The first time Mormonism encountered the Pacific Islands was in the 1840’s. Unfortunately for native Hawaiians, the Gospel wasn’t the only thing Mormons brought to the Islands. Bryan and Lindsay discuss the first mission to the Sandwich Islands, as well as the Smallpox epidemic.
Benjamin Grouard had a son, Frank, with a Polynesian woman. Frank went back to SLC with the Pratts (IIRC) and later became a well-known US Army scout during the Indian Wars. He was an adopted brother of Sitting Bull, and was well-known to the leaders of the Lakota and Cheyenne as well as Army leaders during and after the Custer era (1870-1900). He was there in the aftermath of the Battle of the Little Bighorn (1876), and present at Wounded Knee (1890). He’s a very well-known figure to historians of the Indian Wars but the LDS connection is rarely mentioned.
One more of those Mormons we don’t hear about because they don’t really fit the mold, like Butch Cassidy. 🙂
Love your work, you two; I completely understand the drive to track down obscure little details. (No death masks on my wall – but I want to stay married! )
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