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Orson Pratt

19 September 1811–3 October 1881

Born 19 Sept. 1811 in Hartford, Washington Co., New York.[1] Son of Jared Pratt and Charity Dickinson.[2] Baptized as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by Parley P. Pratt, 19 Sept. 1830.[3] Ordained an elder and appointed to serve a mission to Colesville, Broome Co., New York, 1830.[4] Ordained a high priest and served a series of missions, 1831–1832.[5] Member of the Camp of Israel expedition to Missouri, 1834.[6] Ordained a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, 26 Apr. 1835.[7] Married Sarah Marinda Bates, 4 July 1836.[8] Participated in plural marriage.[9] Served a mission to the British Isles, 1839–1841; established a branch in Scotland.[10] Traveled with the Newel K. Whitney pioneer company and EBW across Iowa Territory, 1846.[11] Migrated to the Salt Lake Valley with the Brigham Young pioneer company, arriving 21 July 1847.[12] Appointed to preside over the church in Great Britain, 1848, 1856.[13] Editor of the Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star, 1850, 1856.[14] Migrated with his family to the Salt Lake Valley with the James W. Cummings pioneer company, arriving 30 Sept.–7 Oct. 1851.[15] Published and edited the Seer, 1853–1854.[16] Member of the Utah territorial legislature; served as council, 1854–1855, 1859–1860, and as Speaker of the House, 1862–1863, 1869, 1872, 1874, 1878.[17] Served a mission to Austria, 1865.[18] Published his major mathematical work, New and Easy Method of Solutions of the Cubic and Biquadratic Equations, 1866.[19] Published the Book of Mormon in the Deseret Alphabet, Apr. 1869, in New York.[20] Appointed as church historian, Apr. 1874.[21] Served a mission to Europe to publish a new edition of the Book of Mormon, Dec. 1878–Sept. 1879.[22] Died 3 Oct. 1881 in Salt Lake City.[23] Memorialized by EBW in the Woman’s Exponent, 15 Oct. 1881.[24]

 

[1] Temple Records Index Bureau, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Nauvoo Temple Endowment Register, 10 December 1845 to 8 February 1846 (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1974), 4, Orson Pratt (restricted access). Orson Pratt, Autobiographical Sketch, ca. 1833, Autobiography and Journals, 1833–1847, MS 587, images 62, 64–65/72, CHL. Missionary Department, Missionary Registers, 1860–1959, vol. A, p. 5, line 210, CR 301 22, image 11/160, CHL. “Family Tree,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org, accessed 28 May 2020), Orson Pratt (KWJZ-CSD). 

[2] Orson Pratt, Autobiography, 1858, p. 4, Historian’s Office, Histories of the Twelve, 1856–1858, 1861, CR 100 93, box 1, folder 11, image 6/30, CHL. Missionary Department, Missionary Registers, 1860–1959, vol. A, p. 5, line 210, CR 301 22, image 11/160, CHL.

[3] History, 1838–1856, vol. A-1, p. 77 (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/history-1838-1856-volume-a-1-23-december-1805-30-august-1834/83, accessed 28 May 2020). Milando Pratt, “Life and Labors of Orson Pratt,” Contributor, Dec. 1890, 43. Orson Pratt, Autobiographical Sketch, ca. 1833, Orson Pratt Autobiography and Journals, 1833–1847, MS 587, images 62, 65/72, CHL. Missionary Department, Missionary Registers, 1860–1959, vol. A, p. 5, line 210, CR 301 22, image 11/160, CHL.

[4] Revelation, 4 Nov. 1830 [D&C 34], pp. 45, 46 (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/revelation-4-november-1830-dc-34/1, accessed 28 May 2020). Historian’s Office, Histories of the Twelve, 1856–1858, 1861, Orson Pratt, Autobiography, 1858, p. 10, CR 100 93, box 1, folder 11, image 14/30, CHL.

[5] Missionary Department, Missionary Record Index, 1830–1971, CR 301 43, images 128–132/339, CHL. John Whitmer, History, 1831–ca. 1847, p. 26 (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/john-whitmer-history-1831-circa-1847/30, accessed 28 May 2020). Revelation Book 1, p. 88 (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/revelation-book-1/74, accessed 28 May 2020). Revelation Book 1, p. 130 (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/revelation-book-1/115, accessed 28 May 2020). Historian’s Office, Histories of the Twelve, 1856–1858, 1861, Orson Pratt, Autobiography, 1858, pp. 11–12, CR 100 93, box 1, folder 11, images 15–16/30, CHL. Orson Pratt, Autobiography and Journals, 1833–1847, MS 587, images 7–8, 12, 46/96, CHL.

[6] Zion’s Camp Festival Papers, 1863–1867, Minutes and Roll of Members, 10 Oct. 1864, MS 14789, image 13/24, CHL. Wilford Woodruff, “The History and Travels of Zion’s Camp,” 1882, MS 1193, images 1–3/124, CHL.

