40 years ago today - Jan 18, 1979

Utah law enforcement officers kill Mormon fundamentalist John Singer as a climax to the armed stand-off about the home schooling of his wives' children. To his adversaries Singer is shot while armed and resisting arrest. To his sympathizers he is a polygamy martyr, who is literally shot in the back as he flees the anti-polygamist Mormon police. Utah courts exonerate the police officers.

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

55 years ago today - Jan 18, 1964

The Church News reports that LDS headquarters has donated $10,000 toward the construction of the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. In 1974, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir performs in the Kennedy Center with attendance by newly installed U.S. president Gerald R. Ford.

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

65 years ago today - Jan 18, 1954

[J. Reuben Clark]
Pres. Jos. Fielding Smith'inquiry about adoption of Korean child by some woman and question if child had negro blood if it could be sealed in temple. Pres. Smith said that had never been done.

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

175 years ago today - Jan 18, 1844

Senator (later President) James Buchanan introduced a resolution in the United States Senate that the United States be declared a Christian Nation and acknowledge Jesus Christ as America's Savior. The resolution was rejected, but many similar resolutions would be introduced during the following years, including at least one that would have amended the Constitution.

[Cline, Austin, History of American Religion: Timeline]

175 years ago today - Jan 18, 1844

Patriarchal Blessing of Joel Hills Johnson ... Thou shalt have power to command the winds and the waves to ride upon the wings of wind so mighty and great shall be thy faith. The Lord shall give His angels charge over thee to deliver thee in time of danger and feed thee in time of famine; and thou shalt converse with them face to face as a man converseth with his friend. ... I seal thee up unto eternal life to inherit thrones, dominions, principalities and power to bring all thy children with thee in due time. If thou observe the Word of Wisdom and eternal life, all these blessings shall be thine. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

[Patriarchal Blessings]

175 years ago today - 1844: 18 January

Patriarchal blessing of Susan Johnson Given by John Smith

"... Thou shalt have that portion of the Priesthood in thy companion that he holds, and power to drive the destroyer from thy house when thy companion is not present to assist thee. Length of days in thy right hand and in thy left riches and honor, I seal all the blessings upon thee enjoyed by thy companion and also with him seal thee up unto Eternal life ...

[Selected LDS Patriarchal Blessings, New Mormon Studies CD ROM, Signature Book, 2009, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

35 years ago today - Jan 17, 1984-Tuesday

[Leonard Arrington]
Elder [Mark E.] Petersen ... wrote editorials for 53 years. According to my understanding he has written all, or nearly all of the editorials in the Church News. Who will write them now? Will their character change? People are beginning to speculate about the vacancy on the Twelve. There has existed one vacancy since LeGrande Richards died [in January 1983]. Now there are two. If they couldn't fill the vacancy of Elder Richards because President [Spencer W.] Kimball was not able to do it, [[Kimball's health was failing. His son noted that "his words nearly always came out wrong and he almost stopped trying to talk." Kimball, Lengthen Your Stride, 614.]] will they be forced to fill both of them now? Who will write editorials for the Church News? Who will direct the church exhibits? Who will direct missionary work? Elder Petersen had enormous influence in many directions. Who will take over his work?

[Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

45 years ago today - Jan 17, 1974

The ROLLING STONE publishes an article "The Mormon Word: No Hair, Sex or 3 Dog Night" which tells of the ASBYU Social Office's cancellation of a scheduled appearance by the group "Three Dog Night" immediately after a conference address by Boyd K. Packer. The article quotes Mark Alexander, BYU social vice-president: "In light of Elder Packer's talk, we are taking a closer look at the groups we are booking, and we are making sure we are in harmony with church standards". In the previous Oct General Conference, Packer referred to the "shabbiness, the irreverence, the immorality, and the addictions" associated with many contemporary entertainers, and intimated that the music itself was inherently evil.

