55 years ago today - May 15, 1966

T]he nationally distributed Parade Sunday supplement observed: "Ezra Taft Benson has consistently supported the John Birch Society's recruiting drives among Mormons." Without exaggeration, Parade also informed its millions of readers that Benson's political activism "has introduced as a result a divisive element in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints."

[Walter Scott, "Personality Parade," Parade, 15 May 1966. From D. Michael Quinn, Ezra Taft Benson and Mormon Political Conflicts, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 26:2 (Summer 1992), also in Quinn, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power Salt Lake City (Signature Books, 1994), Chapter 3.]

80 years ago today - May 15, 1941

President Grant said he had not changed his opinion that we should call these brethren apostles and ordain them Apostles, but not make them members of the Twelve; they are to be sent out to do the same work as the Twelve do in the Stakes of Zion.

[Minutes, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

125 years ago today - May 15, 1896

[J. Golden Kimball]

The condition of some of our people regarding the last address, and the action taken by Apostle [Francis M.] Lyman in Tooele [Utah], and the course taken by Pres[ident] Jos[eph]. F. Smith, John Henry [Smith], and Heber J. Grant in Logan City [Utah] has simply shaken some of the people out of their boots. In the eyes of the people, at least many of them, it is making a martyr of Moses Thatcher.' My idea is that Apostle Thatcher, while suspended by his Quorum is still an apostle, and is not guilty of anything before the Latter-day Saints, until the time comes that he has an impartial trial, for a man cannot be guilty until it is so proven, by two or more witnesses. To say anything against Moses is to do him an injustice. All who have indulged in Politics, have got in trouble of some kind. Men seem not to be guided by the Holy Spirit when indulging in political matters as when preaching the Gospel.

[J. Golden Kimball, Diary, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

125 years ago today - May 15, 1896; Friday

[Heber J. Grant]

Had a chat with the Presidency regarding the editorial which appeared in this morning's issue of the Herald with reference to the alleged statements of Pres[iden]t [Joseph F.] Smith at the recent High Council meeting in Logan [Utah], to the effect that a deal had been made with leading republicans of the nation to deliver to the Republican party the Territory of Utah as a Republican State. I felt that inasmuch as this statement was absolutely false, and as the Presidency and Apostles had never been a party to any such a deal, that some contradiction ought to be made of these statements. No action, however, was taken in the premises.

[Heber J. Grant, Diary]

125 years ago today - May 15, 1896

[Apostle Marriner W. Merrill]

Finished planting potatoes east of [Logan] Temple today.

[Notes from the Miscellaneous Record Book, 1886-1906: Selected diary notes from the journal books of Marriner Wood Merrill, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

130 years ago today - May 15, 1891

Case of Father Edward Bunker was then taken up. Clerk read paper from Father Bunker in which he submits his beliefs and unbeliefs to the High Council ... Coun D.H. Cannon referred to one part of the paper where it refers to Adam being the God of Jesus Christ, etc., and where Father Bunker says the Council had decided upon. Said the Council never decided upon this point at all. He then moved that the communication of Edward Bunker on what he believes and does not believe together with statement of the causes lading to the investigation which called forth his declaration also the full action of the Council in this matter be forwarded to the 1st Presidency of the Church asking their advice as to the proper course for us to take as the Presidency and High Council of the Stake.

[Friday, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

165 years ago today - May 15, 1856

[Wilford Woodruff]

I was called upon to administer to Sister Orson Pratt at 1 oclok in the morning. I promised her that she & her Child should do well And in about 15 minutes she had a daughter born that weighed 12 lbs. Both Mother & Daughter doing well.

[Wilford Woodruff's Journal: 1833-1898 Typescript, Volumes 1-9, Edited by Scott G. Kenney, Signature Books 1993, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

45 years ago today - May 14, 1976

Washington Post article: "Mormon Income Is $3 Million Per Day."

[On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com]

60 years ago today - May 14,1961

Apostle Joseph Fielding Smith announces to stake conference in Honolulu: "We will never get a man into space. This earth is man's sphere and it was never intended that he should get away from it." Smith, the Twelve's president and next in succession as LDS President, adds: "The moon is a superior planet to the earth and it was never intended that man should go there. You can write it down in your books that this will never happen." In May 1962, he privately instructs that this view be taught to "the boys and girls in the Seminary System." On 20 Jul 1969 U.S. Astronauts are first men to walk on moon. Six months later Joseph Fielding Smith becomes church president.

