Episode 138: Top 10 Apostates from the Quorum of the 12

John Larsen is joined by Tom Perry, Heather, and Mike Wagstaff to discuss the top 10 Apostates from the Quorum of the Twelve.

Episode 138

80 comments on “Episode 138: Top 10 Apostates from the Quorum of the 12”

  1. Anonymous Reply

    As I listened to this podcast I was thinking, in light of all the top leaders of the Church, including apostles, who have left the Church, been excommunicated or disfellowshipped, how interesting it would be to see what would happen if one of the members of the First Presidency (especially the Prophet himself), piqued by a combination of cognitive dissonance, rationality, honesty and conscience suddenly came out and publicly admitted that the LDS Church was not what it claimed to be and that Joseph Smith was, at best, a pious fraud. In particular, I wonder what would be the reaction of TBMs like Mike Tannehill if that were to happen.

    • Fred W. Anson Reply

      Now Gunnar, we all KNOW that anyone who leaves the LdS Church can’t be trusted! 

      Everyone knows that people can ONLY be trusted as long as they’re saying glowingly positive things about the LdS Church!  Anything negative or critical is obviously from the devil because it’s . . . well . . . negative or critical! 

      This is so easy, I just can’t believe that you don’t “get it”! 
      (Ow!  My cheek hurts from my tongue getting stuck there while I typed this post) 

      • Elder Vader Reply

        It would be funny to make a church video contrasting some of the quotes in that lesson, with some of the antics of Joseph Smith.  Hey there Nancy Rigdon, come on over later tonight and I’ll lock you in the basement to try and convince you of the principle of plural marriage. 

      • Anonymous Reply

        Yes, I am aware of lessons like that and that a high proportion of Joseph Smith’s earliest counselors (including Sidney Rigdon and Oliver Cowdrey) actually did leave the Church.  But it would still be interesting to see what would happen in this Internet age if Thomas S. Monson himself owned up to having participated in perpetrating a fraud.  I imagine that this, combined with the already devastating and still accumulating evidence against the BoA and the BoM and the Church’s officially approved version of its own history would be incredibly damaging to LDS credibility, though it might not be immediately fatal in the minds of the most determined diehards.

        However, after typing the above, I re-read your second paragraph and thought, as I smacked my forehead “Doh!  Of course!  How stupid of me not to realize that!”

        I hope your cheek recovers quickly!  Some ibuprofen might help with that.:)  It worked for me!

  2. Anonymous Reply

    When I checked my podcasts this morning I first thought “Wait?!  A Monday posting?  What is this, Christmas?”  haha

  3. Megan Reply

    You missed my favorite! Sidney Rigdon. Of course, he’s only my favorite because when I was a kid we had a cat named Sidney Rigdon. Stupid cat ran away… probably formed a schismatic family of its own.

    • Anonymous Reply

      By golly, you’re right!  How could they have left out Sydney Rigdon, of all people!  He may have had as much or even more to do with with the founding of the Church and the writing of the BoM than Joseph Smith himself, according to some researchers (most notably, Craig Criddle. See http://www.i4m.com/think/history/Book-of-Mormon.pdf).

      • Anonymous Reply

        Sidney Rigdon, Oliver Cowdery and Martin Harris were never members of the Q of the 12.

        • Anonymous Reply

          You’re right.  I should have remembered that in the earliest days of the Church, not all members of the First Presidency were necessarily once members of the Q of the 12.  This brings up the question, who was the most recent member of the First Presidency who was never a member of the Q of the 12?

          • Elder Vader

            Alvin Dyer – a treasure trove of gems.  Everything published by Alvin Dyer is totally in the doctrinal ash-heap in 2011.  Black people were fence sitters in the pre-existence.  Very hostile relations with the RLDS church.  My personal favorite ‘The Challenge’ – turning missionaries into obnoxious people one street contact at a time. 

          • Anonymous

            Thanks, John!  I didn’t realize that Alvin R. Dyer was never a member of the Q of the 12.

          • Anonymous

            Right. If they were including those who were not members of the Q of the 12— but were prominent LDS leaders who were exed that opens it up to guys like John C. Bennet who certainly would be in THAT Top 10.

        • Megan Reply

          Phooey. Okay, fair enough. Although I would argue that a special exception should have been made for him, just because!

    • Anonymous Reply

      Sidney Rigdon was actually never a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (he was only a member of the First Presidency). I point that out because the Top 10 “Bad Boys” of the First Presidency could be its own list. Here’s my Top Ten list of the “Bad Boys” of the First Presidency: Sidney Rigdon, Oliver Cowdery, Jesse Gause, Frederick G. Williams, William Law, John C. Bennett, William Law, Amasa Lyman, Albert Carrington, and John Willard Young. The ultimate “bad boy” trophy for these men has to go to Bennett, obviously. John, you need to do this Top 10 list next! 

      • Fred W. Anson Reply

        I would propose that ME do that “”Bad Boys” of the First Presidency” podcast.  

        And ThisIsCrazy28 – great list! 

  4. Elder Vader Reply

    My two favorites from this top ten list were Thomas B. Marsh, and John Taylor. 

    Thomas B. Marsh because his story is just used so effectively to paint people who leave the church with a bad image.  I wasn’t aware that George Albert Smith came up with that little bit of mythology. 

    And John Taylor.  Man.  You just can’t really go very far into the discussion of polygamy before getting into some seriously screwed up stuff.  I love it how ‘the brethren’ try to have it both ways on being consistent.  When John W. Taylor was an apostle, his word was God’s word.  Ignore it and your soul is in peril.  Okay, now he is excommunicated and its the opposite. 

  5. Hermes Reply

    Thinking about the early Mormons’ wildness, I am reminded of Thomas Muntzer (a fifteenth-century German reformer whose history shows some interesting anticipations of Joseph Smith).  Before the twentieth century (and even after it in some places), religion was as violent in the European West as it currently is in the Middle East.

  6. Stephanie Reply

    Excellent discussion.  Everyone was on their game in this podcast.  I learn things from Mormon Expression I never knew before.  Can you imagine a high-level apostate these days with the Internet and social media?  I wonder if there would be the deathbed repentance we see with some of these early bad boys.
    Question:  How about a podcast on another bad boy of early Church history, one Orrin Porter Rockwell??  I would love to hear what the history from an uncorrelated source.  I know about the bodies in the well, but the rest of the history has always been shrouded in apologist logic.
    Two thumbs up on this one.  Great job.

