Richard Ballantyne and the Defense of Mormonism in India in the 1850s

David J. Whittaker

David J. Whittaker, “Richard Ballantyne and the Defense of Mormonism in India in the 1850s,” in Supporting Saints: Life Stories of Nineteenth-Century Mormons, ed. Donald Q. Cannon and David J. Whittaker (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University, 1985), 175–212.

David J. Whittaker was archivist of the Mormon experience at Brigham Young University when this was published. He received his BA from Brigham Young University and his MA from California State University at Northridge. He received his PhD from Brigham Young University. He has published widely in Church periodicals and professional journals.

Richard Ballantyne’s name is usually associated with the founding of the Sunday School program in the early latter-day Church. Indeed, emphasis on this important contribution has often overshadowed his other contributions and achievements. [1]

Richard Ballantyne was born in Whitridgebog, Roxburgshire, Scotland, on 26 August 1817. [2] His parents were of Scottish descent and his father died before his family heard of the restored gospel, brought to the British Isles by the followers of Joseph Smith, Jr. Young Richard was in his twenty-sixth year when his family moved to Nauvoo, Illinois, in 1843. He had finally accepted the message of Mormonism in December 1842, allowing Henry McCune to baptize him into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. [3]

Prior to his conversion he had worked as a farmer and also as a baker. Both employments left little time for school, and what education he had received was during the winter months. After arriving in Nauvoo, he became the manager and bookkeeper of the Coach and Carriage Association, and in 1846 he was involved in the closing of John Taylor’s printing establishment in Nauvoo. [4] He participated in the Mormon Exodus in 1846, staying in Winter Quarters until May 1848, when he migrated to the Salt Lake Valley, arriving in September. Before leaving Nauvoo he had advanced in the priesthood, first to a seventy and then to a high priest. He married Huldah Meriah Clark in 1847 and thus became a “family man” (their first son was born while they were crossing the plains) when he entered the Salt Lake Valley.

During his first year in the Great Basin he engaged in farming. In December 1849 he held the first Sunday school class in the Church. He thus engaged himself until the fall of 1852 when he was called on a mission to Hindostan, India. [5] His mission to East India lasted until September 1855, after which he returned to the Salt Lake Valley.

He arrived home during the “Reformation” and was immediately called on a “home mission.” [6] These experiences undoubtedly led to his plural marriages: to Mary Pearce in 1855 and to Caroline Sanderson in 1857. He spent the remainder of his life in farming and business, and for a short time (May 1877 to November 1878) he owned and operated the Ogden Junction. After this, he engaged first in railroading and then in the lumber business. Some successes in these enterprises led him into real estate, but the Panic of 1893 left him a poor man. He died in Ogden on 8 November 1898.

He is best remembered for his work in the Sunday Schools of the Church, a work he continued throughout his life. But it is the purpose of this essay to examine in detail his mission to India and more specifically his writings and publications there.

The East India Mission, 1849–56

Although Richard Ballantyne’s mission call to India came in August 1852, very early in the Church history, Mormon missionaries were already there. According to Lanier Britsch’s study, the need for an LDS mission arose from the requests of two men in India (Thomas Metcalfe and William A. Sheppard), who wrote requesting tracts and other literature about the Church. [7] This request and the petitions of two sailors, George Barber and Benjamin Richey, in 1849 began the official LDS missionary work in India. Between 1849 and 1856 seventeen Mormon missionaries labored in this mission. [8]

From its founding, the Church was missionary oriented. Extending its efforts into Canada in 1832 and England in 1837, its great success in the British Isles thereafter has overshadowed many of the other missions. [9] In 1849, after the initial assault on the Great Basin, Brigham Young began a renewed program of foreign missionary work. In addition to the British Mission, elders were sent to Italy, France, and Scandinavia in 1849. In 1850 missionaries were sent to Hawaii. But the greatest effort to warn “the world” came in 1852 when, at a special conference held in Salt Lake City on 28 and 29 August, missionaries were called to Gibraltar, Siam, China, Hindostan, South Africa, the West Indies, British Guiana, and Australia. [10]

Ballantyne, like many of his coworkers, brought great zeal and testimony to his calling. Convinced for himself that God had again spoken to man after centuries of Apostolic darkness, he acted out of both conscience and scriptural injunction to warn the world of Christ’s message and imminent return. To accomplish this task, early Mormons willingly responded to their leader’s request to act out their part in this, the final act of this world’s play.

These missionaries were attracted to Mormonism for a variety of reasons, but they generally joined the Church because its message struck a responsive chord in breasts that had already been tuned during an age of spiritual ferment. [11] Undoubtedly, their own conversion experiences affected the way they approached others. The literature they read and the stories they heard often became the models of the material they offered to others. [12] Another important ingredient of their teaching was the influence of their mission leaders and specifically the publications of those leaders. The East India Mission is a case in point.

Setting the Stage: Lorenzo Snow and the East India Mission

Lorenzo Snow, who became the fifth President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, was baptized into the Church in June 1836. He went on his first mission the next year and spent the rest of his long life fulfilling various mission-type calls for the Church. [13] His first mission outside the United States was to England in 1840. While there he assisted Parley P. Pratt in printing an English edition of the Book of Mormon and also managed to publish his first pamphlet, The Only Way to Be Saved. After three years in England, he returned to Nauvoo. He completed several short missions and was in Ohio when he heard of the deaths of Joseph and Hyrum Smith. He returned to Nauvoo, supported Brigham Young as Joseph Smith’s successor, and traveled overland to the Salt Lake Valley in the fall of 1848. Early in 1849, he was called to the Apostleship by Brigham Young, and in October of the same year he was called to the Italian Mission and “to other nations and countries wherever the opportunity should present itself.” [14]

Elder Snow traveled to Italy through London and Paris, and although his major accomplishments on this trip do not concern us here, his interests, assignments, and publishing activities in relationship to India must be noted. [15] From the start he seems always to have considered his call as embracing more than just Italy. For example, before he left London he called William Willes, Joseph Richards, and Hugh Findlay to India on missions. [16]

By the time he reached Italy, Elder Snow was even more concerned with the missionary efforts in India. [17] By March 1852 he was in Malta and was anxiously awaiting news from Bombay and Calcutta. [18] It was during this time that he undertook to publish several tracts and to establish at Malta a “Central Book Depot” for those countries he considered under his presidency. These publishing activities and his leadership had great influence in the Swiss, Italian, Spanish, Bombay, and Calcutta missions. In May 1852 he wrote to Franklin D. Richards of his plans:

In view of carrying forward with efficiency those several missions that have come under my direction, and to open the road to the introduction of the Gospel into those Catholic countries bordering upon the Mediterranean, we are arranging all our publications in respect to kind, matter, quantity, and language. Our printer, who expresses much interest in the prosperity of our cause, has just made arrangements to order from England an apparatus for stereotyping, and we hope, by this means and other opportunities to be able ere long to supply economically from this point, as a Central Book Depot, Italy, Switzerland, Spain, Bombay, and Calcutta. [19]

He also told of two works he had just published: Voice of Joseph and the Ancient Gospel Restored, which was a retitled printing of his earlier The Only Way to Be Saved. [20] Both, he said, were to be sent to Calcutta and Bombay as soon as he had an address to send them to.

Taking his presidency seriously, he had planned to visit India himself as early as July 1851, when he was contemplating sending missionaries there. He had also planned to see his tracts printed there. [21] As he left England he told members there that he would visit Switzerland, Italy, and India. [22] His plans to visit India, Bombay, and Calcutta were changed, however, when he was unable to get passage from Malta because of an accident which damaged the East India steamer he had planned to take. By the time the ship would have been repaired it would have been too late in the year to travel east, so he headed west to England and thence to the United States. [23]

Lorenzo Snow, then, actively anticipating the establishment of a firmer missionary effort in India, sent several men to this country and attempted to set up a book supply station for Church literature in southern Europe and India. When he withdrew from Europe, he left in the hands of others the various missions he had begun, specifically instructing that “these brethren will keep up a correspondence with the Presidency at Liverpool, from whom they will receive from time to time that instruction and counsel as shall tend to promote our Master’s cause under their directions.” [24]

Organized Beginning in India

Despite his inability to visit India personally, Lorenzo Snow provided a catalyst to early missionary work there. Returning home to Salt Lake City, he arrived one day after the special conference had ended that called nine elders to labor in Calcutta and Hindostan. [25] The addition of these missionaries came at a critical time in the history of the mission. Although their united assault on India would prove unsuccessful, it has been said that “there is nothing more heroic in our Church annals than the labors and sufferings of these brethren of the mission to India.” [26]

Richard Ballantyne arrived with the other missionaries in Calcutta on 26 April 1852. [27] As indicated previously, they were not the first Mormons there, nor were the Mormons the first Christian group to visit India. Christian visits to India allegedly date back to the Apostle Thomas, who is said to have established Christianity in India in a.d. 52. Other groups came in the succeeding centuries, but not until the sixteenth century when St. Francis Xavier was very successful in planting Catholicism there was real progress made. In the years following, Spain and Portugal, who had really come to India for its trade, received stiff competition from the English and Dutch. The Protestants failed at first to do missionary work; in fact, the few missionaries there constantly complained of the corruptness and bad example of the East India Company on the natives. But eventually the first Protestant chapel was built after 1710, and Baptists were in Calcutta by 1793. By the time Mormons first made contact with India in 1849, European Christianity did have a foothold, although it was somewhat tenuous. [28]

The LDS missionary thrust was determined by several factors, most of which resulted from the non-Western environment of their field of labor. India’s population was placed at 206 million in 1872, the year of its first census. The vast majority lived in rural settings with those speaking English residing in or near the larger seaport cities where European trade flowed in and out and where British military posts were established. The difficulty of the languages meant that the Mormon missionaries would (at first anyway) have to concentrate their efforts in those areas where an English-speaking population existed and where a practical missionary effort could be sustained. In addition to the language barrier, the early missionaries recorded their frustrations about the native religions (most of which they found revolting), the caste system (which always seemed to place them in the middle between the numerous poor and a handful of rich), and the climate (which ultimately weakened the health of the missionaries). [29]

The initial days in Calcutta were critical for these new arrivals. Since the beginning of the eighteenth century, Calcutta had been the center of British commerce and trade in India. Its population in 1850 was a little over one million, of which some four thousand were Europeans. [30] With its government officials and substantial English-speaking population, Calcutta was and remained through the 1850s the quasi-headquarters of the East India Mission. When the missionaries arrived, an official presidency was set apart and the elders were assigned to various parts of India. These assignments were made at a special conference three days after the American elders arrived in Calcutta. [31]

Richard Ballantyne and Robert Skelton, assigned to Madras, were unable to get passage until 20 June. While awaiting passage, Ballantyne got his first taste of missionary work in India. At the same time he got his first exposure in India to anti-Mormon literature, an exposure which undoubtedly set the stage for much of the orientation of his mission at Madras.

