Introduction

Introduction

At the August 1852 special conference in Salt Lake City, 107 new missionaries were called away from their Utah homes, forty-three to places outside of North America and Western Europe, nineteen to regions that had not seen Mormon missionaries before (see item 734). Among them were a few pamphleteers who took Mormon publishing to new parts of the world. Jesse Haven, William Walker, and Leonard I. Smith, for example, were assigned to South Africa, and during the thirty-two months they labored there, Haven published ten pieces in Cape Town and one in Port Elizabeth, and Walker published two others in Port Elizabeth (see, e.g., items 807–8, 1024–25, 1030). After they left the continent, one of their converts published a pamphlet on Mauritius (item 1092).

The conference sent nine new missionaries to India to join forces with William Willes, Joseph Richards, and Hugh Findlay (see items 739–40), and over a forty-month period, in Bombay, Agra, Madras, Calcutta, Delhi, Hyderabad, and Karachi, the India Mission produced twenty of the entries in this volume. Richard Ballantyne, in Madras, was the most prolific, publishing five tracts, two handbills, a bound collection of his works, and a periodical, the Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor (see, e.g., items 818–19, 887). At the end of his mission, Hugh Findlay issued a pamphlet in the Marathi language—the second Mormon piece in a language of the subcontinent (see items 739, 981).

New periodicals were also established in Lausanne and Geneva, Switzerland; Sydney, Australia; St. Louis; New York City; San Francisco; Liverpool; and Washington, DC. Thomas B. H. Stenhouse, who had been leading the missionary effort in Switzerland since the end of 1850, initiated a French monthly, Le Réflecteur, in Lausanne in January 1853, and his successor, Daniel Tyler, started one in German, Der Darsteller, in Geneva in May 1855 (items 785, 1005). The conference sent Augustus Farnham and eight other missionaries to relieve Charles W. Wandell in Australia (see items 630–31, 655, 670, 711), and in August 1853 Farnham inaugurated the Zion’s Watchman in Sydney (item 816). Erastus Snow began a weekly newspaper, the St. Louis Luminary, in November 1854, and in New York, John Taylor began the Mormon three months later (items 921, 977). George Q. Cannon went to San Francisco in 1855 to print the Book of Mormon in Hawaiian and the following year commenced the weekly Western Standard (see items 1051, 1061). In November 1853 the Millenial Star office published the first number of a periodical that ran for almost thirty-three years, the Journal of Discourses, a semimonthly publication reporting the speeches of the Church leaders—a record of immense value (item 838).

But the iconic publication of the period 1853–57 was the Seer, a monthly magazine published by Orson Pratt in Washington, DC. The public acknowledgement of polygamy at the August 1852 special conference instantly made the practice the primary point of attack for the Church’s opponents and hence a central topic for its defenders. The chief defender was Orson Pratt, sent by the conference “to preach the doctrine of plurality of wives,” and his principal weapon was the Seer. That December he reached the capital, and before the end of the month he had the first of twenty numbers in circulation. Two months later the British Mission began reprinting the Seer in an edition of 10,000 (items 769–70).  

Polygamy is defended in forty-two of the entries in this volume—in works published in San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Council Bluffs, St. Louis, Washington, DC., New York City, Liverpool, Geneva, Lausanne, Hamburg, Copenhagen, Cape Town, Mauritius, Madras, Calcutta, and Sydney. About the time Orson Pratt circulated the second number of the Seer, Orson Spencer composed his Patriarchal Order, or Plurality of Wives!, which the Millennial Star office published in 30,000 copies, clearly intending it to be a principal tool in defending the practice in the British Isles (see item 783). John Van Cott and Hector C. Haight published editions in Danish, and George C. Riser issued one in German. Three and half years after Patriarchal Order appeared, the Liverpool office published 75,000 copies of Parley Pratt’s Marriage and Morals in Utah and urged the conferences to put a copy “into every habitation” in Great Britain (items 1087–88). George Q. Cannon reprinted it in San Francisco, Hector C. Haight, Daniel Daniels, and John L. Smith published it in Danish, Welsh, and French and the Darsteller ran a German translation in three installments. But the most extraordinary work on the topic was by a woman. Belinda Marden Pratt, Parley’s sixth wife, defended the practice in a letter to her non-Mormon sister, basing her argument on human physiology, or, as she called it, “nature’s law.” Her letter was issued in three pamphlet editions under the title Defence of Polygamy, by a Lady of Utah and was reprinted in the Millennial Star, Zion’s Watchman, Robert Skelton and James P. Meik’s A Defence of Mormonism, and translated into French, in T. B. H. Stenhouse’s Les Mormons et Leurs Ennemis (see items 873–75).

