Chronology for Modern Polygamy and Mormon Fundamentalism

1831    Joseph Smith learns that plural marriage may be acceptable to God.

1834    An angel appears to Joseph Smith, commanding him to practice plural marriage.

1835    Joseph Smith marries first plural wife, Fanny Alger.  The marriage dissolves quickly.

1836    Sealing authority is restored through a visitation from the Old Testament Prophet Elijah in the Kirtland Temple.

1841    Joseph Smith begins anew plural marriage in Nauvoo.

1842    Other men in Nauvoo become polygamists.

1844    Joseph Smith is martyred, Brigham Young becomes the key holder of sealing authority.

1852    Brigham Young announces to the world the previously secret practice of polygamy.

1862    The first federal legislation against polygamy is passed by the U.S. Government.

1877    Brigham Young dies and John Taylor becomes the “one” man holding the sealing keys.

1882    Additional federal laws are passed against plural marriage.

1887    John Taylor passed away leaving Wilford Woodruff as the “one” man.

1889    More federal legislation against polygamy.

1890    The “Manifesto” is presented by Wilford Woodruff telling the Saint that plural marriage is no longer commanded by God.  Plural marriages are still secretly permitted.

1899    Wilford Woodruff dies.  Lorenzo Snow becomes Church President and the “one.”

1902    Lorenzo Snow passes on.  Joseph F. Smith becomes the key holder and Church President.

1904    President Smith issues the “Second Manifesto.”  Thereafter new marriages are not permitted.

1904-1920s     Scattered individuals attempt their own plural marriages without the Church President’s permission and are excommunicated.  No organized groups or leaders exist.

1912    Lorin Woolley writes an account saying that in 1886, John Taylor received a visit from Joseph Smith while staying in the Woolley home.

1914    Lorin Woolley’s father, Patriarch John W. Woolley, is excommunicated for performing plural marriages.  He claims Apostle Matthias Cowley gave him authorization.

1918    Joseph F. Smith dies.  Church President Heber J. Grant holds the sealing keys.

1921    John Woolley’s son, Lorin, remembers that back in 1886, he and four other men were ordained with authority to seal plural marriages independent of the Church.  None of the other men left any similar record.

1920s   Polygamists band together for meetings but without any identifiable leaders.

1921    Joseph Musser is excommunicated for plural marriage.

1921-1934 Lorin Woolley tells many stories.  He expands his 1912 account saying that in 1886, there was an eight hour meeting with thirteen in attendance and that he was afterwards ordained to a previously unheard of office of “High Priest Apostle” and made a member of a previously unheard of priesthood quorum, “The Council of Seven Friends.”

1925    Monogamist Lorin Woolley is excommunicated for telling lies about Church leaders.

1928    John Woolley dies outside of the Church, having lived as a polygamist (with two wives) for only six years of his life (1886-1892).

1929    Charles W. Kingston is excommunicated for polygamy.

1929-1934 Lorin Woolley calls six other men to fill his “Council of Seven Friends”:  J. Leslie Broadbent, John Y. Barlow, Joseph W. Musser, Charles F. Zitting, LeGrand Woolley, and Louis Kelsch.  They assert authority over the Church.  Church President Heber J. Grant ignores their claims.

1933-1934 Woolley, Broadbent, Barlow and Musser publish three booklets describing their priesthood organization.  Most polygamists unite under them without ascribing to all of their ideas.

1934    Lorin Wolley dies.  J. Leslie Broadbent becomes the leader.

1934    J. Leslie Broadbent ordains Elden Kingston with an undisclosed priesthood authority.

1935    Broadbent succumbs to pneumonia.  John Y. Barlow assumes leadership.  Truth magazine is started by Joseph Musser.  Musser and Barlow visit Short Creek, Arizona.  Polygamists are arrested.

1935    Elden Kingston, son of Charles W. Kingston, reported receiving visits from angelic messengers giving him knowledge and power.

1836    John Y. Barlow is asked if he holds the sealing keys and answer in the negative.  Musser explains that he also doesn’t know where the keys are located.

1941    John Y. Barlow calls and ordains new “High Priest Apostles.”

1941    Elden Kingston organizes the Davis Council Cooperative Society.

1942    The United Effort Plan (UEP) is started in Short Creek, Arizona.

1944    Law enforcement official conduct a raid, arresting fifteen men who are convicted and incarcerated the next year.

1945    Eleven of the fifteen men sign a “Manifesto” agreeing to abandon plural marriage and are paroled after six months.

