Tuesday, September 1st, 1891.
President Woodruff spent a poor night last night, having very little sleep, and being troubled towards morning with diarrhoea. We left Provo at 7:15. On arriving at the Gardo House we found President Smith there and attended to business; but President Woodruff was compelled to go home, as his health was quite poor.
I dictated my journal to Brother Winter.
Wednesday, Sept. 2nd, 1891.
I had a very sick night last night; was in a fever, and felt quite gloomy and seriously indisposed.
I went to the Gardo House and learned that President Woodruff was sick at home.
Brother F. S. Richards had a long interview with President Smith and myself on the subject of the “scheme”. He informed us that Mr. Dickson was quite satisfied with that instrument, and pleased with the written replies of Brothers Lorenzo Snow, M. Thatcher and A. H. Lund to the question which had been framed. He thought, however, to carry the scheme out, that President Jos. F. Smith should go into court and get through with his affair, because as the “scheme” proposed to return the funds to the First Presidency, objections, he said, would be sure to be made to such a proposition in consequence of one of the First Presidency being a fugitive from justice. I learned from President Smith in this conversation that he had applied to Washington for amnesty, and that the officers here had signed a petition to that end. Brother Richards and myself told him that under ordinary circumstances amnesty could only be obtained by taking a very strong oath. He did not appear to think that that would be the case, and his object in asking for amnesty was to avoid going into court and making promises.
I had an interview with Thomas R. Cutler, manager of the sugar works, and explained to him the results of my trip to California.
A meeting of the Zion’s Savings Bank was held, in which, in the absence of President Woodruff, I presided, as vice president.
I dictated a letter to my son David, and another to Col. Trumbo.
I gave Mr. Dallin a sitting for my bust.
Thursday, Sept. 3rd, 1891.
I passed a feverish night last night, though I think I am somewhat better than I was yesterday. My daughter Ann is quite sick with the measles. They came out and then went in again, but by good nursing they are out again, and we hope that she will now recover.
I called at President Woodruff’s this morning on my way up, and found him much improved in health. He did not think it wisdom, however, to come to the office.
Before leaving home this morning I called my family together and said to them that I wished all who were able to fast to deny themselves food and to humble themselves before the Lord for certain blessings that I felt we needed. I had, according to custom, read a chapter to the family from the Testament, and made some explanations concerning it; after which I knelt down and prayed with them. I said to them that it had been my intention to have devoted some portion of the day to holding a meeting of the family, but I found myself unable to do that, because of business that had to be attended to at the office. I mentioned the subjects which I desired to have them exercise faith for, and one was for my health, that I might be restored and be spared to live among them for many years, and that I might be relieved from my financial embarrassments, and the way be made plain for me to dispose of mining property, or some other way be opened by which I could meet my engagements. There was quite a solemn feeling, and I noticed that no one but the small children partook of any food, and all responded favorably to my request that they should pray, each one, for the blessings that he desired. I felt to thank the Lord with much earnestness for His kindness to us as a family in permitting us to enjoy the liberty that we had and to be so favorably situated, and that we had so much union and love in our midst.
My son Frank called upon me at the office this morning.
Brother Maeser also called to see me concerning some mining stock at Marysvale, which he and some other brethren proposed to let the First Presidency and Twelve have.
There was a meeting of the Co-op. Wagon & Machine Co at the office, at which Brother Jos. F. Smith presided in the absence of Brother Heber J. Grant. Brother Wilcken called to see me on some business connected with my place across the river. He is in poor health, and has been suffering from sickness now for some weeks a very unusual condition for him to be in.
President Jos. F. Smith and myself, and Elders F. M. Lyman, J. H. Smith and A.H. Cannon met as usual and had our prayer meeting, Brother Lyman being mouth in prayer. He and Brother Preston intend to start this afternoon for the south, to investigate some matters at Kanab.
We had a call from Mr. Frank R. Gillespie, Secretary of the Chamber of Commerce, bringing correspondence for President Woodruff from the committees which had been appointed to prepare for the Irrigation Convention, in which correspondence the use of the Assembly Hall was asked, and also the Tabernacle for a concert. I promised that we would give him an answer at an early date.
A Mr. Driver called for the purpose of submitting a proposition to us concerning 2500 acres of land in Clover Valley, Nevada, which he thought would be an excellent purchase for our people to settle in.
I dictated my journal to Brother Winter.
Friday, Sept. 4th, 1891.
President Woodruff is improved in health, but was not at the office today. He thought he had better not come until Monday. I appointed a meeting for 10 [o]’clock this morning for the Twelve that are in town, and the Presiding Bishops, to consider the requests submitted to us by Mr. Donnellan, President of the Irrigation Convention, and Mr. Gillespie, the Secretary. There were present, besides President Smith and myself, Brothers Lorenzo Snow, F. D. Richards, John H. Smith and A. H. Cannon, of the Twelve, and R. T. Burton and J. R. Winder, of the Bishopric, and A. M. Cannon and C. W. Penrose, of the Stake Presidency. After going over the subject very carefully, it was decided that we extend the free use of the Tabernacle for the purpose of the concert, but that we decline the request to use the Assembly Hall for the Convention; and in the presence of the brethren, I dictated a letter in reply to the letters of the above named gentlemen, which all approved of, and afterwards sent it down by Brother Geo. F. Gibbs to President Woodruff for him to sign, as the other communications were addressed to him as the President of the Church. He heartily endorsed our action and the terms in which the letter was written, and signed it.
After this, I met with the Deseret News Co and transacted business.
At 2 o’clock I met with the Board of Education. I made a motion, as President Woodruff was absent, that President Lorenzo Snow act as chairman of the meeting; but he peremptorily declined and insisted on my acting, and, as I told him, I acted because it was the wish. We transacted considerable business.
It had been arranged for my son
Abraham Brigham to go to work in the Juvenile Instructor Office, to learn press work. He has been working for some time in the Jennings Woollen Factory; but as that establishment is closed up, and will remain so for an indefinite period for the want of funds, I thought he had better go to school again, and he did so, and was commencing the study of chemistry, in which study he takes great interest. He stood at the head of the class at the close of the last term. On this account he felt a little reluctant at first to leave the school. I left it entirely with himself; told him I did not wish him to go into any business he had no taste for; and after serious consideration and prayer, as he told me, he had decided to go to the Juvenile Office.
Saturday, Sept. 5th, 1891.
The semi-annual conference of the Salt Lake Stake convened today. I was not able to attend the forenoon meeting, having several engagements, among which was a meeting of all interested in the Brigham Young Trust Co, the object of the meeting being to get a vote upon the number that should form a quorum. We have been compelled to defer business for months because of our inability to get a sufficient number together to form a quorum. It was desired that consent be given for seven to form a quorum, if no more met. There was considerable discussion upon the subject. The general feeling, however, was in favor of it. Another meeting will take place shortly with a view to getting a majority present.
Mr. Gillespie called with the letter which President Woodruff had signed and sent to him concerning the Tabernacle and Assembly Hall. His object in calling was to know if there were any objections to its publication. I thought it better to change one of the sentences in it, and I said then he could publish it.
There was a meeting of the Saltair Beach Co, consisting of N. W. Clayton, James Jack, G. H. Snell, Matthew White and myself. It was decided to take immediate steps looking to the sale of
lands out lots out there, and to invest the money thus raised in arranging for transportation. James Jack was to be the general agent, and he to employ assistants to dispose of the lots. After some discussion, Matthew White was appointed Manager for the time being. H. G. Snell insisted on N. W. Clayton being Manager, which would have been very agreeable to me, but Brother Clayton had some thought of being absent for several months; so White’s appointment was made, with the understanding that whenever a change was desired in the management he would be ready to resign. His salary, for the present, was fixed at $100. per month.
