That possibility apparently needs to be faithfully (and too broadly) denied by Hales so, like a good Mormon apologist, he creates all kinds of pretzeled arguments to minimize it taking place.
Under "Sexuality in Joseph Smith’s Plural Marriages," Hales argues that despite the sexual capability of his multiple wives to produce children and despite the Mormon God's command to Smith to produce children in order to stock the Earth, Smith did not follow through on the opportunity because among other reasons Hales offers up, Smith was simply too busy running his Nauvoo hotel (as well as too busy being spied-upon by a suspicious Emma) to have had much sex with his other wives and, hence, didn't sire any offspring through them:
"Joseph Smith taught that sexual relations were justified and expected in polygamous unions in order 'to multiply and replenish the earth' (D&C 132:63). However, evidence is lacking or unpersuasive in four groups:
"(1) women to whom Joseph Smith was not married;
"(2) women sealed for the next life only, that is, 'eternity' only sealings;
"(3) in sealings to two fourteen-year-old wives; and
"(4) in sexual polyandrous situations (plural sealings to women who were civilly married and experiencing connubial relations with their legal husbands).
"Even though sexuality was permitted in Joseph Smith's plural marriages, it does not appear that conjugal interactions were a common occurrence. Opportunities for Joseph to spend intimate time with his plural wives would have been limited by many factors including his parenting responsibilities at the Homestead and the Nauvoo Mansion, by his preoccupation with Church and civic matters, by the constant need for secrecy, and by the scrutiny of dissenters and unbelievers.
"Emma’s vigilant and mostly intolerant eyes would have been another significant deterrent. Emily Partridge recalled:
"'We [Emily and Eliza Partridge] were sealed in her [Emma’s] presence with her full and free consent. It was the 11th of May, but before the day was over she turned around or repented of what she had done and kept Joseph up till very late in the night talking to him. She kept close watch of us. If we were missing for a few minutes, and Joseph was not at home, the house was searched from top to bottom and from one end to the other, and if we wer'
"A reminiscences from Joseph Lee Robinson states:
"'Ebenezer [Robinson]’s wife, [Angeline], had some time before this had watched Brother Joseph the prophet and had seen him go into some house and that she had reported to Sister Emma, the wife of the prophet. It was at a time when she was very suspicious and jealous of him for fear he would get another wife, for she knew the prophet had a revelation on that subject. She (Emma) was determined he should not get another, if he did she was determined to leave and when she heard this, she, Emma, became very angry and said she would leave...
That sexual relations were uncommon is also reflected by the observation that only two or three pregnancies have been mentioned and only one or two that have been documented with any degree of reliability. Mary Elizabeth Rollins Lightner stated: “I know he [Joseph Smith] had three children. They told me. I think two are living today but they are not known as his children as they go by other names.'
"On another occasion she declared: 'I don’t know about his having children, but I heard of three that he was the father of.'
"Current research supports that one daughter, Josephine Lyon, was born to Sylvia Sessions in 1844 and a child to Olive Frost that did not live long or may have miscarried."
Despite evidence for at least two children being fathered by the sexually potent Smith outside his marriage to Emma, Hales is intent on dismissing the idea that Smith actually sired children with any of his plural wives:
"Most of Joseph Smith's plural wives were fertile and young, capable of conception if the timing was right. The Prophet was virile, having fathered nine children with Emma despite their long periods of time apart and challenging schedules.
"Antagonists may argue that other children were born to Joseph and his plural wives, but their existence was kept secret. However, decades after the martyrdom when RLDS Church missionaries were claiming that Joseph Smith was not a polygamist, Utah Church authorities aggressively combated their claims.
"It is probable that if they would have known of any children fathered by the Prophet with his plural wives, they would have publicly acknowledged it.
"No convincing evidence has been found to support a third child born to the Prophet's plural wives, despite intense research by multiple investigators. . . .