Six of the entries dealing with polygamy were responses to specific anti-Mormon attacks (items 820, 893, 925, 1038–39, 1082), but the Mormons’ reluctance to single out anti-Mormon works was largely maintained during the period of 1853–57. Only eight other responses to specific attacks appear in this volume—Hugh Findlay’s "The Mormons or "Latter-day Saints” (item 790), Richard Ballantyne’s two replies to the Rev. J. Richards (items 827–28), Dan Jones’s Amddiffyniad y Saint and his unlocated handbills responding to A. B. Hepburn and the Rev. C. Short (items 915, 986, 997), Robert W. Wolcott’s A Collection of Testimonies of the Truth (item 1022), and William Walker’s To the Intelligent Public (item 1024).

One hundred and forty-two of the entries of this volume issued from the Deseret News print shop. Sixty-seven of these were governmental pieces, including five volumes of territorial laws, four journals of the territorial legislature, five governor’s messages, daily minutes of the territorial legislature, ten memorials from the legislature to the president or Congress, four proclamations by the governor, the 1855 charter of Great Salt Lake City, and the 1856 constitution of Deseret. The runs of Brigham Young’s governor’s messages ranged from 5,000 copies in 1854—when the Latter-day Saints were seeking Young’s reappointment as governor—to 500 two years later. The fifth territorial legislature met in Fillmore, December 10, 1855–January 18, 1856, and it is clear that one of the Deseret News presses—probably the Ramage—was hauled to Fillmore and employed there to print at least five items for the use of the legislature: Brigham Young’s message, the names and committees of the Council and House of Representatives, a 3-page piece containing two acts pertaining to a constitutional convention, a preliminary version of another act, and the legislature’s daily minutes (see items 937, 1031, 1033, 1034, 1045).

The Salt Lake City entries include twenty-three invitations to various kinds of social functions, seven playbills—without doubt a small fraction of the playbills issued by the Deseret Dramatic Association during the period—seven programs for public events, two issues of W. W. Phelps’s Deseret Almanac, and a number of handbills and circulars. Just six “church” works came from the Salt Lake print shop that had more than one page: an 8-page pamphlet reporting a February 1853 discourse of Brigham Young (item 796); Belinda Pratt’s Defence of Polygamy; a 4-page pamphlet, The Deseret Alphabet (item 881); the 39-page Report of the First General Festival of the Renowned Mormon Battalion (item 975); a 16-page pamphlet reporting an 1843 speech of Joseph Smith and two February 1855 discourses of Brigham Young (item 985); and a 10-page pamphlet consisting of revelations and instructions from Joseph Smith (item 987). In 1855 the shop struck off Constitution and By-laws of the Typographical Association of Deseret (item 961), after the evolving Utah printers guild formally organized that January with Phineas H. Young, president; James McKnight, first counselor; Brigham H. Young, second counselor; George Q. Cannon, clerk; John G. Chambers, assistant clerk; John B. Kelly, librarian; and a membership that included John S. Davis, Joseph Bull, George Hales, William M. Cowley, Matthew Wilkie, Henry A. Ferguson, Horace K. Whitney, Jacob F. Hutchinson, and W. W. Phelps.

