The Ebb and Flow of Mormonism in Scotland, 1840–1900



The story of Mormonism in Scotland actually begins in Canada—not surprisingly when one realizes that for thousands of expatriate Scots in the nineteenth century, Canada was a second homeland. Two Scotsmen, Alexander Wright of Banffshire and Samuel Mulliner of Midlothian, had settled in Upper Canada (now known as Ontario) in the mid-1830s and shortly thereafter they were converted to the Mormon church. They soon let their relatives know about the new religion by sending to Scotland copies of Parley P. Pratt’s A Voice of Warning, and in 1839 they were called to return to their homeland as emissaries of the new American faith. After four months of proselyting, by May of 1840, they had baptized some eighty Scots into the Church, and shortly thereafter the first Latter- day Saint branch was organized at Paisley by Apostle Orson Pratt. By the end of the century some ten thousand people had joined the Church in Scotland, and almost half of the converts had left Scotland as part of the Mormon gathering to Zion.



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