[Quinn, D. Michael, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power, Appendix 5, Selected Chronology of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1848-1996, http://amzn.to/extensions-power]

125 years ago today - May 14, 1896; Thursday

Pres[iden]t W[ilford]. Woodruff requested the brethren to stop enforcing the Declaration [permission from church leaders to enter into politcal office] among the people[;] Let the vote to adopt the same be taken in all the Wards & let the people vote or not as they feel inclined.

[Franklin D. Richards, Diary]

130 years ago today - Thursday, May 14, 1891

[John Henry Smith]

... Presidents Woodruff, G. Q. Cannon and I talked over the political situation and it was thought best to go ahead and organize the Republican party. President Woodruff said he was a Republican and I said I was.

[Jean Bickmore White (editor), Church, State, and Politics: The Diaries of John Henry Smith, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1990, http://bit.ly/johnhenrysmith]

130 years ago today - May 14, 1891

Concerning a young man who has been endowed and "sealed to his wife without having been ordained to any Priesthood," the First Presidency decides to have him ordained as an elder, but not to require him to be re-endowed or re-sealed.

[The Mormon Hierarchy - Extensions of Power by D. Michael Quinn, [New Mormon History database (http://bit.ly/NMHdatabase)]]

130 years ago today - May 14, 1891

John W. Taylor reported about the defense fund and said it brought in about $6,500.00 per month from the whole Church. [The defense fund was used to help with legal costs regarding polygamy prosecution]

[Notes from the Miscellaneous Record Book, 1886-1906: Selected diary notes from the journal books of Marriner Wood Merrill, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

160 years ago today - May 14, 1861

President Young signed a letter G.Q. Cannon instructing him to ... destroy works containing false doctrine [in England.]

[Brigham Young Office Journals, quoted in The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

165 years ago today - May 14, 1856

Lucy Mack Smith dies, having spent the last three years of her life in Emma-s care.

[Emma Smith, Woman of Faith, http://emmasmithmormon.com]

175 years ago today - May 14, 1846

[Wilford Woodruff]

... Some of my friends at times are tryed with the Celestial Law [plural marriage]. ...

[Wilford Woodruff's Journal: 1833-1898 Typescript, Volumes 1-9, Edited by Scott G. Kenney, Signature Books 1993, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

185 years ago today - May 14, 1836

Patriarchal Blessing of Sarah Mackley given by Joseph Smith, Sr. ... when he is gone to fill his mission thou shalt have faith to rebuke diseases in thy family ... and seal thee up to eternal life in the name of Jesus, even so, Amen

[Patriarchal Blessings]

185 years ago today - May 14, 1836

Patriarchal Blessing of Joseph Cooper given by Joseph Smith, Sr. ... And thou shalt have power over unclean spirits and shall do many great miracles, Mountains shall remove at thy word, prisons shall not hold thee, thou shalt translate thyself from planet to planet and preach to the spirits in prison and bring many of them to God. ...

[Patriarchal Blessing Book 1:104, quoted in Early Patriarchal Blessings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Joseph Smith Sr. (Author), H. Michael Marquardt (Editor), http://amzn.to/rCBHVe]

135 years ago today - May 13, 1886

I asked him [David Whitmer] if the table, which the angel brought, and upon which the plates lay when he viewed them was a tangible one, and he said that he did not touch it, it had the semblance of a table. He then ex=plained that he saw the plates and with his natural eyes, but he had to be prepared for it--that he and the other witnesses were overshadowed by the power of God and a halo of brightness indescribable. I then asked him if he ever handled the plates and he said that he did not at any time. I refer=red to his going down after Joseph and Em=ma to bring the plates <<and>> them to his fathers, and he said the plates were not in the wagon nor did he see them or at all during the trans=lation. <<He said Joseph and [-] Oliver and Emma told him about the plates and discribed them to him and he believed them but did not [--] at the time testified of>> He said they were in the possession of the Angel during this time. The manuscript by re=quest, said to be the origi=nal manuscript in the handwriting of Oliver [Cowdery][,] Emma and Christian Whitmer was brought out and untied being wrapped in a sheet of brown wrapping pa=per (or between a brown and buff the paper was) and being laid upon the table I examined the sheets as many as I chose also the scrap of paper containing the characters which were submitted by Martin Harris to Prof Anthon and the certificate of the clerk of the <<U.S.>> District Court of the <<Northern>> District of New York showing that Joseph had deposite=d the title of the book with him claiming to be its author[.] ...

