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Nelson Adam Empey

7 May 1835–4 September 1904

Born 7 May 1835 at Osnabruck, Stormont Co., Upper Canada.[1] Son of William Adam Empey and Mary Ann Morgan.[2] Moved to Nauvoo, Hancock Co., Illinois, by 1842.[3] Baptized as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 Aug. 1845, in Nauvoo.[4] Migrated to the Salt Lake Valley with the Brigham Young pioneer company, arriving by 24 Sept. 1848.[5] Served several missions in the U.S., 1855–1878.[6] Married Emma Jane Evans, 22 Apr. 1856, in Salt Lake City.[7] Participated in plural marriage.[8] Captain in the Nauvoo Legion during the Utah War, 1857–1858.[9] Employee of Zion’s Cooperative Mercantile Institution for many years.[10] Served as counselor in the Salt Lake City Thirteenth Ward bishopric, 1882–1891, and as bishop, 1891–1904.[11] Member of the “Old Folks of Salt Lake County” Committee, beginning 1885.[12] Member of the board of directors of the Deseret Agricultural and Manufacturing Society, later known as the Utah State Fair Commission; served as president, 1888–1904.[13] Vice president of the Utah World’s Fair Commission; Utah’s representative to the World’s Fair in Chicago, 1893.[14] Officiated at the civil marriage of Septimus Wagstaff Sears and Isabel Modalena Whitney, daughter of EBW, 11 Apr. 1892.[15] Officiated at the civil marriage of Septimus Whitney Sears, grandson of EBW, and Gertrude Trindle, 30 Nov. 1902.[16] Belatedly offered EBW funds to attend the International Conference of Women held in Berlin, 20 July 1904.[17] Died 4 Sept. 1904 in Salt Lake City.[18]

 

[1] 1850 U.S. Census, Great Salt Lake, Utah Territory, p. 44, Nelson Empey. Record of Members Collection, 1836–1970, Fifteenth Ward, Ward Record of Members, Part 1, 1849–1859, p. 6, line 219, Nelson Empey, CR 375 8, box 2145, folder 1, image 77/642 (limited access), CHL.

[2] 1850 U.S. Census, Great Salt Lake, Utah Territory, p. 44, Nelson Empey. Record of Members Collection, 1836–1970, Fifteenth Ward, Ward Record of Members, Part 1, 1849–1859, p. 6, line 219, Nelson Empey, CR 375 8, box 2145, folder 1, image 77/642 (limited access), CHL. High Priests, Genealogy, Salt Lake Stake of Zion, Nelson Adam Empey, Church Historian’s Office, microfilm 924617, FHL.

[3] General Church Recorder, Far West and Nauvoo Elder’s Certificates, 1837–1838, 1840–1846, CR 100 402, folder 1, image 27/305, CHL.

[4] Record of Members Collection, 1836–1970, Fifteenth Ward, Ward Record of Members, Part 1, 1849–1859, p. 6, line 219, Nelson Empey, CR 375 8, box 2145, folder 1, image 77/642 (limited access), CHL. Missionary Department Missionary Registers, 1860–1959, vol. B, p. 15, line 593, CR 301 22, box 1, folder 2, image 16/148, CHL. High Priests, Genealogy, Salt Lake Stake of Zion, Nelson Adam Empey, Church Historian’s Office, microfilm 924617, FHL.

[5] “Nelson Adam Empey,” Pioneer Database (https://history.churchofjesuschrist.org/overlandtravel, accessed 27 Feb. 2019). 

[6] Missionary Department Missionary Registers, 1860–1959, vol. A, p. 37; vol. B, p. 15, line 593, CR 301 22, box 1, folder 2, CHL.

[7] “Sealings of Couples, Living and Proxy, 1851–1889,” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Endowment House, vol. B1, 1855–1856, p. 13, Nelson Adam Empey and Emma Jane Evans, 22 Apr. 1856, microfilm 183394, DGS 5270318 (restricted access), FHL.

