Tuesday, April 1st, 1890. The First Presidency met at 10 o’clock and at 3 o’clock with the shareholders of Z.C.M.I., the object of the meeting being to come to some conclusion concerning the increasing of the capital stock of the institution. Considerable conversation ensued, and a resolution was introduced by Brother Barnes that we should not increase the capital stock, and that we should sell the Logan branch store and our surplus real estate. This motion was seconded by Brother James Sharp. Brother P. T. Farnsworth made an amendment to the motion. I had sat very quietly in the meeting until this motion was put, and I spoke against it. I thought it was not a good thing to decide to close out the Logan store at the present time and to depend upon its sale to increase our business capacity. I said I was in favor of selling the surplus real estate; but I proposed that a committee be appointed to examine the whole question and find out what our needs were, and decide whether it will be better to sell new stock or to borrow money. This was finally adopted, and Geo. Romney, Jas. Sharp, T. W. Jennings, Henry Dinwoodey and W. H. Rowe were appointed as a committee, with Heber J. Grant and T. G. Webber as ex officio members on the committee, and a meeting was appointed to hear their report at 10 o’clock on the 8th.
We had a meeting today with the Presiding Bishopric concerning an indebtedness of Brother John W. Young’s, consisting of $15750.00, which he had to pay or lose the land that he had purchased in Mexico. He was very desirous that Zion’s Savings Bank should advance him this money, but it was felt that this would be imprudent. It was thought by the First Presidency that it would be well for the Church to advance this and take this Mexican property as security, because the part of the land that we had bought from Brother Young could not be made secure, as it was not in his power to make title unless he made this payment. So I moved that the Church borrow the money and let him have it, and take all the Mexican land as security.
Elders Abel, McCune and Bailey, missionaries to the Samoan Islands, called and we gave them some instructions, and Brother Jos. F. Smith and myself set Brother Abel apart, Brother Smith being mouth. We had an interview with J. P. Meacham and wife, of Grantsville, regarding some family troubles.
My sons David and Lewis accompanied me home.
Wednesday, April 2nd, 1890. Brother Evan Stephens proposed to the First Presidency this morning, by letter, the holding of three concerts in the Tabernacle during the month of May. His plan struck us very favorably; but in order that we might know whether it was a safe operation, in view of the law concerning houses for religious worship, we requested him to see our attorneys and consult with them upon that point.
We had an interview with Brother Arthur Stayner concerning the sugar interests, and appointed a meeting for Monday, April 7th, at 10 o’clock, in the 14th Ward meeting house, for the Presidents of Stakes and others interested.
At 1 o’clock we met with Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co.
My Brother David has called in for the past two or three days.
I dictated my journal to Brother Winter.
Thursday, April 3rd, 1890. This has been a very busy day with the First Presidency at the office.
The teachings of Elder Wm. M. Palmer were called to our attention some time ago, and it was suggested that the Presidency and High Council of this Stake take his teachings and have him explain his views concerning them. They have done this and have drawn up a document, prepared by a committee of the Council, setting forth the errors in his teachings. It is thought better not to publish this document, but to have something said in the newspaper regarding his errors, so that the people might not be misled, and that the notice of his incorrect teachings might receive as wide a publicity as the notices which have appeared concerning his discourses; for he has been very much advertized.
President Woodruff and myself attended a meeting of the stockholders of Z.C.M.I. at 1 o’clock.
Afterwards we had an interview with Mr. O’Brien and Col. Murrin, democrats, who called upon us to lay before us the importance of making a Democratic organization before this coming election in August. They said there was no doubt but we should be defeated by the same tactics that had brought about our defeat in the city election; but they thought that by carrying out plans which they had to suggest, the “ring” here could be overthrown. Their plan was to organize a Central Democratic Committee and to have Democratic clubs throughout the city. They said that nothing could be done without our people joined in this; but if we did, there was no doubt in their minds concerning its success. They said the present operations were in favor of the Republican party. They want to checkmate this. The People’s Party was looked upon as a union of Church and State, and it was necessary to change this in order to have such an affiliation as ought to exist to give success. There are a great many democrats who have come into the Territory who do not sympathize with what is called the Liberal Party, nor their methods, nor their aims; and they could be organized into a Democratic party, and it would be sure to carry the coming County election.
President Woodruff left me to do the most of the talking with them, as they had intimated that they had come to see me. He said that he had turned over the politics to me. I told them that we had considered this question quite seriously, but it was surrounded by danger. It might be very easy for us to divide, and those who had Democratic inclinations join the Democrats, and others join the Republicans. We would divide ourselves, but would our opponents divide? Would not the anti-Mormon feeling be stronger in their ranks than their love for the national party, under the circumstances? I brought forward the condition of affairs in Idaho to illustrate this. The Democrats and Republicans had united in an anti-Mormon party and had cordially agreed to do everything they could to deprive our people of all their rights as citizens. I mentioned the names of a number. And, turning to this Territory, I mentioned the fact that our leading opponents here are Democrats. Powers, Baskin, Rosborough, Webb, West and many others were all Democrats; yet they were the ringleaders in the proceedings against us. These gentlemen said they would not have anything to do with such men as them in the formation of these clubs and the organization of the party.
We had considerable conversation on the subject, and we told them that we would consider the question.
At 2 o’clock the First Presidency and Elders L. Snow, F. D. Richards, J. H. Smith, H. J. Grant and A. H. Cannon met in the circle. My son Abraham was mouth in prayer, and I was mouth in the circle.
Friday, April 4th, 1890. I drove to the Gardo House this morning, and then rode with President Woodruff in his carriage to the Tabernacle.
The 60th Annual Conference opened today.
There was a tolerably good attendance in the morning, which was largely increased in the afternoon.
President Woodruff made some opening remarks, and then called upon Brothers John Morgan, Jacob Gates, B. H. Roberts and Jos. E. Taylor.
In the afternoon, Elders J. W. Young, A. H. Cannon, A. H. Lund and M. W. Merrill occupied the time. President Woodruff made a few closing remarks.
Saturday, April 5th, 1890. Conference again convened at 10 o’clock. The speakers were Elders John W. Taylor, H. J. Grant, John H. Smith, F. M. Lyman and Moses Thatcher. Brother Taylor’s remarks were of a peculiar character. He confessed that his mind had been occupied with temporal things for a long time past, and that he did not have the spirit of his calling when he permitted himself to be engrossed in those affairs. Brother Moses Thatcher, in his remarks, conveyed the idea that it was quite proper for men to engage in temporal things. He cited the instance of President Young encouraging the brethren to engage in banks, in Z.C.M.I. &c, and also quoted Abraham as having been a wealthy man, and Solomon and David. While speaking, he said that if he was engaged in any business that the Presidency did not approve of he would be glad to be sent on a mission or be counseled to throw such business aside. While he was making these remarks, President Woodruff leaned over and said, “if Brother Thatcher had felt this way three weeks ago it would have saved me a great many sorrowful feelings, for I have been trying to get him to do as I wanted him for some time past.”
