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Prince’s Research Excerpts: Priesthood & Mormonism – 1875

Below you will find Prince’s research excerpts titled, “Priesthood, 1875.” You can view other years here.

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1875:    9/10 Jan.:  Status report on Paris [?] Stake.

“A conference was held in Duffin’s Hall, Paris, Oneida County, Idaho Territory, on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 9 and 10, 1875.

On the stand were President C. C. Rich, of the twelve Apostles; Presiding Bishop, Wm. Budge; and Bishops Henry J. Horne, of Paris; George Osmond, of Bloominton; John A. Hunt. of St. Charles; E. N. Austin, of Liberty; and Peter Jensen, of Ovid Wards.

President C. C. Rich stated that in order to complete the organization of this stake of Zion it would be necessary to organize the High Priests, Elders, Priests, Teachers and Deacons into their several quorums, which he desired to have accomplished forthwith [were all quorums on a stake basis at this time?], and he wished the bishops of each settlement to make out a list of the names of all those holding the priesthood in their wards, and to what quorum and office they had been ordained, and forward them to Bishop Budge, and an organization would be effected as soon as these names were handed in.

Elder Dudley Merrill represented Bennington.  The people mostly were living their religion.

Bishop Peter Jensen represented Ovid, 40 families, generally striving to do right.  Expected to start a day school in a short time.  The Relief Society was in active operation.

Bishop E. N. Austin represented Liberty.  The people were doing well.  Had meetings on Sundays and on Thursday evenings.  New schoolhouse nearly completed.  Day school well attended.

Bishop H. J. Howe represented Paris.  Many were trying to live their religion, while others were careless.  Had regular meetings, a good and large Sunday school, and a day school, well attended, with expectation of starting another in a few days.  Had a co-operative store on a good basis, with upwards of seventy stockholders, and doing a good business.  A large frame schoolhouse was being built in the south end of town, also a co-operative tannery in connection with other settlements.  The Relief Society was in a flourishing condition.

Bishop Geo. Osmond represented Bloomington, 68 families and 374 inhabitants.  Nine births, four deaths, and one marriage during 1874.  Grain raised last year, 22,000 bushels, mostly oats.  Good large schoolhouse built.  Sunday school scholars, 104.  Day and night schools fully attended.  Relief Society in active operation.  People improving.  No cases before the high council, and few teachers’ trials.  Had no blacksmiths or carpenters in the ward.  Young men were averse to learning trades.

Bishop John A. Hunt represented St. Charles.  Had regular meetings on Sundays and on Thursday evenings.  Had a prosperous Sunday school, a day school in operation, and another about to start.  Relief Society was doing good.  Majority of the people attended meetings.  Raised good crops the past season, and tithing paid pretty punctually in kind.  People generally felt well.  A co-operative sawmill established the past season, and it was intended to build a meetinghouse and some good dwelling houses as fast as circumstances would permit.  Had plenty of carpenters and joiners.

Bp. H. H. Dalrymple represented Preston.  The settlement was small, had no regular meetings.  Had not raised a crop, but would continue trying.  The people were poor, but desired to do right.

Bishop Hyrum S. Rich represented Fish Haven.  He had but recently moved there, and the people appeared to be trying to live their religion.

Bishop George Osmond addressed the congregation.

Bishop Charles Robinson represented Montpelier.  People generally felt well and were prospering.  Meetings well attended.  Had a day school.  Relief Society was doing good.

Bishop Wm. Budge confirmed the reports of the bishops.  But a reformation was needed, many were careless and did not properly value their standing.  There was too much drinking and rowdyism, although the elders had endeavored to prevent it.  Our young men were in many respects good, brave, and intelligent, but they yielded to the corrupting influence of strong drink, smoking, and swearing, in opposition to all better counsels and influences.

President Rich also addressed the congregation.

On the second day of the Conference President C. C. Rich said the Priesthood was communicated to man from heaven, and should be honored, by all those who professed to be Saints, in everyday life.  It should be honored in our dancing halls, at public entertainments, and elsewhere.  There was too much whisky drinking and other irregularities and improprieties, and confusion generally.  Dances should be conducted in order and sobriety, and it would enhance the enjoyment of all present.  The man was the head of the family, and he should honor his Priesthood.  It was a wife’s duty to obey her husband, and children’s duty to obey their parents.  In most cases good and holy men had good mothers who enjoyed the Spirit of God.  But a wife who gave way to an evil spirit might expect her children to be actuated by the same spirit.  In the best regulated families kindness and affection prevailed, and it should be the aim of every individual to do no evil in the community.  Efforts were being made in two wards to introduce whisky shops.  If any persons in the church were engaged in that business, it would be doing a good thing for them and the community to cut them off from the church.  We had fellowshipped too much.  The bishops had been too lenient.  The dead branches must be trimmed off, or we should not be justified.  A man who got drunk deprived himself of his reasoning faculties, dishonored his priesthood, and would ultimately fall under condemnation.  The priesthood required nothing of anybody but to do right.  The co-operative tannery was an experiment, and when it was proved a success, he wanted to see a co-operative sheep herd organized, for something must be done to stop the destruction of sheep, as they were depended on for clothing.  It would be more profitable to raise wool and manufacture it into clothing than to dispose of grain at past ruinous prices to purchase goods manufacture thousands of miles away.  He trusted the people would co-operate in taking care of their stock.

