Mormon History

Elder Brown versus Brigham Young - 1877

The Salt Lake Daily Tribune April 10, 1877


The Re-organized Church to California
-- Brigham, the Usurper --
The True Faith.

Correspondence Tribune.}

San Francisco, April 6, 1877.    

Being desirous of hearing the doctrine of the "True Latter-day Saints" preached, the Tribune correspondent attended the Josephite Church last Sunday evening. There was a very large audience present, and they listened with marked attention to Elder Brown. He repeated that the doctrine of Joseph was the true Mormon religion, and that those who did not recognize Joseph as the head of the Church were Apostates. Polygamy is not countenanced by the true Mormon Church, and Joseph never received a revelation ordaining it. Brigham Young secretly introduced polygamy and claims that it was revealed to the Prophet. The Lord did not ordain polygamy, for does he not say, "One wife shalt thou have; concubines, none." King Solomon and David lived in polygamy, but that did not make it right. Though they were servants of God, they sinned in doing so. And this was why the Saints were driven from Nauvoo. Because the people did not accept their religion. If their religion had been acceptable in the sight of the Lord, they would not have been "driven from city to city, and from temple to temple." Before the murder of Joseph, Brigham was scheming for the presidency of the Church. There are men in San Francisco who were present, and I was present -- when Joseph laid his hand on Brigham's head and said: "If any one were needed to run this Church to hell, Brother Brigham would be the best man." On Joseph's death, Brigham said no one could take his place -- that Joseph, though dead in the flesh, could rule the Church from spirit land. Brigham had then conceived an idea of spiritualism. But he was President of the Twelve Apostles, and he did not want a president elected, so that he could rule. He knew he could not rule long, if they remained at Nauvoo, so he thought they would go to the mountain fastnesses of the West. There were many Saints who had built homes and amassed property. Brigham knew that they would not sacrifice their homes and follow him. So he incited the lawless element, who had congregated at Nauvoo, to pillage and rob their Gentile neighbors. The robberies and thefts that were then committed in the name of the Mormon Church, were done by Brigham's instruments, in order to bring down persecution upon the entire Church, and drive the Saints hence. The Gentiles rose in their might, and the Church suffered for the sins of the few, and the murderous teachings of the usurper Brigham. He has carried out these murderous teachings in the valleys of Utah. There exists no greater enemy to the United States Government than the Mormon Church of Utah under Brigham. The Saints believe that the Gentiles are damned in the eyes of the Lord, and the only way to save them is to cut their throats. Many of the Saints are good, and could not be brought to commit crime, but if Brigham was to crook his finger, and say it was the will of the Church, they would not hesitate to slay all the Gentiles in their power. A present apostle of the Mormon Church once said to me, "If President Brigham Young was to tell me to cut my wife's throat, I would do it, for I know unless I did, my life would be the penalty of disobedience to orders."

Note: Compare Elder Brown's quote concerning Brigham Young and the Church, to the one given by Fanny Stenhouse, that Joseph Smith, Jr. had said: "If ever the Church had the misfortune to be led by Bro. Brigham, he would lead it to hell" (Tell It All, p. 268); also, compare with William Smith's recollection: "I also heard Joseph say that should the time ever come that Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimbal would lead this church, that they would lead it to hell. This was said in the hearing of sister Emma Smith," (Voree Herald, July, 1846); see also Saints' Herald for Apr. 15, 1875.