Danites

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"The Danites were a secret band organized during the time of Joseph under the direction of Sampson Avard." [1]

"In the spring of 1838, the heads of the church and many of the members had gone deep into error and blindness…In June, 1838, at Far West, Mo., a secret organization was formed, Doctor Avard being put in as the leader of the band; a certain oath was to be administered to all the brethren to bind them to support the heads of the church in everything they should teach. All who refused to take this oath were considered dissenters from the church, and certain things were to be done concerning these dissenters, by Dr. Avard's secret band…my persecutions, for trying to show them their errors, became of such a nature that I had to leave the Latter Day Saints…" (David Whitmer, An Address to All Believers in Christ, Richmond, Missouri, 1887, pp. 27-28)
"…we have a company of Danites in these times, to put right physically that which is not right, and to cleanse the Church of verry great evils which hitherto existed among us inasmuch as they cannot be put to right by teachings & persuasyons, This company or a part of them exibited on the fourth day of July [illegible word] They come up to consecrate by companies of tens, commanded by their captain over ten." (Brigham Young University Studies, Winter 1988, p. 14)

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