At 2 o’clock I went to the Tabernacle. Several of the Bishops spoke, and Counselor Jos. E. Taylor also.
My brother-in-law, Lucas Hoagland, called on me today, and I arranged for him to come with his wife and child and stop with me tomorrow. His health is quite feeble, though it has improved since he has been here.
Sunday, Sept. 6th, 1891.
Attended meeting at the Tabernacle this morning. President Woodruff was present also. Bishops Heber Bennion, of Taylorsville, and O. F. Whitney, of the 18th, Ward, addressed the congregation, after which Brother Goddard spoke in reference to the Sunday schools. Brother Penrose then presented the authorities and various officers of the Stake, and read reports which were quite interesting, and spoke himself about 20 minutes. In the afternoon, at the request of President Woodruff, I occupied about 70 minutes in addressing the audience, which was a very large one.
I enjoyed much freedom, and felt well in speaking, though my bodily health has not been good for a week. President Woodruff followed and spoke 15 minutes very spiritedly. I was much pleased to listen to him.
There was an evening meeting, but I thought it not prudent for me to be out in the evening, and I did not attend.
My brother-in-law, Lucas Hoagland, and his wife, John Hoagland and his wife, <and> their sister Emily, my wife, took dinner with us about 5 o’clock. We had a very pleasant time.
My son Sylvester took John and his wife home, and the rest stayed all night with us.
Monday, Sept. 7th, 1891.
This has been a day of leisure to me—the only one I have had for a very long time. It was Labor day, and a holiday in town, and I took advantage of it to stay at home and rest, and I enjoyed it very much. I visited with Lucas and his wife and with my wife Emily. They were taken home towards evening.
Tuesday, Sept. 8th, 1891.
Seven of my children were taken to the district school in the 7th Ward this morning by my son Lewis.
Had an interview today with Brother F. S. Richards concerning our church suit. We were much gratified today in seeing a notice in the newspapers that Brother Joseph F. Smith had been pardoned by the President. He is absent from the city. It is thought better that he should not come out in public until the terms of the pardon are known, and Brother John Henry Smith went north to let him know concerning this.
Mr. Jacobs, of the West Side Rapid Transit Co, called on me to get permission to show two gentlemen from Cleveland through the Temple. I wrote him a letter to the superintendent, and also promised to join them at 2:30; but I was prevented from doing this by having a call from Mr. J. H. Boyce, of Brooklyn, who is married to William Martin’s daughter, relatives of mine by marriage. I feel very kindly towards Mr. Boyce, because while I was in prison he came there and visited me, my relatives in the East having charged him to come and see me and find out what could be done, if anything, for me.
I had some conversation with William and Willard Burton concerning a wire mattress factory which they wished to dispose of, and which they had been talking to my son William about purchasing. Abraham and William were present.
Wednesday, Sept. 9th, 1891.
The forenoon was occupied by President Woodruff and myself in hearing and acting upon accumulated correspondence, which was read to us by Brother Reynolds.
At 2 o’clock we had a meeting of the Board of Directors of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co.
There was a meeting of the Bullion, Beck & Champion Mining Co., at which Brothers Thatcher, Beck, Hyde and myself were present, also Secretary Beatie. $2250. was appropriated to pay lawyers bills. After all appropriations were made, there remained nearly $50,000. in the treasury; but because of this suit they said they would not make a dividend. A proposition was made to purchase a sampling mill. In the appointment of the committee I suggested that it would be a very gracious act to have the California stockholders represented, and suggested that Col. Trumbo be put on the committee. This was objected to, but they consented for Brother Clawson to act; so the committee consists of Bishop Preston, H. B. Clawson and A. E. Hyde.
I have felt greatly exercised over the condition of affairs. My necessities are very pressing, and these difficulties are used as a reason for not making dividends. Of course, while there is a large amount in the treasury there is a disposition to find ways to spend it, as in this instance of the sampling mill, which will probably cost not less than $15000., and perhaps $20000. It is, of course, to the interest of Messrs. Beck, Hyde, Thatcher and others, who have joint interests in other mines, to purchase this sampling mill, and especially if the money is taken out of the Bullion-Beck to pay for it; but I, having my interest confined entirely to the Bullion-Beck, feel it, and I am more and more impressed that I should seek for an opportunity to get out of that company and dispose of my share in it, and my prayer to the Lord is that He will open my way that I may do so, or at any rate that I may be free from my present embarrassments. There has only been one dividend declared in twelve months. The stoppage of dividends was entirely unexpected, and in fact assurances were given that they would be continued, and if anything, increased. Under Such circumstances, it is difficult for one in my position to feel entirely satisfied. It leads to the suspicion that the mine has not been worked with a view to making dividends, but to lessen the value of the stock, so that it could be bought up. The ground for this suspicion is that the president, vice president and manager have all been buying stock, and at comparatively low figures.
Thursday, Sept. 10th, 1891.
A son of my nephew Geo. C. Lambert was buried this morning. His name is William Needham Lambert; his age, ten years. He was a boy of remarkable promise, and at the funeral services, which I attended at the 7th Ward meeting house, all who spoke of him mentioned him in the highest terms. He died of heart disease. His mother was grief-stricken at his loss, and could not control her sorrow. Bishop Thorn, Sunday school Supt. Wm. McLachlan, Brother Day, his class teacher, Thos. E. Taylor, Jos. E. Taylor and Brother John Henry Smith all spoke. Brother Jos. H. Felt opened the meeting by prayer, and my son Abraham closed.
At 2 o’clock President Woodruff and myself and Apostles J. H. Smith, J. W. Taylor and A. H. Cannon met as usual and had prayer together, and attended to some matters of business.
I had a call from ex-Congressman E. L. McCoid, of Iowa, and his son W. A. McCoid, who is an attorney in this city, and Dr. H. C. Hoffman. I introduced them to President Woodruff and the other brethren, and we had a very pleasant interview.
It rained all day with more or less violence.
I had intended to have gone to my farm over the river, as Brother Wilcken had sent a request that I would go down. He has been down there for some time, his health being very poor, and it is a cool, pleasant place, and he thinks it is beneficial to him. It stormed so this evening that I concluded I had better not go.
Sunday, Sept. 11th, 1891.
John E. Milner, who is a member of the Irrigation Congress, called upon us to talk over the policy to be pursued by the brethren who are members of this Congress. My view, as expressed to him, was that it would not be attended with good effects to take the public arid lands out of the hands of the Federal government and transfer it to the different states and territories; in our case it would not be productive of good. On the other hand I did not favor Congress taking charge of the water and legislating concerning it; a local legislature would be more likely to understand this subject better than Congress.
I gave Mr. Dallin another sitting for my bust, it being the last.
Dr. Talmage came in and told us the progress they were making in this Stake in forming religion classes. He said there were but five wards that had done anything in this direction, and he found it difficult to organize classes of this kind. We talked over the propriety of having text books for these classes, and for the Sunday schools and church schools. President Woodruff and myself encouraged the idea of getting out such a book, and thought if he could spare the time he would be the most suitable person to do this work. I had a call from Sister Susie Y. Gates, who spoke to me concerning young ladies going to college in St. Louis—Dodge College—which bore a high reputation, to study hygiene, and for her mother to go down to have charge of them. I said that if they had to go outside the Territory to study these subjects, I certainly thought her mother had better go with them; for she would be apt to exercise a watchcare over them that would be valuable to them.
Saturday, Sept. 12th, 1891. I started very early this morning to Westover. I found Brother Wilcken in improved health, also his family that is living there. I had a very pleasant time, and gathered some fruit, of which there is quite a profusion, and returned to my home at 12:15. Brother Winter came from town and I dictated my journal and correspondence to him.
Sunday, Sept. 13th, 1891.