"'Allegations that Joseph Smith was involved with either some form of birth control or abortions have been made. See Fawn M. Brodie, "No Man Knows My History: The Life of Joseph Smith, the Mormon Prophet," 2nd rev. ed. New York, 1971, 346 and W. Wyl, pseud. [Wilhelm Ritter von Wymetal]. "Mormon Portraits, or the Truth About Mormon Leaders From 1830 to 1886." Salt Lake City: Tribune Printing and Publishing Co., 1886, 59. However, no evidence has been found to support these accusations. Neither did Brodie or Wyl present any credible documentation."
As to the "Joseph Smith's possible children," Hales further spins in his behalf:
"Polygamous husbands living when polygamy is illegal face unique challenges as they try to father children with their plural wives. A point arrives when adding new plural wives does not necessarily equate to more sexual relations because the limiting factor is the man’s ability to safely schedule an intimate rendezvous. Whether the man has eight or 80 wives, if external constraints prevent opportunities for secret meetings, sexual encounters will be limited. If such dynamics were present in the Prophet’s complicated life, then additional sealings would have brought minimal increases in his sexual opportunities."
(Brian C. Hales, "Joseph Smith's Polygamy," under "Sexuality in Joseph Smith’s Plural Marriages," at: http://www.josephsmithspolygamy.com/JSPSexuality/MASTERJSPSexuality.html
Despite all these imposed conditions, even Hales can't ignore the obvious, admitting that, in fact, Josephine Rosetta Lyons Fisher (daughter of Sylvia Sessions Lyon), was probably the "biological daughter of Joseph Smith," noting in his essay, "Joseph Smith and the PUzzlement of 'Polyandry,'" that she signed the following affidavit:
"Just prior to my mother's death in 1882 she called me to her bedside and told me that her days on earth were about numbered and before she passed away from mortality she desired to tell me something which she had kept as an entire secret from me and from all others, but which she now desiered to communicate to me. She then told me that I was the daughter of the Prophet Joseph Smith . . . ."
Hales also notes, however, that there is not universal agreement among scholars as to the legitimacy of Josephine's account:
"All researchers do not agree that this statement clearly declares Josephine to be the biological daughter of the Prophet." (In support of that notion, Hales cites an article on Sylvia Porter Sessions Lyon Kimball in 'Our Pioneer Heritage," published by the Mormon organization, Daugthers of Utah Pioneers).
Hales reports further disputes raised by some about Smith's peternity of Josephine:
"It is true that words reflect some ambiguity and could possibly be interpreted to mean that Josephine was to be Joseph Smith's daughter only in eternity without implying an actual paternal physical connection." As support for that position, Hales cites the overtly pro-Mormon opinion of historian Rex E. Cooper found in Cooper's book, "Promises Made to the Fathers: Mormon Covenant Organization" (Salt Lake City, Utah: University of Utah Press, 1990, p. 144n1.
"I find the evidence [of Joseph Smith allegedly siring Josephine] to be less convincing on three different grounds.
"First, although the possibility that Josephine was a daughter of Joseph Smith was being discussed as early as 1905, the statement reports a conversation that took place 23 years before in 1882.
"Second, since the statement is transmitted through [Mormon Church historian] Andrew Jenson, it is a third-hand account of Sylvia P. Sessions' statement.
"And third, the statement is unclear about what meant to be 'a daughter of Joseph Smith.' For example, because of his mother's matrimonial sealing to Joseph Smith, Heber J. Grant was regarded as a son of Joseph Smith, even though he was born 12 years after the Prophet's death."
To his credit, however, Hales admits that "other details support that Josephine was the literal offspring of the Prophet. For example," he writes, "if no genetic connection existed between Josephine and Joseph Smith, it is strange that Sylvia would wait until her deathbed to dramatically divulge that the Prophet was to be Josephine's father only in the next life. If Josephine 'was the daughter of the Prophet Joseph Smith' only because of a sealing ordinance, rather than through physical siring, all of Sylvia's children would be equally his offspring. However, none of them reported any similar divulgences from their dying mother, nor would there be any compelling reason to keep such knowledge secret. Josephine's name also supports the relationship. In addition, other sources, beyond the 1915 affidavit, corroborate the story. In 1880, future BYU president George H. Brimhall recorded:
"'Went to Spanish Fork. . . . Evening had a talk with Father Hales, who told me that it was said that Joseph Smith had a daughter named Josephine living in Bountiful, Utah. . . . Soon the contemporaries of the Prophet JOseph Smith will be all gone.' . . .
