Catalog Archive
Auction 191, Lot 812

Mormon Appeal of Definition of Unlawful Cohabitation Fails

"[Mormonism] Supreme Court of the United States. October Term, 1885. No. 1169. Angus M. Cannon, Plaintiff in Error v. The United States, Defendant in Error...Brief for Plaintiff in Error",

Subject: Document - Mormonism

Period: 1885 (published)


Color: Black & White

5.5 x 8.4 inches
14 x 21.3 cm
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Angus Cannon was a high Mormon church official convicted of unlawful cohabitation under the Edmunds Act. His appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court included here was based on his claim that the broad definition of cohabitation under which he was convicted was not applicable since he had abandoned physical relations with his wives, each of whom had her own apartment in a large house, and therefore he was not guilty of any illegal activity. The Supreme Court affirmed the lower court’s conviction with dramatic impact: “…it was the Cannon decision…that resulted in the prosecution of hundreds of Mormon ‘cohabs,’ encouraged anti-Mormon zealots to take up even more strident calls for the destruction of the social system of Zion, and eventually brought down that system.” (Source: Driggs, Ken, “The Prosecutions Begin: Defining Cohabitation in 1885” pp. 109-125 in Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought, April 1, 1988. Logan, Utah: Dialogue Foundation). 24 pages. Disbound, housed in a document holder. We found no past sales records and only one institutional example on OCLC (BYU).


Condition: B+

Pleasant light toning with a faint vertical crease down the center of most pages. Wrappers are detached with the rear wrapper not present.

Estimate: $140 - $170

Sold for: $60

Closed on 2/8/2023