~ My Music Performance on Songmakers CD: “Tune Town”

Me With Guitar -3
Stephany Spencer-LeBaron, age 38

 


Me with Dee, songmakers
Songmakers Left to Right: Dee Gregory, Suzy Hall, Stephany Spencer, and Lillian 

 


My Songmaker CD Blurb -3
My Blurb for my cut on Songmakers 2004 CD: “Tune Town”  

 


I joined Songmakers organization in 1987. Music has always been an important part of my life. A multi-instrumentalist, the following link is a fun recording of the cut I made in 2004 accompanied by Vic Brandriff and Steve Durfee on a Songmakers’ CD: “Tune Town:”

 


To learn more about the wonderful Songmakers organization, its history, and venues, click on the following link:

Songmakers | Songmakers


~ Review of Verlan LeBaron and Esther LeBaron Spencer’s “The LeBaron Story”

 

the-lebaron-story-book-cover-2
Joseph Smith, Benjamin Franklin Johnson, Alma Dayer LeBaron, and Joel Franklin LeBaron


“The LeBaron Story” is truly a “Vanity Book” — not only because my uncle Verlan LeBaron paid a publishing company in 1981 (back when self-publishing was not the norm) to publish the book — but also because it’s a revisionistic, apologetic, and biased history of “the Mexico LeBarons;” i.e., my grandparents Maud and Dayer LeBaron and their offspring.

What’s more, though my Aunt Charlotte and Uncle Verlan finished and got the book published, they are largely NOT the main authors of it. Truth is, Uncle Verlan was FAR too busy to write a book — even if he knew how — too busy working, traveling around from country to country visiting his ten wives and fifty-plus kids — and running from his brother Ervil who was out to kill him! Aunt Charlotte was about that busy too!

Fact is, MY mother/Verlan’s older sister Esther LeBaron-McDonald de Spencer (who possessed a BA in Journalism) is the one who birthed and did the groundwork for what is now “The LeBaron Story.” She wrote a large part of this book, then turned her “baby” — her manuscript over to Verlan, along with her journals and notes, telling him he could finish and publish her book — could even have all the proceeds from it!

Did she tell them they could have ALL the credit for it too? I know Mother could be ridiculously magnanimous and philanthropic at times. But was she this magnanimous and philanthropic? Even if it were the case, too bad those who published her “baby” didn’t return ANY of her magnanimity and philanthropy. That is, they gave my mother NOT a bit of thanks nor credit for all the work she put into initiating then writing most of The LeBaron Story” — her gift to Verlan LeBaron and “God’s work.” Nowhere do you even get a suggestion that anyone other than Verlan and Charlotte had anythong to do with writing this text! How sad!!

Turning her book idea and all her manuscript work over to the new head of “The Church of The First Born of the Fullness of Times was Mother’s loving and conscientious effort to help her brother Verlan look good and thereby better “build up the kingdom of God.” And it was her way of paying tithing to extend and defend “God’s work” because Verlan had taken over for her brother Joel F. LeBaron, “The One Mighty and Strong Prophet,” after Joel was murdered by his brother Ervil!

The work of finishing and compiling Mother’s grandiose book was largely done by my Uncle Verlan’s first wife Charlotte who did not know enough of the LeBaron family history to write it without relying heavily upon Info from my mother Esther LeBaron-McDonald de Spencer’s journals and notes!

Therefore, about two-thirds of “The LeBaron Story” came directly from my dear Mum’s half-completed manuscript, notes, and journal entries. I was around when she was writing part of her family history — the Mexico-LeBaron history. Delusional Mumma was so proud of her heritage she thought it MOST mportant the world know about her “saintly family” — the greatest and most holy family ever born into the world — next to Christ … perhaps — through whom “The One Mighty and Strong Prophet Joel LeBaron” was born. (Does this smell of megalomania?)

Mumma talked much about her writing endeavors — the “LeBaron History” she was birthing. Having read part of her manuscript and journals, I recognize her writing voice and input throughout “The LeBaron Story” that makes up a large part of this book.

Therefore, note the two different writer’s voices inThe LeBaron Story”! Anything with beautifully written structured writing, defined paragraphs, quotes, sources listed at the back of the book, etc., is my mother Esther LeBaron Spencer’s writing voice — part of her contribution. Whereas Aunt Charlotte, Uncle Verlan, et Al’s writing voices are in the chapters where everything is run together and there aren’t structured paragraphs, footnotes, etc.

But, even though Uncle Verlan and Aunt Charlotte used large parts of what Mother wrote, word for word — used her material exactly as she had written it — no editing whatsoever — as I said before, they gave my creative, ambitious, giving Mom not one BIT of credit — not one speck of acknowledgment …  let alone so much as a howdy-do-dee or thank-you! It’s tantamount to plagiarism … and shameful how Charlotte and Verlan took ALL the credit for Mama’s talent, initiative, education, writing, and hard work!

But getting back to the body of the book, if you were to take the authors’ word for everything, the Mexico LeBarons are/were “a saintly people with a Godly mission.” Well, I beg to differ: Wishing doesn’t make it so. In other words, wishful thinking, such as self-proclaiming oneself as “The One Mighty and Strong,” and claiming one comes from “A Godly people with a Messianic mission” doesn’t make it true.

Much of the book’s lore takes place in Chihuahua, Mexico. Unfortunately, the authors tell the story in the words of true-believing, fundamentalist-Mormon-LeBaron cult members. In other words, it’s a highly biased history with a missionary purpose.

True to their fanatic religiosity, the book was mainly written to proselytize and promote Uncle Joel LeBaron’s cult: “The Church of the First Born of the Fullness of Times.” This presupposes a revision — rewritten history, then; i.e., a white-washing of the LeBarons. Thus, it’s myth in the making.

Nonetheless, I was able to glean a bit of useful information from it. So I’m glad the book was written despite the biased viewpoint because nobody else in the immediate Mexico LeBaron family has written a first-hand history about themselves — and it shows how biased they were, some of what their bias was, and how they used it to portray and supplant themselves as God’s only emissaries of “the truth,” His Work, and His Plan. It’s a bias that supports their grandiose sense-of-entitlement and efforts to achieve power, control, and position in the world. Suffice it to say, despite

Suffice it to say, despite “The LeBaron Story” needing a good Editor’s service, it was quite an endeavor and accomplishment on the part of my not well-educated nor well-read but extremely busy country uncle and his wives. All the while they were compiling Mother’s notes and manuscripts, then finishing this chronology, they were ever laboring under heavy pressures and disadvantages such as raising huge families of children while living in backward, primitive conditions–and running for their life. But book-buyer beware …  be wary! That’s all I can say!

I was given a copy of this book many years ago when it first came out in 1981– fourteen years after I escaped the LeBaron cult in 1967. After reading the text, the obvious Messianic preaching and purpose, plus the revisionism, white-washing, and grandiose fabrications throughout the chronicle of “The LeBaron Story” got my gut so badly I was on my way to toss the book in the dumpster when two of Uncle Verlan’s daughters dropped in. They believed their father was a prophet, so were very happy to be gifted with “The LeBaron Story.” And I was very happy to get rid of it.

But thirty-six years later, for purposes of my own understanding and research, I had to re-buy the book! Argh! It’s going for around $45.00 in hardback on Amazon.com now. Wonders never cease to amaze me … so I wonder! Well, to each his own … and read on!



~ Review of Gabriella Owens’ “BBQ Pizza: A Flaming Expose of Macho Cooking”

 [ BBQ Pizza: A Flaming Expose on Macho Cooking
Owens, Gabriella ( Author ) ] { Paperback } 2013
Paperback

On Review: Gabriella Owens’ Book, BBQ Pizza: A Flaming Expose’ of Macho Cooking

Dear Readers:

I couldn’t believe a cookbook could keep me so engrossed I couldn’t put it down! Because I hate to cook! But by the time I finished reading, loving, and laughing my way through “BBQ Pizza: A Flaming Expose on Macho Cooking” — a book full of humor, impressive information, pizza recipes galore, and more — Gabriella Owens had made a believer out of me! I was seriously considering becoming a “barbecued-pizza specialist” and party host myself.

But I figured the least I could do, after reading her exceptional expose –even learning what pizza peels are for– was to stop three pizzas short of a pizza peel to write this sizzling review.

Gifted Author Gabriella is not only an expert on gourmet barbecue pizza parties, fine wines, wineries, and more, but a comedian — and the President of the California Writer’s Club, San Fernando Valley Branch.

Her creative pizzas put the California Pizza House to shame! But they might be interested in some of her “fabulicious-Pizzalicious” dishes and recipes.

While reading “BBQ Pizza,” I was kept so thoroughly entertained– laughing so hard all the way–I learned how to appreciate and appraise wines, put together perfect pizza parties, and much more — all with no pain!

I told Gabriella: “You’re a standup comedian in a “sitdown” position ‘neath a toadstool lampshade waiting to be discovered! So “standup” and deliver! I’ll turn the lights on any time.”

Meanwhile, everyone should at least discover her hidden talent for writing comedy by reading her book and watching her comedic YouTube movie “BBQ Pizza: Macho Cook to the Rescue—With His Pastrami Pizza Recipe!”

If you’re a standup comedian or would like to be, there are some great lines in this creative author’s book that could keep your audience in uproarious laughter indefinitely.

 Hey guys, buy BBQ Pizza: A Flaming Exposé
Of Macho Cooking
or put it on your reading list today.
You won’t be sorry:
You’ll have a fabulucious day!

By Stephany Spencer

 

 

~ Fred Morrow Plumbing, and Super-Savings on Sewer Sub-Meters!

Fred Morrow
Fred Morrow

Poets for Fred Morrow Plumbing,*
A
nd super-savings on Sewer Sub-Meters:
(He’s installed hundreds of these meter readers!)

First class, first choice
Contractor’s corporation —
In my humble opinion,
Best plumbing Co. in the nation!

I hired Fred Morrow
So I wouldn’t be sorry tomorrow;
Did my homework;
So I don’t repent in sorrow!

On April 4, 2018,
Morrow’s super-plumber Stal
Installed my sewer sub-meter “machine;”
‘Twas some of the best work I’ve ever seen!
If you want a good job done overall,
Fred Morrow Plumbing’s the company to call.
Want to save, all-in-all? Then I say, “Don’t stall”:

Call Fred Morrow services:
 You save on dollars plus time
And energy lost on disservices;
Because you can expect to get:

1- The best PRICE in town yet!
2- No scams, shams, nor sharks around:
3- The job done right when they hit your ground!
4- Savings on DWP’s secret sewer-service slam!
5- A no-problem-no-fault City Inspection!
  6- On-time arrival, completion, and job perfection!
7- PLUS timely follow-ups from friendly Fred!

Now, with all that said,
Fred Morrow gets an “A”
In my grade book today,
For doing his homework
The old-fashioned way:
His company doesn’t shirk;
They get high marks
for first-class work.

Yes, Fred’s a leader — a keeper;
His work ethics couldn’t be neater!
What’s more, Fred and his men
Are friendly, fit, trim, and thin.

You don’t believe me?
Do your homework on DWP
Sewer Sub-Meter Regulations and see.
And interview the whole Plumbing lot
Recommended for this job on Next Door and Yelp.
Then, like me, you may yell and cry, “Help!!”
Because you’ll get the opposite of what I got
With Fred Morrow’s Plumbing
Whom I ultimately sought.

He started his company in late 1970;
 Has around twenty-two employees presently;
I say, “Hire this incredulous hot entity!”
 He’s the only plumbing company with high integrity
That I’ve found around in years —
The only one lately that hasn’t left me
With problems, fears, and tears.

Hats off to Fred Morrow Plumbing,
And a BIG round of cheers!!
May this company be around
For many more years!

By Stephany Spencer
StephanySpencer.com

*Fred Morrow Plumbing: 818-376-6538
 FredMorrowPlumbing.com
16137 Valerio Street,
Van Nuys, California 91406


  • NOTE: I found the following book online. Am posting it here because a guy by the name of “Fred Morrow,” who owns “Fred Morrow Plumbing” — an attorney turned plumber — I thought was one of the protagonists in this story.

    After buying and reading the book on Kindle, I discovered my Google search had found the names “Fred” and “Morrow” in the novel and had somehow linked them with “Fred Morrow Plumbing,” the company I was doing research on.

    But a coincidence: The protagonist in the book IS much like Fred Morrow. However, his name is “Nate Morrow,” he owns his own plumbing company, has high integrity — and the “Fred” in Pemberton’s novel, it turns out, is the protagonist Rita’s uncle!

    I’m leaving this Book recommendation on my blog because I think anybody who knows Fred Morrow would find this book a fascinating read, to say the least! See the book’s title and a clip from the novel listed below:

    Regarding Rita – Google Books Result
    https://books.google.com/books?isbn=1459274555

    Morrow was supposed to meet her at her apartment, five minutes ago. Couldn’t these people … No point in activating Uncle Fred’s antenna, she told herself, but in the back of her mind, she knew Fred had little to do with it. She didn’t want … Fred wasn’t sitting on the front porch, and neither was the plumber. Suddenly fatigue …

    [PDF]

     

~ Pts 11–18: My Mother Esther LeBaron Spencer, Me, and Mormon Polygamist Cults Unmasked

NOTE: Weeks ago I published a compilation of Parts 1-10 of “My Memoir: My Mother, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer — And Mormon Polygamist Cults Unmasked.” The following is the rest of that 18-part series on my mama.


PART 11

My Memoir:

My Mama, Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer:
Ma Meets Pa … Or Was It the Other Way Around? 

dad, 18 5

My daddy, Floyd Otto Spencer, around 1917



History will be kind to me
for I intend to write it.
Winston Spencer Churchill



“It was love at first sight!” exclaimed Mama. ” On October 13, 1943, while I was visiting my brother Alma’s friend, in walked a tall, dark, and handsome stranger [Floyd Otto Spencer]. I knew, the moment I laid eyes on him, he was the man for me!

 I was about twenty-three, then, in my second year at Tempe State University — And quite sure I didn’t want to live polygamy! But all that changed after I saw yer pa because I knew, the minute our eyes met, he was the man I was supposed to marry!” [NOTE: See “Spencer Family Album and Scrapbook,” compiled by my sister Nola.]

“So the following day, while your Pa was up on the roof in sunny Mesa, Arizona, helpin’ my brother Alma re-roof my brother Ben’s house, I took advantage of the chance to be up there on the roof, too, so I could get to know ‘the tall, dark, and handsome stranger.’ ” 

It didn’t matter that my future Daddy was twenty-six years her senior, already married to a beautiful woman, Eva Bowman, and together those two had ten gorgeous children — and another on the way. None of that mattered because Mama was a Mormon fundamentalist.

What did matter in Mormon fundamentalist eyes is Ma was “an old maid” at the time she met future Pa. Now, how had she, an attractive, gifted, and accomplished young woman, existed so long under the radar without being  “married up”?  For “Plygs” are generally married off as children — because, to them, marriage and having all the kids one can have is what Life is all about.

All that matters to Mormon fundamentalists, in general, is having all the kids and wives they can have — so as to bring all the little spirits they possibly can into “good Mormon fundamentalist homes.”

These homes are the best homes in the world, they believe. They simply sacrifice their ALL to serve God by bringing as many as they can of these little “foreordained spirits” down into “good Mormon homes;” i.e., homes that live the “fullness of the gospel,” as Joseph Smith and Brigham Young taught it — Homes where not one jot nor tittle of these early prophets’ words and teachings have been changed! (Is that obsessive-compulsive or what?! Well, they don’t think so.)

But getting back to where I got sidetracked, I’ll tell you what Mother was doing still single at twenty-two: This “catch” was “a Mexico LeBaron.” Now if you’re a Mormon fundamentalist, you know what that means: There was mental illness in Mama’s Family — “The Mexico-LeBaron Family.”

Let me give you some backstory — if I have the story right. (LeBaron stories are/ were wont to change from time to time): Ma’s big brother, my Uncle Ben, was not only bipolar/schizophrenic, but had recently let the various Mormon fundamentalist groups know they were to follow him as their “Priesthood Head,” because he was the “One Mighty ‘n’ Strong.” Uncle Ben further quipped: “I get revelations from God regularly … Thus sayeth the Lord! “

He claimed his father had given him a special priesthood mantle — the “Scepter of Power,” or “The Right of the Firstborn.” (My maternal grandfather, Dayer LeBaron, taught his family this mantle of priesthood power was given to him, Dayer, by his own grandfather, Benjamin F. Johnson — who got it from the Mormon prophet, Joseph Smith. Crazy? And how!)

 In today’s blog, it’s not my intent to go into Mormon fundamentalist and LeBaron doctrine, other than to say all this above crazy business meant Uncle Ben claimed to hold the priesthood keys to the kingdom of God on earth. So he was, therefore, “The one Mighty ‘n’ strong, come in the last days to set the house of God in order” — as prophesied in Mormon scriptures.

 Mormon fundamentalists believe “The house of God” (the mainstream Mormon church) had gotten out of order and lost the keys to the priesthood and, thus, favor with God when they signed away plural marriage in the Manifesto of 1890. For polygamy was the highest commandment their Prophet Joseph Smith had given them.

Trust me, that’s all we have time to tell about these fundamentalist doctrines and beliefs, at the moment. We’ve already gotten far off the subject of “Ma Meets Pa.” But at least now you know why Mama did not feel she was a home-breaker … Instead, believed she was a “home-maker.”



PART 12

My parents, Esther LeBaron-McDonald and Floyd Otto Spencer 

Home Sweet Home


Chorus:

Home! Home!

Sweet, sweet home!

There’s no place like home —

There’s no place like home

Verses:

‘Mid pleasures and palaces,

Though I may roam,

Be it ever so humble,

There’s no place like home.

A charm from the sky

Seems to hallow us there,

Which seek thro’ the world,

Is ne’er met with elsewhere

To thee, I’ll return,

Overburdened with care;

The heart’s dearest solace

Will smile on me there

No more from that cottage

Again I will roam;

Be it ever so humble,

There’s no place like home.

NOTE: “Home Sweet Home” was one of Daddy’s favorite songs. (When I was ten years old, he taught me to play it on the harmonica).


This classic folksong and hymn was written by American lyricist John Howard Payne and English composer Sir Henry Bishop for an opera that was first produced in London in 1823. The song became hugely popular throughout the United States, and was a favorite of both Union and Confederate soldiers during the Civil War.)




Let’s continue where we left off in Part 11 of “My Mama,” where she was saying: “I didn’t feel I was a home-breaker … The thought never entered my mind. I believed I was a ‘home-maker’ because I brought your Pa into ‘the glorious Principle of Plural Marriage.’

“I knew his living this holy principle, as laid down by Joseph Smith, would ensure he would not only have a chance to obtain a home in heaven with God — but he’d also be able to become a God, himself, in the hereafter … and create worlds of his own … and, thus, many homes throughout eternity. Therefore, I was not a ‘homebreaker’ … I was a ‘home-maker.’ ”

So here we have fervent Mormon fundamentalist homewrecker, lovestruck Ma, instead of perched upon a chair doing her college homework, perched upon the housetop doing “home-maker” homework …  flirting in a “pretty-please” position irresistible to future Pa — the guy Mama’s ma said, “had one-foot-in-the-grave.” (He was forty-eight years old — twenty-six years older than Mama.)

  Now, while beautiful future Mother was ardently gazing into gorgeous future Father’s eyes, Mother’s brothers were arduously and assiduously helping lay new shingles as fastidiously as they were waxing unwise in converting future brother-in-law to polygamy, Mormon orthodoxy … and all its lies!

The re-roofing while preaching gave gorgeous Ma multiple moments to be with handsome Pa … Moments in which they got to know each other — up on the rooftop in sunny Mesa, Arizona.

All during this time, Uncle Ben wasted no time showing my future father, mainstream Mormon Floyd Spencer, Scriptures that would convince him the Mormon church was out of order.

However, he was unable to convince future Father that he, Benjamin Teasdale LeBaron, was the one mighty ’n’ strong — come to set the the Mormon church/ the house of God back in order — despite Uncle Ben’s constantly hearing voices from within while relating to future Father his “Thus sayeth the Lord!” revelations. “The word of God” came to my schizophrenic uncle on a regular basis … And on a stepped-up basis while working with and trying to convert future Father to his, Uncle Ben’s, new church.



PART 13

 Floyd Otto Spencer and Esther LeBaron McDonald de Spencer


“Home is the place where,
when you have to go there,
they have to take you in.”
Robert Frost



We left off where Uncle Ben wasn’t able to convince my future Pa, Floyd Spencer, that he, Benjamin Teasdale LeBaron, was The One Mighty ‘n’ Strong come to set the house of God in order. However, Uncle Ben had convinced Floyd Spencer the only way he could be saved was to enter into Plural Marriage; i.e., polygamy/ polygyny/ bigamy.

In fact, betwixt Ma and her brother Ben, my handsome mainstream Mormon pa, Floyd Spencer, was quickly converted to “Plural Marriage” and “the fullness of the gospel;” i.e., Mormon fundamentalist gospel.

It wasn’t hard: My young sexy “future Ma” was regularly looking, with eyes aglow, into the eyes of my middle-aged “future Pa” — and the countenance of the man she “knew” she was to marry — And “Pa” had a reputation for being a womanizer — said a half-brother of mine I met years ago — one of Daddy’s sons by his first wife.

But what finally cinched Floyd’s conversion to polygamy was Uncle Ben’s reading him the 132nd sec. of The Doctrine and Covenants — the Mormon scriptural revelation wherein J. Smith commands his followers to live Plural Marriage or be damned to hell.

After future Pa’s conversion to Mormon fundamentalism, it wasn’t long thereafter before he and future Ma were lovers. Having first met on October 13, 1943, in cold January—three months later—the two were snuggled up in the bed of future Pa’s pick-up truck with Uncle Ben — or Uncle Alma? — in the cab at the wheel hitting the unpaved 1944 rocky rutted road at top speed while the vehicle bounced ‘n bumped up-‘n-down (‘n humped ‘n’ pumped?) as they sped along towards the Mormon town, Colonia Juarez, Mexico — so Pa could get permission from Ma’s pa to marry Ma — while they were still hopefully chaste?! Hmmm! (I would’ve loved to have gone along for the ride!)*

But Daddy didn’t get much permission from his legal wife Eva to take a ride — let alone a second wife. She could “take a hike,” as far as he was concerned because Joseph Smith’s commandment to “live polygamy or be damned” came ahead of everything else — and he’d be damned if he’d be damned!

So Eva, his wife of 23 years and mother of their 10 children — and one on the way — agreed to go along with Joseph Smith’s teachings that required a man live polygamy. I’m getting ahead of the story a little, now, when I tell you that after six-suffering months with her handsome, hardworking husband, she couldn’t take plural marriage anymore.

Feeling betrayed, and unable to bear any longer the heartbreak, jealousy, and loneliness brought on by her husband bedding and abetting his nubile twenty-two-year-old polygamist bride, on October 31, 1944, Eva divorced him on the basis of Adultery, Assault and Battery, Abandonment, Emotional Abuse, and Incompatibility.

While at it, she obtained a Restraining Order … barring him from their younger kids still at home with her. (Tears!) So Daddy never saw his youngest children again till they were in their mid to late teens. I was fourteen at the time and present when he met his two youngest, Jimmy and Vonda, for the first time since they were babies.

Daddy had to pull a lot of strings behind Eva’s back to get to see them. But he felt lucky they got to meet at all! These two children who did not know him had been so turned against him, it wasn’t a warm welcome, only a short reunion … but better than none.