  7. Ron Reply

    John, did I hear you mention Sarah Pratt, Orson’s wife, as one who caved in to Joseph’s advances?  It was my understanding from reading various sources that she was one of the few that ladies we can admire for her courage in this rejecting such advances. Do you have info regarding this that I am unaware of?
    Enjoyed the podcast.

    • Anonymous Reply

      I can’t remember if I said she was involved with Joseph Smith. She was involved with John C. Bennett of the First Presidency.

      • Anonymous Reply

        That’s something that I wondered about too but didn’t think we had time to get sidetracked by it during the podcast.  From the reading I did it sounded like Joseph went after her and she denied him.  When Pratt came home from his mission she told him what happened and Joseph tried to ruin her by claiming she was caught with Bennett and was trying to implicate Joseph to save her butt.  I thought the reason Pratt was exed because he chose to believe his wife instead of Joseph.  I think there is a quote where Joseph says that by believing his wife, Pratt was following her to hell.  But I’m not terribly informed on church history.  So I could very well be wrong about that.  I also didn’t dig very deeply so it’s possible I read a biased source.

        • Anonymous Reply

          Heather_ME, thanks for clarifying John’s comment about John Bennett and Sarah Pratt. From what I’ve read, there is no solid (or at least overwhelming) evidence that John Bennett and Sarah Pratt were “involved” (other than Joseph’s claims). It’s a classic case of “he said, she said.” But I think it’s wrong to make a definitive statement about what the relationship was between the two (i.e., Bennett and Pratt).

          • Anonymous

            You believe that the evidential standard is “overwhelming evidence”? What, pray tell is that?

            I believe the excommunication of Sarah for adultery alone raises the evidence beyond a mere he said she said.

          • Anonymous

            Oh, if Joseph had her excommunicated for adultery, then that definitely does “raise” the evidence (give me a break, John). Where is the logic in that argument? Joseph could have someone exed with the snap of his fingers (what does that prove?) Joseph could tell any rumor he wanted and have the entire town back him up on it. And who said anything about an “evidential standard”? All I’m saying is both John C. Bennett and Sarah Pratt denied that they had a relationship. Why are you choosing Joseph’s word over their word? Sarah Pratt spent a good portion of her life fighting against polygamy (in Utah of all places). I find it hard to believe that a women with such fortitude would be duped by Bennett’s “spiritual wifery” gimmick. Give the woman some credit, man!

          • Fred W. Anson
          • Anonymous

            Fred, I totally agree with you. Your point is true of many events in Mormon history. My point is that we cannot make a definitive statement on the matter. John made the statement that “she was involved with John C. Bennett.” This may be true and it may not be true. I think it’s important to use words like “allegedly,” “purportedly,” “supposedly,” etc. when talking about events like this.

        • Dblagent007 Reply

          I think Heather is right and John is wrong. I’ve looked into this pretty thoroughly and the evidence is strong that Joseph made a play for Sarah while Orson was gone, Sarah rejected Joseph, Orson comes back and believes his wife to the point that he gets ex’ed, and Joseph and Hyrum invent the story of Sarah having an affair with Bennett to explain why she is making these allegations against Joseph.

          • Anonymous

            However Bennet had other cases of adultery and other accusations to answer that weren’t related to the Pratt issue

        • Anonymous Reply

          Or maybe she actually did bed Bennett and Smith was telling the truth. Remember that it was after 4 days of arguments and trial by the twelve that pratt was ex’d for insubordination and his wife Sarah for adultery (with Bennet), so we have some stories, some accusations and one recorded formal event – the trial. And then after it all Pratt sought forgiveness and returned to Smith, thereby accepting his side of the story.

          Problem here is that these events happened more than 150 years ago, all those involved are dead, and one really can’t definitively figure out who is telling the truth, who is just repeating gossip, and who is simply outright lying.

          But all this isn’t enough to base ones testimony of the church on. 

          • Anonymous

            Plus, if she went with Pratt to Utah, then by default she would’ve had to seek repentence for that adultery, for which she was excommunicated, including accepting the sin as part of the process of rebaptism. But then she was excommunicated again (proving that she had been rebaptized after 1845) a second time for apostasy in 1874 or there abouts.

            So she is hardly a reliable witness of what happened during the 1840’s. She called herself ‘an apostate’ and wrote many more things which can only be called anti-church wirttings by a bitter ex member, including accusing Smith of getting Bennett to do abortions for him when the two men had already become enemies.

          • Fred W. Anson

            Darkmatter20, could you please explain to us how being apostate, bitter, angry, or a now critical member of an institution that one was once in makes someone “hardly a reliable witness”? 

            Thanks. 

          • Fred W. Anson

            Then, of course, we’re also going to ask you to please explain to us how being a faithful, satisfied, compliant, approving member of the same institution makes someone “a reliable witness”? 

            Thanks again.

          • Anonymous

            It doesn’t. They will normally defend it. Its llike expecting a republican tea party member to speak ill of the tea party movement when they are completely inmersed in it.

            However if, like the 3 witnesses, they then go against you as a person whilst maintaining the truthfulness of an event (ie the angel with the plates) well then you can say that they are important witnesses and can be considered reliable. Nothing like your enemy saying that you are telling the truth (as in witmers case)

            But the point was that all this happened so long ago that we can’t reliable say who is telling the truth, who lies, who manipulates, who misleads, and who is simply mistaken due to gossip.

            What I did try to point out was that one of the possibilities is that Smith was telling the truth, that Sarah did bed Bennett, but if its so then God has to judge them now. For us its just History but surely one can’t base their belief system or belief in the church or not on what may have or may not have happened back in 1840’s when things are still merky and tabloid standards. Even if Smith did do these things you guys accuse him off, its irrelevant to one’s belief in the church. Maybe he was just a 37 year old with an addiction, not unheard off happening, and because of that the Lord stated looking to (viagra needing) older men to serve as apostles and church presidents. I don’t know. Its nice gossip matter but hardly relevant to the belief or not in God or the church and certainly doesn’t justify calling the church just a ‘system’ as Larsen does here.

          • Fred W. Anson

            YOU WROTE

            “What I did try to point out was that one of the possibilities is that Smith was telling the truth, that Sarah did bed Bennett, but if its so then God has to judge them now.”

            MY RESPONSE
            Then I will point out the possibility that Joseph Smith was lying – as the historical record demonstrates was his strong tendency.  And in the case of polygamy Smith was demonstrably a lying liar – Exhibit A being his famous Sunday, May 26, 1844, “Address of the Prophet—His Testimony Against the Dissenters at Nauvoo” sermon in which he said: 
            “What a thing it is for a man to be accused of committing adultery, and having seven wives, when I can only find one.”