I attended meeting in the Tabernacle. Brother John Nicholson occupied the time in addressing the congregation. His remarks were principally a description of his labors during the three months that he has been absent from home in Great Britain. He alluded to a visit which he and his companions had made to Independence, and his reflections while on the Temple Block at that place, and in connection with that, dwelt on the doctrine of preaching to the spirits in prison and baptism for the dead.
Monday, Sept. 14th, 1891.
Upon reaching the Gardo House this morning, I found President Jos. F. Smith there. He has been absent for a week, and during that time the news has been telegraphed that he has received amnesty from the President of the United States. No particulars have yet been received, and nothing is known here concerning the conditions, if any, of the pardon. President Woodruff was also at the office.
It was decided to publish a notice that our Semi-Annual Conference would commence on Sunday, the 4th of October.
At 10 o’clock we had a meeting of the stockholders of the Sugar Co. The principal business was the election of directors. Elias Morris, Geo. Q. Cannon, Heber J. Grant, Moses Thatcher, Wm. H. Rowe, Geo. M. Cannon, James Chipman, John Beck, Thos. R. Cutler, Francis Armstrong, L. G. Hardy, James Jack and Spencer Clawson were elected directors. The question of allowing Brother Arthur Stayner, who had been secretary of the company for some time, a salary, came up. I felt that something should be done in this matter before the new board was organized, so that the old board would attend to the business which properly belonged to it in this case. It was mentioned to the stockholders that Brother Stayner had made a claim in letters which he had written to different individuals, for from $30000. to $50000., because of his being the promoter of the enterprise. This claim was looked upon by many as being without any proper foundation; in fact, it was looked upon as ridiculous. Some, however, among whom was Brother John W. Snell, thought that he ought to have $25000. in stock given to him. After the adjournment of the stockholders meeting, the old board met, there being a majority present, and took up the question. One motion was that he be paid at the rate of $1500. a year as secretary; another that he should be paid $200. per month, which was amended to $250. a month. I proposed that we should make two propositions; one that if a bonus of $10000. in stock were given to him, he then be paid at the rate of $1500. per annum for his labors as secretary, and that to get consent to this bonus, so that we would not be held
responsible to transcend our powers, a paper be drawn up for all the stockholders to sign. In the event of it being found that we could not legally give him a bonus, that then his compensation be made at the rate of $250. a month. There were some accounts that were unsettled, and at the request of some of the members, I inserted in the motion that whatever amounts he could not furnish vouchers for should be deducted from this salary. There being a disposition to oppose the appropriation of $10000. in stock and the salary as well, President Woodruff himself, though not a member of the board, being present and expressing himself against it, I consented to change my motion and to make it that he should receive $3000. for salary, he having acted as secretary for nearly two years—that is, if a bonus were given; and if no bonus were given, that he be given $250. per month. This was carried. Then another motion was made by another member that he should receive $7000. in stock.
In the afternoon the new board met and organized by electing Elias Morris president, myself vice president, James E. Jennings secretary and treasurer, and Thos. R. Cutler manager. The secretary’s salary was increased to $1000. per annum.
Dr. Talmage called on us today in relation to the subject that we had before us a few days ago, namely, the preparation of a text book which could be used in our church schools and Sunday schools. Brother B. H. Roberts, we were informed, had been working on something of this kind, not designed, however, to be used as a text book, and Brother Reynolds reported that Brother Roberts felt that this new proposition would spoil his work, of which he had prepared one-third. It was suggested that it would be well to withhold the text book until Brother Roberts could put his book on the market and dispose of it, and Brother Talmage was selected to do the work.
Brother John Morgan called, in company with Brother John Henry Smith, and reported his recent visit to Arizona. He gave some description of the political situation there; that our people were, through the influence of leading men, being committed to the Democratic party. It was decided that it would be proper for Brothers Smith and Morgan to go to that Territory; but as they would not have time to do this between now and Conference, it was further decided that it would be well to telegraph to learn how long the constitutional convention would be in session in that Territory, and that instead of visiting each of the Stakes they should go to the convention and meet with those who are there of our people.
I drove out to Westover this evening. I intended to have reached there <in> time, with my wife Carlie, to have looked over the fruit and seen what we had to preserve; but she was detained through the confinement of her daughter Mamie, who was safely delivered of a little girl. It was after 8 when we reached there.
Tuesday, Sept. 15th, 1891.
We arose early this morning and looked over the place, and started from there at 7 o’clock. I reached my place at 8:15.
Presidents Woodruff and Smith were at the office today, and we had a visit from some California friends—Judge Estee, Col. J. P. Irish, Mr. W. H. Mills, Col. Trumbo. We had a very interesting conversation with these gentlemen, who expressed a very kindly feeling. Mr. Mills I have not seen for several years. He is an old acquaintance of mine, and an exceedingly fine conversationalist. We had had many conversations in the past concerning religion, and he asked several questions of us, which President Woodruff desired me to answer. I think they were much impressed with what we said to them. On leaving, Col. Irish said, “Mr. Cannon, I am a lover of justice, and I cannot express to you the sorrow I feel to see you gentlemen tenants of the house which your money has built”—referring, of course, to the Gardo House, which had been seized and was in the hands of the Receiver, and for which we are now paying a monthly rental of $450.
My nephew, John M. Cannon, called and reported the results of his trip to Independence, Missouri, he having gone there at our instance to see the situation of affairs in connection with this lawsuit which has been started by what is called the Reorganized Church, of which Joseph Smith is the head, to gain possession of the Temple lot which is now in the hands of what is known as the Hedrichites, a small body of people who believe in many of the doctrines of the church, but who think that the Prophet Joseph was a fallen prophet. Their feelings are kind towards us; but they do not feel kindly to the Reorganized church. They would much rather that we should have the Temple lot than that the other parties should. John M. was received very kindly by C. Hall, the President, and R. Hill, the Bishop, and assisted their attorney to prepare answers to the complaint. He thought that the suit would be likely to result favorably to the Hedrickites. We sent them $300. to help them in their extremity, as they are quite poor. We thought it better to cultivate their good feelings, because we would be more likely to get possession of that property through
doin them than we should through the other faction. In the afternoon we had a meeting of the Board of Directors of Z.C.M.I. and transacted considerable business.
Mr. Alexander Badlam called upon us and made a short visit. We were all pleased to see him, as he was to see us.
This evening my wife Carlie had some company at her house, and I joined them. There were present: Willard Young, (His wife was detained at home by the sickness of one of the children.) J. D. C. Young and his wife, Walter Beatie and his wife, H. B. Clawson and his wife and two daughters, Willard Croxall, and my son William. We had a very delightful evening, and parted about 12:30.
Wednesday, Sept. 16th 1891.
Brother John Nicholson came to the Gardo House this morning and reported his trip to Great Britain. We had some talk with him on political matters, Brother Jos. F. Smith giving him his views as to the course that should be taken by him on the News.
It was decided by us today to publish a manuscript which had been furnished by Judge Carlton, who had been Chairman of the Utah Commissioners. Brother Reynolds has examined the work, and it was thought that 3000 might be published, and a decision to that effect was reached.
The First Presidency had received cards to the platform of the Irrigation Congress, and President Woodruff and myself went there this morning. We were assigned seats on the platform. We were introduced to a good many members, many of whom I knew. They were in the committee of the whole, and Senator Stewart, of Nevada, an old acquaintance of mine, was in the chair. The Congress is held in the Exposition building. Application had been made to us for the use of the Assembly Hall; but after consideration it was thought better not to grant that, and this was the best building they could get, though it is not such a building as they would have liked. Col. J. P. Irish, of San Francisco, said to us that he wanted us, if we would consent, to address the Congress. He said he had spoken to several of the members, as well as to the Chairman of the Committee of the Whole, and they had all expressed a desire for us to speak.