[8] “Endowments of the Living, 1888–1904,” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Manti Temple, vol. A, 1888–1904, p. 72, line 1278, 24 June 1891, microfilm 170490, DGS 4033450 (restricted access), FHL. “Local and Other Briefs,” Salt Lake Herald, 9 Sept. 1890, 8. “Death of Sister Empey,” Deseret Weekly, 13 Sept. 1890, 397.   Thirteenth Ward, Salt Lake Central Stake, Thirteenth Ward Reports, p. 13, LR 15328 22, box 1, folder 2, CHL.

[9] John Nicholson, “Some Incidents in the Life of Nelson A. Empey,” Improvement Era, Nov. 1904, 20. Thirteenth Ward, Salt Lake Central Stake, Thirteenth Ward Reports, p. 13, LR 15328 22, box 1, folder 2, CHL.

[10] “Nelson A. Empey,” Zions Cooperative Mercantile Institution (ZCMI) Employees, file 39222001299069, photo no. 07788 (https://collections.lib.utah.edu/details?id=434834&q=zcmi+employees, accessed 1 Apr. 2019). “Bishop Empey Dies Suddenly,” Salt Lake Tribune, 5 Sept. 1904, 12.

[11] Andrew Jenson, Historical Record 6, nos. 9–12 (Dec. 1887): 320. Thirteenth Ward, Ensign Stake, Thirteenth Ward Manuscript History and Historical Reports, LR 6133 2, box 1, folder 1, CHL. Thirteenth Ward, Salt Lake Central Stake, Thirteenth Ward Reports, p. 13, LR 15328 22, box 1, folder 2, CHL.

[12] “The Old Folks,” Deseret Weekly, 14 Mar. 1891, 381–382. Andrew Jenson, comp., Church Chronology: A Record of Important Events Pertaining to the History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1914), 219–220.

[13] “D. A. M. Society,Deseret News, 12 Sept. 1888, 5. “Nelson A. Empey Dies Suddenly,” Ogden (UT) Standard, 5 Sept. 1904, 8. Utah State Fair, History of Utah State Fair Association Golden Jubilee Exposition, 1856–1928 (Salt Lake City, 1928). “The Coming Fair,” Salt Lake Daily Herald, 3 June 1888, 5. Thirteenth Ward, Salt Lake Central Stake, Thirteenth Ward Reports, p. 13, LR 15328 22, box 1, folder 2, CHL.

[14] Andrew Jenson, Church Chronology: A Record of Important Events Pertaining to the History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2nd ed. (Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1914), 197. “Utah World’s Fair Commission,” Salt Lake Herald, 7 Feb. 1893, 8.

[15] EBW, Diary, 11 Apr. 1892. Carol Cornwall Madsen, Emmeline B. Wells: An Intimate History (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2017), 321, 504. Davis Co., UT, Clerk, Marriage Licenses, 1888–1941, vol. 1, p. 100, microfilm 25886, DGS 7479203, image 104/454, FHL.

[16] EBW, Diary, 30 Nov. 1902. Davis Co., UT, Marriage License Records, 1887–1966, p. 122, microfilm 483530, DGS 4624255, image 347/561, FHL. Carol Cornwall Madsen, Emmeline B. Wells: An Intimate History (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2017), 504.

[17] EBW, Diary, 20 July 1904. Carol Cornwall Madsen, An Advocate for Women: The Public Life of Emmeline B. Wells, 1870–1920 (Provo, UT: Brigham Young University Press, 1997), 464.   

[18] “Utah State Archives Indexes,” database and images, Utah State Archives (https://archives.utah.gov, accessed 28 Mar. 2019); Utah Department of Health Office of Vital Records and Statistics Death Certificates, series 81448, file no. 991/510 (1904), Nelson A. Empey. “Death of N. A. Empey,” Salt Lake Telegram, 5 Sept. 1904, 3.