50 years ago today - Apr 20, 1974

Reed C. Durham, Jr. gives presidential address to Mormon History Association (MHA) at Nauvoo, in which he emphasizes Joseph Smith's Jupiter talisman and its relationship to magic and Freemasonry. Durham also recites a Masonic legend that was available to Joseph Smith which has many parallels to the story of the coming forth of the BOOK OF MORMON. As immediate result, officials at LDS information center in Nauvoo remove Angel Moroni form spire of center's detailed model of Nauvoo temple. Following architect's drawings the model shows angel holding Masonic symbols of compass and square, but those symbols are absent when angel-replica is reinstalled on model. Shortly afterward LDS president Spencer W. Kimball releases Durham as institute director and requires him to write letter of apology and retraction. Durham is told by "the brethren" do no more research on the subject and to give out no information. Durham remains faculty member of Salt Lake Institute of Religion but declines to
attend future meeting of MHA, even one honoring all of its former presidents.

[On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com, based on Michael Quinn's Mormon Hierarchy vols 1 & 2]

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