[1.

Nathan Tanner, Jr., Journal, 13 May 1886, [50-61], LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah. 2.

Nathan Tanner, Jr., to Nathan A. Tanner, 17 February 1909, typed copy, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah. , as cited in Dan Vogel, Early Mormon Documents: David Whitmer Interview With Nathan Tanner, Jr.]

145 years ago today - May 13, 1876

Br. Brigham spoke of the folly and indecency of the present fashions; said that some of the Daughters of Zion acted like damn fools and the whores of London or Paris would be ashamed to act like they did. Said it would serve them right for some one to take a knife and slit their dresses from their navel to their knees. Urged the Mothers in Israel to teach their daughters to wash, starch, iron, bake, cook, and to make their own adornments and to teach them industry and economy, and qualify them for future usefulness in their sphere...

[Diary of Charles Lowell Walker. Andrew Karl Larson, ed. Logan: Utah State University Press, 1980. 423, quoted in The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

110 years ago today - May 12, 1911

[Thomas A. Clawson Diary]

"Today it was announced in the Deseret Evening News that Mathias F. Cowley could not exercise any of the functions of the authority of the Priesthood because of insubordination. This was the unanimous decision of the Council of the 12. That accounted for our not being able to hold our circle meeting yesterday as that was when the action was taken. I am sorry to see men place themselves in such a position as to make that course necessary to protect the Church."

[Diary Excerpts of Thomas A. Clawson, Signature Books Library, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

125 years ago today - May 12, 1896

[Franklin D. Richards]

Met Pres[iden]ts Cannon & Smith & heard Franklin express the views of exprosecutor W. Dixon concerning the present unsettled state of public opinion about our Presidency and the "new manifesto" & church discipline.

[Diary Excerpts of Franklin D. Richards, 1887-1897, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

145 years ago today - May 12, 1876 (Afternoon)

Concluding remarks were made by President Young. He said he did wish to have the Temple completed by next April so that our Annual Conference might be held therein. Continuing, he said opposition to God and His Kingdom is the natural result of the fall. ... If we had done as we had been told by Joseph, we would be a hundred times richer than we now are. He exhorted parents to bring up their children in the ways of the Lord. -- St. George, Utah

[Journal History of the Church, quoted in The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

160 years ago today - May 12, 1861

[Wilford Woodruff]

We met at the Historians Office at 1/2 past 5 oclok & ordained 4 men to the High Priesthood & High Councillers of this Stake of Zion. .... When I had done Ordaining Howard Sp[enser?] President Young said yes & I ordain you to kill evry scoundrel that seeks your life & when you Come across such men use them up.

[Wilford Woodruff's Journal: 1833-1898 Typescript, Volumes 1-9, Edited by Scott G. Kenney, Signature Books 1993, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

160 years ago today - May 12, 1861

Bro. Brigham showed ... that our coming out here to this wilderness and the Lord sustaining us was more of a miracle than the children of Israel going out of Egypt crossing the Red Sea.

[Diary of Charles Lowell Walker. Andrew Karl Larson, ed. Logan: Utah State University Press, 1980. 179, quote in The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

160 years ago today - May 12, 1861

Pres[ident] Young attended the Tabernacle morning and afternoon. In the afternoon [Morning] he preached a discourse, the Spirit of revolution among the nations was preparing the way for the progress of the Gospel. -- SLC Tabernacle

[Brigham Young Office Journals, quote in The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

170 years ago today - May 12, 1851

Pres. Brigham Young preached to the people on the nature and importance of the Iron County Mission, and the advantages of the brethren fulfilling it. He advised them to buy up the Lamanite children, as fast as they could, and educate them and teach them the Gospel, so that not many generations would pass [as] they would become a white and delightsome people. He remarked that the Lord could not have devised a better plan, than to have put the Saints where they were, in order to accomplish the redemption of the Lamanites. He knew that the Indians would dwindle away, but a remnant of the seed of Joseph should be saved. The President also advised the brethren to put up the logs and pickets of the forts so close that the Indians could not shoot arrows through the openings. He recommended the adoption of the Indian name Parowan for the city. -- Cedar City, Utah

[Journal History of the Church, quoted from The Complete Discourses of Brigham Young, Ed. Richard S. Van Wagoner, Smith-Pettit Foundation, Salt Lake City (2009), http://bit.ly/BY-discourses]

110 years ago today - May 11, 1911

The Twelve vote as a compromise to deprive Matthias F. Cowley of his right to exercise his priesthood but not to disfellowship him. This resolves a two-day deadlock in which seven apostles want to give him no punishment, wheras quorum president Francis M. Lyman and two others want to disfellowship Cowley for performing plural marriage up to his 1905 resignation. Cowley regards this as a second punishment (double jeopardy) he has received for the same acts, which he insists he did by authorization of the First Presidency.