Bishop Budge spoke on the respect due the priesthood, it being the authority of God invested in men.  It should have a bearing upon all classes, young and old, and in all the social and domestic relations of the Latter-day Saints.  The dances of late had been of a very disorderly kind, and he was directly opposed to such exhibitions.  The temples were being pushed ahead with vigor, and means were needed to assist the brethren in their labors.

Prest. Rich proposed that those contributing to the fund for the temples should send their contributions to Bishop Budge.

The several authorities of the church were presented and unanimously sustained, also the following local officers–

Charles C. Rich, as president of that region; Wm. Budge, as presiding bishop; and the following bishops in their several wards: . . .

The following names were presented and sustained as home missionaries–

Lake Town Ward, John Nebeker and Ira Nebeker; Fish Haven, Hyrum S. Rich and Hugh Findlay; St. Charles, John A. Hunt, N. Wilhelmson, Nathan Davis, Mosiah Booth and Daniel Jacobs; Bloomington, George Osmond and Wm. Hulme; Paris, H. J. Horne, Thos. Sleight and Robert Price; Liberty, E. N. Austin and Bro. Morgan; Montpelier, Chas. Robinson and C. Hagerson; Bennington, Joseph W. Moore and Dudley Merrill; Preston, H. H. Dalrymple.

President Rich said he expected the missionaries would be actively engaged during the Winter, and he wished them to preach by the promptings of the Holy Spirit, not to be tedious in their discourses, but to speak what the Spirit dictated and then stop. . . .”

(DN 24(1):10, 3 Feb., 1875)

28 Feb.:  Apostleship restored before Church organized.

“‘Well, says one, ‘if he [Joseph] could not baptize you, how were you first baptized?’  I answer that the Lord was consistent, and that when he sent this everlasting Gospel by his angel, he did not forget, when the work was translated by the Urim and Thummim, to again send an angel from heaven to ordain individuals by the laying on of hands to administer the ordinances of the Gospel, and to call them as Aaron was called, by new revelation.  Angels were sent down from heaven, and the Apostleship was conferred, that same authority which Peter, James and John and the rest of the Apostles held in ancient days was conferred, and many others were called and the Church was organized.”  (Orson Pratt, 28 Feb., 1875; JD 17:315)

1 Mar.:  Woman blessed to heal the sick.

“Thou shalt have power given thee by prayer and faith to heal the sick in thy family.”  (Patriarchal Blessing of Eliza Melissa McGary, by John Smith, 1 Mar., 1875.  RLDS Archives, P8/F18)

8 Apr.:  Church organization planned and ordained by God.

“We have an organization that was planned and ordained by the Almighty.  We have the First Presidency–President Brigham Young, set apart by God to occupy the position that he does, and his Counsel.  Who told men about such an organization as this?  God.  What did we know about it till then?  Nothing.  Who knew about the organization of the Twelve?  Nobody.  Who knew about an organization of High Priests?  Nobody, yet they had them in various ages of the world, according to the record that we have.  Who knew about an organization of Seventies, and of the various Quorums of the Priesthood, and the duties that should devolve upon them?  Nobody.  Who knew about the organization of Bishops?  Nobody.  Have they not got Bishops?  Yes, but they are not in the right place, and they are not bishops, they call them so, but they are not bishops.  I remember introducing brother Hunter to a gentleman in Provo.  ‘Mr. So and So,’ said I, ‘this is Bishop Hunter, our presiding Bishop here.  In England you have your lords spiritual, but,’ said I, ‘this is our lord temporal, and he attends to the affairs of our bread and cheese,’ &c.  But elsewhere their bishops are made spiritual officers, which Bishops were never intended for.  Who knew anything about other organizations of the Priesthood that we have, such as Elders, Priests, Teachers, Deacons, and their various duties?  Nobody.  Where did this originate?  With God.  Where is the pattern?  In the heavens.  When will this Priesthood cease?  Never.  It originated with God, and when we get through with the affairs of time you will find just the same organization, the same Priesthood, the same power, the same principles that exist here.  Why?  Because the things which exist in the Church of God here are patterns of those which exist in the heavens.  God said to Moses–‘See that thou make all things according to the pattern that I showed thee in the mount.’  The pattern that we have is a pattern of that which exists in the heavens, the organization of the Priesthood that will exist throughout eternity.  And these are heavenly things committed to us in the flesh for our benefit, and for the benefit of the world that we live in.  It is not to save or bless me or my family alone, or you and your family alone; but it is to bless and save all who will avail themselves thereof, who have ever lived, and all who live now or ever will live.”  (John Taylor, 8 Apr., 1875; JD 17:375-376)

