25 years ago today - Sep 21, 1998

Donny and Marie Osmond make their return to television as hosts of a talk show called The Donny and Marie Show. They had starred in a one-hour variety show from 1976 to 1979.

40 years ago today - Sep 21, 1983

A U.S. postage stamp honors Philo T. Farnsworth for the "First Television Camera." His electronic television transmission occurred in San Francisco in 1927.

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

50 years ago today - Sep 21, 1973-Friday

[Leonard Arrington]

Brother Eldred G. Smith has had difficulty accepting his position. This goes back to the first talk he gave in conference in which he said "I deserved it, I grew up under it, and I should have had a position, and I am now glad that the brethren recognize this is the case." This is the way his mother brought him up-that he was to take over from his father-that he would take over his father's office and his father's position and so on, but when they eliminated the Quorum of Patriarchs and took that out from under his control and when they took him out of the office he became concerned and has been embittered ever since. Moreover he never says much about the patriarchs and their function. Brother Haycock thought that the talk he [Eldred G. Smith] gave in Munich [Germany] was the best talk he had ever given in a conference. Brother Haycock said that the person within his experience who had had the most difficulty to fitting into the pattern with the General Authorities was S. Dilworth Young. Many of the early talks that he gave in conference-very few of them got into the printed version in the Improvement Era because of the content and so on. ...

President Lee asked Brother Olson about the Wilford Wood materials. A sister or close relative of his had gone to President Lee and emphasized how important it was that the Church acquire this material because there were materials that could damage the Church if they got into the hands of enemies of the Church. President Lee had asked her to work out an arrangement to give them to the Church and she had tentatively assented but then she backed out after she had thought it over. Earl said that we had microfilmed what she had. President Lee seems to be interested in all of these acquisitions. He talked a little about the George Albert Smith papers and the unfortunate (to the family) manner in which one of the daughters [Emily Smith Stewert] of George Albert Smith had sold the papers to the University of Utah for something like $25,000. He said the same thing nearly occurred with the papers of President McKay. He thought it was important to get the Church's oar in before the papers were dispersed, and so he mentioned to the family the day after President McKay died the importance of turning the papers over to the Church. The family did turn over much. Some other papers were taken by the family to Huntsville [Utah] and they are there in the basement of the McKay home. They could very easily be stolen or tampered with or burned or flooded. President McKay's son [David Lawrence McKay] talked to Lauritz [Petersen] about them and Lauritz said, "Wait until he comes back from his mission," so we must take that up with him when he returns. President Lee thinks he will turn over the entire load to us. At one stage [President McKay's secretary] Clare Middlemiss thought that these scrapbooks and histories and diaries belonged to her because she compiled them. Earl said, "Is that proper that when a person does something on Church time, using Church facilities, Church money in the office as a part of her job, does she or he own them?" President Lee said he thought that Clare Middlemiss had a less intense interest in these things than she had once had. We have now got to find out how we can get access to these papers so that they can be used by the writers of our sesquicentennial and one-volume histories.

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

125 years ago today - Wednesday, Sep 21, 1898

[Apostle John Henry Smith]

The Republicans held their primarys tonight to elect candidates to the Precinct and county Conventions. I was elected to both.

Political matters are running high.

[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]

180 years ago today - Sep 21, 1843

William Clayton writes in his journal: "This A.M. he [Joseph Smith] came to talk with Lydia but she won't yet consent. She wants to tarry with her sisters." Lydia Moon, sister of two of Clayton's wives, had agreed to become a plural wife to Clayton but a week ago Joseph Smith informed Clayton that "the Lord had revealed to him that a man could only take 2 of a family except by express revelation . . . He finally asked if I would not give L[ydia] to him. I said I would so far as I had anything to do in it. He requested me to talk to her."

200 years ago today - Sep 21, 1823

Joseph Smith Senior tells Willard Chase (a neighbor and friend to the Smiths) that a spirit appeared to Joseph Smith on 21 September, 1823 and told him of gold plates to be retrieved on 22 September. The spirit instructed him to dress in black clothes, ride a black horse with a switch tail, demand the book in a certain name and, after getting it, take it away without laying it down. Joseph complied and found the box, opened the cover, removed the plates, but laid them down to put the cover back on the box. The plates disappeared and returned to the box. Smith tried to re-take the plates, but he saw something like a toad which soon assumed the appearance of a man and struck him [Smith] on the side of his head. It struck him again when he tried to take the plates again. The spirit told Smith he could not have them, as he had not obeyed the orders, and was instructed to return in one year with his oldest brother (Alvin)

[Willard Chase Testimony; Palmyra Magic Timeline, http://www.exploringmormonism.com/palmyra-magic-timeline/]

200 years ago today - 21-Sep 22, 1823

During late night and early morning hours, Joseph Jr. has a vision of an "angel" or "spirit," who appears three times and tells him about the plates buried in a nearby hill. Lucy Mack Smith seems to separate Joseph's nocturnal angelic visitations from his discovery of the plates by about two months, dating the angelic visitations to harvest time in July 1823 and the visit to the hill on 22 September 1823. This gap conflicts with Joseph's own accounts which, when the 1832 account is corrected, consistently place the angel's visits on the evening of 21-22 September 1823 and the discovery of the plates on the day following.

[Vogel, Dan, Early Mormon Documents, Appendix B: Chronology, 1771-1831, http://amzn.to/T5nY8w]

200 years ago today - Sep 21, 1823

Joseph prays for forgiveness for his "foolish errors" and "weaknesses of youth," and is visited three times during the night by an angel named Moroni. Moroni tells him about a hidden book and quotes scriptures from the books of Acts, Joel, Isaiah, and Malachi. Moroni's quotation of Malachi is recorded as D&C 2. (According to Joseph's neighbors' later testimony, Joseph's "weaknesses of youth" consisted of fighting and drinking)

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

15 years ago today - 9/20/2008


Wall St Journal reports: The Yes on 8 campaign has received "more proportionally from the Latter-day Saints Church than from any other faith," said Mr. Schubert, 35% to 40% of the total. The Mormon Church encouraged its members to send their donations to a separate post-office box set up by a church member, said Messrs. Schubert and L. Whitney Clayton, a senior Mormon Church official involved in the campaign. Mr. Clayton said the church didn't keep track of how much individual Mormons donated, just the cumulative total. He said members bundled the donations and forwarded them to the campaign.

[Mormons for Marriage: A Prop 8 Timeline, http://mormonsformarriage.com/?page_id=68]

115 years ago today - Sep 20, 1908

[George F. Gibbs to John F. Tolton]

... it is not in order for Bishops to sign such recommends [for "second blessings"], for the reason that you alone are responsible for the worthiness of the parties recommended by you. It is taken for granted that you yourself have had your second blessings. If not[,] you had better not sign any more such recommends until you have seen President [Joseph F.] Smith.

[George F. Gibbs to John F. Tolton, Sept. 20, 1908, in Anderson, Devery; The Development of LDS Temple Worship, 1846-2000: A Documentary History, http://amzn.to/TempleWorship]

140 years ago today - Sep 20, 1883

[J.D.T. McAllister Diary]

Apostle B. Young addressed us. Second coming of Christ, progress of the Saints fullfilment of Prophecy, increase of the Saints from 143 pioneers. to one hundred and forty three thousand. and prophecied in 30 years our increase would be one hundred and forty three million.

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

170 years ago today - Sep 20, 1853

"Uncle John" Smith, Presiding Patriarch, confers upon his son, apostle George A. Smith, "all the keys of the Patriarchal Priesthood that ever was sealed upon any man on the earth." He also says in the blessing, "all the inhabitants of the earth shall know that the Lord did choose the Smith family to build up Zion & did by them lay the foundation of this Church which shall never be overthrown neither shall the name of the Smith family be blotted out under Heaven." Despite Presiding Patriarch's dying request in 1854 that his son be his successor, Brigham Young instead chooses oldest son of Martyred Hyrum Smith.

175 years ago today - Sep 20, 1848

Brigham Young returns to Salt Lake City and never again leaves Great Basin.

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

180 years ago today - Sep 20, 1843

[Nauvoo Neighbor Newspaper]

Story: "Porter Rockwell" -- Editorial -- Describing the rumors of Rockwell's attempt to murder Gov. Boggs.

- Ordinances: "An Ordinance Concerning Marriages." -- John C. Bennett, Mayor -- Passed Feb 17, 1842, James Sloan is listed as the recorder. Age of consent is set at 17 for boys and 14 for girls.


180 years ago today - Sep 20, 1843

Joseph marriage to Malissa Lott, age 19. (Allegations of sex). [Brian Hales reports this marriage may have been OKed by Emma Smith]

[Affidavit of Melissa Willes, 3 Aug. 1893. Pages 98 and 105 of the Temple lot case; Exploring Mormonism: Polygamy Timeline, http://www.exploringmormonism.com/polygamy-timeline/]

45 years ago today - Sep 19, 1978-Tuesday

[Leonard Arrington]

This morning Davis Bitton brought me a copy of "Book of Mormon Difficulties" by B. H. Roberts. He had obtained two copies from a friend; I did not ask him who the friend was, and he did not tell me. He was able to obtain one copy for me and one for himself. This document was apparently prepared by Roberts in 1921 and represents perhaps 300 pages. The pages are numbered as far as 280 and it looks like about another 100 or 150 pages after that. None of us have heard of the existence of this document until the last few weeks. As far as we are aware, it is not in our vault and we've never heard it mentioned in the vault of the First Presidency or the Joseph Fielding Smith safe. Last fall, about a year ago, Michael Marquardt telephoned to ask if I'd heard of it; I told him no. He said it does exist and he had seen a copy. [Discussion about who has seen it, and who has copies] ... In connection with what we had heard earlier from Michael Marquardt and attributed by him to Brigham Roberts the grandson, this was supposed to have been done near the end of his life and Roberts was about to leave the Church because his testimony had been destroyed as the result of this study. It is very clear that this could not have been the case. [A list of evidences that Roberts retained his testimony of the Book of Mormon] ...

