Vengeance Is Mine: The Mountain Meadows Massacre and Its Aftermath


Product Details

$34.95  $32.50
Oxford University Press, USA
Publish Date
6.4 X 8.9 X 2.2 inches | 1.95 pounds

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About the Author

Richard E. Turley Jr. was a long-time historian for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City, Utah, and a co-author of Massacre at Mountain Meadows. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the American Historical Association's Herbert Feis Award and the Historic Preservation Medal from the Daughters of the American Revolution. Turley also represented relatives of the Mountain Meadows Massacre victims in their successful petition of the federal government to grant National Historic Landmark status for the atrocity site. Barbara Jones Brown is the director of Signature Books Publishing and former executive director of the Mormon History Association. She also provided content editing for Massacre at Mountain Meadows. She holds an M.A. in American history from the University of Utah and a B.A. in journalism and English from Brigham Young University. While researching her genealogy after beginning work on Vengeance Is Mine, Brown discovered that, like the earlier Mountain Meadows Massacre historian, Juanita Brooks, she is a direct descendant of one of its perpetrators.


"This haunting, exhaustively-researched account stands as the definitive study of the long afterlife of the Mountain Meadows massacre." -- Laurie Maffly-Kipp, Washington University in St. Louis

"Vengeance is Mine is a riveting account of how justice was pursued and evaded during an era of national transformation. With moving prose and a brisk narrative, Richard E. Turley Jr. and Barbara Jones Brown's tale reveals much about both nineteenth century Latter-day Saints as well as the American nation against whom they nearly waged war." -- Benjamin E. Park, author of Kingdom of Nauvoo

"A harsh, painful story of the tragic aftermath of the Mountain Meadows Massacre reconstructed from a decades-long investigation of the sources, Vengeance Is Mine is an unflinching account of investigation, cover up, and suffering. Turley and Brown have made startling discoveries that put the story in a new light without relieving the perpetrators of guilt. A complex, enthralling historical narrative." -- Richard Lyman Bushman, author of Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling

"This impeccably researched and eloquent book tells a story about crime and punishment in a western territory in the years immediately before and after the Civil War. It is a story about the entanglement of local and national politics, about religious zeal and bigotry, and about barriers to achieving justice in a bitterly polarized society. It is a story for today." -- Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, author of A House Full of Females: Plural Marriage and Women's Rights in Early Mormonism, 1835-1870

"In Vengeance Is Mine, Brown and Turley clarify and fill in the narrative spaces in the aftermath of the infamous Mountain Meadows Massacre. Using legal transcripts and other primary documents, they unravel the tale of how American Indians were blamed and then used to deflect attention from the principal orchestrators of unimaginable violence. This story reflects events in Mormon history while contextualizing religious and systemic racial attitudes of the nineteenth-century American West. This is a book not to miss." -- P. Jane Hafen (Taos Pueblo), co-editor of Essays on American Indian and Mormon History

"[T]he authors draw revelatory links between local effects of the massacre and national anxieties about religion and political volatility, giving readers a comprehensive, complex understanding of the era." --Publishers Weekly

"[A] capable work of scholarly detection." --Kirkus Reviews

"Based upon years of extensive research, Vengeance is Mine: The Mountain Meadows Massacre and Its Aftermath is a masterpiece that examines not only the catalysts and culmination but also the consequences of one of the most infamous episodes of both Latter-day Saint and Western U.S. history-the Mountain Meadows Massacre...Learning the hard lessons of the past will help us make a better future for ourselves and others. To that end, I am pleased to highly recommend Vengeance is Mine. Who should read it? Everyone! If you are unsure whether you should buy it, do yourself a favor and do it. Read it, weep over it, wrestle with it, and I believe you will be a better person-one more genuine, merciful, tolerant, and thoughtful-by the end." -- Sam Mitchell, Association of Mormon Letters

"Turley and Brown have accomplished a remarkable feat in capturing so much primary source material and delivering a highly readable text that has lessons for all of us. If you end up finding yourself weeping or not being able to sleep, then the authors have accomplished what they set out to do, making you feel for this senseless tragedy. Vengeance is Mine is worthy of our concentrated attention." -- Kevin Folkman, Association of Mormon Letters

"Vengeance Is Mine does what any sequel does best: expands what is presented in the first iteration, deepens the audience's understanding of what is being presented, and concludes threads considered in the first text. Vengeance Is Mine connects readers more to one of the main figures in the massacre-John D. Lee-expanding his narrative and outlining the effect his trial had on not only him and his family but on American politics, the treatment of Latter-day Saints, and the Church that nestled itself in the Salt Lake Valley. Because it is both a good standalone and an excellent sequel, I recommend readers taking either path when reading: taking up the first book; if they are interested in a deep dive into the massacre, or reading this text on its own, since it provides the same main points that the first book does." -- Adam McLain, Association for Mormon Letters

"This is a book worth reading." -- Amanda Ray, Association for Mormon Letters