10 Apr.:  Change in seniority of 12:  Pratt & Hyde.

“G. Q. Cannon Presented the Authorities and when He Came to the Twelve John Taylor & Wilford Wooodruff was put before Orson Hyde, & Orson Pratt, upon this principle.  John Taylor was Ordained to the Apostleship Some days before I was & O. Hyde & O. Pratt had both been out of the Church and had returned to the Church & been ordained into the Quorum of the Twelve apostle Since Brother Taylor & W. Woodruff had been Ordained so we both stood ahead of them in the Quorum.  President B Young spoke one hour & 19 Minuts.”  (Wilford Woodruff diary, 10 Apr., 1875)

17 Jul.:  Rebaptism of General Authorities.

“At the Endowment House assembled Prests. Young, Smith and Wells Apostles Orson Pratt, Wilford Woodruff and Albert Carrington for baptism.  Prest. Young baptized Prest. Smith and confirmed him.  Prest. Smith baptized Prest. Young, Prest. Wells being mouth in confirming.  Prest. Young baptized Prest. Wells.  Prest. Young then baptized Elders Woodruff, Pratt and Carrington and Prests. Young and Wells confirmed them.

Elder Wilford Woodruff journalizing under this date adds that this baptism was for the renewal of their covenants.”  (JH 17 Jul., 1875)

18 Jul.:  Rebaptism a standing ordinance for emigrants.

“I will here state that Martin Harris, when he came to this Territory a few years ago, was rebaptized, the same as every member of the Church from distant parts is on arriving here.  That seems to be a kind of standing ordinance for all Latter-day Saints who emigrate here, from the First Presidency down; all are rebaptized and set out anew by renewing their covenants.”  (Orson Pratt, 18 Jul., 1875; JD 18:160)

26 Jul.:  Rebaptisms at Grantsville.

“From Elder Wilford Woodruff we learn that meetings were held, morning and afternoon each day, on Sunday and Monday last [25 & 26 Jul.], in the bowery at Grantsville, Tooele County, which were well attended by the people of the County generally.

The speakers on Sunday morning were Elders G. Q. Cannon and W. Woodruff; in the afternoon R. T. Burton, John Taylor and A. M. Musser.  The assembly, on Monday morning, was addressed by Elders L. D. Young, John Taylor and W. Woodruff; and in the afternoon by Elders G. Q. Cannon and John Taylor.

The vote to renew their covenants by baptism was very general by the people, and at the close of the meeting on Monday afternoon, Elder Cannon baptized fourteen persons, who were confirmed by Elders Taylor, Woodruff, Young and Burton.”  (Reprint of report of 28 Jul.; DN 24(27):417, 4 Aug., 1875)

2 Aug.:  Rebaptism into United Order.

“Monday, Aug. 2 [1875] They drove to Virgin City, remained all day, and at 6.30 p.m. commenced baptizing to renew Covenants and for the observance of the Rules of the Holy United Order.  Twenty three persons were baptized by Apostle Erastus Snow and confirmed at the water’s edge; James Jepson, Bishop’s Counselor in the Ward, being the first.”  (Annals of the Southern Mission, Book B, p. 571)

6 Aug.:  Rebaptism into United Order.

“Friday, 6th [Aug., 1875] Elders Erastus Snow, Jas. W. Nixon and James G. Bleak went to Santa Clara, held meeting with the people and Brother Nixon baptized thirty three persons ‘for the remission of sins the renewal of covenant and for the observance of the Rules of the Holy United Order.'”  (Annals of the Southern Mission, Book B, p. 572)

8 Aug.:  Rebaptism into United Order.

“Two days’ meetings were held at Brigham City on Saturday and Sunday, August 7th and 8th . . .

At 10 a.m. [8 Aug.] the general meeting was addressed by Elder John Taylor, and in the afternoon by Elders Wilford Woodruff, Geo. Q. Cannon and John Taylor.