65 years ago today - Jan 17, 1954

David O. McKay tells a meeting of LDS missionaries in South Aftrica that he wanted to ordain an African-American in 1921 but that is not possible "until the Lord gives us another revelation changing this practice." McKay acknowledges two exceptions to this policy: one African-American (Elijah Abel) received the priesthood during Joseph Smith's presidency and one other (identity unknown and probably myth) received the endowment during Brigham Young's presidency. However, McKay liberalizes the church's policy by no longer requiring priesthood eligibility to depend on the South African's ability to trace all his ancestral lines to Europe.

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

80 years ago today - Jan 17, 1939

[David O. McKay]
President George H. Robinson of the Bear Lake Stake called and considered the following questions:

1st: Where should the line be drawn in releasing or sustaining officers of the Church who are selling tobacco and beer?

Answer: Thus far tobacco has been considered a commodity that might be kept in stores and sold as other commodities, and an officer of the Church is not considered to be out of harmony who deals in that product.

With beer it is different'beer is intoxicating. No Stake Officer, member of a Bishopric, or President of a Quorum, or an officer in an auxiliary should be sustained who sells beer to young people.

[David O. McKay Diary, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1910-1951, Privately Published, Salt Lake City, Utah 2010]

95 years ago today - Jan 17, 1924

More people arrive at the Salt Lake Temple to perform endowments than the temple can handle. People are turned away due to overcrowding.

120 years ago today - Jan 17, 1899; Tuesday

Presidents [Lorenzo] Snow and [George Q.] Cannon were called upon by Sister Susa Young Gates, who had received a communication from Mrs. May Wright Sewall, complimenting her on her recent address at the Women's meeting in Omaha [Nebraska], and inviting her to take a more active and a more prominent part in the proceedings of the next National Council of Women. The Presidency encouraged Sister Gates to accept Mrs. Sewall's invitation.

A number of small appropriations were made to cover various items of expense incurred by officers and members of the Church, mostly in the public interest.

[First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

125 years ago today - Jan 17, 1894

[John M. Whitaker]
On the 17th day of January, an important meeting was held in the Assembly Room of the Temple by the First Presidency, the Twelve, the First Council of Seventy, at which President Wilford Woodruff made plain the rights of the Priesthood and the matter of ordaining Seventies was plainly settled. He stated that from now on no more Seventies will be made direct from the Elders Quorums, but as the Elders are set apart as missionaries, they will be ordained Seventies and sent forth as Seventies as that is their special calling to preach the gospel to all nations; he said that the brethren do not seem to appreciate the priesthood sufficiently, and greater care should be taken in ordaining men to the priesthood.

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

155 years ago today - Jan 17, 1864

Brigham Young informs the Twelve that he has received a letter from members in Hawaii that Hawaiian Mission Leader Walter M. Gibson "had ordained on the Island a Quorum of Twelve Apostles & Seventies & Bishops & High Priests &c. He Charged $100 for Ordaining the 12 each & $50 for 70, $5 for a Bishop $2.50 for a Bishops Councelor &c And He claimed all the Island to himself & said that Brigham Young had no dominion over those Islands And all his conduct is Accordingly. He has taken possession of the Island & takes from the Saints all they they raise & is playing the Tyrant over all the Saints on those Islands." Young sends a party headed by Ezra T. Benson and Lorenzo Snow to Hawaii to set things straight. Gibson is excommunicated in Jul.

175 years ago today - Jan 17, 1844

Elizabeth Ann Whitney, wife of Bishop Newel K. Whitney gives birth to the first child, a girl whom Joseph Smith named Mary, born "heir to the Holy Priesthood and in the New and Everlasting Covenant in this dispensation."

10 years ago today - 1/16/2009

[Same-Sex Marriage]
Last of the amicus briefs are filed in the Proposition 8 constitutionality cases. Several indicate that Prop 8 supporters, including ProtectMarriage's legal counsel Andrew Pugno, intended that all same-sex marriages previously legally performed be nullified. Some briefs suggest those marriages could be turned into civil unions.