The first bookbinding in the Salt Lake Valley seems to have been done by Ezra C. Foss, who folded and stitched the 1852 Catalogue of the Utah Territorial Library and bound the laws and journals of the first legislature. A brother-in-law of Willard Richards, Foss was born in Maine on June 23, 1833, learned the bookbinding trade in his native state, and came to Utah in 1850. In 1855 he went to the Carson Valley as a missionary, lived in California for a number of years before returning to Salt Lake City, and moved to Farmington about 1880, where he died on July 3, 1919.

John Bookbinder Kelly learned the trade on the Isle of Man, brought his equipment with him when he came to the Valley in the fall of 1853, and undoubtedly began binding the locally produced books immediately after he arrived in Utah. Born in Douglas on June 9, 1823, he was baptized into the Church in 1841 and for more than three years served as the president of the Isle of Man Conference before immigrating to America. For twenty years he ran the Deseret News bookbindery and then about 1874 went into business for himself. He died in Salt Lake City on July 20, 1883.

During 1853–57, the Millennial Star office in Liverpool continued to be the main publisher of “Church” works, and the presidents of the British Mission played the dominant roles. For the most part, they chose what to put in print and determined the sizes of the editions. Samuel W. Richards was twice mission president, May 1852–June 1854 and October 1857–March 1858, and Franklin D. Richards served as president, June 1854–August 1856. Orson Pratt filled the gap, August 1856–October 1857. With only one exception—Orson’s second series of tracts—every major book published in the British Mission during this period involved one of the brothers. Samuel, for example, published Orson Spencer’s Patriarchal Order; John Lyon’s book of poems, Harp of Zion (item 782); Lucy Smith’s Biographical Sketches of Joseph Smith the Prophet (item 829); and “editions” of the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and hymnal—all of which were shipped to Utah for the use of the Saints there (items 876–78). He reprinted the Seer in Liverpool, inaugurated the Journal of Discourses, and joined forces with his brother in publishing John Jaques’s Catechism for Children (item 898) and an elegant overland travel book, Frederick Piercy and James Linforth’s Route from Liverpool to Great Salt Lake Valley (item 1070). Franklin published the 1854 Voice of Warning (item 929); the fifth “edition” of the Book of Mormon (item 928); Eliza R. Snow’s Poems (item 1060); Parley Pratt’s Marriage and Morals in Utah; the eleventh edition of the hymnal (item 1079); and two of the major works of doctrinal synthesis—Parley Pratt’s Key to the Science of Theology (item 989), and his own Compendium (item 1125).  

Second only to the Liverpool office was the Scandinavian Mission, which produced fifty-two of the entries in this volume. Willard Snow, John Van Cott, and Hector C. Haight, the mission presidents during this period, published two editions of the Doctrine and Covenants, two hymnals, two editions of Parley Pratt’s Voice of Warning, and two issues of Orson Pratt’s Divine Authenticity of the Book of Mormon, as well as the Skandinaviens Stjerne and multiple editions of a number of pamphlets—some of which are unlocated (see, e.g., items 902–6, 1053, 1166).

John S. Davis, founder of Udgorn Seion, translator and printer of the Welsh Book of Mormon and owner of a pair of presses, printed three of the entries in this volume before selling his presses in December 1853 to Dan Jones, who, together with Thomas Jeremy, and Daniel Daniels, had been called to Wales at the 1852 special conference. Jones kept the shop in Merthyr Tydfil for eight months and then moved it to Swansea the following August or September. He edited the Seion and published twenty-four entries in this volume until March 1856, when Daniel Daniels succeeded him as printer, editor of the Seion, and president of the Church in Wales. Daniels published Welsh translations of Parley Pratt’s Marriage and Morals in Utah (item 1101), Orson Pratt’s second series of pamphlets (item 1110), and the Millennial Star’s account of Parley’s murder—the last Welsh entry in this bibliography (item 1151).

