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The king of confidence : a tale of utopian dreamers, frontier schemers, true believers, false prophets, and the murder of an American monarch / Miles Harvey.

Available copies

  • 3 of 4 copies available at Sage Library System. (Show)
  • 1 of 1 copy available at Hood River County Library District.

Current holds

0 current holds with 4 total copies.

Summary:

In the summer of 1843, James Strang, a charismatic young lawyer and avowed atheist, vanished from a rural town in New York. Months later he reappeared on the Midwestern frontier and converted to a burgeoning religious movement known as Mormonism. In the wake of the murder of the sect's leader, Joseph Smith, Strang unveiled a letter purportedly from the prophet naming him successor, and persuaded hundreds of fellow converts to follow him to an island in Lake Michigan, where he declared himself a divine king. From this stronghold he controlled a fourth of the state of Michigan, establishing a pirate colony where he practiced plural marriage and perpetrated thefts, corruption, and frauds of all kinds. Eventually, having run afoul of powerful enemies, including the American president, Strang was assassinated, an event that was frontpage news across the country. The King of Confidence tells this fascinating but largely forgotten story. Centering his narrative on this charlatan's turbulent twelve years in power, Miles Harvey gets to the root of a timeless American original: the Confidence Man. Full of adventure, bad behavior, and insight into a crucial period of antebellum history, The King of Confidence brings us a compulsively readable account of one of the country's boldest con men and the boisterous era that allowed him to thrive. -- from book jacket.
Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Circulation Modifier Age Hold Protection Active/Create Date Status Due Date
Hood River County Library 289.3 HAR 2020 (Text) 33892100700955 Adult Non-Fiction Book None 08/14/2020 Available -

Record details

  • ISBN: 9780316463591
  • Physical Description: ix, 401 pages : illustrations, map, portraits ; 25 cm
  • Edition: First edition.
  • Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2020.

Content descriptions

Bibliography, etc. Note:
Includes bibliographical references (pages 377-386) and index.
Summary, etc.:
In the summer of 1843, James Strang, a charismatic young lawyer and avowed atheist, vanished from a rural town in New York. Months later he reappeared on the Midwestern frontier and converted to a burgeoning religious movement known as Mormonism. In the wake of the murder of the sect's leader, Joseph Smith, Strang unveiled a letter purportedly from the prophet naming him successor, and persuaded hundreds of fellow converts to follow him to an island in Lake Michigan, where he declared himself a divine king. From this stronghold he controlled a fourth of the state of Michigan, establishing a pirate colony where he practiced plural marriage and perpetrated thefts, corruption, and frauds of all kinds. Eventually, having run afoul of powerful enemies, including the American president, Strang was assassinated, an event that was frontpage news across the country. The King of Confidence tells this fascinating but largely forgotten story. Centering his narrative on this charlatan's turbulent twelve years in power, Miles Harvey gets to the root of a timeless American original: the Confidence Man. Full of adventure, bad behavior, and insight into a crucial period of antebellum history, The King of Confidence brings us a compulsively readable account of one of the country's boldest con men and the boisterous era that allowed him to thrive. -- from book jacket.
Subject: Strang, James Jesse, 1813-1856.
Church of Jesus Christ (Strangites) > History > 19th century.
Mormons > Michigan > Beaver Island > Biography.
Beaver Island (Mich.) > Biography.
Michigan > History > 19th century.
Genre: Biographies.

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