In the afternoon there was a very large attendance; the galleries were opened and well filled. President L. Snow and myself occupied the greater portion of the time. President Woodruff made a few remarks after I got through, and the authorities were presented to the Conference, also the report of the Relief Societies and the Church Schools. The authorities were unanimously sustained.
Between the meetings today the First Presidency, the Apostles and the Seven Presidents of Seventies who were in the city held a meeting at the Gardo House, to take into consideration the filling of the vacancy in the First Seven Presidents of Seventies which was created by the selection of Abraham H. Cannon to be one of the Twelve Apostles, at our last Conference. After some conversation upon the subject, Brother F. D. Richards moved, and it was seconded by Brother Jos. F. Smith, that Brother Geo. Reynolds be selected for this position. I had told the brethren before this motion was made what had occurred during the days of President Taylor. Brother Reynolds had then been proposed for this office; but President Taylor thought that he needed his services, as he was engaged in writing some works and Brother Reynolds was his amanuensis. The vote was unanimous in favor of him, and in the presentation of the general authorities his name was submitted to and unanimously sustained by the Conference.
After this, the question as to what course we should pursue in political matters came up and was discussed very freely, without, however, coming to any resolution upon the subject, though President Woodruff expressed himself as being opposed in his feelings to the organization of the national political parties among us.
After the afternoon meeting the Twelve Apostles were invited by the First Presidency to meet with them at the Gardo House, and Brother Reynolds was present also. The object of this meeting was to submit to them the change of policy that we had felt led to consider connected with our inheritances. President Woodruff desired me to explain to the brethren the object of our calling them together. Before doing so, I asked them all if they would covenant to keep this to themselves, unless they were permitted by the First Presidency to communicate it, to which they all responded. There were present, of the Apostles, L. Snow, F. D. Richards, Moses Thatcher, F. M. Lyman, J. H. Smith, H. J. Grant, M. W. Merrill, A. H. Lund and A. H. Cannon. Of these, L. Snow, H. J. Grant and A. H. Cannon had been informed concerning this before. I explained to the brethren in as clear a manner as I could what we had considered and what we had decided upon. Remarks were made by one and another, but all expressed themselves that it was wise policy, and that they accepted it as from the Lord, and a vote was taken to that effect.
At 7 o’clock in the evening a priesthood meeting was held in the Tabernacle. The body of the house was about two-thirds filled. President Woodruff desired me to take charge of the meeting. I called upon Elder Karl G. Maeser to make a report concerning our Church schools. He was followed by Elder Jas. E. Talmage. Both spoke in an interesting manner and brought the subject of the Church schools plainly before us. At President Woodruff’s request I followed and enjoyed a goodly flow of the Spirit in talking to the brethren about Church schools and other matters connected therewith. President Woodruff then made a few remarks, bearing testimony to what had been said.
My son Lewis drove me down home.
Sunday, April 6th, 1890. Sixty years ago the Church of Christ was organized in these last days.
The Tabernacle this morning was crowded to its utmost capacity; many hundreds could not get into the building.
President Woodruff and Elder F. D. Richards occupied the time, and both spoke excellently. Brother Richards has been sick for some time and scarcely felt able to say anything, but he was wonderfully strengthened, and it was remarked that seldom had he spoken so loudly and so well as on this occasion.
It was announced that an overflow meeting would be held in the Assembly Hall this afternoon. The sacrament was administered in both places this afternoon. In the Tabernacle President Woodruff pressed me to speak and occupy all the time I desired. I spoke about an hour and a quarter, and he spoke 10 minutes, afterwards. In the Assembly Hall the speakers were, C. W. Penrose, M. W. Merrill, J. M. Tanner and O. F. Whitney.
In the evening a Sunday school meeting was held. The house was filled. There were a number of speakers, and we had quite an interesting time. I occupied about 10 mins.
Monday, April 7th, 1890. President Woodruff and myself and the Twelve attended a meeting of the Presidents of Stakes in the 13th Ward meeting house.
Elder F. D. Richards spoke in regard to the census, and afterwards Elder
Arthur Stayner presented the sugar interests. A number of important subjects were touched upon, the speakers being President Woodruff and Elders Richards, Thatcher and myself, as well as Brother Stayner.
At 12:30 we met with the Presidents of Stakes from Idaho and conversed on the political situation and gave them counsel suited to their condition. At 2 o’clock we met with the First Seven Presidents of Seventies and took into consideration the question of remuneration for them. They were instructed to report individually what each thought he would need to enable him to attend to the duties of his office and sustain his family.
At 3 o’clock we had a meeting of the General Board of Education, and the Board of this Stake met with us. We appropriated $1450. to assist the college here.
We had a lengthy interview with Brother and Sister Meacham concerning their domestic troubles. Brother Aroet Hale was also present.
Tuesday, April 8th, 1890. We had a three hours meeting this morning of the shareholders of Z.C.M.I. at the Gardo House. All the First Presidency were present. After a lengthy discussion concerning the proposition to enlarge the stock, which the First Presidency and several of the Apostles favored, it was discovered that all our talk was useless, because we could not secure a two-thirds vote. I felt annoyed, because our time had been wasted in discussing a proposition which was impracticable.
At 3 o’clock the First Presidency met with the Assessors and Collectors of several counties and Brothers F. S. Richards and J. H. Moyle, to consider the revenue law. The brethren expressed themselves as being much gratified at the result of the meeting. The law seemed to them a hard one, but it having been explained to them by Brother F. S. Richards they saw it in a light they had not considered before.
Wednesday, April 9th, 1890. Yesterday morning Brother John W. Young came down to my house while I was at breakfast and I rode with him to town in his buggy. He explained his wishes to me concerning his wife Luella. Brother Young is broken down and humbled in a way that I have never seen him before. His wife and himself had an interview with President Woodruff yesterday. They wished me to be present; but as Brother Jos. F. Smith could not be I deemed it better to withdraw and leave President Woodruff with them. John W. wept after <the> meeting. He came and embraced me and begged me not to push him aside, but to sympathize with him and feel kindly towards him. He said his troubles were almost more than he could bear. He desired to have the opportunity of coming and speaking to me about it. I encouraged him all I could.