Nathaniel V. Jones, president of the East India Mission, wrote in June 1853 of a pamphlet that was having an adverse effect on the elders’ activities in and around Calcutta. One Charles Saunder and a friend had produced a work entitled Mormonism Unveiled which, like its 1834 counterpart, was a collection of miscellaneous items attacking Mormonism. [32] As early as 10 May the missionaries were studying it and by 16 May were writing a reply. When the 120-page reply was published on 4 August, it appeared under the authorship of N. V. Jones. But evidence now available makes it clear that it was a group effort of Jones, Amos Musser, James Meik, and Ballantyne. [33] Although Ballantyne contributed but little to the work, it was his first publishing effort to appear in India. His own journal tells of N. V. Jones’s asking for his help on 18 May and of his spending the next two weeks studying the tract and in writing his assigned portion. [34] This first exposure to the anti-Mormon press in India served to set the tone for his own publishing activities during the year that followed.

Publishing in Madras

Ballantyne and Skelton were able to secure passage to Madras on 20 June, [35] arriving on the evening of 24 July 1853. The faith-promoting voyage and their quickly developed friendship with the ship’s captain, Thomas Scott, foreshadowed their missionary activities in Madras. The passage to Madras was during the monsoon season, a rather perilous time to be traveling the Bay of Bengal. But with a visionary “call” to Ballantyne, telling him the time was right to travel to Madras, the two men sought passage. After five refusals, Captain Scott finally agreed to take them, and then only after they promised him safe passage. There was a near miss and a storm did threaten the ship, but they made it safely to their destination. [36] The captain proved to be an important asset in their assault on Madras. Before the voyage he had heard of the Mormons and had refused at first to transport them because he had considered them of “bad reputation” and, therefore, not fit company for the ladies he had as passengers. Only their perseverance, a chance conversation with a merchant on Scott’s ship, and their promise of safe passage finally got them on board. [37]

The passage gave them additional opportunities to get closer to the captain, and in time they were fast friends. During the voyage they lost no opportunity for teaching and were able to preach and distribute such tracts as Parley P. Pratt’s Voice of Warning, [38] the Pearl of Great Price, [39] Lorenzo Snow’s The Only Way to Be Saved, [40] and the Book of Mormon. Captain Scott’s interest grew in proportion to their time at sea. He was particularly interested in Lorenzo Snow’s tract, so much so that the day before they reached Madras he offered to pay for reprinting it. [41] Captain Scott also arranged for a room for them at a fine hotel after their arrival and gave Ballantyne a pair of shoes and some extra money above what the cost of printing would run. Further evidence of the captain’s friendship was manifested the day after the missionaries’ arrival when they received a note from him saying he had contacted and arranged with a printer to have Snow’s pamphlet printed. These missionaries were surprised to learn that the work would be done in two days. [42] The initial agreement called for three hundred copies, but as Ballantyne worked with the printer (reading galleys, etc.) during the next few days, the price break caused him to increase the order first to six hundred and then to a thousand. He also insisted to the foreman of the Oriental Press that good quality paper be used. This was assured when the thousand copies were ordered. [43] This pamphlet of eight pages was ready on 30 July. The day before they received it, Captain Scott offered to pay for the printing of another tract; so when the Snow tract was picked up, Ballantyne was ready to give another order to the printer.

Their second publishing project in Madras was the reprinting of Parley P. Pratt’s Proclamation of the Gospel with some extra material about the history of the Church. [44] This publishing of Pratt’s work at the same time they were printing Snow’s work illustrates that India in the 1850s was a kind of melting pot for Mormon literature and leadership. Elder Snow, as we have seen, was active from the European side of India and the presence of Parley Pratt’s work suggests the influence from the Pacific side.

Elder Pratt had taken California and the Pacific area as part of his missionary responsibility and had, during the early 1850s, specifically written the Proclamation for his area of jurisdiction. Going to Chile, he had taken charge of the Australian missionary work of John Murdock and Charles W. Wandell, giving them a copy of his work in San Francisco and telling them to print it when they got to Australia. This they did as soon as they arrived in Sydney. [45] It was probably this printing that Ballantyne used for his edition. [46] Ballantyne, however, added his own personal touches, and when it appeared on 5 August 1853, it contained both a “proclamation” and a brief account of Joseph Smith’s early religious experiences. [47]

The local press announced the missionaries’ arrival as they busied themselves with the publishing and distributing of these tracts. These public announcements soon led to attacks on them which in turn forced them out of their hotel, the Madras House. A member from England, who was then residing at St. Thomas mount, offered them a room to stay in. This was their first taste of opposition in Madras, which was just the beginning.

On 1 August Captain Scott told Ballantyne that a “very long article” had just appeared in a Roman Catholic paper in Madras. By 5 August Ballantyne had obtained a copy of it and had responded to these “scurrilous reports” which were affecting Captain Scott. [48] On 5 August, the day he received the Proclamation, he called at the Oriental Printing Office and requested Mr. Bowie, the printer, to publish his reply in the United Service Gazette. Mr. Bowie consented, and the issue containing his letter was out by 12 August.

As these attacks increased, the missionaries were forced more and more to defend themselves and their doctrines. On 17 August the Madras Christian Herald fired another volley against them, and again Ballantyne was forced to write a response. [49]

Even though their responses did not stop the attacks, these missionaries were quite aware of the publicity they were getting and sought to make the most of it. Knowing their own supply of tracts would neither last not be sufficient to answer all questions posed to them, they ordered more from Calcutta and Liverpool. [50] At the same time, realizing that “circulating tracts alone will not do,” [51] they decided to schedule a series of lectures on various religious topics. To announce these, they had Mr. Bowie print one hundred handbills which they began to post around the area. [52] But their public meetings were small because by the time they gave their first public lecture on 2 September the charge of polygamy was being leveled against them. Ballantyne’s letter to his wife on 9 September realistically describes their situation at St. Thomas Mount: “The large bone that is now being picked is Polygamy. This is a large pill for many to swallow, and in fact the very first sight of it so nauseates their stomachs, that at present they can scarcely receive anything else.” [53] He had learned this from experience. Robert Skelton had been ordered out of the canonment at St. Thomas Mount because of this and other doctrines. A mob had even gathered to forcibly remove him. Ballantyne himself had just about converted a Mr. Alex Wilson, who refused to hear any more about the gospel after he heard of the polygamy doctrine. [54]

Again Ballantyne took up the pen to explain his religion to the public. He concluded on 29 August to write a piece for the newspaper. He finished it on 31 August, but the section dealing with polygamy was not published. [55]

Polygamy remained a major stumbling block to the LDS missionary work in India. Although Ballantyne was monogamous until after his mission, he began defending the doctrine soon after his arrival in Calcutta. Twelve days after his arrival, he recorded in his journal that he had commenced writing “an article on Polygamy tracing its history from the Old Testament.” [56] These early days in Calcutta taught him how very little he and his coworkers knew about the doctrine and practice of plural marriage; and as the attacks on the Church tended more and more to center on this doctrine, every attempt was made to obtain information on it. Hugh Findlay reflected the concerns and needs of these early missionaries when he wrote from Bombay to N. V. Jones that celestial marriage

is, and has been from the first a point of continual discussion here—the corrupt hearts spicing forth their own abominable ideas concerning it.

I sincerely desire to know the points of said law, as to be known among the gentiles, and any Tracts in your possession on the subject will be more acceptable indeed. [57]

Even before the public announcement of plural marriage (in August 1852), which permitted the missionaries to publicly defend and discuss the doctrine, the press in India raised the issue of its practice. The request of Hugh Findlay was based on his attempts to deal with such attacks. [58] Rumors of plural marriage were a part of anti-Mormon literature as early as the 1830s, even though polygamy’s precise beginnings are not known. There is little doubt that Joseph Smith began the practice, so much a part of LDS history after his death, but exact information is hard to come by. [59] Because of this, with two major exceptions, [60] no public statements were available until the end of 1852. At the beginning of 1853, the Mormon press began producing the defenses that continued through the 1880s. [61]

Mormon leaders, in the wake of this public announcement, sought to head off criticism by establishing new Mormon periodicals in strategic locations throughout the country. Orson Pratt was sent by Brigham Young to Washington, D.C., where The Seer was established. John Taylor went to New York City and in 1855 began The Mormon. Erastus Snow published the St. Louis Luminary at St. Louis from 1854 to the end of 1855. On the West Coast, George Q. Cannon published at San Francisco the Western Standard in 1856–1857. [62] All contained defenses of polygamy, but Pratt’s publication was by far the most systematic and influential in the early Church. [63]

In addition to those previously mentioned, other essays and pamphlets were potentially available as sources to early missionaries needing ammunition to defend themselves. In February and March of 1853, the LDS Millennial Star ran a series of letters on polygamy by John Jacques, stressing the virtue of the Mormons and defending their leaders against attacks then being made. [64] In the following months other items appeared, [65] including the first defense of the doctrine by a woman. [66] The missionaries in India in the 1850s drew on these sources for information on polygamy. Richard Ballantyne’s experience illustrates this.