            This was a blatant lie to an audience that inevitably included at least 30 of his polygamous wives! 
            YOU WROTE
            “For us its just History but surely one can’t base their belief system or belief in the church or not on what may have or may not have happened back in 1840’s when things are still merky and tabloid standards.”

            MY RESPONSEWell if you believe that you’ve been spending too much time reading the spin-doctored and white washed “faithful” history that The Church Educational System spins out rather than the true history that historians write. Mormons have always been “demon record keepers” (to use Mike Quinn’s words) and the historical record is deep and rich.  Thus depend the time elapse in the case of Mormonism we have a historical corpus that’s, to my knowledge, unequaled by any other religion. By using that superb body of evidence it’s really not to hard to piece together what really happened in most cases.  The problem that we have here is that someone is obviously lying so it’s a bit harder to come to a firm conclusion. YOU WROTE”Even if Smith did do these things you guys accuse him off, its irrelevant to one’s belief in the church.”

            MY RESPONSE
            Really? I do hope that you’re joking.  

            As Richard Packham has said well, “If someone claims to have the truth you should probably make sure that they’re not lying to you.”  

            I really need to walk you through the logical implications if someone who claims to be a True Prophet of God is a chronic, pathological liar who routinely frames and slanders people to protect himself and the institution that he’s founded? 

            And, to be clear, I’m not talking about L. Ron Hubbard – though he engaged in the SAME types of behavior – I’m talking about Joseph Smith, Jr. 

            YOU WROTE
            “Its nice gossip matter but hardly relevant to the belief or not in God or the church and certainly doesn’t justify calling the church just a ‘system’ as Larsen does here.”

            MY RESPONSE
            If this was the ONLY “nice gossip” regarding Joseph Smith, Jr. I might agree with you. However, the man was such a chronic liar that he codified and established the practice of  “Lying for the Lord” for the ages. 

            As for it being a system . . . well, it’s hard to deny that it’s not when you have the historical record up to and including the recent example of Jeffrey Holland’s, Fall 2009 “Safety for the Soul” General Conference Address where the man – truly in the tradition of Joseph Smith’s Sunday, May 26, 1844 sermon – told lie after lie after lie. 
            (see http://www.concernedchristians.com/index.php?option=com_fireboard&Itemid=42&func=view&id=82631&catid=527 ) 
            It tends to make one wonder when they’re lying and when they’re not  darkmatter20!  Once, “If someone claims to have the truth you should probably make sure that they’re not lying to you.”  

          • Anonymous

            Jesus …. I aint going to go over all of that!!!

            But briefly,look technically he wasn’t lying since Emma was his only legal wife…..the others where polygamists unions probably just spiritual sealings that weren’t acted on or consumated here on earth, since there aren’t any children born from those nor was the pill or condoms very common in the 1830’s

            Plus, you guys keep making a big mistake in bringing up familysearch as a bona fide source to prove his wives. Anyone could add names to him or seal women to him via the old family search systme. Hell you could also seal him to Marylin Monroe at one point until they corrected the software. I mean people like Hitler, Muscolini, Peron all had their name there from time to time. Even Elvis was added by some fanatical member. But those people wont necesarily accept the endowment or the church, nor does it mean that a marriage will actually be sealed by God after you add a wife to someone or a husband to Marylin Monroe… (there the ‘system’ was wrong but slowly its being corrected)

            Holland and robert millet lie? why don’t you sue them for that. Both dudes are still alive.

          • Fred W. Anson

            YOU WROTE
            “But briefly,look technically he wasn’t lying since Emma was his only legal wife…..the others where polygamists unions”

            MY RESPONSE
            DarkMatter20, it appears that you’ve been taking notes from the Hugh Nibley, Mike Tannehill school of “first come to the conclusion then bend the facts to fit it” school of apologetics. 

            It’s irrelevant if they were legal monogamist or illegal bigamist marriages, they were marriages – period. 

            Simply put, Joseph Smith, Jr. lied AND had the “balls” (pun intended) to lie while, no doubt, looking into the faces of some of the very women that he had engaged in illegal bigamist* marriages. 

            YOU WROTE
            “… probably just spiritual sealings that weren’t acted on or consumated here on earth…”

            MY RESPONSE
            That tired old LdS Apologetic was discredited LONG ago.  Even FARMS has now admitted that Joseph Smith had sex with his bigamist wives. This is due to the fact that LdS Scripture is clear that the whole point of polygamy was to produce children. If you doubt this a simple rereading of D&C 132 should clear the matter up quickly.  This passage in particular makes the matter crystal clear:

            they [plural wives] are given unto him to multiply and replenish the earth, according to my commandment, and to fulfil the promise which was given by my Father before the foundation of the world.”
            — D&C 132:62
            (bolding, and underlining added for emphasis) 

            And the Signature Books press release regarding the new FARMS position notes:  

            “…the Book of Mormon defines polygamy’s purpose as procreation: “For there shall not any man among you have save it be one wife … For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people; otherwise they shall hearken unto [this prohibition]”
            (Jacob 2: 27, 30). 

            Sex and bearing children was clearly the plan.
            (see http://signaturebooks.com/2009/03/joseph-smith-had-conjugal-relations-with-nine-plural-wives-says-farms/ ; retrieved date of bolding, and underlining added for emphasis) 

            And here’s what Todd Compton concluded in regarding this subject “In Sacred Loneliness”: 

            In conclusion, though it is possible that Joseph had some marriages in which there were no sexual relations, there is not any explicit or convincing evidence for this (except, perhaps, in the cases of the older wives, judging from later Mormon polygamy). And in a significant number of marriages, there is evidence for sexual relations.
            (see http://runtu.wordpress.com/2008/03/28/sexuality-in-joseph-smiths-marriages/ ; retreived date of post) 

            YOU WROTE
            “…since there aren’t any children born from those nor was the pill or condoms very common in the 1830’s”

            MY RESPONSE
            No, but there was abortion and Sarah Pratt stated that John C. Bennett conducted several abortions on Joseph Smith’s bigamist wives in order to cover up his sexual improprieties: 