"In 1905, Stake President Angus M. Cannon had an interview with Joseph Smith III, wherein he stated:
"'I will now refer you to one case where it was said by the girl's grandmother that your father has a daughter born of a plural wife. The girl's grandmother was Mother Sessions, who lived in Nauvoo and died here in the [Salt Lake] Valley. She was the granddaughter of Mother Sessions. That girl, I believe, is living today in Bountiful, north of this city. I heard Pres. Young, a short time before his death, refer to the report and remark that he had never seen the girl but he would like to see her for himself, that he might determine if she bore a likeness to your father.'"
Hales acknowledges that "[s]ince Sylvia said she had never told anyone prior to revealing Josephine's paternity to her, these accounts suggest that rumors of Josephine's true biological father arose from other sources that received limited private circulation prior to Sylvia Sessions' death.
In other words, several historial documents support a genetic relationship between the Prophet and Josephine, besices Sylvia's affidavit."
Hales also reports that sometime after April 1838, Joseph Smith was sealed to Sylvia Sessions in Nauvoo, Illinois (Sylvia was at the time civily married to Windsor Lyon and they had together moved to Nauvoo). Windsor was excommunicated from the Mormon Church on 19 November 1842. Hales puts the subsequqent conception of Josephine as occuring on 18 May 1843, a month shy of a year before Smith was killed at Carthage.
Hales argues that "Josephine Lyon's 1915 statement . . . implies that the excommuncation [of Windsor Lyon] invalidated her [Sylvia's] marriage to Windsor, allowing her to be legitimately sealed to Joseph Smith and bare a child with him [meaning Josephine]."
This sealing, Hales contends, is in keeping with Smith's history of "in special circumstances, as President of the Church, believ[ing] himself capable of granting permission to ignore legal unions (constituting a religious divorce"). Hales cites Mormon Church historian Jenson's view that Windsor's excommunication meant "that some sort of divorce or termination was inherent in [his excommunication]. or at least accompanied it chronologically," with Jenson thus "refer[ring] to Sylvia as 'formerly the wife of Windsor Lyons.'" Hales quotes Jenson's further observation that "[w]hen he [Windsor] left the Church [i.e., was excommunicated], she [Sylvia] was sealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith."
A product of the sealing of Joseph Smith to Sylvia Sessions was the conception of Josephine.
(Brian C. Hales, "The PUzzlement of 'Polyandry,' in "The Persistence of Polygamy: Joseph Smith and the Origins of Mormon Polygamy," Newell G. Bringhurst ans Craig L. Foster, ed. [Independence, Missouri: John Whitmer BOoks, 2010], p. 111-116)
George D. Smith, in his book, "Nauvoo Polygamy," supports Hales' conclusion that Josephine was biologically fathered by Joseph Smith--adding, however, that "[n]one of Joseph's 'plural children,' if such existed, have been identified." Nonetheless, George D. Smith reports that there is good reason to conclude Joseph Smith produced children with women other than his first wife, Emma:
"Of all the plural wives, Sylvia [Sessions] may be the best candidate to be the mother of a child father by Joseph Smith."
Smith adds that "nothing as conclusive as genetic testing has been performed" (this is not quite true, since Ugo Perego conductrf some DNA tracking of Josephine's paternal heritage), "but the documentary evidence," says Smith, "is compelling. Four months before Smith's assassination, Sylvia gave birth to Josephine Rosetta Lyon on February 8, 1844. Some 38 years later, Sylvia told her daughter that she, Josephine, had been fathered by the Prophet. When Josephine herself was advanced in age, she affirmed what her mother had told her in 1882. . . . It is significant that Josephine's statement was witnessed by one of the Church's historians, Andrew Jeoson; Josephine's stake president, Joseph Grant, who was a stepfather of Apostle of Heber J. Grant and nephew of Joseph B. Noble; and by her own son."