The rules of the United Order were read and as very large vote to sustain them was given.  At the close of the meeting the assemblage adjourned to the water, where twenty of the leading men, including Elder Charles C. Rich and Bishop Budge, were baptized for a renewal of their covenants, Elder George Q. Cannon administering the baptismal ordinances and the confirmations being done under the hands of Elders John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff and A. M. Musser.”  (Reprint of report of 18 Aug.; DN 24(30):472, 25 Aug., 1875)

11 Aug.:  Rebaptism in St. George.  (Temple font?)

“To day I was notified to be ready for Baptism at six o clock as Br Snow had invited the Bishops and their counsel and principle teachers to attend.  He opened with prayer and dedicated the Font for Baptismal purposes.  Gave some good and timely counsel, showing that when a meeting or an appointment was given out and the people had met, to accordingly let nothing interfere or hinder the work before them but strictly attend to and not give Satan a chance to creep in and divide the hearts and attention of the People.  Br Snow commenced to Baptize Macdonald, MacArthur, and Father Perkins came out of the water and confirmed them, then commenced to Baptize the rest of us, using the following words, calling the person by full name: ‘Having Authority given me of Jesus Christ, I baptize you for the remission of your sins, for the renewal of your covenants, and for the Observance of the Rules of the Holy United Order in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost.  Amen.’  We were confirmed at the waters edge By Macdonald, MacArthur, and Nixon, Nixon being mouth when I was confirmed.”  (Charles L. Walker diary, 11 Aug., 1875)

13 Aug.:  Rebaptism into United Order.

“At work on the Temple all day.  Then went to the font to assist my Family in being Baptized: My wife and daughters Zaidee, Ida, and Agatha.  Afeter which I Baptized a go[o]dly number of persons into the Holy United Order.  It was nearly dark when I got thro.  The Font is now in its place in the Basement of the Temple, resting on the Backs of the iron oxen.  The entire concern, Font, oxen, steps, and railing being made of case iron and made by Br Davis of S Lake City.  It looks well and every one seems pleased with it.”  (Charles L. Walker diary, 13 Aug., 1875)

15 Aug.:  Rebaptisms into United Order.

“Apostle John Taylor and party held meeting at Paris, Idaho where Bishop Edward Hunter addressed about 20 bishops and Geo. Q. Cannon spoke to the Sabbath school children.  At ten a.m. the people met and were addressed by John Taylor.  In the afternoon Wilford Woodruff and George Q. Cannon preached.  The rules of the United Order were read, and John Taylor addressed the congregation.  At the close of the meeting Geo. Q. Cannon re-baptized twenty persons mostly bishops and other high officials, including Charles C. Rich and William Budge, who were all confirmed under the hands of Elders John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff and A. Milton Musser.”  (JH 15 Aug., 1875)

21-29 Aug.:  Home missionary tour/rebaptisms.

“Home Missionary Work.–On Saturday, Aug. 21st, Elders John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff and Geo. Q. Cannon, of the Twelve Apostles, and Bishop E. F. Sheets left this city on a preaching tour.  They went direct to Morgan City, Morgan County, on the day before named, and held two days’ meetings, commencing on Saturday, 21st, at 2 p.m.; Elders John Taylor, W. Woodruff and Geo. Q. Cannon being the speakers.

Sunday, 22, the assemblage was addressed in the forenoon by Elders E. F. Sheets and John Taylor, and in the afternoon by Elders Geo. Q. Cannon and W. Woodruff.

Monday, 23d, the party proceeded to Coalville, and on Tuesday, 24th, held meetings in the bowery at that place, addressed by Elders E. F. Sheets and Geo. Q. Cannon in the forenoon and W. Woodruff, J. Taylor and Geo. Q. Cannon in the afternoon.  At the close of the latter meeting the rules of the United Order were read by Elder Cannon, and the latter subsequently baptized the bishops and their counsellors and other leading men of Summit County, the confirmations being done under the hands of Elders Taylor and Woodruff.

Wednesday, 25th, the party drove to Wanship and held meeting at 20 a.m., addressed by Elders E. F. Sheets, W. Woodruff, Geo. Q. Cannon and John Taylor.  The brethren then drove to Rockport, where Elders Woodruff and Sheets stopped, held meeting and spoke to the people, while Elders Taylor and Cannon went to Peoa, met with and instructed the people.

In the evening the party met at Kamas, where Bishop W. W. Cluff met with the Scandinavians of that part, and instructed them in their own language.  Bishop Sheets also held a meeting there and instructed the people in relation to temporal matters.

On Thursday and Friday, 26th and 27th, the brethren commenced the holding of two days meetings at Kamas, the first on Thursday forenoon, being addressed by Elders John Taylor and Geo. Q. Cannon, and that in the afternoon by W. Woodruff, John Taylor, and Geo. Q. Cannon, the latter reading the rules of the United Order.

On Friday the assemblages were addressed by all of the members of the party, and at the close seventeen of the leading brethren were baptized for a renewal of their covenants, Elder George Q. Cannon administering in the baptismal ordinance and Elders John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff attending to the confirmations.

Saturday, 28th, the brethren met with the people of Heber City, Wasatch County, and each member of the party spoke during the day.

Sunday, 29th, a large number of the Sabbath school children of Heber City met, and were addressed by Elders R. T. Burton, Geo. Q. Cannon and W. Woodruff.