Davis has and he is impressed with two things: 1. B. H.'s absolute honesty in pursuing the difficult questions, with courage and determination. 2. That he came to grips with every aspect of it and did not hesitate in coming to conclusions warranted by the evidence despite what they might do to traditional beliefs. For example: he admits quite candidly that the Book of Mormon could have been the production of one mind. There are in the back of the book some memos, one to Bob [Ben] Roberts from Mark Cannon-no date-and three memos of Michael Marquardt written last fall. Chapter 13 of the book is missing for some reason not explained except that it is mentioned as being missing in the document obtained from Brigham Roberts the grandson. The title of the chapter was "The Messiah in the New World-Quetzoquoatal." The document gives every appearance of being authentic. ...

Richard Roberts, head of the Department of History at Weber [State College] and a grandson of Brigham H. Roberts... told me a number of important and interesting things: 1. That the first wife [Sarah] Louisa [Smith Roberts] did not approve of B. H. taking plural wives, and she was largely alienated from him after he married the second wife. And she brought up her children to be alienated from him. It is his understanding that B. H. did not spend very much time with the first wife and family after the first plural marriage. The first wife more or less left the Church and her children were more or less brought up outside the Church, not only as non-Mormons but in practical respects as anti-Mormons. 2. If this general attitude was not true during the first years of plural marriage, it became definitely true when Roberts married just before [[actually, after]] the [1890] Manifesto Maggie Shipp. ....

The Way, the Truth and the Life, which is probably the single most brilliant work by a Latter-day Saint mind to this day.

The most important lesson indicated by this experience [a discussion with a board member of the Relief Society] is that the Relief Society are not very autonomous, even within their own organization. The brethren are not only directing Relief Society policy but also getting into the actual administration of the organization. ...

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

60 years ago today - Sep 19, 1963

The First Presidency and apostles decide to prevent the performance of BYU professor Clinton F. Larson's play 'The Redeemer' because of its portrayal of Mary Magdalene as the wife of Jesus. "President McKay [is] very much concerned about it, he having said there was no authoritative basis for such a conclusion-that we just didn't know." The performance occurs because it is sponsored by the Provo Recreation Department rather than BYU.

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

130 years ago today - Sep 19, 1893

Zina Diantha Huntington Jacob Smith Young leads a prayer circle for Mary Ann Burnham Freeze in the Salt Lake Temple, who is then baptized for her health, confirmed, and administered to by male temple healers in the garden room.

[Stapley, Jonathan and Wright, Kristine, '"They Shall Be Made Whole": A History of Baptism for Health,' Journal of Mormon History, Fall 2008]

130 years ago today - Sep 19, 1893

[Francis M. Lyman]

[Minersville-Milford] On the train we found the following brethren on their way to the penitentiary to serve sentences for living with their wives ... [Dalley, Jones, Barton] each for adultery with their own wives ... Judge Fudd was also on the train. I plead with him to use his influence with Marshall Brigham not to have the brethren shaved, He promised me he would do his best.

[Excerpts of Apostle Francis M. Lyman Diaries, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

170 years ago today - Sep 19, 1853

John Alpheus Cutler: Organized "The True Church of Jesus Christ" 19 September 1853.

[Cook, Lyndon W., The Revelations of the Prophet Joseph Smith: A Historical and Biographical Commentary of the Doctrine and Covenants, Seventy's Mission Bookstore, Provo UT, 1985, http://amzn.to/RevelationsofJosephSmith]

45 years ago today - Sep 18, 1978-Monday

[Leonard Arrington]

Earl Olson was visited by a security official who asked that the Library-Archives be closed down at noon on Saturday... Security had heard that there was to be a sit-in of women during the afternoon. Apparently there was a reception at 3:00 o'clock in advance of the evening meeting for women. This was a reception for General Authorities and wives, the officers and spouses of Relief Society and Young Women, and perhaps general boards. ... Gordon says there was absolutely no sign of anybody wanting to sit-in and that this was a false alarm. It reminds me of the many false alarms that came during the period of black difficulties, when we kept hearing that many carloads of blacks from California were headed for Salt Lake City and they were going to "take over" Temple Square. This got so far that priesthood members in various wards in Salt Lake City were mobilized to meet the problem, in case it developed. Of course nothing happened.

Alice Smith telephoned this morning, quite discouraged. She called to tell me she did not think the time was ripe to publish a history of the Relief Society. She thought this would be too damaging to the testimonies of LDS women who would read it because, if it tells the truth, it will relate the deterioration of the power and position of women in the Church and will be very depressing to women who care. She gave as examples the following: [First,] in 1964 when she went on the [general] board, the Relief Society visited every stake at least once a year; then as the number of stakes multiplied, they were given permission to visit 60 stakes each year, then still later 24, and the new instructions give them the opportunity of visiting only 12 stakes per year. Second, the Relief Society has lost its money, its magazine, its lessons, and its semi-annual conferences. The Church correlating group in charge of writing manuals has taken over their manual; the Presiding Bishopric has taken over their money; the Ensign has taken over their magazine; and in no case have they had a substitution for any of these. When she was visiting the stake in Virginia, she assured the women that they might phone up Barbara Smith and invite her to meet with them, but as they were about to do so, they received a letter which informed them that they were not to invite any member of the board or any member of the presidency without clearing it with the stake president. The stake president had to clear it with the regional representative; the regional representative had to clear it with the area supervisor; the area supervisor had to clear it with the Quorum of Twelve. And because of all this bureaucratic arrangement, it will be impossible now for any stake to be directly in touch with the central organization of the Relief Society. Not only will they not be able to visit the various stakes, but they can't even correspond with them directly. She says that plans are now to do things at the ward level, which will make it more difficult for the Relief Society to function. She did not reveal what those were, but said that it would occur soon. She is very discouraged. She has accumulated over the years a large supply of Relief Society instructions and materials and has written notes and kept a diary, and she called to know what to do with these. I made a number of suggestions to her; the one which seemed most attractive to her was to give them to BYU or USU so they could be used by girls doing masters theses at the university. Alice said the deterioration of the Relief Society began under President [Harold B.] Lee, under his Correlation program, and that many of his appointees are still functioning and still operating under his philosophy. Dean Larsen, for example, was a Lee protegee, and is now the advisor to the Relief Society. He and those with him are continuing to trim and trim power and authority from the Relief Society.

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

135 years ago today - Sep 18, 1888

[Wilford Woodruff]

The Tribune is full of wrath this morning because George Q Cannon gave himself up yesterday without the ring having Power to arest him and be made a Marter of. The ring are Mad Becaus the New Govornor does not persecute the saints the same as Judge Zane.

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

155 years ago today - Sep 18, 1868

Presidet Young spoke 35 minuts & said He read from the Book of Life keep the word of wisdom, Lay up the grain, Stop traiding with the Gentiles or I will Cut you off from the Church for it is time. Let Every one stop drinking Coffee, tea, whiskey, Tobaco for this is the word of God unto you & you will be Cut off if you do not.

[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 - Sep 18, 1843. Monday.

[William Clayton]

...Joseph and I rode out to borrow money, drank wine at Sister Lyons. P.M. I got $50 of Sister Lyons and paid it to D. D. Yearsley. [Silvia was legally married to Windsor P. Lyon, and also married to Joseph Smith.]

[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 - Sep 18, 1838

[Missouri War]

After receiving reports of disturbances, Governor Boggs orders out two thousand troops and prepares to lead march to western Missouri.

[LeSueur, Stephen C., The 1838 Mormon War in Missouri, Appendix: Chronology of Events in Missouri, 1838-1839]

35 years ago today - Sep 17, 1988

The LDS church joins the VISN television network (Vision Interfaith Satellite Network) sponsored jointly by different religious organizations; renamed the "Faith and Values Channel."

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

45 years ago today - Sep 17, 1978

The first episode of the TV series Battlestar Gallactica, created, written, and produced by Church member Glen A. Larson, airs on ABC. The story line of the series incorporates many LDS beliefs and doctrines.

130 years ago today - Sep 17, 1893

[Francis M. Lyman]

... I also bore down very heavy on the Word of Wisdom. Declared that the filthy stinking tobacco smokers and chewers should not be permitted to enter the presence of the Savior at his coming.

[Excerpts of Apostle Francis M. Lyman Diaries, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

135 years ago today - Sep 17, 1888

[Wilford Woodruff]

President George Q. Cannon was indicted on saturday again for Cohabitation and this Morning He went into Court and Delivered himself up to the Court & Plead guilty to the Indictment and the Court sentenced him on the first Count 75 days imprisionment & $200 dollars fine and the second Count 100 days & $250 dollars fine total 175 days imprisionment & $450 dollars fine. He was taken in to the Penetentiary by Marshal Dyer who was accompanied by C. W. Wilkin H. B. Clawson & James Jack. The Marshal told the Warden to treat him Kindly. He will have all the Privileges the rules Can afford. We Parted in good spirits. This leaves me in a Measure alone for 5 Months but I will do the best I Can.

[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 - Sep 17, 1843. Sunday.

[William Clayton]

I had some talk with Lydia. She seems to receive it kindly but says she has promised her mother not to marry while her mother lives and she thinks she won't.

