Sunday April 1 1883. Sylvester improves. Sister Tenney holds her own. Met at Assembly Hall at 2 p.m. Bros. Bleak (of St. George) and Naisbitt spoke. Excellent meeting. Met at Endowment House and had prayer. Ate supper at Bro. Woodruffs. Met in 14th Ward. Had excellent freedom in addressing Saints, followed by Bro. Woodruff. Remained in town through night. This morning I had my men & children together and gave instructions respecting management of my place and the stock.
Monday April 2, 1883. At the Office. Listened to the case of Kelly one of the men accused of murdering Van Valkerberg. He wished the privilege of being rebaptised. The matter was not clear. Probably the High Council will examine case. With Prests. Smith, Woodruff & Apostles L. Snow & G. Teasdale set apart seven sisters as nurses & midwives & doctors.
My health is poor today. Was administered to by Prest. Smith and Apostle Lyman & Elder Nuttall. Found my daughter Mary Alice very sick when I reached home. She was suffering great pain in her shoulder and side and had difficulty in drawing her breath & coughing. I administered to her twice during evening & she became easier. Sister Tenney had also had a bad spell and it was supposed she was dying. I found her better.
Tuesday April 3, 1883. Feel a little better this morning. Mary Alice easier. Sylvester growing stronger. At the office. A number of Elders from the Southern States and imigrating Saints came in this morning the first through passenger train on the Denver & Rio Grande R. R. Co. Bro. Adams of Parowan was in charge.
Wednesday April 4, 1883. Had an unpleasant night. I was taken with a chill on retiring and afterwards had fever. In the morning bathed in alcohol and anointed myself with oil with good effect. At 11 a.m. met with Board of Directors of Z.C.M.I. Among other business I made a motion to have an Office for the Institution. The question of allowing $5000 extra to Supt. Jennings for the two years of his service as Supt. asked for by him because of the prosperity of the Institution & the extra labor he has performed, came up. I favored for the same reason that I would under such circumstances in my private business. He had been a faithful, efficient Supt. & had managed excellently and at the cost of his health, & if he felt that he ought to have that sum in addition to his salary I would not refuse it to him, even as a matter of policy, not to say as an offering of good will and appreciation. At 2 p.m. met at Endowment House with the Council. Did not clothe myself because of my poor health. At the request of Prest. Taylor all joined in administering to me. Went to my wahine hopes [last wife’s] and stayed the night, it being so stormy did not deem it prudent to go home.
Thursday April 5, 1883. Washed in alcohol and anointed with oil this morning. Felt better and enjoyed the rest of the night. Met at 10 oclock in Assembly Hall. Not many present. I opened by prayer. Prest. Taylor spoke and I followed him and had a good flow of spirit. Afterwards met with First Presidency & Twelve & Bro. John W. Young & Bishop Sharp at the Presidents Office & talked over the situation of Z.C.M.I. I made a motion that Prest John Taylor be nominated as President of Z.C.M.I to fill vacancy occasioned by death of Capt. Hooper. At 2 p.m. the stockholders met and after listening to the reports and adopting them, among which was a dividend of 5 per cent, elected Prest. Taylor President of Z.C.M.I.
The weather has been fine this afternoon. My sister Annie (Woodbury) and Bro. Angus went down home with me and stopped all night.
Friday April 6, 1883. At conference. Met in the Assembly Hall. Prest. Woodruff and Bros Jacob Gates and H. Herriman, President of Seventies, occupied the forenoon. In the afternoon Bro. Erastus Snow occupied the time and spoke very well and powerfully. The evening was occupied by the Sunday School union at the Assembly Hall. Had a delightful time. Remained in town all night.1
Saturday, April 7th 1883. At conference. Reports from the Relief Societies, Young Ladies Mutual Improvement Associations, Primary Associations, and the Deseret Sunday School Union were read. Some of them were imperfect. The Presidents of Stakes were requested to see that they were made out more perfectly in the future. The forenoon was occupied afterwards by Elders F. D. Richards and Albert Carrington who each spoke about thirty minutes. In the afternoon Elder Moses Thatcher addressed the Conference. Afterwards I submitted the names of missionaries and read the Statistical report of the Church, and the reports of the Manti and Logan Temples, and was followed by Elder George Teasdale.