This morning Brother John W. Taylor called while I was at breakfast and I rode with him to town, as he wished to have some conversation with me. He recalled to my mind a remark which I had made to him a week or two ago, in a conversation which he had had with the First Presidency, concerning the appropriation by the B.B.&C. Co. of $130000. to pay Brother Beck. I stated that $80000. of this had been paid to him in excess of what I thought was due to him, and I believed it was to secure his friendship. It seems that this remark lodged in his mind, and he has turned it over and over until he says he has become very miserable and almost gone wild about it, and felt that he could not partake of the sacrament because of it. I listened to him patiently for half the distance between my house and the city. I then asked him, “Had you anything to do, Brother John, with appropriating that money to John Beck?” He replied, No, he did not have. “Did I accuse you of having anything to do with it?” Well, he said, he thought my remarks applied to him, as he had consented to it. I told him that I did not think he had any more to do with it than I had, as he was not a member of the company. Well, he said, he thought that I meant to reflect upon his honesty by this remark. I told him that I had no such thought in my mind. He talked a great deal upon this subject and seemed to be wonderfully worked up because of it. I then asked him if he thought that his conduct in voting against my having any representation, through my stock, on the Board of Directors, when I owned more than one-fifth of the property, was right. He said, No, he did not think it was right; but they were engaged in a war and he wanted to be prepared for it. I said, “Do you mean by that to convey the idea that you are going to war against me, or that I was opposed to you?” He said the impression was that I favored the California Co. I replied I favored them enough to pay them what was due to them, but beyond that I had no communication in any form with them. I said that I had not had any feelings on this subject, because I felt that in excluding my sons from representing my stock on the Board it would be a good thing for me, as it would enable me to stand aloof. But, I said, you have entertained suspicions concerning me which you now find to be unjust, and you have done me a wrong, you admit, in voting against my having a representative on the Board. It appears strange to me, Brother John, I said, that you should feel so terrible bad about a remark that was made to you that was not intended for you - so bad that you could not partake of the sacrament, and yet you could have no feelings about the wrongs you had been doing me. Now, it seems to me, I said, that a person should be more sensitive about the wrongs he himself commits to others than about the wrongs that others commit to him, and if you are going to refrain from eating the sacrament at all, it would be because of wrongs that you had done. I showed him I had no desire to reflect on his honesty, for I did not think he was anything but an honest man.
When we reached the Gardo House, I told him I thought that as the Twelve were going to meet he had better before meeting with them see Presidents Woodruff and Smith.
I learned from him that his object in seeing me was that the Twelve had met the previous evening and he had told his feelings to President Snow and the other brethren, and they had told him that he must make the matter right with me. In fact, I afterwards learned from President Snow that he and the Twelve had said that Brother Taylor could not meet with them nor partake of the sacrament till he had made this matter right; they could not have one of their number entertain such feelings against the First Presidency as he did.
He came in to the Gardo House with me, and had quite a long conversation with Presidents Woodruff and Smith. Brother Jos. F. Smith spoke with the greatest plainness to him concerning his conduct in rejecting the counsel of President Woodruff. He told him that he had always been taught from childhood that it was the duty of the Elders of this Church to listen to the counsels of the man of God who stood at the head; but he, Moses Thatcher and Bishop Preston had deliberately refused to obey that counsel and he thought it was very wrong. After a good deal of conversation, Brother Taylor felt very humble and asked if he could go now and meet with the Twelve, and he was told he could. He then withdrew.
At 10:30 President Woodruff and myself attended a stockholder’s meeting of Z.C.M.I. at the shoe factory. This meeting had been advertized according to the requirements of the law, for the purpose of deciding whether the capital stock of the institution should be increased or not. There were not quite 2900 shares represented at this meeting, and, of course, no business could be done, as it required 6667 shares to be present to take action on the proposition.
At 12:30 we had an interesting meeting with Col. Trumbo and talked over the situation of affairs here. Brother H. B. Clawson was with him. We also had another interview with him later on in the day.
At 1:30 we had a meeting of the Board of Directors of Zion’s Savings Bank, and at 2:15 with the Directors of Z.C.M.I. At this meeting Brother T. G. Webber was given authority to appoint an Assistant Superintendent. It was understood that he would select Brother Wm. H. Rowe, and Brother Rowe’s salary was increased to $400. per month, and Brother Webber’s to $500.
Thursday, April 10th, 1890. The First Presidency had a long conversation with Prest. F. A. Hammond, of the San Juan Stake, concerning the situation of the bill before Congress to make San Juan County an Indian Reservation for the Utes that were now in Colorado. He reported his labors in Washington and the situation of affairs, and we gave him counsel accordingly.
President Lorenzo Snow came in while Bishop Preston was in the office, and we had considerable conversation concerning our temporal affairs and the best method of managing. I have felt greatly impressed for some time that we should condense our tithing affairs and adapt ourselves to the changed condition in which we are now placed. The manner in which we have done our business excites the cupidity of our enemies. They see a great display and imagine that we are much more wealthy than we are. I have remarked several times that I thought it imprudent to have large warehouses filled with grain and corrals filled with cattle, hay, &c, or places where great quantities of vegetables are supposed to be stored; for frequently we make a much larger show in buildings than we do in contents. Our tithing can still be kept in kind, but instead of paying out so much for caring for it, &c, it would seem wisdom on our part to get it conveyed to market as soon as possible and disposed of for money. This could be done without attracting so much attention and occupying such large premises as we now do. Our tithing yards in this city are advertized as places for tourists to visit, and it is part of the round of the hack drivers to carry visiting strangers all through our yards, pointing out our buildings and describing to suit themselves our methods of handling tithing. We have about two acres of land now occupied as tithing premises, and it has become very valuable, and being in such close proximity to the centre of the city it is unsuitable. There does not seem to be the necessity for this being continued. Better for us to have as little realty as possible, so that we shall not be exposing ourselves to attack and provoking attempts to escheat it under the law; and instead of having large herds of cattle and flocks of sheep, it seems to me that it would be far better for us to dispose of them, and in this way avoid attracting so much attention to our system of tithing.
We conversed with Bishop Preston upon this and told him that these were the views of the First Presidency upon this question. I dictated a letter, for the First Presidency to sign, conveying these ideas, to the Presiding Bishops.
Brother Lorenzo Snow spent some time with the First Presidency this morning relating to us what had been done in the meeting of the Twelve. He said that he had called the Twelve together; for he felt that it was necessary that they should meet together and endeavor to have more union in their midst than he thought existed. He said he dreaded the meeting very much, but he spoke for 45 mins. with a great deal of power. He never had felt the spirit of his office upon him stronger than he did on that occasion, and all the brethren felt very much softened.
But, he said, a bombshell was thrown into their midst by Brother John W. Taylor, who proceeded to state feelings that he had against me for expressions which I had made and many other things; said he would be damned if he would submit to them. Brother Snow said he was very much shocked to hear it, and he talked to him with exceeding plainness, and told him that he could not fellowship such a spirit, and that Brother Taylor could not partake of the sacrament with them nor be with them while he had such feelings against any of the First Presidency, and he must make this matter right. In this he was sustained by the rest of the Twelve. He said that the First Presidency were united, and they were an example to the Twelve. He desired to have the Twelve united together, and also with the First Presidency.
From what I have learned Brother Snow spoke with unusual strictness and a severity that is scarcely ever witnessed on his part.
It was this that prompted Brother Taylor to come and visit me yesterday morning.
When he returned to the meeting of the Twelve he acknowledged that he had been in error, that he had misunderstood me, and that he had no foundation for making the remarks which he did.