[Mormons for Marriage: A Prop 8 Timeline, http://mormonsformarriage.com/?page_id=68;http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/courts/supreme/highprofile/prop8.htm]

40 years ago today - Jan 16, 1979-Tuesday

[Leonard Arrington]
In the meeting this morning with Elder [G. Homer] Durham, he reported that he had started reading the "final" form of The Mormon Experience. ... He thought the chapter that might cause problems, if any, was the first chapter. If we could get people over the first chapter, then it would be downhill all the way. He was sure that many members of the Church, including ecclesiastical officials, "do not know enough about the historiography of the Joseph Smith period to appreciate what a contribution you have made in that chapter." The Church is very sensitive right now, he said, about the different accounts of the First Vision. You have handled it very well, but there will still be a few raised eyebrows about it, simply because the ecclesiastical officials are not well enough informed on the subject.

... He suggested that a copy which we might present to Elder [Boyd K.] Packer might be marked with a red pen at various places through the book to indicate that a modification at that point had been made because of his suggestions. He hoped we saved the copy that contains Elder Packer's suggestions and comments, and that we would go through the final volume and indicate changes made as the result of his suggestions. This would help him to realize the extent to which we had complied with his suggestions. Otherwise he might forget and think that he had made suggestions on certain things which we did

[Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

105 years ago today - Jan 16, 1914

[John Wolley]
Some months ago I met [apostle] Mat[t]hias F. Cowley on the street and he asked me if I was familiar with the Sealing Ceremony. I told him I was. He said: If any good man come to you don't turn them down. I believed from that statement that it was still proper that plural marriages be solemnized, and that President [Joseph F.] Smith had authorized Cowley to instruct me. Since that time I have married wives to [a number of men are listed].

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

120 years ago today - Jan 16, 1899; Monday

[Heber J. Grant]
My bump of self confidence is unusually large and therefor I have no doubt that notwithstanding my present financial distress I school live to yet be acknowledged as a financial success.

[Heber J. Grant, Diary]

120 years ago today - Jan 16, 1899; Monday

Presidents [Lorenzo] Snow and

[George Q.] Cannon at 1 P.M. were called upon by Brother James E. Talmage, in relation to his work "Articles of Faith", which is about to be published. A paper connected with it on the subject of the Holy Ghost had been submitted to President Snow for his consideration, and he now told Brother Talmage that he had read it, was very much pleased with it, and thought it might with propriety he made a part of the book. Brother Talmage then read a chapter on plural marriage, which it was decided not to publish in this work, which was being issued under Church auspices, lest it might be construed by our enemies as an attempt by the Church to propagate a belief in polygamy. The use made by local ministers in their reply to President Snow's recent communication to the New York World, of a paper advocating polygamy printed by Brother B. H. Roberts, editor of the Improvement Era, mentioned in this connection.

[First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

125 years ago today - Jan 16, 1894

Presidency and apostles vote for church to pay $25,000 to Brigham Young Trust Company to act as the intermediary in making "a loan" to repay that amount of monies which Bishop Leonard G. Hardy has embezzled from Salt Lake County.

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

130 years ago today - Jan 16, 1889

[James E. Talmage]
Talmage delivers a lecture in the Sixth Ward meeting house on "Effects of Stimulants and Narcotics." ("Drinks and Narcotics," Deseret Weekly 38, no. 4 (19 Jan 1889): 97-101)

[Chronology of the Life and Work of James E. Talmage, J. Trevor Antley, https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MJsHY83JZL_n6CjWq11y1trT_CVXMMXAx2uYOWAwn0c/edit#heading=h.2zfdaoa]

135 years ago today - Jan 16, 1884

Patriarchal Blessing of George Albert Smith by Zebedee Coltrin ... And thou shalt attain to all the blessings and sealing powers that shall be given in the holy temples of the Lord and thou shalt behold the Lord when he shall come in the clouds of heaven, and shall be enabled to do a great work upon the earth, both for the living and the dead, and shall assist in the redemption of thy father's house. And thou shalt become a mighty prophet in the midst of the sons of Zion. And the angels of the Lord shall administer unto you, and the choice blessings of the heavens shall rest upon you.

