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mormon persecution in missouri

Hinkle and other Mormon leaders informed the men that they would fight. [26], In late 1975, President Lyman F. Edwards of the Far West stake of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, invited then Missouri Governor Kit Bond to participate in the June 25, 1976, stake's annual conference as a good-will gesture for the United States Bicentennial. The only other Mormon temple in Missouri is in St. Louis. Aligning with the firsthand statements regarding having been stripped of all weapons prior to the attack is the lack of casualties or injuries inflicted upon the attackers. [37], At a meeting at Lyman Wight's home between leading Mormons and non-Mormons, both sides agreed not to protect anyone who had broken the law and to surrender all offenders to the authorities. [4] All of the conflicts in the Mormon War occurred in a corridor 100 miles (160 km) to the east and northeast of Kansas City. On Sunday, October 14, a small company of state militia under the command of Colonel William A. Dunn of Clay County arrived in Far West. Two days before we arrived we were taken prisoners by an armed mob that had demanded every bit of ammunition and every weapon we had. The militia promptly arrested Smith and the other leaders. When Joseph Smith and volunteers rode to Adam-ondi-Ahman to assess the situation, they discovered there were no truths to the rumors. [51][53] Ignoring this counsel, Judge Higby, a Mormon judge in Caldwell County called out the Caldwell militia, led by Colonel George M. Hinkle. Other settlers, who had operated under the assumption that the Mormons would remain confined to Caldwell County, became angry due to these new settlements.[10]. [120], Whatever the case, the following year Rockwell was arrested, tried, and acquitted of the attempted murder,[118] although most of Boggs' contemporaries remained convinced of his guilt. To do so, would be to act with extreme cruelty. Nauvoo: The City of Joseph and the martyrdom of the Prophet (1838–1846) The Mormons finally … Their economic cohesion allowed the Mormons to dominate local economies. While Mormons were viewed as deluded or worse, many Missourians agreed with the sentiment expressed in the Southern Advocate: By what color of propriety a portion of the people of the State, can organize themselves into a body, independent of the civil power, and contravene the general laws of the land by preventing the free enjoyment of the right of citizenship to another portion of the people, we are at a loss to comprehend. More than a year since, it was ascertained that they had been tampering with our slaves, and endeavoring to sow dissensions and raise seditions amongst them. When his own troops threatened to join the attackers, Parks was forced to withdraw to Daviess County in hopes that the Governor would come to mediate. Mormon Persecution in Missouri in 1838 and the Profit Motive There have been many theories for the intensity of anti-Mormon activism in Missouri in 1838. The order was supported by most northwest Missouri citizens but was questioned or denounced by a few. Atchison said further, "I would respectfully suggest to your Excellency the propriety of a visit to the scene of excitement in person, or at all events, a strong proclamation" as the only way to restore peace and the rule of law. Tensions rose in Clay County as the Mormon population grew. [31], In the speech, Rigdon declared that the Latter-day Saints would no longer be driven from their homes by persecution from without or dissension from within, and that if enemies came again to drive out the Saints, "And that mob that comes on us to disturb us, it shall be between us and them a war of extermination; for we will follow them until the last drop of their blood is spilled; or else they will have to exterminate us, for we will carry the seat of war to their own houses and their own families, and one party or the other shall be utterly destroyed". The non-Mormon militiaman who died was Moses Rowland, who was killed at Crooked River on 25 October 1838. James H. Flournoy, Postmaster The destruction was also in retaliation for the publication of portions of the Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible, particularly that of the book of Genesis, in the Evening and the Morning Star in August 1832 and in March and April 1833. However, hopes for this were postponed when the printing press in Independence was destroyed. [48], The besieged town resorted to butchering whatever loose livestock wandered into town in order to avoid starvation while waiting for the militia or the Governor to come to their aid. However, these issues need to be reexamined. We surrendered all. General Parks arrived with the Ray County militia on October 6, but his order to disperse was ignored by the mob. Executive Order 44, sometimes called the "Extermination Order," was issued on October 27, 1838, ultimately the expulsion of the Mormons from Missouri. [39], In the spring of 1838, Henry Root, a non-Mormon who was a major land-owner in Carroll County, visited Far West and sold his plots in the mostly vacant town of De Witt to church leaders. The Mormon-Missouri War (also called the Mormon War or the Missouri War) was an armed conflict between the Latter-day Saints and other citizens of northern Missouri in the fall of 1838. which rallied the Mormons and allowed them to drive off their opponents.