To the Editor of The N. Y. Tribune.
SIR: The following extracts are from a letter dated in California, "Jan. 24, 1857." The writer is intelli-gent and reliable. With his brother he has sojourned in Carson's Valley and the regions round about two several times, and therefore knows whereof he affirms. A. B. G.
"I see in the last TRIBUNE a charge of the Judge at Genoa (Mormon Station), U. T. W e had not heard of it before. One error in it needs correction ; the statute against lewdness referred to is not a United States but a Utah Territorial law. While in Carson's Valley lately we examined their 'Revised Statutes' as carefully as our time and business would permit. Their whole aim and purpose is to throw power into the hands of their 'Elders,' and dust in the eyes of the 'Gentiles.' The Governor and Courts have ex-traordinary discretionary powers, and if the United States Government had "but half performed its duty, much evil would have been prevented. Some of their laws are clearly in violation of the Constitution, and Congress should examine them. They have what they call a 'Perpetual Emigration Fund.' Their printed laws contain no act creating or incorporating such a fund. It is clearly a Church fund; yet certain fines and forfeitures are directed by law to be paid into said fund!
"We noticed, also, that in an act, ordering the col-lation of the laws of the territory, they direct the pub-lication of an accompanying list of laws 'except such 'as are abrogated, obsolete, not in force, or not neces-‘sary to print;' and in the list they mark sections and parts of acts, 'not print,' and merely refer by volume and page—not to the printed laws, but—to the statutes probably kept in the Secretary's Office in Salt Lake City! So that an 'outside Gentile' who is over-cu-rious must go there for information. But why 'not necessary to print?'
"Their laws on Slavery are for outside show—very fair, just and reasonable, but altogether dependent on the magistrate for their excution. Justices of the Peace and other town officers are elected by the peo-ple, but none of their acts arc legal until the Governor 'commissions' them ! They allow boys of 18 to vote, which works to the advantage of the Mormons in mixed settlements. They grant exclusive rights to 'Elders,' &c., to all water-courses and timber lands—making the masses dependent on these exclusives for irrigation, water-power, and wood. Property, when first brought into the territory is taxed extra—thereby placing the 'extra' on all property passing through Mormondom in the possession of 'Gentile' emigrants to California and elsewhere. They strengthen the power of courts, magistrates and 'Elders,' by dis-couraging the settlement of good lawyers in the terri-tory—denying to such any legal right to collect their fees. Hence the territory is filled with 'bush lawyers,' a disgrace to their profession and a pest to community. Common law is done away with, by forbidding the citing of precedents of any courts but their own.
"The laws of Utah, if extended over Carson's Val-ley, will invalidate the right of every squatter to three- fourths of his claim, and compel him to go to Salt Lake City for even his cattle- brand, beside confusing and unsettling all well-established squatter usages and customs.
"They have no law of marriage, common law not being recognized by their statutes. The laws recog-nize the right to a plurality of wives in only one in-stance—and that instance would not excite attention in ordinary reading—hence polygamy rests almost entirely on the declared right of illegitimate children and their mothers' to inherit equally with the wife and legiti-mate children, ' the Court' being the sole judge of the child's parentage.
"We could fill pages with complaints against their published laws. But of those 'not-print' laws, we can only hear through emigrants who have been fleeced and skinned by their operation, in their passage through Salt Lake City ; and, judging from such reports, the 'not-print' list is pretty long—and very heavy !
"The object of the 'Elders' is very clear. Their aim is to build up an oligarchy as powerful and hideous as the oligarchy of our Southern States. By appropri-ating to themselves 'exclusive control' of water priv-ileges and valuable woodlands, by 'regulating' the 'use' of the first, and the 'roads' through the last, by receiving fees and collecting tolls thereon, they have made great strides toward rendering permanent their power. Their 'wives' are nothing more nor less than slaves. They hire them out to labor, and in most cases are supported by their wages. The mass of their peo-ple are ignorant, fanatical and devoted to their 'El-dery,' who are generally very shrewd and unscrupu-lous scamps. They are taught to look on all 'Gen-tiles' as enemies; and the deep, undisguised disgust and contempt manifested toward them by all Ameri-cans brought in contact with them, confirms this be-lief. "
One incident which is reliable I must find room for, to show the 'workings' of their system. A girl ac- companied a family (relatives) into the Territory. An old ' Elder' wanted her for a supernumerary 'wife.' She rejected his offer with horror and disgust. For this she was turned from the house of her relatives. From door to door she sought employment, but every door was closed against her. Starvation stared her in the face, and she was compelled to marry him. Such is Mormonism ! E. A. G."
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