In addition to the public challenges, his journal and correspondence suggest his personal concerns. In May 1853 his wife wrote him a letter, which he received in September while he was dealing with the public attacks. In addition to her expressions of loneliness she expressed her personal concern with polygamy. [67] His response on this occasion was the same five months later when he wrote to her again:

In regard to domestic relationships, and duties I would here earnestly recommend Brother O. Pratt’s works as your constant guide. He has laid down 27 admirable, and comprehensive rules, in the November and December Nos. of the Seer. You wrote to me that you intended taking that work, but if you have not, I would advise you to get it, and preserve it in the family. [68]

Throughout this time he was preparing to write what became the only pamphlet published in India devoted entirely to the subject of polygamy—Dialogue Between A and B on Polygamy—which appeared in March 1854. The pamphlet’s dialogue format came from his reading of an unpublished anti-Mormon work. [69] The contents, however, clearly reflected Orson Pratt’s influence. Ballantyne had heard Pratt’s 29 August official pronouncement of the doctrine, and his journal reflects his regular habit of reading Pratt’s work; the pamphlet itself shows even more clearly this debt. But in addition to Pratt’s influence, traces of the influence of the early Mormon press are also evident. [70]

Although Ballantyne was the only missionary in India to devote an entire tract to the subject of plural marriage, others, just as troubled by attacks on the practice, directed their writing to the newspapers. One of the best-documented replies was that of Hugh Findlay. Arriving in Bombay in April 1852, he was immediately pelted by the local presses. These assaults continued through the coming months, with each article increasing in vulgarity as they increasingly centered their volleys on polygamy. In the midst of these Findlay called for help, as we have noted previously. [71] A complete analysis of these replies is beyond the immediate scope of this essay, but even a cursory examination of them will reveal the influence again of Orson Pratt and the Millennial Star. [72]

In addition to polygamy, there were two other major problems confronting the missionaries in India: the governmental and religious systems of “paying” employees and converts, and the climate. [73]

The first is talked about in almost every record we have of the India Mission. Ballantyne throughout his mission records his anger and frustration at the constant threats Europeans faced from their employer (the government) when the employer learned they were investigating the Church. At the same time (because they worked primarily with natives who worked for Protestant and Catholic churches), when they tried to teach English-speaking natives, the natives too (because they were dependent upon the priest who paid them) were threatened with losing their livelihood. [74]

The second problem, that of climate, affected both the health of the missionaries and the “health” of their missionary efforts. The monsoon season, extending from June to September, assured a wetness that brought spring to India’s soil and constant dampness to its people. Mormon missionaries noted their inability to keep their clothes dry. They also noted poor attendance at their meetings during these months when most people preferred to remain at home. This excessive heat and dampness played havoc with the missionaries’ health. [75]

Replies to Attacks

In the midst of writing answers to newspaper attacks, Richard Ballantyne learned of a new pamphlet that was being circulated against the Church. His investigation of its contents and author led him to write a first reply, and when another tract followed the first attack, he responded with his second reply.

A pamphlet by Reverend J. Richards made its appearance in Madras about 1 September 1853. By 7 September, Ballantyne had located a copy and was studying and preparing a reply to it. He continued writing through 18 September, took the manuscript to the printer the next day, and by 27 September his Reply was ready for distribution. [76] The work itself was defensive and clearly reflected his earlier involvement in writing a part of N. V. Jones’s work referred to above. It was primarily a collection of documents countering Richards’s attacks. He therefore drew on earlier works printed both in India and America. [77] His borrowing was even more evident in his Second Reply, which appeared just over a month after the first. [78]

The writing of pamphlets directed at a special attack or individual usually meant that the missionaries were well enough established to have immediate interest in the attack and that the attack itself was threatening enough to warrant a more lengthy and systematic rebuttal. This was certainly the situation in Madras; a close reading of Ballantyne’s journal confirms this. [79]

Hugh Findlay, while laboring in Bombay, had pursued the same course just a year before, suggesting that Ballantyne’s experience was not unique. From April to June 1852 Findlay tried systematically to answer the attacks in the local newspaper, but in time found his essays getting longer and less acceptable to the editors. By August 1852 the opposition clergy were busy circulating a tract by J. G. Deck, a tract which threatened Findlay’s work in Bombay. From 30 August 1852, when he commenced writing a reply, to February or March 1853, Findlay records his progress in writing and his concerns over the effect Deck’s tract was having. [80]

By the 1850s the Mormons had engaged in several pamphlet “wars.” Almost all important Church leaders had been involved, and examination of the pamphlets helps not only to reveal the core of the Mormon defensive position, but to put these replies in historical context. [81]

Throughout this period, Richard Ballantyne (like his co-workers), journalizes his feelings about the news from home. His wife sent him regularly the Deseret News, and he also received the LDS Millennial Star and The Seer. In November 1853, he records: “To look into one of these valuable papers is truly like using a telescope to magnify objects at a distance and even causing us to see much which we could not without such aid perceive. . . . The editorials are truly precious.” In a letter to his wife the same month, he writes: “You cannot tell how highly we appreciate the Deseret News. They are as it were life to our souls. When we read them it is like placing us in your midst for a short season, and being refreshed with the Spirit and teachings of Zion.” His sentiment had not changed three months later. [82]

In spite of his well-meaning publishing ventures and the fact that several individuals never really could afford to carry this part of the missionary effort on, Ballantyne became caught in a vicious cycle that many others like him could not avoid. Publishing was a quick way to spread his message and advertise his presence in a given city. But once his message was received and his presence noted, he was immediately attacked. This led him first to newspaper replies and finally to separately published tracts. His letters to newspapers seldom cost him anything, [83] but when he was forced to print his own replies he found his financial status severely taxed. It was here that he found his traveling “without purse or scrip” a disadvantage. It was at this point that he screamed the loudest about those “clergy who work for hire,” those “priests” who, for money, lead the people to hell. [84]

Financially he was always on the poverty level while in India. Forced to depend on the goodwill and charity of others because of his insistence on not preaching for hire, he became caught in another trap, almost beyond his control. His eagerness to preach and defend the gospel at almost all costs forced him to rely very heavily on the gifts of others, usually the very people he was anxious to convert. In several cases his insistent badgering and begging seems to have driven potential converts away. Captain Thomas Scott, as noted before, was most gracious in giving them passage to Madras, taking an interest in their cause, and then in offering to pay for the printing of several of their tracts. Although the evidence is not entirely clear, it seems probable that Captain Scott’s growing coolness to the cause grew almost in proportion to Ballantyne’s pleas for more financial support. [85]

Ballantyne wanted to start a newspaper as early as September, and in October 1853 tried to get Captain Scott to help pay for that venture. It was not until March 1854 that the project was planned well enough that it could be carried out. It was to be a monthly paper, but it too was on very shaky financial grounds. Ballantyne named it the LDS Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor, and even though he was in the middle of getting his tract on polygamy printed, he began preparing material for the first issue on 7 March. In spite of various setbacks his almost indefatigable drive pushed him to have a manuscript to the Oriental Press by 30 March. By 6 April he was distributing the three hundred copies of the first issue at a conference. He optimistically told his conference (composed of seven members) the first issue was “an omen of good to the cause” and encouraged them to support “our monthly press.” The involvement of a conference in matters of publishing was not unusual in the early Church, but by this time and with only seven members Ballantyne should have sense the futility of this effort.

He continued to publicly express optimism even though privately his pessimism grew. On 21 April, he received permission from N. V. Jones in Calcutta to take leave of India “to another country” if he so desired, but he decided to stay until 15 July and managed to publish three more issues of this newspaper. The LDS Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor was a scissors-and-paste job, consisting mainly of articles and revelations from other Mormon publications. [86]

Last Months in India

Ballantyne’s last months in Madras were spent, in addition to working on the previously mentioned periodical, in preparing a “proclamation to the people of India,” [87] dealing with a troublesome missionary companion Robert Owens, [88] dealing with a form of “spiritualism” among potential converts, [89] and advertising and delivering a series of lectures on the Church. [90] Throughout this time Ballantyne was also very ill. [91]

On 26 June 1854, Ballantyne and Skelton received another letter from N.V. Jones “in which he gave us both permission to go home.” [92] For the next month, Ballantyne prepared to leave.

Even as he made preparations to depart, he undertook two other projects related to his publishing activities. The first was to prepare for President Jones an “account of the books he sent me for sale.” [93] In addition to this he was now faced with the need to obtain enough money for the passage home. On 10 July he recorded his intention of getting all the tracts he had previously published bound into one volume. [94]

He apparently was not able to sell enough copies of this bound work to obtain passage, for he finally obtained passage on the brigg Royal Thistle for London by convincing the captain that he was traveling without “purse or scrip.” The captain took a little convincing but finally consented to take him if he would carry his own provisions and because he was sick and “a stranger in a foreign land.” [95]

Even though the bound volume did not sell, Ballantyne’s decision to assemble such a work was probably based on his own experiences as well as those of others. N. V. Jones had written from Calcutta to Liverpool that “bound books sell very well, but tracts we cannot get anything for.” [96] Again, the already established religious groups, with ample financial backing, had gratuitously distributed thousands of tracts to anyone who wished to have a copy. This made it difficult, if not impossible, for Mormon missionaries to sell their pamphlets, especially in a country where the majority of the population existed only on a poverty level.

When Ballantyne reached London in December 1854, he wrote President Richards this summary of his mission to India: [97]

When I left Madras we had baptized 12 persons; ordained one Elder; preached the Gospel in almost every nook and corner of that large city and several of the adjacent villages and cantonments; established a monthly paper of 8 pages; printed 1000 numbers of “Only Way to be Saved;” 1000 of the “Proclamation of the Gospel,” 400 of a “First,” and the same number of a “Second Reply” to the Rev. T. [sic] Richards, of the English Church; 400 numbers of a “Dialogue on Polygamy;” several letters in the newspapers; and a regular issue, monthly, of 300 copies of the little periodical already alluded to.

This was surely a worthy effort for his twelve months in Madras, but, wrote Ballantyne, “we saw little fruit as the result of our toils.” [98]

In conclusion, Ballantyne’s concern with publishing was at least threefold. In the first place, he was motivated to provide an antidote for what he considered was the poison of anti-Mormon literature being spread about the Church wherever he went. Secondly, he was concerned about “nourish[ing] the people with the written word.” [99] Finally, he was (in part) financially tied to these ventures both because of the debts incurred and because of the possible profit which could help sustain the missionary cause in Madras by providing some money to the missionaries themselves. All of this is not to say that he considered publishing the only way to do missionary work. In fact, he specifically noted very early in his mission that nothing could replace door-to-door, person-to-person visits. [100] But it should now be obvious that Ballantyne and his companions in India considered the pen as important in their work as any other tool or aid they had available.

Richard Ballantyne was one of about eighty individuals who published defenses of Mormonism between 1836 and 1857. Our examination of his work as a missionary, particularly as a publishing missionary, has opened up an aspect of the early Church that has yet to be studied in great detail. As an index to its doctrinal position, its value structure, and the stresses and strains of its growth, such an analysis of these writings allows us to glimpse, from a new angle, the Church and kingdom that Ballantyne loyally defended.


[1] The major sources used in the preparation of this paper are found in the Library-Archives, Historical Department, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Salt Lake City. All references herein cited by collection or source with “LDS Church Archives” following are found in this archival repository. The fuller story of the International Missions of the Church in the 1850s is told in David J. Whittaker, “Early Mormon Pamphleteering” (PhD diss., Brigham Young University, 1982), 236–320.