And thy posterity shall become great upon the earth, and the Holy Melchisedek Priesthood shall rest upon them throughout all their generations and thy sons shall become mighty men before the Lord, filled with the wisdom of the heavens, and many of them shall become prophets and apostles and shall dwell in the midst of the Zion of the Lord as their posterity shall become very great and they shall become kings and priests of the most high. And thy daughters shall become women of great renown and shall become the mothers of mighty men before the Lord, and shall dwell among the sanctified of the Lord, and shall become a vast multitude dwelling in the midst of the Zion of the Lord, and shall live and reign a thousand years upon the earth and unto thy generations there shall be no end.

And thou shalt be wrapt in the visions of the heavens ... for thou shalt become a mighty apostle in the church and kingdom of God upon the earth, for none of thy father's family shall have more power with God than thou shalt have, for none shall excel thee... And I now seal all of these blessings upon thy head, and [seal] thee up unto all the powers of exaltation of thrones and dominions, and powers of eternal lives in the name of the Lord, Jesus Christ, Amen.

[Patriarchal Blessings]

140 years ago today - Jan 16, 1879

Editorial comment of LDS political newspaper, the Salt Lake Herald: "We question if seventy-six polygamous marriages have been solemnized in the Endowment house, this city, in a year, or even twice that period." In fact, during 1878, 113 men entered polygamous marriages in the Endowment House.

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

175 years ago today - Jan 16, 1844

An "Ordinance concerning the sale of Spirituous Liquors" is passed by the Nauvoo City Council. It states: "Be it ordained by the City Council of the city of Nauvoo. that the Mayor of this city is hereby authorized to sell said liquors in such quantities as he may deem expedient." The ordinance is signed by "Joseph Smith, Mayor."

175 years ago today - Jan 16, 1844

[Wilford Woodruff]
I had a pig in the sullar & I believe the devil got into him. He leaped out of the pen destroyed one Jar of Butter one Jar of lard scattered ashes all over the sullar & kapered about over the Corn. I gave him a dismissal from the sullar and never saw him afterwards.

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

180 years ago today - Jan 16, 1839

Lyman R Sherman: In a letter 16 Jan. 1839 First Presidency called Lyman R Sherman to replace the apostatized Orson Hyde in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, but Lyman R Sherman died before being ordained an apostle

[Quinn, D. Michael, The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, Appendix 6, Biographical Sketches of General Officers of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830-47, http://amzn.to/origins-power]

180 years ago today - Jan 16, 1839

Joseph Smith, in Liberty jail, writes a letter to "Brothers H. C. Kimball and B. Young," including the post-script: "Appoint the oldest of those of the twelve who were first appointed to be the President of your Quorum." Joseph (who may have thought the balding Kimball was older than Young) does not name the president of the Quorum. But because Brigham Young is thirteen days older than Heber, and because the senior Apostle Lyman E. Johnson had left the church, Young becomes the president of the Quorum of the Twelve and the Prophet's successor as president of the church.

30 years ago today - Jan 15, 1989

The SALT LAKE TRIBUNE reports that ourgoing director of the Utah ACLU chapter Robyn Blumner had "a heightened understanding of the culture, leaving 250 more card-carrying ACLU members in the state" than when she had arrived. Blumner is quoted as saying that "Utah is a very special place. The thing that makes it so special is that there are more unsung heroes per capita here than probably any other state in the nation." She says she had been surprised by the complexity of the society, "I have never before lived in a place where one's religion so affected one's social choices, one's religion here seems to dictate the choice of friends, associates, activities and even business contacts. I find that disquieting."

50 years ago today - Jan 15, 1969

BYU president Ernest L. Wilkinson forwards three clippings from the UNIVERSE to his assistant, Stephen R. Covey, with a memo reading, "I wish you would take the time to prepare a careful answer to the letter published Jan 6, and we will find some way of getting it in the Universe under some student's name."

60 years ago today - Jan 15, 1959

BYU Studies begins publishing faith-promoting works of LDS scholarship, including articles, essays, and poetry on a variety of subjects.