In July 1856 Orson Pratt arrived in Liverpool to preside a second time over the European Mission. As he did eight years earlier, he came to England with a new pamphlet series in mind and over the next eight months published eight tracts on Mormonism’s first principles (item 1097). But unlike his earlier series, these tracts were sold directly to the branches to be used in a massive distribution scheme, and to accommodate this plan he issued the first tract in 47,000 copies and the rest in 50,000 each. The enterprise, however, appears to have been too daunting for the Church members, and the increase in the book debt—the money the conferences owed the Millennial Star office for tracts, books, and periodicals—indicates that the branches were slow in paying for the tracts. The total book debt stood at £3,971 when Orson arrived in England in July 1856 and had declined slightly during the preceding six months. One year later the debt was £6,506, and at the end of 1857 it was £6,885. 

Compounding the problem was a huge inventory of books and tracts that sat unsold in the Millennial Star office. Brigham Young was keenly aware of both the inventory and what he referred to as the “odious” book debt, and in 1858 he wrote Asa Calkin, the new

British Mission president:

confine your printing operations to such numbers of the “Star” as are likely to meet a ready sale, and not print many surplus numbers to be piled on the shelves as dead stock; and print no books nor pamphlets for any one, where there is the least probability that such publications will have to remain unsold in your store rooms; in short, be mindful that blank paper, ink, and other printing materials are often of far

more value as materials than when worked into unsaleable printed matter.

Two years later he gave a similar set of instructions to George Q. Cannon, Calkin’s successor. In March 1861 Cannon sent Young a list of the books and pamphlets in the Liverpool office, remarking that, during the preceding three years, 21 copies of Harp of Zion had been sold out of 3,464; 19 copies of Eliza R. Snow’s Poems had been sold out of 2,590; 32 copies of Biographical Sketches had been sold, leaving 454 bound books and 5,611 in sheets; and 201 of F. D. Richards’s Compendium had been sold out of 1,861 bound books and 1,455 in sheets. In response, Young directed Cannon to dispose of the unbound pieces and send the basic bound books to Utah.10  This change of attitude toward the printed word combined with the Utah War, the Civil War, the deaths of Orson Spencer and Parley P. Pratt, and the censure of Orson Pratt produced a dramatic decline in Mormon publishing. Flake-Draper, for example, has just 152 entries for the ten years 1858–67 that would fall within the scope of this bibliography—less than one-fifth of the 826 entries in vols. 2–3 of this bibliography, which cover 1848–57. Moreover, a third of these Flake-Draper entries are for later printings of Danish and Swedish tracts first published before 1858, and another third are for single-sheet ephemeral pieces and editions of the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Voice of Warning, Key to Theology, Spencer’s Letters, Catechism for Children, and hymnals.

For a six-month period, July–December 1855, the Mormons had two other presses operating in America besides those at the Deseret News. Erastus Snow’s St. Louis press was the first to be established. Called to St. Louis at the April 1854 general conference, Snow reached the city at the end of August, and on September 5 a council of elders in St. Louis sustained his proposal to publish a newspaper there. Twenty-six days later the St. Louis branch began meeting in the “Large brick church” on the corner of Fourth Street and Washington Avenue. About the same time, Snow purchased a press, type, and equipment from A. P. Ladew & Co. of St. Louis and engaged a Mr. Drake “of Connecticut”—who was not a Church member but “a believer”—as the foreman of his print shop, which he set up in the basement of the brick church. The St. Louis Luminary first appeared on November 22, 1854, and issued more or less weekly until December 15, 1855. Except for the first month or so, James H. Hart carried the full burden of the paper. Snow left St. Louis for Utah in August 1855 and began the return trip eight months later, intending to resuscitate the paper when he reached St. Louis. But at that point John Taylor’s Mormon had absorbed the Luminary’s subscribers, and when Brigham Young wrote to Snow on October 31 that he was “at liberty” to restart the Luminary if he wished but the First Presidency thought the Mormon would “do as well” as two papers, he concluded to let the Luminary die. He probably maintained possession of the press until sometime in 1857, but what ultimately happened to it is not known. One might guess he sold it back to A. P. Ladew (see items 920–21).