[2] The primary sources on Ballantyne are the eight volumes of journals he kept from 1852 to 1858 (volumes 1–7) and 1893–1894 (volume 8), all of which are in LDS Church Archives. In addition to these, the LDS Church Archives has several folders of letters and personal papers, which contain such items as his notes of the various things he read, outlines of sermons, patriarchal blessings, and various study notes. A good many of his letters (many of which no longer exist in manuscript form) are to be found in early Latter-day Saint periodicals. His missionary companions in India also left many written items of worth, relating to both Ballantyne and the India Mission. Copies of Ballantyne’s publishing ventures in India are also in LDS Church Archives and will be noted in specific footnote citations.

Secondary sources relating to Richard Ballantyne are Conway B. Sonne, Knight of the Kingdom: The Story of Richard Ballantyne (Salt Lake City: Stevens and Wallace, 1949); Vadis B. (Sue) Ballantyne, “ ‘I, Richard,’ a Biography of Richard Ballantyne” (unpublished Closure Project, Bachelor of Independent Studies, Brigham Young University, 111 pages, 1 July 1974); Edward H. Anderson, “Richard Ballantyne,” in Andrew Jenson, Latter-day Saint Biographical Encyclopedia, 4 vols. (Salt Lake City: Jenson History Company, 1901–1936): 1:703–6.

[3] This is the full name of the Church restored on 6 April 1830 by Joseph Smith, Jr., and several associates. In the process the Book of Mormon was produced with divine help; it is from this book that the name Mormon(s) comes. Throughout this paper the terms Church and Mormon will refer to this organization and its members.

[4] For a concise summary of his Nauvoo days, see Richard Ballantyne, “With the Remnants at Nauvoo,” in the Improvement Era 4 (February 1901): 273–79. See also Journal History, LDS Church Archives under dates of 5, 12, 26 July and 17 August 1846.

[5] For specific details of his life during this time, see Journal History, 20 January, 22 May, 1 June, 24 September, 31 December 1848; 24 July 1849; 23 September 1851; and 18 May, 28 August, 13 October 1852.

[6] For a discussion of the “Reformation,” see Gustive L. Larson, “The Mormon Reformation,” Utah Historical Quarterly 26 (January 1958): 45–63, and more recently Paul H. Peterson, “The Mormon Reformation” (PhD diss., Brigham Young University, 1981). As Peterson shows, the number of plural marriages increased notably during the Reformation. Ballantyne likely became involved in the teaching of this doctrine, and his practice soon followed suit. Ballantyne’s journal during this period is an excellent contemporary source of this episode in Mormon history.

[7] Sources on the India missions are the “Manuscript History of the East Indian Mission,” manuscript in LDS Church Archives; Letter of Benjamin Richey to George A. Smith, dated Nephi, Utah, 2 December 1865, in “Correspondence,” George A. Smith Collection, LDS Church Archives; Ralph Lanier Britsch, “A History of the Missionary Activities of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in India, 1849–1856” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1964), hereafter cited as “Missionary Activities in India”; R. L. Britsch, “Early Latter-day Saints Missions to South and East Asia” (PhD diss., Claremont Graduate School, 1976).

[8] These seventeen missionaries were William F. Carter, Richard Ballantyne, Benjamin Franklin Dewey, Allan Findlay, Hugh Findlay, William Fotheringham, Nathaniel Vary Jones, Truman Leonard, Elam Luddington, Amos Milton Musser, Robert Owens, Joseph Richards, Levi Savage, Robert Skelton, Chauncey Walker West, William Willes, and Samuel Amos Woolley. Brief biographical sketches of each appear in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 163–66. George Q. Cannon does suggest that as early as 1838–1839 George A. Smith set apart William Donaldson as a missionary to India, and in August 1840 a Church newspaper notes Donaldson as a “member of the army [British] bound for the East Indies.” It is at present unknown just what became of this mission. (See George Q. Cannon, The Life of Joseph Smith [Salt Lake City: G. Q. Cannon & Sons, 1888], 308; and excerpts of Donaldson’s letters dated 3 July and 24 July (1840) in Times and Seasons 2 [15 Nov. 1840]: 229; Millennial Star 46 [18 Aug. 1904]: 514. See also, George A. Smith, Rise, Progress and Travels . . . [1869], 34–35.)

The immediate impetus for the India Mission in the 1850s were letters from two people in India to Church authorities in England requesting more information on the Church. (See Benjamin Richey letter cited above; letter of Thomas Metcalfe to “Dear Christian friend of the Church of Latter-day Saints” dated East Indies, Lahore, 19 April 1849, in Millennial Star 11 [15 Aug. 1849]: 252, and William A. Sheppard to Orson Spencer, dated Calcutta, 6 February 1850, in Millennial Star 12 [15 May 1850]: 155–57. See also Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 9–11.) Interestingly, both Metcalfe and Sheppard had been impressed with Church tracts and had requested more. This certainly shaped Lorenzo Snow’s approach to India and his choice of the missionaries who went there. According to Joseph Richards, Metcalfe died of fever and ague at Peshaivr in November 1850 as “a firm believer.” (See Joseph Richards to S. W. Richards, dated Calcutta, 4 August 1852, in Millennial Star 14 [16 October 1852]: 542.)

[9] Useful studies of the early missionary thrust are S. George Ellsworth, “A History of Mormon Missions in the United States and Canada, 1830–1860” (PhD diss., University of California, Berkeley, 1951); Barbara Joan M. Higdon, “The Role of Preaching in the Early Latter-day Saint Church, 1830–1846” (PhD diss., University of Missouri, 1961); Brad Morris, “The Internationalization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” (Manuscript, September 1972, copy in LDS Church Archives); and those sources mentioned in James B. Allen and Glen M. Leonard, The Story of the Latter-day Saints (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1976), 643–44. The most successful foreign missions in the nineteenth century were England and Scandinavia. The standard studies are P.A.M. Taylor, Expectations Westward (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1966); and William Mulder, Homeward to Zion (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1957).

[10] A summary of these missions is in Morris, “Internationalization of the Church,” 13–21. The “calls” of the special conference of 28–29 August 1852 are in Millennial Star 14 (13 November 1852): 600. The actual conference minutes were published in Millennial Star 15 (supplement, 1853), 64 pages. See also B. H. Roberts, A Comprehensive History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 6 vol. (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1930), 4:68–76.

[11] Recent studies have suggested that two major themes of early Mormonism were especially attractive to converts: the strong authoritarian basis of the movement and the primitive gospel approach of its message. The first is dealt with in two published studies by Mario S. DePillis, “The Quest for Religious Authority and the Rise of Mormonism,” Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 1 (Spring 1966): 68–88, and “The Social Sources of Mormonism,” Church History 37 (March 1968): 50–69. The second, although modifying the first, is defended by Marvin S. Hill, “The Role of Christian Primitivism in the Origin and Development of the Mormon Kingdom, 1830–1844” (PhD diss., University of Chicago, 1968), and “The Shaping of the Mormon Mind in New England and New York,” Brigham Young University Studies 9 (Spring 1969): 351–72. Both DePillis and Hill lacked the detailed demographic studies yet to be done before any “final” answers can be given, though both have made valuable contributions to the subject.

[12] For an overview of the literature and messages of the early missionaries, see Ellsworth, “History of Mormon Missions,” 35–50, and Higdon, “Role of Preaching.” Also useful for the early years are James B. Allen, “The Significance of Joseph Smith’s First Vision in Mormon Thought,” Dialogue 1 (Autumn 1966): 28–45 and Gordon Irving, “The Mormons and the Bible in the 1830s,” BYU Studies 13 (Summer 1973): 473–88. The themes of their writings will become obvious as we proceed.

[13] The best sources on Lorenzo Snow are in the LDS Church Archives. These include letter books, miscellaneous personal and official papers, and parts of his diary, although the location of many of his diaries is unknown. Other useful sources include Eliza Roxey Snow, Biography and Family Record of Lorenzo Snow (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1884); Andrew Jenson, LDS Biographical Encyclopedia, 4 vols. 1:26–31; Thomas Cottam Romney, The Life of Lorenzo Snow (Salt Lake City: Sugarhouse Press, 1955); “Lorenzo Snow,” Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine 2 (1911): 145–57; and Edward W. Tullidge, ed., “The Apostle, Lorenzo Snow,” Tullidge’s Quarterly Magazine 2 (January 1883): 377–98.

[14] His call is discussed in Eliza R. Snow, Lorenzo Snow, 109–10.

[15] Snow’s Italian Mission is covered in the sources listed in note 13. Also important is Lorenzo Snow, The Italian Mission . . . (London: W. Aubrey, 1851). This twenty-eight-page pamphlet contains many letters relating to this mission, several of which deal with the topic at hand. Also important for dealing with his connection with the India Mission are five of his letters published in volume 14 of the Millennial Star (1852) as cited in notes 16–19.

[16] William Willes was sent to Calcutta. His missionary certificate was signed by Lorenzo Snow and was dated London, 29 August 1851. (A copy appears in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 13. See also letter to F. D. Richards, dated Paris, 26 January 1852, in Millennial Star 14 [1 March 1852]: 76–78. Snow clearly states in this letter that he is concerned about establishing the gospel in “that country.” He had voiced the same concern earlier. See Lorenzo Snow to F. D. Richards, n.d., in Millennial Star 13 [15 August 1851]: 252–53.) Before leaving London, Lorenzo Snow also appointed Hugh Findlay to the Bombay Mission. The “invitation” was dated 1 September 1851, and on 10 September, Findlay responded in the affirmative. (Originals of this correspondence, together with Findlay’s missionary journals, are in LDS Church Archives. They have been conveniently published in Ross and Linnie Findlay, comp. Missionary Journals of Hugh Findlay, India-Scotland [Ephraim, Utah: n.p., 1973]. Ross Findlay kindly provided me with a copy.)

[17] On the work in Italy, see Lorenzo Snow to F. D. Richards, dated Italy, 18 February 1852, in Millennial Star 14 (1 April. 1852): 107–8. In this essay I have not touched on his work on getting the Book of Mormon translated into Italian.

[18] Lorenzo Snow to F. D. Richards, dated Malta, 10 March 1852, in Millennial Star 14 (24 April 1952): 141–42.

[19] L. Snow to S. W. Richards, dated Malta, 1 May 1852 in Millennial Star 14 (5 June 1852): 236–37.

[20] The Only Way to Be Saved had first appeared in London in 1841. (It was still in use in England in the 1850s, as one Peter Drummand attempted to refute it in The Mormon’s “Only Way to be Saved not the Way to be Saved;” or the plausible logic of Mormonism refuted . . . [n.p., 1854]. This reply was dated Stirling [Scotland] January 1854.) It was published in French and Italian by Lorenzo Snow and again in English from the Italian edition at Malta in 1852. It was probably this English printing that was used as the basis for the three printings in India: in Calcutta in September/October 1852 (in Bengalee); in Madras in September 1853; and in Delhi in ca. October 1853. At least one other printing was planned in India in 1855–56, but there is no evidence that it was published.