[Clayton had asked Joseph Smith if he (Clayton) could marry Lydia Moon. Clayton was already married to two Moon sisters. Smith replied with a revelation stating that more than two wives was likely to cause "wrangles." After informing Clayton of the revelation, Smith asked if Clayton minded if he (Smith) married Moon instead, who which Clayton agreed. Clayton asked Moon on behalf on Smith. The preceding is Clayton's synopsis of his conversation with Lydia Moon.]

[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]

180 years ago today - Sep 17, 1843

Joseph Smith instructs the Sunday congregation that it is wrong to have "men among women, and women among men," and segregates the congregation by gender.

[Quinn, D. Michael, The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, Appendix 7: Selected Chronology of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1830-47, http://amzn.to/origins-power]

45 years ago today - Sep 16, 1978

The first conference for LDS females over age eleven is broadcast over closed-circuit radio to meeting houses. Although not part of general conference, as is the male equivalent, this is the first step in giving LDS females a meeting similar to that which Mormon males have experienced since 1830. In Sept. 1993 this is divided into the Relief Society's and Young Women's "general meeting."

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

90 years ago today - Sep 16, 1933

A Deseret News Church Section full-page article, "The Problem of Isaiah in the Book of Mormon" by Sidney B. Sperry and H. Grant Vest. This is an example of the LDS leadership's delayed acceptance of B.H. Robert's recommendation a decade earlier to openly confront the textual problems in Mormon scriptures. Roberts dies eleven days after this article. On 30 Sept. the Church Section prints "The Synoptic Problem in Its Relation To Modern Revelation," and "The Johannine Problem In Its Relation To Modern Revelation" on 7 Oct.

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

115 years ago today - Sep 16, 1908; Wednesday

[George F. Richards]

The question of necessity for ordaining Presidents of Seventies considered and decided that it is not necessary to ordain a President of Seventy. It is sufficient to set them apart.

[George F. Richards, Diary]

140 years ago today - Sep 16, 1883

[Patriarchal Blessing of William Wadley given by Zebedee Coltrin] ... And thou shalt enter the courts of the kings and many of the nobles of the earth shall have and reverence that gospel thou shalt preach unto them. ...

And thou shalt become a mighty prophet in the midst of the Zion of the Lord. And thou shalt be wrapped in the visions of the heavens and shall be clothed with salvation as with a garment. And the Angels of the Lord shall administer unto thee, and converse with thee face to face, and shall make known unto thee the high laws of heaven. ...

And thou shalt become a mighty tiller of the earth, and shall understand all the princiiples [principles] of the cultivation of the soil. ... And thy sons shalt become mighty men before their Lord, and shall be filled with the wisdom of the heavens, and many of them shall become Prophets, and Apostles, Seers and revelators before the Lord, and be kings and priests unto the most high. ... And thy daughters shall be women of great renown, clothed upon with all the principles of eternal salvation, and their sons shall become mighty men before the Lord, and shall remain and reign upon the earth a Thousand years with the Lord, And their daughters shall be holy women and become the mothers of holy, sanctified men and shall dwell in the midst of the sanctified of the Lord.

... I seal all these blessings upon thy head and thee up unto all the powers of exaltation, of thrones, and dominions and powers of eternal lives, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ . . . . Amen.

[Patriarchal Blessings]

35 years ago today - Sep 15, 1988

Mark Hofmann attempts suicide by way of a drug overdose. He is rushed to the University of Utah Health Sciences Center.

[Whittaker, David J., The Hofmann Maze, A Book Review Essay with a Chronology and Bibliography of the Hofmann Case, BYU Studies Vol. 29, No. 1, pg.80,]

40 years ago today - Sep 15, 1983-Thursday

[Leonard Arrington]

Took Harriet to the B. H. Roberts Symposium last night. ... Brooke Hopkins: Mormons are unusually interested in what they look like to outsiders. It would be a relief if, when someone discovers a fault, it would be openly discussed. When individuals become so concerned with their image that they try to fix the image instead of dealing with the problems underneath, what they [other people] think of us is more important than what we think of ourselves or what God thinks of us. Mormon history suggests that we began as radicals, non-conformists. Exciting to be a Mormon then. Deeply opposed to American culture. ... Now the Mormons seek acceptance, yearn for a good image. An ambivalent situation, a contradiction: inordinately concerned with their image to others-spend $12 million on a Reader's Digest series. Yet claim to be the true religion which is different from that of "the world." An inordinate fear of disclosure with a cost in emotional and spiritual terms. A public relations church. Masks the fear of facing truth. How we must appear to God, how we can reconcile with the New Testament which would give us self respect. The need to find approval is comic. Even if we convince others that we are great, it only puts dealing with the real problems off.

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

60 years ago today - Sep 15, 1963

President Joseph Fielding Smith of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles dedicates the new Liberty Jail Visitors' Center on the site where his grandfather, Hyrum Smith, and great-uncle, Joseph Smith, were incarcerated with others during the winter of 1838–39.

125 years ago today - Sep 15, 1898

[Brigham Young Jr.]

Attended meeting at Temple. It did look grand to see Presidency intact and well. all feel thankful to have Pres[idents]. [George Q.] Cannon & [Joseph F.] Smith in their old places. It seems to me that Pres[ident] Cannon does not have confidence in me as he used to have. He may have reason for it. I know that I do not follow his suggestions without question as I used to do. I know that God loves him and I know that we all love him and we pray for his health and long life.

[Brigham Young Jr. 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]

135 years ago today - Sep 15, 1888

[Heber J. Grant]

Bro George Q Cannon informed me a few days ago that it was his intention to surrender himself to the court and go to the penitentiary for '2unlawful cohabitation'. He said he had had assurances that he should not be sentenced for more than six months. I certainly think it is wisdom for him to purchase his liberty at this price.

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

180 years ago today - Sep 15, 1843

William Clayton writes in his journal: "President Joseph told me he had lately had a new item of law revealed to him in relation to myself. He said the Lord had revealed to him that a man could only take 2 of a family except by express revelation and as I had said I intended to take Lydia he made this known for my benefit. To have more than two in a family was apt to cause wrangles and trouble. He finally asked if I would not give L[ydia] to him. I said I would so far as I had anything to do in it. He requested me to talk to her." Lydia Moon, who had just turned 17, was the younger sister of two of Clayton's wives: legal wife Ruth Moon and his first plural wife Margaret Moon. Clayton had been courting Lydia to become his plural wife until Joseph Smith told him of the recently-revealed "new item of law." Clayton talked to Lydia Moon about becoming Joseph's plural wife but she never would agree to it. She later apostatized from the Church.

180 years ago today - Sep 15, 1843

Joseph puts up a sign in front of the Nauvoo Mansion stating that because of "cruel and untiring persecution," he is no longer able to provide free room and board to so many visitors, as he has been doing in the mansion. "I have been reduced to the necessity of opening 'The Mansion' as a hotel. I have provided the best table accommodations in the city; and the Mansion, being large and convenient, renders travelers more comfortable than any other place on the Upper Mississippi." The mansion also has a 75-horse stable.

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

45 years ago today - Sep 14, 1978-Thursday

[Leonard Arrington]

Reminiscences Things I Have Done as Church Historian Since 1972 That I Am Most Proud Of

... Proud that we were able to break the old rule of personnel and Church employment which required women to be terminated after six months of pregnancy. We were able to break this rule through Maureen [Ursenbach] Beecher. Once having been broken, it is now general policy that women may work until they wish to quit. But the next step was even more difficult-to get Church personnel to agree to allow women a few weeks leave, after which they might resume employment. We were able to get them to do this for Maureen and thus the pattern was set for other women in Church employment as well. ...

Proud that we were able to produce the wonderful one-volume history The Story of the Latter-day Saints, by Jim Allen and Glen Leonard. I recognize that this has been under somewhat of a cloud because of Brother [Ezra Taft] Benson's and Brother [Mark E.] Petersen's objections, but others of the Quorum of the Twelve and other General Authorities are very complimentary, and this includes President [Spencer W.] Kimball himself, who says he read it, thought it was splendid, and could not understand why Brother Benson and Brother Petersen did not like it. This is a major step forward in understanding this book and a major step forward in LDS history and is a milestone in LDS historiography.

5. Proud of our arranging the contracts for the 16-volume sesquicentennial history-that each of the sixteen persons we asked agreed to sign; and proud despite the cloud over the work of the History Division that these contracts have been reaffirmed and the work is proceeding satisfactorily. We have one of these manuscripts already completed and others expected to be completed by the end of the year, the remainder in 1979 and 1980. [This project was cancelled by Boyd K. Packer]

6. Proud that we have been instrumental in the preparation of other books which make important contributions to LDS history [books listed] ... this with full knowledge and approval of my associates and all of us have felt that this tactic was for the good of the Church and kingdom. Nevertheless it is my desire to be open and honest and it has troubled my conscience to have to resort to the diplomatic deception. ... 10. I regret that my own services or the services of my colleagues have not been used by the First Presidency, Church authorities, and Church departments as consultants on historical matters. We have not been invited, for example, to give historical addresses at the dedication of important buildings, plaques, sites, etc. These have usually been given by the prophet, by Elder Petersen, or by Wendell Ashton, and these have not consulted us in the preparation of the talks they have given. This seems to me unthinkable and inexcusable-that those of us who know intimately our history have not been involved in the preparation of historical addresses. This means that many myths have been perpetrated and perpetuated, which means that the next generation of historians will have the problem of correcting these myths.

[Regrets the failure of organizing a 'Friends of Church History' group] ... Bro. Hunter telephoned me and told me not to do anything until we got the approval of the First Presidency. I then presented this matter at our next meeting with President Lee and counselors and they gave us some counsel but did not caution us against organizing, just expressed some misgivings. ... So the whole "brilliant idea" was dropped and the momentum of enthusiasm that had been built up fell like a ton of lead. We were embarrassed, humiliated, and set back in our public relations and good will and simply not able to get the idea back to the First Presidency for their stamp of approval because of the misgivings and cautions of our advisers and our managing directors. ...