*[NOTE: On January 15, 1944, in Colonia Juarez, Mexico, my mother was married to my father as a plural wife. A month later, on February 19, 1944 they went to Salt Lake City to be sealed by Joseph White Musser. Neither of these marriages were legal: Daddy was still married to his first wife Eva. But on June 22, 1945, they were legally married in Mexico because by then Daddy’s first wife had divorced him. (See “Spencer Family Album and Scrapbook” compiled by my sister Nola.)

PART 14

dad-collage

A collage of Daddy’s two families, et Al



“That which does not kill you
will make you stronger.”
Nietche



Let’s go back to Part 13 where my “future ma and pa” lay or sat on a makeshift bed of blankets in the back of “future Papa’s” pickup. The blankets padded their backs and butts as they bounced and bumped along in a rough and rickety ride over 1944s rutted roads in their 1930s vehicle that soon left Mesa, Arizona far behind as they bounded for the Mexican border making lickety-split time!

Like bandits, they had to get out of Dodge to dodge the law that would like to put Pain jail for practicing polygamy. My young uncles Ben and Alma participated in the excitement and the anticipation as they sat in the truck’s cab taking turns at the wheel while conversing excitedly about their soon-to-be brother-in-law’s recent conversion to Plural Marriage and “the fullness of the gospel;” i.e., Mormon fundamentalism.

They were proud of themselves and their ability to preach the gospel — their ability to be good missionaries. Felt they had done “a good day’s work” by bringing another soul into “The Work” — That is, “The work of God, in God’s only true Church upon the face of the earth.”

This “accomplishment” heightened their sense of self-esteem and self-worth — puffed them up a bit as they continued making a beeline for their hometown, the Mexican Mormon colony, Colonia Juarez … so their sister, Esther, could get their papa’s permission to wed — ASAP!

To make a longer story shorter, my parents Esther and Floyd easily obtained permission from Mother’s father to marry — though her parents weren’t particularly happy she was marrying a man over twice her age who already had “one foot in the grave,” as my maternal grandma liked to say.

Nevertheless, “future Mama’s” Mormon fundamentalist parents were relieved their middle child and youngest living daughter Esther LeBaron-McDonald had finally “come to her senses” … had, in the end, chosen to marry into polygamy.

I confess, they had been very worried about her salvation and her entering the highest degree of glory, once in heaven, because, for some years there, Esther had professed (to their dismay) not to believe in nor want to live plural marriage:

“Part of what changed my mind ‘n’ convinced me to accept ‘the holy and righteous Principle of Plural Marriage,’ Mama said, “is I had a marvelously inspired revelation — a dream that showed me plural marriage was right. It even outlined exactly how it should be lived … And how glorious it could be … if participated in correctly.”

 Daddy, likewise, believed he had done the right thing to take a plural wife. But sometimes I wonder if he wondered if he’d chosen wrongly. For, not long after he’d married Mom to his dismay, his hair suddenly turned from Salt-and-Pepper gray to pure white … And thinned … as he turned “blue” and thinner under the unexpected stresses, losses, devastation, and sorrows that followed his new Mormon fundamentalist faith and lifestyle.

Especially devastating to him was losing his eleven childrennot to mention his beloved wife Eva. Then, for all his sacrifices and attempts to live “The Holy Principle of Matrimony/Plural Marriage,” he was soon, again, a monogamist, anyway!! And remained that way till the day he died — was never able to take on another plural wife, so as to live “The fullness of the gospel.”

My ma was too jealous to let him take another wife — never mind that she, herself, took Pa from Eva! That’s what polygamists do, you know. It doesn’t enter their mind that they are taking somebody else’s husband or spouse. They are too busy believing they’re only serving God and abiding by Joseph Smith’s Commandments to live polygamy or go to hell.)

Ah, what travesties and travails life doth present us … And how much of our pain and sorrow do we bringeth upon ourselves because, though we may think we are doing what is right, we are, in reality, holding our fingers on a hot stove; i.e., We’re doing what is wrong. Pain is our warning that we’re doing something not good for us.

However, not realizing this, Daddy concluded: “I couldn’t allow Eva to wear the pants in the family, pussy whip me, and carry me down to hell with her ‘cause she wouldn’t abide by the higher laws of God.

She was too weak to follow me, her husband and priesthood head — too rebellious to live the fullness of the gospel. So, instead of doing what was right, by following God’s command to live plural marriage, she chose to do wrong — to get revenge … causing me no end of trouble with the law and the Mormon church. Even kept me from ever seeing my kids!!!*

“Nonetheless, I had to put God’s Commandments first … That is, to give my life for God and the truth. I knew I could not let her stop me from doing what I believed was right; I had to  continue to follow the Prophet Joseph Smith’s commandment to live ‘The Holy Principle of Plural Marriage’ … or die trying … or I’d be damned.” (And he’d be damned if he’d be damned!)


* Bear in mind that I’m trying to present Daddy’s point of view. To be sure, it didn’t include such things as his violence – his physical and mental abuse towards Eva and her kids. I suspect this was sufficient reason to provoke betrayed Eva to obtain a Restraining Order against him to keep him away from her and her kids … and off her property.

He was of the old-country thinking: Thought it his position and right, as man of the house, to beat his wife and children into submission; that is, control them by “whipping them into shape.” Mama was of this mindset, also! (She bent to her husband’s/ her priesthood head’s will, as good Mormon fundamentalist wives do … “so she wouldn’t deserve his wrath.”)

And, of course, when it comes to his first wife Eva, Daddy didn’t admit to his betrayal of her, nor the hurt he caused her and her/his family when he took on another wife and family.

Unfortunately, Mormon fundamentalists follow their early founders to the hilt (when it comes to some things) – leaders who told them living plural marriage was God’s highest and most holy law. Being stoics, they believed they had to put aside their own feelings and needs … as well as the feelings and needs of all others … in order to live polygamy! Ridiculous? And how! But that’s how they believed.



My Memoir Backstory:
Esther LeBaron Spencer de McDonald–
Ma Meets Pa … Part 15

PART 15

Dad 51+

“Home isn’t home anymore.”
from Olivia Newton John’s song



We left off in last week’s blog where Daddy said:

“I couldn’t allow Eva to wear the pants in the family, pussy-whip me, and carry me down to hell with her ‘cause she wouldn’t abide by the higher laws of God and Joseph Smith. Instead, sEva was evil: She was rebellious … not spiritual enough to follow her priesthood head, do what was right, and live the fullness of the gospel.

“She turned my kids against me! Even took out a Restraining Order to keep me from seeing them ever again.* So I had to divest myself of her in order to follow the Prophet Joseph Smith’s commandment to live ‘The Principle of Plural Marriage’ or be damned. 

“Before I married yer ma, Eva had agreed to go along with my takin’ a plural wife. But she soon changed her mind, betrayed me … and went to the law to get me in trouble.

“Because of her treachery, I had to sell out and flee the country. And set up a totally new homestead in Old Mexico — though I knew no Spanish! As an American, I wasn’t allowed to get a job and make a living there, either!

“Eva even had the Mormon church cut me off as an apostate! That was vengeful … traitorous! She couldn’t wait to get me into all kinds of legal fixes. 

She ruined my estate. Due to her actions, I lost a lot of money. Had to sell, in too big a hurry, my home and almost everything I owned, to go into hiding in Old Mexico.

“Putting it succinctly, she was a revengeful ingrate. Her treachery and rebellion knew no bounds. It was unforgivable! She was, for so many years, my wonderful wife and helpmate — only to  turn against me and do me in!” 

Under these conditions, Daddy chose to stay with his new, twenty-years-younger-than-Eva wife, my Mama Esther LeBaron-McDonald.

Mom said, “After he married me, he had far fewer migraines than he’d had livin’ with Eva. She was a perfectionist, an immaculate housekeeper. And always pressured him too much.

“Yer pa could never please her enough. Her continuous and unending demands on him to make more money so they could live a better lifestyle stressed him out.”

Well, Papa got quite the opposite with Mama! She was a lay-back, easy-going creative and dreamer — never much concerned about what others thought of her housekeeping.

She lived in a dream world — believed she was high class and the greatest woman in the world … among other things. Believed she was above cleaning house and other such menial chores.

He must have missed Eva’s, “A place for everything and everything in its place,” for, in that way, Daddy was like Eva: He kept his shop organized and immaculate.

Born with the gene that enables people to organize things, each one of Daddy’s tools hung proudly and neatly on the wall in its own place when he wasn’t using it.

Not only that, his artistic placement of them formed a beautiful design, relaxing to the eye and pleasing to behold.

It was such a change from Mama’s disorganized, dirty home — which got increasingly worse over the years as she became more and more inundated and overwhelmed with the responsibility of too many children and all else that goes into managing a well-run household.

But to add to her distress and tiring, unending chores was, true to stoic Mormon fundamentalist ways, she was in a constant cycle of being either pregnant, nursing, or becoming pregnant again. And to be sure, women’s work never ends! And Daddy never helped out in the house. “That’s women’s work,” he said!

What’s worse, no matter how Mother’s state of health and energies declined, she and Daddy believed it their fervent, foot-washing duty to God to put childbearing first. Their family’s and their own needs and comforts were secondary when it came to bringing another little “fore-ordained special spirit” into their “righteous Mormon home.”

Mother and Daddy would give their life for any one of their yet unborn babies. That was Mormon fundamentalist doctrine. (It was more like putting the cart before the horse!)

I just wish they would’ve “given their life,” that is, their attention, love, care, and money more to the kids they already had. But Mama loved to tell people her dream was to have twenty-six kids or die trying! Instead, Daddy died “trying” at about age 70 — his last son was born not long before that.

But Mother remained ever the artist, as long as she lived … never much of a homemaker — though she designed beautiful clothes for us kids, curtains for the house, rugs for the floor — that sort of thing. She should’ve had servants, but we could not afford them.

But, after moving to Mexico, where labor was cheap, she would hire a cleaning lady, when the place got too dirty, the dishes, ironing, and laundry piled too high — and she couldn’t get one of her kids to do the menial maintenance work because they had grown up and flown the coop, or other such.

As for Daddy’s migraines, they generally let up, anyway, as people age. However, I’ve always wondered why Mother’s generally messy home didn’t give him a Full-blown migraine every time he walked in the door. Actually, Mummsy would hustle us all into the house to quickly clean up messes, as much as possible, just before Dad got home from work.

The house was still far from immaculate, but that helped keep him from flying into a rage because the place was a mess again and his meal was once more not on the table when he got home after a hard day’s labor in the fields — or doing construction work, handyman work, clock and watch repair. He was a Jeweler. He could have been doing myriads of other chores and jobs too. He was an industrious, hard-working man, gifted at so many things.

But what helped keep peace in the home most was Daddy knew Mummsy was in love with him. And so proud of him and all his accomplishments, talents, and abilities. He could not have been more appreciated and valued.

And, since Mummy believed she was the greatest woman on earth, it went without saying she believed he was the greatest man on earth — next to the Prophet! Papa liked that feeling of importance … of being cared for and honored — priesthood-Pappy … King of the roost.

On top of that, Mumsy felt rich due to how well Daddy/ Floyd O. Spencer supported her and her family. But “Rich” is relative. I suppose she was rich, in comparison to the dire poverty with which she and her indigent, scrabble-farming family grew up in Old Mexico — Not to mention, the pitiful want and starvation she saw all around her among many of the poor Mexican peoples! So I’d like to say Ma and Pa lived happily ever after … but did they?


* Bear in mind that I’m trying to present Daddy’s point of view. To be sure, that point of view didn’t include such things as his violence – his physical and mental abuse towards Eva and their kids.

Violent, tyrannical Dad believed it his right to dominate and administer physical abuse when his wife or kids were in rebellion, made a mistake — or irked him. But sadly, Daddy was probably following the example he was raised with, didn’t know any better, and was only venting his anger, frustration, and pain.

But domestic abuse was certainly more than sufficient reason to provoke betrayed Eva to obtain a Restraining Order against him to keep him away from her and her kids … and off her property.

He was of the-old-country thinking: Thought it his position and right, as man of the house, to beat his wife and children into submission; i.e., control them by “whipping them into shape.”

Mama was of this mindset, also! (She bent to her husband’s/ her priesthood head’s will, as good Mormon fundamentalist wives are taught to do … so she wouldn’t “deserve” his wrath.)

Daddy didn’t admit to his betrayal of Eva, nor the hurt he caused her and her family when he took on another wife and family. Unfortunately, Mormon fundamentalists follow their early founders to the hilt – leaders who told them living plural marriage was God’s highest and most holy law.

Being Stoics, they believed they had to put aside their own feelings and needs … as well as the feelings and needs of all others involved … in order to live polygamy! Ridiculous? And how! But that’s how they believed.



PART 16

family, color.jpeg

Esther LeBaron-McDonald & Floyd Otto Spencer family in 1958


“Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully
as when they do it from religious conviction.”

Blaise Pascal


Picking up where we left off last week, I find it reprehensible Mormon fundamentalist dogma encourages women to intrude upon established marriages, break them up (as Mother did when she went after Father, who was already married and had nine or ten children at the time — and another soon on the way) —  all in the name of polygamy; i.e., “living a higher law.” 

In other words, it encourages adultery: It “legalizes” a woman’s going after a man she’s attracted to, though he is another woman’s “Contracted property.”

It’s altogether barbaric, ludicrous, deplorable, and inexcusable that a religion could teach doctrines and laws that break up marriages and families — doctrines and laws that leave the wife broken-hearted, betrayed, her home downtrodden, and her life and that of her kids smashed to smithereens.

Often, thanks to problems with trying to live polygamy,  children are left to grow up fatherless. And the now-single wife is forced to be mother and father to her large family of small children – A sure way to invite misery, poverty, deprivation and under-class living.

That’s exactly what happened in my father’s case. His Junior-High-School-age kids even had to quit school and work to help support the large, abandoned family! My father’s betrayed wife Eva, now a sad, grieving, and lonely mother of eleven fatherless children, had to leave the home and go to work too.

So who was left to tend home and babies? Obviously, the older children had to play mama. And become premature homemakers.

That’s what happened! Unfortunately, all the above is a typical scenario that broken families endure, thanks to evils like Mormon polygamous doctrines that put “celestial marriage” ahead of everything else.

I’m not proud of the part Mum played in the dire suffering and hell Daddy’s first wife and children endured, even if it was part of Mummy’s fundamentalist Mormon religion to break up marriages.

I only know she could never stand to have done to her what she did to others. She never practiced what she preached. When it came to polygamy, she was too jealous to allow Daddy a plural wife.

And Daddy wasn’t about to take a plural wife unless Mom was in agreement. He’d already suffered, almost beyond endurance, after losing his first wife and eleven children.

Having learned his lesson the hard way, Dad wasn’t about to stumble, bumble, and ramble into another briar patch — wasn’t about to gamble again on whether taking a plural wife would or wouldn’t work — womanizer or no womanizer.

In other words, he wasn’t wandering down any more poison-ivy-bedecked garden paths — without his legal wife’s agreement and encouragement. Even then, he might hesitate.

For Eva had been in agreement, to begin with, when it came to her husband taking a second wife — to fulfill Joseph Smith’s commandment to live plural marriage or be damned. But within six months of Daddy’s having wedded Mummy — bedded Mummy, Eva could bear no more. She packed up kids and all and divorced him.

Though Mother probably didn’t know what she was doing, at age twenty-two or twenty-three, when she went after somebody else’s attractive father and husband “in order to live plural marriage” (that is, have the man she wanted) in the end, she herself was unable to share her handsome husband once Eva had left him.

She never encouraged Father to take another wife — never lived polygamy … never did anything but talk about it. Just as she talked about herself being the most perfect, holy, and righteous woman on earth — the most-Godly example of how to live “the gospel;” i.e., Mormon fundamentalism. Again, it was all talk.

Ma even wrote and disseminated articles on the subject of how to live plural marriage — and the importance of this “holy law of matrimony”!

Followers follow, so the Mormon fundamentalists she put pressure on and talked into going into plural marriage never took into account Mama had never lived it, herself, to speak of.

Anyway, Mother had, as the power behind her “punch,” the Prophet Joseph Smith’s commandment to live “the holy law of matrimony” or be damned to hell. So her followers drank the “punch” — and were damned to hell … till death do us part?? I damn well think so!

Even so, Mum had a following … admirers … true-believing people who idolized and lauded her — because she told them she knew she had her “calling and election made sure!”

If asked how she was sure she was going to the highest degree of glory when she died, she invariably vouched: “My Patriarchal Blessing told me so!” … as though she were so much more special than the rest of us.


  • The following link is a YouTube presentation done by my Aunt Susan Ray Schmidt (formerly Susan Ray LeBaron, one of Uncle Verlan’s former wives who left him), wherein she tells the audience how much she had longed to know that she was saved; i.e., had her “calling and election made sure” … “like Esther LeBaron Spencer:”


PART 17

family, all but sharon

1964 LeBaron–Spencer family photo (one Sis not in Pic)

“A wise man learns from other man’s experience.
A fool cannot learn even from his own.
Will Durant


Taking up from last week’s blog: Since Mother did not/would not live polygamy when it came to sharing Daddy with another woman, I resent that she maneuvered and manipulated me into a harem — a life she could not live herself.

But what’s new?! Ma operated on a double standard: What was not good enough for her was good enough for her daughter. Or she and Daddy were hoping I would be able to live the “highest law of God,” even though “Perfect” Mother was not able to.

I’m sure she wasn’t duplicitous on purpose, but her actions showed a lack of integrity and forethought, not to mention, empathy. But what can you expect from a true-believing “Saint” trapped mentally, spiritually, and physically in a world of evil, lies, perversion, fraud, and fantasy — and unable to find a way out?

Perhaps, her lack of feelings and integrity was at least partially brought on by her splitting from herself due to not only subconscious guilt because she was not living all the gospel precepts she taught and believed in, but also because her artistic and other deep human needs were not being met.

All these needs conflicted terribly with her crazy Mormon fundamentalist beliefs she’d been so indoctrinated and brainwashed with since birth — such as having to have all the kids she could have, one after another, no matter what the condition of her health was! And having to live “The law of chastity” (I’ll explain this in a future blog) — just two examples of the strict fundamentalist beliefs her “profits/Prophets” had instilled in her.

She dared not do what was best for her or her family. She was taught that she had to do only what was best for “God” and “His gospel.” But when you remove the glittering generalities, you realize “God and the gospel” really referred to the “Profit” of the cult — he was “God and the gospel.” He was the one who benefitted from all the cult indoctrination, guilt, and fears he instilled in his followers.

Since Mummy dared not think for herself nor question “the truth,” she wasn’t aware of her two-facedness — if only because she couldn’t admit to herself she was “not good enough” to be able to live up to what she considered “the highest laws of God” … she who lived in a dream world, and told everybody she was the greatest, most righteous woman upon the face of the earth.*

So, though Mum raised me to believe I would go to hell if I didn’t live polygamy, she never lived it during her twenty-two-year marriage with Father — that is, after his first wife divorced him within six months of his marrying Mama as his polygamist wife. But, hey, fourteen children and one wife were more than enough for one old man — or young man!

It was a blessing in disguise, I realize, now that I have escaped the polygamist cult, that Daddy didn’t have more wives and kids for our family to contend with and have to share our parents’ attention, energies, and already meager income with. As for attention, what was that? About the only attention I ever got was when I was in trouble or they were piling on me more slave labor.

But, actually, as a Mormon fundamentalist, I didn’t think in terms of attention, being a slave, etc. That would’ve been “selfish and evil.” We were happy masochists in our misery as we denied ourselves in order to make any necessary sacrifices to bring more little spirits into “good Mormon fundamentalist homes “– such as ours. (LOL!)

We believed we were serving God by doing this. (We told ourselves a lot of stories!) But now that I look back on it, in reality, we were serving the self-proclaimed prophet/ profit, not God/Goodness:

The more kids we produced, and the more sacrifices we made, the more power and profit for the Prophet — and the more little girls available for him and his favorite priesthood members. As I’ve said before, it was all about quantity, not quality.


  • The cult leaders taught if we even dared question what they told us and whether polygamy and “the gospel” was correct, we would be turned over to the buffetings of Satan. That meant we would lose our mind and our soul — a very real concern for my Mother and for me.

*Please keep in mind: Throughout my blogs and Memoirs, I am talking only about the years I knew Mother. Everybody changes as they age. I had no contact with her the last few years of her life before she became riddled with dementia, then died at ninety-two.

So I’ll cut her some slack and say that she must’ve been doing something right or she wouldn’t have had so many people who loved her till the end and still have fond memories of her.



Part 18

man-in-bed-with-three-women

Bigamy Is “BIG LOVE” Literally


One’s a plenty, two’s a crowd,
Three on the sidewalk
Is not allowed.”
(Anonymous)

(But have you noticed in “Big Love”
They may be doing it behind your back …
As in behind closed doors?
Step on a crack
And try to keep track!
Stephany Spencer


As mentioned in previous blogs, Ma raised me to believe I would go to hell if I didn’t live polygamy. Yet, she didn’t practice what she preached: She never lived Plural Marriage during her twenty-two years with Father.*

I resent this duplicity: How she incessantly preached “The Principle” and maneuvered others into it/polygamy as if she were a saint, Priestess, and the greatest example and authority on the subject — Though living “The Sacred Principle” was something she could not do herself — At least not while she was married to her own man.*

Maybe she felt she could vindicate herself for not having lived it – not having shared Daddy – by getting everybody else, instead, to share their husbands and live polygamy, “The Celestial Principle/Law of Marriage.”

But how I remember her ranting on about this “Principle” all the while I was growing up! And talking about how great “The Law of Celestial Marriage” was. Then she’d go on about the dream she had wherein God showed her how “wonderful and glorious” plural marriage is “when lived correctly.” I believe she got off on the power of pushing “The Principle.”

Pushing Plural Marriage as though she were the prime epitome of how to live it, is only one example of how she wasn’t honest with herself as to who she  was and what she was doing by meddling in others’ marriages; i.e., directing others to live P.M., under the threat of going to hell if they did not — as if she, herself, were living polygamy!

That, perhaps, was her greatest downfall – not being strong enough to be honest with herself and others about who she really was. Instead, she sank into a “wannabe” fantasy and con world where she believed her own lies — that she was something she was not and so perfect she had her “Calling and Election” made sure.

In other words, Mother was basically telling people she was going to the highest degree of glory without having, among other things, lived “The Law of Plural Marriage” during her twenty-two years with Father before he died. Truth be told, she never could share him with another woman.

The high road would have been to have accepted herself as she was and for who and what she was, warts, worms, and all, instead of trying to fool others by putting on that she was perfect and was the supreme example of how to live. And was blessed above all others. I guess she did not feel secure enough to live without pretense.*

Apparently, not understanding she needed to accept and portray herself as she was, lack of integrity became “the best policy — that is, pathological lying — she believed her own stories.

Perhaps, believing she wouldn’t have nearly the influence and glory she had when carrying on as if she was God’s greatest daughter, she claimed to be above all others: “The Best,” Number One,” and “The most perfect woman in the world — God’s favorite female.”

In other words, she chose to live in a dream world of delusional thinking rather than be herself, a Mexico LeBaron whom many despised. But maybe one of the reasons the Maud and Dayer LeBaron family was largely despised, among other reasons, was because they lacked integrity — not to mention they didn’t fit in.

