to throw horse and foot into a dogmatic quarrel
to set about promoting morality with bayonets and
bowie-knives ? "
" It is one of our planks," says a young member
of Congress, " to put down those Mormons, who,
besides being infidels, are also Conservatives and
" Young is certainly a Democrat," adds an Able
Editor from Massachusetts, himself a traveller in
the Mormon land ; " we have no right to burn
his block on account of his politics ; nor, indeed, on
account of his religion ; we have no power to
meddle with any man s faith ; but we have made a
law against plurality of wives, and we have the
power to make our laws respected everywhere in
" By force, if we are driven by disloyal citizens
to the use of force."
" You mean, then, that in any case you will use
force passively, if they submit ; actively, if they
" That s our notion," replies our candid host.
352 NEW AMEKICA.
" The government must crush them. That is our big
job ; and next year we must put it through."
" You hold it right, then, to combat such an evil
as polygamy with shot and shell ? "
" We have freed four million negroes with shot
and shell," replies a sober Pennsylvanian judge.
" Pardon me, is that a full statement of the case ?
That you have crushed a movement of secession by
means of military force is true ; but is it not
also true that, five or six years ago, every one
acknowledged that slavery was a legal and moral
question, which, while peace and order reigned in
the slave-states, ought not to be treated otherwise
than on legal and moral grounds ? "
" Yes, that is so. We had no right over the
negroes until their masters went into rebellion. I
admit that the declaration of war gave us our only
" In fact, you confess that you had no right over
the blacks until you had gained, through the rebel
lion, a complete authority over the whites who held
them in bondage ?"
" Certainly so."
" If, then, the planters had been quiet ; keeping
to the law as it then stood ; never attempting to
spread themselves by force, as they tried to do
THE REPUBLICAN PLATFORM. 353
in Kansas ; you would have been compelled, by
your sense of right, to leave them to time and
reason, to the exhaustion of their lands, to the
depopulation of their States, to the growth of
sound economical knowledge in short, to the
moral forces which excite and sustain all social
" Perhaps so," answers the Able Editor. " The
Saints have not yet given us such a chance. They
are very honest, sober, industrious people, who
mind their own business mainly, as men will have
to do who try to live in yon barren plains. They
are useful in their way, too ; linking our Atlantic
states with the Pacific states ; and feeding the
mining population of Idaho, Montana, and Nevada.
We have no ground of complaint, none that a
politician would prefer, against them beyond their
plural households ; but New England is very sore
just now about them ; for everybody in this country
has got into the habit of calling them the spawn
of our New England conventicles, simply because
Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, Heber Kimball, all
the chief lights of their church, happen to be New
"When New England," adds a representative
from Ohio, with a laugh, " goes mad on any point,
VOL. I. A A
354 NEW AMERICA.
you will find that she contrives in this Eepublic to
have her way."
"When her way is just and open sanctioned
by moral principle and by human experience it
is well that she should have her way. But will
Harvard and Yale support an attack by military
power on religious bodies because they have
adopted the model of Abraham and David ? You
have in those western plains and mountains a
hundred tribes of red-men who practise polygamy ;
would you think it right for your missionary
society to withdraw from among them the teacher
and his Bible, and for General Grant to send out
in their stead the soldier and his sword ? You have
in those western territories a hundred thousand
yellow men who also practise polygamy ; would you
hold it just to sink their ships, to burn their
ranches, to drive them from your soil, with sword
"Their case is different to that of the Saints,"
rejoins the Able Editor ; " these red-skins and
yellow-skins are savages ; one race may die out,
the other may go back to Asia; but Young and
Kimball are our own people, knowing the law and
the Gospel; and whatever they may do with the
Gospel, they must obey the law."
THE REPUBLICAN PLATFORM. 355
" Of course, everybody must obey the law ;
but how? Those Saints, I hear, have no objection
to your law when administered by judge and jury,
only to your law when administered by colonels
" In other words," says the Pennsylvania!! judge,
" they have no objection to our law when they
are left to carry it out themselves."
" We must put them down," cries the young
member of Congress.
