Margaret Cooper was born near Clarksville, Tennessee, in 1804. She married Samuel Walker West in 1820. After accepting the Gospel message from missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often inadvertently called the Mormon Church, the Wests moved their family to Nauvoo, Illinois, and subsequently to Utah. After Samuel’s death in 1873, Margaret moved to live with her children in Snowflake, Arizona, and died there, still firm in the faith, in 1882.
When David Patten preached in Tennessee in 1834, I believed it was the work [of God]…and…[was] baptized by David Patten. I have not hankered for the coffee grain nor the tea leaves since. My husband was soon baptized by Elder Parrish and he soon left off tobacco, coffee, and tea. We fed and clothed the Elders with a liberal hand and heart when they were with us. My husband sent money to assist in the building at Kirtland…
When Brother George A. Smith and Brother Carlos Smith [were] in the South, my husband lent them $25.00 to bear their expenses here and he gave money to Brother Wells to bear his expenses. To those that asked he gave and to those that asked he lent and by request he sent just as they asked and his ability would afford. It was in Tennessee with free good will and we have not asked reward nor desired it from our brethren. We have ever been willing to suffer with our brethren and we have been meek when we could not rejoice… [The horse we lent to Brother Wilford Woodruff] was poisoned. Brother Woodruff wrote to us concerning her and wished to make us satisfaction but we were satisfied. Brother Woodruff spoke of her worthiness in his letters and said that she had carried the Gospel. Well we lent her for that purpose and…I supposed that we had given her for the Kingdom of Heaven or in other words in helping establish the principles of the Gospel.
The Polygamy Principle
One day one of my sisters said to me, “Do you believe in the Spiritual Wife Doctrine? I said, “No.”
She said, “If Brother Joseph was to tell you he had a revelation and you must be his spiritual wife, would you say?” I would say, “You may go to hell with your revelations.” And I was raving mad and said I would not believe it if I was to hear the Lord tell an angel to come and tell me, I thought he would do it for a trial as he did to Abraham in telling him to offer up his son.
In such ways I fretted. My husband did not believe it was right and it appeared that the devil had the advantage. I was taken sick and also several of the children and the doctor was called for the first time since we joined the Church. I came near to death though I was convinced of my wrong before I was taken sick. It came to me like this.
My husband and I were going to meeting and as I opened the gate all creation came before me and they seemed as the grass of the field for multitudes. I saw Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob living the Celestial law. Then Joseph and his brethren stood before me and I could feel as it were the pain that pierced their heart when they were told that Principle must come forth in this generation. I said in my heart, “It is enough, I will never fight that Principle again.” When I got well, I was re-baptized for the remission of sins.
I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I have moved 64 times and have not tired of experiencing this beautiful earth! I love the people, languages, histories/anthropologies, & especially religious cultures of the world. My life long passion is the study & searching out of religious symbolism, specifically related to ancient & modern temples. My husband Anthony and I love our bulldog Stig, adventures, traveling, movies, motorcycling, and time with friends and family.