Mormons acknowledge early polygamy days at renovated museum

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tags: religion, polygamy, Mormon



The Mormon church’s renovated history museum set to reopen this week features a small and surprising display about an uncomfortable part of the faith’s history that for generations has been glossed over: polygamy.

The display is tucked inside a modern revamped museum that tells the story of how the church was founded and formed in the eastern U.S. from 1820-1846 before Mormons trekked across the country to settle in Utah. Inside a special 220-seat theater, visitors can watch a theatrical dramatization of founder Joseph Smith’s much-dissected visit from God and Jesus in 1820 in the woods of upstate New York that led to the foundation of the religion.

The decision by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to provide more details about what is known as this “first vision” and acknowledge the early days of polygamy — a practice that has been outlawed by the mainstream church since 1890 — marks the latest illustration of the religion’s push for transparency over secrecy when it comes to its history and beliefs, religious scholars said.




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