15 years ago today - Apr 15, 1999

In Salt Lake City, Utah, Sergei Babarin (70) entered the Mormon Church's Family History Library and opened fire. He killed 2 people, Patricia Frengs of Pleasant Hill, Ca. and security guard Donald Thomas (62). He wounded 4 others and was shot dead by police.

[Source: Ratnikas, Algis, TimelinesDb, http://www.timelinesdb.com/listevents.php?subjid=201title=Utah]

50 years ago today - Apr 15,1964

Daryl Chase, Mormon president of Utah State University, confides that "the LDS church has a greater strangle hold on the people and institutions of the state now than they had in Brigham's time. Complete academic freedom is actually non-existent."

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

75 years ago today - Apr 15, 1939

[President Heber J. Grant Diary] I told Mr. Jackling today that I was listening one Saturday night before the election when Franklin D. Roosevelt was reelected, to Roosevelt's speech, and that I listened only a few minutes when I closed off the radio and said "If that man is not making a talk to array the masses against the classes I am no judge of the tone of his voice or the language he is using, and I do not care to listen to him." Mr. Jackling smiled and said, "That is exactly what I did, closed off the radio, and told my wife I would not listen to him."

[Source: Diary of Heber J. Grant, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

110 years ago today - Apr 15, 1904

Church attorney Franklin S. Richards "urged upon Prest. Smith to not present Apostles J[ohn] W. Taylor's or [Matthias F.] Cowley's name to Conference, [for sustaining] to make any explanation he desired, and if they did not come and take the full responsibility of their conduct . . . to cut them off of the Quorum, and if necessary, to excommunicate them." The federal government was using lack of discipline against Taylor and Cowley as evidence that the church was not serious about relinquishing the practice of polygamy.

120 years ago today - Apr 15,1894

[Utah] Juvenile Instructor publishes hymn "Our Mother in Heaven," which is phrased as prayer to the goddess.

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

150 years ago today - Apr 15, 1864

Brigham Young tells John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff in private, "I am going to tell you something that I have never before mentioned to any other person. I have ordained my sons, Joseph A., Brigham, and John W., apostles and my counsellors, have you any objections?" Taylor and Smith say that they have none. Young further states that in ordaining "my sons I have done no more than I am perfectly willing that you do with yours and I am now determined to put my sons into active service in the spiritual affairs of the Kingdom and keep them there just as long as possible, that you have the same privilege."

170 years ago today - Apr 15, 1844

Nauvoo, Illinois. Joseph Smith settled with Dan Jones for the purchase of the Maid of Iowa steamer.

[Source: Joseph Smith Resource Center: Daily Events in the Life of Joseph Smith, http://josephsmith.net/josephsmith/v/index.jsp?vgnextoid=e581001cfb340010VgnVCM1000001f5e340aRCRDlocale=0]

170 years ago today - Apr 15, 1844

The Twelve draw up a list of upcoming conferences throughout the East and appoint over 300 missionaries to go on political missions throughout those states electioneering for Joseph. By this date, Dr. Foster is told that he will be tried in a Church court on the charges made by Joseph on April 13. The trial is to take place April 20, 1844. Foster begins gathering witnesses to testify in his behalf.

[Source: Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

170 years ago today - Apr 15, 1844

Presidential candidate Joseph Smith publishes a letter in the TIMES AND SEASONS in which he says "I go emphatically, virtuously, and humanely, for a THEODEMOCRACY, where God and the people hold the power to conduct the affairs of men in righteousness."

William Law writes in his journal: "Since [general] Conference Almon Babbit[t] came to me, and said, that Joseph Smith wished a reconciliation and that if I would let all drop and say nothing about it, and be friendly, he would restore me to my office of the First Presidency and raise me higher than ever, & would send me a writing to that effect. I told Mr. Babbit[t] that I could not be bought, that if J. Smith wanted reconciliation with me he must make public acknowledgement and cease from his abominations &c"

175 years ago today - Apr 15, 1839

Joseph Smith, Hyrum Smith, Alexander McRae, and Caleb Baldwin escape while being transported from Liberty jailhouse (after getting their guard intoxicated).

[Source: Tidd, N. R., "Mormon Chronology"]

185 years ago today - 1829 mid-Apr.