All the while I was growing up, being a “mundane commoner” was an anathema in Mother’s eyes. The last thing she wanted was to fit in and be average. She felt she was above others. And thrived on the attention and respect she got by going about like she was royalty and “the main one.”

But, at the same time, she would remind me, “Where much is given, much is expected.” And she meant it. She was good at doing community service and charity. She would leave her older children to take care of the home and family while she went out to advise and help other families.

She once told me, “I never turn down a beggar — a wayfarin’ stranger. It could be God in disguise testing to see whether I am following His admonitions to feed the poor and needy.” So delusions of grandeur reigned hand-in-hand with dualism, duplicity, and fear of God’s retributions.



*Note: Again, please keep in mind: Throughout my blogs and memoirs, I am talking only about the years I knew Mother. Everybody changes as they age. I had no contact with her the last years of her life.

*I know of at least six different times wherein Mother courted married men she was interested in. One of those men was Rulon Jeffs, Warren Jeffs’ father — before she met, courted, then chose to marry Daddy.

  • (Continued in: “My Memoir: My Mother, Esther LeBaron Spencer de McDonald — And Mormon Polygamist Cults Unmasked — Part 19”)

*The following sermon is a perfect example of some of the stuff Mother preached in order to get people to live polygamy. And this is a perfect example of where she got her Mormon fundamentalist doctrine and authority:

(Sermon by Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 4., pp. 55-57; also printed in Deseret News, Vol. 6, pp. 235-236):

“I wish my women, and brother Kimball’s and brother Grant’s to leave, and every woman in this Territory, or else say in their hearts that they will embrace the Gospel — the whole of it….say to your wives, ‘Take all that I have and be set at liberty; but if you stay with me you shall comply with the law of God, and that too without any murmuring and whining.

You must fulfil the law of God in every respect, and round up your shoulders to walk up to the mark without any grunting. Now recollect that two weeks from tomorrow I am going to set you at liberty.

But the first wife will say, ‘It is hard, for I have lived with my husband twenty years, or thirty, and have raised a family of children for him, and it is a great trial to me for him to have more women;’ then I say it is time that you gave him up to other women who will bear children.

If * wife had borne me all the children that she ever would bare, the celestial law would teach me to take young women that would have children….

Sisters, I am not joking, I do not throw out my proposition to banter your feelings, to see whether you will leave your husbands, all or any of you. But I know that there is no cessation to the everlasting whining of many of the women in this territory; I am satisfied that this is the case.

And if the women will turn from the commandments of God and continue to despise the order of heaven, I will pray that the curse of the Almighty may be close to their heals and that it may be following them all the day long….

 Prepare yourselves for two weeks from tomorrow; and I will tell you now, that if you will tarry with your husbands after I have set you free, you must bow down to it, and submit yourselves to the celestial law.
You may go where you please, after two weeks from to-morrow; but, remember, that I will not hear any more of this whining.”

(Sermon by Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 4., pp. 55-57; also printed in Deseret News, Vol. 6, pp. 235-236)

Comments from Mormon Think: Obviously Brigham was motivated to give this speech because the women were not happy with polygamy. From searching records and reading various published stories from faithful polygamous wives, we have found many women that were very upset practicing LDS polygamy and not one account of a truly happily married polygamous woman from the 1800s but obviously, there must be some.

A few quotes from polygamous wives:

“Here was my husband,” she said, “gray-headed, taking to his bed young girls in mockery of marriage. Of course, there could be no joy for him in such an intercourse except the indulgence of his fanaticism and of something else, perhaps, which I hesitate to mention.”

-Sarah Pratt speaking of her husband, the apostle Orson Pratt who dated a 16-year-old girl (and then married her) when he was 57. (Van Wagoner 1986, pp. 92)

“God will be very cruel if he does not give us poor women adequate compensation for the trials we have endured in polygamy.”

Mary Ann Angell Young, Brigham Young’s second wife

“I would never have been sealed to Joseph had I known it was anything more than ceremony. I was young, and they deceived me, by saying the salvation of our whole family depended on it.”

-Helen Mar Kimball, Mormon Polygamy: A History, p. 53

Check out Mormon Think for more sources on polygamy and other LDS history.

Zina Jacobs-Smith-Young
Zina Jacobs-Smith-Young
Zina Jacobs-Smith-Young would have been a millennial blogger, but she died in 1901. The wife of Brigham Young, and prior to that Joseph Smith, and prior to that Henry Jacobs, who was sent on a mission by Brigham before he married her, Zina loves writing, long walks on the beach, and playing the field.

~ My Review of the California Writers Club Anniversary Anthology, “Cascade of Pearls”

 

Product Details
California Writers Club Anniversary Anthology


writing-man-with-pen-etc

  Ode to The California Writers Club:
The California Writers Club is our oyster, 
And we writers the pearls being polished within her.
Stephany Spencer  2016 

pearl in oyster

 2016 marked the 30th anniversary —
The Pearl Anniversary of the California Writers Club,
San Fernando Valley Branch.
For thirty years, this club has been our oyster ranch,

 And we members pearls growing within her dance.
Polishing and developing daily our word-writing romance,
Some works now fairly sparkle and glimmer,

Like well-crafted word pearls enhanced till they glitter,
Reflecting our club’s lively oyster-shell shimmer.
So thanks, California Writers Club —
Thanks for letting us join your Oyster-Ranch “dinner.”

Stephany Spencer 2016



I’m so excited to tell you my California Writers Club, San Fernando Valley Branch, has produced another Anthology, this one in honor of our club’s 30th anniversary. 

 The following quote, taken from the Anthology’s Introductory pages, sizes up our Anniversary Anthology well:

“This collection is a testimony to the power of words, and to those gifted writers who have run them together like strands of precious pearls. Essay, poem, short story — each one sings out and captures our imagination … and our heart.” Victoria Zackheim (Author, Anthologist, Playwright, Educator)

“Through this anthology of short stories, imaginings, and poems,” says CWC Editor, Rita Keeley Brown, “our current members share their adventure of writing.” 

A quote from Truman Capote, taken from the back cover of the  anthology, aptly sums it up: “What I am [we are] trying to achieve is a voice sitting by the fireplace telling you a story on a winter’s evening.”

I’m so proud to say, I, myself, got my act together, followed my poem’s advice, “Dare to fail, or fail to dare do well,” and submitted three poems for this Anniversary Anthology.

When you buy our work of wonders, you’ll see these entries, as well as many more pieces written and submitted by our club’s gifted and creative writers.

Below is the cover of our Anniversary Anthology, “Cascade of Pearls,”  sold on Amazon.com.

Here’s hoping you enjoy it as much as I who am presently snuggled up by the fireplace in the process of reading and reaping the rewards of time well spent within its pages.  ~ Stephany Spencer

 



Product Details

Cascade of Pearls

May 15, 2017

by San Fernando Valley, California Writers Club

Paperback

Get it by Tomorrow, Aug 3
FREE Shipping on eligible orders
More Buying Choices

$14.95(12 used & new offers)



Here are two samples of work composed by Nance Crawford, one of the amazing authors and poets in our California writers club. Enjoy!




 

~ My Review of Scott Anderson’s “The 4 O’Clock Murders”

 

 

 

 

 

Investigative Journalist Scott Anderson, Author of The 4 O’clock Murders

Scott Anderson’s “The 4 O’clock Murders,” published in 1993, is a must-read for those interested in a documentary of America’s most bizarre but now apparently defunct crime family. The Doc chronicles the history of this extremist cult initiated in the late 1960s by the sociopathic serial killer, Ervil LeBaron. (He was my uncle, no less.)

The cult was largely made up of Uncle Ervil’s fourteen wives and about sixty children, plus a few other staunch followers and their wives and children. He called his cult organization the “Church of the Lamb of God.” But it was, in reality, anything but lamb-like. Ervil LeBaron’s cult was a fundamentalist Mormon-mafioso syndicated crime family cloaked under the guise of religion.

Anderson’s text is the most up-to-date book on this cult. Thanks to his dedicated and daring work, we have an amazing wealth of information and insight to further our research, awareness, and understanding of “Evil Ervil,” and his avenging angels.

I’ve been told the “Ervilites” no longer exist. But that’s not to say another extreme cult of “avenging angel’s” couldn’t or hasn’t risen from its ashes to take up where the “Ervilites” left off. You are with me in hoping that isn’t the case and never happens.

Recently, I read Scott Anderson’s “The 4 O’clock Murders,” only to have my hair stand on end when I realized how little I had ever really known about this horrifyingly horrific, dangerous, and devious band of outlaws.

I’m not proud to say most of them were my relatives. And that it was all spawned by my charismatic and brilliant, but lunatic Uncle Ervil and his treacherous teachings — that included hearing God regularly tell him to “Kill those sons of bitches!”

But maniacal “Mormon Manson” Ervil couldn’t have succeeded in his reign of terror without the dastardly group of mislead miscreant, autistic-like, demented people who followed his violent, crazy, megalomaniac, and malevolent religious philosophy.

The majority of Uncle Joel LeBaron’s Church of the Firstborn followers couldn’t stomach his brother Ervil LeBaron’s violent, threatening, and far-fetched Philosophy of life. Nor did they want anything to do with his domineering, devious, and deceptive ways.

Ervil’s overbearing, self-centered, presumptuous, pseudo-authoritative sense-of-entitlement was hard for most to take — not to mention his nonstop talk, wayward religious doctrines — and his bad breath.

Uncle Ervil’s priestcraft and manipulations drove some of my peaceful Uncle Joel’s followers into frenzied frustration, rebellion, and disillusionment — such that they left Joel’s cult Uncle Ervil had a large role in helping Joel build.

In other words, most of Uncle Joel LeBaron’s followers (myself included) wouldn’t leave Joel’s sect to join the violent renegade, retrograde cult Ervil LeBaron started. (Ervil initiated it after Joel excommunicated him from the “Church of the First Born,” a Mormon-offshoot cult.)

Therefore, you have to wonder about the adults who did choose to follow Uncle Ervil, hook, line, and sinker/stinker (Pun intended) — and even to murder for him!

 In 1967, at age twenty-one, I escaped Uncle Joel LeBaron’s cult — just as Uncle Ervil, his right-hand man, and brother, was beginning to preach his own violent, subversive civil-law and blood-atonement doctrine, along with all its mafioso underpinnings.

A few years after I fled “The Church of the Firstborn of the Fullness of Times,” Uncle Joel, as I mentioned above, finally disfellowshipped his brother Ervil from his “church,” due to, among other things, Ervil’s insurrection, insubordination, aggrandizement, and blood-atonement philosophy.

You must read the following books, “The 4 O’Clock Murders,” “Prophet of Blood,” and my recently-deceased Aunt Irene Koonz LeBaron/Spencer’s book, “Cult Insanity,” to know what I’m talking about — if you aren’t already familiar with the LeBaron-Madmen story.

I wish there were an update of this bloody LeBaron Documentary, “The Four O’clock Murders.” Written over twenty-five years ago, much has taken place among the Ervilites, LeBarons, and Joel’s cult since Scott Anderson went out on a limb, putting his life on the line, to chronicle and publish this incredulous history of a vengeful crime family that makes Manson and his “family” seem tame in comparison.

 I’m grateful Anderson scribed this well-written Doc. Without his honesty and dedication, I and the world would never have known the extent to which this bloody, Satanic, and ill-begotten cult was willing to go — although we do have the earlier and equally well-written and researched documentary, “The Prophet of Blood, chronicled and published in 1981 by Ben Bradlee, Jr. and Dale Van Atta.

These Documentaries may not always be right-on-the-button. But they’re close enough to “Who’s got the button?” The Authors did well, given the difficulty involved in obtaining information. Even ex-cult members usually don’t talk — especially to outsiders. If bits of Info were circumspect, blame the cult members they interviewed!

That said“The Prophet of Blood,” is a recommended read. It contains historical data not in “The 4 O’clock Murders.”

Scott Anderson’s Documentary published twelve years later, chronicles updated history of the bloody and loony legacy spawned by the maniacal “prophet,” Ervil LeBaron. It’s a pathetic legacy of a “Prophet out for Profit” … out of his mind.

prophet-of-blood-book-cover

~ My Review of My Aunt Rena Chynoweth’s “The Blood Covenant”

blood-covenant-by-r-blood-blood-covenant-by-chynoweth-1
A ghostwritten Memoir about Rena Chynoweth, Ervil LeBaron, and his cult

This Memoir, written around thirty years ago, struck me as the work of an immature apologist and revisionist. Its bias toward Uncle Ervil’s cold-hearted cult hangs like a cobweb over the entire tale authored by none other than my Ex-Aunt, the infamous Rena Chynoweth.

That said, the book is still in the public libraries, et Al, but is sadly in need of a rewrite and update. How do I know? Because yesterday I had the fortunate opportunity to meet one of my Uncle Ervil’s more than fifty children, the brilliant, gifted, and beautiful Gabriella LeBaron, soon to graduate from the ivy league Cornell University. (Update: She has graduated now, I assume!)

She told me how Rena had indeed taken in Uncle Ervil’s kids and raised them, chancing her own life and well-being while she helped them get out of Ervil’s cult and become good law-abiding citizens! Hats off to Rena!

This is a long story I hope Gabriela will eventually write, herself. For it is the story of great love, sacrifice, dedication, and redemption — especially on the part of Rena, her husband, and others who helped her, including the invaluable “nonprofit” group, “Discovery.” **

*(Insert: October 10, 2017: See below for what I just “discovered” online about this “Discovery” Organization/ Business! Then you be the judge. All I know is some of my cousins really vouch for what it did for them. But it’s common to leave one cult only to be taken in by another.)

In her old memoir of over thirty years ago, it seemed Rena bragged about and exploited, at times, the soldier part she played in the sad and sordid tale of her serial-killer husband Ervil’s bloody, violent, and psychotic cult. At the same time, though, she ended her book with these words:

“I was given a ‘second chance.’ Maybe God wants to use me to reach those kids [Uncle Ervil’s children]. Because I’ve been through years of intensive self-deprogramming myself, I feel I can help them through my own experiences because I understand their very complicated background.

“They should also receive extensive professional help, guidance, and a chance to be around people who really care what happens to them. Simply putting the younger children in foster homes and hoping for the best is not the way to handle the situation.

They will only run away and return to the lifestyle they always knew, breaking the law and posing a danger to people’s lives. They should not be allowed to grow to adulthood without being given a chance to learn proper values.

“These last remnants of Ervil LeBaron’s flock are still a risk to the rest of society. They are the last ones who may still feel bound by his blood covenant that has claimed so many innocent lives.

They have grown up around violence and violent teachings, and there is grave danger they will pass these values on to their own children. I want the killing to stop. Only by finding those still out there and getting them the help they need can we stop the bloodshed.

“What John, my mother, and I envision is a ranch –- a place where these young people can live with family who loves them, where they can finally have the chance to go to school and church and be able to receive the counseling and guidance that will help them become assets to society.

There are a few of us who are willing to do anything we can to give them a chance. If God is willing, and with His help, we shall succeed.

“If anyone has information that would help us reach out to the LeBaron children please contact … ”  Note: Here Rena gave an address and a phone number where she could be contacted. But the resource was around thirty years old, so was likely not worth my posting here, I felt.

But I also had reservations as to how helpful she would be to Ervil’s remnants, given the tone of her memoir. But as of yesterday, April 5, 2016, I learned that she did indeed do a great service to the remnants of Ervil’s children still left in his cult. In fact, Rena and her cohorts are largely responsible for having brought to an end the devious and divisive cult Ervil LeBaron started!! WOW!!

So I am very impressed, now, with Rena — How she not only remade herself but used her personal awakening to help remake and save other unfortunate cult inductees born and raised in my uncle Ervil’s bizarre and dangerous mafioso group.

When her memoir was published, it sounded to me like she had lots of deprogramming and repentance still left in her wake before she could convince me she was no longer caught up in some of the abusive beliefs of “The Lambs of God” and it’s avenging angels.

 So I didn’t see how it would be helpful at all to stick Uncle Ervil’s warped children off on some ranch with her and others like her. Besides, that sounded like just another reclusive cult to me. I felt the best way to civilize warped children was to fully immerse them in a much better environment than the one they came from.

I didn’t think it would be beneficial for a messed up and confused band of cult and ex-cult members to all be living together on some ranch with simply more of their own kind who also grew up in their backward, brainwashed, degenerate, and vengeful cult past.

It seemed to me, to best heal and overcome “damaged human goods,”  They would need to mix and mingle with a normal and better example of beings — strong people they could emulate and learn from — not some adults who still likely had a lifetime of healing left ahead of them before they fully emerged from their bloody cult mindset and the harm it left within them in its wake.

And, as an aside, I had also recently seen some of the Lambs of God and The Book Of Revelations “Avenging Angels” literature being passed out in my area! It is scary stuff and told me the cult of Ervilites still had its leaders.

Or perhaps it was a take-off from Uncle Ervil’s cult and possibly indoctrinating at least some of Ervil’s progeny. Or it was a new group, altogether, but using Ervil’s teachings and trying to bring converts into its bloody cult under a new “prophet,” now.

But still, I had said, “I would be very happy if Rena, et Al, did have a hand in ending this malevolent cult. Let’s pray that’s the case.” Well, it is and was the case, according to my uncle Ervil LeBaron’s astute and beautiful daughter Gabriela!

As I said, Gabriela told me it was thanks to Ervil’s ex-wife Rena’s loving and devoted care of her ex-husband Ervil’s kids that she, herself, was brought out of her father’s cult mess she had grown up in.

And Gabriela has since become a new person, on her way to doing wonderful service to help make the world a better place! She’s an author, blogger, poet, artist, academic, leader, and more. I’m expecting great things from her in the future — in keeping with the things she is doing now by getting her college degree, etc.

That said, as per Rena’s old memoir “Blood Covenant,” penned over 30 years ago, it’s still a worthwhile read but desperately needs to be fact-checked!  Not all is factual. Also, she makes assumptions about a number of serious things that took place in Ervil’s life, as though she were an authority on the subjects. But her assumptions are based only on uneducated and wishful thinking.

For example, she claims “Ervil had nothing to do with the JFK murder.” What does she really know about thisShe wasn’t around Ervil or the cult in 1963. I was. Furthermore, she was only a small kid at that time.

Continuing with my criticisms, important parts of “The Blood Covenant” history were conveniently omitted. She wrote more about her girlish romantic escapades and her “middle class” self than anything — though  she and her family hardly did fit the sociological definition of “middle class.”  “Lower-lower middle class”  or “working-class” was more like it.

The chronicle of her life as Ervil’s wife appeared to be largely an attempt to be in the limelight and cash in on the notoriety of her Ex-husband, Ervil LeBaron, so as to make money and be a star — albeit a notorious one. Maybe we can’t blame her?

So, sadly, we were lucky to get three paragraphs about her cold-blooded murder of Dr. Rulon Allred. And the best apology she could come up with, as to the “Lambs of God” atrocities and murders was, “This did not need to happen.”

Here’s what Scott Anderson had to say:
“In 1990, Rena published her autobiography, “The Blood Covenant.” The ghostwritten book is rather bizarre, a rewrite of “Perils of Penelope,” in which Penelope has a gun and knows how to use it.

Interspersed with gratuitous digs at her murdered sister, Lorna, and insistent claims to having been a “victim,” Rena offers long and clinically detailed accounts of her many brushes with oversexed male suitors.

The small matter of Rulon Allred’s murder is dealt with in a few paragraphs. In 1979, the baby-faced, eight-months-pregnant Rena had taken the witness stand to tearfully deny any role in the elderly man’s slaying. In her book, and with all the passion of a financial reporter, she admitted to being the killer.” (Author of “The 4 O’clock Murders”)

Suffice it to say, you may find her book worth a perusal just to see how a member of Ervil LeBaron’s self-appointed murder-for-God cult used to think.

But if you want to get a better handle on the real scary scoop, read from start to finish “The 4 O’clock Murders” by Scott Anderson. And “Prophet of Blood” by Ben Bradlee, Jr. and Dale Van Atta.

Note: These books may be he found at public libraries, bookstores like Amazon.com, and possibly on Kindle.

 

 

Note: Some entries in the above documentaries are not always exactly right, but hats off to these Author’s for doing as well as they did with a subject that was often hard to get “the truth” about.

And as an added note, this many years later since those books were published, there has been great change and progress in Uncle Ervil’s children and families: True tales of redemption and of what’s amazingly possible in the human spirit, against all odds.

To get an idea of what I mean, read Uncle Ervil’s daughter’s memoir published in March of 2017, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” available in bookstores everywhere. You may also go to the “University” of  YouTube to see interferes of her, and check her website: AnnaLeBaron.com


  • You may use your search engine to look up people and topics if you wish more information on anyone or anything I mentioned in this blog. Also check YouTube, Wikipedia, and other sites.
  • The following is an excellent video Documentary on my Uncle Ervil LeBaron and the LeBaron saga.

 


 


** 10/17/ 2017 — Look what I just found online regarding the Discovery training group I mentioned above. It’s well worth reading!:

Pages: 12Next

Current Page: 1 of 2

Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: notmuch4games ()
Date: February 20, 2008 03:32AM

Howdy, all you straight shooters out there. There is another thread on this site detailing the creepy and controlling tactics of the Discovery Cult operating in the Dallas area, but a new year deserves a new thread.

I just got an email from a contact asking me if I still have Info on Discovery. I do! For those of you who have not read my previous posts, myself and some other straight shooters with family members swindled by D had quite a heated exchange with certain misguided cult-goers. They went on to easier targets no doubt. But my contact assures me that they have simply tried to slip back under the radar.

This group (cult) has an upsidedown view on family values. Put quite simply if your spouse attends Discovery “training” and you chose not to go, the Facilitators or TAs will tell them that you can’t be trusted with details of the training and that if they can’t convince you to attend then you don’t care about them, you will never understand them, and in the end they will have to break ties with you – But not to worry cause their NEW family cares about them and will fill the void where their family and friends once dwelled.

I’ll tell you the basic jist so you don’t have to be subjected to the verbal abuse and physical conditioning; ie, withholding of water, food, bathroom breaks, and personal space.

They will pressure your husband, wife, son, daughter, ect., to give members of the opposite sex “PEE-PEE to PEE-PEE” hugs (their term, not mine) and to not share with their “old” family the way that the facilitators verbally abuse and degrade each member of the group as their turn comes, breaking their spirit and reducing them to tears in a public setting for all to witness. They basically make them feel worthless for the first two days and then make nice and become their best friend on the last day.

The owner of this cult has no formal training in this dispicable form of therapy, nor any training — ANY therapy. This Cult is operated by a lawyer and a gas station owner. It’s all on the web, if you care to investigate.

If you are considering going to Discovery training of if someone you care about is thinking about going – INVESTIGATE! They will break them down and put their own twisted values back into the shell that once was your loved one.

 

Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: straightup ()
Date: March 07, 2008 06:36AM
NM4Games- WELL SAID! You hit the nail on the head. You have been fed the same cult crap as the rest of us. I wish I had come here before I went to Discovery. You could have saved me much money and much more trouble.
Looks like you have their number. CREEPS!!! I’m still reeling from my experiance. I have lots of questions and a little insight. I’ll send you a message. Keep up the good work
Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: Enviro_Cop ()
Date: May 27, 2008 09:26AM
Hey Straightup:
What made you realize Discovery was a scam? You are lucky to get out with your mind still intact. They are still registered as Discovery Training Ministries LLC with the IRS, although they don’t include that info on their website.