            [Bennett was en route to do] “a little job for Joseph [because] one of his women was in trouble.” Saying this, he took [out] a pretty long instrument of a kind I had never seen before. It seemed to be of steel and was crooked at one end. I heard afterwards that the operation had been performed; that the woman was very sick, and that Joseph was very much afraid that she might die, but she recovered.
            (Wymetal, Wilhelm Ritter von (1886), Joseph Smith, the Prophet, His Family, and His Friends: A Study Based on Facts and Documents, Salt Lake City, UT: Tribune Printing and Publishing Company, pp. 60-61; http://olivercowdery.com/smithhome/1886WWyl.htm#pg061a

            And Richard Van Wagoner, citing for this same source, points out that Sarah Pratt also related her observations of Bennett’s abortion work for Joseph Smith to Smith’s son Joseph Smith III: 

            “I saw that he [Joseph Smith III] was not inclined to believe the truth about his father, so I said to him: ‘You pretend to have revelations from the Lord. Why don’t you ask the Lord to tell you what kind of a man your father really was?’ He answered: ‘If my father had so many connections with women, where is the progeny?’ I said to him: ‘Your father had mostly intercourse with married women, and as to single ones, Dr. Bennett was always on hand, when anything happened.”
            (Van Wagoner, Richard S. (1986), “Sarah Pratt: The Shaping of an Apostate”, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 19 (2): p. 79)

            Finally, based on the historical record, another Mormon Studies Scholar notes: 

            “Researchers have tentatively identified eight children that Joseph Smith may have had by his plural wives. Besides Josephine Fisher (b. Feb. 8, 1844) and Oliver Buell, named as possible children of Joseph Smith by his plural wives are John R. Hancock (b. Apr. 19, 1841), George A. Lightner (b. Mar. 12, 1842), Orson W. Hyde (b. Nov. 9, 1843), Frank H. Hyde (b. Jan 23, 1845), Moroni Pratt (b. Dec. 7, 1844), and Zebulon Jacobs (b. Jan 2, 1842). (“Mormon Polygamy: A History” by LDS Historian Richard S. Van Wagoner, pages 44, 48- 49n3.)
            (see http://www.i4m.com/think/history/joseph_smith_sex.htm ; retrieved date of post) 

            YOU WROTE
            “Plus, you guys keep making a big mistake in bringing up familysearch as a bona fide source to prove his wives.”

            MY RESPONSE
            Well since FamilySearch.org is owned by the LdS Church which doesn’t the General Authorities correct the record if it’s so inaccurate and such a libelous assault on the good name and character of their great, founding Prophet?

            YOU WROTE
            “Holland and robert millet lie? why don’t you sue them for that. Both dudes are still alive.”

            MY RESPONSE
            Well lying – even public lying – isn’t a crime unless it’s slander or libel so your argument is absurd.**  

            And I know that they’re lying because I’ve done my homework and confirmed that many things that they say are contrary to established fact and reality. So since I’m done I know that they’re trying to lie to me – and, in their mind, with the BEST of intentions (after all don’t liars for the Lord always lie with the BEST of intentions?)  So they obviously DON’T have the truth as they claim. 

            However, I suspect that you’ve never done that homework assignment so I will ask you directly: 

            “If someone claims to have the truth shouldn’t you make sure that they’re not lying to you?”

            No doubt, something to think about I suppose . . . 

            * And please note that I am now deliberately using the more accurate term “bigamy” to describe Joseph Smith’s behavior in order to forestall the old, LdS Apologist semantic game of saying, “Well . . . technically it wasn’t polygamy, you know!” since you’ve now shown a chronic pattern of relying heavily on their tactics and techniques.  

            ** However, I do know that there’s still talk in the ExMormon/PostMormon community about bringing such a suit against the LdS Church to recover tithe and gift monies that were fraudulently obtained as a result of the LdS Church’s established pattern of “Lying for the Lord”. Perhaps we’ll see such civil action some day, however, since as a NeverMo I’ve never suffered such damages I would be unable to participate in such a suit – bummer for me (I guess).

          • Anonymous

            Dude, you need your own webpage to write so much.

            “Now DarkMatter20, you wouldn’t want people to think that you’re a Mind Control Cultist would you?”  haha….

            “It’s irrelevant if they were legal monogamist or illegal bigamist marriages, they were marriages – period.”

            Rubbish! Either they were marriages as we understand a marriage to be today or they were something else…like today’s widow still married and sealed to her first husband who then remarries again in the Temple for life or mortality. In mormonism there are different types of marriages accepted…..man/woman marriage as the world see’s it too, sealed to one spouse, sealed to others but living apart, polygamist marriages cohabitating as during Youngs days, spirit wifery -for lack of a better name- as Smith sealings to other women already married for life like Pratt’s wife….etc Your mistake is to continue to bring all types of unions and ‘marriage’ down to the common denominator we have today of marriage, which is one man-one woman marriage. Do so, or repeating this mistake, is akin to considering God kingdom as just ‘heaven’ without separating the 3 main glories and the 3 levels inside the celestial kingdom itself.

            “Sex and bearing children was clearly the plan” ….NO, children were the plan and the fact none exists from Smith with any other woman, including the married ones, proves that there was no sex. DNA today proves that there are no Smith kids as you claim so that argument is settled for me. finished. So both Sarah and and the researchers who ‘tentatively’ identified 8 kids are simply wrong as are you.

            Law suite?  why not claim “emotional distress” ….but you could go for a ‘false advertising’ argument too. If you’re creative enough I’m sure you can come up with something although for courts to agree with you…..well………

            FamilySearch? doesn’t work that way. The members submit names and the connections involved, grandparents siblings etc. General authorities rarely waste their time cleaning it up since there is no need to, unless the Jews start complaining again about holocost victims.  .

          • Fred W. Anson

            Well, you are without a doubt from the Mike Tannehill School of Theology in which, “Joseph Smith was a true Prophet of God” and “The LdS Church is true” are the pre-conceived conclusions and then all facts, evidence, and lines of logic and reason must somehow, some way be bent into conformance (even to the breaking point) with those presumptions – no matter how bizarre, irrational or weird, the end contortions and mental gymnastics required. 

            I’ve seen this TBM behavior before (a lot actually) I know better than to spend a lot of time trying to reason with the man behind the wall of glass.  

            If someone else wants to take a run at it – go for it. 

            I’m done and I’m walking away.

          • Anonymous

            ” then all facts, evidence, and lines of logic…”

            Issue is that those events from the 1840’s simply don’t reach the level of ‘facts and evidence’. They are opinions of people long dead. But again, Smith may have committed sins, we don’t say he was perfect or sinless, however today those sins are irrelevant to the bigger church picture.