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

60 years ago today - Sep 14, 1963

President David O. McKay dedicates a monument in Kansas City, Missouri, commemorating the establishment of the city's first school, which was erected by the Colesville Saints in 1831.

90 years ago today - Sep 14, 1933

[Minutes of the Seventies]

Elders Albert J. Southwick and Richard L. Evans came to the office today for the purpose of being ordained seventies but upon consulting with them, Pres. [B. H.] Roberts stated that they were loathe to accept the responsibility of the office of seventy and in discussing their cases it was learned that their KSL broadcasting and Tabernacle choir work would prevent them from attending their quorum meetings. Their ordination will be left to the one who will ordain those who were not present on September 3, 1933, to be ordained in the 18th ward.

[Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, Privately Published, Salt Lake City, Utah, 2015, Appendix 1: Minutes of the Seventies, 1837-1933, Excerpts]

125 years ago today - Sep 14, 1898 (Wednesday)

The State Democratic convention held in Salt Lake City nominated [General Authority] Brigham H. Roberts for Congress...

[Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

125 years ago today - Sep 14, 1898; Wednesday

[Franklin D. Richards]

There are said to be 3 or 5 detectives from the East in Utah seeking out our condition as to Polygamy & illegal cohabitation.

[Franklin D. Richards, Diary]

135 years ago today - Friday, Sep 14, 1888

[John Henry Smith]

Bp. R. T. Burton and I had an interview with Bp. John Taylor and J. H. Martineau about his, Bro. Martineau's, immoral conduct.

We held three meetings today, one being that of the High Council. It was unanimously agreed that Bro. J. H. Martineau should make a public confession of his wrong doing and if forgiven by the people to renew his covenants by Baptism. He said he would do so.

[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]

145 years ago today - Sep 14, 1878

First Primary established by Aurelia Spencer at the direction of the Relief Society. At first the Primary function under the Relief Society, but by 1890 the Primary Association became a separate Church auxiliary with its own general board.

[Correlation Timeline, Compiled by Lisle Brown]

185 years ago today - Sep 14, 1838

William Dryden tells Governor Boggs that he, with ten men as guards, has tried to serve a writ against certain Saints for the incident of Aug. 8 with Adam Black, but the "Mormons" are so well armed that it is impossible to enforce any laws in Caldwell or Daviess counties.

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

30 years ago today - Sep 13, 1993

The Council of Religious Affairs of the Council of Ministers in The Soviet Union approves the registration of the Leningrad Branch of the Church. The approval marks formal Soviet Union recognition of the Church for the first time.

45 years ago today - Sep 13, 1978

In a BYU oral-history interview Russel B. Swensen recalls a seminar given in 1927 by apostle John A. Widsoe: "Brother John A. Widtsoe had courses, trying to provide these seminary men with a rational perspective on the relation of science and religion. . . . [Widtsoe] converted me to the biological theory of evolution. . . . I thought . . . that the theory of evolution was cut and dried. But Brother Widtsoe in his very tentative and very cautious way didn't openly advocate it, but presented the theory so basically and so logically that, in part, it led to my accepting [it]."

60 years ago today - Sep 13, 1963

[Richard L. Evans to First Presidency]

* (1) You have given us an assignment to improve the temple ceremony as it is presented in the one-room temples, and in Los Angeles, on film and sound track for the various language groups. (2) You have given us permission to do this at Brigham Young University at a time when we could dedicate the studio and set it apart for this purpose. (3) Doing this in the Salt Lake Temple or other temple would [again] require virtually making a motion picture studio of some part of the temple, including special lighting, cameras, stage facilities, etc. (4) Brigham Young University's motion picture facilities are crowded so they [BYU President Ernest L. Wilkinson and Wetzel O. Whitaker of the BYU Motion Picture Studio] propose to add a new sound stage at a cost of $91,000 which could be dedicated, locked up, and set apart for this purpose during the periods when these films are not being made. They have made approximately 50 Church films, and are in the process of making more, and need the additional sound stage anyway.

[Richard L. Evans to the First Presidency, Sept. 13, 1963; typed excerpt in Buerger Papers, in Anderson, Devery; The Development of LDS Temple Worship, 1846-2000: A Documentary History, http://amzn.to/TempleWorship]

125 years ago today - Sep 13, 1898; Tuesday

[Minutes of the Quorum of the Twelve]

At 10 o'clock this morning the Council of the Apostles met at the President's office...

Elder Lyman, speaking to this question, said he was reminded of the time when the Council was together after the death of President [John] Taylor, and the feeling of President Woodruff at that time; he was also reminded of President Woodruff's feelings, as expressed on different occasions during his administration, to the effect that whenever he died, the First Presidency of the Church should be organized without delay. "And if the Lord should manifest to you, President Snow, that it was the proper thing to do now, I am prepared to not only vote for a Trustee-in-trust, but for the President of the Church". Bro[ther]. Lyman added that he saw no reason why this action should not be taken at the present meeting, giving the President time, if he desired it, to choose his counselors. He remarked that after the death of Joseph Smith, three years lapsed before the First Presidency was organized; after the death of President [Brigham] Young, it also took three years to organize the First Presidency; after the death of Pres[ident]. Taylor, eighteen months elapsed, and the speaker believed that if the Council had been in harmony, no such interval would have occurred, but the Presidency would have been reorganized earlier. He believed the right thing to do now was to organize the First Presidency, and this act would tend to create confidence at home and abroad. ...

Jos[eph]. F. Smith: "I move that that be the sense of this meeting".

The motion was seconded by Bro[ther]. Cowley.

President Snow asked if there were any further remarks. Several of the brethren called for the question, whereupon Pres[ident]. Snow asked Elder Jos[eph]. F. Smith to put the motion. This being done, it was carried unanimously, and Lorenzo Snow was thus sustained by the Council of the Apostles, as President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Pres[ident]. Snow then arose and said: There was no use in his making excuses as to inability, etc., to assume the vast responsibilities involved in the position to which he had been elected. He felt that it was for him to do the very best he could and depend upon the Lord. He knew the action taken by the Council was according to the mind and will of the Lord, who had shown and revealed to him several days ago that the First Presidency should be organized before the next conference. He had been feeling a little gloomy, and perhaps a little discouraged at the prospect, and the vast responsibility that would naturally fall upon him as President of the Twelve Apostles, and with this feeling he went before the Lord, offered up the signs of the Holy Priesthood and called upon Him to let light come to his mind. His prayer was answered, the Lord manifesting unto him clearly what he should do; also in regard to the counselors he should select when he became President of the Church, "And[,]" said he, "In accordance with the light given me, I now present to you the name of Geo[rge]. Q. Cannon as my first counselor, and of Joseph F. Smith as my second counselor".

Several of the brethren, speaking at the same time, seconded the choice of counselors, and the brethren named had expressed themselves upon the subject--Bro[ther]. Cannon to the effect that he was willing to act in this capacity, or any other, if he could have the love and confidence of his brethren, and Bro[ther]. Smith to the effect that since the Lord had manifested his will in this matter, he had nothing to say, except that he was perfectly willing to act in this or any other position, and would do all he could to sustain the hands of the President in righteousness before the Lord.

Pres[ident]. Snow, before calling for the vote, said, "I have not mentioned this matter to any person, either man or woman. I, wanted to see what the feelings of the brethren were. I wanted to see if the same spirit which the Lord manifested to me was in you. I had confidence in you that the Lord would indicate to you that this was proper and according to his mind and will. I do not feel that I should be over-anxious in regard to anything pertaining to the work of the Lord. I had one revelation or manifestation in my early career which became my star, so to speak, and which I have always had before my mind. I put the meaning of it into couplet form, as follows:

"As man is, God once was;

"As God is, man may be".

That was revealed to me with power; the Holy Ghost was upon me for a long time, and I knew it was my privilege to be like Him whom I afterwards knew was my Father and God. As John the Apostle says, "We are now the sons of God; when He shall appear we shall be like Him", etc. We must act as far as we possibly can like God while we are in the flesh, and I know we can reach that degree of perfection. Now brethren, I shall do the best I can, as God shall give me wisdom and power. I sense keenly my own weakness and inability, but I appreciate the fact that God can make strong. If I know my own heart, the administration about to be ushered in shall not be known as Lorenzo Snow's, but as God's in Lorenzo Snow. As to things which have happened in the past, I do not want to talk about them; it will become us as servants of the Lord to go to work and meet the difficulties before us, as the Lord shall aid and assist us. ..."

The vote was then taken approving unanimously the President's choice of counselors.

M[atthias]. F. Cowley now moved, and the motion was carried, that Lorenzo Snow be sustained as Trustee-in-trust for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Pres[ident]. Geo[rge]. Q. Cannon suggested that the President of the Twelve Apostles be appointed, and on motion of F[ranklin]. M. Lyman, Franklin D. Richards was unanimously sustained to act in that position.

... On motion of Bro[ther]. Grant, it was decided to make public in this evening's paper, the action of the Council in organizing the First Presidency and appointing the Trustee-in-trust and the President of the Twelve Apostles.

The Council then adjourned.

