence; for judges of the courts, should elect the leading circuit preachers; for county officers, local preachers, &c., down to the lowest township officers. Nobody not a Methodist could be elected to any office of whatever grade; no other ticket would be in the field; the church would direct the people to vote that ticket, and in case of refusal would cut them off as apostates. It will at once be seen that the whole State would be entirely in the hands of the Methodists; the laws enacted would be based, not upon the Constitution of the United States, but upon the Methodist discipline; and other denominations -- Baptists. Presbyterians, &c. -- would stand as much chance of obtaining justice as Sampson among the Philistines. Now, instead of Methodists say Mormons, and instead of Indiana say Utah, and you will have some comprehension of the condition of affairs in that Territory.

By Mr. Cullom:

Q. What proportion of the people of Utah are polygamists?
-- A. In regard to that matter I shall be compelled to differ with others who have testified upon the subject. I am quite confident that not over one-sixth of the adult male population of Utah are polygamists. Of course more women are polygamists, practically, than men. Some urge estimates are made as to the number of polygamists; but as the numbers of the sexes are equal in Utah, it is manifestly impossible for everybody to have more than one wife.

Q. How many of those not practically polygamists are in sympathy with it? -- A. I think about one-half the entire population.

Q. What is the entire population of the Territory? -- A. I have made a careful estimate; of the towns as far south as Fillmore, and up the Sevier River, and have compared my own estimates with the statements of travelers further south, and I think the population is from ninety to one hundred thousand. I do not, believe it would reach a hundred thousand.

Q. What proportion of these are Gentiles? -- A. When I left Utah there were very nearly three thousand. In Salt Lake City there were, last winter, eight hundred resilient Gentiles. I made up that list from the subscription list of the Daily Reporter, from the roll of the Masonic and Odd Fellow lodges, from the roll of the Hebrew Benevolent Society, from the list of communicants of the Gentile church, (Episcopal,) from the list of the Gentile Sunday schools and day schools, and similar records; besides being personally acquainted with nearly or quite every one of them.

Q. It has been argued by some newspapers, and by others, that any law which might he passed by Congress, the effect of which should be the destruction or prevention of the system of polygamy, would produce great distress, particularly among the women. What do you think in regard to that matter? -- A. No such statement can ever made by any one acquainted with the condition of affairs in Utah, I think. To any one who had ever lived there such a question would be simply surprising. The women support themselves now, and in many cases support their husbands too.

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Certainly a law releasing them from their husbands could not make their condition any worse. A large majority -- I have no hesitation in saying five-sixths -- of the women in polygamy support themselves by their own labor. I could mention the names of leading and well-known Mormons, whose wives keep millinery shops, boarding houses, &c, or do weaving and spinning for a living. Country bishops generally have three wives, by which means a very convenient and economical division of labor is secured. One acts as housekeeper, the second is gardener, while the third does the spinning, weaving, and washing for the family.

By Mr. Duval:

Q. If polygamy were let alone, and permitted to continue without restraining influences, would it gradually die out, or would it become worse from year to year?
-- A. It would doubtless become constantly worse, if ''without restraining influences;" but restraining influences are at work. The most hopeful feature of the whole affair, in my judgment, is in the fact that nearly all the young girls, those just growing up into womanhood, are opposed to polygamy. And I believe that even if the United States government should do nothing specifically against polygamy, but simply give a sort of sanction to this and other disintegrating forces, the question of polygamy would by and by settle itself, and the rising generation slough it off in the course of the next twenty or thirty years.

By Mr. Buckley:

Q. It is alleged, and with some degree of force, that polygamy will cure itself, if simply let alone; that with the opening up of railroads, and the settling of the country around them, those people will be brought into contract with American institutions, and polygamy and its kindred abominations gradually fade away before the advancement of a higher civilization. What is your opinion upon that point?
-- A. It never would, so long as such absolute power is left in the hands of the Mormon hierarchy. They could almost completely nullify all these outside influences, and perpetuate polygamy indefinitely. But if you can in any way break the power of the Mormon hierarchy, even though you should decide to make no crusade against polygamy itself, I think these disintegrating influences would be sufficient to destroy it in twenty or thirty years.

By Mr. Duval:

Q. To what extent is Mormonism increasing by the accession of new converts?
-- A. Not nearly to so great an extent as they claim. The additions for five years past have numbered from one to three thousand a year -- men, women, and children. To balance that, however, there has been considerable apostacy; so the increase has not been very great, after all.

By Mr. Cullom:

Q. Is the increase of the population by births larger, in proportion to the population, than it is in the States?
-- A. No, sir; I think not so large in proportion to the number of women. I know the medico-theologians among the Mormons claim that population increases much faster under their system, but from the testimony of unbiased physicians, and of old women, who are pretty apt to know the fact in relation to such matters, I think the contrary. You see, the question is not whether one man will has more children with five wives, but whether each of those wives has more children than she would with a husband of her own. The bishop of [Provo] has five wives, and not a single child. As a general thing, I do not think that the wives, in households where polygamy is practiced, average as many children as the ordinary women of our agricultural communities. To this, however, Heber C. Kimball seemed to be an exception, and Brigham Young likewise. Kimball had twenty-two wives in all; at his death he left eighteen widows, eleven of whom still reside in his block -- he had in all forty-one children. Yet it is not unreasonable to suppose that of those twenty-two wives, one-half, at least, should be child-bearing women -- for whom forty-one children would be a small allowance. When Heber Kimball was living, it used to be noted as a curious fact that there were in Salt Lake City five men with an aggregate of seventy wives and one hundred and fifty children. The bishop of the ward in which I lived has thirty children living, and twenty dead. Another bishop, with six or eight wives has seventeen children buried in a row, and the longest grave is not over four feet.

Q. What is the population of Salt Lake City? -- A. I should say a little less than eighteen thousand.

Q. How many of the ninety or one hundred thousand Mormons -- that, I believe, is what you estimate the population of Utah to be -- are dependent for their support entirely upon the labor of their hands, and not upon the revenues of the church, or upon their connection with the heads of the church? -- A. Nearly all; the remainder would constitute so small a proportion as not to be appreciable in a politico-economical point of view. The farms in Utah are generally small, particularly in the northern settlements --

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say from five to twenty acres; the latter is regarded as quite a large farm. Artificial irrigation is necessary in that country, and, with their awkward system of irrigation, twenty acres is about as much as one man can attend to properly. As a result of this system of small farms, the Mormons naturally settle in communities. The whole Territory is divided, into wards; and the center of each settlement is so thick as almost to amount to a village. Each of the wards has an incorporated government, with a mayor and other city officers; and has also an ecclesiastical organization, whose authority extends over all the adjacent country. The people farm these small patches of which I have spoken, and live upon the proceeds, besides paying one-tenth to the church. The great majority have but one wife. Living in that country is tolerably cheap. The region is peculiarly adapted to grazing. Utah can turn out the finest beef cattle in the world. Wheat, rye, bailey, pumpkins, carrots, and turnips flourish particularly well; but for Indian corn the climate is a little too cool. Imphee cane grows luxuriantly where there is no alkali in the soil, and is largely cultivated for the molasses obtained from it.

Q. You speak of breaking the political power of polygamy. This bill, which the committee have agreed to recommend to the House, disfranchises -- cuts off' from the right to hold office, or to vote, or to pre-empt land -- all persons actually living in and practicing polygamy. Would you, or not, regard that as being an effective means of breaking the political power of Mormonism? -- A. Assuredly, I should. The most important things to be done are the removal of power from the probate courts, the disfranchisement of those guilty of polygamy, and the giving the United States marshal the power to enforce the decrees of the district court. This would completely destroy the political power of the Mormon hierarchy everywhere north of Salt Lake City, and I think in Salt Lake City, too. But when you pass the canyon of the Jordan, from there south, through what is known as the "black country," it would be more difficult to carry these measures into effect.

By Mr. Taffe:

Q. In Utah, do as many children live and grow to adult age as in communities where polygamy does not prevail?
A. No, evidently not; not even according to their own statistics. But I would not be understood as attributing this entirely to polygamy. It is largely the result of their fanaticism, or "reliance-on-faith doctoring;" their general prejudice against the medical profession, and practice of resorting to their priests instead, to be cured by the laying on of hands. Neither knowing nor practicing any physiological

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or hygienic laws, diseases and deaths are very frequent, especially among children.

Q. Have you ever heard Brigham Young preach? A. I have, frequently.

Q. Did you ever hear him refer to the government of the United States, or to any attempt on its part to enforce the law of 1862? -- A. I do not think I ever heard him refer to that law specifically. I have frequently heard him refer to the government of the United States; I heard him do some tall swearing, once, in that connection; he was giving a review of the judges that had been sent out to Utah, he began at Judge Brochus, appointed by President Fillmore in 1850, and cursed them regularly and in order down to the present time.

Q. Then there is no concealment on their part that they consider the law of 1862 a dead letter, and that they have no disposition nor intention to obey it? -- A. None whatever; on the contrary, they openly put it at defiance; they say it is unconstitutional; they say the Constitution guarantees to them a local form of government; whatever bears hard on them they call unconstitutional; they regard as law whatever is expedient, and denounce as illegal whatever they do not choose to obey. The authority of the church is paramount: that they openly avow.

