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Mormonism and Masonry, Revisited: Fraternalism and Unity in Mormon Nauvoo,1839-1846
Department: History
Specimen Elements
Unknown to Unknown
Corbin L. LeBaron
Idaho State University
City: Pocatello
The debate surrounding the relationship of Mormonism with Freemasonry has been dominated by partisan bickering and airing of grievances, distracting from the true significance of their joining in Nauvoo, Illinois. When examined together, it becomes clear that both movements share fundamental characteristics that epitomize nineteenth-century America while both attracting and repelling potential members. An examination of these attracting and repelling attributes demonstrates that while both Mormonism and Masonry received many nineteenth-century Americans into their respective institutions, Mormonism largely disrupted the status quo of national manhood while Masonry sought to appease mainstream sensibilities. This singular, though broad-reaching, difference underlies both the success of Masonry in its rise to prominence in American social circles, as well as the Mormon expulsion from the United States. These similarities, differences, and applications should be taken together to examine Mormon-Masonic history as a pair of inherently-male, American microcosmic societies, rather than being harnessed for sectarian gain .Key Words: Mormonism; Freemasonry; Antebellum Era; Anti-Mormonism; Anti-Masonry; Civil War Era; Fraternalism; Illinois; Masculinity; National manhood; Nativism; Nineteenth century; Victorian Era; David B. Davis; Lynn Dumenil; Michael A. Halleran; Mervin B. Hogan; Michael W. Homer; Michael Kimmel; Dana D. Nelson; Charles G. Sellers; Laurel T. Ulrich.

Mormonism and Masonry, Revisited: Fraternalism and Unity in Mormon Nauvoo,1839-1846

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