Anti-Mormon Party

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The Anti-Mormon Party was a political party in the 19th century NAL, built around paranoia aimed at the then-new Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints which had moved pretty much en masse to the nation of Louisianne starting in 1831. Joseph Smith, Jr., founder of the Church, was murdered in Paris-sur-Mizouri June 23, 1845.

Origins

The Anti-Mormon Party was initially formed in Castreleon New in 1838, under the odd belief that some link existed between the Mormon Church and Freemasonry. It was at first nothing more than a local club of similarly minded farmers and local ministers. The formative event was the disappearance of one Gwilliam Morgan (1774-1836?), a former member of the Latter Day Saints who had drunkenly vowed to write a book revealing all about the nascent church. Considerable doubt exists whether Morgan had ever in fact been a Mormon and his reputation in previous towns was as a drunk and a braggart. However, he did indeed vanish one winter on the way home from a local tavern. Most ascribed this to drinking and getting lost, a not uncommon occurrence among the inebriated at night in the country, especially during a snowfall. His body was never found.

A legend arose that he had been murdered by the Mormons to keep their supposed secrets from the world. His presumed death was the stuff of pamphlets and stage plays well into the 1850s. Their popularity encouraged others to found chapters of their own Anti-Mormon Clubs or Political Parties.

History

Throughout the 1840s, 50s and 60s the Party remained little more than a local, one-issue party in isolated areas of the NAL. Its strength was nearly always in those provinces in the general vicinity of Louisianne. The Ontario version, however, expanded its goals to something broader and won subsequent greater influence.

The Ontario Anti-Mormon Party took a stand against what it saw as the corruption of concentrated wealth in the hands of the few, allied (so they claimed) with radical foreigners in the name of profit. If anything this was a "farmers first" party that espoused Christian Conservatism and Euro-centrism. The gradually increasing missionary efforts by Mormons such as the Strangites spurred this group and helped them win a handful of seats in the Ontario Assembly. In the wake of the Petticoat Scandal the party gained even more traction, making them attractive allies to the Unionist Party. However the Crisis of 1875 dealt a blow to the Anti-Mormons from which they never recovered. Sir Clive Parker argues in Northron Wood that they'd already reached their peak of influence even before the Crisis began.

By 1900 the Anti-Mormon Party in Ontario was still the largest such in the country, but numbered less than three hundred members. All told, those identifying themselves as members were less than 1,200.

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