By Mr. Buckley:

Q. You speak of the necessity of breaking the political power of the Mormon leaders: but can we strike at that political power without laying ourselves open to the charge of persecuting the people for their religious faith?
A. With the more fanatical portion -- one-half the people, and perhaps more -- you could not; they would regard any action illegal which should interfere with polygamy. Do not understand me as claiming that the good effects of this bill would be made manifest immediately. I have no doubt there would be a year or two of general confusion and uncertainty. But what I say is, no class of community need suffer. So far as suffering is concerned, there could not but be, it seems to me, less suffering than now; the women who would cease to be regarded as wives under the operations of the law would only have to support themselves and their children, and that they have to do now; the tithing system would be abolished; the people would be permitted to trade wherever they chose, buying wherever they could buy cheapest, and selling wherever they could sell to the best advantage. The polygamists generally, I doubt not, would shortly receive a revelation commanding them to seek some new home, and would leave in large numbers, and their places be supplied with Gentiles.

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Q. Where would the Mormons go to? -- A. To Arizona: it may not be generally known, but it ts a fact, that the Mormons now own an entire county in Arizona.

Q. If they should determine to leave Utah on account of the action of the United States government, would they stop again inside of the United States? -- A. The; would for some years; they could not leave immediately. It is noticeable that the Mormons have been constantly establishing their outposts farther and farther south, until they now reach nearly to Sonora, in Northern Mexico. And these Mormon settlements extend in a band, not over fifty miles wide anywhere, and in most places nut over ten miles wide; the whole constituting a sort of an arc for five hundred miles Commencing at Malade City, in Southern Idaho, we pass through Oneida, Bear Lake Valley, Cache Valley, Bear River Valley, Salt Lake Valley -- in which I include the farms along the eastern shore of Salt Lake -- Jordan Valley, forty miles long, extending to Provo, and the Utah Lake district. There a new point of departure might be taken: that brings us to Mount Nebo, sixty or seventy miles from Salt Lake City, and across the big divide; we then pass Payson, Pondtown, Le Van, Chicken Creek, and Salt Creek, to Fillmore, the old capital. Here again we might take a new point of departure; Sevier River runs through Southeastern Utah, and has some small settlement along its course; from Fillmore, south, you pass St. George, Washington, Harmony, Cedar City, Santa Clara, and Mountain Meadows, which brings you to the Great Desert; crossing the desert you have, a little settlement on the Rio Virgin, and another on the Big Muddy -- which are really in Southeastern Nevada. Below these there are a few detached settlements, extending into Arizona. The whole constitutes a belt of settlements of not less than five hundred and fifty miles in length.

By Mr. Cullom:

Q. The bill before the committee contains a section providing for a system of proceedings in court for the condemnation and sale of property belonging to Mormons who shall be convicted of polygamy and sent to the penitentiary, or shall move away, leaving their wives and children without support -- the property to be sold for the support of the women and children. Is it your opinion that there would be really any necessity for that sort of a provision in the bill?
-- A. I do not know that I am quite clear on that point. It is doubtful whether occasion would often arise for the enforcement og that provision of the bill. To convey to the committee my ideas on this subject, it would be necessary to preface them with a lengthy explanation of the manner in which these family matters are managed in Utah. Unless the husband is a hotel-keeper, as I have before! described, the wives generally live in different places, each on a little patch of ground, a few acres; from this she obtains her own living; but it is not hers; no means for a woman's support are provided, whether the husband be living or dead; the right of dower, &c, are things unknown to Mormon law.

By Mr. Taffe:

Q. Suppose a woman marries, who before her marriage had property in her own right; do I understand that she loses the right to that property when she marries?
-- A. I cannot give you the exact wording of the law upon that point. The practice is for the church authorities to take the matter in hand and settle it: and when a man dies, they divide the property up, giving so much to each widow. I do not understand that any provision is made for any legal proceedings in reference to the case. A case of this kind has arisen with our new assessor. Heber Kimball, on his death, left something to each of his children; the assessor claimed the right to tax as legacies all the bequests, except those to the children of the first wife; this of course, the church resisted, and the question has been referred to the revenue department; the decision of the department in regard to the matter, I have not learned.

Q. What do you think as to the possibility of enforcing the provisions of a law like that proposed by the committee? Do you anticipate a resistance which would result in bloodshed, or a general war? -- A. I find that the idea prevails largely in the States, at least I have seen it set forth in the editorials of leading newspapers, that any attempt to enforce such a law would precipitate a furious and desolating war in Utah. One paper says it would require a standing army of forty thousand soldiers to enforce it. Now it is barely possible that by sending out three hundred men and letting the Mormons destroy them, and follow them up by three hundred more and letting them'" destroyed, and so on, you might manage to aggravate it disturbance into something like military proportions. But let the government take the initiative and send out two thousand men, placing, say six hundred at Camp Douglas, and three or four hundred each at each place where a district court is held, and two or three hundred at Provo, Ogden, and Brigham City, and I would pledge my life almost that there never would be a particle of trouble.

Q. What do you consider the actual military strength of the Mormons? -- A. If Brigham Young were given full and fair warning, say six or eight weeks' time, he might be able to muster eight thousand men capable of holding a musket. I have seen the tabernacle as full as it could hold, and it will hold about ten thousand people, but I

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have never seen the time when a regiment of able-bodied men could be got out of it. Of the eight thousand men whom I have mentioned, the Americans and most of the foreigners living in and near Salt Lake City, have some skill in the use of arms; but as for the rest, a heterogeneous assemblage of Swedes, Danes, Norwegians, Welsh, &c., the more of them there were together, the easier they could be whipped. Give me our old regiments, the Fourteenth and Thirty-first Indiana, and I will take the contract to whip all the men Brigham Young can bring into the field.

Note: Evidently no newspaper published the full House testimony relating to the "Cullom Bill" when that issue was up for review in the Committee on Territories. The Baltimore Sun of Feb. 15, and Feb. 17, 1870 printed some excerpts (as did several other papers at that time) but distribution of the entire record had to wait until "House... Report 21" of the 2nd Session of the 41st Congress was published. Even then, not much of the recorded testimony found its way into the popular press. John H. Beadle's testimony remained "buried" for years, and has never been cited in books and articles dealing with his journalistic career. -- The one section of Mr. Beadle's testimony which did receive some national coverage was his answer to the question: "What is the endowment house?" The Sun's reporting of Feb. 17th reproduced Beadle's answer almost verbatim, and a number of American papers reprinted shorter excerpts from the Sun's columns.

The Mohawk Valley Register.

Vol. XVI.                                        Fort Plain, New York, Friday, March 25, 1870.                                        No. 48.


We have received from the National Publishing Co., 26 South Seventh street, Philadelphia, Pa., advance sheets of a new book, entitled, "Life in Utah, or, the Mysteries and Crimes of Mormonism," being an expose of the "secret rites and ceremonies of the Latter-day Saints," with a full and authentic history of the Mormon sect, from its origin to the present time, by J. H. Beadle, editor of the Salt Lake Reporter. From these advance sheets, we make the following extract, which will be found interesting to our readers:

The first Intelligent Mormon, who gave his views at length, was Mr. Victor Cram, educated as a physician, in Boston, but now a builder in Salt Lake City. As an "Inside view," his ideas ere worthy of presentation on the venerable principle, Audi alteram partem. "We have," said he, "a population of 300,000, three times the population for a new State, and have had for years; they won't admit us. The fact is, we are a little rebellious. This law of 1862 against poygamy, we don't abide by and the people won't do so!"

"And what do you think will be the result?" I asked,

"The result? Why, it will be good when people get enlightened on this point Then polygamy will become popular throughout the world."

"But how do you justify it, or explain this!"

"I take the ground, sir, that polygamy was absolutely necessary to purify and regenerate mankind; that such was the tendency that in no long time the world would have been depopulated, the human race become extinct, without the gracious assistance of polygamy, which inevitable destiny God foresaw, and revealed to Joseph Smith the mode of prevention."

He then proceeded in a lengthy detail the causes which were operating to weaken the reproductive force of nature, and destroy the young before they reached a marriageable age. His views were unique and interesting, but suffice it to say that he proved, to his own satisfaction at least, that the human race was slowly and surely tending to inevitable decay and complete extinction, through the violation of a certain inter-sexual law -- which violation was causing a decline among women and their offspring; that God revealed Joseph Smith the means of cure, which necessitated the employment of polygamy, which would in time regenerate the human race, and restore it to primal strength andbeauty.

"But how comes it," I asked, " that the Caucasian races have gone on and increased for three thousand years in single marriage?"

"Because they never run to that excess, and then this new way of killing infants before they saw the light was not known. But the present mode of living leads to excess, and America, the youngest nation, is going to lead all the rest in that excess; and when the old nations of Europe learn these new tricks and get started on this road, they will go like a flock of sheep, and melt from the face of the earth; and without a radical corrective the race would soon be extinct.

"Mind, I say," he continued, "these are not the reasons why we practice polygamy. We do it solely because God commanded it. 'The mouth of the Lord hath spoken it,' is our sole and only warrant, which we dare not disobey (!!); but these are merely a few of the reasons why God commanded it, as we think. Or to throw aside God's ordinance, and take nature for it, these reasons are sufficient to show why polygamy is according to the law and light of nature; why it is the natural order of things, and why God's chosen people were the offspring polygamous mothers. Now, I took my second wife only last year; my circumstances did not enable me to do so before, and the good effects of the arrangement are already observable in my house, particularly in the son of my second wife, which is a brighter, healthier and stronger child then either of my other eight chlldran. And I challenge you to go to any of our schools, and pick out at random a dozen children of polygamous mothers, and then say on your honor if they are not superior to the average children of single marriages."