The Voice of Joseph was first printed in French in 1850. The next year it appeared in Italian, and in 1852 Lorenzo Snow published a revised edition (from the Italian) at Malta in English. The contents and use of both printings are mentioned in The Italian Mission, 13, 25. (See also Lorenzo Snow letter to Orson Pratt, dated the Piedmont, 4 November 1850, in Millennial Star 12 [15 Dec. 1850]: 370.) Another English printing was in November 1852. (See the notice in Millennial Star 14 [27 November 1852]: 635. The whole tract is quoted in Eliza R. Snow, Lorenzo Snow, 136–68.)

[21] See Lorenzo Snow, “Address to the Saints in Great Britain,” in Millennial Star 13 (1 December 1851): 362–65, esp. 365. See also Lorenzo Snow to F. D. Richards, as cited in Eliza R. Snow, Lorenzo Snow 184–86.

[22] Lorenzo Snow to F. D. Richards, n.d., in Millennial Star 13 (15 August 1851): 252–53. Also in Eliza R. Snow, Lorenzo Snow 191–200. The reference to India is on page 199.

[23] In his letter dated 1 May 1852, at Malta, he apologized for disappointing the “brethren in India” (Millennial Star 14 [5 June 1852]: 236–37). Editorial comments in the Star later explain the exact reason for this change in plans (Millennial Star 14 [3 July 1852]: 296–97). This decision to return to England then to America was probably influenced by the first Presidency’s request of 22 September 1851 that all members of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles return to Salt Lake Valley for the April 1853 general conference. (See Millennial Star 14 [15 January 1852]: 25.)

[24] L. Snow to S. W. Richards, dated Malta, 1 May 1852, in Millennial Star 14 (5 June 1852): 236–37. Lorenzo Snow stated “the Indian Mission [will be left] with Elders Findlay, Willis and Joseph Richards.” The shift back to Liverpool assured that this city would be looked to as the depot for Church publications. I have dealt with this in “Early Mormon Pamphleteering,” Journal of Mormon History 4 (1977): 35–49, esp. 45.

[25] As noted previously Snow’s concern for missionary work in India found expression in a variety of ways. It is quite possible that his public requests throughout 1852 for more missionaries helped result in the special conference of 28 and 29 August. (See particularly his letter of 1 May 1852, in Millennial Star 14 [5 June 1852]: 236–37, and the editorial comments by S. W. Richards in the next issue, ibid. 14 [12 June 1852]: 250.)

[26] B. H. Roberts, Comprehensive History, 4:72–73.

[27] A condensed treatment of their preparation and travel to India is in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 28–40. Since the major focus of this paper is on Richard Ballantyne, specific reference should be made of his accounts of this phase of his mission: Volumes one and two of his journals contain the day-to-day record, MSS in LDS Church Archives. There are also five letters to his wife written at various points along the way: (1) undated letter, Provo City; (2) 3 November 1852, Parowan, Iron County; (3) 13 December 1852, Hugo Ranch, near San Bernardino; (4) 20 January 1852, San Francisco; (5) 8 February 1852, San Francisco. MSS of all these letters in LDS Church Archives.

[28] Much of this is summarized from Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 108. He does not have much material on Christianity in India after 1800, which is, of course, critical to understanding the setting of Mormonism’s assault on this country, especially as the Mormon elders would spend most of their time in replying to attacks made by these groups. Useful studies filling this void are contained in Ramsay Muir, ed., The Making of British India, 1756–1858 (Manchester: University Press, 1915), which reproduces many documents, including British Military dispatches relating to religious matters in the cantonments. These are particularly important because Latter-day Saints made many attempts to get access to the military posts to preach but such access was generally not allowed. Also useful in this regard is Sir Alfred Lyall, The Rise and Expansion of the British Dominion in India [to 1858] 3rd ed. (London: John Murray, 1960). See also Kenneth Scott Latourett, A History of Christianity (New York: Harper and Bros., 1953), 694, 930–32, 1033–35, 1314–18; Fred D. Schneider, “Parliament, the East India Company, and the Calcutta Bishopric,” Journal of Church and State 16 (Winter 1974): 51–71; G. A. Oddie, “India and Missionary Motives, c. 1850–1900,” Journal of Ecclesiastical History 25 (January 1974): 61–74; and Stuart Piggin, “Sectarianism versus Ecumenism: The Impact on British churches of the Missionary Movement to India, c. 1800–1860,” Journal of Ecclesiastical History 27 (Oct. 1976): 387–402.

[29] All of these barriers and their relationship to the India Mission will be noted as we proceed. Two useful works which give insight to India in the mid-1800s are Ferdinand DeWilton Ward, India and the Hindoos: Being a Popular View of the Geography, History, Government, Manners, Customs, Literature, and Religion of that Ancient People: With an Account of Christian Missions among Them (London: William Collins, 1853); and Caleb Wright, India and Its Inhabitants (Cincinnati: J. A. Brainerd, 1854). This last work has many engravings of all aspects of Indian culture. An early convert who lived in India, Matthew McCune, wrote a series, “Chapters on Asia,” Millennial Star 25 (24 Jan. to 6 June 1863).

[30] Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 41.

[31] The conference was held on 29 April 1853. Amos M. Musser’s account is quoted in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 40. See also “Manuscript History of the East Indian Mission,” under same date, MS in LDS Church Archives; and Ballantyne’s Journal, vol. 2, under date of 29 April 1853. The assignments at this conference were N. V. Jones and Amos M. Musser to Calcutta; Richard Ballantyne, Robert Skelton, and Robert Owens to Madras; Wm. F. Carter and William Fotheringham to Dinapore; and T. Leonard and S. A. Woolley to Chinsurah. N. V. Jones was appointed president of the Calcutta Branch and this position eventually came to mean president of the mission. He was set apart by Richard Ballantyne, who had acted as president of the group as they crossed the Pacific. Because the focus of this essay will be on Ballantyne and the Madras area, little will be said hereafter about the other missionaries. I will, however, refer to them as related to their publishing activities. The published letter sources on them, listed by individuals, will be found in Whittaker, “Early Mormon Pamphleteering,” 435–45. The missionaries assigned to Burma and Ceylon (which was considered part of the India Mission) were C. West, B. F. Dewey, Edam Luddington, and Levi Savage. A map of the areas of assignments is found in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” i. N. V. Jones’s account of the conference is in Deseret News, 26 December 1855, 334.

[32] According to N. V. Jones it was published without the author indicated, but upon investigation the authors (or rather compilers) were found to be Charles Saunder and an unnamed associate. It was printed in Calcutta and according to Jones was a “vile production” consisting of “a mere collection of newspaper trash, Bennett’s lies, etc.,” (N. V. Jones to S. W. Richards, dated Calcutta, 14 June 1853, in Millennial Star 15 [20 August 1853]: 558–59; also in Deseret News [12 Nov. 1853], 2.) No copy of this work could be located, but Jones, et al. A Reply to “Mormonism Unveiled” (Calcutta: Sanders, Cones and Co., 1853) is available and it offers many clues as to the content of Saunder’s work. Its title was after the 1834 work of E. D. Howe, Mormonism Unvailed [sic]: Howe’s work was also a potpourri of documents attacking Mormonism and Joseph Smith from various angles. The Bennett referred to is John C. Bennett, author of another attack entitled History of the Saints (1842). Bennett’s book was especially used in anti-Mormon literature to expose polygamy and what he considered the secularism of Joseph Smith in Nauvoo. The Howe book is dealt with in Richard L. Anderson, “Joseph Smith’s New York Reputation Reappraised,” BYU Studies 10 (Spring 1970): 283–314. The Bennett book is discussed in Kenneth W. Godfrey, “Causes of Mormon, Non-Mormon Conflict in Hancock County, Illinois, 1839–1846” (PhD diss., Brigham Young University, 1967), 113–23. That the pamphlet was compiled by several people is made clear in another letter of N. V. Jones, dated 5 August 1853 in Deseret News, 9 January 1856, 350. According to this letter the tract had been in circulation for about a year, and after he had finished a Reply he remarked: “The entire production was a tirade of abuse, a scurrilous [sic] tissue of misrepresentation and falsehood as was ever compiled in one precious bundle.” Saunder is spelled “Sunder” in the Reply and both spellings occur in the sources.

[33] The chronology of the production of Jones, A Reply to “Mormonism Unveiled” can be constructed by examining the “Manuscript History of the East India Mission,” MS in LDS Church Archives and several other sources. The “Manuscript History” suggests the following schedule: From 10 to 14 May, Jones and Musser were at Elder Meik’s (a convert living in Acra) “investigating” the attack. They returned again to continue writing the Reply. By 9 July, they sent one hundred pages of the Reply to the printer and on 4 August, they received 250 copies at a cost of 192 ½ rupees for printing and binding. The cost was borne in large part by their new convert, Arthur McMahon. 192 ½ rupees was about $96.00. A copy of this rare item is in LDS Church Archives. Musser’s role is described in Karl Brooks, “Amos Milton Musser” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1968), 39.

[34] Ballantyne’s Journal, vol. 2, entries from 18 to 31 May detail his involvement in this project. He never mentions just which pages he wrote, but under the date of 20 May 1853, he wrote that he was assisting Brother Jones in answering “Mormonism Unveiled” and that “the part I have been answering related to the Gold Plates and the testimony of the witnesses.” This would suggest that he was responsible for 33 to 44 in the Reply. His work was finished by 28 May. He received a copy of it in Madras on 31 August. See also his letters to Dr. Samuel Sprague, dated Calcutta, 13 May 1853, in Deseret News, 5 January 1854, 2; and to his wife, dated Calcutta, 31 May 1853, MS in LDS Church Archives. See also William Fortheringham, “Travels in India,” Juvenile Instructor 12 (15 June 1877): 136 and Juvenile Instructor. 13 (15 September 1878): 206. The Reply is referred to once again in Ballantyne’s Journal when he was attempting to convert Thomas Scott, the captain of the ship that transported him and Skelton to Madras. It seems Captain Scott had some reservations about some of the arguments presented in the Reply and Ballantyne expressed his opinion that only sound doctrine need be accepted and not everything in this work was necessarily in that category. See his Journal under date of 22 October 1853.