Joseph Smith, Jr. (at Harmony, Susquehanna, PA) claimed to receive a message from God directed to Oliver Cowdery (LDS D&C Sec. 6). Cowdery was told in the text that God had given him a "gift" by which he (Oliver) would "assist in bringing to light" "those parts of the scriptures which have been hidden..." He was further told that his "gift" would allow him "to translate, even as my servant Joseph" and that he would receive no greater witness of the supposedly ancient record. It is possible that the "gift" mentioned in the "revelation" pertained in some way to Oliver's using a diving rod to locate and/or "translate" ancient scriptural records.

[Source: Broadhurst, Dale R., Oliver Cowdery Chronology, http://olivercowdery.com/history/Cdychrn1.htm]

45 years ago today - Apr 14, 1969

First Presidency makes official statement on birth control which omits any reference to their own feelings about birth control as "a personal matter," and states: "We believe that those who practice birth control will reap disappointment by and by," and repeated earlier letter's emphasis on "self control as a dominant factor" in marriage.

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

75 years ago today - Apr 14, 1939

An article by West German Mission President Alfred C. Rees entitled "In the Land of the Mormons" appears in a special issue of the Nazi Party organ DER VOLKISCHE BEOBATCHTER. In the Editor's Preface to the article, President Rees is called "the representative of the Church in Germany," who "paints for our readers a portrait of Mormonism today, a church which views the New Germany with sympathy and friendship." Whether President Rees originally wrote the article in German or not, the language of the piece abounds in such loaded terms as Volk and Rasse (race); and a picture of Brigham Young bears the caption, "Fuhrer der historischen Mormonenpioniere." disturbing in hindsight is the way President Rees blatantly parallels Mormonism with Nazism. As Rees warms to his topic, Mormonism begins to sound like a fulfillment of Nazi teachings, providing "the practical realization of the German ideal: 'the common good takes precedence over the individual good.' " Rees concluded by assuring his readers that "Mormons are people who put this healthy doctrine into action."

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

110 years ago today - Apr 14,1904

[Utah] First Presidency and apostles decide to resume sale of liquor at church resort of Saltair due to need for non-Mormon patronage.

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

110 years ago today - Apr 14, 1904 (Thursday)

The Trustee in Trust of the Church purchased from Mrs. Maggie C. Swope 25 acres of land at Independence, Jackson Co., Mo. Part of the land was a portion of the 63 acres originally acquired for the Church by Bishop Edw. Partridge in 1831 and of which the Temple lot is a part. The new purchase lies adjacent to the Temple lot.

[Source: Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

110 years ago today - Thursday, Apr 14, 1904

[Apostle Rudger Clawson Diary] Pres. Smith announced that the Presidency had about completed a bargain for the purchase of 25 acres of the original temple lot at Independence, Jackson County, Mo.

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

115 years ago today - Apr 14, 1899; Friday

The following telegram was received this morning from Elder W. L. Worsencroft, President of the Samoan Mission: "Hold Elders; headquarters looted; gathering to Apia for safety. All well".

/... a graphophone, or talking machine, and that Brother Wood had already sent a message to the Samoan Saints through this machine, and these brethren now requested Presidents Snow and Cannon to send a few words of greeting to them. They consented, the machine was brought in, and after President Cannon had spoken, President Snow spoke as follows:

"My dear brethren and sisters in Samoa: -- I have just heard what President Cannon has said to you, and I hope you will not forget it. I should be pleased to have the privilege of seeing you, and talking to you face to face, but hardly expect to have this opportunity; but I say to you, if you will live faithful and keep the commandments of the Lord and follow the counsels of the Elders whom we send to you, I shall have the pleasure of meeting you and talking with you in the other life. The Elders we send to you you can trust; they will tell you what is for your best good, and you will be perfectly safe and be greatly blessed in following their counsels. We are very much pleased at hearing from you from time to time, and learning you are faithful in keeping the commandments of the Lord and treating his servants so kindly. I constantly keep you in my mind, and pray for you at the family altar; and hope to have your prayers and faith to sustain me in the high and sacred position which the Lord has called me to occupy. God bless you. Amen."

[Source: First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

135 years ago today - Apr 14, 1879 (Monday)

The corner stones of the Manti Temple were laid.

[Source: Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

185 years ago today - Apr 14, 1829

Harmony, Pennsylvania. Joseph Smith commenced the second week of dictating the translation of the Book of Mormon to Oliver Cowdery.

