Mormon Exodus

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Submitted By ColtMarv
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Mormon Exodus
Since the founding of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Joseph Smith on April 6, 1830, its members were often treated harshly by others, due to their beliefs. Such persecution followed the church as they were forced to vacate one state after the next leading to the members settling in and founding Nauvoo, Illinois. Having a population rivaling Chicago at the time, the financial success of the church and its members, polygamy, and a well-armed militia, fueled the intolerance of Mormons in the region. Church leadership was forced to announce they would leave Nauvoo and go west, after the burning of two hundred Mormon homes and farm buildings in 1845, and mob violence in 1846. Due to unforeseen difficulties the trek west was split off into two sections: they would travel in wagon trains from Nauvoo, Illinois to Omaha, Nebraska in 1846; and, Omaha to the Salt Lake Valley of Utah in 1847. By 1856, the number of converts traveling to the valley reached a point that wagon trains were too expensive and the church leader at the time, Brigham Young, decided that handcarts would be cheaper, and faster for such a large number of converts to reach the valley.
The first trek starting in February of 1846 from Nauvoo, Illinois to Omaha, Nebraska was much harsher due to death and tragedy resulting from black scurvy, Cholera, Typhoid Fever, Tuberculosis, and maternal deaths, and the weakening of the body and mind by stress, while February marked harsh weather and winter cold. Due to being practically forced to leave their homes in a hurry most had left important provisions behind and went out with no experience and with no organized leadership. The 500 wagon long train faced miles of axle-deep mud bogs and rough, obscure trails along the way. Yet along the way they became more organized and began to travel in groups of 10s, 50s or 100s. While also…...

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