This seemed like a bold offer, but one finds in time that the Saints are very much given to the "bluff" game, nor will it be thought strange that they are not the only people who excuse their own sins by pointing out those of others.

This work will be sold by subscription only and an agent is wanted in every county. Address "National Publishing Co., 26 South Seventh St., Philadelphia, Pa.

Note 1: John Hanson Beadle was in Washington, D. C., during the first part of February, 1870, testifying about polygamy and Mormonism before the House Committee on Territories. By early March Beadle had arrived in Philadelphia and on the 8th of that month he penned a letter in that city and sent it to the Cincinnati Commercial for publication. Beadle evidently made a side-trip to Philadelphia at that time in order to finalize the National Publishing Company's printing of his first book, the lavishly produced Life in Utah. That company began running ads for Life in Utah in the Philadelphia Inquirer's issue of April 5th.

Note 2: In her 1992 "Incest and Mormon Polygamy," Jessie L. Embry says: "No Victor Cram is listed in any standard LDS or Utah biographical sources. Nor does the Family History Library's Four Generation Program include a Victor Cram." -- J. H. Beadle arrived in Utah in September of 1868 when Victor Dee Prescott Cram (1856-1927) was only thirteen years old -- too young to have already married a "second wife." Either Mr. Beadle confused Victor's name with that of his polygamous father (Kane County architect-builder Charles S. Cram), or there was another Utah polygamist/builder named Victor Cram, whose relationship to Charles has not been documented. The family included several members of that profession -- Ralph Adams Cram, President of the American Institute of Architects, was one of the foremost American architects.

The  New-York  Times.

Vol. XXI.                                   New York City, Sunday, April 14, 1872                                   No. 6417.


Inside View of the Political Struggles in Utah.

What a Gentile Has to Say -- The Aims of the
Mormon Leaders. -- Why They Seek
Admission to the Union. --
Interesting Statements.


A Times reporter recently had an interview with one of the prominent Gentiles residing at Salt Lake City, in which the gentleman gave some interesting and important information relative to the Mormons. The following is the conversation.

REPORTER -- Why are the Anti-Mormons opposed to Utah having a State Government?

Mr. B[eatle] -- On the principle of nature's first law -- self-preservation. We know too well that on the day in which that thing is done we, or nine-tenths of us, must get up and leave the Territory. We have property there; our home is there; our future in the mines is bright, and we don't want to leave. Make it a State now, with Mormon law and Mormon administration, and we must leave. This is not denied by candid Mormons or their allies. We are openly informed that Utah is "their country, and the Gentiles have no business there."


REPORTER -- Why would you be forced to leave?

Mr. B. -- To answer that question fully would take too much time I will explain briefly. Mormonism as a religion recognizes no civil government distinct from church government. The prime principle of all their preaching in that "God has set up His Kingdom in these mountains -- His priesthood are to rule in righteousness, and all who do not bow shall be cut off." I could give you hundreds of passages from their sermons in elucidation of this point, if necessary. There is one from a sermon delivered by Orson Pratt last October: "All man-made Governments are in rebellion against God * * * There is, there can be, but one Government acknowledged or approved by God." And here is the joint declaration of the first Presidency -- Brigham, Smith and Wells: "It is apostacy to dissent from the priesthood, even if it could be done honestly. * * * A man may honestly differ and go to hell for it. * * * It is our prerogative to dictate to this people in everything, even to the ribbons the women shall wear. * * * To stop and question is the sure road to apostacy. Do as you're told and keep your mouth shut." Besides these, I can show you a pamphlet on Government by a Mormon Elder, John Jaques, now the associate editor of Cannon the Apostle, which you can read at Ieisure. He says: "It is not consistent that the people of God should submit to man-made governments. There is but one true and perfect government -- the one organized by God; a government by prophets. apostles, priests, teachers and evangelists; the order of the original Church, of all Churches acknowledged by God." In pursuance of this theory, all division in voting is forbidden. The priesthood put out a ticket, the people are supplied therewith by the Bishops, and vote them without a question. The Mormon ladies make a great noise about their free, universal suffrage. Now, it so happens that there have been just three instances in their Church history where members ventured to vote against the known wishes of the priesthood


REPORTER -- Were they permitted to do so freely?

Mr. B. -- Judge for yourself. The first was when Brigham Young defeated Sidney Rigdon as candidate for the leadership in Nauvoo, in 1844. Brigham moved that Rigdon be"cut off," and several persons voted "No," then it was moved and carried that they also be "cut off." It was then moved and "unanimously voted" that "all who shall hereafter defend or speak well of Sidney Rigdon shall be cut off." Here was fereedom of election with a vengeance. The other cases were exactly similar to this. Any man who votes against the known wishes of the priesthood is promptly cited before the High Council, and failing to explain and apologize, is cut off. And yet they talk of "union." The entire Territory is governed in the same way.

REPORTER -- But does not the ballot secure freedom of election?

Mr. B. -- By their election law every ballot is numbered, and the voter's name written opposite the number of the ballot. Here is a copy of the Utah statutes. You will find that law on page 90, chap. lix. Brigham's clerk can go into any part of Utah and tell just how any man has voted for twenty years past. Consider, then, what a hold the Bishops have in properly, social matters, &c., upon the poorer class, and don't you see there isn't the ghost of a chance for any but the priesthood to have any power in elections? Don't that beat Tweed and Sweeny ten to one?

REPORTER -- It does, indeed. But how will this thing be managed in the proposed State?


Mr B. -- Probably in this way. First, Brigham Young will be elected Governor; his first Councillor, Lieutenant Governor, and his second Councillor, Daniel H. Wells, (now indicted for murder,) Chief Justice.

REPORTER -- You seem to be picking out the offices for them beforehand.

Mr B -- Why, my dear Sir, they are already elected. The "State of Deseret" was organized in the Winter of 1849 50 -- a year before Utah Territory was constituted. Its organization has been kept up ever since. These officials were chosen and the "Deseret Legislature" meets regularly, and receives a message from "Governor" Brigham Young. I know of no political creation with so many of the ear-marks of treason about it as this existing "State of Deseret."

REPORTER -- And you consider that if Utah were admitted into the Union, this sort of thing would continue?

Mr. B. -- Certainly The State Senate would consist of Apostles and leading Bishops: the House, of minor Bishops and Elders, and thus on througuout the State. Each official's rank would depend exactly on his name and position in the Church, and zeal for Mormonism would be the only basis for promotion in the State. Now, I ask you, Sir, does this realize your ideas of what an American State ought to be?

REPORTER -- Decidedly not: but I had always supposed that the chief, if only, grievance against Mormonism was polygamy.


Mr. B. -- There is no more erroneous idea than that. I find that many, like you, Sir, suppose that polygamy is the only evil of Utah. Remember that Mormonism was an unmitigated evil long before polygamy was introduced. The priestnood influenced the voters to cast their vote solidly for whichever party would grant them most favors, and that made them troublesome neighbors and dangerous citizens wherever they collected. Were all the people of Western Illinois "bloody robbers?" Were the old settlers of Jackson County, Missouri, rank persecutors? Were those of Clay, Ray, Davies, and Caldwell Counties a race of murderers? You are bound to believe they were so, if you believe the Mormons were good citizens, for they have always come into conflict with their neighbors. In fact, you are reduced to the simple dilemma: Either the Mormons are not good citizens, not safe depositories of the civil power, or else all the Ant-Mormons of Western Illinois, Missouri and Iowa, all the Anti-Mormons of Utah and adjoining Territories, and all the men sent by President Grant and other Presidents to Utah, as officials, are a set of murderous scamps, persecutors and mobocrats.


REPORTER -- But the President speaks of an antagonism in Utah?

Mr. B. -- That is true, but this antagonism between Mormons and Americans is not "worked up," as the saying is. It exists -- it is inherent in the nature of the case. Just as with the Indians-- Americans can no more avoid coming into conflict with Mormon institutions than with Indian institutions. It is the natural conflict under such a system between the theocratic or ecclesiastical and the democratic or laical elements. The American idea is that power is derived from the whole people, and is merely delegated to the official who is accountable to the people. The Mormon idea is exactly the reverse. They consider that power and authority come from above. The official is responsible, not to those below him, but to those above: from them he derives his power, and to them he must render an account. The American in Utah looks for justice to the District Court; the orthodox Mormon looks to the Bishop. The former appeals to tbe Supreme Court, and the latter to the High Council and thence to the First Presidency. How can "antagonism" be avoided? If you give them a State Government they will at once elect the leading Bishops, Judges of the Circuit Courts; the members of the High Council will make the Supreme Court, and the first Presidency the executive power. You simply install all the Church officials in places where their ecclesticatical acts become positive law. You place us Anti-Mormons completely in their power. What chance would a man like me have for Justice with Mormon Danites as constables to arrest, and Mormon Elders as Magistrates to bind over; a Mormon Bishop as Circuit Judge to try, and a Mormon Supreme Court High Council to appeal to, presided over, by High Chief Justice, President, Lieut.-Gen. Daniel H. Wells -- a cruel and remorseless bigot who knows as much of law outside of Mormonism as Red Cloud does of Blackstone's Commentaries? And my jury and accusers would be men willing to prove anything the priesthood desire -- men who would swear to visions ot the Savior, to conversation with angels, healing the sick and raising the dead -- men who can "discern by the Spirit, without the aid of earthly witnesses!" What chance would I have of Justice?