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

185 years ago today - Apr 13, 1829

'Light on Masonry' is published by an "anti-Mason Mason" or one who believed that original Masonry had been corrupted. "However holy our mysteries may have been, the lodges are now profaned and sullied. Brethren and companions, attired in your mourning robes, attend and let us seal up the gates of our temple, for the profane have found means of penetrating into them - they have converted them into retreats for their impiety, into dens of conspirators."

A full page engraving at the beginning of the book shows a man with sword in one hand and the decapitated head of William Morgan in the other with his body as his feet. [See 1 Nephi 4:18]

Details of the masonic ceremonies are given, including grips, special words, the tree of life, cherubims, Michael giving a "sign" to lodge members, Urim and Thummim, seven days of creation, a white and green apron, a sash with instructions on how it is worn, and the imparting of divine knowledge from God to Adam. ['Light on Masonry: A Collection of All the Most Important Documents on the Subject of Speculative Free Masonry,' (referred to as 'the Bible of Antimasonry')]

[Source: Grunder, Rick, Mormon Parallels: A Bibliographic Source]

170 years ago today - Apr 13, 1844

Several officers-of-the-law attend a meeting in Nauvoo. "Elder [John] Taylor gave them to understand that if they made an attempt to serve writs on him it would cost them their lives, . . ."

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

115 years ago today - Apr 13, 1899; Thursday

... A question as to the proper use of the terms "ordain" and "set apart" came up and was discussed at length, the main speakers being Presidents Snow, Cannon and Smith, Apostles Richards, Lund, Smith, Woodruff and Clawson. The question was sprung by Brother Lund, who stated that on his arrival from Liverpool [England], homeward bound from Palestine, he received a message by cable, requesting and authorizing him to ordain Joseph W. Mcmurrin as one of the First Presidents of Seventies. He attended to the matter, but in the ordination the word "ordain" was not used, though the words "set apart" were, and all the rights, privileges and powers pertaining to that office were conferred upon Brother McMurrin. He had since learned that it was held, especially by the Seventies, that their presiding officers should be ordained, and some of them had queries in their minds as to whether or not this had been done in the case of Brother McMurrin. The latter being already a Seventy, at the time of his call to be one of the Presidents over the Seventies, the thought had passed through the mind of Brother Lund that it was not necessary to ordain him to preside, and he had therefore used the words "set apart" instead of "ordain". He had since looked up the definition of the word ordain, and found that one of its definitions was "to set apart". He had concluded in his own mind that it was really not necessary to reordain Brother McMurrin, but he desired the mind of the Council upon the matter.

President Snow having asked the brethren to express their views upon the question, President Cannon referred to a remark which had been made to the effect that in organizing the Presidency of a Deacon's quorum the Presidents were not ordained but set apart to preside. He then said that in his opinion the case of a President of a Deacon's quorum and that of one of the First Presidents of Seventies were not parallel, for the reason that the latter was a prominent office and the other was not. He thought there was a difference between ordaining and setting apart, and that a President of Seventies, like Brother McMurrin, should be ordained to that office. According to all the views heretofore entertained, if such a thing should occur as the breaking up of the Quorum of the First Presidency and that of the Apostles, the authority of this Church would rest on the First Seven Presidents of Seventies, and no doubt they would proceed to organize the Church. Therefore, while the word ordain meant setting apart, there was a distinction in our minds between the two proceedings. The ordaining of a man seemed to confer a more definite authority than the setting apart. Moses Thatcher had held that in the case of a Bishop all that was necessary was the setting apart, but from this view the speaker dissented. In the matter referred to by Brother Lund, President Cannon thought it would be unfortunate for Brother McMurrin's ordination to be questioned, as men upon whom the latter had laid his hands might question the legality of their ordination. President Cannon said that as Brother Lund's intent was to ordain Brother McMurrin and confer upon him all the keys of the office in question, it ought to cover the case and his ordination should therefore not be

questioned.

President Snow said that President Cannon had expressed his views exactly, although, after conversing with Brother Lund upon the subject, he had thought it better to bring up the matter before the council. He favored the use of the word ordain in Brother McMurrin's case, but at the same time he held that the conferring of all the rights, keys and powers of the office was equivalent to an ordination, and the term used really embodied all the meaning that the word ordain could convey. He thought that it would be very unwise to question the ordination.

