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Vol. 6 No. i (2018): Spring 2018

A Brief Examination of Women's Agency in Mormon Polygamy Prior to Its Criminalization in 1878

November 27, 2023


This research explores why some adult Mormon women chose and defended polygamy from 1852 until 1878. The goal of this review is to compare the expressed pros and cons of polygamy from its implementation to criminalization, considering public opinion and personal accounts of Mormon women in polygamous marriages. The conclusion drawn is that polygamous marriages often had a positive effect on the Mormon women who entered them in the late 19th and early 20th centuries because they allowed these women true agency not granted in non-Mormon American society.