By Alex Beam
At thirty-nine years previous, Smith had already lived an oversized existence. as well as beginning his personal faith and growing his personal Golden Bible”the e-book of Mormonhe had labored as a water-dowser and treasure hunter. He’d led his humans to Ohio, then Missouri, then Illinois, the place he based a urban higher than fledgling Chicago. He was once working for president. And, secretly, he had married greater than thirty women.
In American Crucifixion, Alex Beam tells how Smith went from charismatic chief to public enemy: How his such a lot seismic revelationthe doctrine of polygamycreated a rift between his humans; how that schism became to violence; and the way, eventually, Smith couldn't get away the implications of his ambition and pride.
Mormonism is America’s biggest and such a lot enduring local faith, and the martyrdom” of Joseph Smith is one in every of its transformational occasions. Smith’s brutal assassination propelled the Mormons to colonize the yank West and declare their position within the mainstream of yankee historical past. American Crucifixion is a gripping tale of scandal and violence, with deep roots in our nationwide identity.
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Extra info for American Crucifixion: The Murder of Joseph Smith and the Fate of the Mormon Church
Specifically, he asked the same question he had posed to President Van Buren and the Illinois congressional delegation when he visited Washington, DC, in 1839: can you get us reparations for our dispossessed property in Missouri?
William Morgan, famous for publishing the Masons’ secret codes and rituals in the widely disseminated 1826 book Illusions of Masonry, lived in Batavia, New York, and was supposedly drowned by hostile Masons in the Niagara River. ) New York even had its own anti-Masonic political party, which fielded a presidential candidate in 1831. The Book of Mormon, wholly composed in upstate New York, repeatedly condemned the “abominations” of secret societies, with “their secret signs and their secret words .
The even-tempered Hyrum failed to pull off what would have been a masterstroke of diplomacy. In fact, Emma broke into a fit of rage and abused him. ” “I told you, you didn’t know Emma as well as I did,” was the Prophet’s quiet rejoinder after learning of the eruption. Alongside Hyrum sat Willard Richards, a longtime church loyalist, also bailing frantically while Rockwell wrestled with the oars. Richards was huge and ungainly, weighing three hundred pounds. He was about to turn forty years old, but his fleshy face had already collapsed into jowls, and his neck was a roll of fat.