[The Mormon Hierarchy - Extensions of Power by D. Michael Quinn, [New Mormon History database (http://bit.ly/NMHdatabase)]]

135 years ago today - May 11th, 1886

[General Authority Abraham H. Cannon]

"There have been two windows left out of the west end of the Salt Lake Temple through an error of the architect which will most likely necessitate the taking down of the wall for 20 ft. Order was given yesterday to stop laying stone now until a decision was reached about this matter. It is a most egregious error."

[Abraham H. Cannon Journal Excerpts, http://www.amazon.com/Apostles-Record-Journals-Abraham-1889-1896/dp/B000MFD1K4]

175 years ago today - May 11, 1846

[Lucy Mac Statement]

Mrs. Lucy Smith's Testimony.



"Nauvoo, May 11, 1846.

"My Dear Son-For so I must call you; as the church has passed through much affection, and it pains my heart that it should suffer more. The Twelve (Brighamites) have abused my son William, and trampled upon my children, and have also treated me with contempt. Now mark it, these men are not right. God has not sent them to lead this kingdom. I am satisfied that Joseph appointed James J. Strang. It is verily so. Now, Brother Reuben, I exhort you for the love you have for the truth, to hear my voice, and warn the saints concerning these things, and your reward shall be doubled in the heavenly world. This from your mother, Lucy Smith,

"Mother in Israel."

"This is to certify that we, the undersigned. members of the Smith family, fully accord with the sentiments expressed above.

"W.J. Salisbury,

"Catherine Salisbury,

"Arthur Milliken,

"Lucy Milliken.'

[Lucy Mac Smith Statement]

210 years ago today - 1811 (after May 11)

After selling his property in Sharon, Vermont and moving to live with Smith's uncle Daniel in Royalton, Smith's maternal grandfather Solomon Mack self-publishes a booklet describing his heavenly visions and voices of the previous winter: Mack, Solomon (1811), A Narraitve [sic] of the Life of Solomon Mack, Windsor

[Wikipedia: Chronology of Mormonism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chronology_of_Mormonism]

70 years ago today - May 10, 1951

[J. Reuben Clark]

[BYU President] Ernest L. Wilkinson called about getting Pres. Herbert Hoover to give the Commencement Address. Pres. Clark said he did not think he could get him, and did not want to try, because would not want to be turned down. Pres. Clark also asked if he had sounded out the Brethren, th[at] there was some feeling that the Commencement Addresses ought to be given by our own people. He had asked J. C. Penney to give the Commencement Address but he could not; Nath[an] Mathesius had also turned them down. Pres. Clark said he did not think they ought to ask if it was a clear slate and he was the first choice, he might. He suggested that they wait until next year, and get one of the Brethren this year. He said that Mr. Hoover would find out and he would feel that he, Pres. Clark, had personally let him down, if he urged him to come, and he would not want him to feel that way.

[The Diaries of J. Reuben Clark, 1933-1961, Abridged, Digital Edition, Salt Lake City, Utah 2015]

100 years ago today - May 10, 1921

Apostle David O. McKay, visiting Samoa, falls "asleep, and beheld in vision something infinitely sublime. In the distance I beheld a beautiful white city. Though far ways, yet I seemed to realize that trees with luscious fruit, shrubbery with gorgeously-tinted leaves, and flowers in perfect bloom abound everywhere. The clear sky above seemed to reflect these beautiful shades of color. I then saw a great concourse of people approaching the city. Each one wore a white flowing robe, and a white headdress. Instantly my attention seemed centered upon their Leader, and though I could see only the profile of his features and his body, I recognized him at once as my Savior! The tint and radiance of his countenance were glorious to behold! There was a peace about him which seemed sublime - it was divine! The city, I understood, was his. It was the City Eternal; and the people following him were to abide there in peace and eternal happiness. But who were they? As if the Savior read my thought, he answered by pointing to a semicircle that then appeared above them, and on which were written in gold the words: 'These Are They Who Have Overcome The World - Who Have Truly Been Born Again!'"

