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This profile was last updated on 3/11/12  and contains information from public web pages.

Mr. Ezra Booth

Wrong Ezra Booth?


Phone: (801) ***-****  HQ Phone
The Joseph Smith Papers
50 E. North Temple Street
Salt Lake City, Utah 84150
United States

Company Description: Joseph Smith, Papers, Historical

Employment History

  • Methodist Minister

Board Memberships and Affiliations

  • Member
    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
61 Total References
Web References
Between October 13, 1831, and December ..., 11 Mar 2012 [cached]
Between October 13, 1831, and December 10, a former member of the Mormon Church, Ezra Booth, began printing lies about the Church in the Ohio Star Newspaper. He printed nine letters which he claimed truthfully detailed his experience as a member of the Church. God had chastened Ezra Booth in September:
"Behold, I, the Lord, was angry with him who was my servant Ezra Booth, and also my servant Isaac Morley, for they kept not the law, neither the commandment; they sought evil in their hearts, and I, the Lord, withheld my Spirit. They condemned for evil that thing in which there was no evil; nevertheless I have forgiven my servant Isaac Morley."1
Ezra Booth was bitter and disillusioned. He had joined the Church when he saw a miraculous healing and was upset that he did not experience miracles constantly.
Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon were very successful in showing many that the things being printed by Ezra Booth were not true.
Uncle Dale's Old Mormon Articles: Early Ohio 1829-31 [cached]
9 of the RLDS History of the Church and Ezra Booth's letter of Oct. 31, 1831).
Note 2: For an anecdote on Alexander Campbell's supposed meeting with Sidney Rigdon during this period, see the closing paragraph of Ezra Booth's letter, published Nov. 11, 1831 in the Ohio Star.
Booth and Rider, two Methodist Ministers, who, a few months ago, joined the Mormon Standard, and followed the infatuated Jo Smith to Missouri, have recently returned to this section of country -- and that, at the late Campmeeting at Shalersville, in this County, they made a public renunciation of the Mormon faith.
Note 2: Historian Amos Hayden dates the alienation of elders Ezra Booth and Simmons Ryder from the Mormons to "about the 1st of September, 1831 (see Hayden's History of the Disciples, page 252).
See also the Ohio Star of Oct. 20th for Lewis L. Rice's comments on Ezra Booth's "renunciation"
Booth and Rider, two Methodist Ministers, who, a few months ago joined the Mormon Standard, and followed the infatuated Jo Smith to Missouri, have recently returned to this section of country -- and that, at the late Campmeeting at Shalersville, in this County, they made a public renunciation of the Mormon faith. -- Observer & Telegraph.
The numbers of Mr. Booth bear the impress of honest sincerity and deep repentance.
Note 1: Ezra Booth, (1792- aft. 1860) was an Ohio Methodist minister who witnessed a supposedly miraculous LDS healing and was baptized a Mormon late in 1830 or early in 1831, apparently in Portage Co., Ohio. Within a short time he was ordained an Elder, and on June 3, 1831 he was ordained a High Priest by LDS official Lyman Wight. During the summer of 1831 Booth traveled in company with Elder Isaac Morley (see LDS Doc. & Cov. Sec. 52) on Mormon activities Missouri and attended the consecration of the "Temple Lot" in that state. Following the disheartening outcome of his experiences, Booth withdrew from the LDS Church membership (some sources say he was excommunicated in early Sept. 1831) and, for the next 30 years lived on his farm at Mantua, Portage Co., Ohio.
Note 2: Ezra was the first person to leave the LDS Church who wrote extensively of his experience while a member of that organization. His nine letters on this topic have been often reprinted since he wrote the first of them for publication in the Ohio Star of Oct. 13, 1831. Strangely, not many newspaper editors saw fit to copy or notice Ezra Booth's remarkable series of disclosures.
Gospel & Doctrine | LDS Blogs, 22 Aug 2011 [cached]
Ezra Booth and the Dangers of Gossip
Ezra Booth, a former minister, became a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, whose members are often called Mormons, in 1831, when the church was still new. He had seen Joseph Smith heal the arm of a church member, and this was his reason for joining. However, Mormons know miracles don't really convert people. The miracle must be followed up with appropriate steps to gain a true testimony, including study and prayer. However, Booth did not do this and so he had only the single miracle to bolster his thin faith.