95 years ago today - Jan 15, 1924

[James E. Talmage]
In the evening I went to Farmington and sat with the high council in an advisory capacity, in the case of Lorin C. Woolley. The man himself was not present, and according to statements made before the council his absence was premeditated and deliberate. ... There were three [witnesses] called, and each gave strong testimony, agreeing in every particular of importance, though no one of them had known that either of the others would be a witness, nor had they been together in connection with this case. Lorin C. Woolley, according to the evidence presented, has persistently given out and declared that President Heber J. Grant and others of the General Authorities (including myself, according to one witness) have violated the rule of the Church against plural marriage and have taken wives during the recent past. After a patient hearing, conducted in the form prescribed, Lorin C. Woolley was excommunicated from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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

105 years ago today - Jan 15, 1914

[Heber J. Grant]
... F M Lyman's office.'He, Rudger Clawson & I met J. G. Kimball and chatted with regarding his sermon in Ensign Ward a week ago Sunday & counseled more thoughtful consideration as to the nature of his remarks.

[The Diaries of Heber J. Grant, 1880-1945, Abridged, Digital Edition Salt Lake City, Utah, 2015]

125 years ago today - Jan 15, 1894

[Franklin D. Richards]
Last night in a dream I was shown distinctly that the people of Utah Territory were politically Democratic & that if their honest vote could be had it would so appear & that they had been counted out dishonestly by the Republican Commission.

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

135 years ago today - Jan 15, 1884

Patriarchal Blessing of Lucy M. Smith [wife of George A. Smith, daughter of Josiah and Lucy M. Bean Smith] by Zebedee Coltrin ... thou shall attain unto all the blessings of eternal lives for thy reward shall be great in the heavens and thou shalt partake of all the sealing powers that shall be given in the holy temples of the Lord and thou shalt behold the Lord when he shall come to His temple ... and the angels of the Lord shall administer unto you for thou shall be a mighty prophetess in the midst of the daughters of Zion and thou shall be wrapped in the visions of the heavens and shall be clothed with salvation as with the garment and shall remain upon the earth until thou are satisfied with life ... I seal all these blessings upon thy head and thee unto all the powers of exaltation of thrones and dominions and powers of eternal lives in the morning of our Lord Jesus, Amen.

[Patriarchal Blessings]

135 years ago - Monday, Jan. 14th, 1884

[Abraham H. Cannon]
"The Territorial legislature, composed entirely of monogamists, convened today."

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

45 years ago today - Jan 14, 1974

The names of the stakes throughout the Church are changed to identify them uniformly with their geographical areas.

55 years ago today - Jan 14, 1964

Church subsidiary Wasatch Radio & Television Company purchases KIRO-TV and KIRO-AM/FM in Seattle (Gordon B. Hinckley named as a director). Its broadcasting interests now include three properties: KSL, KIRO, and WRUL.

[Sherry Baker: Mormon Media History Timeline: 1827-2007, http://byustudies.byu.edu/showTitle.aspx?title=7984]

175 years ago today - Jan 14, 1844

Brigham Young records in his journal, "My wife Mary Ann and I received our second anointing."

25 years ago today - Jan 13, 1994

Emanuel Tov, Hebrew University professor and editor-in-chief of the Dead Sea Scrolls publication projects, invites BYU Professor Donald W. Parry to join the international team of editors working on publication of the scrolls. Later, BYU Professors David R. Seely, Dana M. Pike, and Andrew C. Skinner are added to the team.

35 years ago today - Jan 13, 1984-Friday

[Leonard Arrington]
... All of my experiences with him [Mark E. Peterson], however, were not positive.

Item. When I published in the first issue of BYU Studies [Winter 1959] my study "An Economic Interpretation of the Word of Wisdom," he saw to the suspension of that publication for a full year, and he always held it against me that I wrote the piece.

Item. The talk which he gave in 1963, "Race Problems as They Affect the Church," opposing granting the priesthood to the blacks, a talk widely circulated, apparently with his approval, was one of the most bigoted and narrow-minded talks ever given by a "disciple of Christ." [[Petersen, "Race Problems-As They Affect the Church, at the Convention of Teachers of Religion on the College Level," Aug. 27, 1954, Church History Library, Salt Lake City.]]