The Twelve spent the time from morning until nearly midnight, with the exception of one hour, in meeting. They confessed their sins one to another, partook of the sacrament, and dressed in their temple clothing and prayed. Brother Snow felt that great good had been done and was very much encouraged. It was his intention to hold meetings occasionally, when opportunity offered, and continue the work of reformation.
We were greatly pleased at hearing his report. It gave me exceeding great gratification; for I have prayed very earnestly that we might all be brought to see, in the light of the Holy Spirit, our own characters and faults. I am not afraid when myself or my brethren have the Spirit of the Lord. I know it will enlighten our minds and will make us soft and pliable in matters of duty and in all things pertaining to righteousness; and I ask for no greater blessing to descend upon myself or my brethren than to have the outpouring of the Spirit of God upon us. I have suffered very much in my feelings from things that have been said and done since the death of President Taylor. But all I desire is that my brethren may see themselves in their true light, and see me in my true light. I want the Lord to show me my own faults, at least, so that I can repent; for I know I have many of them, and I do not desire to have any spirit of self-justification.At 2 o’clock the First Presidency and Elders L. Snow, F. D. Richards, Moses Thatcher, F. M. Lyman, John H. Smith, H. J. Grant, A. H. Cannon and J. W. Young met in the circle. Brother Lyman was mouth in prayer and Brother Thatcher in the circle. The question about selling the theatre came up and I gave my views concerning it. I felt very strongly opposed in my feelings to this property going out of our hands into the hands of outsiders, and I suggested that an effort be made to keep it. Brother John W. Young seconded this movement, and Brother Heber J. Grant, in whose hands the matter is, also felt aroused and thought that by a united exertion the property might be saved.
I dictated my journal to Brother Winter, and joined with Brothers Jos. F. Smith, F. M. Lyman and F. A. Mitchell in setting apart Brother Rasmus M. Hansen to labor in Josepa. Brother Smith was mouth.
I stayed this evening at the Gardo House until my children called for me to go with them to the theatre to see a play called “The Gold Mine”. President Woodruff met me as I was going into my box and invited me to sit with him and Sister Woodruff and his son Owen. My children, Mary Alice, David, Emily and Sylvester and my nephew Lewis M. Cannon, occupied my box. The entertainment was a very delightful one and we all enjoyed it very much.
Friday, April 11th, 1890. I am troubled a great deal for the want of somebody to look after my affairs. My own time is so entirely engrossed with the duties of my office that I do not get any time whatever to look after my own business. I have a gardener employed and he is entailing a great deal of expense upon me because I have not time to check him and to direct his labor. It is so concerning my horses and cattle and my affairs generally. If I had time to attend to them I could save a great deal.
My brother David met with the First Presidency this morning and gave us his views concerning the closing of the St. George Temple for three weeks out of every month. He thought it would not be attended with good results. He suggested that the saints of the District should be stirred up to the importance of attending to ordinances for the dead. He said very little was said to the saints upon this subject and they were careless upon it. It was decided that a letter should be written to the Presidents of the Stakes composing that Temple District, calling their attention to this subject, and that Brothers J. D. T. McAllister and David H. Cannon should go around and visit the various Stakes as opportunity afforded.
My brother David and his wife returned today to their home in St. George. Prest. E. D. Woolley, of the Kanab Stake, represented the losses they had suffered through floods, and $5000. was appropriated to assist in building the academy and meeting house, which Brother Woolley thought would be the best method in which to appropriate it, as he could by that means accomplish both objects that he had in view—the building of the meeting house and the erection of the dam.
We listened to a great many letters the remainder of the afternoon. We held a meeting of the Board of Directors at Zion’s Savings Bank and decided to recommend the increase of our capital stock one hundred thousand dollars more and to credit the Reserve Fund with two hundred thousand dollars; in other words, the present stockholders own one hundred thousand dollars in capital stock and have one hundred thousand dollars in earnings, and by selling a thousand shares at two hundred dollars each, we could add another hundred thousand dollars to capital stock and another hundred thousand dollars to Reserve Fund, making altogether four hundred thousand dollars, half in stock and half in reserve.
In the evening I attended with my daughter Hester a surprise birthday party at Brother John McDonald’s. President Woodruff was also there and a number of other friends. A very excellent supper was provided, and we enjoyed ourselves very much until half past ten, when I withdrew.
Saturday, April 12th, 1890. Attended to various items of business which required my personal attention. I was able to do this as Presidents Woodruff and Smith were absent. I also dictated letters to Brother Winter, some of a public nature, and also my journal.
Sunday, April 13th, 1890. I drove to meeting in company with my sons David and Lewis and my daughters Hester and Amelia. Elders Wm. Spry and A. H. Cannon addressed the congregation and we had a very good meeting. I drove home and took dinner, and at half past six held meeting with the saints in the 3rd Ward, of which Brother Weiler is the Bishop. My daughters Hester, Amelia and Emily were with me, and my son Abraham also. Brother Jos. E. Taylor was there for the purpose of presenting the local authorities of the Ward. He presented them all and they were unanimously sustained, after which I occupied the time and enjoyed much of the Spirit.
Monday, April 14th, 1890. I had an interview with one of President Young’s wives, Sister [last name redacted], concerning a young man that is living with her by the name of [first and last name redacted]—a dissipated, bad man, whom she has brought up from childhood, but whose conduct has become such that we are appealed to, as Trustees, to have him taken out of the house, which he disgraces by his conduct, he having gone so far as to take a prostitute into his bedroom and slept with her. How many times this has been done we do not know, but once at least, which Sister Young admitted she knew about. She cried a good deal, as she feels very badly for the man; but we told her that there was no course before us but to have him put out of the house.
Bishop R. T. Burton came in to bring to our attention propositions which were made to him to buy the notes and mortgage which had been given by Thomas Taylor on the Iron Manufacturing Co’s property to settle up the interest which the Trustee-in-Trust and myself had in that property. I hold $10000. interest in that, having paid the money for it, but I have no evidence of it in my possession, the whole of the notes being drawn in Brother W. B. Preston’s favor, it having been thought by President Taylor and myself safer to have it in that shape, not as a Bishop, but as an individual. I proposed to President Woodruff and the brethren present – there being present, Brothers Brigham Young, R. T. Burton, James Jack and Geo. Reynolds – that I would give $15000. in cash; which would clear up the whole amount. The brethren all thought that this was a very good proposition for the Church and said they would accept it.
