Foster, Craig L.

Penny Tracts and Polemics: a Critical Analysis of Anti-Mormon Pamphleteering in Great Britain (1837-1860)

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Craig Foster, Draper, Utah: Greg Kofford Books, 2003, cloth hardbound, 268 pages, 94 illustrations (many of them full page reproductions of title pages and rare pamphlet covers.)

By 1860, Mormonism had enjoyed a presence in Great Britain for over twenty years. Mormon missionaries had experienced an unprecedented success in conversions and many new converts had left Britain’s shores for a new life and a new religion in the far western mountains of the American continent. With the unprecedented success of the Mormons had come tales of duplicity, priestcraft, sexual seduction and uninhibited depravity among the new religious adherents. Thousands of pamphlets with sensational titles such as, The Gates of the Mormon Hell Opened!…, Appalling Disclosures! Mormon Revelations, Being the History of Fourteen Females…, The Prophets; or, Mormonism Unveiled, and, Female Life Among the Mormons were sold or given to the British populace as a way of discouraging people from joining the Mormon Church. Foster places the creation of these English anti-Mormon pamphlets in their historical context. He discusses the authors, the impact of the publications and the Mormon response. With illustrations and detailed bibliography.

“This work contains the contents of the author’s 1989 Brigham Young University master’s thesis, now appearing in an attractive edition. In this book Foster provides historians and others with the essential overview of British anti-Mormon literature of the period (1837-60). It also includes helpful biographical sketches of obscure anti-Mormon writers, providing insight into their backgrounds and motivation, as well as supplying an important bibliography of the primary and secondary literature. Vignettes of selected pamphlets illustrate the book.” –“Book Notes”, The FARMS Review, Vol. 15, No. 2 (2004)


1. Introduction
2. Mormon Church History within the American Context.
3. The Beginings of Mormonism in Great Britain, 1837-1841.
4. The Development Of Anti-Mormon Imagery, 1842-1852.
5. “The Gates Of The Mormon Hell Opened!” 1853-1860.
6. Conclusion
Appendix: A Short List of Anti-Mormon Literature, 1837-1860.
Bibliography, Index

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Weight 1.7 lbs