[First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

125 years ago today - Sep 13, 1898

[LeRoi Clarence Snow]

[After news of Woodruff's death, Lorenzo Snow] put on his holy temple robes and repaired to the Second Annointing room [i.e., Holy of Holies], knelt at the altar, offered up the sacred signs of the Priesthood and poured out his heart to the Lord. ... I have not sought this responsibility but if it is Thy will, I now present myself before Thee for Thy guidance and instruction. ... After he had finished, he expected some special manifestation from the Lord; but there was none, and he left the altar and the room in disappointment. Passing thru the Celestial room and as he entered the large hall-way leading from the room a most remarkable manifestation was given President Snow which I relate in the words of his grand-daughter, included in a testimony which I bore during the M.I.A. conference, in the special session Sunday morning, in the Assembly Hall, June 7th, 1919, at 8:30 A.M. ... Allie Young Pond, the wife of one of the presidency of the Pocatello [Idaho] Stake, is a granddaughter of President Brigham Young and of President Lorenzo Snow, and here is an incident which occurred in her life: 'One evening while I was visiting grand-pa Snow in his room in the Salt Lake Temple, I remained until the door keepers had gone, so grand-pa had to take me to the main front entrance and let me out that way. On the way, after we left his room and while we were still in the large corridor leading to the celestial room, grand-pa stopped and said: `Wait a moment, Allie, I want to tell you something. It was right here that the Savior Jesus Christ appeared to me. He stood about three feet above floor (here grand-pa put his hand out to show about the height) and it looked as though he stood on a piece of solid gold and I talked with him as one man talks with another. It was at that time that He told me not to wait or delay until the regular conference of the Church, but to go ahead, call a special conference and complete the organization of the Church, and that I was to succeed President Wilford Woodruff as president.' He then placed one hand upon my head and said: `Now, grand-daughter I want you to remember that this is your grand-father's testimony and that he told you with his own lips that he actually saw the Savior and talked with him face to face as one man talks with another.'' Amen.

President Heber J. Grant immediately arose and said: '... After the funeral of President Wilford Woodruff, the Apostles met in the office of the First Presidency and brother Francis M. Lyman said: `I feel impressed, although one of the younger members of the quorum, to say that I believe it would be pleasing in the sight of the Lord if the First Presidency of the church was reorganized right now. ...' President Snow said that he would be pleased to hear from all the brethren upon this question, and each and all of us expressed ourselves as believing it would be pleasing to the Lord and that it would be the proper thing to have the Presidency organized at once. When we had finished, then and not till then, did brother Snow tell us that he was instructed of the Lord in the Temple the night President Woodruff died, to organize the presidency of the Church at once. President Anthon H. Lund and myself are the only men now living who were present at that meeting. ... ' A few days after the M.I.A. conference, in an interview with President Lund in his office, he retold the incident to me as given by President Grant regarding the meeting in the office of the First Presidency on Tuesday morning, September 13th, 1898 at which Lorenzo Snow was chosen president of the Church. President Lund also told me that President Snow had related the manifestation to him, of the Savior's appearance to him after dressing in his temple robes and offering up the signs of the holy Priesthood.

[LeRoi Clarence Snow, 'The Appearance of the Saviour to Pres. Lorenzo Snow', 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 - Sep 13, 1898

Quorum of Twelve Apostles sustains Lorenzo Snow as church president with two counselors. Snow then tells them "that he had heard rumors of people thinking that plural marriages could be contracted. He wanted it understood that this can not be done." Concerning post-manifesto plural marriages authorized by his predecessor Snow adds, "As to things which have happened in the past, I do not want to talk about them."

125 years ago today - Sep 13, 1898

An account of a private interview with Pres[iden]t. [Wilford] Woodruff Dec[ember]. 2 1892 at Salt Lake City. ... And when I go I want you, Brother [Lorenzo] Snow, not to delay but organize The First Presidency, take George Q. Cannon and Joseph F. Smith for your councillors, they are good, wise, and men of experience.' Of course I was much surprised, and said, Pres[iden]t. Woodruff, am I to receive this as a revelation? I do not call to mind the words of his answer but they were such as gave me the impression that he wished me to regard it as such. Without thought or considering the impropriety of such a question, I continued'Pres[iden]t. Woodruff, is this the place I am to occupy? He hesitated a moment then replied 'It is according to the order.' I asked, if he had mentioned this matter to his councillors? He said 'No, not to any one.' I told him I wished he would, I understood from his answer that he would do so. This interview was brief'As we arose to return to the Pres[iden]t's Office, he said, 'Now Brother Snow do not neglect to organize as I have told you, it may prevent much trouble.' L[orenzo Snow].

['Brigham City Dec. 3rd 1892', as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1835-1951, Electronic Edition, 2015]

90 years ago today - Sep 12, 1933

[J. Reuben Clark]

Bro Ivins brought up the question of endorsing NRA in Conference. I took no part in the discussion. Bro. Grant felt we should not do so.'Bro Ivins also brought up the question reworking the final clauses of his Washington speech. Having to go to the Banks' meetings, he left us to discuss the questions. We decided that Bro. Ivins should say what he wished. I told Bro. Grant I had in mind speaking at conference about our "issues" and that we would be much happier if we would hang to demonstrated revealed truth. I said in view of Bro. Ivin's attitude, perhaps it would be better if I said nothing. Bro Grant said he thought the discussion timely and that I should go forward with it.

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

95 years ago today - Sep 12, 1928

[Heber J. Grant]

Sister Minerva Young called and I promised upon my return from California to have a visit with Joseph William Taylor regarding the status of his mother's marriage to Joseph E. Taylor. Sister Young thought that their sealing had been cancelled and said that Sister Taylor would be very grateful if she could be sealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith. I told her I could not consent to anything of that kind without consulting the Smith family.

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

140 years ago today - Sep 12, 1883

[Wilford Woodruff]

I Attended the funeral of Sister Elizabeth Knight Johnson. She was Baptized when a girl in Nov 1830 By Hyram Smith. She had Been in the Church about as long as any Person Living. I gave her last Endowments.

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

165 years ago today - Sep 12, 1858

Church historian's office notes discovery this morning of severed head of Provo woman who has been at U.S. military camp for a week. Six weeks earlier another woman's decapitated head is discovered. These are earliest verified examples of someone taking literally the repeated teachings of Mormon leaders that apostates and adulterers should have their heads cut off as "blood atonement" for their sins.

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

180 years ago today - Sep 12, 1843

[Wilford Woodruff]

[Woodruff's train] engine was thrown from the track in consequence of a rail being raised 8 inches by some designing miscrant. The force was such that It drove the engine about 5 rods ahead and smashed it to peaces with the Baggage cars piled [on] top of it & the first passengers cars followed in its train & mounted the pile and instantly killed /about 8 feet high throwing the passen[gers?] [--]/.

... The lives of many were in danger, & it seemed a mystery that so little injury comparatively was done. Four cars were filled with passengers & had not the force been broaken by the baggage cars many lives would have been lost. The Baggage car soon was on fire which was with difficulty extinguished. The fireman was thrown about 3 rods & escaped with a slight injury. But the engineer Mr Adams from Portland was buried beneath the pile & instantly Killed. The ruins had to be removed before the body of the enigneer could be obtained. ...

[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 - Sep 12, 1838

Governor Boggs receives a communication from Daviess County charging the "Mormons" with every crime imaginable. Sixty or more mobbers enter the town of De Witt (Carroll County) and warn the Saints to leave at once.

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

15 years ago today - September 11

A Mormon Bishop, at the direction of higher authorities, visits home of a church member who set up a website opposing the church position on Prop 8, and asks for resignation before threatening excommunication.

[Latter-Day Army: Details of Mormons and Prop 8, http://www.stopthemormons.com/?p=486]

15 years ago today - 9/11/2008

Andrew Callahan asked to resign [from the church] due to his involvement in sending letters to various local leaders regarding SSM. His disciplinary action was later postponed after he made media aware he was being disciplined as a result of his work on Prop 8.

[Mormons for Marriage: A Prop 8 Timeline, http://mormonsformarriage.com/?page_id=68]

45 years ago today - Sep 11, 1978-Monday

[Leonard Arrington]

Bill Critchlow ... said that Alvin Dyer was a first cousin [once removed] to Clare Middlemiss and he said that this helps to explain Alvin's call to be a member of the First Presidency and to be an apostle. It also helps to explain his aggressiveness and forwardness and confidence in functioning as a member of the First Presidency. He also said that Alvin Dyer was a great apple-polisher.

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

50 years ago today - Sep 11, 1973

The overthrow and death of Salvador Allende, democratically elected president of Chile where Mormons are a higher percentage of the population than in the U.S. Allende is a Marxist, and the LDS mission president's non-missionary assistant proclaims that "the Lord played a part in the overthrow of that communist government," possibly a knowing reference to alleged role of Anaconda Copper's LDS executive Charles Jay Parkinson in financing Allende's overthrow. When asked about LDS socialists who are among the thousands who soon "disappear" by orders of dictator Augusto Pinochet, Chile's regional representative Robert E. Wells replies: "If he had to shoot anyone the great majority deserved it since they were terrorists. The U.S. bleeding heart press doesn't understand the local situation." Wells becomes a general authority in 1976.

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

110 years ago today - Sep 11, 1913; Thursday

The question had arisen as to the origin of Baptism for health by Bro[ther]. Hyrum M. Smith, seeking information on this subject.

President Smith remarked that it had been customary to baptize for health from the early rise of the Church, and he related specific incidents showing the good effects resulting therefrom.

Pres[iden]t. Lund also related incidents of a like character which had taken place in the Manti temple, and remarked that there evidently exists some connection between forgiveness of sin and healing, and that this understanding obtained in the days of the Savior and the Apostles afterwards. And while he felt that we should not encourage the idea of baptism for health, he felt that we should not discourage it when the desire was prompted by those asking permission to be baptized for their health. ...

[First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

120 years ago today - Sep 11, 1903

The first polygamous marriage performed in Canada by authorization of President Joseph F. Smith. Patriarch John A. Woolf performs this plural marriage and several others until the end of 1905.

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

130 years ago today - Sep 11, 1893

The World Parliament of Religions refuses to admit LDS delegates.