Item. That he should have received and encouraged the submission of the reports of Tom Truitt about the writings and speeches of our historians, and that he should have circulated these among the Twelve without once talking to any of us to check on their accuracy or intention, was unfair, a manifestation of suspicious attitudes, and partook of retribution.

Item. His calling the meeting with me to defend our action in writing Story of the Latter-day Saints, without prior notice so as to prevent us from preparing a defense, and with charges that were unfair and incorrect, shows his receptivity to rumormongers, the suspicious, the anti-intellectuals, and represents an attempt to embarrass us before the First Presidency.

Item. Elder Petersen is the authority who sicced Tom Truitt and Roy Doxey on the historians last spring by calling their stake presidents and bishops to determine if they were loyal and active members of the church.

I have had a real concern that he might become President of the Twelve or, eventually, President of the Church. Now, at least, [with his recent death] that will not happen. The Lord has preserved us from that kind of leadership.

[Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

45 years ago today - Jan 13, 1974

Three missionaries in Pennsylvania are killed in a head-on collision after a car repeatedly bumps the rear of their car and finally forces them into the path of an oncoming car.

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

120 years ago today - Jan 13, 1899

[James E. Talmage]
One of the questions referred to the First Presidency by the Committee was as to the advisability of reprinting the lecture entitled "The Holy Ghost" ... I have incorporated it in the prospective book [Articles of Faith] in practically an unaltered form. President Snow took the article under advisement today. In conversation Pres. Geo. Q. Cannon supported the view of the distinct personality of the Holy Ghost and stated that he had actually heard the voice of the third member of the Godhead, actually talking to him.

[Chronology of the Life and Work of James E. Talmage, J. Trevor Antley, https://docs.google.com/document/d/1MJsHY83JZL_n6CjWq11y1trT_CVXMMXAx2uYOWAwn0c/edit#heading=h.2zfdaoa]

120 years ago today - Jan 13, 1899

The First Presidency decides that James E. Talmage's book, Articles of Faith, will "be published by the Church" due to the review of its contents by the First Presidency and committee which included three apostles. Its discussion of Celestial, Terrestrial, and Telestial Kingdoms (420-421) states that "advancement from grade to grade within any kingdom, and from kingdom to kingdom, will be provided for." The eleventh edition deletes the latter phrase in 1919, and the twelfth edition in 1924 says: "as to possible progress from one kingdom to another the scriptures make no positive affirmation."

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

40 years ago today - Jan 12, 1979-Friday

[Leonard Arrington]
Charles Graves from [LDS] Public Communications came in to say that he understood that the [Jerald and Sandra] Tanners now have available for sale a reproduction of Joseph Smith's diary covering the years 1832-34. This is the diary which Dean Jessee has been preparing for publication for some time. ... We understand that an article is coming out in Utah Holiday which describes the Tanner publication, which will then result in a big sale of it. Once again, it is unfortunate that Dean Jessee has not been able to complete our volume for publication. We planned this as early as 1972 and hoped for sure to have it out by 1974; but for a variety of reasons it has been postponed and postponed and now we are reaping the consequences of that postponement.

[Confessions of a Mormon historian : the diaries of Leonard J. Arrington, 1971-1997, Gary James Bergera, editor, Signature Books, 2018]

100 years ago today - Jan 12, 1919

[David O. McKay]
At 11:15 A.M., I called on Thos. J. Steed 2742 Adams Ave., relative to his having entered into an alleged plural marriage.

Several important things he admitted; viz.,

(1) That he has entered into such a marriage.

(2) That the one performing ceremony claimed authority to do so.

(3) That it was hinted to him that there is a 'union' or 'secret organization' attempting to perpetuate such marriages; but he says 'To hell with such a union'.

(4) That perhaps the best way to learn more about this would be to attend the funerals of men and women how have recently entered into alleged plural marriages.

[David O. McKay Diary, as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1910-1951, Privately Published, Salt Lake City, Utah 2010]

110 years ago today - Jan 12, 1909

[George Albert Smith]
"Was present in Temple when Father baptized F.M. Lyman for his father [previously excommunicated apostle Amasa M. Lyman] and Pres Jos F. Smith restored his rights etc in the Priesthood."

