"It was by reason of being Mormons that we were kept at arms length" : Mormonism, Freemasonry, and conflicting interests on the Illinois frontier.
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Winslow, Brady G.
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Following the creation of a Masonic lodge in Nauvoo, Illinois, in March 1842, Mormons living in the area enthusiastically joined the fraternity. Despite the eagerness with which Mormons affiliated with the society, many non-Mormon Masons in Illinois viewed the Mormons with suspicion and contempt and justified the distrust they had for the Mormon Masons because the Mormons violated some Masonic principles within their lodge. While the Mormon Masons were guilty of some of the charges brought up against them, these trivial complaints did not warrant the continued antagonism that the Mormon Masons experienced at the hands of other Illinois Masons. Therefore, this thesis argues that anti-Mormonism was the driving force behind the resentment that many Illinois Masons expressed for the Mormon Masons during the first half of the 1840s.
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