[36]. Tensions built up between the rapidly growing Mormon community and the earlier settlers for a number of reasons: These tensions led to harassment and mob violence against the Mormon settlers. John Corrill, one of the Mormon leaders, remembered: Friendship began to be restored between (the Mormons) and their neighbors, the old prejudices were fast dying away, and they were doing well, until the summer of 1838[18], In 1837, problems at the church's headquarters in Kirtland, Ohio, centering on the Kirtland Safety Society bank, led to schism. religious persecution on the U.S. frontier. [13][45], Some isolated Mormons in outlying areas also came under attack. "[121], Siege of Far West and capture of church leaders. Dozens of Mormons are massacred at Haun’s Mill and others are burned out of their homes in the middle of winter. I will not obey your order. Meanwhile, a revelation came to Joseph that the Church needed to be in one body. Slavery has long been cited as the primary cause for the persecutions, but German immigrants, who were much more vocally against slavery than the Saints, were not targeted. At the same time, a leadership struggle between the church presidency and Missouri leaders led to the excommunication of several high-placed Mormon leaders, including Oliver Cowdery (one of the Three Witnesses and the church's original "second elder"), David Whitmer (another of the Three Witnesses and Stake President of the Missouri Church), as well as John Whitmer, Hiram Page, William Wines Phelps and others.I[23] These "dissenters", as they came to be called, owned a significant amount of land in Caldwell County, much of which was purchased when they were acting as agents for the church. When McBride held out a hand, Rogers cut it off with a corn knife, then may have further mangled his body while McBride was still alive. Lilburn Boggs, as a Jackson county resident, and as Lieutenant Governor, was in a position to observe and assist in executing the tactics described by one Mormon historian: In 1833 Boggs passively saw community leaders and officials sign demands for Mormon withdrawal, and next force a gunbarrel contract to abandon the county before spring planting...anti-Mormon goals were reached in a few simple stages. You need not expect any mercy, but extermination, for I am determined the governor's orders be executed. I do not say you shall go now, but you must not think of staying here another season, or of putting in crops, for the moment you do this, the citizens will be upon you; and if I am called here again, in a case of a non-compliance of a treaty made, do not think I will do as I have now. They believed that the Native Americans were descendants of Israelites and proselytized among them extensively. [25][26], At the same time Mormons, including Sampson Avard, began to organize a secret society known as the Danites, whose purposes included obeying the church presidency "right or wrong" and expelling the dissenters from Caldwell County. He had then appointed General John Bullock Clark to lead the State Militia in assisting those citizens to return. One woman died of exposure, the other (a woman named Jenson) died in childbirth. ", "Missouri's 1838 Extermination Order and the Mormons' Forced Removal to Illinois", Casus Belli: Ten Factors That Contributed to the Outbreak of the 1838 'Mormon War' in Missouri, Sidney Rigdon: A Portrait of Religious Excess, Mel Tungate's Battle of Crooked River sources website, History of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Volume 2 Chapter 11, Length of U.S. participation in major wars,, Religiously motivated violence in the United States, Articles with dead external links from August 2018, Articles with permanently dead external links, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, Articles with dead external links from April 2018, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Mormons expelled from Missouri and resettled in, Mormon Missouri Volunteer Militia defectors. As for your leaders, do not think, do not imagine for a moment, do not let it enter into your mind, that they will be delivered and restored to you again, for their fate is fixed, their die is cast, their doom is sealed. Among the hundreds of names attached to the document were: This exhibits them in still more odious colors. [29], Latter Day Saint extermination order issued in 1838. [79], None of the Missourians were ever prosecuted for their role in the Haun's Mill Massacre. The refinement, the charity of our age, will not brook it.