In the afternoon we went again and occupied seats on the platform. Some little time after, Senator Stewart, the chairman of the committee of the whole, addressed the convention and said that there were two distinguished citizens present, who were familiar with the early settlement of the Territory and with our system of irrigation, whom he had no doubt the Congress would like to listen to, if they were willing. Several of the members spoke up and expressed a desire to hear us; but Mr. W. H. Mills, of California, rose to his feet, he having just made a strong speech which had attracted the attention of the Congress, and said that he did not like to have it appear that we volunteered to speak to the Congress, but preferred to embody it in a motion that we be invited by the Congress to address the body. This motion was put and carried. President Woodruff walked forward and was introduced by Senator Stewart. President Woodruff was heard very plainly, but did not speak at any length. What he said made a favorable impression, I think. I had gone there with a great deal of trembling. I dreaded speaking to the body, because a number of our enemies were in the Utah delegation, and I knew that everything that was said would be closely criticized; but my fear left me when I was called on to speak. Senator Stewart introduced me as “George Q. Cannon, whom you all know.” I spoke with a good deal of freedom, and felt much at my ease. My remarks were at several points applauded, and all listened with great attention. I gave a little description of our method of settling here, and how we divided this valley into lots, their different sizes, etc. I then alluded to President Woodruff having made his living on 26 acres of land; described his age and activity, how successful he had been, and that it was only last summer when he had come to the office and said he was getting old, and explained it by relating that on the previous Saturday one of his grandsons had kept up with him hoeing potatoes—a thing which he never allowed anybody to do with him before. The manner in which this was told created some laughter and a good deal of applause. I dwelt also upon the fact that though we had been here so many years, every man who cultivated land owned his own water right; we did not have to pay taxes for our water to any corporation.
I heard afterwards that Governor Thomas had characterized my remarks as foxy, I having spoken very cordially to the Congress and congratulated Utah on having such a meeting. One of the delegates to whom he made the remark said it was the speech of an honest man, and, says he, “you fellows here are playing the fool in the course you are taking with these people”, and gave him a scoring for what he said.
President Woodruff and myself felt much gratified; not that we were personally honored, but at the fact that there was a disposition to show respect to our position. The proceedings this afternoon were very interesting.
In riding back to the Gardo House, the thought suggested itself to me that tomorrow is the anniversary of my conviction and commitment to the penitentiary. Three years ago tomorrow I appeared in the 3rd District Court and received my sentence. I could not refrain from making the contrast between the condition of feeling then and now. Then I was a convict; today, by a vote of this Irrigation Congress, I am invited to speak to them. What a change time has wrought! and to the Lord be the glory. We have nothing to fear, either as individuals or as a people, from time. Time may bring trouble, but it brings advancement also; and from every trial and affliction we emerge stronger and more influential. This has been our history in the past; it will be our history in the future, if we are only true to our God.
Thursday, Sept. 17th, 1891.
Three years ago today—memorable day—I appeared in the 3rd District Court, before Judge Sanford. I never think of that event without thanking the Lord with all my heart for His goodness to me, and for the principle of revelation. The Lord revealed to me with great plainness my duty, and pointed out with certainty the results that would follow my action, if I would do as He directed. In the eyes of many, it seemed to be a hazardous, if not a reckless, step to place myself in the power of the people who would have me in charge. It was feared, and with good reason, that they would multiply charges, on one pretext and another, against me to keep me in prison, if they once got possession of me; but, as I then remarked, whatever the result might be, whether it led to death or to increased captivity, it was plain to me from the Lord that I should take this step. I did not believe, however, it would lead to further evil. As I said, the Lord had revealed to me that if I would do this, it would be easier and better for all concerned, and it would tend to create a change of sentiment. I doubt if any man ever went into imprisonment with a greater feeling of satisfaction and happiness than I did. It was happiness to me to meet the charge that had been made against me, and have the opportunity of showing that though I had failed to appear on a former occasion when I had given bonds to do so, it was not in terror at the thought of punishment, but because President Taylor gave me the counsel of the Lord on the subject and told me that it was the will of the Lord that I should not appear in court at that time. I asked myself, after sleeping one night in my cell, as I descended the steps from the upper tier of cells to go into the yard, if I as a bridegroom, in leaving my bridal chamber, ever had felt happier than I did that morning. I felt to say in my heart that I could truthfully say I had never felt better, and that which the Lord revealed to me before I went into prison was literally fulfilled. My presence in the prison lightened the trials and made the circumstances much more tolerable for those who were in there. Privileges were granted that had not been permitted before. I organized a Sunday school, and we had most delightful seasons every Sunday. After my conviction, others received sentence, but they were very light in comparison with the sentences of those who had preceded them; and from that day forward there seemed to be a different feeling, less severity, and a kinder disposition manifested.
This is not the only instance in my life when I have had reason to praise the God of Israel for His goodness in revealing His mind and will to man. My life is full of instances of the great benefits that I have received through the revelations of the Almighty to me individually. I can say that this has been the case from my boyhood.
I was greatly pleased this morning to meet my son David, who has just returned from New York. He appears to be in good health, and is delighted to get home.
At 10 o’clock we had a meeting of the Board of Directors of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co, and among other business, I made a motion that no large sums of money be loaned for the present on real estate security. The question of the Hotel Templeton came up. This has been something that has given us a good deal of concern in the past, because of the want of success which has attended the efforts of the company that leased the property. Geo. M. Cannon, on behalf of the company, made a statement of their condition and what arrangements they had made. He informed us that they had employed Andrew C. Brixen for three months to manage the hotel. Brixen was of the opinion that in three months he could tell whether it could be made to pay or not. The proposition is for him to take hold as manager on the 1st of October and run it until the 1st of January. George said that the company would be responsible to us for all the debts. Then he proposed that as the bank was equally interested with the company in having the hotel succeed, there being no probability that we could rent the building if they vacated, we should share the loss with the hotel company, if there is any deficiency on the 31st of December in running the hotel for the three months. He thought there was no danger that there would be any loss, as Mr. Brixen felt quite confident that he could at least make it pay expenses. The board thought the proposition sufficiently fair to assent to it.
Brother Moses Thatcher called upon us.
Col. Isaac Trumbo called and described the proceedings before the committee on resolutions last evening. It seems that the Tribune ring now begin to show the object that they had in view, among other things, in having the Irrigation Congress meet here. Gov. Thomas is but the tool of this clique, and has always acted in their interest. Judge Goodwin, the editor of the Tribune, happens to be on the committee on resolutions, and he made an effort last evening at their meeting to have a resolution adopted by the committee adversely to the admission of Utah as a State. Col. Irish is chairman of the committee, and he fought it vigorously; and it was voted down, Goodwin alone voting in its favor. Col. Trumbo thought that there might be an effort made to spring it upon the congress; but if there was, our friends there would be prepared to meet it vigorously.
I feel that Col. Trumbo is entitled to great credit from us for the zeal which he has manifested in this matter. He divined the objects of the call, and he and Senator Stanford had conversations on the subject. Senator Stanford said there were two objects very near his heart, which he hoped to see accomplished before he died; one was the opening of the Leland Stanford Jr. University in California, and the other was the admission of Utah and Arizona as States. He seems to have perceived the objects that the Governor has had in calling this Congress, and said that it would have to be watched, as it would be a dying effort on their part against the Mormon people. Through his influence, Mr. Wm. H. Mills and Col. Irish<, who> were on the delegation, are here, and Col. Trumbo has been indefatigable in his efforts to get strong men put on the delegation, so that any plans of the ring looking to the injury of Utah might be defeated. He informs us that Thomas displayed his meanness this morning in making remarks about the California delegation attempting to choke down the throats of the Congress things that they wanted. He was scored for this by gentlemen from California and was compelled to make an apology.