            But there is no evidence, apart from the acusations from his enemies, that he was immoral or banging other women. If there were, I’d be the first to say that he needs to face God’s judgement over them -since he is long dead. But you go too far in your hatred of the man. He simply wasn’t that bad nor a crook, and especially no predator or sexual offender. 

            “I’m done and I’m walking away.”  …. Best thing you’ve done here.

          • Fred W. Anson

            YOU WROTE
            “…there is no evidence, apart from the acusations from his enemies, that he was immoral or banging other women.”

            MY RESPONSE
            OK, now that piece of misinformation HAS to get addressed. 

            As Todd Compton explains in “In Sacred Loneliness”: 
            “Because of claims by Reorganized Latter-day Saints that Joseph was not really married polygamously in the full (i.e., sexual) sense of the term, Utah Mormons (including Joseph’s wives) affirmed repeatedly that Joseph had physical sexual relations with his plural wives-despite the Victorian conventions in nineteenth-century American religion which otherwise would have prevented mention of sexual relations in marriage.”

            This was a period (the pre-Reed Smoot era) that was not like today: This was a time when the LdS Church was PROUD of their founder’s polygamous marriages and conjugal behavior in those marriages. These affidavits were published by the LdS Church – read that again please, the LdS Church published them not “enemies” or “Antis” – in a booklet entitled, “Blood Atonement and the Origin of Plural Marriage” by Elder Joseph F. Smith Jr and Richard C. Evans.  (readers can download a copy here http://www.archive.org/details/bloodatonementor00smit

            The affivdavits confirm not only Smith’s bigamist marriages but his conjugal activities within those marriages.  Here are some excerpts:

            “Be it remembered that on this thirtieth day of August A. D. 1869, personally appeared before me, James Jack, a notary public in and for said county, Elizabeth Ann Whitney, who was by me sworn in due form of law, and upon her oath saith that on the twenty-seventh day of July A. D. 1842, at the city of Nauvoo, county of Hancock, state of IlHnois, she was present and witnessed the marrying or sealing of her daughter Sarah Ann Whitney to the Prophet Joseph Smith, for time and all eternity, by her husband Newel K. Whitney then  Presiding Bishop of the Church.”
            (affidavit of Melissa Lott Willes, “Blood Atonement and the Origin of Plural Marriage” by Elder Joseph F. Smith Jr and Richard C. Evans, p. 72)   

            Now DarkMatter20 I hope that I don’t have to explain what the insider code words, “marriage for time” means in LdS Theology (for outsider it means “the two parties have the full benefits of marriage – up to and including sex – on this side of the veil”) and this isn’t the only affidavit in which it states that Joseph Smith was sealed “for time” to a polygamous wife. 

            Further, William Clayton, who was Joseph Smith’s personal secretary and who transcibed and edited D&C 132 for Joseph Smith said this in his affidavit: 

            “I again testify that the revelation on polygamy was given through the prophet Joseph on the 12th July. 1843; and that the Prophet Joseph both taught and practiced polygamy I do positively know, and bear testimony to the fact. In April, 1843, he sealed to me my second wife, my first wife being then Uving. By my said second wife I had two sons born in Nauvoo. The first died; the second is here now, and is married.”
            (Affidavit of Willaim Clayton, “Blood Atonement and the Origin of Plural Marriage” by Elder Joseph F. Smith Jr and Richard C. Evans, p. 77) 

            Now DarkMatter20 can you explain to us how and why the very man who wrote D&C 132 for Joseph Smith and thus had as clear an understanding of plural marriage of anyone living at the time would have had conjugal relations – thus being in full obedience to the D&C 132 – and Joseph Smith did not? Do you really mean to imply that William Clayton was MORE faithful to God’s “holy command” of polygamy than Joseph Smith? 

            And the affidavits from the LdS Church continued even after the publication of “Blood Atonement and the Origin of Plural Marriage”: 

            Faithful Mormon Melissa Lott (Smith Willes) testified that she had been Joseph’s wife “in very deed.” 
            (Affidavit of Melissa Willes, 3 Aug. 1893, Temple Lot case, 98, 105; as cited in Foster, Religion and Sexuality, p. 156.)

            In a court affidavit, faithful Mormon Joseph Noble wrote that Joseph told him he had spent the night with Louisa Beaman. 
            (Temple Lot Case, 427)

            Emily D. Partridge (Smith Young) said she “roomed” with Joseph the night following her marriage to him and said that she had “carnal intercourse” with him. (Temple Lot case (complete transcript), 364, 367, 384; as cited in Foster, Religion and Sexuality, p. 15)

            In total, 13 faithful latter-day saint women who were married to Joseph Smith swore court affidavits that they had sexual relations with him. 

            But that’s not all, the previously mentioned Willam Clayton, Joseph Smith’s personal secretary records that on May 22nd, 1843, Smith’s first wife Emma found Joseph and Eliza Partridge secluded in an upstairs bedroom at the Smith home. Emma was devastated.
            William Clayton’s journal entry for 23 May (see Smith, 105-106)

            William Clayton also recorded a visit to young Almera Johnson on May 16, 1843: 

            “Prest. Joseph and I went to B[enjamin] F. Johnsons to sleep.” Johnson himself later noted that on this visit Smith stayed with Almera “as man and wife” and “occupied the same room and bed with my sister, that the previous month he had occupied with the daughter of the late Bishop Partridge as his wife.” Almera Johnson also confirmed her secret marriage to Joseph Smith: “I lived with the prophet Joseph as his wife and he visited me at the home of my brother Benjamin F.” 
            (Zimmerman, I Knew the Prophets, 44. See also “The Origin of Plural Marriage, Joseph F. Smith, Jr., Deseret News Press, page 70-71.)

            Faithful Mormon and Stake President Angus Cannon told Joseph Smith’s son: 

            “Brother Heber C. Kimball, I am informed, asked [Eliza R. Snow] the question if she was not a virgin although married to Joseph Smith and afterwards to Brigham Young, when she replied in a private gathering, “I thought you knew Joseph Smith better than that.”” 
            (Stake President Angus M. Cannon, statement of interview with Joseph III, 23, LDS archives.)

            As for the tired old, “where are his progeny?” argument, in addition to the aforementioned abortions, I would point out that DNA testing hasn’t been completed on the lineage of those who were suspected of being the “fruit” of Joseph Smith, Jr’s bigamist loins.  

