Mormon History

Last Will & Testament of Charles Malmstrom - 1896

Salt Lake Tribune September 5, 1896

MALMSTROM'S  CURIOUS  WILL.
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HEIRS  MAY  NOT  BE  MORMONS  OR  CATHOLICS.
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Are also Debarred from Inheritance if They Join Any
Secret Society -- Text of the Document.
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Correspondence Tribune.

Provo, Sept. 4. -- Charles Eric Malmstrom of Mapleton, declaring himself of sound mind and body, has filed his last will and testament at the Recorder's office at Provo, disinheriting his children in case they become Mormons, Catholics or join secret societies. In case they do, his property goes to the Baptist church. It is a lengthy paper. His wife is given the use of the estate as long as she is unmarried. If she be divorced or dies, then the children, six of whom are living, are given the use of the estate. The estate is then described by sectional bounds. Then the will proceeds:

"And I do further direct and appoint that should any of my children, as above named, or my grandchildren become members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, also called the Mormon church, or the Roman Catholic church, or any secret oath-bound society whatever, or who aids any of them, then shall none of those who so join said churches or said societies or who aid them in any manner whatever, be entitled to inherit any portion whatever of my estate, real, personal or mixed, or to which I may be entitled at the time of my death or decease; but all of my estate in equal shares as above specified shall be given to those of my children that do not join or aid said churches or secret societies. That if all of my said children or grandchildren should join or aid in building up either of said churches or societies, or aid them, then shall all of my property, real, personal or mixed, or to which I may be entitled at the time of my decease, be given and bequeathed to the Baptist church in Utah, or nearest to Utah, provided such church has taken action to exclude from membership in such church any and all who join or or belong to any of the above-named secret societies. My estate or the proceeds thereof shall be used by said church exclusively for the purpose to expose and work against Mormonism, by enlightening the Mormons and other people by proving that Joseph Smith was a false prophet; by circulating such books as "The Mormon Portraits," by Dr. Wyl; "The Golden Bible," by Rev. M. T. Lamb, and by publishing and circulating my manuscript entitled, "Sidney Rigdon in the Court on the Charge of Personating the Fictitious Angel Moroni to Joseph Smith and the Three Witnesses of the Book of Mormon."

I further nominate and appoint the United States District Judge of Utah to appoint an honest person as executor of this my last will and testament. And lastly, do I protest against all and any contests against this my last will and testament, and should any one do, or attempt to do, then that person or persons, their heirs or administrators shall be forever barred from receiving any of my estate, real. personal or mixed, and I further protest against any court entering any proposition for a contest against this my last will and testament.

The document is dated July 28, 1896, and H. T., J. D. and C. A. Reynolds are witnesses.


Note 1: The Utah History Encyclopedia entry for Mapleton includes this tidbit of information: "Charles E. Malmstrom, a Swedish immigrant with an Australian wife, built a home at what is now west Maple Street, about 250 rods west of the present Mapleton City Building, and moved in 1 December 1873...."

Note 2: History does not record the fate of Charles Eric Malmstrom's book, "Sidney Rigdon in the Court on the Charge of Personating the (Dictitious Angel Moroni to Joseph Smith and the Three Witnesses of the Book of Mormon." Evidently his heirs did not spend any of their inherited money to have the manuscript published.

 

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