World Conference 2023

Historic Lecture Series: "Charley's a Gal"

15 May 2023

Community of Christ Historic Sites Foundation will offer " 'Charley's a Gal': James Jesse Strang's First Plural Wife, Elvira Eliza Field," a lecture presented by Amy DeRogatis, part of the foundation's spring series.

The May 18 event tells the fascinating story behind Elvira Eliza Field. James Jesse Strang claimed to be the rightful successor of Joseph Smith Jr. and began his leadership opposing plural marriage. But in 1849 he secretly married a young convert, Elvira Eliza Field, and for six months she dressed as his fictitious nephew Charley Douglass and served as his personal secretary while he traveled on a missionary tour of the East Coast.

DeRogatis will discuss the six months during which Field cross-dressed and will ask the audience to consider why she would take the risk of being photographed incognito. Thursday's online program also will feature a question-and-answer period. The lecture begins at 7:00 p.m. Central Daylight Time. Registration is required.

Tags: marriage, foundation, historic, plural, derogatis, strang

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