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

130 years ago today - Sep 11, 1893 (Monday)

In the Second District Court, Beaver, Joseph P. Barton and Stephen S. Barton, both of Paragoonah, Iron Co., were each sentenced to five months' imprisonment, for alleged adultery.

[Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

170 years ago today - Sep 11, 1853

Brigham Young says there will be temple in Scotland. Joseph Smith once made similar promise to Apostle Parley P. Pratt.

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

180 years ago today - Sep 11, 1843

Nauvoo, Illinois. Joseph Smith appointed William W. Phelps, Henry Miller, and Hosea Stout to wait on Thomas Ford, governor of Illinois, to obtain public firearms for the Nauvoo Legion.

[BYU Studies Journal, volume 46, no. 4: A Chronology of the Life of Joseph Smith, http://byustudies.byu.edu]

185 years ago today - Sep 11, 1838

[Wilford Woodruff]

I am now daily making preperations to leave the State of Maine and all my relatives and friends in Scarborough to lead a Company of Saints from the Islands of the Sea to the land of Zion in the far west. I shall be accompanied by my wife & Child. It is the greatest trial Phebe has ever been called to pass through to take the parting hand of her Parents, Brethren & Sisters, & neighbours & perhaps for the last time, & go a journey of two thousand miles late in the fall & start with a babe of two months old which is in the first stage of the hooping cough & to add to this to leave a kind father's house of plenty & go to a new Country & settle among strangers after the flesh. These kind reader are the meditations that are daily running with the rapidity of lighting through the mind of my bosom friend & companion & to add the insinuation of friends against such a course of procedings, and all the temptations that the devil is capable of inventing are crouded into the mind in order to hinder the will of God being done. ...

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

190 years ago today - Sep 11, 1833

A council meets in Kirtland to consider the expediency of a press there and proposes that the paper be called the Latter Day Saint Messenger and Advocate. The Star will also be transferred to Kirtland, with Oliver Cowdery as editor. A council is held in Jackson County, Missouri. Bishop Partridge is acknowledged as head of the Church in Zion, and ten high priests are chosen to preside over the ten branches there.

W. W. Phelps sings a song about the tribulations of the Nephites in tongues and Lyman Wight interprets the tongues.

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

35 years ago today - Sep 10, 1988

The bishopric of the Boise, Idaho 20th ward mails a letter on Church stationary to ward members. "In meetings with the area presidency, our stake presidency committed to raise funds for Consider [Consider is a political group opposing an Idaho State Lottery]. The assignment to our ward is to, among its members, raise $2,000 by Sep 15th. The urgency of this request does not allow for individual, person-to-person contact. Please, consider your resources, decide what would be an appropriate response to this request, and make a contribution to Consider. Checks need to be made out directly to Consider and collected on a ward basis. They can be turned in to a member of the bishopric or mailed in the enclosed envelope." The letter is signed by Bishop Gordon J. Stevens,

65 years ago today - Sep 10, 1958

Under instructions by the First Presidency, Apostle Henry D. Moyle conducts a mass excommunication in London, England, of nine American missionaries from the French Mission. Led by a counselor to the mission president, these missionaries converted in France to the necessity of continuing polygamy. Immediately after, most affiliate with the Church of the Firstborn of the Fulness of Times, headquartered in Mexico.

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

130 years ago today - Sep 10, 1893

[Francis M. Lyman]

I then spoke of the financial condition of the Church and asked the Saints to come to the rescue with their tithes and offerings. At close of meeting I instructed the Bishops to hunt up men in their wards who have money and borrow it for the church ...

[Francis M. Lyman 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]

165 years ago today - Sep 10, 1858

[Wilford Woodruff]

I learned this morning that there was another Row on East Temple street last evening. Two Gamblers shot each other. One was shot dead. The other had a Ball in his head & one in his thigh. Another man was found dead in a woodpile. He was a Draggoon who was unmercifully beat a few days ago by a Lieut.

Thus we have the fruits of Christianity & Civilization as manifest in the world introduced into our Territory.

[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 - Sep 10, 1843

At a conference in Boston at which seven of the Quorum of the Twelve were present, Elder Wilford Woodruff affirms that the Book of Mormon "contains an account of the ancient inhabitants of this continent who over spread this land with cities from sea to sea," a restatement of the contemporary understanding that the people of Nephi "did cover the whole face of the land, both on the northward and on the southward, from the sea west to the sea east" (Helaman 11:20)

185 years ago today - Sep 10, 1838

[Missouri War]

Judge King orders General Atchison to raise four hundred troops and disperse the Mormons and non-Mormon vigilantes.

[LeSueur, Stephen C., The 1838 Mormon War in Missouri, Appendix: Chronology of Events in Missouri, 1838-1839]

20 years ago today - Sep 9, 2003

Sweden launched September 9, 2003 (lds.org)

[History of Church Websites (updated 2016-11-01), Larry Richman]

40 years ago today - Sep 9, 1983-Friday

[Leonard Arrington]

I learned more yesterday about the ongoing church controversy over history. In the meeting of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve on Thursday, September 1, Elder [Boyd K.] Packer commented that the Church ought to do something to prevent the Sunstone Symposium; it was damaging because it generated criticism of the General Authorities. No person picked up on the comment, however, so there was no discussion and no action taken. Apparently, others present either thought there was nothing that could be done, or nothing that should be done, or that the comment was unfair. In any case, Elder Packer, in this instance, seems to have been a lone crusader. I learned also that Elder [David B.] Haight had been assured by some friendly persons that Sunstone wasn't anti-Mormon. It was an open forum, and things were said and written that might be regarded as anti-Church. But the objective was an open forum, not the perpetuation of anti-Mormon literature. All concerned were active church members. Apparently, Haight later corrected another person who had reportedly made a statement in his presence that Sunstone was anti-Mormon and said that it was merely nonChurch, not anti-Church.

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

45 years ago today - Sep 9, 1978

A new missionary training program was announced: Missionaries to English-speaking missions would receive four weeks training while those learning other languages would continue to receive eight weeks training at the new Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah, which replaced the Language Training Mission and the Mission Home in Salt Lake City.

[Church News: Historical Chronology of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, http://www.ldschurchnewsarchive.com/articles/58765/Historical-chronology-of-The-Church-of-Jesus-Christ-of-Latter-day-Saints.html]

80 years ago today - Sep 9, 1943

United States troops invaded Italy.

[Church News: Historical Chronology of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, http://www.ldschurchnewsarchive.com/articles/58765/Historical-chronology-of-The-Church-of-Jesus-Christ-of-Latter-day-Saints.html]

125 years ago today - Friday, Sep 9, 1898

[First meeting of the Twelve after funeral of Wilford Woodruff] On motion of Joseph F. Smith, Lorenzo Snow was sustained as President of the Twelve. On motion of John Henry Smith, Geo. Q. Cannon and Joseph F. Smith were returned to their places in the Council of the Apostles, according to ordination.

[On] motion of John Henry Smith The Council of Apostles were declaired the presiding Quorum of the church.

President W. Woodruffs desk was given to his son. Geo. Q. Cannon and Jos. F. Smith retain theirs. The Desk in the Apostles room was given to Prest. Lorenzo Snow. Fifty dollars a month was [given] to each of Bro. Wilford Woodruff's Widows on my motion.

[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]

125 years ago today - Sep 9, 1898

At a meeting of the Apostles, Heber J. Grant objects to Apostle Brigham Young Jr. being ahead of Joseph F. Smith in seniority. Young had been ordained an apostle by his father before Smith but had been admitted to the quorum after Smith. The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve meet to discuss the problem on 5 Apr 1900. They decide that an apostle's seniority dates from when he enters the quorum and that Smith outranks Young. Eighteen months later Joseph F. Smith becomes president of the Church

125 years ago today - Sep 9, 1898

[At Temple meeting of the 12, including the 2 former members of the 1st Presidency.] talk began by Bro[ther] H. J. Grant about my preceding Jos[eph] F. S. in the Quorum. He thought wrong and was surprised to see us take our seats, with me between Geo[rge] Q. C. Pres[ident] F. S. I said, I am willing to take any place in the quorum, never felt I was fit to be an ap. ... Said that, I submitted this matter to father one day and he said, rather severely "It is just right the way it is, and you let it alone." I never had courage to tackle question again; still, I am of the opinion that when a man is ordained an apostle and to magnify that office no new man can rank him in being set apart to fill a vacancy in Quorum of the Twelve. I am anxious for God through my brethren to decide this question and I yield my views to them with all my heart.

[Brigham Young had ordained his son Brigham Young Jr. and apostle, but he did not become a member of the quorum until later.]

[Diary of Apostle Brigham Young Jr., http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

180 years ago today - Sep 9, 1843

"The branches of the church at New England reported in the forenoon meeting of the conference in Boston, this day…Elder Benjamin F. Grouard [a black member of the church apparently the branch representative] from Lowell Branch represented that there were 48 members in good standing in that branch and that much interest was manifested in the work, but that no Elder able to speak was there at present." Woodruff Journal – "Elder B.F. Gruid represented the Lowel Branch consisting of Members 48". [That odd phrase, "no Elder able to speak" could be a reference to Walker Lewis being an Elder but not being allowed to act as one.]