REPORTER -- Have you any proof that this would be the case? Might you not have a Constitution guaranteeing fair trials?

Mr. B. -- Bear in mind that all the machinery of this State would be in the hands of the priesthood. And of what account would constitutions be to people who don't believe in human devices? Their religion commands them not to be governed by the laws of man, but by those of God. The priesthood are the interpreters of God's law. The inference is plain. But it is not a matter of mere conjecture. Such a Government was in operation in Utah for twenty years, as far as they could accomplish it by usurpation. They reduced the United States District Courts to mere nullities. The Mormon Legislature passed laws giving their County Courts complete civil and criminal jurisdiction, and made a Territorial Marshal -- himself a polygamist and a Danite -- the officer of the United States District Courts. This, of course, gave Brigham Young complete control of the juries, and nobody could act, even in a United States Court, without being "counseled" as to his verdict. This, however, is too important to be stated on my word alone. Excuse me till I bring the documents.

Mr. B. returned in a few minutes, bringing with him a small volume entitled Journal of Discourses -- a work published by authority.


Mr. B. -- Here are the authorized sayings of the priesthood. Here the doctrines of "blood atonemont," "Adam worship," &c., are fully set forth. But about the juries -- here is a sermon, on their duties, preached by J. M. Grant, Brigham's First Councillor, on Sunday, March 2, 1856. Examine it at your leisure, but note this passage:

"Last Sunday the President chastised some of the Apostles and Bishops who were on the Grand Jury. Did he succeed in clearing away the fog that surrounded them, and in removing blindness from their eyes? No; for they could go to their room and again disagree, though some explanation made them unanimous in their action. But how is it with the little jury? Some of them have got into the fog to suck down the words and eat the filth of a Gentile Court Judge. I call it a Gentile Court, though ostensivly a Court in Utah," &c.

Thus you see, it was treason to the Church to regard the instructions of a Gentile Court. It is notorious, and not denied in Utah, that juries were governed by "counsel" from the priesthood for twenty years -- or until "the Lord" and Gen. Grant sent us Judge McKean, who declared that statute a violation of the organic act, as it unquestionably was, and restored the District Courts to the position which they have in other Territories. Before that the County Judge was always the presiding Bishop, absolutely ignorant of law, and guided only by Church polity.

REPORTER -- Why, such a state of affairs must have been intolerable.


Mr. B. -- Had it gone, on, there would, sooner or later, have been a fight, whenever the Anti-Mormons became strong enough. Take the town of Corinne for instance. There a community of one thousand Americans sprang up on the railroad and their Judge, in 1869, was Bishop Smith of Boxelder, a hoary-headed old sinner with six wives, two of whom were his cousins and two his nieces -- his own brother's daughters! -- Think of that -- an English Mormon Bishop the absolute Judge of the life, liberty, marriage relations, and probate matters of a thousand Americans! Wasn't that a nice outfit?

REPORTER -- And do you personally know this to be a fact?

Mr. B. -- I do indeed, Sir. I was summoned on a civil suit before this lecherous old "Saint," Smith in November, 1869. When coming out of the Court-house I was hit suddenly and without warning in the back of the head by somebody, I know not who, and knocked senseless. They then trampled on me with their heavy boots till I had bones broken and was subjugated generally. My friends hauled me home, the doctor set me on my pins in a month or so, and that was the end of it. The "Saints" had all that fun, and it never cost them a cent. Suppose I had brought suit for damages. I should have had a Mormon Judge and jury, and you can guess would have been the result. I had "damages" enough already! In those days we were almost without resource, except the right of appeal to the District Court. Now make Utah a Mormon State, and that old polygamist will have ten times the power he had before; for then we could not appeal to a Gentile Judge, but only to a Mormon Supreme Court governed by the priesthood.

REPORTER -- It is to be hoped that things will not come to such a pass as that.

Mr. B. -- It all depends upon the action of Congress. But I should, like to ask you a few questions now, Mr. Reporter.

REPORTER -- Certainly, Sir.


Mr. B. -- Well, now, do you think there is really any great tendency in public feeing [in the] East toward admitting Utah?

REPORTER -- I hardly think there is any "great tendency." Still many are captivated with the idea of a magnanimous compromise. The Government is to forgive the past, and the Mormons are to renounce polygamy in the future.

Mr. B. -- Is it possible that Congress can be caught by such a transparent trick -- a scheme which exhibits fraud npon its very surface The priesthood have been proclaiming for nineteen years that God had spoken from the heavens, commanding them to practice polygamy; that their salvation depended upon it, underscore "salvation," if you please, Sir; a Mormon Apostle alwaye emphasizes that word if he intends to do some devilish mean thing, and they must maintain it, though all the power of earth and hell were to unite against it. Life and liberty were as nothing when compared to God's express commandment. Thus they talked until a few short months ago. But now they turn quite round, go back on revelation, salvation, justification and sanctification by celestial conjugation, and propose to give it all up if Congress will grant them more power in another way. Was there ever such a proposition from a body claiming to be religious? How many thimbles-full of brains does it require to see that they cannot possibly be sincere? It is simply a bid for power. Suppose the Government should say: Dismiss your present wives, ignore your supposed revelation on polygamy, and you shall at once have a State Government, with plenary powers, do you imagine they would hesitate? No! They care not a copper for consistency.

REPORTER -- Are you sure of that, Sir?

Mr. B. -- Of course I am. But aside from this I have evidence sufficient to convince any unprejudiced person that the Mormon priesthood cannot be sincere, and that they intend privately to practice polygamy all the same.

REPORTER -- I suppose your evidence is authentic?

Mr B. -- Yes. Sir; polygamy, according to Mormon history, was established in 1843, yet it was never adopted as a church doctrine till 1852, the revelation authorizing polygamy is headed --

"Revelation." "Given at Nauvoo, July 12, 1843."

Now, Sir, was not polygamy forbidden by the Constitution of Illinois in 1843? And had not the Gentiles control of the Courts everywhere, except in Hancock County? Yet now the Mormons boast how they outwitted the State officials and established polygamy. But they did not acknowledge polygamy until September, 1852.


It was to get Utah fully organized as a Territory, and Brigham confirmed as Governor before Congress knew authoritatively of the matter. Now, between those two dates -- 1843 and 1852 -- the Mormon publications contained no less than fourteen solemn denials that polygamy was either a doctrine or practice of their Church. In February, 1844, Joe Smith and his brother, Hiram, published an "Encyclical Letter" in the Times and Seasons, at Nauvoo pronouncing the charge of polygamy as false, and stamping it as "a wicked, corrupt and scandalous doctrine." Six weeks after, Hiram again published a furious denunciation of polygamy. All the Mormon Church papers in England and America continued to denounce it: indeed, it is a curious fact that Mormonism is the only Church which has dealt in wholesale condemnation of polygamy. The missionaries, both in Europe and at home, united in these denials, calling God to witness, with frightful oaths, that their Church had no such doctrine. Yet all this time they were practising it.

All at once, in September, 1852, they reversed the process, denied their own denials, admitted, as they now do, that they had "deceived the Gentiles for the upbuilding of Saints," and proclaimed polygamy as "the celestial law which it is damnation to reject." Isn't that a beautiful recommendation for a people who want to be intrusted with Statehood on promise of good behavior? Fourteen times they have willfully sworn falsely on this subject; lie has been added to lie, and perjury heaped upon perjury, till the pages of Mormon history are black with falsehood and red with sanctified lust; and now their agents, Hooper, Cannon, Fuller and Fitch, come to Congress and propose another guarantee, another trial? A trial of what?

To see if a priesthood who have sworn to one lie fourteen times, will accidentally tell the truth the fifteenth time? To see it an egg which was rotten in 1852 has improved by reason of age!


REPORTER -- But are not these different men who will now manage Mormon affairs?

Mr. B. -- Very few of them; and I suspect the new hands are worse than the old. There is a little bit of recent history on this subject which may have escaped your notice. When Hon. W. H. Hooper, the Mormon Delegate, traveled East early last Autumn, he was interviewed in Philadelphia by a reporter, who gave Hooper's version of the proposed compromise and new State. It embodied the abandonment of polygamy on a number of conditions. When that report reached Utah we all recognized it at once as the plan previously broached there. The Mormon papers immediately began to prepare the public mind for it, and tbe movement had already gained strength when Hooper was heard from again. In Washington he found that his Philadelphia statements would not assist his intrigue, so he denied to another reporter the truth of the first report. But that first report is the very plan counted upon in Utah, and, what is more, Mr, Hooper broached it to me personally a year ago in the Capitol at Washington, and again in his room at the Hamilton House. This compromise and admixture of a "State of Deseret" and an anti-polygamic Constitution is no new thing; I myself know it to be more than a year old.

REPORTER -- When did you first hear of it?