Tuesday, April 15th, 1890. Brother C. H. Wilcken, a part of whose family is living on my farm which I bought from Brother C. D. Haun, it being a good place for an “underground” wife to live at, desired to have us visit the farm, and arranged to have a dinner got up for the occasion. President Woodruff and wife, President Jos. F. Smith and wife, Elder Brigham Young and wife, and myself and wife, formed the party. He took Brothers Smith and Young out last night after dark, and my wife Sarah Jane arranged to go in President’s Woodruff carriage with him and his wife, so as to avoid any danger of attack from my enemies. The distance is about 15 miles. The weather was pleasant and we had a very enjoyable time. Brother Wilcken furnished a most excellent meal. We returned in the evening. While we were there we had a lengthy interview with Brother Archibald Gardner, who related to us the condition of affairs in Star Valley, Wyoming, where he had spent the winter and had built a saw and grist mill.
Wednesday, April 16th, 1890. It was decided to render the people of Star Valley assistance in the shape of seed grain, and Bp. Winder was instructed to arrange with Brother Budge, president of the Bear Lake Stake, for the grain to be obtained in that Stake.
At 1 o’clock we held a meeting of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co, and at 3 o’clock I had a meeting with the Deseret News Co.
The following telegram was received:
“House Committee on Territories this morning took up new disfranchisement bill and amended it by strict party vote, making it applicable to all the Territories. Further action is deferred until Wednesday, when Judge Wilson and all the delegates will appear against it. Judging by the action of today, the Republican policy determined upon is to report the bill favorably to the House of Representatives and rush it through on the first call of the House Committee on Territories. Baskin, Thomas and West are still here and apparently working together. Have you any suggestions?”
It is evidently the determination of at least a portion of the Republican party, if not the determined policy of the party, to disfranchise every Mormon. Many of them are pretty well satisfied that we are inclined to be Democratic in our political tendency.
Thursday, April 17th, 1890. We were gratified this morning to learn that E. H. Parsons had been confirmed as Marshal of the Territory. There has been a very severe fight made upon him for some time past and we have been doing what we could to have him confirmed. Our enemies wanted a man that would be their tool in carrying out their infamous designs against us. Parsons is not a favorite of theirs.
We had a meeting today with my brother Angus concerning real estate in his hands which might be wanted in the event of our being dispossessed of our tithing lot in this city, for offices for the Presiding Bishops. Angus told us that all that he had was at our disposal, and whatever we wished done with the lot in question he was ready to have done.
At 2 o’clock we had the usual meeting. There were present, besides the First Presidency, Elders John H. Smith, A. H. Cannon and John W. Young.
My wife Carlie returned today from California, where she has been on a visit for two or three weeks with her mother and sisters. She is greatly improved in health and has enjoyed her visit very much. She says that my friends there treated her with great respect and rendered her every attention.
Friday, April 18th, 1890. The First Presidency this morning communicated to Elder B. Young the change of policy we had felt led to adopt in counseling the saints concerning land matters, and he fully acquiesced in our views. Elder Brigham Solomon came in. He has just returned from the Samoan Islands, where he has been absent about six months. His health failed so much that it was felt that unless there was a speedy change he could not live. His health is very poor now, but he has improved since arriving here. His father accompanied him on his visit to us.
The First Presidency conversed upon the propriety of having some method adopted by which we could obtain information concerning the doings of the wicked in our midst, and it was felt that if we could have a secret detective service, known to only a very few, it would be very advantageous to us under present circumstances. Our sources of information have been almost entirely cut off by the change that has taken place through the election, and we must take some steps to obtain a knowledge of that which is transpiring in our midst in order to act intelligently and to preserve ourselves against the malign influences that are operating here.
We also made up our minds to make a visit to the settlements in Arizona and Mexico, and President Woodruff desired me to get up an itinerary of the journey.
I dictated my journal to Brother Arthur Winter.
Saturday, April 19th, 1890. The First Presidency were at the Gardo House today. Brothers Jos. F. Smith and Moses Thatcher had a consultation concerning the value of three thousand shares of stock in the B. B. & C. Co. which had been distributed to the heirs of President John Taylor. It seems that in the settlement with the California people these three thousand shares belonged to them; but as they had been distributed it was agreed that an arbitration should be held as to their value, and then President Taylor’s heirs either turn over the stock or the amount at which they were valued, to the California people. I considered this another method of evading the honest payment of what was due to these California people; because if the family had any choice in the matter and could elect which they should do, either pay the stock or the money, after arbitration, they certainly could do that before arbitration, and these shares clearly belonged to the California people and ought, in my opinion, to be surrendered to them without question. I may be wrong, but I am inclined to think that this method has been resorted to in order to keep as much back of these shares as possible, so as to be sure to retain the controlling interest in the Co. Brother Thatcher had been selected by Brother Hyde and others of the Taylor heirs, and the California Co. had selected Brother Jos. F. Smith as arbitrators. If they could not agree, they were to select an umpire. The disagreement today as to the value was very wide. Brother Thatcher claimed that $4. per share was all that they were worth; while Brother Smith placed them at $15. per share. At $15. per share they have paid an interest of 12½% during the last three years, and part of this time the property has been very badly managed. There is no doubt in my mind that, with proper management, judging by what I hear, the property will yield 20 % at $15. per share, and perhaps more.
I explained to Presidents Woodruff and Smith my views concerning the establishing of a college or university here under the direction of the Church Board of Education, and the calling of Brother Willard Young to the presidency of the college, and the creation of an ample foundation fund and the appointment of Brother John W. Young to the mission of raising this fund. They both agreed that it would be a good thing, and thought that whatever steps necessary to be taken to secure this ought to be taken.
I explained also to Brother Jos. F. Smith conversation that had taken place between Bp. Burton, President Woodruff and myself concerning my interest in the notes and mortgage held by Bp. W. B. Preston on the Iron Manfg. Co property. Brother Smith knew that I had ten thousand dollars in cash in that, and I told him that I proposed to yield all claim to that, on condition that I should be credited with that amount on the twenty five thousand dollars advanced to me to meet my bond, and in addition I should pay fifteen thousand dollars in cash as soon as possible. Brother Smith said he was quite willing to accept that. Brother Brigham Young, who was also present, stated that he recollected distinctly President Taylor telling a number of the Twelve and they voted upon the question of my surrender. President Taylor related what the Lord had revealed to him and the method by which this bond should be met; that I was not to pay it individually. He therefore thought that there was no claim upon me to pay it; for the Twelve acquiesced in President Taylor’s view concerning this matter and accepted the word of the Lord through him in relation to my not surrendering myself.
A meeting of the stockholders of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co. was held today, and after a lengthy interchange of views, it was decided to increase the capital stock one hundred thousand dollars, and in order that the new stockholders might have the same interest as the old stockholders they were to contribute one hundred thousand dollars to a reserve fund, which would make each share worth $200. This would give us a capital of two hundred thousand dollars and a reserve fund of two hundred thousand dollars. A motion was made, in accordance with the suggestion that I made, that the small stockholders should have the opportunity of increasing their stock. To this my brother Angus expressed strong dissent. He did not wish to be discriminated against and he thought it wrong. I said if the stock was to be increased by the old stockholders taking all the stock, I was opposed to any increase of stock and should vote for a reconsideration of the vote by which it had been decided to increase the stock. I objected strenuously to the large stockholders having more stock in the bank than they now held. His son Geo. M. Cannon took the same view that I did and seconded the motion that was made. After considerable talk my brother Angus withdrew his opposition and it was carried.