EC

Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: notmuch4games ()
Date: June 03, 2008 12:07AM

I’m still around, guys. As long as Discovery is robbing people of their hard-earned money, I’ll be here to tell what I know about them.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/03/2008 12:10AM by notmuch4games.

Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: straightup ()
Date: June 03, 2008 05:34AM
EC, I have read your comments and the other comments by the creeps from Discovery. They are all so completely fooled by the mind games and BS being fed to them by Lowder and his ilk! I feel sorry for them. I feel sorry for me 🙂
I wasted a lot of money on that crap and I have more problems now than I did before. Actually, my old problems are probably small compared with the new issues I picked up at Discovery. I am practically broke after completing two “classes.” I was approached about helping to pay for another classmate’s tuition shortly after my first class. I had never seen the mean-spirited money-hungry side of the facilitators until I told them that I could barely afford to go to D2 myself.
They were completely different after they saw that I wasn’t going to sign my life away. I was willing to give everything (spiritually) that I had, but I think the money thing really pissed them off. At D2, they kept making references to selfishness and self-centeredness when I would come around. Now I can see them for what they are. A business! I wish I had seen this thread before I wasted my money. Has anyone ever sued a group like that and recouped their money?
At D2, they kept making references to selfishness and self-centeredness when I would come around. Now, I can see them for what they are. A business! I wish I had seen this thread before I wasted my money. Has anyone ever sued a group like that and recouped their money?
Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: Enviro_Cop ()
Date: June 03, 2008 07:14AM

Notmuch4games, good to see you are still in the fight! I too will remain to educate people just how evil Discovery is.

Straightup, it is crazy how the people become total believers. I refused to contribute to D2 (financially), and it looked like my Ex would stop going but low and behold one of her new “family” came forward and paid for the entire weekend, including gas money! They sent her a lot of emails and cards trying to shame her into signing up for the next training. It was all about sending money to Discovery. But she couldn’t see that.

They sent her a lot of emails and cards trying to shame her into signing up for the next training. It was all about sending money to Discovery. But she couldn’t see that.
I am glad you didn’t become one of those zombies!

There is an entity called the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists (http://www.tsbep.state.tx.us.html). Here is their mission statement:
“The mission of the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists is to protect the public by ensuring that psychological services are provided to the people of Texas by qualified and competent practitioners who adhere to established professional standards.”

They exist to regulate the practice of psychology in the state of Texas. That also encompasses investigating people or companies practicing psychology without a license. I feel Discovery Training uses methods which could be considered practicing psychology.

A person can file a formal complaint against anyone who they feel is practicing psychology without a license. Maybe if enough people come forward the gas station owner and lawyer might get investigated?

EC

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/03/2008 07:40AM by Enviro_Cop.

Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: notmuch4games ()
Date: June 06, 2008 12:50AM

I filed some paperwork, but I was advised that the lawyer that helps run this scam had all the language just true enough to not be fraudulent. Discovery works very hard at giving a legitimate, even benevolent appearance to the mental, emotional, and even physical abuse administered at the hands of it’s facilitators. Anyone who has had dealings know that this group is anything but legit. They brainwash their members, alienate them, and then squeeze all of the money they can out of them.

Anyone who has had dealings know that this group is anything but legit. They brainwash their members, alienate them, and then squeeze all of the money they can out of them.

I actually called the “Ewing Ranch” of Dallas fame where D holds it’s abuse siminars and spoke to the site manager. He was quite shocked at my claims about the D cult. He seemed unsure of the validity of my Info, so he gave me his email address and I sent him a condensed version of my file on Lowder and his cult.

I noticed that Discovery’s website now has them meeting at the Dallas Doubletree. Hope I did that! 😉 When I have time, I’ll speak to the GM at Doubletree too. I actually stay at that particular hotel when I’m on that side of town.

Straightup, hang in there. Your mind has had bogus and hairbrained ideas inserted into it by invasive methods. You will slowly start to regain the person who went to the brainwashing siminar. All of the old issues will still be there, but they are YOUR issues and YOU are the only with the solution. There is no GAS STATION OWNER, NO LAWYER, and no magic pill that will solve yours mine or anyone else’s problems. Discovery in Dallas is selling magic beans, and people are still buying the crap. STOP DISCOVERY CULT NOW! Keep your loved ones away from cults (LGAT, Discovery, etc.)

All of the old issues will still be there, but they are YOUR issues and YOU are the only with the solution. There is no GAS STATION OWNER, NO LAWYER, and no magic pill that will solve yours mine or anyone else’s problems. Discovery in Dallas is selling magic beans, and people are still buying the crap. STOP DISCOVERY CULT NOW! Keep your loved ones away from cults (LGAT, Discovery, etc.)

Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: notmuch4games ()
Date: August 07, 2008 10:49PM
Hope everybody is staying away from Discovery and other cults out there. Just send me a message if anyone has questions about D. I am happy to tell what I know to anyone with an interest. Keep up the fight, guys. Maybe someday the authorities will “discover” what many of us already know: DISCOVERY IS A CULT AND IT DESTROYS FAMILIES FOR MONITARY GAIN. God bless!
Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: done ()
Date: September 25, 2008 01:57PM

I really wish I had seen this forum before last weekend: My friend made me go.

I am definitely a “changed” woman! I’ve never been more depressed in my life. The sickest thing is, I am NOT one to be swayed by this kind of thing. Or at least I never thought I was….but on Sunday, I was all about this damn thing. Telling my friends to go and everything. It took a long, long discussion with one of my more rational friends to realize what had happened. This whole damn thing is sick, and I’m so angry about it. Is there anything we can do to stop it? I feel so used.

Options: ReplyQuote

Re: Dallas Discovery Cult Still Ruining Lives
Posted by: Harley21 ()
Date: October 07, 2008 12:53PM
I do not know anything of this cult but I do feel like giving some advice: Do not blame yourself. Always stay positive and hang out with that rational friend of yours. I believe that we can learn from ALL things good and bad……I bet this will make you a much stronger person in the long run. Be good to yourself and smile always.
Options: ReplyQuote
Pages: 12Next

Current Page: 1 of 2

Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.
This forum powered by Phorum.

~ My Review of “It’s Not About the Sex” My Ass!

r4186h8vhr4l-_ac_us218_its-not-about-sex-my-ass-pic

Note: This book was so good I listened to it straight through in audiobook form, then turned around and listened to it again; then bought the hardcover edition!
January 9, 2017

By Stephany Spencer

My book review of “It’s Not About the Sex” My Ass: Confessions of an Ex-Mormon Ex-Polygamist Ex-Wife (Kindle Edition)

I don’t usually do book reviews, for lack of time. But this book was so good I listened to it straight through, on Audible — and am listening to it again, for the third time,  right now. And also bought the book!

I am an Ex-FLDS, Ex-polygamist wife, Escapee of my Uncle Joel LeBaron’s Mormon fundamentalist cult … and a recovering Mormon. So I found the story, humor, and satire in this superbly-written Memoir extra hilarious. I could well relate to it all firsthand! That’s putting it mildly: I about split in half laughing at these clever writers’ tongue-in-cheek asides and observations of life in polygamy and a Mormon fundamentalist cult!

I am still so rebbed up from this excellent, well-written book I listened to from start to finish, non-stop, that I’m following it up with this review — to help me come down from my high, after the great marathon read/listen!

I want to say it is one of the best books I’ve ever read/listened to — It’s a classic. The narrator, also, couldn’t have been better! I only wish I had words and time to give it the best review any expert writer could give it.

It not only is a true view of what polygamy and Mormon cults are all about but gives some good advice, too, on how to avoid one — or how to get out of one if you find yourself in one.

I have an aunt who, after her husband (my Uncle Ervil LeBaron) died, joined Harmston’s group — the cult Joanne Hanks and her husband had belonged to then left. After many years, now, of being married to Harmston, my aunt unfortunately still believes he’s “The One Mighty and Strong”/a prophet! So kudos to the author and her husband for seeing through Harmston’s cult — before it could “Harm” (pun intended) her and her husband anymore — and for having the wherewithal to finally leave!

A sister of mine says Harmston’s clan is worse and more dangerous than was the cult of the psychotic serial killer “Evil Ervil” — “The Mormon Manson”! I’m still wondering about this. For I have not heard anything in the news, so far, nor in “It’s Not About the Sex” My Ass!” to tell me Harmston is a dangerous psychotic megalomaniac murderer like my uncle Ervil was. Though I read recently that Harmston does preach “blood atonement.”

Perhaps it was safer to not tell all that. But thanks, Joanne Hanks and Steve Cuno, for writing this book! Your words, insight, and humor have helped me in my healing journey. And it will also help and has already helped many others who’ve read or listened to your superbly written top-rate Memoir.

 

~ My Review of My Cousin Ruth Wariner’s Memoir, “The Sound Of Gravel”

 

 

The Sound of Gravel: A Memoir by [Wariner, Ruth]

 

NOTE: The following essay is my Book Review of “The Sound of Gravel,” a Memoir by Ruth Wariner, a first cousin of mine.
(“Wariner” is Ruth’s mother’s maiden name. My Uncle Joel LeBaron was Ruth’s father.)


By Stephany Spencer:
In the past year, I’ve read once and listened three times, so far, to Ruth Wariner’s best-selling book/audiobook, “The Sound of Gravel.”  It has gotten higher ratings from me with each new read or listen. So I’ve found it pays to read or listen to a book more than once!

With my first read, I deemed the book “Not what I expected.” I grew up much the same way she had, so I had preconceived notions of what it would or should be about. Ruth is my mother’s brother’s daughter and my first cousin. It took going through her Memoir a second time, as an audiobook too, to be able to say:

You go, cousin Ruth! It’s a well-written Memoir that should be read as well as listened to at least two times by everyone who thinks Mormon cults are ‘Just people exercising their freedom of religion.’ “

This well-scripted book gives you some idea of what “people just exercising their freedom of religion” do to the kids born into these Mormon fundamentalist cults! I should know: I grew up in, then escaped fifty years ago, this same cult Ruth was raised in!

People raised in abusive, traumatizing childhoods often split/revert into themselves when anything goes wrong in their life. I learned from the late Dr. David Viscot that feeling sorry for one’s self is a form of splitting.

Children and adults from abusive backgrounds may often do this pity-potty-party thing in an effort to protect themselves, and to better handle a bad situation. However, it only leads to despondency and depression.

Thanks to Ruth’s Memoir, she’s taught me to replace despondent thoughts with the song/mantra: “Count Your Many Blessings.” I grew up singing this song. But I didn’t realize, till I read and then listened to Ruth’s book for the third time, that this is what I needed to do to keep a good spirit with me.

Singing “Count Your Blessings “reminds me to start adding up all my blessings instead of my cursings. I’ve found it’s the best way — the proactive way to avoid depression, negativity, and feeling sorry for myself in the face of traumatic situations: Aging, for example!

Now, whenever dark clouds threaten to rain on my sunshine, I quickly remember to say or sing: “Count your blessings, name them one by one.” For there is no end to the blessings that have been bestowed upon me in my life, despite all the bad things I’ve had “bestowed upon me,” also — and survived!

I grew up singing the song, “Count Your Many Blessings, “just as my cousin Ruth had. But I had not gotten well the lesson Ruth’s mother, Kathy, taught Ruth when she consistently and quickly always reminded her daughter to “count her blessings” — no matter how bad things were!!

At first, this seemed like a silly thing for Ruth’s mom to incessantly say, in the face of all the mire and dire adversity Ruth and her family constantly lived with. But now I realize Ruth’s mother, Kathy, had learned from her upbringing a good lesson that she  passed down to her own children:

Counting one’s blessings chases out helplessness, hopelessness, blame, negativity, depression, and feeling sorry for oneself. It turns the frown upside down into a smile, and supplants downsides with a positive upside attitude and action: The best prescriptions for surviving any bad situation.

Thank you, Ruth, for passing this lesson on down to me  — along with many other lessons you have taught that bring others up through the blessing of your outstanding Memoir — your valuable gift to the world. I am looking forward to your next book. Write on!



*Count Your Many Blessings

1-  When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

Refrain:
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God has done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
*Count your many blessings, see what God has done.
[*And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.]

 2-  Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by

3-  When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

4-  So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

By Johnson Oatman, Jr., 1897

*(This song is in hymn books and online.)

*The following video gives insight into Mormon fundamentalism and how I and Ruth were raised  — and what we escaped.

~ My Review of My Cousin Anna LeBaron’s “The Polygamist’s Daughter”

 

 

 

 

By Stephany Spencer: My Book Review of my cousin Anna LeBaron’s Memoir: “The Polygamist’s Daughter”

Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., I was honored with a complimentary ARC (Advance Reader Copy) of cousin Anna LeBaron’s bravely written book, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” published March 21, 2017.

Regarding Anna’s Memoir, I was disappointed she didn’t tell us more about her miscreant father, “Evil Ervil,” (the murderous “Mormon Manson”). Also wish she had gone more into the details of her “running away from home.” (I would not have cared if the book were longer!)

As it was, her book said very little about her colorful father. And her “running away” was simply to call her married sister to take her in — a sister within walking distance, no less. Still, I have to give her credit for having had the sense and courage to run away at the tender age of thirteen, no less! For having run away, she might even very well have been killed by the cult she fled!

Even so, in essence, her book was milquetoast for me, in comparison to what was really going on in her family and father’s violent cult that drove her to flee the abusive and corrupt lifestyle. However, I realize she was between a rock and a hard spot when it came to relating this treacherous past.

Furthermore, she was so very young when much of the treachery happened within her family’s cult that she apparently didn’t know much about it — and maybe still doesn’t know that much — and doesn’t want to know that much. But there are a number of good books on the subject. They are just hard for my Uncle Ervil’s children to take in and accept. I do understand that!

I, an old veteran of much of that history, also realize that if she were totally up front, it would possibly compromise her present and future — and her amazing success and redemption in surviving her malevolent past. To give Anna credit, she is such an example of the human spirit and its ability to survive and rise above every adversity handed it.

Her father is my mother’s brother. And was my husband’s buddy/ boyfriend for ten years — so  I knew him well … as well as you could know a devious and manipulative man like my Uncle Ervil LeBaron for whom I had felt much love, respect, and reverence till he went off the deep end in his jealous and murderous power-pushing psychopathy.

Presently, I feel mostly pity, shame, and disgust for my dangerous but now-deceased charismatic zealot evil uncle who, though mentally ill, sociopathic and revengeful, nonetheless, had a lot of people convinced he was a prophet.

To better understand that whole scenario, read Cult Insanity” by Irene Spencer;” “Prophet of Blood,” by Ben Bradlee, Jr. and Dale Van Atta. And “The 4 O’clock Murders,”  by Scott Anderson — among other books on this history.

Also, here, on my Website, you might want to read my book reviews of these above books. Plus, listen to YouTube documentaries and interviews on Ervil, the LeBarons, and Mormon fundamentalist polygamists. They give great background and insight into what Anna LeBaron was brought up in. But you won’t find it in her book.

To further understand this whole bizarre LeBaron crime family mafia scene, check Wikipedia and other online Info about Ervil LeBaron, including my Website Menu bar underMedia About my Family, Friends, and Mormon Fundamentalist Cults.” And “Famous ‘n’ Infamous Relatives of Mine.” You could, as well, watch the excellent film,Prophet of Evil,” starring Brian Dennehy.

Getting back to Anna LeBaron’s Memoir, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” everyone in the LeBaron Colony in the 1960’s saw how Uncle Ervil went about preaching and “doing missionary work,” totally indifferent toward his nine neglected children he had already born at that time by his first wife, my beautiful but bipolar Mexican peasant Aunt Delfina.

These indigent kids were left to roam the streets, starving, and unkempt —  not to mention his fifty or more other deprived, depraved, and abandoned children he bore by his additional thirteen way-out wives he added to his harem as time went on and the LeBaron cult grew and developed — and he and his wives taught their children to be murderers!

So it hurt to the quick to hear, firsthand, in Anna’s Memoir how it felt for her to be so badly neglected and used by her non-empathetic, uncaring, sense-of-entitlement, narcissistic father!

But when I then read how Ervil’s unloved and abused daughter Lillian died, I grieved for days. She was one of Aunt Delfina’s darling children whom, when Aunt Delfina was depressed and mentally ill, I had helped look out for while I lived near them in the LeBaron Colony in Mexico before I escaped the cult in 1967 at age twenty-one.

Sweet Lillian was only around five or so, then. And I don’t believe Anna had been born yet. But I had lived across the street from her jolly mother with the beautiful singing voice, Aunt Anna Mae Marston/ AKA LeBaron.

I had taught her older siblings (including gorgeous David Marston — see his life’s story I have posted on my Website: DAVID M.’S LIFE STORY: (Anna LeBaron’s Half-Brother –The story you are about to read is true)) in my Colonia LeBaron Preschool I started in my home at age fifteen.

Therefore, though I wish Anna had gone more into depth about her very colorful past life, I’m proud of her efforts and the work she put into writing and publishing all that she did of her Life Story. The world benefits by knowing “The unspeakable.”

I’m sure her tragic memories were anything but easy to have to relive in order to put into print. But I get a sense she is protecting her 50+ siblings and other relatives by not revealing more of her early upbringing and beliefs. (There is much meat only she and her siblings could tell an amateur social-psychologist like me. But she kept it from us.)

As for her story, I felt it finally picked up in the latter part where she began to shoot a little from the hip. I especially found it enlightening and helpful when she went into detail about how she overcame a bout of deep depression.

I benefited, also, when she told of her epiphany that gave her a new lease on life — a greater purpose for living. She is presently a Life Coach. And works to help improve the world — just the opposite of what her father did!

Though her father preached that he was “Here to set the house of God in order, to prepare it for the second coming of Christ,” in reality, he did just the opposite of everything he preached and claimed: He was really here “to set the Devil’s house in order” … and prepare the world for a living Hell!

Like her father Ervil, Anna LeBaron is bright, a writer, and a leader. Unlike her father, she exhibits integrity, sanity, empathy, and a loving, giving spirit. So my hat goes off to Anna! She has come a long way, met redemption, made a lot of good choices, and overcome a lot.

I look forward to her next book — but only if she is deep enough and feels safe enough to shoot from the hip — all the way — and “tell all.”

For me, a person that grew up in the LeBaron cult her father helped build, that would be a much more helpful, healing, and insightful sociological study and book — not mishmash but well worth my precious time and money to buy and read.

An afterthought: Possibly, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” given its book cover and all, was mostly meant for the children’s and “Young Adults” section of the library.

In that case, it didn’t need great depth of insight and information — the likes of which an older informed and astute adult like me (who’s read over one-hundred books about/ written by Mormon fundamentalist cult escapees and authorities) would likely be looking for.


 



My Review of Ester Shifren’s “Hiding in a Cave of Trunks”

‘* Note: The following is a book review I did of an acquaintance’s book,”Hiding in a Cave of Trunks.” Unfortunately, when I copied and pasted my review, as usual, it didn’t turn out looking nearly as nice as it looks on Goodreads.com, but it will do.
Hiding in a Cave of Trunks

 Read

 My book review of Esther Shifren’s “Hiding in a Cave of trunks”

Preview

Hiding in a Cave of Trunks

by Ester Benjamin Shifren

Hiding in a Cave of Trunks: A Prominent Jewish Family’s Century in Shanghai and Internment in a WWII POW camp.

Against an impressive historical background, China-born Ester Benjamin Shifren relates the saga of her family’s century-long existence in Shanghai, the city often referred to as “The Paris of the East,” and details the culture and tribulations of the colorful multi …more

Kindle Edition, 276 pages

Published December 4th 2012

Kindle eBook $3.99AmazonStores ▾Libraries




MY REVIEW

Oct 31, 2016

  My Book Review of Esther Schifren’s “Hiding in a Cave of Trunks”

Ester Shifren, highly gifted author, artist, poet, performer, musician, speaker and more, has been a fellow member of my California Writers Club for many years. I thought I knew her till I read her wonderfully written memoir and history book combined. Was blown away by her unique writing style and the depth of the material she presented.

Loved learning about her life as a Jew growing up in China during the World War II era. It was most inspiring to read how her family managed to survive almost three years of incarceration in China during that time period.

You have to read the book to know what I’m talking about. I will only say that I lost sleep reading Ester’s book far into the night. It was so interesting, fascinating, and beautifully written I couldn’t put it down.

I plan to read Ester’s historical memoir again at least one more time. Will also use it for ideas and a guide for writing my own memoirs. This book should be on High School and University required reading lists, as well as in every public library. Ester, you “made history” when you wrote your memoirs!

 

 

 

 

~ My Review of Charlotte LeBaron’s “Maud’s Story”

It’s a short biography of Maud Lucinda McDonald LeBaron. that consists mostly of a published collection of letters supposedly written by her* — and some run-together, often hard-to-decipher paragraphs/vignettes “in Maud’s own words.”

It appears, at the time of this book’s writing, Aunt Charlotte still belonged to “The Church of the First Born.” Her “Maud’s Story,” contains a revised version —  a rewrite of the history of the Joel-LeBaron-Prophet saga, wherein she turns the tale upside down — and him into a martyred Prophet. Thus, she shows, though not intentionally, how religious myths are made.


As a word of clarification, Maud Lucinda McDonald LeBaron is my maternal grandmother, of whom I am “the spittin’ image” (I was always told this while growing up). In fact, the above photo of her looks so much like me at that age, I look at it and think it’s me. I can’t tell the difference!




Still, I resent she used my Grandmother matriarch Maud Lucinda McDonald LeBaron’s story to draw in Grandmother’s progeny, relatives, and others, so as to promote her’s (Charlotte’s) and Uncle Joel’s Church of the Firstborn doctrine — a la Charlotte LeBaron’s viewpoint. In that sense, “Maud’s Story” really should be renamed “Charlotte’s Story.”


But to give Aunt Charlotte some credit, though I was disappointed “Maud’s Story” wasn’t imbued with more of Grandmother’s colorful history, she includes in her booklet numerous short vignettes which I’ve coined: “Quotes from Grandma’s Notes.”


Perhaps, to get more of Grandmother’s history, Charlotte expects us to read “The LeBaron Story,” a manuscript largely written by MY mother Esther LeBaron Spencer — though Charlotte helped her husband (my Uncle Verlan LeBaron) compile, finish, and publish Mother’s work. Nonetheless, this book strikes me as an apologists’ story and largely written to preach the Church of the Firstborn doctrine.


I find its covert preaching of the Church of the First Born dogma distasteful — especially the revising of its doctrine and history to make it more palatable than it was when my Uncles Ervil and Joel LeBaron first spawned this sect/cult in 1953—a take off from their brother Ross Wesley LeBaron’s cult who had been inspired by his oldest brother Ben LeBaron’s cult.







(Comments transferred from Facebook”:)

Says Moira Blackmore:

I knew Maud, she went out of her busy days by visiting me all alone in Galeana with my 4 baby girls, and when their were shooting guns in my back neighborhood… thank you Steff … I love you, Maud, I love Charlotte as well, years later … 

 Steph Spencer

Steph Spencer: I appreciate your feedback, Moira, and your attempts to always be positive and loving. That’s what makes the world go around. I’m so happy Grandma visited you and helped lift your spirits during a very bad time.

I remember her being concerned about your being over there alone and her begging someone to take her over to visit you. I do not remember who she got to do the driving as she could not drive.

And now I’m getting off onto a bunny trail: I know she visited you out of care and concern for you and your situation. But she was also often there for visitors and people she was trying to help convert to the cult. Converts meant more tithing money — and consecrations of all their wealth to the Bishop’s storehouse!