            And the historic record is indicting in this regard as well: 

            Stake President Angus Cannon testified: 

            “I will now refer you to one case where it was said by the girl’s grandmother that your father [Joseph Smith] has a daughter born of a plural wife. The girl’s grandmother was Mother Sessions . . . She was the grand-daughter of Mother Sessions. That girl, I believe, is living today, in Bountiful, north of this city. I heard prest. Young, a short time before his death, refer to the report . . . The woman is now said to have a family of children, and I think she is still living.” 
            (Stake President Angus M. Cannon, statement of interview with Joseph III, 25-26, LDS archives.)

            Faithful Mormon and wife of Joseph Smith, Sylvia Sessions (Lyon), on her deathbed told her daughter, Josephine, that she (Josephine) was the daughter of Joseph Smith. Josephine testified: “She (Sylvia) then told me that I was the daughter of the Prophet Joseph Smith, she having been sealed to the Prophet at the time that her husband Mr. Lyon was out of fellowship with the Church.” 
            (Affidavit to Church Historian Andrew Jenson, 24 Feb. 1915)

            In her testimony given at a Brigham Young University devotional, Faithful Mormon Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner stated that she knew of children born to Smith’s plural wives: 

            “I know he [Joseph Smith] had six wives and I have known some of them from childhood up. I know he had three children. They told me. I think two are living today but they are not known as his children as they go by other names.” 
            (Read her full BYU testimony here: http://www.ldshistory.net/pc/merlbyu.htm)

            Faithful Mormon Prescindia D. Huntington, who was Normal Buell’s wife and simultaneously a “plural wife” of the Prophet Joseph Smith, said that she did not know whether her husband Norman “or the Prophet was the father of her son, Oliver.” And a glance at a photo of Oliver shows a strong resemblance to Emma Smith’s boys.
            (Mary Ettie V. Smith, “Fifteen Years Among the Mormons”, page 34; also Fawn Brodie “No Man Knows My History” pages 301-302, 437-39)

            So DarkMatter20 you’re certainly entitled to your own opinions, however, you’re NOT entitled to your own facts. And the facts of the historical record completely discredits the modern LdS Apologist stance that Joseph Smith didn’t have sexual relations with his bigamist wives. 

            (please note: I want to give my sincere thanks to Deconstructor whose research and analysis I relied on heavily for some of the above content. The reader will find his original analysis here: http://www.i4m.com/think/history/joseph_smith_sex.htm Anything that Deconstructor writes, well worth the time investment and this article is no exception!)

          • Anonymous

            Dude , you ‘was done here’. This is what you consider being done?

            But look, again, you don’t get it. , “marriage for time means”…..not necessarily. According to 132 there is also the need to have full agreement from wife No1, and Emma never gave it. But, also 132, allows a resolution due to said conflict. But again, these ‘marriages’ don’t necessarily imply sex.

            And, “can you explain to us how and why…. [Clayton.].. would have had conjugal relations  and Joseph Smith did not?” Clayton had wife No1’s consent but Emma never gave it.

            ” she had been Joseph’s wife “in very deed.” ” Doesn’t prove copulation or pregnancies or abortions. Don’t you think that had she banged Smith, the top guy in that community, and had a child to him that she wouldn’t have added that to the affidavit? Plus, according to several historians, the words “in very deed” don’t appear in her testimony.

            “Emily D. Partridge said she “roomed” with Joseph” …again you assume, suppose, suggest that means sex but it doesn’t actually say that. And what happened to dear Emily later on….she also said this: “Joseph was a
            prophet of God, and a friend of man. His was a noble
            character. All who knew him can testify to that assertion.
            He was all that the word
            gentleman would
            imply—pure in heart, always striving for right,
            upholding innocence, and battling for the good of all. ” Why don’t you accept Emily’s description of Smith as ‘noble..gentleman… pure in heart, striving for right, upholding innocence’ etc but do read into her “roomed” as wild frontier sex. Plus plenty of the women latter had children with other husbands, including Hellen Kimball at 16, so wouldn’t they openingly declare who was a Josepth Smith son or daughter? He was THE Prophet for them. If there were any they’d have said it openly.

            “Stake President Angus Cannon told Joseph Smith’s son: “Brother Heber C. Kimball, I am informed, asked [Eliza R. Snow]” …really?. You obviously don’t know any stake presidents and when they start gossiping, like Cannon is doing here. Doesn’t even reach hearsay level. I’d dissmiss this, as most of your ‘evidence’ as goosip.

            However, although I cou go on and on showing how your ‘evidence’ isn’t evidence at all, you still don’t get it!! you still don’t realize that no one says Smith was perfect, nor sinless. He was a young man for most of his time there and young men have defects.

            Look, I’ll explain this for your 7th grade intelligence level. Our options are :  a) Smith was banging Fanny et al, now its 2011 so it doesn’t matter now  b) Smith wasn’t banging Fanny et al, its now 2011 so it doesn’t matter now c) he married Fanny et al, didn’t bang any, now can as a spirit, now its 2011 so doesn’t matter anymore. ie our conclusion from the above: “doesn’t matter anymore” . It doesn’t make the church true nor false. It has no effect on Moson’s job performance or calling. Its all historical argument, its academic (and plus I’d say that Compton’s work is full of mistakes by the way) and it for historians and history buffs to argue over and keep researching. You surely don’t believe that all research is said and done, don’t you? But if there are sin, well now it’s up to God to decide because the man is dead.

            Now, regarding your patronizing insults : I don’t need your pity nor do I fanatically defending Smith. He will defend himself when the time comes. But as for you, you will also have to defend yourself at that last judgement day and to be honest with you, I hope you don’t change by then, hope you don’t find the truth or accept Smith as a prophet, so we will never have to deal with you or see you then, just like we wont see your friend and apostate “Deconstructor”. So please don’t ever accept Smith as prophet. 

            Now are you done here?

          • Fred W. Anson

            Well DarkMatter20 I was done until you put up a claim that was so irrational, so ludicrous that it couldn’t be left to stand unanswered.  

            However, with your last post you have demonstrated that you are so fanatically and insanely committed to defending Joseph Smith regardless that there’s really no reason, no logic, no fact, no evidence that you will consider without corrupting it with your psychotic presuppositions. 

            Quite frankly: IMO, you’re seriously imbalanced and you really need to seek help. 

            Yep, I’m done now  because you know the old saying: “If one tries to reason with a crazy person, who’s more crazy?”