I went to the train at 5 o’clock to go to Ogden, and was accompanied by my son David and daughter Mary Alice and granddaughter Louisa C. Cannon, John Q’s daughter. Sister E. B. Wells was also on the train. It was John Q’s birthday, and we went up at his invitation to eat dinner with him. I had a very pleasant time.
Sunday, April 20th, 1890. I took the 9:30 train this morning for Layton. Brother Franklin D. Richards, at my invitation, went with me. His health is still somewhat feeble, though he is greatly improved. At Layton we were met by Brother Wm. Nalder, who carried us in his carriage to the house of the Bishop, Daniel Harris. This is a new ward and is called the 2nd Ward of Kaysville. It covers a large area of country, and it has been felt for some time that a new ward should be created. Brother Smith, the Prest. of the Stake, some two years ago, under instructions, he says, from one of the Twelve, submitted the question to the people as to who they would have for a Bishop, and told them that if they should select a mean man they would have to bear him. The result was that at a meeting the majority of the votes were cast for Brother Wm. Nalder. Some, however, did not vote for him; but Brother Smith thought the vote was as near unanimous as he could have expected. Before Brother Nalder’s name was submitted, however, a petition was sent to the Presidency of the Stake against his appointment. When that petition was sent in, another petition was sent in favor of his appointment. There was only one name more on the one petition than on the other, the ward being about equally divided. In consequence of this the Presidency of the Stake thought that the people were not in a condition to be organized, being so divided, and the matter passed off until last summer, when the question was again submitted to the people for them to choose. There were four candidates. Brother Nalder this time had about five votes less than a man by the name of Alexander Dawson. As Dawson had the most votes of the four, it was then decided that Alexander Dawson should be the Bishop. But it was afterwards stated that there had been some wireworking to get votes for him, and Brother Daniel Harris, Brother Nalder and another brother went to the Presidency of the Stake and protested against the ordination of Brother Dawson until this matter could be investigated. Brother Nalder’s reason, as he stated, for taking this course was that he had been approached in a similar manner, and he had protested against the brethren doing any such thing; and he felt that if Brother Dawson secured the election in the same way it would be very improper. He remarked, however, that he would, if Brother Dawson should be made Bishop, support him as cordially as any man in the ward. Brother Daniel Harris had gone on this occasion with the other two at their solicitation, but said very little or nothing to the Presidency, except to ask for an investigation.
When these facts were reported to me last summer, at a Conference that was held at Centerville, at which Brothers F. D. Richards and myself and S. B. Young were present, I delivered a discourse on the order of the Priesthood and showed how wrong such a method of electing a Bishop was; that the world said “vox populi, vox dei”; but the Lord had taught us to reverse this and to say “vox dei, vox populi”; or, in other words, the voice of God should be the voice of the people, and that instead of the people electing a Bishop in the way that had been done in this case, the nomination should come from above; that such proceedings as they had indulged in might answer in a political convention, but it certainly was not the way the Lord had ordained; for, as anyone could perceive, it would lead to factions, division and partisanship, as every man would want to stand by the man whom he chose and against the man that might be chosen by anybody else, and it would result in dissatisfaction and evil, as it had done in this case. Brother Smith and his counselors were told that the proper way was for them to go there beseeching the Lord to give them His Holy Spirit, and after due inquiry to select the man whom the Spirit would indicate to be the proper man, who was not connected with any factions. This they did. But before doing so they got the people to vote to rescind all previous action, upon which all present
who voted, who voted at all, in the affirmative, excepting two brethren—Abraham Ellison and a son of Brother Dawson. There were several, however, who did not vote, though this was not learned until afterwards. Brother Smith and his counselors thought that the position of Brothers Ellison and Dawson ought not to prevent their proceeding in the manner they had been told to do, and they went ahead, telling the people, however, that wrong had been done in taking the other course, that they had learned better and now wanted to proceed according to the order of God. They nominated Brother Daniel Harris as Bishop, and he selected Wm. Nalder as his first counselor. Afterwards they were ordained by President Woodruff and myself at a Conference at Farmington last September. After this a public meeting was called of the people of the Ward, to select a place where a meeting house should be built. All the disaffected ones kept away from this meeting, excepting one man, and he, when he found that they were going to vote in favor of a certain place, opposed it and said that he thought the Ward ought to be canvassed by a committee. This they declined to do, because they had called a public meeting and all had been invited. So the place that the majority voted for, which we found to be very central, was selected for a meeting house to be erected on. A meeting house was built – a very creditable structure; but none of the disaffected ones, of whom there were upwards of 30 males, had contributed anything to the erection of the meeting house, or had attended any of the meetings since. For the past six months or upwards they have withdrawn from meetings and had taken no part whatever in the Church proceedings of the Ward. One man – a son of Brother Christopher Layton – had however afterwards withdrawn from the other party and had contributed $10. It was this condition of things that caused me to invite Brothers Richards and S. B. Young to meet with the saints, Brother Smith having told me the condition of affairs.
At 1 o’clock we proceeded to the meeting house. Before very long the house was crowded with people. Before I had noticed they had broken the bread and proceeded to bless it, and were going to distribute it, when I stopped the brethren and said we could not have the sacrament administered until more was known about the condition of the saints, and whether they were able to partake of it worthily. I then requested Prest. Smith to make a short statement of affairs, which he did. I then arose and spoke with considerable spirit upon the necessity of union, the blessings that God had given unto us through this gospel, and the promises which had been made, and dwelt some upon how the world was fighting us and how necessary it was that we as a people should be one. I then invited all who were dissatisfied to make their dissatisfaction known. I spoke in very kind terms to the men and women, and said that we wanted to hear whatever cause of complaint they had. A number of the brethren spoke – a Brother Pilling, a Brother Whitesides, a Brother Bruce, a Brother Dawson. All these expressed their feelings, which amounted in brief to this: that a Bishop had been unanimously chosen by the people, and after he had been chosen two or three men had gone and stopped his ordination by making reports against him, and afterwards they themselves had received the ordination of Bishop and First Counselor. Then there was feeling also about the location of the meeting house.
I made inquiry to know whether those who had supported Brother Nalder in the first place had feelings concerning his failing to get the Bishopric. Several arose and said they had had feelings on the subject, but when the organization was completed they fell in with that and admired Brother Nalder more than ever because of his willingness to take the position of First Counselor, though he had been chosen Bishop. Then, I said, I understand that all the adherents of Brother Nalder have fallen in and sustain the present organization. The reply was, Yes. And
that all who have stood out and favored Brother Dawson? Yes. I made inquiry to find out whether Brother Dawson had voted for Brother Nalder when the latter was chosen. Brother Dawson replied that he had. I then asked if he was one of those who had gone and protested against Brother Nalder’s ordination. He said he had not, but he had signed the petition asking for an investigation. I then said, if it be an objection in your mind and the minds of the brethren who favored you, that Brother Nalder should not receive the office of First Counselor because he had interfered with your ordination, should not that also be an objection against your being ordained, because it seems you did the very thing in Brother Nalder’s case that you say he did in your case? He said that he had only desired to have an investigation. Well, I replied, that was all, it seemed, that Brother Nalder or Brother Harris asked for.