" Have you not tried that policy of putting
them down twice already ? You found them twelve
thousand strong at Independence, in Missouri ; not
liking their tenets (though they had no polygamy
amongst them then) you crushed and scattered
them into thirty thousand at Kauvoo ; where you
again took arms against religious passion, slew
their Prophet, plundered their city, drove them
into the desert, and generally dispersed and de
stroyed them into one hundred and twenty-seven
thousand in Deseret ! You know that some such
law of growth through persecution has been de
tected in every land and in every church. It is a
proverb. In Salt Lake City, I heard Brigham
Young tell his departing missionaries, they were
not to suggest the beauty of their mountain home,
356 NEW AMERICA.
but to dwell on the idea of persecution, and to call
the poor into a persecuted church. Men fly into
a persecuted church, like moths into a flame. If
you want to make all the western country Mormon,
you must send an army of a hundred thousand
troops to the Eocky Mountains."
" But we can hardly leave these pluralists
" Why not so far at least as regards bayonets
and bowie-knives? Have you no faith in the
power of truth ? Have you no confidence in being
right? Nay, are you sure that you have nothing
to learn from them ? Have not the men who
thrive where nobody else can live, given ample
evidence that, even though their doctrines may
be strange and their morals false, the principles
on which they till the soil and raise their crops, are
singularly sound ? "
" I admit," says the Able Editor, " they are
" Good is a poor term, by which to express
the marvel they have wrought. In Illinois, they
changed a swamp into a garden. In Utah, they
have made the desert green with pastures and
tawny with maize and corn. Of what is Brig-
ham Young most proud ? Of his harem, his temple,
THE REPUBLICAN PLATFORM. S57
his theatre, his office, his wealth ? He may pride
himself on these things in their measure ; but
the fact of his life which he dwelt upon most,
and with the noblest enthusiasm, is the rais
ing of a crop of ninety-three and a half bushels
of wheat from one single acre of land. The
Saints have grown rich with a celerity that
seems magical, even in the United States. Be
ginning life at the lowest stage, recruited only
from among the poor, spoiled of their goods and
driven from their farms, compelled to expend
millions of dollars in a perilous exodus, and finally
located on a soil from which the red-skin and the
bison had all but retired in despair, they have yet
contrived to exist, to extend their operations, to
increase their stores. The hills and valleys round
Salt Lake are everywhere smiling with wheat and
rye. A city has been built ; great roads have
been made ; mills have been erected ; canals have
been dug ; forests have been felled. A depot has
been formed in the wilderness from which the
miners of Montana and Nevada can be fed. A
chain of communication from St. Louis to San
Francisco has been laid. Are the Republican
majority prepared to undo the progress of twenty
years in order to curb an obnoxious doctrine ? Are
358 NEW AMERICA.
they sure that the attempt being made, it would
succeed ? What facts in the past history of these
Saints permit you to infer that persecution, how
ever sharp, would diminish their number, their
audacity, and their zeal ? "
" Then you see no way of crushing them ? "
" Crushing them ! No, none. I see no way
of dealing with any moral and religious question
except by moral means employed in a religious
spirit. Why not put your trust in truth, in logic,
in history ? Why not open good roads to Salt Lake ?
Why not encourage railway communication ; and
bring the practical intellect and noble feeling of
New England to bear upon the household of many
wives ? Why not meet their sermons by sermons ;
try their science by science ; encounter their books
with books ? Have you no missionaries equal to
Elder Stenhouse and Elder Dewey? You must
expect that while you act on the Saints, the
Saints will re-act upon you. It will be for you
a trial of strength ; but the weapons will be legi
timate and the conclusions will be blessed. Can
you not trust the right side and the just cause,
to come out victoriously from such a struggle ? "
" Well," says the judge, " while we are di
vided in opinion, perhaps, as to the use of phy-
THE REPUBLICAN PLATFORM. 359
sical force, we are all in favour of moral force.
Massachusetts is our providence ; but, after all,
we must have one law in this Eepublic. Union
is our motto, equality our creed. Boston and
Salt Lake city must be got to shake hands, as
Boston and Charleston have already done. If
you can persuade Brigham to lie down with
Bowles, I am willing to see it And now
pass the wine."
END OF THE FIRST VOLUME.
PRINTED BY SPOTTISWOODE AND CO.
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