          • Anonymous

            “there’s really no reason, no logic, no fact, no evidence that you will
            consider without corrupting it with your psychotic presupposition”

            You never presented anything that reaches the standard of ‘fact’ or ‘evidence’. You do have reasoned arguments and attempted logic but both are fatally flawed by your own hatred of Smith.

            By the way I noticed how quickly you resorted to insults throughtout your coments here when you came across someone who disagrees with you. Says a lot about character!

            Hopefully now you are truely done……..wouldn’t want you to be lying again.

          • kackyful

            Oh that’s right, just like Christ would behave, DM20.  Just like ‘im!  I’m sure he is really proud of you for this comment “I hope you don’t change by then, hope you don’t find the truth or accept Smith as a prophet, so we will never have to deal with you or see you then…”   You just proved how backed in a corner you are right now.  Little boy scared to death in the corner with his fingers in his ears screaming “NANNER NANNER NANNER!!!!

          • Anonymous

            Ah…. Jesus constantly attacked Pharisees, businesses within the Temple, many Jews….the type of people who are faithless and don’t think they need to repent, just like many apostates are, including ‘Fred’. So yeah, I fairly sure Jesus would be OK with that comment, he also dislikes some people.

            In a corner? scared to death? Nah….nothing of that over here!!

          • kackyful

            Jesus never wished anyone not to “come unto him”.  You are reading your bible the way you want to to fit your bigoted hateful little heart…we’ll see who is there in that day, sad man.

          • Anonymous

            Doh….like your ex wife testifying against you….like a bitter ex boyfried saying how slutty she is……like a wife scorned whose fury hath no bounds…..

            Their testimony can be true in some situations but it always required corroborating evidence.

            You can’t take the testimony of an ex-spouse as reliable especially if there is still animosity between the parties, as there certainly was between Orson and Sarah Pratt, hence she made “hardly a reliable witness” to all the events that occured 30 years before during 1840’s Navoo.

          • Fred W. Anson

            That’s it? 

            Your arguments are fallacious because they’re ad-homiem attacks on the witnesses. They’re irrelevant. 

            Using that logic we could just as easily argue that the declared allies of the churches and those who want to protect it the institution are just as biased and, therefore, just as unreliable.

            So, using your reasoning, I could just as easily toss out the testimony of Joseph Smith. Thus, when you use ad-hominem arguments, in the end you just end up chasing your tail regardless what side you’re on. 

          • Anonymous

            yeap, that’s it!

            ” I could just as easily toss out the testimony of Joseph Smith…….., therefore,[he is] just as unreliable” Correct! we finally agree.

            you see, simply going on Joseph Smith’s word is foolish. We need more than that……and that confirmation comes directly from God through the holy ghost. You should’ve know about that by now 🙂 I mean the church has preached that for long enough.

            So, trusting in Smith’s testimony only or on Sarah Pratt’s testimony only is foolish and unrealible. Both could be telling the truth just as much as both could be lying. You need more than just what someone writes 30 years after the fact to draw solid conclusions from, apart from saying that the person claimed this or that….30 years after the fact. Actually even after that we need to factor in the Hoffmann principal…ie that anything writen could be a forgery.

          • Fred W. Anson

            YOU WROTE
            “you see, simply going on Joseph Smith’s word is foolish. We need more than that……and that confirmation comes directly from God through the holy ghost. ”

            MY RESPONSE
            Oh you mean like this woman did?

            “For me, I believe that Muhammad was a prophet because of the Qur’an–because I read it, and in my own estimation after reading it, reflecting on it, and praying about it, I found in myself an unwavering belief that the Qur’an is without a doubt revealed by the Lord of the Worlds, by the Almighty God.”
            (see http://forums.catholic.com/showpost.php?s=c37f3f001ea2276b7b74b15a8cf740c6&p=4462691&postcount=3 )

            Sound familiar? Just substitute “Joseph Smith” where it says, “Muhammad” and “Book of Mormon” where it says “Qur’an” and you have the archetypical Mormon Testimony!

            Of course, I’m rather familiar with Mormon Epistemology in this regard, so much so that I wrote a White Paper on it entitle, “Deconstructing Mormon Testimony Bearing” (see http://www.concernedchristians.com/index.php?Itemid=42&catid=10&func=view&id=75526&option=com_fireboard )

            And I will spare you my Mormon Testimony . . . that is unless you really, really, really want to hear it.

            YOU WROTE
            “You need more than just what someone writes 30 years after the fact to draw solid conclusions from, apart from saying that the person claimed this or that….30 years after the fact.”

            MY RESPONSE
            While I agree that time can compromise the accuracy of even a first hand account – and remember this IS a first hand account – the broad, overarching facts remain consistent. I’m 51-years old now. However, I can still tell you where and when I bought my first 6-pack of beer when I turned 21-years old. I can tell you what car I drove it home in and I can tell you the color of the car. 30-years later none of these FACTS have changed.

            And psychologists tell us that the more traumatic the event, the more it “sticks” in our memory.

            In the end, given their respective demonstrated patterns of behavior and overall character, I have only a little doubt in Sarah Pratt and a whole lotta doubt in Joseph Smith, Jr. ‘s testimony.

            YOU WROTE
            “:Actually even after that we need to factor in the Hoffmann principal…ie that anything writen could be a forgery.”

            MY RESPONSE
            Since these documents had entered into the historical record long before Mark Hofmann was even born, your point is moot.

          • Richard of Norway

            Dude, I just read this comment even though you posted it a while ago. Priceless. Gotta save some of those Qur’an quotes. Cheers! 🙂

          • kackyful

            I’ve just now prayed about Sarah Pratt’s side of the story and I had a burning in my bossom, one I never got when I asked about the BofM btw, and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she is telling the truth.  It IS Truth!   (eyes rolling)…I nearly just wet myself when I read your statement that we can get a “witness” of Joesph’s story by praying about it.  Sarah needs human beings to back up her story, but Joseph only needs God.!  Ay matey, gotcha!  😉  

          • Anonymous

            Sure….both would need God to back them up, not just Smith, no issues there. Why you understood something else is strange.

            But Sarah ? she is still the adulteres for me, not Smith.

          • Anonymous

            Plus, if she went with Pratt to Utah, then by default she would’ve had to seek repentence for that adultery, for which she was excommunicated, including accepting the sin as part of the process of rebaptism. But then she was excommunicated again (proving that she had been rebaptized after 1845) a second time for apostasy in 1874 or there abouts.

