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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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Ambiguous Allegiances and Divided Sovereignty

Ambiguous Allegiances and Divided Sovereignty

Mormons and Other Uncertain Americans in Nineteenth-Century North America

(p.177) Chapter 11 Ambiguous Allegiances and Divided Sovereignty
Contingent Citizens
Rachel St. John
Cornell University Press

This chapter recounts the Mormons' uneven relationship with the US government throughout the history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the middle of the nineteenth century. It traces back how Mormons faced the greatest persecution at the hands of Americans and came closest to political independence, developing separate and semiautonomous economic, political, and military institutions, and relocating to the Great Basin. It also describes the Mormon settlement, political authority, economic development, and relations with the Great Basin's Native populations that threatened to disrupt US claims to the region. The chapter highlights anti-Mormon prejudice and the Mormons' continued suspicion of government officials and non-Mormons. It also talks about the military conflict that erupted between the US federal government and the Mormons in 1857.

Keywords:   Mormons, US government, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, political independence, Great Basin, anti-Mormon prejudice, non-Mormons

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