Mountain Meadows Massacre 1 

My guest was Will Bagley, independent historian and columnist. His book, Blood of the Prophets: Brigham Young and the Massacre at Mountain Meadows, covers a period of Mormon history, 1856-1858, laden with controversy: the Reformation, blood atonement, Utah War, murder of Parley Pratt, the Mountain Meadows Massacre and the trials and execution of John D. Lee (1874-1877). Historians and students are divided on some of the main issues and events of this era and many of the lesser ones. His book adds to the controversy. We discussed Bagley's view that Brigham Young directly ordered the Mountain Meadows Massacre as an act of vengeance precipitated by the murder of Parley Pratt.

Bagley contends that Mormons were committed by a sacred oath in the temple ceremony - the alleged "oath of vengeance" - to avenge the blood of the prophets Joseph and Hyrum murdered in 1844, to which list would have been added the beloved Apostle, Parley Pratt, murdered in May 1857 in Arkansas.

I reviewed some of the substantial evidence which demonstrates that there was no "oath of vengeance" administered in the temple ceremony, that this was a tale manufactured and spread by bitter ex-Mormons. Rather, the long established LDS position left all vengeance in the hands of the Lord. In the lecture portion of the ceremony, the Saints were instructed to pray that God avenge the blood of the prophets, based on Revelation 6:9-10, rather than that the Saints seek vengeance.

We discussed several other points, but did not cover the subject sufficiently. I had hoped to have Bagley back on my next Talk Show to pursue this further, but he is too busy. I will probably have him back in the future, but I have decided to continue the subject without him next Sunday to summarize this historical event and consider some of the many controversial points.

Talk Show host: Van Hale, LDS

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This is the 3 June 2007 episode of the Mormon Miscellaneous Worldwide Talk Show, now in its 27th year.To listen to future Talk Shows live, go to Sunday evenings 5:00 - 7:00 pm MST. If you have a question or comment, your participation is invited, regardless of your point of view. Your voice will be heard around the world.  







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