I feel very thankful that the Lord has inspired Col. Trumbo to be so interested, because if there had not been friends of ours watching, there is no knowing what mischief might have been accomplished by our enemies, and the influence of this Congress might have gone out against us and been a serious thing to combat.
I dictated my journal to Brother Winter.
In the evening I attended meeting of the Ward at the new meeting house, the object being to take into consideration the indebtedness of the Ward for the erection of the house. President Woodruff was there, and only a small portion of the Ward. Brother John Gabbott gave a statement of the cost of the building, the amount that had been subscribed, and the amount for which the building committee was indebted. There had been $4200. subscribed. The building will cost in round numbers $6500. Of the $4200. subscribed, about $700. had not been collected, though it was thought that those who had subscribed the amount, in the most of cases, were good for it. I found that neither the Bishop nor the building committee had any plan in their minds as to how this indebtedness was to be reached, and as we were likely to be there for a long time unless something were proposed, in my remarks I said that if the subscriptions already given made every person in the Ward nearly equal, or, in other words, if everyone who has subscribed had paid his or her proper proportion, it was easy to be seen how much more we would have to raise to liquidate the indebtedness. After some conversation I made a motion that a committee be appointed to examine the subscriptions and see how they stood; whether each subscriber had paid about the proper proportion considering his circumstances, and if he had not, that the committee see how much he should pay, and then that they assess a little more than half the amount to make up the $2300. That motion was carried. I said that I would subscribe $300. myself. A committee of five was appointed.
Brother Clawson came to the meeting before it was ended to see President Woodruff and myself about going to Utah County tomorrow with the Irrigation Congress. President Woodruff told him we thought we would not go.
Friday, Sept. 18th, 1891.
It suggested itself to me in the night that perhaps it would be a good thing for both President Woodruff and myself to accompany the Irrigation Congress, or that if he did not feel able to go, that I should go. I therefore got up and wrote him a note by candlelight, stating my views, and sent it by my son David, on horseback, to President Woodruff. The note was delivered to him in bed, and he arose, and we met together at the Rio Grande depot, and took train with the excursionists to Provo. At Provo we visited the Insane Asylum, but did not see any of the patients, as the presence of a large company, it was thought, would excite them. We then returned to the sugar works, and examined the factory, Mr. Dyer accompanying us to the factory to show us the processes of manufacturing sugar. The train then went to Lehi, and we were entertained by the citizens of Lehi at Garff’s hall. They prepared a meal for us, which was enjoyed by the excursionists. After the meal was over, [an] address of welcome was delivered by the mayor, after which there was singing by the glee club. Then followed a speech from Hon. Platt Rogers, mayor of Denver, and Mr. Huntington, of Oregon, and Mr. Slack, of Wyoming, all of whom spoke in the warmest terms of the hospitality they had received and of the excellent impression which their visit to Utah had made upon them. The speeches were very well delivered, in a good spirit. A series of resolutions also were read by Mr. Gillespie, Secretary of the Congress, which were adopted by the meeting.
We reached the city at 3 o’clock. This trip, I think, has been productive of great good. We conversed with a great number of men, and were able to give them considerable information, and the result, I think, must be very beneficial. A number of them expressed themselves in the strongest terms concerning the wrongs that we had suffered. While at Provo we saw Brother Smoot, whose health is very much impaired.
After our return President Woodruff and myself had a long interview with Judge Estee at Brother F. S. Richards’ office, during which we conversed upon the pending suits and the proper course to be taken in relation to them.
I felt quite wearied tonight with the labors of the day.
Saturday, Sept. 19th, 1891.
When I arrived at the Gardo House President Smith was there. Judge Estee and F. S. Richards soon came in, and we had a lengthy conversation concerning the suits and the course to be taken in defending them, the character of the evidence, etc. After this, we had a long conversation with Brother Clawson and Col. Trumbo, during the latter part of which President Woodruff came in. Col. Trumbo expressed himself with a great deal of feeling concerning the situation of affairs, and described the course he had taken in managing affairs so as to bring about the results in our favor which had been effected. He told us what he had done in regard to this Irrigation Congress, and how he had labored. He had spent, he supposed, at least $150. at the Alta club in entertaining delegates and having the right influence thrown around them, so that the members of the Alta club would not poison their minds. He had also spent means in entertaining members at the Knutsford, and he said he had not left any of the California delegation alone at any time. He then alluded to the lawsuit about the Bullion-Beck. He said this was the third time that it had interfered with other matters that were of far greater importance to Utah, and referred us to the different occasions, which we knew to be the case. He said the matter had got to this position now with him, that he either had to drop our affairs and cease to take any further interest in them, or devote time to them, or this suit would have to be closed. He could not afford to have the suit dismissed, for it involved too serious consequences with him, and if we were to appoint anybody to look after our affairs he would give him introductions to gentlemen in California, and they could do what he had been trying to do. He alluded to the manner in which his name had been bandied around the clubs, in consequence of stories that Brother John Beck had circulated, which were utterly false. He did not wish to be put in that light among his friends, and have his reputation injured by statements of that character, though, he said, he felt this more on Bp. Clawson’s account than he did on his own. We had some very plain conversation on the subject, and Brother Jos. F. Smith was deeply impressed, I think, by what was said. I have felt this like a load on me now for some weeks. It has seemed to me that we were in a very curious position. Here was Col. Trumbo on the one hand working for us with might and main, and spending his own money freely to forward our interest; and on the other hand there was antagonism between some of our brethren and him, and they looked upon him as a bad man, and were quite willing that he should be injured in any way. To me it had been exceedingly painful, and I had seen for some time that there was great danger of him becoming alienated from us, and of the interest he had taken being lost. I have felt from the very first that a great wrong had been done in refusing to let the 25% of the stock go according to agreement. Brother Smith said that he would be willing to do anything that he could in this matter. I said to him that I believed he could do more than any other man that I knew towards making matters right, as he was thoroughly familiar with what had been done by Col. Trumbo and other friends whom he had influenced. In consequence of my not agreeing with the Bullion-Beck Co as to the course to be taken about this stock, they being opposed to surrendering it and I being in favor of it, the impression had gone out that I was a partisan to these California people, and what I might say would not have the weight that it would if it were said perhaps by someone else. I said to Brother Smith that if he could have an interview with Brothers <Thatcher>, Preston and Hyde, and explain to them the position of affairs and the results that were likely to follow a refusal on their part to have matters settled without a lawsuit, I thought it would have a good effect. Col. Trumbo had expressed a willingness to leave the whole thing to any of the members of the church that might be chosen, if it took the whole of the stock. He could not devote his time to both affairs; he must drop our public affairs if this suit went on.
Sunday, Sept. 20th, 1891.
Had conversation with my son David this morning concerning his future labors. He had come home, I find, with the idea of entering into business; but upon hearing my views concerning him, he told me that he would drop any intention of that kind. I expressed my feelings to him, that I thought he ought to improve the opportunity of adding to his education by the study of such lines as would be of benefit [to] him in his future career. I desired that he should do this or else go on a mission, and not enter into business and get entangled. My feelings, I said, had ran in the direction of his going to some land where a language had to be learned, – either New Zealand, some of the Polynesian Islands, Germany, or France. My attention had been drawn some time ago to a part of France bordering on Germany, where I believed a number of the seed of Israel could be found, and so far as I knew none of our Elders had ever labored. Germany also was a land which had not been much preached to, and there were great numbers of people there who, if the rigid laws were relaxed, would come into the church. I thought one of his studies should be the acquiring of either the French or the German language.
At 2 o’clock I went to the Tabernacle. I called on Brother Penrose to speak. He delivered a very excellent discourse.