In the early days of the church, adult men, even those married, could be sent out on missions and often did so when they were quite new to the church. This is not the case today, where missionaries must be well-versed in their religion and have strong testimonies. Ezra Booth left on his mission only a few months after joining. This mission demonstrated his lack of true testimony as he faced his first necessity to sacrifice for his faith. He was angry over having to walk to his destination instead of being given transportation, even though the young church had no money for such things and neither did he. He began to feel upset that he didn't see a continual stream of miracles, not understanding that miracles are miracles precisely because they are rare. Missionary work wasn't the glamorous task he expected it to be.
Read more
Tags: agency, Ezra Booth, gossip, integrity, Joseph Smith, Mormon history, Mormons
Smith History Vault: Robert B. Neal Newspapers, 20 Jan 2009 [cached]
R. B. Neal, evangelist, Grayson, Kentucky, sends out Anti-Mormon Tract No. 6, containing the letters written by Rev. Ezra Booth to Rev. Ira Eddy.
"Years of experience among them affords him (Booth) unusual opportunities to detect their wily schemes, and thus to expose them at their every move."
The reader will note that Booth went in among them for the purpose of "detecting their wily schemes" -- went in a hypocrite and came out a "circus rider." ... Suppose he joined the church in September, 1830; he left them in August, 1831. During those "few months" he had "years of experience among them!"
The above is from The Watchman, whose stupidity wiull soon pass into a proverb.
Not another man, woman or child on earth would bracket the name of (Booth) in that clause in Fred L. Rowe's Introduction to the tract.
In "Booth's Bombs," our Tract No. 6, we have reprinted about one-fourth of Howe's "Mormonism Unveiled."
Booth was a man of scholarly attainments, of fine brain and a good, honest heart. He was a Methodist minister, and he went into Mormonism with all the strength of his heart and head. He was one of the band that made the pilgrimage to Missouri to locate Zion and the site for a Temple, to which the Saviour would cme when it was erected. He was thrown in close contact with Smith, Rigdon, Cowdery, and all the leaders. When their perfidity and duplicity dawned upon him he was shocked beyond expression. Humiliated, feeling keenly his disgrace, he tells the story of that trip and opens up, with trenchant pen, the "true inwardness" of Mormonism. "Prophet Joe" had the Lord denounce him as an apostate. This is the best commendation he could have of the truthfulness of his letters.
Annotated History of Joseph Smith Vol. 1 Chapter 18 (Dec. 1831 - Mar. 1832), 11 Feb 2010 [cached]
From this time until the 8th or 10th of January, 1832, myself and Elder Rigdon continued to preach (8) in Shalersville, Ravenna, and other places, setting forth the truth, vindicating the cause of our Redeemer; showing that the day of vengeance was coming upon this generation like a thief in the night; that prejudice, blindness and darkness filled the minds of many, and caused them to persecute the true Church, and reject the true light; by which means we did much towards allaying the excited feelings which were growing out of the scandalous letters then being published in the Ohio Star, at Ravenna, by the before-mentioned apostate, Ezra Booth (9).
The purpose of this revelation was to invite Joseph and Sydney to counteract the influence of Ezra Booth and other apostates like Simonds Ryder.
As already noted, Booth had published letters against the character of Joseph Smith and Mormonism and Booth and Ryder had given speeches in several Ohio towns.
As already noted, Booth had published letters against the character of Joseph Smith and Mormonism and Booth and Ryder had given speeches in several Ohio towns.
Smith, has thrown out a challenge, in the Ohio Star, to Mr. Booth and Deacon Rider, who have renounced the Mormon faith, to meet him in mortal combat (of words) on the subject of the Gold Bible.
Joel Johnson notes in his journal the criticisms of the Mormons even prior to Booth's:
Booth began his public criticisms of Joseph Smith prior to September 1831.
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