Mormons In Utah Essay, Research Paper
Mormons in Utah
I intend to prove that the Mormon religion, which began to rise in both
reputation and numbers in Utah, is a strange mixer of Christianity, American
pragmatism, millennialist expectations, economic experimentation, political
conservation, evangelical fervor and international activity, but is still a
highly followed, rapidly growing, and successful religion.
Mormonism is a major modern religion with more than 8 million members,
and over 4 million in the United States. Mormonism was founded in 1830 by Joseph
Smith who was known as the prophet. This is a young age for such a widely
practiced religion, and its numbers grow daily.
Mormonism is officially the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
Its founding doctrine is based on the assumption that Christianity was too
corrupt and ungodly, and that restoring true Christian values was necessary. A
revelation like this may only come through God who needs to put the true, pure
forms of Christianity in a divine authority.
The Mormons, who follow four books including The Bible, The Book of
Mormon, Doctrine of Covenants, and Pearl of a Great Price do believe that all
religions have some amount of truth to them and do good in one form or another,
but it is only their religion that is ” the only true and living church upon
In 1820 , Mormonism was founded by a teenage Joseph Smith during the
19th century United States religious movement known as the “Second Great
Awakening”. On April 6, 1830, The Book of Mormon was completed and a new
religion was born.
Mormonism attracted many people and the firs official home of the
Mormons was in Fayette, New York. In 1831, the Mormons moved to Kirtland, Ohio,
now known as Kirtland Hills. Other Mormon areas were being established,
especially in Mississippi. Newly proclaimed Mormons were rushing to their new
religious grounds, mainly in norttheastern Ohio and western Mississippi.
Although the Mormons were thrilled with their “perfect” religion, there
were many problems where they had established themselves. The people who were
already present in strongly populated Mormon areas began to get upset and act
very hostile. Threats were made, and the Mormons became very scared-scared
enough to move. So they did. The Mormons reestablished themselves somewhere
along the Mississippi River at a place known as Commerce, Illinois. They Mormons
were granted permission by Chicago to latter rename their property as Nauvoo.
The Mormons still were not wanted. The people living around the Mormons became
worried about their local economy and the affects the block voting done by the
Mormons would have. The Mormons were allowed to set up their own army to protect
themselves. Soon, rumors of monarchical powers and the practice of polygamy
began floating around. This enraged locals even more and the federal government
sent armies into Mormon territory to see if they could dispel any of these
rumors. This only caused more of an upset. In 1844, Joseph Mormon and his
younger brother were placed into a prison in Illinois on charges of treason and
conspiracy. After they were released they were promised protection by the
government, but this was not the case because shortly after their release, they
The leadership of the Mormons fell onto the shoulders of a group of men
known as the 12 Apostles. The 12 Apostles, knowing they couldn’t stay in
Illinois, decided they had to move. Brigham Young, who took over as prophet and
president of the Mormon group, decided to move the Mormons in 1847. They moved
from Illinois to Great Basin in the rocky Mountains in Utah. salt Lake City was
set up as the main Mormon city of worship, and soon over 300 other cities of
worship sprouted up nearby. The Mormon religious territories spread from
California to Colorado, and from Mexico to Canada.
In their new land, the Mormons thought they were safe, and 10% -20%
openly practiced polygamy. The rumors about this had proved to be true and the
government sent in an army to stop this form of worship. This propelled the
supposed Utah War that lasted from 1857 to 1858.
The Mormons went through battle after battle of judicial trials. Finally,
in 1890, the church president at that time, Wilford Woodruff, publicly ended all
Mormon polygamy. The Mormons finally were left alone and their little city in
Utah created thousands more cities like it.
The contemporary Mormon church still has many problems, and while it is
seen as a conservative Christian church, their ideas about God’s nature and
salvation greatly differ from other Christian religions. However, the Mormons
have constantly proved they believe their religion is worth fighting for.
In this report, I have proven the Mormons are an odd mixture of
Christianity, American pragmatism, millennialist expectations, economic
experimentation, political conservation, evangelical fervor, and international
activity, and continue to grow because they are a highly followed rapidly
growing, successful religion.