Monday, Sept. 21st, 1891.
Presidents Woodruff and Smith were at the office.
President Smith received his pardon today from the President of the United States. This makes him a free man. I felt to congratulate him most heartily on this; for he has been a long time concealed from the public. It is now about seven years since he labored in public in this Territory. I trust that this will be the precursor of the pardoning of Brothers Geo. Teasdale and Brigham Young, of the Twelve, and of other brethren; in fact, a general amnesty of the whole people should be granted.
Brothers John Henry Smith and John Morgan came in and were set apart for a mission to Arizona, to give counsel to the brethren and saints there concerning political matters. We feel it is a critical time, and that the brethren should act wisely and with great circumspection under their present circumstances. Authority was also given to Brother John Henry Smith to perform the sealing ordinances for time and eternity, in prayer rooms dedicated for the purpose, to unite in marriage couples who were properly recommended, and who, through poverty or other impediment, are prevented from going to the Temple. I have felt for some time that we should do all in our power to furnish our people with facilities for marriage, not only for time, but for eternity, that their children may be born in the covenant. The long distances which many live from Temples almost precludes the possibility of some of them, because of their poverty, traveling there to receive this ordinance.
In setting Brothers Smith and Morgan apart, I was mouth in blessing Brother Smith, and Brother Jos. F. Smith in blessing Brother Morgan. I dictated for Brother Smith’s use the form of ceremony used in sealing for time and eternity, and also a letter of appointment for him and Brother Morgan, to be signed by the First Presidency, and a letter for President Woodruff to sign, giving Brother Smith authority to attend to the sealing ordinance.
Sister Lucy B. Young brought a letter written by her daughter Susie concerning our church schools at Provo, Logan and Salt Lake sending a young lady to the Sanitarian College at St. Louis, Sister Lucy B. proposing herself to go, at her own expense, to have them in charge. We had no objection to the plan, but did not wish the societies of the Stakes to understand that we were counseling this, but we approved of it, if they chose to raise the funds to send these girls.
Mr. Badlam and Col. Trumbo were in to see us twice today. They are busy, among other things, in trying to arrange about this Bullion, Beck affair. Mr. Badlam has been through the books, examining them with a good deal of care. The last time they came in they said they had finally decided to leave the entire matter in my hands and let me make such a settlement with the company as I could, giving me full authority in the premises to do anything and everything, and they would abide by any settlement that I would make. I am exceedingly anxious to have this affair settled. It has weighed upon me very much, and any prospect of peaceful settlement is agreeable to me.
Brother Jos. F. Smith had a long interview with A. E. Hyde today, and reported that he was willing to do anything in his power to settle the difficulty. An appropriation was made of $600. for the aid of Brother B. H. Roberts, he having applied for that amount. I voted for this under a species of mental protest; not that I feel in the least like begrudging aid to my brethren. I think where men labor in the ministry, they should receive reasonable support. But I have not been suited exactly in my feelings with the manner in which Brother Roberts has expressed himself in relation to this question of aid. It seems as though there was a disposition to either throw himself on the church for it to sustain him, or to leave the ministry and devote himself to some profession. It is with this feeling, I suppose, that he proposed to us a short time ago to go to Ann Arbor as a law student, in order that he might practice law. I have felt that in his case he should seek some employment and devote what time he could to the ministry, and not expect the church to meet his entire expenses. I feel, however, that Brother Roberts really needs help at the present time, and therefore voted for this, though he had a similar amount paid him in May last.
Tuesday, Sept. 22nd, 1891
Mr. Alexander Badlam and son Edgar came down to my house this morning. Edgar is the inventor of the improvements in the gas machine, and it was from him and his brother that I bought my machine for making gas, which my son Lewis has made all preparations for by laying pipes and putting up chandeliers, etc. I have built a gas house according to a plan that Mr. Badlam furnished me. They expressed themselves pleased with the appearance of my place, and thought the gas house was a good structure and would answer the purpose.
I found Presidents Woodruff and Smith at the Gardo House when I reached. We had submitted to us this morning a model for an angel, trumpet in hand, to stand on the top of the central east tower of the Temple. Mr. Dallin had prepared the model. It was a very graceful figure and was admired, though the outstretched arm to hold the trumpet was criticized as the hand being too far from the body; it was thought it would require too long a trumpet in that position. But, taken all in all, it is a very excellent and satisfactory figure.
Col. Trumbo had two interviews with us today concerning affairs, and he expected to leave this evening. I spoke to him about my bond case pending in Washington, and asked him if he would have any objection to seeing Judge Zane to know what his views would be about asking the Attorney General to have the cases dismissed. He suggested that I write a letter. I hastily prepared a letter, dictating it to Brother Winter. In this I was assisted by Brother F. S. Richards. He gave me information concerning the case which was embodied in the letter. Col. Trumbo took the letter to Judge Zane, who approved of it, and said that he would recommend the dismissal of the cases if I wished it; but suggested that in his opinion it would be better to send the letter to the Attorney General, and he would probably write to him on the subject, and then he could as Chief Justice give his views. I dictated a letter to Judge Estee, informing him of the result of this application to Judge Zane, and asking him if he would
have not suggest to the Attorney General that he call on Judge Zane to get his views. I sent him also a copy of my letter to the Attorney General, and asked him to answer by telegraph whether he approved of my sending it or not.
I sent a letter to Brother T. G. Webber, who is now in the East, asking him to purchase for me a magic lantern and some views, concerning which he had written to me on the 16th, he having examined into the business, at my request, at New York.
The day has been quite cool and showery[.]
Wednesday, Sept. 23rd, 1891.
A cold stormy morning.
I found Presidents Woodruff and Smith at the Gardo House.
I called upon Mr. C. S. Varian, the district attorney, and submitted my letter to the Attorney General to him. My object in doing this was to apprise him of my application, and also to learn from him, if possible, what action he would take in the event of enquiry being made of him by the Attorney General. He said he approved of the letter, and he thought that the case ought to be dismissed, but had some question in his mind as to the authority of the Attorney General to dismiss it. I intended to have seen Mr. Dickson, but he was not in his office.
President Jos. F. Smith rejoices in his new-found freedom. He now appears on the street, having gone out in public yesterday evening. It is a pleasant sight to see him once more free, after so long a concealment.
There was a meeting of the Board of Directors of Zion’s Savings Bank & Trust Co. at 2 o’clock.
I dictated my journal to Brother Arthur Winter.
Thursday, Sept. 24th, 1891.
I called upon Brother John Midgley this morning to talk with him about heating my dining room. In the afternoon he came down, as also did Brother Don Carlos Young, and examined the premises, with a view to seeing the best and most economical method of heating. He promised to give me an estimate on the job.
John M. Cannon called this morning on the First Presidency and read to us the answer which he had prepared for the Hedrickits to the complaint of the “Josephites” in the suit which the latter faction has commenced against the former to obtain possession of the Temple lot at Independence, Missouri. We approved of the answer.
Brother Don Carlos Young and Bp. J. R. Winder waited upon us to report concerning the glass for the windows of the Temple. A proposition had been made by Brother F. A. Mitchell to supply that glass, but he is not able to do it at the present time. It was decided, therefore, that we should purchase the glass and when he is able he should pay for it. We get the glass through Brother Nathan Sears, who will get us the best American plate glass selected, and which is frequently sold as French plate glass. He said that no one but an expert could tell the difference. Brother Sears agrees to do all the glazing for nothing, as his contribution to the Temple. It was decided to get the boilers in for the heating of the Tabernacle and Temple, so that work can go on in the Temple during the winter, and that the Tabernacle may be properly heated. The architect proposes to put in a fan by which fresh warm air will be forced into the Tabernacle from registers in the floor. We selected also the kind of lightning rod that we wished to have put on the Temple. The question has been before us for a day or two concerning the capstone, when it should be laid, and whether it should be laid with ceremonies. We have decided that it should be laid with appropriate ceremonies, and I suggested that as it cannot be laid at this conference without leaving the towers in a somewhat unfinished condition, that we defer the laying of the capstone until next April Conference,
which will be the completion of the 40 years since the foundation stone was laid and that in the meantime all the finish designed for the towers be put on, and everything be made ready for the putting on of the capstone and the placing of the figure of an angel on top of the capstone, which we can have finished in bronze before that time. This proposition President Woodruff thought well of, and it was so decided.
