Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 10.djvu/182

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the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-clay Saints was first organized at Fayette, in the State of New York, and its headquarters were moved gradually westward, until a considerable settlement was formed in Jackson County, Missouri. Here it was expected that the New Jerusalem would be built, but an organized system of persecution drove the Saints out of the State of Missouri, and in 1839 they took refuge in Illinois, where they built the city of Nauvoo, in Hancock County, on the banks of the Mississippi, and enjoyed a short respite from persecution. But in 1844 popular hostility broke out with increased violence, and Joseph Smith (who had been frequently brought before judicial tribunals, and invariably acquitted) proceeded with his brother Hyrum to Carthage, where they surrendered themselves prisoners on a charge of treason, the Governor of Illinois having promised them protection and a fair trial. On the 27th of June, 1844, a large body of men, with their faces blackened, surrounded the prison, and murdered the two brothers Smith. Several of these men were indicted for murder, and were tried about a year later, but they were acquitted. The persecution of the Mormons did not slacken after the death of their prophet, and in September, 1845, an armed mob commenced burning houses in Hancock County, while the authorities declared that the State was unable to protect the Mormons, and they must therefore go. Preparations were made by Brigham Young, President of the Twelve Apostles, and the other leaders of the church, to explore the Rocky Mountains in accordance with an expressed intention of the deceased prophet, and in February, 1846, the exodus of the Mormons commenced. It was not, however, rapid enough to satisfy their enemies, and in September the city of Nauvoo was burned by an armed mob, after several days' siege, and the remnant of the Mormons was driven across the Mississippi into Iowa. In the spring of 1847 Brigham Young, with a party of pioneers, started from his winter-quarters on the Missouri in search of a place of settlement. On the 24th of July he reached the Great Salt Lake Valley, after a laborious march of more than one thousand miles through an unexplored country. After erecting a fort, and hoisting the stars and stripes upon what was then Mexican territory, President Young hastened back to the banks of the Missouri, and in the fall of 1848 he arrived once more in Salt Lake Valley, with eight hundred wagons, and the main body of the Mormons. The severest hardships were undergone by these people, not only during their march, but during the first two years after settling in this barren valley, four thousand three hundred feet above the sea, but strict discipline was enforced in the camp, and a careful system of rationing was maintained, until an abundant harvest at last put an end to the necessity. In 1850 the Territorial government of Utah was organized by act of Congress, and Brigham Young was appointed Governor by the President of the United States. From that time forward the