Family, Home, and Social Sciences
First Faculty Advisor
Dr. Jane Lopez
First Faculty Reader
Dr. Fred Woods
Dr. Stan Knapp
emigration; Latter-day Saints; Victorian Britain; religion; Zion
This thesis examines the push- and pull-factors that caused Latter-day Saint converts to emigrate from the U.K. between 1840 and 1860. A close reading of firsthand accounts written by 50 emigrants suggests that temporal and spiritual motives are deeply intertwined in the minds of early Mormon emigrants, and distinguishing between the nature of these factors is difficult. Several patterns emerge in the study of these accounts: first, economic factors were intertwined with millenarian belief; second, the allure of charismatic authority (prophets) or communication with God was influential; third, the doctrine of “gathering” was central to their decision-making, though the focus of where the gathering would take place shifted during this time period. By focusing wholly on the firsthand accounts written by emigrants, this work adds valuable perspective to the existing literature on factors that influenced British Latter-day Saint emigration in the 19th century.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Benson, Samuel, "Coming and Going to Zion: Conceptualizing Emigrant Motives of British Latter-day Saints, 1840-60" (2023). Undergraduate Honors Theses. 296.