The general meeting convened at 10 a.m., and was addressed by Elders R. T. Burton, W. W. Cluff, Samuel Atwood and George Q. Cannon.  In the afternoon Elders Geo. Q. Cannon, Wilford Woodruff, and John Taylor were the speakers and the rules of the United Order were read by Elder Cannon, a large vote being given to sustain them.  Twenty-three of the leading elders of the locality were subsequently baptized by Elder Cannon, for a renewal of their covenants, and confirmed under the hands of Elders Taylor and Woodruff.

In the various settlements visited by the brethren material improvements are everywhere visible, especially in Heber City, where numbers of excellent and substantial stone buildings have been recently erected.  They have some as fine stone quarries in that locality as can be found anywhere.

In their preaching the brethren enjoyed great freedom and power, their teachings being of the plainest character, and their labors result in great good in uniting the hearts of the people together, and inducing them to live nearer than they have been doing to the gospel of Christ.”  (Reprint of report of 31 Aug.; DN 24(32):503, 8 Sep., 1875)

24 Aug.:  Rebaptisms into United Order.

“Elder Wilford Woodruff journalized as follows:

At a meeting at Coalville (Summit County, Utah) this morning Elijah F. Sheets and Geo. Q. Cannon preached, and in the afternoon Wilford Woodruff and John Taylor preached and Geo. Q. Cannon read the rules of the United Order.  At the close of the meeting Geo. Q. Cannon re-baptized sixteen persons, and they were confirmed under the hands of Elders John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff.”

(JH 24 Aug., 1875)

26 Aug.:  Rebaptisms into United Order.

“Elder Wilford Woodruff journalized as follows:

At a meeting at Kamas (Summit County, Utah) in the morning John Taylor and Geo. Q. Cannon preached, and in the afternoon Wilford Woodruff and John Taylor preached, and Geo. Q. Cannon read the rules of the United Order.  At the close of the meeting Geo. Q. Cannon rebaptized seventeen of the leading Bishops and other officers who were confirmed by John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff.”

(JH 26 Aug., 1875)

28 Aug.:  Rebaptism into United Order. 

“My wife Elizabeth and daughter Caroline K. were rebaptized for the remission of sins, the renewal of their covenant and the observance of the Holy Order of God.”  (Christopher J. Arthur autobiography, part III, page 20; LC Collection)

2 Sep.:  Confirmation prayer.

“Elder Daniel W. Jones who was about to start on a mission to Mexico asked Orson Pratt to give him a short order of ordination and confirmation.  Elder Pratt prepared the following which he submitted to Prests. Brigham Young and Daniel H. Wells who approved of the same.  Bro. A. B. or Sister D. C., as the case may be, 

In the name of Jesus Christ and by authority of the Holy Priesthood I lay my hands upon your head and confirm you a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and say unto you receive ye the Holy Ghost.  Amen.”

(JH 2 Sep., 1875)

5 Sep.:  Dedication of grave of George A. Smith.

“By the side of the grave the people joined in singing the hymn commencing on page 335:

Weep, weep not for me, Zion:

Rejoice now and sing ye aloud;

Pray, pray, that Judah’s fierce lion

May quickly descend in a cloud.

Haste, haste; oh, quickly descend in a cloud.

After the large crowd of people had dispersed save a few, Elder John L. Smith, brother of the departed, and the others remaining, knelt around the grave while he offered up a heartfelt, soul-moving prayer, dedicating the ground and the remains, that they might rest undisturbed till the morning of the resurrection.”  (DN 24(32):505, 8 Sep., 1875)

5 Sep.:  Prayer for rebaptism into United Order.

“The wording of the ceremony of baptism into the United Order, as used in the baptisms administered by Apostle Erastus Snow and others was as follows: _____ (name) ‘having authority given me of Jesus Christ, I baptize you for the remission of your sins, the renewal of your covenants, and for the observance of the rules of the Holy United Order, in the name of the Faher, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.  Amen.'”  (5 Sep., 1875, Annals of the Southern Mission, Book B, p. 576)

12 Sep.:  Rebaptism into U.O.; 3rd baptism.

“I was baptized first on the 15th of July 1860 in Fillmore City, Millard County Utah Territory.  I was next baptized on the 5th day of April 1868 in Toquerville.  I was next baptized at Coalville Summit Co. U.T.; this was to comply with the rules of the United Order.  I do not know who afficiated at the first baptism.  But at the second Martin Slack baptized and my father confirmed me; at the third Bp. William W. Cluff of Coalville baptized and confirmed me.  This occurred September 12th, 1875. . . .

