Friday, June 27, 2008

Days of the Beer, June 27

The beer for today is Wasatch Polygamy Porter.

On June 27, 1844, Joseph Smith, Jr. the founder of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormons) was murdered at the Carthage, Illinois jail. His brother Hyrum Smith, was also killed. The brothers were accused of violating the freedom of the press (wow, you can be arrested for that) because a newspaper in Nauvoo, Illinois, published a one-time edition that was not favorable to the Smith. So Smith (as mayor) declared the paper (the Nauvoo Expositor) as a public nuisance designed to promote violence against the LDS's; so Smith had the city marshal destroy the paper and the press.

Then Illinois governor, Thomas Ford, promised protection and a fair trial for Smith. A local militia called the Carthage Greys (who were anti-Mormon) were assigned to protect the jail (fearing a mob).

On June 27, a mob of 200 men, with their faces painted black, stormed the jail. The Greys acted like they were trying to stop the mob, but probably joined the mob. The Smiths were held on the second floor. The mob fired through the door and tried to push the door open and fire into the room. Hyrum was shot in the face and yelled "I am a dead man!" and died, then he was shot 5 more times.

Joseph was given a pistol earlier in the day by a jail visitor (not too strict of a jail) and he tried to use that to defend himself, he managed to get off three shots.

The other two men in the jail lived. John Taylor (not of Duran Duran) was shot 4 or 5 times, but lived, on of the shots hit his pocket watch, which stopped the hands at 5:16. Willard Richards survived unscathed, because when the mob first opened the door, he was pushed behind it... the mob only saw three people in the room.

Joseph Smith tried to jump from the window, but was shot twice in the back, and a third bullet from the ground, hit him in the chest. Smith then fell from the window and called out "Oh Lord, my God!" Taylor and Richards say that Smith was dead when he hit the ground, someone in the mob said that they propped up his body and shot him some more.

As for polygamy, Smith denied that he was married to any other women. However, many people disagree with that. Apparently the LDS church claimes he had 24 marriages. Todd Compton, documented at least 33 plural marriages.

So, if you can find one, go get yourself a Wasatch Polygamy Porter in honor of the guy who died, who may or may not have had 34 wives. The Wasatch Brew Pub describes the beer as:

This dark, medium bodied ale offers the drink-ability of a much lighter beer. The inviting chocolate and malty flavors fade into a slightly dry, silky smooth finish. Why have just one? 4.0% alcohol by volume.
Why have just one? Indeed.

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