Curious_Mormon came to the rescue with this comment:
I don’t know about the temple delay, but we have a lot of sources to show his rapid rise in wealth..
- 1870– He declared $102,000 worth of property, which was likely undervalued.
- 1873 – Ann claimed he had $8,000,000 million in property and made $40,000 per month. He countered by claiming $600,000 in property and $6000 per month income. This was in 1873, and his wealth only went up from there.
- 1878 – Unknown value, but (as referenced in the UTLM quote above) we can show he split his his property among 17 of his wives, and this was valued at around $1,626,000. It should be noted that he died with over a million dollars of interest free loans, which reduced the family’s inheritance to $224,000 and $75,000 to each wife.
Putting aside the ridiculousness of those numbers, for someone who was essentially a day-laborer before this religion, we can assume the truth is somewhere in the middle of all of this.
You know what, no. I’m going to talk about this. Because this is crazy. Brigham was a tradesman until he found Joseph. Then he became a swindler. He earned more in a month near the end than he might have earned his entire life in the beginning.
Adjusted for inflation…using this simplified calculator
- 1870: $102,000 (property claimed then) = $1,964,662.97 (now)
- 1873: $8,000,000 (property claimed then) = $162,715,114.42 (now)
- 1873: $6,000 – $40,000 (monthly salary claimed) = $122,036 – $813,575 (PER MONTH, now)
- 1878: $1,626,000 (property value then) = $41,055,116 (property value now)
- 1878: $1,402,000 (interest free loans given to brigham from the church treasurer) = $35,399,307 (value now)
- 1878: $224,000 (Final value then) = $5,655,809 (final value now)
- 1878: $75,000 (Gift from the church to each wife) = $1,893,686 (value given to each wife in today’s money)