110 years ago today - May 10, 1911

[Joseph Fielding Smith]

I was in council with the quorum of the Twelve Apostles all day in the Temple where we met with Brother Matthias F. Cowley to investigate matters pertaining to him and his alleged activity in

performing plural marriages. He was very frank and confessed his shortcomings in this regard answering all questions required of him and manifesting a spirit of sorrow and confessing his error in the performing of plural marriages contrary to the rule of the church. H asked for forgiveness and expressed a willingness and desire to be in harmony with the authorities of the Church. The session lasted all day, and after his departure from the meeting each of the brethren present expressed his candid views in the case. ... Seven of the brethren were in favor of showing leniency to Bro[ther]. Cowley, because of his frankness and request for forgiveness, and were of the opinion that no punishment, more than he had received should be measured out to him. President Lyman, Charles W. Penrose and Geo[rge] F. Richards were of the opinion that he should be punished by being disfellowshipped.

[Joseph Fielding Smith, Diary, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

110 years ago today - May 10, 1911

Former apostle Matthias F. Cowley is tried by the Council of Twelve Apostles. He is charged with performing post-manifesto plural marriages of questionable sanction. Cowley states: "[Late] President [George Q.] Cannon told me to do these things or I would never have done it." Cowley also states that when he asked Church President Lorenzo Snow for permission, Snow "simply told me that he would not interfere with Brother Woodruff's and Cannon's work [of authorizing plural marriages]." Cowley also makes the statement: " I am not dishonest and not a liar and have always been true to the work and to the brethren. I have always been true and faithful myself. We have always been taught that when the brethren were in a tight place that it would not be amiss to lie to help them out. One of the Presidency of the Church made the statement some years ago when I was in the presidency of one of the stakes of Zion in Idaho that he would lie like hell to help his brethren." The next day the President of the Twelve, Francis M. Lyman, writes their decision: "This day by unanimous vote of the Council of the Twelve Apostles it was decided that Matthias F. Cowley, for insubordination to the government and discipline of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, be and he is hereby deprived of the right and authority to exercise any of the functions of the Priesthood."

115 years ago today - May 10, 1906

Apostle and U.S. Senator Reed Smoot writes to President Joseph F. Smith: "[Senator Beverage] said that he had just been reading your testimony in relation to the marriage of Abram H. Cannon; he did not understand how you, a member of the First Presidency of the Church, could go on a trip with A. H. Cannon and be introduced to a young lady as his wife and have them occupy the position of husband and wife toward each other, it being six years after the issuance of the Manifesto . . . and not complain of one of the Apostles so acting, and of no action being taken by the Church, unless the Church approved of new marriages or at least allowed them."

120 years ago today - May 10, 1901

President [Lorenzo] Snow today made a contract with John Hafen, the artist, for $100. per month to make a number of paintings which would become the property of the Church.

[Journal History, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

135 years ago today - May 10, 1886

Court sentences Frank J. Cannon to three months' imprisonment and $150 fine for instructing his 16-year-old brother Hugh J. Cannon to physically attack Prosecuting Attorney Dickson following the arrest of their father, George Q. Cannon. Frank becomes the U.S. Senator from Utah 1896-98). Fined $35 dollars in 1886, Hugh grows up to become a general board member (1896-1931), mission president (1901-1904), and stake president (1904-1925).

[The Mormon Hierarchy - Extensions of Power by D. Michael Quinn, [New Mormon History database (http://bit.ly/NMHdatabase)]]

180 years ago today - May 10, 1841

[Wilford Woodruff]

Elders Kimball O. Pratt & myself undertook to climb the riging of the Ship. Elders Kimball & O. Pratt went up to the round top of the main mast about 50 feet & returned. I clumb over the round top & went up to the main top gallant sail about 100 feet from the upper deck which was the top of the rope ladders. I could go no higher without climing a single bear rope so I returned to the deck. I found it required some presens of mind & caution to go up & down the riging of a ship as she was waving in the air. We had a calm night.

[Wilford Woodruff's Journal: 1833-1898 Typescript, Volumes 1-9, Edited by Scott G. Kenney, Signature Books 1993, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

25 years ago today - 9 May thru 11 Jul period

[Same-Sex Marriage]

Jack Hoag, co-Chair of Hawaii's Future Today (LDS organized lobbying group), made several public statements stating that Hawaii's Future Today would be endorsing and backing political candidates.

Hawaiis Future Today places political ads in Hawaiis two daily newspapers at a cost of over $1,000. Representative Terrance Thom, supported in these ads, wins his reelection by 54 votes. The Senate Judiciary Chair who opposed this groups political position and was opposed by the ad lost his re-election bid.

