Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, citing terrorism fears, has called for a ban on Muslims entering the United States.
Nearly 140 years ago, a similar barrier was proposed — for Mormons.
On Aug. 10, 1879, U.S. Secretary of State William M. Evarts, amid concerns about the LDS Church's then-practice of polygamy, sent a letter to the country's European ambassadors, instructing them to get their host nations to stop Latter-day Saints from getting on ships bound for the U.S.
Evarts' letter was read by the president's Cabinet "and copies [were] sent by tonight's mail to our diplomatic representatives in [Europe]," several newspapers reported, as quoted by Mormon historian Paul Reeve. "Our ministers are instructed to lay a copy of the letter before the governments to which they are accredited without delay."