President Richards moved that it be the sense of the Council that the action taken with Bro[ther]. McMurrin as to the office named was a competent act and that there should be no revision of it. The motion was seconded and carried.

President Cannon further remarked that when a man holds a Priesthood and he is called to labor within that Priesthood to preside, the words "set apart" should be used, but the office of President of Seventies being a prominent office the Word "ordain" should be used.

President Smith: The Presidency of the Church is a prominent office, but the First Presidency are not ordained.

President Cannon: They are already Apostles, and no new power is conferred upon them by reason of their calling to act in the Presidency.

President Smith thought that the words "set apart" used in the case of a President of Seventies were just as proper and appropriate as in the case of the Presidency of the Church, or in that of a Stake President, since it conferred no higher Priesthood upon either of them to call them to act in the Presidency of these several organizations.

President Cannon rejoined that he would not feel satisfied, if called to act as a President of Seventies unless the word "ordain" were used; that is, if it were intentionally omitted and the words "set apart" substituted; but if other brethren felt to use the words set apart instead of the word "ordain", he would not question their right to so express themselves. Yet if he were the subject for ordination, and Brother Lund, after this consideration of the question, were to ordain him and use the words "set apart" instead of "ordain", he would not feel satisfied with his action.

President Snow remarked that he would not feel satisfied either.

President Richards stated that the Josephites asked the question, by way of criticism, if Brigham Young was ordained to preside, holding that all such officers should be ordained.

President Cannon referred to the revelation providing for the Presidency of the Church, in which revelation the words "appointed and ordained" are used. He then said that in speaking to President Young, after he had selected additional counselors, he asked him if he was going to set them apart. The President answered No, that their priesthood, the Apostleship, entitled them to officiate without further action.

Brother Woodruff here remarked that there was an

understanding among the people that the word "ordain" should be used in all prominent offices, and the words "set apart" in case of temporary callings.

President Snow put this question: "Suppose a man were ordained an Elder in the following manner, `I appoint you to be an Elder, and confer upon you all the rights and keys of this office and calling in the Melchizedek Priesthood, etc.'; and this language were used with the intent of ordaining him an Elder. I hold that such a man would be in every sense of the word ordained."

President Cannon stated that he was told by the late Apostle Parley P. Pratt that the first Elders of the Church, in confirming new members, laid their hands upon them and confirmed them, but that the language was not spoken audibly, and that the prophet Joseph told them they had better speak audibly. But the people received the Holy Ghost all the same.

President Smith asked if the use of the word "ordain" should be confined to the First Seven Presidents of Seventies. A high Priest, he said, was called to preside over a Stake, but the word "ordain" as not used in setting him apart.

President Snow replied that he did not care particularly whether the word "ordain" were used or not, so long as other words were used bestowing all the rights, keys and powers of the office intended to be bestowed upon the person. Such language, with the intent, would in the judgement of the President be all sufficient.

President Smith remarked that this expressed his feelings exactly, and he further said that he was heartily in accord with the action taken upon the matter of the ordination of Brother McMurrin by Brother Lund. He did not believe it would be right to question that ordination. Brother Lund was an Apostle, and was authorized to ordain or set apart Brother McMurrin, and his intent was all right before the Lord, Even if he did not use all the words that some one else would have used, the act was just as acceptable before the Lord, and his mind was that no one should be permitted to call in question Brother McMurrin's ordination. This, he understood to be the substance of the action taken. He believed that the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. He did not favor a uniform ceremony any more than he favored a uniform suit of clothes for missionaries, so long as the language used in ordaining was that prescribed by revelation. In the sacramental prayer and in the form of baptism the Church had a definite guide, but he did not think, even if we failed to confine ourselves strictly to those prescribed forms, that it would vitiate our actions, if the intent was pure; as the authority and intent would govern in such cases; still it would be better to be exact in all such cases. Referring to the Lord's prayer, President Smith said that he did not believe for a moment that it was the intention of the Savior to have the Apostles always using that exact form of prayer; but the object evidently was to impress upon them the need of simplicity and directness in presenting their petitions to the Father. Where this was done, and the dictates of the Spirit faithfully followed, all would be acceptable before the Lord. The

"Josephites" had compiled a book of rules, and the result was that they were all the time quarreling as to how things should be done. Referring to the ceremonies of the various sectarian churches, the speaker said he believed they were all of the devil. He regarded the man of authority as the constitution, and whatever he did by the promptings of the Holy Spirit would be acceptable to the Lord.

