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Taylor’s 1886 Polygamy Uncanonized Revelation

Is it true that President John Taylor had a revelation in 1886 proclaiming that polygamy is an eternal principle?  Polygamist Mormons think so.  In this episode, I’d like to introduce Anne Wilde.  She’s a fundamentalist polygamist herself, and is one of the biggest experts on modern-day polygamy that I know of.  I’m really excited to talk to her.  We’ll ask her about the split between the LDS Church and mainstream polygamists in this day.

I guess it kind of started then but when they issued the Manifesto in 1890,[1] that was a key part of the whole history.  1904 was the Second Manifesto, with Joseph F. Smith, that put a few more teeth in doing away with it.  Then of course in the 1930s, Heber J. Grant issued what we call the Third Manifesto.  That really put—that was kind of the final straw as far as polygamists were concerned because if they were found out to be living it then they were excommunicated from the church.

We’ll also ask her if she thinks the current LDS Church is in apostasy.

Anne:  The D&C says, “I will set the house of God in order.”  It has to be out of order before it can be set in order.  So yes I think to some—and people will disagree on to what level it needs to be set in order, but yes I think the time will come, even the Lord said, “I will send one mighty and strong to set in order the inheritance the saints and set in order the kingdom, or the house of God,”[2] house meaning kingdom.  The church is part of the kingdom.  Yes I do believe that things will reach a point where things have to be set in order.

Check out our conversation!  Don’t forget to listen to our conversations with Brian Hales on Joseph Smith’s polygamy, or Jim Vun Cannon proclaiming Joseph was a monogamist!

[1] In 1890, church president Wilford Woodruff issued “The Manifesto” declaring that he advised Mormons not to contract in any more polygamous marriages.  This is canonized as Official Declaration 1 in the Doctrine and Covenants.  See

[2] Anne seems to be referring to D&C 85:7.  See



2 thoughts on “Taylor’s 1886 Polygamy Uncanonized Revelation

  1. The title, “Taylor’s 1886 Polygamy Uncanonized Revelation”, is a bit misleading. The ‘uncanonised’ bit.

    In 1911, John Taylor’s son claimed that he found the revelation among his fathers stuff after he’d passed away. There are photos of the original written revelation but the original itself is not around for some reason. The photos look like the document is in John Taylor’s handwriting.

    If I have the story straight, it doesn’t seem like it was ever considered part of LDS canon. If it were, why would Jon Taylor have not presented it to the church? Why was it not published in D&C? It doesn’t sound like the RLDS church uncanonised it either.

    Am I wrong? What is meant by uncanonised?

  2. Yes you are correct that this revelation was never canonized in the LDS Church. Polygamists believe the revelation to be genuine and use it as a basis to support their belief that polygamy is an eternal principle and should continue to be practiced.

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