Such money was largely how Grandma and her sons managed to survive down in the Mexico LeBaron colony. Especially was more money needed as each of her sons married more and more wives who bore more and more children. 

Given her help with the church’s conversion of new members, it seems aging Grandma Maud had no energy and time left over for her own hundreds of grand, great-grand, great-great, and great-great-great-grandchildren … not to mention her thousands of other relatives ad infinitum.

During the two years I lived at home before I was married off at age 16, I recall only a few times after we moved to the LeBaron colony that she ever came by her daughter/my mother Esther LeBaron Spencer’s place to visit, even though we lived within walking distance of Grandmother Maud.

 Nor did my Grandmother Maud ever visit me, once I was married, even in my hours of need and desperation, although I lived within walking distance of her.I may as well have not had a grandmother. But she did help Mother a lot after my father died. By then I was 18 and married — no longer living with my mom. 

When I was fourteen and we moved from the United States to where Grandmother lived in Mexico, I had thought, “Now I will finally have one of those grandmothers I have so often read about in children’s literature and so longed for as I was growing up.” 

But Grandmother Maud, though she had favored and spoiled Mama when she was raising her, was never emotionally there for me nor the rest of my mother’s thirteen other children, as far as I know. Not much anyway.

Certainly never was she a grandma that made cookies for her grandkids, let alone did she give us grandchildren any other gifts. Not even hugs. She always had a big twinkling smile for me and her other grandchildren, though, whenever we saw her at church or elsewhere.

 Our Family was not a hugging-touching family. But pioneer-woman Grandmother was also simply overwhelmed and overworked, given her primitive lifestyle and her monumental duties, including being one of the church pianists.

To put it succinctly, there was simply no way my ever-aging grandmother could muster all the time and energy needed to keep up with her exponentially growing progeny. She was already 68 years old when my family moved to the LeBaron colony; I was 14 years old then.

I had always lived within walking distance of her, while in the LeBaron colony, so she did come by three or four times, after I was married, to give me some piano lessons. She was around seventy-three years old then! Thanks, Grandma! 

But other than that, in the four years I lived there on my own after I was married at age sixteen, Grandmother only dropped by one other time  but not to see her new grandchild that I had almost died giving birth to at age seventeen. My baby and I were simply taken for granted, as was generally the custom there!

 TThe reason she came by that one time was to take back a piece of piano sheet music she had given me that she now wanted to turn around and give to an investigator of our cult who was a pianist! I told Grandma, “No! You gave the music to me!! So it’s mine now! And I want it. So you can’t take it back to give to somebody else!”

Grandmom was furious with me for not giving it back to her so she could gift it to the investigator of our “Church”! Getting converts — new people into God’s work — was part of her and her sons’ bread and butter. So that investigator was more important than I, her granddaughter. On top of that, she treated me as if the music still belonged to her though she had given it to me the year before. Such Indian trading! 

Now I know where Mother learned this taking-back of what she had given me as if she still had tabs on it so could turn around, whenever she wanted to, and give it to somebody else — even though I still very much wanted it! I never knew what to depend on. Then you wonder what causes schizophrenic kids? I’m at least sure this behavior did not help any. 

Bottom line: When there are lots of kids and relatives, they are not highly valued. They get taken for granted. They are pawns in the hands of the powers that be and regularly sacrificed for “the cause”!

  


Rachel LeBaron Anderson:
 The BIG question: “Will what you are going to say improve the world by being said?”
Steph Spencer
Steph Spencer Good question, Rachel! I ask myself that important question all the time as I write my Memoirs!
Rachel LeBaron Anderson
Rachel LeBaron Anderson You are bringing healing to the younger generations trying to make sense of everything, building strong roots, many generations will be glad someone wrote things down.
 
Steph Spencer

Steph Spencer Thanks so much for this insightful response and feedback! As always, Rachel, you show wisdom and intellect. Your remarks are much appreciated and will help me as I take time to “make sense of everything” on my end. That is certainly one of my goals!



 
 

Dena McLean I enjoyed reading this book, not only to learn about family but specifically learn more about my Great Grandmother Maud. I know the story is all in perspective but I like to hear all perspectives.

Even if I don’t agree with the religious views, I find it fascinating how they chose Joel LeBaron, Alma’s priesthood keys and all the people connected to each story and then trying to find them in genealogy. Right now, I’m trying to discover if the man who baptized Maud was John Smith, as in Joseph Smith’s brother’s son or another John Smith. I hope to find some truth.

 
 
Steph Spencer

Steph Spencer Thank you for this valuable feedback. As always, I’m impressed with your scholarliness. To be sure, Charlotte’s “Maud’s Story” is skewed: It attempts to convert people to the belief that Joel was a true Prophet, etc.

Aunt Charlotte Kunz LeBaron was there pretty much from the beginning of Joel and Ervil’s “Church” but chose to change how Joel got the “priesthood keys,” et cetera. Newcomers to the story believe her fabrications. That’s how myths are built.




~ My Review of Luna Lindsey’s “Recovering Agency: Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control”

Customer Review

5.0 out of 5 stars Recovering Agency: Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control — A perfect title that says it all!, October 31, 2016
This review is from: Recovering Agency: Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control (Kindle Edition:
Says Stephany Spencer: I discovered Luna Lindsey through Facebook. Her obvious brilliance and observation lead me to become a Facebook friend and follower of her’s. That’s when I learned she was also an Author and had even written a book that I, an ex-Mormon fundamentalist, needed to read: “Recovering Agency: Lifting the Veil of Mormon Mind Control.”

Her well-researched book is a must-read for anybody wanting to understand mind control and how intelligent people can be converted to a cult — or be born into one, and not see the problems, contradictions, and errors in their belief system.

And it’s a must-read, also, for anyone needing help with undoing all the subconscious brainwashing and mind control messages and beliefs imbued in them while growing up Mormon.

Another plus for reading the book is that Lindsey is a brilliant person with a captivating and interesting writing style and a depth of insight and ideas that lets you know you are in the presence of genius.

We are all indebted to her for the work, time, and effort she put into getting this book written and published — no small task!

The research she did, alone, attests to the genius of this woman — Autistic, but you would only know it, or be able to believe it, if you knew that some of our most intelligent scientists (at such places as the Caltech Think Tank in California) are highly functioning autistic geniuses.

Luna Lindsey is a remarkable young woman who has authored a book you won’t regret having spent your valuable money and time on. And it’s a great reference guide, besides!






Why no voting buttons? We don’t let customers vote on their own reviews, so the voting buttons appear only when you look at reviews submitted by others.
Be the first person to comment on this review.

Post a comment


Review Details

Item

4.6 out of 5 stars (42 customer reviews)

5 star
81%
4 star
9%
3 star
0%
2 star
5%
1 star
5%
$9.99
Add to wishlist
Reviewer

Top Reviewer Ranking: 33,698,947


Some of My Pieces Published 2007–2008 in the California Writers Club “The Scribe”

 

                                                                                  writing-man-with-pen-etc

* NOTE: I have taken some of my pieces that were published in the California Writers Club’s newsletter, when I was their Program Chair, and put them on this page, sans the full newsletter they were published in.

Sadly, when I copied and pasted my pieces to this page, the photos, color, etc., did not copy and paste here. Therefore the publications mostly look very drab. What a difference images and color make!


California Writers Club – SFVServing the writers of Greater Los Angeles”

THE SCRIBE

established since 1983 –

Vol. XXI, No. 4 http://www.calwriterssfv.com December 2007

 

Local Agent Lands Writers on Oprahoprah-with-a-book

By Stephany Spencer

Look out December! Our guest presenter will be literary agent, Sharlene Martin, of “Considerate literary management for the 21st Century.”

The importance of a pre-query game plan will be stressed, as will an outline of the essential elements of effective queries that will generate positive responses.

This event is bound to be barrels of fun, while still offering sound advice. You’ll walk out equipped to generate query letters that truly invite interest. And you’ll find that the sense of knowing how to do it is a sure confidence-booster for the “pitch fest” to follow this session.

Since founding Martin Literary Management in 2003, Sharlene has mounted spectacular successes for her clients, including over 60 non-fiction sales to such major publishers as Crown, Penguin, Putnam, Rodale, St. Martin’s, McGraw Hill, Ballantine, Harper Collins, – and many boutique and independent publishers. She’s boosted clients in Readers Digest, People Mag and the London Times.

Examples of her success in the industry are her client’s book, “You’ll Never Nanny in This Town Again.” It hit the New York and LA Times Best Seller lists in 2006 and was recently optioned to E!- Entertainment for development as a sitcom. And Brad Cohen’s book, “Front of the Class,” is now in development with Hallmark for a television movie.

In the past year alone, her clients have made appearances on The Today Show, Oprah, The View, Good Morning America, Martha Stewart, The Apprentice, 20/20, Discovery Channel, Inside Edition, Donny Deutsch and Fox News.

So come touch base and break bread with the Agent who might be your lucky star. And let’s all look forward to this December. □□

She will share secrets for big-time connections that could make you a star. And she really knows; one of her clients was a guest on Oprah.

Says Martin, “Crazy Queries” is sure to be the best advice you’ll ever get on what NOT to do with your writing career.” Get ready to laugh while you learn from first-hand accounts of misguided queries.

You’re guaranteed to chuckle at queries that make truth stranger than fiction. Says Martin, “Some will seem as if the writer can’t possibly be serious, and some will make you wince to think any poor soul ever thought their letter would get them an agent.”

 

 

““““““““““““““““““““““`

* * * * * * *

FAST FORWARD

By: Stephany Spencer

Coming In January…

Anthony Flacco: True Crime and Crime Fiction…

“True crime” is all about getting the story rights; choices of action and character are secondary. Crime fiction is all about getting the story right; choices of genre and style are secondary.”

Anthony, an award-winning author, orator, and actor, with a screenwriting background, frequently gives seminars on crime writing. He is a featured speaker on writing for writers’ conferences and clubs. Look for an interactive seminar, answering many commonly asked questions such as:

1- How does one handle legal matters and agreements with the person one is writing about?
2-  Do you always need to cut in the person you are writing about?
3-  Just what is a sellable idea?
4-  How do we find common ground in the True Crime/Non-Fiction market?

 


COMING IN FEBRUARY...

Kitty Dill: Award-winning Journalism Editor

This will be an exciting interactive seminar wherein Kitty will not only answer your questions about writing Press Releases, getting your pieces on “The Hub,” or in the Ventura County Star newspaper but will also expound on what to do when “60 Minutes” shows up at your door.

These upcoming seminars are sure hits, with something for everyone — so come enjoy, and help make our afternoon a real hit, yourself, by your own presence there.
Ciao till next time!

 

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

 

California Writers Club – SFVServing the writers of Greater Los Angeles

THE SCRIBE

– established since 1983 –

Vol. XXII, No. 1 http://www.calwriterssfv.com January 2008

Who’ll be the Next Star on Oprah? By: Stephany Spencer

Happy New Year to our valued members and guests of the Greater Los Angeles California Writers Club!

We’re starting out with a great program this January 12th featuring the inimitable husband and wife dynamic duo, literary agents, Ashley and Carolyn Grayson.

Dr. Scott Sonders and I have reviewed the web pages of their literary agency and we are impressed and excited with what we see: Ashley and Carolyn Grayson represent literary and commercial fiction and some non-fiction for adults: including business, self- help, scientific, pop culture, true crime, and mind/body/spirit.

They also represent fiction for younger readers. Clients on their fiction list include Isaac Adamson, John Barnes, Andrew Fox, Barb and J.C. Hendee, Bruce Coville, J.B. Cheaney, David Lubar, and Christopher Pike.

The Grayson’s are both members of the Association of Authors’ Representation. Ashley is also a member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. And Carolyn is a member of Romance Writers of America.

Since our membership especially appreciates an interactive production that informs and entertains, we know you won’t want to miss the January 12th presentation.

So with that said, let me end my “piece” with this extended “peace” to everyone:

Happy New Year, CWC!

Two-thousand-eight is here,
We’re another year older;
Our membership has grown;
Our writers are bolder.

As we enter this new year,
Let’s make a resolution
To attend our meetings
And be “The Solution.”

And let us spread good cheer
By welcoming each member;
‘Cause, when it’s all said ’n’ done,
That’s what we’ll remember.

Well, happy new year, everyone!

(poem by Stephany Spencer  2008)

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

                                                                  Board Members

Scott A. Sonders, President         George Hirai, interim VP1   Debra Zednik, Secretary James Ganatta, Treasurer

Advisory Board:

Venita Louise, Membership Chair,    Stephany Spencer, Programs Chair,
Richard Deets, Critique Groups          Larry Fazio, Events Manager

Mike Austin, Development Chair Olivia Mohler, Hospitality Chair Patty Foltz, Webmaster
Farah Khalid, Videographer

Team Members:

Scott Sonders, State Rep2
Lenora Smalley, SFV Spokesperson     Bruce Zacuto, Sergeant-at-Arms
Leila Morris, Editorial    Megan Masten, Outreach     Elizabeth Jaimes, Hospitality

1 also: Editor of the Scribe
2 also: VP of the CWC-Central Board

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

 

FAST FORWARD, by Stephany Spencer

Coming in February – Kitty Dill:
Award Winning Journalism Editor…
This will be an exciting & interactive seminar. Kitty gives the inside view about writing and submitting Press Releases and getting those releases into newspapers. She ought to know, she’s an editor for the Ventura County Star and their internet “Hub.” Kitty will also titillate on what to do when “60 Minutes” shows up at your door.

Coming in March – Linda O. Johnston: Attorney and Romance Writer…
A practicing attorney armed with a double barrel shotgun, a B.A. in Journalism and a Doctorate in Law! The amazing “Linda O!” juggles her busy schedule to write in the afternoons and teach in the evenings. We’ve long awaited the info she’ll share on the legalese involved in writing. BONUS: bring your questions about writing PR, mystery and romance.

 

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

         @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

By: Stephany Spencer                                       March  2008

March 8th will spring into action on the green, while we greet you with a “top o’ the morning,” as gifted attorney, teacher, and writer, Linda O. Johnston, will testify to the legalese of writing… the Do’s and Don’ts that could make or break your writing career.

Linda now lives overlooking Lake Hollywood – the perfect place to turn anything into a Romance, Suspense or Mystery novella. Meanwhile, her two dogs protect her from any real danger – while her Muse has her way with her. And that generally happens every afternoon when she escapes the realities of the true crime at her law office and indulges her fantasies in such endeavors as her latest Kendra Ballantyne,”Pet-Sitter” that recently sold to Silhouette Nocturne.

This amazing “Linda O!” has the writers’ enviable double-barrel shotgun: a B.A. in journalism and a JD degree from Duquesne.

Her writing career began by running a small newspaper. Then she worked in advertising and Public Relations and later moved into her Law Practice. As if that were not enough, The multi-talented Linda also has avocations in writing, speaking, and teaching.

A member of the Mystery Writers of America (Sisters in Crime) and Romance Writers of America, we are pleased to have Linda O. Johnston regale us with her Leprechaun magic and lucky charms. I plan to bring my bag and capture some of it, myself, to take home. It sure beats a trip to Ireland to try to acquire some! ◊◊

 

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

 

~ My Famous ‘n’ Infamous Relatives

We all come from the past,
and children ought to know what it was
that went into their making.”
Russell Baker



The following book by Diana Spencer’s brother, Charles Spencer, the ninth Earl of England, chronicles the story of his Royal family. It may be of interest to Spencer families and anyone related to the Spencers. I had been told by my mother and my sister Mary Spencer that this book showed how we were related to this royal line. Recently I have done some fact checking, and the fact is, if we are related at all, it’s so far back as to be debatable.

The spencers, by Charles Spencer
The Spencer Family Hardcover – November 4, 1999

by Charles Spencer (Author)

29 customer reviews

An insider’s history of the Spencer family, this book tells the family’s story from the sheep farmers of the 16th century through the Civil War and then the relationship with the Marlboroughs, on through the 19th century when the third Earl was one of the architects of the 1832 Reform Bill, to recent years and the death of Princess Diana. In the last chapter, Charles Spencer writes about his own views of the family’s history and what hopes he has for the future.</div> <em></em>


The Spencers: A Personal History of an English Family
Charles Spencer
4.4 out of 5 stars
22

Hardcover
$12.99


  • Verified Purchase

Enjoyed reading about the many characters in this ancient noble family; so many of them, both male and female, involved themselves in the politics of their time; many held high public office, almost all acquitting themselves well; only a few rakes and wastrels, and one or two solidly eccentric characters as well as a fair share of meddling elders.

Charles Spencer’s style is inviting and accessible. The book is a painless way to get an intimate view of moments in history that are family-centric. My only criticism is that he backed away from examining his father and his family (Diana), deferring to discretion when it came to looking at the contentious divorce of his parents.

Comment

Verified Purchase

Sounds like a great fiction romance novel, but no. This book is well written and researched history of the English Spencer Family from their earliest beginnings up to Princess Diana.

In reading this book, there are heartbreaking romances, political power plays with a few executions, inheritance of vast estates and wealth and the loss thereof to amaze you like no fiction could. This history of a pivotal aristocratic family reveals how it was enmeshed with the Churchill (Duke of Marlborough) and Cavendish (Duke of Devonshire) families and gives personal information about many historic figures. I highly recommend it for scholarship, history, immersion in the periods, and as good a read as a historical fiction. Except of course it’s not fiction but life.

Comment

Verified Purchase

Surprisingly well written and very interesting however a big black mark to Amazon for (yet again ) excluding the photographs present in the paper version and not even so much as a single family tree to help remind one which John ,Robert or Sarah fits in where.

1 comment

Verified Purchase

Interesting history book and easy to read. Holds your attention though it does get a little “preachy” at the end. I would recommend it as a summer read.

Comment

Verified Purchase

The current Lord Spencer is the late Princess Diana’s brother, the one who mouthed off to the Queen at Diana’s funeral. His eloquent, albeit blistering, eulogy made me want to read this. Alas, it is rather dull: This earl did that and the next earl did this … nothing really noteworthy.

The Spencers were an enormously influential family of blue bloods that included the Churchills. There was a lot of history that he just glossed over.

Comment

|Verified Purchase

Remembering back to Di & Charles wedding, I recall several saying that the Spencer family was more English than the Windsors. This book explains the contributions of the family over the centuries. While I may have mixed feeling about the current Earl (Di’s brother who is so famous due to his speech at her funeral), the book is well written and quite interesting.

Comment|

Verified Purchase

I was hoping for less chronology and more narrative. Needed a bit more insight to the key figures.

Comment

||

Verified Purchase

It’s ok. I guess I was expecting something more exciting. It was rather dull and slow reading. I am sure if you are truly interested in the heritage of the Spencer family you will enjoy it. I just needed more to keep me engaged to continue reading it. I couldn’t finish the book.

 



 

A famous sports figure, Eddie LeBaron, I’m proud to say, is part of my extended family. You can find him by using your search engine, Wikipedia, etc. He was a war hero, and also a Star in the NFL at 5-foot- seven! 

Years ago, in the public library, I found and enjoyed reading a well-written, interesting biography about him — though I’m not even a sports fan. I came away feeling so very proud of my cousin, Eddie LeBaron! He is a success story — a true hero who overcame many difficulties to become the sports star he had dreamed of being — and much more!

Eddie LeBaron

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Eddie LeBaron
1953 Bowman football card
No. 14
Position: Quarterback
Personal information
Date of birth: January 7, 1930
Place of birth: San Rafael, California
Date of death: April 1, 2015 (aged 85)
Place of death: Stockton, California
Height: 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)
Weight: 168 lb (76 kg)
Career information
High school: Oakdale (CA)
College: Pacific
NFL Draft: 1950 / Round: 10 / Pick: 123
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Pass attempts: 1,796
Pass completions: 898
Percentage: 50.0
TDINT: 104–141
Passing Yards: 13,399
Passer rating: 61.4
Player stats at NFL.com
Player stats at PFR

Edward Wayne LeBaron, Jr. (January 7, 1930 – April 1, 2015) was an American football quarterback in the 1950s and early 1960s in the National Football League for the Washington Redskins and the Dallas Cowboys. He played college football for the College of the Pacific. He also was an executive vice president of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons.

Early years[edit]

Born in San Rafael, California,[1] LeBaron graduated from Oakdale High School in Oakdale, northeast of Modesto.

College career[edit]

LeBaron enrolled at the College of the Pacific (now the University of the Pacific) in Stockton as a 16-year-old.[2] He played college football for the Tigers under Amos Alonzo Stagg and Larry Siemering from 1946 to 1949, lettering all four years and achieving All-American honors as a senior. The Tigers registered an undefeated season (11–0) in 1949, led the nation in total offense (502.9 yards a game), and set an NCAA single-season record of 575 points. LeBaron was a two-way, 60-minute player, as a quarterback on offense, safety on defense, and punter on special teams. He also played one year of baseball for the Tigers as a catcher.

He left the school after re-writing many of the football records: career touchdowns (59), touchdowns in a season (23), longest punt (74 yards), most yardage off interception returns in a game (119), most times leading the team in total offense (3).

He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1980,[3] into the Bay Area Sports Hall of Fame in 2004[4] and was a charter inductee into the Sac-Joaquin Section Hall of Fame in October 2010.[5]

Military service[edit]

LeBaron was commissioned in the U.S. Marine Corps reserves while in college and served as a lieutenant in the Korean War after graduation. He was wounded twice and was decorated with the Purple Heart. For his heroic actions on the front lines, he was awarded the Bronze Star. Due to his diminutive size, 5 feet, 7 inches, and leadership skills from his military service, he was sometimes known as the “Littlest General”.[6]

In 2008, he was inducted into the U.S. Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame.

Professional career[edit]

Washington Redskins (first stint)[edit]

LeBaron was selected in the tenth round (123rd overall) of the 1950 NFL draft by the Washington Redskins, but had to leave training camp to perform military service during the Korean War. At 5 ft 7 in (1.70 m), he was one of the shortest quarterbacks in the history of the NFL.

He returned to the NFL in 1952 after a two-year commitment to the United States Marine Corpsas a lieutenant, when he was discharged after being wounded in combat. He replaced future hall of famer Sammy Baugh in the starting lineup after the fourth game and received All-Rookie honors at the end of the season.[7] The next year he was limited with a knee injury and also shared the starting position with Jack Scarbath.

Calgary Stampeders (WIFU)[edit]

In 1954, the Western Interprovincial Football Union (a predecessor of the Canadian Football League) raided the NFL talent to improve its level of play. LeBaron signed with the Calgary Stampeders along with his Redskins teammate Gene Brito, because his college coach Larry Siemering was named the team’s head coach.[8] He registered 1,815 passing yards, 8 touchdowns and 24 interceptions during the season. He also played defensive back and punter. He decided to return to the NFL at the end of the year, after the team fired Siemering.