The Deseret News Co. had a meeting to listen to the report of the year’s business, made by the superintendent. This company has gone behind over $1100. during the year. Supt. Geo. C. Lambert, upon being interrogated concerning the causes of this, attributed it principally to the hard times; and upon being questioned concerning the prospects for a better business, he expressed the feeling that the prospects were more favorable. For some reason or other, this business is not satisfactory. There is considerable competition at the present time; but in view of the fact that this is the church paper, and the “Herald” has now become a political organ, it would seem that the News should prosper. One objection urged against it, we hear, in some places is that it has too much contention with the “Tribune” and writes articles which are of no interest to the people in the country.
Brother Jacob Gates wanted some help today in the shape of $125., which we agreed to let him have.
The First Presidency and Apostles F. D. Richards and A. H. Cannon held the usual prayer meeting. President Woodruff was mouth in prayer.
I called upon Mr. W. H. Dickson, who was prosecuting attorney at the time of my arrest, when I was put under $45,000. bonds, and submitted to him the letter which I had written to the Attorney General. He read the letter very carefully, and after asking one or two questions, said that if he were appealed to, he could verify all that I said there. My object in showing him the letter was that in the event of his being called upon he would be apprised that I had written. He was non-committal as to what his reply would be, further than he would verify my statements; but I inferred that he would probably write favorably, or at least not unfavorably, from the fact that he said he would submit his letter to me in the event of his writing one.
After this business was through with, he spoke about the testimony that would be expected to be given by leading men before the master in chancery. He had read the answers to questions which had been prepared, and he thought that the answer of Brother Moses Thatcher would lead to very severe cross-examinations, and cross-examination which would be difficult to answer. He referred to the quotations made by Brother Thatcher from the Book of Doctrine and Covenants concerning the church obeying laws which were constitutional. Brother Thatcher had given this as a reason why the Manifesto should be carried out and that we would not hereafter practice plural marriage. Mr. Dickson thought that such a reply would lead to interrogatories concerning the reasons why we did not cease our practices when the Law had been declared constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court. He took the view that the better reason for issuing the Manifesto and for not recommencing the practice hereafter would be that President Woodruff was the head of the church, and that we believed in continuous revelation, and that he had issued a Manifesto on the subject, and that the causes which had produced that would still continue to operate, and public opinion having grown so and being of such a nature that we could not resist it. I told him I took that view. I had contended for years against submitting to the law, for the reason that I hoped the nation would be brought to see our true position, and that public opinion would undergo a change in relation to our question; that they would see that we were sincere and willing to make every sacrifice for the principle; but after trying that for long years, instead of it having that effect upon the nation, the opposite effect seemed to be the result; hostility to the principle had seemed to be intensified, and a determination to crush the practice out had been firmly resolved upon. Another consideration, I said, was that while I had the right to suffer myself, with my family, and be defiant, if I chose to take the consequences, I did not think I had the right, as a leading man, to involve the whole people, the great bulk of whom did not practice this principle, in all the consequences that would follow my refusal. If I got into trouble and was sent to prison, and my property confiscated, had I the right to drag others, who had not violated the law and who had not taken the same view of the command of the Lord that I had, into the same difficulties in which I was involved? Mr. Dickson expressed a wish to converse with us before the examination which is to take place on the 19th of October, and we arranged for him to have this opportunity after Conference.
Brother Wilcken took me in a buggy to the Hot Springs this afternoon. I have had a touch of sciatica in the calf of my leg, and I thought that a bath would do me good.
Friday, Sept. 25th, 1891.
I had a call at the office from F. Chandler, Chas. M. Hampson and Milton Knight, officers of the Wabash railroad. Presidents Woodruff and Smith were out. I had a very interesting conversation with them concerning the early settlement of this valley, which was principally in response to their questions. Upon leaving, they expressed great pleasure at the conversation, and said they had received much valuable information concerning our plans in coming here and the founding of this city.
I had a call from Brother W. D. Brown, a one-armed man who had formerly worked in the President’s office. He desired me, if I had an opportunity, to use my influence to secure him employment. In describing his condition he was moved to tears. I felt to sympathize very much with him, because of his destitute and crippled condition.
I dictated my journal to Brother Winter, also a letter to Gen. Geo. H. Williams, to whom I sent my letter designed for the Attorney General.
Had conversation this afternoon and evening with Brothers M. Thatcher and A. E. Hyde concerning the lawsuit and the terms of settlement. President Jos. F. Smith was also present. I spoke with much plainness in regard to these matters. I remarked to the brethren that I believed I was the second largest stockholder in the company, and as I had no personal interest, direct or indirect, remote or contingent, in the settlement of this affair, only for the sake of peace and harmony, in which we of the First Presidency were united, I could talk plainly upon these matters, as if there was anything to be paid I should have the second largest interest in the payment. The conversation was of quite a pleasant character. President Smith’s talk with these brethren, in which he has made explanations to them concerning our wishes and the obligations we were under to Col. Trumbo, has had a good effect, and they have expressed themselves to the effect that they will do what they can to reach a settlement. President Woodruff had quite a conversation also with Brother Hyde, in which, he informs me, he told him very plainly what his wishes were. We did not separate till about 7 o’clock, and agreed to meet again tomorrow morning.
Saturday, Sept. 26th, 1891.
The conversation of last evening was resumed this morning, after Brothers Thatcher and Hyde came to the office. Brother Preston also came, he having returned from the south last night. I was desirous that Brother Jos. F. Smith should have a conversation with him also, because he has been strongly prejudiced against both Bp. Clawson and Col. Trumbo, and has not had a correct understanding of affairs. Brother Smith informed me that he found him very stiff, and he had a very lengthy conversation with him, on that account.
Brother Thatcher and myself had to attend a meeting of the World’s Fair Transit and Trust Co., of which I am president and he a director. There were present, besides ourselves, Col. Donnellan, Fred Auerbach, R. C. Chambers and Judge Colborn. Considerable business was done in relation to that company, and it was decided that Brother Thatcher and Judge Colborn should go to Omaha, also Col. Donnellan, if he could possibly get away, and they should have authority to take with them Brother W. C. Spence to assist them in reaching a satisfactory conclusion with the railroad company concerning the transportation of passengers to the World’s Fair. It seems that the former arrangement, which was made by Brothers Thatcher and Spence, it now looked upon as <too>
unfavorable by the railway company, and they wish to make some modifications.
As Brother Thatcher and myself walked back to the Gardo House, he informed me that it had been decided that Brother Hyde would sign for himself and as the agent of Brother John Beck, all the stock he had in favor of the payment of Brother Clawson’s claim, and he said if this matter can be settled now, there could be a meeting held before he left for Logan this afternoon and a dividend declared. We afterwards met, all the directors being present, except John Beck. Before the dividend was declared they spoke in relation to the suit being withdrawn, and asked me if I had authority to withdraw the suit, to which I replied that I had not, but I had no doubt that the suit would be withdrawn now, the understanding being that when the suits were withdrawn the pledge which Brother Hyde now made would be carried out, and that he would consent, representing the stock which he acted for, for Brother Clawson to be paid. I then asked, what about the other stock? It was then stated that Brothers Thatcher and Preston would sign their stock, and as I represented some of the California interest and my own, there would only be two small blocks of stock in California that would not be represented and the stock of Brothers Merrill and Card. A dividend of 50¢ a share was afterwards declared. This brings me some relief, of which I have stood very much in need. I feel that my prayers for deliverance in this direction are being answered. I do not like to be weakened in the discharge of my duties as one of the First Presidency by having to carry heavy debts.