[35] Robert Owens, who had been assigned to Madras with them, stayed in and around the Calcutta area until he finally arrived in Madras on 3 January 1854. He was in constant trouble with his fellow workers in India. He was “tried” and his missionary license taken from him on 29 May 1853 for his “abuse to the Council, false teachings, revengeful spirit, etc” (letter of Richard Ballantyne to his wife, dated Calcutta, 31 May 1853, MS in LDS church Archives). Owens was restored to fellowship on 13 June but was again in trouble by 26 June 1853. See “Manuscript History of East India Mission.” Owens remained in Calcutta area until late December 1853, when he was again assigned to Madras. He remained in this general area until he left to eventually return to the United States via Australia. He was a constant problem to Ballantyne, a situation which grew worse as time passed. It eventually separated the two men and was quite disruptive to the unity of the missionaries in Madras. Owens’s behavior reached very serious proportions by April 1854, when his rather lewd conduct seriously undermined Ballantyne’s work with several potential converts. Owens’s life during this period can be traced in records kept by Ballantyne: see his letter to his wife dated Madras, 8 October 1853, 6, MS in LDS Church Archives; and his Journals under these dates: 29, 30 May 1853; 3, 27 January; 14, 23 February; 23, 26 March; 6, 14, 29 April; and 9 July 1854. On April 1854 Ballantyne wrote to N.V. Jones in Calcutta of Owens’s activities in Madras. This letter was copied into the first pages of vol. 4 of Ballantyne’s Journal, under date of 3 May 1854. For the serious moral charges against him see Ballantyne’s Journal, 29 April 1854. Owens arrived in Sydney, Australia, in the fall of 1854 per the letter of William Cook dated 13 October in Millennial Star 17 (17 Feb. 1855): 105. He left Australia on brig Tarquenia for San Pedro, California, on 27 April 1855 per a letter of Augustus Farnliam, dated Sydney, 31 May 1855 in Millennial Star 17 (15 Sept. 1855): 591. He labored in Australia for over five months. He was the first Mormon elder to go to Tasmania. See John Douglas Hawkes, “A History of the Church . . . in Australia to 1900,” (Master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1965), 44ff. Owens appears to have been a loner, and I have not been able to locate his letters or diaries. See also Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 96, n. 3.

[36] The faith-promoting side of this voyage is told in Richard Ballantyne, “A Promise Fulfilled,” Improvement Era 6 (June 1903): 590–93. The fuller account is in his Journal between dates 20 June and 24 July 1853. Much of the ship’s log is quoted in Ballantyne’s Journal. Also, Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 81–86.

[37] Ballantyne, “A Promise Fulfilled,” 590–93; and Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 81–86.

[38] Originally printed in New York in 1837, this book (216 + pages) was probably one of the most influential works outside Mormon scripture in the nineteenth century. A brief bibliographical description is in Peter Crawley, “A Bibliography of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in New York, Ohio, and Missouri,” BYU Studies 12 (Summer 1972): 516–18, Item no. 36.

[39] The Pearl of Great Price was first published in Liverpool, England in 1851. Compiled by Franklin D. Richards, the British mission president at the time, it was essentially a compilation of extracts of the writings and revelations of Joseph Smith. It was a very popular tract and was canonized as the fourth standard work of the Church in October 1880. A convenient study of its history and contents is James R. Clark, The Story of the Pearl of Great Price (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1955).

[40] See note 20.

[41] Robert Patch’s comment that “Brother Ballantyne’s expedition into publications was taken as a result of unsuccessful missionary work in the vicinity [of Madras]” is not correct. Ballantyne’s Journal makes it quite plain that publishing was a major part of his conception of proper missionary work, not a substitute when it failed. Patch’s work contains many inaccuracies, especially when dealing with LDS publications in India. See his “An Historical Overview of the Missionary Activities of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Continental Asia” (master’s thesis, Brigham Young University, 1949). His comments on Ballantyne are on 55.

[42] This information is summarized from Ballantyne’s Journal, dates of 23–25 July 1853.

[43] Ballantyne’s Journal, dates of 24 July to 30 July 1853 when the thousand copies were ready, contains the details of his work with the printer. He noted on 27 July, the day he examined the proof-sheets: “In case it might appear before the Public as a sort of anonymous publication having no one to sustain the doctrines contained in it, in this place, I have added to the title page the following words, ‘Republished by R. Ballantyne, presiding Elder of the Mission to Madras.’ This is all I have added to Bro. L. Snow’s production.” Ballantyne’s missionary companion also tells of this printing: letter of Robert Skelton to Thomas Bullock, dated 5 September 1853 in Deseret News, 2 February 1854, 2.

[44] Actually Ballantyne had contemplated publishing a part of the Proclamation the day before Captain Scott had offered to pay for its printing. He had, according to his journal of 29 July 1853, already begun selecting material to be included in it. Ballantyne felt that Captain Scott’s offer was literally an answer to prayer.

[45] As at Madras, the Australian mission began with publishing activities. More will be said of this, but the best overview of the early printing in Australia is Peter Crawley, “The First Australian Mormon Imprints,” Graduates Review 2 (Fall 1973): 38–51. (The Graduates Review is a publication of the BYU Graduate Student Association of Library and Information Sciences.)

[46] Ballantyne brought at least one other Australian work with him from Calcutta to Madras. He records reading Wandell’s, Reply to “Shall We Believe in Mormon?” on 27 June 1853, just two days before he mentions the Proclamation. The influence of other Australian publications will be noted later.

[47] The contents of it were described in Ballantyne’s letter to S. W. Richards, dated 3–16 August 1853, in Millennial Star 15 (22 October1853): 700–702. The manuscript was given to the printer on 30 July; the proofs were examined on 2 August; and one thousand copies were received on 5 August. The original Proclamation had six sections (or “chapters”) and these were faithfully reprinted by Wandell, probably in November 1851. Ballantyne extracted sections 1, 2, 3, 6 (which he published as 1, 2, 3, 4) and then added a three-page section entitled “Rise and Progress of the Church,” which consisted of extracts from the Times and Seasons 3 (1 Mar. 1842): 706–8. See also Ballantyne’s Journal 30 July 1853. According to his journal, Captain Scott paid twenty rupees for the printing. According to William Fotheringham, a rupee was the value of two English shillings or forty-eight cents. See Juvenile Instructor 17 (15 May 1882): 157.

[48] With the possibility of losing their best supporter, Ballantyne wrote both to the newspapers and to Captain Scott. His letter to Scott appears in his Journal, under date of 2 August 1853. See also his letter to his wife, dated 9 August 1853 (MS in LDS Church Archives) where he says his publishing was trying to correct the poor treatment they were receiving at the hands of “priests and editors.”

[49] Extracts of the attack were copied into Ballantyne’s Journal of 22 August 1853, and appear in slightly modified form in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 89–90. His response was published in the “Madras Circulation” on 7 September 1853. It was copied into his Journal of 22 August and recopied for the publishers on 24 August.

[50] This whole “pipeline” of Church literature needs further study, but it should be noted that these India missionaries ordered “outside” Church literature for a variety of reasons, but primarily to maintain contact with the outside world and to continue to receive instruction themselves. This is especially so in regards to polygamy, a doctrine officially announced at the same conference from which they received their mission calls. Ballantyne’s thinking and writing on this subject was influenced by the literature he continued to receive while on his mission.

[51] Ballantyne Journal, 9 August 1853. He specifically notes on 12 August that they had distributed over three hundred tracts, but had collected money for only eleven of them and really did not know if those that had been distributed were having the desired effect. He probably felt that the use of tracts left an impersonal void they would try to make up through personal contact.

[52] The wording of the handbills, for which they obtained free printing, is in Ballantyne’s Journal, 22 August 1853. The lectures were scheduled for Friday nights, and the first was held on 2 September 1853. Fifteen people came.

[53] Letter of R. Ballantyne to his wife, dated Madras, 6 September 1853. MS in LDS Church Archives.

[54] These experiences are detailed in Ballantyne’s Journal, 28 and 29 August 1853.

[55] The entire piece, begun on 30 August, was really a long editorial or “an article for the Public, to remove if possible some reproach from this cause. . . .” The whole essay was copied into his Journal under date of 30 August 1853 and occupies 39–67 of Vol. 3. From the date at the end of the essay it seems he finished it on 31 August. Pages 40 and 41 are blank, Ballantyne having skipped over them. At the top of page 60 is a penned note: “This far the foregoing was published in the Madras ‘Circulation’ on Monday the 12 September 1853 without comment—May the Lord bless the Editor.” This meant that about three-fifths of the article was published, but interestingly enough it was the unpublished part that dealt with polygamy. Six months later he would print a tract on the subject but his arguments would change but little. What he did publish took almost two weeks to get printed. This episode can be followed in his Journal, 31 August to 12 September 1853. Robert Skelton was listed as the coauthor when it was published although it was clearly the work of Ballantyne. For Skelton’s positive judgment of the essay, see his letter to Thomas Bullock dated 5 September 1853, in Deseret News, 2 February 1854, 2.

[56] R. Ballantyne’s Journal, 7 May 1853. In his first two letters to his wife from India he told her of the problems the missionaries were encountering over this doctrine. On 2 May he told her of his giving a talk on the subject, and on 4 May he mentioned that attacks were being made against him. This no doubt convinced him that a published defense would be necessary.

[57] Letter of Hugh Findlay to N. V. Jones dated Bombay, 24 June 1853. Original is copied into Findlay’s Journal, LDS church Archives. A convenient printing of this is Ross Findlay, 150–51.

[58] H. Findlay copied into his Journal several of these attacks: Bombay Guardian 16 April 1852; Bombay Gazette 21 April 1852; and the Bombay Telegraph and Courier 26 April and 6 May 1852. All of these are in Ross Findlay, 7–19. Findlay’s reply to the Bombay Guardian piece, denying as he did the doctrine and practice, surely placed him in a precarious position after the public announcement in August. His request of 25 June no doubt reveals the growing uncertainty of his public position.

[59] The complex problem of the origin of plural marriage, also called “celestial marriage” by Latter-day Saints, is beyond the scope of this essay. Useful places to begin are Andrew Jenson, “Plural Marriage,” The Historical Record 6 (May 1887): 219–40; Stanley R. Ivins, “Notes on Mormon Polygamy,” Western Humanities Review 10 (Summer 1956): 220–39; Kimball Young, Isn’t One Wife Enough? (New York: H. Holt, 1954); more recently, Daniel W. Backman, “A Study of the Mormon Practice of Plural Marriage Before the Death of Joseph Smith” (master’s thesis, Purdue University, 1975). A useful evaluation of studies on polygamy is Davis Bitton, “Mormon Polygamy: A Review Article,” Journal of Mormon History 4 (1977): 101–18.

