Yesterday on Access Utah we talked with members of a modern-day polygamous community. Today, in part two of our series, we’ll learn how polygamy began in America. When Joseph Smith began to reveal and teach the doctrine of plural marriage in 1841, even stalwart church members like Brigham Young were shocked and confused. In her new book, “Revelation, Resistance, and Mormon Polygamy--The Introduction and Implementation of the Principle, 1830-1853” (USU Press) historian Merina Smith considers the ideological, historical, and psychological elements of the process and captures the emotional and cultural detail of this exciting and volatile period in Mormon history.
She examines the mystery of early adherents' acceptance of such a radical form of marriage in light of their dedication to the accepted monogamous marriage patterns of their day. Merina Smith joins Tom Williams for the hour on Thursday’s Access Utah.