[7] Minutes, Discourse, and Blessings, 14–15 Feb. 1835, p. 149 (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/minutes-discourse-and-blessings-14-15-february-1835/3, accessed 29 May 2020). History, 1838–1856, vol. B-1, p. 1 [addenda] (https://www.josephsmithpapers.org/paper-summary/history-1838-1856-volume-b-1-1-september-1834-2-november-1838/304, accessed 29 May 2020). Historian’s Office, Histories of the Twelve, 1856–1858, 1861, Orson Pratt, Autobiography, 1858, p. 21, CR 100 93, box 1, folder 11, image 26/30, CHL. “History of Orson Pratt,” Deseret News Truth and Liberty (Fillmore City, Utah Territory), 9 June 1858, 65.

[8] Historian’s Office, Histories of the Twelve, 1856–1858, 1861, Orson Pratt, Autobiography, 1858, pp. 21–22, CR 100 93, box 1, folder 11, images 26–27/30, CHL.

[9] “Sealings and Adoptions of the Living, 1846–1857; Index, 1846–1857,” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Nauvoo Temple, vol. A, 1846–1857, p. 439, lines 3041–3046, Orson Pratt, microfilm 183374, DGS 5265582 (restricted access), FHL.

[10] Missionary Department, Missionary Record Index, 1830–1971, CR 301 43, image 133/339, CHL. Scotland Edinburgh Mission, Manuscript History and Historical Reports, 1839–1973, vol. 1, 1840–1850, LR 8180 2, image 7/526 (restricted access), CHL.

[11] EBW, Diary, 8 Mar. 1846; 6, 8 Apr. 1846.

[12] Camp of Israel Schedules and Reports, 1845–1849, Brigham Young’s 1847 Emigration Division, Pioneers of the First Division, Feb. 1847, MS 14290, CHL.

[13] Missionary Department, Missionary Record Index, 1830–1971, CR 301 43, image 134/339, CHL. “In Memoriam: Apostle Orson Pratt,” Woman’s Exponent, 15 Oct. 1881, 76–77.

[14] “The Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star,” Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star, 1 Jan. 1850, [1]. “The Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star,” Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star, 1 Jan. 1856, [5]. “The Latter-day Saints’ Millennial Star,” Latter-Day Saints’ Millennial Star, 27 Dec. 1856, 824.

[15] Alfred Cordon Emigrating Company Journal, June–Sept. 1851, MS 5002, images 7, 13/94, CHL. “Orson Pratt,” Pioneer Database (https://history.churchofjesuschrist.org/overlandtravel/, accessed 29 May 2020).

[16] Seer, Jan. 1853, 1. Seer, Aug. 1854, 320. 

[17] Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah (Salt Lake City: Elias Smith, 1863), 5. Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah (Salt Lake City: Deseret News and Job Office, 1872), 4. “Minutes of the Legislative Assembly,” Deseret Evening News, 24 Feb. 1874, 3. Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the Territory of Utah (Salt Lake City: Deseret News and Job Office, 1878), 14. “Territory of Utah, Legislative Assembly Rosters, 1851–1894,” Utah Division of Archives and Records Service (https://archives.utah.gov/research/guides/legislative-assembly-rosters.pdf, accessed 29 May 2020).

[18] Missionary Department, Missionary Registers, 1860–1959, vol. A, p. 5, line 210, CR 301 22, image 11/160, CHL.

[19] Orson Pratt, New and Easy Method of Solution of the Cubic and Biquadratic Equations (London: Longmans, Green, Reader, and Dyer, 1866).

[20] “In Memoriam: Apostle Orson Pratt,” Woman’s Exponent, 15 Oct. 1881, 76–77. Kenneth R. Beesley, “Typesetting the Deseret Alphabet with Latex and Metafont” (http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.613.4676&rep=rep1&type=pdf, accessed 29 May 2020), 87–88.

[21] “Forty-Fourth Annual Conference,” Deseret Evening News, 9 May 1874, 2. “In Memoriam: Apostle Orson Pratt,” Woman’s Exponent, 15 Oct. 1881, 76–77.

[22] “Star Light,” Deseret Evening News, 24 Feb. 1879, 2. Missionary Department, Missionary Record Index, 1830–1971, CR 301 43, image 140/339, CHL. Historian’s Office, Correspondence Files, 1856–1926, Orson Pratt and Joseph F. Smith, Report to John Taylor, 18 Dec. 1877, pp. [1], 4–[6], CR 100 394, CHL.

[23]  “Utah Death Registers, 1847–1966,” p. 121 (1881), Orson Pratt; citing series 21866, from Utah Department of Health, Bureau of Vital Statistics, Utah State Archives and Records Service, Salt Lake City. “Death of Apostle Orson Pratt,” Deseret News, 5 Oct. 1881, 8. “In Memoriam: Apostle Orson Pratt,” Woman’s Exponent, 15 Oct. 1881, 76–77.

[24] “In Memoriam: Apostle Orson Pratt,” Woman’s Exponent, 15 Oct. 1881, 76–77.