[60] The two exceptions were the revelation on the subject given 12 July 1843 to Joseph Smith and first printed in the Deseret News Extra, 14 September 1852; and the little-known pamphlet The Peace Maker, published in Nauvoo in 1842.

[61] The first public statement from Church leaders came on 29 August 1852 when Orson Pratt, at a special missionary conference, delivered a sermon on the doctrine. The text was printed in the Deseret News Extra, 14 September 1852 and after in Millennial Star 15 (Supplement, 1953): 32–36; and in Journal of Discourses, 26 vols. (Liverpool: F. D. and S. W. Richards, 1854), 1:53–66. Pratt quickly became the major public spokesman for the church on this doctrine. The arguments he gave in August 1852, although expanded in his monthly periodical The Seer (Washington, D.C., 1853–1854), were fivefold: (1) God commanded it; (2) raising up “seed” unto Christ; (3) fulfilling God’s promises to Abraham; (4) providing tabernacles (i.e., bodies) for “noble spirits”; and (5) reforming society both morally and spiritually. His expanded series on “Celestial Marriage” still provide the most detailed examination of this doctrine: see The Seer 1 (Jan.1853–Dec. 1853): 7–16, 25–32, 41–48, 58–64, 73–80, 89–96, 105–12, 122–28, 135–44, 152–60, 169–76, 183–92. For a fuller treatment see Whittaker, “Early Mormon Pamphleteering,” 321–94.

[62] A convenient summary of these periodicals and their publishers is in B. H. Roberts, Comprehensive History, 4:55–68.

[63] Also available was Orson Spencer’s, Patriarchal Order or Plurality of Wives, . . . (Liverpool, 1853). His death in October 1855 probably lessened the influence of this work.

[64] See “Polygamy” series, letters of John Jacques to J.—G.—in Millennial Star 15 (12 & 26 February 1853): 97–102, 133–36 and Millennial Star, 15 (5 and 12 Mar. 1853): 145–49, 161–66. In the midst of this series Jacques was assigned to the editorial office of the Star and in that capacity authored numerous items in the following issues. These letters were the source of his sixteen-page pamphlet Polygamy, probably printed in 1869. See also his poem “Celestial Marriage,” Millennial Star 18 (12 April1856): 240.

[65] See for example “Nelly and Abby—A familiar conversation between two cousins on Marriage,” by “L.” in Millennial Star 15 (9 and 16 Apr. 1853): 225–29; 241–44; and “Monogamy, Polygamy, and Christianity,” Millennial Star. 15 (6 Aug. 1853): 513–17. The first is representative of the dialogue-type propaganda which became very popular in the Church in the 1850s; the second is an example of the proof-texting the defenders of polygamy soon adopted, using as they did non-Mormon sources to prove their position.

[66] See Belinda Marden Pratt, Defence of Polygamy, By a Lady of Utah in a Letter to Her Sister in New Hampshire, (Salt Lake City: 1854). This nine-page letter is dated 12 January 1854. It was reprinted in the Millennial Star 16 (29 July 1854): 475–80 and in Zion’s Watchman (Australia) 1 (15 Nov. 1854): 171–80. It also appeared in Richard Burton, The City of the Saints (London: 1861), 484–93.

[67] Although her letter is not extant, Richard Ballantyne’s journal entry for 26 September 1853 (the day he received her letter) makes it plain what her concerns were.

[68] Letter of Richard Ballantyne to his wife dated Madras, 2–6 February 1854. MS in LDS Church Archives. The “rules” referred to are in The Seer 1 (Nov., Dec. 1853): 174–76; 183–87.

[69] On 3 December 1853 he recorded: “In the evening, I examined a manuscript, which Mr. Mills gave me, written by a Baptist, being a dialogue between the Minister and Member concerning the impropriety of admitting an unbaptised person or a Polygamist to what they call the Lord’s Table.”

[70] The actual writing of the eight-page tract was done on 8 March 1854. On 13 March a printer’s copy was prepared, and although an exact date is not known, it seems obvious it was out by the end of March. Its cost was borne by a Mr. Brown, the man from whom they were then renting an apartment. In addition to the argument from the Old Testament, two lengthy quotes are given in the tract, one in the text of the pamphlet and the other as an “Appendix” to it. The first quote appears on 4–5 and was undoubtedly obtained from either Pratt or the Millennial Star or both. This material first appeared under the title “Luther on Polygamy” in Millennial Star 15 (6 Aug. 1853): 526–27 and in expanded form as “Christian Polygamy in the Sixteenth Century,” in The Seer 1 (Dec. 1853): 177–83. The Appendix, “Milton on Polygamy,” appeared in longer form under the same title in Millennial Star 16 (27 May 1854): 321–24, and Millennial Star. 16 (3 June 1854): 342–45; in the Deseret News 4 (10 Aug. 1854): 1–2; in the St. Louis Luminary 1 (3 Feb. 1855): 41; and in Zion’s Watchman 2 (15 Jan. 1855): 209–10, in exactly the same form as printed by Ballantyne. I have not been able to trace just where Ballantyne got this, but after his work appeared it was reprinted in several Church works. Milton’s arguments are treated in Leo Miller, John Milton Among the Polygamaphiles (New York: Loewenthal Press, 1974). Milton was trying to get out of a bad marriage.

Orson Pratt’s influence again shows up in another early defense of plural marriage: see Jesse Haven, Celestial Marriage, and the Plurality of Wives . . . (Capetown: W. Foelscher, 1853). Written between May and June 1853, this eight-page tract clearly shows Pratt’s influence (see 5–8). Haven was President of the South African Mission and in that capacity wrote this and several other works. An examination of his Journal suggests that it appeared about 17 June 1853. See Haven, “Journal A,” MS in LDS Church Archives under dates of 20 and 26 May and 13–15, 18 and 20 June 1853. A copy of Haven’s pamphlet on plural marriage was in India by October 1853. N. V. Jones called it “a sound work” in his letter to Hugh Findlay dated Calcutta, 7 October 1853, in Ross Findlay, 164–65. I have found no evidence that Haven’s work circulated beyond Calcutta. Although some of the same arguments show up on 88–105 of N. V. Jones, A Reply to “Mormonism Unveiled” (August 1853), it is not likely Haven’s tract was available in India until September or October 1853.

[71] See note 57.

[72] Fortunately Findlay copied into his Journal both the attacks and his replies to them. The first attack he recorded came from Bombay Guardian, 16 April 1852. Findlay’s reply appeared on 27 April. Both are in Ross Findlay, 7–11. On 21 April 1852, The Bombay Gazette spoke of the “debaucheries” of Mormonism. Findlay replied on 23 April 1852. See Ross Findlay, 12–14. On 26 April and again on 6 May 1852, the Bombay Telegraph and Courier attacked the doctrine, and Findlay replied to both (no date given in his journal for the first reply; the second was dated 10 May 1852); see Ross Findlay, 14–30. These newspapers continued their attacks and finally refused to print any more of Hugh Findlay’s replies. This explains, in part, why he was forced to print separate pamphlets. A quick examination of the anti-Mormon material reveals two things: the influence of John C. Bennett’s book (History of the Saints, 1842) and the tendency of non-Mormon Christian groups to rely on anti-Mormon material imported from England.

[73] Both are touched on by Britsch, “The Latter-day Saint Mission to India, 1851–1856,” BYU Studies 12 (Spring 1972): 272–78. Britsch adds to the list the social consciousness of Europeans and the caste system.

[74] This aspect can be traced in Ballantyne’s Journal under the following dates: 28 May 1853; 30 September 1853; 2, 8, 9, 17, and 26 October 1853; 9 December 1853; 28 April 1854 (a conversation with a native on this); 1 May 1854 (three members: Mills, McCarthy and Barnett lost their Tract Society jobs over their conversion to the Church). See also Ballantyne’s letters to his wife: 8 October 1853, and 9 December 1853. Ballantyne made his “gripes” about the protestant clergy using this kind of force in his pamphlet Dialogue Between A and B on Polygamy, 1–2. For other comments on the same problems see: Letter of Hugh Findlay to William Gibson, dated Bombay, 13 November 1853, in Deseret News, 27 April 1852, 2–3; Letter of Samuel A. Woolley, dated 14 November 1853, Delhi, in “Manuscript History of the East Indian Mission,” MS in LDS Church Archives under date of 14 November 1853. Robert Skelton, the last Mormon missionary to leave India, left several comments about these problems. See letters of Skelton to F. D. Richards, dated Calcutta, 8 March 1856, in Millennial Star 18 (31 May 1856): 348–49, and to George Q. Cannon, dated 16 August 1845 in The Western Standard 1 (30 Aug. and 6 Sept. 1856): 3; and letter of N. V. Jones to S. W. Richards, dated Calcutta, 4 October 1853, in Millennial Star 15 (10 Dec. 1853): 812–14. Even after returning to the United States, Samuel A. Woolley, in an interview with the Boston Times, sarcastically commented that in India “the missionaries who have the most cash always [are] the most successful in making converts.” As quoted in St. Louis Luminary 1 (3 March 1855): 57; see also letter of N. V. Jones, n.d., Deseret News 23 April 1856, 56: “The universal means adopted by the missionaries [non-Mormon] to obtain converts has been to hire them.” When their missions were over, most would have agreed with Amos Musser: “The greatest work we accomplished was in saving ourselves.” Letter of A. M. Musser to Orson Pratt, dated Birmingham, 10 March 1857, in Millennial Star 19 (4 April 1857): 220.

[75] From November to February the season is cool and dry, and these were the months of the successful missionary work. The health problem of the missionaries is discussed in Britsch, “Missionary Activities in India,” 2–3, 49, 96–97, 112, 113, 138, 159. “From the time the Elders arrived in Calcutta until the end of 1853 [and after] there are only a few entries in the Journal [of Amos Musser] which do not record someone as being ill. Often the sickness of the brethren were so severe that they were completely bedridden for several days. None of the Elders escaped being sick at least part of the time. The common diagnosis was that they were suffering from fever and chills. However, it was not unusual for them to have boils, blotches, and other maladies” (49).

[76] The production of the first reply, A Reply to a Tract Written by the Rev. J. Richards, M.A., Giving a More Correct Answer to the Question “What is Mormonism?”—purporting to be answered by him . . . (Madras: S. Bowie, Printer, 1853), can be followed through several contemporary sources: Ballantyne’s Journal dates of 7, 14–16, 17–18, 19, 23, and 27 September; Ballantyne’s letters to his wife: 6 September 1853; 8 October 1853; 4 November 1853. Four hundred copies of this eight-page work were printed, and they were bound with an equal number of his first two publishing ventures The Only Way to Be Saved and The Proclamation. . . . The printer was to be paid via the sale of the pamphlet; see Ballantyne Journal, 18 September 1853.

