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Contingent CitizensShifting Perceptions of Latter-day Saints in American Political Culture$
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Spencer W. McBride, Brent M. Rogers, and Keith A. Erekson

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781501716737

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501716737.001.0001

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“Rather Than Recognize This Wretched Imposture”

“Rather Than Recognize This Wretched Imposture”

Edward Everett, Rational Religion, and the Territory of Utah/Deseret

(p.169) Chapter 10 “Rather Than Recognize This Wretched Imposture”
Contingent Citizens
Matthew Mason
Cornell University Press

This chapter focuses on Edward Everett, who was perturbed at the idea of Mormons getting their own territory or state under the name of Deseret. It recounts how Mormon leaders had petitioned Congress for admission as a state, with territorial status as a “plan B.” It also highlights the key source of Everett's consternation with the proposed name of “Deseret” and his overall suspicion toward religious zealotry and charismatic religious leaders. The chapter talks about Everett's letter of protest to his friend, John C. Winthrop, regarding the Mormon's request for statehood, which illuminates a formative moment in Utah and Mormon history and a crucial moment for the Whig persuasion. It also looks into Everett's constitutional concerns about accommodating the Mormons that stemmed from his lifelong sense of the sacredness of the Union.

Keywords:   Edward Everett, Mormons, Deseret, John C. Winthrop, Whig persuasion, Mormon history, Union

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