Bishop William W. Cluff rebaptized and reconfirmed me with many others on the 12th of September 1875, with the following ceremony.  ‘Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you for the remission of your sins; for the renewal of your covenants with God and your brethren, and for the observance of the rules that have been read in your hearing in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Gost; Amen.'”  (Levi Mathers Savage autobiography, LC Collection)

12 Sep.:  All of Joseph’s ordinations from spirit world.

“Joseph Smith received his first ordination under the hand of John the Baptist, who was beheaded, and who, while in the flesh, held the Aaronic Priesthood.  Peter, James, and John, who were Prophets, and were crucified and put to death, at least Peter and James were, they came and ordained Joseph Smith to the Apostleship; and every ordination that he obtained, he obtained from the spirit world from men who had tabernacled here in the flesh.”  (Wilford Woodruff, 12 Sep., 1875; JD 18:118)

7 Oct.:  Call for rebaptism.

“Elder Robert Burton said since his return from a foreign mission he had mingled with and spoken to a great many Latter-day Saints, from Idaho in the north to St. George in the south. . . .

Union was one of the most conspicuous elements that must exist among the Saints, in the last days.  How long would it be before we entered into that united order of things that would cement us together as one people.  For this purpose we were brought here, and for this purpose had the Lord tempered the elements and caused the barren and waste places to become fruitful.  But many of us had become disobedient and selfish and careless, and the servants of God had called upon us to repent and reform, renew our covenants by rebaptism, and continue faithful to the requirements of heaven to the end.”  (Elder Robert Burton, General Conference Minutes, 7 Oct., 1875; DN 24(37):580-581, 13 Oct., 1875)

8 Oct.:  High Priesthood = High Priests.

“The Twelve Apostles should have the word of the Lord to the people; the High Priesthood should have the word of the Lord to the people; these four thousand Seventies, the messengers of Israel to the nations of the earth, should have the word of the Lord to the people; and every Elder of Israel, when he speaks, should have the word of the Lord, and the whole Church and kingdom of God, men and women, should have, each for himself and herself, the testimony of Jesus Christ, which is the spirit of prophecy.”  (Wilford Woodruff, 8 Oct., 1875; JD 18:125-126)

10 Oct.:  Call for High Priests to be rebaptized.

“Elder George Q. Cannon announced that the High Priests who desired to be re-baptized, would meet at the Endowment House at 8 o’clock on Thursday next.  He then read the rules of the United Order.”  (General Conference Minutes, 10 Oct.; DN 24(37):592, 13 Oct., 1875)

14 Oct.:  Rebaptisms of bishops and high priests.

“One hundred and thirty-one persons were re-baptized during the morning at the Endowment House.  Elder Wilford Woodruff in his journal remarks that these 131 persons were High Priests and Bishops.”  (JH 14 Oct., 1875)

17 Oct.:  Bishop’s Court.

“Bishops Court held at the residence of Bp. E. F. Sheets at 9 a.m. Oct 17/75.

Present Bp. E. F. Sheets, Crs. McAllister and Brockbank, and Teachers Holt, Foster and McMurrin and John N. Pike.

Prayer by Cr. McAllister after which the following charge was read.

Oct 14/75

Bp. E. F. Sheets

We hereby prefer a charge against Sister Hewlett for unchristianlike conduct for refusing to comply with our decision in the difficulty between her and Sr. Green and respectfully ask that she be required to answer to the charges.

Very respectfully,

Albert Holt

Wm. H. Foster

Jos. McMurrin

Sr. Hewlett stated that she did not think she could ask forgiveness of Sr. Green when she considered that Sr. Green had injured her.  Said that Sr. Green had shut the door in her face when she complained to her about her children throwing stones and she did not think it was right to sustain Sr. Green in such conduct, and consequently had not complied with the decision of the Teachers.  She had never had any difficulty with any one before, and the only thing she had against St. Green was her shutting her door in her face.  Sr. Green said that the reason she shut the door in the face of Sr. Hewlett was that she (Sr. Hewlett) had previously been to the front door and window and abused her and rather than quarrel with her on this occasion she had told her daughter to shut the door.  Sr. Hewlett had accused her children of stealing, when she knew it was not so.

Br. Holt stated that Sr. Hewlett had not manifested a good spirit when he and Br. Foster had visited her as Teachers.  On the other hand Sr. Green was sorry when her children had done wrong, and she tried to have her children do right.

Br. Foster stated that what had been said by Br. Holt and Srs. Hewlett and Green was substantially correct.

Br. Jos. McMurrin said that at the Teachers trial he gave Srs. Hewlett and Green good counsel, and advised them to ask each others forgiveness, and it was decided by the Teachers that Sr. Hewlett should ask Sr. Green’s forgiveness, and Sr. Green to ask Sr. Hewlett’s forgiveness, and for both to do better in the future.  Sister Hewlett then said that she would not ask Sr. Green’s forgiveness, and he therefore did not think they could press the matter any further, but bring the case before the Bishop.  Sr. Hewlett did not manifest a good spirit.