Washington Redskins (second stint)[edit]

On December 9, 1954, he re-signed with the Washington Redskins.[9] In his seven seasons with the Redskins he started 55 of a possible 72 games at quarterback (he played in 70 of those 72 games).[10] He was also the primary punter for his first three seasons with Washington (punting 171 times for a total of 6,995 yards in five seasons).[10] He was the league’s top-rated quarterback in 1958. He announced his retirement to focus on his law practice at the end of the 1959 season.[11]

Dallas Cowboys[edit]

After not being able to participate in the 1960 NFL draft during their inaugural year of existence, the Dallas Cowboys traded their first round (#2-Norm Snead) and sixth round (#72-Joe Krakoski) draft choices in the 1961 NFL Draft to the Washington Redskins in exchange for LeBaron,[12] convincing him to come out of retirement to become the franchise’s first starting quarterback. He started 10 of 12 games in 1960, with rookie Don Meredith and Don Heinrichstarting the other two.[13] He also scored the Cowboys’ first-ever touchdown in their first exhibition game against the San Francisco 49ers, on August 6 in Seattle. He set a record for the shortest touchdown pass in league history, with his throw to receiver Dick Bielski from the 2-inch line against the Redskins on October 9, 1960.[14]

LeBaron started 10 of 14 games in 1961, with Meredith starting the other four.[15] He only started five games in 1962, splitting time with Meredith.[16] He started the first game of the 1963 season, but was replaced permanently by Meredith for the rest of the season.[17]

He retired at the end of 1963, after playing 12 seasons, throwing for 13,399 yards and 104 touchdowns and being selected for the Pro Bowl four times in 1955, 1957, 1958, and 1962.[10]He is the shortest quarterback to ever be selected to the Pro Bowl.[18] He was also known as an elusive scrambler and great ball-handler.

Personal life[edit]

LeBaron became a football announcer for CBS Sports after his NFL career, and worked as an announcer from 1966 to 1971.[19] He had obtained a law degree during his off-seasons from football, and practiced law after his football career. He was also the general manager of the Atlanta Falcons from 1977 to 1982 and executive vice president from 1983 through 1985.[20]LeBaron was an avid golfer and continued to play golf in his retirement. He died of natural causes on April 1, 2015.[21]


                                             


       profit-of-evil-film   

 






 

(*Some books about Uncle Ervil LeBaron — in public libraries and bookstores)




 

https://thetrueprophetfilm.com/proposed-cast/

THE TRUE PROPHET is an independent film written and directed by Scott Hillier and executive produced by…
THETRUEPROPHETFILM.COM
 
NOTE: This movie was planning on its release in 2014. It was never released due to lack of funding. But there is some information here that may very well be of interest to you. For example, on this Website there are some of Ervil’s writings and more. Must see.

 


A number of books have been published and more than one movie has been done on Mother’s brother, my infamous Uncle Ervil LeBaron. He is now known as “Evil Ervil,” and “The Mormon Manson.” I knew, respected, and loved him till I came to realize, many years later, what a manipulator he was — and before he went off the deep end with his sociopathy and psychosis. 

The “Prophet of Evil” is an especially well-done film produced years ago. It portrays a poignant part of this serial killer’s life. I love how brilliantly Brian Dennehy played the part of my Uncle Ervil.

But no film can possibly portray the depth of suffering, damage, and lunacy this personality-disordered megalomaniac caused in the lives of all he touched — especially his family and his brainwashed, true-believing followers, not to mention his around sixty children. 

You may get the film from wherever you get movies and see the portrayal for yourself. I, myself, will be telling my experiences with my Uncle Ervil down the line in my memoir blogs. You may also read books written about him.

See “Media” and also “Media on Extended Family, Friends and Fundamentalist Cults” in my Menu bar for other books, Book Reviews, and films I may not have listed in this blog. Wikipedia and other Who’s Who sites relate a short history of him also — as well as a short history of many of my other infamous, as well as famous LeBaron and other extended family members and relatives.

For example, you can find in Wikipedia a short biography of my great-great Uncle, Joel Johnson (brother of my great-great grandfather Benjamin F. Johnson) who helped found some of Utah’s first Townsites. And wrote 800 hymns for the Mormon hymnal, during the time of Joseph Smith. Two of these hymns are still in the modern Mormon hymnals. The beautiful “High on the Mountain Top” is one of them — and to this day is still one of mine and Mormonism’s favorite hymns.






Another outstanding relative is my a-number-of-places-removed-maternal great-grandfather, Dr. Francis LeBaron. He was the first of the LeBarons in the United States — brought to America around 1668 by his nurse to save his life, it is said, “because he was part of the French royalty,” or/and his parents were members of the Huguenots — so went into hiding and may eventually have been killed.

~PLEASE NOTE: I took the following material off the Internet. It needs editing. I edited a part of this bio. Do not have time to polish it:
 ~ NOTE: This portrait is of Dr. Francis LeBaron Apothecary General (1781-1829). He is the namesake and great-grandson of Dr. Francis LeBaron born 1668: 

This Dr. Francis LeBaron served in the service of the United States as:
Surgeon’s Mate (Navy), Jan. 31, 1800 to Mar. 1, 1802
Garrison Surgeon’s Mate (Army), 1802 to 1808
Garrison Surgeon 1808 to1813
Apothecary General. 1813 to 1821. 
Check out the following link: http://www.anamelessnobleman.com/HTMLs/ApthcryGnrl.html

francis-lebaron

Learn about upgrading this memorial…
 

Birth: Aug. 9, 1668
Bordeaux, France
Death: Aug. 8, 1704
Plymouth
Plymouth County
Massachusetts, USA

Francis LeBaron was a doctor from France. There are unconfirmed family stories that he was son of the persecuted Huguenots. One Story has him being handed over to a childless doctor, Louis Pecton of Bordeaux, and being
instructed that if his father did not return in one year he was to raise the child as his own and teach him the family trade, for his mother had been killed and his father’s life was in danger. He was just an infant.This would explain how he became a doctor. Louis Pecton raised him and on his death bed in 1693 he told Francis of his true identity. It is said that he also gave him a golden cross that was his mother’s. And it is said that he adored it and never took it off but wore it concealed under his clothing and was buried
with it. As far as is known, Francis never revealed his true identity to anyone.

Another story goes that after Louis’s death, Francis became involved with a French privateer. And it is known that he left France aboard a privateer ship.

The ship ran aground in Buzzards Bay in the fall of 1694. This was during the later stages
of King William’s war with Louis XIV of France. The French crew was captured by the colonists. Francis became separated from his shipmates.

Some stories have him being hidden by his future wife Mary Wilder, while others have him
being left behind because he was sick — or both.

At this time Plymouth had no surgeon and Francis, being a surgeon, performed a successful operation. Since he
was willing to settle in Plymouth, the settlers petitioned the govenor to keep him. And it was done.

There is a book written by Mrs. Jane Goodwin Austin whose great-grandfather Nathaniel Goodwin married Lazarus’ widow Lydia. The book is called “The Nameless Nobleman.” It is fictional but is said to be the story of Dr. Francis LeBaron (dated 1876).

LOUIS PECTON had been a surgeon in the French armies. As popular prejudice would not allow of dissections in civil life, and as Harvey’s discoveries were written in English, few French practitioners then knew as much of their profession as did the old women who acted as nurses, or the barbers who monopolized the use of the lancet. In his army practice, young Pecton had abundant opportunity for dissections and for making the acquaintance of English surgeons.

When, therefore, he went to take possession of his patrimony in a suburb of Bordeaux, he was a surgeon of far greater skill and knowledge than was common in that day. He had married some years before. The parents of the parties had arranged the match, the bride and bridegroom knowing or caring little about each other, as was customary.

On settling down at Bordeaux, it was with a sort of agreeable surprise that the young couple found themselves exceedingly well mated, and proceeded to fall in love with each other.

Pecton practiced medicine, mainly from a sense of duty. His property was enough to support him, so that the fees, which he rigidly exacted from the rich, were systematically distributed among the poor.

One dark night, in 1668, the worthy doctor’s surgery was visited by a stranger of commanding appearance, but in humble apparel. In reply to the puzzled look of the former, the stranger pushed aside his hair, pointed to a little star-shaped scar above is temple, and said:

“Yes, my dear Pecton, your unspoken guess is right. But keep your seat. If you want to show me respect, do it by serving me. My life is sought, and so is that of my infant son. You know by whom! Mine he will yet have, but you must save that of my now motherless boy. He will reach your house to-night with his wet-nurse.

“Let him pass as your son till he grows up, Then tell him what you think will be for his good. Educate him well and see that he is trained to martial exercises. Then teach him your own noble calling. Two hundred Louis-d’ors will come with him to meet the expenses. He has been baptized as “Francis.” Honor him by giving him your own honest surname. And if he never knows any other, he will be far happier than if he bore his father’s historic title.

“Finally, rear him as a good Catholic. And teach him to wear this cross constantly, and to have it buried with him. It may lead, in happier times, to his identification.”

So saying, he handed the doctor a small but richly chased gold cross attached to an embroidered ribbon. A long, whispered consultation followed. The result was that the doctor, after conferring with his wife, accepted the trust imposed, but declared that the little stranger should take the place of his own deceased darling. And should be made his heir, unless reclaimed by his father.

The stranger sadly replied: “No! My double benefactor, that will never be. If I am alive, you shall hear from me in just one year. If you do not, you may know that I no longer live.”

The stranger departed. The doctor never heard of him again. The child arrived mysteriously and the family adapted itself to its new circumstances without attracting outside attention. Soon after, they moved to the opposite side of the city, among strangers, who neither knew nor cared whether little Francis Pecton was the son of his nominal parents or not.

At twenty-one, Francis had a fine education as the times went, and his training had been such as his father had requested. He was the embodiment of health and good spirits, the only grief of his life having been the recent death of his supposed mother. His guardian had given him rare instruction in surgery, and had abandoned his medical practice to him, which the young man was following up with enthusiasm.

In 1693, when Francis was twenty-five years old, Dr. Pecton lay on his death-bed. In a long, last interview he revealed to his ward such portion of his history as he knew. Soon after, he departed, leaving Francis heir to his little estate. The latter, now doubly an orphan, never recovered his former light-heartedness — largely because of something he had learned from the doctor which cast a shadow over his spirit for life. His hereditary cross seemed now doubly precious to him, and was seldom long out of his hand.

At length, his old home becoming insupportable, he invested a part of his funds in the city. A part he distributed among the poor of his neighborhood. With the rest, he bought a share in the privateer L’Aigle. Then, assuming the name of LeBaron, as surgeon of his ship, he started out to fight the battles of Louis XIV against William and Mary.

Like most privateers, L’Aigle won many ignoble victories and made some very gallant failures. At length, in 1696, while running along the New England coast, she took a look into Buzzard’s Bay, and being caught there by a south-west wind, she never looked further.

To bear up was impossible and to bear away was destruction. She came to anchor but soon the storm tore her loose and drove her upon the west coast of Falmouth. Her crew all landed safely, but the inhabitants gathered about them with extremely hostile indications. They had mistaken L’Aigle for a pirate, and were disposed to exterminate her crew at once.

After some hours of threatening, Major Bourne, a magistrate, arrived and took command. By his order, the Frenchmen were received as prisoners of war and were finally started on the route for Boston. When they came to march, it was found that the surgeon of the ship was not among the prisoners. He had landed with the crew, and had evidently escaped inland. Some of the people, first agreeing that the fugitive must be a spy, and therefore not entitled to quarter, started in pursuit.

A few miles northward stood a large, rambling house, in which Edward and Elizabeth Wilder had lived and died, and where their children now lived. The morning after the shipwreck, Mary Wilder was at home alone. Her brother and his wife were away for the day, and she was spinning flax and singing psalm tunes in the big, old kitchen. Suddenly a ragged, drabbled, excited young man rushed into the house and in broken language asked her to protect him. Her good sense and her woman’s heart roused her to efficient action. She took the fugitive to the garret and, taking up the loose boards of the floor, exposed a deep space, bounded by the stout wooden ceiling of the room below.

A few mats and sacks were thrown in, some food was provided, and Mary went to watch for the searchers. At length they appeared, examining every bush and hiding-place, far and near. Mary sent her captive into his place of refuge, and then, replacing the floor, she spread some bedding over the spot and lay down.
Soon the hunters arrived and examined the house. In the garret they found Mary tucked up on the floor, with her head bound in a towel, and a bowl of sassafras tea by her side. They tried to explain their errand, but she was “so sick” she would not listen. Ransacking the rest of the premises, they went on their way. That night Mary won her sister-in-law over to her side and they two soon coaxed young Edward Wilder to help protect the fugitive.

In the course of two weeks, the latter was well nigh forgotten by the outside world. Major Bourne, who had been consulted by the Wilder’s, volunteered to go with LeBaron to Boston, and ask that he might live in Falmouth, on parole, until exchanged. Early one morning Major Bourne, with Wilder and LeBaron, crossed on horseback to Scusset Harbor, in Sandwich, where a boat at once started for Plymouth. At the latter place the prisoner was turned over to the selectmen who at once put him in care of Major Bourne until a convenient craft should be sailing to Boston.

There was then no surgeon in Plymouth, and there was a very serious case of disease requiring treatment. LeBaron volunteered to perform the operation. His knowledge and skill so impressed the people that the selectmen procured his discharge as a prisoner from Lieut.-Gov. Stoughton, and persuaded him to settle in Plymouth.

Dr. LeBaron’s first use of his freedom was to revisit Falmouth, and bring back Mary Wilder as his wife. How much of his history he told his wife was never revealed by her, beyond what is here recorded. To other people he said nothing. It was only known that he considered himself the victim of an official conspiracy, defrauding him hopelessly of his hereditary rights.

But while this feeling made him ready to abjure his native land and all connected with it, he held steadfastly to his religion, wearing his golden cross night and day, and providing that it should not be removed at his death. Many of his new neighbors were greatly troubled that their should be a devote’ of Rome and this fact much injured his influence.

Indeed, he was often charged with a lack of cordiality and sociability. But the poor found him a true follower of the noble-hearted Pecton. For them, his gentlest manners and most earnest efforts were ready. The remnants of his French property were reclaimed and formed into his private charity fund. When his survivors opened his will, they found that he had bequeathed the town of Plymouth ninety acres of land for the same purpose.

The prosperous complained of his brusqueness, but the weak and friendless blessed the sound of his approaching footsteps. With them, he was never impatient or indifferent, though they were sometimes ungrateful to him. With the aged, he was tender, as they reminded him of his adopted father and mother.

Especially was he affected when, in 1699, he soothed the last moments of Mary Allerton Cushman, who as a girl of ten years had landed from the Mayflower, and now at the age of 90 was the sole survivor of that immortal company. That the orphan of Bordeaux should have been, by such mysterious ways, brought to perform this duty, filled LeBaron’s soul with awe.
Eight years of this new life passed quietly away. Then, at the early age of 36, the exile made his last journey. The visitor to Burial Hill in Plymouth may still see the gravestone which Mary Wilder had to import from England. On it he may read: HERE LYES Ye BODY OF Mr FRANCIS LEBARRAN, PHYTICIAN WHO DEPARTED THIS LIFE AUGUST Ye 8, 1704, IN Ye 36 YEAR OF HIS AGE.

A third of a century afterward, loving hands laid Mary Wilder by the side of her long-lost husband. Her son had then, for many years, been his father’s successor as “the beloved physician” of Plymouth. Her grandson was fitting himself for the same high position when his turn should come.

All in this country who bear the name “LeBaron” are of this stock. So are many more, who, through intermarriages with the descendants of Bradford, Standish, Alden, Howland, and Southworth, bear widely different names.

Few of them know of the romance which surrounds their French ancestor. None of them can unravel its mysteries. One of the number has herein told all that he can learn of the matter and it amounts to little more concerning its hero than this family link:
Spouse:
Mary Wilder Waite (1668 – 1737)Children:
James LeBaron (1696 – 1744)

Lazarus LeBaron (1698 – 1773)*
Francis LeBaron (1701 – 1731)Calculated Relationship Inscription:
HERE LYES Ye BODYOF Mr FRANCIS LEBARRAN PHYTICIAN WHO DEPARTED THIS LIFE AUGUST Ye 8. 1704. IN Ye 36 YEAR OF HIS AGE
My flesh shall slumber in the ground.

His a-number-of-places-removed-granddaughter, Author Jane Goodwin Austin, wrote a history about him, “The Nameless Nobleman.” I bought the book on Amazon.com a few years ago, as well as other books written by her.




Another book I found years ago in the Public Library was written, I believe, by my Uncle Ben LeBaron’s son, George LeBaron if I remember his name, and other facts correctly. (If you’re reading this and I am wrong in my data, would you please advise me in my “Comments” section?) 

He told of his experiences earning his Physician’s license and Medical degree at the prestigious Harvard Med School, no less. I say “no less” because if you knew what he grew up under, your sentiments would be the same! He had to be strong and brilliant to do this!





One of Uncle Ervil’s amazing daughters, Author-Speaker-Blogger-and Life Coach, Anna LeBaron, has also written a book. It is about her life growing up in her father’s dangerous and crazy cult — which she ran away from when she was 13!
Her memoir, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” was released March 21, 2017. It’s in the public library, in audiobook, eBook, and print versions. You can order it, now, on Amazon.com and other sites. Check out her Website at AnnaLeBaron.com.

 

These two above photos are of my cousin Anna LeBaron.

By Stephany Spencer: My Book Review of my cousin Anna LeBaron’s Memoir: “The Polygamist’s Daughter”

Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., I was honored with a complimentary ARC (Advance Reader Copy) of cousin Anna LeBaron’s bravely written book, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” published March 21, 2017.

Regarding Anna’s Memoir, I was disappointed she didn’t tell us more about her miscreant father, “Evil Ervil,” (the murderous “Mormon Manson”). Also wish she had gone more into the details of her “running away from home.” (I would not have cared if the book were longer!)

As it was, her book said very little about her colorful father. And her “running away” was simply to call her married sister to take her in — a sister within walking distance, no less. Still, I have to give her credit for having had the sense and courage to run away at the tender age of thirteen, no less! For having run away, she might even very well have been killed by the cult she is fled!

Even so, in essence, her book was milquetoast for me, in comparison to what was really going on in her family and father’s violent cult that drove her to flee the abusive and corrupt lifestyle. However, I realize she was between a rock and a hard spot when it came to relating this treacherous past.

I, an old veteran of much of that history, also realize that if she were totally up front, it would possibly compromise her present and future — and her amazing success in surviving her malevolent past.

Her father is my mother’s brother. And was my husband’s buddy for ten years — so  I knew him well … as well as you could know a devious man like my Uncle Ervil LeBaron for whom I had felt love and respect, till he went off the deep end in his psychopathy.

Now I feel mostly pity and shame for my insane, sociopathic, revengeful, zealot uncle who, nonetheless, had a lot of people convinced he was a prophet.

To better understand that whole scenario, read Cult Insanity” by Irene Spencer;” “Prophet of Blood,” by Ben Bradlee, Jr. and Dale Van Atta.  And “The 4 O’clock Murders,”  by Scott Anderson.

To further understand this whole bizarre crime family scene, also check Wikipedia and other online Info about Ervil LeBaron, including my Website Menu bar underMedia About my Family, Friends, and Mormon Fundamentalist Cults.” And “Famous ‘n’ Infamous Relatives of Mine.” You could, as well, watch the excellent film,Prophet of Evil,” starring Brian Dennehy.

Getting back to Anna LeBaron’s Memoir, “The Polygamist’s Daughter,” everyone in the LeBaron Colony in the 1960’s saw how Uncle Ervil went about preaching and “doing missionary work, ” indifferent toward his nine neglected children he bore by his first wife, bipolar Aunt Delfina.

These indigent kids were left to roam the streets, starving, and unkempt —  not to mention his fifty or more other deprived and abandoned children he bore by his thirteen other wives!

So it hurt to the quick to hear, firsthand, in Anna’s Memoir how it felt for her to be so badly neglected and used by her non-empathetic, uncaring, sense-of-entitlement, narcissistic father!

But when I then read how his unloved and abused daughter Lillian died, I grieved for days. She was one of Aunt Delfina’s children whom I had helped look out for while I lived near them in the LeBaron Colony in Mexico before I escaped the cult in 1967 at age twenty-one.

Lillian was only around five or so, then. And I don’t believe Anna had been born yet. But I had lived across the street from her jolly mother with the beautiful singing voice, Aunt Anna Mae. And had taught her older siblings in my Colonia LeBaron preschool I started in my home at age fifteen.

Therefore, though I wish Anna had gone more into depth, I’m proud of her efforts and the work she put into writing and publishing what she did of her Life Story. I’m sure her tragic memories were anything but easy to put into print.

For me, her story really picked up in the latter part where she began to shoot from the hip. I especially found it enlightening and helpful when she went into detail about how she overcame a bout of deep depression.

I benefited, also, when she told of her epiphany that gave her a new lease on life — a greater purpose for living. She is presently a Life Coach. And works to help improve the world — just the opposite of what her father did!

Though her father preached that he was “Here to set the house of God in order, to prepare it for the second coming of Christ,” in reality, he did just the opposite of everything he preached and claimed!!

Like her father, she is bright, a writer, and a leader. Unlike her father, she exhibits integrity, sanity, empathy, and a loving, giving spirit. So my hat goes off to Anna! She has come a long way, made a lot of good choices, and overcome a lot. I look forward to her next book — when she feels safe to actually “tell all.”




My Uncle Joel LeBaron’s daughter, Ruth Wariner, wrote a bestselling Memoir, “The Sound of Gravel,” published February 2016. It’s available on Amazon.com or wherever you get books. It’s also in audiobook and print in public libraries.

ruth-warnier-portraitThe Sound of Gravel: A Memoir by [Wariner, Ruth]

The following essay is my Book Review of “The Sound of Gravel,” a Memoir by Ruth Wariner, a first cousin of mine.
(“Wariner” is Ruth’s mother’s maiden name. My mother’s brother, my Uncle Joel LeBaron, was Ruth’s father.)

By Stephany Spencer:
In the past year, I’ve read once and listened three times to my cousin Ruth Wariner’s best-selling book/audiobook, “The Sound of Gravel.”  It has gotten higher ratings from me with each new read or listening to it. So I’ve found it pays to read or listen to a book more than once!

With my first read, I deemed the book “Not what I expected.” I grew up much the same way she had, so I had preconceived notions of what it was and should be about. It took listening to it a second time, as an audiobook, to be able to say:

“You go, cousin Ruth! It’s a well-written Memoir that should be read, as well as listened to, at least two times by everyone who thinks Mormon cults are “Just people exercising their freedom of religion.”

This well-scripted book gives you some idea of what “people just exercising their freedom of religion” do to the kids born into these Mormon fundamentalist cults! I should know: I grew up in and then escaped, 50 years ago, this same LeBaron cult Ruth grew up in!

People who grow up in abusive and traumatizing childhoods often split and revert into themselves when anything goes wrong in their life. I’ve learned from the late Dr. David Viscot that feeling sorry for one’s self is a form of splitting. Traumatized people do this so as to try to protect themselves, and to better handle a bad situation. However, it only leads to depression.

Thanks to Ruth’s Memoir, she’s taught me to replace bad situations with the song and mantra: “Count Your Blessings.” I grew up singing this song. But I didn’t realize, till I read Ruth’s book the third time, that this is what I needed to do, more than anything, to keep a good spirit with me and thus avoid depression, negativity — and splitting from myself by feeling sorry for myself in the face of bad situations (like aging, for example!) that I was experiencing or going through.

Now, whenever dark clouds threaten to rain on my sunshine, I quickly remember to say and sing “Count your blessings!” For there are no end of blessings that have been bestowed upon me in my life, despite all the bad things I’ve also survived.

I grew up singing this song, just as my cousin Ruth had. But I had not been taught the lesson Ruth’s mother, Kathy, taught her when she constantly and quickly always reminded her daughter Ruth to “count her blessings” — no matter how bad things were!!