[LDS (or related) Documents on Walker Lewis, the Lowell, Mass. Branch of the Mormon Church and its missionaries and members, and the Priesthood Ban against Blacks, Compiled by Connell O'Donovan, http://people.ucsc.edu/~odonovan/Mormon_Chronology.html]

180 years ago today - Sep 9, 1843

[Benjamin Grouard]

Young, in urging the Mormons to donate money for the missionaries and the Temple building fund, said, "Elder Maginn had an ivory cane. I asked him for it, but he declined making me a present of it. Not long after, he had it stolen from him in a crowd, and it now does neither of us any good. Perhaps your purse may slip through your pocket, or you may lose your property; for the Lord can give and take away.... We do not profess to be polished stones like Elders Almon W. Babbitt, George J. Adams, James Blakeslee, and Eli P. Maginn, &c., &c.; but we are rough stones out of the mountain; and when we roll through the forest, and

knock the bark from the trees, it does not hurt us, even if we should get a corner knocked off occasionally; for the more we roll about, and knock the corners off, the better we are; but if we were polished and smooth when we get the corners knocked off, it would deface us."

[Benjamin F. Grouard Journal, in LDS (or related) Documents on Walker Lewis, the Lowell, Mass. Branch of the Mormon Church and its missionaries and members, and the Priesthood Ban against Blacks, Compiled by Connell O'Donovan, http://people.ucsc.edu/~odonovan/Mormon_Chronology.html]

185 years ago today - Sep 9, 1838

Captain William Allred and ten men learn of a wagon full of guns and ammunition that were going to the mob that was planning an attack on Adam-ondi-Ahman. Allred finds the wagon broken down, arrests three illegal gun carriers, and distributes the guns to the Saints for their protection. The three prisoners are taken to Far West for trial. At this time, the mob has also been taking prisoners from time to time and sending out rumors of torture, in order to "make us commit the first act of violence."

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

25 years ago today - Sep 8, 1998

Gordon B. Hinckley first interviewed by Larry King on CNN's ―Larry King Live.

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

55 years ago today - Sep 8, 1968

The Case Against Congress,' co-authored by LDS journalist Jack Anderson, is on the New York Times list of bestsellers. Other LDS (or raised-as-Mormon) authors on the list: Dian Thomas (1975, Roughing It Easy); Glen A. Larson (1978, co-author, Battle Star Galactica); Howard J. Ruff (1979, How To Prosper During the Coming Bad Years); Robert G. Allen (1980, Nothing Down; 1983, Creating Wealth); Roseanne Barr (1989, Roseanne); Stephen R. Covey (1990, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People); Jack Anderson and Dale Van Atta (1991, Stormin' Norman); Betty J. Eadie and Curtis Taylor (1993, Embraced By the Light); Deborah Laake (1993, Secret Ceremonies, for which she was promptly excommunicated); Roseanne Barr Arnold (1994, My Lives); Stephen R. Covey, A. Roger Merrill, and Rebecca R. Merrill (1994, First Things First); Dave Wolverton (1994, The Courtship of Princess Leia); Richard Paul Evans (1995, The Christmas Box; 1996, Timepiece); Betty J. Eadie (1996, The Awakening Heart); Stephanie Meyer (Twilight series) and likely several others.

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

125 years ago today - Sep 08, 1898

President Wilford Woodruff's funeral is held in the Tabernacle in Salt Lake City, Utah.

130 years ago today - Sep 8, 1893

[Wilford Woodruff]

[At the World's Fair in Chicago] We then went to the Festive Hall to Attend the Contest of the four Quires [Choirs] of singers for the Prizes. The Salt Lake Quire did Splendid and made a fine appearance. The first Prize was given to the Searton Quire. The Second Prize was awarded to our Quire. I think without Doubt that our Quire was the Best & should have had the first Prize But the Quire that took the first Prize was Welsh and the Welsh furnished the Money And it Could hardly be Expected that they would give it to a Mormon Quire Though one of the Judges said the Salt Lake Quire ought to have it. [This is the first national recognition of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.]

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

145 years ago today - Sep 8, 1878

First Presidency secretary L. John Nuttall writes: "Prest. Snow said our Stake report was similar to the other stakes, a spirit of improvement was in the whole church, advised our Young Men and women to marry, and mothers to not talk against Polygamy. . . . Sister Rice, as Midwife and nurse for the Orderville Ward, was blessed to this appointment by Prest. Snow.

180 years ago today - Sep 8, 1843

Mormon Nauvoo resident Charlotte Haven writes to relatives: "We hear that [Hyrum Smith] has already had some wonderful revelations not yet made public, but that a few of the elders put their heads together and whisper what they dare not speak aloud." She says of Elder George J. Adams had returned from a two-year mission in England with a new wife and child, though he already had a wife and family in Nauvoo. "I am told that his first wife is reconciled to this at first unwelcome guest in her home, for her husband and some others have reasoned with her that plurality of wives is taught in the Bible, that Abraham, Jacob, Solomon, David and indeed all the old prophets and good men, had several wives, and if right for them, it is right for the Latter Day Saints. Furthermore, the first wife will always be first in her husband's affection and the head of the household, where she will have a larger influence. Poor, weak woman! . . . I cannot believe that Joseph will ever sanction such a doctrine-"

185 years ago today - Sep 8, 1838

A Missourian writes: "There is still a good deal of excitement with the people of Carrol & Davis Counties, and the Mormons of Caldwell City. there are strong aprehensions also of hostilities by the Indians from the cherokees having built a large council house and inviting all the other tribes, and holding secret consultations, it is generally thought that we shall have war with the Mormons & Indians both, meetings have been held in adopting measures upon the Mormon subject."

190 years ago today - Sep 8, 1833

[Orson Pratt]

"O[rson] P[ratt] and L[yman] J[ohnson] sealed the members of the church at Bath, New Hampshire, Conn., to eternal life."

[Orson Pratt journal]

15 years ago today - September 7


Continued reports of much Prop 8 activity in Mormon churches. A blog reports that members were getting up to speak about it in testimony meeting, which is the type of church service held the first Sunday of the month. Someone comments on the blog, "It is mentioned in every meeting, donation sheets are passed around in RS and there are pleas for donations and volunteers in the announcements as well as impromptu testimonies during classes. It is EVERYWHERE!!!!"

[Latter-Day Army: Details of Mormons and Prop 8, http://www.stopthemormons.com/?p=486]

60 years ago today - Sep 7, 1963

A Deseret News insert titled 'President McKay Birthday Tribute,' with the headline on page 2: "Portrait of a Prophet at 90," and a caption on page 7: "Huntsville is the Prophet's birthplace." This is not quite two years after the death of Counselor J. Reuben Clark who had opposed using "the Prophet" as a reverential title for the living LDS president. However, the Church News itself continues referring to McKay only as "President McKay" until 1965 after which there are increasing headline references to him as "the Prophet" or "the Beloved Prophet."

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

125 years ago today - Sep 7, 1898

[Brigham Young Jr.]

Had conversation with brethren on present situation. All who express themselves--some of the best men among us cannot entertain the idea to have a continuation of our present financial policy. God help us to arrange all in the fear of the Lord. Suggested to Pres[ident] Snow that the apostles resume circle prayer at once and get themselves in harmony with the spirit of God. I fear that there is division in our sentiments. [At the death of Wilford Woodruff, it was estimated the church had a 3 million dollar debt.]

[Diary of Apostle Brigham Young Jr., http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

145 years ago today - 7-Sep 8, 1878

Orson Pratt: "Do you remember what time you saw the plates?" David Whitmer: "It was in June 1829, the very last part of the month, and the eight witnesses, I think, the next day. Joseph showed them the plates himself. We (the Three Witnesses) not only saw the plates of the Book of Mormon, but the Brass Plates, the plates containing the record of the wickedness of the people of the world, and many other plates. The fact is, it was just as though Joseph, Oliver and I were sitting right here on a log, when we were overshadowed by a light. It was not like the light of the sun, nor like that of a fire, but more glorious and beautiful. It extended away round us, I cannot tell how far, but in the midst of this light, immediately before us, about as far off as he sits (pointing to John C. Whitmer who was sitting 2 or 3 feet from him) there appeared, as it were, a table, with many records on it, besides the plates of the Book of Mormon; also the sword of Laban, the Directors (i.e. the ball which Lehi had) and the Interpreters. I saw them just as plain as I see this bed (striking his hand upon the bed beside him), and I heard the voice of the Lord as distinctly as I ever heard anything in my life declaring that they (the plates) were translated by the gift and power of God." Orson Pratt: "Did you see the Angel at this time?" David Whitmer: "Yes, he stood before us. Martin Harris was not with us at this time. I don't think he saw all that we did, but our testimony as recorded in the Book of Mormon is strictly and absolutely true just as it is there written. Before I knew anything about Joseph Smith I had heard about him and the plates from persons who declared they knew he had them and swore they would get them from him, and that he had promised them an interest in them when he should get them. The fact is he could not, for they were not to be made merchandise of, nor to be a matter of profit to any one--they were strictly for sacred purposes, and when Oliver Cowdery went to Pennsylvania he promised to write me what he should learn about the matter, which he did. He told me Joseph had told him his secret thoughts and all he had meditated about going to see him, which no man on earth knew, as he supposed, but himself. So he stopped to write for Joseph. ... One morning I got up as usual to go to work. On going to the field I found between 5 and 7 acres of my ground had been plowed during the night. I don't know who did it, but it was done, just as I would have done it myself, and the plow was left standing in the furrow. This enabled me to start sooner. When I arrived at Harmony, Joseph and Oliver were coming toward me, and met me some little distance from the house. Oliver told me that Joseph had told him when I started from home, where I had stopped the first night, how I read the sign at the tavern, where I stopped the next night and that I would be there that day before dinner, and this was why they had come out to meet me, all of which was exactly as Joseph had told Oliver, at which I was greatly astonished. When I was returning to Fayette with Joseph and Oliver, all of us riding in the wagon, Oliver and I on an old fashioned wooden spring seat and Joseph behind us, we were suddenly approached by a very pleasant, nice looking old man in a clear open place, who saluted us with `Good morning, it is very warm,' at the same instant wiping his face or forehead with his hand. We returned the salutation and by a sign from Joseph I invited him to ride if he was going our way, but he said very pleasantly, `No, I am going to Cumorah.' This was something new to me, I did not know what Cumorah meant, and as I looked enquiringly at Joseph, the old man instantly disappeared so that I did not see him again." Joseph F. Smith: "Did you notice his appearance?" David Whitmer: "I should think I did. He was, I should think, about 5 feet 9 or 10 inches and heavy set, about such a man as James Vancleave, there, but heavier. His face was as large. He was dressed in a suit of brown, woolen clothes; his hair and beard were white, about like Brother Pratt's, but his beard was not so heavy. I also remember that he had a sort of knapsack on his back, and something was in it which was shaped like a book. It was the messenger who had the plates. "Soon after our arrival home, I saw something which led me to the belief that the plates were placed or concealed in my father's barn. I frankly asked Joseph if my supposition was right, and he told me it was. "Sometime after this my mother was going to milk the cows when she was met out near the barn by this same old man, (as I suppose from her description of him) who said to her `you have been very faithful and diligent in your labours but you are tried because of the increase of your toil, it is proper therefore that you should receive a witness, that your faith may be strengthened' and thereupon he showed her the plates. My Father and Mother had a large family of their own. The addition to it therefore of Joseph, Emma and Oliver very greatly increased the toil and anxiety of my mother and altho she had never complained she had sometimes felt that her labor was too much or at least she was beginning to feel so. This circumstance however completely removed all such feelings and nerved her up for her increased responsibilities." Orson Pratt: "Have you any idea when the records will be brought forth?" David Whitmer: "When we see things in the Spirit and by the power of God they seem to be right here present. The signs of the times indicate the near approach of the coming forth of the other plates, but when it will be, I cannot tell. The Three Nephites are at work among the lost tribes and elsewhere. John the Revelator is at work, and I believe the time will come suddenly, before we are prepared for it."