Brother Wilcken drove me to the Hot Springs and we took a bath. Brother Smith and Brother Nuttall also went there in a buggy.
There was a meeting of the stockholders of the Deseret News Co today, and the old board of directors was re-elected, with the exception of Brother Orson F. Whitney, in whose stead Brother James Jack was chosen.
Sunday, Sept. 27th, 1891.
My children who are going to the district school are not making the progress they should do. The school is entirely too crowded. I was in conversation with them this morning, and I arranged for my daughter Rose Annie to teach the younger children at home. I impressed upon her the importance of teaching them to read, to spell, to be good penman, and to make them familiar with arithmetic. I think our present system of teaching is not thorough enough in these elementary and important branches of study. It is frequently the case that young men, after going through a course and graduating, are very poor writers, and I am and have been always desirous that my children should acquire a good style of penmanship; for I think it an accomplishment, and I have found fault with some of our educators and with the system that permits children to neglect these important branches.
I went to the Tabernacle at 2 o’clock. President Jos. F. Smith was there also, being the first time that he has sat in his place, as one of the First Presidency, in public, for 7 years and 29 days. There was a goodly congregation present, many of whom, I think, came on purpose to hear him speak. He was so choked with emotion that it was difficult for him to talk at the first. Afterwards, he warmed up and talked so loudly that he exhausted himself. His remarks were in excellent spirit. He occupied about 20 minutes. I had supposed that he would occupy the whole of the time, and therefore it was with some reluctance that I arose to speak, and my emotions had been aroused to such an extent that it was some little time before I could get control of my feelings or of my voice. My face quivered; but the Tabernacle is so large a place that but few can perceive anything of this character. I felt excellently in speaking, after I got started, and the congregation listened with close attention. The meeting was a most enjoyable one. All felt to rejoice at the liberty which Brother Smith has obtained.
Monday, Sept. 28th, 1891.
The First Presidency had a visit this morning from Brother J. D. T. McAllister, who had come up to attend Conference.
There was a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Deseret News Co. I was elected President, F. D. Richards Vice President, Geo. C. Lambert Supt. & Treasurer, and John E. Evans Secretary.
We had a consultation in the afternoon with the architect and Brothers W. J. Silver and John H. Midgley concerning the proper size for the boilers to heat the Temple and Tabernacle. It was decided to make them 60 inches in diameter and 16 feet in length. Brother D. C. Young thought that this would be a little too much; but we preferred to err on that side rather than there should be any deficiency of power.
Mr. Edgar Badlam called on me to take his leave today. He has been here fitting up gas machines for Bp. Clawson, Col. Trumbo and myself. Mine gives excellent satisfaction. It is a hundred light machine, and my son Lewis has laid all the pipes, done all the gasfitting, part of the time assisted by Brother David Wilcken. Mr. Badlam was very much pleased with what he has done, and said to me that he thought he would make a very fine mechanical engineer. He is desirous that Lewis, if any more machines are sold here, shall set them up, as he was quite satisfied that he could do so. It is quite a change for the better to be able to burn gas in our houses, instead of using coal oil lamps, of which I have quite a fear. Mr. Badlam and his assistant returned to California this evening.
Met at the office of Z.C.M.I., in company with Brothers Thos. R. Cutler, J. J. Grant, Spencer Clawson and James E. Jennings, of the Sugar Co, to converse with Mr. Monroe and Mr. Eccles, of the freight department of the Union Pacific Ry, with a view to reaching a figure for the transportation of beets.
Tuesday, Sept. 29th, 1891.
President Woodruff and myself were called upon by my brother Angus this morning concerning the form of baptism to be used in rebaptizing the saints. President Woodruff desired me to give my views about it. I said that in my feelings I did not think it necessary to add to the words of the Lord on that subject. In the Book of Mormon and in the Doctrine and Covenants the form of baptism had been given, and in neither was there any allusion to the remission of sins, which in these days some of the Elders consider it necessary to insert. If any form of baptism needed these words, it would be the first baptism, because persons coming into the church stood in need of the remission of their sins; but the Lord had not given us those words. Of course, if a man were being rebaptized, it might not be objectionable to insert that he was rebaptized for the renewal of his covenant—a phrase that is now in use. But, I said, this would be as the President of the Church would say. President Woodruff took exactly the same ground. He said that he thought there was no necessity to add to the words of the Lord by using the words “for the remission of sins”.
Brother Evan Stephens called to see us concerning a proposition that he had received from the agent of Gillmore’s band to come to the city and give a concert in the Tabernacle, in which case he would like to get Brother Stephens’ aid for a chorus. We consented for the choir to have the use of the Tabernacle on that occasion, if thereby they could make some funds to assist themselves.
Brothers Elias Morris and W. B. Dougall, two of the church board of education of this Stake, called upon us and had read to us a charter for the organization of the Board.
I had a visit from my wife Eliza’s nephew, Edwin Luce, who came to give me information concerning the Bullion-Beck mine. He appears to be very watchful of affairs, because he knows how heavily I am interested in that property. He thinks it a very valuable property.
Held a meeting with the officers of the Sunday School Union to arrange about a programme of exercises for our general meeting at Conference.
I had some conversation with Brother Geo. Q. Coray, who has been working temporarily at the News office, on the editorial staff. The return of Brother John Nicholson makes his services no longer necessary, but he would like to receive employment, if it were possible.
I also had an interview with Brother A. E. Hyde, who came with a proposition for the First Presidency to take stock in a corporation which had been formed for the purpose of owning and working mines in what is called La Plata, near Paradise, Cache Co.
I attended theatre this evening in company with my wife Carlie and children, and witnessed the performance of Louis IX by Mr. Thomas Keene and company. I enjoyed it very much. The acting was excellent.
Wednesday, Sept. 30th, 1891.
The First Presidency had an interview this morning with Brothers Don Carlos Young and J. H. Midgley concerning the heating apparatus of the Temple, and it was decided to make the heating boilers 54 inches in diameter.
Sisters Bathsheba Smith and Emeline B. Wells called concerning the affairs of the Hospital. Brother H. B. Clawson, the president of the institution, was also present. Considerable conversation was had upon the subject of the best arrangements to be made to sustain the hospital, and counsel was given for a financial statement to be made, so that aid could be solicited through the Presidents of Stakes and Bishops.
Mr. Charles Ellis read to us the titles of twelve lectures that he desired to deliver in the theatre, and requested our aid to secure that building for that purpose, to be used every Sunday evening, at 8:30.
We had an interview with Brother A. E. Hyde on the subject mentioned in yesterday’s journal, and I took occasion to say to him that we did not wish our names to be connected with projects of this character, to be used in public as they had been used in some instances of late. We did not want any impression to get out among the people that we were engaged in speculating in any form, for it would be incorrect. After considerable conversation, it was thought that perhaps we would take some stock in this, as there was a prospect of being speedily reimbursed for our investment.
Attended the usual meeting of Zion’s Savings Bank.
I received a letter from my brother-in-law, Wm. H. Piggott, informing me that their daughter Mary was likely to be married soon and wishing me to get her recommend to the Temple endorsed. I dictated a letter in reply to
my him and my sister Elizabeth.
Brother J. D. T. McAllister came in and we attended to some business connected with the St. George Temple.
My son John Q. and his daughter Margaret gave me a call this morning. He reports all well at his home.