Brother John Henry Smith held in the main with President Smith, but it seemed to him that if the Church was to be run by the operation of the Spirit upon the Elders, or rather by what some of the Elders deem operations of the Spirit, the result would be a grand conglomeration of various views. He then went on to say that it was already understood that a Bishop should be ordained; this being so, why not determine which of the officers of the Church should be ordained, and which set apart, defining the distinctions between them. He held that if the Apostles were not united in such matters, confusion must result. Speaking of the ceremony of baptism, he said that it had gone out that the words "forgiveness of your sins" should be added to the ceremony, as published in the Doctrine and Covenants, but that had since been corrected. The speaker held that uniform views on all such subjects should exist in this council.

Brother Lund remarked that if Presidents of Stakes and all officers having special callings were ordained, the sacredness of the word "ordain" would be lost. It was only as to the Presidents of Seventies that the use of this word had been called in question, or rather the omission of it, and he did not think that any difficulty would arise from the present understanding.

President Snow expressed the belief that no further light would be obtained by discussing the question any longer at the present time, and remarked that if the Council preferred the First Presidency to further consider the matter, it would be done.

Brother Clawson moved that this be the sense of the meeting, and the motion was seconded and carried. ...

[Source: First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

170 years ago today - Apr 13, 1844

Joseph Smith prophecies "the entire overthrow of this nation in a few years."

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

120 years ago today - Apr 13, 1894

[Apostle Franklin D. Richards Diary] Richard W. Young had taken charge of general management of Salt Lake Herald financial and editorial

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

180 years ago today - Apr 13, 1834

Joseph is sick and unable to attend his Sunday meetings.

[Source: Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

Apr 12, 1984

Russell M. Nelson is ordained a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, replacing LeGrand Richards, who had passed away.

[Source: The Woodland Institute 'On This Day Historical Database,' http://www.woodlandinstitute.com]

Apr 12, 1899; Wednesday

Presidents [Lorenzo] Snow, [George Q.] Cannon and [Joseph F.] Smith were at the office. Among the callers of the day was Elder B. H. Roberts, who conversed with President Snow upon the prospect of his getting his seat in Congress. The President remarked during the conversation that it was not clear to him whether Brother Roberts would or would not secure his seat, but it was clear to him that the purpose of the Lord would be accomplished through his trying to get it.

[Source: First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

Apr 12, 1894

[Apostle Heber J. Grant Diary] Pres[iden]t Geo[rge] Q. Cannon said that he felt that there had been three agencies in the past which had done us as a people more harm than it was possible to estimate and that these were the Tribune, the Hotels and the Transfer business in connection with the Livery business and he felt very strongly that the Grant Bros. Co. should not be allowed to fail (in a war with other company?) Felt an assurance that the financial storm that was now passing over the people would pass away and that there was good times coming to us in financial matters. He was very hopeful and thought that if we would have faith in the Lord that He would open our way financially.

[Source: Diary of Heber J. Grant, http://amzn.to/newmormonstudies]

Apr 12, 1874

[Brigham Young Sermon] President Young showed very clearly that it was not a personal speculation; that himself with the rest would put in all he possessed for the accomplishment of the work he was engaged in, and it would all become common stock. The intention is to elevate the poor, and make them comfortable and happy as well as the rich. He wanted no poor in our midst, nor would there be any when the Order got fully established.

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

Apr 12, 1834

[Joseph Smith Diary] Saterday, 12th Went to the lake [Lake Erie] and spent the day in fishing and visiting the brethren in that place.