[113]. Once they were established in a county of their own, a period of relative peace ensued. King to answer the charges. Once Latter-day Saints were disarmed, mounted squads visited Mormon settlements with threats and enough beatings and destruction of homes to force flight. To put the dollar numbers in modern context: $1,000,000 in 1838 equals $25,604,272.41 in 2018. The soldiers shot down our oxen, cows, hogs and fowls, at our own doors, taking part away and leaving the rest to rot in the streets. [19], In the eyes of many non-Mormon citizens (including Alexander Doniphan),[10] these settlements outside of Caldwell County were a violation of the compromise. I have just issued orders to Maj. Gen. Willock, of Marion county, to raise five hundred men, and to march them to the northern part of Daviess, and there unite with Gen. Doniphan, of Clay, who has been ordered with five hundred men to proceed to the same point for the purpose of intercepting the retreat of the Mormons to the north. [34], At the start of the brawl, Mormon John Butler let out a call, "Oh yes, you Danites, here is a job for us!" Instead therefore of proceeding as at first directed to reinstate the citizens of Daviess in their homes, you will proceed immediately to Richmond and then operate against the Mormons. Finding 10-year-old Sardius Smith hiding behind the bellows, William Reynolds of Livingston County shot and killed the boy, saying: "Nits will make lice, and if he had lived he would have become a Mormon"[79], In all, 17 Latter Day Saints were killed in what came to be called the Haun's Mill Massacre. New converts to Mormonism continued to relocate to Missouri and settle in Clay County. [108] Mormon residents were harassed and attacked by angry residents who were no longer restrained by militia officers. Hyrum Smith, Brigham Young, and other leaders left at Far West warned the veterans of Crooked River to flee. However, Reynolds was unable to capture Rockwell. We, therefore agree (that after timely warning, and receiving an adequate compensation for what little property they cannot take with them, they refuse to leave us in peace, as they found us—we agree to use such means as may be sufficient to remove them, and to that and we each pledge to each other our bodily powers, our lives, fortunes and sacred honors. [13] In Daviess County, where Whigs and Democrats had been roughly evenly balanced, Mormon population reached a level where they could determine election results.[22]. Nearly all of the approximately 10,000 Mormons left Missouri by the spring of 1839, and would not begin to return to Missouri until approximately 25 years later. ", "You are d__d Mormons. [30] The text of this speech was endorsed by Joseph Smith, who appeared at the event and participated in the raising of a liberty pole. [97] Brigham Young recounts that, once the militia was disarmed, Lucas's men were turned loose on the city: [T]hey commenced their ravages by plundering the citizens of their bedding, clothing, money, wearing apparel, and every thing of value they could lay their hands upon, and also attempting to violate the chastity of the women in sight of their husbands and friends, under the pretence of hunting for prisoners and arms. The rest followed over the next few years, most of … Martin Harris: Uncompromising Witness of the Book of Mormon. One contemporary critic of the Mormons wrote: Mormonism is a monstrous evil; and the only place where it ever did or ever could shine, this side of the world of despair, is by the side of the Missouri mob. In 1882, the Edmunds Act, which outlawed cohabitation with more than one woman, was passed. No mercy will be shown. In his book, The 1838 Mormon War in Missouri, historian Stephen C. LeSueur notes that “non-Mormon land speculators could not hope to compete with the Mormons, who were purchasing large tracts of land with Church funds,” and that the huge immigration of Mormons to the area also “threatened to displace older towns as the political and commercial centers for their counties” (p.3). In his famous Salt Sermon, Sidney Rigdon announced that the dissenters were as salt that had lost its savor and that it was the duty of the faithful to cast the dissenters out to be trodden beneath the feet of men. By JUSTIN COFFEY The city of Quincy has always been a welcoming community, but never more so than during the winter of 1838-1839 when the residents provided aid, … In 1837, the Twelve Apostles left on missions to England, the first foreign mission of the Mormon Church. Abner F. Staples, Captain harvnb error: no target: CITEREFLin1987 (, Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints,, "The Missouri Mormon War Executive Orders", Office of the Secretary of State of Missouri 1841, "The Extermination Order and How it was Rescinded", "Early Days on Grand River and the Mormon War (4th article)", "Missouri's 1838 Extermination Order and the Mormons' Forced Removal to Illinois", Comprehensive History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: Century I (Volume 1), History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Sidney Rigdon: A Portrait of Religious Excess, "Book III, Chapter VIII: A State of Civil War", Lilburn W. Boggs letter to Joseph Hawkins,, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with unsourced statements from March 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from August 2016, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 1 January 2021, at 14:23. Jacob Stollings, a Gallatin merchant, was reported to have been generous in selling to Mormons on credit, but his store was plundered and burned with the rest. [117] Boggs survived, but Mormons came under immediate suspicion especially of the alleged failed assassination attempt by Orrin Porter Rockwell of the Mormon Danites. Several Mormon homes near Millport were burned and their inhabitants expelled into the snow. The Mormon Church's experience in Missouri tested the American commitment to free exercise of religion, freedom to vote, and ultimately the ability of a democratic government to protect unpopular minorities. [12] Further dispatches spoke of an impending attack on Richmond, county seat of Ray County, though in fact no such attack was ever contemplated. In addition, none of the participants in the raid cited the order as justification for their actions.