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Weekly Excerpt

Emmeline B. Wells on God’s Hand in the Relief Society

[From the minutes of the first stake Relief Society meeting, held in Ogden, Utah, October 1877:] I rejoice every day in the gospel and in the work of the women of Zion— The Lord has been very kind and good to us. And we ought to be very thankful that we have what thousands of women are denied, that is, the right of Suffrage— The women of the world wonder how we obtained this— I tell them the Lord helped us. (Document 3.28)

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This collection of original documents explores the fascinating and largely unknown history of the Relief Society in the nineteenth century. The story begins with the founding of the Nauvoo Female Relief Society in 1842, and the complete and unabridged minutes of that organization are reproduced for the first time in print.

The large majority of the print volume covers the even lesser-known period after the Relief Society was reestablished in territorial Utah and began to spread to areas as remote as Hawaii and England. 

This website features the entire contents of The First Fifty Years of Relief Society, including all the documents, the editorial matter, and the photographs. The website also includes videos, a chronology, and two thousand brief biographies (fully sourced) of individuals who appear in the documents.

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