[Crapo, Richley, Chronology Of Mormon / LDS Involvement In Same-Sex Marriage Politics http://www.mormonsocialscience.org/?q=node/59]

50 years ago today - May 9, 1971

Mary Beth Rampton, wife of the Utah Governor Calvin Rampton, gives a talk on Mother's Day at the Federal Heights Ward in Salt Lake City: "To assist myself in [talking about motherhood], I have drawn two illustrative concepts from my study of prehistory. The first is the concept of the Mother Goddess. The Heavenly Father whom we today know and love and worship is a masculine God; but it is interesting to know that the oldest deity of whom archaeologists have found evidence is feminine Mother Goddess, whose little stone and clay figurines have been found in upper Paleolithic sites over most of the world. She was the goddess of the fruitfulness of the earth and its creatures, the source of the earth's abundant life, charged with nurture. . She became, as the centuries passed, Ninhursag, the mother-goddess of the Sumerians; the Minoan mother-goddess of ancient Crete; Demeter, the earth goddess among the older Greek gods."

[On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com]

90 years ago today - May 09, 1931

Barbara Woodhead (Winder), later the eleventh general president of the Relief Society, is born in Midvale, Utah.

120 years ago today - Thursday, May 9, 1901

[John Henry Smith]

Joseph F. Smith and Brigham Young's allowance was fixed at five thousand per annum. H. J. Grant's was raised some. I was blest and set apart for my mission under the hands of all present. President Lorenzo Snow being Mouth, he gave me a good blessing. He gave me a good many promises.

[Jean Bickmore White (editor), Church, State, and Politics: The Diaries of John Henry Smith, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1990, http://bit.ly/johnhenrysmith]

130 years ago today - May 9, 1891

President Benjamin Harrison visits Salt Lake City and meets with Members of the First Presidency and others. Mormons make a concerted effort to demonstrate "progress" from their anti-federal-government, polygamous past.

[On This Day in Mormon History, http://onthisdayinmormonhistory.blogspot.com]

180 years ago today - May 9, 1841. Sunday.

[William Clayton]

Joseph preached on his side on baptism for the dead ... Afterwards a number was baptized both for remission of sins and for the dead. I was baptized first for myself and then for my Grandfather Thomas and Grandmother Ellen Clayton, Grandmother Mary [Critchley] and Aunt Elizabeth Beurdwood.

[George D. Smith, An Intimate Chronicle; The Journals of William Clayton, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1995, http://bit.ly/WilliamClayton]

185 years ago today - May 9, 1836

John Taylor and wife, Lenora, baptized near Toronto, Canada.

[Hemidakaota, "Church Chronology from 1800-2000," http://lds.net/forums/topic/10668-church-chronology-from-1800-2000-part-1/]

190 years ago today - May 9, 1831

Joseph and Emma adopt Murdock twins (Joseph Murdock and Julia)

[Proctor, Scott and Maurine Jensen, editors, History of Joseph Smith by His Mother: Revised and Enhanced]

190 years ago today - May 1831 (9 May)

[D&C 50]

Section 50 ... After the departure of the Lamanite Missionaries to Missouri and before the arrival of Joseph Smith in Kirtland, Ohio (February 1831), extreme spiritual abnormalities were manifested among new converts in the Kirtland area. ...

Parley P. Pratt, an eyewitness to these events, recorded the following:.

As I went forth among the different branches, some very strange spiritual operations were manifested, which were disgusting, rather than edifying. Some persons would seem to swoon away, and make unseemly gestures, and be drawn or disfigured in their countenances. Others would fall into ecstacies, and be drawn into contortions, cramps, fits, etc. Others would seem to have visions and revelations, which were not edifving, and which were not congenial to the doctrine and spirit of the gospel. In short, a false and lying spirit seemed to be creeping into the Church.

To determine the nature of the spiritual workings among new converts of the Church, Elder Pratt, among others, went to Joseph Smith and asked him to inquire of the Lord concerning the matter. "After we had joined in prayer in his translating room," said Pratt, Joseph Smith "dictated in our presence" section 50.

Section 50 gave instructions on the procedure of discerning "the spirits which have gone abroad in the earth."

[Cook, Lyndon, Revelations of the Prophet Joseph Smith: A Historical and Biographical Commentary of the Doctrine and Covenants, http://amzn.to/RevelationsofJosephSmith]