In the evening there was a Priesthood meeting in the Assembly Hall. Prests Taylor and Smith each spoke, the former fifty eight and the latter thirty one minutes. After which, at the request of Prest. Taylor, I referred to the financial reports and stated that while we are quite willing that every President of Stake and every Bishop should have access to a report of his stake or of his ward, and the disposition made of the tithing from such stake or ward, it would nevertheless be unwise for us to expose our financial affairs in public conference to our enemies to take advantage of, and it was contemplated to have these reports read at a meeting of the Presidents of Stakes and Bishops. A vote was called as to whether such a method of exhibiting the financial reports would be satisfactory or not, and the Priesthood present voted that it would be.
Sunday, April 8, 1883. I remained in town last night and drove down this morning. Returned to Conference. The Tabernacle was very well filled. Prest. Jos. F. Smith spoke for forty two minutes and I followed occupying about thirty five minutes. My discourse was reported and will be published. Elder Lyman followed and occupied about eleven minutes. I enjoyed the spirit very much this morning. In the afternoon I presented the General Authorities of the Church to the Conference, and when I came to the name of Elder John W. Young, I paused to give Prest. Taylor an opportunity to make explanations respecting his position. He was followed by Bro. John W. himself, and then his name was presented as Counselor to the Twelve, and unanimously sustained.
I also read the reports of the auditing committee and the names of missionaries, and Prest. Taylor addressed the congregation for sixty two minutes.
At seven oclock in the evening the Presidents of Stakes and their Counselors and the Bishops who were present in the City met in the Social Hall. The Apostles were all present who were in the City except Bro. Carrington. Most of the Stakes and wards were represented. After a few introductory remarks by Prest Taylor, Bro. Nuttall read the Trustee-in-Trust reports of the receipts and disbursements for the year 1882, and they were referred to the auditing committee. Elders Erastus Snow and W. Woodruff, and Prests Taylor, Smith and myself all spoke.
Monday Apl 9th 1883. At the Office. During these days I have been so busy with meetings that I have not had time to go down home of an evening; I have had to remain in the city. My mother-in-law, Sister Tenney, is very sick and not likely to recover. I have only had the time to call in and see her occasionally, lay hands upon her and speak words of comfort to her which she appears to appreciate very much. Besides my wife her sister Jenny is with her and [blank] sons Grant has come up also and is staying with them.
The Young Men’s Mutual Improvement Association is holding Conference today in the Assembly Hall. This afternoon I attended with Prest. Taylor a meeting of the Central Board of Trade, at which the question of the manufacture of iron was discussed with some freedom.
Elders F. M. Lyman, Bishop Hatch and John Spencer had conversation with us respecting the Indian Mission, and appropriations were made for supplies and wagon. Other business was transacted connected with making appropriations for Smithfield meeting house, and for the help of Wm M. Palmer, President of the Mission in the Northwestern States, and also in favor of a meeting house at Wanship.
In the evening I attended a very interesting meeting of the Sandwich Islanders. Besides the natives there were a number present who had been to the Sandwich Islands as missionaries, including Prest. Jos. F. Smith. At the request of the brethren I presided, and we all spoke. The meeting to me was a very interesting one. I had not attempted to get upon my feet and speak in the Sandwich Island language for nearly 29 years. Still I was able to make myself understood without any difficulty. I am surprised to find how well I had learned the language.
Tuesday, April 10 1883. This morning we held meeting at the Social Hall. Ka-ne-lima [Fifty]. In the afternoon at the Office. Apostles George Teasdale and his companion, Bro. Matthew Dalton, were set apart for the mission to Indian Territory, Prest. Taylor being mouth in the first and I in the second instance. We were assisted by L. Snow, M. Thatcher, and F. M. Lyman.
We counseled respecting Zions Rio Virgin Manufacturing Company, and considered a proposition made by the company for the purchase of machinery to be paid for in stock, which was accepted.