Mr. B. -- Just about a year ago. Sir. It was set forth to me by Hon. Godlove S. Orth, of Lafayette, Ind., who thought it a fair thing, and worthy of his support. But to return to Hooper. He suggested to me last winter that the new State would forbid polygamy, and that it might be so arranged that it could have one Gentile and one Mormon Senator, and asked if we would in that case oppose it. Of course Hon. Tom Fitch would be one Senator, and Hooper the other. Much good two such Senators in Washington, hampered and controlled by the Church Government, would do as in Utah!

REPORTER -- What would the Gentiles now in Utah do in case the "State of Deseret" should be admitted during this session of Congress?


Mr. B. -- Well, it's hard to say. A few have always been on good terms with the priesthood, and they, if very humble, could stay. A few more would make peace on any terms -- such especially as the priesthood care to make any use of. But the great majority, especially men like myself, who have always been outspoken against the temporal rule of the Church, would have to choose at once between two evils -- to fight or emigrate. We could not submit, and it would not do us any good if we did, and we have too much at stake to run away. Our only chance would be to fight. We number 8,000 men. The Mormon militia does not number more than twice as many, and we could keep off the main body of the "Church militant" for some little time. We are tolerably united; four-fifths of us have served in the army, North or South, (it's all the same in our politics in Utah!) we are in mining towns, where we could organize solidly, and we should set up vigilance organizations, have our own laws and police, and permit no Mormon officer to make any arrests among us. But that state of society, as you are aware, could not last very long, with Mormon Sheriffs pursuing criminals into Gentile counties, and Gentile officers (for some counties would have a majority of Gentiles) chasing others back; the only result could be trouble.


REPORTER -- But surely "law" would be paramount?

Mr. B. -- I tell you, Sir, that dozens of prisoners have been killed by Mormon officers on the pretence that they were trying to escape; there is no confidence on either side. Riots, mobs and forcible rescues would be probable facts -- nay, inevitable, were Utah once a State. No prominent man on either side could surrender to the officers of the other party, for fear of assassination. Thus the peaceful administration of justice would be at an end, and the whole community given up to a frightful anarchy. My word for it, if Congress organizes a State there now, they will have another State to reconstruct within two years. It would be Kansas over again, only as much worse as religious bitterness could cause it to be.

REPORTER -- You say that men have been killed while in custody?

Mr. B. -- Yea, certainly, many of them! Potter and Wilson, of Weber Valley, the men arrested for whipping Gov. Dawson, and others. The notorious Bill Hickman tells of "using up" several in that way.

REPORTER -- Was Brigham indicted for murder on Hickman's testimony?

Mr. B. -- Not on Hickman's testimony alone. That only supplied the clue to other testimony. But Hickman has made a full confession, which has unearthed a vast amount of other evidence. Hickman has acknowledged to more than twenty murders which he himself has committed, but the fearful massacre which has made a by-word of "Mountain Meadows" was done by other hands.

REPORTER -- What, then, do you consider the most damning crime in which Brigham was, in whole or in part, a participator?


Mr. B. -- Brigham's crimes are many. One or two are very prominent -- the "Mountain Meadows Massacre," which I have mentioned, and the murder of the Aiken Party are perhaps most prominent. It would seem that Brigham must have been more or less cognizant of the murders of several hundreds of persons. He perhaps may plead the obligations of religion, or that he only followed in the steps of the Jewish leaders of old. Let him answer to his country. I am not a Jew. I live in the present age, and I and my friends have nothing to do with by-gone times. All I can say, Mr. Reporter, is that Brigham cares not a cent for the polygamy prosecutions. It is the haunting murder cases that he wants to hedge against. Make, if you will -- make Utah a State, call it "Deseret," and let the beauty of that superstitious title hide the foulest deed which, even in the darkest ages, the canopy of heaven has overshadowed. Make Utah a State, and then the murderers of more than three hundred American citizens will go unpunished. Make Utah a State, and say where would be the great highway of the West, the glory of this nation, the wonder of the civilized world? Make Utah a State, and in doing so, let our Fatherland forget for the first time its prestige and its inalienable rights of liberty.




by Edward White


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John H. Beadle.

JAMES W. BEADLE, the father of our subject, was born in Jefferson County, Kentucky, in the year 1805. In 1830 he was married to Elizabeth Bright; and in the year 1837 removed to Liberty Township, Parke County, Indiana, when John H. was born, on the 14th of March, 1840.

His early education was suffh only as could be obtained in the very common schools of a very remote country neighborhood. He was, even thus early in life, distinguished for a remarkably active and retentive memory -- three perusals of a paragraph being sufficient to fix it in his mind. At the age of ten years he obtained a prize, given by the Methodist Episcopal Sunday School, of Rockville, for having committed the entire New Testament to memory -- the greater portion of which

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he retains at the present time, as perfectly as when he received the reward for committing the same.

At the age of nine years he completed the course of study taught in the common schools at that time, and his father removed to Rockville, in the same county, in order to give his children better educational advantages. In three years John H. and his older brother had completed the high-school course, and were ready to enter college. But our subject being at this time of a peculiarly delicate constitution, it was decided that his school-days were at an end. This he did not relish; as having great aptitude and love of study, and, on the other hand, having but little inclination or capacity for manual labor, he could but think this decree a perversion of the laws of Nature. Yet, for the next five years he spent the time on his father's farm, near Rockville -- it being about equally divided between ordinary farm-labor and driving stock. He also, during this time, attended two short Winter terms of school at the Rockville Academy, in which he reviewed his high-school studies; making, beside, some progress in Greek and Surveying.

In October, 1857, he entered the Freshmen Class of the University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor. Here he acquired considerable distinction in the study of languages -- his remarkable memory making it but an easy pastime for him to acquire a language so that he could read, write, and speak it in a shorter space of time than is ordinarily spent on the rudiments.

During the second year his health gave way, and for some time his life was despaired of. After recovering sufficiently to travel, he made a short visit home; then started on an extensive tour through Illinois, Missouri, Iowa and Minnesota -- much of the time on foot, and earning his subsistence by such work as he could find to do: such as farm-labor, teaming, selling books, etc. After four months' residence in Minnesota, his heath became so much improved that he was able to return to college in 1860, where he remained until the breaking out of the war.

After an extended tour through New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Ohio, he came home, and enlisted as a private in Company A, of the Thirty-first Indiana Volunteers, and served until after the battle of Fort Donelson, when exposure brought on a disease of the lungs, which nearly terminated his life.

~ 128 ~

During the next four years he alternately traveled, taught school, and studied law; and in 1866 settled, as he supposed, permanently in Evansville, in the practice of that profession. But his health began to give way, and in 1868 he started for California, attempting a correspondence with the Cincinnati Commercial -- as he tells us in the "Undeveloped West" -- with "the hope of being able to pay part of his expenses." And during the next Winter the readers of the Commercial were delighted by a series of fresh, spicy and original letters from Salt Lake City, signed "Beadle," which proved to be the "trial letters" of Mr. Beadle. These letters soon brought him into notoriety, causing him to be classed as one of the first newspaper correspondents in our country.

While in Utah he, for one year edited the Salt Lake Reporter, the only non-Mormon paper in the Territory. He soon made this one of the spiciest sheets in the West, and a continual "thorn in the flesh" to the Mormons.

Since leaving this paper he has traveled continuously in the Western States and Territories, corresponding for the Cincinnati Commercial, Western World, and other papers -- at the same time gathering facts for his books.

In the early part of the year 1870 he issued his first work, entitled "Life in Utah." This is, perhaps, the best and most complete history of Mormonism yet written. There have been but few books that have sold better than this -- Mr. Beadle's first book. Up to the present time, eighty thousand copies have been sold. This work, which reflects great honor on the writer from the clear, impartial statement of the rise, progress, and workings of Mormonism -- acquired only by the most hard and patient labor; and from the forcible and interesting style in which it is written, will deservedly rank it among the reliable histories of our land.

Mr. Beadle in the following year issued a small work, entitled "The Confessions of Bill Hickman, the Destroying Angel of the Mormons.'' This work had, also, quite a circulation.

During the present year "The Undeveloped West," -- the best, as yet of Mr. Beadle's works -- has been issued. It contains a full -- and what is somewhat remarkable for a work on the "great West" -- a truthful description of the far Western

~ 129 ~

States and Territories. This must deservedly prove a very popular work; as well from the happy style in which it is written, as from the fund of useful information it contains.

Mr. B.'s style is enlivening rather than finished and often drops to colloquialisms and "Hoosier ' phrases; and after reading his latest work one feels as if some good-humored friend had dropped in and talked a few hours in the vernacular.

Mr. Beadle has, perhaps, as fine and varied an education as that of any man in our State; which, together with his remarkable memory and more than ordinary happy faculty of of expression, has gained for him, even thus early in life, success and fame.

On last Christmas Mr. Beadle was married in Evansville, to Miss Jennie Cole -- a lady who is peculiarly qualified, not only to gild his life with happiness, but to help and assist him in his intellectual labors.

Mr. Beadle is, as yet, but a young man, and we shall expect him to add much to the success he has already obtained; and the future to mark him as one of America's best and most widely-known writers.