[Source: Faulring, Scott (ed.), An American Prophet's Record: The Diaries and Journals of Joseph Smith: Joseph Smith Diary, 1832-34, http://amzn.to/jsdiaries]

40 years ago today - Apr 11, 1974

L. Tom Perry is ordained to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

[Source: Wikipedia, 20th Century (Mormonism), http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/20th_century_(Mormonism)]

85 years ago today - Apr 11, 1929

[Apostle Richard R. Lyman] Two weeks ago tonight[,] Th[ursday][,] M[ar]ch 28, 1929[,] I met with my prayer circle for the last time * and disbanded it. The [first] presidency & the Council of the Twelve decided March 28th that only official prayer circles be continued * that is[,] circles which have other business to do as for example [the] high council * & our weekly councils meeting. It is nearly 33 y[ea]rs since Francis M. Lyman invited me into the circle. President [Heber J.] Grant presided over it after the death of F[rancis] M. L[yman] until he became president of the church * since then I have been its president. While I feel relieved[,] I hated to say good bye to those fine brethren. I have been associated with them so long. We all said good bye & God bless you * but not without shedding some tears.

[Source: Richard R. Lyman diary, Apr. 11, 1929, Perry Special Collections; emphasis in original as quoted in Anderson, Devery; The Development of LDS Temple Worship, 1846-2000: A Documentary History, http://amzn.to/TempleWorship]

110 years ago today - Apr 11, 1904; Monday

Some time ago Sister Zina Y. Card presented to the late President [Wilford] Woodruff the sacred relic, the arrow head of flint, in a buckskin case, which arrow head is referred to in the history of the Prophet Joseph Smith as having been taken from the remains of the white Indian Zelph, and which was the cause of his death. This arrow head was among the personal belongings of the late President Brigham Young, which were sold to members of his family, and Sister Zina purchased this relic, and presented it to President Woodruff. After President Woodruff's death it was among his personal property, and Sister Zina, who had intended it for the President of the church, had obtained it form President Woodruff, and now presented it to Pres[iden]t. [Joseph F.] Smith as President of the Church, to become one of the sacred relics of the Church. ...

[Source: First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve minutes]

110 years ago today - Apr 11, 1904; Monday

[Angus M. Cannon diary] I met the Presidency in company of F[ranklin]. S. Richards, and talked over the course I should p[e]rsue, when questioned by men in Washington [D.C. at the Smoot Hearings]. I was advised to listen to the attorneys, that the Church might not be brought in trouble, through my obstancy. I obtained a blessing under the hands of the Presidency.

[Source: Angus M. Cannon, Diary]

120 years ago today - Apr 11, 1894

Apostle John Henry Smith writes in his journal, "Brigham Young [Jr.], George Teasdale and myself met with Prest. W. Woodruff, Geo. Q. Cannon and Jos. F. Smith and reported our labors in Mexico. The Mexican mission is a permanent one. Our people are to become citizens. Lands are to be deeded to the people. I am to go to Mexico."

A major reason for the "Mexican mission" was to have a place to continue polygamy without violating U.S. law.

165 years ago today - Apr 11, 1849

... O. P. Rockwells blessing [was given with] /Pres[iden]t/ H. C K[imball] [as the] moutn [mouth. He] said bro. P., we la[y] o[u]r hands on thee in [the name of] J[esus] C[hrist] of N[azareth] & [with the] H[oly] P[riesthood] in us asking H[eavenly] F[ather] in [the] name of [his] Son, J[esus] C[hrist], to 239 look on thy shortc[omin]g[s]., forgive [thy] sins & improprieties, [and] give Council to [thy] comp[anio]ns. [that they] will & enjoy Holy Sp[irit]. [And may] darkness leave [yo]ur eyes [blank] walk in humility & walk in riteousness [blank] to do most good [and] be blessed. [T]hyp[eo]pl[e]'- we la[y] [our] hands on P/orter /[?]/ lived /[?]/ [and we] ded[icate] & conse[cra]te him to thee in [ou]r G. C. & seal [upon thee] life & health. [May you be] filled with wisaidom & Co'-& [be a] bless[in]g. to bro A,'-& stand by him at all times & [in all] circ[umstanc]es & understand all things. [May he] escape [the] hands of his enemies & [that] they have no power over him,'-but [may] thy serv[an]t. triumph over them. & perform his duties & ret[ur]n. in safety. [T]hou shalt go in peace & prosper[ity] & ret[ur]n. ag[ai]n. & if thy enemies lift their weapons /ag[ain]st. thee they/ shall not prevail. [T]hou shalt escape by the /power of the/ L[ord]. thy God. [G]o by faith & [the] Sp[irit] of God shall rest on thee & [thou shalt] accomplish thy desires. [T]hou shalt do ri[gh]t. & [be] insp[ire]d. by this bless[in]g. [And may this] seal[in]g. [bear] thee up to. Et[erna]l. life & all glory& honor will [we] give to the Fat[he]r. in the N[ame] of his Son, J[esus]. C[hrist]. even so. Amen. ...

