We’re continuing our discussion of the Mormon settlement in Zodiac, Texas. Historian Melvin Johnson describes reading the registers from RLDS Archives that document the many temple ordinances that were completed. He also told me that there was more than one Endowment House in Utah!
GT : Oh, 1874, so, essentially, what we’re saying here is between 1846 and 1874, at least in the LDS church, there was no temple to do this. But they would do some of these ordinances outside the temple, on a case by case basis, essentially.
Mel: Correct, and then, of course, the Endowment House was built to be a bridge between that and when the temples came online. Orson Hyde was very jealous of that, so he had an endowment house built down in Sanpete County.
GT: Oh, wow. I didn’t know that.
Mel: Yeah, there were a number of them. And maybe the Endowment House was built earlier than what I think and I need to look at that…
He also discusses a recent forgery on the Zodiac Temple.
Mel: There is a forgery called Zodiac Temple records, Rituals and Rites by John Hawley. It’s 32 pages written of these supposed rites and rituals in the Zodiac Temple. One: John Hawley was not the clerk of the temple. His brother-in-law, John Young was. And secondly, Zodiac was like Kirtland and Nauvoo and early Utah, in that all of the ritual and rites ceremony was oral. It was not written down until 1874 for the opening of the St. George temple.
Does it have ties to Mark Hofmann? Check out our conversation….
Don’t miss our other conversations with Mel!
276: Lyman Wight & Mormon Colonies in Texas (Johnson)
275: Intro to Hawley (Johnson)