Cr. Brockbank said he thought the case a very small one, and that too much time of the Teachers was already consumed in endeavoring to settle it.  Was sorry that such things existed among the Saints, and considered that the decision of the Teachers was correct and should be complied with, and that they both do better in the future.

Cr. McAllister said that the Sisters should abide the decision of the Teachers and both of them do better and set a good example before their children.

Bp. E. F. Sheets had endorsed what the Teachers had done in this matter and also the decision of his counsel, and that was his decision, that Sr. Green and Sr. Hewlett ask each other’s forgiveness and shake hands and do better.

Sr. Green and Hewlett met each other half way and they asked each others forgiveness, and shook hands and the matter was settled.  Bp. Sheets asked God to bless them, and the meeting was dismissed by Cr. Brockbank.”  (8th Ward Minutes, 17 Oct., 1875)

25 Oct.:  Rebaptism of missionaries.

“Seven missionaries were rebaptized today by Apostle George Q. Cannon and confirmed by Apostles John Taylor and Joseph F. Smith.”  (JH 25 Oct., 1875)

5 Nov.:  Rebaptism of 70s.

“Apostles John Taylor, Orson Pratt, George Q. Cannon and Joseph F. Smith re-baptized 34 Seventies this morning in the Endowment House, Salt Lake City.”  (JH 5 Nov., 1875)

6 Nov.:  House is subject to the visiting Teacher.

When a teacher visits “that House is subject to him and the Teacher has the privilege to ask such questions as the Spirit of God may direct him to and no person should go as a Teacher without that spirit.”  (Edward Hunter, Presiding Bishops Office, Aaronic Priesthood Minutes, 1857-1877; cited in Hartley, “Ordained and Acting Teachers in the Lesser Priesthood, 1851-1883,” BYU Studies 16(3):382, Spring, 1976)

12 Nov.:  Rebaptism of HPs by 70s.

“Apostles Geo. Q. Cannon and Joseph F. Smith were in the Historian’s Office counseling with Orson Pratt regarding the powers of Seventies to baptize High Priests, a letter having been received from W. M. Bromley of Springville asking information on that subject.  The Apostles recommended that only High Priests should baptize High Priest, and if any other have baptized, to have the ordinance repeated by High Priests.”  (JH 12 Nov., 1875)

13 Nov.:  Tabernacle Sabbath meetings discontinued.

“No More Tabernacle Meetings.–The Sabbath meetings in the Tabernacle have been discontinued for the season, or until further notice.”  (Reprint of report of 13 Nov.; DN 24(42):664, 17 Nov., 1875)

14 Nov.:  HP set apart as High Counselor & Teachers Pres.

“Apostle Erastus Snow ordained Charles Smith as High Priest and set him apart as High Councilor, also as President of the Teachers’ Quorum.”  (14 Nov., 1875; Annals of the Southern Mission, Book B, p. 590)

17 Nov.:  Bishop’s Court.

“Bishops Court Nov. 17th 1875.

Present Bp. E. F. Sheets and Council

Prayer by Cr. J. D. T. McAllister

James Shelmardine and Henry Wallace


Wm. Groesbeck

The following charge was read:

Salt Lake City Nov 12/75

Bp. Sheets and Council of the 8th Ward

We hereby prefer a charge against Wm. Groesbeck and wife, members of the C. J. C. L. D. S. of the 8th Ward for unbelief and for speaking evil of the authorities and doctrines of the Church and respectfully ask that you investigate the charge as your earliest convenience.

Very respectfully,

James Shelmardine

Henry Wallace

Br. Wm. Groesbeck being asked what he had to say to the charge replied that there was not a word of truth in it.

Br. Henry Wallace said himself and Br. Shelmardine had visited Br. Groesbeck and family quite a number of times, and their reception had been cordial and with the best of feelings.  In speaking on the principles of Co-operation, Br. Groesbeck expressed himself that the United Order was a big steal, and that the authorities of the Church were no better than other men outside of the Church.  With regard to Mormonism he thought other religions were just as good, and that they did not consider it wrong to send their children to outside schools.  He gave us to understand that the Co-op had swindled him out of thousands of dollars.

Br. James Shelmardine said he had visited Br. Broesbeck’s family with Br. Wallace and he did not know of any principle or doctrine that Br. Groesbeck & wife agreed with us in except in the blessing of their children.  If language expresses anything they did not believe in polygamy as a Cardinal Principle.  Br. G. said that the United Order was a put up job for a big steal.  He had also told the same thing on the street.  Sr. Groesbeck asked him if the Lord had revealed the United Order why did he suffer it to be changed.  Br. G. had profaned the name of the deity in his presence.  Br. & Sr. G. had been on the opposite side of every principle and doctrine that they, as Teachers, had advanced.  He did not make these assertions vindictively, or out of hatred, but with the best of feelings as though it were his own sons.