[Source: Blessing to Orrin Porter Rockwell as recorded in the as quoted in Minutes of the Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Privately Published, Salt Lake City, Utah 2010]

170 years ago today - Apr 11, 1844

Smith becomes Mormonism's theocratic king. The kingdom's clerk William Clayton wrote that during the 11 April 1844 meeting "was prest. Joseph chosen as our Prophet, Priest and King by Hosannas."

William Marks, who was present at the coronation, later stated that the Council of Fifty performed an ordinance "in which Joseph suffered himself to be ordained a king, to reign over the house of Israel forever."

A later revelation to the Council of Fifty affirmed that God called Smith "to be a Prophet, Seer and Revelator to my Church and Kingdom; and to be a King and Ruler over Israel."

In detailed minutes of this same ceremony years later, the Council of Fifty's standing chairman, John Taylor, was "anointed & set apart as a King, Priest and Ruler over Israel on the Earth."

In a veiled reference to Smith's kingship, Apostles Lyman Wight and Heber C. Kimball wrote in 1844 that "you are already President Pro tem of the world." Smith is anointed and ordained "King, Priest and Ruler over Israel on Earth" . PLACE: Council of Fifty Meeting in Masonic Hall, Nauvoo, IL

[Source: The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, p.124 as referenced in "Joseph Smith Polygamy Timeline," http://www.i4m.com/think/polygamy/JS_Polygamy_Timeline.htm]

175 years ago today - Apr 11, 1839

Gallatin, Missouri. During the night, Joseph Smith saw in a vision a means of escape from his own unjust imprisonment and that Brother Stephen Markham, a witness for the defense, must flee for his life.

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

175 years ago today - Apr 11, 1839

[Joseph Smith] In Gallatin, indicted by grand jury for treason and other charges but granted change of venue.

[Source: Jessee, Dean, Esplin, Ronald and Bushman, Richard Lyman (editors), The Joseph Smith Papers: Journals, Vol. 1: 1832-1839, Chronology for the Years 1832-1839, http://www.amazon.com/Joseph-Smith-Papers-Journals-1832-1839/dp/1570088497]

10 years ago today - Apr 10, 2004

Despite a directive from Mormon leaders to stop the practice...

A New York Jewish organization was so outraged that it asked U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton to intervene, prompting a meeting in early March between the former first lady and Utah Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch, an LDS church member, The Associated Press has learned.

However, Ernest Michel, chairman of the New York-based World Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors, said he asked Clinton to intervene to force the LDS Church to abide by a 1995 agreement to stop the posthumous baptisms.

[Source: "Sen. Clinton joins effort to end Mormon baptism of Holocaust victims," Mark Thiessen, The Associated Press as quoted in A chronicle of the Mormon-Jewish controversy; The LDS Agreement: A JewishGen InfoFile, http://www.jewishgen.org/infofiles/ldsagree.html]

115 years ago today - Apr 10, 1899

[Apostle Marriner W. Merrill Diary] Salt Lake City. I attended Priesthood Meeting at 10 a. m. which adjourned at 12 noon, and I am aimlessly around this town doing but little business.

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

170 years ago today - Apr 10, 1844

[Nauvoo Neighbor] Editorial -- Speaks of Joseph Smith's platform concerning a National Bank

[Source: http://boap.org/LDS/Nauvoo-Neighbor]

180 years ago today - Apr 10, 1834

[Joseph Smith] The Missouri Saints send a petition to the president of the United States with 114 signatures asking redress for the Jackson County expulsion. Between January 9 and May 15, 1834, the Saints send literally dozens of petitions and letters to various U. S. government officials (in accordance with D&C 101:79-90).

[Source: Conkling, Christopher J., Joseph Smith Chronology]

180 years ago today - Apr 10, 1834 (Thursday)

The United Order at Kirtland was dissolved.