Wednesday, April 11, 1883. Met again at the Social Hall in the same capacity as yesterday morning, and at the Endowment House at 2 p.m. in our usual council. After our meeting in the Endowment House, Bro. Wm Riter and Miss Priscillia Jennings came there to be married accompanied by their respective parents and friends. I had been requested by the bridegroom to perform the ceremony of marriage it being his wife’s wish. As I had blessed her when an infant she desired I should perform the ceremony of marriage. I was greatly impressed in performing this ceremony by its solemnity. In the evening attended the reception at the house of Bro. Wm Jennings, the father of the bride. It was a grand occasion. About 300 guests were present, and every provision was made for satisfying their inner wants. I was accompanied by my wife Sarah Jane. Stopped at my brother Angus’ over night.
Thursday April 12, 1883. At the Office. We listen[ed] to the case – Prest. Taylor and myself – of W. P. Jones of Beaver who had complaints to make against Prest J. R. Murdock and his son-in-law, T W. Farnsworth. We listened patiently and investigated the matter, and found that Bro. Jones himself was to blame in making charges against these brethren, especially Prest. Murdock, and he had to ask his forgiveness.
Attended a meeting of Z.C.M.I.
My mother-in-law, Sister Tinney, died today. She retained her faculties up to the last, and passed away very peacefully. She has been a most excellent woman, exemplary in her conduct, and I have had great pleasure in having her in my family – a quiet, unobtrusive, peaceful woman. Her death will be a great loss to us all, but especially to her daughter, my wife, to whom she has been both father and mother, as her father died before her birth.
Friday, April 13th 1883. The First Presidency, and six of the Twelve, and five of the first Seven Presidents of Seventies, with Bros. Nuttall, Reynolds & Irvine (the latter as Reporter) met at 10 oclock this morning in President Taylor’s office. Prest. Taylor made some remarks regarding the necessity of a more thorough organization of the Seventies, and I followed speaking of the superiority of our missionary organization, and the necessity of a better organization of the Seventies. I hoped the time would come when what are called alternates, who act instead of the Seven presidents of Seventies, should be dropped, and a first quorum of Seventies organized, who, in conjunction with their Seven Presidents could transact all the business of this City. As to what should constitute the first quorum of Seventies that was a point to be decided. The old organization was composed of the Seven Presidents of each of the first ten quorums, not counting the first; they formed the first Seventy, but they had never met in a quorum capacity and time had thinned their ranks until scarcely any of them were left. As the quorums had increased in number it might be advisable to choose the first president of each of the first sixty four quorums, not counting the first, and out of this number form the first seventy. I was in favor, I said, of more seventies being ordained. When I set men apart for foreign missions if they were Elders the spirit in me prompted me to ordain them Seventies, for I felt that was the calling of a Seventy and not so much that of an Elder.
Prest W. Woodruff, F. D. Richards, W. W. Taylor, and others spoke, and then conversation ensued in which we all engaged. Prest Taylor also suggested that the place of Bro. Vancott be filled up by a Scandinavian brother. The meeting then adjourned
Saturday, April 14, 1883. At 9 a.m. the same brethren who met yesterday met again today. The instructions to the Seventies – which had been prepared by President Taylor yesterday afternoon and submitted to us, Jos. F. Smith and myself, for our approval, and which we had signed – were read to the brethren present, and on motion were unanimously accepted. Prest. Taylor also had read a revelation upon the subject which he received this morning, which was as per annexed copy. This terminated the business of the meeting. Prest. Taylor then suggested to the brethren that as I had been going backward and forward to our meetings while my mother-in-law was dying, that as a mark of respect to me and to her they should in a body attend the funeral which was to take place today at noon, and he would invite them to dine with him afterwards. Carriages were provided and all the brethren present attended the funeral which took place at my School house. All my family were present and the Bishop of the ward, one of his counsellors, and some other brethren. Prests. Woodruff and Taylor spoke, also Bro. Erastus Snow. I had yesterday accompanied Bro. Joseph E. Taylor to the graveyard and selected four burial lots in addition to those I already had and selected a spot in one of them for the burial place of Sister Tinney. We had a very interesting time at our School house, and Sister Tenney’s daughters – my wife and her sister – were very much consoled by the remarks which were made and the respect which was shown to their aged mother. After the services the brethren all left for town and my family and myself accompanied the remains to the tomb. Bro. Simons and his wife rode in the same carriage with myself and wife.