© 1971 University of Utah
"fair use" excerpts reproduced

~ 12 ~

...John Hanson Beadle, though equally as serious as Kate on the Mormon question, was a clever and popular journalist. 28

His caustic remarks about the pretensions of Western communities, his savage wit in describing Western personalities, his remorseless judgments of Western boosterism remind one of the late H. L. Mencken. As with Mencken, Beadle's humor, at least on matters about which he felt keenly, was an instrument of ridicule and derision. He was a master of caricature -- the deliberate exaggeration of defective qualities and characteristics in order to convey an image of absurdity and ludicrousness. Just as Mencken's "The Hills of Zion" and "The Sahara of the Bozart" were intended to produce profane laughter at the pretensions of the Bible Belt, Beadle's anti-Mormon columns and books were a veritable bastinado of hyperbole,

28. Unless otherwise indicated, the biographical information on Beadle is taken from his many books, which contain autobiographical material.

~ 13 ~

designed to quash any incipient admiration for Mormon industry, sobriety, and brotherly love.

To give some examples, Beadle described George A. Smith, jovial and popular (with the Mormons at least) member of the First Presidency and Church Historian, as "a round, fat, and unctuous man with pig-eye and soap fat chin." 29

Daniel H. Wells, who had also been a member of the First Presidency, commander of the Nauvoo Legion, and Superintendent of Public Works, was "the most dangerous man in the Priesthood... his face and head bear involuntary witness to the truth of Darwinism."30

Beadle's most suggestive asides, as one might suppose, were at the expense of Brigham Young. The symbolic stone lion over the pillared portico of the Lion House was a "sad misapplication," he wrote; a bull would have been a more appropriate emblem.31

In harmony with this he suggested that the eagle -- "a strict monogamist" -- perched on Eagle Gate was also inappropriate; it should be replaced by a polygamous rooster. 32

Nor were his taunts restricted to persons. The Salt Lake Tabernacle was an "oblong nondescript" -- "like nothing else in the heavens above, or the earth beneath, or probably the waters under the earth." 33

The University of Utah, which then went under the name University of Deseret, had only one building, and it looked "like a tolerably respectable second rate grocery store." 34

Beadle was equally merciless on Mormon customs and predispositions. In Utah, he insisted, there is "more downright lying to the square mile than in any other region on this continent... the Jews lie for gain, the Gentiles from association, and the Mormons 'for Christ's sake.'" 35

The Mormon practice of seeking counsel from the Bishop he characterized in this manner: Brigham Young tells the women of the territory, "If you see a dog run by the door with your husband's head in its mouth, say nothing till you have consulted with the bishop." 36

Polygamy, he concluded, enabled the Mormons to

29. John H. Beadle, The Undeveloped West; or Five Years in the Territories (Cincinnati, 1873), p. 111.

30. Ibid.

31. John H. Beadle, Life in Utah; or, The Mysteries and Crimes of Mormonism... (Philadelphia & Cincinnati, 1870), p. 244.

32. Salt Lake Daily Reporter, March 27, 1869

33. Life in Utah, p. 241.

34. The Undeveloped West, p. 686.

35. John H. Beadle, Western Wilds, and the Men Who Redeem Them... (Detroit, 1877), p. 102.

36. Ibid., p. 506.

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settle "in one master stroke... the woman question, servant-gal-ism, and division of labor." 37

As for the Mormon people, they were a "low-browed, stiff-haired, ignorant, and stolid race." 38

To be more specific, the residents of Heber City were "a race of simple shepherds, with reason scarce above the sheep they drive." 39

An old politician such as Stephen A. Douglas sinks and fails, and all at once it is apparent that he does so because "he damned Brighamism." "What a noise and dust we Kick up" said the fly on the coach wheel!" 40

Obviously, Beadle's sarcasm went beyond the bounds of amusement; it served to create and maintain a stereotype that destroyed all notions of Mormon individuality. "The object of ridicule is to kill," wrote Victor Hugo. "Men's laughter sometimes exerts all its power to murder." (II, 305) The images of Mormonism projected by Beadle and other writers of the period were designed to titillate, horrify, and provoke the nation's conscience: the "lewd twinkle" in the eye of the Prophet, the "verilies" in the conversations of the fanatical faithful, the secret signs of the Danites, the dejected sighs of the plurals, the gibberish which authors claimed to be "regular fare" in the Tabernacle -- these were the images that were tirelessly repeated in the "literature" of the time.

John Hanson Beadle was born in 1840 in a log cabin built by his father in Park County, Indiana, west of Indianapolis.41

His father was a farmer and a country merchant who made annual trips with flat boats of grain and other provisions to New Orleans. A community leader, he was justice of the peace, county commissioner, and sheriff. In 1859 "just out of college" and being asthmatic, young John Beadle made his first independent venture away from home, working and traveling in Minnesota. When the Civil War commenced, he enlisted as a private in the 31st Indiana Volunteer Infantry, but was discharged after a year because of asthma. He then enrolled at the University of Michigan, and graduated with an LL.B. in 1867. Legal practice was short-lived, for when John's asthma reappeared in acute form, his doctor advised him to move west. Casting about for some way to finance his western travels, Beadle offered to report his journeys to various

37. Life in Utah, p. 235.

38. Ibid., p. 249.

39. The Undeveloped West, p. 685.

40. Salt Lake Daily Reporter, October 30, 1868.

41. The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1921), XVIII, 344-345; XVII, 314-315; South Dakota Department of History Collections (Aberdeen, 1906), 111, p. 87.

~ 15 ~

eastern newspapers. His offer was finally accepted by the Cincinnati Commercial and Beadle's articles appeared in this paper for the next twelve years.

Now twenty-eight years old, Beadle visited cities and rural areas in Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas, and reported on conditions in each part of the country he encountered. He was not a romantic, and his articles pricked the bubble out of many a pretending "metropolis." Running out of money, he signed on with a freighting outfit headed for Utah. The train contained some young Mormon men, and Beadle was sufficiently impressed with them to want to know more. His first impressions of Salt Lake City, as reported in September 1868, were reasonably favorable, if a little self-assured: "I had been treated with considerable courtesy," he wrote, "and began to conclude the Mormons had been maligned, and often held long arguments in favor of those whom I suspected to be a much misrepresented and persecuted people."'42

In a second letter, written only five days after his arrival in Salt Lake City, he stated
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.43
This pleasantly detached and rather engaging flippancy ended when Beadle attended some sessions of the general conference held in the Tabernacle in October 1868.44

This was the conference at which the single most important policy crisis of the nineteenth century Mormon experience in Utah came to a head. The transcontinental railroad was about to be completed; economically, at least, Utah was about to join the Union. To those who loved the Kingdom, the specter of a deluge of invading Gentiles was alarming. After intra-administration debate, and no doubt prayerful consideration, Mormon Church officials announced a policy of protection, as they called it, to preserve the exclusivistic commonwealth established in 1847. The protective policy included a program to boycott non-Mormon merchants, the inauguration of economic cooperation, and a tightly-reigned unity

42. Life in Utah, p. 259.

43. Cincinnati Commercial, October 1, 1868, p. 11.

44. Beadle, Western Wilds, p. 113-114.

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on political matters. When a small group of business and intellectual Mormons ("the Godbeites") demurred, they were excommunicated.45

All of this stirred the blood of young Beadle. A believer in Jacksonian individualism, a proud Black Republican, and a firm advocate of liberty of conscience and action, Beadle thought he detected in the Mormon conference the old patterns of European autocracy which the new American Republic had sworn to throw off. 46

Group economics, group politics, group marriage -- Beadle saw these as part of a pattern of theocratic despotism. "When the 'Church of Jesus Christ' forbids its members to buy, or sell only within certain limits, regardless of their private interests," he wrote in his next article, "do you not suspect that Church is going a little beyond what Christ commanded, that it is taking charge of the individual conscience in a matter which ought to be left free?" 47

Beadle was so angered by the (to him incredible) things he saw and heard in the conference that he walked into the office of Utah's "Gentile" newspaper, the Salt Lake Daily Reporter, formerly the Union Vedette of General Patrick Connor's soldiers at Camp Douglas, and wrote a short and vicious letter against the boycott and "the Mormon hierarchy":
"Mormonism boasted that it had produced a city of quiet and order; and so it had -- the quiet of mental stagnation; the order of a perfect religious conformity, of a system which brooked no schism and of which the advocates knew they were right, and wanted no one about who did not think as they. 48
The Reporter's editor-publisher, S. S. Saul, was impressed; this man was no crank but a trained lawyer and persuasive writer. Saul asked Beadle to stay and edit the paper while he (Saul) went east.49

Later Beadle and two friends entered into a contract to buy the paper from General Connor, still the real owner of the paper, agreeing to pay $2,500 at the rate of $300 per month. Prior circulation and the

45. A review of these events is given in my Great Basin Kingdom (Cambridge, Mass., 1958), Chap. VIII.

46. Western Wilds, p. 399-400.

47. Salt Lake Daily Reporter, November 1, 1869. Of the boycott, Beadle later wrote: "It was amusing and provoking to take a walk along Main Street that winter, and see the melancholy Jews standing in the doors of their stores looking in vain for customers... their disgust was beyond expression, and their causes against Brigham not loud but deep." The Undeveloped West, p. 116-117.

48. The Undeveloped West, p. 115, 249-250.

49. Saul introduced Beadle to his readers by saying, "The services of a gentleman recently from the east, who drives a glib and pungent quill, have been secure upon the Reporter." Salt Lake Daily Reporter, October 20, 1868.

