Mormon Americanization, John Taylor, Mormon Reformation


Judge Charles S. Zane's heavy-handed enforcement of the 1882 Edmunds Act in 1884 set in motion a final push to squash not only polygamy but a Mormon political, economic, and religious stronghold in the Utah territory. Though the enforcement of anti-Mormon legislation forced several leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS or Mormons) into hiding on the underground, church leaders made desperate attempts to preserve what remained of a Mormon independent commonwealth. In the years leading up to President Wilford Woodruff's 1890 Manifesto, which in effect issued an end to plural marriages, church leaders avoided church property escheatment, aggressively pursued legal recourse, and worked toward improving public relations.