Sunday, April 15th 1883. Attended meeting in the Assembly Hall. Elders M. J. Empy and John Morgan addressed the congregation. I enjoyed their remarks very much, especially Bro. Morgan’s, who is a forcible and clear speaker.
Monday, April 16th 1883. A meeting was held this morning at the Prests. office at 10 oclock, at which the First Presidency were all present and Bro. Erastus Snow to hear the brethren from Orderville – H. O. Spencer, Thos Chamberlain, E Billingsley, & E. M. Webb – respecting the condition of affairs and to give them such counsel as they needed in their organization in the United Order. It seems that Bro. Spencer & Billingsley were not suited with the Directors and their management, and thought that Bro. Spencer, as Counsellor to the President of the Stake, was not listened to as he should be. Considerable instruction were given. The brethren were encouraged to persevere and do the best they could, and Bro. Spencer was advised not to be so rigid, nor to try to enforce any counsel beyond his influence with the people to make them receive it.
At 4 p.m. attended meeting of the Board of Regents as Chancellor.
Tuesday, April 17th 1883. Prests. Taylor, Smith and myself drove up City Creek Canyõn today to examine into a water power up there.
Wednesday, April 18, 1883. Prest. Taylor and myself talked over matters connected with the iron and coal mines in Iron County which belong to Bro. Thos Taylor, and of which I had purchased half. He (the President) had a plan which he wished, if agreeable to Bro. Taylor, to have him accept for the organization of a Company.
We afterwards had a meeting of the Deseret News Company, and $5000 was appropriated to the paper mill.
At 2 p.m. met with the Twelve at the Endowment House.
Thursday, April 19th 1883. Had a further conversation with Prest. Taylor respecting the organization of a company referred to yesterday. Engaged preparing my sermon delivered at conference for the press. I had some conversation with Bishop Taylor respecting organization of the Company.
Friday April 20 1883. With President Taylor and Smith went up the Canyõn this morning accompanied by Brother Henry Grow and William Ridd and one of President Taylors sons to examine the water power and a suitable place for building.
Mr W. E. Curtis and wife and Mrs E. Stone and a Miss McFarland (a sister of the latter) and Mr. C. M. Russell and wife, called today at the Office today to pay respects to Prest. Taylor and myself. The two former gentlemen are old acquaintances – journalists, one the managing Editor of the Chicago Inter-Ocean, and the other the Editor of the Chicago News, both leading papers. I had an interview with them yesterday and had told them that I would furnish a team and carriage to take them around the city and find some one to accompany them who would be intelligent and show the points of interest. They were anxious they said to hear from our standpoint. Bro. John T. Caine kindly consented to go with them at my request, and I furnished a team and carriage. They had just finished their drive when they came to the office. They expressed themselves delighted with all they seen and heard.
Saturday April 21, 1883. This morning I called at the Walker House to pay my respects to the party from Chicago and found them making preparations to depart. They had intended to stay over Sunday but had changed their minds and concluded to leave this morning. They expressed themselves under many obligations for kindness shown them and spoke highly of their visit. I afterwards went to the office. Mr Wood and Mr [blank] of the Denver & Rio Grande Railway Co. called upon Prest. Taylor as President of the Z.C.M.I. to present the claim of their railway for a portion of its patronage in carrying freight. Had quite a conversation with them.
In the afternoon had meeting with the Salt Lake Street Railway. Bro. Junius F. Wells had some conversation with us respecting his fathers indebtedness and submitted a plan for the sale of the corner lot occupied at present by his father, from which, if all the lots could be sold as he had contemplated, something more than $50,000 could be raised, which would free his father from all outside indebtedness. It was suggested that he should enquire around and find what portions he could sell to members of the Church and report.
Sunday, April 22, 1883. Stormed very heavily this morning. I went to Ogden to attend conference there and had an excellent time. I spoke both morning and afternoon.
