Sidney Rigdon, Appeal to the American People, 1840

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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witness did not swear to please the attorney, , he would order them to be taken into custody, and they were immediately cast into prison, and the next morning they would be brought forward and tried again. Such was the course the Court and their armed body pursued during their settings till they got through; by such means they got men to swear for them, and to swear to most unhallowed falsehoods. It was indeed suborning witnesses to swear, to promise a man’s life if he would swear, and death or imprisonment if he did not swear, and not only to swear, but swear to please them.
This matter of driving away witnesses or casting them into prison, or chasing them out of the county, was carried to such a length that our lawyers, and , told us not to bring our witnesses there at all, for if we did there would not be one of them left for the final trial, for no sooner would and his men know who they were, than they would put them out of the County; as to making any impression on , if a cohort of angels were to come down and declare we were clear, said it would all be the same, for he () had determined from the beginning to cast us into prison; we never got the privilege of introducing our witnesses at all; if we had we could have disproved all they swore.
We here must rather go back a little, for after arrived at , he arrested a great many persons, an account of which will be found in the memorial of the citizens of , to the Legislature of . Their trials also went on at the same time. One thing in relatien to ’s proceeding, we forgot to mention—we will insert it here. After he had arrived, some persons made application for a privilege to go and plunder houses for goods; this was readily granted, and, under this authority, houses were plundered, locks broken, and property taken at pleasure; and all this without any civil process whatever.
We will here give a specimen or two of their swearing. We will first introduce . This said was angry at one of the prisoners—, in consequence of a law-suit existing between them. , we suppose, thought he had a fair oppor [p. 67]
witness did not swear to please the attorney, , he would order them to be taken into custody, and they were immediately cast into prison, and the next morning they would be brought forward and tried again. Such was the course the Court and their armed body pursued during their settings till they got through; by such means they got men to swear for them, and to swear to most unhallowed falsehoods. It was indeed suborning witnesses to swear, to promise a man’s life if he would swear, and death or imprisonment if he did not swear, and not only to swear, but swear to please them.
This matter of driving away witnesses or casting them into prison, or chasing them out of the county, was carried to such a length that our lawyers, and , told us not to bring our witnesses there at all, for if we did there would not be one of them left for the final trial, for no sooner would and his men know who they were, than they would put them out of the County; as to making any impression on , if a cohort of angels were to come down and declare we were clear, said it would all be the same, for he () had determined from the beginning to cast us into prison; we never got the privilege of introducing our witnesses at all; if we had we could have disproved all they swore.
We here must rather go back a little, for after arrived at , he arrested a great many persons, an account of which will be found in the memorial of the citizens of , to the Legislature of . Their trials also went on at the same time. One thing in relatien to ’s proceeding, we forgot to mention—we will insert it here. After he had arrived, some persons made application for a privilege to go and plunder houses for goods; this was readily granted, and, under this authority, houses were plundered, locks broken, and property taken at pleasure; and all this without any civil process whatever.
We will here give a specimen or two of their swearing. We will first introduce . This said was angry at one of the prisoners—, in consequence of a law-suit existing between them. , we suppose, thought he had a fair oppor [p. 67]
Page 67