Read Governor Pyle's speech about the raid
He spoke of crime and child abuse.
Life speaks of deserted Puppies.



Life Magazine Article, Sept 14, 1953

"THE LONELY MEN OF SHORT CREEK"

Page 35

THEY AWAIT TRIAL AS RESULT OF POLYGAMY UPROAR


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THEIR WIVES IN STATE’S CUSTODY, “FUNDAMENTALISTS”
OF SHORT CREEK, ARIZ. LIVE IN AN ALL-MALE ATMOSPHERE.
HERE THEY EAT THEIR BREAKFAST


For men used to having as many as five women and 21 children around the house it was a lonely situation for the men of Short Creek, Ariz. Stolidly they ate a breakfast of oatmeal and fried eggs, (above). They were still too stunned to comprehend what had happened.

The Short Creekers are a “fundamentalist” heretical splinter of the Mormon church, who live underneath vaulting red cliffs – the Towers of Tumurru – in one of the most inaccessible parts of the U.S., 150 miles from the nearest railroad. They believe “in all the doctrines and covenants of Joseph Smith,” including communal living and the famous 132nd section sanctioning polygamy, which the orthodox Mormon Church renounced in 1890. But last July the sovereign state of Arizona in the person of 200 state troopers ---five troopers per Short Creek man---descended on the colony.

Without making a direct charge of polygamy, the troopers arrested the men on charges of conspiriacy to violate a host of laws from statutory rape to misappropriation of school funds. Governor Howard Pyle accused the community of being “unalterably dedicated to the wicked theory that every maturing girl child (usually before she reached the age of 16) should be forced into multiple wifehood with men of all ages.” While the Short Creek men were in jail, the stated packed nearly all of the town’s 85 women and 250 children 450 miles away to Phoenix. Then the 36 men were release on bail pending hearings on Sept. 28. The men walked from behind bars into their lonely town. Heaviest of their burdens was the state’s disclosure of its intention not merely to wipe out the community but to place the children as state welfare charges in suitable Mormon homes. The men’s religion forbids them to show anger, but one finally burst out, “What we are worried about is that we are never going to see our children again.”

Page 36
LEGAL QUESTIONS, AN ELDER’S GRAVE, AN EMPTY SCHOOLHOUSE


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Added to Short Creek’s sadness. Joseph Smith Jessop,
a founder of the colony, poses with youngest child
Mabel Ann, 4 after release from jail.



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He said then, “This will probably be my last picture.”
A week later he died. Last week 101 members of his immediate
family attended his funeral (center) and his sons dug his
grave. At the funeral a son, Virgil Jessop gave the eulogy:



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“This man has left nothing of his worldly worth, but he has
left far more than most people of God’s work. There isn’t
another man in the U.S. that can boast this man’s posterity. . . .
Grandpa has received a martyr’s crown.”


Eighty-four-year-old Joseph Smith Jessop (above), named for the founder of the Mormon Church, was in a way a symbol of the small cooperative colonies believing in polygamy which have cropped up persistently in the Southwest despite efforts to stamp them out.


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QUESTIONING A WOMAN, with three daughters, Attorney General
Ross Jones asks if one of the men arrested fathered all her
nine children. “Yes,” she said.


He had 22 children between the ages of 64 and 4, 112 grandchildren and 147 great-grandchildren. As an elder of Short Creek’s “United Effort” community, Patriarch Jessop helped direct the pooling and division of all earnings from the communally owned sawmill, dairy herd, cannery, 2,500 acres of crop land and $35,000 in farm equipment.

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Only two children left in short creek get lessons from principal.
They could stay behind since family does not practice polygamy


The shock of the arrest was too much for the staunch old Mormon. A month after the raid, heartbroken, he died and his huge family gathered around to do him honor.

In proceeding against the rest of the men of Short Creek, Arizona forced

Page 37


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Deserted Puppy, left behind in town when his young master was
taken by the state troopers to Phoenix, sits in the deserted
main street of Short Creek.


a tricky legal problem. Since the Short Creekers avoid civil marriage ceremonies, it is difficult to convict them of polygamy. The state therefore devised the plan of charging the Short Creekers with numerous other violations, for which the prosecution will demand heavy fines with the design of bankrupting the colony. Its investigators are collecting evidence, they say, to prove many women were reluctant participants in plural unions--- for example, that one girl of 17 was almost forced to marry a 70-year-old. But the Short Creekers deny these charges and are preparing to defend themselves on constitutional grounds. One of them, a University of Utah graduate, says, “The Bill of Rights says we can worship God as we plese. My religion is not abridging the rights of others….Whose is the next religion that is going to become unpopular?”

Page 38
PRAYER AND CORN SEASON

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The community leader’s wife, Mrs. Josephine Johnson, one of the
women allowed to stay in Short Creek, reads the journal of discourses
edited by Brigham Young. Portraits are of other Mormon leaders,
Joseph Smith (left) and John Taylor. Mrs. Johnson is out on $250
bail, her husband on $2,500 bail


In a few Short Creek households the family life still goes on, including the weekly home meeting (lower left). Some older women without small children have been allowed to rejoin husbands. Across the state line, which cuts Short Creek in two, a Utah household is living much as it did before the raid. There Schoolteacher Clyde Mackert, who had been working on his Master's degree, works along with his family canning corn and doing the normal chores of a small farmer.

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MORMON WEDNESDAY NIGHT, a longtime tradition, is celebrated
by the Mackerts with singing at organ in their living room.
Children also recite.



{Editor note: Picture to be replaced later}
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MACKERT HOUSE includes three women and eight children.
Two women say they came from polygamous families and “have
never known what monogamy is”


Mackert went voluntarily across the state line to surrender to the Arizona authorities, along with the other men of Short Creek, but his family was beyond their jurisdiction.

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AT HOUSEHOLD CHORES the mackert family shucks corn for canning.
Mackert was converted to Mormonism after almost losing life as
a paratrooper when his chute only half opened. He first joined
the orthodox church and converted his parents. They remain
orthodox; Mackert himself switched to dissident sect.