~ 17 ~

removal of the paper to Corinne in April, 1869, made payment impossible, and after a few months the newly-designated Corinne Daily Reporter folded.50

Not before it had inflamed some of the local citizenry, however. On one occasion Beadle was "beat up" by the son of a Brigham City man that Beadle had slandered.51

On another occasion Beadle accidently shot himself while target practicing. The newspaper story said that Beadle had "sat down and dug the ball out with his pen knife." An anonymous respondent wrote in to predict: "He'll get a Mormon ball one of these days which will make digging in the ground necessary." 52

In addition to his newspaper editorials and commentaries, and his periodic letters to the Cincinnati Commercial, Beadle energetically turned out several massive books about the West. He had been in Utah scarcely more than a year when he published Life in Utah; or, The Mysteries and Crimes of Mormonism. Six editions of this 669-page book appeared between 1870 and 1904, and there was also a German edition. In 1872, Beadle published Brigham's Destroying Angel; Being the Life, Confession, and Startling Disclosures of the Notorious Bill Hickman, The Danite Chief of Utah. In his preface to this book Beadle declares: "Mormonism only becomes peaceful with the world in the degree that it ceases to be Mormonism." 53

Shortly after the Hickman book appeared, Beadle returned to Evansville, Indiana, where he married, on Christmas Day, 1872, Jennie Cole. The couple subsequently had five children. Still in Indiana, Beadle published, in 1873, an 823-page volume entitled The Undeveloped West; or, Five Years in the Territories. In this book he refers to himself as the Gentile Prophet -- a not inappropriate name for him. A revised edition came out in 1877 under the title, Western Wilds and the Men Who Redeem Them. Three subsequent editions rapidly appeared.

50. The Undeveloped West, p. 115-116.

51. In a subsequent hearing, the youth was fined, while, to use the words of T. B. H. Stenhouse, editor of the Salt Lake Telegraph, "the slanderer goes free, having escaped with the whipping only." Salt Lake Telegraph, November 6, 1869.

52. Undated clipping in the J. H. Beadle Scrapbook, Library of Congress -- microfilm copy, Utah State Historical Society Library, Salt Lake City.

53. Salt Lake City, 1872. The book was reprinted in 1904. On re-reading Brigham's Destroying Angel after completing the reading of Beadle's other books, one feels certain that Beadle did some retouching of the Hickman manuscript, if he did no more than that. There are phrases in the Hickman confessions that are typically Beadle. This may or may not mean an inaccurate confession, but it does mean some friendly editorial assistance, if not ghost-writing, and probably a market orientation.

~ 18 ~

Incidentally, these books are filled with fascinating sketches, and Beadle himself drew most of these.

Always the moralist, Beadle, during this stay in Indiana, became interested in the Women's Temperance Movement, and wrote a series of letters on the subject to the Cincinnati Commercial. These reveal, again, his distrust of authority. He lamented that the temperance movement had been taken from the hand of the religionists, who urged sobriety through admonition, and that it had become the subject of legislation. It was foolish to pass a law which said, "You shall not drink except as we prescribe by law." 54

Since Cincinnati was the center of liquor distribution in Ohio, Beadle's point of view was no doubt appreciated by the publisher of the Commercial. Beadle traveled in Ohio and Indiana, describing temperance workers meetings, the attitudes of druggists and saloon keepers, and even accompanied the noted leader of the temperance movement in Ohio, Dio Lewis, on one of his speaking tours. 55

Out of this experience came another book entitled The Women's War on Whiskey: Its History, Theory, and Prospects (Cincinnati, 1874).

As if for a breather after this experience, Beadle returned to Utah in the fall of 1874, where he served as clerk of the First District Court (under judges James McKean, Philip Emerson, and Jacob Boreman). He also wrote for the Salt Lake Daily Tribune, resumed his letters from the West to the Cincinnati Commercial, and published articles on Utah and the Mormons in Harper's, Popular Science Monthly, and Scribner's. 56

In the late 1870's Beadle made his final break with Utah and returned to Indiana where he bought the Rockville Tribune and wrote editorials and historical and political articles for the American Press Association. He made an extended tour of Canada and Nova Scotia in the 1880's, which was widely reported, and toured Europe in 1890. Out of the latter experience came A Hoosier Abroad, a copy of which we have not been able to find. Beadle died in Washington, D.C. in 1897, at the age of fifty-seven.

The books and articles of J. H. Beadle are a specimen of the nineteenth century Protestant conscience at work. Particularly suggestive

54. Cincinnati Commercial, January 15, 1874.

55. Ibid., February 11, 1874.

56. John H. Beadle, "The Silver Mountains of Utah," Harper's, LIII (October, 1876), 641-651; "Social Experiments in Utah," Popular Science Monthly, IX (August, 1876), 479-490; "Mormon Theocracy," Scribner's Monthly, XIV (1876), 391-401.

~ 19 ~

is Beadle's disgust with the lower-class life which frontier conditions induced. Almost gleefully, Beadle mailed in reports of abject poverty, inferring that this condition was somehow a product of lack of character. Santa Fe, to take a non-Utah example, consisted of "mud-walled squares filled with pigs, chickens, jackasses, children, ugly old women, and greasers." The height of a "greaser's ambition," he wrote, was "a palacio of dried mud, a meal of corn and pimento, and a slip of corn-shuck filled with tobacco and rolled into a cigarette." 57

As for the Chinese, a "Higher Power" was behind their immigration, for they could "learn our civilization and religion, and carry Christianity and its attendant blessings to their own country." 58

Beadle's publications, as with those of other writers about the Mormons and the West, are filled with men and women who are drawn and tired and stolid, who wore plain clothes, who were not practiced in the social virtues, and who had not the capacity to participate in intelligent conversation. Clearly, the middle-class life of post-frontier Indiana and Ohio was superior!

A distinguished lecturer at the University of Utah, William Mulder, some years ago commented that "Mormon news was... on occasion the country's chief diversion."59

The studies of Richard Cowan and Dennis Lythgoe confirm this opinion.60

Perhaps one reason for the inordinate interest of Americans in the Mormons was the nation's need for such a diversion. The long and seemingly irreconcilable conflict between the North and the South; the Civil War brutalities and atrocities; the post-Civil War sadness and remorse; economic depression and the concern of farmers, laborers, and small businessmen over the swelling power of the trusts -- these issues were so intense and divisive that novels and personal experience accounts about a peculiar people in the heart of the Rockies must have been welcome. Stories of supposed impostures, visions, paranoids, prophets, seraglios, abductions, destroying angels, the giant lake of salt in the remote desert wasteland -- what a horrifyingly pleasant fare for the reader in search of escape! This was a mental safety-valve as welcome as the Turnerian economic safety-valve.

57. The Undeveloped West, p. 448-490.

58. Ibid., p. 325.

59. William Mulder, The Mormons in American History (Salt Lake City, 1957), p. 13.

60. Richard O. Cowan, "Mormonism in National Periodicals" (Ph.D. dissertation, Stanford, 1961) ; Dennis L. Lythgoe, "The Changing Image of Mormonism in Pediodical Literature" (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Utah, 1969).

~ 20 ~

Unfortunately, there was a tendency to congeal and preserve this distorted image of Mormonism. The comforting (to middle-class Americans) stereotypes developed by writers in the 1850's and 1860's tended to remain throughout the rest of the century -- and to some extent continued to appear in twentieth century literature and folklore. The stereotyping of the Mormons was duplicated with Catholics, Irishmen, Jews, Italians, Mexicans, Indians, blacks, and other minorities.

Surely, there is a lesson here. The mind that sees people only in terms of a group image--that refuses to notice individual differences within the group -- that takes no account of the nuances of characters within any society -- this is the mind of prejudice and intolerance. The acceptance of individual differences is an indispensable requirement for sensible human relations.

There is also another lesson. In making changes in the children they bought, Victor Hugo wrote, "The comprachicos not only deprived a child of his natural lineaments, not only took away his face from the child, but they also took away his memory." (I, 31) This works both ways. By twisting Mormon history in the interests of denigration and destruction, nineteenth-century writers made it difficult for us to know just what our heritage is. But the reverse is also true: It is equally difficult to recognize our heritage in the manufactured image presented by some well-intentioned members of our own faith. To manipulate the image of the past, whether by distorting it out of prejudice or mistaken reform, or by prettying it up for the supposed edification of future generations, is not significantly different from the labor of the odious comprachicos who, in L'homme qui rit, produced terrifying monstrosities. In striving not to be manipulators, let all of us who love history strive to pass on images of authenticity and reliability.