George Q. Cannon’s San Francisco press had its conception in the Hawaiian Islands during the time he was a missionary there. On October 6, 1853, the Mormon missionaries met on Maui, voted to purchase a press for the purpose of printing the Hawaiian translation of the Book of Mormon, and designated Cannon—who had learned the printing trade in Nauvoo—Philip B. Lewis, and Benjamin F. Johnson to raise the funds. About the first of February 1854, William McBride sailed to San Francisco with the money, assigned to assist John M. Horner in purchasing the press. When a press could not be found in San Francisco, one was ordered from New York, and on October 6, 1854, the press and a supply of paper arrived at Honolulu after a five-month voyage. In the meantime, Cannon had left the Islands, and with no one in the mission able to operate it, the press was stored until March 1855, when it was shipped to Parley Pratt in San Francisco (see items 1051, 1061).

Cannon arrived in Salt Lake City on November 28, 1854, and the following May, in company with his wife and two printers, Joseph Bull and Matthew F. Wilkie, he left for San Francisco—assigned to print the Hawaiian Book of Mormon and collaborate with Parley Pratt in publishing a newspaper. On June 24 he reached San Francisco and immediately made contract with Parley, who was returning to Utah. Securing “two rooms in a fire proof brick building” belonging to Sam Brannan at 118½ Montgomery Street, he and his associates set up the press and began on the Book of Mormon; on January 28, 1856, they finished the book. Twenty-six days later Cannon issued the first number of the Western Standard. He admitted to Brigham Young that he had to borrow a little to get the paper up and running, and he noted that they now had “quite a nice little office,” which he thought was “a pretty close approximation to the sectarian’s idea of the Lord’s creation of the earth—out of nothing.” That summer, Cannon’s brother David came to work in the shop, and the following May, Cannon recruited William H. Shearman to replace Matthew Wilkie, whose health was deteriorating. Henry McEwan and William M. Cowley, two hands from the Deseret News, arrived in July 1857 to relieve Wilkie and Bull; in September, Cannon received Brigham Young’s letter confirming that U.S. troops were en route to Utah. Anticipating Young’s subsequent instructions, he reported on October 30 that he had “packed up” the “type and material . . . and every thing ready for a move by the time the Steamer returned with the Utah mail.” One week later he issued the final number of the Standard, and in December he, Bull, and McEwan departed for home.

In the last two numbers of the Standard, Cannon advertised his shop for sale, noting that his press was a “Washington Press, No. 3.” “Ours is an Office that many would like to have,” he explained to Brigham Young, “but money is very scarce and hard to be procured and the newspaper business is entirely overdone, so that the chance to sell is not very good.” For two years the press remained stored in San Francisco. Then, at some point between October 1859 and March 1860, a Church member named Dwight Eveleth shipped it to Seth M. Blair and James Ferguson in Salt Lake City. Blair and Ferguson, publishers of a new Salt Lake City newspaper, the Mountaineer, had obtained Brigham Young’s permission to send for the press, and by March 20, 1860, they had taken possession of it. Where it went after the Mountaineer died in July 1861 is unclear.

In the missions, Mormon pamphleteers followed the pattern of their predecessors by picking and sticking with a printer. Richard Ballantyne in Madras, for example, had all of his pieces printed by S. Bowie at the Oriental Press, 164, Popham’s Broadway. Jesse Haven used W. Foelscher at No. 2, Church Street—the only one in Cape Town who expressed a willingness to print for him—even though Foelscher was “a great blunderer.” In Geneva, John L. Smith employed Charles Louis Sabot at Rive, 10, for most of the issues of the Darsteller, as well as for the French translation of Marriage and Morals in Utah and the first French hymnal.13 For his German edition of the Voice of Warning, Daniel Garn engaged Nestler and Melle, the printers of Zions Panier and the German Book of Mormon. And for his and Robert Skelton’s Defence of Mormonism, James P. Meik turned to N. Robertson & Co. at the Columbian Press in Calcutta, the printer of William Willes’s two earlier pieces.

