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Bagley Discusses The Man Who Commissioned His Book


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I came across these comments about the man who commissioned Will Bagley's book "Blood of the Prophets". I recall that someone was asking about information on him and so I thought this might be interesting to post;

Excerpts from "Looking Evil in the Face" by Will Bagley

By May I had quit my job at Evans & Sutherland Com
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I came across these comments about the man who commissioned Will Bagley's book "Blood of the Prophets". I recall that someone was asking about information on him and so I thought this might be interesting to post;

Excerpts from "Looking Evil in the Face" by Will Bagley

http://www.salamandersociety.com/interviews/willbagley/

Interesting indeed.

But there's not much here -- nothing, really -- about how Bagley hooked up with Singer in the first place. Did Bagley answer an ad in the Salt Lake Tribune, and did he say he was the only one who could and would pin responsibility for the massacre on Brigham Young, as Gene Sessions recollected in his FAIR Conference address? The questions remain unanswered.

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Interesting indeed.

But there's not much here -- nothing, really -- about how Bagley hooked up with Singer in the first place. Did Bagley answer an ad in the Salt Lake Tribune, and did he say he was the only one who could and would pin responsibility for the massacre on Brigham Young, as Gene Sessions recollected in his FAIR Conference address? The questions remain unanswered.

Yes, he did answer an ad;

Had it not been for a March 1995 help-wanted ad in The Salt Lake Tribune, I never would have written a book about one of the most controversial subjects in the history of the American West, the Mountain Meadows massacre:

"Inquisitive Research Manager needed for 1 to 2 yr. full time project on the Fancher Wagon Train Party of 1859 [sic]. Generous salary plus expenses. High energy, enthu

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What we do not have is any clear motive on the part of Singer. Why would a multimillionaire want to spend over $250,000 on reasearch MMM massacre. The only possible explanation I have heard is that he wanted to do a movie. Even if that is the end result, it still does not explain why the MMM. What sort of statement was Singer trying to make?

Regards,

Six

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What we do not have is any clear motive on the part of Singer. Why would a multimillionaire want to spend over $250,000 on reasearch MMM massacre. The only possible explanation I have heard is that he wanted to do a movie. Even if that is the end result, it still does not explain why the MMM. What sort of statement was Singer trying to make?

Regards,

Six

Note that Singer has disappeared. Cue the Danites! :P

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Yes, he did answer an ad;

He cited Sessions remarks at the Fair conf-but did not directly dispute them;

He said this about his meeting with Mr. Singer;

I posted the initial info. on Mr. Singer because someone was asking on another thread for information about him.

I get the impression Will is denying here that he said he told Singer he was the only one who could and would pin the massacre on Brigham Young. But, as you point out, he did not directly address or deny this alleged quotation. Like Bsix, I am wondering about Singer's motive. Moreover, how would Sessions have come up with the account that he did? While he is critical of Bagley's work, Sessions strikes me as an even-handed guy, a professional historian himself, and certainly no enemy of Bagley. He recommended Bagley's book for publication, after all.

And given what we know about Singer (that he was an ex-Mormon looking to make a movie about the massacre) I think it is a safe bet he wasn't looking for someone who would exonerate the Church and President Young in the affair. So I have to think a candidate's perceived predisposition would be important to him in the selection process.

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And given what we know about Singer (that he was an ex-Mormon looking to make a movie about the massacre) I think it is a safe bet he wasn't looking for someone who would exonerate the Church and President Young in the affair. So I have to think a candidate's perceived predisposition would be important to him in the selection process.

Was (is???) Singer an exmo? I'm somewhat confused on that point. The article states:

Singer was a swashbuckling entrepreneur, dedicated Republican, and gun-rights advocate who had acquired a consuming interest in western history after he converted to the LDS church.

Did he join, then leave?

Either way, I agree that Singer's role is bizarre -- and that is an understatement. I don't know that it can lead directly to a conclusion about the objectivity of Bagley's research, but this whole thing is truly weird, and Singer himself is the weirdest aspect of it all.

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Was (is???) Singer an exmo? I'm somewhat confused on that point. The article states:

Did he join, then leave?

Gene Sessions, in his FAIR Conference address cited in another thread, described Singer as a "former Mormon." Bagley has not denied this, nor has anyone else that I have seen, so I have no reason to question it.

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Gene Sessions, in his FAIR Conference address cited in another thread, described Singer as a "former Mormon." Bagley has not denied this, nor has anyone else that I have seen, so I have no reason to question it.

I agree. I suspect that if Sessions called him a "former mormon" then he must have known something more about this man. It also is not a stretch to believe Mr. Singer was no longer a believer when he went looking for someone to write a book about Mountain Meadows which would implicate Brigham Young.

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