            So she is hardly a reliable witness of what happened during the 1840’s. She called herself ‘an apostate’ and wrote many more things which can only be called anti-church wirttings by a bitter ex member, including accusing Smith of getting Bennett to do abortions for him when the two men had already become enemies.

  8. Glenn Reply

    Being excommunicated in the early church was like being de-friended on Facebook.  Classic!

  9. Anonymous Reply

    Here is a list of some interesting things I found in my research for the podcast but that went unshared for lack of time:

    Orson Hyde: Served a mission in Jerusalem.  Climbed Mount Olive and prayed.  BYU purchased land in the area and created a park in his name.  http://lds.org/scriptures/bible-maps/photo-11?lang=eng

    Orson Pratt: Essentially excommunicated over polygamy and then became a huge polygamist himself.  His wife Sarah (who was at the heart of the controversy which lead to the excommunication) eventually divorced him and started an anti-polygamy society in SLC.  When Orson was 57 he married a 16 year old.  Sarah was quoted as saying, “Here was my husband, gray headed, taking to his bed young girls in mockery of marriage.  Of course there could be no joy for him in such an intercourse except for the indulgence of his fanaticism and of something else, perhaps, which I hesitate to mention.”

    Lyman Johnson: This guy was really angry about the Kirtland bank stuff.  I guess he lost a lot of money when it failed.  Anyway, things came to a head during a meeting.  Wilford Woodruff said of that meeting: “I saw one of these Apostles in the Kirtland Temple, while the Sacrament was being passed, stand in the aisle and curse the Prophet of God to his face while he was in the stand, and when the bread was passed he reached out his hand for a piece of bread and flung it into his mouth like a mad dog.  He turned as black in the face almost as an African with rage and with the power of the devil.  What did he do?  He ate and drank damnation to himself.” 

    William McClellin: When Joseph Smith was in jail in Missouri, McClellin asked the sheriff if he could flog Joseph.  The sheriff relayed this request to Joseph and he agreed as long as he could have his shackles removed to fight back.  McClellin balked and demanded the use of a club.  Joseph accepted the terms.  The sheriff backed down, refusing to let them fight on such unequal terms.  He also was rumored to have ransacked Joseph’s house while he was in jail.

    John W. Taylor: The “Taylor Stake” in Raymond Alberta Canada is named after him.  There is also a street and a church building named after him.  He is also credited with helping establish the polygamist communities in Canada (before his excommunication).

    • JMW Reply

      John W Taylor really wasn’t an apostate… He was a scapegoat and was
      unjustly dealt with, his resignation from the 12 was brought about by a
      deal cut by Reed Smoot with the Senators on the committee over
      privileges and elections. His excommunication was brought about from the
      spying and following, instigated by Francis Lyman, of people that JFS
      was sending up to Taylor when they came to him wanting to be sealed
      plurally.

      David O McKay later restored his apostleship and brought him back into
      full fellowship status by proxy when he was president of the church
      making him squeaky clean. He’s like any real saint/prophet of his day,
      persecuted and cut off, then later restored and exonerated but by then
      the damage is done…

  10. Fred W. Anson Reply

    Here’s a research question that I’ve been struggling with for some time – perhaps someone here knows the answer: 

    Q: How many people did Joseph Smith excommunicate in his lifetime?
    What I’ve uncovered so far:
    This link only covers the period from 1831-1838: http://saintswithouthalos.com/n/discipline.phtml

    And, using that link (assuming it’s accurate), from 1831-1838 I count a total of 19 over that 7-year period – an average of 2.7 per year.

    And, of course, things only got worse after 1838 with the famous excommunications of John C. Bennett in 1842 and William Law in 1844. 

    If I recall in the 1840’s Joseph Smith was excommunicating Latter-day Saints like a small boy stomping on ants.

    So how many did he excommunicate from 1839-1844? 

    If we have that number we’ll have a reasonable answer to my original question. 
    Does anyone know? 

  11. Wes Cauthers Reply

    Great episode. I learned a lot on this one. The quote from Brigham Young was tragically comic. That guy was a real piece of work.

  12. Pollz05 Reply

    On of my favourites! I like this series. Please do more dummies too!

    • Rawkcuf Reply

      Yes!  Please don’t crunch on chips, finger pennies, crumple papers, etc!  If you want to maintain a sense of seriousness, stop pretending to be a foley artist.

  13. MJL Reply

    I was expecting a top ten list of the J. Golden Kimball types but I was pleasantly surprised to be presented with the rogues gallery of early Church leaders.  Great podcast!

  14. Alyssa Reply

    Glad to see that my great-great-great-(great?) grandfather Amasa Lyman made it onto the list. But personally I think he could possibly be higher on the list for his sheer coolness. During his period of disfellowship in the 1870s, he became the leader of the Godbeite religion. They were a group of educated, liberal Mormons (mostly from Britain) who didn’t believe in polygamy or the literal Atonement, who strongly believed that Brigham Young should not have been both the ecclesiastical leader and the political leader at the same time, and who argued against Young’s policy of cultural isolationism. The Godbeite religion itself didn’t last long but the publication they founded (the Utah Magazine) eventually became none other than… (drum roll please)… the Salt Lake Tribune. Heck yeah, I’m proud of my roots. 😛

    • Fred W. Anson Reply

      Big Amasa M. Lyman fan here too.  

      First, for leading the Mormon contingent that founded “The California Colony”, that is San Bernadino, CA. (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_San_Bernardino,_California#Mormon_San_Bernardino ) 

      Second, for being the great-grandfather of E. Leo Lyman who is one of my favorite Mormon and Southwest Historians (see http://wchsutah.org/people/leo-lyman.htm ) 

      John, if you could get Leon Lyman on the show to talk about Amasa Lyman, The Mormon Trail (aka “Spanish Trail) linking California and Utah, and/or San Bernadino that would be a HUGE “get”.   He’s considered one of the leading experts on both and is considered by many to be THE foremost Southwest Trail Historian. 

      Very interesting guy and a treasure trove of information. 
      (by the way if you want to ‘spin him up’ just say two words: Brigham Young. Then sit back and enjoy the show! To say that he’s not a B.Y. fan is to understate things badly!)

  15. Anonymous Reply

    However Bennet had other cases of adultery and other accusations to answer that weren’t related to the Pratt issue

    • Bitherwack Reply

      That is the same thing I was going to comment on.  If you are sitting in front of a microphone folks, please, please don’t fiddle with poker chips, chains, rattles, or any other noisemakers!

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *