The Mormon Colonies in Mexico

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University of Utah Press, 1938 - History - 338 pages
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"Romney's unique vantage point is the strongest draw of this narrative: Romney and his family lived much of their life in the Mexican Mormon colonies. But the narrative's value is much broader and deeper than just that. Romney's insights into Mexican politics and personalities, and his view of the course of history from inside rather than from outside, are fascinating, colorful and opinionated. He was clear about who he admired and why, and who he did not."
--from the Foreword

In the 1880s, as a precondition to granting Utah statehood, the United States government enacted laws to put a stop to the Mormon practice of polygamy. Those who continued to practice this principle were forced underground as federal marshals roamed the territory searching for "polygs." In response, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints looked for safe places to send its members; many found refuge across the border in Mexico.

Unavailable since its original publication in 1938, this important document of a little-known chapter in Mormon history is now reprinted with a foreword by Martha Sonntag Bradley. Romney was raised and spent much of his life in the colonies, making this book a significant contribution to LDS history. It chronicles a new kind of Mormon pioneer facing the hardships of an unfamiliar land, a tenuous relationship with the government, and the necessary fortitude to hold fast to one's belief in the face of difficulty and trial.

  

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Contents

Preface
1
Introduction
3
President Diaz the Dictator
13
Mormonism
20
The First Mormons in Mexico
37
The Mormons Seek Mexican Lands to Colonize
49
Further Expansion
60
Colonia Diazthe First Permanent Mormon Colony
74
Strained Relations
149
The Exodus of the Chihuahua Colonists
182
The Exodus of the Sonora Colonies
195
Events Following the Exodus
201
Was the Exodus Necessary?
214
A Remnant Returns to the Colonies
232
Greater Prosperity Seen
249
The Human Product
264

The Founding of Colonia Juarez
85
The Founding of Colonia Dublan
95
The Founding of the Mountain Colonies
102
The Founding of the Sonora Colonies
115
Colonia Juarezthe Seat of Culture
128
Events Before the Exodus
144
Attempted Property Settlements
285
The Hazards of a Religious Boycott in Mexico
292
Conditions in the Colonies in the Year 1938
300
Thrilling Experiences
310
Copyright

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About the author (1938)

Thomas Cottam Romney (1876-1962) was director of the Logan LDS Institute of Religion.

Martha Sonntag Bradley is professor of architecture and director of the honors program at the University of Utah, and author of Kidnapped from that Land (University of Utah Press, 1993).

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