THE LAST DAYS OF BRIGHAM.
THE CULLOM BILL.
OPINIONS OF THE FAITHFUL—ACTION OF THE GODBEITES—CONFERENCES HELD BY ASSENT-ING AND DISSENTING SAINTS.
SALT LAKE CITY, April 8.—The news of the anti-polygamy bill of Mr. Cullom has been variously re-ceived in Utah, The Brighamites at first affected indiffer-ence. Their organ, The Deseret News, said: " Persecu-tion has driven us from a township * * * * to a Territory; it has made us strong, thrifty, and fear-less." Next day it said that the Lord, who had com-manded them to practice polygamy was on one side of the contest, and those who opposed His will by their enactments, were on the other. If the issue were tried who could for a moment question the result? It was the Lord vs. Congress, and they would bet on the former. It is said that all the employes of Zion's wholesale store resolved each to marry another woman, to show their defiance, should the bill become a law.
THE MORMON MASS MEETING.
There appeared, a few days later, in their organ, a call for a mass meeting in the Tabernacle, signed by promi-nent Elders and Apostles, for the purpose of remonstrat-ing with Congress against the passage of the Cullom hill. Soon after 1 o'clock on the 31st ult. the old Tabernacle, which holds about 2,500, was filled with people. The re-monstrance and resolutions which were there adopted declare that they regard polygamy as a vital principle of their religion, given them of God through Joseph Smith; sustained by the Bible, and practiced by holy men of old, while this proposed law offers them no alternative but the cruel one of either rejecting God's command and abjuring their religion, or disobeying the authority of the Government they desire to honor and respect. They submit that the bill is unconstitutional, because such a law concerns the establishment of religion and prohibits its free exercise; because the measure is ex post facto, there having been no statute of the United States or of the Territory against it until years had elapsed; because it imposes excessive fines, and inflicts cruel and unusual punishment; because it provides a special rule of naturaliza-tion applicable only to the Territory of Utah, and be-cause it disfranchises and proscribes American citizens for no act but simply for a belief. It closes by beseech-ing and adjuring Congress to send to Utah a Commission, clothed with the necessary authority, to make a thor-ough investigation, and obtain evidence concerning their religious system from its friends instead of its enemies.
THE GODBEITE MEETING.
The Godbeites, who hold that polygamy is no part of religion, and is not commanded of Heaven, but is rather a matter of individual choice, were at first disposed to join with some prominent Gentiles of the city and ask the Senate to modify the House bill so as not to disturb polygamous relations already entered into. A meeting, was held in Masonic Hall for the purpose of taking some such action, and was attended by the leaders of that schism—Stenhouse, Jennings, &c— and some Gentile merchants and lawyers. Everything was going one way at this meeting, and a resolution praying for the modifi-cation of the bill by the Senate had been drawn up and presented, when Col. Maxwell, Register of the Land Office, made a forcible presentation of the other side of the question. The meeting ended by the appointment of a committee, composed wholly of Gentile merchants and lawyers, to draft a memorial to the Senate and present it to an adjourned meeting. Some members of this com-mittee called on Apostles Q. Cameron and John Taylor next day, Brigham Young being yet in the South, and asked them if they would pledge that the Church would obey the law in future if the past should he left undisturbed, to which they emphatically answered No. "It was a part of their religion," they said, "to marry all the women they pleased, and their Constitutional right, by which they would stand at all hazards." This reply, the withdrawal of the Godbeites from the project, and the conviction, upon full discussion, that no half-way measures would meet the case, as either the Mormons or the United States must give way, caused the Gentiles also to refrain from action. The committee never formally met, and the adjourned meeting never con-vened.
A MEETING AT CORINNE.
The Gentiles at Corinne, who fight the Mormons at arm's length, held a public meeting there, denounced their more moderate brethren in this city and thanked the House in strong terms for the bill, especially for its stringent provisions; undoubtedly thus expressing the feelings of nine-tenths of the Gentiles of Utah. The Godbeites, claiming that their doctrine means first of all loyalty to the Government, wanted to break the power of Brigham Young, so as to obtain for themselves a chance before the people. But they did not at first see that, with half-way measures, the Government would simply exasperate the Mormons. Some of the Godbeites, who are polygamists, at first made use of intemperate expressions. By Sunday evening, however—the news came on Thursday—the key-note of their preaching was, "It is between Grant and Brigham, not between Grant and the people of Utah." The Tribune of last week, takes the ground that the assumed elevation of the Mormon Church above the State is more offensive than polygamy; that the latter is a stalking horse on which to run a tilt at the former; that the enactment will be merely a rod in pickle for such as defiantly brave United States authority in future; but that if the law be unconstitu-tional the courts will set it aside, and that will end it," meanwhile advising citizens to be calm, and trust the issues with God. Harrison gives the following as to the Godbeite movement with reference to polygamy: We believe in the right of all men to decide the correctness of the doc-trine of polygamy for themselves; our constant counsel to all is to sus-pend the further extension of the practice until it can be done harmoni-ously, with the will of the nation. Any opposite course can only result in useless antagonism and 'irrepressible conflict.'" But The Telegraph, formerly Stenhouse's, now M. A. Fuller's, professedly independent, but sympathizing with the Mormons, recognizes no such quality as expe-diency. ORTHODOX AND HETERODOX CONFERENCES.
Three separate conferences convened in this city on the 6th, Brighamites, Godbeites, and Josephites. The latter report a membership of about 250 persons. The Godbe-ites have made no statistical report of their numbers, and thousands sympathize with them who dare not yet avow it. At their conference no new doctrine was ad-vanced except the denial of the atonement. The Brighamite Conference was informal, held but one session, and then adjourned to the 5th of May. The speak-ing was mostly political. Elder Orson Pratt told of the persecution of the Mormons; that the Government de-manded of them a battalion of 500 men for the Mexican War, in order that their women and children might per-ish in the Indian country; that the United States organ-ized the Mormons, recognizing them as polygamists oc-cupying one of the Territories, &c., falsehoods that com-pel a doubt as to the sincerity of those who listened to them without offering objection. Only 36 persons were present at the conference of the Josephites.
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