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In this engaging interview with historian Bryan Buchanan and Lindsay Hansen Park (Year of Polygamy Podcast) we delve into the complex history of Joseph Smith’s controversial practice of polygamy. What evidence supports his multiple marriages, the experiences of his wives, and the implications of this aspect of Mormon history?

Throughout the interview, we emphasize the importance of nuanced historical analysis over apologetics, encouraging open and honest discussions about Mormon history, polygamy, and the broader impact of these topics on the faith’s evolution and how it affects members today. This interview provides a thought-provoking exploration of the complexities within Mormon history and invites them to engage in constructive conversations about these issues.

1834: Mormon Polygamy Under Brigham Young w/ Lindsay Hansen Park and Bryan Buchanan


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  1. Justin Carlson September 23, 2023 at 2:09 pm - Reply

    Lindsay/Bryan— another important thing about the winter quarters piece of history is its connection to the black priesthood Vin origin story, and the unauthorized mixe-race polygamy that was going on in that area

  2. Frank September 23, 2023 at 6:22 pm - Reply

    Much has been said about Jospeh Smith not having progeny with his plural wives. Lindsay is correct is saying that women were not ignorant about preventing pregnancies.

    In the early 1830’s in Massachusetts there was a famous doctor, some would argue infamous during the time, named Charles Knowlton, who wrote the book, “The Fruits of Philosophy, or the Private Companion of Young Married People,” which taught people about his method of birth control of washing out the vagina after coitus with a solution he had developed — i.e., a spermicide.

    I had once documented that John C. Bennett met and trained with Knowlton; however, I have since lost the citation. Nineteenth Century women used spermicides.

    I can just imagine Joseph Smith saying to his wives after conjugal visits, “Make sure that you wash out!”

  3. Robert M. Hodge September 24, 2023 at 12:31 pm - Reply

    I have read somewhere that Hyrum, who attended Dartmouth, took time to pass on what he had learned to Joseph Smith

  4. Ryan September 24, 2023 at 6:11 pm - Reply

    This is a very important and powerful episode. Best in a long time.

  5. Diane Hatch September 29, 2023 at 10:05 pm - Reply

    Up front, I didn’t listen to this, but from the comments it became obvious to me that no one talking in the podcast was alive in the sixties and the advent of the sexual revolution. Only with easy access to The Pill could women feel confident about effective birth control.

    “Birth control” has existed forever. My mother used it in the forties and ended up with three unplanned pregnancies before The Pill. That’s how reliable it was until The Pill.

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