At first, this seemed like a silly thing to consistently say, in the face of all the mire and dire adversity Ruth and her family constantly lived with. But now I realize Ruth’s mother, Kathy, had learned from her upbringing a good lesson that she then passed down to her own children:

Counting one’s blessings chases out negativity and depression, or feeling sorry for oneself. And supplants it with positivity, action, and being in control: the best prescriptions for surviving any bad situation.

 Thank you, Ruth, for passing this lesson on to me  — along with many other lessons you have taught through your outstanding memoir — your valuable gift to the world.

*I’ve posted below the words to this Thanksgiving song, in case you want to sing it too. (The music can be found online, by looking up the title of this song, if you don’t already know it).

Count Your Many Blessings

1-  When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.

Refrain:
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God has done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
*Count your many blessings, see what God has done.
[*And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.]

 2-  Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by

3-  When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

4-  So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

By Johnson Oatman, Jr., 1897











 

Shattered Dreams” and Cult Insanity” by Best-Selling Author  Irene Spencer/ AKA: Irene Kunz LeBaron, at IreneSpencerBooks.com. Her books are also in audiobook form. (Irene is my Aunt, through marriage, as is Rebecca Kimbel, Irene’s half-sister.)

*Note: I took the picture featured on Irene’s book cover,”Cult Insanity.
Uncle Ervil LeBaron is holding my eight-year-old daughter, Asenath Marie Tucker, the little girl in the yellow dress. I took this photograph before I had any idea of the psychopathic, maniacal activities my mother’s brother, my Uncle Ervil, was up to.)








His Favorite Wife,”  by Susan Ray Schmidt/ AKA: Susan Ray LeBaron (Another Aunt of mine, her Memoir reads like a novel. My family is mentioned in it.)

 

One of my favorite books on the subject of my relatives and my past is the following book, written by a very talented writer,
Aunt Susan Ray Schmidt.
(I took care of her for five days when she was around nine years old (Long before she married my Uncle Verlan LeBaron, of course, and thus became my aunt) while her parents were out of town, and we were still living in Colonia LeBaron, Chihuahua, Mexico).







Doris Hansen and Rebecca Kimbel also each interviewed Authors Irene LeBaron Spencer (See: IreneSpencerbooks.com) and Susan Ray Schmidt (see her website). Both are my Aunts. 


Aunt Rebecca Kimbel and Doris Hanson also interviewed, on their TV and YouTube sites, other relatives and friends of mine from my days in the cult — people such as my cousin, Carolyn Jessop, a memoirist who wrote the bestselling,”Escape,” and other books.

 





Also, check out Aunt Rebecca Kimbel’s excellent and adamant speech on YouTube’s TED-X Talks. (In around only 18 minutes, she did a genius presentation on all the main issues to do with Mormon cults, including White slavery.


See also (on Good Reads) her novel, “A Savage Wild,” published in 2013. I have yet to get and read it




See the film: “The Childbride of Short Creek.” It was on YouTube, among other places, the last time I checked. (My sisters were interviewed by the writers of this film, to get Info for their Script.)




Banking on Heaven is a Documentary my cousin Laurie Allen (Mother’s brother, Uncle Wesley’s granddaughter) and her cohort, Dot Reidelbach, created. (It gives a good overview of life as a Mormon fundamentalist female in Short Creek, Arizona, and Hilldale, Utah.

I went online a few years ago and ordered a copy of their DVD. I don’t know if you can find it on YouTube or the Internet now. But give it a try.)
@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@





My Spencer family line may or may not be related to England’s famous poet Edmund Spenser. The jury is still out on this.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Edmund Spenser
Edmund Spenser oil painting.JPG
Born 1552/1553
London, England
Died 13 January 1599 (aged 46–47)[1]
London, England
Resting place Westminster Abbey
Occupation Poet
Language English
Alma mater Pembroke College, Cambridge
Period 1569–1599
Notable works The Faerie Queene

Signature

Edmund Spenser (/ˈspɛnsər/; 1552/1553 – 13 January 1599) was an English poet best known for The Faerie Queene, an epic poem and fantastical allegory celebrating the Tudor dynasty and Elizabeth I. He is recognized as one of the premier craftsmen of nascent Modern English verse, and is often considered one of the greatest poets in the English language. He was deeply affected by Irish faerie mythology, which he knew from his home at Kilcolman and possibly from his Irish wife Elizabeth Boyle. His genocidal tracts against Gaelic culture were war propaganda. His house (ruins remain) was burned to the ground during the war, causing him to flee Ireland.

Life[edit]

Edmund Spenser was born in East Smithfield, London, around the year 1552, though there is some ambiguity as to the exact date of his birth. As a young boy, he was educated in London at the Merchant Taylors’ School and matriculated as a sizar at Pembroke College, Cambridge.[2][3] While at Cambridge he became a friend of Gabriel Harvey and later consulted him, despite their differing views on poetry. In 1578, he became for a short time secretary to John Young, Bishop of Rochester.[4] In 1579, he published The Shepheardes Calender and around the same time married his first wife, Machabyas Childe.[5] They had two children, Sylvanus (d.1638) and Katherine.[6]

In July 1580, Spenser went to Ireland in service of the newly appointed Lord Deputy, Arthur Grey, 14th Baron Grey de Wilton. Spenser served under Lord Gray with Walter Raleigh at the Siege of Smerwick massacre.[7] When Lord Grey was recalled to England, Spenser stayed on in Ireland, having acquired other official posts and lands in the Munster Plantation. Raleigh acquired other nearby Munster estates confiscated in the Second Desmond Rebellion. Some time between 1587 and 1589, Spenser acquired his main estate at Kilcolman, near Doneraile in North Cork.[8] He later bought a second holding to the south, at Rennie, on a rock overlooking the river Blackwater in North Cork. Its ruins are still visible today. A short distance away grew a tree, locally known as “Spenser’s Oak” until it was destroyed in a lightning strike in the 1960s. Local legend has it that he penned some of The Faerie Queene under this tree.[9]

In 1590, Spenser brought out the first three books of his most famous work, The Faerie Queene, having travelled to London to publish and promote the work, with the likely assistance of Raleigh. He was successful enough to obtain a life pension of £50 a year from the Queen. He probably hoped to secure a place at court through his poetry, but his next significant publication boldly antagonised the queen’s principal secretary, Lord Burghley (William Cecil), through its inclusion of the satirical Mother Hubberd’s Tale.[10] He returned to Ireland.

By 1594, Spenser’s first wife had died, and in that year he married Elizabeth Boyle, to whom he addressed the sonnet sequence Amoretti. The marriage itself was celebrated in Epithalamion.[11] They had a son named Peregrine.[6]

In 1596, Spenser wrote a prose pamphlet titled A View of the Present State of Ireland. This piece, in the form of a dialogue, circulated in manuscript, remaining unpublished until the mid-seventeenth century. It is probable that it was kept out of print during the author’s lifetime because of its inflammatory content. The pamphlet argued that Ireland would never be totally “pacified” by the English until its indigenous language and customs had been destroyed, if necessary by violence.[12]

In 1598, during the Nine Years War, Spenser was driven from his home by the native Irish forces of Aodh Ó Néill. His castle at Kilcolman was burned, and Ben Jonson, who may have had private information, asserted that one of his infant children died in the blaze.[13]

Title page, Fowre Hymnes, by Edmund Spenser, published by William Ponsonby, London, 1596

In the year after being driven from his home, 1599, Spenser travelled to London, where he died at the age of forty-six – “for want of bread”, according to Ben Jonson – one of Jonson’s more doubtful statements, since Spenser had a payment to him authorised by the government and was due his pension.[14] His coffin was carried to his grave in Poets’ Corner in Westminster Abbey by other poets, who threw many pens and pieces of poetry into his grave with many tears. His second wife survived him and remarried twice. His sister Sarah, who had accompanied him to Ireland, married into the Travers family, and her descendants were prominent landowners in Cork for centuries.

Rhyme and reason[edit]

Thomas Fuller, in Worthies of England, included a story where the Queen told her treasurer, William Cecil, to pay Spenser one hundred pounds for his poetry. The treasurer, however, objected that the sum was too much. She said, “Then give him what is reason”. Without receiving his payment in due time, Spenser gave the Queen this quatrain on one of her progresses:

I was promis’d on a time,
To have a reason for my rhyme:
From that time unto this season,
I receiv’d nor rhyme nor reason.

She immediately ordered the treasurer pay Spenser the original £100.

This story seems to have attached itself to Spenser from Thomas Churchyard, who apparently had difficulty in getting payment of his pension, the only other pension Elizabeth awarded to a poet. Spenser seems to have had no difficulty in receiving payment when it was due as the pension was being collected for him by his publisher, Ponsonby.[15]

The Shepherd’s Calendar[edit]

Title Page of a 1617 Edition of The Shepherd’s Calendar printed by Matthew Lownes, often bound with the complete works printed in 1611 or 1617.

The Shepherd’s Calendar is Edmund Spenser’s first major work, which appeared in 1579. It emulates Virgil‘s Eclogues of the first century BCE and the Eclogues of Mantuan by Baptista Mantuanus, a late medieval, early renaissance poet. An eclogue is a short pastoral poem that is in the form of a dialogue or soliloquy. Although all the months together form an entire year, each month stands alone as a separate poem. Editions of the late 16th and early 17th centuries include woodcuts for each month/poem, and thereby have a slight similarity to an emblem book which combines a number of self-contained pictures and texts, usually a short vignette, saying, or allegory with an accompanying illustration.

The Faerie Queene[edit]

The epic poem The Faerie Queenefrontispiece, printed by William Ponsonby in 1590.

Spenser’s masterpiece is the epic poem The Faerie Queene. The first three books of The Faerie Queenewere published in 1590, and a second set of three books were published in 1596. Spenser originally indicated that he intended the poem to consist of twelve books, so the version of the poem we have today is incomplete. Despite this, it remains one of the longest poems in the English language.[16] It is an allegorical work, and can be read (as Spenser presumably intended) on several levels of allegory, including as praise of Queen Elizabeth I. In a completely allegorical context, the poem follows several knights in an examination of several virtues. In Spenser’s “A Letter of the Authors,” he states that the entire epic poem is “cloudily enwrapped in allegorical devises,” and that the aim behind The Faerie Queene was to “fashion a gentleman or noble person in virtuous and gentle discipline.”

Shorter poems[edit]

Spenser published numerous relatively short poems in the last decade of the sixteenth century, almost all of which consider love or sorrow. In 1591, he published Complaints, a collection of poems that express complaints in mournful or mocking tones. Four years later, in 1595, Spenser published Amoretti and Epithalamion. This volume contains eighty-nine sonnets commemorating his courtship of Elizabeth Boyle. In “Amoretti,” Spenser uses subtle humour and parody while praising his beloved, reworking Petrarchism in his treatment of longing for a woman. “Epithalamion,” similar to “Amoretti,” deals in part with the unease in the development of a romantic and sexual relationship. It was written for his wedding to his young bride, Elizabeth Boyle. The poem consists of 365 long lines, corresponding to the days of the year; 68 short lines, claimed to represent the sum of the 52 weeks, 12 months, and 4 seasons of the annual cycle; and 24 stanzas, corresponding to the diurnal and sidereal hours.[citation needed] Some have speculated that the attention to disquiet in general reflects Spenser’s personal anxieties at the time, as he was unable to complete his most significant work, The Faerie Queene. In the following year Spenser released Prothalamion, a wedding song written for the daughters of a duke, allegedly in hopes to gain favour in the court.[17]

The Spenserian stanza and sonnet[edit]

Spenser used a distinctive verse form, called the Spenserian stanza, in several works, including The Faerie Queene. The stanza’s main meter is iambic pentameter with a final line in iambic hexameter (having six feet or stresses, known as an Alexandrine), and the rhyme scheme is ababbcbcc. He also used his own rhyme scheme for the sonnet. In a Spenserian sonnet, the last line of every quatrain is linked with the first line of the next one, yielding the rhyme scheme ababbcbccdcdee.

Influences[edit]

Though Spenser was well read in classical literature, scholars have noted that his poetry does not rehash tradition, but rather is distinctly his. This individuality may have resulted, to some extent, from a lack of comprehension of the classics. Spenser strove to emulate such ancient Roman poets as Virgil and Ovid, whom he studied during his schooling, but many of his best-known works are notably divergent from those of his predecessors.[18] The language of his poetry is purposely archaic, reminiscent of earlier works such as The Canterbury Tales of Geoffrey Chaucer and Il Canzoniere of Francesco Petrarca, whom Spenser greatly admired.

Spenser was called a Poets’ Poet[by whom?] and was admired by John Milton, William Blake, William Wordsworth, John Keats, Lord Byron, and Alfred Lord Tennyson, and others. Among his contemporaries Walter Raleigh wrote a commendatory poem to The Faerie Queene in 1590, in which he claims to admire and value Spenser’s work more so than any other in the English language. John Milton in his Areopagitica mentions “our sage and serious poet Spenser, whom I dare be known to think a better teacher than Scotus or Aquinas“.[19] In the eighteenth century, Alexander Pope compared Spenser to “a mistress, whose faults we see, but love her with them all.”[20]

A View of the Present State of Ireland[edit]

In his work A Veue of the Present State of Irelande (1596), Spenser discussed future plans to subjugate Ireland, the most recent rising, led by Hugh O’Neill, having demonstrated the futility of previous efforts. The work is partly a defence of Lord Arthur Grey de Wilton, who was appointed Lord Deputy of Ireland in 1580, and who greatly influenced Spenser’s thinking on Ireland.

The goal of this piece was to show that Ireland was in great need of reform. Spenser believed that “Ireland is a diseased portion of the State, it must first be cured and reformed, before it could be in a position to appreciate the good sound laws and blessings of the nation”.[21] In A View of the Present State of Ireland, Spenser categorises the “evils” of the Irish people into three prominent categories: laws, customs, and religion. These three elements work together in creating the disruptive and degraded people. One example given in the work is the native law system called “Brehon Law” which trumps the established law given by the English monarchy. This system has its own court and way of dealing with infractions. It has been passed down through the generations and Spenser views this system as a native backward custom which must be destroyed. (Brehon Law methods of dealing with murder by imposing an éraic, or fine, on the murderer’s whole family particularly horrified the English, in whose Protestant view a murderer should die for his act.)

Spenser wished devoutly that the Irish language should be eradicated, writing that if children learn Irish before English, “Soe that the speach being Irish, the hart must needes be Irishe; for out of the aboundance of the hart, the tonge speaketh”.[22]

He pressed for a scorched earth policy in Ireland, noting that the destruction of crops and animals had been successful in crushing the Second Desmond Rebellion (1579–83), when, despite the rich and bountiful land:

“‘Out of everye corner of the woode and glenns they came creepinge forth upon theire handes, for theire legges could not beare them; they looked Anatomies [of] death, they spake like ghostes, crying out of theire graves; they did eate of the carrions, happye wheare they could find them, yea, and one another soone after, in soe much as the verye carcasses they spared not to scrape out of theire graves; and if they found a plott of water-cresses or shamrockes, theyr they flocked as to a feast… in a shorte space there were none almost left, and a most populous and plentyfull countrye suddenly lefte voyde of man or beast: yett sure in all that warr, there perished not manye by the sworde, but all by the extreamytie of famine … they themselves had wrought'”[22]

List of works[edit]

  • Iambicum Trimetrum
  • 1569: Jan van der Noodt’s A Theatre for Worldlings, including poems translated into English by Spenser from French sources, published by Henry Bynneman in London[23]
  • 1579: The Shepheardes Calender, published under the pseudonym “Immerito”[24](entered into the Stationers’ Register in December[23])

1590:

1591:

1592:

  • Axiochus, a translation of a pseudo-Platonic dialogue from the original Ancient Greek; published by Cuthbert Burbie; attributed to “Edw: Spenser”[23] but the attribution is uncertain[25]
  • Daphnaïda. An Elegy upon the Death of the Noble and Vertuous Douglas Howard, Daughter and Heire of Henry Lord Howard, Viscount Byndon, and Wife of Arthure Gorges Esquier (published in London in January, according to one source;[23] another source gives 1591 as the year[24])

1595:

1596:

Posthumous:

  • 1609: Two Cantos of Mutabilitie published together with a reprint of The Fairie Queene[26]
  • 1611: First folio edition of Spenser’s collected works[26]
  • 1633: A Vewe of the Present State of Irelande, a prose treatise on the reformation of Ireland,[27] first published in James Ware’s Ancient Irish Chronicles (Spenser’s work was entered into the Stationer’s Register in 1598 and circulated in manuscript but not published until it was included in this work of Ware’s)[26]

Editions[edit]

  • Edmund Spenser, Selected Letters and Other Papers. Edited by Christopher Burlinson and Andrew Zurcher (Oxford, OUP, 2009).
  • Edmund Spenser, The Faerie-Queene (Longman-Annotated-English Poets, 2001, 2007) Edited by A. C. Hamilton, Text Edited by Hiroshi Yamashita and Toshiyuki Suzuki.ge Faculty of English website, retrieved 24 September 2009

Sources[edit]

  • Croft, Ryan J. “Sanctified Tyrannicide: Tyranny And Theology In John Ponet’s Shorte Treatise Of Politike Power And Edmund “Spenser’s The Faerie Queene.” Studies in Philosophy, 108.4 (2011): 538–571. MLA International Bibliography. Web. 8 October 2012.
  • Johnson, William. “The struggle between good and evil in the first book of ‘The Faerie Queene’.” English Studies, Vol. 74,
  • Maley, Willy. “Spenser’s Life.” The Oxford Dictionary of Edmund Spenser. Ed. Richard A. McCabe. 1st Ed. 2010. Print.
  • Rust, Jennifer. “Spenser’s The Faerie Queene.” Saint Louis University, St. Louis. 10 October 2007. No. 6. (December 1993) p. 507–519.

External links[edit]



 


Joel Johnson is my great-great-uncle, brother of my great-great-grandfather Benjamin F Johnson.

My Uncle Joel LeBaron is my mother’s brother and my Great–great Uncle Joel Johnson’s namesake. I was amazed to see how much Uncle Joel LeBaron looks like his Great Uncle Joel Johnson – especially in the cheeks, nose, mouth, and jaw! (He resembles his namesake more than any of my  mother’s other six brothers!)

Great-great uncle Joel Johnson is, among other things, famous for such well-known and beloved Mormon hymns as “High on the Mountaintop.” It  can still be found in modern Mormon hymn books. And is still one of my favorite hymns.

Great-great Uncle Joel Johnson wrote around 800 hymns for the Mormon church. He also helped found some of Utah’s Townsites.

The following I borrowed from Wikipedia for your convenience. But there is also more on him and his history that you can find if you do various online searches:

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia 

“High on the Mountain Top”
Hymn
Joel H. Johnson2.jpg

The text writer of the Latter Day Saint hymn
Written 1853
Text by Joel H. Johnson
Meter 6 6 6 6 8 8
Melody “Deseret” by Ebenezer Beesley
Composed 1854

“High on the Mountain Top” is an 1850s hymn written by Latter Day Saint hymn writers Joel H. Johnson and Ebenezer Beesley.[1]Originally named “Deseret”, it is hymn number 5 in the current LDS Church hymnal.

The lyrics to the hymn were written by Johnson in 1853, five years after Brigham Youngpreached on Ensign Peak as the Mormon pioneers first arrived in the Salt Lake Valley.[2]Even though Johnson’s journal contains more than 700 hymns, “High on the Mountain Top” is his most notable contribution to LDS music.[3]

In 1854, Beesley composed music to accompany Johnson’s poem. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir adopted Beesley’s rendition and it has since become one of the choir’s standard numbers.

The hymn has five verses and centers on the theme that God has restored the gospel to the earth.

References[edit]

Jump up ^ Petersen, Randy (2014). Be Still, My Soul: The Inspiring Stories Behind 175 of the Most-loved Hymns. Tyndale House Publishers. pp. 60–61. ISBN 0825434335.

Jump up ^ Koltko, Claire et. al (2006). The Eyewitness History of the Church 3 (Google eBook). Cedar Fort. p. 187. ISBN 1555179630.

Jump up ^ “Joel Johnson: An Early Member of the Church who Wrote More Than 700 Hymns, Including High on the Mountain Top”, Mormon Tabernacle Choir, April 2014. Accessed 14 Nov 2014.

 

 

~ My Homage to Detective Sam Brower, Author of “Prophet’s Prey:” A Chronology of Warren Jeffs, the FLDS, and Shortcreek/ Colorado City

sam-brower
Author and Private Investigator Sam Brower

 

The Book “Prophet’s Prey,” was authored by outstanding LDS Mormon Leader, Activist, Detective and Private Investigator Sam Brower. It is among the best books written on life within Mormon fundamentalist clans and enclaves.

A film by the same title, “Prophet’s Prey,” opened in theaters on September 18th, 2017. It’s based on Brower’s chronicle of Warren Jeffs and Short Creek/ A.K.A. Colorado City — Check out the Trailer and film online.

Recently I noted on Facebook Utahn Sam Brower is running for Iron County Commissioner. Because I appreciate so much all the work he has done to help rid the world of such as the menacing, maniacal “prophet/profit” of evil, Warren Jeffs, I wrote the following poetry slam:


“Slam Slogans” for Sam —
That Sam-I-Am”
for Iron County Commissioner:

Vote for Sam Brower,
Man-of-the-hour.
He’s got the power! 

The new
John-Wayne-of-the-West,
He’s passed the test!
You can bet with Sam
You’ll get the best.
He’s heads and shoulders
Above all the rest.

Now Is The Hour:
Cast your vote
For P.I. Sam Brower
For Iron County Commissioner;
Help this superpower
Overpower his opponents
At the 11th hour!

Put Sam Brower in power,
Then get behind this
 Man-of-the-hour,
And watch your work
Make fodder flower/flour!

By Stephany Spencer


Watch Prophet’s Prey (2015) Full Movie Streaming






*The following video gives insight into Mormon fundamentalism and how I was raised  — and what I escaped at age 21.

My Poem: “Comical Comedians Madigan and Gaffigan”

madigan                              jim-gaffigan

 What a brilliant comedian is Jim Gaffigan!
He makes me laugh, then laugh again.
His moniker is “Mr. Universe,”
And he’s earned this name.
For most standup comedians’ work
Is loaded with filth, smut, and worse —
To make up for ad-libbing that’s lame,
They employee obscenities and curse.
But Gaffigan’s humor is satire clean —
At least any of it that I’ve seen.
If only there were more so funny
Without being dirty and mean.

Another comic like Gaffigan,
Is hilarious Kathleen Madigan.
She, too, makes me laugh ‘n’ laugh again.
Both have lines filled with humor and wit,
Sans obscenities and words like *#%!

   (By Stephany Spencer  2013)

My Aunt-in-law Producer Rebecca Kimbel

177_Rebecca_Kimbel   In today’s blog, I am featuring my amazing Aunt: Rebecca Kimbel. I highly recommend listening to her YouTube interviews, among other things. To make it easier to get to know a little about her, I copied and pasted some of her online information.

But you may find more information at her website, RebeccaKimbel.com, and on her YouTube Channel.

Around a year ago, I discovered her on  YouTube where she had produced many  live interviews with Ex-Mormon fundamentalists.

She is one of my many relatives I did not know about or had lost contact with when I went into hiding after escaping the cult I was raised in.

Since coming into contact with her and listening to videos of her TV shows recorded on YouTube, I have become so much more enlightened.