© 1980 Utah State Historical Society
"fair use" excerpts reproduced

by Brigham D. Madsen

~ 7 ~

...A. Stubblefield was permitted to sell liquor at Booths Ferry on Bear River beginning December 19, 1868... J. H. Beadle visited the spot on January 16, 1869, and reported the Stubblefield saloon "where one could get bread, meat, coffee, and sage brush whiskey, on a pinch;" another saloon under construction by Green and Alexander; a man named Gilmore of Brigham City who had laid two foundations for buildings; and others who were considering the site as a natural location for the proposed town. [20]

Two other visits by Beadle on February 6 and 18 revealed a town of fifteen houses and one hundred fifty inhabitants. The citizens held a meeting, called the place Connor City in honor of Gen. Patrick E. Connor, and hoped that the Union Pacific officials would lay out a city at the site. Beadle reported:
There is no newsstand, post office or barber shop. The citizens wash in the river and comb their hair by crawling through the sagebrush. A private stage is run from this place to Promontory, passing through Connor... [21]

20 Corinne Journal, 25 May 1871.
21 Corinne Journal, 18 Feb. 1869.

~ 10 ~

At the time of its founding the lilliputian town of Corinne consisted of sixty or seventy tents and shanties and three or four hundred inhabitants. As one of its first citizens, J. H. Beadle, wrote:
It was a gay community. Nineteen saloons paid license for three months. Two dance-houses amused the elegant leisure of the evening hours, and the supply of "sports" was fully equal to the requirements of a railroad town. At one time, the town contained eighty nymphs du pave, popularly known in Mountain-English as "soiled doves." Being the last railroad town it enjoyed "flush times" during the closing weeks of building the Pacific Railway. The junction of the Union and Central was then at Promontory, twenty-eight miles west, and Corinne was the retiring place for rest and recreation of all employees. Yet it was withal a quiet and rather orderly place. Sunday was generally observed: most of the men went hunting or fishing, and the "girls" had a dance, or got drunk. [27]

27 John Hanson Beadle, The Undeveloped West... pp. 120-21

~ 14 ~

A Gentile Newspaper

...[Corinne had] its own newspaper by early April 1869. John Hanson Beadle, finding himself temporarily out of funds in October 1868, had volunteered to write a few editorials for the almost defunct Salt Lake Reporter. The owner, S. S. Saul, was so impressed with the new reporter's pungent wit and acrid style that Beadle was immediately hired and, along with two partners, A. Aulbach and John Barrett, soon bought the paper and moved it to the more hospitable Gentile clime of Corinne. [40]

Here, Beadle found magnificent support for his unceasing anti-Mormon articles as he and his colleagues struggled tokeep the infant Utah Semi-Weekly Reporter alive. By November the paper had burgeoned into a tri-weekly sheet, but its three owners had, by then, surrendered their interests to the Printers' Publishing Company whose new management announced that delivery would stop to all patrons who failed to notify the company about their subscriptions.

Before the change in ownership and throughout the summer and fall of 1869, editor Beadle had full opportunity to establish his point of view and philosophy and, with one brief exception, what came to be the policy of all other Corinne newspapers: attack Mormon theocracy and polygamy at every opportunity; if there were no other news, always fall back on further derision of Mormon practices and theology; and continue a drumfire of boosterism to publicize the grand potential of Corinne as a thriving metropolis and place of settlement

40 John Hanson Beadle, The Undeveloped West... pp. 115-17

~ 15 ~

for other Gentiles. Beadle agreed with his successor that "Ours is a fight of no ordinary consideration. . . . We have the banded influence of Mormonism against us on three sides, and rival towns on the fourth." [41]

The extravagant chamber of commerce editorials exceeded even the well-known propensity for small western towns to blow theirown horns. The Boise Idaho Statesman, despite its usual support of the Reporter's anti-Mormon tirades, could not refrain from commentingthat one would think that according to the columns of the Corinne newspaper "New York, Chicago and San Francisco were situated toofar from Corinne ever to amount to much," and although a good paper, the Reporter's "inordinate, uncontrollable weakness is Corinne.It seems to suppose that adjectives and assurances will build a city." [42]

Although boosting the prospects of Corinne was a necessary and vital part of promoting the financial success of the town's business, including that of the Reporter, the barrage of anti-Mormon attacks, asides, and ridicule became almost an obsession with the various editorswho tended to look upon themselves as the intellectual and cultural leaders of the town's citizenry. Nothing was too far-fetched that it could not be enlarged upon not only to the delight of the Gentile readers of Utah Territory but also to the consternation and exasperation of easterners far removed from the field of the newspaper battles.

For example, the New York Tribune of May 1, 1869, quoted the Utah Reporter's account of a sermon by Brigham Young in which the prophet was supposed to have censured Thomas L. Drake, a vociferous Mormon-hater and associate justice of Utah Territory in 1863:
There was old Drake, the D__dest old rascal in the country, that said he "loved to d__n the Mormons, he'd get up at midnight and walk ten miles over thistles to d__n them, and he'd d__n any man that wouldn't d__n them;" and I say G_d d__n him, and God will d__n him and all such scalawags as they send out here.
The Tribune writer attested that the Corinne paper had the most positive proof that the above remarks were reported word for word and concluded that if such things could be said publicly what thoughts and feelings must the Mormon leaders keep hidden in their wicked souls. [43]

Typical onslaughts against the Utah Saints by the Reporter included disparagement of Mormon leaders, charges of injustices perpetrated

41 Utah Reporter, 2, 13 November 1869.

42 Idaho Statesman, 25 November, 21 December 1869.

43 New York Tribune, 1 May 1869. cf. Cincinnati Commercial, Apr. 29, 1869.

~ 16 ~

against defenseless Gentiles, learned analysis of Mormon character or lack of it, and exaggerated accounts of the pernicious effects of Mormon theology on the benighted followers of the "Profit" as Brigham Young was customarily called. When N. P. Woods was appointed deputy U.S. marshal for Utah, editor Beadle attacked him as the nephew of Daniel H. Wells, the supposed evil genius of Mormonism. In illustration of the second category above, the Reporter editor gave an account of a young Gentile gentleman who was attacked by five armed men for "paying attention to some of the Mormon girls" of Salt Lake City. The editor concluded, "the life of a Gentile... is not worth a feather in the hands of the Mormon police." In a leading editorial the Reporter explained why the Saints were so downright mean: "The difference between inherent and ordinary meanness is this: The ordinary mean men are usually only mean where their own interests are involved, whereas the inherent mean men [Mormon] are blind to all interests, personal, local or general." As for
From their tent office, 1869, the staff of the Reporter initiated one of the liveliest news sheets in Utah journalistic history. William H. Jackson photograph, courtesy of the U.S. Geological Survey.

~ 17 ~

the questionable doctrines of the Utah church, the editor quoted a New York Post article that emphasized the frightful mortality rate among Mormon children, Young's counselor Heber C. Kimball having reportedly buried forty-eight of his sixty-three children. The Reporter insisted that the Post was misinformed, the editor apparently personally knowing of one polygamous family that had buried one hundred forty-eight children. He was sure that polygamy was the reason for the high death rate. But sometimes it was just easier to dismiss a Utah leader with a succinct "once an ass always an ass," as in the case of T. B. H. Stenhouse. [44]

The internecine newspaper war between the Utah Reporter and the Mormon journals of Salt Lake City finally erupted into a cause celebre that received national attention. In early autumn Beadle published a severe criticism of polygamist Judge Samuel Smith of Brigham City, charging the jurist with having married two of his cousins and two of the daughters of his own brother to increase his total family complement to six wives.

On November 1 Beadle appeared at the. Brigham City courthouse, one of twelve Gentiles among twelve hundred Mormons, to answer charges of a debt of $886.82 1/2 supposedly owed to O. H. Elliott for supplies furnished to the Beadle Printing Press. Presiding Judge Samuel Smith dismissed the suit in favor of Beadle. As the editor was leaving the courthouse a young man approached him and said, "You're the man that wrote that lie about my father." He then knocked Beadle down and stomped on him.

The assailant, Hyrum Smith, a son of the judge, was tried for the offense and fined $50, although Beadle later maintained it was only $5. Beadle suffered a broken collarbone, in two places, a badly cut temple, an injured right eye, a section of his scalp torn off, and some internal injuries. He was taken to Corinne where he was given medical attention and endured a convalescence of about five weeks before leaving for his home in Rockville, Maryland, having "no desire to try it again" in Mormondom." [45]

The eastern press read with avidity the stream of articles pouring forth over the wires and in the editorials of the Reporter. According to the editor, it was Hyrum Smith's intention to murder Beadle; the Mormons of Utah were "sordid barbarians * * * when native-born American citizens are plotted against, shunned, abhorred, driven, persecuted and murdered by a horde of unscrupulous, outrageous, lying,

44 Utah Reporter, 23 October; 4, 9, 21 December 1869.

45 Beadle, The Undeveloped West, pp. 183-87; Box Elder County, First District Court, 12 October, 1 November 1869, 9; Utah Reporter, 23 October 1869.

~ 18 ~

thieving, murdering fanatic foreigners, it is time for action." "There is no such thing as justice or security for their persons or property here." [46] The Salt Lake newspapers, on the other hand, explained that it was a personal quarrel only and did not represent the views or practices of the general Mormon population, although the Salt Lake Telegraph could not refrain from concluding, "What are we coming to, when in a free country a man cannot slander his neighbors through the press to his heart's content, without getting a bloody nose for it?" [47]

The Deseret News was forced to recognize the existence of Corinne again by acknowledging that "Mr. Beadle is the editor of an insignificant sheet * * * which only maintains a circulation of a few scores by continually loading its columns with ... diatribes against the Mormon Church, * * * remarkable for nothing but scurrilous abuse and sheer lack of truth." While deprecating the attack by young Smith, the News nevertheless warned that "When * * * such parties make their slanderous aspersions personal, they must look for and abide by the consequences." [48]

The whole affair was important not only for highlighting the antipathy evident between the two groups but also for exacerbating the Mormon problem in the East and especially in the nation's capital where some lawmakers rejoiced at the new ammunition furnished them to help in the passage of even stricter anti-Mormon legislation.

46 Utah Reporter, 4, 6 November 1869.

47 Salt Lake Telegraph, 4, 7 November 1869.

48 Deseret News, 10 November 1869.

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