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Latter-day Saint Polygamy Research

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The Church of Jesus Christ
of Latter-day Saints

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Online Resources[edit | edit source]

History of Polygamy in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints[edit | edit source]

A few members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints practiced polygamy in the early 1840s. Between 1852 and 1890, Latter-day Saints openly practiced polygamy and most of these families lived in Utah. (Although, some members living outside of Utah also practiced polygamy.) In 1890 the current president of The Church, Wilford Woodruff, issued the Manifesto which forbid new plural marriages. Some members continued to enter new polygamist marriages until 1904 when a Second Manifesto declared plural marriages punishable by excommunication.[1] For more information about Plural Marriage in the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, go to this article.

Additional Reading[edit | edit source]

Polygamy Research Methodology[edit | edit source]

Tips[edit | edit source]

  • Research each wife and her children.
  • Look at the ages and birth years of the children. You'll find that some children couldn't have physically been born to the same woman.
  • Check for multiple households in the censuses. Wives didn't always live with one another or even with their common husband.
  • Polygamist husbands didn't always live close to their wives. Sometimes the husband would move far away (but they didn't get a divorce). Sometimes husbands served missions and lived far away from their wives.
  • Use other records for Latter-day Saints as well as records you'd use for U.S. research.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, "Plural Marriage in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints" in Gospel Topics, https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics/plural-marriage-in-the-church-of-jesus-christ-of-latter-day-saints?lang=eng, accessed 29 August 2019.