[Journals of George Albert Smith]

120 years ago today - Thursday, Jan 12, 1899

[Rudger Clawson]
At this point the tables were spread and the brethren partook of the sacrament. After the bread and wine were blessed by Pres. Snow, [they] ate and drank freely until satisfied. It was indeed a time of refreshing and one long to be remembered. Benediction by Pres. Geo. Q. Cannon.

[Stan Larson (editor), A Ministry of Meetings: The Apostolic diaries of Rudger Clawson, Signature Books in association with Smith Research Associates, Salt Lake City, 1993, http://bit.ly/rudgerclawson]

125 years ago today - Jan 12, 1894

[James E. Talmage]
A meeting of the Theological Class Committee, and the Presidency, to consider the subject of the sacrament. After the acceptance of a paragraph written by me on the duties of the priesthood in seeing that the Sacrament is not administered to any but Church members, and to none who are unworthy, I asked concerning the custom of administering the sacrament in our Tabernacle, where all classes assemble, where indeed it is known that many outsiders partake and others show by strong demonstration their scorn for the ordinance, where in short no supervision that is effective can be exercised. In answer I found that the First Presidency and the Twelve were united in desiring the administration of the sacrament removed from the Tabernacle to the Ward houses, where the local authorities could properly guard the sacredness of the ordinance. I understand instructions to this effect will soon be issued.

[James E. Talmage, Diary, 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 - Jan 12, 1884

[J.D.T. McAllister Diary]
Certain Women not to be sealed to Joseph Smith

read a letter from Prest. Taylor approving our action in the E.G. Defriez matter. also that sister Maria Iverson Moss could be Sealed to some good man. Such cases should not be Sealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith.

[Diary Excerpts of J.D.T. McAllister, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

150 years ago today - Jan 12, 1869

Deseret News editorial against universal male suffrage for the United States: "Education and intelligence should precede the suffrage, otherwise the latter would be like a razor in the hands of a child - more likely to prove destructive than otherwise." Since Utah is not a state, it is unable to cast its vote against the 15th amendment (Mar. 1870).

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

155 years ago today - Jan 12, 1864

Having been publicly accused of using improper language, First Counselor Heber C. Kimball writes in his memorandum book: "I was told by the Lord that I should not be removed from my place as first counselor to President Young, and those who had oppressed me when it was in their power to do me good, shall be removed from their places. That [second counselor] Daniel H. Wells, [future apostle] Albert Carrington, [future apostle and son of Brigham] Jos. A. Young and others were among that number."

155 years ago today - Jan 12, 1864

[Wilford Woodruff]
At Eleven oclok I Called at the prision & was with the prisioner untill a few moments before his Execution. His Mother Brothe[rs?] wife & 5 children visited him last night also this morning. He had gotton a woman with Child who was not his wife. He requested his Brothers to take care of this woman & if they were permitted to take more than one wife to take her to wife. He had a vary hard time to part with his wife Children & Friends. He felt to Confess all of his [crimes] and ask the forgiveness of God & all men for all his Crimes. He had worn his garments up to within an hour before his death. I advised him to take it off which He did. He Converse with me untill abut 12 oclok. He asked me to pray with him that he might have strength to go to his Execution & pay the penalty of his Crimes. I prayed with him according to his request & then bid him good by as did others who were with him.

He then walked to his place of Execution. There was a large number out side the wall & some one hundred in the Court House pl[aced?] at the windows to witness the Execution. Jason Luce sat in a Chair with his feet maniceled. He addressed the people a few moments Renounced Wm. A. Hickman as his betrayer bid the People good by. Sherif Burton drew the Black Cap over his face & at a given signal 5 Balls was shot through or near his heart & his spirit left his body without a groan or hardly a movemet of his body. His Corps was taken to the gate & Exhibited to the Croud. It was then taken to his Brothers House & laid out.

[Luce had killed a man by slitting his throat with a Bowie knife on Dec. 7, 1863. The execution occurred 36 days after the crime was committed.]

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