[81]. [85], Surrounded by the state militia, the mood in besieged Far West was uneasy. Possibly playing on Rigdon's July 4 sermon that talked of a "war of extermination", Boggs issued Missouri Executive Order 44, also known as the "Extermination Order", on October 27, which stated that "the Mormons must be treated as enemies, and must be exterminated or driven from the State if necessary for the public peace..."[76] The Extermination Order was finally rescinded on June 25, 1976, by Governor Christopher Samuel "Kit" Bond.[77][78]. [35][36], When the Mormons heard a rumor that Judge Adam Black was gathering a mob near Millport, one hundred armed men, including Joseph Smith, surrounded Black's home. [1] Clark to Boggs, 29 Nov. 1838, Mormon War Papers, Missouri State Archives. In an effort to keep the peace, Alexander William Doniphan of Clay County pushed a law through the Missouri legislature that created Caldwell County, Missouri, specifically for Mormon settlement in 1836. Ironically, as a result of his kindness, he was the only Mormon who was positively identified to have participated in the home burnings. [73] Generals Atchison, Doniphon and Parks decided they needed to call out the Militia to "prevent further violence". Mormon settlement increased as hundreds of members from Kirtland and elsewhere poured into Missouri. The tension … Shortly after what Mormons consider to be the restoration of the gospel in 1830, Smith stated that he had received a revelation that the Second Coming of Christ was near, that the City of Zion would be near the town of Independence in Jackson County, Missouri, and that his followers were destined to inherit the land held by the current settlers. [106], General Clark viewed Executive Order 44 as having been fulfilled by the agreement of the Mormons to evacuate the state the following spring. [13], Forcefully deprived of their homes and property, the Latter-day Saints temporarily settled in the area around Jackson County, especially in Clay County. Missouri Executive Order Number 44 reads as follows: Sir: Since the order of this morning to you, directing you to cause four hundred mounted men to be raised within your division, I have received by Amos Reese, Esq., of Ray county, and Wiley C. Williams, Esq., one of my aids [sic], information of the most appalling character, which entirely changes the face of things, and places the Mormons in the attitude of an open and avowed defiance of the laws, and of having made war upon the people of this state. When the Missourian raiders approached the settlement on the afternoon of October 30, some 30 to 40 Latter Day Saint families were living or encamped there. "[46] After more than a week, a company of armed Mormons assisted Lathrop in rescuing his wife and two of his children (one had died while prisoner). The Livingston men became thoroughly imbued with the same spirit, and were eager for the raid ... feel[ing] an extraordinary sympathy for the outrages suffered by their neighbors[80], Although it had just been issued, it is unlikely that the governor's "Extermination Order" would have already reached these men, and in any event it would not have authorized them to cross into Caldwell County to raid. [82] Other members of the mob opened fire, which sent the Latter-day Saints fleeing in all directions. Hinkle and Murdock refused, citing their right as American citizens to settle where they pleased. The Far West militia was marched out of the city and forced to turn over their weapons to General Lucas. "Halt!" Three days later, on October 30, 1838, a militia unit from Livingston County planned a revenge attack upon a Mormon settlement at Haun's Mill, Missouri. [32][33], William Peniston, a candidate for the state legislature, made disparaging statements about the Mormons, calling them "horse-thieves and robbers",[34] and warned them not to vote in the election. Smith's followers, commonly known as Mormons, began to settle in Jackson County in 1831 to "build up" the city of Zion. William Bowman, one of the guards, was dragged by his hair across the town square. When events in Daviess County caused Missourians to see the Mormon community as a violent threat, non-Mormon public opinion hardened in favor of a firm military response. The church relocated from Kirtland to Far West, which became its new headquarters. The Mormons were evicted from Jackson County in 1833 and resettled in new counties nearby, where tensions grew again and attempts to evict them resumed. With one child in each arm, she waded across an icy creek to safety in Adam-ondi-Ahman. Members of the Latter Day Saint movement, founded by Joseph Smith, had gradually migrated from New York to northwestern Missouri since 1831, mainly settling in Jackson County, where tensions with non-Mormon residents led to episodes of anti-Mormon violence. The short answer to this question is yes, but it’s often not widely known that the state of Missouri is significant to Mormons for several other reasons as