I also recommend listening to the outstanding speech she did on Ted X — which you can find and listen to on YouTube.

There, in around 18 minutes, she manages to outline ALL the most poignant factors involved in Mormon fundamentalism, including being raised a White slave in modern America!

I look forward to your comments and feedback, knowing you will benefit from having listened to any of Aunt Rebecca’s Independently produced TV shows she has also recorded on YouTube.

But for now, I present her remarkable online Bio:

 

Specializing In

Motivational Speaking  *  Workshops/Seminars  *  Writing

Helping Businesses, Communities, and Individuals to Maximize their Potential

Rebecca Kimbel is a powerful motivational speaker whose compassion, wisdom, and leadership skills can change your relationships, your neighborhood, your business and your life.

Effectiveness of public speaking and private communication requires an understanding of people, problems and time. Kimbel is a profound example of mastering these skills and teaching them. 
Her expertise has been presented in over one hundred hours of television broadcast, newspapers and other publications, the web, public formats, private coaching, seminars/workshops and Toastmasters International where she served as Area Governor 2006-2008. She was awarded Toastmasters International Area Governor of the year 2007-2008. Kimbel is a Distinguished Toastmaster ( DTM ) which is The highest accomplishment award of Toastmasters International.

Kimbel’s qualifications and experience make her a heart felt, moving, dynamic and unforgettable speaker.
Catch My New Show!
The Rebecca Kimbel Show airs on Tuesdays 7 pm on channel 12 Access Humboldt.  Access Humboldt Schedule
Visit My Youtube Channel
This channel features a unique collection of unsung heroes, those who have outstanding courage, and those who inspire us, motivate us and change our lives. Some bring us joy; others bring us leading edge thinking to dare to rise above our challenges. We present examples of courage to make life better and down to earth practical applications to controlling the direction of your own life. The variety of interviews continues to grow as we salute the better qualities in those who are influencing a better tomorrow. We invite you to join us.

 

Help Support Human Rights Awareness
Human Rights Awareness

Publicly Televised on Comcast
Walnut Creek, California
Program          Keeping Our Neighborhoods Safe


“Kimbel’s powerful presentation is a wonderful model to make life work better in your community”, stated Producer Pat Van Horn. “Rebecca Kimbel was diligently working with the viable parts of the community to build safe neighborhoods and to help explain laws and how to use them to bring about positive change. That is what Kimbel is all about, teaching people to work together, creating community concluded Van Horn.”

 

Program         Communication Skills to Build Community

Procuder Pat Van Horn has referred to Kimbel as a person who “builds community.” “Kimbel is well known in Northern California and has provided a valuable resource of leadership and communication skills to help develop community and its desired cause and effect. Kimbel is a dedicated person who does a lot of training, community work and is truly an outstanding leader, not only as a Toastmaster, but as a Community Focus Person, stated Van Horn.”

Program         Polygamy, Are All Americans Free?

“Rebecca Kimbel enlightened the viewing audience and myself, she is a wonderful messenger to help people understand. The key to Kimbel’s message is to educate and help individuals, said Pat Van Horn.” 

 

 

 

 

Producer, Doris Hanson

14887_10202162213869662_70814664_nI recommend listening to Doris Hanson‘s YouTube interviews. She had her own independent TV show for many years. Now she produces her shows on YouTube.

I have learned a lot from listening to these excellent interviews she has done of especially mainstream Mormons, and also Mormon fundamentalists who have left or escaped the Sect they were raised in. Each has an interesting story to relate — and I can “relate” to all of them.

 

~ Media on My Extended Family, Friends, and Fundamentalist Mormon Cults



prophet-of-evil-dvd  This is a movie done some years ago about my infamous Uncle Ervil LeBaron, my mother’s brother. He is now known as “Evil Ervil,” and “The Mormon Manson.” I knew, respected, and loved him before he went off the deep end with his sociopathy and psychosis.

The film was very well done. I love how brilliantly Brian Dennehy played the part of my Uncle Ervil. But no film can possibly portray the depth of suffering and lunacy that went on in this man’s life that also affected the lives of all his brainwashed, true-believing followers and children.

You will have to get the film from wherever you get movies and find out the rest of the story for yourself; though I will be telling my experiences with my Uncle Ervil later on down the line in my memoir blogging.



https://thetrueprophetfilm.com/proposed-cast/

THE TRUE PROPHET is an independent film written and directed by Scott Hillier and executive produced by…
THETRUEPROPHETFILM.COM

*NOTE: This movie was planning on its release in 2014. It was never released due to lack of funding. However, there is some interesting information on the site that you may find useful. For example, on this Website are some of Ervil’s writings and more. Must see.

*You may also read books written about him. I have listed here, below, some of these books. Wikipedia and other such sites relate a history of him also –– as well as a short history of the rest of the LeBaron family: His parents and siblings.



prophet-of-blood-book-cover
A Documentary about the LeBaron’s, especially Ervil LeBaron and his Cult

 



But hats off to him! Till I recently read his chronicle, I had no idea just how devious and wicked was the cult Uncle Ervil spawned; not to mention the people who followed him hook, line, and sinker/stinker!!



blood-covenant-by-r-blood-blood-covenant-by-chynoweth-1
Rena’s story about Ervil LeBaron and his cult

This Memoir, written about thirty years ago, seems merely an immature, biased, apologist’s cold hearted revisionist tale written by the infamous Rena Chynoweth wherein she could brag about the part she played in the sad and dirty story of her husband’s bloody, violent, and psychotic cult. All is not fact-checked nor factual, much is omitted, and she writes more about her girlish romantic escapades and herself than anything.

In other words, it appears to be, largely, an attempt to be in the limelight and cash in on the notoriety of Ervil LeBaron, so as to make money and be a starlet — albeit a notorious one. We were lucky to get two paragraphs about her cold-blooded murder of Dr. Rulon Allred. And the best apology she could come up with, as to the “Lambs of God” atrocities and murders is, “This did not need to happen.”

But you may find her book worth a perusal just to see how a member of Ervil LeBaron’s murderous cult used to think. I say “used to think”  because recently I had the opportunity to meet and visit with Gabriela LeBaron, a first cousin, and one of Uncle Ervil’s more than fifty children! She brought me up to date on how Ervil’s ex-cult is doing now — and that includes Rena!

Please see my Menu Bar to read about this important update and Info I have included in my full book review of Rena’s thirty-year-old Memoir The Blood Covenant.” 

If you want to get more of a chronicle of Ervil’s old mafioso cult, and its demise, read “The 4 O’clock Murders” by Scott Anderson, published in 1993And “Prophet of Blood” by Ben Bradlee and Dale Van Atta, published in 1981.

These two documentaries are not always exactly right, in some of the history of this cult they wrote about, but hats off to them for doing as well as they did with a subject that was often hard to get “the truth” about.



*For much more information on anyone or anything I mention on this site, you may use your search engine to look up these people and topics. Also check YouTube, Wikipedia, and other sites.



Both Doris Hanson and Aunt Rebecca Kimbel are success stories of brilliant and determined women — who are also escapees from Mormon Fundamentalist cults!

They are each now Independent TV Producers who also host their own YouTube sites, among other things. Each of them interviews, among other outstanding leaders and people, escapees from dangerous Mormon cults.



My cousin, Donna LeBaron Goldberg (as seen below with her sister Barbara LeBaron on their website header) is interviewed a number of times by Producer Aunt Rebecca Kimbel on YouTube, for example. I hope you check out these YouTube interviews.

donna-and-barbara-website




Doris Hansen and Rebecca Kimbel also each interviewed Authors Irene LeBaron Spencer (See: IreneSpencerbooks.com) and Susan Ray Schmidt (see her website). Both are my Aunts. And Aunt Irene is Donna LeBaron Goldberg’s and Barbara LeBaron’s mother, as seen in the photos above.



Aunt Rebecca Kimbel and Doris Hansen also interviewed, on their TV and YouTube sites, other relatives and friends of mine from my days in the cult — people such as my cousin, Carolyn Jessop, a memoirist who wrote the bestselling,”Escape,” and other books.





Also, check out Aunt Rebecca Kimbel’s excellent and adamant speech on YouTube’s TED-X Talks. (In around only 18 minutes, she did a genius presentation on all the main issues to do with Mormon cults, including White slavery.


See also (on Goodreads.com) her novel, “A Savage Wild,” published in 2013. I have yet to get and read it




See the film: “The Childbride of Short Creek.” It was on YouTube, among other places, the last time I checked. (To get Info for their Script, my sisters were interviewed by the writers of this film.)




Banking on Heaven is a Documentary my cousin Laurie Allen and her cohort, Dot Reidelbach, created. (It gives a good overview of life as a Mormon fundamentalist female in Short Creek, Arizona, and Hilldale, Utah.

I went online a few years ago and ordered a copy of their DVD. I don’t know if you can find it on YouTube or the Internet now. But give it a try.)

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@



 Some Recommended Books and Films Written Mostly by My Relatives and/or By Fellow Ex-Mormon Fundamentalists

(Many can be found in Public Libraries, on Amazon.com, etc., and on the Authors’ website. A number of them are in audiobook form also):

Shattered Dreams” and Cult Insanity” by Best-Selling Author Aunt Irene LeBaron Spencer, at IreneSpencerBooks.com. Her books are also in audiobook form. (Irene is my Aunt, through marriage, as is Rebecca Kimbel, Irene’s half-sister.)

*Note: I took the picture featured on Irene’s book cover,”Cult Insanity. (See it below in its original form :

Uncle Ervil LeBaron is holding my eight-year-old daughter, Asenath Marie Tucker, the little girl in the yellow dress. I took this photograph before I had any idea that Uncle Ervil was a psychotic sociopath.

ervil with marie
Uncle Ervil LeBaron, Brother-in-law Dan Jordan, & my daughter, Asenath Marie Tucker



One of my favorite books on the subject of my relatives and my past is the following book, written by a very talented writer, Aunt Susan Ray Schmidt. (I took care of her for five days when she was around nine years old (long before she married my Uncle Verlan LeBaron, of course, and thus became my aunt) while her parents were out of town, and we were still living in Colonia LeBaron, Chihuahua, Mexico).

His Favorite Wife,”  by Susan Ray Schmidt (Another Aunt of mine,  her book reads like a novel. My family is mentioned in it.)




kimbel and kocielaplygs-book-cover

TWO EXCELLENT BOOKS:PLYGSand “PLYGS 2 by Ed Kociela,  available for sale on Amazon.com

*(He calls his book “Fiction,” to protect the innocent and himself, I suspect. It’s not fiction!

~ Also see Rebecca Kimbel’s YouTube interviews with this amazing journalist who spent many years writing news reports on the infamous polygamist town, Short Creek/AKA Colorado City.)




Another must read is Prophet’s Prey, by Sam Brower (also an audiobook).

A film came out September 2016: Prophet’s Prey. It is based on his book and was playing in theaters. I haven’t seen it yet.



Another “must read” is “God’s Brothel, by Andrea Moore-Emmett. (Also check out her super interviews with Rebecca Kimbel, and possibly also with Doris Hanson, on YouTube.)






No Man Knows My History, by the late UCLA researcher and professorFawn McKay Brodie (niece of David O. McKay, a former President and Prophet of the mainline  Mormon church) This book is a well-researched history of the so-called “Prophet Joseph Smith” — a must read!)

My great-great-grandfather, Benjamin F. Johnson, was sealed to Joseph Smith as a son. Beginning at the tender age of eighteen, he became one of Joseph Smith’s Scribes. (I recently read,  in a questionable place, that his son, Benjamin F. LeBaron, was also sealed to Joseph Smith as a son! But given the references for this claim, I’d say the jury is still out on this one!)





* This concludes my present most-recommended books and media on the subject to do with my Mormon fundamentalist past. However, there are plenty more books, films, and TV shows published on this subject of Mormon fundamentalism, polygamy, and cults.

Check libraries, bookstores, Youtube, your online search engine, and “Media” in the Menu of my own website for more material on these subjects. I own around one hundred books and also some films and TV productions about Mormonism, its past, and Mormon polygamist cults. Many of the books and scripts are written by former Mormon Fundamentalists who have left/escaped their cult.

I found all one hundred or more of my books worth reading, but have gleaned from them the ones I most recommend to start with. If I think of any other books or media, I will come back and add them later. But I’m sure this is more than enough to start with.

Again, you can always check the public libraries and online Book Stores like Amazon.com, also, if you want even more books and Media presently available on the subject.

I am open to questions or feedback on this material, should you wish to make comments on my site. Till then, happy reading, listening to, and watching films, YouTube interviews, and TV shows on this informative media.

As always, I look forward to hearing from you and to your following my site. Thank you in advance for your most appreciated feedback. It’s what we Authors thrive on.

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@







September 26, 2016:  

The following books and films, etc., I also recommend, if you are interested in learning more about my extended family, or/and other things to do with Mormon fundamentalism:

(*By the way, this Romney insert is not a book, but I thought it interesting. Also wanted to say, my mother (born 1921 in Colonia Pacheco, Mexico) grew up with Gov. Romney’s (George Romney, et Al) family, there in the Mormon colonies in Mexico.romney-and-polygamy 




“The LeBaron Story” is truly a “Vanity Book” — not only because my uncle Verlan LeBaron paid a publishing company in 1981 (back when self-publishing was far from the norm) to publish the book — but also because it is a revisionistic, apologetic, and biased history of some of my grandparents Maud and Dayer LeBaron’s rather grandiose offspring.

What’s more, my Aunt Charlotte and Uncle Verlan are largely NOT the authors of this book though they have taken all the credit for it. Truth is, Uncle Verlan was FAR too busy to write a book — even if he knew how — too busy working, traveling around from country to country visiting his ten wives and fifty-plus kids — and running from his brother Ervil who was out to kill him! And Aunt Charlotte was about this busy too!

Fact is, my mother/Verlan’s sister Esther LeBaron-McDonald de Spencer (with a BA in journalism) is the one whose idea it was to write “The LeBaron Story.” She wrote a large part of this book, then turned her manuscript over to Verlan, along with her journals and notes, telling him he could finish and publish her work — could even have all the proceeds from it!

It was Mother’s effort to help her brother Verlan “build up the kingdom of God” — her way of paying tithing and defending “God’s work” because Verlan had taken over for her brother Joel LeBaron, “The One Mighty and Strong,” after Joel was murdered by his brother Ervil!

The work of finishing and compiling Mother’s book was largely done by my Uncle Verlan’s first wife Charlotte who relied on Info from my mother’s journals and notes to help her.

About 2/3 of “The LeBaron Story,” therefore, came directly from my dear Mom’s manuscript as well as her journal entries. I remember when she was writing this history. She talked about it a lot at the time. I recognize her writing and input. It’s mixed throughout the text — makes up a large part of it.

You may want to note the two different writer’s voices used in the book! Anything with the more beautifully written structured writing, defined paragraphs, quotes, and sources listed at the back of the book, etc., is my mother Esther LeBaron Spencer’s writing voice — her contribution. Whereas Aunt Charlotte, Uncle Verlan, et Al’s writing voices are in the chapters where everything is run together and there aren’t structured paragraphs, footnotes, etc.

Although Uncle Verlan and Aunt Charlotte used large parts of what my Mother wrote, word for word — used her material exactly as she had written it — no editing at all — they gave Mother not one BIT of credit — not one speck of acknowledgment, let alone so much as a howdy-do-dee or thank-you. It’s tantamount to plagiarism — shameful how Charlotte and Verlan took all the credit for this book!

But getting to the body of the work, if you were to take the authors’ word for everything, for sure the Mexico LeBarons are/were “a saintly people with a Godly mission.” But I beg to differ: Wishing doesn’t make it so. In other words, wishful thinking, such as self-proclaiming oneself as “The One Mighty and Strong,” and claiming one comes from “A Godly people with a Messianic mission” doesn’t make it true.

Much of the book’s lore takes place in Chihuahua, Mexico. Unfortunately, the authors tell the story in the words of true-believing, fundamentalist-Mormon-LeBaron cult members. In other words, it’s a highly biased history with a Messianic purpose.

True to their fanatic religiosity, as I said above, the book was mainly written to proselytize and promote Uncle Joel LeBaron’s cult, “The Church of the First Born of the Fullness of Times.” This presupposes a revised and rewritten history, then — and a white-washing of the LeBarons … It’s myth in the making, to be sure.

Nonetheless, I was able to glean a bit of useful information from it. I’m glad the book was written, despite the biased viewpoint, because nobody else in the immediate Mexico LeBaron family has written any first-hand history about themselves.

But suffice it to say, the book could use a good Editor’s service, if nothing else — although, even as it is, it was a big endeavor and accomplishment for my aunts and uncle to pull off. For they were very busy people who had done little reading in comparison to Scholars and those Majoring in Journalism or such. Plus they were laboring under great pressures and disadvantages like raising huge families of small children while living in backward, primitive conditions. But book-buyer beware …  be wary! That’s all I can say!

I was given a copy of this book many years ago when it first came out in 1981, fourteen years after I escaped the LeBaron cult in 1967. After reading the book, the preaching, plus the white-washing and grandiose fabrications throughout the chronicle of the LeBaron family got my gut so badly I was about to toss the book in the dumpster when my Uncle Verlan’s daughters Rhea and Donna dropped in. They still believed their father was a prophet, back then, so were very happy to be gifted with my book, “The LeBaron Story.” And I was very happy to get rid of it.

But thirty-six years later, for purposes of my own writing, understanding, and research, I had to re-buy the book on Kindle! Argh! It’s going for around $45.00 or so in hardback, no less, on Amazon.com. Wonders never cease to amaze me … so I wonder! Well, to each his own. Read on!



escaping-polygamy


stolen-innocents-book-imageElissa Wall was raised in the FLDS cult, the same cult that I was raised in for around eight years, as a child, before my parents left this fundamentalist group and joined another, the LeBaron group.



escape-from-polygamy-book-cover




Anna LeBaron is my cousin, one of  Uncle Ervil’s daughters.

Her above book, The Polygamist’s Daughter, is presently available in bookstores as of March 21, 2017. (See her website,  AnnaLeBaron.com.)





flora-jessop-church-of-liesThe is a wonderfully and intelligently written memoir by Flora Jessop (and Paul T. Brown), who was born and raised in the FLDS cult — there in Short Creek, Arizona (now called “Colorado City,” on the map) and Hilldale, Utah, where I lived for some time, as a child.




My sister, Lenora Spencer (mentioned in the credits of this book) gave Jon Krakauer a lot of the good information included in his book about Short Creek/Colorado City, Hilldale, and Centennial Park, Utah.

In turn, he helped her a lot — with advice, etc., that aided her escape from the bonds of White slavery, polygamy, and Mormon fundamentalism.

My niece Vicky Rogers LeBaron filled Krakauer in on some of the details, also, that have made up part of the research that went into writing this documentary.





the-sound-of-gravelMemoirist and Author Ruth Warinerruth-with-her-memoir Ruth (LeBaron) Wariner Centofante, a daughter of my mother’s brother Uncle Joel LeBaron, published her memoirs Feb. 2016.

A best-seller, it’s in public libraries. Audiobook also available.




The book largely consists of a collection of some of my grandmother’s letters — and some vignettes Grandma wrote that are run together in often hard-to-decipher paragraphs.

More to be said on this later. I’ll say, for now, she’s done a revised version—a rewriting of the history of the “Joel LeBaron: Prophet” saga, turning it upside down and him into a martyred prophet. (She shows, though not intentionally, how religious myths are made.)


*Note: It’s now 2017, and I’ve written a much longer Review of Aunt Charlotte’s “Maud’s Story,” posted below:

Maud Lucinda LeBaron is my maternal grandmother, of whom I am “the spittin’ image,” I was always told growing up. In fact, the above photo of her looks so much like me at that age, I look at it and think it’s me. I can’t tell the difference!




Still, I resent she used my grandmother Matriarch Maud Lucinda LeBaron’s story to draw in her progeny and relatives, as well as others, so as to promote her’s and Uncle Joel’s Church of the Firstborn doctrine — a la Charlotte LeBaron’s lore. So “Maud’s Story” really should be renamed: “Charlotte’s Story.”


But to give Aunt Charlotte a little credit (though I’m disappointed “Maud’s Story” wasn’t imbued with more of Grandmother’s colorful history—her growing up with Spencer W. Kimball as a pioneer in poverty and primitive conditions in Thatcher, Arizona, for example! (See: “The Story of Spencer W. Kimball : A Short Man, a Long Stride“) she includes in her booklet numerous short vignettes that are, she claims, direct “Quotes from Grandma’s Notes.


Perhaps, to get a little more of Grandmother’s history, Charlotte expects us to read “The LeBaron Story,” which she also claims authorship for along with her husband, my Uncle Verlan LeBaron—though it was my mother who wrote a great deal of “The LeBaron Story.” See my review all of this book, another apologists’ chronicle largely written to preach the Church of the Firstborn religious doctrine.


I find its covert preaching of the Church of the First Born dogma distasteful— especially the revising of its doctrine and history to make it more palatable than it was when my Uncles Ervil and Joel LeBaron first spawned this sect/cult in 1953—an offshoot from their brothers Ben and Ross Wesley LeBaron’s cults!







This is an excellent memoir written by a nephew of Warren Jeffs, Brent Jeffs. It is a very informative and bravely written memoir of one of the unfortunate and abused (sexually, physically, emotionally, and mentally) boys raised in the FLDS/Mormon fundamentalist cult. He has been interviewed on TV a number of times.

You go, Brent! More people need to follow your example and bring to light what is really going on in Mormon fundamentalist cults in the name of religion.




ervil-in-another-film  This film is/was about my Uncle Ervil LeBaron. Did a Google search and found it was scheduled to be released in 2014, but was canceled for lack of funding. But am told a new film on Uncle Ervil is due to be released in 2017 or 2018.




Joanne Hanks Memoir is one of the best books written on what life in polygamy is like, and why she eventually fled it. See my book review on her memoir. It’s posted on my Website.






Welcome to My Photoblog Site!

Welcome to My Photoblog Site!

 

with-sunglasses
Beulah Stephany Spencer-LeBaron, 2015, age 69

 

Hi! I am Stephany Spencer, poet, lyricist, memoirist– a professional Jackalyn-of-many-trades. Welcome to my own little corner of the world-wide-web! 

As we speak, my Website I started June of 2016 continues to grow and develop along with my continuing to develop the skills of being a Webmaster and first-time blogger/Photoblogger.

It’s work so fun, I doubt I’ll ever be done! I do love the creative process — the “one-on-one.” And am thrilled to share it with you on my little part of the globe — My little piece of the planet’s valuable virtual Internet real estate! 

 My goal is to blog on enlightening and entertaining “shoot-from-the-hip” insights, essays, personal stories, and creative works — especially my poetry and memoirs. If I may serve my visitors, otherwise, please advise!

Should you be a Creative and curious person, then this blog is for you. I plan to post my blogs sporadically, now, to give me more time to get my book/ Memoir written.

As for my blogging, I don’t intend for this to be a monolog but a dialog. I want you to give me your feedback in the “Comments” section. I will read every comment and respond as time allows. If you have a topic you want me to address, please leave a comment below.

I’m looking forward to connecting with you. Till then, feel free to click around and scroll down on my Menu Bar to become acquainted with my Website.

It was lovely chatting with you. If you are a follower of my blogs, that’s even lovelier! 

 Till next time, cheers, and have a happy life!

Your Host,
Stephany Spencer

Think in terms of possibilities.
(Emily Dickinson)