80 years ago today - Jan 25, 1940

Minutes of the Council of the Twelve and of the First Presidency: Attention was called to a postscript on a letter from President Roscoc C. Cox of the Hawaiian Mission, calling attention to a recommendation he had received for ordination of two boys to the office of Deacon, the mother of these boys having some Negro blood in her veins.

President [J. Reuben] Clark explained that this matter has come up at various times in the past, that is the question of what should be done with those people who are faithful in the Church who are supposed to have some Negro blood in their veins.

President Clark said at his request the clerk of the Council had copied from the old records of the Council discussions that have been had in the past on this subject. He said that he was positive that it was impossible with reference to the Brazilians to tell those who have Negro blood and those who have not, and we are baptizing these people into the Church. The question also arises pertaining to the people in South Africa where we are doing missionary work, and in the Southern States, also in the islands of the Pacific.

President Clark suggested that this matter be referred to the Twelve who might appoint a sub-committee to go into the matter with great care and make some ruling or re-affirm whatever ruling has been made on this question in the past as to whether or not one drop of negro blood deprives a man of the right to receive the priesthood.

Brother [John A.] Widtsoe moved the adoption of President Clark's suggestion.

Motion seconded and unanimously approved.

[George Albert Smith Papers, Manuscripts Division, Marriott Library, University of Utah, Excerpts From Minutes of the Council of the Twelve and of the First Presidency, 1879-1947 as quoted at Marquardt, H. Michael, Mormon Central, http://www.xmission.com/~research/central/chorg2.htm]

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