Comments of Belinda Marden Pratt
(as copied from her account book)

18 January 1879

This has been a memorable day.  The mass meeting to enter our protest against the Anti-polygamy Crusade now going on in Salt Lake among the Gentile Ladies and also in our settlement (Fillmore) took place today.  Being chosen as chairman of the meeting I addressed them as follows.

Beloved Sisters and Friends.  It seems to fall to my lot as Chairman to state the objective of this meeting and the purpose for which we have been called together.  The anti-polygamy ladies of Salt Lake City have entered upon a crusade against us concerning Plural Marriage and have addressed themselves to the Christian Clergy of the United States and the Honorable Lady of the White House at Washington, Mrs. Rutherford B. Hayes and the Women of the United States and also a memorial to the Senate and the House of Representatives, laying before them the great crime of polygamy, falsely representing us and calling upon Congress to enact such laws as shall make effective the Anti-Polygamy law of 1862, wishing to deprive us of our rights as citizens, wives, mothers, and children.

How can we look upon them other than enemies who strive to deprive us of our constitutional privilege guaranteed to us by that noble document of our forefathers, “The Constitution,” and shall we sit idly down and not vindicate our ——.  God forbid.

Let us with one accord lift up our voices in behalf of this great principle which our Heavenly Father has revealed for the exaltation of the Human Family.  I know by the revelations of his Holy Spirit that he has given unto me that this principle is true and emanated from Him.

To me, when I first received the Gospel it was another testimony that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God.  Inasmuch as our Fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were Polygamists and we hope to sit down with them in the Kingdom of Heaven, so should we be willing to make the sacrifice, for it is a sacrifice if we enter into this Holy Order by the right Spirit.  We should with all our influence uphold it.  I have lived in it for many years and can truly say, I never saw the time I would exchange places with anyone.

Those in our midst many of them know not what they do when they put their names to such a document as has been handed around in our midst.

Which of them would like to see their friends and neighbors imprisoned, robbed, and plundered.  Not many of them I think.  Yet they are virtually helping it done.  Know you not that God is greater than them all.  And that which he has established he is able to preserve. 

The Government of the United States is great and powerful.  But He who rules above is greater and in Him we trust.  This principle is Holy and from God and though all nations should legislate against it, yet He will preserve and uphold it and bring to naught all their plans and schemes.  He will cast down whom He will and will uphold all those who trust in Him.  We will not fear what man can do but walk humbly before our God and in the end gain Eternal Life which is the greatest of all blessings.

[transcribed by David Grow, Feb. 2007]

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