... David Whitmer brought out and showed us the manuscript of the Book of Mormon, mostly in the handwriting of Oliver Cowdery, some of the writings was thought to be in the handwriting of John and Christian Whitmer, but only comparatively a few pages. The fact also appeared that the names of all the witnesses were subscribed in the handwriting of Oliver Cowdery. When the question was asked David Whitmer if he and the other witnesses did not subscribe their own names to the respective testimonies, he replied that they did. Then he was asked, "Where are the original documents?" That he did not know, but supposed Oliver had copied them, but this was an exact copy. ...

[Joseph F. Smith, Diary, 7-8 September 1878, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah., as cited in Dan Vogel, Early Mormon Documents: David Whitmer Interview With Orson Pratt And Joseph F. Smith]

150 years ago today - Sep 7, 1873

[Wilford Woodruff]

I dreamed at night that I Saw Jedediah M Grant & Sister McMinn & talked with them, and the ownly request Sister McMinn made of me was to ask the people to Stop talking about her.

I dreamed that I saw many of the Dead arise. I saw some swine in which Devils had Entered & they tried to kill me but did not have power to hurt me. I told some wicked men that the dead had risen. They said they did not Believe it but they Shook with fear.

[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 - Sep 7, 1838

Joseph stands trial for the incident with Adam Black before Judge Austin A. King (a Methodist whose brother had been killed in the anti-Mormon riots of Jackson County in 1833. Joseph is accused of having threatened Adam Black's life on Aug. 8, 1838. In spite of the lack of hard evidence, the judge gives in to fear of mobbers and fines Joseph and Lyman Wight a $500 security bond. ... Rumors reach Joseph that a mob has gathered to attack Adam-ondi-Ahman.

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

220 years ago today - Sep 7, 1803

Harriet Page Wheeler Young, later one of three women in the original pioneer company of 1847, is born in Hillsboro, New Hampshire.

[LDS Daily, www.ldsdaily.com]

85 years ago today - Sep 6, 1938

The First Presidency appoints a coordinator of the church's first anti-polygamy surveillance team which obtains information on Mormon Fundamentalists and turns it over to excommuncation courts and to law enforcement agencies. The surveillance coordinator reports to first counselor J. Reuben Clark.

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

125 years ago today - Tuesday, Sep 6, 1898

[John Henry Smith]

I was sent for by President [of the Twelve] Lorenzo Snow to go to his room in the Temple.

He said he wanted me to run for U.S. Senator.

He also told me he would not take hold of affairs until after the funeral of Prest. Wilford Woodruff. He said he thought the church owed three millions of dollars. He also said he did not agree with Prest. Geo. Q. Cannon's business methods. He said the load seemed more than he could carry.

[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]

135 years ago today - Sep 6, 1888 (Thursday)

Elders Andrew Jenson, Edward Stevenson and Joseph S. Black left Salt Lake City for the East, to visit the "waste places of Zion," [IE various church history sites] in the interest of Church history.

[Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

160 years ago today - Sep 6, 1863

The first RLDS (now 'Community of Christ') missionaries to Utah were zealous in finding forums for their message, and, as a result, they had several scrapes with Latter-day Saint authorities. Over a period of several months, the missionaries built a respectable following in Utah. A high point came on 6 September 1863 when Briggs conducted the first Reorganized Church baptismal service in Salt Lake City.

[Utah History Encyclopedia: R.L.D.S Church, http://www.uen.org/utah_history_encyclopedia/]

175 years ago today - Sep 6, 1848

[Nauvoo Temple]

Lightning struck the weather vane on the cupola with little damage, but left a large scar on the building.

[Brown, Lisle (compiler), Chronology of the Construction, Destruction and Reconstruction of the Nauvoo Temple]

180 years ago today - Sep 6, 1843

An anti-Mormon meeting is held at Carthage. A preamble and ten resolutions are drawn up and approved that state generally that the signers of this resolution will stick together in opposing the Latter-day Saints. "We are therefore forced to the conclusion that the time is not far distant when the citizens of this county will be compelled to assert their rights in some way. . . . We pledge ourselves in the most solemn manner to resist all the wrongs which may be hereafter attempted to be imposed on this community by the Mormons, to the utmost of our ability,â€"peaceably, if we can, but forcibly, if we must." They pledge to oppose any candidates sympathetic to Mormons, to aid any law officers attempting to remove Joseph Smith to Missouri. [He is called a "modern Caligula."]

[Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

40 years ago today - Sep 5, 1983

PEOPLE magazine story on Howard Hughes widow Terry Moore says that Moore wed Hughes in 1949. "Though the two were never properly divorced," reports PEOPLE, Moore subsequently remarried four times. Once was to L.A. Rams football star, Glenn Davis, "in a quiet Mormon ceremony." The magazine also reports her inheritance (10 to 20 million dollars) will be channeled into charity funds, personal gifts, a new limo, a suburban mansion, and "ten percent will go to the Mormon church to which she tithes."

65 years ago today - Fri Sep 5, 1958

[Regarding the apostasy of the French missionaries]

[Hugh B. Brown:] "Well, while in Basel, President Milton L. Christensen of the French Mission called me on the phone and said that there was very serious trouble, and asked me if I could come over. I was just leaving for Rome, but I flew to Paris and he told me the nature of the trouble when I arrived. He said that there was a group of missionaries who were preaching polygamy and a lot of other things, denouncing the Manifesto and circulating literature sent to them by the Fundamentalists.

* * * * *

I sat down and talked to Tucker for three hours. I talked with him and used every method I could think of, persuasion and prayer. I wept with him. He sat there looking me in the eye. He did not take his eye off me while I talked with him. I said, "Do you accept the Manifesto?" He said, "I do not." "Do you believe that polygamy should be practiced now?" He said, "I know that there are righteous men who are practicing it with the knowledge of the General Authorities." "Do you believe that President McKay is two-faced and is talking out of both sides of his mouth and not telling the truth?" "I believe just that. But I do not and I would not know until the Lord reveals it to me." I said, "I am here representing the General Authorities looking into this matter, and I am telling you that you are wrong." He said, "I do not accept you as an Apostle. I take my direction from the Lord and only from him."

* * * * *

There were two other men who had talked the same way. One was stony- faced. I asked when they got their first impressions and they refused to answer. They said they would not implicate anybody . . . . There were two other ladies in the French Mission--American missionaries-- who I think will have to go home. I think someone must see them individually and decide each individual case on its merits. They are saying there are two Priesthoods, and John the Revelator is the man who presides over you and he has given them instructions through this man Tucker that he does not need to ask for instructions from you or me or anyone else. I have never in my life run into anything quite like it. I had all those cases in Granite Stake under Dr. Talmage. We handled cases of those polygamists, including John Burt. Tucker is a missionary from home. He is a brilliant young man, too brilliant for his own good. He is the most defiant, self-opinionated person I have ever met."

[Henry D. Moyle:] "When I got to Stuttgart, I felt the very devil himself was there. There was not anything I could pinpoint, but I think a feeling that there might be some relationship between the feeling I had at Stuttgart and in the French Mission. "I am sure that is the French situation. The first thing after I talked with the Elders, instantly they started to ask me about the Manifesto and Brother Taylor and Cowley. I cut them off pretty short. I told them that they were not in their missions to discuss that question. I am afraid it has affected some others. It is pretty hard to keep in confined. They correspond with one another."

[Meeting of General Authorities at Grosvenor House, London, David O. McKay Office Journal]

150 years ago today - Sep 5, 1873

[Wilford Woodruff]

I dreamed last night the 4 That the United States Flag passed from North to South in the sky all tattered & torn. Then the Constitution of the United States followed it but was all tied up with ropes to keep it from falling to Peaces. Then followed an imens Eagle with his tallons fast in the hair of the Head of President Grant Carrying him off. When this passed I awoke.

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