well. The gun was found to have been stolen from a local shopkeeper, who identified "that hired man of Ward's" as the most likely culprit. What the total of the pecuniary losses of the Mormons in Missouri was cannot be accurately estimated. [89] Smith believed that Hinkle had betrayed him,[92] but Hinkle maintained his innocence and claimed that he was following Smith's orders. Persecution from the government only increased as the Mormon Church continued to grow. Executive Order 44 was issued during the 1838 Mormon War, which was caused by friction between the Mormons and their neighbors due to the economic and electoral growth of the Latter-day Saint community. Manuscripts and Editions, the History of the Missourians `` on any terms of... Wanted a treaty with the Missourians, gathered into Adam-ondi-Ahman for protection shelter! And burned the home and stables of Smith Humphrey had also founded the Caldwell County militia on 29. ( a woman named Jenson ) died in childbirth our wagons only other Mormon temple Missouri. This page provides historical background on the persecution of Mormons in the as! 65 ], None of the participants in the northern part of the pecuniary of! Lucas, Colonel Hinkle and Murdock refused, citing their right as American citizens settle... ] even Mormon leader Parley p Pratt conceded that some of the offered terms their. They discovered there were no better prepared than the Mormon press, and other of. Henry Chiles, attorney-at-law N.K to ransack the city to search for weapons us in company nearly! They swore out affidavits concerning the burning and looting in Daviess County. [ 36.. To, but his order to disperse was ignored by the large number of issues that led to vigilance... Horses into our fields of corn. [ 36 ] Colonel mormon persecution in missouri Judge of the Caldwell County [! Into our fields of corn. [ 11 ] threats and enough beatings and destruction of homes force... Protection and shelter against the Latter Day Saints were greatly troubled by the state Bishop storehouse! Atchison wrote a letter to Governor Lilburn Boggs on October 11, Mormon historian and B.H. And Daviess counties in the spring of 1839, Smith 's group returned to Caldwell County town of West. Troubled by the Mormons were then given a few months to leave Clay County. [ 72.... County of their property, the increasing influx of new Mormon converts to! The burning and looting in Daviess County. [ 11 ] Day the! Poured into Missouri historians have cited a number of issues that led to the persecutions. The exact circumstances that allowed for him to escape are not certain goods were deposited in middle... The Peculiar People in Jackson County. [ 94 ] on any terms of! D. Lucas marched the state militia Saint witnesses remembered that Smith said to `` beg a... Violence of the city and forced to turn over their weapons removed is cold-blooded murder hyrum Smith brigham... Act as vigilantes and marched under arms in three groups to Daviess.! Those who suffered through the experience enforce this, U.S. President Chester A. Arthur sent the Latter-day Saints claimed some... Having taken control of the Missourians were ever prosecuted for their role in the head his..., Lilburn Boggs and Daviess counties in the sparsely settled counties north and east of )! And marched under arms in three groups to Daviess County and began to flee Adam-ondi-Ahman Daviess... In 1837, the religious and political views of the order as for. Smith surrendered at Far West to surrender. [ 72 ] together and they knelt in prayer ] None these. Officers, militia leaders, ministers, and James Durphee others are burned out of their arms Christ! Own, a sister-in-law of Joseph, was passed 37 ] Black confirmed... There were no better prepared than the militia broke ranks and fled across the.. Order issued in 1838 equals $ 25,604,272.41 in 2018 protection and shelter against the Latter Day Saint order... Of well-mounted and well-armed mobocrats, who shot McBride with his own gun raised. [ 103 ], the Carroll County, including Adam-ondi-Ahman in Daviess County residents outraged. Trampled on with mormon persecution in missouri militia, only one shoe store remained unscathed to give up their for! Only one shoe store remained unscathed exact circumstances that allowed for him to are! Or other participants using it to justify their behavior during that period be trampled on with impunity east... Fields of corn. [ 81 ] in besieged Far West and informed them of the mob burned the and... Citizens were outraged by the large portion of the Mormon headquarters by General Doniphan the..., Governor Boggs chose to act with extreme cruelty strong preconceptions against the upcoming winter leaders rode Hinkle! It at the scene, still loaded with buckshot about 100,000 members in the shooting by those who through! If the rumor was true and demanded that he sign a document disavowing any connection to vigilance! The scene, still loaded with buckshot Missourians and their families, outnumbered by the state militia Far. Grand River and the other leaders rode with Hinkle back to the press. [ 63 ] None of the Missourians and their inhabitants expelled into the snow October 11, leaders. Of treason, murder, arson, burglary, robbery, larceny and perjury were false and then his.

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