George D. Smith adds:
"Although Sylvia explained that she was sealed to Smith when her lawfully-wedded husband was 'out of the Church,' Windsor's November 1842 estrangement followed Sylvia's marriage to Smith by nine months."
Interestingly, George D. Smith also reports how Joseph Smith paid intense personal attention to infant Josephine:
"Four days after Josephine was born, . . . Patty Sessions reported that 'Brother Joseph was at her [Sylvia's] house' and that 'Mr. Lyons, Sylvia's husband, lent him $500.00.' Patty described other visits and said that after Josephine's birth, Joseph 'visited at her [Sylvia's] house almost daily.'"
When it comes to Jospeh SMith having sex with his multiple wives, however, Hales, doesn't get everything right. Contrary to Hales' highly questionable assertion these intimate encouters were not all that frequent, George D. Smith writes that "[t]here is no reason to doubt that [Joseph] Smith's [polygamous] marriages involved sexual relations in most instances." (He does acknowledge, however, that "Sylvia Sessions' testimony to her daughter, Josephine, represents the only concrete claim for a child--and even then the testimony is second-hand"). Still, he provides credence to the claim that Joseph Smith fathered children with his polygamous partners:
"Mary Elizabeth Lightner spoke of 'three children' whom she said she 'knew he had' by his plural wives. These births would have been disguised because the children would have borne the names of their stepfathers. 'They told me, I think two of them are living today but they are not known as his children, as they go by other names.'
As George D. Smith points out, "[i]t was a general rule that children of plural marriages were not acknowledged in the pre-Utah period. Eliza Partridge left home in 1846 with her son, who was fathered by Amasa Lyman. Her sister, Emily, recorded the secrecy:
"'While it Nauvoo I had kept my child secreted and but few knew I had one, but after I started on my journey,' she wrote, 'it became publicly known and people would stop at our house [in Winter Quarters, Iowa] to see a "spiritual child."' George Smith writes that "[i]n an autobiographical account within her diary, she added that 'spiritual wives, as we were then termed, were not very numerous in those days and a spiritual baby was a rarity, indeed--but few children had been born in the celestial order of marriage.' Some children could have been disguised in families where a woman had a civil husband different from the husband she was sealed to."
Notably, George D. Smith contradicts Hales' claim that Joseph Smith did not sire "plural children" because it was regarded as being illegal under civil law, nor because (at least according to Hales), it was difficult for Smith to engage in baby-making with other women, given his heavy social schedule:
"Perhaps, as Lucy Walker Smith Kimball said, one restraint to fathering plural children was the 'hazardous life [Joseph Smith] lived, in constant fear of being betrayed.' While stressful circumstances and a complicated schedule may well have impacted the frequency of marital intimacy, from all outward appearances, his conjugal visits were not greatly impeded by social or legal pressure. Smith unquestionably fathered the three sons Emma gave birth to in Nauvoo. The dates of conception are telling. For Don Carlos, it was just months after the family reached Nauvoo. A stillborn son, which was delivered on February 7, 1842, was conceived during the early days of Smith's marriage to Louisa Beaman. And Emma's last child, David Hyrum, was born in November 1844, after Joseph's death, meaning that David was conceived early that year in the midst of enormous turmoil."
That said, George D. Smith adds the caveat that "[u]ntil decisive DNA testing of possible Smith descendants--daughters as well as sons--from plural wives can be accomplished, ascertaining whether Smith fathered children with any of his plural wives remains hypothetical."