[77] The largest quote in the Reply occurs on 2–3 and it comes from the Times and Seasons 1 (Jan. 1840): 47. It is the testimony of the widow of Solomon Spaulding (Mrs. Matilda Davidson) regarding the relationship of the writings of her husband to the Book of Mormon. The testimony had been taken by Jesse Haven. Ballantyne’s immediate source was an earlier India publication, What is Mormonism published by Wm. Willes in Calcutta in October or November 1852. A recent treatment of the Spalding theory is Lester E. Bush, Jr., “The Spalding Theory, Then and Now,” Dialogue 10 (Autumn 1977): 40–69.

[78] The production of the Second Reply can be followed in Ballantyne’s Journal: 5 October 1853 (he learned of Rev. Richards’s second tract); 9, 17 October (one Samuel Pascal told him that John Mills had offered to pay for the printing of the second reply): 13, 14 October (spent compiling it); 17 October (examined and corrected the proof sheets); 28, 29 October (he received 397 copies of the Second Reply). In a letter to Mr. Mills (copied into his Journal on 14 October), Ballantyne described the contents: “The tract will not only be a reply to Mr. Richards, but is designed, especially on the subject just named [the trinity], to be a standard work.” The estimated cost, on 15 October, to print it was 17 rupees. Its final cost was just over 26 rupees. All but 11 rupees had been paid by 10 December 1852. Eleven of the eighteen pages of the Second Reply (6–17) contain Lectures three through five of the “Lectures on Faith” from the Doctrine and Covenants.

[79] See especially Ballantyne’s Journal under dates 7, 13, 14, 27 September; 5, 9, 11, 14, 24, 30 October 1853.

[80] See Findlay’s Journal, as printed in Ross Findlay, under dates of 30 August; 6, 28 September; 26 October; 1, 4, November 1852 and 5, 6, 7, 9 January; 3, 4, and 13 February 1853. The twenty-page work was finished by end September 1852, but problems with finances and the printer delayed its publication until February or March 1853. Note Findlay’s letter of 13 September 1852, in Millennial Star 14 (27 Nov. 1852): 635–36. A copy of this rather rare pamphlet is in LDS Church Archives under the title of “The Mormons or Latter-day Saints.” A Reply by Hugh Findlay To a Tract Bearing The Above Title by J. G. Deck and Reprinted at the Bombay “Time Press” (Bombay: Duftur Ashkana Press, 1853).

[81] A complete listing of early Latter-day Saint authors who wrote pamphlet-length replies to specific attacks is beyond the scope of this essay. A partial listing would include the following writers: George J. Adams, William Appleby, Richard Ballantyne, James F. Bell, S. Bennett, James Flanigan, Hugh Findlay, Dan Jones, N. V. Jones, David W. Kilbourne, Reuben Miller, Julian Moses, Orson Pratt, Parley P. Pratt, Erastus Snow, John Taylor, and Benjamin Winchester.

[82] His comments on the LDS press appear throughout his journals and letters and could be the subject of a separate essay. The quotes cited above are found, in order of their appearance, in the following: Journal, 3 November 1853; letter to his wife, dated Madras, 4 November 1853, MS in LDS Church Archives and Journal, 11 February 1854.

[83] A possible exception would be the reference contained in his journal under the date of 8 September 1853: “Today Subscribed for the ‘circulator’ a paper published three times a week. I wish to encourage it as the Editor is friendly and publishes my letters, to which I have attached great importance.” See also his comments in his letter to S. W. Richards, dated Madras, 4 October 1853, in Millennial Star 15 (9 Dec. 1853): 796.

[84] Undoubtedly these kinds of judgments were unfair generalizations, but their existence in Ballantyne’s (and others’) journals does suggest a kind of scapegoat or escape mechanism that enabled these missionaries to rationally deal with situations that were often beyond their ability to control or understand. By the end of Ballantyne’s Madras mission there is an almost paranoia about his failure there. For Ballantyne’s comments on the failure of the India mission see his Journal under dates of 23 November 1853; 22 February; 16 March; 12, 24 April; 28 May, and 26 June 1854; see also his letters to his wife, dated Madras 9 and 18 December 1853, MS in LDS Church Archives; to S. W. Richards, dated Madras, 6 February 1854, in Deseret News, 19 October 1854, 2–3.

[85] This can be traced through Ballantyne’s Journal beginning in June 1853. The fact that his first two publishing efforts totaled one thousand copies each, but the next three were only four hundred copies each may suggest this lack of financial support. His concerns over money to publish reached his dreams on 25 September 1853.

[86] Ballantyne’s Journal gives most of the information on the dates this periodical appeared. The first issue appeared by 6 April 1854; the second issue was out by 28 April 1854; the third and fourth issues seem to have appeared around the first of June and July 1854, respectively. Ballantyne left Madras in July, and his companion, Richard Skelton, continued the publication for at least three more issues: August, October, and November 1854. Copies of the first six are in LDS Church Archives; a copy of the seventh is in the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

[87] Ballantyne’s Journal, 12 May 1854. I have been unable to find any proof that it was ever printed.

[88] See note 35.

[89] On 12 December 1853, Ballantyne noted in his journal that a Mr. McCarthy had been dabbling with “evil spirits and hat moving.” On 16 December he took notes on “Moving, Rapping, and Kindred Phenomena.” Ballantyne had earlier encountered this when his missionary group had arrived in San Bernardino in December 1852. See his journal for 23 December 1852. This was an interesting part of early Mormon social history which eventually caused great concern to Church leaders. Orson Pratt’s concern was reflected in his “Second Epistle to the Saints,” The Seer 1 (Nov. 1853): 167. See also Davis Bitton, “Mormonism’s Encounter with Spiritualism,” Journal of Mormon History 1 (1975): 39–50. Ballantyne, like Pratt, simply relegated these experiences to the devil.

[90] He announced to the public a series of twelve lectures through three hundred printed handbills he distributed on 14 May 1854. Twelve lectures were to be given in Madras and also in neighboring Vepery. He describes these lectures in a letter to John Taylor, dated Madras, 29 May 1854, in Deseret News, 19 October 1854, 2–3. He had tried a similar approach in August 1853 (see note 52), and N. V. Jones had tried this also in Calcutta in November–December 1853. Ballantyne records that few attended the lectures in Madras. The use of handbills was quite common in the early missionary effort. A non-Mormon mention of these early handbills is by Daniel Kidder: “It is not an uncommon thing to see handbills posted up in our streets, setting forth various items about the fulness of the gospel, and promising to gratify the curiosity felt to know what the Latter-day Saints do believe” (Mormonism and the Mormons . . . [New York: Lane and Scott, 1852], 311).

[91] Beginning on 15 May 1854 his Journal almost daily records his illness. From 4 June to 25 June he was so ill he could not keep up his journal. He recounted the critical period of this illness in a letter to his wife, dated 4 July 1854. MS in LDS Church Archives.

[92] They had written Jones on 28 May requesting his counsel in regard “to the propriety of leaving Madras. We stated that our labors here seem to be at an end . . .” (Ballantyne’s Journal, 28 May 1854). By 26 June he noted that every door in Madras had been closed against them. Ballantyne’s certificate of release was dated 4 August 1854 and was copied into his Journal, Vol. 5, 9 January 1855. He requested this from N. V. Jones on 9 July after he had been “released.” The First Presidency had prepared the way for their release in “To the Missionaries From Utah,” Deseret News, 31 August 1854; and Millennial Star 16 (18 Nov.1854): 721–22.

[93] Ballantyne’s Journal, 9 July 1854. As I have suggested elsewhere, this was a necessary part of the distribution system of Church literature. See my comments in Journal of Mormon History 4 (1977): 46–47.

[94] “I am now getting 106 Volumes of the Series of Tracts which I have published here bound, with the intent to sell them to help me home. The volume contains:

1st A Proclamation of the Gospel, by P. P. Pratt

2nd The Only Way to be Saved, by Lorenzo Snow

3rd A Reply to the Rev. J. Richards

4th A Second Reply to Rev. J. Richards

5th 1st No. of the Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor

6th 2nd No. of the Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor

7th 3rd No. of the Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor

8th 4th No. of the Millennial Star and Monthly Visitor

9th The Dialogue on Polygamy

These comprise all that I have published in Madras during the last 11 months with the exception of four letters which were published in the ‘Gazette,’ and ‘Circulator:’ Making in all 4,300 pamphlets” (Ballantyne’s Journal, 10 July 1854).

A title page was prepared for this edition: Tracts &c. Published by Richard Ballantyne, Elder in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; Consisting of. . . . The price for the collection was one rupee. LDS Church Archives has a copy of this edition.

[95] See his Journal, dates of 15 and 17 July and 16 August 1854.

[96] Letter of N. V. Jones to S. W. Richards, dated Calcutta, 17 March 1854, in Millennial Star 16 (13 May 1854): 303. As early as 9 September 1853, Ballantyne complained of a lack of books to sell, especially copies of the Book of Mormon. See his Journal for that date. See also his letter to his wife, dated 9 December 1853, 7. MS in LDS Church Archives.

[97] Letter of R. Ballantyne to [F. D.] Richards, dated London, 13 December 1854, in Millennial Star 17 (13 January 1855): 28.

[98] R. Ballantyne to [F. D.] Richards, Millennial Star 17 (13 January 1855): 28.

[99] Ballantyne’s Journal, 5 October 1853. His comment on the “poison” is in his letter to his wife dated Madras, 2–6 February 1854, 2–3. MS in LDS Church Archives. For a list of Mormon imprints published in India see Whittaker, “Early Mormon Pamphleteering,” 446–49.

[100] There are several such references in his Journal, and since my emphasis in this essay has been on his publishing activities, there is the possibility the reader will think he did nothing else. Although his writing did play a major role in his missionary work it must not obscure his day-to-day preaching, visiting, and other such activities which he recorded in his journal. His specific concerns about the limits of publishing were voiced in a letter to S. W. Richards early in his mission: “The most effective way to remove the prejudices of the honest, we find to be to visit from house to house. In this way they discern the spirit we are of.” See the letter dated Madras, 3 August 1853 in Millennial Star 15 (22 October 1853): 700–702. By 12 August 1853, they had distributed three hundred of their tracts (only received pay for eleven). He recorded on that date: “I feel that circulating Tracts alone will not do. The people must be awakened.” Also important, and I have not developed it here, is the story of the attempts to get material published, which material never appeared in printed form. See Whittaker, “Early Mormon Pamphleteering,” 450–53, for a listing of the items that were either not completed or never published.