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25 June 1870


Retrenchment Association; Fourteenth Ward Meetinghouse, Salt Lake City, Utah Territory

White building with wood trim, Salt Lake City, circa 1890

Salt Lake City Fourteenth Ward meetinghouse, circa 1890.

[. . .] Sister Eliza R. Snow said there had been other branches of the Young Ladies’ department organized, which she wished to present to the meeting as follows: Miss Julia Horne, president of the Fourteenth ward department; Miss Jennie Seaman, Miss Annie Taylor, Miss Harriet Taylor, Mrs. [p. 37] Beulah Beatie, Miss Sophia Taylor, Miss Georgiana Fox, counselors; Mrs. Isabella Pratt, secretary. [. . .]

A meeting having been organized in the Fifteenth ward, Sister Snow presented Miss Sarah Russell as president of the Fifteenth ward department; Mrs. Janet Griggs, Miss Janet Swan, Mrs. Lucy Russell, Miss Mary Wright, Miss Sarah Price, and Miss Mary Greenig, counselors; Mrs. Bell Guthrie, secretary. [. . .]

Sister Snow said although this was a Retrenchment meeting, she wished to speak to the Relief Society; said she was very, very sorry to hear that some of the wards had been raffling quilts, etc. She said the society was first organized by Joseph Smith; it was designed to be a sacred and holy organization, and to save souls—to improve the habits, feelings and thoughts of those connected with it. It [p. 38] should have nothing demoralizing in it; said she did not think God would bless money for the poor obtained by unrighteous means. She would just as soon play cards for money as to raffle for it. She wished to say to the presidents of the Relief Societies that President [Brigham] Young denounced raffling. If mothers set the example of raffling, they need not expect their children to increase in goodness. We care more for the morals of the society than the relief of the poor. Said she would rather possess one shilling with the blessing of God upon it, than to have thousands that he did not sanction. If our consciences are founded on the Gospel of Jesus Christ, they will not yield to unholy things. If there are sisters who hold office here, let them speed the work of God; they should not do that which has been disapproved by proper authorities. The evil one is always on the alert to lead us astray. The love of money is the root of all evil. We had better go without, than to get means unrighteously. We live in a day of revelation, and it is our privilege to know the mind and will of our Father, and we need not be in the dark; for there are ways by which we can be instructed. We have God’s Spirit and agency at our head; there is a way appointed by which we may know the law and will of God. She knew that it was the wish of all the sisters to do all the good they could and obey God’s laws. Said she felt deeply on this point. Let us be faithful; we have the power of God in our midst; then, sisters, let us be up and doing.

Sister Bathsheba W. Smith said she coincided with what Sister Snow had said; she knew it was not the President’s wish to have raffling carried on anywhere, especially in the Relief Society; said we must sustain him by faith, and also by works, and God will sustain us, and we will be blessed. [. . .] [p. 39]

Miss Snow then presented Mrs. Julina Smith as presidentess of the Sixteenth ward department; Mrs. Sarah E. Smith, Miss Margaret A. Winegar, Mrs. Mary J. Taylor, Miss Elizabeth M. Yates, Miss Mary A. Riser, Miss Effie L. Minkler, counselors; and Mrs. Caddie McKean, secretary. Unanimously accepted. [. . .] [p. 40]

Source Note

Tenth Meeting of the Ladies’ Co-operative Retrenchment Association,” in Susa Young Gates, History of the Young Ladies’ Mutual Improvement Association (Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1911), 37–40; Lydia Young, Secretary.