I examined the case of [first and last names redacted], who wanted to go on a mission to the United States to preach to the Germans. He had been accused of taking liberties with his pupils. He is a [1 word redacted] teacher. I got the Presidency of the Stake and Bro. [last name redacted], the head of the academy and the school Trustees together and learned from them the nature of the charges against Bro. [last name redacted]. I afterwards held a meeting with them at which he was present, and as I found that there was no time for me to examine into these charges I requested the Presidency of the Stake to have a meeting this evening at which Bro. [last name redacted] was to be present and at which the young ladies could also be present. It is evident that while there has nothing criminal come to light he has been taking undue familiarity with his pupils and is unfit, if these things be true, to teach any ladies, and certainly unfit to go on a mission. I dined at Bro. Shurtcliff’s, President of the Stake, and took supper at my son Frank’s with Bros F. D & F. S. Richards.
The President of the Stake submitted a number of questions to me respecting high Council matters, concerning which I gave him counsel.
I returned to Salt Lake that evening, and remained in town all night.
Monday April 23, 1883. At the Office. Bro. Shurtcliff reported the examination of the case of Bro. [first and last names redacted], the result being a confirmation of the reports that had been made concerning his conduct.
Brothers Brigham Young and Heber J. Grant returned this afternoon from their mission to Arizona and New Mexico. Presidents Taylor, Smith and myself had conversation respecting the purchase of Bro. Wells property. It was decided to offer Bro. Wells $40,000 in cash and his indebtedness against the Church for his corner lot. This would mean nearly $63,000. It was deemed better for the Church to secure this lot because of its proximity to the temple. If it were to be sold in small parcels it might fall into the hands of people who would put up buildings and establish branches of business that might be offensive.
Tuesday, April 24, 1883. A fierce east wind was blowing strongly this morning and has raged all night. Mr Isaac Brandt of [blank] and Mr W. B. Dean of St. Pauls, Minn., government inspectors of the U. P. Railroad, called at the Presidents Office this morning, and we had a very agreeable conversation with them. President Taylor invited them to dine with him, which they did. I was also present.
Bishop Taylor having rejected the proposed organization suggested by President Taylor we took the matter into further consideration today and President Taylor suggested that I have an interview with him, which I did. President Taylor and myself had further conversation upon the subject, and he decided upon a certain plan which he wished me to submit to Bishop Taylor. In the afternoon Bishop Taylor came up, and President Taylor with Bro. John Nuttall, James Jack and George Reynolds and myself had an interview in the Gardo House and talked over business arrangements
Wednesday, April 25, 1883. At the Office. It was decided to help the Saints at Beaver to purchase Fort Cameron buildings by advancing half the amount of the purchase money. The uses to which these buildings shall be put are to be decided hereafter. Bishop Thomas Taylor called and left a map of his iron claims, and also specimens of iron, coal and coke.
Met at the Endowment House at 2 oclock. Had an interesting meeting. It was decided that I should accompany Bishop Sharp, my brother Angus and F. A. Mitchell to visit the coal fields in Grass Creek Canyõn it being the design to meet Mr D. O. Clark who has charge of the coal interests of the Union Pacific Railroad Company. The company had claimed in place of agricultural lands some coal fields that belong to the Church and to my brother Angus and had obtained patents therefor from the government. Afterwards, when it appeared upon proof that these lands were coal lands, and were already in possession of these parties, the government had intimated its intention to vacate patents, and there was about to be a suit entered for this purpose. The object now is to have Mr Clark look at these mines with a view to yielding them or purchasing them if the Church should be willing. My brother Angus is quite willing to part with his share as he feels unable to carry it.
Thursday, April 26, 1883. I started this morning on Brother Sharp’s Directors car in company with the brethren named yesterday, and we spent the day in going to the end of the track in Grass Valley Canyõn and from there by vehicles to the old church coal bed as it is called. We were met at the end of the track by Brothers Cluff and Elderidge with two spring vehicles. We traveled with them about 2½ miles over very heavy roads. The wheels clogged up so much that they became one solid mass of mud. I did not go up to the bed as the climbing was very bad, but my brother Angus, Brother Cluff and Mr Clark went up there. The trip was a very interesting one. Bro. Sharp furnished us our meals on his car and we had a very pleasant time. I trust that the result may be an amicable arrangement between the claimants and the U. P. Co. for I think a law suit would be beneficial to neither party. I remained in town all night
Friday, April 27, 1883. At the Office. President Taylor has been absent the greater part of the day at Cottonwood in consequence of the death of a widow of his father – his plural wife, whose funeral he is arranging.
