Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer,
Me, and More Perils of Polygamy
The middle photo is the way I remember my
Uncle Ervil M. LeBaron in the 1960s
A wise leader inspires and motivates,
rather than intimidating and manipulating.
Continuing where we left off in the previous blog,
wherein my life was being hijacked in the name of plural marriage:
As I mentioned previously, Mother’s brother Ervil M. LeBaron
was in on the manipulation of my love-life too. What’s new?!
Whose life wasn’t he in on? But I didn’t know that back then.
As it turns out, Ervil LeBaron had time for everyone’s family but his own. This cunning Con was too busy using and abusing others – all the new converts and you name it – under the highfalutin pretense of being The Second Grand Head of God’s church on earth.
His maneuvering and manipulating others to his own advantage was only outdone by his coercion and priestcraft, when it came to pulling the wool over the eyes of the “lambs” and fleecing the newbie true-believing Church of the Firstborn sheep.
Uncle “Evil Ervil” was truly something else!
And in his heyday and depth of glory, now that he had all those trusting, true-believing followers and converts suddenly at his deceptive fingertips! And this, thanks to his brother and self-proclaimed Prophet Joel LeBaron’s new “Church” having begun to take off in the late 1950s – and that was thanks to the French missionaries having joined this sect/cult/ offshoot of the mainstream Mormon church/The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
As it turns out, while Uncle Ervil was horrendously manipulating my life on one level, my parents –another set of controllers found wanting in the area of integrity – unbeknownst to me, were secretly snooping in my personal belongings and betraying my trust in them, as they managed to find every new place I hid my diary. (I hid it “just in case,” having not the least idea my own parents were actually reading it behind my back while I was gone teaching school during the day.)
By regularly reading my entries, they, along with Uncle “ErVile,” were able to control and manipulate my life … in the end, causing me great distress and unhappiness!
However, for my parents, reading my diaries behind my back was the entertainment of the day for them as they colluded and eavesdropped, by way of my diaries, in order to run my life and future.
I can’t even imagine their “entertainment” when they read in my journal that Ervil, Mumma’s younger brother, had, behind my parents’ back, secretly bartered me off in marriage in exchange for land (in the name of God, revelation, and building up “His” kingdom) to Homer Babbitt, a man Mum’s age/ 26 years older than I, her second cousin, and a girlhood friend!
In my Journal entry for July 15, 1962, I wrote:
“Ervil told me not to tell my parents about my upcoming marriage to Homer – so the devil can’t interfere with God’s plans.” I also wrote that I was not at all attracted to Homer Babbitt – and that when we kissed, to cement our engagement to marry, it felt icky.
Homer’s kiss wasn’t much more than a peck on the lips, thank God. And That was my first kiss ever!
Oh dear and Heaven help us! Also, my first date ever — though hardly a kiss and hardly a date. But no matter how Homer had kissed me, I would’ve gotten no pleasure out of it because I had no feelings for him.
I don’t recall doing anything else with this extremely shy, middle-aged stranger, Homer. Only recall that, to cement our coerced marriage vows, Uncle Ervil arranged for a secret rendezvous wherein Homer and I could convene in Homer’s black Buick he’d skillfully hidden behind a secluded clump of mesquite bushes toward the outskirts of the LeBaron scrabble colony. Situated in the Chihuahuan desert, in 1962 the cult was amply surrounded by cacti, mesquite, and other desert vegetation suitable for hiding out in!
Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer,
And More Perils of Polygamy