After drawing out all these points, I asked Brother Seymour B. Young to speak, which he did for a few minutes very pointedly. I then called upon Brother Franklin D. Richards, who spoke and read from the revelation of Jan. 19, 1840, wherein the Lord says that “I give unto you certain officers,” etc. Brother Franklin reasoned upon this, saying that this was the order that God had established. It was He who gave unto us the officers of the Church; it was for us to sustain or reject the nominations. I followed, and asked them if there was any other plan that they could devise than the one that had been adopted. The Presidency of the Stake had done what they had under the direction of the First Presidency. I spoke with a good deal of feeling and told them how wrong the action had been in the beginning; blamed Brother Smith for it; and then I asked for a vote of all who could partake of the sacrament. Probably from half a dozen to a dozen did not lift up their hands. We then proceeded to administer the sacrament, and while it was being administered, Brother Ellison desired to speak to me. He asked if he could make a motion that there should be another meeting, in which he felt that all the differences could be settled. I told him I would be glad to have him make that motion, which he did, and it was seconded. It was finally decided to have a meeting on Tuesday, the 22nd, at 10 o’clock, and all should get together and fast and pray before the Lord. I advised them to commence and confess their sins one to another; that all were sinners, and no man need feel humiliated by confessing his sins because his brother was just as much a sinner as he.
The meeting broke up with the best of feeling, and I felt to thank the Lord with all my heart for His goodness, for the brethren and sisters were very much softened. Our meeting covered about four hours and a quarter. Brother F. D. Richards returned to Ogden. Brother Seymour B. Young and myself went to Salt Lake City. I found my children on the train. Lewis met us at the station and took us home.
Monday, April 21st, 1890.
I was occupied most of the day at the dentist’s getting my teeth fixed.
Tuesday, April 22nd, 1890. At the dentist’s again and attending to other matters of business. I gave Abraham some instructions concerning the accounts of Cannon & Sons Co, in which I had been credited with various amounts for stock, &c.
I dictated my journal to Brother A. Winter.
Wednesday, April 23rd, 1890. At the dentist’s this morning.
I met with Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co at 1 o’clock.
The salary of the Church Architect, Brother J. D. C. Young, was increased from $1800. to $2500. per annum. We conversed with him about his duties, and he expressed himself as ready to do any work that might be required of him for the Church without any extra charge, such as for tithing offices, meeting houses, church academies, or any other buildings. His views were very correct, and we were pleased to have him express himself in this manner, because others who had acted as Architects had charged extra when they got up plans for meeting houses.
Brother Jos. F. Smith received a letter from Brother Moses Thatcher, stating that he intended to resign as arbitrator in placing a value on the B. B. & C. stock, and expressed himself as entirely satisfied with what he had already done for the company and thought no more should be asked of him. Brother Smith afterwards had an interview with Brother John W. Taylor and urged upon him the propriety of the family surrendering the three thousand shares of stock which had been given to minors, as he thought that there was just as much power in the executors of the estate to do that before the arbitration as afterwards, and as the California people were clearly entitled to these shares, he thought it would save considerable trouble. Brother Taylor promised to see what he could do about it.
Thursday, April 24th, 1890. The First Presidency had some conversation with Brothers Winder and Armstrong concerning a plan for holding Church property. It had suggested itself to me, in conversation on this subject, that inasmuch as we were not able to hold real estate as a Church, that a company might be formed that would buy the real estate and erect such buildings on it as we might need, we furnishing the plans and agreeing to pay a fixed rental for the property. This would relieve us from all anxiety about real estate. There have been so many plans adopted to hold our real estate which have given us trouble and anxiety that I have become convinced that the most simple and best way of dealing with this question is for us to rent or lease. The loan and trust company of Brothers Winder and Armstrong would be willing, they said, to take hold of this business if we wanted them to do so. At 2 o’clock the First Presidency and Twelve held their usual meeting. Brother John W. Young made the opening prayer, and President Woodruff prayed in the circle. It was decided that word should be sent to Brothers F. M. Lyman and M. W. Merrill in the north, to attend the Oneida Stake Conference on Sunday and Monday. A. H. Cannon was appointed to go to Tooele Conference. Brother Smith intended to start to Colorado in a day or two.
Brother John W. Young expected to go to the States.
We had some conversation today with Brothers F. Armstrong and A. W. McCune concerning gas stock, and a secret arrangement was entered into between us and them, which would be carried out in the event of the stock being returned to us by the decision of the Supreme Court.
Friday, April 25th, 1890. The First Presidency attended to some business, and then Brother Jos. F. Smith and myself attended a meeting of the Deseret News Co. This occupied our time until a little after noon.
At 1 o’clock I attended a meeting of the Literary & Scientific Association. We were in session all afternoon, considering the question of disposing of some of the real estate that had been given to us by the late Trustee-in-Trust, President Taylor. A portion of this land Dr. Jos. S. Richards asserted he had a claim upon through a promise which had been made to him by Bishop Hunter. There was considerable conversation on this point, and he was sent for, and came and made his statement. The final decision was that a committee be appointed by the chair to negotiate with Dr. Richards as to what would satisfy him at the same time to try and retain for the Association six rods front and 12 deep of what is known as the Museum lot; but if this could not be done, the feeling of the meeting was that the whole of that land had better be sold to him, if he could give anything near a market price, the funds to be taken to erect a building on the Council House corner. I appointed Bishop Winder, R. W. Young and I. M. Waddell as the committee.
We had an interview with the President and Secretary of the North Jordan Canal Co – Brothers Hague and Mackay – and also Brothers Summerhays, Morris and Rowe and Sister Erikson, to try and arrange a difficulty that had arisen between them. After hearing a brief statement of the situation, we found that it was no use for us to listen to their arguments because the matter was in court and could not be taken out, as the Canal Co. consisted of a good many who were not Mormons.
Brother John W. Young expects to start for New York tomorrow morning, and in a few days after his arrival there, leave for Europe. My son David he desires to accompany him. I am not altogether pleased with the idea of David going on this trip in this way, as I hope some day that he will go on a mission, and traveling with John W. is not likely to prepare him for the hardships that he will have to encounter on an ordinary mission. I had much rather he had taken a mission first and known the difficulties he would have to contend with in preaching the gospel without purse and script; then he would have appreciated the comforts and conveniences of such a trip that he is now about to take.