Dictated my journal to Brother Irvine.
Saturday, April 28 1883. At the Office attending to business. President Taylor was busy making arrangements for the funeral of his father’s wife to be held at the 14th Ward Assembly Rooms today. He desired me to be present and suggested that I should speak. The Meeting House was tolerably well filled at the hour of 2 oclock when the services commenced. I read a portion of the 9th Chap., of the Second Book of Nephi, and then commenced to speak to the people; but the recollection of my wife Elizabeth’s funeral which had taken place in this house during my absence, and this being the first time I had attempted to speak at a funeral since her death, caused such a flood of emotions to pass through me that I could not continue, and it was with difficulty that I could control my feelings. Finding that I could not obtain the necessary calmness to proceed I sat down and requested Brother Joseph F. Smith to speak which he did occupying the time until it was necessary for me to leave for the train going north, as I had an appointment at Brigham City. My wife Sarah Jane accompanied me. I had conversation on the train with Mr. Averil, Clerk of the Third District Court, and Mr. S. S. Stevens of the Rock Island Railroad. We took supper at my son Frank’s at Ogden and left by the Utah Northern a few minutes before 7 oclock. We were met at the station at Brigham by a buggy which had been sent down by Brother Snow, and we were kindly entertained by him at his new brick residence. Brother Franklin D. Richards was also his guest and Brother and Sister Woodruff were at one of the other houses of Bro Snow, the house of his wife Phebie, their daughter
Sunday, April 29th 1883. We held two meetings today (in Brigham City) and I enjoyed them very much. The house was crowded to overflowing. I occupied the greater part of the forenoon, the brethren having all spoken yesterday, and was followed by Bro. F. D. Richards in testimony. The people listened to my remarks with intense interest, and Bro. Richards felt reluctant to say anything to break the influence of what had been said, but bore his testimony. In the afternoon Bro. Woodruff spoke, and I followed for about half an hour. The weather is beautiful and I have enjoyed this trip very much. This evening was spent in conversation upon various principles, particularly the principle of adoption. The brethren were solicitous that I should give them my views respecting that, which I did in a way that surprised myself, there being ideas given to me that I had not thought about before. Bro. Lorin Farr spent part of the evening with us he having come up on the train with me last night.
Monday, April 30, 1883. We left Brigham City at 6.50 A.M. Upon reaching Ogden we went to my son Franks where we found my sister Mary Alice and her husband Charles Lambert, and a sister of my father’s, Eleanor Cannon, whose married name is May. She is the sole survivor of that family that we know of and is 77 years old. They have just come in by the emigrant company from England. Sister May has been a member of the Church since President Taylor’s mission to England, she having joined about the time that my mother did, but has never gathered. She is now feeble and aged, and I little thought she would gather. But my Aunt [blank] her eldest sister had a manifestation many years ago that her sister [blank] would come to this Valley, and now it is fulfilled. They accompanied us to the city. My aunt went to my Sisters. We were met at Ogden by my brother Angus and my son Abraham.
At the Office. President Taylor read a revelation to me which he had received respecting the iron mines of Bro. Thomas Taylor, in which we were told that the Presidency were not to contract debts unless commanded of the Lord to do so. I had conversation with Bishop Taylor respecting the matter, but he manifested no disposition to accept the suggestions made in the revelation, but at my request he said he would wait till morning before giving any definite answer.
Attended a reception (accompanied by my wife Eliza) this evening at the White House, the old home of President Brigham Young, whose grandson, B. S. son of Brigham and Kity Spencer Young, was married today to Miss Claridge, and they held a reception at which President Taylor, myself, Bro. H. J. Grant, and a large company, particularly of young people, were present. Everything was in fine style, and the evening passed very agreeably, a fine supper having been prepared.