Br. M. Palmer said that when he had assisted Br. Groesbeck & family in the capacity of a Teacher he was always welcome.  Did not believe Br. G. ever had a testimony of the truth of the work.  Did not know that Br. G. was a wicked man but he used hard language.

Br. E. Tufts corroborated the above testimony.

Br. Wm. Groesbeck said that whenever Br. Palmer & Br. Tufts visited him, he always told him they were welcome.  Their main conversation was in relation to Br. Brockbank and sustaining the authorities of the Church.  I told them I was not on speaking terms with Br. Brockbank.  When Br. Shelmardine & Br. Wallace came as Teachers they spoke about the United Order and said that we were to turn over our property and be subject to the directors.  I asked them what provisions was made for the children.  Br. Shelmardine said he supposed the Lord intended that they should provide for themselves.  I told them that I should think my children would curse me in my grave.  I did not want any of it and I told them that the way they taught it, it was a big steal.  I relation to my saying that outsiders were as good as those inside the Church, I did say that I believed there were as good men outside the Church as in it.  I told them I paid tithing when I made anything, but when I did not I was not going to pay any.  I teach my children to do right and to obey me and their mother.  They are not old enough to teach the Gospel to.  I cannot see the U[nited] Order at present, neither do I believe in it as it has been taught.  I deny the charge in full.

Remarks were made by Br. Wm. Cowan and Br. John Pack, and a letter was read from Br. James Needham, all testifying that Br. Groesbeck, tho not doing as well as he should, was not opposed to the Kingdom of God.

Br. James Shelmardine said that Br. Groesbeck and wife did not believe in United Order in any shape that we could put it before them.  I told Sister Groesbeck that I did not know of any of these big stealings of the authorities of the Church–she said that I was an innocent child.

Sr. Groesbeck said I asked Br. Shelmardine if the United Order had not been changed or modified.  He said yes.  I then asked him what right the people had to change what the Lord had revealed.

Br. Wm. Hennifer said he knew that Br. Groesbeck was ready at all times to vindicate the character of the authorities of the Church.

Bp. Sheets asked Br. Shelmardine & Wallace if when they visited Br. Groesbeck’s home they went in and left the house in a joking manner.  They replied they did not.

Cr. J. D. T. McAllister said while I have been here my mind has travelled up and down our streets, and finding one young man in those saloons, have they praying Fathers?  Yes they have, but the children take their own course and that very determinedly.  Sr. Groesbeck said she thought a Methodist school the best for her children.  I am very sorry to hear it.  We have left the outside world with all their follies, and they are not our brethren in the Gospel.  Send your children where they will be taught the Gospel, and not wait until the children are 7 or 8 years of age, but teach them there is a God just as soon as they can talk or understand.

I do consider that the charge has been fully sustained, but some things might have been said which might not have been intended, which might have given a different understanding under different circumstances.  I advise you to take your children from outside schools.

Bp. E. F. Sheets asked Br. Groesbeck if he believed that Brigham Young was a Prophet, Seer and Revelator.  (Br. G. answered ‘Yes.’)  As such Prophet, Seer and Revelator, do you believe he has a right to teach the United Order and to dictate in temporal as well as in spiritual things.

Br. Groesbeck said he could not believe in the United Order as he had heard it taught, but he had not heard Pres’t Young and the Twelve teach it, and he did not believe that Pres’t Young would teach any thing swindle, and he did not believe Pres’t Young had a right to dictate in all temporal things.

Bp. E. F. Sheets talked a long time to Br. Groesbeck upon his duties as a member of the Church, and exhorted him to live according to the plan of the Gospel, and advised them both to take their children from a Gentile school, and ask the forgiveness of the brethren, and that the Teachers ask Br. Groesbeck’s forgiveness if there is any misunderstandings, and to meet each other half way.  Br. Groesbeck moved forward and shook hands with Br. Brockbank, Shelmardine & Wallace, and they asked each others forgiveness.  Sr. Groesbeck asked the forgiveness of the brethren if she had said or done anything wrong.”  (8th Ward Minutes, 17 Nov., 1875)

27 Nov.:  Rebaptism of Salt Lake 8th Ward.

“8th ward was rebaptised.  My wife Ellen and our Daughter Mary[;] Cornelia my wife & my son Moroni & wife Marinda and my daughter Angeline were rebaptized by Bro. Brockbank.  I confirmed them.”  (J. D. T. McAllister diary, 27 Nov., 1875; Huntington Library)

19 Dec.:  Teachers to prepare for rebaptism.

[Teachers Meeting]  “Br. James Toms said he was not going to have any body to dictate him with regard to his property.  Sr. Toms did not believe much in any religion at all. . . .

Bp. Sheets requested the Teachers to invite Br. Toms to our next meeting and would like to have the Teachers who had not been rebaptized to be ready when another opportunity offered, so that they could conscientiously teach.”  (8th Ward Minutes, 19 Dec., 1875)