It was hard for me to believe that in free America any religious sect could be persecuted merely because it was too pure and good.
It was hard for me to believe that in free America any religious sect could be persecuted merely because it was too pure and good. Still, might not Mormonism be just the one exception proving the rule of perfect religious toleration in this most tolerant and A letter to a dearest wife from her husband Republic?
I resolved to examine the matter and see for myself on which side was the burden of wrong-doing, and what of truth there might be in this strange and continual charge from the Mormon side of "persecution. Having applied my usual method in the case of Joseph Smith and his associates, I find that the world at large and especially the thousands of Mormons in Utah know but little of the true life, character and actions of Joseph Smith and the ringleaders of the so-called Mormon Church and Kingdom.
The vast majority of the poor dupes in Utah and surrounding Territories, never having passed through such experiences as drove Mormons by the wholesale into rebellion and indignant apostacy, and drove those who continued steadfast in their infatuation from their places of settlement and sojourn in Ohio, Missouri and Illinois, are utterly incredulous, even refusing to believe the facts when recited and fully sustained, and thus remain in profound and blissful ignorance of much they ought to know, and which, if known, would undoubtedly influence them to repudiate any institution making it possible to have committed such acts in the name of God and religion.
Stories and reports of the criminal conduct of Joseph Smith, Brigham Young and their henchmen, did not rise from nothing, but are found to have had their origin in facts, which can be fully established and proven under the rules of historical investigation and criticism, Let me first introduce those of my witnesses who knew Joseph Smith's parents.
It must be interesting to the reader to know the tree from which fell this prodigious apple. Joseph looked very much like him. She was full of low cunning; no trick was too mean for her to make a little money.
You could not believe a word of what she said. She used to talk a great deal about Mormonism. Everybody's opinion of her was, that she was a thorough liar.
Her daughter wrote that book about Joseph for her. She and her husband looked like a pair of splendid gypsies. They looked wild and ignorant. Seeing them, nobody could doubt the stories about their money-digging, fortune-telling, etc. I know that the excellent lady who gave me these details spoke the absolute truth, but I cannot enjoy it.
I rather like old "Mr. Lucy Smith, nee Mack. Micawber and be hard on Mr.
They are splendid people in their way. Lying was as natural to them as drinking water, and they do it in a delightful way; it's prestidigitation with the truth, you see; artistic skill, acquired by a life's practice. Just read old Lucy's book on Joseph the prophet, for instance where she tells that Mrs.
Harris wanted to force money on her, and that she refused it scornfully; read her description of the "breast-plate," which she valued at five hundred dollars, and that other of the "Urim and Thummim," which consisted of "three-cornered diamonds set in glass.
It is not vulgar lying, it is the talent of Sheherezade, without the bloody Sultan, and without -- alas! Smith" is the Micawber of the family.
His imagination is an Ophir of delightful absurdities, hatched in an atmosphere filled with the sound of the urgent but never-heeded claims of his countless creditors. Peter Ingersoll, an old acquaintance of his, puts it in this shape: When about noon, he requested me to walk with him a short distance from his house, for the purpose of seeing whether a mineral rod would work in my hand, saying at the same time he was confident it would.
When we arrived near the place at which he thought there was money, he cut a small witch-hazel bush and gave me direction how to hold it. He then went oft some rods, and told me to say to the rod, 'Work to the money.
He rebuked me severely for speaking it loud, and said it must be said in a whisper. While the old man was standing off some rods, throwing himself into various shapes, I told him the rod did not work. He seemed much surprised at this, and said he thought he saw it move in my hand Another time he told me the best time for digging money was in the heat of summer, when the heat of the sun caused the chests of money to rise near the top of the ground.
Harris commenced urging upon me a considerable sum of money, I think some seventy-five dollars, to assist in getting the plates translated. I told her that I came on no such business; that I did not want her money Yet she was determined to assist in the business, for she said she knew that we should want money, and she could spare two hundred dollars as well as not.
The Spirit has said that you shall receive fourfold. The old lady seemed confused, and left the room. But let us leave the humble parents, and turn to the great son, irreverently called by the wicked, "Joe Smith.
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