[Source: Jenson, Andrew, Church Chronology]

110 years ago today - Apr 9, 1904; Saturday

[Joseph F. Smith] I have only just received word from Elder [John W.] Taylor whose letter was written in Canada Mar[ch]. 16th but did not reach me until the 7th inst. His letter will speak for itself and I will forward it to you by this mail together with a letter received from Elder [Matthias F.] Cowley something over a week ago. You will see that they both refuse to voluntarily go before the Committee. Elder Cowley Says if he is subpoenaed he will go but will not put himself in the way. I regret that these brethren have decided to do as they have. ... And you will pardon me if I say that after the scandalous treatment I have received from the public press on account of my testimony given before the Committee, I cannot blame these gentlemen for the conclusion they have reached half so much as I might have done under other circumstances and fairer treatment.

Of course you know how I have been horribly caricatured and made hideous in cartoons, and slandered and lied about most outrageously, and all for what? Well, I will not take time to answer here.

...In relation to what Mrs. Stanley intends to say to the committee, if put upon the witness stand, I can only say that if Lillian H. Cannon told her that She "was married to Abra[ha]m H. Canon by President Jos[eph]. F. Smith, at Sea &c." She simply lied! I dislike to say that any lady would lie. And I am loath to believe that Mrs. Cannon every told anybody any such thing, for I cannot conceive what object she could have in making such a statement if she made it at all. I have been told by one of her most intimate friends that she herself denies every having told such a story.

To you, I will say that my wife accompanied me on that trip. I cannot recall a moment when I was in the presence of Mrs. Cannon that my wife was not with us. ....

[Source: Joseph F. Smith, letter to Reed Smoot, excerpt in Quinn Papers, original in LDS Archives]

120 years ago today - Apr 9, 1894

Of "O My Father," President Wilford Woodruff tells general conference: "That hymn is a revelation, though it was given unto us by a woman-Sister Eliza R. Snow." Death of Thomas C Sharp, principal conspirator in murder of Joseph and Hyrum Smith. He has had a successful career as mayor, judge, school principal and newspaper editor.

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

120 years ago today - Mon., April 9th, 1894

[Apostle Abraham H. Cannon Journal] Some of us belonged to a Masonic Lodge in Nauvoo, but no good come of it. We found fellow members were plotting against the Church leaders, and seeking their death. We should not join the Masons, Odd Fellows or other such organizations,

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

170 years ago today - Apr 9, 1844

[Brigham Young Sermon] There is no need of breaking the law of the land [IE polygamy] if you keep the law of the Lord. I want a wife that can take care of my children when I am away, who can pray, lay on hands, anoint with oil, and baffle the enemy; and this is a spiritual wife.

[Source: Elden J. Watson, ed. Brigham Young Addresses, 1801-1877: A Chronological Compilation of Known Addresses of the Prophet Brigham Young, 6 vols. (Salt Lake City: Privately published, 1971)]

170 years ago today - Apr 9, 1844

[Joseph Smith Diary] Pres[iden]t Young requested all who were in favor of electing Joseph to the Presidency to raise both hands which they [did] say 1,100 Elders and commenced clapping their hand[s] and gave many loud cheers. The opposite was called for and only one hand raised

[Source: Faulring, Scott (ed.), An American Prophet's Record: The Diaries and Journals of Joseph Smith: Joseph Smith Diary, 1844, http://amzn.to/jsdiaries]

170 years ago today - Apr 9, 1844

[Apostle Wilford Woodruff Journal] B Young remarked ... When J. C. Bennet went forth to try to destroy the Saints A little company of us went before God and asked him to take away his power, and it fell like lightning from Heaven. We asked for Duncan not to be Govor-nor. He was not but he is now dead and damned. We asked for Reynolds to be taken away. He soon shot himself & went to Hell. Carlin is dead and so our enemies have fallen on evry hand. Whare is the officers of Government in washington? Seven were hurled into eternity in an instant by the bursting of a big gun. The bitter branches are beginning to be cut off. Take care O man how you oppose this work for their is a God in Israel. ...

A contribution was taken up for Joseph Smith to meet a debt. $100 dollars was donated another hundred loaned. Conference was Adjurned untill 2 oclok Saturday to hear a discourse from Elder Taylor on politicks. About three hundred Elders volunteered to go out preaching this season. Their names were taken to be published in the Times & Season.

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

175 years ago today - Apr 9, 1839

Gallatin, Missouri. Joseph Smith's trial commenced before a drunken grand jury and judge.

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