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Short Creek soon became a gathering place for polygamist former members of the LDS Church.In 1935, the LDS Church excommunicated the Mormon residents of Short Creek who refused to sign an oath renouncing polygamy. Barlow began to lead a group of Mormon fundamentalists who were dedicated to preserving the practice of plural marriage. Barlow, Charles Zitting, Joseph White Musser, Le Grand Wooley, and Louis A. In 1932, these leaders created the organization known as the Council of Friends, a group of seven high priests that was said to be the governing priesthood body on Earth.Such members held hope that the LDS Church would one day come back "into order" and re-establish the practice of polygamy.

Warren Jeffs has since been sentenced to life in prison plus 20 years along with a ,000 fine after his conviction on aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault charges.

After the formal abandonment of plural marriage by the LDS Church, many members around Short Creek and elsewhere continued, and even solemnized, plural marriages.

In 1904, the LDS Church issued the Second Manifesto and eventually excommunicated those who continued to solemnize or enter into new plural marriages.

Woolley, of a purported 1886 divine revelation to then-LDS Church President John Taylor.

They see this 1886 revelation as precluding validity of the 1890 Manifesto against new plural marriages by church members, issued by Wilford Woodruff, whom the LDS Church recognizes as Taylor's successor.