I have been trying to arrange through Brother John W. Young to get a private car for our contemplated trip to Arizona and Mexico, and he has an opportunity of purchasing a private car for $4000., which he feels is a bargain. The only difficulty in the way is the want of the money. If we could wait till he went to New York, he could send the money from there; but we are anxious to get away on account of the hot weather. I told him that I thought he had better give up the idea of getting it, so far as we are concerned. While I was explaining to Presidents Woodruff and Smith what I had said to him, he came in and the conversation was renewed, and upon his representing the position of affairs, and that he thought without doubt he could get word here by next Thursday, and we could start on Friday, we decided to wait till Friday, in order to have the advantages which such a car would furnish.
After I got home this evening it struck me that my son David had better be ordained an Elder. He holds the office of a Priest. I have not had time to think upon this or I should have had his name submitted to the priesthood meeting and had him ordained; but I took the liberty of ordaining him, and called on Lewis M. Cannon, my nephew, who was in the house, to join me in ordaining him and blessing him for his journey.
Saturday, April 26th, 1890. I attended to my private affairs. The weather is very beautiful. We have had a great deal of rainfall the early part of this week, and now all the vegetation feels the effect of the warmth that we are having.
I dictated my journal.
Sunday, April 27th, 1890. My son Lewis took me up in the buggy to meeting in the Tabernacle. The house was well filled with a very attentive congregation. I spoke and had considerable liberty in doing so.
Monday, April 28th, 1890. Brother John Nicholson called upon the First Presidency, and we had an interview with him concerning his work on the “News”. He complains that the company have <not> treated him properly by giving him so much work to do without adequate remuneration. He related the character of the duties that he had to perform, with occasional interruptions, and his statement amounted to this, although he did not make it in these words: that he had been doing the work of managing editor when another (C. W. Penrose) got the credit and the pay of the position. He intimated also that articles that were not wise he had had to bear the blame of writing them. He said he did not come to bring any complaints about Brother Penrose, but to state the facts as they were. Brothers B. F. Cummings, Jr, and J. H. Anderson, who were also working on the paper, corroborated his statements.
After this we had an interview with the members of the Board of Education of this Stake, and Prof. Talmage. I told him the views that I had entertained and which I had submitted to the Presidency concerning the organization of a college or university here, of which Captain Willard Young should be president. I said to him that the only thing in my mind had been whether we could arrange for Captain Young and himself to move in their orbits without coalition. He said that he did not desire to be the Principal of any of our academies, and had so stated to Brother Maeser. He should be glad to have Brother Willard Young as President of such an institution and he be assigned his department as a teacher of science. He expressed himself very fully and freely on this point, and I felt quite relieved, because I feared that there might be some objection in his mind to occupying what might be called a subordinate position.
President Shurtliff, of the Weber Stake, and Brother Joseph Stanford had an interview with us concerning the occupancy of the Ogden Tabernacle as a school. We feared that it might result in injury to us in the pending suit, the using of it for other purposes than religious worship. Our feeling was to have the building vacated at once. They are in great difficulty to find a place that will be suitable. We made an appropriation of some land to help them.
Brother John T. Caine telegraphs us today that “the House Committee on Territories this morning, by strict party vote, ordered a favorable report on disfranchisement bill. There has been no decision concerning our Church property by the Supreme Court.”
Tuesday, April 29th, 1890. The First Presidency took time this morning to go through the accumulated public correspondence.
Brother F. M. Lyman called. He had just returned from Cassia and Oneida Stakes.
I received a letter from Col. Isaac Trumbo today, urging the necessity of Brother Jos. F. Smith and myself going with him to Washington to work against disfranchisement, after which I dictated the following telegrams:
To John T. Caine,
Can help sent to you from here use influence at Washington of avail in defeating disfranchisement, or have the Republican party resolved to make it law?
To Col. Isaac Trumbo
Last news received, the committee instructed to report disfranchisement bill and recommend its passage. How does this appear to you? Have you still hopes that it can be defeated? Answer collect.
Wednesday, April 30th, 1890. I had a meeting with the widows of President Young, in company with Brother Brigham Young, my co-trustee, for the purpose of having them select two appraisers to act with us in appraising the estate. They had a good deal of feeling concerning the estate, and appeared to be alarmed lest their income should be endangered.
I have not mentioned in my journal that Brother Brigham and myself had a meeting with a number of the heirs and talked over the situation of the estate. One or two had been talking around among the heirs that we had more property in our hands, as trustees, than was necessary to sustain the widows, and agitating a settlement. J. W. Clawson, a son of Alice Young Clawson, was desirous to raise some money out of his share, to enable him to go to Paris to complete his artistic education as a painter. Our meeting with the heirs was very satisfactory. We had a free interchange of feeling, and I told them that I should be glad to have them appoint a committee of their number to devise the best method of dealing with the estate. That committee has since had an interview with us and reported that they think the best thing to be done is to incorporate and to issue stock, making ample provision for the wives of President Young. This plan strikes me as being an excellent one if it can be carried out, and I think it will help to secure the property.
After explaining to the widows today our position and what we desired, they felt much relieved, and before we separated seemed very pleased at the action that we proposed, and signed a paper appointing Elias A. Smith and Jesse W. Fox, Jr, as appraisers to act with us.
I had two meetings also with the Board of Directors of the Literary & Scientific Association, to hear the report of the committee which had been appointed at the stockholders’ meeting for the purpose of reaching some conclusion concerning the land opposite the south gate of the Tabernacle, part of which Dr. Jos. S. Richards wanted to purchase. After hearing their report, at our first meeting, a motion was made to ask Dr. Richards sixty thousand dollars for the land. They came back in a short time and reported that he had accepted the offer. We then ratified it, and Brothers F. S. Richards, Aurelius Miner and John Q. Cannon were appointed a committee to ascertain when the stockholders could meet legally to ratify this action[.] I had an interview with Brother Wm. H. Shearman in regard to his taking a mission to Ottawa to instruct the people there concerning our views. There is evidently a great deal of ignorance there, and Members of Parliament exhibit it in their allusions to us and to our people in Canada. I have felt that we ought to have some one there to inform them, and have suggested that Brother Shearman be sent. But he has made an appointment to go to Europe on Monday with some of his family, and this will prevent his accepting this mission.
The First Presidency had a meeting with Arthur Stayner, Elias Morris, Amos Howe and Geo. W. Thatcher upon the establishment of the sugar industry. Afterwards Brother Penrose came in and submitted some matters to us for our consideration.
Brother John T. Caine answered our dispatch as follows:
“Men who have personal interest at stake and could bring business influence to bear by personal appeal to Members might accomplish much. Do not know that Republican party is committed to the measure.”
At 1 o’clock the Board of Directors of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co held their meeting.
Bryant H. Wells, a son of Prest. D. H. Wells, was brought in by his brother Junius to be set apart, he having been selected as a nominee for a cadetship at West Point by Hon. John T. Caine.
I dictated my journal to Brother A. Winter.