Frederick E. Bording continued to serve as the Church’s printer in Scandinavia (see item 516). Indeed, every Danish or Swedish piece listed in this volume bears his imprint, with one exception —a broadsheet printed in Malmö, Sweden (item 795).

For the bulk of its printing during this period, the British Mission relied on three printers: Richard James and John Sadler in Liverpool, and William Bowden in London. James, still at 39, South Castle Street, printed the Millennial Star and Journal of Discourses until April 1861, when the mission established its own press. At that point, he was fifty-nine years old and was in business with his twenty-two-year-old nephew Richard J. Thawarth, employing two “men” and two “boys.” In addition to the Star, Journal, and numerous pamphlets and circulars, he printed the Seer, the 1854 hymnal, Orson Pratt’s second series of tracts, Eliza R. Snow’s Poems, and Franklin D. Richards’s Compendium.

Sadler, born in Norfolk about 1819, printed at least eleven of the entries in this volume—the first two at 16, Moorfields, and the rest at l, Moorfields. His pieces include John Lyon’s Harp of Zion, the 1854 Voice of Warning, the first edition of John Jaques’s Catechism for Children, Parley Pratt’s Key to Theology, and Route from Liverpool to Great Salt Lake Valley.

Bowden, the same age as Sadler, printed at least ten of the entries, including Lucy Smith’s Biographical Sketches, the two 1854 impressions of the Book of Mormon, the 1854 Doctrine and Covenants, the second edition of Catechism for Children, and the 1856 hymnal. At the time of the 1851 census he employed three men in his shop at 16, Princes Street, Red Lion Square, which he moved to 5, Bedford Street, Bedford Row, Holborn, in 1852. By 1861, his staff had grown to six “men,” eight “boys,” and five “girls.”     

Thomas Fazakerley, in Liverpool, served as the British Mission’s bookbinder. When he died in 1889, the Millennial Star ran a warm tribute to him, noting that his shop bound the 1841 Book of Mormon and did all of the mission’s bookbinding subsequent to the move of the mission office to Liverpool in March 1842. Born near Liverpool on February 25, 1802, Fazakerley began his apprenticeship in 1813 and went into business for himself in 1835. At the time of the 1861 census, his shop employed six “men,” two “boys,” and nine “females.” After his retirement in 1875, his son John continued the business until the First World War.

With the deaths of Orson Spencer and Parley Pratt and the censure of Orson Pratt, the Church lost three of its leading writers. Spencer died in St. Louis on October 15, 1855, at age fifty-three, after a forty-day illness thought to be typhoid fever. Parley Pratt, at age fifty, was murdered in Arkansas on May 13, 1857. Orson Pratt’s censure was made public in the Deseret News on July 25, 1860, and again five years later in the News of August 23 and Millennial Star of October 21, 1865 (see items 543, 769–70, 1097). But the principal works of these men continued to be published and continued to effect the standardization of Mormon theology. During the seven decades subsequent to 1860, Spencer’s Letters was reissued five times, parts of Orson Pratt’s first series of pamphlets went through three editions and his second series through ten editions in Danish and Swedish, and Parley Pratt’s Key to Theology was reprinted eight times in English and three times in Dutch and German. The other two major works of doctrinal synthesis, John Jaques’s Catechism for Children and Franklin D. Richards’s Compendium, also remained influential books. Compendium, revised and enlarged, was reprinted eight times before 1930, and Catechism for Children was republished seven times in English and eleven times in Danish, Dutch, German, Hawaiian, and Swedish.