1945    Heber J. Grant passes away and George Albert Smith becomes Church President.

1948    Elden Kingston dies.  His brother, Ortell Kingston leads the Kingston organization.

1949    John Y. Barlow dies, having added seven new members during his tenure.  The Council of Seven Friends now contains eleven High Priest Apostles.  Musser assumes the senior position.

1950    Joseph Musser ignores the seniority of the other ten Council of Friends (commonly called the “Priesthood Council”) members and ordains Rulon C. Allred as his successor.

1950    A. Dayer LeBaron dies.  His children and wife testify that he had special priesthood authority.  Joel LeBaron claimed angelic visitations and authority from his father.

1951    David O. Mckay becomes President of the Church and sealing key holder.

1952    Rebellion occurs among Priesthood Council members who refuse to accept Rulon C. Allred.  Musser releases the old Council and calls seven new Council members (seldom referred to as High Priest Apostles by this time). A split occurs with Musser and Rulon Allred presiding in Salt Lake City over the new Priesthood Council and Leroy Johnson presiding in Short Creek.  Charles Zitting, LeGrand Woolley, and Louis Kelsch refuse to be involved.

1953    State official raid Short Creek apprehending 122 adults and 263 children.  The men are quickly charged, convicted, and paroled.  The mothers are allowed to accompany their children who are sent to foster homes, but eventually released.  Three years later, all have returned to Short Creek.

1954    Musser, who had been incapacitated by several strokes, dies.  Rulon Allred presides.

1955    Joel LeBaron incorporates the Church of the Firstborn.  His brother incorporates the Church of the Firstborn of the Fullness of Times.  Both claim authority from their father.

1970    Joseph Fielding Smith is new Church President and “one” man holding the sealing keys.

1971    Ervil LeBaron organizes his own Church of the Lamb of God.

1972    Ervil LeBaron sends followers who kill his brother Joel.

1972    Harold B. Lee becomes President of the Church and controller of sealing authority.

1973    Spencer W. Kimball succeeds Harold B. Lee.

1975    The Allred Group incorporates themselves and the Apostolic United Brethrenn or AUB.

1977    Rulon Allred is shot by followers of Ervil LeBaron.  Owen Allred becomes the new AUB leader.  Ervil is prosecuted and incarcerated.

1981    Ervil LeBaron dies in prison.

1983    The State of Utah sues Ortell Kingston for welfare subsidies fraud.  He pays $250,000 and the case is dropped.

1984    Leroy Johnson releases Priesthood Council members Marion Hammon and Alma Timpson (called years before by John Y. Barlow).  They split off to form Centennial Park.

1984    Ron and Dan Lafferty murder their sister-in-law and her daughter.

1985    Ezra Taft Benson become President of the Church and “one” man.

1986    Leroy Johnson passes away.  Rulon Jeffs becomes leader.  They incorporate as the FLDS Church.

1987    Ortell Kingston dies.  His son, Paul Elden Kingston assumes the leadership role.

1994    Howard W. Hunter is the new Church President and holder of the sealing keys.

1995    Gordon B. Hinckley succeeds Howard W. Hunter.

1999    David Ortell Kingston is convicted for incest and John Daniel Kingston for felony child abuse.

2000    Jeremy Ortell Kingston is convicted of incest in his marriage to his fifteen year old cousin.  Tom Green is convicted of bigamy and criminal non-support.

2002    Rulon Jeffs dies.  Not believing in a Priesthood Council of any size, neither Jeffs or Johnson, called new members.  The leadership vacuum is filled by Warren Jeffs, who had been his incapacitated father’s spokesman for several years.

2002    Brian David Mitchell kidnaps Elizabeth Smart.

2003    Warren Jeffs excommunicates all potential rivals.  He acquires land in Eldorado, Texas.

2005    Temple in Eldorado Texas, FLDS compound is dedicated.  Warrant for Warren Jeffs arrest is issued.

2005    Owen Allred dies and J. LaMoine Jenson succeeds him as leader of the AUB.

2006    Warren Jeffs hides and is placed on the FBIs Ten Most Wanted List. Later he is arrested.

2007    Warren Jeffs is convicted of two counts of rape as an accomplice.  He also abdicates his position as Prophet to the FLDS.

2008    Thomas S. Monson become LDS Church President and the “one” man holding all sealing keys.

2008    Texas law enforcement official raid the Eldorado compound, taking over 400 children into custody.