(George D. Smith, "Navuoo Polygamy: 'But We Called It Celestial Marriage" [Salt Lake City, Utah: Signature BOoks, 2008], pp. 96. 100-102, 117-119. Note: George D. Smith's book, in which he draws the above conclusion, was published two years before Ugo Perego publicly reported that autosomal DNA testing had been conducted on selected members of the Lyon and Smith lines. Perego claims, however, that the findings contained "a lot of 'genealogical noise' [due to] the multiple familial relationships shared by both Josephine Lyon's and Joseph Smith's descendants." Perego explains that is because "descendants from the Smith and Lyon/Fisher families are part of the same pioneer stock that particpated in the first colonization of the Great Salt Lake Valley . . . and could have potentially had many overlapping ancestors." See Ugo A. Perego, "Joseph Smith Jr., the Question of Polygamous Offspring, and DNA Analysis," in "THe Persistence of Polygamy," Bringhurst and Foster, ed. [Independence, Missouri: John Whitmer Books, 2010)].
Despite Hales' questioanble assertion that Smith had relatively infrequent sexual relations with his plural wives, it appears that Smith, in fact, had eager conjugal hook-ups with them, as reported below.
"[Mormon historian Todd] Compton writes:
"'Because of claims by Reorganized Latter-day Saints that Joseph was not really married polygamously in the full (i.e., sexual) sense of the term, Utah Mormons (including Joseph's wives) affirmed repeatedly that Joseph had physical sexual relations with his plural wives-despite the Victorian conventions in nineteenth-century American religion which otherwise would have prevented mention of sexual relations in marriage."
"--Faithful Mormon Melissa Lott (Smith Willes) testified that she had been Joseph's wife 'in very deed.'
(affidavit of Melissa Willes, 3 August 1893, Temple Lot case, 98, 105; Foster, Religion and Sexuality, p. 156.)
"--In a court affidavit, faithful Mormon Joseph Noble wrote that Joseph told him he had spent the night with Louisa Beaman.
(Temple Lot Case, 427)
"--Emily D. Partridge (Smith Young) said she 'roomed' with Joseph the night following her marriage to him and said that she had "carnal intercourse" with him.
(Temple Lot case (complete transcript), pp. 364, 367, 384; see Foster, 'Religion and Sexuality,' p. 15)
"In total, 13 faithful Latter-day Saint women who were married to Joseph Smith swore court affidavits that they had sexual relations with him.
"--Joseph Smith's personal secretary records that on May 22nd, 1843, Smith's first wife Emma found Joseph and Eliza Partridge secluded in an upstairs bedroom at the Smith home. Emma was devastated.
(William Clayton's journal, entry for 23 May 1843; (see Smith, 105-06)
"--Smith's secretary William Clayton also recorded a visit to young Almera Johnson on May 16, 1843:
"'Pres. Joseph and I went to B[enjamin] F. Johnsons to sleep.' Johnson himself later noted that o' this visit Smith stayed with Almera 'as man and wife' and "occupied the same room and bed with my sister, that the previous month he had occupied with the daughter of the late Bishop Partridge as his wife.'
"Almera Johnson also confirmed her secret marriage to Joseph Smith:
"'I lived with the prophet Joseph as his wife and he visited me at the home of my brother Benjamin F.'
(Zimmerman, "I Knew the Prophets." p. 44; see also, "The Origin of Plural Marriage," Joseph F. Smith, Jr., Deseret News Press, pp. 70-71.)
"--Faithful Mormon and Stake President Angus Cannon told Joseph Smith's son:
"'Brother Heber C. Kimball, I am informed, asked [Eliza R. Snow] the question if she was not a virgin although married to Joseph Smith and afterwards to Brigham Young, when she replied in a private gathering, "I thought you knew Joseph Smith better than that."'
(Stake President Angus M. Cannon, statement of interview with Joseph III, p. 23, LDS archives)
("Did Joseph Smith Have Sex with His Wives?," under "Did Joseph Smith Obey the commandment and Have Sex with His Wives?," at: http://www.i4m.com/think/history/joseph_smith_sex.htm
The record clearly shows that Joseph Smith was a horndog and that he likely fathered children beyond the bounds of his first marriage bed.
Brian Hales seems a bit too reluctant to admit the full extent of that inconvenient reality.
Edited 15 time(s). Last edit at 02/23/2013 11:02AM by steve benson.